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Se eO On ur S Pa ect ge ion 19

April 2016

Conversations start here.


SMILE IT’S FESTIVAL SEASON FEATURES ON LOCAL FESTIVALS PAGES: 6,14,18,33 & 36 Health presented by WellStar • pages 19–22







FOOD p30



Postal Customer ECRWSS Atlanta,GA Permit #3241 PAID US Postage PRSRT STD


Tripp Liles tripp@thecurrenthub.com

Mark Penstone mark@thecurrenthub.com

Tricia Morris (Social Chick) tricia@thecurrenthub.com


Carrie Kutney Art Director carrie@thecurrentplus.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Frank Mack Di Chapman Jessica Diamond Nancy Wallace Fred Mills Send submissions & questions: events@thecurrentplus.com Main Phone Number 770-810-5943

Our Mission: The CurrentHub aspires to communicate in a way that’s useful, engaging, enjoyable, and unique. We strive to reflect the full range of what the area has to offer, also advocating positions that strengthen unity and continuity. We desire to create and maintain a challenging, enjoyable and caring work environment that encourages creativity and innovation. Our rewards are informed, educated readers, very satisfied advertisers, happy employees and profitable growth. The CurrentHub is published monthly. Presort standard postage paid at Atlanta, GA. Postmaster send changes to Current Communications, 1014 Canton St., Roswell, GA 30075 Publisher has the privilege to reject any advertising. Advertiser is responsible for full content of advertisements provided and are responsible for any claims made therein. thecurrenthub.com

Currentchoices The Month in Preview April 2016


Mojo Vinyl proudly celebrates Record Store Day

April 16 Record Store Day is an annual event, founded in 2007, held on the third Saturday of April each year to celebrate the culture of the independently owned record store, like Mojo Vinyl Records, in historic Roswell at 26 Webb Street. Owner Rand Cabus (pictured) says, “Record Store Day is my favorite day of the year. We’ll open an hour earlier than usual with a large crowd waiting to get in. Some of them will camp out in the wee hours of the morning for a chance to buy the exclusive records available. It’ll be an all-day party with a band and everything.” ¶ Roswell’s own “The Seven Sons” will provide this year’s entertainment; the band’s music is rooted in classic and progressive rock. Band members include Nick Starr, Ron Walker, Tim Christner, and Tony Walsh. “The Seven Sons” will get started around one in the afternoon. For more info on Mojo visit www.mojovinylrecords.com.


Roswell Ghost Tour Celebrates Azalea Festival April 16 The Roswell Ghost Tour will be giving away free azaleas on Apr. 16 at 8 p.m. during their Saturday night tour. After the walking tour that shares stores of the spirits said to dwell behind the mansion walls and the toilsome tales of the mill village, each participant will go

home with an Azalea plant. Roswell Ghost Tour is owned and operated by paranormal investigators and has among its many recognitions the title of Best Ghost Tour in the Atlanta area. For more info or to make a reservation, visit www.roswellghosttour.com.




Yesterday and Today: the Interactive Beatles Experience

April 7– Apr. 24 Georgia Ensemble Theatre (GET), will end their record-breaking 23rd season with the musical sensation Yesterday and Today: the Interactive Beatles Experience. This immensely popular touring show will run April 7 through April 24, 2016 at the Theatre’s home, the Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest Street, Roswell, GA. Yesterday and Today: The Interactive Beatles Experience is the nation’s most innovative and unique show using the works of the Beatles. This amazing group, anchored by brothers Billy, Ryan, and Matthew McGuigan, does away with the worn out “tribute” format of bad wigs and fake accents. Instead, they perform as themselves, and leave the song choices completely in the hands of the audience. This is done through request cards that audience members fill out prior to the show. On those cards, the audience member fills out three things: their name, their favorite Beatles song, and the reason why they chose that song. The cards are collected, and two minutes before the show begins, a set list is created based upon the songs chosen by that particular audience. The reasons that the audience members chose those songs are woven into the narrative of the evening. Tickets are available now online at www.get.org, or by calling the Box Office at 770-641-1260.  >>WORLD CLASS JAZZ

In April


Alpharetta Food Truck Alley

April-October Every Thursday beginning Apr. 14 through Oct. 27 the City of Alpharetta will feature Food Truck Alley on Old Roswell Street in Downtown Alpharetta. Enjoy a variety of 6–8 rotating food trucks and music each week. Stroll the streets, eat delicious food, listen to some great music and kick off the weekend a little early. On Apr. 28 Honeywood, a five-piece bluegrass jam band from Atlanta will perform. The group of new and veteran players performs a mix of original songs, choice covers and classic tunes inspired by traditional bluegrass, Cajun, funk, jazz, Grateful Dead and jam bands.

Just in case you haven’t heard, The Velvet Note is an award winning, beautifully appointed listening room in Alpharetta. The sound stage hosts a true classic—a 1924 Baldwin M series baby grand piano. The Velvet Note was Winner of Downbeat magazine’s Best Jazz Venues Worldwide Award for 2015. This April they have shows featuring trumpeter Dominick Farinacci, who was one of 18 artists worldwide invited to be a part of the inaugural class of the Jazz Studies Program at The Juilliard. Farinacci has won the “International New Star Award,” Disney’s “New Star Award,” and topped the charts as one of Japan’s No. 1 jazz musicians. On Apr. 17 they will feature Nikki Carter, who started by performing at open mic nights in the area. She was fortunate to win The Lawrence Awards, which has earned her this professional debut at The Velvet Note incredibly thankful for the opportunity to perform and is excited for what is to come. For tickets and show times visit thevelvetnote.com.

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Wigwam Fest

April 22-24 Back by popular demand, Atlanta’s second annual Wigwam Fest will offer soul searchers, fitness junkies, and wellness seekers an interactive, customizable experience unlike any other. A diverse collection of instructors and experts in categories such as yoga, fitness, dance, stand-up paddle boarding, sound therapy, food, outdoor adventures, clean living, and healing arts combine forces in a fun-festival-meets-educational-retreat atmosphere. Whether attendees are trying unplug from the tech-driven world, recover from a breakup, overhaul their health and fitness, or just do something different and productive on a weekend, you will engage your mind, body and spirit while discovering new pathways to well being. The exploration takes place April 22–24 at the scenic Chattahoochee Nature Center in Roswell. For more info visit www.wigwamfest.com. >>REMEMBRANCE

Community-Wide Holocaust Remembrance Day Commemoration

May 8 On Sunday, May 8, from 3:30–4:30 p.m., the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta (MJCCA) will invite the entire community to come together for a special Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HaShoah) commemoration ceremony at the MJCCA’s Besser Holocaust Memorial Garden, one of the preeminent Holocaust Memorials in the Southeast. The program will feature remarks from Rabbi and National Jewish Book Award-winning Author Rabbi Joseph Polak. The program is free of charge, and will take place at the MJCCA, (5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody). Rain or Shine. For information, visit www.atlantajcc.org. >>IT’S A GLASS

Chihuly in the Garden

April 30-Oct.30 >>PARTY IN JC!

Spring Park Party

April 16 Joins friends and neighbors to celebrate the spring season at the city’s newest event, Johns Creek Spring Park Party. The event features children’s activities, games, food, and fun for the whole family. This will take place at Shakerag Park located at 10945 Rogers Circle in Johns Creek between 10am and 4pm.

Chihuly in the Garden at the Atlanta Botanical Garden will feature 21 installations across the Garden’s Midtown grounds and include “gardens under glass,” consisting of vibrantly colored artwork in a variety of botanical displays, including floating in pools, suspended in air, and interspersed with plantings. Viewing the exhibition during the day and night will offer different viewing experiences. Extended evening hours during Chihuly Nights, giving visitors a different, yet spectacular experience for viewing the sculptures with dramatic lighting, set against the city’s skyline. Atlanta Botanical Garden is located at 1345 Piedmont Avenue in Atlanta.



METRO EVENTS Georgia Renaissance Festival runs April 16 through June 5 in Fairburn, Georgia





By Jessica Diamond


in Georgia is meant to be an indoor/outdoor experience. Our restaurants have big open patios and our homes have wide, welcoming porches. For a few cold weeks, we all squeeze into our little indoor spaces, huddled together and waiting for the sun to rise again. A brief look at the events on tap in metro Atlanta will uncover a wealth of opportunities to embrace the best of what Atlanta has to offer, both indoors and out. So get out and explore. It’s kitschy, it’s crazy, it’s a little bit of a guilty pleasure and we love it every year. The Georgia Renaissance Festival is back with all of its cosplaying vengeance for its 31st anniversary. Stretching from Apr. 16 through Jun. 5, this immersive event will encourage thee to speak in confused riddles for weeks as you twirl in your old fashioned skirts and nom on impossibly large turkey legs while watching jousting and juggling and thinking, “I could probably do that…” A word to the wise: those lances are heavier than they look. The entertainment options are truly endless and the cast of characters is one of a kind. Whether you go with a group of friends, bring the family, take a date or just come as you are, you are guaranteed to find a memorable experience, particularly if you commit and wear a costume. You may find yourself so drawn into the fun that you travel back in time and join the festival for good! To plan your visit and purchase tickets, visit www.garenfest.com.



always, Atlanta is just as well equipped to take care of your entertainment cravings. The Tony Award winning musical Ragtime will hit the stage of the Cobb Energy Center this Apr. 23 and 24 for an unforgettable weekend. This show takes you back to the turn of the century to follow the stories of an upper-class wife, a Jewish immigrant, and a young musician from Harlem as they find their way in New York. Ragtime cleaned up at the Tony Awards winning Best Book and Best Musical Score, so you know it’s going to be good. Get your tickets while you can at www.cobbenergycentre.com/events/ragtime. One of Atlanta’s oldest and dearest spring festivals is back for its 45th year. The Inman Park Festival & Tour of Homes has everything you could ever want from a street festival with an arts and crafts show, a street market, live entertainment, a dance festival, a parade, tours of historic homes and much more. There is so much going on they had to spread it over two days, April 31–May 1. This festival highlights one of Atlanta’s oldest and most beautiful neighborhoods with the goal of offering something for everyone and keeping the neighborhood special, as well as showcasing local artists and vendors. Just


