is Love A ir in thAeNTIC ROM RGIA GEO AYS GETAW
HOW TO FIND THE RIGHT FIT FOR YOUR CHILDREN
GUIDING STUDENTS TO LEARN AT THEIR OWN PACE
Spring 2019 CONTENTS FEATURES Navigating Atlanta Like a Native . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Family Fun in Atlanta . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
With a sprawling footprint and four different interstates, Atlanta can be intimidating for commuters.Our tips will help you get around like a pro.
Warm weather is here—the kids are itching to get out of the house, and so are you. Here’s our list of great things to see and do around the city.
The Montessori Method . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Romantic Getaways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .42
Stressing emotional development as well as academics, this innovative education style addresses the needs of the whole child. Find out more about Atlanta’s Montessori-accredited schools.
Dreaming of a getaway for the two of you? No need to head to an exotic locale—plenty of romantic destinations beckon from just a short drive away. Here are six of our favorites.
DEPARTMENTS In Focus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 The inside scoop on news, events and happenings around Atlanta.
Homes and Communities. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 When you’re relocating with your kids, finding the right neighborhood is your top priority. Here are some of Atlanta’s top family communities you’ll all love to call home.
Neighborhood Spotlight. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 With prime housing, cultural and recreation options, the city of Cumming in Forsyth County is a magnet for new metro-area families.
School Spotlight. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
Relocation Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 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 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Get caught up on the best exhibitions, theatrical productions, special events and live music across the metro area.
Hidden Atlanta . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 At the newly reimagined Interactive Neighborhood for Kids, imaginations run free as youngsters explore a pint-sized environment designed just for them.
At Lyndon Academy, challenging academics go hand in hand with confidence and a love of learning.
4 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
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inFOCUS NEWS BITES FROM AROUND ATLANTA
By now, your little ones have probably dragged you to see “The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part.” But did you know they can relive the experience at LEGO Movie Days? Through April 28, LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Atlanta is hosting movie-themed event days with fun activities including a scavenger hunt, building a mystery LEGO mosaic, and (best of all) the chance to meet your favorite characters from the film! Visit atlanta.legolanddiscoverycenter.com for more information.
SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW
Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta has a little something for everyone this spring. For the grownups, there’s Dear Evan Hansen, the smash hit about a high school outcast who finds himself in over his head when a lie places him at the center of a family’s dark tragedy (April 23-28). For the kids, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella gives the classic fairy tale a fresh spin that’s sure to delight Mom and Dad, too (May 5-7). For tickets, call 800-278-4447 or visit broadwayinatlanta.com.
PHOTO: Price Is Right Live™ / © 2019 FremantleMedia
Meet a Sports Legend
Come On Down! Ever wanted to try your luck on a TV game show? Now’s your chance! The Price Is Right Live rolls into the Fox Theatre on March 26, offering eligible audience members the chance to play such beloved games as Plinko, the Big Wheel, and the fabulous Showcase to win cash, appliances, vacations, and possibly even a new car! Then, on May 9, Double Dare Live! brings the classic Nickelodeon game show to life with mind-bending trivia questions, messy physical challenges, and the legendary obstacle course! For more information, call 855-285-8499 or visit foxtheatre.org. 8 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
Shake hands with a three-time NFL champion and contribute to a good cause at the same time at the Harvester Christian Academy Gala & Auction. Bill Curry, former head coach for Georgia Tech and Georgia State (as well as the Universities of Alabama and Kentucky), is available for meet and greet opportunities at the event, which takes place Tuesday, March 19 at the Douglasville Conference Center in Douglasville. For ticket information, visit harvesteracademy.com.
PHOTO: © Carol Rosegg
inFOCUS Atlanta’s Tops For Renters
PHOTO: Atlanta Botanical Garden
Metro Atlanta is home to six of the nation’s Top 20 Suburbs for Renters, according to a recent report by RentCafe.com. Chamblee (pictured) leads the pack, increasing its renter population by 156% over a five-year period and sporting an average rent $10 cheaper than the city of Atlanta’s. Norcross, Clarkston, Johns Creek, Lilburn, and Jonesboro also made the list.
Atlanta in Bloom There’s no better way to experience the beauty of spring in Atlanta than by taking in Atlanta Blooms at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Throughout March and April, the 30-acre facility comes alive with hundreds of thousands of colorful flowers including tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, crocuses, and perennial bulbs. Free with garden admission. 404-876-5859, atlantabg.org.
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INTS PO E FIV
MIDTOW RE IN N EAT H T
g n i t a g i v a N
ATLANTA YOUR GUIDE TO GETTING AROUND LIKE A NATIVE
By Muriel Vega
As a new resident, finding your way around Atlanta can be
intimidating. It’s a big place, after all, with different neighborhoods and landmarks spread out across a metropolitan area that stretches across several counties. In addition, there are four different interstates criss-crossing the city to keep track of. And of course, there are more than 70 streets with “Peachtree” in the name. To help you get your bearings, we’ve broken down some of the major streets, interstates and public transportation options you’ll need to know.
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MAIN ROADS AND HIGHWAYS It all starts on Peachtree Street. Atlanta’s Main Street begins in the Five Points area of downtown, passing such landmarks as the Georgia-Pacific Tower and the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel before crossing northward into Midtown, where you’ll encounter the Margaret Mitchell House, the Woodruff Arts Center (home of the High Museum of Art), and the Fox Theatre. Just before passing Piedmont Hospital, it becomes Peachtree Road (specifically, at Palisades Road) before continuing on to the Buckhead district and Lenox Mall and Phipps Plaza. From there it’s on to Brookhaven, where it becomes Peachtree Boulevard before crossing I-285 to become Peachtree Industrial Boulevard. Other prominent roads to know are West Peachtree Street, which runs parallel to
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PHOTOS: (Top Right) Stone Mountain Park, Stone Mountain, GA
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Peachtree in downtown and Midtown; Ponce de Leon Avenue, which begins in Midtown and travels eastward to Decatur; and Buford Highway, the area’s center of international culture and cuisine, which is located primarily in DeKalb County to the northeast. The Downtown Connector is the unofficial name of the approximately 7.5-mile stretch of highway where Interstates 75 and 85 merge as they pass through downtown Atlanta. Also known as 75/85, the Connector begins near Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport at the Langford Parkway exit and runs north past the campuses of Georgia State University and later Georgia Tech. The Connector ends in Midtown, at an interchange known as the Brookwood Split. The east side of the metro is served by Interstate 85. Heading south from the Connector, I-85 leads to East Point, College Park and the airport; its northward stretch passes Chamblee, Doraville, Duluth, and Suwanee on its way to the Carolinas. Just past Suwanee, it branches off into Interstate 985, which leads to Buford, Flowery Branch, and Gainesville. After splitting with I-85, Interstate 75 heads northwest, climbing through Smyrna, Marietta, and Kennesaw on its way toward Chattanooga, Tennessee. Its southern stretch heads southeast toward Macon and eventually to Florida. Interstate 20, meanwhile, passes Six Flags Over Georgia on its way from Alabama into Atlanta, crossing the Connector and Interstate 285 on its way east. Approximately 64 miles long, Interstate
285 is also known as “the Perimeter” because it forms a circle around the city. From East Point in the south, it travels north toward Smyrna, arcing east past Sandy Springs in the north (radio traffic reports usually refer to this section as “the top end”) and then south through Doraville, Tucker, and Stone Mountain, and then looping westward toward the airport and College Park. Two major landmarks along this route are the Cobb Cloverleaf, where 285 connects with I-75 northwest of the city, and the Tom Moreland Interchange, or “Spaghetti Junction,” where it intersects with I-85 near Tucker. Georgia State Route 400, also known as Georgia 400, splits off from I-85 and cuts northward through Buckhead, Sandy Springs, Roswell, Alpharetta, and Cumming, after which it becomes a surface road near North Georgia Premium Outlets in Dawsonville. The major landmark along this road is the Concourse at Landmark Center, recognized for a pair of distinctive office towers known as the King and Queen buildings.
PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) provides rail and bus service to the metro Atlanta area, with four rail lines operating primarily in Fulton and DeKalb counties. All four lines connect, offering transfers
at the Five Points station located downtown off Peachtree Street. The one-way fare is $2.50 including transfers, and payment is easy with prepaid MARTA Breeze cards, which can be purchased at the train stations. The Gold and Red lines travel a north-south trajectory, while the Blue and Green lines take an east-west route that runs mostly through the city of Atlanta. The Gold line goes from the airport through downtown and the business district, past Lenox Square Mall and Chamblee to end in Doraville. The Red line makes the same trek from the airport through the downtown area, but splits after the Lindbergh station and heads toward Buckhead and Dunwoody, ending near Sandy Springs. The Blue line is the longest route, covering Avondale, Decatur, Candler Park, Inman Park, Grant Park, and Cabbagetown to the east. To the west, it stops at several landmarks, including CNN Center, Centennial Olympic Park, and the Georgia Dome. The Green line starts at Edgewood in the east and splits from the Blue line after the Vine City neighborhood, terminating in Bankhead to the west of the city. To complement the rail service, MARTA offers bus and shuttle line. Bus stops are located throughout metro Atlanta with affordable fares newcomeratlanta.com | Newcomer Magazine | 11
MARTA provides rail and bus service to Atlanta.
and reliable schedules. MARTA also offers a free shuttle to Midtown’s Atlantic Station development and IKEA store, which departs from the Arts Center Station on the Red and Gold lines. Other public transportation options include CobbLinc, providing bus service throughout Cobb County and to downtown Atlanta; Gwinnett County Transit, serving Gwinnett County with bus service to downtown, and the State Road and Tollway Authority, which operates the Xpress commuter bus service, offering 27 routes across 12 metro Atlanta counties. Navigating Atlanta in your car can seem overwhelming. But now that you're familiar with Atlanta’s major thoroughfares and transit options, you're well on your way to getting around like a native. Bon voyage!
