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Buckhead Reporter

Head for the Hills

Fast, then feast Muslims celebrate Ramadan FAITH 6

Worth the wait

North Buckhead has Master Plan COMMENTARY 8

JULY 10— JULY 23, 2015 • VOL. 9 — NO. 14

Ready, set, roll

PAGES 10-17

NPU approves new 22-story condo tower on Peachtree BY COLLIN KELLEY An unusual 22-story condominium building inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s famed “Fallingwater” received unanimous approval by Neighborhood Planning Unit-B at its July 7 meeting. The building at 2520 Peachtree will be Buckhead’s first planned condo tower since the end of the recession as developers have embraced the new luxury apartment building craze that has swept the city of Atlanta. The new condominium, located just north of Peachtree Battle Shopping Center, will have up to three units per floor, with a total of 65 units. Large, staggered outdoor balconies give the tower a waterfall type appearance as seen in the rendering released by developer JPX Works. JPX Works, the company behind the mixed-used apartment and retail development called Inman Quarter in InSEE FIRST, PAGE 5

Gardening collection was small, but blossomed BY MARY HELEN KELLY It began 40 years ago in a telephone closet in the basement of the Atlanta History Center. The collection was small then. It contained only about 100 books. Now, with more than 30,000 objects relating to gardening and landscaping, the Cherokee Garden Library is among the premier gardening libraries in the southeastern United States, says Staci Catron, the library’s director. The library, part of the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center, focuses on collecting materials related to the land and gardening of Atlanta and the state of Georgia, and includes everything from photographs to landscape drawings to postcards to seed catalogs. Catron says the collection is home to some objects so rare that libraries in Chicago and New York do not have them. “I like it because it’s got a very specific focus and mission, and no one else in the world is doing it, which makes it unique and fun,” said Catron. SEE GARDENING, PAGE 4


Bryce Ebersole, 7, left, and sister Malin, 4, have their modes of transportation positioned at the start of the eighth annual Chastain Park Fourth of July parade. A little rain did not dampen the crowd’s spirits as they traveled down West Wieuca Road to the Chastain pool. See more photos on page 2.


Kinsey Harper, left, president of the board of Cherokee Garden Library, and library director Staci Catron page through a book from the collection.



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It rained on their parade Left, Kendall Ebersole, 7, is ready to ride in the eighth annual Chastain Park Fourth of July parade. Right, Jim King, left, gets in the spirit as “Uncle Sam,” while John Kultenback accompanies him. Below, the parade started at West Wieuca Road and Dudley Lane, then traveled westbound to the Chastain pool for refreshments.

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Buc shuttles cut back on Peachtree stops Buc shuttles reduced the number of stops on the Piedmont-Lenox line in early July. Buc shuttles now connect directly from Piedmont Road to the Buckhead MARTA station, eliminating stops along the way on Peachtree Road. The changes went into effect July 6. They were brought on by the Buckhead Community Improvement District’s decision to reduce the operating budget for the Buc. Jim Durrett, Buckhead CID’s executive director, said the cuts will save the CID about $500,000 a year. Livable Buckhead, the nonprofit that operates the shuttles, said the revised PiedmontLenox line will continue to operate Monday through Friday during morning and evening commute hours, with shuttles running approximately every 12 minutes. The Buc shuttle connecting AT&T’s Lenox Park facilities to the Lenox MARTA station and surrounding areas will not be affected, Livable Buckhead said in its newsletter.

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The collection is housed in the Kenan Research Center.

Gardening collection started small, but blossomed CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

6/30/15 2:35 PM


The Cherokee Garden Library’s collection is open to the public, free of charge, Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m., at the Atlanta History Center, 130 West Paces Ferry Road, NW. On Oct. 14, garden writer Ken Druse is scheduled to present the library’s 40th Anniversary Celebration Lecture. The event is open to the public. Individual tickets are $25.

The fact that no one else in the world is doing what this library does makes it a popular place for landscape architects and designers, gardeners and artists – “from Girl Scouts to post-docs and everyone in between” – to do research, Catron said. Materials are also requested electronically from around the world. Catron says the library focuses a lot on relevance. For example, the oldest book in the collection, “The Profitable Art of Gardening” by Thomas Hills and published in London in 1856, still carries important information for readers today. After reading a selection aloud about growing herbs and why one would do that, Catron said, “When you flip through it and read any passage, it really resonates now.” With the 40th anniversary of the library happening this year, Catron wants to keep the collection relevant and relatable. Existing for 40 years “shows the importance in the community” and that “this collection has stayed relevant,” Catron said. “One of the great things about studying gardening and the land is it’s always the same purpose – we’re trying to heal our bodies and our hearts, and our minds and our souls,” says Catron. In honor of the 40th anniversary, garden writer Ken Druse will speak in October at the Atlanta History Center.

“In the last decade we have made it a core part of our mission to bring speakers on relevant topics,” said Kinsey Harper, president of the library’s board. Four pieces highlighting the contents of the Garden Library are also on special display as part of the “Four for the Fortieth” exhibit this year. The pieces include Philip Miller’s The Gardeners Dictionary, Jane Wells Loudon’s The Ladies’ Flower-Garden of Ornamental Greenhouse Plants, Loula Kendall’s “Bellwood Plantation” pastel on paper, and Hastings’ Seed Catalogue No. 44, Fall 1912. The materials were “selected to highlight and celebrate the materials housed in the Cherokee Garden Library,” according to a press release. Both Catron and Harper said the point to preserving the library’s extensive collection of books and objects is so people can relate to them now. Harper said the library is “constantly building,” with an acquisitions committee headed by Catron. “We want to honor the past and preserve it, but we want to stay relevant in the 21st century. We are celebrating four decades, and optimistically looking forward to the next four decades,” said Catron. For more information on the Cherokee Garden Library and its 40th Anniversary events, visit CherokeeGardenLibrary.

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |


Left, some of the volumes in the collection. Right, “Bellwood Plantation,” on special display for the “Four for the Fortieth” exhibit.




First Buckhead condo tower since recession gets approval CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

man Park, has called the condos “villas in the sky.” The building will sit atop a two-story parking garage, and will also have a pool and other amenities. The site of the new development, near the intersection of Lindbergh and Peachtree roads, is currently home to a condo building built in the 1950s, which will be demolished. 2520 Peachtree now goes to the Atlanta Zoning Board of Review before getting final approval from Atlanta City Council.

• Representatives from the Atlanta Police Department reported that while violent crime is down in Zone 2, there has been a serious uptick in the number of property crimes, specifically stolen cars. Reports show that two to three stolen cars per week are being reported in the Buckhead area. Residents were reminded to not leave keys or valuables in their cars.



A condo inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s ”Fallingwater” received unanimous approval by the NPU-B.

Cyclorama getting ready to move The Atlanta Cyclorama and Civil War Museum has closed its long-time location in Grant Park, opening the way to move the historic painting of the Battle of Atlanta to the Atlanta History Center in Buckhead. In addition to the 128-year-old painting, a locomotive, four cannons and other Civil War artifacts will be moved to a new facility at the history center. Construction on the new building to hold the painting is to begin in the fall and the new display is scheduled to open in 2017. The locomotive, the Texas, will be displayed in a new breezeway being built at the history center between the current building and the new building that will house the painting, the history cenB RIEFS ter said. The new display will allow the locomotive to be seen from West Paces Ferry Road, the center said. The display also will allow the restoration of more than 3,000 square feet of the painting that was removed for generations, the history center said. “The Atlanta History Center has the most comprehensive collection of Civil War artifacts at one location in the nation,” Mayor Kasim Reed said in a press release. “The relocation of the Atlanta Cyclorama to the history center provides the opportunity to make new connections between the Cyclorama and other artifacts, archival records, photographs, rare books, and contemporary research, providing a unique opportunity to renew our Cyclorama - one of the city’s most important cultural and historic landmarks.”

Massell inducted into government Hall of Fame Former Atlanta Mayor Sam Massell has been inducted into the Georgia Municipal Association’s Municipal Government Hall of Fame, the Buckhead Coalition announced. Massell, who served in various elected positions in Georgia for 22 years, was honored June 29 during the GMA’s annual convention, held in Savannah. Massell served as mayor of Atlanta from 1970 until 1974 and as president of the Atlanta Board of Aldermen/Vice Mayor. He is currently serving as president of the coalition, a nonprofit civic organization. BH


In other action: • NPU chairwoman Andrea Bennett gave an update on a recent meeting of the Buckhead Community Improvement District, residents and business owners to discuss improvements to the intersection of Phipps Boulevard and Wieuca Road. One potential solution is the construction of a roundabout similar to the one in Emory Village. Bennett said the next steps would be to run traffic models to see which would help alleviate traffic congestion at the busy intersection.