The traffic in Atlanta has reached such unreasonable and impressive heights that it has become a point of pride for those who brave it on a daily basis. Of course, we all fantasize about what it would be like to clear all of the cars and obstacles away and have the freedom to move around our fair city at will. Outside of The Walking Dead, there is little opportunity for these fantasies to come to fruition. There are, however, four magical dates throughout this year in which a few choice streets will be closed to all traffic for an increasingly popular event known as Atlanta Streets Alive. Streets Alive is a national initiative that encourages cities to close their streets to traffic for a day and open them up for pedestrians and cyclists to enjoy and celebrate local business districts on April 17. To learn more about Streets Alive and upcoming dates at www.atlantastreetsalive.com. Let’s come to terms with something right now— unless you are in possession of a disposable fortune and a plane ticket, no one around these parts is going to get to see Hamilton anytime soon. However, we are all suddenly in the mood for a Broadway style night out on the town after watching the opening number at the Academy Awards, am I right? As

Inman Park Festival & Tour of Homes April 31 through May 1

last year, the Inman Park Festival was featured in the AJC’s list of “10 Things Every Atlanta Resident Should Do.” It’s hard to argue with that! To learn more about the festival and plan your weekend, visit www.inmanparkfestival.org. This month, we are spoiled for choice with a large and diverse range of entertainment, food and drink festivals, art fairs, and much more. Now is the time to take full advantage, before the heat sets in and someone wakes the mosquitoes from their sleep. Not to mention the impending summer laziness in which we will occupy our rocking chairs and tell tales of the dreaded winter snowflake. Get up, get out and see what you can find! ❍

JOHNS CREEK 470-388-3159 8465 Holcomb Bridge Johns Creek, GA 30022 EAST COBB 678-920-9455 1401 Johnson Ferry Rd. Marietta, GA 30062 ROSWELL 770-625-6122 625 W. Crossville Rd. Roswell, GA 30075 ALPHARETTA 770-686-5352 3450 Old Milton Pkwy Alpharetta, GA 30005 SUWANEE 770-688-0622 2615 Peachtree Pkwy. Suwanee, GA 30024





6 THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR TAX REFUND By Robert Fezza and Steve Siders

According to the IRS, 8 out of 10 people will get a tax refund this year with the average being about $2,800 per check. Maybe you’ve already received yours?!?! It is tempting to splurge and have fun with a refund but remember; this isn’t “found money.” It’s your money that the government has been holding for you for the past year at 0% interest. Having a little fun is healthy, but we highly encourage you to work through the following suggestions first. If, at the end, you have some of the refund leftover, have fun—and support our local community with a night out. Canton Street in Roswell is a favorite of the Odyssey family with its fun shops and great restaurants.

plan (Path2College). The cost of college isn’t getting any cheaper.

GOOD MAINTENANCE HABITS Have you been putting off some much-needed home repairs? What about your vehicle? Good maintenance habits can save you money in the long run by avoiding costly repairs. In some cases you can increase the value of your home with simple, seasonal upkeep.


Most of us like to support a favorite Things to consider: charitable organization. Donations PAY OFF DEBT can significantly help your local The best thing to do with a refund is church and/or a local charity, and to pay off credit cards or other high they may be tax deductible. If you’ve interest consumer debt. run out of refund money, consider volunteering your time instead! SAVE FOR RETIREMENT We have found that the more fiscally Once you have taken care of responsible people become, the more consumer debt, maximize your retirelikely they are to enjoy helping others, ment savings—an employer 401k or while also sufficiently building enough 403b at least up to the match (if wealth to retire comfortably and possioffered). Are you eligible to bly leave a legacy. This is far more contribute to a Roth IRA? satisfying than any short term EMERGENCY SAVINGS spending spree! ❍ To avoid using credit cards to pay for Robert Fezza, CFP® and Steve Siders, CFP® own the “next” unexpected repair, build up Odyssey Personal Financial Advisors, 500 Sun your cash savings. This will allow you Valley Drive, Suite A-6, Roswell, GA. Their firm speto avoid creating more debt the next cializes in working with people who are serious time an unexpected expense occurs. about making progress towards their financial goals.

COLLEGE FUND Once all of the above are addressed— and if you have young children—you may want to consider opening or contributing regularly to the GA 529

Odyssey manages portfolios greater than $500,000. 770-992-4444, www.odysseypfa.com. Securities offered through Cetera Financial Specialists LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.

Bicycle Built for Two by Jim Collins at Riverside Park By Jessica Diamond

In April, the Roswell Arts Fund is launching ArtAround Roswell, the city’s first ever sculpture tour. Ten sculptures, on loan from various artists, will be displayed throughout Roswell parks, along with a schedule of monthly events and celebrations relevant to the sculptures until the conclusion of the tour in December. The tour is free to all and sets the stage for future initiatives to bring public art into Roswell and increase its influence in the unique local culture. ArtAround Roswell follows the format of many sculpture tours that have preceded it. However, it is unique for a number of reasons, not only in that it is the first for Roswell. “We arranged all of this in just nine

months, which is unusually fast,” Roswell Arts Fund Chair Rochelle Mucha explained. “Sculpture tours themselves aren’t unique and there are standard processes in place for public art. We were thorough with our research and we divided and conquered. Everyone was very focused and very motivated to make this successful. We have such a wonderful collaboration with the parks department and with the city. Everyone was able to optimize their gifts and contribute something important. We also seem to have touched a nerve in the community. Continues on p. 11






By Kirsten Ricci This month I begin a new column focusing on what will probably be your biggest investment—real estate. It will not be the usual column on how to improve curb appeal in 10 easy steps, or the hottest colors for spring, but rather a column that looks at how events in the local economy affect the value of our homes. There are a multitude of changes that happen here in the North Metro Atlanta area, which have a great impact on home values. This means I’ll be touching on area commercial and residential development, new schools, and even planning by local governments. In just the past year schools have been built, new commercial properties are coming to life, and local governments struggle to find the right



balance between business and residents. All of these issues have a big impact on the value of your house—far more than planting petunias in the front yard. No matter if you live in East Cobb, Roswell, Alpharetta, or Johns Creek, we all face the same issues and challenges to understanding the local market and we can all share lessons from good and bad experiences. As a local resident and real estate professional, it will not be my mission to engage in politics that often surround issues of development, but rather I aim to provide real information about development in and around the communities we cover. I often hear stories from people about projects that they are sure are happening, when in fact, I know otherwise. So I hope that you will find this



Phase II of Avalon in Alpharetta

column a useful, go-to resource on what is and will be happening locally. There are a lot of large projects on the horizon: the City Green in Roswell, the Atlanta United headquarters being built in Cobb County, phase II of Avalon in Alpharetta, and the mother of them all—MARTA expansion. All of these projects will have profound effect on home values and quality of life. Unfortunately, when it comes to local info on these subjects, bad information gets out fast and oftentimes it’s wrong, such as the proposed large Riverwalk development in east Roswell. It’s not happening, but I talk to people all the time who swear it is! I hope to help spread correct

Roswell Sculpture Tour continued from p. 9

People are really excited about this initiative. This bodes well for our long-term aspirations. We plan to bring more permanent public art to Roswell in the future and this response is extremely encouraging.” The tour will kick off with a celebration and ribbon cutting at noon on Apr. 16 on the Roswell Area Park playground. This will be the first monthly celebration connected to the tour that is free and open to the public. Food will be served and guests can find out more about future events, such as a happy hour, a Publix sponsored party with a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math) truck, a bike themed event and more with each theme constructed to highlight the sculpture and its location. The tour is interactive as well. Visitors can vote for their favorite sculptures online each month and the winning sculpture will be awarded a prize. There will also be a selfie contest to encourage online dialogue and engagement. “Public art is truly a museum without walls,” Mucha said. “We have great aspirations and plans to integrate art into the walls and the architecture around the city. We want to inspire the people here and strengthen our collaborators and our stakeholders to provide everyone with a chance to contribute. Roswell has an opportunity to create a formal collaboration between the business and art communities to mutual benefit. I believe we have the talented, passionate and committed people to make it happen. Art has a direct benefit to the function, growth and moral of any organization or city. It’s a win win on every front.” To learn more about ArtAround Roswell, visit www.artaroundroswell.com. ❍

information that you find of use. I look forward to engaging you and if there are subjects you want covered or have some news for me, send an email to kirsten@roswellrealty.net. Oh and if you want tips on curb appeal and how to move your house I can do that best in person. Remember, in this day and age of internet anonymity, real estate is still a people business. ❍ Kirsten Ricci is a Roswell resident and a Keller Williams Agent who specializes in residential real estate in the north metro Atlanta area. She can be reached at 678-472-3832, kirsten@roswellrealty.net. Her site is www.klrgrouprealestate.com. SS Sentinel by Rollin Karg, Riverside Park

Left: Architectural Reliquary by Suzy Hendrix, sponsored by Roswell Downtown Development Authority 2015 Members (Heart of Roswell, Canton Street) Pictured, l- r:  David Lyon, Randy Schultz, Suzy Hendrix, Monica Hagewood, David Schmit






It’s a welldocumented fact that music can bring people together to accomplish great things. It is this tradition that motivated a group of passionate music lovers to create a non-profit that would celebrate the power of live music while doing good for the surrounding communities. Atlanta Plays it Forward (APIF) provides diverse, high quality musical entertainment and event services for little or reduced cost to pre-qualified charities and causes. “Since our formation two years ago, Atlanta Plays It Forward has led, participated in, or contributed to over 40 charitable events,” Director Tom LaDow said. “Our organization has grown from a small group of musicians, friends and advisors to now include a Tom LaDow large and growing number of venues, event service providers, musicians and bands.” With their wide reach of professional musicians and service providers, APIF has established a reputation for excellence all over the metro Atlanta area and developed invaluable relationships with many popular local venues. APIF is active year round, but explodes during the warm weather months with standing performances at Alive in Roswell each month, April through October, and a concert series at Chukkar Farms in Alpharetta known as TGIF. “The north metro community has embraced us for which I am so very grateful,” LaDow said. “I believe if we

keep making friends and work strategically we can move the organization to a level capable of assisting many more worthy causes in the years to come.” As a non-profit, APIF is able to secure top quality entertainment services for reduced cost to deliver the most profit to the charities that apply. Furthermore, APIF now partners with Uber to provide one free ride to guests of each event, the contributions from which Uber then gives to the charities participating. “”I was very impressed by Tom’s idea to organize musicians and event service providers to deliver high quality, low cost event services to worthy causes.” Dotty Etris, Executive Director of the Roswell Convention & Visitors Bureau said. “It has been wonderful seeing his vision gain so much traction in a few short months!” APIF’s signature events include music from every era and every genre. Each season they produce an event known as Atlanta Dance Party, which includes performances reminiscent of the best dance music of the 70s, 80s, 90s and today. Their performances are well attended and the organization continues to expand its services with the demand. The organization also aims to expand its musical repertoire, as the board members are all primarily musicians and music lovers at heart. To learn more about APIF or schedule an event, visit www.atlantaplaysitforward.org. ❍



