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Relocation, Lifestyle & Living in Atlanta

August/September 2013


FAYETTE COUNTY Affordable Homes, Booming Business and More

LIQUID GEORGIA Finding Great Sips Without Leaving the State

Atlanta’s Arts & Entertainment Your Guide to the City’s Top Theaters, Museums and Culture

Finding a New Dentist

Inside Charter Schools

Make It Macon

How to Simplify Your Search

Providing Parents with More Options

Exploring “The Heart of Georgia” | Newcomer Magazine | 3

August/September CONTENTS FEATURES Finding a New Dentist . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Arts and Entertainment Guide. . . . . . . . . . . . . . ...26

With so much to do after your move, selecting a dentist can slip through the cracks. We offer some tips to take the stress out of your search.

Charter schools are becoming more common throughout Georgia. We explore how they work and what they may be able to offer your child.

From family-friendly museums to thought-provoking theater and world-class performing arts, Atlanta’s thriving cultural scene has something for everyone.

Charter Schools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Exploring Macon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Located in central Georgia, Macon offers a budget-friendly getaway brimming with music, history and a strong dose of Southern charm.




In Focus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Relocation Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37

The inside scoop on news, events and happenings around Atlanta.

Homes and Communities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

A comprehensive guide to help you find your way before, during and after your move, including counties, neighborhoods, relocation tips, a map of metro Atlanta and much more.

Fayette County’s booming business community, affordable housing and tons of recreation options make it a great place to live, work and play.

Upcoming Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48

Neighborhood Spotlight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

Get caught up on the best exhibitions, theatrical productions, special events and live music across the metro area.

Just 15 minutes south of Atlanta’s airport, Fayetteville boasts affordable housing, a small-town feel and a thriving, historic downtown.

Hidden Atlanta . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50

School Spotlight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

The Margaret Mitchell House, Atlanta’s top literary landmark, offers a fascinating look at the birthplace of Gone With the Wind.

Greater Atlanta Christian School molds future leaders with an emphasis on real-world interactions and service to others.

Dining Out . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Take a tour of some of the finest wineries, craft breweries and micro distilleries in the state.

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PHOTOS: (Center) Richard Termine; (Right) Macon-Bibb County Convention & Visitors Bureau


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6 | Newcomer Magazine | | Newcomer Magazine | 7

inFOCUS n e w s b i tes fr om a ro un d AT LANTA

Lights, Camera,


Let the Music Play

PHOTO: Manda McKay

PHOTO: Courtesy of the Fox Theatre

You haven’t had the true Atlanta summer-movie experience until you’ve enjoyed a fantastic flick on one of the biggest screens in town. The Coca-Cola Summer Film Festival continues through August at the historic Fox Theatre, with a roster of topnotch offerings including Iron Man 3 (Aug. 16), a selection of Saturday Morning cartoon shorts (Aug. 17), Breakfast at Tiffany’s (Aug. 18) and the 2009 comedy Zombieland (Aug. 29). For more information, call 404-881-2100 or visit

There’s no doubt that after a six-year hiatus, Music Midtown has retaken its crown as Atlanta’s premier music festival. This year finds the fest bigger and better than ever, spreading over two days and three stages with a stellar lineup that includes the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Journey, Queens of the Stone Age, Imagine Dragons, Jane’s Addiction, Cake, Drivin’ N’ Cryin’, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and many more. Sept. 20 and 21 at Piedmont Park. For tickets and other information, visit

Art Attack Featuring 200 talented artists working in a dozen different mediums, the nationally recognized Atlanta Arts Festival returns for its seventh year of artist demonstrations, classes, live music, children’s crafts and great food. Whether you’re looking to add to your collection or just like to browse, there will be jewelry, paintings, photography, ceramics, sculptures, glassblowing and much more on display. Sept. 14 and 15 in Piedmont Park. For more information, call 770-941-9660 or visit 8 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Courtesy of the Fox Theatre

PHOTO: Allison Suzanne

Who You Gonna Call? Ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes of the Discovery Channel’s “Mythbusters”? Well you’re in luck, as cohosts Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage present the Mythbusters: Behind the Myths Tour, an evening of experiments, audience participation and tales from the set of the Emmynominated series. This one-night-only event comes to the Fox Theatre on Aug. 30. For more information, call 404881-2100 or visit

infocus Family-Friendly Suwanee

PHOTO: Courtesy of Peachtree City

The accolades just keep on coming for Suwanee. After scoring high marks earlier this year in the National Citizen Survey, which polls residents of different communities, the Gwinnett County city was recognized as one of the country’s 10 Best Towns for Families by Family Circle magazine in its July issue. The city’s affordable housing, quality schools, green space, low crime rate, financial stability and access to health care contributed to the family-friendly designation. Congratulations to Suwanee! For more information, visit

International Flavor Enjoy food, art and culture from around the world at the International Festival and Dragon Boat Races in Peachtree City. This sixth annual event features live entertainment, international cuisine, activities for children—and, of course, dragon boat races for young and old alike. For those interested in participating, dragon boats, paddles, life jackets and training classes are provided. Sept. 28 at Drake Field. For more information, visit | Newcomer Magazine | 9

Finding a New

DENTIST How to Simplify Your Search By Susan Flowers and Lindsay Oberst

Newcomers to the Atlanta area face a seemingly endless list of tasks, from arranging for utilities to finding new resources for shopping and home maintenance. Among the crucial chores that could easily be neglected in those busy first few weeks: choosing a new dentist. 10 | Newcomer Magazine |


are of the teeth and gums is important for the overall health of children and adults. But how do you find the right dentist when you’ve just moved to a new city? Simply picking the practice closest to your home or work, or selecting one at random, might provide a bad match. Fortunately, there are ways to simplify your search. One step is to consult the Georgia Dental Association (GDA) website (see sidebar) and search for member dentists who operate near you. All GDA members agree to abide by the ethical standards reflected in the American Dental Association’s Principles of Ethics and Code of Professional Conduct. Dr. Sidney Tourial, president of the GDA, advises new residents to quiz their neighbors about their dentist. “Is the office clean? Do they like the care they receive?” he asks. He also recommends visiting social media sites and other websites where patients can rate and comment on health care providers. It’s also a good idea to ask your previous dentist. “When people come to me and say they’re moving away, I happen to know a lot

Make sure your potential dentist is a member of a reputable professional organization. of dentists that practice similar to the way I do,” Tourial says. “So if they’re happy with me, they’ll be happy with who I recommend.”

The Right Dentist for You Once you have a recommendation or two, you’ll want to check the background of your potential dentist. Knowing more about a professional’s education and experience can help you to have confidence in your care. The Georgia Secretary of State’s website allows visitors to check that a dentist has an up-

to-date license and find out whether any disciplinary actions have been taken against that provider by the Georgia Board of Dentistry in the past several years. You’ll also want to make sure your potential dentist is a member of a reputable professional organization such as the GDA, the Georgia Dental Society or the American Dental Association. Just as with any other profession, dentistry’s knowledge base and best practices are constantly evolving, and your new dentist should be up to speed on the latest information and training. Georgia requires that dentists complete a minimum of 40 hours of continuing education every two years, with at least 20 of those hours acquired at an on-site course or seminar. Among the questions to keep in mind when interviewing a prospective dentist: • Is the dentist keeping up with new techniques? Is his or her equipment up-todate? • Is the location convenient? “If it’s hard to get to your dentist,” says Tourial, “you’re not gonna go.” • Do the hours or appointment schedule work within your availability? • How are emergencies handled outside of normal business hours? • Does the dentist explain the proposed treatment and other issues related to your overall health? • Is information provided about fees and payment options?

The Right Dentist for Your Child While a general practitioner can usually provide excellent care for your entire family, some parents may wish to consider a pediatric dentist, one who specializes in the care of children. u | Newcomer Magazine | 11

Pediatric dentists complete two to three years of additional training to specialize in treating children, says Dr. Charlie Coulter, chief dental officer at Dentistry for Children. What’s more, he adds, they are “uniquely qualified to treat a child who is having his or her first dental visit, to treat early childhood tooth decay, a child overcoming a negative experience in a previous dental or physician’s office and children with special needs.” When it comes to finding a pediatric dentist, “It’s better to go with word of mouth rather than what you see on a billboard,” says Dr. Michael Healey, a pediatric orthodontist serving Roswell and Dunwoody. Check with friends and family in the area, as well as your neighbors, parents at your child’s new school or fellow church members for recommendations. When screening a candidate, ask how many offices he or she has. “If they have five offices,” Healey asks, “how much time can they spend with your child?” It’s also important to ask how many patients the dentist sees daily. “Personally, I see around 30 or 40,” he says. “There are some offices that see 120 kids a day, which means the doctor only has three minutes with a child.”

Someone You Can Trust For many patients, establishing a rapport with a dentist is crucial. Dr. Charles King, president of the Georgia Dental Society, says that’s just as important for the dentist. “Good relationships produce better results,” he says. “As health care providers, we always want to give our best to whoever walks through our doors; even more so, we want to form lasting relationships that enable our patients to feel confident and secure that their lives are in great hands. Honestly, it keeps them coming back.” When talking with a potential provider, ask yourself if he or she is someone you feel comfortable with—one you can trust with your health, or your child’s. “An outstanding dentist, in my opinion, is one who gives his or her best for the benefit of his or her patients every single day,” says King, “no matter what the procedure, no matter what the cost.”


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American Dental Association

Georgia Dental Society

Georgia Dental Association

Georgia Secretary of State | Newcomer Magazine | 13

TOP: The golf course at Flat Creek Country Club in Peachtree City. BOTTOM: The Line Creek Nature Area.

FAYETTE COUNTY Close to Atlanta, Yet a World Away

PHOTOS: Courtesy of Dan Nelson

By Daniel Beauregard

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L PHOTOS: (Top Left and Bottom) Courtesy of the City of Fayetteville; (Top Right) Dan Nelson.

ocated approximately 25 minutes south of Atlanta, Fayette County is an increasingly popular destination for families, empty nesters and professionals. Since its foundation in the early 1800s, the county has grown into one of metro Atlanta’s main destinations for those looking to live close to the city while enjoying the area’s laid-back feel, excellent education options and a multitude of recreational attractions.

