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Playbook AWARE & Inside PREPARED

City of Decatur


Clear zone

NOVEMBER 2016 Volume 27 • Number 4

Official Publication of The City of Decatur, Georgia



terrific ecatur #octopid a decaturg y a id l o h #

Holiday Tree Lighting Thursday, Dec. 1 More Holiday Happenings on Pages 8-11

News 3 City

BUsiness 14 NEWs


Look inside to meet Holly Octopus


School news 21

Focus City of Decatur

Holiday Events, Art Updates, Holidays Indie-Catur


n addition to monthly membership meetings, the Decatur Business Association hosts a number of events throughout the year including Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 10, and the Bonfire and Marshmallow Roast on Thursday, Dec.15. Breakfast with Santa tickets go on sale Dec. 1 and the bonfire is free and open to the community.

Not only are they fun events, they also provide a great way to get involved in the community. Instead of just attending them, why not lend a helping hand? You can help distribute marshmallows during the bonfire or usher Santa into the conference center for breakfast. The DBA board is always looking for more volunteers to help out at events and meetings. If the holiday season is too busy for you, there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer during other times of the year. The DBA Concert Committee helps pick the bands that play at the Concerts on the Square and Blue Sky Concerts in May and September. Volunteer committee members also help out at the DBA tent during the concerts by selling glow sticks and signing up attendees for the raffles. The Beach Party Committee puts on the association’s largest and most popular event in June every year. Join the committee and be a part of the festival that is responsible for turning Ponce de Leon Avenue into beachfront property. Visit for more information.

Focus on Community Development

Public Art Update Milagros Collective, the artists chosen to design the mural for the MARTA overpass at the corner of West Trinity and Atlanta Avenues, will start painting this month. There was a slight See DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT on page 12

The Decatur Focus is a joint publication of the City of Decatur, the Decatur Downtown Development Authority and the Decatur Business Association. It is a newsletter intended to provide announcements and information related to events, activities, and businesses in the City of Decatur. The purpose of the newsletter is to promote the city and encourage the exchange of information among residents, business owners and the school system. Letters to the editor, editorials or other opinion pieces are not published. All press releases, announcements and other information received for publication are subject to editing. Information found in the Focus is also posted on Decatur’s official website at The deadline for submitting articles, announcements or advertising is the first day of the month preceding publication. Contact: Editor, Decatur Focus, P.O. Box 220, Decatur, GA 30031, 404-371-8386; fax 404-371-1593; email: Clear zone

DECATUR CITY COMMISSION Patti Garrett...................................................Mayor Fred Boykin................................Mayor Pro Tem Scott Drake..................................Commissioner Tony Powers...............................Commissioner Brian Smith..................................Commissioner

DECATUR DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY Board Chris Sciarrone, Chair Linda Curry • John Drake Bill Floyd • Scott Kentner Tony Leung • Fisher Paty

Proposed MARTA overpass mural concept by Milagros Collective

Decatur Business Association

DECATUR BUSINESS ASSOCIATION Tim Martin.............................................. President Kyle Williams............................. President-elect Susan Sparks.......................................... Treasurer Lisa Bobb................................................. Secretary Marc Brennan............................. Past President

Design and layout: Information for the FOCUS should be submitted by mail to Editor, Decatur Focus, P.O. Box 220, Decatur, GA 30031, or by email to

2 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

City News First-Time Voter at Age 82


Remember: Election Day is Nov. 8.

ecatur Votes Committee member Joan Schork visited Betty Brown, a Decatur resident who has lived in Oakhurst her entire life, to bring her an absentee ballot application when she discovered Ms. Brown has never voted during any election. Thanks to Joan and Decatur Votes Ms. Betty Brown is a newly registered voter and will cast her first vote in November shortly before her 83rd birthday. Congratulations Ms. Brown and we thank you for letting your voice be heard.

Decorating Contest Coming Soon Commissioners Cup up for Grabs


t’s almost time to pull out your holiday decorations. Decorate your home or business in the colors and traditions of the season and enter the Holiday Decorating Contest. Submit a photo of yours or your neighbor’s best decorations to Shirley Baylis at shirley.baylis@ for the judges to review by Friday, Dec. 9. Be sure to include name and address of the decorations in the email. Judges will ride by the addresses on Dec. 9 and 10, and winners will be posted on the Decatur Minute and the city’s Facebook page. Special yard signs will be posted in the yards of winners to display for the Holidays. The winner of the Commissioners Cup will be presented at the Dec. 19 City Commission meeting. If you have additional questions or need more information email Shirley Baylis or call 678-553-6573.

Decatur Unveils Holiday Ornament The Decatur Tourism Bureau and the Decatur Arts Alliance invite the community to the official unveiling of the 2016 Decatur Holiday Ornament on Friday, Nov. 4, 5-10 p.m., at Wild Oats & Billy Goats, 112 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. The 2016 ornament is the fifth in a series of handcrafted ornaments commissioned by the Tourism Bureau and the Arts Alliance. After the unveiling, the 2016 ornament will be on sale at local Decatur shops, including Wild Oats & Billy Goats, Little Shop of Stories, and Trinity Mercantile & Design. The unveiling is part of the Decatur Arts Alliance Art Walk. See visitdecaturgeorgia. com or for more information or call 678-615-0915.

