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Relocation, Lifestyle & Living in Atlanta

October/November 2013

Georgia’s Historic Towns Take a Charming Tour of the Past

Broadway in Atlanta

Smash Hit Shows at the Fox Theatre

East Point A Terrific Place to Call Home PLUS

Atlanta s GeattaionwWaithyout Vac Town Leaving

2013 Education Guide Your Annual Resource for Great Atlanta Schools, Trends and More

October/November CONTENTS FEATURES Atlanta Getaways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Newcomer’s 2013 Education Guide. . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

From pampering room service to rustic camping, recharge your batteries without leaving town thanks to these soothing staycations.

Learn about homeowner associations and neighborhood associations and why they might be a good fit for you.

Your guide to metro Atlanta’s public and private school options, including unique educational opportunities, how computers are changing the way students learn and more.

HOA’s and Neighborhood Associations . . . . . . . . . 14 Georgia’s Historic Towns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 From gold rushes to presidential escapes and antebellum homes, these charming towns offer a picturesque escape into the past.





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

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

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

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.

Neighborhood Spotlight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 East Point boasts affordable homes, plenty of parks and entertainment options, proximity to the airport and a walkable downtown filled with great restaurants.

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

Special Advertising Section: Atlanta Independent School Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .28

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

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

Broadway in Atlanta brings the best hit shows from the Great White Atlanta offers many excellent schools and learning resources. Learn more Way to the Fox Theatre. about some of the exceptional independent schools, boarding schools and education centers serving the metro area. Find Newcomer Newcomer Magazine Magazine on on Facebook Facebook and and Twitter Twitter for for lots lots of of additional additional Find Find Newcomer Magazine information before before and and after after your your move, move, from from news news on on deals deals and and events events to to information on Facebook and Twitter tips on real estate, organizing, events, restaurants and much more! Facebook:


tips on real estate, organizing, events, restaurants and much more! Facebook: Follow@NewcomerAtlanta. us for additional information before and after Newcomer Magazine; Magazine; Twitter: Twitter: Newcomer @NewcomerAtlanta.

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your move, from news on deals and events to tips on real estate, organizing, restaurants and much more! Facebook: Newcomer Magazine Twitter: @NewcomerAtlanta

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

Patrick Killam editor

Kevin Forest Moreau marketing & promotions

Jeff Thompson contributing writers

Daniel Beauregard, Sheila Cosgrove, Dawn Sloan Downes, Susan Flowers, Ruksana Hussain, Lindsay Oberst, Hope S. Philbrick, Cady Schulman, Muriel Vega director of sales & marketing

Patrick Killam account director

Lacey James

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Newcomer magazine, October/November 2013 Volume 17, Issue 4. Submissions, photography or ideas may be sent to Killam Publishing, Inc., 200 Market Place, Suite 230, Roswell, GA 30075. Submissions will not be returned unless otherwise requested and accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope. Newcomer magazine reserves the right to revise any necessary submissions. Reproduction in whole or in part of any elements of this publication are strictly prohibited without the written permission of the publisher. © 2013 Killam Publishing, Inc.

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

A New World

PHOTO: Courtesy of High Meadows School

Congratulations to Kacie Darden, a middle years teacher at the High Meadows School in Roswell, for beating the World Record in Race Across America over the summer! Darden, her partner Danielle Grabol, and a crew that included High Meadows teacher Anne Lovatt bicycled 3,000 miles from Oceanside, Calif., to Annapolis, Md., in eight days, two hours and 35 minutes, beating the previous record by half a day. The race, which is 50 percent longer than the Tour de France, is considered the world’s toughest. Great job, everyone!

Lighting Up the Night

PHOTO: Courtesy of Callaway Gardens


With more than 8 million lights making up 15 fantastic holiday scenes, Callaway Gardens’ Fantasy in Lights is the most spectacular sound and light show in the South. From Nov. 22 through Dec. 30, this sprawling resort complex transforms into a storybook world filled with such tableaus as an enchanted rainbow forest, Santa’s workshop, a magical Christmas garden and more. For more information, call 800-225-5292 or visit

PHOTO: Joey Ivansco/Atlanta Botanical Garden

Suwanee in the Spotlight

Garden of Unearthly Delights The Atlanta Botanical Garden offers a bounty of fun activities throughout the month of Ogre-tober, highlighted by the lifelike sculptures of the Imaginary Worlds exhibit (above). Marvel at more than 100 life-size scarecrows at Scarecrows in the Garden, partake of seasonal brews and live music during Fest of Ale on Thursday nights, and watch celebrity chefs strut their stuff during the Pumpkin Carving Contest on Oct. 24. And don’t forget Goblins in the Garden, a daylong costume party for the little ones on Oct. 27. For more information, visit 8 | Newcomer Magazine |

Suwanee is certainly enjoying a banner year. On the heels of being recognized as one of the nation’s 10 Best Towns for Families by Family Circle magazine this summer, the family-friendly city has been hailed as one of America’s Best Places to Live in the September issue of Money. Earlier this year, the Gwinnett County city was rated highly in the National Citizen Survey, and its Super Incredible Race and Suwanee Day celebrations won awards from the Southeast Festival and Events Association. For more information, visit

infocus A Festival of Flavors

PHOTO: Netherworld Haunted House

PHOTO: Courtesy of Taste of Atlanta

The city’s biggest food festival serves up a jampacked weekend of gourmet events as the 12th annual Taste of Atlanta descends on Technology Square Oct. 25 through 27. Sample mouthwatering fare from more than 90 local restaurants, including the Optimist, Saltyard, Cook Hall, D.B.A. Barbecue and many more. Enjoy cooking demonstrations, entertainment, craft beers, cocktails and more. For more information, visit

A Frightfully Good Time Celebrating 17 years of frights and thrills, Netherworld, Atlanta’s premier haunted house, returns to Norcross with two all-new experiences. Flee in terror from the otherworldly menace of the Dead Ones and plunge into the nightmare world of the Boogeyman, who feeds on your fears! See why Netherworld has consistently been voted one of the top haunted houses in the country. Oct. 4 through Nov. 3. For more information, visit | Newcomer Magazine | 9

Staycations Great Atlanta

Get Away From It All While Staying Close to Home By Hope S. Philbrick

Planning a vacation can be a daunting task, especially when you’re still recovering from the financial and physical toll of moving to a new city. But you deserve a relaxing break, and a soothing “staycation” can be just the ticket, allowing you to recharge your batteries while also getting better acquainted with your new home. Whether your ideal escape involves pampering room service or rustic camping, a grown-up retreat or fun for the whole family, getting away from it all doesn’t have to involve lots of time at the airport or on the road. These five destinations offer a range of options to help you feel better than you did when you arrived.

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LEFT TO RIGHT: Relax on the terrace of the Ellis Hotel; get back to nature at Don Carter State Park; pamper yourself at Stonehurst Place.

PHOTOS: (Center) Don Carter State Park/Georgia Department of Natural Resources; (Right) Anne Almasy.

Don Carter State Park Enjoy an ideal beach vacation at Georgia’s newest state park, about 60 miles north of Atlanta. Situated on the north end of Lake Lanier, this 1,316-acre park offers access to a quiet section of the normally busy lake and is a haven for water lovers with its large sandy beach, bath house, boat ramps and docks, and fish-cleaning station. A 1.5-mile paved multi-use trail and 2-mile hiking trail lead explorers through the hardwood forest. The park offers several choices for overnight getaways: One modern campground is designed specifically for RVs, while another primitive camping area is just for tents and hammocks. For those who prefer a soft bed, eight two-bedroom rental cabins are perched on wooded hillsides near the lake. The rental cabins boast rocking-chair porches and fully equipped kitchens. The park welcomes visitors of all ages.

National Green Seal certification. Dine on upscale sustainable fare, soak in a deep bathtub and sink into a luxurious pillow-top mattress. Visitors can also enjoy an in-room treatment from the skilled therapists of Flavours Spa. From the rain showerhead to the ostrich leather

The Glenn Hotel is located just minutes away from many of Atlanta’s key attractions.

