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Conversations start here.

WHO NEEDS AMAZON? This may come as a surprise, but brick and mortar retail is doing just fine. p32 HEALTH p 18


Callie Strain and Kim Kopp of k + c curated a full-service interior design business located in City Antiques in Roswell.




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


Tripp Liles tripp@thecurrenthub.com

Mark Penstone mark@thecurrenthub.com

Carrie Kutney Art Director carrie@thecurrenthub.com

Tricia Morris (Social Chick) tricia@thecurrenthub.com


Frank Mack Di Chapman Rachael Brice Spalding Negron Fred Mills Geri Laufer Send submissions & questions: events@thecurrenthub.com Main Phone Number (678) 383-0981

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 FEBRUARY 2018


The Art of Love Exhibit

February 14-17 The Wild Hope Art Gallery, 8560 Holcomb Bridge Road, Alpharetta, has assembled the perfect romantic interlude for Valentine’s Day. The Art of Love Exhibit will feature the work of Victoria Jackson and Aziz Kadmiri, a married couple, both professional artists with international followings. The artists’ personal story is a classical romance, highlighting how the magic of true love can endure even when tested by thousands of miles and many years of separation. The show will open with a reception from 4 to 7 p.m. on Valentine’s Day, February 14 and will hang through February 17. Those attending the Art of Love Event can register to win dinner for two at di Paolo restaurant as well as several gift certificates for Thompson’s Frame and Gallery. For more information on the exhibit, call the Wild Hope Art Gallery at 678-580-0493.


Roswell Beer festival

March 24 Okay so this event is still over a month away but if you want to go you must get your tickets now because it sells out every year. In its 6th year, the Roswell Beer Festival is a celebration of the craft of beer. The event, held on the Historic Roswell Square Mar. 24, will feature over 300 beers representing nearly every variety imaginable. In addition they will have food from some of the best restaurants in the area and the music will set a rocking tone for the whole day. And get this… it all goes to a great cause: The STAR House Foundation in Roswell that serves over 270 at-risk local school children. For tickets and info visit roswellbeerfestival.com.


A Comedy of Tenors

Mar. 1-18 The theatre world has waited 30 years for comic genius Ken Ludwig to deliver the long-awaited companion to the hilarious, Tony Award-winning Lend Me A Tenor, the most popular American farce of the 20th century. This time around, we’re in 1930s Paris featuring; a one-hotel suite; four tenors; two wives; three girlfriends; and a soccer stadium full of screaming fans. The stage is now set for the concert of the century— as long as producer Henry Saunders can keep Italian superstar Tito Merelli and his hot-blooded wife Maria from causing runaway chaos. An uproarious ride, full of mistaken identities, bedroom hijinks, and madcap delight. This is a production of the Georgia Ensemble Theatre located in the Roswell Cultural Arts Center. For show times and tickets visit GET.ORG.





Monster Truck Jam

> > > > > > > > Feb. 24-25


The Daughter of the Regiment

Feb. 24 – Mar. 4 The Daughter of the Regiment, produced by The Atlanta Opera, is a rollicking romantic comedy set in the Swiss Alps at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre. The opera centers on Marie who is a spirited and charming tomboy, adopted and raised by a French army

regiment, and she has fallen in love with the handsome Tonio. Acclaimed director E. Loren Meeker leads this production of Donizetti’s screwball comedy set among the Swiss Alps. Andriana Chuchman will sing the role of Marie, and Atlanta Opera Studio alum Santiago Ballerini will sing the challenging role of Tonio. For info and tickets visit www.atlantaopera.org.

For those of you who’ve not raised a small boy in the past decade, let me introduce you to the world of Monster Jam. Monster Jam features highoctane spontaneous entertainment and intense competition, featuring the most recognizable trucks in the world. Each truck is approximately 10.5 feet tall, 12 feet wide, 17 feet long and weighs 12,000 pounds. A typical Monster Jam engine will generate 1,500 horsepower, thanks to a blower that forces air and fuel into the engine… they are loud and kids go nuts. This event is held at the Mercedes-Benz stadium in Atlanta. For tickets and info visit www.monsterjam.com.


Roswell Roots Festival

Throughout February Celebrate Roswell’s African American history and culture throughout the month of February with a series of unique and fun events for everyone. Roswell’s Roots Festival is one of the largest and most comprehensive celebrations in the state of Georgia. Share in our diverse history while discovering more about African American heritage, art, food, and contributions. Maybe you will even learn SEE OUR ROOTS something about Roswell’s roots you never ARTICLE ON knew before! For more info visit PAGE 30 roswellroots.com.


Cardboard Con

March 1 All of us as kids probably built something from cardboard. Well now of course there is a festival to celebrate that fact in the form of Cardboard Con. Held annually in downtown Atlanta, Cardboard Con is a family-friendly “traveling” convention which spans several convention hotels over the course of five hours, providing a significant positive economic and spiritual impact on the city as a whole. Cardboard Con is more efficient than other science fiction conventions held in Atlanta, as it eschews the outdated and inefficient “volunteer system” in favor of the “you’re in charge of yourself” system. If nothing else it is a great place to people watch… especially if it rains. For more info visit cardboardcon.com.


36th Annual Great American Cover-Up Quilt Show

March 9–18 Admittedly we’re early on this but in March there is a unique quilt show coming to Bulloch Hall in Roswell called The 36th Annual Great American Cover-Up Quilt Show. Bulloch Hall Quilt Guild has a unique opportunity to host this special exhibit of quilted art, which represents the 59 designated National Parks in the United States. There are 177 pieces in the collection and each National Park is represented by three originally designed quilted illustrations. The exhibit will replace the traditional guild quilt show at Bulloch Hall. You can see more about the project at npscentennialquilts.com and for specific info on the local show visit bullochhall.org.