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FOR MORE INFORMATION GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION DOT.GA.GOV MARTA 404-848-5000, ITSMARTA.COM COBBLINC 770-427-4444, COBBLINC.COM GWINNETT COUNTY TRANSIT 770-822-5010, GCTRANSIT.COM XPRESS 844-977-7742 XPRESSGA.COM
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C O MM U NI TI E S
By Susan Flowers
NEIGHBORHOODS FINDING THE RIGHT FIT FOR YOUR CHILDREN
Face painting in Duluth.
Outdoor fun in Alpharetta.
elocating to a new city is always challenging. For families with children, that holds especially true. The process involves much more than finding a new home close to your new place of employment. Schools, the makeup of the neighborhood, leisure activities and many other factors need to be taken into account when choosing a place to call home. You really have to have a game plan,” says real estate agent Rhonda Duffy, who runs Duffy Realty of Atlanta and has been hailed as one of the top agents in the country by Realtor.com. That plan begins with identifying specific areas of interest to families with children. If you already know you want to live within the Atlanta city limits, you’ve narrowed your search considerably. Atlanta neighborhoods have much to offer, like VirginiaHighland’s leafy, tree-lined streets, Midtown’s Piedmont Park and Woodruff Arts Center (which includes the High Museum of Art), and Grant Park’s historic homes, park, and Zoo Atlanta.
PHOTO: (Top Right) Courtesy of the Alpharetta Convention & Visitors Bureau
DO YOUR HOMEWORK ON SCHOOLS Neighborhood schools are, of course, a critical factor to consider. The Atlanta School Guide, Atlanta’s leading education resource for parents and educators, is a great place to start (atlantaschoolguide.com). Available for free at more than 850 locations across the metro area, this semiannual publication offers features on educational trends, as well as important dates, helpful tips and terminology, and detailed, up-to-date information on public and private schools, summer camps, early education centers, and other educational resources.
SUBURBS AND MIXED-USE COMMUNITIES If you’re not tied to a particular section of town, your options increase dramatically. Many of Atlanta’s suburbs boast features of interest to families with children. Cities like Alpharetta, Marietta, Decatur, Duluth, and Lawrenceville abound with green space, walkable downtown centers, and other amenities. Alpharetta, located in north Fulton County, is home to a historic downtown district, several parks, a weekly farmer’s market, and Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre at Encore Park, which hosts outdoor summer concerts by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. u newcomeratlanta.com | Newcomer Magazine | 15
C O MM U NI TI E S
In addition to a beautiful city square, Marietta’s attractions include the Gone With the Wind Museum and Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park: a Civil War site with 16 miles of hiking trails. Decatur likewise radiates a cozy, small-town charm, especially around its historic courthouse and town square. Public transportation is easily accessible, and recreational activities are plentiful in its many parks and playing fields. 16 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
Just north of Atlanta in Gwinnett County, Lawrenceville features such attractions as the Aurora Theatre, the Gwinnett Stripers minorleague baseball team, and numerous parks offering playgrounds, sports facilities, and trails. Nearby Duluth boasts the 35-acre Southeastern Railway Museum, the Hudgens Center for Arts and Learning, and the Arena at Gwinnett Center: home of the Gwinnett Gladiators hockey team. Both cities are served by Gwinnett County Public Schools, recognized as one of the best school systems in the state of Georgia. One of metro Atlanta’s newest municipalities (incorporated in 2006), Johns Creek earns rave reviews from residents and national media alike for its quiet, safe atmosphere; excel-
lent schools; and excellent recreation opportunities, such as the Johns Creek Greenway. Its proximity to both Atlanta and to the North Georgia mountains gives residents the best of both worlds. Other family-friendly suburbs worth considering include East Point, home to the Georgia Soccer Park and the Dick Lane Velodrome, one of the leading bicycle racing facilities in the country; Roswell, which features the Roswell Cultural Arts Center and the Chattahoochee Nature Center; and Sandy Springs, which boasts Heritage Green, a four-acre park that hosts free concerts and events. Mixed-use neighborhoods, which allow residents to live, work, and play within the same area, are also worth considering, especially for families used to living in larger metropolitan areas. “A lot of mixed-use developments are attractive to younger families,” says Robin
PHOTO: (Bottom) Courtesy City of Suwanee
Family Picnic in Suwanee.
C O MM U NI TI E S
Kids having fun in Suwanee.
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Lemon, a sales agent with Keller Williams Realty Consultants. “They want their children to experience more of a neighborhood feeling.” Atlantic Station, in Atlanta’s Midtown area, is a 138-acre development offering an array of condos, lofts, townhomes, apartments, and single-family homes, as well as a two-acre lake and plenty of green space, in addition to a mix of restaurants and shops. In Suwanee, located in Gwinnett County, the Town Center development features singlefamily homes, townhomes, and condos, as well as retail and office space and the 10-acre Town Center Park. With abundant green space, an interactive fountain, and a 1,000-seat amphitheater, Town Center Park is referred to as Suwanee’s front yard. Northwest of the city in Cobb County, Smyrna’s pedestrian-friendly Market Village sports an airy, open feel, with plentiful green space, a public square and fountain, charming townhomes, restaurants, and retail and office space. There are many other suburbs and communities worth a look as well. A good place
PHOTO: Courtesy City of Suwanee
to start is with a visit to Newcomer’s website (newcomeratlanta.com) and reading about the cities and areas profiled in our “Neighborhood Spotlight” and “Homes and Communities” sections to get a sense of what communities you’d like to explore further.
ASK QUESTIONS AND INVESTIGATE Once you’ve settled on a neighborhood, ask your potential new neighbors about the area. Duffy recommends seeking out three sets of neighbors and asking them all the same questions. For families with children, those include: How social is the neighborhood? Are there many parties or events? How many kids live in the area, versus how many adults? It’s important to establish whether a particular neighborhood provides sufficient opportunities to make friends with children of similar age. It’s also a good idea to visit local shopping areas to ensure that there are child-friendly establishments and other retail outlets that fit your family’s lifestyle. A distance of only two or three miles can make a difference. And be sure to investigate any family-friendly amenities in the neighborhood. The fact that a subdivision has a pool, for example, doesn’t mean that the facility has room for all the residents to enjoy it on a regular basis, that there’s adequate seating around the pool, or that sufficient safety measures are in place. Your search should also be guided in part by the needs and interests of the children in your family. “Are they a computer family? What kind of sports do they play?” asks Lemon. “If the kids are really involved in certain things, I can start gearing a search toward the family’s needs. There are some families that will come in and say, ‘My children are very interested in volleyball, or very into karate.’” Most importantly, when scouting a new neighborhood and a new home, remember to take your time. “The key to buying a house is to ask a lot of questions that are important to you, and slow down the process,” Rhonda Duffy advises. By having a detailed strategy, asking questions, and placing special emphasis on neighborhoods and the amenities they offer, you’re much more likely to settle on the perfect home for yourself and your children. newcomeratlanta.com | Newcomer Magazine | 19
SPOTLIGHT Cumming By Michelle Bourg
Jim ‘N Nick’s Bar-B-Q
ocated just 30 minutes north of Atlanta along GA-400, Forsyth County has been ranked among the nation’s fastest growing counties 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. The county seat, Cumming, draws affluent families with plentiful housing, cultural attractions and recreation options. With all these things going for the area, Cumming might just be the best of all possible worlds.
PHOTO: City of Cumming
Housing 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 $600s. Traditions is a traditionally styled neighborhood with amenities that include 12 parks, a lake, a pool and tennis, surrounded by luxurious homes and close to schools and shopping. Prices range from the low $400s to low $500s. Cannon Place, just opened last year, is a pedestrian-friendly community with generously sized brick-front townhomes, a pool and tennis courts, just minutes from Lake Lanier and priced in the mid-$200s.
Arts and Entertainment
Big Creek Greenway
OFF THE BEATEN 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 for some time afterward.
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PHOTOS: (Left and above) Shelby Robinson Photography
The Collection at Forsyth
Located in a 1923 school building, Tam’s School Street Playhouse (formerly the Cumming Playhouse) presents plays, musicals and a wide variety of 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 returns annually, every autumn. Sawnee Mountain Preserve
Culinary Treats Perfect for a pre-theatre dinner, Tam’s Backstage combines Mediterranean flavors with American grilling, just downstairs from the Tam’s School Street 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.
