10-13-17 Dunwoody Reporter

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OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 • VOL. 8— NO. 21


Dunwoody Reporter



► Major buildings rise in construction boom time PAGE 8 ► Food & Drink: Q&A with Pontoon Brewing’s CEO Sean O’Keefe PAGE 10

Taylor to leave House seat; political battle begins

Vigil draws dozens to remember Las Vegas victims

BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

Republican state Rep. Tom Taylor of Dunwoody is stepping down from his seat next year. With a Democratic challenger already in the race, Taylor’s move leaves a legislative seat up for grabs in the northern suburbs where the 6th Congressional District race recently energized voters. Former Mayor Ken Wright, a Republi-

Morgan Sturtz, 10, of Dunwoody holds a candle at the Oct. 3 vigil for victims of the Las Vegas mass shooting. Story on page 17 ►

See TAYLOR on page 30


COMMUNITY This girl’s a natural behind the wheel

Prayer with no corresponding action is a useless and vain exercise. ...What will make us safer is ordinary people like you and I, from every political stripe, finding the courage to act.

From High Street to HQ2? Dunwoody site OUT & ABOUT Thrills & chills: Your bidding for guide to Halloween Amazon BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net Developers for the long-stalled High Street development in Perimeter Center are making a bid to bring the new Amazon headquarters to Dunwoody. Dunwoody city spokesperson Bob Mullen said Oct. 9 that Boston-based GID, developers of the long-planned High Street site, will be giving their plans and background information directly to the state for the state’s sub-

Rev. Robert C. Wright Episcopal Bishop of Atlanta, on the Las Vegas massacre

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See COMMENTARY page 18



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See FROM on page 16

2 | Community

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Community Briefs PR O PO SED 2018 B UDG ET S ET AT JUS T O V ER $2 4 M The mayor and City Council held the first public hearing on their $24.1 million budget at the Oct. 9 meeting. The budget is expected to be adopted at the council’s Oct. 23 meeting. Included in the proposed budget is an expenditure of $3.3 million for road resurfacing. The budget also proposes hiring one detective, two patrol officers and one property and evidence technologist in the police department. Other proposed expenditures include: ► Improvements to Chamblee-Dunwoody Road from Peeler Road to Vermack Road — $ 100,000 ► Meadow Lane intersection improvements — $50,000 ► Womack Road sidewalk from Oakhurst Walk to Tilly Mill Road (completed along with paving) — $320,000 ► Crosswalk improvements at Tilly Mill Road at Andover Drive and ChambleeDunwoody Road at Georgetown Park (rapid flashing beacons only) — $20,000 ► Chamblee-Dunwoody Road at Womack Road intersection improvement — $150,000 ► Central Parkway sidewalk improvements — $25,000 ► Dunwoody Club sidewalk between Whitney Landing and Winters Chapel Road — $270,000

PO LICE PR ESENTING A C T IV E S HO O TER R ES P O NS E C L A S S The Dunwoody Police Department is presenting a Civilian Response to Active Shooter Event (C.R.A.S.E.) on Nov. 2. The presentation will be at Saint Luke’s Presbyterian Church, 1978 Mount Vernon Road, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. This course provides strategies, guidance and plans for surviving an active shooter event. This is a free event but registration is required as space is limited. To register, visit goo.gl/KLYdhS.

R ECYCLE B IN TRA DE- IN EV ENT S ET FO R O C T. 2 2 The city has coordinated with DeKalb sanitation officials to host a recycle bin trade-in on Oct. 22 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Dunwoody City Hall parking lot at 41 Perimeter Center East. The DeKalb County Sanitation Division is requiring residents to switch to a new standard 35-gallon recycle roll cart or an upgraded 65-gallon recycle roll cart. The new carts replace existing 18-gallon bins and 40-gallon bags as part of the residential singlestream recycling program. Existing subscribers with 18-gallon bins must trade them in by April 30, 2018, for a complimentary 35-gallon roll cart or, for a $15 fee, subscribers can choose a 65-gallon roll cart. Existing subscribers must trade in/return the 18-gallon recycling bin prior to obtaining the complimentary 35-gallon roll cart or the 65-gallon roll cart. To register for the trade-in event visit goo.gl/HngJKC, click the “View City Events & Rental Facilities” link and then click “DeKalb Sanitation Recycle Bin Trade-in” event tab. Residents will need to create an account with the Parks Registration Portal. After “Checkout” residents get a form to take with cash or check (if you choose to upgrade to the 65-gallon roll cart it will cost $15) to your selected event and DeKalb County Sanitation will handle the swap. If residents are not able to make the bin trade-in events, they can also trade existing 18-gallon bins in person at the Sanitation Division’s administrative office at 3720 Leroy Scott Drive in Decatur.

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Methodist Dunwoody United Gil Yates, about to begin at for his classmate Coast Indians was making a beeline A class on Pacific strode into the room, Church when a man OK.” approached. “Shuffling’sbuddy, who would not front row, center. said, as the man his “No running!” Yates is a year older than all in good fun. Yates The teasing was share his age: 91. with Perimeter Adults did but spring this name, classes reveal his 175 students taking The men are among most of whom (PALS). By Kathy for senior adults, Services education & Learning continuing the start.Dean year of providing been members from PALS is in its 25th need for of Dunwoody, have Wethe hear takes care of it all and his wife, Dot, and this kind of are 60-plus. Yates rings especially the time: less is more. The to help other people, phrase true for older “People our age want made lifelong friends.” adults who are empty nests and Yates said. “We have facing are4 ready to Continued on page fellowship,” Dot of their enjoy the lives. Intown and north metro second half many comforta Atlanta offer ble options for them. “Baby boomers have spent much working and of their lives building said Dawn Anderson their wealth for retiremen t,” , Realtor, Dorsey “As retiremen Alston Realtors. t becomes more of a reality, they plan their transition begin to to downsize. Ease and affordability of life, proximity are certainly the goals of most downsizing common boomers.” The trend of continues to grow, 55+ active adult commun ities Anderson said. well qualified “Baby boomers buyers and know are looking for.” exactly what they are Kim Isaacs, aged Avalon in Alpharet 58, said that her townhom e in ta gives her everything they and her husband want. “We had home in Johns lived in our previous Creek for 19 years. left for college, When our last we child and really didn’t decided that we wanted a change need a large house of us,” she said. for just the two



Continued on

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DHA: No position on City Hall site’s plan BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

After six months of discussion, the Dunwoody Homeowners Association will not take a position on a mixed-use development where City Hall now is located. DHA could not reach a consensus during a series of votes Oct. 1 on whether to support or oppose Grubb Properties’ proposed development on Perimeter Center East. The developers propose to build an office tower and 1,200 condos and apartments on the property. DHA President Robert Wittenstein said Oct. 2 that the first motion made during the board-only portion of the meeting was made to take no position, but that proposal failed due to lack of a second. A second motion to oppose the project was defeated and a third motion to support the project also was defeated. “It was an interesting evening,” Wittenstein said. “The end result is that we take no action. The main concern was traffic … and do we want more people and businesses coming to Dunwoody. We couldn’t come to a consensus if it was a good thing or bad thing.” Grubb Properties is seeking approval for 1,200 residential units and 500,000 square feet of office space on 19.5 acres at 41, 47 and 53 Perimeter Center East. The site is located behind the Ravinia complex off Ashford-Dunwoody Road. The project goes before the city Planning Commission on Nov. 14. It is then scheduled to go before the City Council on Dec. 11 for preliminary approval and a public hearing and then to the council again on Jan. 8 for a final vote. The DHA’s position carries no legislative weight. The last time a developer actively sought DHA’s endorsement was during last year’s proposed Crown Towers development. The developers for that project eventually withdrew their rezoning request. Developers often present plans to DHA seeking community input before going before the Planning Commission. Grubb Properties made its first presentation to the DHA in May and has worked with board members on the plans while seeking the group’s endorsement. Representatives from Grubb Properties were on hand for the Oct. 1 meeting and addressed major concerns many DHA members had about the number of apartments versus owner-occupied residential units. DHA members kept pushing for at least 75 percent owner-occupied residential units while Grubb Properties said financing for such a project needed to include more rental apartments. However, Wittenstein said DHA members were more concerned at the Oct. 1 meeting about traffic rather than owner-occupied units versus rental units. Grubb Properties representatives said they filed a rezoning request with the city on Sept. 5 and are also seeking two special land use permits. Because of the size of the project, a development of regional impact study, or DRI, now is underway and is expected to be finished by the Nov. 14 meeting. Completing the project is expected to take 10 years. A traffic study completed by engineering company Kimley-Horn projects cars will make about 650 new entrances and 500 new exits during peak morning hours, according to Todd Williams of Grubb Properties. During peak evening hours, the numbers flip — about 500 entrances and close to 650 exits, he said. Estimates are that 10 new students per year, over a decade, would join the DeKalb County School System, for a total of about 100 students in grades K-12. The city purchased the building at 4800 Ashford-Dunwoody Road for its new City Hall with plans to relocate there early next year. DUN

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4 | Education

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PUBLIC INFORMATION OPEN HOUSE INTERSECTION IMPROVEMENTS AT GROGANS FERRY AND ROSWELL ROAD The City of Sandy Springs will host a Public Information Open House to present proposed improvements designed to improve traffic efficiency and safety at Roswell Road and Grogans Ferry Road. The proposed project realigns the intersection and installs a traffic signal. Thursday, October 26, 2017 6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Sandy Springs City Hall, Council Chambers 7840 Roswell Road, Building 500, Sandy Springs, GA 30350

For more information please visit sandyspringsga.gov.

Priscilla Cole, who was most recently an assistant principal at Centennial High School in Roswell, has been hired as the new Dunwoody High principal.


New Dunwoody High principal is glad to join ‘family’ BY EVELYN ANDREWS evelyn@reporternewspapers.net

Priscilla Cole, Dunwoody High School’s new principal, said at an Oct. 10 meet-andgreet that she is excited to join a new community and said one of her goals will be to learn students’ names and connect with the students. “I’m looking forward to becoming part of a new family,” said Cole at the event in the school’s auditorium, which about 75 people attended. “I believe in being in the classrooms and being in the whole school. It is my goal to get to know students.” Cole officially takes the job on Oct. 16. She was most recently an assistant principal at Centennial High School in Roswell, a Fulton County public school that is similar in size to Dunwoody High at around 2,000 students. Cole was named assistant principal of the year in Fulton’s Northeast Learning Community. She will replace Tom McFerrin, who announced in July he would resign to take a new job as the district’s Career Technical and Agricultural Education coordinator. McFerrin will remain as Dunwoody High principal until Cole starts her new position. Cole said that she chose to apply for the principal position because of its diversity. “I told myself that if I’m going to be a principal, I want to go to a diverse school,” she said. “When the Dunwoody position opened and I read the school’s background, I knew I had to go there.” Kelly Clinch, the co-president of the PTSO at Dunwoody High, said the organization is looking forward to building a relationship with Cole. “We are very happy to begin working with Ms. Cole,” Clinch said in an email. “She brings strong leadership experience and a passion for students to this role, and we are excited to see what the future brings for Dunwoody High School in this new chapter.” Stephen Green, superintendent of the DeKalb County School District, said at an Oct. 4 Dunwoody Perimeter Chamber of Commerce luncheon that having a new principal at Dunwoody High will usher in “the next era” at the school. “Dunwoody is at a very important crossroad right now,” Green said. “[McFerrin] has left a powerful legacy and brought the school to new heights. It’s time for the next era.” Cole said she knows that McFerrin was well-liked in the school and community, and she hopes to build on that relationship. “I give respect to him for being a great leader. He’s going to be missed,” she said. “I’m excited to build on those relationships with the community.” A student at the meet and greet expressed a concern that smaller programs and initiatives that are funded by private sources could lose funding in McFerrin’s departure. McFerrin’s relationship with the private donors is what keeps some programs funded, such as fine arts initiatives, the student said. Cole said she would ensure programs that benefit students are protected. She noted her experience connecting with community through initiatives she piloted at Centennial High, including a program that provides information to real estate agents so they will encourage new residents to send their children to the school. Cole also launched a program that met regularly with the local business community, she said. “It all starts with discussion and being open to having conversations, and then seeing if there are ways we can work together,” Cole said. When asked what she believed her colleagues at Centennial High would say about her, she said they would say she always supported initiatives that would help students. “If it was best for students and the teachers were on board, I would do it,” she said.


