Decatur Living Spring 2023

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A Dream Home Team

Shelley and Andy Rogers are loving life on historic Sycamore Street

Recruit Local Businesses when planning your next outdoor fête Outdoor Living in metro’s most stirring open air sanctuaries

Amplify Decatur Music Festival’s spring line up is back and ready to rock

Design ∙ Installation ∙ Maintenance 627 Valley Brook Road Scottdale, GA 30079 ∙ (404) 373-0023
Spring 2023 CONTENTS 4 A DreamHome Team Shelley and Andy Rogers are loving life on historic Sycamore Street 2 Publisher’s Letter Put Some Spring in Your Step 10 Spring Fling Recruit the help of these local businesses when planning your next outdoor fête 14 Think Green This Spring Historic Druid Hills Home & Garden Tour 18 Springtime Sanctuary 22 Banding Together for the Good of Decatur Amplify is back and ready to rock 28 The Perfect Summer (Camp) Dive into specialty camps this summer 30 Calendar of Events Spring 2023 DECATUR LIVING 1

WELCOME TO the best season of the year – spring! To me, this is the season when homes look their very best — gardens are at their most colorful; windows are open to let in a gentle breeze; and the longer days convince everyone to linger a little longer on the porch and enjoy a glass of tea or wine. What’s not to love?

This issue of Decatur Living celebrates all things outdoors and all things spring, starting with our cover story, all about two Decatur residents who absolutely love their freshly renovated home in the historic district. With the combination of their good taste and the knowledge of some local experts, photos of this gorgeous estate will leap right off the page – along with writer Vanessa Rust’s lively interview with the homeowners.

Elsewhere in the spring issue, we’re thrilled to feature two new writers: Carol Padgett, who wrote the feature on creating an outdoor sanctuary, and Jenny Peterson, who wrote about the beloved

Put Some Spring in Your Step!

tradition of summer camps. This issue is brimming with reasons to come down with a case of spring fever – in a good way, of course — by enrolling the kids in a cutting-edge camp, sprucing up the area around the swimming pool, hiring an ultra-cool, on-the-go cocktail bar for your next soiree, attending an open-air event around town (including the Druid Hills Tour of Homes) and much more.

It’s all here, and we can’t wait for you to tell us what you think. We’re exceptionally proud of this issue, and we thank you, our loyal advertising partners and readers, for giving us the chance to tell Decatur’s story. From our porch to yours, enjoy the pleasant months ahead.



P.O. BOX 2589


PUBLISHER Natalie Gregory


EDITOR Denise K. James



WRITERS Kit Eisterhold

Carol Badaracco Padgett

Vanessa Pascale Rust

Jenny Peterson

Decatur Living

Telephone: 404-373-0076

Decatur Living is published quarterly by Natalie Gregory. Distribution is a minimum of 14,000 with up to 11,000 being mailed to households in Decatur, Druid Hills, Avondale Estates, Candler Park, Lake Claire and Oak Grove. Contents of this magazine may not be reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Advertisers and advertising agencies assume liability for content of all advertisements. The publisher does not necessarily share the editorial opinions expressed in Decatur Living Magazine. Personal decisions regarding health, finance, and other matters should be made after consultation with the reader’s professional advisors.

Decatur Living is now on Facebook and Instagram. CHECK OUT THIS ISSUE ONLINE @ WWW.DECATURLIVING.COM Welcome / PUBLISHER’S LETTER
Architectural Collaboration On the cover
Natalie Gregory Publisher, Decatur Living
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A DreamHome Team

Shelley and Andy Rogers are loving life on historic Sycamore Street

SHELLEY AND ANDY ROGERS’ beautiful and eclectic home is nestled on a quiet street in Decatur. “Decatur has a lot of beautiful homes, but this one, in particular, my husband and I have always loved. It was a dream come true to get to buy it,” says Shelley Rogers. Purchased in 2010, the Sycamore Street home has received a few renovations since then which have elevated the space tremendously. “I studied the place for a long time before doing anything. It was overwhelming – I still had a full-time job, young kids, no design background; [I was a ] finance girl,” says Shelley. “I started working on this house when we got here, a room at a time.”

Shelley, who is now a jewelry designer, has an eye for design and had a specific vision for the house. With the help of Anne Sciarrone from Anne Architecture and Lisa Turner from Trinity Home & Design, Shelley was able to bring her vision to fruition. “It was time for this house to have some fresh new ideas – new life breathed into it.”

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The Rogers’ house is saturated in rich tones that invite guests to explore the relationship between patterns and textures. Shelley skillfully juxtaposes antiques with contemporary furnishings and layers in curated pieces of art to create a space that is both elegant yet welcoming. “Art helps to tell your story, and it can connect rooms to each other through stories, and it can introduce new ideas as one enters a new space. What would you like your guest to explore and enjoy as they move through your space?” asks Shelley.

Marie Mealor (Marie Mealor and Associates), a Decatur antiques and art dealer who travels to Europe on buying trips, is the primary source of the exquisite antique paintings featured throughout the Rogers’ home. Shelley and Marie’s friendship was born from a neighbor inviting Shelley to one of Marie’s open houses. “Marie lived in this house in the ‘80s…. I got to know her after I moved in. I have had so much fun working with her. She knows every inch of this house. Her eye and her taste are impeccable.”

