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Spring 2018


s ' a t n A tla Best Places to Live A GUIDE TO ATLANTA’S TOP COMMUNITIES





The Inside Scoo p A NEWBIE’S GUIDE TO ATLANTA | Newcomer Magazine | 3

Spring 2018 CONTENTS FEATURES Atlanta Insider’s Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Atlanta’s Top Communities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

New to Atlanta and feeling confused by the lingo? From the Big Chicken to the Frosted Orange, we’ll get you up to speed.

Which one of Atlanta’s many appealing neighborhoods is right for you? Our guide will help you find the perfect place to call home.

Choosing a Summer Camp . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ...20 Unique Outdoor Adventures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

From learning new skills to exploring nature and building self-esteem, there are many good reasons to send your child to camp.

From whitewater rafting in the Smokies to hiking in the Okefenokee Swamp, these outdoor escapes are just a short drive from Atlanta.




DEPARTMENTS In Focus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 The inside scoop on news, events and happenings around Atlanta. Homes and Communities. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 What does 2018 hold for the Atlanta housing market? Industry insiders give you the inside scoop as you prepare to buy your home.

Relocation Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 A comprehensive guide to help you find your way before, during and after your move, including counties, neighborhoods, relocation tips, a map to metro Atlanta and much more.

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

Neighborhood Spotlight. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

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

With quality schools, a thriving housing market and abundant recreation options, Cumming has it all, within easy reach of the city.

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

School Spotlight. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

With an untamed landscape, lakes, trails and more, Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area offers adventure just a short drive from the city.

With an individualized approach and a commitment to the art of teaching, Saint Francis School creates a community of learners for life.

Restaurant Review . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Midtown’s newest eatery, Rose & Rye, is creating works of culinary art in the heart of Atlanta’s arts district.

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For additional information before and after your move, from news on deals and events to tips on real estate, organizing, events, restaurants and much more! | Newcomer Magazine | 5

We wish to thank all the people who made this publication possible through their valuable time and dedication. Many thanks to our advertisers for their support of Newcomer magazine. publisher/president

Patrick Killam


Michelle Bourg & promotions Jeff Thompson


contributing writers

Daniel Beauregard, Anna Bentley, Michelle Bourg, Susan Flowers, Tony Jenkins, Rachael Mason director of sales & marketing

Patrick Killam account director

Lacey James

TO ADVERTISE CALL 770-992-0273 font: mawns handwriting

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Newcomer magazine, Spring 2018, Volume 22, Issue 1. Submissions, photography or ideas may be sent to Killam Publishing, Inc., 200 Market Place, Suite 230, Roswell, GA 30075. Submissions will not be returned unless otherwise requested and accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope. Newcomer magazine reserves the right to revise any necessary submissions. Reproduction in whole or in part of any elements of this publication are strictly prohibited without the written permission of the publisher. Š 2018 Killam Publishing, Inc.

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PHOTO: Joan Marcus

Looking to spend more time outside but need a little motivation? You’ll find plenty of it at the GET OUTDOORS! Expo. Learn camping skills, see the latest in fishing and hiking gear, take part in workshops, demonstrations and giveaways, and maybe even buy a new boat or RV. The event is April 7-8 at the Towns County Conference Center in Young Harris. Admission is $5 for adults and children over 14. For more info, call 706-896-4966 or visit

Since its debut in 2015, the musical Hamilton has won numerous awards and introduced a new generation to the story of founding father Alexander Hamilton and his role in the American Revolution. And now Atlanta audiences can experience the Broadway smash hit for themselves, as Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta brings the national touring production to the Fox Theatre from May 22-June 10. For more information, please call 855-285-8499 or visit

PHOTO: Thomas McGovern Photography

All Aboard! Have you ever wondered exactly what the caboose on a train is for? Now’s your chance to find out! Caboose Days offers railroad buffs the opportunity to ride on a vintage caboose, enjoy movies showing cabooses in action, and learn all about the important role these cars play on the railroad. This family-friendly event takes place April 7-8 at the Southeastern Railway Museum in Duluth. 770-476-2013,

Getting kids to practice healthy habits just got a lot easier! Designed for children ages 5-12, Healthyville provides fun, hands-on activities to help kids learn how their bodies work and how to make healthy choices in their everyday life, from the foods they eat to taking care of their teeth. The exhibit runs through May 28 at Children’s Museum of Atlanta. For more information, please call 404-659-5437 or visit 8 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Todd DeFeo

Making Healthy Habits Fun

inFOCUS Art in Action For one day every year, visual and performing arts students at Woodward Academy’s Upper School take art out of the classroom and turn it into a fun-filled event. On Experience the Arts Day, hundreds of students create or perform works in such diverse fields as painting, chorus, sculpture, woodworking, photography, dance, jazz and many more. The whole event takes place on the campus lawn, with fellow students, staff and faculty serving as an enthusiastic audience. This year’s 38th annual event will take place on April 11. For more information, visit | Newcomer Magazine | 9

>>> No doubt about it, Atlanta can be an


Stone Mountain

intimidating place. There’s so much to take in that it’s easy to feel like an outsider. To help you start feeling like a true local, we’ve broken down what makes our city special: its essential dining experiences, sites that add a little history to your new home and the five things every true Atlantan has to do. Follow these helpful suggestions and you’ll be feeling like an insider in no time.

Suntrust Park

Atlanta Botanical Garden




Dance in the Olympic Rings

Walk Up Stone Mountain

Located in the heart of downtown, Centennial Olympic Park is a lasting legacy of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. At its heart is the Fountain of Rings, where the water dances in a synchronized ballet with music, sound and light effects, four times a day, 365 days a year. In warmer months, the fountain is one of the most unique and fun ways for kids—and grownups—to cool off from the summer heat.

Standing at the top of Stone Mountain offers an unparalleled view of not just the Atlanta skyline but the entire surrounding area. If you can’t handle hiking the incline, you can ride to the top in a cable car, but keep in mind that you won’t get “I climbed Stone Mountain” bragging rights.

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Catch a Braves Game at Suntrust Park

Learn Some Southern History

There’s nothing quite like an Atlanta Braves home game, especially now in the Braves' new home at SunTrust Park. The fun starts long before first pitch with a stroll through The Battery Atlanta, surrounding the park filled with dining, shopping and activities galore. Inside the park, you’ll feel right on top of the action, as the park boasts some the best sightlines in the major leagues.

The metro Atlanta area is rich with history. Learn more about one of the city’s most famous residents at the Martin Luther King. Jr. Center ( At the Atlanta History Center, check out exhibits illuminating the Civil War and the city’s fascinating post-antebellum story and tour some of Atlanta’s grandest historic homes.


Explore the Outdoors Take a stroll along the Beltline, a 22-mile paved trail that links 45 neighborhoods, numerous parks and additional trails. Be sure to stop for lunch on the patio at one of the many eateries along the way ( Admire the stunning gardens at the Atlanta Botanical Garden ( and spend an afternoon walking, picnicking or just people-watching at the city’s favorite green space, Piedmont Park.

PHOTOS: (Left) ©2014, Kevin C. Rose/; (Center) Patrick Duffy/Atlanta Braves/Getty Images; (Right) Courtesy of the Atlanta Botanical Garden

Atlanta Insider's Guide


The Varsity is Atlanta’s iconic fast food joint, in operation since 1928. The flagship location on North Avenue is billed as the world’s largest drive-in restaurant, sitting on more than two acres and able to accommodate more than 800 customers at a time. In addition, servers and savvy customers speak their own special lingo. Try the Frosted Orange, a frozen treat that tastes like a Creamsicle, only better.


Grab a Burger at the Vortex

Dine at Bacchanalia

This attitude-heavy restaurant and bar (patrons must be 18 or older) serves up some of the best burgers in town, including the Classic Coronary™, a half-pound sirloin patty topped with a fried egg, three slices of American cheese and four slices of bacon with mayo on the side. Two locations.

This upscale establishment is the city’s premiere fine dining restaurant. Each night, chefs Anne Quatrano and Jonathan Kallini create a different seasonal menu. The fourcourse meal, which costs $95 per person, includes two small appetizers, an entrée, a cheese course and dessert.

hangout A super cool burgers with a bar &


Hit Watershed for Fried Chicken Wednesday Fried Chicken Night is a time-honored tradition at the Watershed, and all that experience means that they do fried chicken right: The Washington Post called it a “treasure,” and Food and Wine magazine ranks it as the best in the country. Make sure to get there early, as this popular item sells out in a hurry.


