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COMMUNITY

WELLNESS

Early intervention

Epic 50th anniversary

Young models in the latest school fashions were among the attractions at the 2013 CrossRoadsNews Family & Back-toSchool Expo on Aug. 3. 2

Obesity rates for low-income preschoolers declined slightly in Georgia and 18 other states and territories, a movement in the right direction. 6

The King Center is set to commemorate the 1963 March on Washington and King’s “I Have a Dream” speech with a host of events. 8

Ready for school

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EAST ATLANTA • DECATUR • STONE MOUNTAIN • LITHONIA • AVONDALE ESTATES • CLARKSTON • ELLENWOOD • PINE LAKE • REDAN • SCOTTDALE • TUCKER

Copyright © 2013 CrossRoadsNews, Inc.

August 10, 2013

Volume 19, Number 15

www.crossroadsnews.com

2013-14 school year brings new opportunities, challenges By Ken Watts

Things are looking up for the DeKalb School District as its 99,676 students return to school on Aug. 12, interim Superintendent Michael Thurmond says.

of six of the nine of board members – the district suddenly, miraculously appears to be on more solid fiscal ground with teacher pay increases, possibly fewer furlough days, and the prospect of more resources directed to the classroom to help improve student perforMichael Thurmond mance. Interim Superintendent Michael Thurmond said this week that things are looking up for the DeKalb County schools. “We are excited about the coming

Come Monday morning, rush-hour traffic will be a bit thicker as the DeKalb School District’s 945 buses roll out before dawn to pick up and deliver nearly 100,000 kids to the district’s elementary, middle and high schools on their first day of the 2013-2014 school year. The start of the new school year for the district’s 99,676 students on Aug. 12 is full of excitement and optimism – and with good reason. After all of the turmoil of the past year – academic probation for the district, departure of the school superintendent, appointment of an interim superintendent, removal Please see STUDENTS, page 9

File Photo

Red Moore, other Negro Leagues stars honored President Barack Obama shakes hands with Atlanta baseball legend James “Red” Moore at the White House on Aug. 5. Admirers helped with Moore’s travel expenses.

Obama cites contributions to history, sports By Ken Watts

Atlanta baseball legend James “Red” Moore lived through many unforgettable moments on the field, but none could compare with the thrill of a lifetime when he met President Barack Obama at the White House on Aug. 5. Moore, 96, played for the Atlanta Black Crackers starting in the mid-1930s, appearing on the rosters of three All-Star teams and three Second Half Championship teams. He and 11 other stars of the iconic Negro Leagues were honored Monday by Obama in the Grand Foyer of the White House. “You brought a sense of pride to the African-American community during the tough social climate of segregation,” the president told the group. The White House said Obama invited the players and their families to mark their contributions to American history, civil rights and athletics. The delegation included Minnie Minoso, Ron Teasley and Pedro Sierra, who competed for teams like the Philadelphia Stars, New York Black Yankees, Indianapolis Clowns and Boston Blues. Obama shook hands with Moore and each of the other players before his remarks. “I want to make sure I get your names right,” he joked. Obama, a lifelong student of history, is well-versed on the Negro Leagues. Between 1935 and 1940, Moore, who lives in Atlanta, was recognized as one of the premier first basemen in the Negro National and American Leagues. In 1938, he was selected for the Southern News Services All-American Negro League Baseball Team. Buck O’Neal, the late Negro Leagues player and manager, once said Moore was

White House Photo by Pete Souza

disbanded after Jackie Robknown as a defensive whiz inson became the first black who could “pick it” at first person in modern times to base. play in the Major Leagues Because of decades of in 1947, clearing a path for racial segregation, Africanother black players to follow American baseball players to the majors. were forced to play in their Moore was able to make own leagues and were prethe trip to Washington vented from competing with thanks to the generosity of white players in the Major fans and admirers who read Leagues. Over time, they about his opportunity to go developed their own highly to the White House in the entertaining brand of baseJuly 13 edition of Crossball with blazing speed on RoadsNews and contributed the base paths, power hitto his travel expenses. ting, tight defense and stellar Greg White, a family pitching that was popular friend who helped chaperon Moore to the with baseball fans – black and white. The leagues declined and eventually nation’s capital, said many people helped.

“We raised $1,430 in donations,” said White, who works for the city of Decatur and is immediate past president of the Southwest DeKalb High PTSA. “We were also able to get discounts on the airfare, so we want to thank everyone who made this trip possible.” After the president’s remarks, the group broke into an impromptu rendition of “Happy Birthday” for Obama, who celebrated his 52nd birthday on Aug. 4. “Wow, you can sing too!” Obama quipped. White said that Moore was thrilled to meet the president and to share the spotlight with his baseball buddies. “I’m just so happy for them to not only get the recognition they deserve, but to have the once-in-a-lifetime chance to interact with the president,” he said.


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CrossRoadsNews

Community

August 10, 2013

Scenes from the 2013 Family & Back-to-School Expo

Students from the Conservatory of Dance in Lithonia execute an African dance number at the CrossRoadsNews’ Aug. 3, 2013, Family & Back-to-School Expo at the Mall at Stonecrest.

Indie rock group Hero the Band from Decatur kicks off the expo with an energetic performance.

Students model fashions from Sears and J.C. Penney.

Fifteen-year-old guitarist and vocalist Rhaelon Monique performs her own songs.

Exhibitor New Beginnings Today talks with a visitor.

Life Chef Asata Reid shows parents and kids how to make tasty and healthy after-school snacks.

Kids sign the solicitor general’s perfect attendance pledge board.

Madre Jenkins of Decatur with CrossRoadsNews Publisher Jennifer Parker won the $250 Mall at Stonecrest Gift Card grand prize.

CrossRoadsNews Photos by Jennifer Ffrench Parker, Curtis Parker and Ken Watts

IKEA shopping spree winners Cheryl Moore of Decatur, Nicole Banks of Conyers and Debbie Tillman of Stone Mountain pose with IKEA marketing manager Diedra Cunningham. They will have their shopping spree on Aug. 10.


