Atlanta Intown - October 2023

Page 1

Coming Soon • 887 Berkshire Road NE

4 Bed | 4 Bath | Offered at $1,750,000

Morningside Modern residence featuring a 4-car garage, soaring high ceilings, a state-of-the-art kitchen, and an oversized primary suite on the main level.

New To Market • 3118 W Roxoboro Road NE

5 Bed | 4.5 Bath | Offered at $2,995,000

Italian Tuscan farmhouse with 5 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms, over 6800 square feet and oversized half acre lot.

Road NE

5 Bed | 4 Bath | Offered at $1,450,000

Morningside at its Very Best Describes This Custom Designed Brick Total Expansion & Renovation.

Sold • 1819 Windemere Drive NE

5 Bed | 4.5 Bath | Sold for $2,099,000

Handsome Watershed Development custom built home. In pristine condition with one of Morningside best backyards with sports court, fire pit and more.

Under Contract • 949 Plymouth Road NE

5 Bed | 3.5 Bath | Offered at $1,795,000

Features high ceilings and finished basement all in move-right-in condition. 10+++ location.

New To Market • 1165 Reeder Circle NE

3 Bed | 2 Bath | Offered at $949,000

Freshly completed and move-in-ready, this charming Classic Morningside Tudor is perfectly situated in a prime location along upper Reeder Circle.

Recent Activity

1288 Lenox Circle

Under Contract for $825,000

1615 E Sussex Road NE

Sold for $1,850,000

1138 Zimmer Drive NE Sold Above List Price for $1,600,000

764 Wildwood Road NE

Sold for $950,000

2 | OCTOBER 2023 Ken Covers, Luxury Home Specialist Seeking Exceptional Results For Your Home Sale? Let’s Talk About The Possibilities. Ken Covers, Real Estate Advisor Engel & Völkers Atlanta 1745 Peachtree Street | Atlanta | GA 30309 C +1 404.664.8280 O +1 404.845.7724 | ©2023 Engel & Völkers. All rights reserved. Each brokerage independently owned and operated. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. If your property is currently represented by a real estate broker, this is not an attempt to solicit your listing. Engel & Völkers and its independent license partners are Equal Opportunity Employers and fully support the principles of the Fair Housing Act. Source: FMLS 2023 Scan here to get in touch and get started on a plan for your home sale. Coming Soon • 1850 Wildwood Place 4 Bed | 3 Bath | Offered at $1,395,000 Total back to studs renovation of this residence situated on a prime cul-de-sac in the desirable neighborhood of Morningside-Wildwood Place. Coming Soon • 1121 Morningside Place 2 Bed | 2.5 Bath | Offered at $475,000 Well-located townhouse abundant in enhancements, offering a bright and spacious ambiance. New To Market • 589 Pelham

Published By Rough Draft Atlanta Keith Pepper Publisher

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Creative Director


Each month, 27,000 copies of Atlanta Intown are mailed to homes and distributed to businesses in and around ZIP codes 30306, 30307, 30308, 30309, 30324 and 30329. For delivery information, To subscribe to home delivery, ($75 / year) email

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About the Cover

The Atlanta Pride Festival returns Oct. 14-15 with a weekend of music, marches, and the annual Pride Parade. Find out more about this year’s event, plus an interview with festival director Chris McCain –starting on page 16. (Photo by Lawrence Chen/Atlanta Pride Committee)

OCTOBER 2023 | 3 Scan to subscribe to Rough Draft, or, text DRAFT to 66866 roughdraftatl roughdraftatl roughdraftatl atlanta Reporter Newspapers A Publication Atlanta Intown A Publication Silver Streak By Contents OCTOBER 2023 ©2023 with all rights reserved Publisher reserves the right to refuse editorial or advertising for any reason. Publisher assumes no responsibility for information contained in advertising. Any opinions expressed in print or online do not necessarily represent the views of Reporter Newspapers or Rough Draft Atlanta. Honored as a newspaper of General Excellence 2018 Editor’s Letter 4 Community Cop City Referendum 6 BeltLine Transit 6 News Roundup 8 SupportNow 8 Vine City Walmart 10 May I Be Excused? 12 Sustainability Above the Waterline 14 Arts & Entertainment Atlanta Pride Festival 16 Pride Director Chris McCain 20 Halloween Happenings 22 Dining Women + Wine 24 Terminal South 25 Bagel Rescue 26 Food & Games 26 Real Estate Amsterdam Walk 28 Atlanta Design Festival 28 Ponce Redevelopment 28 Get Out Of Town Fall Foliage 30 Weekend in Greenville 33 Helen Oktoberfest 35 Editorial Collin Kelley Editor Sammie Purcell Associate Editor Staff Writers Dyana Bagby Cathy Cobbs Bob Pepalis Logan C. Ritchie Contributors Sally Bethea, Jacob Nguyen, Sarah Pierre, Katie Rice, Clare S. Richie, Tim Sullivan Advertising Deborah
30 22 6

2390 WATERFORD COVE Decatur, Georgia 30033

4 Bedrooms, 2.5 Bathrooms Offered for $675,000

Meticulously maintained and updated by the original owner, this brick home is a special opportunity for a fourbedroom home in the Oak Grove Elementary and Lakeside High School district. Tucked into the heart of the Oak Grove community on a cul-de-sac street with a view of the spring-fed pond from the backyard, this quality-constructed home includes hardwood floors, new bathrooms, an updated kitchen, all upto-date systems and more!

I came out to my parents when I was 17. When I came home a little later than usual from school and my mom asked where I’d been, I casually and calmly said, “With my boyfriend.” I didn’t give it a lot of thought, nor did I feel any anxiety about it. I remember being happy and feeling cute, summer break was coming, and rather than give the usual “I was with friends” or “I’m working on a project,” I just let the truth out.

My mother’s brother was gay and they were very close, so I knew she wasn’t going to freak out. My dad had already figured me out two years before when he nonchalantly mentioned how I was always on the phone or hanging out with my boyfriend. Later, when my uncle’s partner was diagnosed with HIV and couldn’t find work, my dad gave him a job.

It would be years before I understood just how lucky I was to have understanding parents in the South in the 1980s at the height of the AIDS crisis. There was also an inordinate amount of LGBTQ students and teachers at my high school – again this is the South in the 80s – so I was never subjected to horrible bullying.

While I was on my personal journey, I was very aware of the fearmongering, homophobia, and politicians eager to exploit and “other” an already marginalized community. I I will never forgive Ronald Reagan and his disgraceful handling of the AIDS crisis.

I marched in my first Atlanta Pride Parade in 1989 and would continue to do so for many years after. I also made incredible friends – many who did not have my relatively charmed childhood – who enlightened me about the need for activism. I protested outside a Cracker Barrel, I protested at AIDS rallies, and I have stood outside the State Capitol in all kinds of weather holding signs.

And I’ve written editorials like this far too often.

We are deep into another season of fearmongering, othering, homophobia, and transphobia that makes the 70s and 80s look tame by comparison. Social media has amped up the rhetoric, disinformation, and shameful behavior of public figures and politicians who seem to take glee in their bigotry.

This year’s theme for the Atlanta Pride Festival and Parade is “Show Up & Show Out” (read more on page 16). Never has that call to action been more necessary. There must be a loud counteraction to the hate being used as a wedge issue in local and national politics, and also emboldening people to act like fools – online and in public.

I urge you – once again – to reject hate and ignorance. Drag queens and the trans community are not grooming children, attempting to thwart the human and civil rights of others is fascism, and democracy is always preferable to theocracy, despite the machinations of some leaders whose flexible morals have been on full display the last few months.

Nominations now open for 20 Under 20

The 15th annual 20 Under 20 will appear in our January 2024 issue and we are now seeking nominations of students from public schools, private schools, and colleges ages 19 and younger who have contributed to the community in a significant way.

Nominations are welcome from teachers, counselors, administrators, parents, siblings, fellow students or community leaders.

Here’s the information we need:

■ Nominator (name, relationship to nominee, and contact information)

■ Nominee (Name, age, grade, school, parent or guardian names, contact information)

■ Characteristics and service: Please provide a paragraph describing why this nominee deserves recognition. Include service projects, goals, and areas of interest to help illustrate your point.

■ A high-resolution photograph (1MB in size or more) of the student in any setting.

The deadline for nominations is Nov. 1, 2023. Please email your nominations to editor Collin Kelley at

4 | OCTOBER 2023 PREMIER EXHIBITION SERIES SPONSOR PREMIER EXHIBITION SERIES SUPPORTERS ACT Foundation, Inc. William N. Banks, Jr. Cousins Foundation Burton M. Gold Sarah and Jim Kennedy BENEFACTOR EXHIBITION SERIES SUPPORTERS : Robin and Hilton Howell Organized by the High Museum of Art, Atlanta. Matt Herron (American, 1931–2020), The March from Selma (detail), 1965, gelatin silver print, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, gift of Gloria and Paul Sternberg, 1999.154.5. © Estate of the artist. MAJOR FUNDING IS PROVIDED BY EXHIBITION SUPPORT PROVIDED BY A Long Arc Photography and the American South since 1845 HIGH MUSEUM OF ART ATLANTA | THROUGH JAN 14 | HIGH.ORG I'm coming out –again EDITOR'S NOTE Collin Kelley c. 404.444.0192 o. 404.874.0300 PEGGY HIBBERT #1 Agent in Druid Hills • #1 Intown Brokerage Your Neighborhood Expert With Global Connections Atlanta Fine Homes, LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each franchise is independently owned and operated. Source: FMLS. 1/1/21–12/31/21. Druid Hills. All Property Types + Price Points. Intown Ranking: TrendGraphix. Top 5 Firms. 1/1/21–12/31/21. Zip Codes 30306, 30307, 30308, 30309, 30324. All Property Types + Price Points.
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‘Stop Cop City’ referendum in legal limbo as petitions made public

Atlanta officials will scan and make public the petitions against the city's planned public safety training center but will not verify the signatures or advance the "Stop Cop City" referendum process as they await further guidance from a federal appellate court.