Explore Buford Highway You don’t have to travel around the world to enjoy a wealth of international cuisine. Buford Highway offers a diverse cornucopia of authentic ethic fare, from Korean barbecue and Vietnamese noodle bowls to Chinese kabobs, Cajun crawfish and Mexican menudo with handmade tortillas. u


The Vortex


PHOTOS: (Left) ©2014, Kevin C. Rose/; (Top Right) The Reynolds Group

Enjoy a Frosted Orange at the Varsity



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This 56 chicken is a m-ufoot tall st see!


The Big Chicken

Georgia State Capitol




The Big Chicken

CNN Center

This giant bird, which adorns a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in neighboring Marietta, won’t teach you anything new about Atlanta, but it’s one of those things you have to see to believe, and is more than worth the drive to the suburbs. the-big-chicken

Distinguished by a giant outdoor CNN logo, the cable empire’s world headquarters offers behind-the-scenes tours of several of its newsrooms. The space also includes a number of shops and restaurants and is connected to the Omni Hotel and Philips Arena, home of the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks.

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Ebenezer Baptist Church The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. preached nonviolence at this historic church, which has been operating for 124 years. Today, you can still visit the church on Auburn Avenue and take part in its services.


The Gold Dome The Georgia State Capitol shines brightly in the Atlanta skyline due to the gold paneling on its dome. The Capitol also houses a museum where flags, artwork and other historic artifacts are displayed.


Margaret Mitchell House At this historic landmark, you can see the apartment where author Margaret Mitchell wrote Gone With the Wind. The space has been preserved with period furnishings and original architectural features. The remainder of the building and an addition next door serve as museum dedicated to Mitchell’s work.

PHOTOS: (Left) ©2014, Kevin C. Rose/; (Bottom Right) Courtesy of Atlanta History Center

Margaret Mitchell House | Newcomer Magazine | 13







Congratulations! You’ve made the excellent decision to

relocate to our exciting city, and you’re ready to start searching for your dream Atlanta home. But with any home purchase, there are numerous factors shaping your search that will have an impact on the home you ultimately choose. We’ve asked a panel of Atlanta real estate experts what trends they see affecting prospective homebuyers in 2018. Here are their responses: PLENTY OF CONSTRUCTION, BUT A TIGHT MARKET The most important thing for homebuyers entering the Atlanta market to know is that the city is continuing to experience a period of tight home inventory, creating a challenging climate for consumers. “This leads to a seller’s market and higher sales prices so long as demand remains high,” says Mike Wright, Vice President of Marketing and Communications with Harry Norman, Realtors. Jamie Walzer, Team Leader with the Nest Atlanta Real Estate Group, notes that the market sector most affected is homes under $500,000, and says that she expects offerings in that range to continue to move quickly with multiple offers while experiencing the most growth in price. Anne Mabry, realtor with Berkshire Hatha-

way HomeServices Georgia Properties, agrees, noting that buyers in the $250,000 to $400,000 range are working harder to find new construction that meets their needs, often traveling outside the Perimeter (I-285) to find their ideal community. Fortunately, many employers are recognizing this, and establishing offices in these areas as they follow the work force. On a more positive note, local experts believe that the situation is beginning to stabilize and may even improve soon. Bill Murray, President of the Atlanta Realtors Association and Senior Vice President and Managing Broker with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Georgia Properties, says that “Prices should continue to rise at approximately the same rate: 5 to 6 percent,” although this rate may be higher in some popular neighborhoods. Says Wright, “We think

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that there will be a gradual increase in available inventory in 2018 and that will have a moderating effect on pricing, so average sales prices will continue to increase, but at a slower pace.”

ATLANTA'S HOTTEST NEIGHBORHOODS Atlanta is clearly a hot market everywhere, but what are the neighborhoods that buyers are looking to make their own? Recently, construction of the Beltline—a multi-use paved trail system spanning 22 miles and connecting 45 different communities around the city—has created a path of revitalization attractive to Atlantans of every description. Murray and Wright agree that the Old Fourth Ward district just east of downtown will continue to be in demand, and Wright also cites the nearby Piedmont Park and Ansley Park neighborhoods, as well as Bellwood

Quarry to the northwest and the West End area to the southwest. “The southwest side continues to gain momentum,” says Walzer. “We’ve seen tremendous growth in this area year over year.” Similar revitalization projects have created high-demand neighborhoods all around the metro area. Wright points to the beneficial effect of downtown renewal in Chamblee, Sandy Springs, Marietta, Milton and Roswell, as well as the city of Decatur east of the city. Decatur’s strong growth has spilled over to surrounding areas, says Walzer: “White Oak Hills and Belvedere Park provide buyers the opportunity to be close to the city of Decatur without the prices…it still boasts affordable housing for the intown market.” Some communities are so established that their popularity remains a constant. Wright and Murray both acknowledge the evergreen appeal of

“One significant trend in Atlanta is the townhome... 'It is hard to find any area of Atlanta that does not have a strong number of new construction townhomes.'" —Bill Murray, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

the tony Buckhead district, the genteel Chastain Park area, and Brookhaven, an old neighborhood that recently became an independent city and has significant appeal for young families.

WHAT KIND OF HOME? Once Atlanta buyers zero in on their desired neighborhood, they’re mainly looking for traditional homes, and as might be expected, new construction is in high demand. But one significant trend here is the townhome. Murray says, “It is hard to find any area of Atlanta that does not have a strong number of new construction townhomes.” Mabry reports that her affluent townhome buyers have specific requirements, requesting kitchen-level garages, elevators and staggered spacing to avoid direct views into neighbor’s homes. u | Newcomer Magazine | 15

Pendant lighting

Farmhouse Sink Integrated technology

White soft-closing cabinets Island without a cooktop

Handscraped floors

IT'S ALL IN THE DETAILS Whatever style of home that buyers are seeking, one thing is clear when it comes to the features they demand in that home: square footage for its own sake is no longer paramount. More important to today’s buyer are how that space works for their lifestyle and the excellence of the details. “Quality of finishes and fixtures are leading the way,” says Murray, and as Wright describes it, “Lifestyle over square footage…open floor plans, high ceilings and efficient space planning. Nice finishes are considered more important.” These finishes entail a range of things. Kitchens always generate detailed wish lists, and according to Mabry, those lists currently include islands without a cooktop, pendant lighting, soft-closing cabinets in white or light finishes, farmhouse-style sinks, and wooden pantry shelving. Other details in demand now are hand-scraped floors, his-and-her closets with designer organization, walk-in closets for secondary bedrooms and side-entry garages. One detail prospective owners are searching for is relatively new: the integration of technology into the home. Says Wright, 16 | Newcomer Magazine |

Covered porch

Outdoor television

Outdoor fireplaces

“Lifestyle over square footage… open floor plans, high ceilings and efficient space planning. Nice finishes are considered more important.” —Mike Wright

“The ability to monitor and control household systems via smartphone is becoming an expectation, especially in new construction.” Buyers are also interested in space outside the home, but again, it’s about utility as opposed to sheer size. “Outside living spaces are in high demand…covered porches with fireplaces and TVs,” says Murray. “Kitchens adjacent to the house and lawn or pool area are also getting a higher number of requests.” And as Millennials enter the market, their interest in sustainable living could change its future for some time to come. Walzer reports that her younger clients are interested in lot space to build a tiny home or include a garage with an in-law suite above, and that room to plant a garden or keep chickens is a growing trend. Of course, many of the vast number of elements that make a place desirable are intangible, and “location, location, location” will always play a major role in any home purchase. School districts will always be crucially important for families. Atlanta is known for its traffic issues, unfortunately, and commute times are something that all experts agree is a major concern for buyers. As Murray puts it, “How long a drive to the office, school…to socialize, shop? The newest major concern is ‘Am I close to mass transit?’” Buyers are expressing a renewed interest in walking to these places, making the “live work play” concept loom large for the future. As a newcomer to Atlanta, you’ll need to be prepared to do some homework and have patience as you search for your dream house, but don’t worry: it is out there. Once you’re settled in at last and enjoying your life at your new address, there will be no doubt that the search will have been worth it. | Newcomer Magazine | 17


SPOTLIGHT Cumming By Michelle Bourg

L Jim ‘N Nick’s BBQ

PHOTO: City of Cumming

ocated just 30 minutes north of Atlanta along GA-400, Forsyth County and its county seat of Cumming have been ranked among the nation’s fastest growing areass for almost a decade. Home to major employers, including nearly 70 international companies, it boasts quality schools, low taxes, a thriving real estate market and a national-model greenspace system— all with the big city just a stone’s throw away.