Shelley leads me from the living room to the still life wall in the kitchen, which has been years in the making and is an ever-evolving collection. “This has been a purely joyful project for both of us. To us, the collection seems to have its own breathing spirit.” Shelley shares that Marie is also a skilled framer. “Part of the magic is collaborating to find the perfect framing to complement the artwork itself and the interior space,” she adds.

Major renovations were done to the kitchen and back patio from 2018-2019.

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“Anne, Lisa, and I all worked together. Their talent is in knowing what a homeowner needs. Some homeowners want to hand the process over and say, ‘You do it all.’ And some homeowners have their own ideas, and these people worked really well with me. Whatever your need is, these people can really match that.”

Lisa designed the kitchen and outdoor garden. “I love a moody kitchen with excellent functional lighting. Layering the lighting is so important – general lighting in ceiling, task lighting for countertops and cooktops and a pretty pendant or two for both function and style. And when you can, interior lighting in cabinets so you never lose anything in the back of a cabinet! Also, drawers. The ease of using drawers and being able to pull them open to access everything is so helpful. Crouching down to reach into the back of a cabinet for a heavy stock pot is not fun, and not great on the back. I love the [walnut] cabinet with brass screen doors. Shelley needed a place to let pies and baked goods cool with dog intervention. It's a gorgeous modern take on a pie safe!”

When Lisa designs highly sociable areas, she considers guest management and having a place to serve guests which encourages gathering away from the prep and cooking areas of the kitchen.

“This kitchen is a great example. The bar is at one end toward the living area and has cabinets that turn into serving surfaces that reduce the size of the kitchen access. Collaboration with clients is what I strive for. Kitchens and outdoor spaces are quite an investment; it makes sense to have a

professional onboard. Their expertise and resources, with both function and aesthetics, are essential. Of course, Shelley has great taste and was wonderful to collaborate with,” Lisa says.

From the kitchen, we make our way to the backyard. “We knew it was finally time to start this renovation when we were worried our party guests might fall through the dilapidated veranda deck onto the cars below!” Shelley and Andy jokingly share. “When I met Anne, one of the things we talked about was how to use this lot to our best advantage.

I wanted something that flowed outdoor to indoor, and Anne helped me get there. It was a fun process. We did quickly decide to stay within the house’s original footprint.” Anne and her team did a lot of research, looking at Leila Ross Wilburn’s (the first woman in Georgia to become a licensed architect) original designs. “They work hard to capture that element in their new design, to make it appropriate for today, but also honor that legacy. This woman back in the ‘20s and ‘40s was talking about modern conveniences and not overdoing a space but making it work for the modern woman and for entertaining.”

Today, the outdoor veranda that Shelley and Anne collaboratively designed is a gorgeous tranquil space that the Rogers frequently use. “This was a super fun project for me and my team,” says Anne. “We were excited and honored to work on this house with its historical significance, as a home originally built in 1910 and designed by Leila Ross Wilburn. With that being said, it was important to us that the work that we did was in integrity with the original house. There had been some modifications and additions made to the back of the house in the ‘80s, I believe, that did not reflect the house's original style. We wanted to correct that with the new work with more period architectural details and the creation of an outdoor space that was as lovely as the rest of the house. The design of

Spring 2023 DECATUR LIVING 7
Andy and Shelley Rogers

the veranda had to satisfy two goals: to create a garage on a lower level and to update the outdoor living space. This created a challenge, in that in order to have enough ceiling height in the garage, the level of the veranda ended up being above the level of the main floor of the house. It worked out quite nicely though, to have two levels — the upper level being the veranda with soft seating and an elevated view out to the pool and the level that is at the kitchen level with a dining area and grill,” she explains.

When Anne designs an outdoor space conducive to entertaining, she likes to have some of the area be covered, so that inclement weather doesn’t prevent the use of the space. “It's great when the outdoor cooking area can be conveniently located near the main kitchen for ease of transporting food. Having areas for seating, a table for dining and standing room for milling about in an outdoor living space provides

for a nice variety of ways for people to socialize in an outdoor space.” And, of course, lighting and sound systems are a must when it comes to the overall design.

The Rogers’ backyard is a relaxing oasis, featuring the reimagined veranda and a swimming pool with a soothing fountain surrounded by a garden of lush, verdant greenery. Jenneke Somerville, Principal of Grandiflora and based in Athens, Georgia, helped transform the Rogers’ gardens. “Jenneke is a loving and skilled caretaker of the gardens, and she executes beautiful floral designs for our parties,” says Shelley.

“It gets me excited to work with clients like Shelley, who knows and wants unusual plants. This allows me to get creative and even test out plants with fun colors, textures and other aspects of design,” adds Jenneke.