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By Michael Harris

Muse and Co. Fine Art of Roswell, which has a long history of presenting female and abstract works mostly of local artists, is introducing three dynamic artists in conjunction with the Roswell Roots Festival. The show, which is titled Abstracted Visions, will showcase the works of three African American women artists Lillian Blades, Tracey Murrell, and Charlotte Riley-Webb. All three have won numerous awards and recognition for their work  and they have all had significant exhibitions nationwide. Blades is known mostly for her multilayered 3D assemblage and  is a native of the Bahamas. Much of her work deals with ideas and abstracted images of womanhood, the sea, and memories of her childhood and home. Her  paintings, assemblages, and prints are included in numerous museum, public, and private collections.  Murrell is an Atlanta-based artist and curator.  Her bold, minimal artwork explores the use of silhouettes by re-contextualizing images from popular culture to use as entry points for conversations on gender, race, and beauty.  Her use of  positive/negative space and  high-key color are reminiscent of pop and  post pop  masters such as Lichtenstein, Katz, and Hume—prompting viewers to question their own beliefs about race and gender, as well as what is high and low art.  Riley-Webb is an Atlanta native who grew up and was educated in Ohio. She is a painter, illustrator, and print maker

Clockwise from top left: Artists Lillian Blades, Charlotte Riley-Webb, and Tracey Murrell.

who was known for most of her career for her vibrant color palette and images of beautiful, graceful, and strong women and girls. Her foray into abstraction over the past decade carries forward the vibrant coloration and story-telling of her figurative work. Riley-Webb has won numerous awards including one from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation and the  John T. Biggers Award.  This exhibition runs throughout February with an artists’ talk and reception on Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. Muse and Co. Fine Art is located at 31B Oak St. in Roswell. For more information on the gallery visit their site at www.musecofineart.com. ❍








strategy to see you through good times and bad? Does your portfolio reflect your personal goals and risk tolerances? If you experienced strong growth in 2017, is it time to take some profits and/or to rebalance your portfolio to its original target mix? While investment management is a marathon of patience rather than a shortsighted sprint, now is as good a time to review the terrain.

children turned 18 recently? Be forewarned! If you don’t have the legal paperwork in place, hospitals and healthcare providers may not be able to discuss your adult child’s personal medical emergency with you. To remain involved in their healthcare interests, you’ll want to have a healthcare power of attorney, durable power of attorney and HIPAA authorization in place.

With spring right around the corner, now is a great time to spring clean your personal financial life. Let us know if we can help you turn your finanfor you and your loved ones? If so, when is the last time you took a look at them? Your family may have cial planning jump-start into a mighty wealth Meaningful Conversations about Money by Robert Fezza and Steve Siders management leap. It begins with a meaningful experienced births, deaths, marriages or divorces This month we complete our 10 financial best prac- and/or you may have acquired or sold a business. For conversation. Life’s a journey—navigate it wisely! tices to jump-start the new year with tips #6 –10 to all these reasons and more, it’s worth revisiting your Robert Fezza, CFP® and Steve help energize your personal wealth management estate plans periodically. Siders, CFP® own Odyssey efforts. You can see tips #1 –5 online at Personal Financial Advisors, 9. HAVE A LOOK AT YOUR POA AND HEALTHthecurrenthub.com/jumpstart. Let’s jump back in. 500 Sun Valley Drive, Suite A-6, CARE DIRECTIVES. Be sure you have the necessary 6. GET READY FOR TAX TIME. The new tax Roswell, GA. Their firm documents in place in case you become changes signed into law in December don’t apply to incapacitated. As healthcare becomes increasingly specializes in working with peo2017 taxes (due by April 17, 2018). Still, there are the complex, advance directives (living wills) play an ple who are serious about making progress towards usual tax-planning activities to tackle: gathering their financial goals. Odyssey manages portfolios increasingly vital role in ensuring your healthcare W2s and 1099s, receipts and expenses, donation wishes are met should you be unable to express them greater than $250,000. 770-992-4444, reports, etc. As important, be sure to look at all your when the need arises. Get the right documents if you www.odysseypfa.com. Securities offered through Cetera options to maximize IRA (or Roth IRA) don’t have them, and know where they are if they are Financial Specialists LLC, member FINRA/SIPC. contributions for 2017, including spousal IRAs! needed!

8. ENSURE YOUR ESTATE PLANS ARE CURRENT. Do you have wills and/or trusts in place




GREAT EVENTS ON TAP THIS MONTH Pat Rains (left) and Brian Borngesser of Gate City Brewing Company will host festivities on the weekend of Feb 10–11. Wicked good music, food, and beer.

Gate City Brewing By Tripp Liles

I’m going to start this month with big congratulations to local guys Pat Rains and Brian Borngesser of Gate City Brewing Company in Historic Roswell on their 3rd anniversary. Now to be clear they aren’t married… well to each other anyway. Rather, this anniversary marks their 3 years of making world-class beer right in the heart of Roswell in a repurposed garage. And to celebrate that fact they will have a weekend of festivity on Feb.10 and 11. The Gate City tap list is always on point and they will be offering a special release packaged beer just for this occasion. There is no entry fee for either day, which gives you unfettered access to the best beer around and from what I was told, some of this has been aging for years in preparation for this celebration. Beyond the world-class brew they will feature wicked good music and food onsite. If you have not been to Gate City then this is a great opportunity to see and taste great beer made right. As I’m sure you heard, the Ringling Brother’s Circus stopped operating last year. Like many of you I grew up going to that annually whenever the circus was in town. Don’t fret because there is still the Big Apple Circus, which is going on now through Feb. 25 in the parking lot at Verizon Amphitheatre. I’ve been to this show several times and it is a great classic take on a circus done with professional performances. They feature a one-ring setting coupled with an artistic style that creates an intimate setting and no bad seats. This is the Big Apple Circus’ 40th Anniversary that features a seven-person pyramid on the high wire with Nik Wallenda and the Fabulous Wallendas. They will also feature a daring quadruple somersault on the trapeze by The Flying Tunzianis. This is the first time these guys have performed together, and in the setting provided, it promises to be a great time for the whole family. For tickets and specific show times visit the Verizon Amphitheatre site at www.vzwamp.com.