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |


A 2-year-old girl pranced across the carcause she said Allah, the Arabic word pet in her bare feet, jingling as she ran with for God, forgives sin during that time. decorated bell bracelets on each ankle. During Ramadan, Muslims fast A little boy playing hide-and-seek from dawn until dusk, avoiding food, wandered through the crowded room drink and engaging in sexual relations, asking, “Now, where’d that boy go?” Ehsan said. Sleeping all day and wakA second boy, hiding under the ing at night to feast would defeat the table of food laid out for the comspirit of the holiday, she said. ing feast, giggled when the first boy Eid al-Fitr means “feast of fastfound him. They ran back across the breaking” and celebrates the end of partition into the mens’ area of MasRamadan. This year it falls on July 17. jid Uthman, a new “Only during Ramosque operating madan do you see from a small office women and chilpark in Dunwoody. dren here,” Ehsan “The community wanted A half-dozsaid. They gather toto get together and have a en women who gether on the weekplace here, especially for had gathered in end days and celethe room talked the Friday prayers. It’s hard brate most heavily and laughed. They during the last 10 for people who are at work hadn’t eaten since days of the month to go to another, bigger sunrise, but seemed because that’s when more involved in ex- masjid because of the traffic the Prophet Muand the time it takes.” changing colorful hammad received broaches as gifts of the Qur’an, she said. friendship than in Ehsan and her – RAMISA EHSAN breaking their fast husband, Kahlid with the waiting Bashir, are foundbowls of fruit. ing members of the The women, Masjid Uthman most of them mothon Mount Vernon ers of little children, paid little attenRoad. Masjid is the Arabic word for tion to the hide-and-seek game. They mosque, whereas mosque is an Engtry to let the kids have fun so they will lish word “meaning place of prayer,” start to think of the masjid as a “secshe said. ond home,” Ramisa Ehsan said. They chose to name the masjid afAbout three dozen women and men ter Uthman, who was a companion gathered July 3 at Masjid Uthman to and son-in-law to the Prophet Mubreak their daily fast and pray as part hammad. Uthman was elected by the of their celebration of Ramadan, the people to represent them after MuMuslim holy month of fasting. Mashammad died, Ehsan said. Uthman jid member Rafidah Naseem calls Rawas one of four democratically electmadan a “month of happiness” beed people, she said. BH



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“It wasn’t because of his family status that he was chosen, but because of his piety and righteousness, and the kind of person he was,” Ehsan said. Ehsan and her husband moved from India to Buffalo, N.Y., 20 years ago, when he started his residency in nephrology. Both she and her husband are medical doctors, who work in Atlanta. They came to Georgia seeking the best jobs, and they chose Dunwoody for its schools, she said. They have one son in eighth grade and a son who is a senior in high school. The family has been part of the local Muslim community for 10 years, Ehsan said. Before the Masjid Uthman opened in May 2014, local Muslims gathered in a home on Tilly Mill Road, she said. “The community wanted to get together and have a place here, especially for the Friday prayers,” Ehsan said. “It’s hard for people who are at work to go to another, bigger masjid because of the traffic and the time it takes.” Their congregation has grown to about 60 members, many of them fam-


ilies with young children. The imam, the prayer leader, is a young man who attends a local college, Ehsan said. For the Friday evening dinner on July 3, places were marked by a bowl of fresh fruit. Congregation members would follow fruit with spicy rice dishes and condensed milk soup. “We Indians like to eat with our hands,” Ehsan said. She said it makes her think about life before utensils. Two boys ran together back across the partition. The women finished their food and stood side by side for the first group prayer, led by the imam on a television screen from the other side of the room. Naseem, who moved from Minneapolis to Dunwoody a year ago, said her husband’s computer job brought them to Georgia. Many of the friends she’s made at the masjid also have husbands who work with computers, she said. Naseem said she met everyone she knows in her community through her faith. “When I came to this masjid,” she said, “I made all of my friends here.”




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Back row, left to right, Yaser Arafath, Syed Rajkapoor, Khalid Bashir. Front row, from left, Ayesha Thasneem Nagoor Hanifa, Hashir Nagoor Hanifa and Muhab Wani at Masjid Uthman, a mosque operating in a small office park in Dunwoody. BH


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North Buckhead approves Master Plan North Buckhead is ing facility and thousands of called a neighborhood, but single-family homes (rangit is more like a small city. ing from relatively modest to With over 9,000 residents high-end)? and a property tax digest Following the philosophy larger than most Georgia that it’s better late than nevcounties, North Buckhead er, the North Buckhead Civis big and still growing rapic Association decided that it idly. Overall, though the was time to join many othneighborhood has some er Atlanta neighborhoods major challenges, it is most(mainly in the central part of ly healthy. the city) and finance a neighGORDON By the time the neighborhood master plan for CERTAIN borhood joined the city of North Buckhead. Atlanta in 1952, the founCity Councilmember GUEST COLUMN dation for many of today’s Howard Shook was an imchallenges had already been mediate supporter. Caleb set. In particular, there was no regular Racicot of the TSW consulting firm was street grid and little other planning or inhired. We then met with Charletta Wilfrastructure such as parks and sidewalks. son-Jacks, director of the Atlanta Office A neighborhood with no underlying plan of Planning, who was most helpful. She – what could possibly go wrong? was instrumental in coordinating involveOur population has doubled repeatedment by the various city departments. ly since our agricultural beginnings more The process started with a busload of than a century ago. Particularly intense city department representatives getting a growth started when the southern part guided tour of North Buckhead. of the neighborhood converted from sinThat was July 2014. Since then, we’ve gle-family to high-density mixed use. The held four public meetings involving all neighborhood now hosts many skyscrapaspects of the neighborhood: residents, ers and retail outlets. About a quarter of representatives of the neighborhood’s a million vehicles now pass through or business community, nonprofits, etc. along its borders each day (including Ga. Online surveys and a half-day workshop 400, which bisects the neighborhood). were conducted. The process was guidStill, the result is a highly diverse and ed by a Stakeholders Steering Commitattractive neighborhood. tee made up of residents, business interWhat other Atlanta neighborhood ests and nonprofits. The end result was a has millions of square feet of Class A of110-page, six-part document. fice space, its own MARTA station (with another ½-mile away), its own major What were the key recommendations? highway/expressway interchange, as well • Land use: “Preserve and protect sinas a 29-acre nature preserve? What othgle-family areas” and “maintain the North er neighborhood is home to Phipps PlaBuckhead-specific NPU-B policies idenza and has Lenox Square across the street? tified in the 2011 Comprehensive DeWhat other neighborhood has such a divelopment Plan.” Improvements to the versity of housing types: apartments, lowRoswell Road corridor’s appearance, and high-rise condos, a public houswalkability and traffic flow were outlined.

Office Manager Deborah Davis Contributors Robin Jean Marie Conte, Kathy Dean Mary Helen Kelly, Phil Mosier, John Ruch, Megan Volpert

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |

Left, North Buckhead area map. Right, population in the area, as well as housing units, are projected to increase. Lower right, North Buckhead has over 9,000 residents and a property tax digest larger than many Georgia counties.

• Parks and open space: More parks are needed. While progress has been made, most of the neighborhood still has no parks. Trails and sidewalks are needed to connect to the parks we do have. • Transportation: Use better traffic management technology. Many streets need repaving, and some need “complete street” treatment, including sidewalks and traffic calming. Several intersections and street segments require major reworking. Transit, walkability, bikes and PATH400 need promotion and support. • Other: Detailed recommendations were made dealing with environment, infrastucture and facilities, and urban design and historic preservation. City departments began their review of our plan last December to ensure its consistency with city policies and planning guidelines. The plan was approved by the Atlanta City Council on July 6. The plan will be incorporated into the City’s Comprehensive Development Plan. This process took hundreds of volunteer hours and almost all the civic association’s bank balance. Was it worth the cost? Yes! • We have needed documentation about our neighborhood. • City officials have become more familiar with North Buckhead’s assets and needs. • We identified needed policies and about 100 specific projects. • We now have an official, well-coordinated roadmap to guide North Buckhead’s future. The plan and supporting information is online at Gordon Certain is president of the North Buckhead Civic Association.

North Buckhead Population Trends Year 2010 (Census) 2014 (Est.) 2019 (Est.)