August 10, 2013

Community

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CrossRoadsNews

“This grant allows us to continue our now more than 14-year mission of helping former inmates in South DeKalb and throughout metro Atlanta.”

STAND receives $1.2 million grant to help former inmates A DeKalb community agency will get a huge boost in its work to prevent inmates from becoming repeat offenders. U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson, who represents Georgia’s 4th District, announced on Aug. 8 that Standing to Achieve New Directions Inc. will get a $1.2 million grant from the Department of Health and Human Services. Decatur-based STAND provides behavioral health services for men returning from periods of incarceration. Charles Sperling, the nonprofit’s founder and executive director, said the grant will help the group expand its efforts to reintegrate former prisoners into society. “This grant allows us to continue our now more than 14-year mission of helping former inmates in South DeKalb and throughout metro Atlanta become healthy, productive members of our communities,” Sperling said. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration award is part of a national recidivism effort called Project Synergy. STAND will receive an annual grant of $430,000 for three years through 2016. Since 2009, Johnson has supported more than $700 million in funding to help prevent inmates from becoming repeat offenders, according to a press release from his office. “These grants are a testament to a commitment by local and state leaders to address the problem and a bipartisan consensus at the federal level about the need for smart investments in effective re-entry programs,” Rep. Hank Johnson meets with Charles Sperling (right) and his staff at STAND Inc. The nonprofit provides Johnson said. behavioral health services for men returning from periods of incarceration.

Stonecrest Master Plan on display After months of public input, a draft of the long-awaited Stonecrest Master Plan is complete and residents are invited to come take a look on Aug. 17. The plan will be on display at the Mall at Stonecrest from 2 to 5 p.m. in the food court and courtyard. Residents are encouraged to review and provide comments on the master plan and take a bike tour of proposed improvements. The DeKalb Department of Planning and Sustainability launched the Stonecrest

Livable Centers Initiative study to create a unified vision for the ultimate enhancement of the Stonecrest area. The study seeks to enhance the area’s long-term economic viability, improve local congestion, create a healthy and safe place for pedestrians and cyclists, and promote easy access to jobs. The mall is at 2929 Turner Hill Road in Lithonia. For more information, contact Jen Price at jenprice@sycamoreconsulting.net or 404-377-9147.

AGL promotes safe digging on 8/11 Atlanta Gas Light is using Aug. 11 as a reminder to the public to call 811 before starting any outdoor digging project, big or small. AGL President Bryan Batson said the utility launched the safety campaign to prevent injury, property damage or utility outages from improper digging. “We believe that making a quick and easy call can help maintain safe, reliable service and protect our customers, employees and the communities we serve,” Batson said. When calling 811, residents are connected

to their local one-call center, which notifies the utility of the intent to dig. Professional locators are then sent to the site to mark the locations of underground lines with color-coded spray paint, flags or stakes. Once lines have been accurately marked, residents are urged to use hand tools to dig carefully. If a line is accidentally damaged or if the odor of gas is present, call Atlanta Gas Light at 1-877-427-4321. For more information about safe digging, visit www.atlantagaslight. com/Safety.


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Forum 2346 Candler Rd. Decatur, GA 30032 404-284-1888 Fax: 404-284-5007 www.crossroadsnews.com editor@crossroadsnews.com

Editor / Publisher Jennifer Parker Graphic Design Curtis Parker Staff Writers Jennifer Ffrench Parker Jessica Smith Ken Watts Copy Editor Brenda Yarbrough Advertising Sales Jeanette Ross Circulation Manager Jami Ffrench-Parker CrossRoadsNews is published every Saturday by CrossRoads­News, Inc. We welcome articles on neighborhood issues and news of local happenings. The opinions expressed by writers and contributors are not necessarily those of the publisher, nor those of any advertisers. The concept, design and content of CrossRoads­News are copyrighted and may not be copied or reproduced in whole or in part in any manner without the written permission of the publisher.

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“However in the case of a City of Stonecrest, there are really not that many “resources” to be taken.”

Obama showed humility, humanity in wake of verdict By Steve Bradshaw

temperament. I was most struck by President Obama’s the president’s clear-eyed impromptu press briefing assertion that we don’t on July 19 in the wake of need some national conthe George Zimmerman versation on race. I agree verdict was indicative with him that those types of his humility and his of summits tend to be humanity and may prove contrived and stilted. Steve Bradshaw to be a watershed event I think we all would be in the history of race relations in better served by more intimate conAmerica. It further underscores versations among family, friends, why I admire him so much. church members and co-workers More than the words he spoke, set against a backdrop of mutual which were for the most part on respect and caring. Better still, at point, I was struck by two things. least for me, is chatting over a beer n He waited before speaking. He at a local pub as I have done many did not come out right after the times with my good friend Bob. We verdict making highly emotional don’t agree on everything. At times statements. He paused for a few we don’t agree on anything. But I days to think and process the events love the guy. And I love the fact that that had transpired. Then he care- we can be candid with each other. fully considered what he was going The sitting president of the to say. United States is not black. He is n His remarks were not delivered mixed. However, he looks black. in anger or anguish. Certainly As a result, society to a large degree some of his comments were very views this as his most defining charpersonal. But those personal com- acteristic. What I like is the simple ments simply reinforced the point fact that this calm and elegant man that before he was president, he was has not let how he looks define him. a man. I have always marveled at He has adapted to and overcome his self-control. Among the many whatever obstacles were in his way skills and talents that he brought as he was evolving to become the to office with him, I think the one person that he is. that serves him best and by extenSteve Bradshaw lives in Clarksion serves the rest of us best is his ston.