The Ellis Hotel Celebrating its 100th anniversary as a hotel in 2013, the Ellis offers proof that history can be respected even when it’s extensively renovated. Located in the heart of downtown Atlanta, the 1913 landmark once known as the Winecoff Hotel is now a boutiquechic destination. The décor pleases the eye without compromising comfort or function, while the hotel’s eco-friendly practices have earned

headboard and LCD television, the Ellis offers a refined respite from the hubbub of the city.

The Glenn Hotel Originally built as an office space in 1923, the building that houses the Glenn Hotel was converted to its current state in 2006 and is now part of Marriott Hotel Group’s Autograph Collection. Recognized on the National Historic Register, the building celebrates its 90th anniversary in 2013. Located in the Luckie Marietta District, it’s just steps from Centennial Olympic Park, the World of Coca-Cola, the Georgia Aquarium, CNN Center, Philips Arena and other key attractions. Named to honor John Thomas Glenn, a prominent businessman and the 31st mayor of Atlanta, the eco-friendly hotel offers 93 guest rooms, 16 suites and a penthouse. All rooms boast sleek décor, luxurious linens, “peek-a-boo” showers, iHome docking stations, flat-screen TVs and original artwork. Dine on seasonal American fare at the street-level Glenn’s Kitchen or head to the rooftop SkyLounge to sip a cocktail while admiring the stirring view of Atlanta’s skyline.

Stonehurst Place

Relax in comfort at the Ellis Hotel.

Atlanta’s only intown bed and breakfast, Stonehurst Place was originally built in 1896 and renovated in 2008 with ecofriendliness and energy efficiency as key considerations. The result is a spectacular mix of old and new. Located in Midtown Atlanta, the 19th-century mansion is close to Piedmont Park, the Fox Theatre, the High | Newcomer Magazine | 11

The Living Room at the W Atlanta-Buckhead.

Museum of Art and other attractions. You won’t find doilies or stuffy antiques at this luxury B&B, but you will find original, museum-quality works of art, landscaped gardens and lavish modern amenities. All six rooms and suites offer pillow-top mattresses, private en-suite bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, LCD flat-screen TVs, plush robes, an iPod docking station and more. A two-course gourmet breakfast is included with each stay. This is the perfect pampering spot for grown-ups.

W Atlanta-Buckhead Located in the heart of Buckhead, which is ranked as one of the nation’s 10 most affluent communities, the W Atlanta-Buckhead places you close to the shopping havens of Lenox Mall and Phipps Plaza. It’s also convenient to several sophisticated restaurants, including the new Cook Hall (located on its ground level), which features craft cocktails and contemporary cuisine. A glass-elevator ride to the top of the hotel brings you to Whiskey Blue, a hip bar that’s rivaled only by Living Room, located in the lobby—both are helmed by skilled mixologists, boast cool vibes and offer long lists of tempting libations. Exercise in the fully equipped fitness center, lounge near the only infinity-edge pool overlooking Peachtree Road, or doze on the signature W bed. Relax in the hotel’s country-club atmosphere. Push the Whatever/Whenever button on your phone and the W team will deliver whatever you want, whenever you want it (as long as it’s legal). It’s like having a personal assistant on call.

FOR MORE INFORMATION Don Carter State Park 5000 N. Browning Bridge Road, Gainesville 678-450-7726,

The Glenn Hotel 110 Marietta St. NW 404-521-2250, Stonehurst Place 923 Piedmont Ave. NE 404-881-0722, W Atlanta-Buckhead 3377 Peachtree Road NE 678-500-3100,

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PHOTO: Courtesy of W-Atlanta Buckhead

The Ellis Hotel 176 Peachtree St. NE 404-523-5155, | Newcomer Magazine | 13




What You Should Know About HOAs and Neighborhood Associations By Susan Flowers

When it comes to neighborhoods, Atlanta offers everything from older, tree-lined communities to new subdivisions with the latest perks. And those areas offer just as much variety when it comes to neighborhood and homeowners associations. Whether you’re looking for an area with strict standards for appearance with an eye toward property values, or fewer rules but more personality, metro Atlanta has the right neighborhood for you. 14 | Newcomer Magazine |

Is An HOA Right for You? A homeowners association (HOA) is a legal entity that is typically responsible for upholding rules governing the appearance of properties. An HOA will often have the right to enforce those rules by issuing fines and even placing liens on properties of noncompliant owners. “The big advantage is that there’s a standard that’s set for everyone,” says Realtor Josh Jarvis of Jarvis Team Realty. “They also do some other things, like maintain the amenities.” Because of the HOA, these neighborhoods are often able to offer pools, sidewalks, clubhouses or tennis courts. Cal McShan, vice president of the Atlanta division of Sentry Management, which manages HOAs for 300,000 homes, condominiums and townhomes across the country, notes that an HOA can be crucial to your home’s value in the long run. “In today’s market, having the help of an association, in terms of the services that are provided, is key to the health of the property you’re purchasing,” he says. “If things are uniformly maintained [by an HOA], you don’t or two sore thumbs” lowering home values, says Sentry Management marketing director Paul Queen.

property. You may not be able to, or it might cost more than it would otherwise, because you can’t just go get an aluminum building.” Another potential drawback is the impact of HOA dues on your purchasing power. While a well-maintained neighborhood can prevent your home’s value from depreciating, what you pay toward an HOA will be considered by banks when you apply for a loan, because your dues affect your debt-to-income ratio. “If you pay $600 a year, that’s $50 a month,” says Jarvis. “A lot of people don’t think about that.” This can play an especially large role in the purchase of a townhome or condo, or in the purchase of a home priced near the limit of what you can afford.

Because of the HOA, these neighborhoods are often able to offer pools, sidewalks, clubhouses or tennis courts. Of course, one person’s sore thumb can be another’s needed enhancement. Keep in mind that an HOA’s interpretation of standards can differ from yours, and you have to abide by the organization’s rules. “They can also restrict things that you want to do to the home,” Jarvis says. “For example, you may want to put an outbuilding on your

Do Your Research

If you’re looking for a home in a neighborhood with an HOA, a little due diligence can pay off in the long run. Ask to see financial reports for any HOA you’re seriously considering. Without adequate funding, amenities can’t be maintained and improvements can’t be made. It’s reasonable to expect that your neighborhood’s pool and other features will be just as attractive in 10 years as they are today. u | Newcomer Magazine | 15

It’s also a good idea to ask to see the minutes of the past few HOA meetings. These documents can inform you of ongoing problems that can factor into your decision to buy. “What they’re talking about in the minutes gives you a good snapshot of what the issues are in a neighborhood,” says Queen. Although HOA documents are nobody’s idea of a pageturner, it’s still important to give them a thorough read. If an HOA’s standards differ significantly from yours, it’s better to know before you purchase. Drive through the neighborhood to be sure that it’s properly maintained. Amenities or homes in poor condition can tell you that an HOA isn’t doing its job. And if you’re considering a gated community, be aware that everything inside those gates is the responsibility of the neighborhood’s homeowners. If a road inside a gated community needs paving, the association, not the county, is responsible for the cost. “In a gated

community, the only things they don’t own are the mailboxes,” says Jarvis.

Neighborhood Associations If you’re looking for a looser structure than that offered by many homeowners’ associations, a neighborhood association might be the ticket. Found more often in areas close to Atlanta’s

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downtown than in the suburbs, neighborhood associations frequently act as advocates for a community, working with elected officials on improvements and taking actions to enhance the area’s quality of life. A neighborhood association is typically less concerned with enforcing standards for appearance and more concerned with issues that affect the community, says Nancy Dorsner of the Lake Claire Neighbors. “Really, it’s just having an organization that can represent the neighborhood when things come up like school redistricting,” she says. “It’s a whole lot easier for the association to get face time with elected representatives. Every person in the neighborhood can’t get a meeting with our city council person. We can speak with one voice on neighborhood issues, like recommending that a traffic light should be changed.” Although the name suggests that it’s an HOA, the 1,200-member Dunwoody HomeContinued on page 18 | Newcomer Magazine | 17

“Our neighborhood is laid back. We like the fact that it’s quirky and interesting.” — STACEY HARRIS, Dunwoody Homeowners Association

owners Association is actually closer to a neighborhood association in function. The Dunwoody HOA covers the entire city of Dunwoody, a DeKalb County suburb with a population of around 46,000. With events including Food Truck Thursdays, a Fourth of July parade and live concerts, “We very much add to the quality of life in our city,” says President Stacey Harris. The group also hosts candidates’ forums for city council and mayoral elections. The Lake Claire Neighbors group seldom, if ever, tackles issues relating to the appearance of

individual homes. “Even though we may have an issue of growing grass too long, we prefer the more flexible and free approach to how our neighborhood evolves,” says Dorsner. “Our neighborhood is laid back. We like the fact that it’s quirky and interesting. We don’t have to have all matching mailboxes,” she adds. Remember that HOAs and neighborhood associations are different entities that serve different functions, and be aware of what each offers and what you want when you’re investigating a particular community. Good luck!