The Atlanta City Council voted 15-0 on Sept. 18 to approve a resolution directing the city clerk to scan the petitions that the Vote to Stop Cop City Coalition says contain 116,000 signatures of registered Atlanta voters, about twice the number required by state law to force a referendum.

The scanned documents will be saved as digital images and are to be posted on the city's website for public access.

Councilmember Liliana Bakhtiari, who opposes the 85-acre training center being built in the South River Forest, introduced the resolution after working fellow council members and with Stop Cop City coalition members on the wording.

The legislation is intended to put pressure on city officials to stop fighting the referendum and to allow public experts to verify signatures because the city says it cannot do so, Bakhtiari said.

The proposed referendum would allow voters to choose if they want to repeal the ordinance that authorized the lease of roughly 300 acres of South River Forest land to the Atlanta Police Foundation.

Mayor Andre Dickens along with city officials and state officials have called the petition drive “invalid” and “futile.”

On Sept. 11, organizers of the Vote to Stop Cop City coalition turned in 16 boxes filled with petitions to the city clerk. They

were shocked when city officials handed them a memo that said they were prohibited from verifying the signatures because they were turned in too late.

The memo said the Sept. 1 decision by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to stay a July 27 federal district court’s preliminary injunction meant petitions needed to be turned in by the original Aug. 21 deadline. The city said it would have to wait for a final ruling by the 11th Circuit Court, likely to come in November, before it could decide to verify signatures.

Mayor Dickens said in a written statement he backs a transparent process for the petition drive.

“I fully support the action taken by City Council," Dickens said in a written statement. "As I have stated before, I support allowing the process to run its course in an open and transparent manner. Like many, I want to know exactly what is in those boxes and this moves us one step closer.”

Bakhtiari wanted to introduce legislation on Sept. 11 that would allow the City Council to put its own public safety training center referendum on the ballot but was told by city attorneys the legislation would be unconstitutional. The resolution on Monday was a new way to move the process forward, Bakhtiari told Rough Draft in an interview after the meeting.

"My intent was, if we are legally tied from being able to actually put something on the ballot, which are very much seems we are, to try to find another way to move this forward," Bakhtiari said.

"If I put it out in the public, then there are going to be experts that are able to verify [signatures] and can hold us accountable. I fully believe that they have the signatures,"

Bakhtiari said. "And by the mayor's own admission, he wants to see what is in the boxes. OK, let's see what's in the boxes."

Bakhtiari said if public experts are able to verify the signatures, that puts pressure on the city to "do what's right" and hopefully withdraw its appeal in the 11th Circuit Court.

"If we withdraw the appeal, my understanding is that it'd be kicked back to [U.S. District Court] Judge Mark Cohen and we'd be able to move forward with the verification process and put this thing on the ballot," Bakhtiari said.

Bakhtiari's original motion wanted to redact voter information included in the petitions, such as addresses and phone numbers, to ensure people who signed the petition are not potentially harassed.

Councilmember Alex Wan succeeded in

amending the motion to say redactions will conform with Georgia's open records law.

Wan said during the meeting that he has heard from many constituents who support the training center "but are enraged by the process." He said open records requests have already been made to the city for copies of the signatures.

Councilmember Keisha Sean Waites criticized how the city administration has handled the entire petition drive process.

"I feel like the process has been completely convoluted and lacks integrity," Waites said in an interview with Rough Draft. "The process of building the center has been secretive and clandestine. I fully support a public safety facility, but I just believe everything associated with the location is tainted."

BeltLine launches transit study for 13.6 miles of corridor

quadrant, according to a press release.

The planning area for the northwest segment of the transit corridor is from Lindbergh Center MARTA Station on the north side of the BeltLine loop to Bankhead MARTA Station on the western side. The study continues along the southwestern and southeastern quadrants of the BeltLine loop to Glenwood Avenue.

The study will also solidify the preferred station locations in the southwest and southeast quadrants where the transit alignment has already been determined.

MARTA has already completed a study that defines alignment in the northeast quadrant, according to the release.

while making Atlanta a more mobile city. Rail transit is key to how we do that.”

Kimley-Horn & Associates will conduct the study, and it will take 24 months from kick-off to final deliverables. Activities will include field investigation, consolidation of previous studies, stakeholder and public outreach, environmental screening, equity considerations, service planning, ridership forecasting, and financial planning. The project will specifically look at connectivity between the regional transit network and the regional trail network.

“Transit is at the heart of the BeltLine vision,” Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. President and CEO Clyde Higgs said in a statement. “The BeltLine is about high-quality ways to connect people to jobs, health care, shopping, education, and opportunity

Light rail transit is essential in a layered infrastructure approach to address current and future mobility needs due to the influx of people anticipated to move to Atlanta in the next few decades, the press release said.

For more information about the BeltLine and transit, visit transit.

6 | OCTOBER 2023
Atlanta BeltLine Inc. is launching a transit planning study for a 13.6-mile portion of the rail corridor around the 22-mile BeltLine loop. The study is funded by the Federal Transit Administration and will identify the preferred Atlanta BeltLine transit alignment and station locations in the northwest Vote to Stop Cop City activists submitted 116,000 signed petitions at Atlanta City Hall on Sept. 11. (Photo by Dyana Bagby) A rendering of the Atlanta Streetcar at Ponce City Market.
OCTOBER 2023 | 7 Chase Mizell #1 AGENT, ATLANTA REALTORS®, 2021 + 2022 c. 770.289.2780 o. 404.874.0300 • JUST LISTED • Sir Elton John's Two-Story Residence Park Place on Peachtree 2660 Peachtree Road, No. 36D 4 Bedrooms, 4 Bathrooms, 3 Half Bathrooms Over 13,000 Square Feet Offered for $4,995,000 © 2023 Sotheby’s International Realty® used with permission. Atlanta Fine Homes, LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each franchise is independently owned and operated. #1 Agent Volume, 2020+ 2021, Atlanta REALTORS® Association. Square footage from tax records.

George Lefont, who introduced foreign and independent cinema to Atlanta, has died at 85. He was suffering from complications related to Parkinson’s Disease. Lefont operated The Silver Screen, The Screening Room, Garden Hills Cinema, Tara Theatre, Lefont Sandy Springs, and Plaza Theatre, for 40 years before retiring in 2017.

Former Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Lisa Herring is joining the Biden Administration as a strategic advisor to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

U.S. Soccer will move its headquarters and open a state-of-the-art training center in metro Atlanta with the help of a $50 million investment from Atlanta United owner Arthur Blank.

SupportNow organizes help for families in tough times

After an engagement or pregnancy announcement, friends and family typically flock to an online registry to honor the happy life event. In contrast, when a friend experiences a major accident, serious illness, or the loss of a loved one, a similar “support registry” was lacking – until now. SupportNow is here to fill that gap.

“We help supporters provide relief to families in tough times,” said SupportNow co-founder and CEO Scott Arogeti. “People want to help but sometimes they feel unsure of how to direct their

compassion. SupportNow makes it easy by providing clear direction through a simple, easy-to-understand platform.”

Co-founders and husband-andwife team Scott and Jordan Arogeti are leveraging their tech start-up experience as they build SupportNow, while also raising three children under 5 together.

“We are about community support. Fundraising is a piece of it, but it's not the full picture,” Scott said. “Anyone that's walked with someone during a tough time knows families also need help organizing all the friends, colleagues, etc. that want to lend a hand.”

According to Jordan, the platform allows volunteers to help in a variety of ways: running errands, child care, transportation, and more.

"I have nothing but gratitude for SupportNow. Having a place like this to honor my wife and bring together all our friends and family that want to show support has been a godsend," shared Jeffrey Marchese, who recently lost his wife to breast cancer.

A close friend or extended family member typically creates the Support Registry on behalf of the family at www.SupportNow. org, which creates a link to share with other supporters.

“The goal is to shield the family,” Jordan said. “Decision fatigue is a real thing and sometimes families struggle to know what to ask for when everyone is asking how best to help. It doesn’t have to be overwhelming.”

SupportNow registries are available at no cost to the family or supporters. At the point of donation, supporters can round up to cover the fees of their gift/donation, ensuring 100% of their gift is provided to the family.

To reach more customers, SupportNow is partnering with nonprofits, social media influencers, and funeral homes.

"As a Rally Kid Coordinator my goal is to provide relief and support to families enduring one of the most challenging times of their lives. SupportNow gives the whole Rally community a place to

The PATH Foundation and the City of Atlanta officially opened the Eastside Trolley Trail. The trail includes 1 new mile of trail that connects the previously separate segments at Coan Park and Gilliam Park.

come together to collect funds, food, or simply gather volunteers in a single place without burdening the family." shared Cali Ruth Hays, Rally Foundation, who builds registries for families with a child battling cancer.

As of mid-September, SupportNow has 2,000+ users and 350 registries with those numbers expected to spike as new partnerships launch.

Long-term, SupportNow seeks “to be ubiquitous whenever someone close to you is experiencing a tough time and everyone is looking for ways to do their part.” per Scott.

“We want to be viewed as where the community comes together to help families experiencing tough times,” Jordan added. “For SupportNow to be the pipes through which support flows.”