Housing Units 4,994

Population 8,332





To see larger versions of these images, go to ReporterNewspapers. net. SPECIAL BH


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When you have four kids, odds are that in any given month, one of them will get sick. In fact, the folks at my local pharmacy know me by the sound of my voice, which is nice in a small-townfriendly sort of way, but at the same time a bit unsettling. When you are about to embark on a family vacation, however, the odds of illness increase because you must factor in Murphy’s Law (ML), which states that whenever something can go wrong, it will, and which results in the following equation:

right eye we ROBIN JEAN looked at MARIE CONTE each other, knowing ROBIN’S NEST that there was nothing in my arsenal to ward off whatever she had. She woke up the next morning with her eye swollen shut. I called our eye doctor, who called in a prescription for antibiotic drops, which we filled and then loaded ourselves into the car. When my daughter pried her eye open enough for me to apply the drops, however, I saw a disturbing yellowish goo, 4 (urgent care) x 52ML2 Rx (length of illness) and I called the doctor again. He grew concerned and said that we = 3y (length of vacation) extremely $ (HSA) needed to go to an ophthalmologist immediately and get her eye cultured. Thus you see that the result is roughThis is where I give a shout-out to Dr. ly an 89 percent probability that at least Rondowsky of Dunwoody and his enone child will become sick or have a medtire staff, who located an ophthalmoloical emergency within three days of the gist on our route, called his office, and vacation, with the duration and severiinformed him of the situation. ty of the condition in direct inverse proWe were south of the Sweet Tea Line, portion to the amount in your healthwhich lies just beyond the Mason-Dixcare account. The longer your trip, the on, driving through Kentucky in search higher the risk factor, so that if you are of the ophthalmologist. We made it to gone for more than one weekend, illness the office before closing time and ran or injury is inevithe culture to the table. hospital across The upshot is the street. that we’ve been Every hour on sick in all the best the hour, through places. Ohio, New York, I prepare for and into Canada, the inevitable I leaned across by always packthe minivan seats ing a first aid kit, to instill more including evdrops into my erything from daughter’s eyes. I Echinacea and got the call from Benadryl to mole the Kentucky skin and crutchophthalmologist es. I also ema few days later, ploy the popular while I was standROBIN JEAN MARIE CONTE ing in a poncho new-age method Robin prepares for the of positive thinkon the Maid of inevitable illness when her ing: “You’re fine… the Mist at Niagfamily goes on vacation. Now run!” ara Falls; my girl A few years ago, had indeed conwe took an epic two-week family minitracted a dreaded bacteria. We continvan adventure-trip up to Niagara Falls ued our journey back down the Eastern and back down the East Coast. (Two seaboard stopping for hamburgers and weeks in the minivan! You can imagophthalmologist checkups. ine how excited I was when my husband The bacteria ate a tiny hole into my suggested this particular vacation, since daughter’s cornea, just a tiny one, and driving around in a minivan full of kids I thank God, modern medicine and is something I really don’t do enough.) every ophthalmologist from here to We were traveling from Atlanta to New York that my daughter’s vision is Nashville to upstate New York for the intact today. first few legs of the journey. I had a So to all of you families out there, first-aid bag the size of my body that was traveling on family vacations, have a safe filled with lozenges, pills, drops, slings and healthy trip! and a snake-bite kit, and naturally, on I’ll see you at the doctor’s office. evening three of our trip -- a Sunday, of course -- my daughter complained that Robin Conte is a writer and mother of her eye hurt. four who lives in Dunwoody. She can be As I dropped some Visine into her contacted at

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 9

Head for the Hills

Fresh Air and Easy Living Homeowners talk trading in the city life for the mountains BY KATHY DEAN It might seem that the reasons for moving to the North Georgia mountains would be as varied as the people moving there, but that’s not really the case. It can all be distilled down to a few basic things that everyone wants – natural beauty, a relaxed lifestyle and friendly communities. When it comes to the details, though, everybody has their specific needs. For Kathy and Dave Brown, their 20-year dream of a log home finally came true in March. It took perseverance and patience to find the perfect cabin for vacations, and eventually retirement – a place with plenty of land for their grandchildren to play. “My husband and I are both retired law enforcement and we look forward to this quieter way of life,” Kathy said. “We come from the Tampa, Florida area where it’s a rat race. In the mountains, no one is a stranger and everyone is more than willing to help you.” The Browns are ready to get back to basics and enjoy the tranquility and slower-paced lifestyle. They’d originally bought acreage in Sylva, North Carolina, but never built on it; they realized they wanted something a little closer to home. “We’re just eight hours from our Florida house and within a few hours of Atlanta, Chattanooga and Cherokee,” Kathy added. “It’s the perfect vacation area, and I love the clean mountain air and beautiful landscapes of the mountains.” The area also affords them a great place to enjoy outdoor leisure activities and antiquing. Throughout the years, the Browns had been collecting antiques for their dream cabin. Some remodeling

is already underway to make it true to the early 1900s theme they’ve chosen. “Their cabin is lovely, and so is their land,” noted Donna M. O’Neal, associate broker, Coldwell Banker High Country Realty, the realtor who helped them locate their mountain cabin in Morganton, Georgia. For mountain living, it’s hard to beat Big Canoe, a beauty spot surrounded by even more natural beauty. Big Canoe’s North gate is 10 miles from Amicalola Falls State Park and Lodge, home of the tallest cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi River. And just five minutes from the gates of Big Canoe is Gibbs Gardens, recognized as one of the premier gardens in all of North America. A bit farther, but still just minutes away, are the 750,000 protected acres of the Chattahoochee National Forest, which features more than 430 miles of trails and 2,200 miles of rivers and streams – 1,370 are trout streams. Just over the Tennessee border, there’s the 640,000-acre Cherokee National Forest, and the 530,000-acre Nantahala National Forest is down the road in North Carolina. But it’s what’s in Big Canoe that brings people. Not only is it the perfect setting for events, especially weddings and retreats, there’s a range of new and resale homes, priced from $200,000 to $3 million+, that attract people looking for retirement homes, vacation homes and second homes. Hundreds of Atlanta families find their weekend getaway homes there. For one of those families, Bob and Carolyn Littell, it’s become their permanent spot of paradise. In the 1980s, Bob was living and working in Dallas, Texas. He relocated

to Atlanta in 1981 as chief marketing officer of an Atlanta-based insurance company. Soon after arriving, he attended a corporate retreat at Big Canoe that had already been planned before he arrived. He can remember saying: “I thought I’d found heaven!” After returning home from the retreat, he told his wife, Carolyn, about it and on regular intervals over the years that followed, they returned for visits, renting homes for the weekend to catch up on some reading and hike the trails. What drew them back was an area dubbed “the Enchanted Land” by the Indians, a mountaintop retreat of more than 8,000 pristine acres of woodlands and lakes. Cousins Properties in Atlanta began developing the area in the early 1970s. Bill Byrne of the Byrne Corporation of

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Georgia acquired the development in 1987. In 1997, Greenwood Development Corporation joined forces with Byrne to form the Big Canoe Co., LLC, which still manages Big Canoe today. While the area is carefully developed, about 30 percent of the land is set aside as usable green space. Initially, the Littells had planned to downsize their Buckhead home and just have a weekend mountain get-away in Big Canoe. But one day Carolyn called Bob and told him, “The dogs and I are moving up to Big Canoe permanently and you’re welcome to join us.” Today, Bob works only a few days out of their condo in Buckhead and then heads north to their mountain sanctuary. “It is really an amazing place,” Bob said. “And it attracts amazing people, including several retired universi-


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The interior of Kathy and Dave Brown’s cabin in Morganton, Georgia.

JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |

Carolyn Littell

706-268-2354 office 404-630-4185 cell

Head for the Hills


Above and left, Big Canoe, Georgia, offers water and mountain views.

ty presidents, senior executives and other successful professionals, working and retired.” There’s no shortage of activities in Big Canoe. The mountains cradle three lakes that invite swimmers, boaters and fishermen/women to get out in the water and enjoy the natural bounty. More than 300 members play on the indoor and outdoor courts of Big Canoe Tennis Club, one of the area’s tennis complexes. For golfers there’s the challenging Mountain Course, a 27-hole championship golf course designed by Joe Lee that winds through picturesque valleys and along rushing streams; it’s been rated as a Top 20 course in Georgia. “The gorgeous, new clubhouse is a great place to socialize, and one of the things I like best about Big Canoe is that you can own a $250,000 weekend get-away cabin and be sitting in the Black Bear Pub talking with someone

who owns a $2 million home. Nobody cares,” Bob added. “The common bond is nature and the setting. Most Big Canoe residents check their egos at the door…and their lawnmowers.” Another couple, Kathleen and Paul Greenlaw, moved in May 2014 from the Stone Mountain area to Talking Rock in Pickens County. They found their retirement home while searching through online listings, though they were originally looking for a plot of land to park their camper. Tina Pritchett, owner/broker of Mountain Tracks Realty in Blue Ridge, Georgia, helped get everything settled. “Tina was really great,” Paul said, “and she did not pay me to say that!” The Greenlaws agreed that the best part of living in the mountains is the small communities with little to no traffic, and the abundant wildlife and nature. They enjoy the privacy, peace, relaxation and silence, broken only by singing birds. Being in just the right

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place up on a mountain affords incredible views, they said, and lets them see amazingly colorful sunsets at night, and the fog-shrouded valley in the early morning (if they decide to get up early enough to watch the beautiful sunrise). There’s a lot they love about their new homestead, and plenty to do, like fishing, hiking, and nature and wildlife photography. Local courses, like the nearby Arrowhead Pointe Golf Course in Elberton, offers great deals for golfers. When they get in the mood to shop, it’s just a 15- or 20-minute drive to get anything they need. Kathleen and Paul added that one of their favorite activities is sitting on their deck or in the sunroom and watching the wildlife – deer, foxes, turkeys and the occasional bear. “People are usually ‘wowed’ when they come to visit us. It’s not so much about our house, as it is about our location,” Kathleen said. “We live at 1,700 feet, completely surrounded by woods, nature and wildlife, all on more than five acres.” Paul shared his advice for people considering a move to the north Georgia mountains. First, make a list of what you really want, what’s really important to you, and prioritize each point. Questions to consider are: where do

you want to be located, and in what kind of setting do you want your mountain home? Do you want to be in the woods, near a lake or on the top of a mountain? Would you like a pond, stream or river on your property? How much acreage would you like to buy? Do you want to live in or near a town, or in the country? Do you want to be able to see your neighbors or not? Then do some extensive research to find the spot that’s right for you. “We narrowed a list of approximately 100 Internet listings down to a dozen or so and spent two weekends with Mountain Tracks Realty finding the perfect home,” Kathleen said. “Here in the mountains, there are so many possibilities to choose from. The deals are still incredible, but prices are going up. If you are seriously looking for a mountain home, don’t wait. Our home realized a 10 percent increase in value in less than a year.” The Greenlaws look forward to each day in the mountains and the new things they see, hear and enjoy there, from sunrise to the sunsets – and the incredible amount of stars that the city lights didn’t let them see. “All this and, should we miss the traffic, we’re less than an hour-and-a-half from downtown Atlanta,” Paul added with a smile.