Harlem Globetrotters

This event is to support and spread awareness for the Special Olympic athletes in Georgia and serves as their largest fundraiser. Anyone with a lot of guts and little common sense can jump into the icy waters. All proceeds will benefit the Special Olympics Georgia and to register visit their site at www.specialolympicsga.org. The Polar Plunge takes place at Acworth Beach at Cauble Park. See when you started this article you had no idea Acworth had a beach… now you do. For more info on other great events all around us visit our web site on the internet machine at www.thecurrenthub.com. ❍


four-point shot in the history of the sport against those pesky Washington Generals, the ever present opponent for the Globetrotters. For tickets, show times, and more information, visit www.harlemglobetrotters.com. For those who have visited my home, you know that I do not in fact have a green thumb or a green lawn. For those of you who don’t have the touch of death in the garden, might I recommend the Atlanta Botanical Garden Flower Show to be held Feb. 23–25. This event has a somewhat long history that started as the Atlanta Acworth Polar Plunge Flower Show in the 1930s, then While we’re on the “old school” These days the Globetrotters have a bloomed into the Southeastern Flower new generation of athletes who live up Show, which wilted in 2013 and went theme, let me mention that the away. This new event held at the Harlem Globetrotters are in the area to the same showmanship from years on Mar. 3 at the Infinite Energy Center past. The Globetrotters’ show features Atlanta Botanical Garden focuses on competitions in floral design, horticuleven more amazing basketball skills in Duluth and at Philips Arena on ture, and photography. For more info, and wizardry, with a continued focus Mar. 10. The Harlem Globetrotters free of puns, visit atlantabg.org. have been around since the 1920s, but on family entertainment. During their In case you haven’t noticed, we’re ac2017 tour, the Globetrotters unveiled their heyday was in the 70s with the tually having a winter this year. Even basketball’s first ever four-point line, great Fred “Curly” Neal. And who 30 feet away from the basket… over six my Yankee friends are complaining. could forget that TV special when the Well if you’re saying I’m a winter wimp, feet beyond the NBA’s current threeHarlem Globetrotters were on and I am, then how about you take the Gilligan’s Island… ah the good old days point line. It’s a move that came six years after the team unveiled the first Acworth Polar Plunge on Feb. 24. of just three TV channels to watch.




Music To Warm Your Heart a band with charisma and integrity. Both humble in person and imposing behind a kit, he is a graduate of the inaugural Jazz Studies Program at The Juilliard School and a two-time Grammy Award winner. He earned his stripes as a member of bassist Christian McBride’s acclaimed trio and was the driving force of McBride’s big band. Singer songwriter Sarah Partridge performs on Feb. 24. After graduating college at Northwestern University in Ulysses Owens Jr. 1982, she worked around Chicago, and By Fred Mills landed her first feature role in Tom There is plenty to love about the local Cruise’s 1983 hit  Risky Business. She spent years honing her technique in Los music scene in this month of love. Angeles and New York City, where she We’ve got some excellent tributes moved in 1994, and instantly bonded coupled with a few excellent original with trumpet legend Doc Cheatham. artists to cap off the month. Partridge released her debut I’ll Be Easy There are a couple of professional to Find in 1998, a widely acclaimed tribute acts in the area this month with album and has grown exponentially the first being Markell Williams paying with each new recording. It would not homage to the legendary crooner Sam be surprising if a few of her songs Cooke. When this moving tribute became standards in the future. And comes to Earl Strand Theatre on Feb. 14, your sweetheart will sure be in for a Sarah Partridge treat. The “Sam Cooke Experience” is peppered with stories from the iconic singer’s childhood and rise to fame. On Feb. 17 Jane Powell, “The Goddess of Soul” takes the stage of the Roswell Cultural Arts center as she performs a blend of classic R&B songs, blues tunes, jazz standards, and gospel anthems. Jane has worked with some of the best in the business including the legendary Ray Charles. Powell will captivate you with her playful personality, spicy sense of humor, and now, Bright Lights & Promises: soulful style. If you’re craving some jazz, then our Redefining Janis Ian, her latest release, captures an artist fully in command of friends at The Velvet Note in her craft. Surrounded by an enviably Alpharetta have you covered. On Feb. sympathetic cast of collaborators, 17 they welcome multi Grammy winning drummer Ulysses Owens Jr. Partridge has expanded the possibilities and his trio to the intimate Velvet Note for fellow vocalists, bringing the work of stage. Owens has established himself an American original firmly into the jazz as a leader in his generation of jazz fold. For info and tickets visit The Velvet artists, admired for his sensitive, fiery Note site at www.thevelvetnote.com. and complex playing, vivid display of To keep up with local shows visit our textural nuance, and gift for propelling site at www.thecurrenthub.com.❍