Why you should say ‘no’ to the city of Stonecrest By Faye Coffield

or unable to create basic departments and/or I believe there are only services, they will have to three things you can do be contracted from the with power – use it, abuse county. it or fear it. Right now There has been no those in the southern porstudy of how much proption of unincorporated erty taxes of residents DeKalb have the power. within these newly creFaye Coffield There is an effort to ated cities have increased. change parts of unincorporated Some will point to the fact the DeKalb into the city of Stonecrest. Georgia Legislature enacted legisIt appears I am one of those persons lation which allowed these cities who will be in the targeted area and to take various resources from De­ will therefore be impacted. Kalb. However in the case of a city Within recent years, we have of Stonecrest, there are really not observed several cities break away that many “resources” to be taken. from unincorporated Fulton and Property values have decreased DeKalb to establish new “cities.” significantly, creating a shortfall in To some this may appear to be a DeKalb and this shortfall will cross great idea. To others like me, it is a over to the property values in the move which will dilute the power of proposed city of Stonecrest. South DeKalb and black residents The city of Lithonia is already in DeKalb as a whole. in place and is unlikely to want to The creation of the city of change its boundaries. Stonecrest is Stonecrest will mandate the cre- surrounded by residential properation of a governmental structure ties and small businesses which are including a mayor, at least five city not a good match for a new city. council members, various other Some may talk about the growth administrative local government potential of the corridor. The stark agencies and related services. reality is without a train or other It will also have to create a high-speed transportation there police, fire and sanitation depart- can be no major growth. ment along with support staffing Whoever controls the majority including secretaries, administra- of unincorporated areas will contive assistants and others. If the trol the destiny of the county. “city of Stonecrest” is unwilling Faye Coffield lives in Lithonia. index to advertisers

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For Sybrina Fulton, from another mother By Elisabeth Omilami 7 20 2013

Black Child Walking Black child walking in the Florida sun Didn’t know his life was done Cause Zimmerman took it with his gun Trayvon, Trayvon He went to the store in his own neighborhood Got some candy and soda always does children good But he never got home like he thought he would Trayvon Trayvon See Zimmerman was hoping this would be his night That he could follow this child and provoke a fight Cause he knew they were alone and something else he knew That he would get away – his story – he knew cue by cue Trayvon Trayvon Zimmermans story was all the chief heard And he never said a mumbling word “Just go on home boy, you did your job” They never talked about the life he robbed Trayvon Trayvon But the cry of the people had to be heard But it was Zimmerman’s case the jury heard - Zimmerman’s word Surely they could see that a child had been killed But in their minds another story had been drilled Trayvon Trayvon So we all sat listening to the trial Heard the prosecution and defense read through file after file And waited for the justice that we knew he deserved We had to know truth would be served Trayvon Trayvon

It’s showing everyone who is ignorant how A people who have lost millions of sons still stand now Raising their heards higher and higher Filled with truth, yes hot like fire Good white folks you cant stay quiet You have to speak out, you have to try it It’s your voices that can change your friends And its our hearts that can make amends For Trayvon It coulda been my son, it could been you Cause black is the color of my baby’s hue I been teaching him since he could talk How carefully in America he must walk And I wont stop when I can get an ear To say to our children “don’t walk with fear” Because your God is always near Through good times and bad, our cries he will hear Trayvon So I write this poem for Sybrina Fulton She is the example of beauty in this unfair world She showed us how to act, how to take a stand Whether it be for a boy or a man Trayvon And like Sybrina Fulton I’ll hold my head high I’ll take the pain, I’ll cry the cry That violence is not the answer She says – we must work together to root out this cancer Trayvon Trayvon If we haven’t learned anything this is it Teach our nation to never forget Especially black-born boys and men Never knowing when their life will end

Black child walking through the Florida sun Didn’t know that his time had come Gone to heaven by Zimmerman’s Education is our armour ... Keeping gun our eyes open being aware ... Trayvon Trayvon Don’t be naive, some people just don’t care So finally the day came for the Must most of us black or white jury to speak We belong to this freedom fight People waited in silence quiet and meek So make some rules in your home, “Not guilty” came the answer I remember that felt my heart break Someone should always know Another black child gone for where you’re at America’s sake Make a call, we’ll show up just like Trayvon Trayvon that Trayvon Could have been my child “could have been me” And if you run and you get caught Said President Obama from old Remember this fight has already DC been fought But this story is familiar, this story Defend yourself, yes that is true ain’t new But run if you can, save your life, If being born with black skin as yes do your hue So what to do? See, everybodys’ son is my son too I cant be afraid of my own back hue Only love can change a heart So children, walk with the wisdom No ones talking ‘bout that sad - it’s a fact.. true part That you could be Trayvon... And its Loving your enemies seems weak just like that and fake Trayvon Martin But it’s the only answer in this R.I.P. Baby boy R.I.P. world we can make


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August 10, 2013

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Wellness

August 10, 2013

“While the changes are small, for the first time in a generation they are going in the right direction.”

Preschool obesity dips slightly after decades of rising rates Obesity among low-income preschoolers in Georgia and 18 other states and U.S. territories has declined slightly after decades of rising rates. The latest Vital Signs report from the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Florida, Georgia, Missouri, New Jersey, South Dakota and the U.S. Virgin Islands saw at least a 1 percentage point decrease in their rate of obesity from 2008 through 2011. Twenty states and Puerto Rico held steady at their current rate. Obesity rates increased slightly in three states. Some states, including Texas, Utah and Louisiana, were not included in the study because they did not have consistent data or they changed their methods for collecting data during the study period, researchers noted. In 2011, the prevalence of obesity among low-income, preschool-aged children in Georgia was 13.2 percent, down from 14.8 percent in 2008, and the prevalence among the states and territories ranged from 9.2 percent to 17.9 percent. The report, which was released on Aug. 6, found 12 percent of all American preschoolers – one in eight – are obese. Among minority children, the numbers are even higher, with 19 percent (one in five) of black children and 16 percent (one in six) of Hispanic children between the ages of 2 and 5 meeting the criteria for obesity. Children are five times more likely to be overweight or obese as an adult if they are overweight or obese between the ages of 3 and 5 years. In older children and adolescents, obesity is associated with high cholesterol, high blood sugar, asthma, and mental health problems. Dr. Tom Frieden, CDC director, said that even though obesity remains epidemic, the