Holiday Solid Waste and Recycling Services Thanksgiving, Thursday, Nov. 24 Regular solid waste and recycling services for Thursday, Nov. 24, and Friday, Nov. 25, will be on Wednesday, Nov 23.

The Thompson family on Lansdowne Avenue earned the Commissioners Cup in 2015.

NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 3

City News Housing Authority Celebrates National Night Out

The Decatur Housing Authority held its annual National Night Out celebration in October. This event creates an opportunity for residents to meet their neighbors, local police and firefighters, and members of other organizations. The celebration featured music, activities for youth, and food. National Night Out is a nationwide event that usually takes place in August in all 50 states and Canada. Decatur had to reschedule the event due to rain.

4 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

City News Helping Our Neighbors This Holiday Season – It’s Not Too Late


Season of Giving/Christmas Decatur has entered its 22nd year in making the holiday season brighter for children and seniors in Decatur with the help of individuals, places of worship, businesses, neighborhood associations and clubs. You can help your neighbors by sponsoring a child or senior. Shop for them yourself, or if you’re busy with your own holiday preparations, consider making a donation that will be used toward clothing, books and gifts. Thanks to the continued generosity of the community, A Season of Giving/ Christmas Decatur has served thousands. During last year’s holiday season, the community helped more than 600 children and seniors through this program. Gift Giving “Adopt” a child or senior – receive a personalized wish list and purchase between $100 and $150 in gifts. Wish lists specific to each recipient are created through an in-person conversation with seniors and each child’s parent or guardian. If you purchase a wish list book at Little Shop of Stories and mention why, the shop will donate 20 percent of your purchase to A Season of Giving/Christmas Decatur. Too busy to shop? Make a financial contribution instead and we will do all the shopping for you! Send contributions to A Season of Giving/Christmas Decatur, P.O. Box 220, Decatur, GA 30031.

Veterans Day at Decatur Cemetery Ceremony of Remembrance Friday, Nov. 11

On Saturday, Nov. 5, volunteers will place flags on the graves of nearly 1,000 veterans in the 58-acre Decatur Cemetery. The flags will remain in place through Saturday, Nov. 12. To volunteer, contact Amy Weaver at The community is invited to the traditional Veterans Day Ceremony of Remembrance on Nov. 11, 11 a.m. The time coincides with the armistice, which ended The Great War in 1918. To many at the time it was considered “The War to End all Wars.” For more information:

Other Ways to Help Volunteer during the first week of December at the distribution center. Opportunities are available on Saturdays and weekdays (including evenings). All gifts are due Saturday, Dec. 3. To receive a wish list for a child or senior, inquire about volunteer opportunities, or for additional information, email or call 404-378-8068. Happy holidays!

Fall 2016 Junior Police Academy Congratulations to the Fall 2016 Junior Police Academy class. The Decatur Police Department now offers the JPA during the summer and the CSD fall break. For more information, contact Lt. Jennifer Ross at or 678-553-6613.

NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 5

City News MLK Service Project

Celebrate 15 Years of Helping Decatur’s Senior Citizens


oin family, friends, neighbors, and clubs to volunteer for the 15th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Service Project on the weekend of Jan. 14-16. Discover the power of our community of volunteers and make a difference in senior citizens’ lives.

The MLK Service Project helps senior homeowners stay in the homes they love. You can help with projects that include making greatly needed repairs to homes and doing yard work that elderly homeowners have been unable to afford or are physically unable to do. Jobs for All Skill Levels When signing up, please indicate the shift(s) desired, and any specific skills you have (such as carpentry, general home repair, painting, drywall installation and repair, plumbing, gardening, landscaping). Skills are not necessary but they help us in assigning tasks. There are jobs for everyone, from unskilled to DIY handyperson to skilled professional. Volunteers who are able to help make repairs to their own homes, skilled amateurs, as well as skilled tradespeople, especially roofers, plumbers, electricians, and carpenters, are crucial to this effort. There are many other ways to help. The landscaping committee invites skilled and “weekend” gardeners to lead simple gardening projects. Volunteers can assist with transporting tools and materials (truck preferred), as well as helping to weatherize homes. The food

6 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

committee seeks donations of sandwiches and homemade desserts to feed the hundreds of hungry volunteers. More than 1,300 volunteers work on the project each year.

Youth groups should sign up by Dec. 15. Volunteers younger than 18 must have parents or guardians sign release forms and bring them to the project. The form and other information regarding the service project are available at Each volunteer, regardless of age, must complete a release form. Sponsors and Donations The MLK Service Project is sponsored by the Decatur Preservation Alliance (DPA) in partnership with the City of Decatur and is supported through grants and private donations, both financial and in-kind. Gifts are tax deductible. To make a donation, visit and click on “Join or Donate,” or mail your check payable to DPA (designate MLK Project) to Decatur Preservation Alliance, PO Box 1764, Decatur, GA 30031.