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Craig Miller, far left, a producer and chairman of the Georgia Film, Music and Digital Entertainment Commission, moderates a panel on the Georgia film industry at an Oct. 10 Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber of Commerce event. Joining him on the panel were, from left, Jeffrey Stepakoff, executive director of the Georgia Film Academy, Susanna Spiccia, founder and executive director of re:imagine ATL, and LaRonda Sutton, a consultant who helps cities attract projects.

Panel: Film industry can grow while reducing neighborhood impacts BY EVELYN ANDREWS evelyn@reporternewspapers.net

The Georgia film industry needs to spread out from metro Atlanta to sustain the business and reduce impacts on local neighborhoods, said panelists at an Oct. 10 Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber of Commerce event. As filming, which can can cause road closures or use loud special effects, begins to bother residents of some neighborhoods, moviemaking should become less concentrated in metro Atlanta, said LaRonda Sutton, a consultant who helps cities attract projects, at the event held at the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North hotel. “Some of the neighborhoods in Atlanta are beginning to feel fatigue. The excitement starts to wear off,” Sutton said. Chastain Park neighborhood residents in Buckhead recently experienced that as filming for the NBC show “Good Girls” closed two neighborhood streets, Rickenbacker Way and Midvale Drive, for five days. Jeffrey Stepakoff, the executive director of the Georgia Film Academy, said filming in other areas of the state is needed to help spread the economic benefits. “We’ve got to spread the economic activity across the state,” Stepakoff said. “We are the Georgia Film Academy, not the Atlanta Film Academy,” he said. Sutton and Stepakoff, were joined by Susanna Spiccia, founder and executive director of re:imagine ATL, a nonprofit that teaches students skills needed in the film industry, and Craig Miller, a producer and chairman of the Georgia Film, Music and Digital Entertainment Commission, who moderated the panel. To make Georgia’s film industry sustainable, Stepakoff said, industry leaders need to train writers and bring post-production and distribution professionals to the state. Schools should encourage talented Georgia writers to stay in the state, he said, rather than send them off to New York and California. “That is precisely what we need to stop doing,” he said. “We need to keep

our talent here.” To help train middle and high school students in skills needed in the film industry, Spiccia launched re:imagine ATL, which goes into local schools to train students and teachers. They work in schools across the metro area, including North Atlanta High School in Buckhead. The organization helps students get internships and provides connections to help them get jobs in the industry, she said. “We want to get into as many schools as possible because we are a direct line to the industry,” she said. The film industry in the U.S. was found in 2015 to be predominately comprised of white men, Spiccia said. Bringing Atlanta students into the industry will make the industry more diverse, which is one of the goals of the nonprofit, she said. “We’re going to see a more inclusive industry,” she said. As the film industry continues to grow in Georgia and metro Atlanta, Sandy Springs could make some improvements to attract more projects, Sutton said. “You have to make sure the permitting process is streamlined and you are promoting what is beautiful about Sandy Springs,” she said. Sutton established the city of Atlanta’s office that streamlined the permitting process for filming and created a point of contact for residents with questions about projects filming in their neighborhoods. Companies are currently filming 51 movies and TV shows in the state, excluding reality TV shows, Miller said at the event. Tax incentives passed in Georgia in 2008 are the driving force behind the industry’s growth in the state, but having an international airport and a wide variety of environments also contributes, panelists said. To help attract and support the industry, DeKalb County officially launched the DeKalb Entertainment Commission on Oct. 11. In addition to the TV and film industries, the office will provide government support to the music and video game industries in the county.

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6 | Community

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Trees come down for I-285/Ga. 400 interchange work BY JOHN RUCH johnruch@reporternewspapers.net

Sandy Springs’ landmark “King” and “Queen” skyscrapers rise in the background as crews work on Ga. 400 right of way near Mount Vernon Highway.


Trees have been coming down by the truckload along Ga. 400 and I-285 in recent weeks as the state’s “Transform 285/400” interchange reconstruction project preparation moves ahead. Tree-clearing along Ga. 400 — which eventually will require some new sound barriers for local neighborhoods — has been underway for months. But activity in recent weeks has ramped up as the project nears its first milestone: replacing the Mount Vernon Highway bridge over Ga. 400 in Sandy Springs. Right of way clearing on I-285 got started, including at the busy Roswell Road interchange. The work has involved some lane and ramp closures, which are done at night to minimize traffic effects. All of the clearing is just prep work to relocate utilities and make way for new lanes and ramps. Aiming for completion in mid-2020, the project will rebuild the interchange to improve vehicle capacity and flow. It will also add “collector-distributor lanes”— physically separated exit and entrance lanes — to 400 north to Sandy Springs’ Spalding Drive and to 285 between Roswell Road and Ashford-Dunwoody Road in Dunwoody and Brookhaven. The 400/Abernathy Road interchange in Sandy Springs will be rebuilt as a “diverging diamond,” in which traffic flow changes in time with traffic lights to move cars faster, and 33 bridges will be built or rehabbed. Here are some scenes from the recent work in late September and early October.

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An earthmover handles plowed-up trees at the I-285 westbound on-ramp from Roswell Road in Sandy Springs.

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OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net


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A bulldozed right of way runs alongside the I-285 westbound on-ramp from Roswell Road.

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ON THE RISE Major buildings take shape in construction boom time It’s a construction boom time in metro Atlanta, and cranes are rising across Reporter Newspapers communities. From Perimeter Center to Phipps Boulevard, and from Pill Hill to Executive Park, here are some of the biggest local buildings underway. PHOTOS BY PHIL MOSIER

Center for Advanced Pediatrics ▲

1400 Tullie Road, Brookhaven Project: Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta outpatient care tower, 8 stories. Expected completion: 2018

◄ Northside Hospital addition

1000 Johnson Ferry Road, Sandy Springs Project: 8-story addition to the main Northside Hospital in the Pill Hill medical center, going up along with a 10-story parking garage. Expected completion: 2018

Marcus Heart and Vascular Center Peachtree and Collier roads, Buckhead Project: Piedmont Hospital’s hub for new center funded by $75 million Marcus Foundation gift. Expected completion: Late 2020

Community | 9

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Mercedes-Benz USA headquarters Abernathy Road at Mercedes-Benz Drive, Sandy Springs Project: The luxury automaker’s North American headquarters, relocated from New Jersey. Expected completion: Early 2018

▼ Park Center

Hammond Drive and Perimeter Center Parkway, Dunwoody Project: The next two State Farm office towers, one 22 stories and one 19 stories, rising across the street from a tower that opened this year. Expected completion: 2019-2020

1000 Park Avenue ►

1000 Park Avenue at Phipps Boulevard, Buckhead Project: 27-story, 270-unit apartment building. Expected completion: August 2018

10 | Food & Drink

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Q&A with Pontoon Brewing’s CEO Sean O’Keefe BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

Pontoon Brewing, promising to bring the “pontoon lifestyle” with plenty of beer to Sandy Springs, plans to open in early November. CEO Sean O’Keefe said he along with COO Marcus Powers and Brewmaster Cole Brown are busy finishing up the final touches on their brewery at 8601 Dunwoody Place. The friends all went to the University of Florida together where they learned to appreciate beer -- so much so, they started making their own. Check out more about the brewery at pontoonbrewing.com.


How did you all meet and then decide making beer would be a great career choice?


Marcus and myself [and two friends who are now silent partners] all went to college together. When [the now silent partners] both got jobs in Atlanta,

From Left, Pontoon crew members CEO Sean O’Keefe, Brewmaster Cole Brown, Tyler Cole and COO Marcus Powers. The crew plans to open a brewery in Sandy Springs in early November.



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Food & Drink | 11

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net they started brewing as a hobby. I had worked at a brewery during the summers in North Carolina and subsequently, Marcus and I started homebrewing. Once the four of us reunited in Atlanta, we started brewing together and came up with Pontoon! All of us are involved and have helped make Pontoon what it is today.


What was the first beer you made? Did it taste great?

A: The first beer made was Southern

Skipper White IPA! It came out wonderful! [It took a] couple brews to get it dialed in, but from the start, we knew we had something great. No Pants Pilsner came right after.


How come the name is Pontoon Brewing? And why is the otter your mascot?


Pontoon really sells the Pontoon lifestyle — a slow-moving party platform that doesn’t need to be flashy or move quickly to have fun. We came up with Pontoon because no one buys a Pontoon boat to show off or go fast, they do it to have a great time, have a nice cold beer and enjoy where they are at that point in time. Same reason the otter is our mascot. You never see otters working. They even play with their food!

Q: Why locate in Sandy Springs? A: We looked at over 40 buildings

in areas as far as Carrollton, Acworth, Smyrna, the West End BeltLine, all the way to Sandy Springs. We finally found the location we are in today because of the great proximity to the Chattahoochee [River], the amount of traffic and businesses in Sandy Springs and the welcoming city. We thought Sandy Springs was a great location.


What is the secret to making a good beer that no one seems to know?

A: The secret to making good

beer is proper cleaning and taking good notes! Oftentimes, the reason a beer comes out bad is due to infection from oxygen exposure or bacteria that can spoil a great brew. Proper cleaning of all equipment is key. Also, keeping good notes to know what you did right and what you didn’t do right! Educating yourself on new hops, fun yeast strains and new techniques are all good ways to


make good beer.


How do you come up with the names of your beers — for example, No Pants Pilsner?


We actually have a pretty fun text group for coming up with names! Sometimes after having a few Pontoon brews! It’s a good mix of all of us that come up with the names.


How do you decide on flavors that go into your beers? Is it trial and error or is there a formula you all follow?


A lot of the beers we try to make are food inspired. For example, we made a Pecan Pie nut brown ale that is savory and perfect during the holidays! We also made a sour beer with cranberries, tangerines and fall spices. We take a traditional style of beer, really nail down the recipe and try fun varieties! Sometimes it doesn’t turn out like we like, but we brew as many times as it takes before we sell them.


Making beer seems like a dream job for people who love beer. Is that true? Any challenges to brewing?

Do you each have a favorite beer? Which ones and why?


We are very diversified when it comes to favorite beer styles. Cole likes his German styles, a good mild and IPAs. As our brewmaster, BJCP [beer judge certification program] judge and level 2 Cicerone [beer certification program], he can appreciate all styles, though! Marcus likes saisons, Kolschs and IPAs. You can always find at least two of those in his fridge. My favorites are stouts, browns, Scotch ales and saisons. It could be 100 degrees outside and I could be sipping a rich, chocolatey stout.


What does the future hold for Pontoon?