Twelve percent of all American preschoolers, one in eight, are obese. The numbers are even higher for minorities – one in five of black kids and one in six for Hispanics.

tide has begun to turn for some kids in some states. “While the changes are small, for the first time in a generation they are going in the right direction,” Frieden said. “Obesity in early childhood increases the risk of serious health Dr. Tom Frieden problems for life.” First lady Michelle Obama said the announcement reaffirmed her belief that by working together, we are making a real difference in helping kids across the country get a healthier start to life. She said that with more than 10,000 child care programs participating in the Let’s Move! Child Care initiative, vitally important work is being done. “We know how essential it is to set our youngest children on a path toward a lifetime of healthy eating and physical activity,” the

first lady said. “Yet, while this announcement reflects important progress, we also know that there is tremendous work still to be done to support healthy futures for all our children.” For the Vital Signs Michelle Obama report, CDC researchers analyzed measured weight and height for nearly 12 million children ages 2 to 4 years who participate in federally funded maternal- and child-nutrition programs. Forty states and the District of Columbia and two U.S. territories (U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico) were included in the report. The data come from the Pediatric Nutrition Surveillance System. Janet L. Collins, director of the CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and

Obesity, said that many of the states showing declines have taken action to incorporate healthy eating and active living into children’s lives. “We must continue to strengthen and expand proven strategies that help Janet L. Collins our children live healthier lives by avoiding obesity in the first place,” Collins said. The Atlanta-based CDC is encouraging state and local officials to step up efforts to drive down rates of childhood obesity. Business leaders, child care providers, health care providers, communities, and families are some of the groups that influence nutrition and physical activity in the places where young children live, learn and play. State and local officials can assist these groups by: n Making it easier for families to buy healthy, affordable foods and beverages in their neighborhoods. n Helping provide access to safe, free drinking water in places such as community parks, recreation areas, child care centers, and schools. n Helping local schools open gyms, playgrounds, and sports fields during non-school hours so children can play safely after school, on weekends, and over the summer. n Helping child care providers adopt best practices for improving nutrition and physical activity and for limiting computer and television time. n Creating partnerships with civic leaders, child care providers, and others to make community changes that promote healthy eating and active living. For more information, visit www.cdc. gov/obesity/childhood.

Auction promotes prostate health A wine sampling and sports and Olympic memorabilia auction on Aug. 13 at the historic Pittypat’s Porch in Atlanta will support the prostate health and cancer prevention work of Us TOO. Pours for Prostates takes place from 5:30 to 8 p.m. and includes appearances by celebrities and former athletes. Proceeds benefit Us TOO International, a nonprofit founded in 1990 by prostate cancer survivors and their families that provides survivors and their families with information and resources free of charge. African-American males have a prostate cancer incidence rate up to 60 percent higher than white males and double the mortality (death) rate of white males. Every 100 minutes a black male dies from prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States. Co-hosts are the Comprehensive Men’s Health Initiative, Georgia Prostate Cancer Coalition, and CCRTD at Clark Atlanta University. Supporters include the Winship Cancer Institute at Emory; Friends of Art Benton, Ansley Golf Club; Dendreon; En-

terprise Rent-a-Car; Eagle International; the Atlanta Braves; Cancer Treatment Centers of America; and Peachtree Planning Corp. Tickets are available at the door or online at www.ustoo.org. Pittypat’s Porch is at 25 Andrew Young International Blvd. Visit www.ustoo.org or call 630-795-1002 for more information.

Gresham Library hosts yoga class Adults can enjoy a basics of yoga class on Aug. 13 at the Gresham Library in Atlanta. The class, which takes place from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., will help participants establish and deepen their grasp of yoga, a discipline that involves prescribed postures and deep breathing. The library is at 2418 Gresham Road. For more information, call 404244-4374.

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Commissioner Larry Johnson and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius discuss health care outreach.

Johnson meets with HHS chief DeKalb Commissioner Larry Johnson met with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to discuss outreach for the Affordable Care Act in DeKalb County at the recent National Association of Counties convention held in Fort Worth, Texas. Johnson, who represents District 3 on the

Board of Commissioners, chairs the NACo Health Steering Committee that sets policy for member counties. Enrollment under the act begins in October, and health care networks take effect in January. Hundreds of thousands of uninsured Georgians will gain access to benefits.

Safe Haven Transitional hosts event DeKalb residents can learn more about Safe Haven Transitional Inc. at an Aug. 17 domestic violence community awareness event at Exchange Park in Decatur. The event, which takes place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., focuses on Safe Haven’s children’s program, “Transformers.” Organizers will share information on Safe Haven’s services and how the community can support its program. There will be games, activities, live music and food.

DeKalb-based Safe Haven, which has served the community for 19 years, provides housing and supportive services to women and children who are homeless due to domestic violence. Its mission is to break the intergenerational cycle of abuse and to transition families into permanent housing. The Exchange Park Recreation Center is at 2771 Columbia Drive. For more information, contact Monique Bates at moniquesht@ yahoo.com or 404-241-8740.


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August 10, 2013

Music lovers can expect everything from big-band standards to Motown and classic rock during the 7-to-8 p.m. show.