IMPORTANT FACTS • An HOA is a group of property owners with the authority to enforce rules concerning such issues as yard work, safety and uniformity of appearance. • A neighborhood association is a group of neighbors and business owners concerned with such issues as quality of life. • If you move into a community with an HOA, membership is generally mandatory. • Most condominium communities are HOAs. • Some HOAs have restrictions about parties, noise, etc. • HOAs usually own and maintain community property such as roads, tennis courts, etc.

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e Park Arts Festiva

East Point By Muriel Vega


ust a 10-minute drive from downtown Atlanta, the former railroad town of East Point attracts professionals, businesses and families with affordable homes, a tight-knit community feel, an abundance of parks, a walkable downtown area and its proximity to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Corner Tavern


Culinary Treats

With a variety of options, East Point offers the convenience of city living without the price tag. Minutes away from the prestigious Woodward Academy, The Village of Egan Park ( exudes small-town charm and boasts single-family homes from the mid $100s to high $200s. For those looking to rent, Stonetree Apartments (404-768-2510) features one, two- and three-bedroom homes, a swimming pool, fitness center and a great location close to many shopping and restaurant options. Highland Retreat (404-768-8876) offers spacious two- and three-bedroom apartment homes and townhouses, two sparkling pools, a business center and common areas with free Wi-Fi, among other amenities.

Taco Pete (404-968-4790) has been bringing tasty California-style tacos to downtown East Point since 2009. For vegetarians and vegans, Lov’n It Live (404-765-9220) serves up organic, locally grown organic fare. Nationally praised Oz Pizza (404-761-7006) is known for its quality New York-style pies. Stop by Q’s Restaurant (404-767-9894) for Southern-style breakfast fare or mouth-watering fried chicken. The Corner Tavern (404-768-0007) is a popular downtown hangout with a relaxed atmosphere and great patio seating.

Local Treasures East Point Farmer’s Market

From May through December, the East Point Farmer’s Market (www.eastpointfarmersmarket. com) aims to create a healthier community by promoting sustainable, locally grown food options. Held once a month, it features produce, jams and other foodstuffs, arts and crafts and more, providing a perfect opportunity to spend a fun morning with the family and support the community. The city also offers a one-stop shopping mall at Camp Creek MarketPlace with stores like Lane Bryant, Old Navy, Barnes & Noble and others.

Arts and Entertainment East Point’s forte? Festivals. Enjoy great food while taking in artists’ displays during the Taste of East Point on the last Saturday in April, or take in a movie during the Friday Night Flicks Outdoor Movie Series ( across from City Hall. Aaron’s Amphitheatre at Lakewood (404-443-5090) has hosted big-name music acts since 1989 with more than 15,000 seats and a sprawling lawn area. The Georgia Soccer Park (404-9924928) provides lush, natural-grass playing fields for youth and adult recreation leagues. Cyclists from across the country race at the Dick Lane Velodrome (404-769-0012), one of the premier bicycle racing facilities in the nation. N

Dick Lane Velodrome

Georgia Soccer Park

The city gets its name from being the eastern terminus of the now-departed Atlanta & West Point Railroad.

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PHOTO: Chris Kelly/

The Inside Track | Newcomer Magazine | 21

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Teaching and Technology

How the Digital Age is Changing Education

Rapid technological advancements are changing the way that people interact, communicate and access information. And more and more, educators are incorporating those advancements into the classroom. By using an array of accessible computer devices and programs, they create interactive learning environments, while also offering students a greater understanding of the technology they use every day. by Daniel Beauregard

21st Century Classrooms As textbooks and chalkboards give way to laptops and interactive whiteboards, the traditional classroom model is getting a 21st-century update. Technology is no longer reserved for the computer lab. Instead, students interact

with technological devices on a regular basis throughout the school day. “Textbooks are becoming a thing of the past. Everything is becoming digital,� says Steve Wells, technology instructor at McGinnis Woods Country Day School in Alpharetta.

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At Notre Dame Academy in Duluth, traditional computer labs have been replaced with an extensive collection of Apple products including MacBooks, iPads and iPod touches, which are placed on carts to make them easier for students to access, says Ken Lemons, direc-

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

tor of technology and education technology coordinator. In addition, there are enough iPads for every middle school student. The students use the computers in place of textbooks, and return them at the end of the year. While the devices are more expensive than books, they don’t receive as much wear and tear, Lemons says, making them more cost-effective. At Victory World Christian School in Norcross, every student from kindergarten through fifth grade is equipped with a Neo 2 laptop, which stays on-site at the end of the day, says Irene Prue, the school’s principal. Each classroom is also equipped with an iPad and an interactive whiteboard. McGinnis Woods currently has 125 laptops, about one for every two students in kindergarten through fifth grade, on four laptop carts in different areas of the school. Middleschool students are assigned their own laptops. The school is also outfitted with 30 Microsoft Surface tablets, and boasts a math lab with 17 desktop computers. At Trinity Chapel Academy in Powder Springs, all middle-school students are issued a MacBook, and at Wesleyan School in Norcross, every student in grades 5 through 12 is provided a tablet computer. Every third- through fifth-grade student at Greater Atlanta Christian School is provided with an iPad. The amount of computers and other devices such as smart boards differs from school to school. That’s especially true of public school


systems. Every school in the DeKalb County 4575 Lawrenceville Highway R Lilburn, GA 30047 Schools system is different, says Chief Information Officer Gary Brantley, “because every school has different needs.” PCA_Ad_Newcomer Magazine Oct Thanks to a special-purpose sales tax passed 2.375” x 4.812” in 2011, the school system plans to update equipment throughout the district, provide interactive whiteboards to every classroom and PCA_Ad_Newcomer Mag Oct.indd 1 provide students access to tablets and laptops, among other projects. The entire system is projected to have wireless connectivity by the end of 2013.

9/15/12 8:14:

Changes in Teaching and Learning Utilizing technology as an educational tool has had a profound impact on the ways both teachers and students function within the classroom. Technology is a part of students’ daily lives outside of the classroom, so utilizing it as a teaching aid is a logical step. “They grow up with digital technology,” Lemons says. “They see this stuff at home and everywhere. The traditional stand-and-deliver style of teaching, where the teacher is writing things on the board and reciting the things the students need to learn, just doesn’t work as well as it once did.” At Victory World Christian School, the Neo 2 laptops allow teachers to tailor lessons to each student’s needs—for example, creating individual math worksheets for each child. “The responses are automatically scored so the teacher can see what areas each child needs help with,” says Prue. “It gives child and teacher immediate | Newcomer Magazine | 23

feedback so you can give a kind of individualized instruction.” At McGinnis Woods, each classroom is fitted with a Promethean interactive whiteboard and projector. The boards enable students to participate in hands-on activities, dropping and dragging animated items and using a pen to highlight different words. More than just a tool for teachers, contemporary technology is changing the way students learn and interact with their instructors. After completing a project, McGinnis Woods students create a presentation to show their classmates how to do the things they’ve just done. In that way, the students become teachers themselves. “To me, the best idea is to get that pen out of the teacher’s hands and into the students’ hands,” says Wells. “Another big component of that is that it becomes a group thing. They’re able to collaborate, and that’s huge for the kids to learn early on.” Teachers, of course, aren’t the only ones excited about the educational advances offered by technology. Wells, with McGinnis Woods, says there’s “a quantum leap in students’ engagement and how much more they absorb the content.” Wells believes that using technology in the classroom is more than a means of encourag-

“Textbooks are becoming a thing of the past. Everything is becoming digital.” – STEVE WELLS, McGinnis Woods Country Day School ing students to get excited about learning; it’s an obligation. “They seem to learn more in a shorter period of time and seem to retain more,” he says. “The studies out there show that the test scores go up when they [participate in] this style of learning. So we, as responsible teachers, can’t ignore that. Because of these tools, we have more engaged learners.” But all of these technological improvements are no substitute for the human touch. So don’t expect to see computers running a classroom any time soon, says Prue of Victory World Christian School.