8 | OCTOBER 2023 News RoundUp
Subscribe to our daily morning newsletter. Text DRAFT to 66866. © 2023 Sotheby's International Realty. All Righ¬ts Reserved. Sotheby's International Realty® is a registered trademark and used with permission. Each Sotheby's International Realty office is independently owned and operated, except those operated by Sotheby's International Realty, Inc. All offerings are subject to errors, omissions, changes including price or withdrawal without notice. Equal Housing Opportunity. *Represented buyer. Don't get spooked by the haunting thought of buying or selling your home this fall. With Carmen's 25 years of real estate experience, no magic is necessary to turn your real estate goals into reality! No tricks, only treats. c. 404.625.4134 o. 404.874.0300 CARMEN POPE FOUNDING PARTNER 1555 PEACHTREE STREET NE, SUITE 100, ATLANTA, GEORGIA 30309 104 WESTMINSTER DRIVE OFFERED FOR $5,500,000* 1083 OAKDALE ROAD SOLD FOR $3,950,000
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Vine City Walmart to reopen in 2024 with police substation

The Vine City Walmart Supercenter that closed last year after alleged arson is slated to reopen in May 2024 as a Neighborhood Market with a pharmacy and grocery store, ensuring people in the historic Westside neighborhood have access to fresh food.

The store will also include an Atlanta Police Department substation where an officer's presence is intended to prevent crime, according to city and Walmart officials.

The announcement of the Walmart reopening was made at an Aug. 29 community meeting at the Abernathy Center at Historic West Hunter Street Church, a spiritual and strategic meeting place during the civil rights movement. Attending the meeting was a slate of Walmart executives and city officials, including Mayor Andre Dickens and City Councilmember Byron Amos.

Dickens recalled telling Walmart officials about the "need and necessity" of reopening the store on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. Without the store, the community would become a food desert.

"Food insecurity is real across Georgia," Dickens said. "And we don't want it to happen here in Atlanta. Eight years ago, about 54% of the people in the city lived within a half-mile of fresh food. Now we're up to 75%.

"This administration wants to make sure we have healthy communities, which means adding grocery stores," he said.

The City Council recently approved the mayor's request to allocate $1.5 million to Invest Atlanta, the economic development arm of the city. Invest

Atlanta will use the funds to offer tax breaks to attract supermarkets offering fresh food and creating jobs to underserved communities, especially Black and Brown communities on the South side of the city.

"Walmart is going to take advantage of the incentive for this store and other stores I'm hoping that we get on the South side," Dickens said.

The Vine City Walmart will be the first Neighborhood Market out of hundreds across the country to have a police substation. The substation will not be occupied at all hours but will be a place for officers to fill out paperwork, hold meetings, or charge their phones or body cameras, the mayor said.

Most importantly, the presence of the APD substation should make people think twice before shoplifting or committing some other crime, he added.

"After talking with the Merchants Association on MLK and Clark University and other people in the neighborhood, folks were saying they want to see more police presence," Dickens said.

The goal is to keep people safe, but also to make sure shrinkage — the loss of inventory from theft or damage – does not hurt Walmart's bottom line so "they don't want to stay here anymore," he said.

Walmart officials said the Vine City store would employ about 130 people and starting pay is $14 for entry-level positions.

The existing building is 75,000 square feet. About 60,000 square feet is expected to be used for the Neighborhood Market. The remaining 15,000 square feet is planned to be a fulfillment center to provide more delivery and pick-up services.

10 | OCTOBER 2023
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The Vine City Walmart will reopen as a Neighborhood Market concept in May 2024.
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Nothing compares to what’s next.

The butterfly effect in action

the ‘Buy Nothing Decatur’ Facebook page (“Church Pew, barely used!”) and a ‘Free Stuff’ kerfuffle followed. The irony of people squabbling over claims to a free church pew somehow made it all worthwhile.


The first thing I do each morning is take the dogs on a short walk. Typically, we turn right out of the driveway, the left is for the evening walks to keep things spicy. But since school started those walks are a little earlier and synching with the schedule of a nasty dachshund. At least I like to think it’s the dachshund that has the bad attitude and not my dogs. That could be because from across the street, his owner looks like that curmudgeonly greeting card lady. But maybe she is pleasant as can be? I can only imagine what she thinks of me and my wild beasts.

My dogs love people and most other canines too, but occasionally we encounter what seems to be a sworn enemy. Avoiding that little wiener dog often determines our route now and a leisurely stroll can turn into a heart-pumping fiasco of barking and pulling, setting a different tone for the day altogether. Also, nobody tell Sleater that her DNA test says she’s part dachshund.

One minor change can have profound ripple effects. There’s a Chinese proverb that goes “The flapping of the wings of a butterfly can be felt on the other side of the world” but I imagine they are first felt closer to where the flapping took place. Our nephew Dennis from New Jersey is a Senior in college and needs to complete an internship as part of his degree. There were some good opportunities around here and we figured it would be fun to have him stay with us for a while. He’s a great guy, my kids love having him here and he’s helpful around the house. He requires a little space though, you know, for sleeping and such.

We have a small guest bedroom but, for the past few years, it has been used primarily for my daily Peloton affliction. So, we moved the Peloton into the master bedroom where we had the church pew I bought at a Poncey-Highland consignment shop about 25 years ago. I had a perfect spot for it in the foyer of my first condo. I’d sit by the open window and smell the Krispy Kremes being made but nowadays it tends to collect junk. We posted on

Since the guest bedroom shares a Jack and Jill bath with her room, Margo tried to parlay Dennis’ arrival into an argument about why she and Elliott should switch rooms. When Elliott wouldn’t bite, she negotiated a deal whereby we switched out the IKEA bed set up in her room for the pull-out sofa bed in the guest room. That way, she argued, Dennis has a real bed and she gets more space in her room. Only the IKEA bed had drawers underneath and shelves on the headboard that held years’ worth of Margo’s hoarding.

So Margo and I spent a weekend cleaning out and reorganizing her room as well as buying and building a new shelving unit for her closet. And I now have a

‘Nostalgia’ section of my closet that holds things she doesn’t need anymore but can’t part with either.

The IKEA bed is big and clunky and was built IN Margo’s room so moving it without taking it apart defied physics. The sofa bed is so heavy that I’m certain the Task Rabbit guys who helped me move it into the house sought other lines of work immediately after the gig. My mother-in-law offered that it might work better downstairs in her apartment. There’s another philosophical nugget about whether a tree falling in a forest makes a sound when no one is around and it probably doesn’t even apply here, but I pretended not to hear her.

12 | OCTOBER 2023
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Sleater and Beans on high alert for the neighborhood dachshund.
OCTOBER 2023 | 13 All data believed to be accurate but not warranted. If you have any existing brokerage relationship, this is not intended as a solicitation. Equal housing opportunity. *Represented Buyer 952 PEACHTREE ST. SUITE 100, ATLANTA, GA 30309 | 404.480.4663 | ANSLEYRE.COM JASON COOK c. 404.431.1384 | o. 404.480.4663 | JASON@ANSLEYRE.COM NO.1 AGENT ANSLEY PARK NO.1 AGENT IN THE 30309 ZIPCODE The Power of a LOCAL EXPERT JASON COOK 1301 PEACHTREE STREET, 5L* Offered for $4,000,000  72 WESTMINSTER DRIVE Offered for $3,850,000 80 INMAN CIRCLE Offered for $3,795,000 217 15TH STREET Offered for $3,295,000 1301 PEACHTREE STREET, 5F Offered for $3,100,000 127 AVERY DRIVE Offered for $2,175,000 61 MADDOX DRIVE Offered for $1,500,000 207 WESTMINSTER DRIVE Offered for $1,495,000 1144 ZIMMER DRIVE* Offered for $1,399,000 75 INMAN CIRCLE Offered for $1,195,000 199 AVERY DRIVE  Offered for $999,000 1109 VICTORIA STREET Offered for $925,000 FOR SALE SOLD FOR SALE FOR SALE FOR SALE FOR SALE SOLD UNDER CONTRACT SOLD FOR SALE FOR SALE SOLD

Downtown flooding highlights need for resilience

neighborhood — recorded an astonishingly rapid rise in water level from three feet to twelve and a half feet in less than an hour, followed by an equally rapid fall.

Heavier rainfall


On the afternoon of Sept. 14, the unimaginable happened. The Georgia Aquarium on Baker Street in downtown Atlanta had to be evacuated because of too much water — not from leaky fish tanks, but from flash flooding that seeped into the facility. Less than a mile away, a rain gauge near the office of the city’s watershed management department registered 1.34 inches of rain in fifteen minutes: an amount

“usually observed in three hours,” according to Mikita Browning, the department’s commissioner.

Like many places around the planet, Atlanta is experiencing its own consequences of a hotter world: the increase in intensity and frequency of extreme weather events. As storms travel across warmer oceans, they absorb more water vapor and heat leading to heavier rainfall, stronger winds, and more flooding. This past summer, oceans registered the highest temperatures in modern history.

The isolated thunderstorm ultimately dumped nearly three inches of rain, providing a particularly graphic example of what can happen when the natural landscape is transformed by urbanization into roads, rooftops, and other hard surfaces. The deluge slammed into pavement and rooftops before speeding downslope, pushing aside much in its way.