The Rogers love hosting parties in their freshly designed alfresco space. “Our favorite

ones are smaller gatherings where we can sit and talk to people — dinner parties. And it is really nice to not have to do all the cooking. When we can have people like Jennifer Odendahl (founder of Retro Party Rentals) and Paula Connor (Catering and Special Events at Oakhurst Market) provide, I think that’s a lovely idea,” says Shelley.

Andy also loves the updates made to their home. “It was a mess back here before, and it was long overdue to do some nice refreshening,” he says. “The whole project was in very good hands with Anne and Shelley and Lisa with the kitchen.” He scans the backyard approvingly.

“Andy is well-known among our friends to be a skilled cocktail craftsman, and he especially enjoys outdoor entertaining with the Green Egg,” says Shelley. Andy nods in agreement. “I love entertaining. I love when the weather gets like this and having people over to be outside with us,” he says with a smile.

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Spring Fling

Recruit the help of these local businesses when planning your next outdoor fête

SINCE SPRING’S ARRIVAL, we all want to be outside more, basking in the warmer weather and bright sunshine among the flora and greenery with friends and family. And what better way is there to welcome the season than with an outdoor fête? When planning a dreamy outdoor dinner party, garden grad party, or alfresco rehearsal dinner, you must consider a list of things – the space, food, ambience, setup, time of day… A lot goes into hosting a successful party, which is why we culled a few local businesses that can help elevate your open-air party with their services and sage advice.

A Warm Weather Menu

When it comes to your event’s fare, Oakhurst Market — a local market that offers locally sourced produce, fresh house-baked bread, beer and wine — has you covered. “We have a butcher on site, offer sandwiches daily, have a great variety of prepared foods and, of course, provide catering,” says Paula Connor, who oversees Catering and Special Events at Oakhurst Market.

Connor is a big fan of their assorted crostinis. “They offer a great variety and are easy to eat while standing. Our menus are based on some of our most popular items offered in the store and what our past customers have enjoyed at their catered events. We can certainly customize the menu to fit our customers’ needs/wants.” Oakhurst’s presentation and flavors are top-notch. And their Earl Grey and Lemon with Madagascar Vanilla Bean Buttercream topped with Fresh Berries is the perfect dessert –it’s lightweight yet decadent.

Connor’s top three must-haves for an outdoor fête are food, drinks and music. Her other tip is to consider the flow of the event and what is needed to set up the space, like chairs, tables, tents and more. “I think the fresh air, not being in a confined indoor space and being able to move around more freely are good reasons to have an outdoor party,” she concludes.

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Cocktails for a Crowd

No party is complete without drinks. If you really want to level up your event, bring in The Tippy Tap Company, featuring a vintage Piaggio Ape from Italy transformed into a gorgeous six-tap bar. “We started the importing process in 2018 and got it in our hands two weeks before I had my baby boy in 2019! I'm a Southern girl from Louisiana. My background is in bartending, hospitality and service, so starting The Tippy Tap was like second nature to me,” says founder Alice Wallace.

Whatever you need when it comes to party beverages, The Tippy Tap handles. “We want our client, the host, not to have to worry about a thing as far as the drinks are concerned, and we want all the guests to feel well taken care of. We are always trying to pair the drink menu with the food, the crowd and sometimes, even the weather. Nothing better than a cold glass of dry French rosé on a hot summer day,” Wallace notes.

The Tippy Tap can serve any assortment desired, from Champagne, wine, beer, custom craft cocktails and custom craft mocktails to juices, kids’ drinks, cold brew, kombucha…

you name it. “Even though we are an Italian truck, our most popular drink is, surprisingly, our skinny spicy margarita. We have clients that hire us back just for the margaritas!”

Wallace’s best tips for throwing a successful alfresco event are to consider the elements your guest will be experiencing, such as the weather, where the sun will be during your party and even mosquito season to ensure your guests will be comfortable. “Don't over stress. People love being taken care of, so making sure your guests are comfortable, well

fed and have enough to drink are the most important elements,” she remarks.

Alluring Ambience

Every outdoor party needs an alluring ambience. Set the scene with fresh flowers or greenery styled in an assortment of vases of varying sizes to add some color and freshness to the space. Lighting is incredibly important — think patio string lights and candles (real or battery-operated) to give the

12 DECATUR LIVING Spring 2023

area a soft glow. Turn on some music that suits your party’s theme. And lastly, create a memorable tablescape with the help of Retro Party Rentals, a boutique event rental company in Atlanta.

“In 2017, I was selling vintage glassware on Etsy. A friend was bartending a party at Kelly’s Closet, and they inquired about renting glasses. I hadn’t thought of providing vintage rentals before, but I had the glasses to make it work. My business grew from there, and now, I supply vintage glassware, flatware and dishes for events,” says founder Jennifer Odendahl.

Every successful outdoor event needs proper glassware for cocktails, the right music, and good lighting, if you ask Odendahl. “I love the look of mismatched dinnerware with unique glassware; it elevates a gathering and

can be a conversation starter. Also, vintage glassware and a spirit, like Murrell’s Row, distilled in Decatur, make a perfect hostess gift!”