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“We firmly believe that technology will never replace the teacher because kids, particularly at the elementary level, they need that [face-toface] contact,” she says. “But it sure does enhance instruction.” Additional reporting by Lindsay Oberst

TODAY’S TEACHING TOOLS Smart boards: Interactive white boards that act as large touch screens are replacing chalkboards. Students can use them to participate in hands-on activities, dropping and dragging animated items and using a pen to highlight different words. Laptops and tablet computers: Textbooks are being replaced by compact computers and tablet devices such as the iPad. Devices such as the Neo 2 laptop developed by Renaissance Learning allow teachers to test students’ reading comprehension and create individualized instruction. Software and applications: Students at McGinnis Woods use Prezi software and Microsoft PowerPoint to give presentations. Notre Dame Academy students report on what they’ve learned via movies or podcasts. Students at Victory World Christian School use Rosetta Stone software to learn Spanish.

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Beyond the Classroom

Educational Programs That Enhance Traditional Learning


he Georgia Department of Education offers a number of dual-enrollment programs that allow high school students to take college courses for both high school and college credit, enrolling full-time or part-time in college courses before graduating high school. Among these programs are Accel, which offers public and private high school students the opportunity to earn credit hours toward an Associate or Baccalaureate degree; Move on When Ready, which allows students to attend college full-time during their junior or senior year and receive high school and college credit simultaneously; and the Dual HOPE Grant for students seeking technical certificates or diplomas from institutions in Georgia’s technical college system.

Internships and Before- and After-School Programs

The metro Atlanta area is home to a wealth of top-notch schools that provide a superb educational experience for your child. But the learning doesn’t stop once the school bell rings at the end of the day, or once the school year’s over. From dual-enrollment and after-school programs to internships and summer classes and workshops, Atlanta schools and organizations offer a number of diverse and unique educational opportunities to supplement their classroom instruction, broaden their horizons and even provide a head start on their college education. by Ruksana Hussain

Internships are offered at many high schools to allow students to gain experience in a field they may wish to pursue in college, often receiving school credit. The Paideia School offers internships as part of a larger, school-wide initiative designed to strengthen the school’s community stewardship ethic and deepen learning through volunteerism and civic involvement. Students can choose from weekend, summer, short-term and after-school options with organizations such as Atlanta Children’s Shelter and the Be the Match Foundation. Many schools offer additional learning opportunities before and after the regular school day. These classes traditionally focus on enrichment, building character or learning new skills. Atlanta Public Schools (APS) partners with individual schools and outside child-care providers for its Expanded Day programs, which offer assistance in academics and the development of social skills. In addition, APS offers special enrichment programs in conjunction with local cultural organizations. These include the City Scientist After-School Program, in which staffers with the Fernbank Museum of Natural History serve as instructors for two-week classes for grades 3 through 5. These classes are held at local schools, culminating in a visit to the museum on the final day. Similarly, the Atlanta Botanical Garden’s after-school program offers a four-week science-focused program for grades 3 through 5, held at the Garden. And the High Museum of Art presents a three-week program for grades 3 through 5 that focuses on reading, writing, math and art. Many independent schools offer their own after-school programs. The Lovett School offers afternoon enrichment programs that encourage students to learn, grow and have fun by providing high-quality programming in a safe, | Newcomer Magazine | 25

Pinecrest AcAdemy

A PreK-12th grade, Catholic School

ing environment outside of the classroom. Classes are offered right after school and are conveniently located on Lovett’s campus. “Our afternoon enrichment programs help students get to know their teachers on a different level,” says Cynthia Coleman, director of afternoon enrichment and summer programs. “Some of our most favored classes are karate, chess, tennis, cheerleading and swimming, especially when training for swim teams.” These programs are open to the public and available to students outside the Lovett community.

Continuing Education and Study-Abroad Programs Continuing education programs are usually open to various age groups, from young children to adults, who want to learn new skills or enhance their existing knowledge in a particular area. The Savannah College of Art and Design’s Atlanta campus offers “summer seminars” for high school students who have completed their freshman, sophomore or junior years and want to explore the worlds of art and design. These weeklong programs include field trips, lectures and studio work, and conclude with an exhibition of student works. Kennesaw State University offers Summer University, a series of oneweek camps for children in all elementary grade levels. “With traditional classrooms being so structured these days, there is no option for teachers

FOR MORE INFORMATION 955 Peachtree Parkway Cumming, GA 30041 • 770-888-4477

OPen HOuse

Jan. 12, 2014 1 to 3 pm

Accel Curriculum-and-Instruction/Pages/ACCEL-Program.aspx Alliance Theatre Acting Camps Atlanta Public Schools After-School Programs Atlanta Young Writers Institute Brandon Hall School Chinese Summer Program Dual Enrollment Transition-Career-Partnerships.aspx Fernbank Museum Summer Camp Georgia Aquarium Camp H2O Kennesaw State Summer University The Lovett School Afternoon Enrichment Programs The Paideia School Internships SCAD Summer Seminars scad-summer-seminars Zoo Atlanta Safari Day Camps safari_day_camps

26 | Newcomer Magazine |

or children to be creative,” says Program Director Michelle Girage. “These camps offer a great avenue to channel that creativity,” Courses include LEGO robotics, cooking, improv and computer game design. Some schools also provide the opportunity to study abroad. Brandon Hall School is currently offering a four-week summer program in conjunction with Shanghai Jiao Tong University that will allow students to participate in classes in Chinese language and calligraphy in China.

Summer Programs

interested in the performing arts, available throughout the summer for all grade levels. At the Alliance Thaetre, “We offer programming in two formats—one is musical theater, with a focus on acting, singing and dancing, and the other is stage-based, which includes improv skills and creative writing,” says Education Coordinator and Producer of Drama Camps Christina Dresser. Camps are taught by Atlanta-based actors and culminate in a 30-to-40-minute showcase performance on the final day. “Sometimes talent from these camps is recruited by the Alliance Theatre,” Dresser says, noting that Tiny Tim from last year’s A Christmas Carol was a student from the drama camp. With so many options, there’s sure to be a supplemental education option that fits your schedule and budget as well as your child’s interests.

Atlanta-area theaters, museums and other organizations offer summer programs for young children and high school students.

Atlanta-area theaters, museums and other organizations also offer summer camps and workshops for young children and high school students. The Fernbank Museum of Natural History offers an educational summer camp for kids in kindergarten through fifth grade. Other organizations with summer offerings include the

Georgia Aquarium, the Atlanta Young Writer’s Institute, Zoo Atlanta and the Alliance Theatre, which hosts a summer drama camp for children


authentic Montessori • • • • •

right in Johns Creek!

Children ages 18 months to 6 years Montessori-certified teachers Developmentally appropriate, high quality materials Vibrant classroom communities Child-centered, holistic, Montessori education

“Education should no longer be mostly imparting of knowledge, but must take a new path, seeking the release of human potentialities.” – Dr. Maria Montessori

Call to sCheDule a tour!