Parked cars floated down streets. Moving cars had to be abandoned when their engines flooded. Dorms at Clark Atlanta University were evacuated as dirty stormwater entered buildings and rushed down hallways. First responders rescued people from water that was five feet deep in some areas. The U.S. Geological Survey stream gauge nearest to the urban core — located on Proctor Creek in the Grove Park

Wet, stormy weather is not unusual in the South, as those of us who grew up here can attest; the 1960s was a particularly rainy decade. Nor is flooding in low-lying areas — such as Atlanta’s Vine City, Peoplestown, and Mechanicsville — unexpected. What is new are intense, flashy rainfall events over short periods of time. Municipal stormwater systems were not designed to handle these extreme events, which are more frequent due to climate change.

Tackling stormwater

In 2002, then-mayor Shirley Franklin created the Clean Water Atlanta Program: a response to the federal consent decree that settled the lawsuit filed by Chattahoochee Riverkeeper and others in the mid-1990s to stop chronic overflows of untreated sewage and polluted stormwater into streams and rivers. The long-term goal of the program has been to meet the requirements of clean water laws and align the city’s wet weather

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Cars were swept up during the flooding near Clark Atlanta University on Sept. 14. (Courtesy WSB-TV)

strategies with sustainable solutions.

Mayor Franklin asked Wayne Clough, then-president of Georgia Tech, to convene an advisory panel of national experts to focus on technical aspects of the city’s plan to fix its combined sewer and stormwater system. Pipes built nearly a century ago to serve downtown Atlanta conveyed sewage and stormwater — together — to facilities for treatment; however, by the 1990s, overflows were occurring sixty times per year on average. Downtown development, new pavement, and aging infrastructure combined to stress the system, resulting in increased flooding and pollution.

Among other solutions, the Clough panel endorsed the construction of deeprock tunnels in some areas to capture and detain storm runoff prior to treatment. According to Mikita Browning, these storage tunnels and several green (natural) infrastructure projects helped minimize

flooding impacts during the recent flash flood event. Over the years, the watershed department has taken additional steps to slow and capture stormwater to reduce flooding and pollution. The city also passed a nation-leading post-development stormwater ordinance in 2013 requiring developers to manage the first inch of stormwater that falls on their sites.

These initiatives have been supported by a portion of the municipal option sales tax (MOST) first passed by the state legislature nearly twenty years ago to help fund the mandated multi-billion-dollar overhaul of the city’s sewage system.

To grapple with the extreme weather events associated with global heating and safeguard lives and property, a more robust budget is needed.

A game-changing strategy

The Clough panel’s report, delivered

to Mayor Franklin in late 2002, recommended a five-point plan. It included a critical strategy to reduce stormwater pollution and flooding: a stormwater utility. Adopted by dozens of municipalities in Georgia, a stormwater utility can provide a steady and reliable source of revenue for reducing stormwater flooding and pollution with green and gray (engineered) infrastructure. Proposed several times over the past twenty years, Atlanta’s city council has not — yet — been able to muster the political will to implement a utility. Meanwhile, the storms keep coming.

In a press release issued after the recent downtown flash flooding event, Browning noted that her department is “evaluating the feasibility and approach for a stormwater utility while considering affordability.” She told me a utility would be a “game-changer” for managing extreme

weather events throughout Atlanta; she hopes to bring the utility proposal forward by next spring. This fall, she plans to introduce a measure that would require developers in the downtown area to store (and later release) more runoff than previously required to reduce peak storm volumes and rates.

A stormwater utility can ensure that everyone pays their fair share for their contributions to the flow of runoff from their developed (hardened) property into the community and nearby waterways. It’s past time for the city of Atlanta to embrace this practical, proven strategy. Let Mayor Andre Dickens and the Atlanta City Council know that you are behind their efforts to make our city more resilient and protect people, property, and the environment with a stormwater utility.

OCTOBER 2023 | 15 S E W E L L A P P L I A N C E 7 4 5 5 T r o w b r i d g e R o a d | S a n d y S p r i n g s , G A 3 0 3 2 8 | 4 0 4 2 5 5 0 6 4 0 A P P L I A N C E S | O U T D O O R L I V I N G V I S I T O U R A T L A N T A S H O W R O O M

Show Up & Show Out

Atlanta Pride Festival, annual parade set for Oct. 14-15

With LGBTQ+ rights under threat during another fraught political season, this year’s Atlanta Pride Festival theme, “Show Up & Show Out,” is encouraging visibility in the face of adversity.

But like any Pride festival – the first iteration happening 52 years ago – there will also be a chance to mix, mingle, dance and have fun.

The Pride celebration begins on Oct. 13 with the Official Kickoff at the Georgia Aquarium. Hollywood superstar DJ Dawna Montell will headline the event with support from circuit icon DJ David Knapp and DJ Brian Rojas. Tickets and more details area available at georgiaaquarium. org/pridekickoff.

Piedmont Park will be the epicenter of festival weekend with music, arts, food, information and more.

Swedish pop duo Icona Pop, rapper Saucy Santana, and Australian singersongwriter G Flip will headline the music

stages on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 14-15

Two stages will feature entertainment in the park during the weekend – the CocaCola Main Stage and the Mercedes-Benz USA Stage.

Also on the lineup are Ashlee Keating, Outfront Theatre Company, Voices of Note Chorus, Shooting Start Carbaret, DJ Mike Q, Michel Jons Band, and the Starlight Cabaret will close out the weekend with the largest outdoor drag show in the country.

“The entertainment portion of the festival is always a huge draw,” said Chris McCain, executive director of the Atlanta Pride Committee. “We’re excited to welcome the community for what is sure to be a high-energy experience. This year, we have something for every fan.”

The entertainment kicks off on the Mercedes-Benz USA Stage on Saturday, Oct. 14 at 12 p.m. with an eclectic mix of local artists and performers; entertainment on the Coca-Cola Main Stage starts at 2 p.m.

The annual Pride Parade will take place on Sunday at noon, making its way along Peachtree Street from Downtown to Piedmont Park. The parade usually attracts 100,000 to participate and watch, so be sure

to find a viewing spot early along the route. This year’s parade grand marshals are a mix of local organizations and individuals who have contributed to the LGBTQ+ community in significant ways. The marshals include All-1-Family, Danielle Bonanno, Aubri Escalera, Jim Farmer, Georgia Voice, Sergio Mendez, Jon Santos, Jennifer Slipakoff, Voices of Note and ToniMichelle Williams.

“This year’s Grand Marshals are a diverse and powerful representation of metro Atlanta’s LGBTQ+ community,” McCain said. “From politics to media, community services and entertainment, our Grand Marshals are well-deserving, and we can’t wait to watch them Show Out in this year’s parade.”

In addition to the main parade, three annual marches will also be held on Saturday. The Trans March is at 1:45 p.m., the Bi & Pan March is at 3:30 p.m., and the Dyke March at 5 p.m. All three marches will be held along 10th Street.

For more details about all of the events, visit Be sure to turn to Page 20 for an interview with Pride executive director Chris McCain.

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Atlanta Pride Parade Atlanta Trans March Icona Pop The 2023 Atlanta Pride Grand Marshals

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Other Providers are available in our network. Provider may also contract with other plan sponsors. Important! At Humana, it is important you are treated fairly. Humana Inc. and its subsidiaries comply with applicable Federal Civil Rights laws and do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, ancestry, marital status or religion. ATTENTION: If you do not speak English, language assistance services, free of charge, are available to you. Call 1-855-360-4575 (TTY: 711). Español (Spanish): ATENCIÓN: Si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingü.stica. Llame al 1-800-706-6167 (TTY: 711) 繁體中文 (Chinese): 注意:如果您使用繁體中文,您可以免費獲得語言援助服務 。請致電 1-855-360-4575 (TTY: 711)。


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When Chris McCain attended his first Atlanta Pride in 2012 at age 27, he felt a sense of awe at the tens of thousands of people packed into Piedmont Park.

“I just remember it being the largest space that I’ve ever seen so many queer people together, and also seeing all the artists and the entertainment,” he said.

‘Visibility and solidarity’ remain goals of Atlanta Pride 8

would be the best place to raise a family.

“What I love about Atlanta is that it is consistently a welcoming and inclusive place for queer people,” McCain said. “Atlanta is the queer capital of the South, if not the Southeast.”

Although Atlanta is known for welcoming LGBTQ people, the state of

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“When you are part of a relatively small minority, it felt really inspiring and comforting to be around so many people who are like you.”

This year, McCain returns to Atlanta Pride – set for Oct. 14-15 at Piedmont Park – as the organization’s executive director, a job he started in May. He takes the helm as Atlanta Pride rebuilds itself after the festival was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to COVID-19.

The cancellations hurt the nonprofit organization financially and many volunteers did not return when Atlanta Pride came back to Piedmont Park in 2022.

McCain’s background in fundraising, philanthropy, social justice, and community outreach while working at jobs at Emory University, the Jessie Ball duPont Fund in Florida and, most recently, the Director of Philanthropy at The Bail Project in Los Angeles, made him the perfect fit to lead Atlanta Pride into its next chapter, according to Atlanta Pride Board Chair Crystal Stubbs.

“His passion for and commitment to social justice – particularly for the LGBTQIA+ community – along with his breadth of nonprofit leadership experience really impressed our search committee,” Stubbs said in a news release announcing his hiring.

McCain is a metro Atlanta native. He grew up in Gwinnett County and graduated from Norcross High School. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Davidson College in North Carolina and earned a Master of Divinity from Vanderbilt University in Tennessee.

“I came out after college in North Carolina and went to my first Pride, a much smaller Pride than Atlanta Pride, in Nashville while at Vanderbilt,” he said.

In 2018, he moved to L.A. to be with his boyfriend where he worked for five years at The Bail Project, a national nonprofit organization working to make sure that no one is sitting in jail pretrial because of their race or poverty. During those five years, McCain built a diversified fundraising program from the ground up, leading his team to raise more than $100 million over five years.