What to Bring A limited number of tools and work gloves will be available. Volunteers are encouraged to bring their own tools (hammers, saws, drills, and other tools; rakes, clippers, loppers, and other yard work implements). Make sure tools are clearly marked for identification purposes. To make this project more environmentally friendly, please bring a reusable water bottle. Sign up for one or more of the following shifts: Youth Volunteers

Volunteer Shifts

Anyone over the age of 12 is welcome to volunteer. Those under 12 are also welcome if they are volunteering through a supervised organization such as Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts. Please check first before signing up.

Saturday, Jan. 14 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 1-5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 15 1-5 p.m. Monday, Jan. 16 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 1-5 p.m.

Whom to Contact, Where to Report Volunteers meet at the Solarium at the Community Center of South Decatur, 321 W. Hill St. in the Oakhurst district, at least a half-hour before shifts start. All volunteers are invited to attend a celebration cookout on Monday, Jan. 16, 5 p.m., at the Solarium. To volunteer, contact Lee Ann Harvey, 678-553-6548, or leeann. Volunteer as an individual or as part of a group.

City News Holiday Shopping Safety Tips Decatur residents often report package thefts after “Cyber Monday” and throughout the holiday season. Here are some tips from Decatur Police that may help protect your packages. • If possible, ship your packages to your work address or a location where you know someone will be there to receive the package. • Request that a signature be required to deliver the package. • Track your packages and ask a family member, friend, or neighbor to look out and take the packages in when they arrive. • If you are traveling, make sure to ask a family member, friend, or neighbor to check for packages at your home. You may have received a gift delivery you were not expecting. • If you observe people you do not recognize on a neighbor’s property, pay attention, and if it appears they are removing packages, call police immediately and provide detailed descriptive information. Also watch to see if the person goes back to a vehicle and provide a description of the vehicle and their direction of travel. Find out what options are available for a more secure delivery from the delivery company you are using. Companies now offer options such as scheduling your deliveries and receiving alerts the day before packages will be delivered. You can also reroute or reschedule deliveries or arrange for in-store pick-up if you are not able to be home to accept the deliveries.

Decatur Launches Updated OneMap


n response to feedback from residents, Decatur’s online mapping application “OneMap” has been updated. OneMap provides access to geographical information system (GIS) data through a standard web browser. Users can query and view geographic and tabular data and print out maps and related tabular reports. OneMap can be accessed on any computer that has a connection to the Internet. Check it out at onemap.decaturga. com/cityofdecatur. You can use OneMap to: • Look up by address, place, or parcel ID • Determine if a property is in the city limits • Determine a property’s zoning district • Determine if a property is in a historic district • View 25-50-75-foot stream buffers • View flood hazard zones • Create maps For more information about OneMap, contact Angela Threadgill, 678-553-6575 or angela.threadgill@

911 Now Receives Emergency Text Messages


itizens within the city limits of Decatur who are hearing or speech impaired can now send text messages to 911 in an emergency. Texting also provides a way to reach help in a dangerous situation when a voice call is not possible or where a voice call fails due to a high volume of phone activity but texting is successful. To text to 911 in an emergency: • Enter “911” in the “To” field. • Text in simple words – do not use abbreviations. • Include the location of the emergency and the type of help needed. • Keep the text message brief and concise. • Press the “Send” button. • Be prepared to answer questions and follow instructions from the 911 call taker.

When to text to 911: • If you are hearing impaired. • When a voice call could increase a threat. • If you are injured and cannot speak. • If you are in a remote location and can only send a text message.


Currently, the four major carriers AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile Call if you and Verizon Wirecan, text if less have agreed to you must offer the text-to-911 service. This does not mean that the service is available in all areas, however. Should you be out of the area for a carrier, you will receive a message stating that the text service is not available and to call 911. Photos, videos and other attachments cannot currently be sent to 911 via text, although these capabilities will be available in the future. NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 7

n u f t a h w , h o r u t a c e d n i d n i f l 'l u yo Join in the Jolly The holiday decorations are up and downtown Decatur sparkles with endless twinkly lights and dozens of glittering storefronts. You are invited to enjoy the Indie-catur holiday experience with festivities on the square, and local cheer throughout the season.

deck your halls

eARn $20 GiFt cARDS

The 2016 edition of handcrafted ornaments is designed by artist Karen Fincannon. Choose from four shapes, perfect for your holiday décor — or to give! Brought to you by the Decatur Tourism Bureau and the Decatur Arts Alliance, and available for purchase at the Decatur Visitors Center and local shops. Read about the unveiling on page 3.

snap a selfie

we love


Find festive photo frames in participating Terrific Thursday shops. Post your pic on Instagram or Facebook with #holidaydecaturga for a chance to win sweet seasonal prizes!


spectacular shopping deal

y of Decatur Spend $200 in any cit cludes shop in November (ex a $20 local e eiv rec to restaurants) ng your restaurant gift card. Bri Center rs ito Vis the receipt(s) to or to the at 113 Clairemont Ave. g Small rin du are squ tent on the nday on Su d an y da tur Business Sa your gift Nov. 26 and 27 to claim gift cards card(s). Limited to three per shopper.