We are planning to open in the first two weeks of November! We will have a big grand opening with bands, a live otter [from North Georgia’s Zoo to You] and great beer! Pontoon will likely open a second location that focuses on production to get into future states like Florida, Alabama, Tennessee and other southern states. We are so excited to open the brewery! It’s been a lot of work but we’ve had tremendous support from a lot of companies and individuals. We can’t wait for our fans to help experience the Pontoon lifestyle as well!


We think it’s the dream job! We started Pontoon because we love beer and love the industry. The industry is very unique and is very collaborative. For anyone considering opening their own brewery, I would say build a good team, brew for a few years and make it happen! There are some big challenges. Capital is needed. It’s hard to start a brewery without money. There is also a lot of red tape and things that pop up. All of these things make it tough for little guys to come in but it does happen and it makes it all the more exciting.

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What can people expect when they come to the Pontoon brewery?


A big taproom with ample seating, and outdoor area, good selections of beer in all shapes and sizes, games, TVs and a great atmosphere. Beer is made on site so tours will be available, as well as take-home beers. Pontoon will be hosting many events like corporate events, weddings, fundraisers and weekly events. We will also be doing tours that will take people with beer in hand to the Chattahoochee to drop in, get picked up and brought back to the brewery. Food trucks, seasonal parties and beer releases! All sorts of fun stuff!


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12 | Perimeter Business

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Beer business an ‘untapped’ development boon, experts say BY JOHN RUCH johnruch@reporternewspapers.net

Craft beer isn’t just fun to drink, but also a billion-dollar industry with “untapped” potential to spark economic booms in local cities, according to experts at an annual north Fulton development conference. Indeed, “Untapped” was the official theme of this year’s “North Fulton Opportunity Outlook” event, held Sept. 15 at Sandy Springs’ Wyndham Atlanta Galleria hotel. Presented by the Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce and the Council for Quality Growth, the conference brings city officials and developers together to network on trends and redevelopment sites. “There’s a lot more breweries coming,” said Paul Gatza, director of the Brewers Association, a Denver-based craft brewing trade group. One of them in Pontoon Brewing, set to open next month in northern Sandy Springs. Its CEO, Sean O’Keefe, was among the “Untapped” panelists. Pontoon will be Sandy Springs’ first brewery – as opposed to a brewpub that also serves food – and city leaders see it as potentially sparking their longtime urban planning goal: redevelopment of northern Roswell Road’s older shopping centers and apartment complexes. And that’s not the only craft brewing

business headed to one of Sandy Springs’ redevelopment wish-list areas. Another is Porter Pizza Brewery, slated to open this winter at Powers Ferry Road and Northside Drive, just across the street from the Wyndham. Owner Allen Porter says he hopes to create a brewpub chain that can open a Dunwoody location as well. At the conference, economic development officials from other north Fulton cities said they have their eyes on the craft business. A Roswell representative said that city aims to have breweries operating within its borders by year’s end. In Milton, an official explained, the city offers a new “limited tap” license that allows up to four beer taps at a business that does not regularly serve food. One of the first to take advantage: a company that wants to stage bicycle rides that end with a drink. Gatza put some numbers on the craft — meaning made locally by small businesses — beer business’s exploding market share. In 1980, he said, there were 89 breweries in the U.S. owned by 42 companies, of which five were craft. Today, there are more than 5,600 breweries, and craft has grown to 13 percent of the market share. Each year, about 900 craft breweries open and about 100 close, he said. The emergence of craft beers in the late 1980s helped to revitalize his hometown of Denver, Gatza said. The opening of Wyn-

koop Brewery was “the ignition point for the whole downtown area to emerge,” he said. He added that today, downtown Denver’s real estate is so expensive that some of the breweries that made it successful, such as River North Brewery, have been priced out of their own neighborhoods. Georgia is benefiting from the craft beer trend as well, Gazta said. The state had 53 breweries in 2014; today, it has 65, of which 38 are craft breweries. Another 85 are in the planning stages, a number that Gatza said could triple in next five years. He praised the so-called “Beer Jobs Bill” — the last legislative session’s Senate Bill 85 — which allowed breweries and distilleries to sell a certain amount of alcoholic drinks directly to consumers rather than through a distributor. The Brewers Association is pushing for a higher cap on the amount of alcohol sold, among other legislative changes. The bill was shepherded through the legislature by former state Sen. Hunter Hill of District 6, which includes parts of Buckhead and Sandy Springs. Pontoon is among the breweries that opened or changed their business model in response to the Beer Jobs Bill. “The word ‘red tape’ is thrown out a lot,” said O’Keefe, describing the complexities of licensing and permitting for an alcohol-producing business. But, he added, reaching out early to the city of Sandy

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Pontoon Brewing CEO Sean O’Keefe, far left, speaks during the Sept. 15 “Untapped” event. Joining him on the panel are, from left, Michael Sard, an attorney specializing in alcohol licensing; Matt Curling, owner of Roswell’s Variant Brewing; and Michael Lundmark, CEO of Alpharetta’s Jekyll Brewing.

Springs for advice was key, and legislation like the Beer Jobs Bill helps the industry. One of those city officials is among those looking to benefit from the craft beer trend. Gabriel Sterling, a Sandy Springs city councilmember and candidate for Fulton County Chair, has been working on his own beer for several years under the name Elbow Bend Brewing. While the business is on hold while Sterling campaigns, he attended the “Untapped” event as a public official and spoke afterward about the plans he has brewing. Sterling said he had originally planned to contract out his beer-brewing, but with the Beer Jobs Bill allowing for direct sales, he “might open a physical location,” he said. “I’d love to do it in Sandy Springs.”

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Community | 13

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

City Council approves Perimeter Center hotel, office tower project

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A 16-story office tower and 10-story hotel development in Perimeter Center got the green light from Dunwoody City Council at its Oct. 9 meeting. Two council members opposed the project, however, saying the project developed the area too densely. As part of approving the special land use permits for the project at 1134 Hammond Drive and adjacent to the Dunwoody MARTA Station, the mayor and council included two conditions that the developers must meet: the office building must be LEED certified; and the city must issue a building permit within two years and construction be completed within four years. If not, the SLUPs approved will be voided. Brandon Houston of Trammell Crow told the mayor and council that his company is in talks with a tenant seeking to locate its headquarters in the office building. The hotel and accessibility to MARTA are key reasons the company is considering locating to Dunwoody at this site, he said. Square footage of the office building is just under 350,000 square feet. The hotel will have 193 rooms. A pedestrian bridge will connect the MARTA station to the office tower and to the hotel. The location next to a MARTA station is a strong selling point for potential office tower tenants and also for the hotel, which likely would serve mainly business travelers, Houston said. Houston said the tenant he is in talks with plans to have at least 150 employees use MARTA. Councilmember Terry Nall and Lynn Deutsch voted against the development. Deutsch said she believed the project was too big and dense for the area and Nall said the developer did not provide a compelling reason to approve such a large project when he said the city was getting little in return, such as only a 0.1-acre pocket park between the office tower and MARTA station. Nall also raised his concerns about the city’s analysis stating traffic would increase by 7.1 percent in the area. The hotel will include a roof deck and bar tenants that employees of the office tower will be able to access. The hotel and the tower would have an elevated walkway and terrace connecting them. The project is to be built on just more than 4 acres of a largely unused portion of the Perimeter Mall parking lot that fronts Hammond Drive and the MARTA rail line and is located across the street from the State Farm development. Trammell Crow is seeking a $130 million tax break from the Dunwoody Development Authority. The company plans to break ground next year and open the buildings in 2020.

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14 | Community

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Voters Guide: Dunwoody City Council On Nov. 7, voters in three Dunwoody City Council districts will have two choices on the ballot. In Post/District 1, Joe Hirsch is challenging incumbent Pam Tallmadge. In Post/District 2, incumbent Jim Riticher faces challenger Robert “Bobby” Zuckman. In Post/District 3, Henry Bierenfeld and Tom Lambert will compete for an open seat. The Reporter asked all of the candidates for a biography and the answers to questions about their political stances. All of them except Zuckman responded, and part of their answers appear below. For their full answers, including positions on bicycle amenities and Perimeter Center development, see Reporter Newspapers.net.

POST/DISTRICT 1 JOE HIRSCH dunwoodyjoe.com

Occupation: Journalist What is motivating you to run for City Council?

PAM TALLMADGE pam4dunwoodyga.us

Occupation: Executive Assistant, Charter-System Foundation; City of Dunwoody Council Member District 1 What is motivating you to run for City Council? I love Dunwoody. It is a small town in a very large metropolitan area. Dunwoody needs fresh ideas to keep our small town a desirable city for our current citizens, their families and future citizens. I have lived, worked and served in Dunwoody for over 27 years. We are seeing a trend of individuals who lived here leave the area for college and/ or job opportunities only to return later in life to raise their families. My goal is to get to the “yes” — I am motivated to achieve the wants and the needs of our citizens while being fiscally responsible.

I truly want Dunwoody to be better. After creating our own city, the promise of enhanced services for less tax money has not been perfected. The city is in need of fresh ideas from someone who has an open mind. I am a big stakeholder for our success, having teenaged school children and two elderly parents who live in Dunwoody. We need more honesty, transparency and better constituent services. Our city is in need of someone to shake up the establishment. I am confident that I will hold people accountable for their mistakes, while also providing a voice to everyone.

What is the biggest issue facing the district and how will you address it?

What is the biggest issue facing the district and how will you address it?


We don’t want to become the victims of our own success. Traffic causes loss of productivity, harms our health and quality of life, damages the environment and even inhibits our emergency response times. District 1 has one of the strongest economic engines around, yet has projected further increases in traffic that can send us backwards. While many roadway projects, bike-sharing, carpools, buses and MARTA plans are being developed, we need to make sure it is done collaboratively so they can all be used congruently. State Farm constructing a direct platform to MARTA from their new office is a great example.

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Growth. I want to continue to be involved with the positive changes Dunwoody has enjoyed since the city was formed in 2008. I believe the city and its citizens are facing significant progress, and with this progress comes problems. I believe we, as a community, do not want to lose what makes Dunwoody, Dunwoody. I want to be part of the team bringing fresh ideas, based on the citizens input to manage the expected growth for the betterment of all of our citizens.

POST/DISTRICT 2 riticher.com

Occupation: Mostly retired. Career in engineering and IT management and consulting. What is motivating you to run for City Council? I ran four years ago because I saw a need for more emphasis on basic infrastructure, and believe my efforts in this area and others should continue with the experience I’ve gained. There is a learning curve, and I believe Dunwoody would be best served by a candidate who knows the ropes and


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Community | 15

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net knows our citizens and has lived in the community for a significant amount of time, and that is me. What is the biggest issue facing the district and how will you address it? Most of the problems we have stem from many years of county neglect. We are catching up on those years of deferred repaving and improving our parks. It only takes time and money, and we are working on this things in a fiscally responsible way (no debt). Our current paving rate yields about a 20-year repaving cycle. We were paving less, such that our paving cycle was more like 24 years, so a significant improvement.

POST/DISTRICT 3 HENRY H. BIERENFELD (no campaign website)

Occupation: Event Coordinator, East Lake Golf Club What is motivating you to run for City Council? I chose to be a candidate, in the 2017 election for Dunwoody City Council, District 3 to give back to the community I have called home for over four decades. I am motivated to utilize my longevity in our community to make a significant impact on our city.

Cut-through traffic will continue in our community, how we ease that congestion is the issue.