A GREAT WAY TO SPEND A SUNDAY The CNC celebrates 4 decades with the Sundays on the River concerts. By Tripp Liles

Throughout the year the Chattahoochee Nature Center will have numerous celebrations centered around the celebration of their 40th anniversary. A large part of those celebrations are the Sundays on the River concert series that begins on April 10 with a concert by the Georgia State University Jazz Ensemble Band. The GSU ensemble is directed by Dr. Gordon Vernick and they feature authentic jazz, albeit with a Georgia twist. What is that? You can hear it first hand on Apr. 10 as they hit the Ben Brady Lakeside Pavilion at the CNC. This concert, and all in the series, are done in a ‘Chastian Style’

picnic setting with adult libations available. The series continues on May 8, when Roswell’s own Angela Reign will be performing. Reign was named Georgia’s 2013 Best Female Country Artist, and CBS Atlanta’s Top Rock Artist. She and her talented six-piece band will reign with her authentic #GeorgiaMusic style that represents the crossover from pop, to country, to rock music. You may have seen Angela perform at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, the Bluebird Café in Nashville, in competition as a finalist in Hard Rock’s International Battle of the Bands or performing the “Star Spangled Banner” at sporting events, for this is one talented lady. Barry



Richman and Roger Andes will join on guitars while Ron Jutz and Sean O’Keefe perform the rhythm section. Angela Reign’s show will make a perfect event to take your special Mama to, for a Mother’s Day with Music. Opening for Angela will be East Cobb native, 14-year old up-andcoming musician, Haven Burke. The series will conclude in June with Joe Grandersen and his Jazz Quintet on the 12th. This popular quintet performs music that ranges from classic Frank Sinatra tunes to the music of Georgia’s own Johnny Mercer. Grandersen’s classic soul voice and trumpet solos will bring #GeorgiaMusic alive with classic tunes like “Skylark” and “Moon River.”

Roswell’s own Angela Reign will perform on May 8

All of these shows are held at the Ben Brady Lakeside Pavilion at the CNC. They start at 7:30 p.m. and tickets can be purchased at www.freshtix.com/events/sundays-onthe-river-concerts. For additional info call 770-992-2055 ext.224. ❍





Bringing Nature Home With The CNC’s

SPRING NATIVE PLANT SALE By Lisa Cole, Horticulturalist, Chattahoochee Nature Center he Groundhog predicted an early spring and already we are seeing evidence of that at the Chattahoochee Nature Center. The gentle sunshine, warm breezes and unfurling leaves beckon us out our doors along the walkways and woodland trails. Mother Nature is coaxing us out into the gardens, rivers, creeks, and meadows which surround us. We are inspired to dig and plant and grow our own gardens. What a perfect time of year to bring nature home! At the CNC, the Horticulture staff, volunteers, and Master Gardeners have been busy all winter long preparing for the highly anticipated Spring Native Plant Sale taking place on Fri. and Sat., Apr. 1, 2, 8 and 9. We have collected and sown seeds, cuttings, and transplants over these past 6 months to prepare for our sale. Bigger and better than ever before, in just a few weeks time, we will have over 120 species of native and high performing plants available to our visitors. We love meeting local gardeners and helping them bring their visions alive with beautiful native specimens. Gardeners will have a chance to connect with our horticulture staff and master gardeners for practical advice while shopping for native perennials, shrubs, groundcovers and trees as well as vegetables and spices. Additionally, this year is Roswell’s second annual Azalea Festival held April 11-30. You can plant native azaleas, they naturalize and add beauty to our spring gardens.


Here are a few examples of types of plants that you will find at our sale: Shade Garden If you have a shaded area in your garden space, consider yourself lucky! A shady woodland area with rich, well-drained soil can support quite a variety of unusual and distinctly beautiful native bloomers. This spring, our sale features over 50 species of plants perfectly suited for shade. Delicate blossoms of Rue Anemone, Jack-inthe-Pulpit, Geraniums, Larkspur, and May Apples provide interesting and colorful qualities to the woodland gardens. Woodland Phlox and Columbine are perennial favorites, and are in full bloom this time of year. Full Sun Garden An area of hot, dry sun is the perfect place to plant long-blooming perennials which attract butterflies and pollinators into your garden space. Consider these drought-tolerant, easy to grow plants: Yarrow, Agastache, Blazing Star, and Salvia. When planning an area for butterflies, it is worth noting that the plant selection is the most important factor. Even a small area can support a large number of insects, so be sure to add host plants for caterpillars, such as fennel, little blue stem grass, parsley, and milkweeds. Maximize the time butterflies stay by planting for all seasons. Many plants such as the Georgia Aster, Goldenrod, New England Aster, and Narrow-leaf Sunflower are important for these areas because they bloom in the early fall and keep butterflies coming around long after the dog days of summer are over.

Common Challenges in the Garden As a Horticulturalist, I am often inundated with questions about gardening. Here is a list of common challenges and some tips to help you plant a successful garden this year: “I don’t have a green thumb. Many of my plants die by the end of the summer.” Proper plant selection is the key to wellperforming gardens. Choose tough, drought-tolerant species for dry areas. While many native plants are suited to drought, they require water to establish their roots into the ground. This means you will typically need to water every 3–4 days by soaking newly planted areas. A good soaking is much better than a light drizzling with the hose on the mist setting. A general rule of thumb is to provide an inch of water a week. In cases of severe drought, you may need to provide supplemental water as well. Consider your garden placement in relation to your water source. You will be much more likely to water an area that a hose can

reach than one to which you have to carry heavy buckets of water to maintain. “I live on a creek/pond/river. What plants can grow in wet conditions?” There are plants that thrive in wet conditions that also are beautiful, function as erosion control, and attract birds, butterflies, and other native wildlife. Consider Virginia sweetspire, Swamp and Hammocksweet Azaleas, Swamp Milkweed, Beebalm, Royal and Cinnamon Fern. Swamp Rose and Texas Star Hibiscus are brilliantly colored, eye-catching, and perfect for drainage ditches, runoff areas, and wetland habitats. Plants which grow in these conditions are typically fast-growing and will provide you with brilliant displays within a single year. “My grass keeps dying in the shade.” If you have an area that you are unhappy with, why not try something new? A semishaded, poorly performing turf area can be transformed into a magnificent shrub and

flower border. Stokes’ Aster, Blue-eyed Grass, Summersweet Clethra, Oakleaf Hydrangea, native azaleas, native sedges, and many ferns work nicely in these areas. By changing turf over to native plantings, you can encourage more native birds and insects to live in your yard, and spend less time mowing. Adding a layer of mulch and maintaining a strip of turf around the area will ensure that your new garden space looks well-groomed. The Horticulture Department at the Chattahoochee Nature Center is proud to bring you this Spring Native Plant Sale. By adding natives to your garden, you are actively encouraging the growth, development, and prosperity of our natural heritage of flora and fauna. Every insect, bird, bee, and butterfly needs food, water, shelter, and a place for the next generation to grow. Each native plant that you bring to your garden supports and strengthens the intricate and complex web of life of which we all are a part.

For more info visit chattnaturecenter.org.


Fern Selection Ferns are wonderful plants which add textural elements to the garden. Many people think that ferns can only grow in shady, moist areas, but this is not the case, as many can thrive in full sun and drier areas. If you have a large area with erosion problems, consider the Hayscented Fern, which is very easy to grow, tolerating wet, dry, shade, and sun. It is a rapid spreader which will quickly stabilize an area and help minimize erosion. Have a rich, moist area in your garden? The Northern Maidenhair Fern may be the fern for you! It is often considered the daintiest and prettiest of all ferns, with delicate fan patterned fronds cascading from shiny black stems. The Dixie Wood Fern is a very rare naturally occurring hybrid whose growth habit is dramatically upright with large, coarse, dark green fronds. This fern is very tolerant of dry locations, provides great structural support as a backdrop or focal point, and is semi-evergreen. Veggie and Herb Selection from Unity Garden A wide array of edible plants is available for your herb and vegetable garden. All-time kitchen favorites including oregano, thyme, rosemary, chives, and marjoram are easy to grow and add flair to home cooked meals. Have you tried stevia? It is a great sweetener to add into drinks and dishes, and the leaves taste like candy. Lavender and chamomile are both fragrant and edible, with the flowers being used in relaxing teas. These and many more will be ready for sale in just a few short weeks! ❍ Lisa Cole is Environmental Horticulturalist Manager of Gardens at CNC.






Spring has definitely sprung in Roswell as two big festivals take center stage. The Second Annual Roswell Azalea Festival will run Apr. 11 through 30. It takes place throughout Roswell as organizers prepare to pay tribute to the beauty of springtime and to the abundant azaleas, which are a heat and drought tolerant plant native to Georgia. The festival began as an effort to increase awareness of The Cottage School and to create a scholarship endowment fund for that school. However, due to its instant success, it rapidly grew to encompass many areas of the city. The event focuses on the azaleas during their peak blooming season. The guiding force behind the establishment of the Roswell Azalea Festival has been Sandy Buhler, a community volunteer involved in many areas of service. The event highlights Plant Sales & Programs, The Azalea Invitational Art Exhibition, Musical Performances, Sculpture Tour, Art Galleries, The Cottage School Azalea Gala & Golf Classic, A Harvest Dinner, Ghost Tours, Photography Exhibits, Scavenger Hunts, Garden Tours, Pottery Exhibit, Special Offers from area Businesses, 5K & 10 K Run, The Atlanta Jazz Party, Art Shows, Historic Homes, the Farmers & Artisans Market, Chattahoochee Nature Center, Roswell Parks, a Beer Fest, and if you can believe it, much more. Azalea Festival booklets are available to pick up at the Roswell Visitors Center, 617 Atlanta Street, or for a complete list of festivities for this year’s festival visit www.roswellazaleafestival.com On May 7 and 8 the 26th Annual Colors Festival of Arts will be held on the Historic Square in Roswell from 10 .a.m. to 6 p.m. You will find the Colors Festival of Arts in Roswell’s picturesque historic Town Square. Art is showcased under the spreading branches of mature trees. Entertainment takes place from the bandstand, originally built to allow Teddy Roosevelt to address the crowds when he visited Roswell and his mother’s childhood home, Bulloch Hall. Just across the street you’ll enjoy a warm welcome at the Roswell Visitors Center. Roswell Jr. Women’s Club members operate a hostess tent in the Square, offering assistance to attendees and to the artists and craftsmen. Fine arts and original crafts, musical entertainment, and Roswell culture attract people from near and far as they enjoy this creative event. Mother’s Day weekend is the perfect time to gather the family and celebrate Mom’s special day. If you haven’t found the perfect gift for her— no worries! You’re sure to find just what she wants at the Colors Festival of Arts. There’s something for all ages to enjoy on this special weekend in Roswell, Georgia. A free shuttle will run from Roswell City Hall to the Historic Town Square. For more visit www.colorsfestivalarts.com. ❍

health&wellness presented by

3rd Year on Prestigious List



or the third consecutive year, WellStar Health System was named one of the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For®, which recognizes companies across the country that have exceptional workplace cultures. The prestigious award is a reflection of WellStar’s commitment to taking care of its team members, who are dedicated to taking care of others.