When designing an outdoor space for a party, Odendahl always starts with the occasion/theme and then works with any seasonal cocktails, the event’s colors, the outdoor space and of course, the weather. “One favorite party was a fiesta and featured a tequila tasting station complete with vintage mini aperitif glasses. Another party featured a blind taste test of a high-end wine versus a low-cost wine, and everyone voted on their favorite.” Her best tips for throwing a successful alfresco shindig are to be prepared for anything, including wind, rain, sun, cold snaps and mosquitoes — and to keep guests hydrated. “I like putting out carafes on the table,” she says.

Remembering the Moment

Don’t forget to take lots of photos! Having a professional photographer snap pictures during your alfresco bash allows guests and you to relive the wonderful time you had through photographs. Local photographer Robert Lambert — whose work includes photography, documentary shorts, music videos and more — helps create lasting memories with his beautiful photography. Having a professional is great for capturing those joyful candid moments and group photos, plus images of the decor. Another plus is that you don’t have to worry about having one person sit out of the group shot to take the photo.

“A good candid moment caught on camera will keep bringing smiles to you and your guests and highlight the joys of coming together in celebration. When the party's over, revisiting those intimate times with friends through images can remind all of us that we should plan another get-together,” says Lambert.

“I like photographing outdoors because it’s exciting to capture the serendipity of light, shadows and color — and it gives me and the subjects space to move around, feel relaxed, and explore different compositions, he adds. “Spring is the perfect time to get outside for photos; the colors in the trees, blossoming flowers and a longer golden hour all make for perfect conditions to play with a camera.” According to Lambert, the three things every outdoor party (and party photo) should have are friends, food and music. “Get outside and make the most out of the weather and colors around you!”

For more information, visit: Oakhurst Market

The Tippy Tap Co.

Retro Party Rentals

Photographer Robert Lambert

Spring 2023 DECATUR LIVING 13

Think Green This Spring

Historic Druid Hills Home & Garden Tour

and the Druid Hills Tour of Homes & Gardens is right around the corner. This year the tour will be Friday, April 28th through Sunday, April 30th. We are partnering with virtually every environmentally oriented nonprofit in Druid Hills — we are calling ourselves the “Canopy Coalition” — to put on a fantastic spring celebration.


The Olmsted Linear Park Alliance, South Fork Conservancy, Fernbank Forest, Trees Atlanta, The Georgia Native Plant Society and The Georgia Audubon Society are all

taking part and will be hosting various events throughout the neighborhood to highlight the gorgeous natural gardens and greenspaces here in Druid Hills.

In keeping with the spring celebration, we are having a decidedly garden-themed tour this year. We are featuring homes like 1755 Ridgewood, a beautiful craftsman cottage with clinker brick and Tudor accents, set in a bucolic, one-acre wooded garden with a creek running through it, directly adjacent to Vickers Park and Peavine Creek. We also have a rare native plant

garden down the street, at 1721 Dyson Drive.

Before you go to the next house on the tour, take some time to stroll through Fernbank Forest. The Fernbank Museum has agreed to open up Fernbank Forest to tour goers — and the forest is one of the last remaining stands of old growth forests in Atlanta, with 300-year old specimen hardwoods. You will also be able to access the award-winning rooftop garden at Springdale Park Elementary, located at 803 Briarcliff Road.

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We have a trio of cozy homes along Harvard Road. Start with a quaint Tudor at 1360 Harvard, perched high on a hill overlooking the neighborhood with an inviting patio and pergola in the back. This setting makes you feel aloft in the canopy of hardwoods overhead. A recently renovated brick craftsman with covered front porch and rare jerkinhead dormer is just a few houses down the street, at 1355 Harvard, and don’t miss the gorgeous clinker brick Tudor with turret and crenelated porte-cochere, which neighbors affectionately refer to as the Castle House.

At 1491 Emory Road, we have the opportunity to glimpse a rare, five-acre wooded garden with a creek running through it, walking trails and a magnificent koi pond and waterfall. Just a short walk away, you will find the Peavine Trail, where you can take a guided tour with members of the South Fork Conservancy and the Friends of Peavine Trail. Bring your kids on Saturday, and enjoy an opportunity to learn about hummingbirds and plant flowers in the South Fork Conservancy’s Rain Garden, complete with

music and lessons about native and pollinator friendly plants.

There is an impressive, true two-story brick Tudor with board and batten gables at 1169 Oxford Road, and, across the Twitten and a brisk walk down Oakdale, 883 Oakdale is a magnificent, Walter T. Downing estate sitting on a grand, nearly two-acre lot with a spectacular garden.

It’s going to be a great tour and a fabulous spring. We hope you will join us and admire these beautiful spaces in Historic Druid Hills. Visit

▲ 1355 Harvard ▼ 338 Oakdale
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1360 Harvard
Creative design for inspired living | | 404.378.0197

Springtime Sanctuary

LAVISH AND UNDERSTATED. Wild and contained. Structured and unregulated. Descriptions that seem contradictory at first glance easily fuse to describe the lush array of patios, pools and outdoor enclaves that grace Atlanta-area homes today.

Our city’s superpower (one among many) is a humid subtropical climate that ensures residents are lounging in three- and four-season outdoor spaces for all or most of the year.