Arts and Entertainment

Mountain Crest offers a maintenance-free lifestyle, with a park, pool and tennis and traditional homes from the low $300s to the high 400s. Minutes from GA-400 and adjacent to shopping and dining at Vickery Village, Vickery showcases detailed architecture and expansive customizable floor plans, priced from the high $400s to the $700s. Traditions offers 12 parks, a lake, a pool and tennis, surrounded by luxurious homes and close to schools and shopping. Prices range from the mid $400s to high $600s. Just opening is Cannon Place, a pedestrian-friendly community with spacious brick-front townhomes, a pool and tennis courts, just minutes from Lake Lanier and priced in the mid-$200s.

Located in a 1923 school building, The Cumming Playhouse presents plays, musicals and concerts. Summer evenings bring family fun and music under the stars at The Collection at Forsyth Concert Series. The Cumming Fairgrounds hosts a number of annual events, including the Taste of Forsyth festival, the July 4th Celebration, and of course the Country Fair and Festival every autumn.

Culinary Treats Perfect for a pre-theatre dinner, Tam’s Backstage combines Mediterranean flavors with American grilling, just downstairs from the Cumming Playhouse. Branchwater serves steak, seafood and cocktails in an upscale pub atmosphere. Famous for its bourbon burgers, Castleberry Ale House offers both family dining and a late night bar menu. Jim ‘N Nick’s serves up barbecue done right with their trademark cheese biscuits.

Cumming Aquatic Center

THE INSIDE TRACK In the 1830s and 1840s, Cumming prospered by supplying the miners working in north Georgia’s gold mining industry. The 1849 California gold rush depressed the city’s economy, and Cumming remained essentially rural until the 1980s.

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PHOTO: City of Cumming

Mountain Crest home interior

Sawnee Mountain Preserve

Local Treasures More than 800 acres of green space, trails and picnic areas beckon visitors to the Sawnee Mountain Preserve, with views of the North Georgia mountains beyond. The paved 20-mile Big Creek Greenway connects Cumming, Alpharetta and Roswell for walkers, runners and bicyclists. Mary Alice Park is the springboard to fun on Lake Sidney Lanier, with boat ramps, beaches, and picnic areas. The Cumming Aquatic Center is a state-of-the-art facility with indoor and outdoor pools and diving facilities, while the water at The ICE skating and ice hockey complex is frozen year round for lessons, public skate sessions, youth hockey leagues and fun-filled birthday parties. N

THE PIEDMONT SCHOOL OF ATLANTA Serving Children Grades K to HS with learning and social challenges


Academic, Social, and Life Skills Certified teachers deliver a regulareducation curriculum combining: • Georgia Standards • Differentiated group instruction • Collaborative project-based learning • PE, art, foreign language, culinary arts, and community-based instruction • Technology in every classroom

OPEN HOUSE: March 16, 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. • April 16, 9:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. • May 11, 9:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Rolling Admissions. Fully Accredited GAC. Accepting applications for 2018-19 4484 Peachtree Road, NE | Atlanta, GA 30319 • For information or a personalized tour, call: Catherine Trapani, Ph.D., 404-382-8200 | Newcomer Magazine | 19

p Summer E D U C AT I O N




Keep Your Child Learning All Summer Long By Daniel Beauregard and Anna Bentley

Summer is still months away. But for parents who want to turn those lazy summer days into exciting opportunities for learning and adventure for their children, the time to begin planning is now, since spots fill up well before the start of summer. With so many kinds of camps available today, there are several things parents need to consider before signing the form and packing the duffel bag.

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Your first choice is to decide between day camp and overnight camp. “Overnight camps are great for kids who are comfortable being away from home and family, who make friends easily, adapt well and are excited about new situations and adventures,” says John Dovic, camp director for High Meadows Summer Day Camp. Day camps, meanwhile, “are a good choice for children and parents who are not completely comfortable being apart for an extended amount of time, and for kids who might have other evening or weekend obligations,” he says. Once you’ve decided which camping format is best for your child, the next step is deciding between a traditional camp, educational camp or a specialty camp that focuses on a particular pursuit, such as academics, dance or science. All offer important benefits; which type you choose depends on a number of factors, including your child's specific temperament, interests, goals and educational needs.

TRADITIONAL SUMMER CAMPS The words “summer camp” conjure visions of swimming, campfires and crafts. With today’s educational focus on test scores and technological proficiency, these activities are sometimes seen as mere “play.” But in actuality play is a child’s most important activity, and the skills and traits it develops are just as important in adult life as technical ones. Dovic explains, "With the guided leadership of camp counselors as role models, children can strengthen their social skills and develop the 'soft skills' so important in today’s world— things like grit, determination, creativity, communication, teamwork, responsibility, risktaking and flexibility." He continues, "At camp, children grow and achieve outside the pressures

Photo: Courtesy of High Meadows Camp


Kids at the High Meadows Camp during Mud Day

of a formal classroom, developing an authentic love of learning and exploration that naturally benefits them in academic pursuits." And in today’s over-scheduled world, even youngsters need time to step away from the computer, have fun and enjoy being a kid. High Meadows Summer Day Camp offers a traditional camp setting focused on the outdoors and experiential learning, in which campers learn about subjects through direct, hands-on experience gained over the course of a three-week session. High Meadows, which accepts children ages 4 through 14 (rising ninth-graders), offers a range of activities including arts and crafts, Native American lore, swimming and more. (

EDUCATIONAL CAMPS Other educational camps combine classroom learning with outdoor recreational activities to help students improve educationally—while still having plenty of fun in the process. Squirrel Hollow Camp at The Bedford School, a school for children with learning disabilities, combines mornings of small-group tutoring with afternoon exploration of the school’s 46-acre Fairburn campus, with activities that include swimming, soccer and conquering the school’s challenge course. Classes are grouped by age and skill level and allow campers to develop skills in a stressfree environment. u



ned to llow is desig “Squirrel Ho in a recredemic tutoring Box, adprovide aca y ,” says Bets ational setting and director emeritus o ct r missions dire School. “Students who rd of The Bedfo weeks make average ur fo ll readattend a ht months in ig e to x si f o ssion.” gains written expre nd a th a m , g in (thebedfordsc


innis Wood s Country D in Alpharetta ay School , campers ca n pair subje specific aca ctdemic camp s in math, S and even ch panish ess with the school’s Sun tional Summ saer Camp pro gram. Camp also take an ers educational field trip each week; past camps have visited the A Botanical G tlanta arden, the C enter for Pup Arts and Ca petry gle’s Family Farm. (mcginniswo | Newcomer Magazine | 21

FOR PINT-SIZED SCIENTISTS, THERE ARE PLENTY OF SPECIALIZED SCIENCE CAMPS COVERING TOPICS LIKE VIDEO GAME DEVELOPMENT, COMPUTER PROGRAMMING, ROBOTICS AND BIOLOGY. At the Children's Museum of Atlanta, kids can choose from three different day camps: the Imaginator Theater Camp; the Adventure Camp, which lets kids explore a variety of Museum activities; and Mad Science Camp for keen junior experimenters.

SPECIALTY CAMPS For children with a particular interest or passion, specialty camps afford an opportunity to explore it in depth. For pint-sized scientists, there are plenty of specialized science camps covering topics like video game development, computer programming, robotics and biology. Science-based specialty camps in Atlanta include those offered by the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics, and Computing (CEISMC), and Camp H2O at the Georgia Aquarium. Georgia Tech’s programs are mostly for middle- and high-school students and focus on STEM (Science, Technology, En-

CANTERBURY SCHOOL Keeping alive children’s inborn sense of wonder

Infants - Pre K Grades K-3 Afterschool and summer camp Located in Morningside, convenient to Downtown, Midtown, Druid Hills, Buckhead, Decatur, L5P Canterbury School practices a nondiscriminatory admission policy.

Call 404-522-5659 For more information 22 | Newcomer Magazine |

Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia Sowing the Seeds of Organic Learning All day, year-round, authentic Montessori program Montessori certified teacher in every classroom School leadership team with advanced academic degrees Extracurricular activities including art, karate, music, sports, and yoga offered at school Scientifically designed, hands-on, multisensory learning materials Flexible academic program schedules 6450 East Johns Crossing • Johns Creek, GA 30097 • 770-814-8001 • | Newcomer Magazine | 23

hosts Camp I-Can-Cook® Mini camps, during which children prepare dishes from various cuisines. “Even at the age of 4 and 5, a lot of kids love to participate in the kitchen in some way, shape or form,” says YCA’s Jennifer Fox ( The High Museum of Art hosts an annual summer art camp that lets budding artists explore new techniques as they create and display their masterpieces at a weekly exhibition, while they also learn about famous artists and architects. (


gineering and Mathematics) topics such as robotics, computer programming and modeling. (ceismc.gatech. edu). Camp H2O, meanwhile, is geared toward giving first- to fifth graders a behind-the-scenes look at the aquarium through encounters with animals and lessons from caregivers ( Camps are available to suit almost any interest that your child may have. The Young Chefs Academy (YCA)

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So how do you go about finding a camp? The American Camp Association’s website ( is a great resource, with more than 3,600 accredited camps. After researching the different options available, it’s time to narrow down your choices. Talk with your child about his interests and expectations for summer camp, match them to your own, and then do your homework to select the best option. Once you’ve found some promising choices, contact them directly with questions to determine if they meet your needs. (See sidebar). It can take a little legwork to find the right camp for your child, but it's worth the effort. Your child will have fun while learning and making friends and memories for a lifetime—and you’ll get some summer afternoons to enjoy some peace and quiet.