Johns Creek Montessori sChool of GA Excellence in Montessori Education

6450 East Johns Crossing • Johns Creek, Georgia 30097 (770) 814-8001 • | Newcomer Magazine | 27

2 0 1 3


Atlanta Independent School Directory It’s no secret that Atlanta offers a wealth of school choices and learning resources. The following profiles highlight just a few of the independent schools and nearby boarding schools serving the metro Atlanta area. For additional information about the schools listed below, including location, class size and open house dates, turn to “Beyond the Basics” on page 33. ALEXSANDER ACADEMY

ATLANTA GIRLS’ SCHOOL Atlanta Girls’ School offers girls in grades 6 through 12 a college-preparatory curriculum of the highest standards. Graduates attend Ivy League schools, prestigious liberal arts colleges, leading southeastern universities and respected research institutes. Atlanta Girls’ School was custom-built for one purpose: girls’ achievement and success. Girls attending AGS learn to take appropriate risks, be courageous leaders, give back to their communities and project personal confidence and competence in all they do. Through classrooms, sports, stage and community involvement, AGS leverages the legacy and experience of girls’ schools all across the country, preparing girls to be respected leaders in every field. With access to real-world experiences, AGS students complete two customized internships with local, national or global organizations. Combined with the two-week “Winterim” program, community service and global travel programs, internships fuel extracurricular learning that culminates in each student’s senior speech to the entire school. For more information, call 404-845-0900 or visit 28 | Newcomer Magazine


Alexsander Academy, located in Alpharetta, serves students who need a small, academically focused but flexible learning environment to be successful. The school focuses on academics, independence skills and classroom and social skills. Alexsander Academy believes all children are capable when taught the way they need to learn. Alexsander builds students’ self-esteem by fostering an environment where they are successful but also challenged, where expectations are high but realistic, and where they are able to form true friendships with their peers. For more information, contact Stefanie Smith at 404839-5910 or at smith@alexsanderacademy. org, or visit


The Bedford School offers a fresh start to students who have been frustrated in a traditional setting due to learning differences. The school serves children who have been professionally diagnosed as having specific learning disabilities and related disorders. Bedford is located on a 45-acre campus in Fairburn, Ga., 15 minutes south of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Its mission is to maximize the potential of children with learning differences and develop foundations for success; this is accomplished through small classes, a structured, multisensory approach and a dedicated staff. The school’s Squirrel Hollow Camp summer program offers academic tutoring in a recreational environment. Call Betsy Box, director, at 770-774-8001 or visit for more information.



ClearWater Academy is a private state-ofthe-art school for students ages 6 through 18 with learning differences (Asperger’s Syndrome, ASD, ADHD, non-verbal learning disability, PDD-NOS). While academics are at the forefront, social and emotional development strategies, assistive technology and therapies support students striving to meet their full potential. ClearWater Academy is proud to offer new middle- and high-school programs along with career development and practical living opportunities for high school students. Accredited by the Georgia Accrediting Commission, ClearWater Academy accepts the Georgia Special Needs Scholarship (SB-10) and participates in the Georgia Department of Revenue’s tax donation program. To learn more, call 770-631-3650 or visit

The success of Faith Lutheran School is built on challenging academics offered in a Christcentered environment. The curriculum promotes individual achievement, fosters selfesteem, encourages creativity and social skills and is bolstered by arts and sports programs, including band, choir, track, basketball and more. Students benefit from small classes, experienced, innovative educators and a safe, nurturing environment. Programs are offered for kindergarten through eighth grade, along with preschool for children ages 2 to 4. Founded in 1958, Faith Lutheran School is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. For more information, call 770-973-8921, email or visit

THE CHILDREN’S SCHOOL The Children’s School, founded in 1970, is an institution of educators devoted to teaching young children. The curriculum is a rich and academically rigorous one, centered on experiential learning and building critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Students at TCS benefit from a formal character education program, Building Character & Community, and a unique outdoor education component of the curriculum. The Children’s School offers a number of after-school programs that serve day-school students and elementary-aged children in the greater community. Its 10-building Midtown campus across from Piedmont Park allows for freedom within boundaries—a hallmark of its educational philosophy. The Children’s School serves a diverse group of students age 3 years old through the sixth grade. TCS graduates go on to attend and excel at a number of schools throughout Atlanta. For more information, call 404-873-6985 or visit

EASTSIDE CHRISTIAN SCHOOL Eastside Christian School is celebrating 30 years of providing a quality academic experience from a biblical perspective in a loving environment. ECS has earned a reputation for providing students mastery skills in a core knowledge base and instilling a strong work ethic necessary for a solid academic foundation leading to excellent placement in secondary schools, including magnet programs. Eastside Christian School teachers are excellent role models who help children develop empathy and character traits that lend themselves to forming good relationships in which they not only enjoy their individual accomplishments but also take pleasure in the success of others. Located in the heart of east Cobb County on a beautiful campus with new state-of-the-art playgrounds, ECS offers K-5 through eighth grade with the option of pre-first grade and an extended day program. Eastside Christian School is accredited with SACS and the Association of Christian Schools International. For information or to schedule a tour, call Lynne Floyd at 770-971-2332 and visit u SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Newcomer Magazine | 29

THE FRIENDS SCHOOL The Friends School of Atlanta (FSA) provides challenging academics in a diverse environment, drawing on the Quaker values of simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality and stewardship to empower students to go out into the world with conscience, conviction and compassion. Founded as a model of diversity in 1991, FSA strives to address the development of the whole child and seeks to nurture that of goodness within each student. Offering classes from pre-K through eighth grade, FSA’s program is designed to prepare students for a successful high school future and a lifetime of engagement as thoughtful citizens. For more information, call 404-3738746 or visit


THE HERITAGE SCHOOL The Heritage School is an independent, college-preparatory, non-sectarian day school that serves more than 400 students from 4 years of age through graduation from high school. The mission of the school is to develop the mind in preparation for college and later life, develop the body through competition and teamwork, develop the spirit through self-awareness and growth, and develop camaraderie through shared experience. Heritage students have numerous opportunities to learn outside of the classroom starting in pre-kindergarten and take curriculum-based overnight trips starting in third grade. The 43 graduates of the Class of 2013 were awarded more than $3 million in academic scholarships with acceptances to colleges and universities including Harvard, Yale, Georgia Tech, UGA, Wesleyan, SCAD and Duke. The Heritage faculty and staff strive to create enthusiasm for learning and are committed to the growth and development of each child every day. For more information, please call the Office of Admissions at 678-423-5393 or visit

As Georgia’s largest Christian, coeducational, college-preparatory school, Greater Atlanta Christian (GAC) prepares students in grades K3 through 12 for success by helping them grow as Jesus did in wisdom, in stature and in favor with God and man. This is accomplished through exceptional academics, athletics and arts. Talented faculty and a low teacher-tostudent ratio help students become leaders, critical thinkers and responsible members of a global community. More than 1,775 students arrive daily to the 80-acre campus 10 miles northeast of downtown Atlanta. Parents, students and faculty partner in the creative, hands-on, collaborative learning approach that GAC offers. The results are 100 percent college-bound students. As an Apple School of Distinction, GAC integrates technology into its curriculum. Established in 1968, GAC sets the foundation for lifelong learning. Families are strengthened in this one-of-a kind community environment where prayer, praise and worship are daily privileges. For information, call 770-2432000 or visit 30 | Newcomer Magazine

JOHNS CREEK MONTESSORI SCHOOL OF GEORGIA Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia offers authentic Montessori education in the heart of Johns Creek. Observe the “Montessori Magic” happening in the school’s vibrant classroom communities, where children are free to choose from a wide variety of activities and lessons best suited to their development. Specially trained teachers act as “guides” to the extensive curriculum, planting a seed of wonder that grows into a desire for greater knowledge. Multi-age classrooms allow younger children to learn from older ones, and for older children to reinforce and “test” their learning when helping younger ones. This dynamic, structured environment nurtures a strong work ethic, love of learning, and a passion for discovery not found in other schools. Dr. Maria Montessori wrote: “Education should no longer be mostly imparting of knowledge, but must take a new path, seeking the release of human potentialities.” Help your child to reach their full potential. Call 770-814-8001 to schedule a tour or visit SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

HEBRON CHRISTIAN ACADEMY Hebron Christian Academy has two campuses, but only one mission: to help parents prepare their students spiritually, academically, physically and socially to become disciples of Jesus Christ. HCA is a private Christian school currently serving 929 students from kindergarten through grade 12. HCA offers an academically challenging program, including AP and honors classes, with students scoring far above national averages. The school also offers award-winning fine arts programs and leadership development. In addition, HCA offers a broad range of sports; students participate competitively in Georgia High School Association Region 8A. For more information, call 770-963-9250 or visit


Massanutten Military Academy has partnered with the Heroic Imagination Project to create a unique and rewarding boarding school experience, centered on a personal development plan that includes formal mentoring, setting and managing goals and teaching situational awareness along with the critical thinking skills to navigate them. This program underlines Massanutten’s mission to produce confident, capable and productive citizens who are prepared for leadership. Massanutten’s academic curriculum includes Project Lead the Way, a hands-on STEM program supported by America’s leading corporations and foundations. Additionally, Massanutten offers a variety of Advanced Placement and honors classes, college entrance testing preparation and electives including Highland bagpipe and drum band, art, drama, journalism, yearbook and a course on imperialism. Founded in 1899, Massanutten Military Academy is a coeducational boarding school serving grades 7 through 12 and a postgraduate program, located in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley in Woodstock, Virginia. Please call 540-459-2167, ext. 1, or visit more information.

