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Dunwoody Reporter


Perimeter Business ► Consulates help small businesses cross borders PAGE 4 ► Electric bikes roll into Perimeter PAGE 5

Council raises concerns about tower’s traffic, green space

This BBQ is smokin’


Dunwoody City Council deferred voting Sept. 26 on a rezoning request for a 20-story office tower next to the Dunwoody MARTA station, and asked developers for more information on traffic and on the possibility of expanding green space in the area. Developer Transwestern is seeking a special land use permit to construct the officer tower across the street from the 21-story State Farm building that is nearly See COUNCIL on page 23

Camille Weinstein, 3, and her mother Aurelie, try some samples at the 4th annual Kosher BBQ Competition and Festival at Brook Run Park on Sept. 25. See additional photos on page 15.


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OUT & ABOUT Hoos in the Forest

Parking woes plague streets near high school BY DYANA BAGBY Roseanne Lutz was pulling out of the Corners Cove cul de sac where she lives on a recent Tuesday morning. Numerous cars lined one side of the street along the manicured lawns of the neighborhood – but none of them belonged to the residents of the seven homes located off Vermack Road. “We’re getting perturbed about the students parking here,” Lutz said while leaning out the window of her Toyota Prius. The students Lutz and others are irritated with are Dunwoody High School students

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The city of Dunwoody is denying it violated the state’s Open Meeting Act when it met in an executive session June 13 resulting in a directive that members of the Dunwoody Homeowners Association could no longer serve on city boards. Assistant City Attorney Lenny Felgin stated in a Sept. 14 letter to Assistant Attorney General Jennifer Colangelo that the city followed state law when it met behind closed doors June 13 because the matter discussed — litigation — is legally allowed to be discussed out of the public eye. The Attorney General’s Office notified the city’s attorneys Sept. 9 it was investigating the executive session to determine if the mayor and council discussed a new city policy, in violation of the Open Meetings Act. The case is still pending, according to a spokesperson with the Attorney General’s office. In his letter to the Attorney General’s Office, Felgin stated the reason the mayor and council met June 13 in executive session was to discuss the Center for Discovery lawsuits – one filed in state court and another in federal court. Center for Discovery sued the city after it was first approved in 2014 to open a facility for teenage girls with eating disorders in the residential neighborhood cul de sac on Manget Way, but then the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals reversed that decision after public outcry. Felgin went on to state in his response to the state Attorney General’s Office that Gerri Penn, a board member of the DHA, also served on the ZBA and was a vocal opponent to the Center of Discovery home. He also noted that the DHA publicly opposed the Center for Discovery facility. Felgin said Penn researched the case outside her duties as a ZBA board member and essentially cast the tie-breaking vote by the ZBA in reversing the zoning decision. The city settled the lawsuit in July with Center of Discovery for $850,000, with the city’s insurance picking up $600,000 and the city paying out $250,000. Felgin noted the DHA was established long before Dunwoody became a city in 2008 and served as a “quasi-governmental organization” before the city was incorporated. He also said that “even today, with the incorporated government of the city, the Planning Commission and the council as the zoning authority, all zoning matters coming before the City Council is [sic] always brought to the DHA first to garner their support. “Due to [DHA’s] rather large vocal minority of residents (1,000 out of approximately 49,000 residents), it is very influential on the decisions made by council,”

Felgin stated. When the City Council discussed the Center for Discovery lawsuits in April with an attorney representing the city, Laurel Henderson, she informed them a main reason the city would not likely win was because Penn had done outside research on the case and was an active member of DHA. It was at that April meeting when the council started considering Henderson’s opinion that there would continue to be a clear or inferred conflict of interest for DHA members to serve on city boards, Felgin wrote. Following that April meeting, the city attorneys were directed to write up a memo on their opinion if serving on the DHA is a conflict of interest for serving on city boards and also how city board members should conduct themselves as a way to minimize more lawsuits, Felgin said. Then, at the June 13 meeting, more discussion of the Center for Discovery lawsuit took place, and Mayor Denis Shortal said he wanted to send the memo written by the city’s attorneys to members of the DHA also serving on city boards. Shortal also said he was going to call specific city board members, including Gerri Penn, to ask them to resign from the DHA or their city boards to alleviate potential conflicts of interest, according to Felgin. Shortal also said he would not appoint people to city boards unless they resigned from the DHA or other similar organizations. “The overwhelming majority of the council, after some discussion, had no issue with the plan. No votes were taken. No policy was set,” Felgin stated. Felgin emailed the DHA board members also serving on city boards the memo outlining the potential conflict of interest on June 17. Included with the memo was an email stating the information was covered by attorney-client privilege and should not be released to the public. If the information was released, the person who did so faced a possible city or state ethics violation. Felgin said the reason to include the warning of an ethics violation was to try to avoid a situation that occurred in the city several years ago in which the minutes of an executive session were leaked to the press and resulted in the city attorney resigning. The email also included the mayor’s directive that DHA members resign from their city board of the DHA, Felgin stated. “That portion of the email was not a legal opinion or directive from the city attorney’s office nor did it indicate that the mayor, in any way, required them to make that choice or that this was a policy that the council had voted on,” Felgin stated.


SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Community | 3

DHA President Robert Wittenstein took issue with some of Felgin’s comments. “The DHA is not a quasi-governmental organization. This is patently absurd,” Wittenstein said. Two classic examples of a quasi-governmental entities are public hospitals like Grady Hospital that are privately run but publicly funded and the Georgia Ports Authority, which receives millions in state funds to operate the ports, he said. Wittenstein also said Felgin’s notion that zoning matters come to the DHA before the city to garner their support “is simply not true.” “We receive updates from developers occasionally on items of general interest to the community and on very rare occasions take a position in favor of, or in opposition to a proposal,” Wittenstein said. “This is a gross exaggeration of our role that is simply a false statement.”

44th annual Dunwoody Home Tour returns Oct. 5 The Dunwoody Home Tour returns Wednesday, Oct. 5 for its 44th year, featuring four houses in Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. The homes represent a variety of architectural styles and vintages, ranging from historic to new construction. One stop is the historic Mills B. Lane Jr. summer home on Spalding Mill in what is now Sandy Springs, built in 1938. The house is now home to a discerning collector of paintings, sculpture and antiques who calls the home his art gallery. Another stop is a 1978 home in the Georgian Colonial Revival style, that mainstay of Dunwoody architecture, which has undergone three years of renovation, including a new kitchen and a newly finished terrace level. The other two homes are in the Greek Revival style,

one built in 1978 and recently renovated, the other new custom construction. The tour is the major annual fundraiser of GFWC Dunwoody Woman’s Club, a member of both the GFWC Georgia Federation of Women’s Clubs and the General Federation of Women’s Clubs, the country’s oldest organization of women devoted to advocacy in the areas of Arts, Conservation, Education, Home Life, International Outreach and Public Issues. Proceeds help fund college scholarships to high school seniors and women returning to college later in their lives; supporting Lost Corners Preserve in Sandy Springs; local schools’ libraries and art programs; and more than 30 other initiatives, including the Dunwoody Nature Center, Spruill Center for the Arts, Stage Door Players and Tallulah Falls School in

North Georgia, founded by GFWC GA. The tour runs 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Oct. 5. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door of the first stop, 5393 Redfield Circle, Dunwoody. For tickets and details, see


One of the four residences on the 44th annual Dunwoody Home Tour.