Your Live insider’s Guide | Jumpstart your holiday spirit — and your holiday shopping — with daily tips in November on and all of Decatur’s social media.

terrçific s y a d s r u h t

tree lighting

Small Business Saturday + Sunday Bring your list and check it twice! Shop locally for gifts and treat yourself to festivites on the square – live music, giveaways, free gift wrapping for Decatur purchases, face painting, five-minute massages, free hot cocoa, a gift basket raffle, and Santa!

nov. 26-27

Dec. 1

Tree Lighting

Enjoy the annual tree lighting on East Court Square at 7 p.m. Local businesses sponsor this spectacle – complete with caroling, cocoa, snow, and Santa.

Dec. 10

menorah lighting

t s a f k a e r b ta with san

bonfire on the square

Breakfast with Santa

Start your day with Ol’ Saint Nick at this DBA sponsored event, 8-10 a.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children under 12. Buy tickets at

Dec. 15

Bonfire + Marshmallow Roast On the Square Roast a marshmallow (or three) around the popular 10’ x 10’ bonfire, 7-8 p.m. This free event is hosted by the Decatur Business Association and supervised by the Decatur Fire Department.

Grand Menorah Lighting Join in the Chanukah celebration on the square at 6 p.m. Enjoy sing-alongs, latkes, raffles, and prizes! has the

Dec. 28

Stay CONNeCteD! decaturga

downtowndecatur cityofdecaturga holidaydecaturga




terrific Ale Yeah 906 W. College Ave. 10 percent off all food items Aimee Jewelry and Fine Arts Gallery 335 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. Enjoy wine, cheese, and 25 percent off select jewelry Bleu Hanger 303 E. College Ave. 20 percent off non-sale items Butter and Cream 416 Church St. Boutique Karma 145 Sycamore St. 20 percent off non-sale items

Decatur CD 356 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. Special promotions, sales, and refreshments every week Decatur Square Framing & Gallery 111 Clairemont Ave. 15 percent off framing and original artwork Fabu Face Spa 335 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. Nov. 17, 6-8 p.m.: complimentary miniservices, snacks and wine. Dec. 15, 6-8 p.m.: complimentary miniservices, snacks, wine, cocoa, and a stocking stuffer table. Found Co. Decatur 335 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. Special discounts every week

Furry Tails Pet Shop 228 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. The Great Frame Up 335 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. 20 percent off ready-made frames and pre-framed art in the gallery Greene’s Fine Foods 141 E. Trinity Pl. Various discounts HomeGrown 412 Church St. Local libations from Urban Tree Cidery and a new buy-one-get-one 50 percent off special each Thursday Little Shop of Stories 133 E. Court Sq.

Get Gifty with Holly Octopus + Find Free Art A fun-filled holiday experience with seasonal shopportunities, snacks, special in-store events, sales, and extended hours. Plus, on each Terrific Thursday, 10 artsy octopi will be placed by artist Larry Holland in participating shops around Decatur. Visitors lucky enough to find an octopus get to keep it!

November: $5 gift certificate for every $50 purchase; December: $10 gift certificate for every $100 purchase Natural Body Spa 225 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. 25 percent off select merchandise, complimentary gift wrapping of purchase, 15 percent off 60-minute or longer services, raffle for gift basket ($200 value), and complimentary wine and cookies Pure Barre Decatur 415 Church St. | $10 drop-in class for new clients, 10 percent off retail (excludes socks and sale items) Salon Red Kids 123 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. 20 percent off different retail categories each week

@wolfcatworkshop @vileatl




Check out instagram for a sneak peek of the Terrific Thursday octopi and preview which pieces to look for each week. Find one? Tell the shop owner or take a photo with your find and post with #octopidecatur to showcase your discovery!

Shaded Soul Tattoos 340 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. $25 off all tattoos (minimum purchase $100); $10 off all piercings Splash of Olive 201 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. Entrance on Commerce Squash Blossom 113 East Court Square 25 percent off different merchandise every week, wine and snacks Sq/Ft 149 Sycamore St. | Discounts, wine, snacks, and a DJ Treehouse Kid & Craft 533 W. Howard Ave. Free holiday crafts for kids and giveaways

TrĂŠs Jolie 427 Church St. | 20 percent off all non-sale items Trinity Mercantile & Design 116 E. Trinity Pl. | Discounts on pillows and lighting in December Vivid Boutique 308 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. Wild Oats and Billy Goats 112 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. Extended shopping hours, local artists offering individual discounts ranging from 10-25 percent off. Worthmore Jewelers 117 E. Court Square

Hey KiDS (of all ages)! Find a complete, up-to-date list of the participating shops at

Cut out Holly and make your own ornament or visit holly for a printable download.

City News Volunteer School News Spotlight

Downtown Development continued from page 2

McNeely and Capriola Are Junior Stage Captains at AJC Book Festival


ou can always count on seeing Katie Pedersen and her daughters Matilda and Phoebe McNeely at the AJC Decatur Book Festival. Katie started volunteering as Stage Captain at the Teen Stage in 2009 with Matilda and Phoebe volunteering at her side. Starting in 2015, in honor of many years of dependable Teen Stage volunteer service, Phoebe was named the first-ever Junior Stage Captain. Jenny Capriola also served as Junior Stage Captain this year. She volunteered at both the Children’s and Teen stages, running errands, escorting authors, and answering questions, among many other tasks. Interested in becoming a volunteer? Visit for details.