“The Atlanta climate allows us to create spaces that engage the interior of the house and extend living, dining and entertaining areas in functional and beautiful ways,” notes Micah Rogers, lead landscape architect at Boyce Design and Contracting in Atlanta, who has a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) accreditation from the U.S. Green Building Council.

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Mid-century soothes the senses

Rogers notes a renaissance of homeowner desire for mid-century modern’s iconic understatement.

“Customers are starting to move away from flowing, organic forms in their pools and patios and are starting to migrate back toward clean, organized lines with an emphasis on proportion and function,” he describes.

“Mid-century modern aesthetics never really went away,” he continues, “but we are seeing more and more client inspiration photos with horizontal lines, warm wood accents and no-frills hardscape finishes.”

Of his firm’s design interpretation of the aesthetic, Rogers notes, “With it comes outdoor spaces and additions that feature stained slat walls and ceilings, large-format concrete and paver patios, brick and rubble walls with leaner and longer proportions and an emphasis on neutral color schemes with pops of color via stained wood accents and playful furnishings.”

A big believer in noted Chicago architect Louis Sullivan’s design philosophies, Roger agrees that form follows function. “Good design is only good if it works correctly in addition to looking good,” he says.

As such, he adds, “We love to create flowing spaces with clear circulation, functional gathering areas, pleasant sight lines and a unified aesthetic.”

Design philosophy can get a bit complicated, though, as local landscape architects are continually working within Atlanta’s rich mixture of new build and renovated living and outdoor spaces.

“If done right, though” Rogers continues, “renovations can take advantage of established landscaping, structures and other existing features to make a space feel instantly ‘lived in,’ rather than the look of a new build that might take five years to ‘grow in’ and feel established, at least on the landscape and outdoor living side of things.”

Plants push the limits

Landscape designer Jenneke Somerville of Athens, Georgia gravitates toward intimate, detail-oriented gardens filled with perennials and annual color. She grew up on a farm with artists for parents, so, in her mind, plants provide the eye with a visual playground.

“The joy of gardening is that nothing is ever static,” she muses. “I always say, ‘plants on wheels’—if you don’t like it in one location, move it to another.”

Somerville’s elegant and oftentimes unexpected approach includes trying combinations that others may not think to mix. For example, she says, “Try pots of tropical plants outside mixed with annuals, mixed with vegetables (okra is very sculptural).”

And she adds, “Try cactus, agaves, succulents, herbs and bulbs indoors or on porches to extend the gardening season well into the winter.”

According to Somerville, since the pandemic, people intrinsically crave a connection to the outdoors and their own personal gardens— even if that simply means potted plants on a porch or balcony.

Environmental underscoring

“Everybody knows and loves the introduction of new plant material and hardscapes,” notes Jessica Neese with Atlanta’s In Bloom

Landscaping, a designer with an inclination toward classical and traditional designs. “But outdoor lighting is the icing on the cake.”

Lighting serves to extend daytime living into night, she says, and, on a practical level, it adds another level of appreciation of the investment.

“The industry itself has migrated toward more environmental and energy-saving options, primarily in the [areas of] irrigation and outdoor lighting,” Neese notes. “Irrigation has rain sensors and smart apps that enable much better control of systems to control watering waste.”

Similarly, LED fixtures and bulbs have completely ousted other outdoor lighting options over time.

When it comes to outdoor landscapes, is it the homeowner or the designer who is pushing toward environmentally conscious design options?

“We have the occasional client who asks for sustainable design principles and energy efficiency,” Rogers says. “But I feel like the opportunity for much more awareness and integration of sustainable development in the outdoor living market is there . . . and needs to be pursued by designers and contractors.”

Even simple environmental sustainability practices come naturally to homeowners that relish time spent in outdoor spaces, Somerville says.

“I have some clients who are interested in incorporating native plants or a rain garden to absorb water runoff, or who prefer an organic garden using compost or manures,” she points out.

It’s a trend she suspects savvy homeowners will continue to pursue moving deeper into 2023. And she encourages them:“Use some plants that are native and encourage insect habitat and birds in the garden to keep everything balanced.”

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Protect the home you love. 18292101 Allstate home products not available in FL, and may also not be available in certain areas of other states. Policies may be written by a non-affiliated third-party company. Insurance subject to terms, conditions and availability. Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company & affiliates: 2775 Sanders Rd Northbrook, IL. ©2016 Allstate Insurance Co.
Protect the home you love. 18292101 Allstate home products not available in FL, and may also not be available in certain areas of other states. Policies may be written by a non-affiliated third-party company. Insurance subject to terms, conditions and availability. Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company & affiliates: 2775 Sanders Rd Northbrook, IL. ©2016 Allstate Insurance Co.
Protect the home you love. 18292101 Allstate home products not available in FL, and may also not be available in certain areas of other states. Policies may be written by a non-affiliated third-party company. Insurance subject to terms, conditions and availability. Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company & affiliates: 2775 Sanders Rd Northbrook, IL. ©2016 Allstate Insurance Co.
18292101 Allstate home products not available in FL, and may also not be available in certain areas of other states. Policies may be written by a non-affiliated third-party company. Insurance subject to terms, conditions and availability. Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company & affiliates: 2775 Sanders Rd Northbrook, IL. ©2016 Allstate Insurance Co.
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Banding Together for the Good of Decatur

Amplify is back and ready to rock

IF IT’S APRIL IN DECATUR, it’s time for the Amplify Decatur Music Festival—our hometown’s renowned concert series, which draws nationally and internationally touring bands to the downtown square every year, all while strengthening our community.