Community Living Home to an estimated 107,000 residents, Fayette County enjoys the lowest cost of living in the metro area, according to the Council for Community and Economic Research’s Cost of Living Index. Residents enjoy a median household income of $81,498 and a median home value of $247,500, both higher than the city of Atlanta. Nowhere is that high quality of life more visible than in Peachtree City. Named one of Bloomberg Businessweek’s Best Places to Raise Kids for 2013, the county’s largest city boasts a population of more than 34,000 residents and is famous for its unique 90-mile network of multi-use paths. These paths are used by pedestrians, cyclists and even golf carts, which are a common mode of transportation throughout the city. Add an abundance of lush wooded scenery, and this nearly 15,637-acre community feels like a soothing resort. “Basically, we call it

TOP LEFT AND BOTTOM: Scenes from downtown Fayetteville. TOP RIGHT: The Great Georgia Air Show in Peachtree City.

resort-style living, and it is,” says Nancy Price, executive director of the Peachtree City Convention and Visitors Bureau. Developed as a planned community in the 1950s, Peachtree City consists of five distinct villages—Aberdeen, Braelinn, Glenloch, Kedron, and Wilksmoor—each with its own shopping areas, recreational facilities and schools. While sporting a very different feel, Fayetteville, the county seat, offers its own idyllic allure. With 16,000 residents, a historic downtown district and pedestrian-friendly streets, it exudes a small-town charm, which appeals to a broad

range of inhabitants, says Brian Wismer, Fayetteville’s director of community development. “We’re a bedroom community with a short commute into town,” he says. “You’ve got the families with school-aged children, and we also have a lot of senior citizens, who like the lifestyle here.” In addition, Fayetteville has been named a top 10 suburb for retirement by Forbes and a top 10 Georgia town for young families by the financial website NerdWallet. The smaller towns of Tyrone, Brooks and Woolsey offer their own pastoral settings, with all of the county’s amenities still close by. u | Newcomer Magazine | 15

LEFT: A produce stand along Fayetteville’s downtown square. RIGHT: Peachtree City’s Shakerag Arts, Crafts and Bluegrass Festival.

Education and Business

national average of 1,498. And a majority of the schools scored more than 90 out of 100 on the Georgia Department of Education’s College and Career Readiness Performance Index, a new system used to evaluate academic success. “[The school system] has really been a major reason why people come to Fayette County,”

says Virginia Gibbs, president of the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce. “They just know that … wherever you live in the county, there are some great schools doing amazing work with students, K-12 as well as some really wonderful pre-K programs.” The system’s 26 schools serve more than 20,000 students.

Hapeville, Georgia come see where things are taking off! Hapeville is located on the doorstep of the Atlanta HartsfieldJackson International Airport. Hapeville welcomes Porsche Cars North America, Inc. In 2012, Porsche closed on 56.2 acres on which it will build its U.S. Headquarters, a $100M project. Dramatic tax advantages attract businesses to Hapeville’s commercial Opportunity Zone. Residential neighborhoods feature homes such as craftsmanstyle bungalows, traditional Chicago-style townhomes and loft-condominiums; with manicured parks and facilities. Hapeville celebrates the arts through public art and cultural events in historic downtown. Hapeville Assoc. of Tourism & Trade Department of Economic Development Hapeville, GA. * (404)-669-8269

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PHOTOS: (Left) Courtesy of the City of Fayetteville

photo: darnyl k. katzinger


One big draw for families is the county’s nationally recognized public school system, Fayette County Schools, which is considered one of the best in the state. Last year, Fayette County students earned an average SAT score of 1,542, topping both the state average of 1,452 and the

The Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater in Peachtree City hosts national touring acts.

potential employment opportunities and peripheral business opportunities,” agrees Gibbs. Another growing business sector in the region is the health care industry, due in no small part to Fayetteville’s Piedmont Fayette Hospital. The 172-bed facility employs more than 500 physicians and more than 1,100 employees,

making it one of the largest employers in the county. Since opening in 1997, Piedmont Fayette has been named one of the nation’s top 100 hospitals five times by Thomson Reuters, and been recognized as one of the country’s “most wired” hospitals six straight years for its use of advanced technology. u

PHOTO: Charles Plant

Fayette County also boasts a thriving economic center that offers a number of attractive incentives for businesses, including the 2,200acre Peachtree City Industrial Park, which features its own Foreign Trade Zone, allowing an easier path for merchandise entering from or going to foreign countries. And the area continues to benefit from Georgia’s growing film industry. The Lifetime series “Drop Dead Diva” films in Peachtree City, which also hosted the motion picture Lawless. The CVB has also recently developed a film tour, Price says, highlighting locations used in “The Walking Dead,” Sweet Home Alabama, Fried Green Tomatoes and more. And recently, Pinewood Studios, the British film studio most famous for producing the James Bond film series, announced plans for a production facility in Fayetteville. The studio is slated to make the area even more attractive to large film productions, and bring more business to the county. “The estimates are for about 150,000 ancillary businesses that will want to locate in proximity” to the facility, says Wismer. “We’re very optimistic about the business forecast for the next year to year and a half.” “There’s so much excitement in the community because of what that means and all the | Newcomer Magazine | 17

Entertainment and Recreation Perhaps Fayette County’s biggest attraction is its wealth of recreational and entertainment activities. Among its leisure-time offerings are the Line Creek Nature Area, a 70-acre public preserve; three lakes (Lake Horton, Lake Kedron and Starr’s Mill) open to fishing and boating (except at Starr’s Mill); six golf courses, youth athletic programs, miles of recreational trails and numerous parks. The county is home to two outdoor music venues, the Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater and Southern Ground Amphitheater. Peachtree City also boasts a tennis center and an indoor aquatic center. Major events in the county include the Shakerag Arts, Crafts and Bluegrass Festival, featuring live music and homemade crafts; the Dragon Boat Races and International Festival, a day of international food, dance and culture; and the Great Georgia Air Show, which draws more than 30,000 spectators for a weekend of aerial stunts and demonstrations. Shoppers can visit the Avenue Peachtree City, a walkable, open-air shopping center fe aturing national and local stores and restaurants, and the Fayette Pavilion in Fayetteville, which offers a number of affordable shops as well as a movie theater.

Close to Atlanta and yet a world away, Fayette County provides all the advantages of metro Atlanta against a relaxing backdrop. With affordable housing, top-notch schools, firstclass health care, a booming business scene and a multitude of recreational and entertainment options, it offers an increasingly attractive alternative to big-city life.

ESSENTIAL INFORMATION Fayette County Government Fayette County Schools Fayette County Chamber of Commerce Fayette County Development Authority City of Fayetteville City of Peachtree City Peachtree City Convention and Visitors Bureau


You’re in Fayetteville. Just 15 miles south of Atl airport Top-ranked schools • Top-ranked healthcare

Fayetteville welcomes its newest resident Pinewood AtlAntA StudioS!

Enjoy our historic downtown, year-round.

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e Park Arts Festiva

spotlight Fayetteville By Muriel Vega

Southern Ground Amphitheater

Sparrow’s Cove

PHOTO: Courtesy of the City of Fayetteville


Culinary Treats

Fayetteville boasts a variety of housing options for both professionals and families. The Lakemont community (770-692-0152) features homes in the low $200s. Whitewater Creek (770-6920152), a gated, private golf community, boasts a clubhouse, tennis, four lakes and other amenities, with homes starting in the mid $300s. Homes can also be found in the mid $200s in the Sparrow’s Cove and Apple Orchard subdivisions. For apartment living, Cobblestone Fayette Apartments (770-719-9477) and Weatherly Walk Apartment Homes (770-460-1491) are large communities with amenities such as pools and tennis courts, with a variety of affordable floor plans.

The Royal Chef (770-716-8299) offers a cozy atmosphere and quality Chinese cuisine. The Speedi-Pig Barbecue (770-719-2720) is famous for its Brunswick stew and 99-cent Piglet sandwiches. Broadway Diner (770-716-2628) serves breakfast, sandwiches, steaks and other staples. Head to Franks at the Old Mill (770460-6055) for Italian and Mediterranean specialties, or Village Café (770-460-7888) for sandwiches, pasta and other American fare. Partners Pizza (770-716-1528) serves up calzones and specialty pies.

Local Treasures Southern hospitality and history are alive in Downtown Fayetteville, anchored by the Old Courthouse Square and surrounded by small shops, murals, a cemetery and train depot. Built in 1825, the Fayette County Courthouse is the oldest surviving courthouse in Georgia. Just outside the square, the Holliday-Dorsey-Fife Museum (770-716-5332) boasts ties to such figures as Margaret Mitchell and “Doc” Holliday. Fayetteville is also home to Piedmont Fayette Hospital (770-719-7000), named one of the nation’s top 100 hospitals by Thomson Reuters.

Arts and Entertainment The downtown area hosts more than two dozen events each year, including “Lunch on the Lawn” outings with live entertainment on the courthouse lawn. The Southern Ground Amphitheater (770-719-4173) hosts national musical acts and family movie nights. The popular golf course at Whitewater Creek hosts an annual golf tournament in the fall. The Fun Junction USA (770-460-5862) amusement park provides family fun with minigolf, the Screaming Eagle coaster and other attractions. The Fayette Pavilion features great shopping with stores, restaurants and a movie theater. N

The Holliday-Dorsey-Fife House Museum

The Inside Track Fayetteville was recently recognized as a top 10 suburb for retirement by Forbes magazine.

PHOTO: Courtesy of the City of Fayetteville

PHOTO: Courtesy of the City of Fayetteville


stablished in 1922, Fayetteville is a pedestrian-friendly community with a small-town feel and a thriving, historic downtown. Its low unemployment rate and one of the best school systems in the state contribute to a high quality of life. Just 15 miles from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Fayetteville offers easy proximity to downtown Atlanta, yet is far enough away to offer a peaceful retreat.




Providing Parents with More Education Options By Daniel Beauregard

When searching for a school for their child, parents used to have two options: independent schools, or “one size fits all� public schools with limited opportunities for individualized instruction. But public education is changing, and families have more options than ever before.

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harter schools—tuitionfree public schools created by local communities—are becoming more and more common throughout Georgia. These schools offer a variety of educational approaches to fit a child’s individual learning needs.