delay in the project due to abatement requirements of lead found in the steel girders, but once the painting begins, it’ll take about 30 days to complete. The design of the mural is the result of a community input process that included input from adjacent neighbors and students from the high school and middle school. Felici Asteinza and Joey Fillastre, the artists that make up the Milagros Collective, will stay with a local family during the length of the project. If you see them around town make sure to say hi or invite them over for dinner. It’s easy to spot them, they’ll be driving a colorfully painted car. Thank you to everyone who has given positive feedback on the recently painted traffic signal boxes. The Decatur Box Project is supported by the Decatur Arts Alliance and spearheaded by Larry Holland of Fishbone Art, organizer of Secret Doors Decatur. Take a stroll around town and check out all of the boxes that have been transformed from dull, gray corroded metal into colorful, whimsical works of art. Let us know which one is your favorite. Holidays Indie-Catur Nothing says the holidays like octopi. At least that’s how you’ll feel during this holiday season in Decatur. We’ve teamed up with local artist Larry Holland to include free public art in this year’s holiday celebrations. On every Terrific Thursday, 10 artist-created, wooden octopus cutouts will be placed around town in participating shops. If you find one, you get to keep it. Want a location hint? Check out #octopidecatur each Thursday on Instagram.

12 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

City Decatur Wins Savvy Awards for Better Together Initiative


Crosswalk Prep Begins Downtown


ecatur won two national awards from the City-County Communications and Marketing Association (3CMA) for the Better Together Initiative that resulted in the Better Together Community Action Plan for Equity, Inclusion, and Engagement. The city won a Savvy (first place) for Community Visioning and an Award of Excellence (third place) for Citizen Engagement. Judges noted that the effort was impressive for a community of any size – a well-developed-and-executed process from start to finish that resulted in a very comprehensive action plan. The Savvy awards recognize outstanding local government achievements in communications, public-sector marketing and citizen-government relationships. More than 700 entries in 38 categories were received and judges from across the United States reviewed every entry. There were 68 first-place Savvy awards, 67 second-place Silver Circle awards, and 68 third-place Awards of Excellence presented. Pictured are Linda Harris and Renae Madison with 3CMA Board Past-President Julie Brechbill and 3CMA Executive Director Scott Lehtonen.

Flag Football Game Nov. 14

Decatur Fire/Rescue versus DHS JROTC The Decatur Fire/Rescue Department and the Decatur High School JROTC cadets will challenge each other in a flag football game to raise money for the annual JROTC Cadet Ball. The game will take place Nov. 14, 5 p.m., at the Decatur High School stadium. A $5 donation will be taken at the gate. Proceeds will support the annual JROTC Ball. For more information contact Chief Stephanie Harpring, 404-373-5092, stephanie., or JROTC Army Instructor SFC (Ret) Phyllis Primus at pprimus@

Assistant City Manager David Junger and crosswalk contractors have been taking measurements around downtown preparing for installation of new custom crosswalk graphics. In most cases, the graphics will be applied in place of the deteriorating faux brick crosswalks around town, but there will be a new crosswalk across Trinity Place, between Church and McDonough streets, to support increased pedestrian traffic expected in that corridor. In addition, the temporary crosswalk that had been installed (and removed) at 335 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. during construction of the Place on Ponce, will be made permanent. NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 13

Business & Nonprofit News Salute!

Good News About S uri til VYooeT m s N lighboer l

un to te er ! Jackson Named VP of Marketing at Purchasing Power Decatur resident Tumara Jackson has been named vice president of marketing at Purchasing Power, LLC, an e-commerce voluntary benefit company offering an employee purchase program through the convenience of payroll deductions. In her new role, Tumara expands her current responsibilities to include oversight of all marketing channels, including consumer marketing, e-commerce marketing analytics and research, and creative services. Her duties also include supervising affiliate and federal government marketing efforts, direct channels, and website marketing campaigns. Spoeth Becomes New Health + Social Impact Lead Decatur resident Shelly Spoeth has been named Porter Novelli Atlanta’s new Health + Social Impact practice lead. Shelly built her career as a healthcare communications leader in Atlanta and has become a familiar face and trusted partner to many local organizations, including the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Million Hearts initiative, CDC’s HPV Vaccine Is Cancer Prevention campaign, and CDC’s Division of Oral Health community water fluoridation initiative. Shelly is a founding member of the planning committee for the National Conference on Health Communication, Marketing, and Media, held in Atlanta and attended by healthcare communicators from across the country. 14 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

Functionize Physical Therapy Practice Opens


unctionize Health and Physical Therapy, a new practice in Decatur, focuses on functional medicine. Owner Lauren Sok founded the practice to provide a level of care she believes is rarely seen in today’s healthcare systems. The physical therapists at Functionize provide one-on-one specialized healthcare focused on the whole person, not just a specific injury or condition. They also offer one-on-one manual therapy, pelvic health physical therapy, trigger point dry needling, Pilates, and running analysis. Whether you are suffering from chronic pain, an unexpected injury, impaired athletic performance, or general “old age” aches and pains, owner Lauren Sok says they will find a way to “functionize” you. Functionize is at 755 Commerce Dr. For more information, call 404-907-4196