“At WellStar, we are proud of our Employer of Choice strategy, which is centered upon creating a culture of trust throughout our System,” said David Anderson, WellStar executive vice president of Human Resources, Organizational Learning and chief compliance officer. “Our culture is built upon a foundation of transparency, integrity and confidence among our team members. It not only ensures we can recruit and retain top talent, but also is a critical component of achieving our vision to deliver world-class healthcare.” In addition to making FORTUNE’s list three years in a row, WellStar earned Top 10 honors on Working Mother’s 100 Best Companies list for the past six years and Top 100 for eight years. WellStar also has received accolades and honors from the Companies That Care Honor Roll, National Association of Female Executives Top Companies for Executive Women, World at Work Work-Life Seal of Distinction and the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption’s Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces Top 100. “Now more than ever, it is important for companies to prove they are great

workplaces,” said Michael Bush, CEO of Great Place to Work®. “Top talent expects as much as they seek new opportunities, and customers are demanding it as well as they decide where to spend their dollars. The 100 best workplaces are at the top of the heap in demonstrating they have a high-trust, high-performing culture.” WellStar was selected among hundreds of companies vying for a place on the list this year. Applicant companies opt to participate in the selection process, which includes an employee survey and an in-depth questionnaire about their programs and company practices. Great Place to Work® then evaluates each application using its unique methodology based on five dimensions: credibility, respect, fairness, pride and camaraderie. Organizations named on the list see many benefits that include better financial performance, less employee turnover, higher levels of customer satisfaction and loyalty, more innovative and creative thinking, higher productivity and enhanced public perception. To see the complete 2016 FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® list, visit www.fortune.com.

East Cobb Health Park at twilight About Fortune Fortune is a global leader in business journalism known for its unrivaled access to industry leaders and decision makers. Founded in 1930, Fortune has transformed into a digitalfirst operation with nearly 17 million monthly unique visitors on Fortune.com as well as 3.4 million global readers in print.Fortune is home to some of the strongest business franchises, including: Fortune 500, Best Companies to Work For, World’s Most Admired Companies, Fastest Growing Companies and Most Powerful Women. The Fortune Conference Division extends the

brand’s mission into live settings, hosting a wide range of annual conferences for top-level executives, including the FORTUNE Global Forum and the Most Powerful Women Summit. About Great Place to Work Great Place to Work® is the global authority on high-trust, high-performance workplace cultures. Through proprietary assessment tools, advisory services, and certification programs, including Best Workplaces lists and workplace reviews, Great Place to Work® provides the benchmarks, framework, and expertise needed to create, sustain, and recognize outstanding workplace cultures. In the United States, Great Place to Work® produces the annual Fortune “100 Best Companies to Work For®” list and a series of Great Place to Work® Best Workplaces lists including lists for Millennials, Women, Diversity, Small and Medium Companies and over a half dozen different industry lists.





COMPASSIONATE MEDICINE PALLIATIVE CARE PHYSICIANS PROVIDE COMFORT Most people probably can’t think of a time when their physician asked, “What’s important to you?” But patients with life-limiting illnesses find Parin Chheda, M.D. themselves discussing topics like that when they meet with palliative care physicians. Palliative care is focused on providing comfort and support. It can be helpful to anyone with a lifelimiting illness at any stage, such as people with heart or lung disease or cancer. These patients and their families often learn about palliative care when they end up in the hospital. “I sit down and talk to people and get to know them as human beings,” said Parin Chheda, M.D. “What brings meaning into their life? After establishing what makes life meaningful, we talk about if they have ever thought what they would want the last chapter of their life to look like. My goal is to make sure that the medical procedures and treatments we offer are in line with their goals and preferences.” Dr. Chheda realized he wanted to work in palliative care when he accidently showed up to the wrong rotation—a hospice rotation—during the third year of his residency at University of California San Diego Medical Center. Similar to palliative care, hospice care specializes in providing support for people at the ends of their lives. “I had the best day,” he said, remembering that accidental rotation. “It was so fulfilling! It’s not easy work, but it’s meaningful. It helps people—why else become a doctor? I really feel it’s what I was born to do.” Now, Dr. Chheda cares for patients at WellStar. He initially meets with his patients and their families for

anywhere between 30 minutes and an hour and a half. In addition to getting to know what’s important to the patient, he helps ensure they have all the information necessary to make medical decisions that are in line with their goals. He also helps manage pain and other symptoms, such as shortness of breath, anxiety and depression, nausea and constipation. Because palliative medicine is often associated with caring for people who will likely die from their chronic illnesses, it’s easy to see why some patients are hesitant to meet with a palliative care physician at first. “As soon as they understand that I’m really taking the time to understand what they’re going through, they really open up,” Dr. Chheda said. “It’s about their needs and how I can care for them.” There is also an educational factor. For example, family members may want to nourish a dying patient with food and water. But typically, people do

WellStar recently hosted national and state leaders from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), as part of an Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) quality improvement initiative led by Melissa Boekhaus, M.D., FAAP. Dr. Boekhaus, who currently is in practice with WellStar Medical Group (WMG)—Pediatric and Adolescent Center, serves on the board of the AAP’s Georgia Chapter (GA AAP). The goal of the AAP initiative is to improve ADHD diagnosis and treatment processes, as well as outcomes, for children. According to the AAP, ADHD affects 11 percent of all children, ages four - 17 in the United States. It is the most common childhood Melissa Boekhaus, M.D., FAAP, at the AAP learning neurobehavioral disorder and its prevasession hosted by WellStar. lence continues to grow, particularly among boys. During a year-long collaborative, Dr. Boekhaus will lead 14 participating pediatric practices in implementing AAP ADHD guidelines, while measuring and testing their progress toward improvement goals. Sixty participants from across Georgia (pediatricians, managers and nurses) attended the first learning session, which was held at the WellStar Development Center. Avril Beckford, M.D., FAAP, a member of the WellStar Board of Trustees, WellStar Chief Pediatrics Officer and past president of GA AAP, said she is proud of the leadership by WMG pediatricians at both the committee and board level of the GA AAP. In addition to Drs. Beckford and Boekhaus, WMG pediatricians Larry Clements, M.D., FAAP, Romualda Klicius, M.D., FAAP, and Jose Rodriguez, M.D., FAAP, each have served as GA AAP board members.

Palliative Care, continued from left.

not handle fluids well when they are in their final days. A palliative physician may work with the family to help them understand that giving extra fluid could actually hurt them by filling the lungs and making it hard to breathe. Physicians aren’t the only ones providing palliative care. They work closely with an interdisciplinary team of nurse practitioners, care coordinators, pharmacists, social workers and chaplains to ensure patients’ many needs are addressed during this sensitive time. The team also works with family members who serve as caregivers, to help them understand their role in honoring the patient’s wishes. “We try to include everyone in the picture,” Dr. Chheda said. “Sometimes I’ll organize a family meeting. It’s a team approach.” WellStar has a multidisciplinary palliative care team to help patients with chronic conditions live quality lives and get medical care that is in line with their wishes. For more information about palliative care, visit www.wellstar.org.





MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR SPRING ALLERGY VISIT By Grace Chiang, M.D., WellStar Allergy & Asthma Spring is the busiest time of year at your allergist’s office as patients begin experiencing the first symptoms of seasonal allergies, or “hay fever.” If you’re planning to see an allergist this spring, make sure you get the most from your appointment by writing down your questions and concerns ahead of time. Let your allergist know about the following: • New symptoms or symptoms that are worse than in previous years. Coughing, difficulty breathing or loss of sleep can be signs of asthma. • Missed school or work due to allergy or asthma symptoms. It’s important to report any related hospitalizations or visits to the emergency department. • Medications taken, even if they are over-the-counter and herbal supplements. Patients meeting with an allergist may also want to ask these questions, which can lead to changes resulting in better management and improved quality of life: • Am I currently on the best treatment plan? • What steps can I take to avoid allergy symptoms? • What other treatment options are available? Treatment options may include allergy shots, sublingual allergy tablets or other medications. Allergy shots can reduce symptoms in up to 85 percent of patients with seasonal allergies. WellStar Allergy & Asthma is currently accepting new patients of all ages, located at 3747 Roswell Rd, Suite 205 in Marietta and 4480 North Cooper Lake Road, Suite 101 in Smyrna. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 470-956-9050 or visit www.wellstar.org/allergy.

10 WAYS TO EAT LESS SUGAR By Tracy Stark, RD, LD, CDE, a registered dietitian at WellStar Nutrition advice is everywhere: magazine articles, newspapers, TV, the radio, the internet. It is can be difficult to decipher mixed messages, leaving people who have resolved to lose weight or eat healthier confused. One concrete change is that we need to cut way back on sugar. Why? A growing body of research has linked excessive sugar intake with metabolic syndrome, fatty liver disease, Type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. These illnesses are becoming more common, even amongst individuals who are not overweight or obese. How much sugar is too much? The newly updated 20152020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends limiting the amount of added sugars in our diet to no more than ten percent of total daily calories. What does this mean? Since caloric intake is extremely individualized, let’s look at an example. Based on the new guidelines, the sugar recommendation for a person consuming a 2,000 calorie diet would equate to no more than 12 teaspoons of added sugar per day. To put this in perspective, a can of soda contains approximately 10

1. Check the Nutrition Facts label: Look at the sugar grams located under Total Carbohydrate. Divide by four. This is the number of teaspoons of sugar in the serving size listed at the top of the label. Use this number to determine whether or not the food item is a healthy choice.