He and his boyfriend married last year at Joshua Tree. They decided this year to move back to Atlanta to be closer to their families. They also plan to adopt and felt Atlanta

Georgia, like many states, is facing an onslaught of anti-LGBTQ legislation from socially conservative lawmakers, particularly against transgender people.

Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed legislation into law this year banning hormone treatments for transgender children. LGBTQ advocates argued the law was medical discrimination.

Georgia Republicans also plan to renew debate on a “Don’t Say Gay” bill after it was tabled this year. The bill would require anyone acting in place of a parent, including teachers at public and private schools, church leaders or camp counselors, to get parental permission before offering “any curriculum or instruction addressing issues of gender identity, queer theory, gender ideology, or gender transition.”

“We are feeling a lot of pressure from the legislature, and there continues to be violence, especially against transgender members of our community,” McCain said.

“It’s during these moments when we need Atlanta Pride so people can come together for visibility and solidary,” he said.

This year’s theme for Atlanta Pride, “Show Up and Show Out,” is a direct reference to the backlash the LGBTQ community is facing. The theme lets people know Atlanta Pride is a place for LGBTQ people in Georgia and across the South “to show up for each other and to show out with acts of protest, activism, education, and celebration,” McCain said.

“There is a vital need for us to be together to show visibility and solidarity, especially as we are feeling under attack,” he said. He noted that Atlanta’s first Pride Parade was held in 1970 on the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.

“LGBTQ people still need spaces to find each other, to learn about equal employment, transgender healthcare and also to find friends and build relationships,” he said. “They are crucial for our well-being and our future.”

20 | OCTOBER 2023
A rendering of the Westside spur trail. Chris McCain
OCTOBER 2023 | 21 Chabad Intown Menorah Lighting ©2023 Engel & Völkers. All rights reserved. Each brokerage independently owned and operated. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. If your property is currently represented by a real estate broker, this is not an attempt to solicit your listing. Engel & Völkers and its independent license partners are Equal Opportunity Employers and fully support the principles of the Fair Housing Act. Viewpoint 855 Peachtree Street NE Residence #1201 1 Bed | 1 Bath Offered at $380,000 Listing Agent: David Hollingshead 212.851.6393 Cotting Court 77 Peachtree Place NE Residence #319 2 Bed | 2 Bath Offered at $515,000 Listing Agent: John Giffer 404.403.8758 40 West 12th 40 12th Street NE Residence #1906 4 Bed | 3.5 Bath Offered at $2,651,991 Listing Agent: Susie Proffitt 404.915.9367 Downing Park 1585 S Ponce De Leon Avenue #9 3 Bed | 4 Bath Offered at $1,495,000 Listing Agent: Robbie Roberts 404.925.9100 J5 775 Juniper Street NE Residence #617 2 Bed | 2 Bath Offered at $764,900 Listing Agent: Tyler Russell 404.510.2246 Atlantic 270 17th Street NW Residence #4107 2 Bed | 2.5 Bath Offered at $799,900 Listing Agent: Michael McLeod 404.606.0962 J5 775 Juniper Street NE #522 3 Bed | 2.5 Bath Offered at $1,197,500 Listing Agent: Nat Milburn 404.213.8091 Presenting
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Little 5 Points Halloween Festival & Parade

This year’s festival is set for Oct. 21-22 and features a 3D Haunted House, skate ramp, live music, art vendors, food, ghost tours, and the annual parade on Sunday at 2 p.m. More information at

Netherworld Haunted House

A Halloween tradition since 1997, Netherworld is open now through Nov. 11 in Stone Mountain. The haunted house, known for its terrifying special effects with themed scenarios, is recommended for adults and teens. Visit for details and tickets.

Scarecrows in the Garden

The Atlanta Botanical Garden brings back its display of scarecrows created by local artists, crafters, and youth groups from Oct. 6 to 31. Other events include the Garden Spooktacular Day Camp for kids on Oct. 11, the Goblins in the Garden costume contest on Oct. 22, and the Great Pumpkin Carving Contest on Oct. 26. Visit the calendar at for more details.

Legends and Lore at Rhodes Hall

The 1904 “Castle on Peachtree” opens to visitors 21 and over on Oct. 25, 27 and 30 for tours featuring tales from staff and guests about hauntings and ghostsightings in the mansion. New this year is the “Hidden Spaces” tour of parts of the mansion not generally open to the public. Find tickets and info at legends.

Woodland Spirits and Ghostly Gatherings

The Fernbank Museum’s outdoor exhibit, featuring a variety of ghostly figures lurking throughout WildWoods and Fernbank Forest, is open Sept. 30 to Nov. 5. On

Oct. 14, Ghostly Gatherings will offer after-hours access to Woodland Spirits, the special exhibit Vikings: Warriors of the Sea, Halloween-themed activities, opportunities to meet live nocturnal animals with AWARE Wildlife Center, and more. Tickets and information are at FernbankMuseum. org.

The Ghastly Dreadfuls & More

The Center for Puppetry Arts presents a puppet show, “The Ghastly Dreadfuls,” strictly for adults Oct. 11-28. For the kids, there’s “The Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow” Oct. 18-29 and a screening of the original “Child’s Play” on Oct. 21. Visit for more information.

Capturing the Spirit of Oakland Halloween Tours

Costumed docents guide visitors through Oakland Cemetery after dark, telling stories of some notable and notorious residents Oct. 19-22 and Oct. 26-29. There’s a special VIP event on Oct. 31. Tickets sell out quickly, so get yours now at

Sips Under the Sea

This adults-only after-hours costume party is Halloween night from 7-10 p.m. at the Georgia Aquarium. The night includes drinks, dancing, music, and access to the aquarium’s main galleries. Get more info and tickets at

Boo at the Zoo

Dress up the kids and head to Zoo Atlanta on Oct. 21-22 and 28-29 for trick or treating, photo ops, yummy treats, and a chance to meet animals from around the world. Details can be found at zooatlanta. org.

Fox Theatre Ghost Tours

The historic theatre will offer tours of its backstage, basement, and rarely-seen areas where staff members have felt ghostly presences and seen shadowy figures from Oct. 2-11 Visit for tickets.

22 | OCTOBER 2023
Fright Nights: Check out these Halloween
If you’re looking for something to do during spooky season, check out this guide to upcoming events around Atlanta.
Rhodes Hall






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Planning your European wine trip

It’s that time of year when travelers begin to think about their “next big adventure,” and if you have a deep love for wine like we do, then it's time to plan your dream European wine tasting trip.

It’s easy to read all the wine books and attend all the wine tastings at your local wine shop, but there's nothing quite like experiencing the magic of where it's made. Europe is a great place to start when you begin tapping into your wine travel bug. It is a treasure trove of wine regions, each with its unique charm, history, and flavors waiting to be explored.

Select a destination

The first step to planning your European wine trip is to select your hub - a major city like Barcelona, Venice, Provence, or Paris, each boasting incredible wine regions in close proximity. In a recent interview, we had the pleasure of chatting with Jessica Battista, expert travel advisor and owner of Ultreia Travel, to gain insights into the process of planning wine-centric getaways.

Jessica starts by saying, "For the typical traveler, the wine aspect usually isn't the primary focus of the trip; it's an added bonus for food and wine enthusiasts." She says that most people have a limited amount of vacation time, resulting in only 3-4 days reserved for wine exploration while the rest

of the trip is spent exploring and sightseeing in the main city center.

After deciding what country to visit, and the city you’ll be spending the most amount of time in, you’ll then need to define your wine preferences. In the process of organizing travel experiences for her clients, Jessica engages in a series of informative questions to help her gauge their wine preferences, accommodation choices, and

tour preferences, including whether they lean towards private or group tours.

If you are heading to Paris, you have a number of options for the ultimate wine getaway. Champagne, France is a quick one-hour train ride and there are an endless number of Champagne tours available for an easy day trip of bubbly bliss.

Red wine drinker? A three- or fourday trip to Bordeaux is a great option for travelers who enjoy big, bold reds. Bordeaux, known for its structured, age-worthy red wines, is a top destination for Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot enthusiasts.

A two-hour train ride from Paris and you’ll find yourself in one of the most picturesque cities you’ll ever visit. From the food, the art, the people watching, and the emerging cocktail and natural wine bars, Downtown Bordeaux is officially one of the hottest cities in France to visit. Nearby this bustling city, you'll discover some of the world's most renowned and prestigious wineries. Most of the chateau visits are by appointment only, so outside of doing your own research, you can either use a travel advisor to assist in setting up your wine tastings, or a reputable tour booking company. Your hotel can also make recommendations and reservations for you.

Getting around

Getting around Europe's wine regions can be an adventure in itself. We always recommend hiring a driver for the days

you are doing winery visits. While it is nice to have the freedom of having your own vehicle to explore the countryside and visit wineries at your own pace, it is imperative that someone in your group take turns being the designated driver. Jessica Battista always books a driver for her clients to ensure that they get the most out of their tastings.

Jessica also advises that you obtain an International Driver’s Permit which is required or highly recommended in many countries. The International Driver’s Permit is not necessary for the rental car companies, but this is required by law if you plan to operate a vehicle in Italy, for example. You can apply for this permit at the AAA office for only $20.

Joining guided wine tours that provide transportation, expert guides, and curated winery visits make for a very stress-free experience. Jessica frequently uses Florencetown, a private and small group provider for Italian winery tours and experiences. Whether you use a travel advisor or tour company, always plan your transportation in advance, as Uber, Bolt, and taxis are not as readily available when you are outside of the city centers.