ASK AROUND Things to ask a prospective summer camp:

q Is the camp accredited? q How are counselors trained? Are they certified? What is the average age? q What is the background of the director and leadership staff? q How does the camp address safety concerns? Is there adequate supervision at all times? q What are the camp’s policies regarding campers’ cell phones and other electronic devices? q Can the camp provide references?




Session 1: June 11 - June 22 Session 2: June 25 - July 6 Held on the campus of The Bedford School in Fairburn 5665 Milam Road Fairburn, GA 30213 770-774-8001 •

Grades 1-9 Ability Grouping Squirrel Hollow Camp

Challenge course Beautiful 45-acre campus in Fairburn | Newcomer Magazine | 25


Saint Francis School

A Community of Lifelong Learners By Michelle Bourg


n this era of standardized testing, it’s easy to forget that learning doesn’t stop at graduation, but is a lifelong process with benefits beyond the mere attainment of grades. At the Saint Francis School, students come to realize the value of learning for a lifetime, whatever their academic interests or ability. An independent, not for profit institution with no religious affiliation for grades K-12, Saint Francis’ mission is “to provide a college-preparatory education to students with diverse academic ability in a structured environment that is challenging and supportive.” An emphasis on reading, writing and math, with attention to organization habits and study skills, helps to develop critical thinking and problem solving. A key aspect of the program is recognizing differences in academic ability and learning styles; the school tailors its approach to students’ individual strengths and encourages their sense of mastery by making structure, organization and process cornerstones of the program. The success of Saint Francis’ philosophy is grounded in teachers who view teaching as more than just a job. Headmaster Drew Buccellato describes the philosophy of teaching as an art: “‘The science of teaching’ is knowing your particular subject area; the ‘art of teaching’ is being able to successfully share what you know with your students, especially if they have difficulty grasping that concept.” Grades K-8 are located on the school’s 24-acre Roswell campus. Core subjects include reading and literature, English, math, science, and social studies with honors, traditional and support levels to address varying academic abilities, taught using multi-modal techniques. Additional subjects in the curriculum include art, music, drama, physical education, and technology, and afterschool clubs are also offered for a number of

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interests, including art, dance, chess, crafts, cooking and science. An interscholastic athletic program fields 23 teams in 15 different sports, including a competitive equestrian club. Located on a 43-acre campus in Alpharetta, the high school both challenges students and provides support as they prepare for college. All core courses are offered at the AP/Honors, CP1 and CP2 levels, and electives include engineering, robotics, video production, broadcast journalism and PixArt Studio. In sports, the Knights excel in football, basketball, golf, tennis and more. Students can also choose from a number of clubs, among them the National Honor Society, the Community Service Club and the Art Club. Saint Francis’ dedication to personal attention to its students is facilitated in part by its intimate size. With a total enrollment of 750, the school maintains one of the lowest student-teacher ratios in the Atlanta area, with an average class size of 12. From this close-knit and nurturing environment, alumni go on to great things: 100 percent of students take the SAT and or ACT and are accepted into college; graduates have been admitted to such institutions as Emory University, Georgia Tech, Stanford, Auburn and the University of Georgia. Through its dedication to an individualized approach, “the art of teaching,” and a foundation of good study skills, Saint Francis School produces graduates who continue to learn and grow for a lifetime. N

THE SPECIFICS Grades: K-12 Student/Teacher Ratio: (Average Class Size: 12) Tuition: $14,000-$21,000 Location: Roswell (Elementary and Middle); Alpharetta (High School)

Contact: Web:

9375 Willeo Road, Roswell GA 30075 (770) 641-8257

15:1 studentto-teacher ratio

Sports for every grade

STEM-equipped labs


4241 Central Church Road Douglasville, Georgia 30135 770-942-1583 •

M PE M arc N ar h H ch 2 O 26 2 • U • 6 9 a SE pm m

100% college acceptance rate | Newcomer Magazine | 27





When you’re relocating to a new city, the first choice you have to make can seem like the hardest: Which neighborhood should you call home? The good news is that Atlanta’s diverse neighborhoods and cities offer something for everyone, including quality education, affordable housing, family-friendly events and tight-knit communities. Whatever you’re looking for, Atlanta has many perfect spots to choose from. Here we present seventeen of Atlanta’s most popular communities, located all around the metro area, to serve as a starting point for your explorations. 28 | Newcomer Magazine |


INSIDE THE PERIMETER Midtown's towers reflected in Lake Clara Meer at Piedmont Park





PHOTO: ©2014, Kevin C. Rose/




s Piedmont Park haeen been called "Thengr heart of Atla ta"

The heart of Atlanta is Midtown, the city’s second largest business district and a booming live-work-play community. Its network of walkable tree-lined streets put the area’s shopping, dining and employment just steps away, and access to the MARTA rail line, interstates 75 and 85, and AMTRAK put the rest of the city—and the world—within easy reach. It’s also home to the city's art district, including the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the High Museum of Art, the Alliance Theatre, the Fox Theatre and more. And at its center are the Atlanta Botanical Garden and Piedmont Park, “Atlanta’s back yard” and the scene of numerous events and festivals throughout the year.

F Y OLD FOURTH WARD Spurred by the development of the Atlanta Beltline, the “O4W” has rapidly become one of the city’s most vibrant districts and a beacon for progressive but thoughtful revitalization. Attractions in this area just northeast of downtown include Ponce City Market, a mixed-use development with premier dining and shopping; the bustling Freedom Market and Sweet Auburn Curb Market; numerous restaurants and bars and several parks. And of course there's the Beltline itself, which connects the neighborhood to the rest of the city with a walkable scenic path that features dining, art and community life along the way. Housing options range from historic charming bungalows to modern new townhomes, with plenty of starter options.

Street life in Virginia-Highland

F Y VIRGINIA-HIGHLAND Just east of Midtown is the vibrant neighborhood of Virginia-Highland (or “The Highlands”), named for the intersection of Virginia and Highland avenues at its heart. This fun, funky neighborhood is filled with eclectic shopping and diverse dining and nightlife options, including some of Atlanta’s oldest bars and pubs. Its network of short blocks and residential streets lined with historic bungalows makes it one of Atlanta’s most walkable communities. It’s also right off the Atlanta Beltline, a 22-mile biking and walking trail, and a short walk from Piedmont Park, making it ideal for active young professionals. Its Summerfest arts and music festival is one of the largest in the Southeast.

PHOTO: ©2015, Kevin C. Rose/

north F Y

east F E Y



The public face of this wealthy historic district is its Peachtree Street corridor, lined with high-rise offices and glitzy hotels, dining and shopping. Its private side stretches away from Peachtree across 43 distinct neighborhoods, stretching from I-285 to I-85 and making up a fifth of the city. Notable neighborhoods include Tuxedo Park, with palatial mansions on rolling manicured lawns; Chastain Park, home to one of the city’s largest parks, with a golf course, equestrian center, tennis courts and a pool, and Garden Hills, with its winding, tree-lined streets.

A vibrant city with a tight-knit community, Decatur is located just 15 minutes from Atlanta and minutes from Emory University and the CDC. The city puts a premium on walkability with its historic downtown, full of charming restaurants, pubs, boutique shops and specialty stores and surrounded by charming, cozy neighborhoods. Events are held downtown throughout the year, including the popular Decatur Craft Beer Festival and the Decatur Book Festival. Decatur is also on the MARTA rail line, allowing for easy access to Atlanta’s top destinations and events.

Lenox Mall anchors Buckhead's upscale shopping district

south F Y COLLEGE PARK College Park presents the best of both worlds for rising professionals who enjoy some quiet time. Its easy proximity to downtown Atlanta and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport offer big-city convenience, balanced with a relaxing, small-town feel. The airport and the Georgia International Convention Center also make this a desirable destination for business travelers. There’s affordable housing in the historic College Park neighborhood, and there are numerous attractive dining options. The main campus of Woodward Academy, the largest independent day school in the continental United States, is located here as well.

northwest F E VININGS This unincorporated village is unique in being part of the city of Atlanta, but located in Cobb County, situated on the northwest side of Buckhead. Vinings offers walkable charm, quality schools, great shopping and dining and recreation on the Chattahoochee River, all with easy access to the entire metro area. Generous property tax exemptions make it attractive to empty nesters and retirees.