2. Compare labels Foods that claim to be “sugar free” or “reduced sugar” can be a misleading marketing gimmick. Place similar product labels side by side in order to compare and determine which product is lowest in sugar.

3. Read the Ingredient list Food labels do not separate added sugars from natural sugars. Look for terms on the Ingredient list such as high-fructose corn syrup, molasses, evaporated cane juice, corn syrup solids and fruit juice sweetener. Ingredients are listed in descending order by weight. The position of sugar in the ingredient list will help you determine if the product contains large or small amounts of sugar. Products that have sugar sources near the beginning of the ingredient list, or have several sources of sugar throughout the list, typically have higher added sugar content.

4. Choose naturally occurring sugars Choose to fill up on fresh fruit and vegetables instead of foods with added sugars. Fresh fruits and veggies contain vitamins, minerals and fiber. Fiber

teaspoons of sugar and the average American consumes about 22 teaspoons of sugar per day. What about natural sugar? Fructose (fruit sugar) and lactose (milk sugar) are naturally occurring sugars, meaning they are sugars in the way nature intended them to be. They are not considered added sugars. When we consume foods with naturally occurring sugars, we are also getting essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. Here are 10 tips for reducing added sugar intake:

has been shown to slow the rate of carbohydrate absorption, as well as improve cholesterol levels, create fullness and aid with digestion.

5. Get adequate protein Protein rich foods such as lean meat, fish, eggs and egg whites, low fat cheese and cottage cheese take much longer to digest than carbohydrates. Consuming protein with each meal allows us to stay satisfied from meal to meal while discouraging those urges for carbohydrate dense snacks in between.

6. Go with unsweetened dairy products A common misconception amongst these two food items is that they are always healthy, a far cry from the truth. Flavored, sweetened milk and yogurt are often loaded with added sugars, so check those Nutrition Facts to see just how much. Choose plain milk and yogurt instead— each contains naturally occurring sugar.

7. Eat less processed food It is no surprise that the majority of processed foods contain large amounts of added sugars, as well as sodium and fat. Choosing whole foods by shopping the perimeter of the grocery store will assist in keeping those added sugar grams down. If you must choose something that comes in a box or a can, be sure it is as minimally processed as possible by choosing foods with very few ingredients in the list.

8. Avoid portion distortion Be sure you are checking labels to identify serving sizes and number of servings per container. At first glance, sugar grams may not appear excessive until you check how much you get for that number of sugar grams, as well as how much you plan to consume. More often than not, people are doubling and tripling serving sizes without even realizing it.

9. Log your foods Most people have no idea of what our daily intakes are. One way to resolve this issue is to start logging your foods using a food tracking app. This allows us to track not only sugar, but calories, macronutrients, vitamins and minerals. Food logs are critical in creating an awareness of what we are consuming from day to day and also provide us with accountability for staying on track.

10. Make gradual changes When considering lifestyle change, one of the most common mistakes I see people make is attempting to overhaul all their behaviors at once. A more sensible approach is gradual changes—one or two at a time. If you consume regular soda, try switching to calorie free beverages only. If you have dessert every night after dinner, find a lower sugar alternative such as fresh fruit. When we chip away at the behavior changes one at a time, we are much more like to form new, healthier behaviors that are much more sustainable.




MOVIES OFFER A GREAT WAY TO BOND WITH KIDS suede monstrosity she stole from her mother’s closet rented her coolness out to nerdy Ronald (long before You may have caught the recent Patrick Dempsey was McDreamy.) news story about how one theater I was seriously taken aback with some of the chain is banning any parent or content and adult themes in each film, which adult guardian from allowing chilhonestly, in my adolescence, flew right over my head. dren 6 and under into R-rated And as I cringed at the sexual overtures and bad films with said adult. behavior of the on-screen teens, I noticed that the This action by Regal Cinemas laughter and the bonding between me and my girls sparked lots of debate around the issue of who should far outweighed the danger of them emulating have the last word regarding what children see and anything they saw. Not to mention the benefit of havhear on the big screen. Really, there are decent arguing me right there if any burning questions or the ments on both sides. I can see the merit in parents need to elaborate on a topic came up. having the final authority over what their kids see, Over the next week I thought about how great it but obviously, 6-year-olds don’t need to hear was that I was sharing a part of my culture, albeit incessant foul language or see risky behavior. pop culture, with two of my favorite people in the This made me think of a couple of weeks ago when world, and connecting with them in a playful way my daughters and I had a girls’ movie weekend. We that is so refreshing. Parenting can so often feel like watched Clueless, 10 Things I Hate About You, and guarding, or restricting and chastising; it’s nice to reCan’t Buy Me Love. I was whisked back to high late to them on a casual level and to share part of my school, watching as popular Amanda in the white generation’s history, however insignificant. By Beth Nitschke

We’ve had several moments around the table, lulls in conversation, and my oldest daughter will look at me and say, in the thickest New York accent, “mine is, Men are From Mars, Women are from Venus,” (hilarious scene from Clueless) and all of us start cracking up! Or, I’ve been driving my car, passing on the left a tiny bit aggressively, and my other daughter will look at me and quote the same movie saying “Listen Bond, here in America we drive on the right side of the road.” My angry reply: “I am! You try driving in platforms!” The potential connection and laughter that happens over a good, or bad, or stupid movie between you and your kids is a very good thing. ❍ Beth Nitschke is a native of the Roswell area. She is a mother of three, a home school mom, and a writer. She lives with her kids and their family dog in East Cobb.





HEY! YOU! TAKE A HIKE! By Di Chapman

No, I don’t mean “get out of town,” “leave the neighborhood,” or “get outta here.” On the contrary, stay! Take an actual hike on the beautiful trails we have right here in our backyard, in awesome scenery that brings visitors from everywhere. You’re familiar, right? My husband and I weren’t! When we moved to Atlanta from Southern California five years ago, it turned out that our real estate agent happened to have grown up in Roswell. After looking at

townhomes throughout the Perimeter area, realizing that we wanted the outdoors, he announced, “Roswell might be perfect.” It was. We found a lovely home on a quiet bluff. Our first week here, I heard what I figured was freeway noise in the distance. I’m from Southern Cal, right? What else would it be? A few days later, a neighbor welcomed me to the neighborhood, coincidentally after a rain, and said, “Wow, listen to that river! After it rains it’s so loud!” “River, what river?” I responded. “The one right down here.” He pointed to the edge of our bluff, not 20 feet away. That “freeway” turned into music to my ears. So, on a fluke we discovered that our new home was perched above the Old Mill, Vickery Creek and the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, a national recreation area in our own backyard. What’s not to love? It’s a treasure for the taking, and doesn’t cost one penny. I’ve been “outdoorsy” since childhood, bred for it because most of my formative years were in Seattle. If you know anything about Seattle weather, you know it’s socked in until the rain decides to stop. Not that it stops anyone from having an outdoor life, but it can put a damper on it. But the forests, mountains, beaches, and waterfront streets called to us. Places were safe back in the day, and we kids were like Charlie Brown, Linus, Lucy, and Pig Pen,

traipsing all over creation. We hiked in the woods and at the beach, hiked the hills, and pulled “Wallendas,” walking logs that had fallen over canyons. We instituted a “don’t tell mom and dad” rule. All grown up, my hiking took me to places like trails in Lillehammer, Norway, home of the 1994 Winter Olympics. I can honestly say it was the first time a woman trotted past me on an uphill incline while pushing a baby carriage. Returning stateside, I moved to the Northeastern U.S. and found myself gravitating to the Appalachian Trail, where trailheads abound. No reservations necessary for day hiking. Come on down! During our first few years in Roswell, my husband and I walked a long route around town, scampering down from our home to the trails along the creeks— then through the historic district. My husband did this at least 300 days a year, and I over a 100, as I’m a gym rat as well. Somehow, we never ventured past the covered bridge at Roswell’s Old Mill Park and Vickery Creek, where trails of the national recreation area begin. Instead, we traveled to other hikes on the periphery of Atlanta, like Amicalola Falls and Lake Altoona. Then, one quiet day, while enjoying the sights on a lakeside trail soft with pine needles, I kicked an unexpected tree root. I went flying into the air,

Healthy Aging:THE MIND-BODY Connection



taying active, both physically and mentally, is an important key to overall health and affects how long we live. The mindbody connection plays a crucial role in our health, particularly as we age—in fact, to a large degree, mind-body communication is predictive of how well we will age. While genetics account for part of the aging process, there is no denying that staying actively engaged in life can dynamically improve health, stamina and vitality. Current research supports the theory that the mind-body connection truly does affect our health. A recent study conducted by Harvard University found that among seniors who were exposed to fleeting messages linking positive traits with the aging process, the measurable increase in their stamina and fitness was equivalent to what they would have achieved in a three-month exercise program. Have you ever noticed someone who seems to have lost his or her zest for

life? Physical decline is often seen in older adults who show a lack of interest in learning new things, resist new experiences, and have a lack of social support and close, intimate friendships. They may also manage stress less effectively than their peers. According to Brenda Stockdale, an