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-ofthe-art facility with indoor and outdoor pools, while the water at The ICE is frozen for hockey and figure skating with lessons and public sessions. For shoppers, The Collection at Forsyth, Cumming Town Center and Cumming Marketplace each offer dozens of choices. N
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EDUC AT I O N
I N S I G HT
avigating Atlanta’s educational landscape means discovering many types of schools with descriptions that may sound somewhat familiar; magnet, charter and special needs are just a few. One type of school that’s gaining more popularity in the metro area is Montessori education, named for Maria Montessori, an Italian physician and educator. These independent schools are rooted in the concept 22 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
that children learn best through hands-on exploration that they follow at their own pace. The first such school, the Casa Dei Bambini (Children’s House), opened in Rome in 1907. The Casa was so successful that Montessori shared her methods with other educators, resulting today in more than over 20,000 Montessori schools in 110 countries around the world. While they are perhaps best known for educating children at the preschool and
GUIDING CHILDREN TO LEARN AT THEIR OWN PACE By Phil Keeling
elementary levels, Montessori schools and methods have been implemented up through the high school level. At each level, the focus is as much on social, physical, and emotional development as academics. Life skills, responsibility, and respect for the environment are taught alongside more traditional subjects, such as science, mathematics, history, and language, creating a student that is truly well-rounded in both academic studies and emotional maturity. Learning objectives are
accomplished through experiential, practical, and sensory activities in an organized setting.
A MIX OF FREEDOM AND STRUCTURE Montessori schools differ from traditional public or independent schools in several fundamental ways. Generally speaking, classrooms are less rigid, and the student, not the teacher, is the focus. You won’t see rows of children sitting at desks. Instead, students are grouped by age ranges rather than grades, and allowed to work and think independently. Montessori students are given the opportunity to learn from their own mistakes and grasp concepts at their own pace. Rather than the traditional focus on a student getting an A in a class, Montessori education puts far more effort into the mastery of a given subject. Essentially, this comes down to the child learning, understanding, and using specific
skills, rather than focusing on tests and forgetting that information the moment the exam is finished. Instead of giving a lecture or handing out assignments, teachers work one-on-one with students, providing guidance when necessary, like presenting a new topic or a new challenge to meet when a child is ready. No grades are awarded, and there are no limits on how long a child follows a particular area of interest. At Johns Creek Montessori, children work in one of three classroom community age groups. These groups range from 8 weeks to 15 months, 12 months to 36 months, and 2 and a half to 6 years old. Children are free to
THAT MIX OF FREEDOM AND STRUCTURE ALLOWS TEACHERS TO PAY ATTENTION TO CHANGES IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THEIR STUDENTS AND ADAPT THEIR LESSONS ACCORDINGLY. explore activities that interest them and may work on as many activities as they like. That mix of freedom and structure allows teachers to pay attention to changes in the development of their students and to adapt their lessons accordingly. It’s an approach that helps students grow not just academically, but personally. Allowing young students to choose the activities that interest them most has led to many misunderstandings about Montessori education: specifically, that it lacks the structure and out-of-school opportunities that students in public or private schools receive. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth, says Lucy Bennett, director of communications at Arbor Montessori School. “There’s a common misconception that with Montessori education we let them be completely independent; that there’s no discipline or guidance,” she says. “But we give freedom and limits.” u newcomeratlanta.com | Newcomer Magazine | 23
EDUC AT I O N
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TEACHING THE WHOLE CHILD One of the main foundations of the Montessori experience is the concept of educating the whole child. That extends to topics that may not be part of a textbook curriculum, explains Patricia Craft-Heuer, director of education at Village Montessori School in Roswell. “It’s about learning socially—learning grace and courtesy lessons,” she says. “It’s learning about the world, that people are the same and have the same needs—housing, food, clothing. That sort of approach helps alleviate prejudice, which is important if the goal is to create children of the world. They need to learn about other countries and how people live there.” Part of that understanding comes from learning and emulating positive character traits such as respectfulness, kindness and helpfulness. “All of us here try to be good examples by living character education,” says Craft-Heuer. “It’s not just someone saying, ‘Do this, and you’ll be a good person.’ Children pick up on
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EDUC AT I O N
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examples. They see the respect we have for everyone, from the youngest child to the principal. Even concepts of being helpful and loving are ingrained at a very young age.” In addition to cultivating children’s minds, Montessori schools make physical activity a priority, as well. Instead of taking in information from textbooks or computers, students learn by working with materials in a tactile, hands-on environment. That may involve stacking blocks, organizing movable letters or learning to count with tiny animal figures. Montessori materials engage children’s different senses, helping them to comprehend through activity and experience. Montessori students learn across a wide range of subjects, just like their counterparts at more traditional schools. “Another misconception is that Montessori doesn’t have extracurriculars,” says Lucy Bennett with Arbor Montessori School. We have art, music, Spanish, and an athletics program. Montessori schools in the area are very robust in the same way that independent schools are.” u
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EDUC AT I O N
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CHOOSING A MONTESSORI SCHOOL Parents who are considering a Montessori education may wonder whether this approach is the right fit for their child. After all, every child learns in his or her own way. Montessori educators encourage parents to ask questions and talk about their child’s learning style, habits, and home environment when visiting a school. Does your child learn better in a group setting or on their own? Do they like to stay in one place or do they need to move around? Children who operate with few limits at home may not flourish within the structure of a Montessori school, and children used to very strict guidelines may have trouble adapting to a self-directed setting that allows them the freedom to explore on their own. If and when parents do decide on a Montessori approach, it’s important to understand that not all Montessori schools are the same. Since the term is not trademarked, any school can refer to itself by that name. Some may claim to follow an “alternative” or “hybrid” Montessori program, or offer Montessori instruction for just part of the day. u
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Dream. Think. Do. Arbor Montessori School inspires curiosity, encourages diversity, and fosters a lifelong love of learning. Call 404.321.9304 today to set up a personalized tour.
Experience the Arbor difference. Serving students 18 months to 14 years at two Decatur campus locations. 2998 Lavista Road, Decatur GA 30033 1434 Scott Blvd., Decatur GA 30030 404.321.9304 â€˘ www.arbormontessori.org
Arbor Montessori School admits students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, family structure or sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities of the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, family structure or sexual orientation in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.
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The most reliable sign of a school’s adherence to Montessori principles is certification: Montessori teachers are trained and certified in the Montessori method. What’s more, schools that have been accredited by organizations such as the Association Montessori International (co-founded by Maria Montessori) and the American Montessori Society have been determined to operate in accordance with Montessori standards.
PREPARING FOR WHAT’S NEXT
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 • www.JCMSOG.org
In the end, says Julie Strickland, assistant to the head of school at Springmont School, the Montessori approach helps prepare students for the rigors of high school and higher education in ways they might not learn in a more traditional setting. “Last year, my son who attended Springmont from age 2 through middle school was surprised to be invited to join the small team of undergraduates representing his university at an exclusive business case-study competition,” Strickland says. “He was not convinced he was the most qualified of his classmates to serve. The professor listened to my son’s concerns and replied, ‘Yes, but you actually think, you’re curious, you ask good questions and communicate well, and most importantly, I have watched you lead a group. These are skills our team needs.’ These are skills my son developed in his Montessori environment and was able to build upon in high school, while his peers were just starting to develop those skills.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION ARBOR MONTESSORI SCHOOL 404-321-9304, ARBORMONTESSORI.ORG JOHNS CREEK MONTESSORI SCHOOL OF GEORGIA 770-814-8001, JCMSOG.COM SPRINGMONT SCHOOL 404-252-3910, SPRINGMONT.COM VILLAGE MONTESSORI SCHOOL 770-552-0834, VMSCHOOL.COM AMERICAN MONTESSORI SOCIETY 212-358-1250, AMSHQ.ORG ASSOCIATION MONTESSORI INTERNATIONAL USA 703-746-9919, AMIUSA.ORG
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Endeavor Montessori A MONTESSORI EDUCATION offers significant developmental benefits in addition to academic success. Montessori students benefit from a curriculum that focuses on developing physical, cognitive, social and emotional growth, enabling them to reach their full potential and thrive as well-rounded individuals. Through specifically designed lessons that follow the Montessori philosophy, children gain an understanding and appreciation for learning that lasts a lifetime. Endeavor Montessori, opening Summer 2019 in Dunwoody, GA, will implement a modernized Montessori approach that cultivates the whole child through a nurturing and inspiring school environment coupled with challenging academic lessons and activities.