Pinecrest Academy is a private pre-K through 12 college-preparatory Catholic school. Pinecrest provides an atmosphere of academic rigor and critical thinking, while offering personalized attention in a Christ-centered environment of faith and reason. Pinecrest Academy prepares students to become committed Christian leaders, eager to transform a global society. It accomplishes this in a gender-separate environment on a coed campus. Following the educational philosophy of the Legionaries of Christ, Pinecrest implements the Integral Formation education method to develop the spiritual, intellectual, human and apostolic dimensions of the whole person. The school challenges its students to identify and use their gifts in service to others. Pinecrest Academy provides a safe, moral and spiritual environment that leads to positive peer groups and joyful, caring, confident students. The school serves the Archdiocese of Atlanta, local parishes, regional Christian and civic communities and others who embrace its educational philosophy. For more information, call 770-888-4477 or visit

PROVIDENCE CHRISTIAN ACADEMY Providence Christian Academy is a unique, mid-sized K-12 interdenominational Christian school in the Atlanta area, offering an accredited program that rivals larger schools while providing more personal attention and the comfortable fit of a smaller student body. As a parent-sponsored school, Providence Christian Academy is more than an academic institution, it’s a community of believers, consisting of Christian parents in partnership with Christian educators to help young people develop their God-given gifts and abilities. High standards in academic, athletic and fine art achievements and spiritual growth have been the hallmarks of Providence for more than 20 years. For more information, please call 770-279-7200 or visit www.providencechristianacademy. org. SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Newcomer Magazine | 31



As a Marist-sponsored school pursuing Catholic status, Sophia Academy sees each child as an individual with unlimited potential, if given the opportunities and tailored instruction for different learning styles. Small classes and innovative multisensory instruction, combined with weekly teacher training, produce results for all children. Ninety percent of students master their personalized goals, and 80 percent participate in extracurricular activities. The curriculum includes international Orton-Gillingham language learning and modified Common Core standards. Award-winning theater and sports teams, fine arts and religious education broaden students’ interests, promote leadership, develop talents and shape character. Your child will be known and valued. Sophia Academy serves pre-K through high school and is located at 2880 Dresden Drive in Atlanta. Call 404-303-8722 or visit www.sophia for more information.

By his mother’s account, a young Jeff Bezos, founder of Inc., one of the most dominant online retailers, was so engrossed in his school activities that his Montessori teacher picked him up in his chair to move him to new tasks. Engaged learning such as this occurs daily at Springmont, which is celebrating 50 years in Atlanta this year. Springmont provides a progressive learning environment where lessons are experienced, not just taught, and a sense of wonder is inspired in students. Springmont is located on a 7-acre wooded campus in the heart of Sandy Springs. This hands-on, discovery-based education serves children ages 1½ to 14. Springmont provides students with a foundation for learning that supports problem-solving, develops collaborative skills, grows self-awareness and ignites imaginations for a lifetime. As a result, graduates matriculate to Atlanta’s finest high schools. Visit the Springmont campus and see the environment where your child will thrive. For more information, call 404-2523910 or visit


PHOTO: Michie Turpin Photography

Celebrating its 60th anniversary as a K-8 school within the Archdiocese of Atlanta, St. Joseph Catholic School is a 2003 National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. Accredited by AdvancED, St. Joseph offers an academically challenging curriculum and a focus on character-building that fosters the development of the whole child. The standard curriculum is enhanced with weekly school mass, art, music, computer lab and Spanish. Extracurricular opportunities include drama, robotics, basketball, volleyball and more. Located at 81 Lacy Street in Marietta, Ga. Call 770-428-3328 or visit for more information about this remarkable school.




Atlanta Indepentent School Directory! CALL 770-992-0273

32 | Newcomer Magazine

Woodward Academy is metro Atlanta’s long-proven leading college-preparatory independent school for families who want the certainty of more complete preparation for college and life. Tapping into more than a century of educational wisdom, Woodward Academy transforms each experience into a tangible opportunity for learning and growth. Woodward students develop a deep respect for difference as they collaborate with peers who come from 23 metro Atlanta counties, and from a broad array of religious, economic and ethnic backgrounds. Woodward students find opportunities to explore and excel at every level, whatever their interests. They receive wise guidance at every step—from the first day of pre-K to the final AP exam—expanding their academic capacities through specialized instruction and individualized support. A typical Woodward Academy graduating class attends more than 100 different colleges and universities, devotes 5,000 hours to community service projects and earns more than $13 million in scholarship awards. Because of the Woodward experience, Academy graduates are notably confident and wellprepared for college and beyond as they enter the complex and evolving world. For more information, call 404-765-4001 or visit SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION

Beyond The Basics School




Annual Tuition Range


Religious Affiliation

Accreditations or Affiliations

Open House Dates*

Alexsander Academy




$9,000 $23,500




Call for Appointment

Atlanta Girls’ School




$19,800 $20,500




11/10; Monthly info sessions starting in Oct.

The Bedford School








1/26, 2/23, 3/19

The Children’s School








Tues & Thurs, Nov.-March

ClearWater Academy



Kedron Area

$20,000 $25,000




March 2014

Eastside Christian School



Greater North Atlanta

$5,680 $8,525




10/23, 11/13, 1/15, 2/5

Faith Lutheran School



East Cobb

$3,600 $6,675




12/8, 1/25, 2/11, 3/16

The Friends School of Atlanta








12/7, 1/11, 2/1

Greater Atlanta Christian School




$11,540 $16, 960




10/15, 11/12, 1/14

Hebron Christian Academy




$5,891 $7,850




Contact School

The Heritage School




$7,485 $14,180




Visits by Appt.

Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia



Johns Creek

$5,000 $10,550




Call for tour




VAIS, SACS-CASI, NAIS, AMCSUS, TABS, VAMS, Parents League of New York

11/9. 12/14, 1/11, 2/8, 3/22, 4/19

Massanutten Military Academy



Woodstock, Va.

Pinecrest Academy




$6,775 $14,200


Roman Catholic

SACS, SAIS, NAIS, NCEA, College Board


Providence Christian Academy




$9,420 $13,980




Contact School

Sophia Academy



Chamblee/ Tucker

$4,750 $21,125




Contact School




Sandy Springs

$10,810 $18,530




10/25, 11/17, 1/21

St. Joseph Catholic School




$5,966 $7,756





Woodward Academy



College Park, Johns Creek





1/26 (Johns Creek), 2/9 (College Park)

C - Christian

CC - Catholic

L - Lutheran

N/A - Does not Apply

ND - Non-denominational

* Open house dates may be specific to a grade level or day of the week. Please contact each school for details.


Newcomer Magazine | 33




Historic Towns Embark on a Charming Tour of the Past

Georgia’s long and storied history continues far beyond the shadow of Atlanta’s skyline. From gold rushes to antebellum homes and presidential retreats, Georgia’s attractions are as varied as the towns they call home. As autumn’s turning leaves and crisp blue skies encourage us to get out and hit the open road, this is the perfect time to discover some of the state’s most interesting and charming historic towns and perhaps take part in their seasonal festivities. By Dawn Sloan Downes and Sheila Cosgrove

34 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTO: Little White House: Kim Foster Photography.