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4 | Perimeter Business ■

Perimeter Business A monthly section focusing on business in the Reporter Newspapers communities

Consulates help small businesses cross international borders BY JOHN RUCH

The Indian government consulate for the Southeast, operating from a mansion on Sandy Springs’ Glenridge Drive, has the standard passport and visa office. But the main reason the consulate opened shop there in 2012 was to do business. The northern Perimeter area has 13 foreign government consulates, and many more unofficial “honorary consulates,” that play a little-known but key role in helping small businesses do international deals. “I jokingly say Sandy Springs is the only city with its own foreign policy, because we do have a significant number of consulates here,” said Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul. Countries with consulates in Paul’s city include India, Colombia, Costa Rica and Nigeria. And it’s not an accident—Paul’s predecessor, the late Mayor Eva Galambos, pushed hard to convince the Indian consulate to open in Sandy Springs. “Eva’s mindset, and it certainly still drives me today, is the world is no longer insular,” said Paul. “You’ve got to be able to look beyond your borders…If you’re not forming relationships around the world, you’re getting left in the dust.” Nagesh Singh, India’s consul general in Atlanta, said his country had business on its mind, too. “As the Southeast started emerging as

for example, frequently works with the Buckhead-based Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, which represents mostly large corporations, and the Latin American Chamber of Commerce of Georgia, which represents mostly small businesses. Conexx, a private LEFT, CITY OF SANDY SPRINGS; RIGHT, CONSULATE GENERAL OF MEXICO, ATLANTA America-Israel busiAt left, Indian Consul General Nagesh Singh, left, receives a proclamation from Sandy Springs ness networking orMayor Rusty Paul last year. Right, from left, Javier Díaz de León, consul general, Consulate General of México in Atlanta, and Juan Perez and Gabriel Vaca, both with UPS, attend the ganization serving the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s Membership Meeting on September 21. Southeast, frequently works on Perimeter a manufacturing hub…we started noticing small companies navigate rules, regulabusiness connections. the growth here,” he said of the choice of a tions and tax systems. And it goes both di“Basically, it’s a triangle,” said Conexx Sandy Springs consulate. rections—foreign companies coming here, President Guy Tessler, describing the joint The booming Southeast economy also and vice versa. work among his organization, the Israegets the attention of countries that are al“The large corporations, the big boys, li consulate in Atlanta, and the Israeli govready longtime trading partners, such as have their own ways of doing that,” Díaz ernment’s Economic Mission in New York Mexico, the second-biggest international said. “But we do help a lot of medium [and] City. Working together, he said, they can efbuyer of Georgia goods. Mexico has long small businesses.” ficiently find the proper business partners had a metro Atlanta consulate, now operMultinational companies like Coca-Coamong the hundreds or thousands availating from Chantilly Drive, just across I-85 la and UPS also connect with the consulable in the U.S. and Israeli economies. from Brookhaven and Buckhead. ates, the consul generals said, but more for That “triangle” recently went to work in “It’s no secret the Atlanta region has bedirect talks about government policy rathcreating an innovative Sister City relationcome a multicultural and diverse market,” er than nitty-gritty business help. ship between Sandy Springs and the Westsaid Javier Díaz de Léon, Mexico’s consul While the consulates act as a resource ern Galilee Cluster, a group of local governgeneral and a Sandy Springs resident. for business information, they don’t do it Díaz and Singh said their consulates’ alone. They often work with internationContinued on page 9 business work usually involves helping al or cultural business associations. Díaz,




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Perimeter Business | 5

Electric bikes roll into the Perimeter market dents who want to get around campus. And we have some people who are 75 to 85 years old and they say they don’t want to give up their quality of life,” Hunger said. In other words, there is no target market, he said. Hunger said his business does attract more leisure riders rather than competitive, hard-core cyclists. “There are two very distinct groups of cyclists,” he said. Helen Gardner, general manager of Peachtree Bikes with stores in Sandy Springs and Buckhead, agreed there are vast differences between those who like their road bikes and those who want to ride an e-bike. “I thought, ‘What’s the point?’” she said. “I didn’t understand them,” she said. But in the past few years as the popularity of e-bikes has moved from China and Europe to the U.S., Gardner and other touring and road bike fans and stores have opened up to a different kind of cyclist. “We don’t stock many e-bikes. We started carrying them a couple years,” she said. “But we’re still selling regular bikes hand over fist.” The e-bikes are preferred by a totally different clientele than what normally comes into their stores, and Gardner predicts they will bring in a “new genre of customers” in the coming years. Rebecca Serna, executive director of the Atlanta Bicyle Coalition, said she loves her


Eric Hunger has opened his own ElectroBike store in Executive Park in Brookhaven.


It had been 18 years since Eric Hunger of Sandy Springs had gotten on a bike. Bad knees from playing tennis kept him from a onceloved form of leisure activity. Then he learned about electric bikes, which use a battery to provide pedal assistance for riders straining up a steep hill or needing an extra push after a long ride. His first ride on an ElectroBike, the brand of one kind of “e-bike,” as electric bikes are known, a couple years ago sold him on the product.

“I rode 4.5 miles around town and had a blast,” he said. Hunger was so sold on e-bikes that this month he opened his own ElectroBike store in Brookhaven’s Executive Park. ElectroBike is an e-bike brand founded in Mexico City, where there are 28 stores; there are also several stores in California. Hunger is banking on what he believes is an emerging form of transportation in the U.S. by bringing the concept to Georgia and Florida, and then, he hopes, the entire Southeast. “We have millennials coming in who want to commute to work. We’ve sold to college stu-

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Yvonne Williams has resigned as the The PCIDs are two jointly operated, president and CEO of the Perimeter Comself-taxing business districts in Perimmunity Improvement Districts after 17 eter Center, one on the DeKalb County years. side and one on the Fulton County side. In a PCIDs press release, Williams citWilliams has led the PCIDs since 1999 ed “life balance and through many major family considerations,” streetscape and roadincluding her daughway improvement projter’s upcoming entry ects, as well as many into college, as reasons influential planning for her resignation. studies. She also led the There is no successor PCIDs’ effort to provide in place, according to some key funding to PCIDs spokesperson speed up the forthcomBill Crane. ing I-285/Ga. 400 interCrane said the PCIDs board canceled change reconstruction its September meeting project. for lack of a quorum. “It “As we prepare to is expected that selecttake on and support ing an interim director the largest transporfor the PCIDs will top tation infrastructure JESSICA MCGOWAN their agenda when that project in the histoYvonne Williams meeting is re-schedry of this organization, uled,” he said. as well as within our “Yvonne Williams region, we want to led and helped build thank and recognize out our Perimeter Yvonne Williams for Community Improveher leadership, long ment Districts into tenure and service in one of the ‘best pracbuilding this organitices’ model CIDs in Georgia,” Crane said. zation,” said Central “We wish Yvonne WilPerimeter CID Board liams luck in all her Chair John Heagy in future endeavors as the press release, referring to the interwell as her intended focus on her famichange project. ly at this time.” -- John Ruch


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Perimeter Business | 7

Electric bikes roll into the Perimeter market Continued from page 5 electric bike. She has a toddler who loves to be pulled in a trailer behind her. On the hilly roads of Atlanta, pulling a small child is no easy task, but with pedal assist, uphill climbs are eased. “We want biking to be an option to as many people as possible,” she said. And electric bikes are an option for people who want to ride a bike but are intimidated by, for example, the Georgia heat or the hills of their neighborhoods. “The e-bikes will fill an important role in this arena,” she said. Global research firm Navigant Research predicts electric bike sales around the world will jump from $15.7 billion in revenue in 2016 to $24.4 billion by 2025. More than 35 million bikes are expected to be sold globally this year, according to the firm. Electric bikes are powered by lithium

batteries and allow the rider determine how much help is needed during a ride. With the motor turned off, the bike operates as a traditional bicycle. A flip of a switch turns on the bike’s battery to give a boost, or pedal assist, so a rider can easily pedal with the e-bike taking over the hard riding. Many e-bikes also have throttles which allow riders to not pedal as the bike essentially transforms into a scooter. “We have had some people come in and say they are ‘cheater bikes,’” Hunger said. “But it’s up to you to decide how much exercise you want.” E-bike batteries can be charged in conventional electric outlets. In Georgia they are also are allowed on designated bike paths, according to state law. Hunger said his decision to locate in Brookhaven was sealed as he learned more about the Peachtree Creek Greenway project, a 12-mile multi-use path and linear park that is de-

signed to connect the cities of Brookhaven, Chamblee and Doraville and, in the long term, to the Atlanta BeltLine. The Brookhaven City Council approved in August a $35 million master plan for the greenway. In the Perimeter Center, there is also an ongoing push to DYANA BAGBY E-bikes can sell for $1,000 and up. ease car congestion by encouraging bicygy for the commercial area. While the PCIDs cle use with bike paths being built and striped plan does not specify e-bikes in its plan, it does in Dunwoody, Sandy Springs and Brookhaven. feature a Cox Enterprise employee who comThe Perimeter Community Improvement mutes to her job on Peachtree-Dunwoody Districts has also gotten these cities to approve Road in Dunwoody on an e-bike. a proposed bicycle implementation strate-

8 | Perimeter Business ■

Openings Cheeky Taqueria Chastain brought out the ribbon for its grand opening Sept. 19. On hand, Marian MacleodElliott, Nick Ridgely, Suzanne Brown, Adam Clark, general manager, Gene Suttonk, Zac Smith, Matt Hughes, Roger Prichard, Tom Mahaffey, Joe Luranc, Erica RockerWills, Beth Berger and Angela Forrester. The resturant, located at 4600 Roswell Rd. in Sandy Springs, serves Mexican cuisine.