Expo kicks off March on Washington 50th This year marks the 50th anniverKing and Coretta Scott King. sary of the 1963 March on WashingKing Center CEO Bernice A. ton and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s King said that as America prepares to historic “I Have a Dream” speech, mark the 50th anniversary, it is imand the King Center is set to comportant that her father’s hometown memorate the occasion with a range create a very special celebration of of events in Atlanta, Washington and this historic milestone. nationwide. Observances in Washington The overall theme is “Our World, begin on Aug. 24 with a “Realize His Dream: Freedom – Make It Hapthe Dream” march and rally at the pen.” It kicks off on Aug. 17 from 3 Lincoln Memorial, and the four-day to 9 p.m. with the Atlanta Global Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his historic “I Have a Dream” Global Freedom Festival opens on Freedom Exposition at the King speech on Aug. 28, 1963, in Washington. the National Mall. National Historic Site, 450 Auburn On Aug. 25 and 26, the King Ave. N.E. in Atlanta. Center’s Global Leadership Summit is one of several initiatives that The expo, whose theme is “Freedom to Prosper in Life,” “Freedom focus on educating youth. College students from around the world to Peacefully Coexist” and “Freedom to Participate in Government,” will gather to learn lessons taught by the National Park Service. is hosted by the King Center, the King Historic Site, Ebenezer Baptist, The 50th Anniversary Commemoration culminates on Aug. Atlanta Public Schools, the city of Atlanta, and Operation Hope. 28, the date of King’s 1963 speech, with an interfaith service at the The expo will feature storytelling and other children’s activities, King Memorial and a “Let Freedom Ring Global Commemoration tours, musical performances, oral history recording, fitness activi- and Celebration.” A “Let Freedom Ring” Bell Ring begins nationally ties, and health and wellness education. There will be film presenta- and worldwide to mark the exact time that King shared his dream tions, an educational expo depicting various groups’ contributions of hope, healing and brotherhood. toward fulfilling King’s dream, an ethnic food court, and an evening For more information, visit www.officialmlkdream50.com or “candlelight flotilla” in the reflecting pool surrounding the crypt of www.thekingcenter.org or call 404-526-8944.

Conservatory of Dance open house Residents of all ages can lace up their sneakers and dancing shoes for free classes at the Conservatory of Dance on Aug. 17. Zumba, hip-hop, pre-ballet, tap, boot camp and jazz classes will be available from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. during the studio’s annual Family and Friends Day. The open house takes place at 5424 Hillandale Park Court, Suite B, in Lithonia. Prizes are up for grabs, and dancewear will be available for purchase. Bruster’s Ice Cream will provide cool treats. Attendees can get their cars washed while watching demonstrations by the award-winning D’Lauren Dance Troupe, and there will be a fish fry. Proceeds from the fish fry and carwash benefit the troupe’s trip to the 2014 nationals. New students who enroll during the open house will receive $5 off the registration fee. For more information, e-mail conservatoryinfo@aol.com or call 770593-4600.

Local favorite at library

May’s Family Fun Day rescheduled

Vocalist Jeni Michelson is bringing her singing, swinging one-woman show to the Decatur Library on Aug. 13. Music lovers can expect everything from bigband standards to Motown and classic rock during the 7-to-8 p.m. show. Michelson has been entertaining Atlanta audiences for more than 30 years as a solo artist and with her variety dance band, Society Express. The library is at 215 Sycamore St. in downtown Decatur. For more information, call 404-370-3070. Jeni Michelson

The annual DeKalb Family Fun Day scheduled for Aug. 11 has been postponed until Aug. 25 because of weather concerns. Interim CEO Lee May’s office says that the event, now in its sixth year, attracts more than 4,000 participants to the Bransby Outdoor YMCA at Rock Chapel, 1185 Rock Chapel Road in Lithonia. The 2-to-7 p.m. event is free and open to the public. Activities include face painting, horseback riding, rock climbing, swimming, paddle

boating on the lake, health and wellness screenings, and vendors. The event also will collect school supplies to help support students in the new school year. May is partnering with several community groups, including Project A.R.M., the Beverly Cunningham Outreach Program, and Saving Our Children and Families. For more information, visit the DeKalb Family Fun Day Facebook page or www. projectarm.org.


9

CrossRoadsNews

August 10, 2013

Schools

“We are excited about the coming school year. … We think we’re going to have a banner year for our students and for our district.”

Accreditation issues among top concerns facing district STUDENTS,

from page

1

school year and look forward to having nearly 100,000 beaming faces on our campuses in just a few days,” he said in an Aug. 1 statement. “We think we’re going to have a banner year for our students and for our district.” Thurmond and his team discovered a $27 million surplus in May while working on the $759 million fiscal 2014 budget. He said spending cuts and higher-than-expected property tax revenues generated the extra funds. As recently as last fall, planners had predicted a $14.5 million deficit. But on Aug. 5, Chief Finance Officer Mike Bell closed the books on fiscal 2013, confirming that the system is no longer in danger of a shortfall.

Stop truancy With the financial distraction out of the way, school officials will search for ways to boost student academic performance. That means making sure students apply themselves and spend the maximum amount of time on task in the classroom. Cutting the high truancy rate will be a top priority. The district will work closely with DeKalb Solicitor General Sherry Boston. Boston says the prime responsibility for keeping kids in school falls on parents. “As the mom of two young girls myself, I know how hard it is to get them up early and ready for school, pack their lunches, help with homework and take them to activities,” Boston said at the CrossRoadsNews Family & Back-to-School Expo at the Mall at Stonecrest on Aug. 3. “It’s no easy task and can be especially challenging for those who are single parents, work two jobs, or face

economic challenges.” She said there’s a direct connection between truancy, low graduation rates and juvenile crime. “Before we can blame anyone else for what our kids are not learning or for the crime problems in our neighborhoods, we have to take a look at ourselves,” she wrote in a July 21 editorial in CrossRoadsNews. Each year, her office receives 700 cases of educational neglect. These cases involve children who have more than five unexcused absences in one school year. “Some of these kids have missed more than 40 days of school in just six months,” Boston said. “These children are likely to fall far behind their peers and have a difficult time succeeding in the future.” Because Georgia law requires all kids ages 6 to 16 to be in school, Boston says her office has to bring their parents to court. They face fines, sentences of up to 30 days in jail, or community service. But Boston says she doesn’t want to send parents to jail. “What we want to do is change attitudes about education. That’s why we have a diversion program called the Attendance Review Team where these parents sign a contract that their kids won’t have any more unexcused absences and that they will meet monthly with a teacher, counselor or social worker.” Boston says that put quite simply, a lack of education often means a life of crime. “Truancy is the No. 1 predictor of criminal activity for boys and the No. 2 predictor of criminal activity for girls,” she says. “And about 90 percent of DeKalb County’s inmates are high school dropouts. If we can keep more kids in school, we’re likely to have

much safer communities.”

and instructional programs.”