F E HAPEVILLE This charming city with a small-town feel is the home of the Dwarf House, the first Chick-fil-A restaurant. Hapeville takes pride in its downtown that features the historic Christ Church and Carriage House, the Depot Museum, a conference center and numerous businesses. There’s also a picturesque downtown park and a public art program that has created a number of murals to beautify the city. Hapeville has experienced significant revitalization recently: Porsche Cars North America recently built its world headquarters and the Porsche Experience Center here. u | Newcomer Magazine | 29


F Y ADAIR PARK “Go west!” is the new watchword in Atlanta for young professionals seeking an affordable community with access to the city. Longtime residents of this community on the National Register of Historic Places are welcoming newcomers who are finding good values on existing homes with vintage charm, while trendy lofts and townhomes are springing up rapidly. An artists’ mecca, Adair Park’s location on the Beltline has spurred the growth of small businesses and the creation of parks with playgrounds and sports facilities. The neighborhood comes together to host the annual Porches and Pies Festival and the Tour de SWAT cycling event for a unique sense of local pride.


F E Y SANDY SPRINGS Directly north of Atlanta, Sandy Springs is one of Atlanta’s biggest employment and high-end shopping destinations. The city is in the process of developing a new city center, called City Springs, to serve as the heart of the community. Set for completion in summer 2018, it will include office space, green space, residential and retail space and a performing arts center. The city hosts the Sandy Springs Artsapalooza fine arts festival each spring, and the popular Sandy Springs Festival, with its beloved pet parade, in the fall.

F E GAINESVILLE Gainesville is a top pick for active families and nature lovers alike. Lake Lanier, on the western and northern edges of town, offers swimming, fishing and camping options, and the Blue Ridge Mountains just north of town are another perfect option for hiking or camping. Back in the city, the Interactive Neighborhood for Kids and Quinlan Visual Arts Center are just two of its attractions the family will enjoy. Gainesville has also been recognized by the AARP as one of its top 10 affordable places to retire. Retirees can tee up at the Chattahoochee Golf Club, take a swim at the Frances Meadows Aquatic Center, and enjoy an abundance of other recreational opportunities.

F Y JOHNS CREEK Just a neighborhood a decade ago, Johns Creek officially became its own municipality in 2006—and it hasn’t stopped growing since. The young, affluent city boasts some of metro Atlanta’s top schools and the awardwinning Technology Park mixed-use development, which hosts several Fortune 500 companies. And with the Chattahoochee River forming a large part of the city’s southern and eastern boundaries, Johns Creek offers plenty of options for outdoor recreation—including miles of recreational trails; the Johns Creek Greenway, a four-mile (and growing!) trail system; and the Autrey Mill Nature Preserve and Heritage Center, which sits on 46 acres of woodlands. Enjoying a playground in Johns Creek


F E Voted one of Georgia’s best affordable suburbs by Businessweek magazine, this Gwinnett County town has some of the metro area's most exclusive neighborhoods and is home to some of its best golf courses and private tennis clubs. Duluth sports a small-town feel thanks to its family-friendly town green and historic downtown district, filled with charming specialty shops and accessible by a network of sidewalks and bikeways. The Town Green, with its amphitheater and fountain, hosts community events throughout the year, such as the annual Duluth Fall Festival each September. Duluth is also the home of the Atlanta Gladiators (a minor league ice hockey team) and the Infinite Energy Center, which hosts major festivals, concerts and events. The Hudgens Center for the Arts presents exhibits by well-known masters and local artists, and classes in pottery, drawing, painting and more for both adults and children. 30 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: City of Johns Creek



Call 770-926-0166 for a personal tour. SETTING A NEW STANDARD IN EDUATION Our students excel in academics, flourish in the arts and receive an education that prepares them in a unique way for a successful college career.

90th Lilburn Daze cake booth

Percentile in math and reading batteries on standardized exams.

F E LILBURN With an estimated population of around 13,000, this Gwinnett County city is one of the smaller ones on this list, but that makes a big difference when it comes to its sense of small-town community. Top attractions include the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, the largest traditional Hindu temple of its kind in the world outside India; Lilburn City Park, home of the annual Lilburn Daze festival; and the Camp Creek Greenway, a 4.2mile paved and gravel trail. Lilburn has experienced substantial growth in recent years, and has recently completed a new city hall and library complex and revitalized its downtown corridors.


74% Of the 4th through 8th grade students are eligible for Duke TIP.

92nd Percentile in the nation on the PSAT, among students with at least 8 years of attendance at Lyndon.

F E Y WOODSTOCK Woodstock calls itself “a city unexpected,” and this community of almost 32,000 offers amenities you might not expect in a city of its size. More than 2500 businesses are located here, and there's a wide choice of housing options, including condos, townhomes and single-family homes in urban and suburban settings. The city also boasts a free downtown trolley service, bike share program, hiking and biking trails, concerts, festivals and other special events. It's easy to see why Woodstock has been steadily racking up accolades from national media outlets and was the only Georgia city to make Money Magazine’s 2015 list of “Top 50 Best Places to Live in the U.S.” u | Newcomer Magazine | 31

F E SMYRNA Attractive neighborhoods, a thriving downtown and plentiful green space are highlights of this Cobb County city, which was one of the area’s first to complete a master plan for revitalization. Its Village Green is a vibrant town center containing the city hall, library and community center, along with shopping, office space and residential options. It also hosts concerts and festivals throughout the year. Residents also have access to more than 33 additional acres of parks and green space, all located within one mile of downtown. With immediate access to I-75 and I-285, Smyrna is minutes away from virtually everywhere in Atlanta.


F E PEACHTREE CITY This master-planned community has the feel of a vacation resort. Golf carts are a primary means of transportation here, with residents zipping along miles of paths that are also great for strolling and bicycling. The area’s lake, golf courses, playgrounds, nature areas and sports fields offer numerous recreational opportunities, and the Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater hosts outdoor concerts. The city is also a magnet for film and television productions and boasts a Southern Hollywood film tour that visits popular filming locations.

32 | Newcomer Magazine |


Rose & Rye

American Dining with Global Reach by Michelle Bourg | Newcomer Magazine | 33

PHOTOS: Chris Watkins


t’s one of Atlanta’s most unique and notable buildings, and for years, Keefe’s vision for Rose & Rye involved a warm and inviting aesthetit’s also been something of a mystery. A stately white Victorian home, ic, something achieved in the restaurant’s interior in several ways. The complete with towers, columns and a sweeping wraparound porch, intimate first floor cocktail lounge, nicknamed “The Grotto” due to its it sits high atop a stone wall on 15th Street in Midtown yet still dwarfed full-length stone wall behind the bar, has a slightly industrial feel with by the glass and chrome high rises that have grown up around it over the concrete and distressed wood floors and wood and metal furnishings, years. Once the home of an eccentric Atlanta businessman, it later served brightened by plentiful natural light. The airy main dining room plays the as a home for artists who often bartered their works for rent. But in recent clean lines of white leather banquettes and a fresh white and taupe color years, “The Castle” has mainly been closed and empty, a curiosity for art scheme against the warmth of delicate chandeliers, oaken tables, concrete and symphony patrons passing by on their way to the Woodruff Arts Center across the street. But last October, the Castle came to life again, opening its doors as Rose & Rye, the newest restaurant venture of Thaddeus Keefe, owner of 1KEPT Kitchen & Bar in Atlanta and Charleston and YNK in Orange County. Inspired by his own background in art, Keefe envisions his new endeavor as a one-of-a-kind dining experience with a global twist on Southern cuisine, in a sophisticated but inviting one-of-a-kind environment. A native of Texas who comes to Atlanta by way of Minneapolis, Executive Chef Lindsay Owens creates menus that combine classic Southern cuisine with traditional French cooking, plated with plenty of visual verve. A commitment to seasonal local and regional ingredients gives diners a chance to try new favorites often. Starters have included warm drunken mustard potato salad with bacon fat, and glazed Cheshire pork belly with pate a choux gnocchi, fennel and green apple slaw. Among the presented mains have been seared snapper with a celery root puree, farro and a wild cherry reduction, and a bone-in pork chop with a sweet potato Above: Rose & Rye’s airy main dining room hash cake, butternut demiglace and pickled plum chutney. Left: Chef Lindsay Owens’ stylishly plated menu items Desserts at Rose & Rye offer a touch of the unexpected: an olive oil cake is topped with whipped mascarpone and pickled plums, while bour- floors and touches of brickwork, with expansive views of the Midtown bon ice cream and bacon fat popcorn meet beside a dark chocolate tart. art district beyond the windows. The third floor function spaces invoke a Buttermilk panna cotta gets a hint of spice from fig jam and aged balsamic club-like atmosphere with fireplaces and bookshelves lining the walls. Currently, Rose & Rye is open for lunch on Fridays and for dinner on and a bit of savory from rosemary shortbread. Tuesday through Saturday, with brunch When it comes to drinks, the options are THE DETAILS service planned on Saturdays. as carefully considered as the food. Keefe’s Attire: Dressy casual Parking: Public parking available in area, In naming his creation, Keefe chose eateries have a tradition of creative and balAtmosphere: Modern and elegant fees vary the rose, for its delicacy, and rye—plain anced cocktails, and Rose & Rye continues Recommendations: Burrata salad with Hours: Lunch: Fri, 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. but culinarily refined. Together, they it, alongside an eclectic wine list that inpesto foam and julienne snap peas; Dinner: Tues-Thurs 5-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 5-11 p.m. symbolize the restaurant perfectly— cludes choices from Greece and Croatia and snapper and celery root puree, olive oil Brunch: Sat (Beginning April, 2018) cake with pickled plums Location: 87 15th St., Atlanta 30309 combining diverse elements into an ina carefully chosen selection of local and naReservations: Recommended Contact: 404-500-5980 tionally known bottled beers. viting and accomplished whole. N