What is a Charter School? Charter schools get their name from the fact that they operate according to an agreement, or “charter,” which is a performance contract between the school and the local or state school board. This charter grants the school more flexibility in how it instructs its students, and grants the school more autonomy in hiring and dismissing teachers and staff. Instead of a local board of education, the school is governed by an independent board, which usually includes parents. Charter schools can employ innovative approaches and different methods of teaching,

and Mathematics (STEM). Charter schools can also adopt their own calendars, such as a year-round calendar, extended school hours or even Saturday classes. They often feature smaller classroom sizes, and in general provide more personalized instruction and attention that a child might receive in a larger, more traditional public-school setting. In return for this freedom, the school takes on more accountability with parents and the school board that authorized the charter. Unlike traditional public schools, if a charter school doesn’t meet the goals stated in its charter, it faces the prospect of its charter not being renewed, notes Nina Rubin, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit Georgia Charter Schools Association. And unlike independent schools, charter schools cannot charge tuition, and must follow the same open admission and enrollment standards as other public schools. u

“Charter schools expand options for families, ensuring that more children have access to a highquality, public K-12 education.” NINA RUBIN, Georgia Charter Schools Association including single-gender education, languageimmersion programs, project-based learning, a Montessori curriculum, or one focusing on the arts or Science, Technology, Engineering | Newcomer Magazine | 21

“Charter schools expand options for families, ensuring that more children have access to a high-quality, public K-12 education,” Rubin says. Currently, there are more than 120 charter schools throughout Georgia. The state is also home to 14 charter school districts. Like individual charter schools, charter systems are allowed greater flexibility in addressing the educational needs of their students, in exchange for increased accountability. By June 2015, every system in Georgia will be either a public system, a charter system or an Investing in Excellence in Education system, which will enjoy some flexibility, although not as much as that enjoyed by charter systems. Charter systems enjoy “increased parent and community support due to the local governance at each school,” says Merrianne Dyer, superintendent for Gainesville City Schools, an eight-school system in Gainesville, Ga. “Therefore, each school’s design is customized for the students and parents.”

their children to any school in the system. Transportation is provided by the school of choice.

Different Ways of Learning

Dyer says the charter approach allows educators to explore ways to achieve better results. Since 2008, when Gainesville City Schools became one of the first charter systems in the state, academic success throughout the system has improved, she says. Gainesville City Schools offers open parental choice for all of the schools in the system, which means that parents can choose to send

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Choice—having more schools and more ways of learning to choose from—is the core of the charter school concept. Like so many other charter schools, one of the newest, Westside Atlanta Charter School, came into being when members of the local community decided they wanted another education option for their children. “We have this concept of student-centered learning, and the teacher will kind of be the guide on the side,” says Westside’s principal, Pete Settelmayer. “The students will drive how the standards are learned and we will not use worksheets or the old ditto forms—it will all be student-created work.” Westside Atlanta is scheduled to begin its first school year on Aug. 5, serving 120 students in grades K through 2, adding a grade each year until it reaches eighth grade.

Harkness says that single-gender charter A couple of years ago, Rae Harkness, a DeKalb County parent, was searching for the schools offer “incredible” benefits. “I have found right school for her daughter. She didn’t want that my daughter has formed much stronger friendships with girls than to send her to the local pubever before,” she says, “and lic school. She couldn’t afthe cattiness and fights that ford tuition for an indepenusually start over boys are dent school, and there were not present.” waiting lists for some of the There are as many difcounty’s more appealing ferent ways of teaching and school-choice programs. learning as there are charter Harkness says she wantschools, Settelmayer says, ed a public school with high and Westside Atlanta Characademic standards, mandater opened specifically to tory parental involvement give parents and students and a responsive teaching another choice. staff. She felt she was run“The way we teach and ning out of options until she the way our students learn learned about Ivy Preparamight be an option for tory Academy for Girls, a them,” he says. single-gender charter school Whether you’re seeking that had just been authospecial emphasis on a sperized to open in the KirkRAE HARKNESS, cific discipline or simply a wood community. DeKalb County Parent more personal, interactive “I did my research on the relationship between stuschool and was pleased with the results,” Harkness says. “My child would be dents and teachers, a charter school may offer in a structured, supportive environment and on just the learning environment you and your child have been looking for. a path to college.”

“I have found that my daughter has formed much stronger friendships with girls than ever before”

FOR MORE INFORMATION Georgia Charter Schools Association

Westside Atlanta Charter School

Ivy Preparatory Academy


Cartersville City Schools

City Schools of Decatur

Dawson County Schools

Gainesville City Schools

Marietta City Schools

Putnam County Schools | Newcomer Magazine | 23

PHOTOS: Greater Atlanta Christian School


Greater Atlanta Christian School Emphasizing Leadership Through Service By Cady Schulman


hile other children were spending their summer vacation at the mall or by the pool, 94 students from Greater Atlanta Christian School (GAC) were filling their days with service projects throughout the metro area. These tasks ranged from feeding homeless people who live under bridges in downtown Atlanta to collecting food for the Norcross Co-Op Ministry and raising money for the Atlanta Mission. Meanwhile, other GAC students were traveling to Kenya and China on mission trips that found them performing such tasks as building houses, teaching Vacation Bible School and delivering food to orphanages, among other duties. “They come home really tired,” says Jill Morris, GAC’s director of community relations, who describes the students’ endeavors as “labors of love” that will serve them well in the future. “When they leave here, they want to study abroad,” she continues. “They want to take on nonprofit work. … [Service] adds so much to their resumes for college.” Serving others is a vital part of life at GAC. High school students are required to perform a certain number of hours of community service, which helps them “understand their importance in global leadership,” says Morris. In this way, the school helps students “learn to love each other,” she continues, “[and] learn to love themselves.” Students also attend chapel services every day. “We were created by a Creator, and if we don’t know that Creator, we don’t know what our purpose is in life,” she says. In addition to interacting with others in the name of service, GAC students venture into the outside world as part of their academic pursuits as well. Anatomy & Physiology students, for example, inspect cadavers at Emory University.

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“There are leadership seminars in which students are spending the summer working in government programs like Student Government Association, and government honors programs,” says Morris. “There are a plethora of opportunities for them to go above and beyond the AP honors classes.” The sprawling, 80-acre campus on Indian Trail Road in Norcross boasts separate buildings for the school’s 1,850 elementary, junior high and high school students—many of whom, says Morris, come for GAC’s fine arts program. Greater Atlanta Christian features a School of Ballet and a School of Music, choral, marching band and orchestra programs, a dance team, and visual arts and drama classes. These programs benefit students in ways beyond broadening their cultural horizons. “It’s a new phenomenon that more and more pre-med students take art,” Morris says. “It gives them a heads-up in seeing the detail in things and helping their right brains develop.” The school also offers more than 70 athletic programs, including water polo, and boasts state championship titles in a number of sports. All of these offerings reflect the school’s dedication not just to educating its students, but to furthering their growth as human beings, as reflected in GAC’s mission statement: “To help each student grow as Jesus did in wisdom, stature, and in favor with God and man.” N

The Specifics Grades: K3-12 Student/Teacher Ratio: 13/1 Tuition: $11,540-$16,960 Location: Norcross

Contact: 1575 Indian Trail Road, Norcross, GA 30093 770-243-2000 Web:




8:40 AM








K | Newcomer Magazine | 25

Broadway in Atlanta’s “Evita” comes to the Fox Theatre next summer.


Entertainment Your Guide to Atlanta’s Arts and Entertainment Scene

Your new city offers more than just great new places to explore, fabulous restaurants and a wealth of good schools. It’s also the arts capital of the Southeast, with top-notch theaters, music and performing arts venues, museums … the list goes on. Don’t know where to start? Don’t worry. On the following pages, we’ve put together a program of the biggest players on Atlanta’s cultural stage. 26 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Richard Termine

By Kevin Forest Moreau

PHOTOS: (Top Left) Courtesy of Spivey Hall; (Top Right) Angela Sterling, Courtesy of the Atlanta Ballet; (Bottom Left) Jeff Roffman; (Bottom Right) © 2013, Kevin C. Rose/

TOP: (Left) Spivey Hall; (Right) The Atlanta Ballet’s “Romeo et Juliette.” BOTTOM: (Left) The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra; (Right) The Fox Theatre.

CONCERTS, SHOWS AND PLAYS Alliance Theatre One of Atlanta’s most celebrated theaters, the Tony Award-winning Alliance is known for launching Broadway shows and touring productions including Bring It On, Sister Act and Ghost Brothers of Darkland County. Among the highlights of the 2013-2014 season is the musical Harmony, with music by Barry Manilow.

Atlanta Ballet Founded in 1929, the Atlanta Ballet is the nation’s oldest continually operating ballet company. Its 84th season kicks off in December with its

signature production, Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker. Other highlights include Romeo et Juliette, Pinocchio and Hamlet.

Atlanta Opera Since its first production in 1980, this acclaimed company has developed a reputation for fostering great local and international talent. For its 2013-2014 season, which opens in October, the Atlanta Opera will stage productions of the classics Tosca, Faust and The Barber of Seville.

Atlanta Symphony Orchestra The Grammy Award-winning Atlanta Symphony, one of America’s leading orchestras, has an

ambitious 2013-2014 season on tap, with five world premieres, guest performances from such names as André Watt and cellist Yo-Yo Ma, and crowd-pleasing programs including a Movie Music Spectacular and A Tribute to Marvin Hamlisch.

Broadway in Atlanta Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank, Broadway in Atlanta hosts a number of touring Broadway productions each year at the Fox Theatre. Highlights of the 2013-2014 season include Ghost (Nov. 5-10), The Book of Mormon (Jan. 28-Feb. 9, 2014), The Lion King (April 10-27), American Idiot (May 1-4) and Evita (June 3-8). u | Newcomer Magazine | 27

TOP: (Left) Bodies ... The Exhibition; (Right) The Atlanta Opera’s “Tosca.” CENTER: The Fernbank Museum of Natural History.

Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre This 2,750-seat theater just northwest of Atlanta is home to the Atlanta Ballet and the Atlanta Opera, as well as concerts and touring productions. Upcoming highlights include comedian Lewis Black (Oct. 19) and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular (Nov. 7 through 23).

Broadway productions, specializing in fare that appeals to audiences young and old alike. The company’s scheduled productions for this season are The Little Mermaid (Sept. 7-15) and Stomp (Sept. 25-29), both at the Fox Theatre.

This Midtown landmark, a former 1920s movie palace known for its Islamic and Egyptian architecture, hosts a number of concerts, performances and plays. Upcoming highlights include screenings of Iron Man 3 (Aug. 16) and Breakfast at Tiffany’s (Aug. 18) as part of the theater’s annual Coca-Cola Summer Film Festival.

Rialto Center for the Arts

seat concert hall that hosts music, dance and theater performances. Upcoming shows include an evening of chamber music by Philip Glass and Tim Fain on Sept. 27 and mandolin player Chris Thile (Nov. 2).