Where to stay?

Choosing the right accommodations is essential for a memorable wine travel experience. Look for accommodations near the wineries or in wine regions themselves. Many vineyards offer charming guesthouses or bed-and-breakfast options where you can wake up surrounded by breathtaking vineyards.

Hotels in the area may offer an additional layer of convenience given they can book transportation, tastings, dinner reservations, and even laundry services. Usually, villas or apartment flats come with longer stay requirements, but the benefit is having a kitchen available for preparing meals at your convenience. You can then explore the outdoor markets and shop for all the ingredients your heart desires!

While planning the ultimate wine adventure can be exciting, it can also get overwhelming. Where to start, how much to budget, where to go? Use the staff at your local wine shop to help in making some of these decisions. Many wine professionals have visited properties and can provide firsthand insights and experiences. There are also huge benefits of seeking guidance from a travel advisor.

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WOMEN + WINE Katie Rice & Sarah Pierre Photo by Polina Kovaleva/Pexels

Terminal South announces food hall concepts

Stafford Properties has announced that four Asian concepts have signed leases at Terminal South’s Switchman Hall.

Tiger K Cup Bob, Sabu K Ramen, The Cream, and a yet-to-be-named hibachi and chicken restaurant will join the food hall –all four of which are owned by real estate developer and restaurateur Christian Lee and his partners Alex Parajuli and Made Yata.

A first-generation American, Lee graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in mechanical engineering and has called Atlanta home ever since. As a real estate developer, he has a knack for finding great locations and overseeing construction, while Parajuli and Yata take over operations when the restaurants open. “We’ve been looking for an opportunity

along the Atlanta BeltLine, and Terminal South couldn’t be a better fit,” Lee said in a press release. “The walkability and booming residential growth in the area were huge drawing points.”

With one location in Duluth, this will be the first in-town location of Tiger K Cup Bob. Guests of the Peoplestown location can expect a menu of Korean street food classics including Pork Bulgogi Croquets with house-made panko topped buns, more than a dozen hotteok (Korean pancakes coated in cinnamon and sugar) offerings including the chocolate, banana, and peanut-butter stuffed variety which is aptly named The Elvis, and a sweet and spicy Korean Fried Chicken Cup Bob.

Sabu K Ramen is a new concept that will offer 20 different ramen options with varying degrees of heat. While the menu is still in development, Lee says guests can

expect both Japanese and Korean-style ramen.

The Cream – also a new concept – will serve bubble tea (also known as boba tea) and bingsu, a dairy-based shaved ice that Lee likened to snowflakes. The Cream will feature a menu of ten bubble teas and ten bingsus. While offerings will change seasonally, there will be a couple of mainstays including Brown-Sugar Bubble Tea and Strawberry Cheesecake Bingsu.

The yet-to-be-named hibachi and chicken concept will feature classic hibachi (think steak, salmon, shrimp, veggie, and chicken) plus Korean-style chicken wings which are deep fried and then coated with sauce – options will vary from a sticky and sweet Korean glaze to more traditional options like lemon pepper and mild/ medium/hot.

Located in the historic Peoplestown

neighborhood, TerminalSouth is located steps away from the Atlanta Beltline and will be the final stop on the city’s first-ever Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line.

The project features the adaptive reuse of two former warehouse structures, introducing approximately 45,625 square feet of mixed-use space, including the food hall.

Previously announced tenants include Cheff Issa Prescott's Life Bistro, a vegan fine dining restaurant that opened its first location in 2016 in Sylvan Hills; a franchise location of The Original Hot Dog Factory from Joia and Torrence Evans; Dalisha Williams and Jamaican-born Chef Nicoy McLean's Perfect Seasoning with a Caribbean-inspired menu; and Southern Grace from Delorean Ostrom, who will serve a regionally-inspired menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

OCTOBER 2023 | 25
Photo courtesy of the artist

Erin Stieglitz may be the founder of Bagel Rescue, but the inspiration really came from her son.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Stieglitz left her career in communications to focus on her children. Because of COVID restrictions that year, the family’s annual holiday service project looked a little different.

The family decided to shift their charity focus to first responders and ended up delivering breakfast to staff at Northside Hospital. Stieglitz’s first instinct was to pick up bulk bagels from the store, but her oldest son – who was 9 at the time – had a different idea.

“Why would we get bulk bagels?” He asked his mom, confused as to why they wouldn’t go to their normal bagel shop, Goldbergs Fine Foods in Dunwoody, to pick up a fresh spread. He ended up calling the manager at Goldbergs, who said that while they couldn’t help with freshly made bagels, they’d be happy to give the family the leftover bagels from the day before.

When Stieglitz showed up for the pickup, she was shocked to find hundreds of bagels waiting on her.

“I mean, I had my backup plan ready,” she said. “I was like – if we need to go buy more bagels, this is where I’m going to go because I was thinking it wasn’t going to be that much!”

The family finished their service project, and that could have been the end of things. But the number of bagels left over at Goldbergs kept needling at Stieglitz. She

got back in touch with the manager at Greenbergs and asked if she could continue to bring the leftover bagels to the hospital once a week. But still, the same question kept popping up in her mind – what were other bagel shops doing with their leftovers?

“We discovered that all the bagel shops had waste, and none of them wanted to throw it away,” Stieglitz said. “They hated throwing it away. They just didn’t have the bandwidth to deal with it.”

From that simple discovery, the nonprofit Bagel Rescue was born. Stieglitz started reaching out to other bagel shops and making connections between those shops and local feeding programs and food pantries. Three years later, Bagel Rescue works with 32 bagel shops and delivers to more than 100 feeding programs each week. The organization has over 100 volunteers and has rescued over a million bagels since its inception in an effort to provide hunger relief to those in need and to help lessen the negative effect that food waste has on the environment.

“I just feel like I had to do something,” Stieglitz said. “We’re watching our community in this horrible situation, and for those of us who were fortunate enough to have enough to eat, and to have a home, what can we be doing? This felt like something we could do.”

Steve Jones, who is retired, doesn’t remember how he learned about Bagel Rescue, but said it might have been from the weekly volunteering opportunities in one of Rough Draft Atlanta’s daily newsletters. He volunteers one day a week on Tuesday mornings but has been thinking about adding another day to his rotation.

“The first time I went to Bagelicious, I bet I got 200 bagels from them that afternoon,” Jones said. “They were throwing them in the dumpster! It’s such a waste. So that’s another thing that’s really good about this, just repurposing food that was going to get thrown away.”

Lauren Bacon, the pantry manager at Suthers Center for Christian Outreach in Brookhaven, called Stieglitz and Bagel Rescue a real asset to their overall food supply system. Suthers gets most of their bread and pastry supply from the nonprofit food rescue Second Helpings Atlanta, but Bacon said Stieglitz is always willing to help them in a pinch.

“Today, we didn’t get enough bread through our means, so I just contacted her and asked her, can you give me more? And she always gives us more,” Bacon said. “She’s an important part of our process now.”

Bagels have essentially taken over Stieglitz’s life at this point. Her car always smells like bagels, and her kids know that if they’re going anywhere, they’re probably going to make a pick-up or a drop-off on the way. But ever since her son’s first call to

Goldbergs in 2020, Bagel Rescue has become somewhat of a family affair. Stieglitz said her son helps her make social media videos and helps her keep their website updated.

“He stays involved,” she said. “He has great ideas, and he’s curious. This whole thing got started because he was curious.”

As far as what’s next for Bagel Rescue, Stieglitz said she hopes the nonprofit is able to go beyond the bagel and tap into other semi-perishable food sources. She also hopes to extend the organization’s reach beyond Atlanta.

“I feel like we have a very replicable model that would work in other cities,” she said. “It just takes some passionate people who are willing to do the research and make the connections.”

For more about the organization, visit

The owners behind Painted Pin and Painted Duck are opening two new concepts, Painted Pickle and Painted Park, in Atlanta.

Painted Pickle is a pickleball gaming and entertainment venue that is expected to open this December, according to a press release. The concept will be located at 279 Ottley Drive at Armour Yards and will sit adjacent to the upcoming northeast segment of the Atlanta BeltLine, which recently received $25 million in federal funding.

“We were successful in bringing a fresh perspective to boutique bowling with The Painted Pin and re-introducing duckpin bowling to the mainstream with The Painted Duck,” said Justin Amick, president and CEO of the Atlanta-based company Painted Hospitality, in a press release. “Now, we look forward to putting our stamp on pickleballthe fastest growing sport in the nation with Painted Pickle.”

According to the release, Painted Pickle stretches over 32,500 square feet and will include eight indoor pickleball courts with nets, a central seating area, a clubhouse, and one outdoor court. There will also be a stage

for live music and other games such as ping pong, cornhole, shuffleboard, and more. The menu will include cocktails, beer and wine, sushi, charcuterie, small plates, and more.

Painted Park expects to open in January, according to the release. It will be located at the former Parish Brasserie and Neighborhood Cafe in Inman Park at 240 North Highland Ave.

The concept will include two bars, two patios, a gaming room, a DJ booth and dance floor, and an area that Painted Hospitality calls the “park.” This area will be located along the Eastside BeltLine Trail and have a gazebo bar, fire pits, and lawn games. The menu at Painted Park will feature cocktails, beer, and wine, and consist of bar fare such as fries and sandwiches.

Both of the menus will be created by Painted Hospitality Executive Chef Thomas Collins.

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Erin Stieglitz

Reimagining Amsterdam Walk

space, according to its Sept. 8 filing for a Development of Regional Impact with the Atlanta Regional Commission.