St. George Village 11350 Woodstock Rd Roswell, GA 30075 678-987-0402 stgeorgevillage.com

expert in psychoneuroimmunology, stress can actually be more damaging to older adults. “A genetic marker of aging can be seen in something called a telomere. As we age, telomeres naturally shrink and, as they shrink, they open the door to disease,” she explained. “But chronic

stress unnaturally shrinks telomeres. So finding ways to reduce stress is important to preventing illness.” Learning to manage stress, along with staying physically active and participating in mentally stimulating activities, can improve our health and extend our life span. At St. George Village, we understand how important it is to our overall health to keep minds and bodies active, and we believe that a passionate engagement with life protects the healthy connection between mind and body. Come see how we promote a healthy lifestyle every day through our amenities and services, including a wide range of classes, activities and events that challenge and nurture the mind-body connection! Call us at 678-987-0402 for more information or to schedule a tour. See details about our community, lifestyle, and residents on our website, stgeorge village.com, or like our Facebook page and follow us on Pinterest. ❍


posing in what I hoped was a graceful arabesque, landing hard on my left foot. Ouch. I ignored it and hiked the half-mile back to the car. That night, my foot ballooned up into a purple blue unidentifiable blob. Ah, yes. I was in the “boot” for eight weeks, a condition that did not stop me from body sculpting classes at the gym. A broken foot doesn’t affect bicep curls, okay? I also managed a preplanned trip to the Bahamas, where I gazed longingly at the waterslides and azure ocean beach. While I was unable to walk our usual path, my husband finally ventured across the covered bridge and up the steep hill on the other side. Eureka! “Hiking trails!” he reported one evening. “Right over there!” he pointed to the other side of Vickery Creek below us. When my boot came off, we hit them together. During my absence, he had found me a new pair of periwinkleblue high-top hiking boots. I approved. They’re perfect for a woman who applies Di on the trails above the Vickery Creek Covered Bridge. makeup before hikes. I subsequently found myself a pair of burgundy-colored low-top boots for travel. Boots must never take up space meant for cosmetics in my suitcase. Hence, I began the trail system here, a stone’s throw from our home. Y’all, this is for everyone. We don’t rock climb or cliff hang. The threat of death does not inspire us. This winding trail loop, with 6.5 miles of moderate hiking, does. Couples stroll. Families with small children in tow with the resounding, “Aren’t we there yet?” walk together. Your trek needn’t be strenuous, but it is exercise. Ladies, with every step on an incline, your back view improves. The trails are social as well. We “regulars” from throughout the area stop and visit as we pass each other. Invariably, there are pooches who are loving the trails as well. We know them all by name, too, and give each a rub behind the ears. These trails are “alive” year around. My hiking has taken me twice to Iceland since we began our trails here. As much as I enjoy exploring the fjords, lava “moonscapes,” and waterfalls there, this home-sweet-home trail loop is the place to come back to. It’s now “our” trail and our continued enjoyment. We’ll let you use it, too. We’ll share. Promise! Now, go on. Take a hike! ❍






Try tucking planters and bird baths directly into the landscape for a natural vignette.

By Nancy Wallace

Hello, April, arguably the most beautiful month of the year. If you are reading this column, Dear Gardener, I hope you are filled with a sense of renewal, a garden full of flowers, fun, and foliage because that’s what April is all about: the celebration of new and unexpected beginnings (more on that in a minute). Right now, let’s have some fun. How many of you are familiar with my favorite dual-personality word: godwottery? We first learn of it in a poem from scholar and theologian, Thomas Edward Brown (1830-1897): “A garden is a lovesome thing, God wot!”. Brown was describing his own garden, which included an assortment of ferns, roses, a pool, some fish, a grotto, among other things. When he needed a word to rhyme with the line “Rose plot,” he came up with “God wot.” The word “wot” is an archaic term and a variant of “wit” (to know), or, “God knows!” and therefore

There is no need to descend to Godwottery, or even to know the difference between an aquilegia [columbine] and an antirrhinum [snapdragon], in order to be enthralled by the ingenious and lovely permutations of shape, colour and texture—to say nothing of scent—which surround you.

In other words, the garden should be allowed to stand on its own, without accentuating it with nonsensical items. But allow me to elaborate on “godwottery” a little more (as alluded to Garden ornaments provide a striking contrast to their by Struther) by way of the English surroundings when thoughtfully chosen. newspaper, The Guardian (August 18, preconception of what a garden 1969), which describes exaggerated garshould be, results in a very strange dens compiled of collections of collection of elements… Cotswold incompatible kitsch this way: stone retaining walls, vaguely Godwottery, the sentimental

Spanish wrought iron gates; ‘crazy’ paving, nowadays often colored yellow, green, and pink; plainly irregular ponds, now usually of pale blue fibre-glass, fed by streams of impossible source; gnomes, fairies, and animals, usually plastic. So there you have it: a full-circle description of “garden godwottery,” what it is and where it came from. Now that we’ve got that sorted out, what sort of godwottery is on display in your garden? I myself enjoy a bit of godwottery whether it’s in my own garden, or elsewhere. Sundials, bird baths, bird and toad houses, a random garden cloche, are all ways to complement the garden. On the other hand, a sense of humor and surprise may linger a little longer in the mind, like an unexpected repurposed planter or garden ornament. I have a habit of tucking planters directly into the landscape to provide structure, contrast, height, and a splash of seasonal color. The thing to remember: don’t over do it, but have some fun. I mentioned “new beginnings” above,

O Our ur Atherton Atherton P Place lace F Family amily

Welcomes You When we speak of family, we include our Atherton Place team members as well. Not only are we part of your everyday life, helping you live each day to the fullest, but we also feel at home here.

Of our 92 team members, the average tenure at Atherton Place is an amazing 12 years. We are particularly proud that 25% of the team has been here for more than 20 years!

When Atherton Place opened in 1988, the concept of Senior Living was brand new. Over time, our commitment to providing a high-quality community with a personal touch has grown and touched many lives. Our residents regularly share that our team members are a key reason in making this a comfortable home. We invite you to join us for lunch, a complimentary tour and an opportunity to meet some of our team members. Call 770-421-7300 for more information.

111 TOWER ROAD NE • MARIETT MARIETTA, TT TA, A, GA 30060 • athertonplace.or athertonplace.org g

because this column is, sadly, my last 27 column for The Current Hub. Due to client and landscape installation obligations this year, I won’t have the time to devote to a garden column anymore. But fear not! My friend and degreed horticulturist, Geri Laufer, will be stepping in to write the garden column beginning next month. Geri’s Roswell garden won “Best Garden in the Large Garden Category” from Garden Clubs of Georgia, and she has written more than 200 articles for consumers and the garden trade. She was the founding chair of the Atlanta Chapter of The Herb Society of America, and has also written a book, Tussie Mussies, about the language of flowers. Geri helped found the Master Gardener program in Georgia, and has some landscape design experience of her own. So, you see, I am leaving you in good hands. Take it away, Geri. And thank you all, for being my audience for the last couple of years. Grow well and prosper. ❍ Photos by Nancy Wallace. Nancy provides garden design & renovation services. Follow her blog: wallacegardens.tumblr.com. APRIL 2016 THECURRENTHUB.COM

stood out among the other contemporary words in his poem. After that mention, we don’t hear much more about this “God wot!” until 1938, when author-poet Jan Struther (pseudonym of British-born Joyce Anstruther) wrote in her book of essays, Try Anything Twice:




need to choose a school environment that will best match your child’s current education level so their Well here we are...April...the current skills can be advanced immediately. month of making school choices Coming from such diverse preschool backgrounds, for the upcoming year from a Kindergarten is of considerable angst for a lot of preschool level all the way parents. Kindergarten will encompass students through your college-bound from little to no preschool, to students coming from child! academically superior programs. Depending on In the January edition of Kids which environment your child is coming from, how & Kay, we discussed admissioncan your child be best served? How will your Kay Paschal, Owner testing stress, mostly from a child’s strengths and/or weaknesses be addressed in Peachtree Park Prep preschool-Kindergarten these very important elementary school years when standpoint. Letters of acceptance have now been developmental skills are all over the map and brain mailed out all over Atlanta from the area’s private patterns for future learning will be at their peak? schools and you now have all your “cards on the You will not want your child to have a stagnant table” to make the best choice for your child. year of learning experiences nor do you want to exStudents bound for college are also receiving their pose your child to a learning environment above April letters of acceptance so families all over town, their capability. This is a fragile time of from preschool to college, are looking at all the establishing their “love of learning success” so available options for the 2016-2017 school year. vitally important to set the tone for the rest of their For the preschool age or Kindergarten child, you early elementary years. So, be an advocate for


By Kay Paschal


SUMMER CAMP: The Importance of Good Counselors hat happens when a generation of kids grow up without playing army in the woods, constructing a dam in a creek or scaling a mountain top? This concern is widely shared among parents. Time spent in nature calms us and bonds us with friends much more than screen time can. Consistent outdoor adventures can also help develop self-confidence as well as a sense of wonder and curiosity about nature. Great outdoor camps send kids


outside to find these kind of memories with the help of cool camp counselors. Tim Reidy is the camp director at Camp Kingfisher, a nature camp where kids discover cool ecology and connect with animals and friends outside at the Chattahoochee Nature Center, in Roswell. He said some of his favorite nature experiences from camp include canoeing, log rolls, educational hikes, mountain biking, and campfires. “When you see camp as impactful for children, it becomes clear how important it is to choose camps with high standards for counselors,” Reidy said. He encouraged parents to spend

After a mile and a half of paddling on the Chattahoochee, a camper group cools off in a wetland

YOUR child, no matter which end of the learning curve they are at, and investigate and scrutinize the school, faculty, and administration team for what they have to offer your child, all learning levels are of equal importance for parents and schools to address. For the college-bound child, oh my goodness, their selection may or may not be your selection! In state, out of state, small school, big school, party school, athletics, dorm, apartment, frats and sororities, the list is endless and I wish you GOOD LUCK! ❍ Kay Paschal is the Owner of Peachtree Park Prep.

time looking over a camp’s staff recruiting page or chat with the director to learn all they can of the benefits for their children. With an older friend championing them on, children climb mountains, paddle the canoe they were afraid to board, tell the truth when it’s inconvenient, and achieve more than they had ever thought possible. This is the impact of good counselors. “As summer approaches, I hope you give your child the opportunity to grow and have fun at a great outdoor camp,” Reidy said. “You may just find that, by giving your child a chance to try something new outside, he or she may gain memories that will last for a lifetime.” A Chattahoochee Nature Center tradition since 1993, Camp Kingfisher has provided an unforgettable camp experience to thousands of children and young adults. Outdoor adventuring and learning abounds on CNC’s 127 incredible acres, where campers hike, swim, see wildlife, canoe, investigate, craft and more. Camp Kingfisher is accepting applications for the summer. For more

information on the many different camps and age groups, or to register, visit chattnaturecenter.org/camp-kingfisher or call 770-992-2055 ext. 222. ❍ Camp Kingfisher Chattahoochee Nature Center Roswell 770-992-2055 ext. 222.