Mini Mischief Offers Wide Range of Children’s Clothing Mini Mischief, a new local online shop, carries girls, boys, and gender-neutral children’s clothing for sizes 0 through 8. The shop offers West Coast and European trends and supports brands lever Baby that are environmentally Kids & friendly. They also support g lo CNewbothrnin -8 local brands such as Camp wned Locally O y a Sunshine, which receives 50 & Run B rgia eo G , ur at Dec ma percent of the profits from Mom two designated shirts. To shop Mini Mischief visit the website or one of the pop-up shops around town – or organize a private event. Free shipping is provided. A delivery service allows orders to be received within two hours. For more information visit


Business & Nonprofit News L ’Arche Atlanta Celebrates 4th Birthday and Raises $42,000

[solidcore] Studio Opens in Decatur [solidcore] has opened a workout studio at 150 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., offering complimentary classes through Nov. 6. Customers can sign up for an account and classes via the live schedule at A special price of $250 for a 10-pack of classes (regular drop-in rate is $37/class) will be available throughout November and December, and new clients can also buy a two-class pack for $34. The new studio features [solidcore]’s patented new machine, known as Sweatlana. Made out of powder-coated aluminum, the machines do not rust and offer a variety of resistance, making the workout approachable for new clients and challenging for those who are more advanced. For more information visit

When L ’Arche Atlanta hosted its 4th Birthday Benefit and Bash at Agnes Scott College in September, more than 120 people attended. The event raised more than $42,000 to support L ’Arche’s mission of building community around the gifts of people with intellectual disabilities. The organization was founded in 2012 with one house in the Oakhurst neighborhood serving three (now four) individuals with disabilities whom they call “core members.” Thanks to a partnership with a local organization, the Community of Hospitality, L ’Arche was able to launch the community in a thriving neighborhood and establish great relationships with neighbors. L’Arche is grateful for having such wonderful and receptive neighbors. In addition to the local home, the organization hosts community social events that are open to the public and attract large numbers of people with and without disabilities. For more information, visit

Conversations Series Features Brian McLaren Thursday, Nov. 3 • 7 p.m. The community is invited to hear activist, pastor, and theologian Brian McLaren as part of the Conversations series at First Baptist Church of Decatur, 308 Clairemont Ave. on Thursday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. McLaren will discuss the shifts that are reshaping the church and invite dialogue with the audience about ways to be more dedicated to healing the planet, building peace, overcoming poverty and injustice, and collaborating with other faiths to ensure a better future for all. The Decatur visit is part of the Conversations series in partnership with the Georgia Center for the Book and is free and open to all. For information contact the Georgia Center for the Book at the Decatur branch of the DeKalb Public Library at 404-370-3070 ext. 2285, or

Villa International Hosts Wine-andCheese Fundraiser Nov. 13 • 4-6 p.m. Greek Orthodox Cathedral 2500 Clairmont Rd. Decatur resident Sarah Hagenbush-Jones invites the community to Villa International’s signature fundraiser, Viva Villa, in the Carlos Ballroom, Hellenic Community Center, Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Annunciation on Nov. 13. For more information visit or call 404-633-6783.

NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 15

DBA News

Scene at the DBA Golf Open Thank you to all the sponsors of the fourth annual DBA Golf Open, which took place in September, at Smoke Rise Country Club. Alexan 1133 AT&T Burge & Associates Butter & Cream Carlsberg Carter & Associates Cartridge World USA Decatur CoWorks DeKalb Medical Center Delta Community Credit Union

Eagle Rock Empire HVAC Fidelity Bank Gas South Griffin and Company Joyner & Burnette, P.C. Kronberg Wall McCurdy & Candler, LLC Melissa Stratton Natalie Gregory Orangetheory Fitness

16 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

Private Bank of Decatur Resurgens Bank Servpro Shelter Lending Services Timothy Martin & Associates Truman TSYS Welcomemat Services Wells Fargo Williams Teusink, LLC



Make ‘Deck the Wylde’ Wreaths at Oakhurst Garden Nov. 30-Dec. 3 • 7-9 p.m. The Wylde Center invites adults to enjoy an evening of wreath making at Oakhurst Garden, 435 Oakview Rd. Participants will receive Balsam Fir wreaths, along with a variety of garden materials, including dried berries and herbs, pine cones, and magnolia pods, to embellish the wreaths and create one-of-a-kind holiday decorations. The cost is $65 per person, or $55 for Wylde Center members. All materials are included. You must register online in advance and may choose an evening from Nov. 30 to Dec. 3. Garden staff will be on hand to offer suggestions and any needed help. Bows and other decorative accessories will be provided. To register, visit

3rd Annual ‘Reflect Hope’ Twilight 5K Run/Walk Saturday, Dec. 3 • 5:30 p.m. Ebster Recreation Center, 105 Electric Ave. Register for the Twilight 5K Run/Walk to benefit A Beacon of Hope. Kick off the holiday season as participants glow and jingle through the streets of downtown Decatur. The evening includes a 5K and one-mile run/walk, chip timing for 5K, a live DJ, festive holiday activities, glow gear for all runners, long-sleeve T-shirts and awards. 5K adult registration – $25 through Nov. 29/$30 race day 5K 18 yrs. and younger – $18 through Nov. 29, $23 race day One-mile registration – adult $20; 18 and under $18 Register online at To learn more, contact Jill Fossett, jillfossett.aboh@, or visit

Meeting Reminder

Thank you to DBA sponsors

December 6 Holiday Party Decatur Courtyard by Marriott 130 Clairemont Ave. 5:15 p.m. Networking reception 6 p.m. Hometown Heroes, Beer Festival Grant Awards Sponsors: Decatur Development Authority, Decatur Courtyard by Marriott Visit for details.

NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 17

Decatur Events Decatur First Christian Church Christmas Tree and Wreath Sale


ecatur First Christian Church will hold its ninth annual “Friend and Fund Raiser” Christmas Tree and Wreath sale through Dec. 1. To purchase Fraser fir Christmas trees and handmade wreaths, visit the church (across from the Decatur Post Office), or pre-order your tree through Nov. 23 for a 5 percent discount at The deadline for pickup of pre-sold trees is Dec. 1. Local deliveries are $10; certain conditions apply. Proceeds benefit church and community missions in the city of Decatur, including the Toy Park. The church is at 601 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. For more information, call 404-3783621.

Working for Strong Communities .since 1979. Please view all of our listings at www. adamsrealtors . com 458 Cherokee Avenue, Atlanta, GA 30312 404-688-1222

18 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

Dates and Times of Sales Friday, Nov. 25-Saturday, Dec. 10, or until sold out Kick off: Friday, Nov. 25 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Sales Hours Monday-Friday • 4:30-8:30 p.m. Saturday • 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Sunday • 1 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Volunteers – Needed and Appreciated Help with unloading trees, making wreaths, serving meals, hospitality at check out, and delivery of sold trees. Sign up at 404-378-3621 or fccdecatur@ Free long-sleeve T-shirt and homemade meals provided.

Decatur events

Decatur Events

it’s a Date to Stay up late! Woodlands Hosts ll Decatur residents, and everybody else, too, are invited Photography Exhibit to walk in the Decatur Lantern Parade on the evening of


Friday, May 15. This is one of those “the-more-the-merrier” events, so plan now to participate and be a part of helping oodlands Garden, 932 Scott Blvd., is hostto make this lantern parade memorable. ing a photography exhibition and sale in Make your own lantern at home or conjunction with Atlanta Celebrates Phocome to a lantern-making workshop tography. The exhibit will be open during where supplies and guidance are providnormal business hours, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., or upon request for ed. Find out where and when by visiting special groups, until the end of the year. The retrospective show presents the donated work of local photographer To participate, line up at Color Wheel Virginia Twinam Smith, who began visiting Woodlands Studio at 508 E. Howard Ave. after 8 p.m. Garden while living in a Decatur nursing facility. Join The parade steps off at 9 p.m. led by The the celebration of her life and work by dropping into the Black Sheep Marching Ensemble and paupstairs gallery or scheduling a visit (404-373-2222). rade guru Chantelle Rytter. The parade Consider purchasing some original art for your own colwill wend its way to the community lection. If you can’t make it to the photography exhibit bandstand in front of the Old Courtbut would like to support the garden, save the date for house on the square. Georgia Gives Day, Nov. 17, and make a donation to supThe parade is sponsored by Color port Woodlands. Wheel Studio, Decatur Arts Alliance, Decatur Education Foundation, and the Decatur Development Authority.

Frank Hamilton School Your neighbor and intown real estate specialist.

Come Play With Us!

Whether you are buying or selling — or simply exploring your options — call me to be sure you are positioned for success in today’s changing market.

Giving you the time and attention you deserve

• Top 1% producer, Atlanta Board of Realtors (2009 – 2014) • More than 125 homes sold in City of Decatur since 2009 • More than 260 homes sold

All­level instruction in Oakhurst/Decatur overall since 2009 by legendary musician Frank & his handpicked staff on many acoustic instruments and in vocal harmony • 678.429.9731 Next term starts September 27th! Register now: 20 | Decatur Focus • MaY 2015

LISA CRONIC, REALTOR® 678.641.4325

Decatur Resident for Over 20 Years | 404.874.0300 © MMXIV Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Equal Housing Opportunity. Each Office Is Independently Owned And Operated.

NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 19

Decatur Events Holiday Marketplace + Café

Oakhurst Tree Lighting Dec. 11

Dec. 2-3 • Clairemont Elementary School • 155 Erie Ave. The 25th annual Holiday Marketplace + Café will take place at Clairemont Elementary School on Friday, Dec. 2, 5:30-9:30 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 3, 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Enjoy the holiday spirit as the school transforms into a festive market where more than 100 local and national artists exhibit handmade jewelry, paintings, photography, pottery and more. Stop by the café for homemade soups and decadent desserts. Parents can take advantage of free childcare provided by Color Wheel and the Science of Fun. Proceeds benefit Clairemont Elementary School’s educational programs. For more information, visit

Sunday, Dec. 11 • Harmony Park The annual Oakhurst Lanterns, Lights and Carols celebration, a free evening event open to all, is a collaborative effort of the Oakhurst Neighborhood Association, Oakhurst Cooperative Preschool, Oakhurst Community Choir, and the historic Boy Scout Troop 107, which provides the tree. The evening festivities begin at 5 p.m. at Oakhurst Cooperative Preschool, 830 W. College Ave. Kids can create or bring their own lanterns at OCP before parading down Mead Road into Oakhurst, starting at 6 p.m. Once the parade reaches Harmony Park, the Oakhurst Community Choir will perform a selection of holiday songs as the holiday tree is lit. Refreshments will be provided by Kavarna and other local establishments.