CARTERSVILLE Less than hour from Atlanta up Interstate 75, Cartersville is steeped in history. It became the seat of Bartow County after nearby Cassville was burned during Gen. Sherman’s famous march during the Civil War. Cartersville is home to the Etowah Indian Mounds Historic Site, a state park commemorating the area’s Native American culture dating back 1,000 years. Other historic attractions include the Booth Western Art Museum, which features exhibits exploring the life and culture of the American West, and Rose Lawn Museum, a faithfully restored Victorian mansion that was the home of famous 19th-century evangelist Rev. Sam P. Jones. On Oct. 19, the inaugural Cartersville Bluegrass & Folk Festival fills the historic downtown area with live music from more than a dozen bluegrass, folk and country acts. The 11th annual Southeastern Cowboy Festival and Symposium fills the Booth Museum with lectures, children’s activities, pioneer demonstrations, re-enactments of historic gunfights and more, Oct. 24 through 27. And on Dec. 5, the Cartersville Exchange Club Christmas Parade rolls through downtown. 770-387-1357,


The annual Gold Rush Days celebrate the discovery of gold in Dahlonega in 1828.

Situated in the rustic Appalachian foothills, Dahlonega gave America its first gold rush. Today, visitors can learn more about the period at the Dahlonega Gold Museum, housed in a courthouse built in 1836. While on the town’s historic square, grab a treat at the Picnic Café and Dessertery inside the century-old Price Building, or enjoy a classic Southern-style dinner at the Historic Smith House Inn, which was built in 1898 atop a rich vein of gold. The annual Gold Rush Days on Oct. 19 and 20 celebrate the discovery of gold in the area in 1828, with festivities including more than 300 arts and crafts vendors, a parade, live music and much more. Or take in Dahlonega’s month-long Old Fashioned Christmas, which starts on Nov. 29 and continues almost daily throughout December; don’t miss the hometown parade with Santa Claus on the first Saturday of the month. 706-864-3513,

HELEN Just 90 minutes from Atlanta, this quaint hamlet is like a Bavarian outpost nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Helen was an overlooked mountain town until it was revitalized in the 1960s, becoming an authentic replica of an Alpine village—and one of the top three tourist destinations in the state. Stroll its picturesque streets while taking in the German architectural touches, or visit such attractions as Habersham Vineyards and Winery, Unicoi State Park and Anna Ruby Falls. Helen’s biggest celebration, naturally, is Oktoberfest, which fills the streets with German food, drinks and music each autumn. The festival marks its 43rd anniversary this year, and runs through Oct. 27. 800-858-8027, u TOP TO BOTTOM: The Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville; the Little White House in Warm Springs; Helen replicates an Alpine village; shopping in Thomasville. | Newcomer Magazine | 35

MONROE Nestled right between Atlanta and Athens, Monroe was the birthplace and home of four Georgia governors, earning it the nickname “the City of Governors.” Among the city’s historical attractions is the McDanielTichenor House, the former home of Henry McDaniel, Georgia’s 37th governor. This stunning example of the region’s Italianate and neoclassical architecture styles is available for weddings and other special events. Light up the Night on Nov. 7 as Monroe celebrates the lighting of the trees throughout downtown with art displays and local entertainment. On Thursday nights from Nov. 29 to Dec. 19, enjoy Candlelight Shopping in the charming shops of downtown Monroe’s historic town square. 770-266-5331,

WARM SPRINGS This charming Southern town is best known for its natural warm springs, where president Franklin D. Roosevelt sought treatment for his polio. Tour the Little White House, the six-room cottage believed to have inspired some of Roosevelt’s New Deal programs. Today, guests to Warm Springs can visit a touch pool to feel the waters, which remain at a constant 88 degrees year-round. During the Candlelight Tour Festival, Nov. 16 through 18, the streets are lined with lighted trees and candles, and decorated with thousands of lights, garlands and bows. Visitors stroll past the town’s specialty shops and restaurants as carolers fill the air with holiday tunes. 706-655-2558,

THOMASVILLE This South Georgia town boasts more than 70 unique historic sites, many of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Filled with antebellum homes and Victorian architecture, Thomasville features a wealth of Georgia history. The Deep South Fair comes to town Oct. 8 through 12, with a demolition derby, arts and crafts exhibits and more. The Thomasville FlyIn features a startling variety of planes, aircraft engines, demonstrations and memorabilia, Oct. 11 through 13.. Take in the 27th annual Victorian Christmas, which transforms downtown Thomasville into a timeless wonderland with carriage rides, carolers, live music, a live nativity and residents strolling in Victorian-era clothes on Dec. 12 and 13. 229-228-7977,

MORE HISTORIC DESTINATIONS BRUNSWICK Named for the ancestral home of King George II, this South Georgia city boasts Victorian architecture, tree-lined streets, boutique shops and stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. 912-265-4032,

MILLEDGEVILLE This former state capital is known for its antebellum structures, architectural landmarks, historic sites and idyllic downtown. 800-653-1804,

SAVANNAH Georgia’s oldest city dates back to 1733, and thrives to this day as a vibrant port with cobblestone streets, gorgeous architecture and a rich historic district. 912-644-6400,

36 | Newcomer Magazine |

38 40 47





Vehicle Emission Inspection

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

Mass Transit

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

Driving Tips

MARTA Rail Service

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

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

770.279.7200 4575 Lawrenceville Highway • Lilburn, GA 30047

38 | Newcomer Magazine |

PCA_Ad_Newcomer Magazine Oct 2.375” x 4.812”

GETTING STARTED Patrick Killam, Publisher 770.992.0273 Office 770.649.7463 Fax

NEED TO KNOW Voter Registration

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

ad Size:

issue: december/January 08

ProoF SH

Full Page 8.375"x 10.875" HalF Page Horizontal 7.375"x 4.812" HalF Page Vertical 3.5625"x 9.875" tHird Page Vertical 2.375"x 9.875"

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

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

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

Cherokee County QUICK INFO

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

County Neighborhoods Schools

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

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


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

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

City of Woodstock


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


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

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

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

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

Cagle Dairy Farm, Canton

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

40 | Newcomer Magazine |

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


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


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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

White Water

Cobb County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

Marietta City Schools Board of Education



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

42 | Newcomer Magazine |




DeKalb County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development

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


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

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


Emory University



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

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

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


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

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

UTILITIES & CONTACTS Electricity Georgia Power


Snapping Shoals EMC


Walton EMC


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



404-780-2355 Water

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


Comcast Cablevision


Hospitals Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston


DeKalb Medical Center


Emory University Hospital


Piedmont Hospital and Medical Care Center

404-605-5000 | Newcomer Magazine | 43


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

Avg. SAT Scores

Fayette Co. Georgia National

1550 1431 1483

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

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


WATER Fayette County Water 770-461-1146 Comcast

CABLE TV 404-266-2278

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


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

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

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

Fayette County


Starr's Mill in Fayetteville

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

44 | Newcomer Magazine |


Peachtree City


Fulton County

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

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

Elementary Schools Middle Schools High Schools Charter Per-pupil expenditures

Downtown Atlanta skyline




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

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

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development.

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


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


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

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

58 19 16 6 $9,746

Atlanta City Schools


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

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

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

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

Fulton County



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

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


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

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


Telephone 888-436-8638

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


Comcast 404-266-2278 Hospitals Emory Eastside Medical Center


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


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

Gwinnett County

Photo: Georgia Dept. of Economic Development


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


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




46 | Newcomer Magazine |


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

Global Winter Wonderland, Turner Field

Theater & Concerts

PHOTO: Courtesy of Global Winter Wonderland

Terror on the Trail, Sims Lake Park

Exhibits & Events

America’s Got Talent Live, Fox Theatre See many of the performers from the recent season of “America’s Got Talent.” Oct. 8, 855-285-8499,

Michael Bublé, The Arena at Gwinnett Center The superstar crooner visits Atlanta promoting his recent CD, To Be Loved. Oct. 27, 800-745-3000,

This 19th annual event features exhibits and demonstrations of southern Appalachian culture such as woodworking, broom-making, folk art painting, stained glass and more. The festival also features archery, sack racing, games, a silent auction, food and live music. Oct. 5, 706-746-

Browse vendors offering seasonal produce, fresh eggs, artisan breads, cheese, meats, herbal products and much more. Oct. 19, Nov. 23 and Dec. 21,

11th Annual Southeastern Cowboy Festival and Symposium, Booth Western Art Museum

Enjoy a carnival with midway attractions, contests, interactive performances and more. Oct. 12,

Join the Booth Museum for a four-day celebration of the West with art and history lectures, children’s activities, pioneer demonstrations, gunfight re-enactments and much more.