Newton’s third law of motion stated that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. It’s simple physics we all learned in school and it certainly applies to the real estate market. In 2018 you can expect some reaction to all the housing gains we’ve seen during recovery from the great recession. With many homes in our area earning double-digit gains for 8 years, I can say those days are coming to an end… soon. Interest rates are moving to normal levels and appreciation is slowing down so if you’re thinking about selling, now is close to peak performance in many neighborhoods. In the Historic Roswell area pricing has hit the breaks on many townhome communities and even new construction is seeing a reduction on price. A few years ago this was “hot” property but that “hot” label now applies to Downtown Alpharetta, which simply has more of that connected feel that buyers crave. Roswell has not kept up, and the lack of infrastructure investment coupled with government dysfunction is costing people money. This is especially true for the higher priced homes around Canton Street, with homes in the $600s sitting on the market for longer periods. Overall, inventory remains low, but the market is less desperate as buyers are more willing to move north into South Forsyth County… the new frontier. The infrastructure of that area is maturing and many buyers are no longer afraid of going north of Alpharetta. This also complicates a market with several dynamics at play with regards to what buyers want… a turn-key house. The homes that sell today, especially at the higher prices points, are ready to move into with no updates needed. As you move north of the $600K price point, people are not going to move into a home and feel the need to repaint, refinish floors, and renovate kitchens and baths. The hot trend of the day is the “Farmhouse Style” started by Chip and Joanna Gaines several years ago. The more white kitchens and fresh pops of color, the easier the sell. So simply looking at pricing in a neighborhood is short sighted. All homes in a neighborhood are not exactly comparable. You need to have a realistic look at your property. If you’ve not made updates in more than a decade then you cannot expect top dollar. To be clear, if you’re under that price point then there are neighborhoods that are still doing well. A for instance is Martin’s Landing on the east side of Roswell. There are many cases of homes in that area that have doubled in price, into the low $400s, from just 3 years ago. I stress that $400K price point. Those homes were severely underpriced, and now that’s corrected. Again, simple play here is buy low sell high. It’s an old adage that will never die. ❍ Kirsten Ricci is a Roswell resident and a Berkshire Hathaway Agent who specializes in residential real estate in the north metro Atlanta area. She can be reached at 678-472-3832, kirsten@roswellrealty.net.

health&wellness presented by WellStar North Fulton Hospital


WellStar North Fulton Hospital Community Calendar FEBRUARY 2018 through APRIL 2018 All classes in January and February will meet in an alternate location as the hospital classrooms are not available. SUPPORT GROUPS Ostomy Support Group

By Jon-Paul Croom, president of WellStar North Fulton Hospital

Last month, Paul Hewson found himself admitted to our Intensive Care Unit with an unknown blood illness. After multiple tests, his attending physician discovered Mr. Hewson was suffering from a rare blood disorder. When deciding treatment, the doctor chose to take one additional step; he consulted the Mayo Clinic directly through an online portal between WellStar and Mayo. Mayo responded promptly with suggestions for altering the care strategy and for medication they had observed to be successful in treating this unusual ailment. Ultimately, Mr. Hewson’s health improved and he was discharged and referred to a specialist who is an expert in the management of this disease. Though I used a pseudonym to protect our patient’s privacy, the facts of this story represent the rapid advances we have made in real-time communication between physicians. The result is more immediate advanced care for patients. In November of 2017, WellStar North Fulton Hospital joined WellStar’s collaboration with Mayo Clinic, a global leader in medical research and education. Our physicians now have the ability to collaborate at any time with other physicians within the Mayo Clinic Care Network and share the latest medical information. In all cases, these consults are completed at no additional cost to patients. Because of these advances in communication technology, great outcomes (like Mr. Newson’s) are becoming commonplace. This also presents a great example of WellStar’s commitment to providing the best care, close to home. ❍

Third Tuesday of every month, 6:30 p.m. Classroom C This group is open to anyone who has or will have an ostomy and any friends, family or supporters. Call John Dorso at 678-694-8726 to register or to obtain more information.

Stroke Support Group Last Wednesday of each month from 6:30 -7:30 p.m. ACE Dayroom. Please join Stroke survivors, caregivers, and families to share and support one another. The group is facilitated by the Stoke Program Coordinator and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. RSVP to Keisha C. Brown at 404-229-9639 or keishac@thriveworks.com.

Epilepsy Support Group Third Wednesday of every month; 7–9 p.m. Classrooms A/B. People with epilepsy as well as their family and care-providers are invited to attend this support group. The meetings will provide time for attendees to share helpful information and resources from their own experiences. Please contact Tim for more information at 770-667-9363.

Services Manager, at 770-751-2556 for location and to register.

Alzheimer’s Association Caregiver Support Group Every Fourth Saturday, 10–11 a.m. Classroom C. Please join our monthly support group for caregivers and family members of individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or related disorders. The support group offers a place to share information, support each other and learn about resources in your community. Call Christine at 404-786-3433 for more information.

Maternity Tours Please join one of our Women’s Health nurses in the hospital atrium on alternating Tuesdays at 4 p.m. and Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. for a guided tour of the Labor & Delivery suites, Mother/ Baby Unit and the Neonatal ICU.

Water Birth Thursdays 2/8, 2/22, 3/8, 3/22, 4/5 and American Heart Association 4/19 at 7 p.m. Registration Friends and Family CPR* required. For Saturday 3/17, 10–12 p.m. $25 couples CPR course for those who do not desiring to need a course completion card. learn about the Contact 770-956-STAR (7827) for information on Heartsaver CPR/1st option of a water birth delivery. Aid classes and CPR for Healthcare Completion of the class is required to be considered for water birth at Providers. WNFH. $30.00 per couple.


BLS for Healthcare Providers Saturday 4/28, 9–3 p.m. $60 This course is designed for healthcare providers and professionals.

For more information on classes, to register, or to find a physician, call 770-956-STAR (7827) or visit www.wellstar.org.

*AHA Disclaimer: The American Heart Association strongly promotes knowledge and proficiency in BLS, Diabetes Self-Management ACLS and PALS and has developed instructional materials for this Workshop purpose. Use of these materials in an Saturdays , 2/10, 3/10, and 4/14. Breast Cancer Support The Diabetes Association of Atlanta educational course does not Group represent course sponsorship by the (DAA) offers classes at WellStar First Thursday of every month, American Heart Association, and North Fulton Hospital to teach 10:30-11:30 a.m. diabetes self-management skills. Call any fees charged for such a course do Cope and connect with others who Patricia at 404-527-7180 for more not represent income to the are facing the same struggles. Please information and to register. Association. call Sarah Bentley, RN, Oncology




A LIFE CHANGED Hyperbaric oxygen treatment at WellStar North Fulton Hospital changed outcome for double amputee


n less than 18 months Alex Hearn went from being a trauma patient at WellStar North Fulton Hospital to being a double amputee swimming at the Iron Man triathlon in Augusta, Georgia. Alex, 49, credits the treatment he received at North Fulton’s Wound Care & Hyperbaric Center for being able to adapt prosthetics to his legs and live an active life. “I hate to think what it would have been if I had not received hyperbaric treatment,” said Hearn.