First Baptist Family Movie Night on the Lawn First Baptist Decatur invites the Decatur community to join them on the front lawn for Family Movie Night on Nov. 12. The event beginst at 4 p.m. with games and music on the lawn. The movie begins at dusk (approximately 5:45 p.m.). Hot dogs and hamburgers will be sold as part of a donation-based fundraiser for the community partner, Decatur Cooperative Ministry, which works to prevent and alleviate homelessness in DeKalb County. All proceeds raised for the evening will benefit DCM. Call us for an appointment! 404-377-7263



235 East Ponce De Leon Ave STE 109 Decatur GA 30030

Expert, uncompromising legal representation when you need it most.


• Personal Injury and Wrongful Death • 150 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., Suite 260 • Downtown Decatur 404-253-7860 • • 20 | Decatur C&A-2col-ad-focus.indd 1

Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

5/14/14 4:47 PM


School News Waldorf School Presents Mashenka and the Bear Puppet Show Saturday, Nov. 12 10 a.m.-4 p.m.


he Waldorf School of Atlanta is presenting a marionette puppet show, Mashenka and the Bear, by the Early Childhood faculty, at the annual holiday fair on Nov. 12. The Russian folk tale, about a clever girl who outsmarts a bear, is adapted by Bronja Zahlingen. There will be three performances during the holiday fair. Come to the fair for children’s activities, an artists market, food and music, as well as the puppet show performances. More holiday fair information is available at

news to help you keep fit


Charles Cope • Proprietors • Kimberly Schoon

650-B East Lake Drive • Decatur, GA 30030 • 404-377-1030 • NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 21

School News Fall in the Garden at Holy Trinity Parish Preschool


oly Trinity students are planning and planting their fall garden. They are growing green lettuce, spinach, kale and collards, plus root veggies like beets and carrots. As the weather gets colder, they cook and eat their harvest. The children decorate fences with friendly scarecrows and make colorful “garden ghouls.” They are also learning about the colors of fall, how big, orange pumpkins grow, and the spices that make the smells of Thanksgiving. There are spaces available primarily for 2 year olds. Tours are Monday-Friday, 9:30-11:30 a.m. Visit or call 404-371-1310.

Personalized hometown community banking

Decatur restaurateur Mike Gallagher (Brick Store Pub, Leon’s Full Service, Kimball House) at left with the bank’s new Decatur President, Brent Adams.

Full-service community banking: From safe deposit boxes, checking and savings to lending options from mortgages and construction to SBA and other business loans.

404.809.3930 | PRIVATEBANKOFDECATUR.COM ONE DECATUR TOWN CENTER, SUITE 120, 150 EAST PONCE DE LEON AVENUE A division of Private Bank of Buckhead. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

22 | Decatur Focus • NOVEMBER 2016

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Around Town

Artway Finds Oakhurst


Show off your Decatur on social media and share it with your neighbors. Email

German Students Visit Decatur

Phil Proctor

Patti Garrett

Decatur Public Works employees pose with sculptor Phil Proctor after installing his work, The Geometry of Sol, in front of Fire Station No. 2 on West Hill Street. Five public sculptures were installed around Oakhurst to complete phase two of Decatur’s Artway public art project.

Students from the Decatur High School German Exchange program visit with Mayor Patti Garrett.

#artway #nicejob #publicworks

#germanvisitors #gutentagyall

New Commissioners Want Others to Run

Porchfest Kick-off

Tony Powers

Brian Smith

Commissioners Tony Powers and Brian Smith recently took time to encourage F.AVE students to participate in the F.AVE 5K and Mayor’s Mile Run. #fave5k #beactivedecatur

Members from the Thankful Baptist Church Choir kicked off Porchfest with a few musical selections at Oakhurst’s Harmony Park. They were the first performers of the day, which featured 185 bands playing on porches and lawns all around Oakhurst. #porchfest #getthispartystarted #joyfulnoise

NOVEMBER 2016 • Decatur Focus | 23


Printed on Recycled Paper

P.O. Box 220 Decatur, GA 30031-220

Decatur Square.117 East Court Square.Decatur.404/370-3979 Amsterdam Walk.500-L3 Amsterdam Ave.Atlanta.404/892-8294


And this is just the beginning! Stop in soon and see everything that's new.


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pre-sorted standard u.s. postage PAID Permit No. 199 Decatur, GA 30031

e n w H arrivals at Worthmore!

Think your doctor should listen to more than just your heart? Your neighbor and intown real estate specialist.

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Whether you are buying or selling — or simply exploring your options — call me to be sure you are positioned for success in today’s changing market. We believe in “Personal Care” at the doctor’s office. By partnering with a network of specialists and a state-of-the-art health system, we give you the care you need and the attention you deserve.

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• More than 300 homes sold overall since 2009

9/28/16 3:40 PM

Focus Newsletter,November 2016  

November 2016 edition of the official newsletter of Decatur, Georgia