Portman will soon seek rezoning for the property that now allows for nearly 1 million square feet of commercial use, said Mike Greene, vice president of development.

"It has never been residential property," he said. "We want to reduce the commercial square footage down significantly to maybe one office building and retail and do the rest of it in residential."

Portman is under contract to buy the roughly nineacre Amsterdam Walk from Halpern Enterprises, which has owned the property since 1985. Halpern is a partner on the redevelopment.

lot of Amsterdam Walk and is adjacent to the Beltline's planned Northeast Trail along the Carriage Trail through Piedmont Park.

An aerial view shows where Amsterdam Walk is located in relation to the Atlanta BeltLine Eastside trail (unpaved portion), Piedmont Park and the Atlanta Botanical Garden. (Halpern Enterprises)

Greene said the ABI contract is contingent on rezoning. As part of Portman's contract with ABI, the company agreed to build 20% of the apartments as affordable rather than the typical 15% developers along the Beltline provide. The apartments would rent at 80% of the area median income. Today, rent for a one-bedroom at 80% AMI is $1,532.

Portman is also working with Beltline officials to ensure the affordable units remain affordable for 99 years, Greene said. Most affordable units built in the city, even those along the Beltline, expire after 20 years because of state law on land use restrictions.

"What I would say is affordable rent on the Beltline today is probably $15 to $22 a square foot. And just to give you an idea, I think most new deals are being cut somewhere between $48 to $55 a square foot," Greene said.

"[Affordable commercial] is new territory, but the cooperation between us and the Beltline and Invest Atlanta is there to figure out essentially where the endgame is to get back to a rent for people who are local, who don't have a lot of assets, and for entrepreneurs that are starting out," he said.

Greene said "nothing is happening fast" on the project, but preliminary plans are to have it completed by 2028. He said Portman promises a "robust and full" conversation with neighborhood groups and civic stakeholders including ABI, Atlanta Botanical Garden and Piedmont Park Conservancy.

Hundreds of apartments, retail and office space are in the future for Amsterdam Walk, a commercial district that sits along the Atlanta Beltline in the Virginia-Highland and Morningside neighborhoods.

Portman Holdings plans to redevelop the nine-acre site bordered by Piedmont Park and the Atlanta Botanical Garden with about 900 apartments, 400,000 square feet of office space and 90,000 square feet for retail

A few years ago, Halpern announced its plans to "Reimagine Amsterdam Walk" because the retail and entertainment district has its back turned to Piedmont Park and the Beltline. The company selected Portman to buy and redevelop the site as part of its vision to create a more walkable and bikeable area with connections to the Beltline and Piedmont Park.

Portman is also under contract to buy roughly two acres from Atlanta Beltline Inc. (ABI). The two acres include the back parking

"We have a serious problem in the city of affordable units expiring faster than they're being created, so the pool of affordable housing keeps shrinking," Greene said. "The Beltline attorneys and our attorneys are working together to basically craft the language so we can avoid the 20-year limitation."

The project will have ground-floor retail and commercial space and Portman agreed to provide 12.5% of that space at reduced rates to people who qualify through a Beltline program, Greene said.

Determining what affordable commercial rates will be is still to be determined and Portman is working with ABI and Invest Atlanta, the city's economic development arm, Greene said.

Atlanta Design Festival returns Oct. 14-22

The 2023 Atlanta Design Festival is set for Oct.14-22 to promote the city as the Southeast’s evolving design capital with the theme “Why Not Now?”

The festival kicks off with the Creative Futures Conference Oct. 14-15 featuring panelists and speakers from globally renowned architectural firms and creative industries including Bjarke Ingels Group, MVRDV, and acclaimed eating designer Marije Vogelzang, just to name a few.

"Partnering with a show of support from key industry leaders, government, academia, and public interest combined, conditions in 2023 are ripe for a serious dialogue about Atlanta’s future economic and social prosperity, and the true value of design investment in our great city,” said event founder Bernard McCoy. “’Why Not Now?’ serves as a call to action for Atlanta to understand and assert itself as the creative capital of the Southeast."

Another major component of this year’s festival is a collaboration with the new

Amsterdam Walk's location is like no other in the city, Greene said. It's at the corner of Virginia-Highland and Morningside, two popular Intown neighborhoods, plus it's on the Beltline and near Piedmont Park and the Atlanta Botanical Garden.

"You're in a little pocket that's right on three major civic assets and two fantastic neighborhoods and has great views of Midtown," he said.

"We see Amsterdam Walk as just a phenomenal opportunity, not only to offer mostly residential, and some office that has no other equivalent," he said.

"Then the ground-floor retail around the buildings, the public sphere can be amazing," he said. "It can be like nothing else."

Portman recently announced it was scaling back another BeltLine-adjacent project, Ponce & Ponce, Read more about that on Page 29.

Fourth Ward development set to open this fall along the Atlanta BeltLine’s Eastside Trail.

The first phase of Fourth Ward comprises a 480,000 square-foot office building, street and BeltLine-facing retail, a hotel, and a social club, built above a 1,250-space subterranean parking deck. MailChimp, a market-leading provider of web-based marketing services, is already confirmed as the anchor tenant.

The development from New City Properties will host the Creative Futures Conference and multiple events during the festival.

Another highlight of the festival is the 16th annual MA! Architectural Tours, which be taking place in Atlanta and at Serenbe. This year’s tour features modern homes, commercial, and contract design projects, showcasing cutting-edge trends in sustainable materials, architectural systems, and interior design.

Tickets and more details about events happening at the festival are available at

Photo by Dyana Bagby New City Properties’ Fourth Ward development.

Portman scales back Ponce redevelopment plans

Portman Holdings is scaling back its redevelopment plans for a stretch of Ponce de Leon Avenue in Virginia-Highland due to changes in the economy that "have simply changed the viability of new projects," according to a company official.

Mike Greene, senior vice president for Portman, told Rough Draft that the company has decided not to purchase the parcels at 752, 756 and 774 Ponce de Leon Ave. that include the beloved The Local bar and restaurant and Vesta Movement gym. It also includes the former Marcos Pita building that burned down a decade ago.

Portman plans to close by the end of the year on the properties closest to the Atlanta Beltline's Eastside Trail including the former Paris on Ponce building owned by Cartel Properties, Greene said. Other properties include Chipotle and the strip shopping center where MJQ Concourse and The Bookhouse Pub are located. The addresses are 710, 712, 718 and 738 (also known as 736) Ponce de Leon Ave.

The original proposed development on prime real estate at Ponce de Leon Avenue and Ponce Place adjacent to the busy Eastside Trail included two towers totaling 470,000 square feet of office space, more than 35,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space, and an apartment building with 354

units with underground parking.

But the real estate market has changed from more than a year ago when Portman worked with Virginia-Highland residents and the city to get zoning for the project approved, Greene said.

"The economy is very different today than it was when we started the rezoning," he said. "High interest rates coupled with already high construction costs, low liquidity in the banking industry, and flattened rent grow, have simply changed the viability of new projects.

Greene said it would take months to come up with revised plans that would likely include more emphasis on residential than office, but follow the zoning regulations the original project received for density caps and open space requirements.

Retail will still be part of the project as will a connection to the Eastside Trail. Upgrades for street and sidewalk improvements along Ponce Place are still planned.

"Ultimately, we just came down to the conclusion that keeping the whole thing together is too risky for us, and we'd prefer to keep a lion's share of it together by letting a part of it go," Greene said. "We still definitely believe in the BeltLine, and we definitely believe in the Ponce area."

MJQ Concourse co-owner Ryan Purcell announced the iconic dance club was


relocating to Underground Atlanta next year because of the planned development. The Drunken Unicorn, a live event venue and part of MJQ Concourse, will remain open on Ponce until Portman is ready to move forward with its revised project, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle.

The Bookhouse Pub, another Ponce de Leon Avenue institution, planned to close but announced Aug. 26 on social media that it will remain open for two more years after Portman announced it was scaling back and slowing down its project.

Greene said he has also been in talks with Ryan Murphy, owner of The Bookhouse Pub, about Portman assisting in maintenance work to the building to ensure it can remain open until Portman is ready to break ground.

Greene said he was happy The Local and Vesta would be able to remain open at their homes.

"Those are two great businesses with great owners and we wish them the best for many years to come. We will do everything we can to be great neighbors and drive business to them," he said.

OCTOBER 2023 | 29
Portman’s original vision for Ponce & Ponce development. Steven Molina Contreras, Abigail’s Portrait, United States, 2019, archival pigment print, © Steven Molina Contreras, Courtesy the artist and Aperture Exhibition organized by Aperture. Curated by Pilar Tompkins Rivas.

Fall Color

Head to North Georgia, North Carolina for spectacular foliage and more

sculpture of President F.D. Roosevelt and views of the forested valley. Ga. Hwy. 190 is a pretty driving route.

Fort Mountain State Park

This park in Chatsworth is best known for a mysterious rock wall along the mountaintop, plus a variety of trails. For the easiest walk, take the 1.2-mile loop around the park’s green lake. For a challenging, all-day hike, choose the 8-mile Gahuti Trail. Mountain bikers have more than 14 miles to explore. Hwy. 52 has beautiful mountain scenery and overlooks worth stopping to see the view.

Moccasin Creek State Park

Georgia’s smallest state park sits on the shore of a gorgeous Lake Burton. Guests can choose from the 2-mile Hemlock Falls Trail or 1-mile Non-Game Trail with a wildlife observation tower. Hwy. 197 is a particularly pretty road, passing Mark of the Potter and other popular attractions.