Spivey Hall

This 833-seat venue on the campus of Georgia State University is one of the city’s premier venues for leading national and international jazz and world music acts. The Rialto’s 2013-2014 season kicks off with the Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club (Oct. 5).

Renowned for its exceptional acoustics, this 400-seat space on the campus of Clayton State University in Morrow is a great setting for live jazz and classical music. Among the highlights of its upcoming season are performances by the Tetzlaff Quartet (Oct. 20) and pianist Paul Lewis (Nov. 10).

Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts

Theater of the Stars

Currently celebrating its 10th anniversary, Emory University’s Schwartz Center features an 800-

For more than 50 years, this Atlanta-based regional theater has presented hundreds of

28 | Newcomer Magazine |

MUSEUMS AND EXHIBITS Atlanta Cyclorama & Civil War Museum The centerpiece of this attraction is a panoramic painting of the Battle of Atlanta. The painting stands 42 feet tall, is 358 feet in circumference, and includes a diorama, adding a dimension of depth to the portrait. The museum also features Civil War memorabilia and a steam locomotive.

Atlanta History Center Situated on a 33-acre complex in Buckhead, the Atlanta History Center features two museums, two historic homes, six historic gardens and the Kenan Research Center. The Center also hosts various special events throughout the year.

PHOTOS: (Top Left) Premier Exhibitions Inc.; (Top Right) Tim Wilkerson; (Center) © 2013, Kevin C. Rose/;

Fox Theatre

Bodies…The Exhibition This unique showcase, located in Atlantic Station in Midtown Atlanta, offers an unmatched view of the human body and how it works. More than 200 actual bodies and specimens, preserved through a unique process, offer visitors a unique look at our skeletal structure, musculature, nervous and reproductive systems and more.

Booth Western Art Museum Located less than an hour north of Atlanta in Cartersville, the Booth Museum explores many different aspects of Western culture and history. Current exhibits include a popular look at paintings that graced the cover of the Saturday Evening Post magazine.

Gone with the Wind Museum Dedicated to Margaret Mitchell’s world-famous novel and its classic movie adaptation, this charming museum on the historic Marietta Square showcases some of Mitchell’s personal volumes of the novel, as well as movie memorabilia including the original honeymoon gown worn by Vivien Leigh in the film.

High Museum of Art With more than 13,000 works of art in its permanent collection, the High is considered the Southeast’s leading art museum. It often hosts prestigious exhibits such as the current Girl With a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the Mauritshuis (see sidebar).

Margaret Mitchell House Explore the life of Mitchell, the former journalist best known as the author of Gone With the Wind, by touring the apartment where she wrote much of the novel. There are also exhibits on the writer and her world-famous book.

Michael C. Carlos Museum Known as one of the Southeast’s foremost museums of ancient art, this museum on the Emory University campus showcases objects from ancient Egypt, Rome, Greece, Africa, Asia and elsewhere. It also hosts educational lectures, workshops and other events.

Suwanee SculpTour This popular public art exhibit in Suwanee, a half-hour north of Atlanta, features more than a dozen original sculptures, which can be enjoyed during a 1-mile walking tour in and around the city’s Town Center. The current SculpTour is on display through March 2015.

Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition This absorbing exhibit at Atlantic Station transports visitors back in time to April 1912 and places them aboard the historic RMS Titanic. Assume the role of a passenger as you learn about the ship’s construction and examine more than 200 artifacts from the Titanic’s fateful voyage.

FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education The Atlanta Ballet’s education program teaches ballet technique for children as young as age 3. The Centre follows Fulton County’s education | Newcomer Magazine | 29

Fernbank Science Center

calendar, with classes beginning in August and ending in June. Summer programs are also available. www.

The Science Center, which is not connected to the Fernbank Museum, features a two-story exhibit hall filled with educational displays. There’s also a planetarium and observatory, a large solar panel, a library, an areo space lab, a laboratory devoted to meteorology and seismology, and the 65-acre Fernbank Forest.

Center for Puppetry Arts This enchanting Midtown institution houses a museum dedicated to the art of puppetry, with more than 350 puppets from TV shows, movies and around the world. The Center also hosts workshops and performances like the recent Dr. Seuss’s The Cat in the Hat. Upcoming highlights include The Wizard of Oz (Oct. 9-20) and Rudolph the RedNosed Reindeer (Nov. 7-Dec. 29).

Interactive Neighborhood for Kids

“Rumpelstiltskin” at the Center for Puppetry Arts.

The Children’s Museum of Atlanta

Fernbank Museum of Natural History Take an entertaining and educational look at natural history at this museum, with such permanent exhibits as A Walk Through Time in Georgia and Giants of the Mesozoic, which showcases some of the world’s largest dinosaurs. There’s also an IMAX theatre with an ever-changing lineup of fascinating films.

Tellus Science Museum This Cartersville museum allows aspiring archeologists to stare into the jaws of a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Other attractions include a mineral gallery and a look at transportation technology. The museum also hosts lectures and other educational programs.

PHOTO: Courtesy of the Center for Puppetry Arts

This downtown museum features interactive attractions that stimulate learning and creativity. Year-round exhibits allow children to tromp through a fun crawl space, work on a farm and explore their artistic sides. The current Weebles Coast to Coast® exhibit allows children to visit all 50 states without leaving the museum (through Sept. 8).

This children’s museum in Gainesville offers children a glimpse into what it’s like to be a doctor, banker or even a police officer, through role play and hands-on exhibits. There’s also a library, an interactive stage, an arts and crafts room and an actual fire truck from 1927.

30 | Newcomer Magazine |



SEP 27

An evening of chamber music with influential composer and pianist Philip Glass and violinist Tim Fain

OCT 18

Award-winning mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke


Mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile of Punch Brothers

NOV 15 1. Girl with a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the Mauritshuis The High Museum of Art offers a once-in-a-lifetime glimpse of 35 paintings from the Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, home of one of the most prestigious collections of Dutch Golden Age paintings. Johannes Vermeer’s celebrated Girl with a Pearl Earring makes its first visit to the Southeast, accompanied by works from such renowned talents as Rembrandt van Rijn, Frans Hal, Jan Steen, Rachel Ruysch, Abraham van Beyeren and Jacob van Ruisdael. These enchanting paintings span the full range of subject matter and technique that made the 17th century such a fertile period for painting in the Dutch Republic. Through Sept. 29 at the High Museum of Art. 404-733-5000,

PHOTO: Johannes Vermeer (Dutch, 1632–1675), Girl with a Pearl Earring, ca. 1665, Oil on canvas, The Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague.

2. The Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club Enjoy this rare night of authentic Cuban music featuring musicians from the popular 1999 documentary The Buena Vista Social Club. Among the players scheduled to appear are Omara Portuondo, Eliades Ochoa, Manuel “Guajira” Mirabal and Barbarito Torres. Oct.5 at the Rialto Center for the Arts. 404-413-9849, 3. Philip Glass The Schwartz Center for Performing Arts kicks off its 2013-2014 season with a celebration of the famed American composer. Glass will participate in a residency in late September that includes a performance with violinist Tim Fain on Sept. 27. 404-727-5050, 4. Wabi Sabi in the Garden The Atlanta Ballet performs world premieres by a talented crew of up-and-coming choreographers. Aug. 15 and 22 at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. 404-892-3303,

Estonian National Symphony Orchestra with Narek Hakhnazaryan, cello

JAN 31

yMusic, ensemble of string trio, flute, clarinet, and trumpet


Classic and contemporary jazz with the Newport Jazz Festival: Now 60, featuring Anat Cohen

FEB 20

Celebrated pianist Lang Lang

MAR 28

Inon Barnatan, piano, and Alisa Weilerstein, cello


5. 10th Anniversary Western Swing Dance The Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville celebrates 10 years of showcasing art that examines the legends and realities of the American West. The evening includes live entertainment, hors d’oeuvres, drinks and dancing. Aug. 3 at the Booth Western Art Museum. 770-387-1300, | Newcomer Magazine | 31

The winery at Chateau Elan sits on more than 60 acres of vineyards in the midst of a sprawling resort.


Finding Great Sips Without Leaving the State By Hope S. Philbrick

Georgia is home to many wineries, craft breweries and micro distilleries, making it easy to enjoy great drinking options without crossing the state border. You can buy a bottle or two from your local retailer, but it’s even more fun to visit producers for a behind-the-scenes tour, review the full selection of offerings and sample a taste before you buy. We’ve compiled a selective list of locations that are open to the public, many of which host special events and festivals throughout the year. Château Élan Winery & Resort

Dawsonville Moonshine Distillery

The winery at this Braselton retreat, a four-diamond, four-star resort and conference destination, also hosts the French fine-dining restaurant Le Clos, the Mediterranean-style bistro Café Elan, a culinary studio and a wine market, which features wines and a variety of wine and culinary gift items. Offerings include chardonnay, viognier, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, port-style wine, white and red blends, and several muscadine wines. Tours are available daily; times vary. The Deluxe Tour is $10 per person and includes five wine samples and a souvenir wine glass; other, more extensive private tours range from $15 to $50 per person. Purchase a custom wine label as a keepsake. The winery is also available for private functions. 678-425-0900,

This distillery produces and offers free tastings of “legal moonshine”— hand-crafted corn whiskey based on traditional recipes passed down over more than 150 years—and employs a custom-made 250-gallon copper still for production. Additional products to complement its signature corn whiskey are in the works. Daily tours and tastings are free. 770-401-1211 or 706-344-1210,

32 | Newcomer Magazine |

Habersham Vineyards & Winery Located a half-mile from the Alpine village of Helen, Habersham is one of the oldest and largest wineries in the state, producing vinifera varietals as well as blended wines using both vinifera and French-American

Festive Ale. Visitors must be 21 and up; dogs are welcome on the patio. Tours and tastings are free, although a souvenir pint glass is available for $10. Closed Mondays and Tuesdays. 404691-2537,

TOP LEFT: The tasting room at Yonah Mountain Vineyards. TOP RIGHT: A tour of SweetWater Brewing Company. BOTTOM RIGHT: A copper potstill at Richland Rum. CENTER: Dawsonville Moonshine Distillery.

grapes, in a range of styles from sweet to dry. The gift shop stocks a range of specialty gift items from around the world, including gourmet foods. The winery is open daily for self-guided tours and free tastings. 770-983-1973 or 706-878-9463,