Challenges and opportunities While calling on parents to meet their responsibilities, the district says it will intensify its struggle to get off probationary status with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, its accrediting agency. SACS placed the district on accreditation probation in December 2012 over governance and other issues. Gov. Nathan Deal suspended six of nine board members in February under authority of controversial state law 20-2-73 and replaced them with his appointees in March. Five of the suspended members – Donna Edler, Sarah Copelin-Wood, Jay Cunningham, Dr. Pamela Speaks and Dr. Eugene Walker – lost their petition to get their jobs back. The sixth member, Nancy Jester, did not seek reinstatement. Walker is challenging the constitutionality of the law used to remove them from office. The state Supreme Court is expected to rule in November. In the meantime, the School Board is rebuilding confidence. After a May 15-17 site visit, SACS acknowledged that the district has made progress toward meeting 11 required actions to restore full accreditation. The SACS report praised the job that Thurmond and his team have done to “effectively develop and implement a strategic plan to guide the direction of the system.” It noted that “stakeholders and staff at all levels expressed a new sense of hope and optimism based on the actions of the new board and interim superintendent.” SACS also took note of the unexpected but welcome change in the district’s finances and said it hopes the resources “can be used to improve academic

The ‘fallback’ plan SACS said the district will have to demonstrate over time that the progress can be sustained. It will return for another progress check in December and is expected to issue its next report by the end of 2013. During his April 3 visit with the School Board, Dr. Mark Elgart, president of AdvancED, SACS parent company, said it’s unlikely the district will regain full accreditation this year. More likely, he said it will move up to “advisory” status, one step below full accreditation, if the system is able to sustain the progress it has shown. On July 1, the board took a major step toward developing a “fallback” plan in case things don’t work out with SACS. Members voted to pursue dual accreditation for its high schools. Under the policy, DeKalb schools also will apply for accreditation from the Georgia Accrediting Council. Many parent groups wanted the additional accreditation as a safety net to protect the value of their kids’ diplomas in case DeKalb loses SACS certification. The timeline for GAC calls for site visits to high schools in February 2014, findings presented to GAC in March, and an effective accreditation date retroactive to July 1, 2013. Thurmond told a June 15 town hall meeting that he is not against pursuing dual accreditation but is against diverting precious staff resources while his team is trying to regain accreditation from SACS. The same staff will have to be used to secure agreements with both agencies. He said he’ll have a better idea of how dual accreditation will play out after a December meeting with SACS.

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10

CrossRoadsNews

People

August 10, 2013

“I tried to seek justice for victims. It all came together.”

Prosecutor with DeKalb roots voted District Attorney of the Year Selma District Attorney Michael Jackson, who has strong ties to DeKalb County, has been named Alabama’s District Attorney of the Year. Jackson was picked by his peers for the honor at the annual Alabama District Attorneys Association summer conference in June. He is currently the only African-American DA among Alabama’s 41 district attorneys and the first African-American to receive the honor. Jackson attended Flat Shoals Elementary from the fifth grade and is a 1981 graduate of Towers High School in Decatur. He also attended Walker High School, now McNair High School. His mother, Ann Tucker, lives in Decatur. Jackson said the recognition was unexpected but that he suspected something was up when his wife, Miah, wouldn’t let him wear shorts to the session. “We were at the beach, but she insisted that I put on a sports coat,” he said. Jackson, who represents the state’s largest judicial circuit, said it’s a big honor to be

Alabama District Attorney of the Year Michael Jackson poses with his award along with his wife, Miah, holding Jolie; daughter Josie; and son Prince.

selected by your peers. He credits his staff of 35 and his relationship with law enforcement agencies for his success. “I tried to seek justice for victims,” he said. “It all came together.” In selecting Jackson, his colleagues noted his successful prosecution in 2012 and ear-

lier this year of two men who murdered a 3-year-old boy. They also mentioned Jackson’s prosecution of former Alabama state legislator and high school principal James Thomas, who was convicted of sexual misconduct with a student. Jackson, 49, is serving halfway through

his second six-year term as district attorney for Alabama’s 4th Judicial Circuit that includes Hale, Wilcox, Perry, Dallas and Bibb counties and the city of Selma, which figured so prominently in the fight for civil rights. When he was elected in 2005, he was only the second African-American DA in the state’s history. Before that, he was the youngest municipal judge in the state. In 2010, he received national attention for the prosecution of 77-year-old James Bonard Fowler, who pleaded guilty to killing Jimmie Lee Jackson 45 years before. In 1965, Fowler, who is white, bragged about killing Jimmie Lee Jackson, who was black, in Perry County. His death on Feb. 26, 1965, helped lead to the Selma-to-Montgomery marches in March 1965 and to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. For his work on that case, Michael Jackson was recognized with a John F. Kennedy Personal Courage award in March of this year. Jackson is a graduate of Florida State College of Law. He lives in Selma with his wife, Miah; daughters Josie and Jolie; and son Prince.