M ER CED ES- B ENZ US A B R EA KS G R O UND A groundbreaking for the Mercedes-Benz USA headquarters at 6480 Barfield Road in Sandy Springs was held Sept. 26. From left, Dietmar Exler, MBUSA’s president and CEO, Gov. Nathan Deal, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul lift the shovels. MBUSA is temporarily headquartered in Dunwoody while awaiting the new building, due in early 2018.

Complete Spine Solutions opened its newest location at Brookhaven Station, 4060 Peachtree Road, Suite J, and celebrated with a ribbon cutting on Sept. 20. On hand for the festivities, Alan Goodman, Simone Cingel, Alyssa Dennis, Francisco Albizu, Dr. David Shapiro, Arlene Shapiro, Rick Martin, Brookhaven City Councilmembers Linley Jones and Joe Gebbia, Department of Labor representatives, Meagan Hanson, City Councilmember Bates Mattison and Elizabeth Warren.

The Dunwoody Perimeter Chamber celebrated the relocation of Travelfaire after 32 years to 1711 Mount Vernon Road on Sept. 22 with a ribbon cutting. In attendance: front row, from left, Peggy Grant, Bill Grant, Meredy Shortal, Dunwoody Mayor Dennis Shortal, Celia Gardner, co-owner, Jan Gardner, co-owner, Jan McMullen, Carla Thomas and Melissa Brown. Back row, Scott Nathanson, Leslie Shahan, Gary Hinchliffe and Mary Jo Thrasher.

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Buckhead residents Robin and Doug Shore were honored by Kennesaw State University’s Coles College of Business with the naming of its Entrepreneurship Center at a ceremony on Sept. 24. The Shores established an annual scholarship eight years ago for deserving students in sales and marketing, the “Business Press Educational Foundation (BPEF)/Joseph Shore Scholarship Fund.” Doug Shore is an advisory board member for Springs Publishing LLC, the parent company of Reporter Newspapers.

SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Perimeter Business | 9

Join us for a free educational event featuring Jennifer Smrtka, ARNP-C, MSCN, an expert who will discuss topics about multiple sclerosis (MS). Plus, get some tips for talking about MS with friends and loved ones. Mayor Shlomo Bohbot, left, presents Sandy Springs City Manager John McDonough with a gift from the Western Gallilee Cluster.


Consulates help small businesses cross international borders Continued from page 4

terms the Americans may take as a polite brush-off and Israelis interpret more literally. “The simple phrase ‘It’s interesting’ has caused many headaches and need for interpretation,” he said. Singh noted that doing business in In-

ments in Israel. Paul specified that he wanted the Sister City to be more than the typical cultural exchange. He wanted an ongoing economic development partnership focused on medical technology, tourism, and information technology and cyber security. Conexx helped find the right region of Israel with the right sort of industries to match Sandy Springs. Government leaders from Sandy Springs visited the Western Galilee last year, and some of the Israeli area’s SPECIAL From left, Yael Ron, Western Galilee Cluster, Lisa Nash, principal, leaders visited here Heards Ferry Elementary School, Yariv Hameiri and earlier this month, Mayor Yechilei observe schoolchildren at work. stopping at such places as Emory dia can be tough enough for Indians, as Saint Joseph’s Hospital. But besides that there are 29 national languages, each spotraditional form of exchange, “task forces” ken by at least 20 million people. “I’m more of officials from both sides are staying in comfortable speaking with you than [with touch for ongoing connections. someone] in southern India,” he said. The outcomes can be surprising. Paul Likewise, Southern hospitality can be said that during a stop at The Weber a surprise to Indian immigrants who are School, one Israeli mayor noticed the linomore familiar with north communities or leum floor—a common product here, but ones in California. Singh said that when he unusual in the Western Galilee. The mayand his wife took a walk after moving to or was interested in the durable material, Buckhead, they were surprised that drivers and it turns out some of it is manufactured waved at them. “’Who are these people?’” in Georgia. “It’s even mundane things like he recalled wondering. “Then I realized it’s that,” Paul said. a normal thing to do.” Doing business can require some cul“Better cultural understanding of each tural interpretation, and local consuls said other’s habits and ways is almost 50 perthey wished they were asked for help with cent of the job done,” Singh said, “wheththat more often from both sides. er it’s the political sphere or the economic Tessler said that Americans and Israesphere.” lis can misunderstand each other over

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Opinion / Mexican community’s contribution to Georgia economy Wherever new immigrants go, they face significant challenges. Migrants have very high resilience and capability for integration with the members of the communities where they live, but most of the time, they struggle against social, economic, cultural and lawful impediments to move forward towards a better life due to their immigration status. However, they face them with dignity and perseverance. For instance, in Georgia, their adaptation process is in many ways a complex issue, considering the many economic and legislative obstacles that immigrants face in their quest for further or higher education. Unfortunately, many residents believe that immigrants do not deserve an opportunity for a better education, or to obtain valid identifications or access to driving licenses. This is hard to understand, considering that an inclusive, better educated and empowered community provides better opportunities for everybody. Nevertheless, some remarkable initiatives of understanding and acceptance have been carried out in this great city and in this state. Such is the case of “Welcoming Atlanta,” an initiative that promotes inclusion and welcoming to build a multicultural community in metro Atlanta. According to Welcoming Atlanta, the city boasts the second-fastest-growing foreign-born population in the United States. The city government of Atlanta recognizes the richness of the cultural and economic contributions of these communities, and that makes a lot of sense. Since Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed announced in May 2014 the creation of Welcoming Atlanta, this initiative has focused on five key areas of immigrant integration: ensuring equitable access to services; expanding educational opportunities; facilitating economic em-

On The Record

powerment; enhancing public safety and fostering a connected community; and building immigrant civic engagement and leadership. Through this initiative, the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs was established, which has been working as the liaison between the city of Atlanta and the immigrant and refugee community. The goals of this Javier Díaz de León office are, among others, was appointed as the consul general of Mexico in Atlanta in public safety, community June. He previously served as consul general in Raleigh, N.C., engagement, and economand as deputy consul in New York and San Diego, Calif. ic development. Here is some hard data ports to Mexico. Georgia has increased that may provide an overview of the imits exports to Mexico in more than 200 portance and contribution of the Latipercent since NAFTA started. The top no and Mexican community to Georgia: exports from Georgia to Mexico are: in1 in 10 Georgians are Latinos; in 2014 sulated wire; aluminum sheets; gas turthe purchasing power of Georgia’s Labines; civilian aircraft and related entinos was $17.6 billion (an increase of gines and parts; and refrigerating or 1,232 percent since 1990); and Latinos in freezing equipment. And on the othGeorgia paid $1.9 billion in federal taxer side, these are Georgia’s top imports es and $1 billion in state and local taxfrom Mexico: insulated wire; televies in 2013. sions; motor vehicles; refrigerators or Mexico’s importance for Georgia in freezers; internal combustion piston enterms of our economic relationship is gines; and lamps and light fittings. surprising to many. Mexico is Georgia’s Mexico and Georgia share a strong fourth-largest trading partner in the and vibrant relationship, since we are world, after China, Germany and Canvery important to each other. We are ada. Our bilateral trade reached $9.7 business partners and we share an inbillion dollars in 2015; but more imterest in common prosperity. portantly, Mexico is the second-largest Mexican migrants moving to Georbuyer of goods from Georgia, after Cangia embrace a dream for a better life. ada. Georgia exports to Mexico reached We must understand their ideals and $3.4 billion in 2015, when Mexico acneeds, but also recognize their daily counted for 9 percent of Georgia’s excontributions to the economy and soports worldwide. cial fabric of Georgia. We encourage Besides the above mentioned, Georthem to be proud of their roots, their gia’s exports to Mexico have grown culture and the place where they come at an annual average rate of 10.2 perfrom, but also to be an integrated, emcent in 21 years since NAFTA came into powered and vocal part of the commuforce; Georgia is the 11th U.S. state in exnities they live in.