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5 ADVENTURES JUST A SHORT DRIVE AWAY Now that you’ve completed the adventure of moving to your new city, you’re probably ready for an all-new adventure that’s less stressful, but just as rewarding. Fortunately, there are numerous adventure-filled vacations within an easy drive of Atlanta. From whitewater rafting in the Smokies to hiking in the Okefenokee Swamp, exciting opportunities abound. By Tony Jenkins and Susan Flowers

The entire family will enjoy an outdoor adventure in Sevierville, Tennessee.

Shooting the rapids in the Upcountry.

Breathtaking views await zipliners in Sevierville.

PHOTOS: (Opposite) Sevierville CVB; THIS PAGE: (Top Left); (Top Right) Sevierville CVB; (Bottom) photo courtesy of

1. UPCOUNTRY SOUTH CAROLINA If you just can’t wait to get outside, head to the Upcountry region of South Carolina, home to some of the state’s most gorgeous scenery and most exciting outdoor fun, just slightly more than a two-hour drive from Atlanta. For outdoor adventure, Paris Mountain State Park, encompassing 1,540 acres just north of Greenville, is practically a world in itself. For hikers and mountain bikers, there are more than 16 miles of trails, from the easy half-mile Turtle Trail to the challenging 3.6-mile Sulphur Springs trail, where navigating the rocky ravines will reward you with ridgetop views and possibly sightings of deer or other wildlife. Water lovers will love Paris Mountain too. Anglers can cast their line in Lake Placid for catfish, bream and bass. Canoes, kayaks and paddleboats are available for rent, and there’s a swimming area just right for splashing. There are numerous spots for a picnic, and both trailside and paved campsites for those who want to stay a while. Meanwhile, downtown Greenville is just 15 minutes away for those who prefer to relax in urban comfort. Straddling the state line with Georgia is the Chattooga River, one of the Southeast’s best whitewater rafting sites. Paddlers float through pristine forests on their way to thrilling Class IV and V rapids, and even novices can enjoy the ride on a guided tour.

2. OKEFENOKEE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE With more than 400,000 acres of exotic wildlife and lush vegetation, the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge is an adventure-lover’s paradise

Paris Mountain offers miles of scenic biking trails.

only a five-hour drive from Atlanta. The refuge was established in 1936 to conserve the Okefenokee Swamp, thought to be 6,000 to 8,000 years old and teeming with deer, mink, otters, bobcats, tortoises, storks—oh, and a few larger animals as well. Paddle your canoe alertly through the swamp and you might glimpse an alligator or a bear. Be sure to come prepared for strenuous paddling or to push the canoe at some points, as well as for extreme temperatures and precipitation. Canoeists can camp at any of the designated wilderness campsites located throughout the refuge with reservations. If you're looking for something a little less taxing, 90-minute guided boat tours are available, including trips through Suwannee Canal and Chesser Prairie and a sunset tour. You can also arrange for an extended or overnight excursion. Hikers can enjoy many different trails. Take in nature’s wonders as you observe birds and other wildlife in their natural habitat, and en-

joy plant life that surrounds you at every step. Walk the Upland Discovery Trail and photograph a colony of red-cockaded woodpeckers, or immerse yourself in the forests of the fourmile Longleaf Pine Interpretive Trail. You may also enjoy cycling on the swamp’s paved roads. Fishermen can enjoy the refuge throughout the year—but you may have to compete with an alligator for your catch! The refuge features shallow water prairies, lakes and ponds, and fishing from a boat, kayak or canoe is permitted in various areas.

3. SEVIERVILLE, TENNESSEE Known as the birthplace of Dolly Parton, Sevierville is a picturesque getaway less than four hours from Atlanta. Sevierville offers many activities that will please both adrenaline junkies and nature enthusiasts. Start with fishing, camping and canoeing at Douglas Lake. Then check out the views of sparkling formations, grottos and a crystal-clear stream in the Forbid- | Newcomer Magazine | 35

den Caverns. Next, take a rafting tour through the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains. And that’s just the beginning. The town is only minutes away from America’s most visited national park: the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which is free to enter. Serious hikers will find plenty of options for challenging all-day or overnight adventures on more than 850 acres of maintained trails, while beginners will love the quick and easy choices. For even more thrills, visit one of Sevierville’s several zip-lining companies for breathtaking mountain views as you zip along, hundreds of feet above the trees and streams.

4. HUNTSVILLE, ALABAMA Located less than four hours northwest of Atlanta, Huntsville, Alabama may be best known for the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, but that's not its only attraction for those seeking an outof-this-world adventure. Whether you want to kayak on the Flint River or explore underground caverns, the right getaway is waiting in Huntsville. Just minutes from downtown, the Land Trust of North Alabama offers more than 60 miles of public trails for hiking, biking, bird watching or picnicking at any one of eight na-

Animals of the African veldt roam a natural habitat at Chehaw State Park in Albany.

ture preserves, encompassing five mountains: Wade Mountain, Rainbow Mountain, Green Mountain, Keel Mountain and Monte Sano. Southeast of the city along the Flint River, the Hays Nature Preserve and the Goldsmith Schiffman Wildlife Sanctuary offer more than 10 miles of scenic and gentle paved trails perfect for hiking or biking. For a change of pace, there’s Cathedral Caverns. Just a 20-minute drive from Hunts-

36 | Newcomer Magazine |

ville, it offers a breathtaking look at nature’s wonders, with 14 acres of underground caverns for amateur spelunkers to explore. Among the sights are the 45-foot “Goliath” stalagmite column (one of the tallest in the world), the Frozen Waterfall and the 126-foot entrance cavern. Other fun activities include nature trails, a climbing wall and gemstone mining. Tent camping facilities are available within Cathedral Caverns State Park as well.

5. CHEHAW STATE PARK Chehaw State Park in Albany bills itself as “Nature’s Playground,” and it definitely lives up to the nickname. The park was founded on the principles of conservation, preservation and education, and it continues this mission with more than 700 acres of unspoiled conservation land, a wild animal park and the state’s only accredited zoo besides Zoo Atlanta. Chehaw boasts more than 10 miles of exciting mountain bike trails, designed in loops of one mile or less in length so riders can create their own routes. For BMX racers, there’s a racing track open to the public that hosts sanctioned races, along with an adjacent practice track. Disc golfers will want to check out the 18-hole, par-54 disc golf course. If you’re feeling more sedate, hop aboard the Wiregrass Express for a scenic tour of the native South Georgia landscape, or the African Veldt ride to view the seven species of animals that roam the 40-acre exhibit in natural herds. The Veldt is part of the Zoo at Chehaw, which houses more than 230 specimens representing more than 125 species, including cheetahs, meerkats, lemurs, camels and more. Participate in a feeding or chat with a keeper as part of your visit on a weekend. There’s so much to do that you’ll want to spend more time, so camp out at one of the park’s 44 RV sites, 18 tent sites, or air-conditioned camper cabins, accessible to laundry and dump facilities and equipped with hookups and a fire ring to grill the fish you catch in the lake.