Designed for infants through middle schoolage children, Endeavor Montessori’s curriculum is distilled from the experiences and knowledge of esteemed Montessori certified teachers and leaders from across the country. Children will benefit from a child-centered approach to learning, whereby each child’s uniqueness is recognized and individual progression is encouraged. In an Endeavor Montessori classroom, teachers know that each child learns in a different way, and they will accommodate each child’s specific needs and learning style. Each child will be challenged appropriately, and high academic standards will require the students to fully master a subject before moving up to the next level. One of Endeavor Montessori’s main goals
is to develop self-directed citizens of the world. Culture and diversity will be celebrated through a global approach to learning, which fosters cultural awareness and builds a sense of connection with all human beings despite their differences. Children will benefit from learning that these differences should always be respected and from the integration of global languages into their curriculum. Endeavor Montessori will offer a learning environment where children are exposed to appropriate levels of technology, integrated seamlessly into an enhanced Montessori curriculum. This approach, along with a Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math (STEAM) program, addresses the demands placed by modern education, while also
strengthening children’s innate desire to seek knowledge on their own and find the answers to their own questions. Emphasis is also placed on building a strong bond between teachers, students and their families. Children and parents will benefit from a warm and close-knit school community with educators who are passionate about the growth of each child. This combination of a holistic Montessori curriculum with a modernized approach and community-oriented atmosphere will prepare students to actively meet and overcome challenges in a positive and healthy way. For more information, call 770-637-1242 or visit endeavormontessori.com.
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Arbor Montessori School IN 1970, A GROUP OF TEACHERS MET AROUND A KITCHEN TABLE to discuss what an ideal Montessori program in Atlanta would look like. Almost 50 years later, Arbor Montessori School continues to serve the Atlanta area. Arbor students become lifelong learners, creative problem-solvers, collaborators, and global citizens who want to make a difference in the world. Today, Arbor is one of the largest Montessori schools in the Southeast, yet in Arbor’s community, children receive individualized attention from understanding, knowledgeable, experienced faculty. Arbor serves children ages 18 months to eighth grade with developmentally appropriate environments and curricula at each stage. “Arbor provides an authentic Montessori education,” says Luci David, an Arbor parent. “The teachers are kind, patient, and passionate; the classrooms and play areas are beautiful and safe. Most importantly, my child is flourishing and is excited to go to school every day.” The flagship campus sits on a 4-acre wooded lot offering students opportunities to
engage inside and outside. In addition to an outstanding academic program, Arbor offers art, music, Spanish, before-and after-school care, a strong athletics program, extracurriculars, and a close-knit community. Arbor’s second campus offers a conveniently located, smaller community of toddler and 3-to-6-year-old primary classes. Children
benefit from intentionally-designed materials and experienced teachers. Arbor’s teachers offer lessons promoting meaningful work, encouraging children to be the optimal version of themselves. The founders’ vision has become a reality: “Go here, then go anywhere.” For more information about the school, visit arbormontessori.org or call 404-321-9304.
Springmont School SPRINGMONT, THE OLDEST MONTESSORI SCHOOL IN THE SOUTHEAST, offers students 18 months
PHOTO: Lydia Mayfield
through middle school an integrated, experiential learning opportunity that is extraordinary by design. Classrooms are large, light-
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filled, and thoughtfully prepared while the campus’ many natural areas, class gardens, and farm animals afford rich outdoor life science lessons. Multi-aged classes allow younger children to learn from older ones and older students to mentor younger classmates. Specially designed Montessori materials, designed to support children’s developmental needs, offer students a wide variety of hands-on activities that concretely reinforce skills, lessons, and concepts. Highly experienced teachers guide students through an individualized curriculum that SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
develops the whole child—socially, emotionally, and academically. Physical Education, Spanish, Art, and Music are important parts of each student’s experience. At Springmont, each student is challenged to reach his or her fullest potential and are empowered to help steer his or her own education. Students’ innate curiosity grows into a life-long love of learning ana quest for meaningful discoveries and deeper knowledge. Middle school students run microeconomies, participate in internships, and compete in regional academic competitions. They have opportunities to hone timemanagement skills, experience active leadership roles, articulate complex ideas, and work both independently and in diverse groups. Springmont graduates are confident, collaborative, engaged learners, prepared for success in Atlanta’s premier high schools as well as life beyond academics. Springmont School—Extraordinary by Design. For more information, call 404-252-3910 or visit springmont.com.
Stepping Stone Montessori School STEPPING STONE MONTESSORI SCHOOL is an authentic Montessori program for children ages 6 weeks to third grade. Each level consists of mixed aged classroomsâ€”Nido equals 6 weeks to 18 months; Toddler equals 18 months to 3-year-olds; Primary equals 3-year-olds to 6-year-olds. The Toddler community has a two-hour work cycle and the Primary community has a threehour work cycle. At the AMI-accredited Sugar Hill Campus, the elementary class is first grade through third grade and will eventually expand to sixth grade. The children have access to all classroom materials during their time at school and choose their work according to their interests. This open-ended cycle promotes physical and mental independence. At both campuses, all lead teachers are either AMI or AMS certified in one or more Montessori levels. The school provides continuing education for all staff members through Bright From The Start classes and Montessori workshops locally and nationally. Stepping Stone's mission is to support each
child to be kind and respectful of the earth and each other, to be self-disciplined, to have excellent critical thinking skills, and continue their love of learning. Equally important are its partnerships with parents through conferences,
education nights, and social gatherings. Please visit steppingstonemontessori.com for more information or call to schedule a tour; Sugar Hill Campus, 770-614-4310; Cumming, 770-205-0317.
Christian Montessori ALL PARENTS WANT TO KNOW that they are providing the very best for their children.The staff at Christian Montessori has over 75 years of combined teaching experience and is passionate about helping each child reach his or her God-given potential. Christian Montessori was established in 2010, and is the premier Christian Montessori School in north Georgia. It is recognized as a member school with both the American Montessori Society and the Montessori Institute of America. The school is fully accredited by AdvancEd and SACS, and its Primary class is licensed by the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning. When you enroll in Christian Montessori you can be confident you are giving your child the best. Visit christianmontessori.org or call 404-862-5437 today to schedule a tour of the school. SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
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Challenging Academics in a Family Environment By Phil Keeling
idden away in the green hills of Cherokee County, the students of Lyndon Academy are taking part in a tightlyknit education that focuses on a love of learning, and an eye toward future accomplishment. Founded in 2005, founder Linda Murdock laid the foundation for Lyndon Academy with an interest in creating an elite private educational experience for local and international students alike. Now, 14 years later, this goal has been met with flying colors. But that doesn’t mean the Academy is going to rest on its past accomplishments. With its small classrooms and a vested interest in seeing pupils grow into leaders, the students of Lyndon Academy, no matter how young, are confident and eager to engage in classroom activities, an attitude that Chief Operations Officer Peter Murdock says the Academy’s attention and encouragement helps to create. “A lot of classrooms across other campuses, if you asked the students what they were doing, they’d just shriek or disappear under their desk,” says Murdock. “Here they jump up with their hand in the air, ready to answer, and will intelligently speak about what is going on in their classroom.” There is a great deal that factors into that level of preparedness and enthusiasm, but perhaps the biggest detail comes from the student to teacher ratios in relation to the advanced courses offered at Lyndon. In addition to meeting local public and private institutions class for class, Lyndon Academy offers more AP classes than the average school in the U.S. With a student/teacher ratio of 8 to 1, a student will be able to receive a great deal of personal instruction in a wide range of topics, from hands-on science educational opportunities to immersive
language studies in Spanish and Mandarin. Of course, many parents are often concerned about social education, particularly when it comes to small schools. But at Lyndon Academy, this is no issue. Lyndon knows the importance of social development, and it’s helped create this through a huge growth in athletics, special events, and extracurricular activities. The addition of a gym with a full-sized basketball court has encouraged a real sense of school spirit, to the point that it’s become a hub for student activities and socializing. The development of competitive sports teams has also tapped into school pride, with Lyndon’s softball, volleyball, golf, and cross-country teams all taking home local, regional, and state awards in the past three years alone. Sports aren’t the only thing that gets the kids excited, however. Lyndon Academy has also been growing in the arts. With the Lyndon Academy band growing from 5 to 60 in the span of a few years, and the formation of their choral group, Noteworthy, the school is taking strides to include a great number of artistic endeavors for growing minds. This year, Lyndon Academy will graduate its first class of seniors, including students who have their choice of colleges all over the country. This is Lyndon Academy’s goal in motion: preparing young minds for the rigors of higher education, from Pre-K to High School. N
THE SPECIFICS Grades: PK-12 Student/Teacher Ratio: 8:1 Tuition: $6,400-$15,100 Location: Holly Springs
485 Toonigh Road, Holly Springs, GA 30188, (770) 926-0166 LyndonAcademy.org
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FOR STUDENTS WHO NEED AN
ACADEMIC BOOST THIS SUMMER!