This year’s main event offers an eclectic lineup that includes St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Patty Griffin, James McMurtry, The Suffers, and more. The Saturday festival will

also feature Town Mountain, Jackson County Line and The Sundogs. Tickets are $75 for general admission, $195 for VIP and $275 for premium VIP.

Amplify Decatur will also host a series of free events in and around the downtown Decatur Square on Friday, April 28, including Tumbling Dice—The Ultimate Tribute to The Rolling Stones, and a tribute to Elliot Smith at Waller’s Coffee Shop on the evening of Sunday, April 30.

Amplify Decatur is presented by Lenz and produced in partnership with Eddie’s Attic. Proceeds will be directed to Decatur Cooperative Ministry (DCM), Decatur Education Foundation (DEF), and Giving Kitchen to aid their vital missions. Since 2011, Amplify My Community has produced more than 120 concerts and raised and donated more than $550,000— including more than $335,000 in Decatur.

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Meet the bands

St. Paul & The Broken Bones

St. Paul & the Broken Bones burst into the world with their 2014 debut Half the City, establishing a sound that quickly became a calling card and landing the band critical praise from The New York Times, Rolling Stone, SPIN and NPR – and tours with some of the world’s biggest artists: Elton John and The Rolling Stones among them, presenting what Esquire touted as a "potent live show that knocks audiences on their ass."

Their new LP, “Angels in Science Fiction,” stretches their limbs further afield, building on the shadowy psychedelia and intricate, experimental R&B of 2022’s The Alien Coast.

Patty Griffin is among the most consequential singersongwriters of her generation, a quintessentially American artist whose wide-ranging canon incisively explores the intimate moments and universal emotions that bind us together. Over the course of two decades, the two-time Grammy Award winner and seven-time nominee has crafted a remarkable body of work in progress that prompted the New York Times to hail her for “[writing] cameo-carved songs that create complete emotional portraits of specific people…[her] songs have independent lives that continue in your head when the music ends.”

According to Stephen King, “The simple fact is that James McMurtry may be the truest, fiercest songwriter of his generation.”

In McMurtry’s latest effort, “The Horses and the Hounds,” the acclaimed songwriter backs personal narratives with effortless elegance (“Canola Fields”) and endless energy (“If It Don’t Bleed”). His 10th studio album spotlights a seasoned tunesmith in peak form as he turns toward reflection (“Vaquero”) and revelation (closer “Blackberry Winter”).

“How do we heal from this?” Kam Franklin asks on The Suffers’ explosive new album, “It Starts With Love.” It’s a loaded question without any clear answers, a painful reckoning with the open wounds of racial violence and trauma that continue to plague this nation as we lurch forward from one tragedy to the next, swearing things will change each time, only to watch the same scenes play out over and over again. “They keep breaking us like we can’t feel,” Franklin continues. “We’ve all been shouting out since Emmett Till.”

Town Mountain

Raw, soulful and with plenty of swagger, Town Mountain has earned raves for their hard-driving sound, their in-house songwriting and the honky tonk edge that permeates their exhilarating live performances.

Formed in 2006, Jackson County Line offers ear-sticking songwriting laced with cello, hypnotically placed ambience, tangible hooks and toe-tapping power grooves. Fans of Jason Isbell, Lucinda Williams, and Wilco will love this band.

Brothers Lee and Will Haraway formed The Sundogs in Atlanta in the early 2000s and quickly gained attention for the melodic, Americana rock ‘n’ roll sound of their records and for their high-energy live shows.

Patty Griffin James McMurtry The Suffers Jackson County Line The Sundogs
Spring 2023 DECATUR LIVING 23

Strengthening Our Community

Since 2011, Amplify has donated more than $550,000 to community nonprofits, including more than $335,000 in Decatur. Here are the 2023 beneficiaries:

Decatur Cooperative Ministry’s mission is to help families facing homelessness settle into safe, stable homes and build healthy lives filled with peace, hope and opportunity. Founded in 1969, Decatur Cooperative Ministry (DCM) offers transitional housing, shelter, homelessness prevention, rapid re-housing and permanent supportive housing programs.

Decatur Education Foundation works together with the City Schools of Decatur, Decatur Housing Authority and City of Decatur to bolster community efforts and ensure that all students have the resources, opportunities and experiences in order to foster their growth and ensure their academic success.

Giving Kitchen provides emergency assistance for food service workers through financial support and a network of community resources.


2:15 The Sundogs

3:00 Jackson County Line

4:00 Town Mountain

5:00 James McMurtry

6:30 The Suffers

7:45: Patty Griffin

9:30 St. Paul & the Broken Bones

Additionally, Friday, April 28 will feature free performances around the Decatur square.