Alex Hearn competed last year in the swim portion of the Iron Man triathlon in Augusta, Georgia.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a medical treatment In a hyperbaric chamber the pressure is increased up that enhances the body’s natural healing  process by to three times higher than normal air pressure. breathing pure oxygen in a pressurized room or tube. Under these conditions, the body can gather more oxygen than would be possible breathing pure oxygen at normal air pressure. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used to treat serious infections, bubbles of air in the blood vessels and wounds that won’t heal as a result of diabetes or radiation injury to name a few. Alex had a car accident on May 6, 2016 not far from North Fulton Hospital, a Level II trauma center. Due to the gravity of his injuries, his legs had to be amputated below the knee. “I have no recollection of the accident. My last memory is getting in the car after having lunch with my coworkers,” said Alex. He woke up a week later and his life had changed. “I wasn’t angry, bitter or depressed. I was very serene and excited to be alive,” he said. After spending some time at the Intensive Care Unit he was transferred to North Fulton Hospital’s Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit, where he did physical, occupational and speech therapy. His left leg started to get stronger, but his right leg was giving him trouble. He had extensive wounds that were not healing. That is when hyperbaric treatment was suggested. “When we first saw Alex his lower legs were not in good shape. Our main focus was to save his knee joints so he would be able to use prosthetics and have After graduating from the Wound Care & Hyperbaric Center, Alex Hearn was a better outcome,” explained Debra Gonzalez, able to use prosthetics on both legs. Director of the Wound Care & Hyperbaric Center at

Debra Gonzalez, director of the Wound Care & Hyperbaric Center at WellStar North Fulton Hospital; Alex Hearn; and Matthew Kanouse, one of the techs who treated Alex during his time at the Center.

North Fulton. He started inpatient treatment five days a week, 90 minutes per day. He was released from the hospital on July 1 and continued to get into the chamber every day until he completed 40 sessions of 90 minutes. “It was almost like getting into a spaceship,” remembered Alex. “It is awesome technology that is available right here.” His knees were saved and by November of 2016 and was able to start using prosthetics on his left leg. Five months later he started using prosthetics on his right leg. “From the nurses on the second floor, to my therapists in rehab and the team in wound care and hyperbarics, everyone was phenomenal and helped me through this process. My wife was by my side all the time and we ended up becoming friends with many of them,” he said. Alex continued his recovery process and after months of therapy he decided he wanted to something special. (Continues on next page)



PAIN & SPINE CENTER HAS A GRAND OPENING WellStar North Fulton Hospital’s Pain & Spine Center celebrated its expansion with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Jan. 16. A nice gathering of local politicians, business leaders and WellStar personnel Attendees were given a full tour of the were on hand to cut the beautiful new facility. ribbon and officially open a beautiful new facility dedicated to making life more comfortable for the many people who suffer from chronic pain and discomfort. In addition to the new space, the facility added an Infusion Center, which provides an WellStar North Fulton Pain and Spine Center alternative for oral medication. To book an appointment or learn 4500 Hospital Blvd more about the Pain & Spine Center, Roswell, GA 30076 please call 770-751-2719. ❍ Phone: 770-751-2719

(A Life Changed, continued from previous page) “There are so many things you take for granted, like walking, jumping or running. It’s pretty tough when you realize you can’t do those things. But then when I started to see that I could do some of those things again I thought I wanted to do something I’ve never done before,” he said. Encouraged by his physical therapist he signed up for the swim portion of the Iron Man triathlon as a physically challenged athlete. He completed the 1.2mile swim in 43 minutes and 55 seconds. “When they were taking me out of the water and people saw that I was missing my legs from below

Jon-Paul Croom officially opening the new center.

Kenneth H. Joel, M.D., who has served as the Medical Director for the Pain and Spine Center since 1990, addresses the crowd gathered to tour the facility.

the knees there was a change in the mood. The cow tion.blog. To schedule an appointment at the Wound bells were louder and people couldn’t stop cheering,” Care & Hyperbaric Center please call 770-751-2832. Alex recounted. This year he plans to compete again. He’s also very Wound Care & Hyperbaric Center active in support groups for amputees, where he shares his message of hope. “I like to share my story Where: 3000 Hospital Blvd, Roswell, GA 30076 with amputees or physically challenged individuals, I want to tell them this is not a death sentence. If you What do they treat: The center offers a full range of put your mind and heart in the right place you can therapies for wound treatment including conventional accomplish more than what you think.” and specialty dressings, debridement, compression Alex recently started a blog to share his progress as therapy, total contact casting, skin substitutes and he trains for Iron Man 2018 and invite others to hyperbaric oxygen therapy. share their stories. Visit his blog at www.ampuletena-



HAPPY HEART, HAPPY LIFE Preventive screenings help patients assess risk factors and have a healthy heart M.D., medical director of North Fulton’s cardiology program. “Oftentimes we know that big events like heart attacks or strokes could have been prevented if risk factors had been addressed, so it is imEvery 42 seconds someone portant to take a proactive has a heart attack in the approach.” United States. In a year, The screening uses a combi610,000 Americans die from nation of basic labs and a heart disease, according to the cardiac CT scans to identify American Heart Association. heart disease before someone But many heart conditions are shows any signs or symptoms. preventable through early Each screening includes a conheart screenings. sultation where the patient WellStar North Fulton receives education on how to Hospital offers Know Your improve risk factors going forHeart, a screening that can ward and if there is any risk help determine patients’ risk that needs to be addressed imfor heart disease, stroke and mediately the patient gets other serious conditions. referred to a cardiologist. The WellStar Know Your During the consultation paHeart program is a preventive, tients receive risk factor self-pay screening program education, diet, weight and exthat offers two levels of testing performed at North Fulton Hospital. Patients can get basic or advanced screenings depending on their age, symptoms and risk factors. “This is a very successful program offered by WellStar Health System and we’re excited to offer it here at North Fulton,” said Hunt Anderson,

Along with Valentine’s Day, February marks American Heart Month, a great time to give your heart some love.

ercise recommendations, as well as a personalized report to take home.