AFTERNOON RECREATION ACTIVITIES TUTORING IN READING, MATH AND WRITING SKILLS
Session 1: June 17 - June 28 Session 2: July 1 - July 12 Held on the campus of The Bedford School in Fairburn 5665 Milam Road Fairburn, GA 30213 770-774-8001 â€¢ thebedfordschool.org
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15 EXCITING ATTRACTIONS EVERYONE CAN ENJOY
By now, you might already know that metro Atlanta is filled with great neighborhoods, restaurants, entertainment venues and other draws for adults. But it also has plenty to offer for families with children, including attractions filled with history, fascinating wildlife and exhilarating activities. Now that the warmer weather’s here, it’s the perfect time to pack everyone into the car and explore your new city’s family-friendly destinations. Here are 15 that everyone can enjoy. By Kevin Forest Moreau
THE ATLANTA BRAVES Atlanta is home to the Atlanta Braves, its own Major League Baseball team, and SunTrust Park— located just northwest of Atlanta—is the current home of the Braves. Travel to the recently built ballpark to cheer on the team. Come early to watch batting practice, stay after the game on Fridays for the free Friday Night Fireworks show and check the team’s website for special themed days, giveaways, postgame concerts and more. 404-577-9100, braves.com. 34 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
ATLANTA HISTORY CENTER Dedicated to highlighting and celebrating Atlanta’s rich past, this 33-acre complex in the Buckhead neighborhood allows kids and adults alike to step back in time and tour the Swan House, an elegant 1928 mansion. Visitors can also experience a glimpse of life during the Civil War at the Smith Family Farm, where they can interact with characters from the period and participate in daily chores. The permanent exhibit Turning Point: The American Civil War features more than 1,500 artifacts, including cannons, flags and other items guaranteed to capture your child’s imagination. 404-814-4000, atlantahistorycenter.com.
BODIES THE EXHIBITION Children can learn about the human anatomy in a fun and fascinating way! With over 200 actual preserved human bodies and specimens, this is an opportunity and a unique experience to learn about what makes us —on the outside and the inside! Each bodily system is included: from the nervous system to skeletal to circulatory. Health issues are also displayed, including the consequences of smoking, obesity, and different forms of cancer. Learn about the body and appreciate the human machine with the assistance of docents and comprehensive guides. 404-496-4274, bodiesatlanta.com. CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF ATLANTA Located in downtown Atlanta, the nonprofit Children’s Museum of Atlanta encourages creative, imaginative play with interactive exhibits. Watch your children climb through the layers of the earth, catch colorful fish, create art on a giant paint wall, climb on a John Deere tractor and more. The museum’s current special exhibit, Run! Jump! Fly! Adventures in Action!™ (running through May 27), lets children become action stars for the day and practice activities like kung fu, surfing, snowboarding, yoga and horizontal climbing. 404-659-5437, childrensmuseumatlanta.org.
PHOTOS: (Top) Courtesy Center for Puppetry Arts; (Bottom Images) Courtesy Fernbank Museum of Natural History © Bryant Upchurch; © AMNH/D.Finnin
FERNBANK MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY
The Cat in the Hat at the Center for Puppetry Arts.
CENTER FOR PUPPETRY ARTS Learn about puppets from all over the world and create your own puppet at this entertaining and educational attraction in Midtown Atlanta. The Center also hosts special exhibits as well as performances and film screenings for families, teens and adults (current shows include Paul Bunyan and the Tall Tale Medicine Show, January 22 to March 10). The Center features the Jim Henson exhibit, an interactive exhibition following his life as a puppeteer. Visitors can view icons like Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy, and there will be even more fun coming this May and November. 404873-3391, puppet.org.
From the bronze dinosaurs that greet you on your way inside to eye-popping documentaries screened in its IMAX theater, the Fernbank Museum is a fun mix of education and entertainment. Walk beneath skeletons of two of the world’s largest dinosaurs in the Great Hall’s Giants of the Mesozoic exhibit, and explore the history of the planet and the state via A Walk Through Time in Georgia. At the “Nature Gallery,” special nature-themed exhibits rotate year-round in a unique outdoor space. Or watch the film Flying Monsters 3D, which takes you back in time to when dinosaurs roamed the earth, focusing on the flying pterosaurs, screening through June 1. 404-929-6300, fernbankmuseum.org. u
Fernbank Museum of Natural History.
largest e h t er Discov ures to ever creat the skies at take to nk Museum’s Fernba aurs Exhibit. P teros newcomeratlanta.com | Newcomer Magazine | 35
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LEGOLAND DISCOVERY CENTER Located on the top floor of Phipps Plaza in the Buckhead neighborhood, LEGOLAND Discovery Center features fifteen different attractions for children ages 3-10. Kids can learn how LEGO bricks are made on the Factory Tour, destroy ogres in the Building a tower at the Kingdom Quest Laser Ride, earthquake table at Legolan d. create their own race cars and learn advanced building tips and tricks at the Master Building Academy. A more recent addition to the destination is Pirate Adventure Island, where children can create their own LEGO pirate ship, set off air cannons and discover hidden sea creatures. 404-848-9252, legolanddiscoverycenter.com.
PONCE CITY MARKET
. the Georgia Aquarium Watching stingrays at
GEORGIA AQUARIUM Home to more than several hundred species from around the world, this downtown Atlanta landmark offers a truly immersive experience. You don’t have to be a budding marine biologist to be amazed by the Georgia Aquarium’s impressive collection of whale sharks, beluga whales, manta rays, penguins and many more aquatic creatures—more than 10,000 in all, inhabiting more than 10 million gallons of fresh and marine water. Its newest exhibit, SunTrust Pier 225, features California sea lions in an intimate setting, allowing visitors to watch their behavior and learn more about them in their natural habitat. 404-581-4000, georgiaaquarium.org. 36 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
Located in the heart of Atlanta, Ponce City Market is the perfect place to spend a day. The building is an exciting urban mix containing flats, offices, restaurants and stores, so people of all types can enjoy it. With tons of restaurants and food counters to choose from, Ponce City Market is a great place to explore the wide variety of food Atlanta has to offer. From classic American dining and Indian street food to an Italian market and Latin-inspired fare, you can find something for everyone. After fueling up (and maybe a stop by the edible cookie dough counter for dessert), you can explore the various shops located in the building and shop ‘til you drop. 404-900-7900, poncecitymarket.com.
SIX FLAGS OVER GEORGIA Featuring everything from pulse-pounding thrill rides to kid-friendly entertainers, this amusement park is on every Atlanta kid’s summertime to-do list. Your little ones can take a tour of the park on a steam-engine locomotive, indulge in good-natured fun in the bumper cars or take a ride in a log down a mountain river. Don’t forget the Dare Devil Dive and exciting roller coasters including Goliath, Georgia Scorcher, Great American Scream Machine and Superman: Ultimate Flight. There’s also a water park: Hurricane Harbor offers a zero-gravity wave slide along with a giant, interactive children’s area. 770-739-3400, sixflags.com/overgeorgia.
SKYLINE PARK After some fun at Ponce City Market, hit the skies at Skyline Park, located right on top of the building. Enjoy fun carnival games, the Skyline slide, mini-golf and more as you look out at the amazing view of the city. Skyline Park has fun events throughout the year, such as rooftop igloos to dine in during the winter, so keep an eye on their calendar to plan your visit around the perfect event for you! 770-9991530, skylineparkatlanta.com.
SOUTHEASTERN RAILWAY MUSEUM
PHOTO: (Right) © 2014, Kevin C. Rose/AtlantaPhotos.com
Located northeast of Atlanta in Duluth, the Southeastern Railway Museum is a great stop for families who are visiting or even locals looking for a fun outing. Learn about the rich history of train travel and see relics of design throughout the years. Check out tools used to build train parts, take a look at train cars and cabooses and even go inside some of the passenger cars and get the full experience of old trains. Don’t forget to stop by the gift shop on your way out for a fun trinket to commemorate the experience. 770-4762013, train-museum.org.
WORLD OF COCA-COLA Atlanta, as you may know, is the home of Coca-Cola, and this nearly 100,000-square foot museum and shrine, located downtown near the Georgia Aquarium, pays tribute to the world-famous soft drink with interactive exhibits, more than 1,200 pieces of Coke memorabilia, a 4-D theater, and a vault said to contain the drink’s secret formula. There’s also a bottling line, an exhibit of Coke artwork, and CocaCola Freestyle, which offers more than 100 Coke flavors from around the world. 404-676-5151, worldofcoca-cola.com. u
STONE MOUNTAIN PARK One of Georgia’s most popular attractions, this beautiful 3,200-acre park offers a nonstop array of events and activities. Climb (or take a cable car) to the top of the mountain, brave the SkyHike adventure course or cool off while navigating the rope bridges and tunnels of the Geyser Towers. Go camping, fishing or hiking on the property, enjoy a train ride around the park, or play a little golf while the kids enjoy some live entertainment. Then cap it all off with the famous Lasershow Spectacular. 800-401-2407, stonemountainpark.com.
Giant bottles at the World of Coke.
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Baby orangutan at Zoo Atlanta.