TOM LAMBERT VoteTomLambert.com

Occupation: Marketing Consultant, writer, at-home dad What is motivating you to run for City Council? I believe the time to start building the Dunwoody of tomorrow is today. We need to leverage our position as the economic hub of metro Atlanta to our advantage. Let’s move out of perpetual planning and into building the projects that make a difference! Priorities are immediate implementation of the Brook Run Park plan and a clear vision for and commitment to projects in the Winters Chapel corridor. We can protect our residential neighborhoods and the character that makes Dunwoody such a special place to live, while still adding the services and amenities our citizens desire and deserve. What is the biggest issue facing the district and how will you address it?

What is the biggest issue facing the district and how will you address it? The biggest issue facing the district is traffic. Additional intersection improvement for our main streets where congestion occurs needs attention. Synchronizing traffic lights for improved traffic flow that would ease congestion at peak traffic times is a must. Collaborating with our neighboring cities to implement a traffic plan that is consistent is essential.

With all of the focus on PCIDs and Dunwoody Village, it seems that District 3 has rarely received the attention it deserves. I believe the biggest opportunities for our city may lie along the Winters Chapel corridor, where the city needs to focus on improvement projects and appropriate development — including a multi-use trail to improve safety, quality of life and provide connectivity to Windwood Hollow and Brook Run Parks. At Brook Run Park, I will prioritize immediate implementation and construction of the short-term project list on the parks master plan.


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16 | Community

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From High Street to HQ2? Dunwoody site bidding for Amazon Continued from page 1 mittal for the new Amazon headquarters, dubbed Amazon HQ2. Amazon’s deadline for proposals to be submitted is Oct. 19. Dunwoody will not be submitting another site for consideration, Mullen said. Attempts to reach GID for comment were not successful. The 42-acre High Street property at Hammond Drive and Perimeter Parkway includes the office buildings at 211 Perimeter Center Parkway and 219 and 223 Perimeter Center Parkway, where the Atlanta Journal-Constitution is currently based. The property is located near Perimeter Mall and the Dunwoody MARTA Station. Access to mass transit is a key criteria in Amazon’s request for proposals. Media reports have speculated High Street was on the list to be considered by the state, and the city officially announced Oct. 9 that GID planned to make its case to the state for consideration. Amazon on Sept. 7 posted a press release to its website stating it was seeking to open “Amazon HQ2,” leading states across the country, including Georgia, to work to submit the bids by the Oct. 19 deadline. Amazon states it would invest over $5 billion in construction and employ up to 50,000 people. Dunwoody Economic Development Director Michael Starling said the push to bring Amazon to Georgia is being driven by the state Department of Economic Development and metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. He said High Street’s location to mass transit makes it a contender. “There’s really not a perfect site in any locale,” Starling said. “But High Street is across from MARTA.” Much of the High Street property has long been vacant, with only renderings posted on a website for a massive mixeduse development. The project has been in the making for more than more than a de-

cade. Last year, GID representatives told members of the Dunwoody Homeowners Association the company planned to break ground this year on the development. However, nothing has occurred at the site. Katie Bishop Williams, executive director of the Dunwoody Convention and Visitors Bureau, which has a keen interest in marketing Perimeter Center, said she’s not familiar with how the High Street property is laid out or the details of its plans for Amazon. “But this is the hottest economic development opportunity in the country right now and it’s no secret cities are vying for Amazon,” she said. Every state is trying to bring Amazon to their home, she said, and for Dunwoody to be considered at all would be boon. “If Dunwoody had any chance, this would open up new jobs and economic activity and bring lots of possibilities, not only for the city but for the region,” she said. Fred Cerrone, founder and chairperson of Hotel Equities and COO of Dunwoodybased Hotel Development Partners, has lived in Dunwoody for 35 years. He said he’s always envisioned the High Street property as “a city within a city.” “It’s a unique environment. Why not?” he said of the chances of Amazon coming to Dunwoody. Mass transportation is huge when attracting a major headquarters, he said, as is proximity to a major city, retail, major interstates and plenty of hotels. Dunwoody and High Street meet all those criteria, he said. “It’s across from a major MARTA station. That’s why you build public transportation-to attract companies like this,” Cerrone said. Cerrone and his companies built and own three major hotels in Perimeter Center. He said he has always seen the potential for the area to bring in major corporations, such as State Farm.

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A rendering of the stalled High Street mixed-use development in Dunwoody and bordering the Sandy Springs border shows a mix of residential and office towers. Boston-based GID, developers of the property, are now hoping the state will consider the property as a potential site for the new Amazon headquarters.

“We’re excited to hear about the potential” of Amazon, he said. “It’s exciting to think of something of this magnitude coming here.” Plans already approved for just the first phase of the High Street site include one 30-story residential tower, a 12-story office building, two seven-story residential buildings, two eight-story residential buildings, a 12-story residential building and several three-story townhouses. All residential buildings would have ground-floor retail. Total residential units in Phase One would include 500 apartments at more than 552,000 square feet and 75 condominiums at more than 237,000 square feet. Proposed retail space totals 130,000 square feet and office space totals 250,000 square feet. Phase one of Amazon’s request for proposal calls for enough room for buildings of more than 500,000 square feet by 2019 and up to 8 million square feet beyond 2027, according to Amazon. Amazon is also seeking about 100 acres for the new headquarters, but states in its request for proposals that while the acreage does not have to be contiguous, it should be pedestrian-friendly. Heyward Wescott, immediate past president of the Perimeter Chamber in Dunwoody, said he thinks the High Street site would be a great spot for a portion of the new Amazon headquarters. “It definitely has potential for part of the project – we could have our own Avalon,” he said, citing the 86-acre development in Alpharetta that includes 500,000 square feet of retail as well as Class A office space, single-family homes and rental apartments. “Perimeter Center is ripe for redevelopment,” Wescott said. “We are getting more hotels and there are developers coming in and kicking the tires.” Wescott also pointed out that DeKalb County has three sites that have been floated as potential Amazon sites – High Street, Doraville’s Assembly and the city of Stonecrest, which has offered to de-annex more than 300 acres to create a new city of Amazon. Amazon is seeking tax abatements for its new headquarters and Wescott


said he hopes the DeKalb County School District would be on board to agree to the abatements after opposing tax abatements for the redevelopment of the GM property in Doraville. “Everyone has to be flexible because they will be asking for things in return,” he said. Cerrone also said the state of Georgia has proven itself as a very pro-business state in the past and has the inclination to provide tax incentives for businesses. “The history is there,” he said. City Councilmember Pam Tallmadge, who is seeking re-election for District 1, which includes Perimeter Center, said she wants to hear from Dunwoody residents about what they think of the potential of Amazon building a new headquarters in the city. “It is too soon to comment in regards to a real-estate deal as large as this one,” she said. “Other than what I have heard on the news, I don’t have their detailed plans. I would also like to hear from the citizens of Dunwoody; all of Dunwoody would have to embrace this proposal, not just District 1.” Joe Hirsch, who is challenging Tallmadge, said the fact the property near Perimeter Mall is being considered a contender for Amazon HQ2 is “is testament to our city’s fabulous people, geography and quest for innovation in the area.” “Dunwoody is attractive to businesses seeking criteria such as good connectivity, recreation and affordable housing,” he added. “The payoff for the city that lands this Amazon project will be tremendous, from high-paying jobs to further investments in the entire city. While an increase in traffic is definitely a huge concern, I believe a company such as Amazon can certainly provide our city with the acumen needed for smarter growth in the region.” Councilmember Terry Nall, who also represents the Perimeter Center, would only say, “I’m confident we would not change the name of our city.” GID bought the Perimeter Center Parkway property a decade ago for $83 million with plans to build a “vertical-urban” community. The economic recession hit, however, and put the project on hold.


Community | 17

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Vigil draws dozens to remember Las Vegas victims BY JOHN RUCH johnruch@reporternewspapers.net

A candlelight vigil drew dozens of people to Brook Run Park Oct. 3 to remember the victims of the Las Vegas mass shooting. The nighttime vigil was intended to “quietly pay respect to the people we lost this week and the people who are still suffering after this horrible attack,” said organizer Jill Vogin, who wore a sweater decorated with a U.S. flag shaped like a heart, to the group of at least 40 attendees. Attendees walked in darkness, some silent, some talking quietly amongst themselves, on a circular path near the park’s gazebo as they pondered the Oct. 1 attack where a suicidal gunman killed at least 58 people and wounded hundreds more by sniping at them from a hotel tower. Promoted as silent and apolitical, the vigil had no leader and no speeches aside from Vogin’s brief introductory remarks. Dunwoody City Councilmember John Heneghan was among the candle-bearing attendees; citing the event’s apolitical intent, he declined to comment on his reasons for attending as a public official. “The candles alone say more than enough,” Heneghan said. Dunwoody Police Lt. Fidel Espinoza said he attended not only to supervise police protection of the event, but also to honor the victims, who included several law enforcement officials. “Personally, I’m not surprised Dunwoody would do something like this,” Espinoza said, praising the community for creating an event where “we can put aside our own personal thoughts [and] politics and focus on the victims affected by this tragedy. Among the attendees were two candidates for local offices: Joe Hirsch, who is challenging incumbent Pam Tallmadge for the City Council’s District 1 seat, and Sally Harrell, a Democratic former state representative who says she will challenge state Sen. Fran Millar (R-Dunwoody) next year. Neither candidate actively campaigned or announced their presence at the vigil. “While I know physically it’s not going to accomplish much, mentally, perhaps spiritually, it’s going to make a difference in the community,” Hirsch said of his reason for attending. “This is not an answer, but it’s a response.” “I need quiet time to reflect,” Harrell said as she held a candle, adding that she has avoided news reports about the shooting. “This is a good way to process grief, to be part of a community without being overwhelmed. Vogin said the vigil organizers are an informal group of girlfriends who began planning their own events folDUN

lowing the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., in August where a protester was killed by a participant. It is essentially an email list of people who can show up at impromptu events, and now has about 50 participants, including Dunwoody City Councilmember Lynn Deutsch, Vogin said. The idea of the group was to quickly attend or arrange two types of events, Vogin said: political rallies and vigils to respond to tragedies. Its first activi-

ty, she said, was joining a recent Dunwoody rally against President Trump’s pronouncement that he would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration program. Above, State Senate candidate Sally Harrell walks during the vigil. Right, A street sign advertising the vigil. Below: Dunwoody residents Ameer Salim, 9, [left] and his sister Leila Salim, 11. PHOTOS BY PHIL MOSIER

18 | Commentary

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Commentary: After Las Vegas, ministers speak on ‘the unspeakable’ It struck many of us as all too familiar. A gunman had climbed high in a hotel and opened fire on a concert crowd below. All that seemed different about the Las Vegas shooting on Oct. 1 was the location and the numbers of the dead and wounded. Police found the body of the killer, Stephen Paddock, in a hotel room stocked with a small armory of guns and ammunition. They even found calculations he’d made to better target people in the crowd below once the killing began, according to news reports. By the time he was done, 58 people were dead, nearly 500 wounded. Many officials locally and around the country responded with statements of thoughts and prayers for the victims, while national media was filled with debates about whether thoughts and prayers are enough. In the days after the shooting, we asked several local ministers what they would say — what they could say — to console members of their congregations after yet another mass shooting. Here’s some of what they said.

In the face of unspeakable gun violence in Las Vegas on Sunday night, many of us are left wondering how we respond. As our hearts break, we are called first to lament, to remember, and to pray. We hope that many of you will find the church to be a space of healing in the face of such an act of evil. – Covenant Presbyterian Church Senior Pastor Rev. Dr. Richard Hill and Associate Pastor Rev. Katie Owen Aumann emailed a note to their congregation.