Read these articles from our other editions online at

“It’s kind of like planning for war.” --Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul, speaking at a Sept. 21 forum about the traffic impacts from the new Atlanta Braves stadium coming to nearby Cobb County “The city of Sandy Springs opposes any boycott, divestment or sanctions initiative whose purpose is to instill hostility or promote anti-Semitism.” --An excerpt of a Sandy Springs City Council resolution that opposes the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions political movement that is pressuring the Israeli government on alleged human rights issues

“The city is investigating into ways to intervene or try to ensure affordable housing when massive apartment complexes are disassembled and people are going to be displaced.” --Brookhaven City Councilmember Joe Gebbia about plans to redevelopment hundreds of apartments units in the Buford Highway corridor “You can drive a truck or five or six freight trains through it.” --Brookhaven City Attorney Chris Balch on the city’s ethic ordinance provision for the method of removing a city councilmember

“This is a boycott. No longer will Macy’s, no longer will Lenox…profit off of our suffrage. No longer can they get another black dollar off of our pain.” --“Sir Maejor” Page, leader of Black Lives Matter of Greater Atlanta, during a Sept. 24 protest at Buckhead’s Lenox Square Mall “The most important piece of advice I give a community like Atlanta that is considering [a cap park] like this is, find your champion.” --Tara Green, president of Klyde Warren Park in Dallas, which is a model for a similar highway-capping park proposed in Buckhead DUN

SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Commentary | 11

The uber-listmakers among us Robin’s Nest Robin Conte

I pulled something out of the pocket of a jacket I hadn’t worn since last season. I know you’ve had that serendipitous experience, of discovering perhaps a forgotten $10 bill or a Robin Conte is a writer Werther’s Original caramel that had been stuffed into a piece and mother of four who of clothing. But that’s not what was in my pocket; it was an lives in Dunwoody. She old list. can be contacted at I find them everywhere—lists in my purse, lists on my nightstand, lists under my lists. You see, I am a compulsive list-maker. I know I’m not the only one. There are those who are list-makers and those who are not list-makers, and then there are those who are uber-list-makers—the truly OCD among us—like me. I am an uber. If you’re not a list-maker, you’re not, and you know you’re not. You’re one of those happy-go-lucky, “que sera, sera” people who skip through life not worrying, being happy. What you don’t know is that you’ve been missing out. You don’t know the little tingle, the small rush, the spark of joy you get when you cross off an item on your list. It’s a cheap thrill, but it’s still a thrill. If you are a list-maker, you know that, too. ,What you may not know is the difference between yourself and an uber. I am here to illuminate the

distinctions. If you are a garden-variety list-maker, you will take the time to jot down the specific groceries you intend to buy or the items you need at the hardware store. You might make a note on your smartThing, reminding yourself to take the dog to the vet or that you need to update your tetanus shot. But you will be able to function normally without a list. If you are an uber, you cannot. Your day will not truly begin until you have a list. List-less, you will wander aimlessly through the kitchen, coffee cup in hand, wondering what you are supposed to do until you see, let’s say, a newspaper begging to be read. That will jolt you into action, so you will find a stray piece of paper and write down “read the newspaper,” along with 10 other tasks, and you can start your day. If you are an uber, you will then prioritize the jobs, and if you are an advanced uber, you will also designate the time periods within the day during which the jobs will take place. If you happen to complete a task that wasn’t yet written on the list, you will write it down just for the satisfaction of crossing it off again. You know you’re an uber if you need that fix. If you are an uber, you will take one task and break it down into multiple steps, i.e.: write the letter, address the envelope, stamp the envelope, mail the envelope. This allows for optimal crossing-off satisfaction. If you are an uber, you will throw a little party for yourself if you actually complete everything on your list. I hope you have been enlightened as to the differences among us. Now, if you are an uber, please cross this off your list and go about your day.


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12 | Community ■

Council raises concerns about tower’s traffic, green space Continued from page 1 finished. The current zoning of the property, a 4-acre parcel on an unused corner of the parking lot of Perimeter Mall, only allows for a two-story building. The Planning Commission and city staff have recommended the Transwestern project be approved. “I’m struggling with the lack of green space,” said Councilmember Lynn Deutsch. “In my experience, when a developer asks to up density in an area, the government gets something in return. I don’t see what benefits the city is receiving ... in an area full of concrete.” Jessica Hill of Morris, Manning & Martin, an attorney for Transwestern, said the developers agreed to allow the city access to a triangular piece of property for a possible park underneath the MARTA tracks, dubbed Perimeter Park, at the request of the city’s Planning Commission. But the small size and location of the property doesn’t allow for much more than the building itself, she said. “There’s not much opportunity to put any green space on the property,” Hill said. Transwestern originally filed plans with the city seeking to construct a 16-story office tower, but are now asking for 20 stories, Hill said. The office tower will be

I’m struggling with the lack of green space. In my experience, when a developer asks to up density in an area, the government gets something in return. I don’t see what benefits the city is receiving ... in an area full of concrete. LYNN DEUTSCH TRANSWESTERN

City Council has asked developer Transwestern, who seeks to build a 20-story office tower, above, on a parcel near Perimeter Mall zoned for a two-story structure, for additional information on traffic and expanding green space.

about 356,000 square feet, with 13,000 square feet designated for retail. A restaurant and shops are planned for the ground floor. No tenants have been finalized for the building, according to developers. Deutsch also asked about a traffic study. Hill answered that a regional traffic study was not needed because the proj-

ect was about 140,000 square feet smaller than what is necessary to trigger the study. Dunwoody Public Works Director Michael Smith told the City Council that Hill was correct that the project did not reach the threshold for requiring a regional traffic study. He also said the city requested a

COUNCILMEMBER traffic study in June but has yet to receive one. “This area has been studied ... for State Farm,” Hill said. “The plans are being implemented now. We’re connecting directly to MARTA.” Councilmember Doug Thompson asked Hill if the developers would have any objection to having a traffic study done. “Yes, we would. The city staff has recommended approval of this project. From a timing perspective, this is the year in closing,” Hill said. “Providing a traffic study at this time would not be acceptable. We’ve made it this far without providing one.” Shortal and Deutsch also questioned the height of the building. Councilmember John Heneghan noted that because two council members, Pam Tallmadge and Terry Nall, were absent due to other commitments, it would be prudent for a deferral. “I personally think it’s a pretty good project,” Heneghan said. “But based on concerns from others, I think we should defer to the next meeting.” Thompson also said he believed the project was a good one but asked the developers to speak with city staff about the height of the proposed office tower. He also addressed traffic concerns. “This is a good project and I know it’s on MARTA, but we want to make sure there are no unintended traffic concerns,” he said. Transwestern is also seeking a tax abatement from the Dunwoody Development Authority. Transwestern would save approximately $14.5 million in property taxes over 12 years, according to an analysis by Georgia Tech. The project is a speculative project — meaning no tenants are signed on to locate there — so how many jobs the project would bring to Dunwoody is uncertain. Transwestern estimates the project will bring nearly 2,500 jobs to the city.


SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Community | 13


Mayor Denis Shortal held his second town hall on Sept. 20 at Dunwoody Baptist Church.

posed Westside Connector to connect Ashford-Dunwoody Road to Perimeter Center Parkway will have to be paid for with state or federal funding, Shortal said, because there is not enough money in the city’s budget to pay for it. • Shortal said he could not discuss the future of Austin Elementary School because the issue is a real estate matter protected in executive session. State Sen. Fran Millar (R-Dunwoody), who attended the town hall, said the issue really needed to be addressed. “What we have are two governmental entities arguing over if they want to swap property,” Millar said. “I think this issue needs to be resolved. If the city is not going to do anything, then the city should come forward and say something.” Discussions have taken place be-

tween the city and the DeKalb School District over where to build a new Austin Elementary. The current school is located on Roberts Drive. There are rumors in the community that a new school is proposed to be built in Dunwoody Park where the current Dunwoody Senior Baseball fields are located. Jerry Weiner, president of Dunwoody Senior Baseball, said in April he was told the DSB leagues would be relocated to fields at Peachtree Charter Middle School. DSB opposes that location. Weiner also said he was told it would cost about $3 million to relocate the fields but that the city did not want to pay any money toward that expense.

Mayor Shortal talks Brook Run theater, Austin Elementary and more at town hall BY DYANA BAGBY

en. He also said there are no plans to replace the building with another performing arts center or community cenTopics as varied as the demolition of ter. “The cost of a building like that is the theater building at Brook Run Park quite high … and not in our budget,” he to tax abatements to Austin Elementasaid. ry School drew attention as Dunwoody The Stage Door Players theater at Mayor Denis Shortal held his second the North DeKalb Cultural Center may town hall since being elected to the be enhanced or expanded in the future, post. Shortal said. About 50 people attended the Sept. Other topics discussed included: 20 meeting in the chapel of Dunwoody • Shortal was asked why the city ofBaptist Church. fers tax abatements and incentives to The topic raised corporations like most often by those State Farm to build in attendance was in Perimeter Centhe City Council’s ter through the recent vote to acDunwoody Develcept bids to deopment Authorimolish Brook Run ty. Shortal said the theater. Shortal companies bring cast the sole vote jobs, economic deagainst awarding velopment and the bid. He said the funds into the city. six council memAnd, he said, if bers who voted the city didn’t proin favor — Lynn vide the incentives Deutsch, Terry then DeKalb CounNall, Doug Thompty would do so son, Jim Riticher, through its own dePam Tallmadge and DENIS SHORTAL velopment authorJohn Heneghan — DUNWOODY MAYOR ity. will explain why “Then [the city] they voted the way would lose control they did in emails. of what’s going on. If we did not pro“Everyone knows where I stand,” vide tax incentives, DeKalb County will Shortal said. “We’re a democracy and grant it,” he said. He said a new law is votes were taken. In a democracy, mabeing worked on in the state legislature jority rules.” to prohibit county development auShortal said the city’s new parks thorities from granting tax abatements plan will be considered without the thein incorporated cities that have their ater in the plans. No firm date of when own development authorities. the building will be torn down was giv• The $20 million to $30 million

Everyone knows where I stand. We’re a democracy and votes were taken. In a democracy, majority rules.


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14 | Community ■


City Council approved additional money for Donald-Bannister Farm renovations.

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Council approves adding $60,000 to historic farm budget The Dunwoody City Council approved adding $60,000 to the budget for renovation to the Donald-Bannister Farm at its Sept. 26 meeting. The Dunwoody Preservation Trust will pay $50,000 of that amount with the city covering the remaining $10,000. City Parks & Recreation Director Brent Walker explained to the council that the original contract awarded to Diversified Construction of Georgia to build public bathroom facilities was for $225,600. But additional costs to the existing barn structure, including replacing the existing roof, bumped up the total needed to $285,600. Walker said in a memo to the council that the additional repairs coupled with additional change orders requested by the Dunwoody Preservation Trust were reasons for the increased price tag. “These additional costs will be paid through the $50,000 donation made by the Dunwoody Preservation Trust and $10,000 from the Donaldson Bannister Farm Site Improvement Capital Fund,” Walker stated. Built in 1867, the Donald-Bannister Farm is the second oldest home in Dunwoody; since 2009, it has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2014, the city began taking steps to repair and renovate the farm for public use. The City Council last year approved a $167,500 bid from Midwest Maintenance for installation of new supporting floor joists, support beams and rear wall replacement, based on a structural engineer’s report on the city-owned home. Estimates to completely repair and renovate the farm property have come in at about $4 million to $5 million. In January, the Dunwoody Preservation Trust updated the City Council on the renovation project. Former City Council member Danny Ross, and his wife, Queenie Ross, were instrumental in preserving the old house. The couple also tried unsuccessfully this year to save the theater at Brook Run Park. -- Dyana Bagby


SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Kosher BBQ at Brook Run Park


Far left, Chelsea Seaborn and her daughter Olivia, 2, snuggle “Blue Flame,” while attending the 4th annual Kosher BBQ Competition and Festival at Brook Run Park on Sept. 25. Left, John Fish works the 8th Day Prime Cut booth, representing The Kehilla in Sandy Springs, by cutting brisket into bite-sized pieces. Bottom left, Marshall Nichols tries a non-meat sample. Below, Bob Atkins, of Big Green Egg grills, shows off the day’s main attraction.


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16 | Out & About ■






holds a reception honoring artists and host businesses at Fidelity Bank, 2 Perimeter Center East, Dunwoody, 30338. Free. Open to the community. To find out more and see participating artists and city-wide venues, go to:


Wednesday, Oct. 5, 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. The 44th annual Dunwoody Home Tour features four homes in Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. Tickets, $25, available at: home-tour, from Dunwoody Women’s Club members and also at area businesses. Pick up online ticket purchases at Will-Call, 5393 Redfield Cir., Dunwoody, 30338 (first home on tour).

BROOKHAVEN ARTS FESTIVAL WIN 8541 Reporter ad.indd 1

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Saturday, Oct. 15, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. The 2nd annual Brookhaven Arts Festival gets underway! Check out more than 100 participating artists, featuring fiber, glass, jewelry, mixed media, painting, photography and sculpture. Free entry. Continues Oct. 16, 12-5 p.m. 4047 Peachtree Rd., behind the Brookhaven MARTA station on the Apple Valley Road side, 30319. Questions? Go to:

Saturday, Oct. 8, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Chastain Arts Center holds its 4th annual Pottery on the Porch sale. Check out functional, sculptural or for the garden pieces. See demonstrations of throwing on the wheel. Free and open to the public. 135 W. Wieuca Rd., NW, Atlanta, 30342. For additional information, call 404-2522927.

BEANS & BOWLS Friday, Oct. 14, 5-9 p.m. Spruill’s 15th annual “Free Beans with Every Bowl” sale gets underway. Purchase ceramic pieces and stay for a bowl of chili, made by Spruill Arts Ceramics Department students and instructors. Free. All are welcome. Proceeds benefit the department. Cash and checks preferred. Continues Oct. 15, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Oct. 16, 12-5 p.m. 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. Questions? Go to: or call 770-394-3447, x223.



Sunday, Oct. 16, 7 a.m. Certified as a Peachtree Road Race 2017 qualifier, this Rotary Club of Dunwoodysponsored 5K begins and ends at Perimeter Mall. The course is designed for runners—a fast and challenging course. The 1-mile Fun Run begins at 9 a.m.; Tot Trot, for ages 2-5, at 9:15 a.m. 5K, $25-$35. Music, awards, door prizes, refreshments. 4400 Ashford-Dunwoody Rd., NE, Atlanta, 30346. Register and learn more:


HOOS IN THE FOREST Saturday, Oct. 15, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Reception for Dunwoody Nature Center’s inaugural Art in the Park event, “Hoos in the Forest,” featuring 20 whimsical creatures made of naturally found materials. Artist’s talk, tour, workshops, “poetry on demand.” Lunch and beverages provided. Free admission. Exhibit runs through Nov. 15. See additional details: or call 770-394-3322.







FINE ART MONTH Wednesday, Oct. 5, 5-7 p.m. The Dunwoody Fine Art Association announces that October is Fine Art Month, and

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 9:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. The Dunwoody Branch Library holds a class for senior drivers. Topics include: blind spots; maintaining proper following distance; safety belts, air bags, antilock brakes and new technology; effects of medications; eliminating

SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

distractions. Taught by certified instructor. Free. For those 55 and older. Limited to 20 participants. Call 770-512-4640 to register. 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338.