PHOTOS: (Top Left) Lindsey McIntosh Photography; (Top Right) Courtesy of SweetWater Brewery

Richland Rum This family-owned operation in Richland, Ga., produces small-batch rum from sugarcane, using a special fermentation process involving a special strain of yeast that took 12 years to perfect. The distillery partners with Chocolate South, High Road Craft Ice Cream and Monday Night Brewing on additional tasty products. Open weekdays and the first Saturday of each month. Tours are free, although advance reservations are recommended. 229-887-3537,

SweetWater Brewing Company Based in Midtown Atlanta, the state’s premier brewery boasts a product line that includes the flagship 420 Pale Ale and a hops-heavy IPA (India pale ale). There are also seasonal brews like the popular winter offering

Terrapin Beer Company This Athens-based brewery, which released its first beer in 2002, offers dozens of beers for all seasons, including some collaborations and special releases. Two-hour tours include tastings, live music and informative talks. The outdoor areas are dog-friendly. Tours and tastings are free, but souvenir glasses are $10 or $12. Open Wednesday through Saturday. 706-549-3377,

Yonah Mountain Vineyards Yonah Mountain Vineyards, situated on a privately held 197-acre estate in northeast Georgia, offers a variety of wines including chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, cabernet sauvignon, and the award-winning Genesis red blend. All available wines are open for tasting. Prices range from $12.50 to $40 by the bottle and from $4.50 to $9 by the glass. You can also taste any four wines for $5 or any seven for $10 with souvenir glass. Join the Tour de la Cave and Barrel Tasting Tour, which is offered at noon on most Saturdays for $25 per person. The tasting room is open daily; a new, 17,000-squarefoot tasting room is currently under construction. 706-878-5522, | Newcomer Magazine | 33



Admire downtown Macon’s unique architecture.



Music, History and Culture Make Macon a Must-See Known as “the Heart of Georgia” for its location in the center of the state (just an hour and a half from Atlanta), Macon is a vibrant city, filled with music, culture, historic sites, antebellum homes and thought-provoking museums. As home to thousands of college students thanks to the presence of Mercer University, Wesleyan and other universities, it buzzes with a youthful energy even as it memorializes its rich past.

PHOTO: Macon-Bibb County Convention & Visitors Bureau

By Muriel Vega

34 | Newcomer Magazine |

LEFT: Cannonball House. RIGHT: (Top) Macon’s cherry trees in bloom; (Bottom) The Georgia Sports Hall of Fame. CENTER: The Allman Brothers Museum.

PHOTOS: (Left, Top Right, Bottom Right) Macon-Bibb County Convention & Visitors Bureau

Historic Appeal Macon is steeped in history, with ties to various Native American cultures dating back more than 1,000 years. The Ocmulgee National Monument offers a fascinating step back through time, with carefully preserved Indian mounds and earth lodges, as well as an archaeology museum showcasing artifacts created by the prehistoric Native Americans who lived here. 478-752-8257, The city of Macon itself grew out of the site of Fort Benjamin Hawkins, established in 1806 overlooking the Ocmulgee mounds. Today, Fort Hawkins houses a museum that educates visitors about the site’s rich and storied past. 478742-3003, Macon also offers a unique glimpse into life during the Civil War. The Cannonball House, a Greek Revival mansion constructed in the early 1850s, is named for damage sustained from a cannonball during an 1864 Civil War raid. The Cannonball House offers guided tours of the main house, a two-story kitchen and servants’ quarters, and is home to several collections, including a collection of Civil War uniforms, weapons and other memorabilia. 478-7455982, Another Civil War-era home, the JohnstonFelton-Hay House (more commonly known as

Arts and Attractions

the Hay House), is an 180,000-square-foot Italian Renaissance Revival mansion built by William Butler Johnston in the 1850s. Known as the “Palace of the South,” it offers tours and is also available for weddings and special events. 478742-8155, Other historic attractions include Wesleyan College, the first university in the United States chartered to grant degrees to women (; Riverside Cemetery, a beautiful, 125-acre property that serves as the final resting place for more than 18,000 souls, including Civil War veterans from both sides of the conflict (478-742-5328, www.riversidecemetery. com); and the Tubman African American Museum, which presents an in-depth exploration of African-American art, history and culture, including an exhibit celebrating the life of Harriet Tubman, who rescued hundreds of slaves during the Civil War via the Underground Railroad (478-743-8544,

Macon also boasts a deep musical heritage, as the birthplace of Little Richard and the hometown of Otis Redding. The Allman Brothers Band was founded in Macon, and fans can explore the group’s early days at the Allman Brothers Band Museum at the Big House, which houses a treasure trove of band memorabilia including guitars, posters and awards—all in the house where members and their families lived in the band’s early days. 478-741-5551, The Museum of Arts and Sciences, the state’s largest museum devoted to the arts and sciences, features permanent and rotating exhibitions, a planetarium, a mini-zoo, a nature trail and more. 478-477-3232, The Macon Film Festival attracts filmmakers from around the world and fans of mainstream and independent movies for festivities including screenings, workshops, special events, celebrity guests and much more. 478-256-3809, Every March, as thousands of cherry trees bloom throughout the city, the International Cherry Blossom Festival offers 10 days of concerts, competitions, theatrical performances, a | Newcomer Magazine | 35

The historic Grand Opera House.

parade, a fashion show, a fireworks display and much more. 478-7517429, The Waddell Barnes Botanical Gardens at Middle Georgia State College feature 16 distinct gardens filled with fruit trees, shrubs, vines and many other types of plants, as well as walking and running trails. The gardens are free and open to the public. 478-471-2780, botanical. The Georgia Children’s Museum hosts a number of fun exhibits including a “KidsTowne” that allows children to interact as part of a community. 478-755-9539, The historic Grand Opera House, constructed in the 1880s, has presented such famous names as Harry Houdini and Charlie Chaplin. Today, it hosts touring showsand the Macon Symphony Orchestra. 478-3015470, The Georgia Sports Hall of Fame features more than 14,000 square feet of Georgia sports memorabilia and a Hall of Fame corridor honoring more than 300 inductees. 478-752-1585,

Whether you’re visiting for a convention, a special event or just a relaxing weekend, Macon offers a variety of budget-friendly choices. For a personal touch, visit the 1842 Inn, a bed and breakfast with 19 guest rooms, a courtyard, and porches for enjoying the view. 877-452-6599, A couple of miles from downtown Macon, the Homewood Suites Hilton Macon-North offers full suites and affordable rates for weekend trips. 478-477-9776, If you’re looking for an ideal getaway with a heavy dose of Southern hospitality and charm, Macon offers the perfect peaceful escape from Atlanta living, while also providing an array of exciting things to see and do. Let its music into your heart as its history and architecture sweep you back in time, and you’ll be planning your return visit before you’ve even left.

PLANNING YOUR VISIT Downtown Macon Visitor Information Center 478-743-3401 •

Middle Georgia Regional Airport 478-788-3760 •

Macon Downtown Airport 478-745-4794 • Private aircraft

36 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Macon-Bibb County Convention & Visitors Bureau

Where to Stay

38 40 47





Vehicle Emission Inspection

Vehicles dating from 1985 through 2006 model year must be checked each year for emission standard compliance. Visit a statedesignated inspection station for the service. Call 800-449-2471 or visit

Mass Transit

One way to avoid long commutes is to take advantage of the city’s local transit system, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA). Offering both train and bus service, MARTA is a convenient way to travel to downtown or the airport. The fee for traveling one way is $2.00 including transfers, and payment is even easier now with the Breeze limited-use and extendeduse cards. Weekly and monthly passes can be obtained at discounted rates. For fares, schedule and route information call 404848-5000 or visit

Driving Tips

MARTA Rail Service

Georgia 400 is the only toll road in Atlanta. If you travel it daily, obtaining a Cruise Card is recommended. Purchased in advance, the Cruise Card allows drivers to bypass the tollbooth and avoid long lines. Call 404-893-6161 or visit www.georgiatolls. com to purchase a card. The Georgia DOT provides daily updates of road work, road closings and traffic delays, which are helpful when commuting. Updates can be obtained by calling (toll free) 1-877-694-2511, by dialing 511, or by visiting

Inspiring transformative experiences in faith, life, and learning. –– K-12 college-prep ––

770.279.7200 4575 Lawrenceville Highway • Lilburn, GA 30047

38 | Newcomer Magazine |

PCA_Ad_Newcomer Magazine Oct 2.375” x 4.812”

GETTING STARTED Patrick Killam, Publisher 770.992.0273 Office 770.649.7463 Fax

NEED TO KNOW Voter Registration

Registration applies to U.S. citizens at least 18 years of age. You have up to 30 days before an election to register. Register at your local Voter Registration Office and most public libraries. Refer to the AT&T directory for locations, or download a registration form at

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Making a Phone Call All phone numbers in the metro Atlanta area include the area code plus the sevendigit number. To make a phone call, dial one of the four area codes (404, 770, 678 and 470) and the seven-digit number. In general, 404 is designated for intown areas and 770 for suburbs; the 678 and 470 area codes overlay both areas. Cell phone subscribers can choose from any area code when signing up for service.

Registering for School By law, children must be 5 years old on tHird or before September 14.75"x to 4.812" enter Page Horizontal kindergarten and 6 years old on or before September 1 to enter the first grade. To enroll your child in either kindergarten or first grade, FourtH Page Vertical 3.5625"x 4.812" you will need to provide the child’s social security number; a vision, hearing, and dental screening from a family practitioner or local healthSixtH clinic;Page and Vertical immunization records 2.375"x 4.812"on Georgia State Form 3231. | Newcomer Magazine | 39

COUNTY INFORMATION EDUCATION public schools Cherokee County Schools Board of Education 770-479-1871

Cherokee County QUICK INFO

Elementary Schools 22 Middle Schools 7 Intermediate Schools 1 High Schools 6 Alternative 1 Evening 1 Per-pupil expenditures $8,578 School & bus information: 770-720-2112

County Neighborhoods Schools

pRivate schools Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.