Prevention is key Because heart disease can be silent, adults should have regular well checkups with their primary care physician starting as early as 20 years old. Basic tests should include checking blood pressure, cholesterol, signs of diabetes and body weight. The patient also has an electrocardiogram, where the heart’s electrical activities are translated into waves, revealing specific information about the heart’s health.


1 Lose weight/ maintain healthy weight

2 Eat better 3 Get active 4 Manage blood pressure 5 Reduce blood sugar 6 Stop smoking 7 Control cholesterol

If necessary, a patient can also have a coronary calcium scan to check for any buildup in the arteries as well as more advanced cholesterol testing. When results reveal a problem, the primary care physician directs the patient to a cardiologist. While you’re spending time honoring the special people in your life, remember the impor-

tance of keeping your hearts healthy too. To determine eligibility and to schedule an appointment for a Know Your Heart screening call 770-756-STAR (7827). To see a cardiologist at WellStar Cardiovascular Medicine in Roswell, call 770-410-4520. The office is located at 4500 Hospital Boulevard, Suite 230. ❍

WellStar North Fulton Hospital SPECIAL EVENTS Introducing the Speaking about Wellness for Women 2018 Quarterly Seminar Series “Genetic Counseling: What It Can Tell Us and What It Cannot” Thursday 3/29 Did you know WellStar offers a comprehensive genetic risk assessment program to help patients identify possible hereditary causes of cancer, cardiac conditions and more? Presented by: Sarah Siddiqui, MS, CGC, Board Certified Genetic Counselor, WellStar Center for Genetics and Individualized Medicine.

Introducing the Speaking about Wellness for Healthy Aging 2018 Quarterly Seminar Series “Maintaining Your Strength, Balance and Flexibility for Fall and Injury Prevention” Tuesday 4/24 Strength, balance and flexibility are important at any age, but we have to work harder as we age to maintain it. Join us as a Physical Therapist from WellStar North Fulton’s Rehabilitation Department will review exercises and activities to help you stay at your best. You will also learn some simple tips to make your home safer to aid in the prevention of falls. Presented by: A Physical Therapist from WellStar North Fulton Hospital Rehabilitation, Doors open for dinner at 6 p.m. Program presentation: 6:30– 7:30 p.m. Cost: $10 per program, contact 770-956-STAR (7827) for more info.

Senior Health Fair with the City of Roswell Wednesday 3/28 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Adult Recreation Center 830 Grimes Bridge Rd. Join us for free health information and screenings.


Facebook.com/NorthFultonHospital Twitter handle: @NFultonHospital

By Nancy Gore

For the past thirteen years, book clubs throughout Roswell gather to read the same book selected by the organization Roswell Reads. This year, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the death of Martin Luther King, Jr., the book selected is Burial for a King: Martin Luther King, Jr.’s funeral and the week that transformed Atlanta and rocked the Nation by Rebecca Burns. You are invited to read this riveting and emotional account of the landmark week that encapsulates Dr. King’s legacy, America’s shifting attitude toward race, and the emergence of Atlanta as a new kind of Southern city. Burial for a King chronicles the story of an unlikely alliance of former student radicals, the middle-aged patrician mayor, the no-nonsense police chief, black ministers, white churchgoers, Atlanta’s business leaders, King’s grieving family members, and his stunned SCLC colleagues, who worked to keep Atlanta safe, honor a murdered hero, and host the tens of thousands who came to pay tribute. Additionally, there are a variety of Roswell Reads events connected to the theme of this book to be held in March. A free family program “Stand Up for Justice, Friendship, Harmony and Respect” will Rebecca Burns is a Georgia-based be held at the Roswell library on Sat., Mar. 3, from 1 journalist, teacher, and author to 2:30 p.m. Children can explore the importance of whose work focuses on urban standing up for what they believe in. This interactive, planning and development, civil hands-on family program will include multiple and human rights, and social and learning stations, a friendship photo booth, a postereconomic justice. making station, and a reading of Bank Street College of Education Best Children’s Book of the Year Child of the Civil Rights Movement, by Paula Young Shelton. In addition, there will be a bus trip and walking tour of Atlanta’s civil rights monuments, where you can trace the footsteps of Dr. King and the genesis of the civil rights movement in Atlanta. The tours will start at the Roswell Adult Recreation Center at 10 a.m. and return approximately at 3 p.m. Tours are available both Wed. Mar. 7 and Sat. Mar. 10. A free writing workshop will be held by Rebecca Burns on Fri. Mar. 16 at 10 a.m. until noon at Roswell City Hall. The title of the workshop is “Exploring New Forms of Nonfiction Storytelling.” Burns served as editor-in chief of Atlanta magazine from 2002-2009 and she presently serves as the publisher of The Red & Black, an independent student newspaper and media organization serving the University of Georgia and Athens community. She also teaches parttime at UGA and frequently speaks to school, civic, and corporate groups. Activities culminate in the 13th annual Roswell Reads Literary Luncheon on Mar. 17 at the Roswell Adult Recreation Center at 11 a.m. Roswell Reads is sponsored by Friends of the Roswell Library, Friends of the East Roswell Library, the City of Roswell, and the Roswell Rotary Club. For more details about all the events, go to www.roswellreads.com. ❍




LIFE… 50+ (



A SLIPand Slide TYPE of WINTER By Di Chapman

“May you live in interesting times...May you live in exciting times.” This 17th century Chinese adage is used continuously all around us, but did you know it was actually spoken as a curse? I had no idea, but let’s face it, curse or otherwise, doesn’t this apply to the winter we’re experiencing?