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In the aftermath of the horror of Las Vegas, I ask you to remember and pray for the souls of those who have died, including Mr. Paddock. I encourage you to seek the comfort we find in Christ Jesus. Holy Scripture reminds us that we are to “… rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep.” It is an important part of what makes us human. Even though Las Vegas is more than 1,500 miles from Georgia, we are nevertheless connected with the men and women struck down and the loved ones they left behind by our ability to empathize and have compassion. So, we pray. We reach to God in familiar words to remember the dead and send our positive psychic and spiritual energy to those still in shock and who will grieve for years to come. But let us remember also, Jesus was a man of prayer and of action. Prayer must be prelude to action. Prayer with no corresponding action is a useless and vain exercise. Most importantly, prayer without action is not the faith Jesus practiced! My sincere prayer is that the lives of those killed in Las Vegas will not be in vain. I still believe that America is a great country! I still believe we can accomplish great things together. I believe we can affirm the Second Amendment, protect the rights of hunters and sportsman, and enact common sense gun laws that put into practice intelligent safety measures. This is not a partisan sentiment. Morgues and cemeteries are not divided by political affiliation. This is about coming to the realization that moments of silence and prayer will not, of themselves, make us safer. What will make us safer is ordinary people like you and I, from every political stripe, finding the courage to act. Jesus often asked men and women he encountered, “What do you want?” I want an America where we are less afraid and more neighborly. An America where it is more difficult to get a semi-automatic weapon or high capacity magazines than it is to get a bottle of Sudafed. I want an America where special interests like the National Rifle Association don’t control our elected officials with campaign donations that render them spineless. I want an America where law enforcement officers are better equipped to keep us safe than criminals are equipped to do us harm. These are not Democratic dreams or Republican dreams. This is an American dream. – Rev. Robert C. Wright, Episcopal Bishop of Atlanta, in a public statement.

“Violence has once again horrified us as a nation and drawn us together in sorrow. All of us — people of faith as well as those with no particular religious affiliation — are stunned by the tragic, senseless, and incomprehensible loss of life in Las Vegas. “At the same time we are awed by the courage and selflessness of the first responders, touched by the kindness of generous neighbors, and moved by the actions of strangers who have reached out to care for those who have been hurt, separated from their companions and frightened. I invite all of us to pray for those whose lives were taken and those whose lives have been altered by such violence. “May Mary, the Mother of Jesus, comfort the people of Las Vegas and strengthen our nation with trust in one another and hope for our common future.” – Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta in a public statement.

With many tears and fears for the present and the future, we lament in hope and humble ourselves to pray. As we pray, we remember the promise that you hear our prayers and heal our land. Father, our hearts ache from the frequent earthquakes and natural disasters, wars and rumors of wars, and senseless acts of violence. And honestly, as much as we desire to be a faithful people who trust in you, in the back of our minds lingers the question, “Where is God in all of this?” In the effort to find a suitable answer, we search the depths of our hearts, minds and souls, seemingly to no avail. And suddenly, out of the abyss of darkness, springs the hope of Elijah. Elijah who, even as a prophet of God, wrestled with these same questions. You responded to him as you respond to us now: “I am not the author of disaster. I am not the author of confusion. But I am with you, so close you can sense my presence and hear me whisper, “I love you.” Father, you are an only-good God. You love us and promise to never leave us nor reject us. You hear our prayers. And so we ask: comfort our hearts, renew our minds and refresh our souls; give us hope. And father, because we do not understand the why in all of these things, we need you to help us. Help us do our part to heal our land. We repent of any error in our ways and ask you to forgive us and reconcile us. Reconcile us, not only to you, but also to one another and teach us to love as you love, forgive as you forgive, be present as you are present and be good to each other as you are good to us. In Jesus’ name, amen. – Pastor William C. Givens, Buckhead Baptist Church, in a statement issued to Reporter Newspapers.


Community | 19

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This girl’s a natural behind the wheel

BY JOE EARLE joeearle@reporternewspapers.net

She just got it. The first time Malena Shipley climbed into a Soapbox Derby car, it was obvious to the adults around her that she instinctively knew what to do to make that car go fast. She was just 7, but she somehow seemed to know how to handle the car. That’s what Nancy Mooney saw. She was there that first day. Mooney’s the race director of the North Georgia Soapbox Derby, which holds its races in Dunwoody. Back five years ago, she was showing kids soapbox cars during Lemonade Days, Dunwoody’s annual hometown celebration, when Malena first got into a Soapbox car and piloted it down a hill. Mooney’s been around Soapbox cars much of her life. Her dad raced them when he was a boy and she raced them when she was a girl. When she saw Malena get in the car, Mooney watched the young girl naturally get into a racing position. “She definitely had a natural ability at 7 years old,” Mooney said. “She had a natural instinct to put her bottom back and lean her nose forward.” Mooney recruited Malena as a driver and found her a car. A short time later, Malena won her first race. Since then, Malena’s never stopped. The Brookhaven seventh-grader has been DUN

the North Georgia champion in each of the three different divisions of Soapbox racers, was a top rally point earner in the nation in the “stock” division last year, and has been to the national competitions in Akron, Ohio, five times to race against other top drivers, said her dad, John Shipley. Now, at age 12, Malena’s a world champion. In July, Malena took first place in the local masters division of the All-American Soapbox Derby. Her black-and-yellowstriped car will be displayed in a derby museum alongside all the other winners’ cars from eight decades of competition. How good is she? “On a scale of 1 to 10? She’s a 12,” Mooney said. Malena’s dad, an art director, serves as his daughter’s pit crew. They travel together to competitions scattered from Florida to Virginia. Malena figures she races about once a month. Some of her best friends are now drivers in other cities or other states. In a race, Malena has to work the track to find places her gravity-powered cars can gain speed. She’s not really sure how she knows where to go, she just goes. “We look for places to go downhill,” she said with a shy grin. “It’s like skiing. I don’t ski. I just know stuff about skiing.” Through five years of racing, Malena’s learned her way around a Soapbox track. She’s taken tips from other drivers and watched closely as winners made their

Above, Malena Shipley poses with her trophy and her winning Soapbox Derby car. (SPECIAL) Inset, Malena Shipley, right, and her dad, John Shipley, discuss her racing success. (JOE EARLE)

runs. “I’ve learned by trial and error and by watching people,” she said. In a race, she said, things slow down. She tries to work out an imaginary line that offers the quickest run downhill and stick to that line. “When we’re going downhill, things are like in slow motion — and going fast, too,” she said. Drivers of the masters-level Soapbox cars aren’t seated, but more or less lie down and peek through a narrow slot to see where they’re going. “Can you see your competitors?” her dad asked. “I don’t look at competitors because you tend to steer to where you look,” she said. That would slow her down, of course. So, leave worrying about other drivers to

the ones behind her. The point, after all, is to go as fast as possible. Malena likes that. “I like the way it feels to go downhill,” Malena said. “I guess I just like going fast.” “She’s a little edgy,” her dad said. “She’s likes things with a little challenge.” What comes next? Malena already has a new car, painted black and yellow like her old one, and she’s started competing again regionally. She can race Soapbox cars through age 20. But she doesn’t think she will. She’s turning her competitive nature to a different sort of sport. She wants to play basketball, to drive for baskets instead of finish lines. She plans to play in the WNBA someday.

20 | Community

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Former news anchor to run for 6th Congressional seat BY JOHN RUCH

reform that includes coverage for pre-existing conditions, partly because his twin children were born prematurely and needFormer Atlanta TV news anchor Bobby ed extra care. Kaple will run as a Democrat to challenge “I’m running for Congress because my U.S. Rep. Karen Handel in the 6th Congreskids, my mom, my family, and countless sional District next year, he announced friends and neighbors, through no-fault of Oct. 9. their own, have pre-existing conditions,” Kaple, a Milton resident, left his jourKaple said in the press release. “In Connalism job at CBS46 last month, saying gress, I’ll fight passionately to make sure he would run for office. In a phone interevery American has access to affordable view, he said his work in local reporting — healthcare. I will not sit by and let Washin Iowa, Florida, Los Angeles and Atlanta ington politicians take us back to the days of denying coverage to those who are sick and placing lifetime caps on people’s care. That’s wrong and people here know better.” Handel won the 6th Congressional District seat earlier this year in a special election that drew national attention for strong competition SPECIAL SPECIAL U.S. Rep. Karen Handel. from Democrat Jon Ossoff in the Bobby Kaple. Republican-dominated area. The — gave him experience in earning trust of 6th District includes parts of Brookhaven, members of both parties and in seeing realDunwoody and Sandy Springs as well as world effects of national politics. east Cobb and north Fulton counties. “It gives us a front-row seat to the actual “My total focus right now is on the conconsequences of the dysfunction in Washstituents of the 6th District and the issues ington,” Kaple said of local news journalthat are important to them, such as passists. ing tax reform,” said Handel in a written In a press release announcing his camstatement. paign, Kaple said his priority is healthcare Ossoff, who last week declined to say johnruch@reporternewspapers.net

whether he will run again, did not respond to requests for comment. Handel was elected to serve out the unexpired term of Tom Price, who briefly served as U.S. secretary of health and human services before resigning last month amid scandal over his use of charter and military planes for work travel. The office goes onto the ballot again in November 2018. Kaple said he was “troubled” by the reports of Price’s expensive flights. “It’s a perfect example of what people are so sick of when it comes to career politicians,” Kaple said. Kaple is positioning himself as an independent-minded candidate — neither his campaign announcement nor his website’s main page mention he’s a Democrat — with a compelling personal story about the crucial issue of healthcare reform. Asked about whether he consulted national party leaders, Kaple said, “I have not talked to the Democratic National Committee. I don’t take any cues from them.” “I voted for Jon Ossoff,” Kaple said, but added that 2018 will be a different race, and “I’m a different candidate.” He noted the special election’s timing helped it to gain national attention and predicted the 2018 midterms, when the office is next on the ballot, will be quieter and more local-

ly focused. “This isn’t about all the outside interests that turned [the special election] into a circus,” Kaple said. Kaple noted that, unlike Ossoff at the time of the special election, he lives in the district. And in places like Milton, he says, people tell him they “don’t feel they’re being represented by Karen Handel.” Ossoff is also a journalist, working as CEO and managing director at Insight TWI: The World Investigates, which produces documentaries about corruption and crime. Asked about the coincidence of another journalist challenging Handel in a time when the media is often a target of national political criticism, Kaple underlined differences between his work and Ossoff’s. Kaple emphasized that his work has been in local journalism — including coverage of the 6th District special election — while Ossoff’s documentaries often have international subjects. Kaple is now a full-time candidate and said he will remain so during the race, while the family’s income comes from his wife Rebecca, a reporter at FOX Sports South. Kaple elaborated on the story of his twins’ premature birth at Buckhead’s Piedmont Hospital and said the medical bill would have bankrupted someone who lacked his salary and quality of insurance.