FAMILY FUN DESTINATIONS: A SHORT DRIVE FROM ATLANTA Lookout Mountain (Chattanooga, TN): Featuring three top-rated, world-famous natural attractions—including America’s deepest cave and largest underground waterfall accessible to the public—Lookout Mountain is the perfect getaway for extraordinary experiences and breathtaking beauty. 800-8258366, lookoutmountain.com. Biltmore Estate (Asheville, NC): The largest private home in the country, this 8,000-acre property sits in the Blue Ridge Mountains and offers visitors tours of the historic locale built by George Vanderbilt along with sweeping vistas from its spacious gardens. 800-4113812, biltmore.com. Amelia Island (Amelia Island, FL): Enjoy one of the Sunshine State’s best-kept secrets with this beach town nuzzled up to the Georgia border at the Atlantic coast that boasts an array of lovingly preserved Southern Victorian homes. 904-277-0717, ameliaisland.com.
CANTERBURY SCHOOL Keeping alive children’s inborn sense of wonder
Infants - Pre K Grades K- 8th 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 canterburyschoolga.com 38 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
PHOTO: Courtesy of Zoo Atlanta
Sprawling over nearly 40 acres in the Grant Park neighborhood of Atlanta, Zoo Atlanta is home to more than 1,000 animals representing more than 200 species. The zoo boasts one of the largest populations of gorillas in North America, and is one of only four in the country to house giant pandas (there are currently seven living at the zoo, including a pair of twins born in July 2013). Other famous residents include giraffes, lions, meerkats, black rhinos, parakeets and a Komodo dragon. The zoo also features rides, an indoor play area and educational sleepovers, among other programs. 404-624-5600, zooatlanta.org.
Fernbank Museum of Natural History
The fossilize of ancient cr d remains Fernbank's haeatures fill lls.
By Anna Chandler
THE HISTORY OF GEORGIA IS FULL OF CREATURES both big and small. But at Fernbank Museum of Natural History, it’s the biggest ones that tend to grab our attention. Filling Fernbank’s Great Hall is the 123-foot-long skeleton of an Argentinosaurus: the largest dinosaur ever discovered, and the first one in the world to ever be fully mounted for display. It is a truly colossal sight, and only the beginning when it comes to the amazing exhibits found on display at Fernbank. Dedicated to exploring the natural sciences, world history, and local and international cultures, Fernbank’s museum and outdoor adventure areas make for a perfect weekend family outing. Feel the past beneath your feet as you step into A Walk Through Time in Georgia, an exhibition that tells the story of Georgia’s natural history and its role in Earth’s story at large. Fernbank’s Reflections of Culture exhibit explores how humans from across the world
connect with one another through the creation of jewelry, dress, and body-modification. In Conveyed in Clay: Stories from St. Catherines Island, the rich history of Native American culture is told through pottery. Some pieces, at 5,000 years old, are the oldest examples of pottery ever found in North America. Fernbank also takes full advantage of modern technology, using a giant-screen theater to immerse visitors in 2-D and 3-D films about everything from dinosaurs to the animals you’ll find in your backyard. Natural light streams through Fernbank’s atrium’s skylight ceiling, but the fun goes beyond the walls: The museum also offers 10 acres, complete with trails and interactive exhibits, as well as Fernbank Forest and WildWoods, where visitors are surrounded by examples of the Georgia Piedmont region's original forest vegetation. For the 21-and-up crowd, Fernbank After Dark is great for a date night or evening out with friends. On the second Friday of every
Fernbank's 10 acres of outdoor beauty truly draw the visitor in.
DON’T MISS THESE EXCITING ATTRACTIONS AT FERNBANK! 3-D MOVIES Great Barrier Reef: Through May 2 Great Bear Rainforest: Opens May 3 Flying Monsters: Through June 1 SPECIAL EXHIBITS Pterosaurs: Through May 4 David Rogers Big Bugs: On view April 27-July 21
Fernbank's Pterosaurs exhibit is the largest of its kind in the U.S. SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
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PHOTOS: (Top and bottom) © AMNH/D.Finnin
month, the museum offers guests the chance to take in films, enjoy cocktails and live music, or even just visit exhibitions without the kids. Museum admission for adults age 13-64 is $20, and $18 for children age 3-12. Combination passes are available for guests interested in seeing the museum and watching a 3-D giantscreen movie at a discounted rate. The Fernbank Museum of Natural History is located at 767 Clifton Rd, Atlanta, GA 30307. For more information, call 404-929-6300 or visit fernbankmuseum.org.
The U.S. Space & Rocket Center By Charlotte Nauert
The USSRC has exhibits from the very small to the very, VERY big.
final frontier. Here, you will find more than 1,500 permanent rocketry and space exploration artifacts, in addition to the vast, rotating space-and science-related exhibits. For an extra dose of excitement, the Center offers bus tours of nearby NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, where you can envision the birth of the Saturn V rocket right before your eyes and learn about the work Marshall is doing to send America back to the moon and beyond. The Apollo 11 mission anniversary events this summer include a celebratory car show featuring vehicles from the era and a fullscale, Polaris-powered Apollo Lunar Rover replica that will be unveiled on July 13. On July 16, 50 years to the day the Saturn V lifted off on the Apollo 11 mission, the U.S. Space & Rocket Center will hold a Guinness Book World Record event by launching the largest number of model rockets simultaneously! The day tops off with an Apollo 11 celebration dinner and program, and the commemo-
THIS YEAR, 2019 MARKS AN IMPORTANT ANNIVERSARY IN HUMAN HISTORY: half a century since man first landed on the moon. And the rocket that took acclaimed astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin there? Saturn V, conceived and constructed just a few hours outside of Atlanta in Huntsville, Alabama—now home to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, an electrifying destination for aerospace aficionados and aspiring astronauts alike. Described by former NASA astronaut Owen Garriott as “a great way to learn about space in a town that has embraced the space program from the very beginning,” the Center opened in 1970, shortly after the historic Apollo 11 moon mission. Since then, the U.S. Space & Rocket Center has evolved into a huge and exciting showcase of the U.S. space program, featuring interactive science exhibits, one-of-a-kind artifacts from the Apollo program, and an International Space Station exhibit that is sure to thrill space lovers of all ages. Known as “Earth’s largest space museum,” the Center offers no shortage of informational —and inspirational—exhibits regarding the 40 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
Would-be astronauts of all ages can learn more about the final frontier. SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
A model of NA tions Integrat SA's Payload Operaion Center at USSRC.
rative events conclude with a stellar concert on July 20—moon landing day. Leave your footprint in Huntsville, beside those of the NASA greats who walked before you. The U.S. Space & Rocket Center is open seven days a week, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., excluding major holidays. Admission is $25 for adults and $17 for children, while space fans ages four and under get in free. The U.S. Space & Rocket Center is a short drive from the Atlanta area, and an experience that stargazers of every age can certainly get excited about. The U.S. Space & Rocket Center is located at 1 Tranquility Base in Huntsville. For more information, call 800-637-7223 or visit rocket center.com.
Bodies... The Exhibition RATED ONE OF THE TOP ATTRACTIONS IN GEORGIA, “BODIES…The Exhibition” is an excellent resource to learn about the human anatomy in an intimate and informative way. Using an innovative polymer preservation process, the exhibition allows guests to see the body’s inner beauty. With more than 200 actual human bodies and specimens on display, the exhibition provides a unique look into the human body. Docents are available throughout to answer questions and point out interesting facts and details. Audio guides in English and Spanish are also available to provide a more comprehensive experience. Each system of the body is included in the exhibition: skeletal, muscular, nervous, circulatory, respiratory, digestive, reproductive/urinary, fetal (optional) and the treated body. Vital health concerns such as obesity, smoking, cancer, cirrhosis, arthritis and lack of exercise are on display to illustrate the damage caused by these concerns. The exhibition provides details on how visitors can take better care of their bodies by making healthy lifestyle choices. For more information, call 404-496-4274 or visit bodiesatlanta.com.
Investigate beyond the skin, inch by inch.
Get a hands on look at what goes on inside the human body.
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OU T S I D E
AT L AN TA
By Hope S. Philbrick
Five Picture-Perfect Georgia Getaways With your recent move to Atlanta, has it been a while since the two of you had some quality “couple time?” (pizza and “Game of Thrones” doesn’t count). Time to pack the kids off to Grandma’s and get away for a memorable escape. From mountains to beaches, gardens to historic buildings, Georgia is full of destinations where sparks are sure to fly.
Pull up a chair and relax at the Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee.
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Barnsley Resort's 3000-acre resort is perfect for both romance and a little competition.
Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee At this haven on the shores of Lake Oconee (Georgia’s second largest lake), lavish yourself with the royal treatment you deserve but too rarely experience. The luxurious AAA Five Diamond resort boasts stunning décor, rich amenities, exceptional service, and impressive attention to detail. Situated on 35 acres in Reynolds Plantation, a 10,000-acre golf and lakefront community, the resort rests under towering pines and is surrounded by water on three sides. Each of the 251 guestrooms offers a private terrace, feather bed and dozens more scrumptious treats. While cuddling may be priority No. 1, you can also golf 99 championship-caliber holes, hike for miles, or just get pampered with any of 37 spa treatments. Indulge at the Linger Longer Steakhouse and keep the kids entertained and having fun with the Ritz Kids program. 706-467-0600, ritzcarlton.com /reynolds
PHOTOS: Barnsley Garden Resort Georgia
Barnsley Resort Whether you stay for one night or a week, it’s easy to ignite romance at this 3,000-acre resort in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Canoodle in front of a fire in your private cottage. Go horseback riding along scenic trails. Play a round of golf on the picturesque course. Tour the history museum. Meander through 160-year-old gardens. Kayak on the lake. Savor a couples’ massage at the spa. Or enlist the help of the onsite concierge to help set the stage for romance: whether you’d like to return from a delicious dinner at the Rice House to find rose petals strewn across the bed, a picnic basket stocked with fixings for s’mores, or your claw foot tub decorated like a tiki hut. 877-773-2447, barnsleyresort.com. u
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Old-fashioned charm with comfortable modern amenities at the Dresser Palmer House.
Find your bliss at this historic bed and breakfast in Savannah, located one block from famed Forsyth Park. Built in 1876, this Italianate townhouse is now a spacious, upscale hideaway. Retreat into your private, individually decorated room and sink into a claw foot tub or king canopy bed. Each visit includes a gourmet breakfast and an evening social with wine and hors d’oeuvres. Opt for plush chairs in front of a fireplace in the main room, or stroll into the charming Historic District, where entertainment options abound. Guests can also take a horse-drawn carriage tour or rent a scooter to see one of Georgia’s oldest cities. Drop into unique boutiques, visit museums, or dine at a restaurant, pub, or bakery. Need help planning? If you want champagne and chocolates delivered upon arrival, that can be arranged, too. 912-238-3294, dresserpalmerhouse.com.
Callaway Gardens Love blooms at this 6,500-acre resort and preserve nestled in the southernmost foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Explore the peaceful gardens and woodlands by car, foot or bike. Play tennis and golf or rent a boat and go fish. For a jolt of adrenaline, try the TreeTop Adventure course, with 10 zip lines and 20 obstacles. If the weather looks frightful, explore the Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel and the enclosed butterfly conservatory. Feast at any of the resort’s nine restaurants, all dedicated to serving sustainably grown and regionally produced food whenever possible. Choose accommodations that are just right for you: the Mountain Creek Inn, Southern Pine Cottages, Mountain Creek Villas & Vacation Homes, or The Lodge and Spa at Callaway Resort and Gardens (part of the Marriott Autograph Collection). 844-512-3826, callawaygardens.com. u
Disappear into the serenity of the Appalachian Mountains at Callaway Gardens.
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PHOTOS: (Top) Christopher Hornaday Photography; (Bottom) Courtesy of Callaway Gardens
Dresser Palmer House
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The Lodge at Smithgall Woods is like a wilderness retreat.
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If you like the idea of seclusion, try this former private estate. A wilderness retreat in Helen, the Lodge at Smithgall Woods is tucked into a protected 5,664acre Heritage Preserve managed by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. Six mountain cottages with a total of 17 bedrooms offer private baths and incredible views of nature. Some cottages feature porches along the stream, while others boast private hot tubs. Elegant amenities await—this isn’t roughing it! The Smithgall Cottage has a touch of rustic elegance with large decks overlooking creeks and woodland vistas. Once tucked into your comfortable bed, listen to the creek babble a lullaby. A one-mile trail leads to Dukes Creek Falls, and hikers and bikers adore the five miles of trails and 18 miles of roads. Anglers may prefer catch-andrelease fly fishing in one of north Georgia’s premier trout streams. 706-878-3087, gastateparks.org/smithgallwoods
PHOTO: Ga. Dept. of Natural Resources
The Lodge at Smithgall Woods
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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 $32 fee (payable by major credit or debit card, cash, check or money order). Licenses are valid for eight years. Licenses are issued through the Georgia Department of Driver Services at several sites across Atlanta. Call 678-413-8400 or visit dds.ga.gov.
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 $2.50 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 itsmarta.com.
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MARTA Rail Service
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,
GETTING STARTED not including sales tax. Your tag office will provide the amount of sales tax on your vehicle. For information on a specific county, contact the appropriate countyâ€™s Tax Commissionerâ€™s Office.
Vehicle Emission Inspection
Vehicles dating from the 1993 model year and later (except the three years prior to the current year) must be checked yearly for emission standard compliance. Visit a state-designated inspection station for the service. Call 800449-2471 or visit cleanairforce.com.
The Georgia DOT provides daily updates of road work, road closings and traffic delays, which are help-ful when commuting. Updates can be by calling (toll free) 877-694-2511, by obtained dialing 511, or by visiting dot.ga.gov.
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 sos.ga.gov.
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 proof of a vision, hearing and dental screening on Georgia State Form 3300 and immunization records on State Form 3231. Social security numbers are requested but not required.
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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 www.cherokeega.com Neighborhoods www.canton-georgia.com www.woodstockga.gov www.cityofballground.com www.hollyspringsga.us www.cityofwaleska.com Schools www.cherokee.k12.ga.us
PRIVATE SCHOOLS Visit our Web site at newcomeratlanta.com 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 www.newcomeratlanta.com. 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, www.cherokeechamber.com 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,
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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 www.newcomeratlanta.com
COUNTY INFORMATION EDUCATION
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
Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development
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 www.cobbcountyga.gov small-town atmosphere and boasts redistributed land once part Neighborhoods www.austellga.org abundant parks and green space, of the Cherokee Nation. www.mariettaga.gov exceptional recreational programs Named after Thomas www.ci.smyrna.ga.us and top-notch schools, includWelch Cobb, the county www.kennesaw-ga.gov ing Kennesaw State University. experienced a devastating www.cityofpowdersprings.org Kennesaw’s Historic Downtown setback during the Civil features shopping, dining and atWar when most of it was Schools www.cobb.k12.ga.us tractions such as the Smithsoniandestroyed during the Battle www.marietta-city.org 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, www.cobbchamber.org 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 www.newcomeratlanta.com 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 newcomeratlanta.com 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 www.newcomeratlanta.com. 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
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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 newcomeratlanta.com for a list of private schools in this county.
UTILITIES & CONTACTS ELECTRICITY Georgia Power
Snapping Shoals EMC
GAS Georgia’s natural gas market is deregulated. For a list of providers for this county, visit www.newcomeratlanta.com. TELEPHONE AT&T
DeKalb County Water System 770-621-7200 CABLE TV Charter Communication
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.
DeKalb County prosCounty www.co.dekalb.ga.us pers in part due to its exNeighborhoods www.decaturga.com cellent transportation sys- www.druidhills.org tem. Five major road ar- www.dunwoodyga.org teries traverse the county: www.candlerpark.org www.stonemountaincity.org Interstates 20, 85, 285, 675 and US Highway 78. Schools www.dekalb.k12.ga.us Hartsfield-Jackson Inter www.csdecatur.net 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, www.dekalbchamber.org 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.
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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 www.newcomeratlanta.com
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 newcomeratlanta.com 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, www.gnfcc.com Metro Atlanta attractions, including the 404-880-9000, www.metroatlantachamber.com Big Creek Greenway trail. South Fulton Shoppers flock to North 770-964-1984, www.southfultonchamber.com 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 www.newcomeratlanta.com Phipps Plaza..
County www.co.fulton.ga.us Neighborhoods www.alpharetta.ga.us www.buckhead.net www.virginiahighland.com www.eastpointcity.org www.collegeparkga.com www.hapeville.org www.roswellgov.com www.sandyspringsga.org Schools www.fultonschools.org www.atlanta.k12.ga.us
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 www.newcomeratlanta.com. TELEPHONE AT&T 866-271-9724 Comcast 404-266-2278
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
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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 newcomeratlanta.com 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 www.newcomeratlanta.com.
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
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 www.co.gwinnett.ga.us towns, country stores, farms has experienced tremenNeighborhoods www.cityofbuford.com dous growth, from 2,000 and forests, today it is home to www.duluthga.net residents in 1990 to more than 245 international www.snellville.org more than 10,000 today. companies and 450 high-tech www.suwanee.com firms. With an average of 260 Schools www.bufordcityschools.org To help manage growth, the city has developed new professional and industrial www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us 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, www.gwinnettchamber.org 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 www.newcomeratlanta.com
Mall of Georgia
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Enabling Children with Learning Diﬀerences
✔ 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
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Kristin Chenowith, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre The award-winning actress and singer, known for originating the role of Glinda in the musical “Wicked,” performs. March 29, 800-745-3000, cobbenergycentre.com.
The Temptations and The Four Tops, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre The Motown groups, known for such classic hits as “My Girl,” The Way You Do the Things You Do,” “It’s the Same Old Song” and “Ain’t No Woman (Like the One I’ve Got,)” perform..
Celtic Woman, Fox Theatre
PHOTO: Celtic Woman
March 29, 800-745-3000, cobbenergycentre.com.
KISS, State Farm Arena The legendary theatrical rock group performs as part of its End of the Road farewell tour. April 7, 800-745-3000, statefarmarena.com.