FOR MORE INFORMATION Chehaw State Park 229-430-5275

Huntsville, Alabama 800-843-0468

Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge 912-496-7836

Sevierville, Tennessee 888-738-4378

Upcountry, South Carolina 800-849-4766 | Newcomer Magazine | 37

38 | Newcomer Magazine |

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THERE Driver’s License

Out-of-state drivers are required to obtain a Georgia driver’s license within 30 days. To obtain your license, you will need to provide the following: 1) Previous driver’s license; 2) Two pieces of identification; 3) An eye exam at the time of issue; 4) A $20 fee (in cash) for a five-year license, or a $35 fee for a 10-year license. Licenses are issued through the Georgia Department of Driver Services at several sites across Atlanta. Call 678-413-8400 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

Car Tag

MARTA Rail Service

Enabling Children with Learning Differences

to Succeed ✔ Pre-K through 8th Grade ✔ Small group instruction using multi-sensory techniques ✔ Academic programs matched to individual’s strengths Phone: 770-594-1313 I 200 Cox Rd. Roswell

W W W. P O R T E R A C A D E M Y. O R G 40 | Newcomer Magazine |

You must register your car within 30 days of residency. Bring with you the following information: 1) Car title, name and address of lienholder, or copy of lease agreement; 2) Current tag registration; 3) Mileage reading of vehicle; 4) Proof of insurance; 5) Emission certificate (if applicable). There is an approximate $20 fee for your tag. In January 2006, the state began charging sales

GETTING STARTED tax on vehicles. Your tag office will provide the amount of sales tax on your vehicle. For information on a specific county, contact the appropriate county’s Tax Commissioner’s Office.

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

Driving Tips

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

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

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 or before September 1 to enter 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, you will need to provide the child’s social security number; a vision, hearing, and dental screening from a family practitioner or local health clinic; and immunization records on Georgia State Form 3231. | Newcomer Magazine | 41

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 Amicalola EMC 706-276-2362 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 Ball Ground 770-735-2000 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,

42 | 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


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

Cobb County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

White Water



One of Family Circle magaCobb County came into zine’s “Ten Best Towns for Families,” Kennesaw takes pride in its being in 1832 when the state County small-town atmosphere and boasts redistributed land once part Neighborhoods abundant parks and green space, of the Cherokee Nation. exceptional recreational programs Named after Thomas and top-notch schools, includWelch Cobb, the county ing Kennesaw State University. experienced a devastating Kennesaw’s Historic Downtown setback during the Civil features shopping, dining and atWar when most of it was Schools tractions such as the Smithsoniandestroyed during the Battle affiliated Southern Museum of at Kennesaw Mountain. Median household income: $65,123 Civil War and Locomotive History, Today, Cobb County, 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 fers a quality of life unsurdelivers an amazing sense of style passed in the Southeast. More and love of life. The new Market 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.



Marietta City Schools Board of Education


Elementary Schools 7 Middle Schools 1 High Schools 1 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 Cobb EMC 770-429-2100 Georgia Power 888-660-5890 GreyStone Power Corp. 770-942-6576 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 | Newcomer Magazine | 43

COUNTY INFORMATION EDUCATION PUBLIC SCHOOLS DeKalb County Schools Board of Education 678-676-1200

DeKalb County 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.

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


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

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



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


Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

Avg. SAT Scores DeKalb Co. 1334 City of Decatur 1577 Georgia 1460 National 1509

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 prosCounty pers in part due to its exNeighborhoods cellent transportation sys- tem. Five major road ar- teries traverse the county: Interstates 20, 85, 285, 675 and US Highway 78. Schools Hartsfield-Jackson Inter national Airport is only six miles from DeKalb’s Median household income: $51,753 southern border and the Median age of residents: 35 Population: 739,956 DeKalb Peachtree AirSales tax: 7% port, a general aviation field, is reported to be Chamber of Commerce DeKalb County the second busiest air404-378-8000, port in Georgia. DeKalb County is also a leader in Property Taxes The property tax rate is $41.50 per $1,000 for the biomedical commuunincorporated DeKalb County. Tax Commissioner: nity with The Center for 404-298-4000 Disease Control headquartered there. is the Courthouse Square, which The median value of homes in features an eclectic mix of store2006, according to the Census Bu- front boutiques and shops, restaureau, was $190,100. rants and entertainment options.

44 | Newcomer Magazine |

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 hotspot for families. N For more counties and neighborhood information, visit our Web site at


Fulton County filled with high-rises, upscale restaurants, the Governor’s Mansion, the historic Swan House and the Atlanta History Center. Buckhead is also an entertainment and dining hotspot. With more than 200 restaurants, bars shops and luxury hotels, the Buckhead area is a magnet for young professionals.

PUBLIC SCHOOLS Fulton County Schools Board of Education 404-768-3600 Elementary Schools 58 Middle Schools 19 High Schools 17 Charter 8 Centers 4 Per-pupil expenditures $9,561


Buckhead is “where old money lives and new money parties,” according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. With its mixture of mansions and uniquely styled homes, Buckhead is a favorite among architecture and history buffs. Convenient to Georgia 400, Interstate 85 and MARTA, it’s

Avg. SAT Scores Fulton Co. 1567 Georgia 1452 National 1498 PRIVATE SCHOOLS Visit our Web site at for a list of private schools in this county.


One of metro Atlanta’s most vibrant and affluent cities, Alpharetta is home to approximately 62,000 residents, according to 2012 U.S. Census Bureau estimates. They're drawn to its mix of big-city vitality and small-town charm, as well as its many amenities and affordable housing options. Homes range Median household income: $57,664 from large apartment comMedian age of residents: 34 munities to elegant subPopulation: 977,773 Sales tax: 7%, Atlanta City: 8% divisions, with a median value of $324,300. Chamber of Commerce Alpharetta offers a vaGreater North Fulton riety of parks and outdoor 770-993-8806, Metro Atlanta attractions, including the 404-880-9000, Big Creek Greenway trail. South Fulton Shoppers flock to North 770-964-1984, Point Mall for a multiProperty Taxes tude of retail options. The The property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value is: city’s historic downtown $44.12 for the City of Atlanta; $29.13 for incorporated area boasts an appealing Fulton County; $41.60 for unincorporated Fulton town square surrounded County; $33.75 for Johns Creek; $33.86 for Sandy by restaurants and shops. Springs. Tax Commissioner: 404-613-6100 The Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre hosts big-name The neighborhood also offers numerconcerts each summer. N ous antique stores, art galleries and For more counties and neighborhood mall shopping at Lenox Square and information, visit our Web site at Phipps Plaza..

County Neighborhoods Schools


Elementary Schools 52 Middle Schools 14 High Schools 20 Charter 15 Alternative 6 Per-pupil expenditures $13,069 School & bus information 404-802-5500

Downtown Atlanta skyline



Atlanta Public Schools Board of Education

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development.

Fulton County serves as the center of the metro Atlanta area. With 90 percent of the city of Atlanta, including the state’s capital building, located within its borders, it sits at the hub of the area’s financial, transportation, retail, communications and cultural services. A number of Fortune 500 companies, including the Coca-Cola Company, Delta Air Lines and UPS, are headquartered here. More than 970,000 people live in Fulton County, drawn by its convenience to Interstates 75, 85 and 285 and Georgia State Route 400. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median value of homes in the county is $246,200. Fulton is home to many of Atlanta’s signature neighborhoods, including its bustling downtown district. Older neighborhoods like Inman Park, Grant Park, Candler Park and Virginia-Highland offer affordable housing, pedestrianfriendly layouts and plentiful parks and recreational options. Midtown Atlanta is the heart of Atlanta’s cultural scene, with the Woodruff Arts Center (home to the Alliance Theatre, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the High Museum of Art) and the historic Fox Theatre, as well as a host of art galleries. Midtown’s Piedmont Park, the city’s most popular green space, hosts many outdoor festivals and concerts.


UTILITIES & CONTACTS ELECTRICITY City of College Park 404-669-3759 City of East Point 404-270-7010 City of Fairburn 770-964-3481 City of Palmetto 770-463-3322 Georgia Power 888-660-5890 GAS Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit TELEPHONE AT&T 866-271-9724 Comcast 404-266-2278

Fulton County



CABLE TV Charter Communications 887-906-9121 Comcast 404-266-2278 HOSPITALS Atlanta Medical Center 404-265-4000 Atlanta VA Medical Center 404-321-6111 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 University Hospital Midtown 404-778-2000 Grady Memorial Hospital 404-606-1000 North Fulton Regional Hospital 770-751-2500 Northside Hospital 404-851-8000 Piedmont Hospital 404-605-5000 Shepherd Center 404-352-2020 St. Joseph’s Hospital 678-843-7001 | 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 City of Buford 770-945-6761 City of Lawrenceville 770-963-2414 City of Norcross 770-448-2122 Georgia Power 404-395-7611 Jackson EMC 770-963-6166 Sawnee EMC 770-887-2363 Walton EMC 770-972-2917 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 Gwinnett City Water 678-376-6800 Lawrenceville 770-963-2414 Norcross 770-448-2122 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


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

Mall of Georgia




46 | Newcomer Magazine |



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Disney Junior Dance Party on Tour, Fox Theatre All of your child’s favorite Disney Junior characters, including Mickey and the Roadster Racers, Doc McStuffins, Sofia the First, Vampirina and the Lion Guard, come to life in this interactive all new concert experience. March 24, 855285-8499,

Stomp, Fox Theatre

Theater & Concerts Sheltered, Actor’s Express

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Fox Theatre

A Jewish couple tries to find a home for a European child fleeing the Nazis in 1939 in this Alliance Theatre production. March 1-25,

Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta brings the beloved Broadway musical about a man’s uproarious attempts to inherit his family fortune through murderous means. March 13-18,



Atlanta Youth Wind Symphony, Callanwolde Fine Arts Center

The Atlanta Ballet: Black Swan, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

The 85-member ensemble, made up of the metro area’s leading high school wind musicians, performs at the historic arts venue.