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 11

Head for the Hills

Novice or beginning paddlers are able to navigate the shoals in the Etowah River’s Class I water.


Experience, touch Georgia history paddling Etowah River BY ELLEN ELDRIDGE

History buffs can get a different perspective on past events while paddling north Georgia rivers during guided trips hosted by a Rome, Ga.-based nonprofit. Joe Cook, advocacy and communica-

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tion coordinator for the Coosa River Basin Initiative, an environmental organization, said canoeing the Etowah River is a great way to cool off during the summer heat and to get in touch with Georgia’s past. “Everybody in north Atlanta is familiar with the Chattahoochee [River], but the Etowah is almost as close to those communities,” Cook said, “and the Etowah is a place where you can really experience and touch history.” He said there aren’t any shoals that novice or beginning paddlers can’t navigate along the Etowah River’s Class I water. The nonprofit CRBI, named for the area’s watershed, hosts paddle trips from March through November. All along the Etowah River, in particular, Native American fish weirs from 500 years ago are visible to people paddling by, Cook said. “You can literally touch history in the rocks placed by Native Americans 500 years ago,” Cook said. “That’s a rare opportunity to experience something like that outside the confines of a state historic site.” Ellen and Brian Cardin found their love of kayaking after meeting Cook on a 110-mile trip last summer. For them, the idea to buy kayaks and head out on the seven-day tour came from a popular public television show called “Georgia Traveler,” Cardin said. “I guess you can call kayaking a midlife crisis for us!” Cardin said. She and Brian are 51. She said they want to stay as active as possible while they are healthy. They’ve met people aged 6 to 85 on the rivers, she said. The CRBI’s third annual “Paddle Through History” fundraiser is set to launch Oct. 11 in Bartow County, Cook said. The tour includes a stop at the ValCONTINUED ON PAGE 14



JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |



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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 13

Head for the Hills

Whitewater Fun

Nantahala Outdoor Center hosting special summer events Just an hour northwest of Highlands, North Carolina, the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) has a summer of events on tap for families, vacationers and whitewater paddlers. There’s something for guests of all ages and skill levels to enjoy during the months of July, August and September along the banks of the river. Multi-day adventures are available for visitors interested in rafting or zip lining by day and then relaxing overnight in one of NOC’s newly renovated cabins, bunkhouses or a SPECIAL resort lodge with Whitewater rafting along the Nantahala River. convenient access to campus activities. individuals and teams racing from one point on the river to The company also offers tubing, kayak and rafting rentals another point. The races take place Aug. 2-7. and trips on the Chattahoochee River.

Whitewater Junior Olympics Nantahala Racing Club, the nonprofit partner of NOC, hosts paddlers ages 18 and under for the 2015 Whitewater Junior Olympics July 24-26. This national-level youth event features slalom, downriver and freestyle competitions. Familyfriendly and fun for beginner through advanced paddlers, it’s a great opportunity for kids to meet young paddlers and families from around the country and get inspired about whitewater.

ICF Junior & U23 Whitewater Canoeing World Championships The International Canoe Federation’s Wildwater Canoeing World Championships provides juniors and young adults under 23 with the opportunity to compete internationally in the wildwater discipline. Wildwater racing consists of

Paddle Grapple

Participants in the Sept. 6 event choose from stand-up paddleboard, surfski, marathon, kayak or canoe classes in this race on Fontana Lake in the Great Smoky Mountains. With 3- and 6-mile race options available, the Paddle Grapple has something for every boater, whether recreational or elite.

Guest Appreciation Festival (GAF) & Bike Trials The weekend of Sept. 25-27 includes craft vendors and family-friendly activities including corn hole, giant Jenga, face painting, a bounce house and more. After rafting and zip lining, guests can dance to live music on the banks of the Nantahala River. For the complete event schedule and more information, visit

Chill. 14


Add a bit of education to your recreation by paddling along north Georgia rivers CONTINUED FROM PAGE 12

ley View plantation, a home that predates the Civil War. “That one tours an antebellum plantation home overlooking the Etowah, and it’s a really significant historical site that isn’t always open to the public,” he said. A suggested donation of $75 per person or $130 per couple includes a canoe/kayak to paddle, unless tourists prefer to bring their own. The donation also covers a year’s membership in CRBI, catered dinner, beer, wine, beverages and a chance to win a new kayak. Visit to register. Only 75 tickets will be sold, and the event has sold out each of the last two years it was offered, Cook said. An Aug. 2 trip starts in Canton and features educational programs on the history of the area, a six-mile paddle on the Etowah River and a dinner at The Wheeler House, an event venue in Ball Ground, Ga., first built in 1906. Suggested donation is $80 per person or $140 per couple, and includes canoe or kayak rental, dinner and membership in CRBI. Tickets may be reserved at All trips offered by CRBI through November are suitable for beginners, Cook said, and he encourages people who have never paddled before to come on a group trip where there is “safety in numbers.” “There’s always somebody to help you out on a group paddle trip,” Cook said. “It gives the opportunity to paddle on a river in a safe environment.”

Get a new view on life. It’s within easy reach – only 90 minutes from Atlanta. A place to relax. A place for fun. A place to call your own in the welcoming mountains of North Georgia.

JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |

Blue Ridge, Cherry Log, Morganton, Ellijay, Mineral Bluff

Chris Colbert, Associate Broker 404.226.2062

706.632.3737 1665 Appalachian Hwy, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Are the Mountains Calling You? Morganton, GA 7BR/5BA $1,749,900 Luxury Mountain Estate on 126 acres. Creekfront, trout pond, 3 car garage with apartment, golf driving range. MLS 245619 Call Teresa Bidez 706-455-2911

Blairsville, GA 5BR/4.5BA $1,100,000 Horse Ranch on 83+ unrestricted acres! Elegant country home, barn, workshop. Moments to Lake Nottely. MLS 247725 Call Dana Nelson 706-835-7906

Ellijay, GA 3BR/2.5BA $619,500 Craftsman style home on 3+ acres 1000 ft on Boardtown Creek. 3 fireplaces 3 covered porches, 2 car garage. MLS 247581 Call Donna O’Neal 770-356-9034

Blue Ridge, GA 5BR3.5BA $475,000 Gorgeous creekfront cabin - 1.9 acres on Fightingtown Creek. Perfect family retreat or full time home. MLS 238605 Call Mike Holloway 706-851-7513

Cherry Log, GA 4BR/3.5BA $454,900 Mountain & river view lodge on 2.7 acres. Gated community with deeded river access, paved roads, underground utilities. MLS 246455 Call Mark Reeves 706-455-2418

Blue Ridge, GA 3BR/3BA $448,000 Luxurious LOG home – Million $$ View! Great rental property or year round home. Too many features to list. MLS 248069 Call Mark Engledow 706-633-3988

Mineral Bluff, GA 3BR/3BA $439,900 Panoramic view cabin on 2.9 acres. Double level decks, exterior fireplace. Excellent rental history. MLS 233289 Call Jackie Lumpkin 706-455-1830

Blue Ridge, GA 3BR/3BA $424,999 Renovated 1908 cottage. 2 serene acres, 1BR guest house. Custom furnishings & antiques included. MLS 248430 Call Mark Reeves 706-455-2418

Marble, NC 3BR/3BA $399,900 Two houses on 6+ acres, mountain views. Main house is REAL log home. Multiple outdoor spaces. MLS 248087 Call Jack Shingler 321-279-1049

Blue Ridge, GA 3BR/3.5BA $384,900 Custom built Craftsman style home 3.7 acres on noisy Fightingtown Creek. Mountain views too! MLS 246708 Call Teresa Bidez 706-455-2911

Morganton, GA 3BR/3BA $329,900 Incredible long range views of the Cohuttas! Open concept, outdoor fireplace porch. Paved roads. MLS 247942 Call Mark Reeves 706-455-2418

Blue Ridge, GA 5BR/4BA $318,800 Country home on 6+ acres – borders USFS and trout stream. Outbldgs, guest quarters, fenced horse pasture. MLS 242861 Call Jack Cusick 706-994-1203

Blue Ridge, GA 2BR/2BA $259,900 Spacious log-sided cabin – prime rental location. 1.35 acre lot, mtn views, garage and basement. MLS 242431 Call Donna O’Neal 770-356-9034

Mineral Bluff, GA 4BR/2BA $229,000 Stately 1900 Victorian in downtown. Professional kitchen, 5 FPS, 1+ acres, 3 car garage, and MORE. MLS 247124 Call Mark Reeves 706-455-2418