UTILITIES & CONTACTS HOME SERVICES Cobb Energy (Electricity, Security, Telephone and Satellite TV) 770-429-2222 Electricity 706-276-2362 Amicalola EMC Cobb EMC 770-429-2100 Georgia Power 888-660-5890 Sawnee EMC


Gas Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit Telephone AT&T 888-436-8638 ETC Communications 678-454-1212 TDS Telecom-Nelson 770-735-2000 Ball Ground Windstream 800-501-1754 Water Cherokee County Water Authority City of Ball Ground City of Canton City of Waleska

770-479-1813 770-735-2123 770-704-1500 770-479-2912

City of Woodstock


Cable TV Charter Communications 888-438-2427 Comcast 404-266-2278 ETC Communications


Hospitals Northside Hospital-Cherokee 770-720-5100 Wellstar Kennestone Hospital 770-793-5000

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

Avg. SAT Scores Cherokee Co. 1560 Georgia 1460 National 1509

Median household income: $63,518 Median age of residents: 34 Population: 210,529 Sales tax: 6% Chamber of Commerce Cherokee County 770-345-0400, Property Taxes Per $1,000 of assessed value is: Unincorporated Cherokee County, $26.80; Incorporated Cherokee County, $24.06. Tax Commissioner: 678-493-6400

Cagle Dairy Farm, Canton

Located northwest of Atlanta, Cherokee County gets its name from the original inhabitants of the area, the Cherokee Indians. The county seat, then called Etowah, was established in 1833 and renamed Canton in 1834. Today, the city is enjoying its greatest economic boom in its history since more than $60 million was invested in residential and commercial development in 1998. Despite developing its own industrial base, Cherokee County remains idyllic and serene. Farming, especially poultry processing, remains a leading industry. Canton and the neighboring community of Woodstock have seen tremendous growth as subdivisions crop up to accommodate newcomers. In fact, nearly 60 percent of the county’s population are commuters. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median value of homes in 2006 was $194,900. Homes for well over $1 million can be purchased in such neighborhoods as Bradshaw Farms, Bridge Mill and Town Lake Hills. Interstate 575 and Ga. Highway 92 traverse the county, affording residents easy access to Atlanta and the nearby attractions of Town Center Mall, Lake Allatoona and the North Georgia Mountains. Other great places to live,

40 | Newcomer Magazine |

Ridge Mountains and along the banks of the Etowah River, Canton is prime location for development.


work and play in Cherokee County include the cities of Ball Ground, Holly Springs and Waleska.


Canton Canton was incorporated in 1833 and renamed in 1834 at the request of two founding fathers who had visions that the town might become a silk center similar to what existed in Canton, China. Canton did become famous for its “Canton Denim,” known worldwide for the high-quality denim produced by Canton Cotton Mills. Today, Canton is attracting new industry and residents. As a result, the city is re-investing in its downtown. As part of its “Streetscapes” program, downtown Canton will be restored to its historic look and features a newly designed theater on Main Street. Located at the foothills of the Blue

Twelve miles south of Canton, Woodstock is the fastest-growing city in Cherokee County. With a growth rate of 70 percent over the past 10 years, the city has doubled in size. Residents enjoy easy access to Interstate 575 and Ga. Highway 92, allowing short commutes to Cobb and Fulton counties. While affording convenience to big-city attractions, Woodstock still maintains its small-town appeal. Buildings dating back to 1879 characterize the downtown, where antique and other specialty shops are located. Various golf courses are located in Woodstock, including Arnold Palmer’s Eagle Watch, a course with wooded countryside views that is considered to be one of the top places to play in Atlanta. The 11,860-acre Lake Allatoona provides additional recreation. Woodstock is also convenient to more than 13 state parks. N For more counties and neighborhood information, visit our Web site at | Newcomer Magazine | 41


pUBLIC schools Cobb County Schools Board of Education 770-426-3300 Elementary Schools 71 25 Middle Schools High Schools 16 Magnet 6 Charter 6 Special 4 Per-pupil expenditures $8,816 770-422-3500

Elementary Schools 7 Middle Schools 1 1 High Schools Sixth-Grade 1 Magnet 1 Per-pupil expenditures $9,061 School and bus information 678-594-8000 Avg. SAT Scores

Cobb Co. 1534 Marietta City 1514 Georgia 1460 National 1509 pRivate schools Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.

UTILITIES & CONTACTS HOME SERVICES Cobb Energy (Electricity, Security, Telephone and Satellite TV) 770-429-2222 ELECTRICITY Acworth Power 770-974-5233 770-429-2100 Cobb EMC Georgia Power 888-660-5890 770-942-6576 GreyStone Power Corp. Marietta Power/ Columbia Energy 770-794-5100 GAS Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit TELEPHONE AT&T 888-436-8638 Comcast 404-266-2278 MCI Worldcom 770-541-7235 Outside Georgia 800-356-3094 WATER Austell Water Cobb County Water Systems Marietta Water Powder Springs Water Smyrna Water

770-944-4300 770-423-1000 770-794-5100 770-943-8000 770-319-5338

CABLE TV Bellsouth Multimedia 770-360-5000 Charter Communications 888-438-2427 Comcast 404-266-2278 HOSPITALS Emory Adventist Hospital 770-434-0710 WellStar Cobb Hospital 770-732-4000 WellStar Kennestone Hospital 770-793-5000 WellStar Windy Hill Hospital 770-644-1000

White Water

Cobb County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

Marietta City Schools Board of Education



One of Family Circle magaCobb County came into zine’s “Ten Best Towns for Famibeing in 1832 when the state lies,” Kennesaw takes pride in its County redistributed land once part small-town atmosphere and boasts Neighborhoods of the Cherokee Nation. abundant parks and green space, Named after Thomas exceptional recreational programs Welch Cobb, the county and top-notch schools, includ experienced a devastating ing Kennesaw State University. Kennesaw’s Historic Downtown setback during the Civil War when most of it was features shopping, dining and atSchools destroyed during the Battle tractions such as the Smithsonian at Kennesaw Mountain. affiliated Southern Museum of Median household income: $65,123 Today, Cobb County, Civil War and Locomotive History, Median age of residents: 35 located north of Fulton the Smith-Gilbert Arboretum and Population: 698,158 County, is one of the fastnearby Kennesaw Mountain NaSales tax: 6% est-growing counties in the tional Battlefield Park. Chamber of Commerce nation. With a diverse ecoCobb County nomic base that includes 770-980-2000, Rapidly defining what’s new jobs in the service, retail, Property Taxes and progressive in quality of life aerospace and technology The property tax is $28.75 per $1,000 of assessed and citizen services, Smyrna sectors, Cobb County ofvalue. Tax Commissioner: 770-980-2000 delivers an amazing sense of style fers a quality of life unsurand love of life. The new Market passed in the Southeast. More than $770 million has been spent luxury apartments and condos near Village, home to fabulous restaurants, on transportation improvements in Cumberland Mall, secluded sub- bars and upscale shops and services, recent years, allowing residents easy divisions in East Cobb and horse is the final piece of a master plan for access to Atlanta and the commer- ranches in the northwest corner success. Call it “Main Street USA” or cial districts of Vinings Overlook, of the county. The small towns of “Disneyland,” but don’t overlook its Cumberland Parkway and the pres- Marietta, Vinings, Smyrna and Aus- charm and ability to offer the best in tigious “Platinum Triangle” in the tell still retain their Southern charm fresh, trendy lifestyle options. N Galleria area. amidst urban settings. According to For more counties and neighborhood A variety of housing options the Census Bureau, the median valinformation, visit our Web site at exist in Cobb County, including ue of homes in 2006 was $205,200.

42 | Newcomer Magazine |




DeKalb County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

Located east of Fulton County, DeKalb County is the second largest county in the state with a population of about 705,000. DeKalb County contributes to Atlanta’s status as an “ international city” with its businesses and residences representing more than 30 different countries and 120 languages.


Decatur The county seat of DeKalb, Decatur is a charming historic city known for its recreation and pedestrian-friendly streets. Its beating heart

The square is also home to some beautiful public art, and hosts numerous festivals, town celebrations and neighborhood events. Decatur is home to a diverse population, attracting young professionals, families, retirees and bright young college students—the city is home to the prestigious women’s university Agnes Scott College, and world-renowned Emory University is just outside the city limits. Older brick homes, smaller bungalows and cottage homes distinguish the community and the surrounding neighborhoods of Avondale Estates, Oakhurst and Candler Park.


Emory University



DeKalb County prosNeighborhoods pers in part due to its ex- cellent transportation sys- tem. Five major road ar- teries traverse the county: Interstates 20, 85, 285, Schools 675 and US Highway 78. Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is only six Median household income: $51,753 miles from DeKalb’s south- Median age of residents: 35 Population: 739,956 ern border and the DeKalb Sales tax: 7% Peachtree Airport, a general aviation field, is report- Chamber of Commerce DeKalb County ed to be the second busiest 404-378-8000, airport in Georgia. DeKalb County is also a leader in Property Taxes the biomedical commu- The property tax rate is $41.50 per $1,000 for unincorporated DeKalb County. Tax Commissioner: nity with The Center for 404-298-4000 Disease Control headquaris the Courthouse Square, which tered there. The median value of homes in features an eclectic mix of store2006, according to the Census Bu- front boutiques and shops, restaurants and entertainment options. reau, was $190,100.

In the northern corner of the county is Dunwoody, a popular neighborhood among established professionals and young, upwardly mobile professionals raising families. It is often referred to as the “tennis set” neighborhood because of its numerous recreational outlets that include Lynwood Park and Recreation Center, as well as Blackburn Park and Tennis Center. Cultural attractions include the Dunwoody Nature Center and the Spruill Gallery. A variety of housing is available in Dunwoody, including apartments, townhomes, ranch-style homes, bungalows and mini-mansions with manicured lawns. Nearby Perimeter Mall provides shopping, dining and family entertainment. With its proximity to all major expressways and North Fulton’s booming business opportunities, Dunwoody is a hot-spot for families. N For more counties and neighborhood information, visit our Web site at

EDUCATION pUBLIC schools DeKalb County Schools Board of Education 678-676-1200 Elementary Schools 83 Middle Schools 20 High Schools 20 Per-pupil expenditures $9,896 School & bus information 678-676-1300 City Schools of Decatur Board of Education


Early Learning 1 Elementary Schools 4 Middle Schools 1 High Schools 1 Per-pupil expenditures $13,444 School & bus information 404-370-8737

Avg. SAT Scores DeKalb Co. 1334 City of Decatur 1577 Georgia 1460 National 1509 pRivate schools Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.

UTILITIES & CONTACTS Electricity Georgia Power


Snapping Shoals EMC


Walton EMC


Gas Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit Telephone AT&T



404-780-2355 Water

DeKalb County Water System 770-621-7200 Cable TV Charter Communication


Comcast Cablevision


Hospitals Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston


DeKalb Medical Center


Emory University Hospital


Piedmont Hospital and Medical Care Center

404-605-5000 | Newcomer Magazine | 43


PUBLIC SCHOOLS Fayette County Schools Board of Education 770-460-3535

Avg. SAT Scores

Fayette Co. Georgia National

1550 1431 1483

PRIVATE SCHOOLS Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.