Robert Swan

Polar explorer & environmentalist

and magazines. Free. Open to the first 10 participants. Appropriate for those ages 13-17. 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. For further details and to register, call 770-512-4640.

Out & About | 17


MOVIE NIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE Wednesday, Oct. 5, 6:30 p.m. Polar explorer and environmentalist Robert Swan visits Pace Academy, who will discuss climate issues, part of the school’s Isdell Center for Global Leadership’s Year of Climate. Free. The public is welcome to attend. Knights Hall, Garcia Family Middle School, 5th floor, 966 W. Paces Ferry Rd., NW, Atlanta, 30327. Learn more by going to: or calling 404-262-1345.

Tuesday, Oct. 11, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Join others at the Brookhaven Branch Library for a screening of “Where the Wild Things Are.” Rated PG. Free. Open to all. The first five families in attendance receive a personal copy of the book. Snacks provided. 1242 N. Druid Hills Rd., NE, Brookhaven, 30319. To learn more, call 404-848-7140.

FALL GARDENING Saturday, Oct. 8, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Find out about fall gardening from the president of the Dunwoody Garden Club. Light refreshments provided. Free. For adults. No registration required. 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. Call 770-512-4640 to learn more.

STILL LIFE ART Tuesday, Oct. 11, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Get to know artist Frida KahFrida Kahlo lo and her work, Artist then create your own still life drawing based on her style. Learn how to use lines, shapes and angles. Free. For adults, ages 18 and up. Open to the first 15 participants. Call 770-512-4640 to sign up. Dunwoody Branch Library, 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338.

OPEN HOUSE Saturday, Oct. 15, 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Gather at the Blue Heron Nature Preserve for their fall Open House, with Atlanta Audubon and Trees Atlanta also in attendance. Enjoy a bird walk, nature hike, planting trees, children’s crafts, theater performances and tours. Free. Open to the community. 4055 Roswell Rd., NE, Atlanta, 30342. Call 404-345-1008 or visit: for details.

KIDS’ STUFF CREATE CUPCAKES Monday, Oct. 10, 3-4:30 p.m. Fill your sweet tooth with this cupcake decorating session. Come create an edible masterpiece! Geared for those ages 10-12. Free. Open to the first 15 participants. Call the Brookhaven Branch Library at 404-8487140 or swing by 1242 N. Druid Hills Rd., NE, Brookhaven, 30319 to sign up.

ALTERED BOOKS Tuesday, Oct. 11, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Celebrate Teen Read Week at the Dunwoody Branch Library by making decoupage boxes out of old books

COMPUTER GAME DESIGN Thursday, Oct. 13, 6:45-8:45 p.m. Marcus Jewish Community Center-Atlanta offers a threesession workshop for teens, grades 8-11, covering fundamentals of video game design and programming, including how to build code with HTML, CSS and JavaScript. $80 for non-members; $60 for members. Continues Oct. 20 and 27. 5342 Tilly Mill Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. For more information, contact Paige Godfrey at 678-812-4082, or email:

HEAD TO TOE! Friday, Oct. 14, 2:15-3:15 p.m. This program invites young audience members to think, observe and move like their favorite animals. Inspired by Eric Carles’ book of the same name. Free. All are welcome. Suitable for those ages 2-4. Sandy Springs Branch Library, 395 Mount Vernon Highway, Sandy Springs, 30328. For details, call 404-303-6130 or email:

FUN ART Friday, Oct. 14, 3-4 p.m. Get creative with arts and crafts inspired by nature and the seasons. Free. For those ages 5-12. Open to the first 10 participants. Dunwoody Branch Library, 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. For information and to sign up, call 770-512-4640.


Most women know to get a mammogram but not a lung screening. Yet lung cancer kills more women than any other type of cancer. The good news is a lung cancer screening can help detect it early when there are more treatment options. Northside Hospital Cancer Institute offers a low dose CT screening if you’re 55 – 77 years old and a current or previous smoker. It’s quick and easy and could save your life. For information call 404-531-4444 or visit

Friday, Oct. 14, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Create animals using plastic bottles at the Sandy Springs Branch Library. Registration required by emailing: leah.germon@fultoncountyga. gov. Free and open to all. Suitable for ages 5 and up. 395 Mount Vernon Highway, Sandy Springs, 30328. Questions? Call 404-303-6130.

Where the Extraordinary Happens Every Day

18 | Dining Out ■

B A: The rooftop space at 5Church in Midtown B: Peanut butter and jelly pie C: Jumbo lump crab cake D: “60 second” New York strip steak E: The ceiling features the handpainted text of “Art of War”




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When Tom Catherall called it quits on the Here to Serve restaurants, he left a giant hole in Midtown where Shout used to be. Everyone was hit hard - the gay Sunday brunch crowd, the small firm business lunch crowd, the dinner between museum and theater crowd, and certainly some of Atlanta’s most fun and chatty servers. Shout did so many things so well without looking too much like it was aiming for the lowest common denominator. I am pleased to report that where Shout once was, 5Church is now holding it down and then some. The valet service is great and they have umbrellas. The patio and the upstairs deck are both shaping up to open as soon as the weather cools a bit. The decor is stunning. The layout of Shout always made it hard to people watch, with the darkened booth niches and huge circular bar blocking the view from the stairs. 5Church has really opened up the place, as well as classed it up by opting for a stark black and white color scheme that plays off the loud street art on the walls. Upon closer inspection,

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Dining Out Megan Volpert Megan Volpert lives in Decatur, teaches in Roswell and writes books about popular culture.

the whole ceiling is covered with the entire hand-painted text of Sun Tzu’s Art of War. Wear some hot pink and prep for a great photo op. The food lives up to the space. 5Church began in Charlotte and opened in Charleston before coming here as well, and they really understand how to do plates that are both Southern in their comfort and cosmopolitan in their construction. Might have something to do with James Beard Award-winning executive chef RJ Cooper. One dish for which he isn’t responsible is the “60 second” New York strip, featured on the menu in all three cities, from the mind of partner and chef Jamie Lynch. Equal parts delicious food and food for thought, the steak gets a quick sear on one side so the heat soaks up into it and leaves the other side barely cooked. Examining pink from one side instead of in the center results in a whole new mouthfeel and that is worth trying for a change of pace. On the other hand, there are a couple of plates that are worth ordering over and over again. They’ve got a wasabi crusted ahi tuna on a bed of miso foam and seaweed salad that will make you forget Shout ever existed. Ditto for the jumbo lump crab, which is done as a salad and not as a cake. On the brunch and dinner menus it’s a first course, but on the lunch menu it’s an entree. Personally, I could take a bath in it. This is also the case for the cave aged cheddar agnolotti, piled high with the pop of peas and the crunch of ham, straight out of autumn’s fantasy food land and hopefully will stay on the menu yearround. The sides are served family style and I don’t know why you’re bringing your kids to Midtown, but they will happily enjoy the mac ’n’ cheese while you bask in the afterglow of

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SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Dining Out | 19

E that creamy agnolotti filling. For dessert, get the peanut butter and jelly, which is a delicious experiment in layers. Then again, the duck-fat beignets are a serious challenger and the oven roasted pineapple is improving. The coffee is from a roaster near the original Charlotte location, and as much as 5Church has brought its familiar touches from home, it fits into Atlanta already. The bar program is maybe a little on the fizzy and fruity side of things for me, but hey, what’s Midtown without a wild berry mojito and a rosemary gin fizz? There are a dozen kinds of bubbly, too, so if you miss Shout more often than you like to admit, go toast to 5Church’s success. 5Church is at 1197 Peachtree St. For more information:

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20 | Education ■

Exceptional Educator: John Gresens of North Springs Charter High School Editor’s note: Through our “Exceptional Educator” series, Reporter Newspapers is showcasing the work of some of the outstanding teachers and administrators at our local schools. If you would like to recommend an Exceptional Educator, please email John Gresens teaches visual art, ceramics, sculpture, jewelry design and other art courses at North Springs Charter High in Sandy Springs. He has been teaching for seven years and sponsors the school’s participation in “The Deconstruction,” a twoday, online international competition during which students deconstruct something and reimagine it as something else. North Spring students won the competition two

years ago. For this year’s challenge, the students will deconstruct America.