Hiawassee, GA 3BR/3BA $189,900 Great year round mtn view from wrap porch. Minutes from Boundary Waters Marina on Lake Chatuge. MLS 248166 Call Aric Drott 404-219-2000

Cherry Log, GA 3BR/1BA $165,000 Furnished cabin in the woods. Open plan living with 2 bedrooms on the main. Gas fireplace, covered porch. MLS 248471 Call Kimberly Bruner 706-455-5703

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 15

Head for the Hills

Atlanta Botanical Garden-Gainesville opens to visitors BY COLLIN KELLEY The Atlanta Botanical Garden has expanded, but not in Midtown. Just an hour and half north of the city, the first phase of the Gainesville outpost of ABG is now open to visitors. Located on land donated by Charles and Lessie Smithgall, phase one is a little more than five acres, but will eventually grow to 168. The new garden is destined to be one of the largest and most diverse woodland gardens in the country, including the largest conservation nursery in the Southeast on the property. The Gainesville garden makes for a perfect day trip, or perhaps a stop on leisurely longer one to Lake Lanier or the mountains. The garden is divided into sections, all easily accessible up gently rolling paved pathways. Just behind the sleek visitors center is the Forest Pond, where flowering water lilies and other aquatic plants float and surround the surface. Also just beyond the visitors center is the Ivester Amphitheater, which will play host to concerts and events on a regular basis. Three of this year’s SunTrust in the Garden concerts are being held in Gainesville, including last month’s Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell show. The Temptations are July 11 and Scott McCreery is July 17. The curving, grassy terraces can seat 2,200 people with ample room to spread out a picnic. Head up the pathway into the Overlook Garden, which features perennials, shrubs and ornamental trees. Butterflies seemed to particularly enjoy this part of the garden. There’s also comfortable seating along the paths to rest and observe the flora and fauna. Perhaps the most beautiful section is the Stream Garden, a woodland hillside with a dramatic, cascading waterfall surrounded by wildflowers and hydrangeas. The curving path and series of wooden bridges offer amply places to stop and snap photos. Kids of all ages will love the Model Train Garden where two large – and impressive sounding trains – chug through tunnels and twist along their own garden. In the adjacent Glade Garden, a box of toy trains is available for kids to build their own adventures. For those who want a longer walk, the half-mile Sourwood Trail and Holly Ridge Trail take visitors into the woods surrounding the garden. Native hollies, rhododendrons, witch hazel and shade trees make for good scenery along the hilly terrain. The Gainesville garden is also offering regular events such as wine tastings and activities for children. Visit and click on Gainesville for more details and directions.



The Atlanta Botanical GardenGainesville is only about five acres now, but it will eventually expand to 168 acres. The pathways reveal a colorful expanse of native plants, trees, water features and even a model train garden sure to delight kids of all ages. PHOTOS BY COLLIN KELLEY

JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 17

Visit us in Town Brookhaven! Great Wings & Salads, Too!

out& about

BROOKHAVEN • BUCKHEAD • DUNWOODY • SANDY SPRINGS • Monday - Monday Nite Mingle $3.50 craft beer and half price bottles of wine & Bingo at 7:00pm with prizes! • Tuesday - Burger Special / Burger & a side with a glass of Wine $14.50, 5pm-Close • Wednesday - TEAM TRIVIA 7:30pm $50.00 Top Prize • Thursday - 50¢ wings & Blue Moon 23oz pints $6.50, Keep the Glass! • Friday - Live Music 8:30-10:30 featuring Brandon Crocker • 13 TV’s! – Come Watch Your Favorite Sports! • Family Friendly Atmosphere!

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Stand up for the Hooch Sunday, July 12, Registration, 9-9:30 a.m.; Recreation Race, 10 a.m; Elite Race, 10:30 a.m. – Sandy Springs Recreation

and Parks has partnered with High Country Outfitters and Yolo Surf Company to present this annual paddleboard race & festival. The event welcomes both amateurs and professionals to partake in a day of events on the Chattahoochee River. The race includes various divisions from a 6-mile course for elite paddlers, to a 2-mile race for beginners, age classes for men, women, and children and demo periods for non-racers throughout the day. Registration, including lunch and a registration packet, is $75. Morgan Falls Park, 200 Morgan Falls Rd., Sandy Springs, 30350. For more information and to register, go online to or call 404-814-0999.

Dive-In Movies Friday, July 17, 8 p.m. – Looking for a unique way to watch movies with your family this summer? The Murphey Candler Pool hosts a screening of the movie “Big Hero 6.” Kids and kids-at-heart are invited to bring their swimsuits and enjoy a warm summer evening watching the movie from the community pool. Pre-show entertainment begins at 8 p.m.; film begins at 9 p.m. Film screening is free with pool admission. General admission for adults, $5; general admission for children, $3; seniors, $1, groups of 20 children, $40. Murphey Candler Park, 551 W. Nancy Creek Dr., NE, Brookhaven, 30319. For more information, go online to

It Starts in the Parks Saturday, July 18, 7:30 a.m. – The

Brookhaven Parks and Recreation Department has officially announced the first annual 5K race taking place in Blackburn Park. Present-

ed in affiliation with Play in Brookhaven and Run & See Georgia, this event takes place during Parks and Recreation Month, which was established in 1985. The race includes awards for overall male, female and masters groups, and highlights the top three males and females in 14 age groups. Registration is $35 until July 16 or $40 on the day of the race. 3493 Ashford Dunwoody Rd., Brookhaven, 30319. For more information and to register, go online to, email, or call 404-637-0512.

Doggie Daze Saturday, July 18, 9:3011:30 a.m. – The Blue Her-

on Nature Preserve opens its doors to four-legged friends for this guided tour of the preserve. Dogs receive blue bandanas and treats while their humans can enjoy bagels and OJ starting at 10 a.m. Donations support habitat restoration for native wildlife at the preserve. Free and open to the public. Visitors are encouraged to bring leashes and supplies for picking up after your dogs during the hike. 4055 Roswell Rd., NE, Atlanta, 30342. For more information, go online to or call 404-345-1008.

Summer Splash Saturday, July 25, 9 a.m. – Sandy Springs

Hospitality and Tourism presents the annual Chattahoochee River Summer Splash. The 6-mile, three-hour float begins at Morgan Falls Dam and ends at Powers Island where guests can enjoy live music, food and family activities throughout the day. First shuttle leaves at 9 a.m. from the parking lot at MEAG Power, and the last shuttle back to the parking lot leaves Powers Island at 4 p.m. Guests can rent or bring their own kayak, canoe or raft for the float. MEAG Power, 1470 Riveredge Pkwy., NW, Sandy Springs, 30328. For more information, go to or call 770-206-1447.

Center Ice Arena

Sandy Springs New Ice Skating Arena

5750 Roswell Road Sandy Springs, GA 30342 404-549-8425

Daily public ice skating sessions $8 admission, $4 skate rental Kids 5 & under $6 admission, $4 skate rental Kids 3 & under free



JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |

Live DJ Friday, Saturday, and Sunday public sessions


Concerts in the Park Saturday, July 11, 7-9 p.m. – The Dunwoody Nature Center continues their Concerts in the Park series with the Atlanta band Allatoona. Visitors are invited to bring their picnic baskets and blankets down to the meadow to enjoy a live performance featuring music that mixes rock and country. The event also features a rotating selection of craft beers hand picked for the night by Moondog Growlers. General admission tickets for adults, $5; students, $3; free to DNC members, and children 3 and under. 5343 Roberts Dr., Dunwoody, 30338. For more information, go online to or call 770394-3322.

Tan Shoes & Pink Shoelaces Thursday, July 16 through Saturday, July 18, 7:30 p.m. – Fishworks, Inc. presents a live performance fea-

turing energetic dance moves, comedy and harmonious music. The play, written by Atlanta’s own Tom Edwards, is a theatrical tribute through the music, movies and television shows of the 1950s and 1960s. Suitable for all ages. General admission tickets, $17 in advance; $20 at the door. Kingswood United Methodist Church, 5015 Tilly Mill Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. For more information and to purchase advance tickets, go to or call 770-457-1317.

Rhythm & Blues Thursday, July 23, 6:30-8 p.m. – Her-

itage Sandy Springs continues its Rhythm & Brews series with a performance by Ashevillebased female trio Underhill Rose. Their harmonies pull inspiration from rhythm and blues, folk music and old country styles. Blankets, picnics, and coolers are welcome, but pets and smoking are not allowed. Food available for purchase from Breadwinner Cafe. Admission for adults 21 and up, $5; admission for ages 13 to 20, $2; and free for children 12 and under. Sandy Springs Society Entertainment Lawn at Heritage Green, 6110 Bluestone Rd., Sandy Springs, 30328. For more information, visit or call 404-851-9111.

Spend Your Summer With Us!