Friendship An Important Key To Your Well-Being



riends are one of the true joys in life. Not only do our bonds with friends give us a sense of community, but in many cases— especially as we grow older—our friends also become our family. Retirement can be exciting, giving you the freedom to explore new interests, pursue lifelong dreams, continue your education and more. And what better way to enjoy that freedom than with friends who share your enthusiasm? Having close relationships and staying socially active are essential to maintaining quality of life. In fact, research shows that social interaction in older adults can result in health benefits such as lower blood pressure and potentially reduced risk for cardiovascular problems, some cancers, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease. • Schedule a time each day to call a friend or visit Friends are also helpful in keeping loneliness at bay someone. and preventing the depression that comes with iso• Meet your neighbors—young or old. lation. Here are some suggestions from AARP • Use social media such as Facebook to stay in Foundation of ways to stay connected to friends touch with long-distance friends. Or write an and make new connections: old-fashioned letter.

• Stay physically active and include group exercise as a fun way to socialize while staying healthy. • Take a class to learn something new and expand your circle of friends. • Revisit an old hobby and connect with others who share your interests. • Volunteer to deepen your sense of purpose and help others. • Check out faith-based organizations. Many offer outreach to help isolated community members. • Get involved in a cause and meet new people with a shared purpose. We cordially invite you to come see how friends are an integral part of the St. George Village community. Experience our warm and welcoming environment, take a tour and stay for lunch. Call Stacy at 678-987-0402 for a confidential appointment. Find more details about our community, lifestyle, and residents at www.stgeorgevillage.com. Follow us on Facebook and Pinterest, too! ❍

St. George Village | 11350 Woodstock Road | Roswell, GA 30075 | 678-987-0402 | stgeorgevillage.com | www.pinterest.com/stgeorgevillage

to speak. Our trek revealed our park’s winter beauty, and freshness, albeit with patches of ice and mud to navigate. Footprints and paw prints told us that our usual trail comrades had beat us to it. We didn’t even think about the sloping mud field we had to conquer to return home. Then it was there. We recited a countdown sequence as we stood atop the steep mud field. “I’ll go first!” I exclaimed as I descended into the slip and slide pit in front of us. Descending a hill covered in pudding-like mud is a Candid Camera segment waiting to happen. At mid-point in the mud, my feet flew out from underneath me. The mud cushioned the landing on my backside. I laughed. Next, my honey who was inquiring on my safety lost his footing and landed in a mud-cushioned fall as well. As hysterical as this scene might be, the late great Allen Funt would have inserted a number of bleeps over my husband’s speech. “Holy bleep!” What the bleep?” “Bleep, bleep, bleep!” As one who is well-versed in the art of face planting, stumbling, and slipping, I am still laughing! The red Georgia mud was all over us. How did it do that? Every layer of clothing slid in the mud. Our outerwear was muddy, our innerwear was muddy, our socks were muddy, and our backsides were embarrassing. All of this meant our wonderful post-hike night was topped off with a mud-scrubbing fest. And what the heck would Chinese curmudgeons predict for Valentine’s Day? Hmmmmm. I loved our winter wonderland, but I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. However, gentlemen, let me recommend a Valentine activity such as a stroll with your sweetie. It’s an opportunity to wrap your jacket around her shoulders and cozy up. It’s bound to at least be chilly. My husband and I will enjoy a Valentine’s lunch locally, and the enjoyment of our favorite park again, albeit with better footing. All of this is indeed interesting and exciting in ways we can calmly enjoy! I want to wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day and remember that spring will be here soon enough. Let’s hope it’s boring! ❍


I enjoy talking to our mailman, so on day two of the snow and ice in January, I watched as his little box of a vehicle struggled to climb the small hill in front of our home. Those little tires spun and spun and finally lurched forward to the next patch of icy snow. My neighbor and I, who stood conversing in the snow while she encouraged her little Maltese to do his business quickly, watched with apprehension. “Oh, oh. Will this happen?” Yes, it did. During the days leading up to our “winter wonderland,” more than once, when I exited my car to run into the grocery store, or the gym, or the dry cleaners, I invariably found myself running back to the car to pull out my wool scarf. As we ladies all bundled up after exercise classes to the point of being unrecognized, conversations in the locker rooms started when women wailed, about how they moved from various places up north to escape this type of climate. Welcome to the new south! In the midst of our winter wonderland, my husband and I were desperate to break free from the shutin experience to see what was happening in the wooded trails behind our house. We put on three layers of clothing, fleece leggings, and long underwear, topped off with gloves, a cap for my husband, and earmuffs for me. (Goofy, I know.) We crossed the covered bridge leading to the trail. Gingerly, placing our boots one after the other and held on to the handrail as we climbed the ice-laden concrete steps on the forest side of the covered bridge. Then, there it was. Reddish-brown Georgia clay mud. We expected snow, we expected ice, but mud? Who said there’d be mud? Footprints of others who slipped and skidded were everywhere. Good to know we weren’t the only nutty ones in town. I grabbed trees to steady me as I climbed. I searched for patches of non-soggy ground. Slowly and methodically, I made it to the top and turned around to see my husband climbing almost in slow motion, several yards behind me. At the crest of the trail, we took a breath. We were out of the woods, so


FLOWER POWER! Start a Stunning Vegetable and Flower Garden from Seed GARDEN (

Basil is so easy to start from seed; they all germinate! Green Scene by Geri Laufer

Metro-Atlanta homeowners and gardeners spend a bundle every year buying flowers and veggie starts at their local garden center or big box store, thinking they’re taking the quickest, easiest route to achieve a gorgeous garden. Perhaps that’s the way to go for some. But it limits the choices available, and may force you to skimp on the number of flowers you plant or else go over budget. Every year, more gardeners discover that starting their own flowers, herbs and vegetables from seed is not only extremely economical, but satisfying and a lot easier than they thought. The choices are dazzling!