Smithgall Woods State Park

Protecting more than 6,000 acres around Dukes Creek, this is the perfect spot for fly fishing while enjoying fall color. Day

Mid-October to early November is prime time to see the fall foliage at its peak color, so set aside a weekend for a drive to North Georgia or North Carolina.

According to the Fall Foliage Prediction Map at, leaves will peak in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina between Oct. 2-16, while Oct. 30Nov. 6 will offer the brilliant reds, oranges, and yellows in North Georgia.

According to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, these are the parks to check out the best foliage color along with some recommended hikes and activities. Check out for more information.

Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge

An hour north of Atlanta in Dawsonville, you’ll find the Southeast’s tallest cascading waterfall. A short, flat path leads to a boardwalk offering the most spectacular views. There’s also an easy-to-reach overlook at the top. For a tougher challenge, start from the bottom of the falls and hike up the steep staircase.

Black Rock Mountain State Park

At an altitude of 3,640 feet, Black Rock Mountain in Clayton is Georgia’s highest

state park (Brasstown Bald is the state’s highest peak). Roadside overlooks and the summit visitor center offer sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The 2.2-mile Tennessee Rock Trail is a good choice for a short, moderate hike. For an all-day challenge, take the 7.2-mile James E. Edmonds Backcountry Trail.

Cloudland Canyon State Park

Located in Rising Fawn, one of Georgia’s most beautiful parks offers easy-to-reach rim overlooks and challenging trails. A

favorite hike takes you down a staircase to the bottom of the canyon, where you’ll find two waterfalls. The 5-mile West Rim Loop is moderately difficult and offers great views of the canyon.

F.D. Roosevelt State Park

Many people are surprised to find hardwood forests and rolling mountains south of Atlanta. The 6.7-mile Wolf Den Loop is a favorite section of the longer Pine Mountain Trail. For a touch of history, drive to Dowdell’s Knob to see a life-size bronze

visitors can picnic near the creek, and overnight guests can hike a private trail to Dukes Creek Falls. A 1.6-mile loop climbs to Laurel Ridge and provides a view of Mt. Yonah once most leaves are off the trees. Smithgall Woods has some of the park system’s most sought-after cabins and is near wineries and Helen’s Oktoberfest.

Tallulah Gorge State Park

Tallulah Gorge near Clayton is one of

Continued on page 32

30 | OCTOBER 2023
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Tallulah Gorge Brasstown Bald Camping at FDR State Park
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the most spectacular canyons in the Southeast, and you can choose from easy or difficult trails. Hike along the rim to several overlooks with waterfall views, or hike to the bottom of the gorge for a bigger challenge.

Unicoi State Park & Lodge

Ziplines take you high above the forest canopy for a unique view of leaves near Helen. If you’re up for a steep hike, take the 4.8-mile Smith Creek Trail up to Anna Ruby Falls. Unicoi offers a lodge and restaurant.

Vogel State Park

Near Blairsville, the 4-mile Bear Hair Gap Trail makes a nice day trip for experienced hikers, offering a birds-eye view of the park’s lake. For an easier walk, follow the Lake Loop to a small waterfall below the dam. The twisting roads around Vogel, particularly Wolf Pen Gap Road, offer some of north Georgia’s prettiest fall scenery.

North Carolina

Cashiers Valley Leaf Festival

At press time, the annual Cashiers Valley Leaf Festival at Village Green in downtown Cashiers was still on for Oct. 6-8. More

than 100 Artisans, food, entertainment and more are staples of the event. Visit for more information.


While the leaves will be past their peak, the annual Highlands Food & Wine Festival ( returns Nov. 9-12 with music, tastings, dinners, and more. Highlands also offers great shopping, dining, and the chance to explore the scenic surroundings. Visit for more information.


Enjoy dining and shopping, visit the Biltmore Estate, take a ride on the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad, or have a drink at one of the breweries or distilleries. The Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands is set for Oct. 19 and Oct. 22 in downtown. Visit for more information.

LEAF Festival

A short drive from Asheville, just below Mt. Mitchell and near Black Mountain, the music festival features African, Latin, Appalachian, Cajun, Celtic, Blues, Bluegrass, and more Oct. 19-22. Visit for tickets and information.

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The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC. Continued from page 30

A Weekend in Greenville, SC

Food, art, and a gorgeous riverwalk just two hours from Atlanta

Greenville, South Carolina might not come to mind if you’re thinking of a weekend getaway but hear me out. If you’re looking for cool shopping, dining, and outdoor experiences, then this nearby city should definitely be on your itinerary.

Greenville’s effort to revitalize its downtown after decades of neglect is obvious the moment you pull into town – just a little over two hours up I-85 from Atlanta.

You’ll definitely want to park your car and explore downtown on foot to get the full experience. But first, let’s get you checked into a hotel that’s easy on the budget and has an incredible view.

We stayed at the Hampton Inn at Riverplace (, which is right in the heart of Greenville’s most spectacular area – Falls Park on the Reedy. Make sure you ask for a room with a view when you make a reservation. Walk out of the hotel and you’re in the heart of the park. The view from the Eugenia Duke Bridge offers an incredible

Continued on page 34

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Falls on the Reedy in Greenville, SC. (Photo courtesy Visit Greenville)


view of the Reedy River as it cascades over the falls.

You’re also just steps from Main Street and its shops and restaurants, including Halls Chophouse (, which offers a delicious steak with an equally stunning view of the river.

If you want to grab coffee and dessert, walk across Main to Spill the Beans (, which offers gourmet roasts and ice cream and, you guessed it, amazing views of the falls.

There are numerous paths to stroll along the river and check out the public

concerts, weddings, and other events.

If you want to walk off dinner, take a stroll along one of the trails along the Reedy River. Head south and you’ll come to the main part of the falls and the beautiful Liberty Bridge that spans it. It’s a great spot for selfies and taking in nature.

If you get into town on the first Friday of the month like we did, you don’t want to miss the First Friday Art Crawl ( Galleries all over town – and especially along Main Street – are open from 6 to 9 p.m. with special exhibitions, art for sale, and more.

Saturdays are definitely a good day to visit Greenville for a couple of reasons. The Saturday Market on Main Street is open from May through October with local vendors selling produce, bread, sweets, and more. Another is the Shoeless Joe Jackson Museum and Library (shoelessjoejackson. org). If you’re a fan of baseball – or even just the “Field of Dreams” movie – this museum is only open on Saturdays and it’s a fascinating look at one of Greenville’s most famous native sons.

art there and be sure to check and see what’s happening at the Peace Center (, which is just on the other side of the river from the hotel. The concert hall hosts everything from concerts, to comedy, to musicals.

While you’re at the Peace Center, but sure to check out the historic Wyche Pavilion, which is all that remains of the Duke’s Mayonnaise factory. The shell of the 119-year-old building has been preserved and now plays host to outdoor

On Sunday, we took a visit to The Commons (, a food hall with some of Greenville’s best local eateries. We just managed to grab some sinfully good pastries and bread from Bake Room ( bakeroomsc) before it sold out and grab a coffee at Methodical Coffee (

And if you need some more outdoor adventure before you head home, the Swamp Rabbit Trail might be what you’re looking for. You can walk or bike the 22mile trail all the way from Greenville to Travelers Rest.

To find out more about visiting Greenville, check out visitgreenvillesc. com.

34 | OCTOBER 2023
The historic Wyche Pavilion. Pastries at Bake Room in The Commons Food Hall. Continued from page 33

Head to Helen for Oktoberfest merriment, Christmas shopping

Oktoberfest in Helen, GA is such a big deal – and draws so many visitors –that it actually started in early September. The merrymaking continues through Oct. 30 with dancing, entertainment, food, and, of course, beer.

Most of the Oktoberfest action is centered around the riverside Helen Festhalle at 1074 Edelweiss Street, but there are events happening all over the Bavarian-style village.

A traveling Oktoberfest keg-tapping ceremony on Saturdays rotates to various biergartens, restaurants and taverns. Popup events throughout the town add plenty of fun, while shops and restaurants create their own festival ambience.

In the Festhalle, visitors will see performers in traditional dirndls, Tyrolean hats and lederhosen, sample the beers and the best of the wurst (six kinds), German potato salad, red cabbage, potato cakes, American dogs and more.

The Festhalle is open daily from Sept. 29 to Oct. 30. Hours are 6-10 p.m. during the week, until midnight on Fridays, from 1p.m. to midnight on Saturdays, and 1-7 p.m. on Sundays.

Admission is $8 during the week, $10

on Saturday and free on Sunday.

As soon as beer steins are put away, the Christmas decorations come out. Helen has become so well-known as a holiday destination that Lifetime has filmed two of its Christmas movies there.

From the day after Thanksgiving through Feb. 19, the village is dressed up and illuminated every night. The town’s specialty retailers and restaurants stay open late during this period to accommodate the crowds.

If you’re looking for something completely different on New Year’s Eve, check out the Dropping of the Edelweiss, a fuzzy white star-petaled flower that is a symbol of courage and devotion in Switzerland, Germany and Austria. There’s also plenty of food, music, dancing and more from 8 p.m. to midnight.

And you can go ahead and mark your calendars for Feb. 18-19, 2024 for the annual WinterFest and Sautee Nachoochee Arts Festival. More than 175 artists will be at four locations – Helen Arts & Heritage Center, Hardman Farm Historic Site, the Sautee Nacoochee Center and Unicoi State Park & Lodge.

For more details about all the upcoming events in Helen, visit HelenGA. org.

OCTOBER 2023 | 35
Christmas in Helen (Courtesy Helen/White County CVB) Oktoberfest means plenty of beer and dancing in Helen. (Helen/White County CVB)
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