Q: What attracted you to teaching at first? A: I was given some bad advice when I was a young person. I was always the “art kid,” and I knew that I wanted to be an artist from a very early age. Someone close to me in a position of authority told me, “You’ll never be able to make a living as an artist.” I listened and I was occupationally derailed for a long time. After marrying my wife, who is an artist and was a sculpture major at the time, I realized that I had to create. In 2003, my mother died in a house fire and I had an epiphany. In a moment of ex-


John Gresens teaches visual art, ceramics, sculpture, jewelry design and other art courses at North Springs Charter High School.

treme clarity, I knew that I wanted to be an art teacher. Q: Has the appeal changed? A: I think it changes from year to year. This is such a dynamic occupation that is subject to radical shifts annually. Changes in policy, administration, strategy and technology all have such an effect on teacher motivation. I’ve had some real struggles with all of the previously mentioned issues in the past. While I have to deal with the non-classroom issues, I’ve really embraced the idea that the focus is, and will always be, the student. Q: What keeps you going year after year? A: The personal connections with my students that I get to develop are so rewarding. To be able to teach a 14-year-old student and watch her or him grow, change, struggle, fail, triumph and ultimately leave at 17 or 18 with a stronger sense of who he or she is, is amazing. I smile knowing that I had a part in that! Q: What do you think makes a great teacher? A: A wise teacher told me early in my career that teaching is all about relationships. I believed it then and I believe it now. All of the best teachers I know really care about their students and they let them know that daily. The strategies may be different, but the caring and communication are constants. If your students trust you, you can teach them anything. Q: What do you want to see in your students? A: I want to see them engage with process, find passion in the content, and execute a strong, informed product. All of this while showing respect for others and the studio. The sum of this should produce an artist or at least an art appreciator. Q: How do you engage your students? A: Every day is another show. It’s like being on stage, banging out a performance worthy of appreciation. I try to make sure that my passion for the content areas is always

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strong and that I’m actively learning on my time. Being “on fire” for the material carries over in my lectures and demonstrations. I also teach an adult wheel pottery class at the Spruill Art Center on Monday nights. Teaching adults in a three-hour block helps me to solve more advanced problems and bring that knowledge back into the classroom at North Springs. Q: Do you have a project or special program you use year after year? A: Two years ago we participated in “The Deconstruction.” It’s a 48-hour global project where you bring a bunch of stuff together, tear it apart and reassemble it to solve a creative problem. We won the whole thing in 2014! The competition/project “went dark” for a year as the organizers reloaded. It’s back this year and we plan to participate again. This year the theme is “Deconstructing America.” Check it out at I am also running a Maker Lab at North Springs. The whole student body will have access to my tools and equipment to satisfy their creative curiosities. I’ll have it up and running in the next month or so and it will be accessible a couple of days a week after school and at least one day before school. We’ll work collaboratively with science, some clubs and science teams to get them access so that they can learn and compete. Q: Is there a “trick” that works to get students involved? A: Have fun and tell them you care about them. Show them some passion. They might not completely buy in, but it’s hard to let down someone who explains their motivations and stays real. Q: What do you hope your students take away from your class? A: I hope that they will understand the challenges and beauty of communicating through objects and performances that are made from knowledge, wisdom, hard work and creativity. I also hope they will come out unafraid to take calculated risks for rich rewards.

CORRECTIONS In the Reporter Newspapers’ Education Guide [Sept. 16-29], a quotation from Riverwood International Charter School student Celine LaGrange was accompanied by a photograph of a different student. Here is Celine’s photo. Also in the Education Guide, Mount Vernon Presbyterian School’s production of “eurydice” was omitted from a list of plays planned at local high schools this fall. The play is scheduled to be performed Oct. 13-15 in the school’s Black Box Theater on its Glenn Campus.

SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Classifieds | 21

Reporter Classifieds SERVICES AVAILABLE Home Tending - Regular inspections of your unoccupied property. Call Charles, 404-229-0490. Driveways & Walkways – Replaced or repaired. Masonry, grading, foundations repaired, waterproofing and retaining walls. Call Joe Sullivan 770-616-0576. Tranquil Waters Lawn Care – Pressure washing, flower beds, trimming, tree/shrubs installation, hauling of debris, pinestraw & mulch. Free estimates. Discounts for Seniors & Veterans. No contracts needed. Call Mike 678-662-0767 or Andrew 678-672-8552. Quinn Windows – Family owned and operated. Window replacement and home remodeling company since 1980. Visit www. or call 770-939-5634.

To advertise, call 404-917-2200 ext 110 CEMETERY PLOTS

Matthew’s Handy Services – Small jobs and chores re my specialties. Shelving/ organizers, carpentry, drywall, painting, plumbing and minor yard work. Member of the Better Business Bureau. Call 404-5472079 or email: Cleaning Services – Do you want your house cleaned at a Reasonable rate? Would you like someone that is Dependable, Professional and can give you Quality Service? Charlotte’s the one for you – call 404-604-7866!

YARD SALES Cross Creek Fall Yard Sale – Saturday, October 15, 8:00 – 2:00 (rain date: October 22). 1221 Cross Creek Pkwy (off of Bohler Rd). Large sale, great chance to kick off holiday shopping!


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Q Research Solutions, a leading consumer product testing company, is currently looking for consumers ages 18 and older in Sandy Springs/Dunwoody, GA (near the Perimeter Mall) who would like to be part of a special trained panel that would meet regularly on a part-time basis to assess food/nonalcoholic beverages for a period of approximately 12 months. For questions contact:

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22 | Public Safety ■

Police Blotter / Dunwoody From Dunwoody police reports dated Sept. 18 through Sept. 23. The following information was pulled from Dunwoody’s Police-2-Citizen website and is presumed to be accurate. „„A 46-year-old Conyers man was ar-

rested Sept. 22, at about 11 a.m., for trying to shoplift men’s cologne valued at $443 from the Macy’s department store in Perimeter Mall in the 4300 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road. „„On Sept. 23, at about 3 p.m.,, a 25-year-

old Decatur man reported to police that someone broke into his car while it was parked at a restaurant in the 1200 block of Ashford Crossing. Items stolen from his car, a black Ford LGT, included a driver’s license, Social Security card, debit card, $80 in cash, shoes valued at $160 and a machete.

B U R G L A RY „„4600 block of N. Shallowford Road –

On Sept. 18, report of burglary-forced entry-non residence. „„4300 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 20, report of burglaryno forced entry-non-residence.

A S S AU LT „„100 block of Perimeter

Center East – On Sept. 18, report of assault-simple assault/battery. „„6600 block of Peachtree

Industrial Blvd. – On Sept. 18, report of assault-simple assault/battery. „„200 block of Asbury Commons –

On Sept. 19, report of assault-simple assault/battery. „„100 block of I-285 WB/Ashford-Dun-

woody Road – On Sept. 19, report of simple assault. „„1200 block of Mount Vernon Road –

On Sept. 21, report of simple assault.


„„300 block of Meadow Lane Road/Pe-


rimeter Center N. – On Sept. 19, arrest for driving while license is suspended or revoked.

„„6100 block of Abercorn Ave. – On Sept.


block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road/Perimeter Center East – On Sept. 20, arrest for driving while license suspended/revoked. „„4600 block of Tilly Mill

Road/Dunkerrin Lane – On Sept. 20, arrest for failure to obey traffic control devices. „„5600 block of Trace

Drive – On Sept. 20, arrest for speeding. „„4500 block of Olde Pe-

rimeter Way – On Sept. 20, arrest for loitering and prowling. „„6600 block of Peachtree Industrial

Blvd. – On Sept. 21, arrest for marijuana possession. „„6600 block of Peachtree Industrial

Blvd. – On Sept. 21, arrest for marijuana possession. „„ 6600 block of Peachtree Indus-

eter Center Place – On Sept. 18, report of larceny-shoplifting. „„4400 block of Ash-

ford-Dunwoody Road – On Sept. 18, report of larceny-shoplifting. „„4700 block of Ash-

ford-Dunwoody Road – On Sept. 18, report of larceny-shoplifting. „„4700 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 19, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. „„100 block of Perimeter Center East –

On Sept. 19, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. „„100 block of Perimeter Center East.