UTILITIES & CONTACTS HOME SERVICES ELECTRICITY Georgia Power Company 888-660-5890 Coweta-Fayette EMC 770-253-5626 GAS Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit TELEPHONE AT&T Residential


WATER Fayette County Water 770-461-1146 Comcast

CABLE TV 404-266-2278

HOSPITALS Fayette Care Clinic 770-719-4620 Piedmont Fayette Hospital 770-719-7000


Old-fashioned community pride mingles with a progressive sensibility on the streets of historic downtown Fayetteville, where antique stores and boutiques sit side by side in refurbished buildings. Boasting a population of approximately 16,000 residents, Fayetteville is home to the Fayette County Historic Society, Research Center and Museum. A haven for family fun, Dixieland Fun Park offers an assortment of activities for young and old alike. The HollidayDorsey-Fife Museum provides a fascinating link to the past thanks to its association with several historical figures, including Margaret Mitchell and "Doc" Holliday. The 1,500-seat Southern Ground Amphitheater attracts national touring acts with its annual summer concert series.

17 6 5 1 1 $8,359 770-460-3520 Photo: Courtesy of the City of Fayetteville

Elementary Schools Middle Schools High Schools Alternative Open Campus Per-pupil expenditures School & bus information

Fayette County


Starr's Mill in Fayetteville

Located southwest of Atlanta, the land comprising Fayette County was ceded from the Creek Indian Nation in 1821, thus creating Georgia’s 49th county. The county seat, the city of Fayetteville, was established in 1823 and contains the oldest courthouse in the County state, built in 1825 and located Neighborhoods The area now known as on Fayetteville’s historic town Peachtree City was originally square. Both the county and city Schools settled by Woodland Era were named for the Marquis de Indians several thousand LaFayette, who fought alongside Median household income: $82,216 Median age of residents: 42.4 years ago, and ceded to George Washington in the Population: 107,104 the Federal government Revolutionary War. Sales tax: 6% in 1821 by Chief William Author Margaret Mitchell Chamber of Commerce McIntosh, Jr. spent many summers at her 770-461-9983, Comprising some grandfather’s home in Fayette 12,000 acres, Peachtree County, which helped to inspire Property Taxes Per $1,000 of assessed value is: City was chartered in the locations in her novel Gone With Unincorporated Fayette County, $30.70; 1950s as a masterplanned the Wind. Fayetteville, $31.64; community of five separate Today, the 199-square mile Peachtree City, $34.54. villages. Today, the area area is renowned as a thriving Tax Commissioner: 770-461-3611 is linked by a 90- mile economic center that features network of trails and golf numerous attractive incentives for businesses, including the 2,200From 1984 to 1994, Fayette cart paths connecting homes, acre Peachtree City Industrial Park, County was the fifth-fastest growing businesses, schools and parks. Gol carts, bicycles and walking are the which features its own Foreign Trade county in the U.S. Zone, which allows merchandise to Fayette County boasts several preferred modes of transportation enter from or exit to foreign countries golf courses and two amphitheaters, among its 35,000 residents, who without a formal U.S. Customs entry among other attractions serving a enjoy its wooded scenery and or payment of duties. In addition, family-oriented population of more wealth of parks, playgrounds and Fayette County maintains a rural, than 106,000 residents. Single-family recreational areas. N . small-town allure, and has been housing in Fayette County ranges For more counties and neighborhood recognized as one of the nation’s from the $50,000s in moderateinformation, visit our Web site at most attractive communities for income areas to more than $2 million corporate family relocation. in affluent neighborhoods.

44 | Newcomer Magazine |


Peachtree City


Fulton County

PUBLIC SChooLS Fulton County Schools Board of Education 404-768-3600

Buckhead is also the epicenter for the city’s entertainment and dining industries. With more than 200 restaurants, luxury hotels and nightspots, it has long been a young professional’s paradise. The area also offers numerous antique stores, art galleries and mall shopping at Lenox Square and Phipps Plaza.

Elementary Schools Middle Schools High Schools Charter Per-pupil expenditures

Downtown Atlanta skyline




Considered Atlanta’s “silk stocking district,” Buckhead is “where old money lives and new money parties,” according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. With its one-of-a-kind Georgian and Neoclassical mansions and uniquely styled homes from the 1950s and 1960s, Buckhead is a favorite locale among architecture and history buffs. It is home to the Governor’s Mansion, the historic Swan House and the Atlanta History Center.

County Neighborhoods Schools Median household income: $57,586 Median age of residents: 35 Population: 963,676 Sales tax: 7%, Atlanta City: 8% Chamber of Commerce Greater North Fulton 770-993-8806, Metro Atlanta 404-880-9000, South Fulton 770-964-1984, Property Taxes The property tax rate per $1,000 is: $30.49 for the City of Atlanta; $28.03 for incorporated Fulton County; $33.69 for unincorporated South Fulton and $31.90 for unincorporated North Fulton County County. Tax Commissioner: 404-730-6100

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development.

At the center of the Metro Atlanta area is Fulton County. Bordered on the west by the Chattahoochee River and encompassing Interstates 85, 75, 285 and Ga. 400, Fulton County is at the hub of the area’s financial, transportation, retail, communications and cultural services. Most Fortune 500 corporations maintain national or regional facilities in the area; many are headquartered here, including Coca-Cola, Equifax, United Parcel Service, Home Depot, Delta Airlines and Turner Broadcasting System. More than 3 million live and work in Fulton County. Older, innercity neighborhoods, such as Inman Park, Candler Park and trendy Virginia-Highland offer eclectic living amidst unique boutiques and restaurants. Midtown is at the heart of the city’s cultural life, home to the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, High Museum of Art, Alliance Theatre and the historic Fox Theatre. Many outdoor festivals are held at Piedmont Park. According to the Census Bureau, the median value of homes in 2006 was $270,000. Homes in the millions can be found in such affluent neighborhoods as Buckhead, Sandy Springs and Alpharetta.


one of Atlanta’s most affluent neighborhoods. Homes range from elegant subdivisions to those with acreage. The Country Club of the South is a planned community home to several sports stars, high profile executives and celebrities. A successful combination of old and new, Alpharetta has become a haven for singles, families and professionals wanting a bit of country living with all the amenities that city dwelling offers. While many residents shop at nearby Northpoint Mall and Gwinnett Mall, many still enjoy the old stores on Main Street— a visit to the Alpharetta Soda Shoppe is a special treat. N


Once a small farming community, Alpharetta has greatly boomed within the last 20 years to become

For more counties and neighborhood information, visit our Web site at

58 19 16 6 $9,746

Atlanta City Schools


Elementary Schools Middle Schools High Schools Charter Non-Traditional Per-pupil expenditures: School & bus information:

55 16 22 7 2 $13,710 404-753-9815

Avg. SAT Scores Atlanta (City) 1285 Fulton Co. 1584 Georgia 1460 National 1509 PRIvATe SChooLS Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.

UTILITIES & CONTACTS hoMe SeRvICeS Cobb Energy (Electricity, Security, Telephone and Satellite TV) 770-429-2222 eLeCTRICITy City of College Park 404-669-3772 City of East Point 404-270-7093 City of Fairburn 770-964-2244 City of Palmetto 770-463-3377 Georgia Power Company 404-395-7611 GreyStone Power Corp. 770-942-6576 Sawnee EMC 770-887-2363 GAS Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit TeLePhoNe AT&T 888-436-8638 Outside Georgia 800-356-3094

Fulton County



CABLe Tv Charter Communications 877-728-3121 Comcast 404-266-2278 hoSPITALS Atlanta Medical Center 404-265-4000 Center for the Visually Impaired 404-875-9011 Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Hughes Spalding 404-785-9500 Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite 404-785-5252 Emory Crawford Long Hospital 404-686-2513 Fulton County Health Dept. 404-730-1211 Grady Memorial Hospital 404-616-4307 North Fulton Regional Hospital 770-751-2500 Northside Hospital 404-851-8000 Piedmont Hospital 404-605-5000 Shepherd Center 404-352-2020 South Fulton Medical Center 404-466-1170 St. Joseph’s Hospital 404-851-7001 | Newcomer Magazine | 45

COUNTY INFORMATION pUBLIC schools Gwinnett County Schools Board of Education: 678-301-6000 Elementary Schools 72 Middle Schools 24 High Schools 20 Alternative 6 Open Campus 1 Per-pupil expenditures: $8,338 City Schools of Buford Board of Education:


Elementary Schools 1 Middle Schools 1 High Schools 1 Academy 1 Per-pupil expenditures $10,198 Avg. SAT Scores Gwinnett Co. 1526 City of Buford 1455 Georgia 1460 National 1509 pRivate schools Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.

UTILITIES & CONTACTS Electricity 770-945-6761 City of Buford City of Lawrenceville 770-963-2414 770-448-2122 City of Norcross Georgia Power 404-395-7611 Jackson EMC 770-963-6166 770-887-2363 Sawnee EMC 770-972-2917 Walton EMC Gas Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit


Telephone 888-436-8638

Water Buford 770-889-4600 Dacula 770-963-7451 678-376-6800 Gwinnett City Water Lawrenceville 770-963-2414 770-448-2122 Norcross Cable TV Bellsouth Multimedia 770-360-5000 Charter Communications


Comcast 404-266-2278 Hospitals Emory Eastside Medical Center


Joan Glancy Memorial Hospital 678-584-6800 Gwinnett Medical Center


Gwinnett Women’s Pavilion 678-312-4770 Summit Ridge Center for Behavorial Health 770-822-2200

Gwinnett County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development


Some of Duluth’s neighborhoods include Edgewater Estates, Sweet Bottom Plantation, and Riverbrooke. Affluent estates with antebellum architecture can be found as well as apartment communities, older brick, ranch-style homes and subdivisions. Duluth still retains some of its original small-town businesses, along with chain businesses, many accessible by Ga. 400 and I-85.