It begins at 7 p.m. Friday, April 28 with a concert at the gazebo featuring The Dirty Doors: A Tribute to The Doors. The folk duo Ghoststories opens the show.

The weekend concert series wraps at 7 p.m. Sunday, April 30 with a tribute to Eliot Smith at Waller’s Coffee Shop. Tickets are $10.

24 DECATUR LIVING Spring 2023
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The Perfect Summer (Camp)

Dive into specialty camps this summer

SUMMER CAMP is a beloved American tradition, with generations of children finding inspiration, new hobbies, endless play and lifelong friends during the memorable three-month break from school. Think outside the box with a circus camp or music camp. Below are just a few open for registration.

In Decatur Science of fun STEM camp

Get ready for slime, rockets, robots and more at a highly-engaging STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) camp held by The Science of Fun on two locations in downtown Decatur. Campers ages 5 to 9 are encouraged to explore and experiment — and no prior STEM experience required. Four themes include Life Lessons: Birds, Plants, and Critters; Busy Bodies: Bones, Senses and Germs; Fun Forces & Tiny Tech: Vehicles, Sounds, Robots, and Weird Weather: Tornadoes, Hurricanes, and Crazy Clouds. Kids can look forward to capturing a cloud in a

bottle, tie-dying shirts and making a slingshot rocket. Week-long sessions run from May 30 through July 14. Campers ages 10-12 and older can register for a counselor in training program.

Community Music Centers of Atlanta

Budding musicians can fine-tune skills at various music-oriented camps put on by the Community Music Centers of Atlanta at its Decatur campus. Rock camp, music theater camp, guitar and ukulele camp, drum camp, folk and country music camp, Schoolhouse Rock camp, string camp and piano camp await enthusiasts throughout the summer. Young

musicians are engaged by both traditional and contemporary uses of musical styles and all levels are welcome. Beginners are taught basic theory, while more advanced musicians work on performance projects and improvisation. Camps are designed for students in kindergarten through fifth grade. There are also programs for middle and high school students.

Circus Camp

The “Greatest Camp on Earth” at Friend’s School Decatur teaches children real circus skills such as unicycling, tightrope, stilts, partner balancing, clowning and magic. All

28 DECATUR LIVING Spring 2023

skill levels are welcome, and the camp serves ages 5 and older, including teens. Highly trained counselors describe which circus skill they will be teaching for that "act," and campers pick the real circus activities they would like to learn. The best part? The camp presents a live show by circus professionals every day to entertain and inspire campers. Week-long sessions run from June 5 through July 24. Classes fill up quickly!

InTown Stars

Intown Stars welcomes campers ages 5 through 12 to its state-of-the-art 75,000-square-foot gymnasium, course and rink in Decatur. Campers will have access to the entire gym and be able to choose which activities they do daily with a balance of structure and free play. There’s a full gymnastics gym, parkour course, roller skating rink, sports field, hammock village, art studio, gaga pits and more. Campers will be jumping, climbing and moving with camp-wide games, including water Olympics and a field day, held every day. Sessions run from May 30-July 28.

Youth Camps at Agnes Scott College

Agnes Scott College offers several one-of-a-kind youth camps for middle and high schoolers at its picturesque campus that combine learning and fun. The weeklong Astro Camp—an approved NASA camp curriculum—immerses rising 6th through 12th grade student campers in STEM activities centering around Earth science, planetary science, the International Space Station, virtual journeys to the moon, Mars and beyond. Two sessions will be held: June 5-9 and June 12-16. For the tech-y teen, the weeklong Camp Tech Revolution for ages 10-15 lets campers dabble in some of the most cutting-edge technology in the world today. Tech Revolution will hold six one-week sessions from June 19 through July 28. For budding authors and novelists, a Young Writers Camp will unleash creativity through a variety of literary experiences and scripted prompts. The middle school session will be held June 19-28, and a two-week high school writers camp will be held from June 12-23. Every camp at Agnes Scott is held on its safe and beautiful 100-acre campus with outdoor classroom opportunities and inspiration around every corner.

Outside Decatur


History Center

Explore the past through games, historic simulations and more with history camps and writing camps at the Atlanta History Center. Themed weeks include “Around the World in Five Days,” “Fantastic Mysteries and Where to Find Them,” and “All-Star Atlanta,” where campers will learn about Atlanta’s favorite sports teams. Ages 6 to 11. Two week-long camps will be held on June 5-9 and June 12-16. history-summer-camp

High Museum of Art

Dive into art at the High Museum. Young artists will explore the museum’s galleries and hone their skills in drawing, painting and design to create original artworks. Professional teaching artists will inspire children to experiment with materials and try new techniques. Weeklong camps are held for rising first through eighth graders with themes that include Space Art Exploration, Messy Masterpieces and Going Wild. Camps run from June 5-July 28 and fill up fast.

Camps include:

NASA Astro Camps

Georgia STARTALK Program: Chinese and Turkish Writing Camps Camp Tech Revolution and MORE!