2nd Annual Atlanta Blues Festival, Fox Theatre
Award-winning musical about the career of Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons. March 22-24,
Enjoy performances from Sir Charles Jones, Pokey Bear, Theodis Ealey, Calvin Richardson, Ronnie, Bell and Tucka. April 13, 855-285-8499,
March 3, 800-745-3000, statefarmarena.com.
Carol Burnett, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre
Disney on Ice Celebrates 100 Years of Magic, Infinite Energy Arena
Mariah Carey, Fox Theatre
The comedic actress answers audience questions during this intimate evening. March 25,
A cast of more than 50 unforgettable Disney characters takes to the ice for this magical celebration of music and memories from some of the most beloved films of all time, including “Frozen,” “The Lion King,” “Toy Story”, “Beauty and the Beast” and more.. April 25-28,
Theater & Concerts Fleetwood Mac, State Farm Arena The latest incarnation of the classic rock supergroup performs from its rich catalog of hits.
The award-winning singer and songwriter known for her five-octave vocal range and hits including “Vision of Love” and “All I Want for Christmas is You,” performs. March 5,
Kelly Clarkson, Infinite Energy Arena The GRAMMY Award-winning pop singer, children’s book author, talent coach on “The Voice” and winner of the first season of “American Idol” performs. March 28, 770-626-2464,
Experience Hendrix, Fox Theatre
Performers including Billy Cox (from the Jimi Hendrix Experience”, Joe Satriani, and many more celebrate the musical legacy of the late singer and guitarist Jimi Hendrix. March 9, 855-
Run! Jump! Fly! Adventures in Action, Children’s Museum of Atlanta
Exhibits & Events
Leprechaun Craft Week, Interactive Neighborhood for Kids
Celtic Woman, Fox Theatre
Create your own leprechaun to help celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. March 11-17, 770-536-1900,
The international musical sensation returns to Atlanta supporting their latest album, “Ancient Land.” March 14, 855-285-8499, foxtheatre.org.
Jeff Foxworthy, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre
Enjoy the 1993 classic in the Fernbank Museum’s Giant Screen Theater, followed by afterhours access to the special exhibit “Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of the Dinosaurs.” 7-11 p.m.
Jersey Boys, Fox Theatre Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta presents the national touring production of the Tony 56 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
PHOTO: Minnesota Children’s Museum
The superstar standup comedian and Atlanta native performs. March 15-16, 800-745-3000,
Movie Night: Jurassic Park, Fernbank Museum of Natural History
March 15, 404-929-6300, fernbankmuseum.org.
Keeper for a Day: Giant Panda, Zoo Atlanta How do you care for a giant panda? Learn
Frida and Diego: Passion, Politics, and Painting, High Museum of Art
about their diets, assist in cleaning and caring for these black-and-white bears, and go behind the scenes at the Giant Panda Conservation Center. Participants must be 14 years old or older. March 16, zooatlanta.org.
educational experiences that may include an F-18 cockpit simulator, constructing a model balsa-wood glider, exploring design principles of aviation with one of 12 on-site aircraft, and outdoor activities including simulators and swimming (weather permitting). March 18-22,
Cider, Wine & Dine Weekend, Hendersonville, N.C.
STEM Day, Fernbank Museum of Natural History
NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge, Huntsville, Ala.
Experiment with new (and old) breakthroughs in science, technology, engineering and math. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 16, 404-929-6300,
Teams of six students compete to build rovers that will carry two students, one male and one female, over a half-mile obstacle course of simulated extraterrestrial terrain including craters, boulders, ridges, and crevasses. This event at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center is open to the public and included in museum admission.
European Masterworks: The Phillips Collection, High Museum of Art This exhibition presents a selection of paintings and sculptures from The Phillips Collection, America’s first museum of modern art, which opened in 1921 in Washington, D.C.
PHOTO: Andy Jay
April 12-13, 800-637-7223, rocketcenter.com.
April 6-July 14, 404-733-5000, high.org.
Little Critters Day, Fernbank Museum of Natural History
Pickens Azalea Festival, Pickens, S.C. This family-friendly festival features two days of amusement rides, artists, food, free entertainment, and free parking. April 19-20,
Ring in the start of spring with cute and cuddly baby animals, seasonal crafts, and activities. And don’t forget to visit egg stations for special giveaways. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 13,
Mother’s Day Craft Week, Interactive Neighborhood for Kids Show your mom how much she means to you with special handmade crafts! May 6-12,
Cider, Wine & Dine Weekend, Hendersonville, N.C.
Look Again: 45 Years of Collecting Photography, High Museum of Art
Robots Day, Fernbank Museum of Natural History
This four-day celebration of apple blossom season features more than 40 events including cidery tours, live music, special dinners, and a ticketed kickoff gala. April 25-28, 800-828-4244,
Drawn from the High’s collection and local private collections, this exhibition explores the history of photography and the ways that photographs can be a conduit for ideas, information, and emotion. Through April 14, 404-
See how intelligent machines are advancing science, medicine, commerce, and other areas with local Atlanta robotics groups. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 18, 404-929-6300, fernbankmuseum.org.
Gallabrae-Greenville Scottish Games, Greenville, S.C.
Run! Jump! Fly! Adventures in Action, Children’s Museum of Atlanta
This massive celebration of all things Scottish features a parade, Celtic jams, spirited competition and much more. May 24-25,
Easter Craft Week, Interactive Neighborhood for Kids Create your own fun Easter craft with an assortment of fun materials. April 15-21, 770-536-1900, inkfun.org.
Teacher Appreciation Craft Week, Interactive Neighborhood for Kids Thank your teachers for all they do with a special handmade craft! May 1-5, 770-536-1900, inkfun.org.
Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs, Fernbank Museum of Natural History Journey through the Mesozoic Era with the largest flying animals that ever lived, featuring remarkable rare fossils and casts, hands-on and digital interactive displays, enormous lifesized models and stunning dioramas. Through May 5, 404-929-6300, fernbankmuseum.org.
Encourage your child to channel their favorite action-movie star by exploring such fun activities as kung fu, surfing, snowboarding, and more—building strength, coordination, balance, and endurance in the process! Through May 27, 404-659-5437, childrensmuseumatlanta.org.
A Short Drive Away Kidsfest, Pickens, S.C. This 12th annual event features a talent show, instrumental workshops, live performances and an “instrument petting zoo.” March 16,
Garden Jubilee, Hendersonville, N.C. This annual lawn and garden show takes place each year on Memorial Day Weekend on Hendersonville’s Main Street, with more than 260 vendors selling plants, lawn furniture, garden tools, yard art and more. May 25-26, 800-828-4244, visithendersonvillenc.org.
Apollo: When We Went to the Moon, U.S. Space and Rocket Center, Huntsville, Ala.
Rocket Explorer Experience: Spring Break, Huntsville, Ala.
This world-premiere exhibition celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 spaceflight that landed the first two men on the moon on July 20, 1969. Enjoy an Apollo 11 launch experience and explore artifacts and memorabilia showcasing this pivotal moment in American history. Through Dec. 31, 800-637-7223,
The U.S. Space and Rocket Center hosts
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INTERACTIVE NEIGHBORHOOD FOR KIDS RENOVATIONS HELP INK RETURN By Charles Beikert
Children and parents of Atlanta, your wait is over. The Interactive Neighbor-
INK is about more than just having fun: it's about stimulating creativity, exploring and learning new experiences.
hood for Kids (INK) has been a fixture for families and children for 16 years, providing a safe “neighborhood” environment where children of all ages have a chance to learn and develop their full potential. Heavily damaged in flooding last year, a sustained and passionate effort on the part of museum staff and local groups has resulted in a restoration of the beloved facility. “The community has rallied and made big donations of time, money and materials,” Executive Director Mandy Volpe says. “It looks great. Everything is just so fresh and clean. It all looks brand new,” INK performer Jeff McClure says. After nearly five months of renovation, February 1 marked the Grand Re-Opening of INK with a ribbon cutting ceremony. Improvements to the museum include the refurbishing of some favorite older exhibits as well as the addition of new experiences like “going to the bank” and “careers in manufacturing,” all geared toward Learn about animals, adoption, and medical treatment at the veterinary clinic.
young children in that signature INK way. Children can once again touch and explore a neighborhood environment scaled to their size. The post office, the veterinary clinic, the dentist’s office, the old diner, and more are all there and with fresh new faces guiding the way! Kids can also learn about the excitement of flying in a plane in “Grandpappy Airlines,” a full-sized 1955 Aero Commander 560 airplane. Get to know the doctor’s and dentist’s office in the INK Medical Clinic. Or just let the kids roam free through the mazes and nets of INK’s Family Playhouse. Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.; Sunday from 1-5 p.m. Admission is $9 per person Monday through Saturday and $6 per person on Sundays. Memberships, birthday parties, group visits and field trips are also available.
Interactive Neighborhood for Kids (INK) is located at 999 Chestnut St., SE, Gainesville, GA 30501, 770-536-1900, inkfun.org. 58 | Newcomer Magazine | newcomeratlanta.com
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