Pub Crawl for Autism Saturday, July 18, 1 p.m. – This fundraising event benefits Autism Speaks, one of the country’s lead-

ing autism science and advocacy organizations that is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism. The crawl brings participants to restaurants in the Dunwoody Restaurant Group via Fur Bus. Registration includes a commemorative beer koozie, dinner, one free bar’s choice drink at each location, and the chance to win prizes. 21 and up. Registration available between 12:30 and 1 p.m. on the day of the event, $50. O’Brian’s Tavern, Mount Vernon Shopping Center, 2486 Mount Vernon Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. For more information, go online to



Support Local Athletes Saturday, July 18, 7 p.m. – The At-


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You can’t spell MARTA without ART, and there is plenty of public artwork on display at MARTA train stations in Reporter Newspapers communities. Each station houses its own style of artwork. For one of our periodic “where are you” photo challenges, can you identify each station by its art? Answers on page 24.


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BY MEGAN VOLPERT Editor’s Note: After nearly two years of reviews, Art Huckabee has put down his fork. Decatur writer, resident and foodie Megan Volpert will pick up where Art left off, visiting a mix of established and newly-opened eateries around the metro. Megan is serious about her victuals and has planned vacations around restaurants. For her first assignment, she revisits an Atlanta institution. Forks up! As everyone knows, Miss Ann Price, owner and proprietor of the beloved Ann’s Snack Bar, passed away in April. When word got around that she had gone, citizens of Atlanta were saddened for many reasons, at least one of which – selfishly – was concern over whether the Snack Bar would fold. Would the legendary Ghetto Burger fade away? Would it hang on as a mere shadow of its former glory? And how good could the visit be without Miss Ann to police your manners when you finally got to sit down? It was a muggy Thursday and I’d just spent half the morning waiting through the seven circles of the DMV. Having accustomed myself to long lines for the day already, it seemed like a trip down to 1615 Memorial Drive to the Snack Bar was a good reward. It was my first time there since Miss Ann’s passing and I was delighted to arrive in an empty parking lot. Just 30 minutes before opening and I was first in line! So I sat on the curb watching other cars pull in and eyeball my number one slot with envy. We filed in at eleven o’clock on the dot, hurrying past the patio tables on the

A summer

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rant Re




Revisiting Ann’s Snack Bar





screened-in porch to claim one of the eight seats at the counter. If you like quiet, sit at one of the three seats on the left. Nothing going on over there but a stack of burger buns a mile high. If you really want to see what’s what, sit on the right side of the counter – right in front MADELINE FREIDMAN of the giant sign with Miss Ann’s rules and Megan Volpert could only eat half of her giant with a good view of the grill. The best thing double-cheeseburger, so she took the rest home for about the five seats on the right, however, dinner. Ann Price’s rules for the Snack Bar remain in is that you get front row for the antics of force, so beware while you enjoy your burgers. Miss Henrietta. What a pistol! It’s a wonder she survived behind the counter, given Miss Yes, the burger is still huge and still cooked to perfecAnn’s rule against cursing. I asked Miss Henrietta how tion and still topped with the usual suspects and still she and the family are getting along at the Snack Bar totally delicious. Yes, the fries are still average because since April and she reports that they’re “maintaining.” the fact that you even bothered to order and eat any Indeed, nothing about the rules or the food has fries alongside a burger so spectacularly gluttonous is changed. A tardy newcomer stepped to the counter to kind of crazy. Yes, the sweet tea still gets stored on the place her order, and was instantly waved off with a curt, counter in giant old plastic barrels and it still tastes “who was first?” It was all I could do not to shout, “bin- precisely like the South poured into a styrofoam cup. go!” As much as I love the Ghetto Burger, let’s bear in Ann’s Snack Bar has been holding steady since Nixmind it’s really an emergency food – not a dreary Thurs- on’s first term. After more than four decades as the tightday afternoon food unless you had one wicked Wednes- est burger ship in town, what on earth made you think day night. I ordered the double-cheeseburger combo the ship would falter? Miss Ann must be resting in peace, with homemade sweet tea, ready for me in about ten for the Snack Bar is still what it always was. minutes. I managed to eat two-thirds of my enormous burgMegan Volpert lives in Decatur, teaches in Roswell and er and made a small dent in the fries. The remainder writes books about popular culture. Send feedback to Tastwas wrapped up in tinfoil to take home for dinner.

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Quick Bites: News You Can Eat The second annual Atlanta Meatball Festival returns to Belle Isle Square in Sandy Springs on Sunday, Aug. 30, from 1–5 p.m., serving up a selection of meatball dishes, music, limoncello tastings and much more. More than 20 restaurants will be taking part in this year’s event including Double Zero, Seven Lamps, Food 101 and St. Cecilia. Advance tickets are now available online at The team from the recently-shuttered Veni Vidi Vici in Midtown will open il Giallo Italian restaurant in Sandy Springs at 5920 Roswell Road in August. The new restaurant will offer authentic Italian with pasta made in front of the diners. Riccardo Ullio has opened his third Italian concept restaurant, Novo Cucina, at 5592 Chamblee Dunwoody Road in the Dunwoody Village Shopping Center. The new restaurant is serving up pizza, pasta, wine and gelato. Ullio also owns Fritti and Sotto Sotto in Inman Park. For more, visit Buckhead Italian-American restaurant Portofino, 3199 Paces Ferry Road, has ended lunch service to concentrate on dinner and a new Sunday brunch menu launching in the fall. The Fresh Market has opened a new store at 2840 Brighton Park shopping center (formerly known as Loehmann’s Plaza). The gourmet supermarket offers fresh foods and local, organic produce. The Georgia Restaurant Association and the Georgia Department of Economic Development have partnered together to create the first-ever Georgia Restaurant Week. This inaugural seven-day culinary event will take place July 13-19 and feature restaurants from around the state. Visit to see the full list of participating restaurants. Local husband and wife team Kenny and Kelly Keith are opening a pair of new artisan doughnut shops in Buckhead and Brookhaven. According to Tomorrow’s News Today, Bon Glaze will open a 600-square-foot space in Powers Ferry Square in Buckhead and 1,700-square-feet at Brookleigh Marketplace on Johnson Ferry Road. Grand China is moving to a new location just across from The Peach shopping center at 2905 Peachtree Road in Buckhead. The property was the most recent home of Peachtree Bikes (which is now on Roswell Road next door to Buckhead Theatre).

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Standout Student

Student Profile:

 Avi Botwinick  The Weber School, rising senior From martial arts to school work to holding several different leadership positions in and outside of school, Avi Botwinick says he “wants to help people because that’s something I’ve always been passionate about.” Avi is an active member and leader in BBYO, a Jewish youth movement. Avi says what is great about the group is the fraternity of it. The boy’s chapter, Kol Ram Aza, was founded his freshman year in high school, and since then he says it has provided a place for local Jewish teens to feel attached to their Judaism. He was recently elected president of the chapter for next year and says his main goal is “to help Jewish teens who would otherwise not be Jewish to feel connected to their Judaism in some way.” Avi also finds himself encouraging others in the world of martial arts. Avi began studying Shaolin Kung Fu when he was 8 years old. He began in the youth program, and has since then come full circle as he taught the youth program in recent years. The studio where Avi began his studies has recently closed, but that has not stopped him from continuing to expand his knowledge. He started studying Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at a new center. He says he is still practicing the forms he already knew and trying to blend them with what he is learning now. “My study of martial arts has taught me discipline, how to control my body, and how to defend myself and when it’s appropriate to do so,” Avi said. Avi doesn’t currently teach classes at the center where he studies, but he has found other ways to help younger kids. He is actively involved in the Peer Leader program at The Weber School. The program helps new students make a smooth transition into the school.



JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |

What’s Next: Avi returns to The Weber School this fall for his senior year. He is applying to several colleges, including the University of Georgia, Washington University in St. Louis, and Emory University. –This article was reported and written by Mary Helen Kelly, intern with Reporter Newspapers.

Do you know a standout high school student? Send nominees to

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Avi is also a member of National Honor Society. He loves math and science, and is also a part of a robotics team at Weber that is building a robot to battle at Dragon Con this September. His two favorite classes are chemistry and physics, both of which he has taken at the AP level. “Avi is the type of student that teachers love to have in their classroom. He comes into class every day, smiling and excited to share something cool he has seen online. Avi pursues his interests wholeheartedly and his natural curiosity drives him to take challenging courses,” Avi’s Chemistry teacher, Nicole Brite, said. Avi recently attended a physics camp at Georgia Teach and will attend a college prep camp at Emory this summer, focusing on neuroscience. He thinks it would be cool to be an anesthesiologist or an FBI agent, but Avi says he wants to follow his passion for helping other people. “In order to have a good world you have to have people helping others,” Avi said.

Answers to Where Are You? quiz” 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Lenox Station. Dunwoody Station. Brookhaven/Oglethorpe Station. North Springs Station. Sandy Springs Station. Medical Center Station. Buckhead Station.