This celebrated version of the classic “Swan Lake” jumps ahead to the third act, when Prince Siegried mistakes the daughter of an evil sorcerer for his true love, Odette. March 16-18, 800-745-3000,

March 7, 404-872-5338,

Blake Shelton, Philips Arena The award-winning country musician and television personality (“The Voice”) performs on his “Country Music Freaks” tour, joined by Carly Pearce, Trace Adkins and more. March 8, 800-745-3000,

Mamma Mia!, Aurora Theatre

PHOTO: ©Steve McNicholas 2012

Stomp, Fox Theatre

The award-winning pop singer, a native of New Zealand best known for her hit “Royals,” performs. April 14, 770-626-2464,

Something Rotten!, Fox Theatre This hilarious smash musical tells the story of 16th-century brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom, who are desperate to write their own play and compete with William Shakespeare by writing the world’s first musical. April 17-22, 855-285-8499,

Bon Jovi, Philips Arena The rock band known for such hits as “Wanted Dead or Alive” and “Livin’ on a Prayer” performs just days after being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. April 20, 800-745-3000,

Little Big Town, Infinite Energy Center

Mamma Mia!, Aurora Theatre

Celebrating its 20th year, this award-winning country quartet performs on a bill that also includes Kacey Musgraves and Midland. April 21, 770-626-2464,

P!nk, Philips Arena

48 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Chris Bartelski

Celtic Woman, Fox Theatre

March 9, 855-285-8499,

The multiplatinum group, one of the most popular country acts of all time, performs songs from its 2015 album “Southern Drawl” and across its legendary career. Also appearing is the Charlie Daniels Band. April 13-15,

Lorde, Infinite Energy Center

The Alliance Theatre presents two one-act plays by playwright-in-residence Pearl Cleage, following the same character over a 30-year period. March 23-April 15, 404-733-5000,

The international musical sensation returns to Atlanta with a new show, ““Homecoming,” in support of the live album of the same name.

Alabama, Fox Theatre


Hospice & Pointing at the Moon, Fulton County Southwest Arts Center

Inspired by the music of the Swedish pop group, this musical production combines timeless music with the tale of a young brideto-be’s attempt to discover the identity of her father. March 8-April 22, 678-226-6222,

An eight-member ensemble makes stirring music using brooms, hubcaps, garbage cans, wooden poles and other surprising instruments in this crowd-pleasing favorite. Presented by Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta. April 6-7, 855-285-8499,

The inspirational pop singer, known for such hits as “Don’t Let Me Get Me” and “Get the Party Started,” brings her “Beautiful Trauma” tour to Atlanta. April 21, 800-745-3000,

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

Yanni, Fox Theatre The Greek New Age musician is in the midst of a world tour in celebration of the 25th anniversary of his landmark album “Live at the Acropolis.” May 2, 855-285-8499,

Joe Bonamassa, Fox Theatre The blues rock guitarist is known for his solo work as well as his collaborations with superstars from the worlds of blues and rock. May 4-5, 855-285-8499,

Candide, Atlanta Symphony Hall The Alliance Theatre and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra co-produce this staging of the awardwinning musical, based on the satirical novel by Voltaire. May 9-20, 404-733-5000,

Justin Timberlake, Infinite Energy Center The singer and actor performs hit songs from across his career, including from his new album, “Man of the Woods.” May 11, 770-626-2464,

movements, and Balanchine’s “Who Cares?,” set to 13 Gershwin classics. May 11-13,

Atlanta International Auto Show, Georgia World Congress Center


More than 500 new and pre-production vehicles are displayed on the 400,000-square-foot convention floor at this event, in its 36th year as one of the biggest auto shows in the nation.

Live From Here With Chris Thile, Fox Theatre The National Public Radio program (formerly “A Prairie Home Companion”) broadcasts live from the famous Fox Theatre. May 19, 855-285-8499,

U2, Infinite Energy Center The GRAMMY award-winning band performs in support of its newest album, “Songs of Experience.” May 28, 770-626-2464,

Joris Laarman Lab: Design in the Digital Age, High Museum of Art This exhibition features work from pioneering Dutch designer Joris Laarman. Feb. 18-May 13, 404-733-5000,

The Atlanta Ballet: Bach to Broadway, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Harlem Globetrotters, Philips Arena

The Atlanta Ballet closes its season with a program that includes “7 for Eight,” featuring eight dancers performing to music from seven Bach

The beloved basketball team returns with all the ball-handling wizardry and entertaining antics fans of all ages have come to expect. March 10, 800-745-3000,

Al Taylor, What Are You Looking At?, High Museum of Art Tour more than 150 sculptures, drawings, and prints from across the career of the late American process artist, in the first major museum survey of his idiosyncratic work. Through March 28, 404-733-5000,

Geranium Festival, McDonough

Exhibits & Events

March 21-25,

This 41st annual arts and crafts festival takes place in and around the square in downtown McDonough, with handcrafted items, food and fun. May 19,

A Fire That No Water Could Put Out: Civil Rights Photography, High Museum of Art The history and legacy of the civil rights movement in the United States are explored in this exhibit featuring more than 40 photographs, both iconic and contemporary. Through April 29, 404-733-5000, | Newcomer Magazine | 49


ARABIA MOUNTAIN A World of Adventure Close to Home By Michelle Bourg

Arabia Mountain landscape

PHOTOS: (Left) William Bishop; (Top Right) Phil Varney; (Bottom Right) Arabia Alliance

Interior of Abbey Church, Monastery of the Holy Spirit

Arabia Mountain at sunset


t’s been a long winter, and now you’re more than ready to get out, enjoy the spring weather and see something new. Just 20 miles from downtown Atlanta on I-20 in Lithonia is the perfect destination: the 2,550-acre Preserve at the Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area, boasting some of the most unique and beautiful natural scenery in the state. Here you can walk, hike or bike while taking in views of windswept stone fields, rare flowers, wetlands, lakes, stream-laced forests, and two of Atlanta’s three granite manadnocks (stone outcroppings rising from a plain). Along the more than 30 miles of trails, you’ll encounter a landscape that can seem as if it’s from another world. Stark expanses of granite dotted with shallow pools are mixed with lush carpets of rare native plants, including the diamorpha, with its shiny bulbous red leaves and in late March, pale pink star-like blooms. When autumn comes, the color scheme changes to the sunny gold of the yellow daisy. Head to the Arabia Mountain Top Trail for panoramic views from the rock’s summit, or bike over the 500-foot bridge crossing the South River to Panola Mountain State Park. Trails are open from dawn to dusk; leashed dogs are welcome and parking and trail access are free of charge. But there’s much more than scenery here. Cast your fishing line, go geocaching or paddle a canoe on Alexander Lake at Panola Mountain. Explore historic farm buildings or the ruins of the old quarry. Visit the

Escape day-to-day life with a walk around the lakes at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit, taking a moment at the soaring Gothic Abbey Church. Flat Rock Archives for a look at the community’s rich African-American history. Learn about wildlife rehabilitation at the AWARE Wildlife Center and meet the ambassador animals, including Tappy Oka the barred owl and Cessna the flying squirrel. Escape day-to-day life with a walk around the lakes and the renowned bonsai garden at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit, taking a moment at the soaring Gothic Abbey Church. Educational programs and tours are available to help make the most of your visit to every part of the Heritage Area. Whether you spend just a few hours or make a day of it, your time at the Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area will satisfy your yen for adventure and inspire you for even more.

The Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area is located at 3350 Klondike Road in Lithonia. For more information, call 404-998-8384 or visit 50 | Newcomer Magazine | | Newcomer Magazine | 51 | Newcomer Magazine | 52

Profile for Killam Publishing, Inc.

Newcomer Magazine | Spring 2018  

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

Newcomer Magazine | Spring 2018  

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