7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

8/10, 8/17, 8/24, 8/31

Legal Notices

Notice of Petition to Change Name of Adult in the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action Case Number: ++ 13CV7853-9++ Ruth Santos Valencia filed a petition in the DeKalb County Superior Court on July 24, 2013 to change the name from: Ruth Santos Valencia to Ruth Santos Ortiz. Any interested party has the right to appear in this case and file objections within 30 days after the petition was filed. Dated: July 24, 2013 Ruth Santos Petitioner, Pro se c/u Stan Singleton 4956 Leisure Drive Dunwoody, GA 30338 404-316-9350

Debra DeBerry Clerk of Superior Court

8/10, 8/17, 8/24, 8/31

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++13CV5372-4++ Harriet Bundley-Reyes Plaintiff Vs. Hector Reyes Defendant TO: Hector Reyes 12404 Chelton Lane Bowie, MD 20715 By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated July 23, 2013, you are hereby notified that on May 7, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Divorce. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is 361 Colchester Drive, Stone Mountain, Stone Mountain, GA 30088. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, July 23, 2013. Witness the Honorable Gail C. Flake Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 24th day of July, 2013. 7/27, 8/3, 8/10, 8/17

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++13CV7080-3++ Lonnel Gumble Plaintiff

Vs. Mockeysha Diggs Dashan Herrings Defendant TO: Mockeysha Diggs Dashan Herrings By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated July 22, 2013, you are hereby notified that on June 25, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Legitimization. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Lonnel Gumble, 2788 Waters Run, Decatur, GA 30035. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, July 22, 2013. Witness the Honorable Clarence Seeliger Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 23rd day of July, 2013.

Columbia, SC 29210 By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated July 10, 2013, you are hereby notified that on July 2, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Name Change for Minor Child. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Myranda Morgan, 2561 Glenrock Dr, Decatur, GA 30032. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, July 10, 2013. Witness the Honorable Asha F. Jackson Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 12th day of July, 2013.

7/20, 7/27, 8/3, 8/10

Civil Action # ++13CV4131-10++ Saberina Moody Plaintiff Vs. Jeremie Morgan Defendant TO: Jeremie A. Morgan 5405 8th Ave South St Petersburg, FL 33707 By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated July 2, 2013, you are hereby notified that on April 2, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Divorce. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Saberina Moody, 3736 Windsor Circle, Clarkston, GA 30021. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, July 2, 2013. Witness the Honorable Tangela M. Barrie Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 9th day of July, 2013.

Notice of Petition to Change Name(s) of Minor Child(ren) in the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action Case Number: ++ 13CV7426-3++ Jasmine Johnson filed a petition in the DeKalb County Superior Court on July 8, 2013 to change the name(s) of the following minor child(ren): From Jahlil Cameron Davis to Cameron Marquis Johnson Jr. Any interested party has the right to appear in this case and file objections within the time prescribed in OCGA 19-12-1(f)(2) and (3). Dated: July 8, 2013 Jasmine Johnson Petitioner, Pro se 2374 Cranbrooke Drive Decatur, GA 30032

Decatur, GA 30032 Debra DeBerry Clerk of Superior Court

7/20, 7/27, 8/3, 8/10

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++13CV7026-2++ Myranda Morgan Plaintiff Vs. Malique Gamble Defendant TO: Myranda Morgan 3430 Broad River Road, Apt #1105

7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

Notice of Petition to Change Name of Adult in the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action Case Number: ++ 13CV7411-3++ Jesse Harris filed a petition in the DeKalb County Superior Court on July 8, 2013 to change the name from: Jesse Harris to Jesse Robert Pinckney. Any interested party has the right to appear in this case and file objections within 30 days after the petition was filed.

Dated: July 8, 2013 Jesse Harris Petitioner, Pro se Jesse Harris 4371 Glenwood Road Decatur, GA 30032 404-633-2716

Debra DeBerry Clerk of Superior Court

7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++13CV5532-10++ Kim A. Dunn Plaintiff Vs. Willie Dunn Defendant TO: Willie Dunn By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated June 14, 2013, you are hereby notified that on May 10, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Divorce. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Kim A Dunn, 1303 Constitution Road SE, Atlanta, GA 30316. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, July 10, 2013. Witness the Honorable Tangela M. Barrie Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 10th day of July, 2013. 7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

Notice of Petition to Change Name of Adult in the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action Case Number: ++ 13CV5705-10++ Teresa Kelia Clark filed a petition in the DeKalb County Superior Court on May 15, 2013 to change the name from: Teresa Kelia Clark to Kelia Teresa Clark. Any interested party has the right to appear in this case and file objections within 30 days after the petition was filed. Dated: May 15, 2013 Teresa Kelia Clark Petitioner, Pro se 5126 Miller Woods rive Decatur, GA 30035 404-782-2965

Debra DeBerry Clerk of Superior Court

Civil Action # ++13CV6839-9++ Kem Johnson Seymour Plaintiff Vs. Larry James Seymour Defendant TO: Larry James Seymour By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated July 8, 2013, you are hereby notified that on June 27, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Divorce. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Kem Johnson Seymour, 816 Deshon Creek Drive, Lithonia, GA 30058. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of July 8, 2013. Witness the Honorable Mark Anthony Scott Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 8th day of July, 2013. 7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

Notice of Petition to Change Name(s) of Minor Child(ren) in the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action Case Number: ++ 13CV6798-2++ Sherita Dowdy filed a petition in the DeKalb County Superior Court on June 20, 2013 to change the name(s) of the following minor child(ren): From Chrisma Kelsey Dowdy to Kelshey Leshay Dowdy. Any interested party has the right to appear in this case and file objections within the time prescribed in OCGA 19-12-1(f)(2) and (3). Dated: June 12, 2013 Sherita Dowdy Petitioner, Pro se 433 Derby Shine Dr Stone Mountain, GA 30088