Suwanee is named after the Shawnee Indians who settled here Mall of Georgia in the latter part of the 18th century. Following the official founding of Originally part of Georgia’s the city in 1837, Suwanee became Native American territory, Gwinnett a railroad stop along the Southern County was created by the State Railroad route. It remained a small Legislature in 1818 and named after country town well into the ’70s when Button Gwinnett, the third signer of construction of I-85 and U.S. 23 the Declaration of Independence and brought easy access to the region. a former state governor. Since then, Suwanee has exWhile the county was perienced tremendous once largely rural with small growth, from 2,000 resiCounty towns, country stores, farms dents in 1990 to more Neighborhoods and forests, today it is home to than 10,000 today. To more than 245 international help manage growth, companies and 450 high-tech the city has developed firms. With an average of 260 a comprehensive developSchools new professional and industrial ment plan that promotes companies relocating to the pedestrian-oriented deMedian household income: $64,005 county each year, attracting more velopment and mixedMedian age of residents: 33 than 6,000 new jobs, Gwinnett use zoning. Designated Population: 789,499 County remains in the top 10 a Tree City USA for more Sales tax: 6% ranking for growth nationwide. than 10 years, the city Chamber of Commerce The county supports many is committed to preserving Gwinnett County cultural events, restaurants 27 percent of its land as 770-232-3000, and shopping opportunities, green space. Property Taxes including the Mall of Georgia. Such foresight has The property tax in unincorporated Gwinnett Gwinnett County remains allowed Suwanee to retain County is $31.77 per $1,000 of assessed value. affordable for renters and first-time its old-fashioned charm Tax Commissioner: 770-822-8800. home buyers, many of whom find while providing contemhomes in the communities of Doraville, in Metro Atlanta and is home to porary convenience. Only 35 miles Lawrenceville and Snellville. The median some of the best golf courses and from downtown Atlanta, Suwanee is value of homes in 2006, according to private tennis clubs. There are close to big-city attractions, business numerous parks for recreation and districts and shopping. Many anthe Census Bureau, was $193,100. participatory sports, including tique shops and historic structures, Bunten Road Park and “Shorty” including several Victorian and reHowell Park. Two major malls, gional farm-style homes, are located Gwinnett Place and Northpoint, near downtown Suwanee. N are located near Duluth. The Southeastern Railway Museum, Amidst the pristine setting of which preserves and operates old For more counties and neighborhood Gwinnett County, Duluth has some railroad equipment, is a must-see information, visit our Web site at of the most exclusive neighborhoods for any railroad aficionado.




46 | Newcomer Magazine |


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Hotel California, Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater The popular Eagles tribute band performs. Sept. 13, 877-725-8849,

Sesame Street Live: Can’t Stop Singing, Philips Arena Join Elmo and other beloved “Sesame Street” characters as everyone’s favorite street becomes a nonstop musical extravaganza. Sept. 13-15, 800745-3000,

Stomp, Fox Theatre The popular stage show featuring creative exhibitions of percussion, movement and visual comedy returns for a brief engagement. Sept. 25-29, 404-881-2100,

Opera With an Edge, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Suwanee Day, Town Center Park

Theater & Concerts

Enjoy a free preview of the Atlanta Opera’s upcoming 2013-2014 season, including memorable musical moments from Tosca, Faust and The Barber of Seville. Sept. 30,

admission. Aug 16 and Sept. 20, 404-733-5000,

The Bellamy Brothers, Theater of the Stars presents this popular musi- Southern Ground Amphitheater

John Anderson, Grand Theatre

Dreamgirls, Fox Theatre

cal about a young singing group, starring Jennifer Holliday. Aug. 2-11, 404-881-2100,

American Idol Live 2013 Tour, Arena at Gwinnett Center The top 10 finalists from Season 12 of “American Idol” perform. Aug. 4, 888-929-7849,

The Grammy Award-winning country music legend performs as part of the Booth Western Art Museum’s 11th annual Southeastern Cowboy Festival & Symposium. Oct. 26, 770-387-1300,

The enduring country duo, known for such hits as “Let Your Love Flow,” “Lie to You for Your Love” and “For All the Wrong Reasons,” performs. Aug. 17, 770-719-4173,


Exhibits & Events

Anything Goes, Fox Theatre

The national tour of Cole Porter’s classic musical, winner of a 2011 Tony Award for Best Musical Revival, lands in Atlanta. Aug. 20-25,

The Little Mermaid, Fox Theatre


Southern Brewers Festival, Chattanooga


Huey Lewis and the News, Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater

Eve 6, Town Center Park

The long-running pop group celebrates the 30th anniversary of its landmark album Sports. Aug. 23,

Enjoy live music from Robert Randolph and the Family Band, the North Mississippi All-Stars, Galactic with Corey Glover and other artists on the waterfront in downtown Chattanooga, Tenn. There will also be great food and more than 30 ales and lagers from microbreweries from around the country. Aug. 24,


Theater of the Stars presents this musical production based on the hit Disney movie. Aug. 7-15,

The alternative rock group performs in Suwanee. Aug. 10,

Enchanted Maize, Rock City

String Fling 2013, Grand Hyatt Buckhead

Grand Funk Railroad, known for such hits as “We’re an American Band” and “I’m Your Captain,” performs. The Spin Doctors (“Two Princes”) also appear. Aug. 10, 877-725-8849,

Friday Jazz, High Museum of Art Enjoy an evening of art and live music every third Friday of the month at the High, with extended hours and full gallery access. Free with museum 48 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Photo courtesy of Rock City

Grand Funk Railroad and the Spin Doctors, Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater

This black-tie optional gala, a fundraiser for the Center for Puppetry Arts’ field trip sponsorship program, features a cocktail hour, a seated supper, a short puppetry performance, an open bar and live and silent auctions. Individual tickets are $200. Sept. 7, 404-881-5129,

Healthy Living Day, Michael C. Carlos Dance Center The Atlanta Ballet’s second annual event in observance of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month features free dance classes, nutrition

Frida and Diego: Passion, Politics, and Painting, High Museum of Art

seminars, food demonstrations and more. Sept. 8,

Wine Over Water, Chattanooga

at this breathtaking exhibit. Through Oct. 31,


Enjoy wine, hors d’oeuvres and live music as you stroll across the historic Walnut Street Bridge in downtown Chattanooga, Tenn. Sept. 28,


Enchanted Maize, Rock City Wind your way through the twists and turns of the famous cornfield maze at Rock City near Lookout Mountain. Open Thursdays through Sundays. Sept. 19-Oct. 27, 800-854-0675,

Sandy Springs Festival, Heritage Green This two-day celebration features live music, fabulous food, arts and crafts, children’s activities, games and more. Sept. 21-22,

Shakerag Arts, Crafts and Bluegrass Festival, Peachtree City Join in the fun at Peachtree City’s annual arts and crafts festival, featuring hand-crafted items, children’s activities and live bluegrass music. Sept. 21-22,

Suwanee Day, Town Center Park Suwanee’s annual community celebration turns 30 with live music, fireworks, great food, rides and arts and crafts from more than 115 exhibitors. Sept. 21,

Covering America: The Saturday Evening Post in the 1950s and Early 1960s, Booth Western Art Museum This exhibit showcases 30 original paintings that graced the cover of the Saturday Evening Post, the nation’s oldest magazine. These works depicting everyday life in post-WWII America, created by such renowned artists as Norman Rockwell and Richard Sargent, are shown alongside the covers on which they appeared. Through Sept.

Suwanee SculpTour, Suwanee Downtown Suwanee’s walkable, outdoor public art experience returns with 15 new sculptures created by artists from across the country. Through March 2015,

Inside CNN Studio Tour, CNN Center Get a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the world’s first and most famous 24-hour news network. Watch the CNN newsroom in action and have your picture taken reading the day’s news. Ongoing, 404-827-2300,

29, 770-387-1300,

Thirsty Thursdays, High Museum of Art

Art Festival at Thornebook, Gainesville, Fla.

Enjoy an evening of art and drinks every Thursday at the High, with half-price admission after 4 p.m. Ongoing, 404-733-5000,

Browse more than 100 arts and crafts vendors and enjoy entertainment and children’s activities at this two-day festival. Oct. 12-13,

Imaginary Worlds: Plants Larger Than Life, Atlanta Botanical Garden Walk among giant topiary sculptures of giant cobras, rabbits, butterflies and other creatures

Titanic: The Artifact Expedition, Atlantic Station This stirring exhibit showcases more than 200 artifacts preserved from the wreck of the RMS Titanic, offering a one-of-a-kind look at the iconic ship and its passengers. Ongoing, 404-496-4274, | Newcomer Magazine | 49



Birthplace of a Literary Classic

50 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTOS: (Left) © 2013, Kevin C. Rose/; (Top and Bottom Right) Courtesy of the Atlanta History Center

The Margaret Mitchell House

n 1925, Margaret Mitchell and her husband, John Marsh, moved into the Crescent Apartments, a 10-unit, three-story Tudor Revival apartment building on Peachtree Street. It was there that Mitchell, having left a job writing for the Atlanta Journal Sunday Magazine to recover from injuries, wrote much of Gone With the Wind, which went on to be translated into more than 40 languages, win a Pulitzer Prize, and inspire a movie that won 10 Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Screenplay. By Muriel Vega Today, the structure at 990 Peachtree Street is one of Atlanta’s premier literary attractions, with a history every bit as colorful as the book that was conceived within its walls. Condemned in 1978, it was saved from demolition by Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, who declared it a city landmark; the building suffered through two separate fires before it was restored to its former glory, finally opening to the public in 1997. Run by the Atlanta History Center and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Margaret Mitchell House offers guided tours of the apartment daily, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and noon to 4:30 p.m. on Sunday. In addition to the apartment tour, which includes original architectural features like the leaded glass window Mitchell would gaze through while writing the novel, as well as her writing desk from her time with the Atlanta Journal, the Margaret Mitchell House presents two exhibits that shed further light on both the writer and her famous work. Margaret Mitchell: A Passion for Character explores the author’s life from her childhood writings to her journalism career and her philanthropic efforts, while The Making of a Film Legend: Gone With the Wind traces the best-selling novel’s journey to the big screen. To uphold the author’s legacy, the Margaret Mitchell House’s Literary Center hosts summer writing camps and a poetry program for high school students. The Margaret Mitchell House is located at 990 Peachtree Street. Admission is $13 for adults, $10 for seniors and students ages 13 through 18, and $8.50 for children 4 through 12. For more information, call 404-249-7015 or visit

Newcomer Magazine | August/September 2013  

Atlanta’s new resident relocation guide for businesses and families moving to Metro Atlanta.

Newcomer Magazine | August/September 2013  

Atlanta’s new resident relocation guide for businesses and families moving to Metro Atlanta.