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Community | 21

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Sandy Springs author releases crime drama set in desert


BY JACLYN TURNER Steven Cooper did not sleep well two nights before the release of his first novel in 10 years. “I’m excited-slash-anxious,” said the novelist, a Sandy Springs resident. “It’s like delivering a baby and asking the world if you like my baby.” This baby’s name is “Desert Remains.” It’s the first in a series of crime dramas following Detective Alex Mills and psychic Gus Parker, who team up together in an unconventional partnership to catch a killer. The psychic character, Gus, is meant to turn psychic fiction on its head. “It’s well integrated in the reality of the crime drama without it being fantasy,” said Cooper, who hopes to reach a broad audience with his book. The book is set in the deserts around Phoenix, where Cooper once worked as a TV reporter. “It’s a love letter to the desert as a backdrop to crime,” Cooper said. “As beautiful as the desert is to look at, the book allows the desert to become a character of its own. The killer is using the desert as a tableau for his crimes, to manipulate people. “It has unexpected elements to a crime novel with unpredictable characters, an unusual setting, not a big city setting,” Cooper said. Prior to setting up residency in Sandy Springs to try a corporate life working communications at Newell Brands, Cooper was a TV reporter in Phoenix and Orlando. He has received multiple Emmy awards and nominations and an Edward R. Murrow Award. He also taught at Rollins College in Winter Park, Fla. In Phoenix, Cooper often covered crime as a young reporter. “I sat in trials, observed the crazy [things] people do to each other. It’s not uncomfortable [for me] to write about crime. It’s a way to work out the ugliness I had to watch going to crime scenes and seeing body bags,” Cooper said. His home also backed up to a mountain preserve, which he often hiked and which served as an inspiration. “Ever since I left Phoenix, I knew I wanted to write this story,” Cooper said. When he found the momentum to pick up his writing career, he pitched the idea to his family and friends, receiving positive feedback, and started writing. Last year, Newell Brands chose to relocate its headquarters to New Jersey. Cooper received a two-book deal from publisher Seventh Street Books three weeks after finding out about the move. He didn’t want to uproot himself again, so he set to writing. The release date for his novel, Oct. 10, coincidentally marks the first anniversary of his departure from the company. Cooper frequently writes and edits at the Starbucks and Einstein’s Bagel Bros. coffee houses at Peachtree-Dunwoody and Hammond roads. “It’s a chance to get out of the house, be around a different vibe, and be around a lot of coffee. Coffee is key for writers.” During the editing process, Cooper visited Phoenix to explore the mountains, trails, and the neighborhoods. He consulted with the Phoenix police department to discuss how they deal with crime. But now, Cooper is feeling quite settled in to his metro Atlanta lifestyle, and imagines he might one day want to write a book with Atlanta as a backdrop. “Atlanta has great neighborhoods and pockets of intrigue in it.” Yet Cooper noticed a trend about how he writes, saying the process is to immerse and then get distance. His previous books, of a more campy mystery genre, are also inSPECIAL fluenced by places he’s been or lived, and he Steven Cooper. did not write them until he lived in Florida. “I’d probably write my Atlanta novel flying off to a vacation somewhere. I’ll start it when I’m away,” Cooper aid. “I’d like to go to Peru.” “Desert Remains” is available on Amazon.com and at local bookstores. Cooper will be hosting book signings at Barnes & Noble, 2952 Cobb Parkway, on Saturday, Oct. 21, at 2 p.m., and at Tall Tales Bookstore, 2105 LaVista Road, on Sunday, Oct. 29, at 2 p.m.

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22 | Out & About

Facebook.com/TheReporterNewspapers ■ twitter.com/Reporter_News parking: Sandy Springs Christian Church and the Weber School (shuttle buses available). Info: visitsandysprings.org.


Saturday, Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.




Dressing up is for horses, too, at this Halloween event featuring pony rides, barn tours, a horse show competition and Atlanta Mounted Police demonstrations. Children are encouraged to come in their Halloween costumes and parade with costumed horses. All proceeds benefit Chastain Park’s therapeutic riding and community outreach programs. Free, with food and drink for sale and a silent auction. 4371 Powers Ferry Road, Buckhead. Info: chastainhorsepark.org.





Friday, Oct. 20, 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Members preview: 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Kick off the night with a Mad Hatter Tea Party, enjoy Music in the Museum with a DJ, and stroll through the Atlanta History Center’s foggy gardens and haunted historic houses. Scare factor ratings on all events ranging from 1 (all ages) to 5 (“very scary!) will help you decide which paths to take. Children are encouraged to come in costume. Food and drink available for purchase. $20 general public; $15 members; $10 children. 130 West Paces Ferry Road N.W., Buckhead. Info: atlantahistorycenter.com.


Saturday, Oct. 21, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Join costumed characters for a “not-so-frightful” evening at Abernathy Greenway Park. Events include a trick or treat candy station, face painting station and a photo op station. Food available for purchase. Free. 70 Abernathy Road N.E., Sandy Springs. Handicapped parking on site. Other


Friday, Oct. 20 to Sunday, Oct. 22, 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday; 2 p.m. on Sunday.

Galloway Theater Company presents the Tony Award-winning play, “Peter and the Starcatcher,” at the Chaddick Center for the Arts at The Galloway School. Features 35 Upper Learning actors playing 100 characters from marauding pirates to unlikely heroes. Suitable for ages 5 and up. $10 online or at the door. 215 W. Wieuca Road N.W., Buckhead. Tickets: gallowayschool.org.

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Out & About | 23

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net


Thursday, Oct. 19 to Saturday, Oct. 21, 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 22, 3 p.m.

Riverwood International Charter School presents this Tony Award-winning tragicomedy set in Hazlehurst, Miss., in the home of the Magrath sisters, who are dealing with their own problems while awaiting news of their gravely ill grandfather. $5 students; $10 adults. Riverwood auditorium, 5900 Raider Drive, Sandy Springs. Info: RiverwoodICS.org.

“HARMONIC PROGRESSION: THE JOURNEY” Sunday, Oct. 22, 7:30 p.m.

The Atlanta Concert Band performs music by Wagner, Strauss, Alexander and Grainger in a concert at North Springs High School. Free. 7447 Roswell Road, Sandy Springs. Info: atlantaconcertband.org.


Perimeter North Family Medicine Welcoming new patients! Perimeter North Family Medicine is proud to serve the families throughout the Atlanta area. Dr. Mithun Daniel provides comprehensive, patient-centered care to patients of all ages, and offers a full range of medical services, including chronic disease management, preventative care, acute illness care, mental health services and specialized care for men and women’s health. We accept most insurance plans and offer a convenient location for the families of the Greater Atlanta area.

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Sunday, Oct. 29, 3 p.m.

Covenant Presbyterian Church’s adult choir presents “Requiem” by Gabriel Faure in the historic sanctuary at the church. Free. 2641 Peachtree Road N.E., Buckhead. Info: covpresatlanta.org.

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Throughout October, Sundays to Fridays 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturdays 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta invites the community to its Cycle Studio throughout October. Participate in at least eight indoor cycle classes, track your progress on the leaderboard, and earn points toward the chance to win a Precor indoor bike. Free. MJCCA Zaban Park, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Register: atlantajcc.org/biketoberfest. Info: deanne. jacobson@atlantajcc.org or 678-812-4025.

PICKLEBALL CLINIC Thursday, Oct. 19, 6 p.m.

Check out pickleball, which combines elements of badminton, tennis, ping pong and racquet ball, in a beginners’ clinic at Hammond Park. For adults ages 18 and up. Free. Hammond Park tennis courts, 6005 Glenridge Drive, Sandy Springs. Info: tramos@sandyspringsga.gov. Register: registration@sandyspringsga.gov.

BEGINNERS ZYDECO DANCE CLASSES Thursdays, Oct. 19 and Oct. 26, 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Learn Zydeco dance in two classes sponsored by the Atlanta Cajun Zydeco Association. No partner or previous dance experience needed. Wear comfortable shoes and clothing. Food and drink available for purchase. Arrive early to dine with instructor Don Baggett. $10 per class. Darwin’s Burgers and Blues, 234 Hildebrand Drive, Sandy Springs. Walk-ins welcome, or register: essex34d@aol.com. Info: aczadance.org.


COMMUNITY INPUT MEETING The City of Sandy Springs is hosting two public meetings to provide the community with information about the proposed Path 400 Multiuse Trail Extension. The first of these two meetings will be on Wednesday, October 25, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. – noon. A second town hall meeting will be held that same day from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Both meetings will cover the same content. Location:

Highpoint Episcopal Community Church 4945 High Point Road

Saturday, Oct. 21, 8 a.m. race time; 6:45 a.m. to 7:15 check in.

Hosted by Riverwood International Charter School’s Community Service Club, all proceeds from this 5K go toward building two houses for Nicaraguan families and supplying food and hygiene kits to the same community. The race begins and ends at Riverwood. $35; $40 on race day. 5900 Heards Drive, Sandy Springs. Register: runsignup.com/ Race/GA/Atlanta/RiverwoodRunsforaReason5k. Sponsor info: Laura Taylor at taylorls@fultonschools.org. Continued on page 24


For more information please visit sandyspringsga.gov

24 | Out & About

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Continued from page 23


Medical Associates

SANDY SPRINGS READS Throughout October

Celebrate community through this annual event whose theme this year is farmers markets. Volunteer to read “Fresh Picked Poetry, A Day at the Farmers’ Market” to a classroom of second graders and lead related creative activities and discussion at Sandy Springs elementary schools. Through Oct. 28. Info: Myers-kathy@comcast.net.

Welcome Dr. Michael Crowe! Peachtree Dunwoody Medical Associates is proud to welcome Dr. Michael Crowe, a boardcertified gynecologist with over three decades of experience practicing in the Atlanta area. Dr.

Sandy Springs second graders share poems from “Fresh Picked Poetry” and some of their own poems at the Sandy Springs Farmers Market, 6100 Lake Forrest Drive. Saturday, Oct. 21, 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Crowe offers comprehensive gynecologic care to women of all ages, serving with the same excellent, compassionate care you are accustomed to from Peachtree Dunwoody Medical Associates. Dr. Crowe is welcoming new patients, accepts most insurance plans, and offers a convenient location

Children ages 7 to 14 can create their own dishes and learn about locally grown foods at the Sandy Springs Library, 395 Mount Vernon Hwy. N.E. Thursday, Oct. 26, 4:30 p.m. Registration required: leah.germon@fultoncountyga.gov or 404-303-6130.

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Through Saturday, Oct. 28. Workshop: Saturday, Oct. 21, 10 a.m. to noon.

Call 404-497-1020 for an appointment! 875 Johnson Ferry Road NE, Suite 200, Atlanta, GA 30342 PeachtreeDunwoodyMed.com

Pick up a rock in the lower parking lot at the Dunwoody Nature Center through Oct. 28 and decorate it for a new event co-sponsored by the nature center and the city of Dunwoody. Decorate at home or in a free Oct. 21 workshop at Spruill Center for the Arts. All paints and materials must be nontoxic and water-based. Rocks will be placed at the nature center during the Dunwoody Rocks! Party on Saturday, April 28. [See next Out & About event.] Nature Center: 5343 Roberts Drive, Dunwoody. Spruill Center: 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. Info: dunwoodynature.org.


Saturday, Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Dunwoody Nature Center at the Dunwoody Rocks! Party. People who have decorated rocks for the event [see above Out & About event] can place their rocks around the center and participate in activities including a DJ, picnic lunch and chalk artist Taylor Wilkins. 5343 Roberts Drive, Dunwoody. Free. Info: dunwoodynature.org.


Sunday, Oct. 22, 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

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More than 20 teams will cook through the night vying for grand champion status in this 5th annual festival coordinated by the benevolent society Hebrew Order of David. Festival guests are asked to bring Kosher nonperishable food items in exchange for free tasting tickets for this event, which benefits six charities. $1 per taste. Brook Run Park, 4770 North Peachtree Road, Dunwoody. Info: theatlantakosherbbq.com.