– On Sept. 19, report of larceny-articles from vehicle.

„„100 block of Drexel Pt. – On Sept. 20,

„„ 4400 block of Ashford-Dun-

woody Road – On Sept. 22, arrest for larceny-shoplifting. „„4300 block Dunwoody Pk. – On Sept.

22, arrest for marijuana possession. „„7400 block of Madison Drive – On

Sept. 22, arrest for marijuana possession. „„Ashford-Dunwoody Road/Hammond

Drive – On Sept. 22, arrest for driving while unlicensed. „„4300 block of N. Peachtree Road – On

„„2400 block of Dunwoody Crsg. – On

Sept. 23, arrest for burglary-forced entry-residence. „„2400 block of Dunwoody Crsg. – On

„„100 Perimeter Center East – On Sept.

Sept. 23, arrest for burglary-forced entry-residence.

18, arrest for obstruction-probation violation.

„„1100 block of Hammond Drive – On

Sept. 18, arrest for strong-arm robbery.

„„100 block of Perim-

4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road - On Sept. 21, arrest for larceny-shoplifting. „„

On Sept. 18, arrest for assault-simple assault/battery.

„„1600 block of N. Springs Drive – On


„„4600 block of Drexel Way – On Sept.

Sept. 23, arrest for failure to appear.

Road/Ravinia Pkwy. – On Sept. 18, arrest for obstruction-parole violation.

23, arrest for obstruction-resisting officer.

trial Blvd. – On Sept. 21, arrest for marijuana possession.

„„100 block of Perimeter Center East –


„„100 block of Drexel Pt. – On Sept. 20,

Sept. 23, arrest for larceny-shoplifting. „„4500 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 23, arrest for assault-in-

20, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. report of larceny-parts from vehicle. „„1400 block of Drexel Way – On Sept.

20, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. „„4900 block of Winters Chapel Road –

On Sept. 20, report of larceny-other offenses. „„2300 block of Drexel Way – On

Sept. 20, report of larceny-parts from vehicle. „„4300 block of Drexel Pt. – On

Sept. 20, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. „„100 block Perimeter Center East

– On Sept. 20, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. „„100 block of Drexel Pt. – On

Sept. 20, report of larceny-articles from vehicle. „„5200 block of Drexel Pt. – On

Sept. 20, report of larceny-articles from vehicle.

report of larceny-parts from vehicle. „„4400 block of Chamblee Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 21, report of larcenyshoplifting. „„1600 block of Mount Vernon Road –

On Sept. 21, report of larceny-other offenses. „„4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 21, report of larcenyshoplifting. „„4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 22, report of larcenyshoplifting. „„4300

block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road – On Sept. 22, report of larcenyshoplifting. „„4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 22, report of family offense-no violence. „„4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 22, report of larcenyshoplifting. „„4700 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

Road – On Sept. 22, report of larcenypocket picking. „„1200 block of Ashford Crsg. – On Sept.

22, report of larceny-articles from vehicle.

OT H E R „„100 block of Perimeter Ctr. E. – On

Sept. 18, report of wanted person located. „„4600 block of Peachtree Place Pkwy.

– On Sept. 18, report of motor vehicle theft. „„5400 block of Redbark Way – On Sept.

18, report of possession of alcohol by a minor. 4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road – On Sept. 18, report of sexual offenses/rape. „„

„„4500 block of Chamblee Dunwoody Road – On Sept. 18, report of harassing communications.

1200 block of Ashford Crsg. – On Sept. 19, report of harassing communications.


„„ 900 block of Ashford Pkwy. – On Sept. 20, report of damage to business property.

„„5400 block of Drexel Pt. – On Sept. 20,

„„4800 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

report of larceny-articles from vehicle.

Road – On Sept. 20, report of motor vehicle theft. DUN

SEPTEMBER 30 - OCT. 13, 2016

Community | 23

Parking woes plague streets near high school Continued from page 1

two teenaged boys moving her garbage bins from in front of her house. She asked them what they were doing and they told her they were making a parking space. “We’re trying to get in our driveways, to get to our mail [from mailboxes], and there are cars in front of them,” she said. “It’s getting tight.” The lack of parking at DHS and spillover into nearby streets is not a new issue. But in recent weeks, the Dunwoody Police Department has issued a statement via social media noting the issue and saying they are aware of the problem. “If the vehicles are parked illegally and a resident notifies us, we will respond and take any appropriate action required,” Officer Mark Stevens wrote in an email. “We do not tow unless the vehicle affects traffic flow. Ticketing is at the discretion of the officer, as is contacting the driver prior to enforcement actions.” City officials are also trying to find some kind of fix to alleviate the parking problem, city spokesperson Bob Mullen said. “The role the city has is to ensure students, teachers and visitors are parked legally, in designated spaces and not in areas or on streets where parking restrictions exist,” he wrote in an email. “We’ve spoken with DHS Principal Tom McFerrin about the parking and lack of

who have taken to parking in front of residences on various residential side streets because there is no parking available at the school. Dunwoody High School is located at 5035 Vermack Drive. Residents have been leaving notes on the windshields of students’ vehicles telling them they can’t park here, according to posts on social media. Police have been called numerous times to ticket or warn students, and the city has also installed signs saying “No Parking from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.” on several streets around high school. A Dunwoody police officer had already been to Corners Cove twice before 9:30 a.m. to patrol the cul de sac and ensure no students were parked illegally, Lutz said. Because the residential streets are public roads, students are allowed to park on them as long as they do so legally, as in not in front of driveways or on the wrong side of the street. Lutz pointed to a red Jeep parked in front of a home and said the residents have talked to the student who drives the Jeep and also to his mother. “He’s an Eagle Scout,” she said. “They’re good kids. Well, most of them are. And they do carpool and we appreciate that,” Lutz said. One recent morning Lutz said she saw

space and they are looking at ways to adfor more than a year, Lubin said. Parents dress the issue. When they have reviewed will gather in the Vanderlyn Elementathe options, we plan to coordinate a time to ry School playground while waiting for reconvene and discuss,” Mullen said. their children to get out of school and comMcFerrin did not return calls seeking plain about the lack of parking they have comment for this article. because DHS students are using all their Robin Lubin was sitting at a picnic table in front of Vanderlyn Elementary School with her mother on a recent Friday afternoon waiting for her children to get out of school. She said she parks at a nearby park and walks to the school. Vanderlyn Elementary is located at 1877 Vanderlyn Drive, right around the corner from DHS. “Now there are no spots for parents to park,” she said. The DYANA BAGBY Dunwoody High School students park in Corners high school students are parkCove, angering some residents, who say vehicles ing in the visitor parking spacare blocking driveways and mailboxes. es in front of the elementary school that were once used by parents when they dropped off their chilspaces, she said. dren in the morning and picked them up Lubin said the parking problems startin the afternoon, she said. ed in 2014 and at the end of last year “it beLubin said when she was a DHS student came unmanageable.” in 1994, students were told not to park in “There are unhappy parents that come front of Vanderlyn Elementary. to Vanderlyn to volunteer and they are not A resident at the end of Vanderlyn able to park in front of the school,” she said. Drive puts up orange pylons every day to “It’s crazy,” Lubin said. “It’s just a mess.” keep students out and has been doing it

Coming in October: A new way to reach active seniors e f i L is the fastest-growing age group r o i Sen in metro Atlanta wing Fall leaf vie a at Georgite sta parks


page 10


82-year olyd legendar r page 7 voluntee



nio 6 | AtlantaSe

OCtoBER 201


Pickleball— where what it is, page 10 to play it


comfortable seniors get While some gy, others est technolo lat the h wit y. lead the wa By Kathy Special

Projected increase in metro Atlanta’s 65+ population between 2010 and 2020



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For advertising and editorial information, call 404.917.2200 ext. 111 SOURCES: U.S. CENSUS, ATLANTA REGIONAL COMMISSION

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24 | ■

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