Debra DeBerry Clerk of Superior Court

7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++13CV6252-9++ Brandon Grant Plaintiff Vs. Latrice Jackson/Billy Williams Defendant TO: Latrice Jackson 2047 Corners Circle Lithonia, GA 30058 By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated June 25, 2013, you are hereby notified that on June 21, 2013, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Legitimization for minor children Brandon Jackson and Xyell Grant You are required to file with the Clerk

of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Brandon Grant, 806 Montrose Pkwy, Norcross, GA 30092. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, June 25, 2013. Witness the Honorable Mark Anthony Scott Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 25th day of June, 2013. 7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++12CV11120-2++ Victoria Hayes Plaintiff Vs. Elray Booker Defendant TO: Elray Booker 2149 Vineyard Walk Atlanta, GA 30316 By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated June 26, 2013, you are hereby notified that on October 1, 2012, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Divorce. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Victoria Hayes, 5177 Winding Glen Drive, Lithonia, GA 30038. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, June 26, 2013. Witness the Honorable Asha F. Jackson Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 27th day of June, 2013. 7/13, 7/20, 7/27, 8/3

NOTICE OF PUBLICATION In the Superior Court of DeKalb County State of Georgia

Civil Action # ++12CV9613-3++ Lawrence Honore Plaintiff Vs. Laquita Williams Defendant TO: Laquita Williams By Order of the Court service for service by publication dated May 28, 2013, you are hereby notified that on August 14, 2012, the above-named Plaintiff filed suit against you for: Modification of Child Custody. You are required to file with the Clerk of Superior Court, and to serve upon the plaintiff’s attorney whose name and address is Elizabeth Ann Guerrant, 246 Sycamore St, Ste 120, Decatur, GA 30030. Answer in writing within sixty (60) days of, May 28, 2013. Witness the Honorable Clarence Seeliger Judge of the DeKalb Superior Court. This the 27th day of June, 2013.


11

CrossRoadsNews

August 10, 2013

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1525 East Park Place Blvd, Suite 1500 Stone Mountain | 770-879-0845 www.GeorgiaSmilesforLess.com

Schedule Your Appointment Today

OFF Treatment Plan

Smile For Less, LLC Stone Mountain | 770-879-0845 With this coupon. Not valid with other offers. Offer expires 2/28/13.

exam & x-rays

new patients only

4262 Clausell Court | Suite A | Decatur, GA 30035 P:404.289.2244 F:404.289.2888 www.bjhlawyers.com

PHOTOGRAPHY

3271 Turner Hill Road Lithonia, GA 30038

Smile For Less, LLC Stone Mountain | 770-879-0845 With this coupon. Not valid with other offers. Offer expires 2/28/13.

Bankruptcy • Personal Injury & Workers Comp • Family Law/Divorce/Custody Wills/Probate/Trusts • Criminal Defense • Corporate & Business Law

678.691.5187

Email: info@generationlearningcenterandacademy.com

events

hair care / salons

The Local Authors' Workshop

Natural Hair Products For Natural and Relaxed Hair Some of the products we carry include:

and present author

MJ Kane Aug. 17, 2013 • 3 pm-6pm

The Virtuous Women Event Center 5351 Rock Springs Road Lithonia, GA 30038

Registration $20 at www.thevirtuouswomenatl.com • Registration encouraged due to limited seating.

personal care

Located in:

The Shops of Heritage Place 4450 Hugh Howell Rd., Ste 13 Tucker, GA 30084 770-908-8020

www.healthyhairdimensions.com

• • • • • •

Andre Walker Hair Hydratherma Naturals Curl Junkie Mixed Chicks Uncle Funky’s Daughter Qhemet Biologics

Tues-Sat 11AM-8PM MYHEALTHYHAIRDIMENSIONS

travel

Gentle Touch Personal Care Home

Where compassion assists aging with dignity and respect DOES YOUR LOVED ONE NEED EXTRA HELP AT AN AFFORDABLE PRICE? Look no further…. Gentle Touch Personal Care Home (PCH) is a state-licensed facility that specializes in one-on-one personalized geriatric care. Gentle Touch is nestled in a very private wooded residential community. Our residents benefit from a well established neighborhood watch program, which ensures a safe and quiet environment.

At Gentle Touch the residents and their families have grown to expect consistent, quality care that is always rendered with compassion and love.

SERVICES INCLUDE: • Fresh, healthy, home cooked meals • Bathing, grooming and toileting assistance • Assistance in daily living activities • Medication Management • Laundry and Housekeeping services • Scheduled transportation • Assistance With Doctor Appointments • Attentive caregivers and companions • Custom Tailored activities and games • Registered nurse on call for medical assistance • 24 hour round the clock care

Wendy Spence Owner/Manager

Gentle Touch Personal Care Home Decatur, Georgia

Mobile 678.429.0937

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12

CrossRoadsNews

August 10, 2013

fashion & home

clearance! % %

5O -8O

off

orig.* prices

We’ve marked down hundreds of items, including summer’s best styles. Get here early for the best selections. selections for her:

tops, pants & skirts for misses, petites, women & juniors • handbags • shoes sleepwear • more

selections for him:

polos • sportshirts • more

selections for kids:

sets • dresses • tees • tops • shorts • more

selections for home:

bed & bath • housewares • tabletop electrics • luggage • more Free online shipping at macys.com Free shipping with $99 purchase. No promo code needed. Exclusions apply.

*Intermediate price reductions may have been taken. Clearance items are available while supplies last. Advertised merchandise may not be carried at your local Macy’s & selection may vary by store. Prices & merchandise may differ on macys.com. N3070201. OPEN A MACY’S ACCOUNT FOR EXTRA 15% SAVINGS THE FIRST 2 DAYS, UP TO $100, WITH MORE REWARDS TO COME. Macy’s credit card is available subject to credit approval; new account savings valid the day your account is opened and the next day; excludes services, selected licensed departments, gift cards, restaurants, gourmet food & wine. The new account savings are limited to a total of $100; application must qualify for immediate approval to receive extra savings; employees not eligible. N3070201E.indd 1

7/26/13 8:45 AM

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CrossRoadsNews, August 10, 2013  

CrossRoadsNews, August 10, 2013