Counselor Alex Melnick leads a bird-watching hike at Camp Kingfisher


Cultural Arts Center Announces 2016 Summer Puppet Lineup Hobey Ford’s Golden Rod Puppets

Frisch Marionettes Roswell’s Summer Puppet Series will once again return to the Cultural Arts Center stage this June and July, featuring a lineup of award-winning puppeteers from Georgia and around the country. New this year is a partnership with local artist and illustrator Heather Lund, who is designing a custom coloring book to commemorate the 2016 Roswell Summer Puppet Series. The book will be inspired by the stories featured in the performances and will showcase gorgeously whimsical original illustrations. A limited number of these coloring books will be available for purchase during the puppet shows this summer. “We are thrilled to work with Heather on this exciting new project,” said Donna Clayton, Roswell Cultural Arts Center Coordinator. “Her illustrations are a perfect addition to the puppet series, and we can’t wait to introduce her work to our audiences.”

Each week, shows will take place Monday through Saturday at 10 a.m., with additional shows at 1 p.m. on Wednesday and Friday. Shows run approximately 45-60 minutes. Tickets and additional information is available at www.roswellpuppets.com. 2016 Lineup: June 6 – 11: Hansel & Gretel, Presented by Frisch Marionettes June 13 – 18: The Pirate, the Princess & the Pea, Presented by Crabgrass Puppet Theatre June 20 – 25: The Dragon King, Presented by Tanglewood Marionettes June 27 – July 2: The Little Red Hen’s Garden, Presented by StoneLion Puppets July 5 – July 9: Travelin’ Tales, Presented by Lee Bryan “That Puppet Guy” July 11 – 16: Migration, Presented by Hobey Ford’s Golden Rod Puppets July 18 – 23: Jack & The Beanstalk, Presented by All Hands Productions

Teens Looking For Work? The City of Roswell is now accepting applications for more than 200 summer positions within its Recreation, Parks, Historic & Cultural Affairs Department. A summer job with the City of Roswell is the perfect way to not only obtain meaningful work experience and build your resume, but also to make new friends and give back to your community. These summer jobs may even inspire a career path in Recreation and Parks—as has been the case with many of the City’s full-time employees who started out as summer workers as teenagers. Positions are open to applicants over the age of 16, including high school students, college students, teachers, and retirees. To see a full list of current summer openings, visit roswellgov.com/summerjobs.









Drift Fish House and Oyster Bar at The Avenue East Cobb is open and this is how to open, folks. Chef Doug Turbush has now completed the trifecta in his East Cobb culinary empire. I watched this place from the initial build out, the training, and now have had the opportunity to eat the end product, and it was a pleasure. Drift is excellence from moment one. Zero apologies needed. It is ready to go. Turbush, who easily makes any top chef list in Georgia, rules the dining scene in East Cobb for good reason. They lead by a mile in design. This place is gorgeous and comfortable, featuring well-scaled rooms with working furnishings and layouts, which come together for both customer and staff. Additionally, the staff here is head of the rest. Service and execution in front house and bar is Chef Turbush (in cap) runs an impeccable operation. superb. The most important room, however, is the kitchen and Turbush is playing chess while others are playing checkers. Drift is his checkmate that started with previous openings Seed Kitchen & Bar and Stem Wine Bar. Turbush and company were ready to grow and they have, by starting with the finest locally sourced quality ingredients. His signature is the time and trouble taken to source the finest from local suppliers first, which is frankly great seafood. The Executive Chef at Drift is Brendan Keenan who has been on Turbush’s team for 5 years now. “I have known Brendan for many years, and I trust him implicitly not only for his ability to create dishes that are both approachable and exciting, but also for his commitment to trying new techniques and  flavors,” says Turbush. “From the very start, Brendan has been a major component of the high-quality  dining experience that made Seed and Stem successful.”  This creative menu features seafood from the East and Gulf Coasts and includes raw bar items as well as larger entrees. Keenan has special twists on classic dishes like oysters Rockefeller to go with modern cocktails, craft beers, and great wine selec-

Foodie News And Notes Right across the street from one of my favorite places, Oak Street Café in historic Roswell, is a new Sicilian joint called Zuzzu. I stopped in when they were barely open, testing out the new kitchen, and these guys are off to a great start. By the time you read this they will be running at full speed and for Roswell they offer great value. The pizza is downright excellent, period. They have a wood-burning oven and their pies begin with homemade starter yeast coupled with all organic local ingredients and highlighted with natural ingredients from Italy. This is not crap from a premade industrial bucket Chef Jessica with a UGA sturgeon made in some corporate factory. Beyond the pizza they offer Paninis, a variety of salads, and entrees featuring pastas, meats and seafood. Zuzzu is located at 42 Oak Street Suite B, in Roswell. Foundation Social Eatery, located in east Roswell recently held a special night where chef Mel Toledo teamed up with chef Daniel Porbiansky of The Century House Tavern in Woodstock to prepare a special menu for 20 lucky guests and boy was I one of the lucky ones. Some restaurants call these nights ‘pop-ups’, where a special menu is prepared, usually with a guest chef. Well these two prepared six courses featuring various game dishes for just $120 bucks and it was worth 3 times that. Frankly, it should have been $250 per head before the wine, which was out of this world. The courses were: Foie Gras Torchon, Veal Sweetbread Schnitzel, Sous Vide and Seared Rabbit, Palmetto Squab, Almond Crusted Venison, and Spiced Red Wine Poached Plum. Unbelievable! Each one. Chef Toledo has become a leader in the local culinary scene and if you haven’t been, Foundation Social Eatery is a great spot as is The Century House Tavern over in Veal Sweetbread Schnitzel Woodstock. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. You get what you pay for and these places are literally underpriced for the extraordinary quality and lovely service. These guys team up for special nights at various times throughout the year. When you visit the restaurant ask to be on their mailing list to get in line for the next event. Their respective sites are: www.foundationatl.com and centuryhousetavern.com. ❍


tions from the full bar. Drift Fish House and Oyster Bar is located at The Avenue East Cobb at 4475 Upper Roswell Road.






They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but lunch should be your biggest meal. With that little bit of advice I decided to go see what lunch is all about in East Cobb. I stayed away from the chains; after all, I can eat at them anytime. Instead, I chose a few locally owned restaurants. Keegan’s Irish Pub is tucked away in the back of the Publix Shopping Center on Shallowford Road, and I had heard nothing but good things about its awardwinning chicken pot pie. There was a decent lunch crowd. With several high tops and booths full as well as a smattering of people at the bar, we were promptly seated. I ordered chicken pot pie and it arrived with pie crust delicately draped over the sides of the serving dish. As I put my fork into the crust, chunks of chicken and vegetables rose out of a creamy and flavorful sauce. I was not disappointed. My dining partner had one of the house favorites, the Keegan’s Meatloaf. A large slice of meatloaf piled high on a scoop of mash potatoes and served with vegetables. It was quite good. I had never eaten at Mirko Pasta, so I took my daughter and her friend for some carb loading. The pasta is made in house and doesn’t get any fresher. I had a simple salad—a large portion of crisp greens and flavorful dressing. The girls enjoyed pasta with Alfredo sauce and chicken, and ate every bite. The alfredo sauce was creamy and the grilled chicken had the best flavor. The service was fair. I had to ask the waitress several times for different things. My big complaint was cost. The dollar amount next to the pasta was just for the pasta. I didn’t know the sauce was extra as well as the chicken! One pasta dish ended up costing me $18. Yes, everything is fresh and house made—but an $18 lunch, I just can’t grasp that again. I never thought of Red Sky Tapas for lunch. After all, it was a place I go to on the weekends for dueling pianos and cocktails. It always seemed more like a “bar” than a restaurant. They’ve recently added a new lunch menu that includes chicken salad, a fried green BLT, lettuce wraps with lobster, blackened Ahi Tuna, and seared tenderloin. I met a group of friends there and I was pleasantly surprised. It’s a great place to get a good, quick lunch and not feel like I’ve ruined my diet for the day. We ordered several servings of the popular lobster and roasted corn dip. Served with colored chips, it’s just spicy enough to be addictive. The blackened ahi tuna was seared perfectly, served over a bed of lettuce, and topped with a poached egg. Others had the steak and blue—also a hit. I will remember Red Sky next time I want a “ladies lunch” or a meal after a tennis match. Lastly, I stopped at Sugar Benders Bakery. It’s more a small, cute breakfast and lunch café featuring unique pastries as well as the coolest cakes you’ve ever seen. In a little sitting “nook” by a Veronica Estrada of Sugar Benders in picture window it feels like you’re in a small house in Buckhead—very quaint and cozy. Paper Mill Village in East Cobb I ordered a grilled caesar wrap, which was filled with grilled chicken, cheese and romaine. Other menu items: BLT on house made Amish bread; hummus and avocado sandwich with Muenster cheese; turkey cacciatore sandwich with roasted turkey breast, a creamy pesto, and white cheddar. The brownies are huge and so chocolaty. Worth another visit and next time for I’ll try the breakfast.



By Jessica Diamond

The Roswell Beer Festival is celebrating its fourth anniversary with an event that is, as described on the website, “not bigger, just better!” This year’s event will allow for the same amount of guests as the previous year, and is expected to sell out as it has every year. The beer fest is kept intentionally intimate and exclusive to maintain quality. Ticket revenues completely cover the cost of the event, so 100% of donations from sponsors and other sources goes directly to benefit the STAR House Foundation, an after school program for at-risk youth. The STAR House crew have taken surveys each year to gain feedback and optimize the Roswell Beer Fest as much as possible. Based on that information, this year’s fest will feature more than 250 kinds of beer, two local bands playing a variety of live music with everything from rock to bluegrass, and more high quality food options than ever before. This year will also feature Roswell Beer Festival merchandise, such as t-shirts, growlers and hats that can be purchased with festival tokens. “We’ve been more strategic about it this year,” festival chair Jeff Bridges said. “We like it small, intimate, manageable and more refined. We have a much wider selection of beers and food, as requested by previous attendees. We’ve really figured out how to streamline this process and get the most out continued on page 34






Beer Festival, continued from page 33

of it. One year we had too few restrooms, the next year not enough, but now we know exactly what we need. We know just how much ice to get, how many volunteers we need, what supplies to have on hand, everything. We can keep pricing consistent, whereas most festivals raise their prices each year to cover costs. Because we’ve planned so carefully, we are the only beer festival run by a non-profit, that I know of, that gives 100% of proceeds to the non profit. That’s pretty unique.” The event is run entirely by STAR House board and staff members, as well as no less than 260 volunteers. Great effort has been put into increasing sponsorships this year, including major contributions from New Kent Capital and Van Epps & Associates. The proceeds will go towards funding the STAR House 5-year strategic plan to expand its services into every public school in Roswell to better serve a greater number of at-risk students. There is also a plan in place to create a STAR House summer camp. “There are a lot of people in Roswell who care about STAR House. But the great thing about this event is that it draws in those who may have never heard of it,” Bridges pointed out. “We are appealing to an entirely new audience, many of whom come here from outside the community. Our reach is wider and allows for new people to get involved. Also, it’s a pretty good bargain. You’re getting to try a lot of beer for a very reasonable price.” To find more details about the Roswell Beer Fest and purchase tickets for April 30, visit www.roswellbeerfestival.com. To learn more about the STAR House Foundation, visit www.starhousefoundation.org.