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OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net



DAY OF THE DEAD (DIA DE LOS MUERTOS) FESTIVAL Sunday, Oct. 29, noon to 5 p.m.

Experience traditional dancing, crafts and authentic Mexican food and entertainment at a Day of the Dead Festival presented by the Atlanta History Center in partnership with the Consul General of Mexico and the Institute of Mexican Culture. This free admission day at Atlanta History Center includes access to exhibitions and historic house experiences. 130 W. Paces Ferry Road N.W., Buckhead. Info: atlantahistorycenter.com.


This 13th annual festival features a chili cookoff, arts and crafts, children’s Halloween costume contest, music and other family activities. Suggested donation: $20 family. Free with High Point Civic Association membership. Highpoint Episcopal Community Church, 4945 High Point Road N.E., Sandy Springs. Info: highpointcivic.org.




Saturday, Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., rain or shine.

Functional and sculptural ceramic works created by more than 25 teachers and students will be for sale at the Chastain Arts Center 4th Annual Pottery On The Porch Pottery Sale. Raku firing demonstration and bluegrass music from Hicks with Picks. 135 W. Wieuca Road N.W., Buckhead. Info: ocaatlanta.com/chastain.

2419 Lake Arrowhead Drive | Waleska, GA 30183 | 770.720.2700 www.lakearrowheadga.com



LEARN SOMETHING “TOMORROW’S BUCKHEAD: A WALKING TOUR” Tuesday, Oct. 17, 10:30 a.m. to noon.

Join Jim Durrett, executive director of the Buckhead Community Improvement District, for a guided tour of Buckhead. A PEDS’ Walktober event [walktoberatl.org], the tour will highlight the locations of transformation projects including the Park over Ga400 and wraps up at the newly renovated Charlie Loudermilk Park. Free. Register for one of 25 spaces. Meet outside of the main lobby entrance at 3340 Peachtree Road N.E., 100 Tower Place, Buckhead. RSVP: buckheadcid.com.


Learn what you can do with those boxes of random family photos in a presentation at the Atlanta History Center by Sue VerHoef, the center’s director of Oral History and Genealogy. $15 nonmembers; $10 members. 130 West Paces Ferry Road N.W., Buckhead. Info: atlantahistorycenter.com.



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*Restrictions beoffer. local resident, age 18 and over with valid photo ID. FirstWellbridge time guests only. One pass per person. Cannot be combined with another offer. combinedmay withapply. any Must other Offer expires August 31,a2017. ©2017 Offer expires October 31, 2017. ©2017 Wellbridge

26 | Out & About

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Saturday, November 11 Kindergarten–Grade 5, 1 pm Sunday, November 12 Grades 6–8, 1 pm • Grades 9–12, 4 pm The Lovett School practices a nondiscriminatory admission policy. Financial aid is available.

www.lovett.org Developing young men and women of honor, faith, and wisdom with the character and intellect to thrive in college and in life.

OPEN HOUSE Sunday, December 3, 1– 1–44 p.m. p.m. December 4,

Share in inthe the Spirit

Smile, Sandy Springs! Photo contest promotes city’s natural appeal A group that works to preserve green space and recreation areas in Sandy Springs has launched a digital photo contest to raise appreciation for those areas and to encourage their exploration. The two themes are nature — photos that capture the vibrancy of Sandy Springs parks, greenspace or trails — and family fun, photos that show how people can thrive using those parks, greenspace and trails. The Sandy Springs Conservancy will use selected images on its website and promotional materials and at the 2018 Thought Leaders Dinner hosted by the

Conservancy in the spring. Photos may be submitted by any Georgia resident through Dec. 16. There is no entry fee and multiple entries are permitted. Four prizes will be awarded: one to an adult [18 or older] and one to a youth in both the nature and family fun categories. The adult winners will receive $500 and one ticket to the Thought Leader Dinner to accept the prize. The youth winners will be awarded $100. The Reporter Newspapers is a sponsor of the contest. For contest rules, visit sandyspringsconservancy.org.

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An education you can afford for a future you can depend on! Call today to schedule tour and complimentary lesson!

Serving grades 7–12, Marist School provides an education where achievement exists within a spirit of humility and generosity. Students are challenged by an extensive college-preparatory curriculum while an array of extracurricular activities inspire exploration and uncover hidden talents. Through it all, students gain a unique strength of character and skill and a joy of serving others that prepares them to be compassionate, confident leaders.

Come visit to experience Marist’s spirit yourself. Learn more at marist.com marist.com

• Financial Assistance • Certifications • Accredited Curriculum • Job Placement Assistance • Day & Night Classes • English as a Second Language Program • GED Preparation

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www.ict.edu | Campuses in Chamblee, Morrow and Gainesville

Education | 27

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

All-School Open House Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Daniel Stern

The Weber School, junior Daniel Stern has always had a passion for tennis and he used that passion to create a tennis camp for children with mental disabilities. Daniel began playing the game at age 6, following in the footsteps of his older sisters. He played competitiveSPECIAL ly until eighth grade, Daniel Stern, right, a junior at The Weber School, created when a knee injury a tennis camp for children with mental disabilities. forced him to take a break. After recoverhours to updating every racket donated. ing, Daniel began playing again recreationDaniel plans to continue the tennis ally, and eventually played singles for the camp with Friendship Circle next summer, Weber School’s tennis team. and wants to expand the program to reach Along with tennis, Daniel also has a other kids. strong passion for helping others. He beSarah Kallis, a student at Holy Innocents’ gan volunteering at Friendship Circle, a Episcopal School, reported and wrote this arnonprofit organization that provides comticle. panionship to people with special needs, after hearing a representative speak at his school during his freshman year. Daniel started out being paired with someone with special needs at an event, such as a karate class. “I really became interested in this program,” he said, and he enjoyed seeing the difference he was making in someone else’s life. Daniel quickly made the decision to become more involved in Friendship Circle, signing up for its “Buddies” program. He was paired with a man named Mike and visits him once a week. After playing tennis with Mike one day, Daniel became inspired to share his love for tennis with other people involved in Friendship Circle through a summer camp. It was a long process to turn the camp from an idea to a reality. “The most difficult part was starting off,” he said. First, Daniel went to the Sandy Springs Tennis Center to start the process of acquiring a court. “I asked them if they would be willing to donate courts for a special needs tennis camp, but I really didn’t know what I was doing yet,” he said. Luckily, the tennis center was very willing to help. “They gave us shady courts with a picnic area,” Daniel said. Next, Daniel approached Friendship Circle, told them his plan for a four-day tennis camp, and rounded up 15 campers through them. He then found 17 volunteers, mostly from the Weber School, to help him with the camp. Each camper was paired with a volunteer. The students also donated $1,200 raised on a crowd-source fundraising website for camp food and supplies. Daniel also held a racket drive at school, and later dedicated

Standout Student

Discover everything, except your limits.

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remarkable faith ● service ● academics ● joy

At Holy Spirit Prep, we are committed to making our school a remarkable communion of joy, so that when our students graduate and enter their colleges or universities of choice across the world, they are joyful young men and women poised for a lifetime of happiness. Learn more about our remarkable students, how to visit, and how to apply at holyspiritprep.org.


Preschool Tuesday, November 7 Grades K-6 Thursday, November 2 Grades 7-12 Friday, November 3 Details at holyspiritprep.org/visit.

An independent Catholic school for students age 6 months-12th grade. www.holyspiritprep.org/visit

28 | Education

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Dunwoody Elementary School is hosting a bicycle race Oct. 21 to raise money for the school’s “Tiger Fund,” which helps fund school programs and events. Registration costs $20 per person and will be open until the day of the event. Registrations is open online at dunwoodypto.membershiptoolkit.com. The event is limited to 300 participants and will be held rain or shine. All participants are required to have a helmet, according the event website. There are two routes: a 2-mile open course on the street and a route for younger riders that stays within the school’s parking lot. Check in and registration begins at 7:30 a.m. and the first race begins at 8:30 a.m.

St. Jude the Apostle WES TM IN SCatholic TER’ S TV N EWS PSchool ROGRA M WINS AWAR D

The Westminster School, a private school in Buckhead, won an award for its student TV news station, WCAT. The students won a 2017 National Student Production Award, presented by The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS), the organization that hosts the Emmy Awards, according to a school press release.


October October 17, 17, 9:30-10:30 9:30-10:30 AM AM and and 7-8 7-8 PM PM


St. Jude the Apostle School October October 29, 29,Catholic 2-4 2-4 PM PM KI NDERGA RT EN I NFORMAT ION MEE T I NGS

October 17, 9:30-10:30 AM and 7-8 PM


Kindergarten - 7th grade October 29, 2-4 PM

Nurturing Nurturing the the the formation formation formation of of of Saints Saints Saints and and and Scholars Scholars Scholars Nurturing Kindergarten Kindergarten---8th 8th 8thGrade Grade Grade Kindergarten

National NationalBlue Blue BlueRibbon Ribbon RibbonSchool School Schoolof of ofExcellence Excellence Excellence National Twice Twicerecognized recognized recognized~~~2014 2014 2014and and and2003 2003 2003 Twice

7171 7171 7171Glenridge Glenridge GlenridgeDrive Drive DriveNE, NE, NE,Atlanta, Atlanta, Atlanta,GA GA GA30328 30328 30328

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call call call770-394-2880, 770-394-2880, 770-394-2880,ext. ext. ext.423 423 423to to toschedule schedule scheduleaaatour tour tour

Reporter Classifieds


Left, William Turton, a Westminster sophomore, and faculty advisor Daniel Searl filming for the school’s TV news program, WCAT, which recently won an award.

Bennett Porson, a senior, William Turton, a sophomore, and the WCAT staff won in the live sports event category for their coverage of the varsity football team’s secondround state playoff game against Savannah High School on Nov. 18, 2016, the release said. “It’s an honor for WCAT to receive the National Student Production Award for Live Sports,” said Daniel Searl, WCAT’s faculty advisor, said in a statement. “The award recognizes the hard work and professionalism of our students who plan, organize, and execute full-fledged broadcasts with six cameras, three on-air announcers, a pre-game show, replay, custom scoreboard, graphics and more.”


Pianos for Peace, a local nonprofit that hosts a piano festival each fall, has donated pianos to several Atlanta schools, including schools in Buckhead, according to Atlanta Public Schools. The nonprofit hosted the festival, which brought around 50 pianos to public parks and streets, in September. After the festival concluded, the pianos were donated to local schools, nursing homes and community centers, according to the organization’s website. Two of the pianos were donated to Garden Hills Elementary and Warren T. Jackson Elementary School on Mount Paran Road. Nine other pianos were donated to other Atlanta schools.

To Advertise, call 404-917-2200 ext 110





Matthew’s Handy Services – Small jobs and chores are my specialties. Shelves, organizers, carpentry, drywall, painting, and plumbing. Member of BBB – 404-547-2079 Email: mwarren8328@gmail.com.

Piano Lessons – Looking for piano lessons? Affordable lessons for ages 4 & up. Serving Dunwoody, Roswell, and Sandy Springs. Call 770-367-0024. www.facebook. com/keys4soul

Computer/IT: Sales Engineers, Atlanta, GA. Apply: www.onetrust.com

Good Rascal Dog Training

Driveways & Walkways – Replaced or repaired. Masonry, grading, foundations repaired, waterproofing and retaining walls. Call Joe Sullivan 770-616-0576.