How tall is too tall when it comes to unkempt lawns? BY ELLEN ELDRIDGE

Though some people may be more have a property down the street that was likely to track their children’s growth than vacant and one of the neighbors called the height of their grass, penalties exist for code enforcement,” Wyatt said. “It was unkempt lawns. maybe 18 inches high.” Melanie Williams said she’s heard peoThe house wasn’t abandoned, Wyatt ple recommend all sort of strategies for said, but the residents had moved out. maintaining property—including rentBy calling in a complaint, her neighing goats. “I thought they were kidding,” bor did what Dunwoody Code CompliWilliams said, describing a recommenance Officer Tom LaPenna wants residents dation made to the Dunwoody Preservato do in those situations. Code complition Trust volunteers who maintain historance in Dunwoody is complaint-driven, ic cemetaries. he said, and officers aren’t out measuring Property maintenance in many suburgrass height looking for violations. They ban subdivisions is policed primarily by rely on residents to turn in their neighbors. homeowners or the associations residents LaPenna said that in two cases he’s join when they buy their homes and that worked, neighbors mowed residents’ front often also provide upkeep for common yards for three years because they wanted amenities such as pools or tennis courts. ot help their neighbors, who had moved But local governments get in on the act, out of state. too. Let your grass grow too tall and you When the neighbors finally tired of face a visit from the local lawn police. cutting extra lawns, they called LaPenna, A first offense in Brookhaven costs who said he found a “jungle” with 6-foot$100, a second offense by the same proptall weeds in the backyard. “I realized the erty owner costs $200—even if the vioback door was broken into so I reported lation occurs at a second property in the that to the police,” he said. city—and a third offense costs $500. Dunwoody Councilman John Dunwoody and Sandy Springs can imHeneghan said he thinks less than 1 perpose fines once weeds or grass exceed 10 cent of city residents don’t keep their grass inches. In Brookhaven and Atlanta, the alcut. “It’s usually those odd situations where lowable height is a foot. somebody passed away and their kids live In an informal survey recently, several in another state and they just haven’t gotDunwoody residents had no notion of the ten around to getting somebody to take height at which they must trim grass and care of the lawn,” Heneghan said. weeds under city law. Their guesses ranged Heneghan uses a system to keep his from 4 inches to 18 inches. grass short. “You can’t make somebody cut it at 4 “During the heat of summer, I plan on inches,” 20-year Dunwoody resident Marcutting my grass only on days just before ty Johnson said. “That’s too short; those it’s going to rain otherwise the heat of the people are crazy.” sun will burn out my lawn and I’ll have no Johnson lives in Mill Glen, where he grass whatsoever.” said everybody cuts their grass and 13 keeps weeds down. Johnson prefers his homeowner-association-free 12 Buckhead and Brookhaven: 12 inches neighborhood because he’s happi11 er not living under the rule of “little old ladies with nothing better to 10 Dunwoody and Sandy Springs: 10 inches do” looking for violations. 9 “I don’t want to live anywhere where somebody can tell me what 8 color I can paint my house or what 7 kind of mailbox I can put up,” Johnson said. “I would rather deal 6 with the crazy-looking stuff than have some board tell me what I can 5 and can’t do.” 4 Johnson said he’d never called city officials to complain about un3 maintained property, but he admit2 ted that his neighbor, Georgia Power Co., sometimes lets its grass get 1 out of control. 0 “They let that grow up and only CHRISTOPHER NORTH cut it about once a year but noLocal jurisdictions have body’s ever complained about it that I’ve heard about,” said Johnvarious restrictions on the son, who lives near power lines. height of weeds or grass. Amanda Wyatt said she never The cities of Dunwoody and Sandy personally called the authorities on Springs allow 10 inches before they a neighbor, but remembers when will fine a homeowner. Brookhaven one of her neighbors did. “We did and Atlanta allow 12 inches. BH

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The fantasy warriors of Blackburn Park BY JOHN RUCH On Sunday afternoons, Brookhaven’s Blackburn Park magically transforms into a fantasy battlefield straight out of “The Lord of the Rings” or “Game of Thrones.” Amid the Frisbee-tossers and dogwalkers in the park, armored knights cross swords, swashbucklers fence with foes, and Japanese anime heroes battle gladiators for ownership of magic shields. These fantasy warriors come from two separate groups: the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), which meets at noon, and Dagorhir Battle Games, which gathers at 3 p.m. Members of the society lean toward historical re-enactment, its members clad in metal armor and able to sing medieval church choral music on cue. Participants in Dagorhir engage in a more freewheeling sport, something like paintball with foam swords. But both groups share a love of fullcontact fantasy combat and real camaraderie. And both have used Blackburn for years due to its easy access for metro Atlanta members and its large population of locals who are welcome to watch and even join in. On a recent Sunday, the heroes and heroines of this alternative universe gathered at places where the park becomes the SCA’s Barony of South

Downs and Dagorhir’s Realm of High Spires. Chainmail and helmets Ben Coffee is standing in a Blackburn parking lot, strapping on a 40-pound suit of armor made of overlapping metal plates. He’s going to need it, because his friends are about to whack him with wooden swords. But, he’s quick to note, combat is only one part of SCA medieval activities. “The music is fantastic,” he says, breaking into a tuneful and dramatic “war song.” “It’s a gateway hobby” to other aspects of medieval culture, says member Michael Myers in agreement, while he dons an impressive steel-andchainmail helmet. Founded in California in 1966, the Society for Creative Anachronism is a worldwide organization whose members play out an idealized version of medieval life with some historical research and educational programs. That includes not only martial arts, but also music, dance, calligraphy, clothingmaking and more. Still, swordplay is a key ingredient, especially since members of the society determine their “king” and “queen” by combat in tournaments. There are several “kingdoms,” or regional chapters,

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COMMUNITY around the country; Atlanta falls under the Kingdom of Meridies, and the local chapter is known as the Barony of South Downs. Members sometime hold combat demonstrations, but they say spectacle is not the point. “We’re not Medieval Times,” member Dave Lopez said. “We’re not putting on the big show…We’re an education group.” Regardless, it’s remarkable to see guys in armor and shields going at it in the park. They use swords painted like steel but made of rattan, a wood that turns to soft pulp rather than sharp splinters after impact. Other members, including Lopez, skip the heavy armor and engage in light-footed fencing with a thin sword called a rapier. In this case, the swords are real, their tips blunted with padding. Lopez also carries a dagger and a miniature shield, explaining that fencers use them in their off-hand to deflect blows. Then he hops into combat with other members, rapiers clashing and daggers flashing. The amount of expertise and fancy equipment on display might look daunting to someone interested in joining the group. And in fact, it does take extensive training and certification before members can fight. But no one is expected to show up on Day One in a suit of armor. Coffee says the membership requirements are few, including only a basic attempt to dress in medieval fashion. “For years, I went to [SCA] events in pajama pants,” he confesses. Likewise, members are encouraged to take on medieval alter egos, but simply keep them grounded in reality. That means skipping King Arthur fantasies and pretending to be a believable medieval-era character instead. As Lopez puts it, “I want to be a walking piece of history.” In addition to the Sunday events, the society holds fencing practices in Blackburn on Tuesday evenings, and will stage a 20-person regional war game event there on July 14. Dagorhir “It’s like playing a video game in real life,” says Sean Huff as he explains the Dagorhir games about to unfold. Soon, about 20 players attacked one another with foam swords. The action

was nonstop. When players “died” from sword strikes—which they did constantly—they simply walked to a “respawn” spot and returned to battle. While it had the format of medieval combat, Dagorhir had the speed and good-natured laughter of a pickup soccer game. Dagorhir was invented in 1977 in Washington, D.C. Its name means “battle lords” as translated into the Elven language of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings,” but there’s no requirement that players pretend to be living in a hobbit-filled Middle Earth. They’re welcome to imagine themselves as vampires, ninjas—“whatever floats your boat,” as Huff puts it. At last Sunday’s game, some players wore T-shirts and shorts while others were clad in medieval-style jerkins or light leather armor. One couple, inspired by Japanese fantasy fiction, had fox-style tails clipped on their pants. The players were diverse in more than fashion, too. There was a mix of genders, race and ages—from teens to mid-thirties—rare for most games or sports. “The diversity of people is out of this world,” said Jesse Hardin, a 24-year-old who said he’s been playing Dagorhir since he was 9. The group’s post-game dinner together is part of the fun, he said. Passers-by are welcome to borrow a sword and join in after a quick tutorial. Dagorhir is easy to learn and play: Get smacked on a limb, it’s crippled; get smacked in the body, you’re dead. That works in everything from oneon-one combat to huge team battles for capture-the-flag type games. While fiberglass-core foam swords are the most popular weapon, a wild variety of alternatives are game-legal. One guy fired heavily padded arrows from an actual bow. (All such weapons need to meet the organization’s safety and training standards.) The tag-like format means that players “die” constantly and there’s no final championship victory. Huff said that’s another big attraction. “There’s no way to win. You win by having fun,” he says. “It really reduces ego. There’s no LeBron James out here carrying the team.” For more information, see or Two fantasy groups, the Society for Creative Anachronism and the Dagorhir Battle Games, left, use Blackburn Park on Sundays to engage in combat.