A Sub For Kids


Jersey Mike’s Subs restaurants throughout the Greater Atlanta area joined forces in March for a month-long campaign to benefit Bert’s Big Adventure. To support the charity, Jersey Mike’s stores in the state donated $1 for every #13 sub sold throughout the month of March. Thirty-two area Jersey Mike’s stores participated in the fundraiser. Locally, Dale and Ron Longo, For the past 3 years Steve Stroud of owners of the Jersey Mike’s location at 665 Roswell Inc. and Jeff McCoy of Technipower Holcomb Bridge Road in Roswell, held a have volunteered at the Roswell Jersey Mike’s special event on Mar. 22 raising additional location to help raise funds for funds in the honor of their grandson of who Bert’s Big Adventure.

Azalea Festival Goes Big As part of the Second Annual Roswell Azalea Festival, Bank of North Georgia will host artwork featured by Ann Alexander, Diane Buffington, Mary Lou Carpenter, Joan Hilliard, Teddi Shattuck and Autumn F. Strickland. Original works will be exhibited by each artist and will also be available for sale during Diane Buffington, owner of Wild Hope Art Gallery. bank business hours. The Bank of North Georgia is located at 10446 Alpharetta Street in Roswell. The exhibit will run from April 11 to 30. The exhibit will be held in conjunction with the Roswell Azalea Festival, which pays tribute to the beauty of Roswell during springtime. Additionally, enjoy the rare occasion to have High Tea at Historic Bulloch Hall as they serve delicious tea sandwiches and sumptuous desserts by ladies in period attire. The event will be held on Apr. 13 at 4pm. For a complete list of events for this year’s festival visit www.roswellazaleafestival.com

A Jazzy Party The Grand Ballroom of the DoubleTree by Hilton in Roswell, transforms into a cabaret jazz hall with superb combos of hot swingin’ classic improvisational jazz for your listening and dancing pleasure on Apr. 22, 23, and 24. All-star line-ups will play seven sets on Friday night, Saturday afternoon, Saturday night, and Sunday. All performers are featured in each session. In the swinging Atlanta Jazz Party tradition, these shows feature AJP first- timer from New York City, the lovely and talented Molly Ryan, swinging New Orleans trumpet player Duke Heitger along with Ed Polcer, amongst numerous other talented musicians. The AJP always tries to work local talent into the program and a surprise guest from time to time is not uncommon. Rumor has it Joe Gransden and his 16 Piece Big Band is making an appearance for certain on Sunday so get your tickets soon. For more info visit www.atlantajazzparty.com.

Property Bros Up Close And In Person On Apr. 13, at 7:30 p.m., Book Festival of the MJCCA (Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta), welcomes The Property Brothers, the multi-talented identical twin brothers, Jonathan and Drew Scott, presenting their new book, Dream Home: The Property Brothers’ Ultimate Guide to Finding & Fixing Your Perfect House. The author event will take place at the MJCCA (5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody), with a Q & A following the program. As hosts of four of HGTV’s most watched shows, Jonathan and Drew have been called the “faces” of home renovation by the New York Times. Millions of fans have learned the ins and outs (and joys and heartbreaks) of real estate and renovation from their hit shows on HGTV. And now, with their new book, the brothers will reveal their secrets for buying and renovating the perfect home. Don’t miss this opportunity to get a sneak peek into the Scotts’ whirlwind lives—and see their playful personalities—live and in person. To purchase tickets call the MJCCA Box Office at 678.812.4002 or visit atlantajcc.org.


was lost in 2006 to a terminal illness. Bert’s Big Adventure is a nonprofit organization that provides an all-expenses-paid, five-day journey to Walt Disney World for children with chronic and terminal illnesses and their families. For more info on Bert’s Big Adventure visit www.bertsbigadventure.org.




What’s in a name? Alive After 5 is now Alive in Roswell

By Jessica Diamond

t as not long ago that downtown Roswell was, for most people, a cute little area to drive past on the way to somewhere more exciting, like Buckhead.Populated mainly by antique shops with a few cafes and art galleries mixed in, Canton Street was all but closed by 5 p.m. every night. The old buildings were not in the best shape, and property was not valuable.

That picture is a far cry from what downtown Roswell looks like today. Canton Street is booming. The restaurant scene has exploded with award-winning independent restaurants and the downtown area is one of the city’s main economic drivers. Amazingly, those in the traditionally sought after neighborhoods of Atlanta, such as Buckhead, Vinings and Midtown are calling Uber cars to bring them to Roswell for a Saturday night on the town. Had a psychic predicted such a thing even a decade ago, no one would have believed it. Roswell? Isn’t that for the, ahem, older crowd? Not anymore. Now, Canton Street is for everyone. As long as you bring your credit card, that is. So what drove the shift? There are a number of theories and contributing factors. However, most would point to the influence of a monthly phenomenon


Food Truck Alley in Alpharetta

known as Alive After 5, which this year is being rebranded as Alive in Roswell. Alive After 5 began as a fairly simple street party meant to generate interest in an otherwise struggling area of the city. There are several businesses that have stood the test of time and made it through the bust to the boom, such as The Chandlery and The Fickle Pickle. A few art galleries have also managed to thrive, such as Ann Jackson Gallery and Raiford Gallery. However, much of the space on Canton Street was unused and neglected. The retail and restaurants struggled to stay afloat. Alive After 5 was a chance for Roswell residents to discover an underused and historic area of the city, or at least experience it in a new way. For one evening a month, the shops would extend their hours past 5 p.m. and offer an open house style party with complimentary snacks and drinks. The street began to feel open and alive with activity as music was brought in and people wandered among the businesses, getting acquainted with the shops and restaurants in a way that felt more like a block party or a street festival. While the event didn’t often generate large amounts of revenue, it did improve the profile of downtown Roswell and get everyone’s attention. Over the years, Alive After 5 has transformed into one of the most highly anticipated festivals in the area. Thousands upon thousands of people from all over the Metro area swarm the streets of downtown Roswell, extending from the corner of Canton St. and Woodstock Rd. all the way to the Historic Roswell Square. Restaurants are packed to the gills. Live bands play on the street corners to cheering crowds. Vendors set up tables and food trucks congregate to feed the masses that can’t get tables at the restaurants. It’s almost more than the previously sleepy little street can handle. One would think, based on attendance, that it’s the only event of its kind in the whole area. This may have once been true, but not so anymore. Upon seeing the success of Alive After 5 in Roswell and the boom it created for the downtown area, surrounding communities took notice and seized upon the opportunity to revive their own underused downtown spaces and appeal to the new audiences making their way to the suburbs. Alpharetta has a downtown area not totally dissimilar in style to Canton Street in Roswell. Though a slightly different layout, this dense collection of restaurant and retail primarily consists of independent shops, restaurants and galleries. After observing the models of events like Alive After 5 and other community events in Atlanta, Alpharetta launched their Alpharetta Food Truck Alley on Old Roswell Street. Food Truck Alley is, like Alive After 5, a Thursday night event that begins in April and concludes in October. Unlike Alive After 5, Food Truck Alley is a weekly rather than monthly event. This creates the illusion that Alpharetta, in fact, offers its residents and guests the opportu- Continues on p. 38


Music Festivals, continued from page 37


nity for an early weekend every week. Pretty clever, right? Food Truck Alley features a rotating collection of 6-8 food trucks each week, along with live local music and a similar “street party” atmosphere. The event has gained popularity since its inception and continues to be an economic driver for the downtown Alpharetta area and its surrounding businesses. On the other side of the Fulton County line, the growing city of Woodstock has also taken steps to put their walkable downtown area on the map. Thanks to its location and relatively affordable properties, Woodstock has succeeded in drawing a younger market out into the suburbs. The downtown area has been revitalized to reflect the growing

population of millennials and their young families with a scenic train track running through the middle. Main Street Woodstock, in an effort to build support and recognition for its own local businesses, has begun a series known as Friday Night Live, or FNL. FNL is a monthly event that has drawn increasingly larger crowds with each passing month. This series runs March through December and takes the street party concept a step further by offering a different theme each month. Themes include ideas such as Super Hero Night, Roaring 20s, Havana Nights, and more. Guests and businesses are encouraged to embrace each theme to the fullest as they enjoy live music, food, drinks and explore the businesses of participating

Downtown Merchants who stay open late for the event. These street fests, series, promotions and collaborations have proven to work wonders when it comes to taking struggling historic suburban districts and turning them into destinations. The exposure has allowed these cities to completely revitalize and sometimes even revive their local economies. The model of Alive After 5 (Alive in Roswell) and its related events is being reproduced in cities all over the nation. This also revives a sense of community in many places, and a sense of loyalty to local business. Of course, it isn’t enough to create an event and hope that it takes off. These events need constant updating and fresh ideas in order to stay relevant and attractive to large audiences. In some ways, it spurs a level of competition among the local business communities, as many of their guests at these events are not local residents. Alive After 5 has been a successful, well-attended event for a handful of years now, and the crowds continue to make their way Roswell on the third Thursday of the month. However, it isn’t sufficient to leave the model as it is. With each community finding their own voice and creating their own experience, the fight for attention is growing heated and the crowds are fickle. It is a unique challenge for each of these communities to make themselves permanent fixtures in the competitive entertainment market of Atlanta. Luckily, with the increasing amounts of transplants moving to the area, there should be enough entertainment dollars to go around and support each of these communities. The suburbs are transforming as a result and local economies are shifting with them. It is fascinating to see what innovative ideas the business communities come up with in order to set themselves apart. It is also encouraging to see the local businesses forming collaborations and communities in order to accomplish their individual goals. However, the race is on and no city can stand still for fear of falling behind. The next big idea may be just around the corner!

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The Current Hub  

The Current Hub April 16 edition

The Current Hub  

The Current Hub April 16 edition