Piano Lessons in Your Home – lessons for all ages, levels & styles. Call Kimberly Izor 404-444-8440 or www.pianolessonsforyou.net

Hiring for Office Assistant at SpaceWorks in Dunwoody. Email resume and cover letter to jobs@spaceworks.aero. See www. spaceworks.aero/careers for more details.


Handyman Services – Moving and Delivery too! Local owner – call 803-6080792 Cornell Davis.

Kebensa Math Tutoring – Honors Algebra, Honors Geometry, Honors Algebra 2, Trigonometry, Honors Pre-Cal or AP Cals AB/BC. Single & Group rates --- in-person or online. Better grades guaranteed! Call 678-641-8871 or email: keithsawyer@ bellsouth.net.

2860 Spalding Dr (Rivergate side street parking). Antiques / Interior’s Dealer Clearance – Christmas Bric-a-brac, repair supplies, hardware, frames & prints, tools, furniture, etc. Fri./Sat./Sun., October 20, 21 & 22 - 10 AM – 4 PM.


Need Help? RETIRED TEACHER AVAILABLE – School pick-up, Monitor homework, Tutor. Nancy 321-231-8824.

Lovely, level Dunwoody Lot for Sale in “Sellars Farm”. 134’ frontage and 178’ deep. Call 770-512-3463 or 770-394-3604

Home Tending – Regular inspections of your unoccupied property…”0n market or just away”. Call Charles at 404-229-0490.


Certified Dog Trainer Private Training In Your Home

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CEMETERY PLOTS Arlington Memorial Park – Sandy Springs - Beautiful, Pine crest section, Plots 11B, spaces 3 & 4. Arlington staff will be happy to show plots. Call 973-714-2499.

Classifieds | 29

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Home Services Directory

To Advertise, call 404-917-2200 ext 110

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30 | Community

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Taylor to leave House seat; political battle begins Continued from page 1 can, says he will run for Taylor’s House District 79 seat. Michael Wilensky, a Dunwoody Democrat, is already in the race. GOP elected officials state Sen. Fran Millar and DeKalb County Commissioner Nancy Jester said it was probably time for Taylor to step down, especially after his DUI conviction last year. “I’m not surprised,” Millar said. “He’s been there eight years and he had a personal situation that would result in a very nasty campaign. [The campaign] would have been pretty merciless. It’s better he goes out on his own terms.” Taylor, who represents state House District 79, which includes Dunwoody and portions of Doraville and Chamblee, did not respond to repeated requests for comment, but confirmed via social media he was not seeking re-election in 2018. The District 79 seat is up for election in November 2018. The new representative will take office when Taylor steps down in January 2019. The changing demographics for the northern suburbs that have traditionally been Republican strongholds likely also played a role in Taylor’s decision,

Millar said. While Republicans still are still in leadership positions in the General Assembly and in this geographic area, there has been a growing tide of non-Republican voters moving into the area. “We’ve also got changing demographics,” Millar said. “I think it’s good when someone can come to that conclusion on their own. I give him credit.” DeKalb County Commissioner Nancy Jester, who lives in Dunwoody, said Taylor’s decision to not run again is probably a “wise one.” “He’s got some baggage, and that would have been a real Achilles’ heel for him,” she said. “I like him, and I hope he’s dealing with that issue personally and in a productive way.” Joseph Knippenberg, professor of politics at Oglethorpe University in Brookhaven, said this state House race could become more interesting thanks in part to the 6th Congressional District race, which will be on the same ballot. Republican Karen Handel, who won a heated special election for the seat just a few months ago against Democrat Jon Ossoff, already faces a challenge from former Atlanta TV news anchor and Democrat Bobby Kaple in her re-election bid. Ossoff has declined to comment on whether he will run again.

Tom Taylor.

Michael Wilensky.

Ken Wright.




Democrats continue to stay engaged in Dunwoody, and the attention and money the congressional race likely will attract again could trickle down to the state legislative race, Knippenberg said. “If they have a hotly contested Congressional race ...there’s a good chance for a lot of Democratic voter energy will spill over into state races,” he said. The greater change Dunwoody and this House district is seeing is the ability for candidates to hold onto swing voters, Knippenberg added. Aligning oneself with President Donald Trump is not likely to play well with some voters in the district because of its affluent and

educated residents, he said. Wilensky, a Dunwoody attorney who announced in July his bid for the District 79 House seat, said he was surprised by Taylor’s decision not to run. “His decision not to stand for re-election surprises me, but it will not alter the course of my campaign,” Wilensky said. “The voters of Dunwoody, Doraville and Chamblee are independent thinkers looking for public servants who get results, especially with state funding for MARTA and our region’s continued economic progress on the line,” he said. “I will continue to show that I can deliver on the key issues for the families in this district as the next representative of House District 79.” Wright, the former mayor, announced just days after Taylor’s announcement he would be running to succeed Taylor. “I was super-surprised when Tom announced he wasn’t seeking re-election ... and the timing just seemed right for me,” Wright said. Wright served as Dunwoody’s mayor from 2008 to 2011, when he decided not to seek re-election so he could focus on family and his business. He said he knows Taylor well and they worked together on the founding of the city. Taylor called Wright before publicly announcing his decision to not seek re-election, Wright said. “And I thought, hmmm, OK. I talked to my wife and when she agreed I decided to throw my hat into this thing.” Wright said he was not recruited by GOP party members to run but thought this was the time to return to politics after remaining involved on various boards and committees in numerous Dunwoody organizations over the years. “I’m looking forward to diving in, talking to folks and putting myself back out there,” he said. Amy Swygert, chair of House District 79 committee for the DeKalb Democrats, said she appreciated Taylor’s moderate stance on many issues, but is looking forward to new leadership. “I consider myself a moderate Democrat, so I also appreciated that [Taylor] often voted on issues in a way that satisfied moderates on both sides of the aisle,” she said. “But I am very excited for new leaders to step forward, especially those that can represent the Dunwoody of the future, rather than the Dunwoody of the past.” Millar said he doubts another Republican will run against Wright in the primary. “I think he’s a great choice. I think we’re blessed to have him as an option,” he said. “I’m hopeful people will look past what’s happening in D.C. and look at people’s records,” he said. “The race should be interesting.” DUN

Public Safety | 31

OCTOBER 13 - 26, 2017 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Police Blotter / Dunwoody From Dunwoody Police reports dated Oct. 1 through Oct. 8. The following information was pulled from Dunwoody’s Police-2-Citizen website.

were arrested following a call regarding simple battery.



4400 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road

4000 block of Dunwoody Park — On

— On Oct. 1, in the morning, a man was arrested and accused of reckless driving.

Oct. 1, after midnight, a man said the registration decal was stolen from his car.

6800 block of Peachtree Industrial

4300 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road

— On Oct. 1, a teenager was arrested and accused of shoplifting from a department store.

Boulevard — On Oct. 1, in the afternoon, a man was arrested and accused of driving under the influence of alcohol. 2500 block of Stoning-

ton Road — On Oct. 2, in the morning, a man was pulled over after an illegal left turn and arrested and accused of driving with a suspended license.

4400 block of Ashford-

Dunwoody Road — On Oct. 2, in the afternoon, a teenager was arrested and accused of shoplifting an Apple watch. Dunwoody Road — On Oct. 2 in the afternoon, two women were arrested and accused of shoplifting children’s clothes from a department store.

Road/ Ravinia Parkway — On Oct. 3, in the afternoon, a woman was arrested and accused of marijuana possession. She had less than one ounce on her person.

4500 block of Ashford-Dunwoody

3100 block of Ashford Gables Drive — On

Road — On Oct. 2, in the afternoon, a woman was arrested and accused of trying to steal a Free People denim jacket from a department store.

Oct. 3, in the evening, a man was arrested and accused of disorderly conduct charges. Oct. 4, in the morning, a man was arrested and accused of marijuana possession.

On Oct. 3, after midnight, a man was arrested and accused of shoplifting.

1100 block of Hammond Drive — On Oct.

1100 block of Hammond Drive — On

Oct. 3, in the afternoon, two women were arrested and accused of shoplifting from a discount retailer. 4700 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road

4, in the morning, a woman was arrested and accused of violating her probation. I-285/Ashford-Dunwoody Road — On

Oct. 4, in the morning, a man was arrested and accused of driving while unlicensed.

4500 block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road

block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road — On Oct. 5, at night, a woman was arrested and accused of damage to private property charges.

— On Oct. 7, in the afternoon, a man was arrested and accused of shoplifting.

I-285 / Ashford-Dunwoody Road — On

— On Oct. 6, in the afternoon, a woman was arrested and accused of shoplifting.

A S S AU LT 100 block of Dunbar Road — On Oct.

1, officers responded to a nonviolent dispute between a couple. 3600 block of Dunwoody Club Drive —

On Oct. 3, in the afternoon, a woman was arrested and accused of simple assault. 6600 block of Peachtree Industrial

Boulevard — On Oct. 5, in the afternoon, a woman was arrested and accused of aggravated assault with a weapon.



for local news and information! We’re honored that Reporter Newspapers won 12 awards, including three first-place selections in its division, in the Georgia Press Association’s 2017 Better Newspaper Contest.


Business Writing First Place - Managing Editor John Ruch Lifestyle/Feature Column First Place - Robin Conte, “Robin’s Nest” Page One First Place - Designed by Creative Director Rico Figliolini


Hard News Writing Second Place - John Ruch News Photograph Second Place - Phil Mosier Special Issues: Second Place - Fall 2016 Education Guide Humorous Column: Second Place - Robin Conte

100 block of Perimeter Center East — On

100 block of Perimeter Center Place —

Madison Drive — On Oct. 8, after midnight, two people



4500 block of Ashford-

8200 block of



Oct. 6, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of driving under the influence of alcohol. 100 block of Perimeter Center — On Oct.

6, in the early morning, a man was arrested and accused of failing to appear in court. 1400 block of Dunwoody Village Park-

way — On Oct. 6, in the morning, a man was arrested for credit fraud.


General Excellence: Third Place Local News Coverage: Third Place - Staff Writers Religion Writing: Third Place - Staff Writers Serious Column: Third Place - Robin Conte Newspaper Website: Third Place

These awards are especially meaningful to us since they are judged by professional journalists and include respected, large-circulation community newspapers across the state. However, what’s most important is that they validate what you have already told us in our readership survey: Reporter Newspapers are your preferred source for local news and information. That’s the “prize” we value most. Thank you for helping to make us the most preferred and most-awarded local newspapers in our communities.


block of Ashford-Dunwoody Road — On Oct. 6, in the morning, a woman was arrested and accused of providing false information.



www.ReporterNewspapers.net Published by Springs Publishing LLC

32 |

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A WEEK OF GOOD EATS From November 4-10, explore the city’s diverse culinary scene and enjoy exclusive, multi-course menus during Sandy Springs Restaurant Week 2017.

Don’t forget to savor, snap, tag and share your favorite eats on Facebook and Instagram: #SSRestaurantWeek


(2 courses): $10, $15, or $20


(3 courses): $25, $35, or $45 Plus Unique Offerings from local specialty food retailers – learn more online!

For participating restaurants and menus: visitsandysprings.org/restaurantweek Check out participating restaurants and menus at visitsandysprings.org/restaurantweek. ELEGANT ELF MARKETPLACE Work up an appetite for Restaurant Week and check off your holiday shopping list at the Elegant Elf Marketplace presented by the Sandy Springs Society on November 4-5, 2017.

Visit sandyspringssociety.org/the-elegant-elf/ for more information.