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“My favorite part about living here is the flexibility to be as active and sociable as I want!” Meet Christie Kinsaul, who moved to Canterbury Court to downsize and simplify her life. Little did she know how much she would love her new lifestyle. “Maintaining a two-story townhouse and everything in it was taking considerable time and effort. I was ready for some changes, and I wanted to make the move on my own terms.” Christie didn’t expect to find such luxurious living in a one-bedroom apartment, which she says “is plenty big” and comes with full services and amenities. She was also delighted to discover an abundance of activities designed for resident interests, including outings to local events. As a retired music teacher, she’s especially fond of going to the Atlanta Symphony and the opera. Along with more flexibility to spend her time as she chooses, Christie’s move to Canterbury Court has given her peace of mind knowing that on-site health services are available, should she ever need them. Call (404) 365-3163 to see our warm, inviting community and furnished model apartments, including our diamond collection one-bedroom residences. 3750 Peachtree Road, N.E. Atlanta, Georgia 30319

The SCA meets at noon and the Dagorhir fights at 3 p.m. JOHN RUCH BH

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 27


Buckhead Police Blotter From police reports dated June 14 through 20

tion when a man with a T-shirt over his face got out of a black BMW sedan. He held a black, semi-automatic pistol and demanded the man hand over his bank bags. When the victim turned to run, the suspect threw him on the ground, put the gun to the back of his head and said “give me the bags.” The victim complied and gave the gunman $450.

The following information was provided to the Buckhead Reporter by the Zone 2 precinct of the Atlanta Police Department from its records and is presumed to be accurate.

ROBBERY  3100

block of Peachtree Road—On June 20, people in a car parked behind a nightclub saw a red sedan with two men inside driving the wrong way. One of the men got out of the sedan, brandished a handgun and demanded the victims “drop everything.” The victims placed their items on the ground and began walking away; the suspect re-entered the sedan and drove off. One of the victims received an alert that a credit card had been used at a gas station on Piedmont Road. An off-duty officer saw the suspects pumping gas, but lost them in the traffic after they left the station. While police were attempting to locate the suspects, another robbery was reported at a gas station in the 1100 block of Chattahoochee Avenue. The suspects fit the same description. The victim reported she was sitting inside her vehicle, talking on the phone, as she pumped gas. A

 2800

red car pulled behind her, a man got out, appeared at her door and placed a gun to her head. He demanded she get out of her black Mercedes C250 and leave her Apple iPhone. An arrest has been made.  2200

block of Peachtree Park Drive— On June 15, a man walking down Peachtree Park Drive was approached by two men who ran up behind him, put a silver handgun to his head and demanded his property. The victim placed his backpack, Apple iPhone and credit cards on the ground. The two men picked up the items and ran toward Peachtree Road.

 2300

block of Peachtree Road—On June 16, a man was returning from a bank and parking in the rear of the loca-


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block of Piedmont Road—On June 19, a man who was walking on Piedmont Avenue was approached by three males. The first man said, "You know what time it is” as a second man struck the victim in his face with an object. The victim attempted to fight back, eventually causing the three suspects to run off without taking anything.

 2600

block of Piedmont Road—On June 19, a man armed with a silver/ chrome semi-auto handgun in his shorts pocket walked up to a business’s rear door as workers were making repairs at the location. The armed man took their cash, cellphones and credit cards.


block of Chattahoochee Boulevard—Witnesses saw four men attempting to break into a vehicle and yelled, “What are you doing?” The men ran to an older, white Ford Crown Victoria. When a witness attempted to get the tag, a suspect in the passenger seat pointed a black semi-auto pistol and then sped off.

 1500

block of Chattahoochee Boulevard—A driver in a mobile home park overheard a car alarm, looked outside and saw two men picking the lock. When the suspects noticed the driver, they retreated to a white GMC Yukon and drove off. The driver attempted to follow the men in his vehicle. As he cornered them in, they started shooting. There was damage to both vehicles.

 1400

block of Northside Drive—A man’s ex-boyfriend saw him talking with other men outside a nightclub and became upset. They started fighting. The ex threw a rock, but missed hitting his victim. When patrol units arrived, they noted the victim was bleeding from the chin and arms.

 3200

block of Lenox Road—A woman and her boyfriend were engaged in an argument about money. She picked up a fork to defend herself when he tried to physically remove her from the residence.

An arrest was made.  600

block of Morosgo Drive—A man was harassing a woman and approached her in an aggressive manner. When another man came to her aid, the suspect began making racial and homophobic slurs, picked up a bottle and attempted to hit them with it. Several witnesses corroborated the victims’ claims and an arrest was made.

 2100 block of Cheshire Bridge Road—

When patrol units arrived at an apartment, they overheard a woman screaming for help. They also heard the sound of a person being slapped. When they knocked on the door, the suspect stated, “We having an argument.” The woman again yelled for help. When police tried enter, the woman said the man ran out the back door and into the woods. The man became upset when the woman tried to go out for her birthday, and he held her hostage and poured bleach over her head and arms. Police noted several holes in the apartment walls, a broken bedroom door frame and signs of a struggle. The woman was taken to Northside Hospital.

R E S I D E N T I A L B U R G L A RY  500

block of West Paces Ferry Road— A burglary was reported at a vacant house, where plywood covering the door was kicked in. Several power tools and air compressors were taken.

 2100

block of Claude Street—A house’s kitchen window was broken and a purse containing a driver’s license, Social Security Card, $350 and debit/credit cards was taken. Additional items reported stolen included paperwork, two 52inch flat-screen TVs, a guitar and an Excel 3200 SI pressure washer.

 2400

block of Brantley Street—Approximately two feet of copper was reported missing from an air conditioning unit in the attic of a house. The front door, basement door, attic door and backdoor were left open.

 700

block of Lindbergh Drive—An apartment resident heard banging and prying noises at her front door. There was damage to the door frame and pry marks present, but no entry was made.

 2100 block of Piedmont Road—An LG

42-inch flat-screen TV, an Apple iPad, an Apple MacBook laptop, a set of Bomnora headphones and a bed sheet were reported missing from an apartment.

 1100 block of Lavista Road—An apart-

ment resident heard a knock at the door and saw a man standing in front of his CONTINUED ON PAGE 30 BH

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Buckhead Police Blotter CONTINUED FROM PAGE 28

door. When the victim went into his bedroom, he heard noises and saw two men running with his laptop. The door lock was damaged and an Apple MacBook Pro laptop, an iPad and a set of Beats by Dre headphones were taken.


block of Marietta Boulevard— A large rock was thrown through a front window at a storage facility. An electronic signing pad was taken. The suspect attempted to take two flat-screen TVs.

 900

block of Chattahoochee Avenue— Police were dispatched to an audible alarm call at a jewelry store and were told the front doors and fence were intact. They returned and discovered a hole cut in a fence and the rear exit door kicked open. Surveillance footage captured the suspects entering several rooms and removing a Smith & Wesson handgun, $100,000 worth of diamonds, $5,000 in Canadian money and a video monitor.

 3400

block of Roswell Road—A regis-

ter and safe were entered and money was taken from a church.

A UTO T H EFT  2500

block of Ridgewood Road—A 1991 Chevy C1500 pick-up was reported missing from the driveway of a residence.

 2000

block of Bolton Road—A 2015 Toyota Camry was stolen from a gas station when the driver left the keys laying on the counter.

 2000

block of Callaway Court—A 2002 Chrysler Town & Country was reported missing from the owner’s driveway.

 2000

block of Hatteras Way—A 2007 Saturn Aurora was reported stolen when the owner discovered her garage partially closed and the vehicle missing. An Apple iPad Air, two Apple iPod Nanos, a red leather briefcase and several credit cards were also taken.

 1000

block of Davis Circle—A 1988 Chevrolet C15 was reported missing from in front of the owner’s residence.

 3300

 1800

 3500

block of Howell Mill Road—A 2012 Jeep Wrangler was reported stolen from a department store parking lot. The victim discovered the steering wheel column damaged.

 2000

block of Howell Mill Road—A 1999 Dodge Durango was reported missing from the parking lot of a restaurant. A K-Bar knife, lawn equipment, luggage and a Smith & Wesson Shield 9-millimeter pistol also were taken in the theft. A second auto theft was reported in the same parking lot when a 2004 Jeep Liberty was taken. The owner found broken glass on the ground.

 1000

block of Peachtree Park Drive— A 1989 Oldsmobile was reported stolen from the parking lot at the apartment complex where the owner lives.

 400 block of Deering Road—The victim

discovered his 1998 Dodge R150 missing from the street in front of his residence.

block of Peachtree Road—A 1995 GMC Yukon was reported stolen from a restaurant parking lot. block of Peachtree Road—A 2014 Chevy Traverse was reported stolen from the parking lot at Phipps Plaza.

 2400

block of Camelia Lane—A 2015 Chevy Camaro was reported stolen from the parking lot of the apartment complex.

 1900

block of Monroe Drive—An attempt to steal a black 1973 Ford Fairlane was reported in an apartment complex parking lot. The owner discovered her vehicle was entered and the ignition switch was damaged. Possibly as part of an ongoing dispute, which she would not discuss further.


June 14 and June 20, a total of 41 thefts from automobiles were reported and an additional 31 reports of other larcenies, including shoplifting, were made.

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 | 31

Our readers prefer Atlanta INtown & Reporter Newspapers for local news and information over any other community publications by a 4 to 1 margin! We’ve just completed our first, independent readership survey and the results speak for themselves Other local publication(s)

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JULY 10 – JULY 23, 2015 |


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