Tosca, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Ghost the Musical, Fox Theatre The national touring production of the Broadway show, based on the hit movie starring Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore, comes to the Fox for a limited engagement. Nov. 5-10,

Oct. 24-27, 770-387-1300,

Trek or Treat, Suwanee Creek Park The City of Suwanee’s annual free Halloween celebration for kids features games, a costume parade and a free hot dog lunch (while supplies last). Oct. 26,


Radio City Christmas Spectacular, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

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East Point Farmer’s Market, East Point

Destination East Point Fall Festival, East Point

Enchanted Maize, Rock City PHOTO: Tim Wilkerson

The finale of this live-music series takes place in conjunction with the seventh annual Community Chili Cook-Off at Jess Lucas Park. Oct. 18,


The world-famous Rockettes return to Atlanta with an all-new show featuring brand-new scenes, sets, costumes and musical numbers. Witness the eye-high kicks and precision dance style that have made the Rockettes a household name. Nov. 7-10, 12-17, and 19-23, 800-745-3000,

Downtown Live Concert Series, Downtown Hapeville

Observe and learn about helicopters, hovercraft, race cars and other vehicles at this fourth annual celebration of big machines, bringing the Tellus Museum’s Science in Motion transportation gallery to life. Oct. 19, 770-606-5700,

Foxfire Mountaineer Festival, The Atlanta Opera kicks off its 2013-2014 Rabun County Civic Center 404-881-8885,

25-26, 678-226-6222,

Heavy Metal in Motion, Tellus Science Museum

Tosca, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

season with a production of Giacomo Puccini’s dramatic tour de force. Oct. 5, 8, 11 and 13,

The Aurora Theatre presents this haunted attraction, in which teenage zombies compel captive souls to share spine-tingling stories as visitors follow a trail that loops around Sims Lake. Recommended for ages 10 and up. Oct. 11-12, 18-19 and

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

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

Learn how to observe the moon through telescopes and with the naked eye. All participants receive a lunar chart and instructions on how to use it. Nov. 8, 770-606-5700,

Downtown Festival & Art Show, Gainesville, Fla. See works from more than 250 artists working in oils and acrylics, watercolors, sculpture, jewelry and more. Nov. 16-17,

Global Winter Wonderland, Turner Field See recreations of some of the world’s greatest monuments at this lantern festival and multicultural theme park. Nov. 21-Jan. 4, 2014,

PHOTO: High Museum Jerry Pinkney Illustration Photo Release

Lunar Astronomy Workshop, Tellus Science Museum


Jerry Pinkney’s “Grr (Lion Picks Up Mouse)”

Witness: The Art of Jerry Pinkney This is the first major exhibition to examine the 50-year career of Caldecott Medal-winning artist and illustrator Jerry Pinkney, displaying more than 140 of his watercolor illustrations from classic picture books and commissions. Oct. 12-Jan. 5, 2014.


Holidays in Hapeville, Downtown Hapeville Join this annual holiday celebration with crafts, games, music, hot cocoa, Santa Claus and a treelighting ceremony in Jess Lucas Park. Nov. 26,

Bedford Dasher, The Bedford School This fifth annual 5K run/walk and Elf Run begins and ends at the Bedford School in Fairburn, which strives to maximize the potential of students with learning differences. Registration begins at 7 a.m. Dec. 14, 770-774-8001,

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

Bodies the Exhibition, Atlantic Station This exhibit offers an unmatched view of the human body and how it works, with more than 200 actual bodies and specimens offering a look at our skeletal structure, musculature, nervous and reproductive systems, and more. Ongoing, 404-496-4274,

Fox Theatre Tours, Fox Theatre Take a guided tour of this historic Midtown venue. Ongoing, 404-881-2100,

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

Paris on Peachtree: The Art of the Louvre’s Tuileries Garden Explore the art and evolution of the famous Tuileries Garden, which stretches between the Louvre Museum and the Place de la Concorde in Paris. Works include paintings, drawings and photographs of the garden, and largescale sculptures created in the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. The exhibit also details how the Tuileries inspired works by various French artists. Nov. 3-Jan. 19, 2014.

Go West! Art of the American Frontier from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West


This exhibit features objects and major works of art showcasing the exploration and settlement of the American West, including posters, photos and other artwork created for Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West show, recreational frontier firearms and the advertisements that promoted them, and a war bonnet and other artifacts crafted by members of Plains tribes. Nov. 3-April 13, 2014. MOnDay-SaturDay

ONGOING Friday Jazz

10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Closed Sunday

Enjoy an evening of art and live music every third Friday of the month (except December) at the High, with extended hours and full gallery access. Free with museum admission.



Scarlett on the Square

Thirsty Thursdays Enjoy an evening of art and drinks every Thursday at the High, with half-price admission after 4 p.m. All events at the High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. The High is closed on Mondays. For more information, call 404-733-5000 or visit

Original Gone With the Wind memorabilia on display from the private collection of Dr. Christopher Sullivan. Gift Shop, facility RentalS annual eventS

770-794-5576 | Newcomer Magazine | 49

hiddenATLANTA LEFT: “Green Day’s American Idiot.” RIGHT: “The Book of Mormon.”


Bringing the Best of Broadway to the Peach State

50 | Newcomer Magazine |

PHOTOS: (Left) Turner Rouse, Jr.; (Right) © Joan Marcus 2013

Broadway in Atlanta

or more than 30 years, Atlanta audiences have enjoyed many of the most popular dramas, comedies and musicals that Broadway has to offer, without the expense of a plane ticket and hotel room. Each year, Broadway in Atlanta brings a selection of national touring productions of acclaimed and award-winning shows to the Fox Theatre in Midtown Atlanta. Broadway in Atlanta, sponsored by Fifth By Cady Schulman Third Bank, kicks off its 2013-2014 season with Ghost the Musical (Nov. 5-10), based on the 1990 film starring Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore. The season’s other entries include Once (March 4-9), based on the 2007 film about two musicians who fall in love in Ireland; Disney’s The Lion King (April 10-27); Green Day’s American Idiot (May 1-4); Evita (June 3-8); and the show expected to be the season’s biggest hit, The Book of Mormon (Jan. 28-Feb. 9), a satire from creators of the TV show South Park and the hit musical Avenue Q. “It’s really the hottest show still on Broadway,” says Russ Belin, Broadway in Atlanta’s vice president. Choosing shows for each year’s lineup takes time—around 18 months, to be exact, as producers travel to New York to take in various shows and attempt to gauge how they’ll play for local audiences. Not every Broadway show is a perfect fit for Atlanta crowds, Belin says. Broadway in Atlanta audiences tend to respond well to shows like Flashdance the Musical from last season, he adds. “Shows where you’re going to have a good time and fun music—those are the kinds of shows we’re going to look for,” he says. That formula has proven successful for Broadway in Atlanta, which has enjoyed a strong couple of years with such shows as War Horse, Beauty and the Beast, Flashdance, Million Dollar Quartet, Sister Act, Les Misérables and Jersey Boys. “Basically, every show’s been more popular than we expected,” Belin says. “I think we’re able to build up the subscribers and get them excited, and I think people are starting to trust our brand. We continue to bring the hits straight off Broadway.” All shows are presented at the Fox Theatre. For showtimes, tickets and other information, call 800-278-4447 or visit

Newcomer Magazine | Oct/Nov 2013  

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

Newcomer Magazine | Oct/Nov 2013  

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