Agnes Scott College offers summer youth camps for elementary, middle and high school students on its campus in the heart of downtown Decatur.

6, 13, 20, & 27



Relax on the lawn of the Solarium Thursday evenings in April and listen to jazz artists from all over the Southeast. Bring blankets and picnic dinners, but please leave your lawn chairs at home. Concerts are held rain or shine; in case of rain, the concert will move inside the Solarium. Family-friendly and free.

2, 9, 16, 23, & 30



Gather everyone together and pack your blankets, chairs and appetites! The area’s best food trucks will be offering delicious fare every Tuesday evening in May — weather permitting — at Decatur’s newest and biggest greenspace, Legacy Park.

Relax, savor early summer and take in the beauty of nature while you enjoy a tasty bite. Bring the whole family; there’s room for the kids to run around and have fun. Pets are welcome to tag along as well, as long as they are leashed.


28 - 30

Bring your most festive basket, and join the Easter Bunny in a hunt for eggs on the front lawn of Decatur First Baptist Church. The Easter Bunny arrives at 10:30 a.m., so don’t be late! Hunting groups are determined by age: 2 and under, preschool, kindergarten and 1st through 5th grades. Sponsored by Decatur Business Association and local businesses. Free to the community.



5 - 7 MAY
The Decatur Arts Festival offers a number of music, theater, literary and comedy performances, as well as opportunities to purchase one-of-a-kind artwork at the juried Artists Market, showcasing around 140 artists. This year’s festival welcomes the return of the Fine Arts Exhibition; visit the newly renovated 4th floor gallery of the Decatur Library to view these works on display. Kick off the festival weekend with the ArtWalk on Friday, then enjoy KidsFest on Saturday with the whole family. Food, drinks and activities await all weekend. APRIL AMPLIFY DECATUR MUSIC FESTIVAL
Get ready to rock Decatur Square! The main event of Amplify 2023 is an all-day Saturday lineup featuring: St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Patty Griffin, James McMurtry, The Suffers, Town Mountain, Jackson County Line and The Sundogs. Food and beverage vendors will be on site. This festival will also feature a series of shows in and around Decatur Square the entire weekend, including Tumbling Dice—The Ultimate Tribute to The Rolling Stones on Friday, April 28, and an “Amplify Vs.” show at Waller’s Coffee Shop on the evening of Sunday, April 30.
30 DECATUR LIVING Spring 2023
Did you know the city of Decatur became the very first Bee City USA® in Georgia in 2016? Learn more at our very own celebration of National Pollinator Week on June 24 in the Square. Admire bees, butterflies, native plants and a wide variety of vendors at this buzzworthy event. Educational activities, speakers and more are part of this mini festival. Bee there or bee square!

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In this spring market with limited inventory, it is crucial to align yourself with a knowledgeable agents who specializes in the area. As leading agents in this market, we have a proven track record of bringing our clients opportunities to help execute their real estate goals. Don’t miss out on your chance to find your dream home – contact us today to explore your options and start your journey towards homeownership.

DECATUR COMING SOON 4 BD | 3 BA 249 Madison Avenue DECATUR COMING SOON 3 BD | 3 BA 126 Huron Street
Compass is a licensed real estate broker and abides by Equal Housing Opportunity laws. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only. Information is compiled from sources deemed reliable but is subject to errors, omissions, changes in price, condition, sale, or withdrawal without notice. No statement is made as to the accuracy of any description. All measurements and square footages are approximate. This is not intended to solicit property already listed. Nothing herein shall be construed as legal, accounting or other professional advice outside the realm of real estate brokerage. NATALIE GREGORY 404.373.0076 | 404.668.6621 nataliegregoryandco OAK GROVE $725,000 | PENDING 4 BD | 3.5 BA 1567 Reserve Circle DECATUR $749,000 | SOLD 3 BD | 3.5 BA 432 E Howard Avenue DECATUR $1,095,000 | ACTIVE 4 BD | 2.5 BA 307 Superior Avenue DECATUR SOLD | REPRESENTED BUYER 5 BD | 5.5 BA 630 Pinetree Drive

They say life doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle. But that doesn’t mean you have to handle it alone. These days, it’s more important than ever to make sure you have a financial professional by your side; someone who can help evaluate your needs, assess the current economic landscape and recommend a plan of action that will help protect your family’s wealth, lifestyle and dreams for the future. Let’s get started — there’s no better time than now.

Tim Martin, a Registered Representative, offering securities through NYLIFE Securities LLC (member FINRA/SIPC) A Licensed Insurance Agency 5909 Peachtree Dunwoody Road, Building D, Suite 1100, Atlanta, GA 30328. Tim Martin is a FinancialAdviser offering investment advisory services through Eagle Strategies, a Registered Investment Adviser. Tim Martin Wealth Strategies is not owned or operated by NYLIFE Securities LLC or its affiliates. 1806672 TIM MARTIN, LUTCF 1435-B McLendon Drive | Decatur, GA 30033 770.934.7511 | @TMAwealthstrategies @timmartinwealth TIMMARTINWEALTH.COM Plan.
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