Fun The local garden center has full racks of fresh-for-2018 seed packets, so choose a handful. Or request a hardcopy seed catalog online, then when it arrives in the mail, round up the kids and page through it, circling those you want. Start small. Typically, the descriptions are so alluring that it’s a case of “your eyes being bigger than your stomach” but don’t order more than five if you are a newbie. Don’t forget to add an Heirloom

Seed leaves of baby Arugula Tomato with one-pound fruits, or some fail-proof Zinnia seeds. Some examples are Baker Seeds, Park Seeds, or Burpee Seeds, but there are many companies online.

Informative Descriptions in those seed catalogs, or on the back of the seed packets are filled with information on how to


Heirloom Tomatoes started from seeds provide enough to share with neighbors.

grow, and the ideal conditions so each Economical variety will achieve maximum beauty A whole seed packet containing or productivity. Use it for reference. dozens of seeds generally costs the It’s like reading sound bites of same as one starter plant. Imagine gardening info and you will learn so getting a whole flat of marigolds for much! $1.29.




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There is something satisfying about starting seeds indoors. Those tiny seedlings seem to shrink the time until spring arrives. When the seedlings have two sets of leaves, it’s time to thin them out and pot them up in their own little pots or into a flat that you have washed out from last year. Gradually expose them to outdoor conditions (called ‘hardening off ’) and plant masses of flowers or unusual veggies in your garden and landscape. Start some plants from seeds this year and send in photos of how they did. www.thecurrenthub.com. ❍ b e p u t ou t o n ba ns can utto re B r e lo he

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Ultra-easy seeds like Shirley Poppies, Bachelor Buttons, and Zinnias merely need to be thrown out in the garden on bare earth (no mulch) and they will sprout, grow and flower with zero care on your part (!). Can’t get much easier than that. Make sure you have a sunny spot to start the seedlings indoors such as a cool sunroom, or a grow light to boost the foot-candles of light. The more sun the shorter, stockier, and healthier the seedlings will grow. Buy fluffy seed starting mix that’s free of diseases and insects, retains water and drains well. Wash last year’s containers or poke drainage holes in a clean cottage cheese carton (anything will work), fill with potting soil, and plant seeds according to directions. Some varieties need to be covered with soil, while others need light in order to sprout and are sprinkled on the surface and watered in. Water carefully keeping the potting soil moist but not wet until you see the tiny cotyledons (first seed leaves) appear green against the soil! Success!



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Geri Laufer lives in Atlanta, where she works on designing and installing a new landscape for their new old house.





By Frank Mack

Drinking and food go together. Both are social activities that need spaces and involve people with all our inherent peculiarities. Thus a buck to be made and the hospitality industry was born. You can argue endlessly about which is more important to the business… the drinking or the food. But you’ll not find a person with a kitchen and liquor license that won’t tell you which one is more profitable. It’s the drinks… the soda, the booze, the beer, and the wine. Hands down no contest. To that end, there is a new restaurant in downtown Alpharetta (30 Milton Ave.) the whole industry needs to take a look at called Truck & Tap. These guys have shredded the old business plan by outsourcing the kitchen and the associated costs to a growing band of talented roving restaurateurs we all know and love… the food trucks. At Truck & Tap, they do have a small built-in kitchen mind you, but it only operates after the truck leaves, doing an okay easy bar food thing. That kitchen is perfect for late night munchies if the drinking is making you spin a bit. But the heart of the day and mealtimes is all about the truck on site.

Which truck you ask? Ahhh, there’s the beauty. It’ll always change. This model gives you the option of just enjoying the beer, music and overall vibe or discovering something from a roving kitchen out back. It’s a street party feel. Overall the place is sweet. I love the look and everything from owner all the way down the line. The beer list has a local first mentality but to be clear, offers something for a wide variety of tastes. They also feature a nice selection of wines and get this, even craft sodas for the kids.


The Truck & Tap in downtown Alpharetta combines a bar with food trucks for a street party vibe.

omelet. If any industry has the crazy geniuses and talent required to reinvent itself decade by decade it’s this one, as always being led by the American restaurateur.

Restaurant notes Truck & Tap co-founder Zack Yurchuck brings passion to the table. He’s not just riding the cutting edge of a cultural shift in drinking, he’s evolving local economics into the heart of the hottest local restaurant scene in Georgia, which is now Alpharetta. A 26-year-old kid just landed some kind of restaurant industry moon shot. All of this works so nicely together. Downtown Alpharetta has overtaken Canton Street as the “hot” place to be… especially in the food scene. So it only makes sense that this business model thrives here. This ambience is the perfect drinking environment and couple that with a revolving food truck provided by PREP, featuring lobster rolls, loaded burgers, BBQ, Binh Mi Sandwiches… you get it. Due to the continuing moving parts, a menu list is not possible here, so checkout their site at truckandtap.com. Connect with their social media and you can keep up with the current offerings. I’m floored by the simplicity and perfection of it all. This is the second of three Truck & Tap locations. The very first has already been humming along in Woodstock for two years now. Still, I can I see it raising some hackles as well. Those folks don’t matter, because you have to break the eggs to make an

I have a couple of new guys to put on your radar. The first is Meating Street BBQ at 1294 Alpharetta St. in Roswell. I’m going to get into this more next month but I’ll just say we lost Bill Greenwood’s Swallow at the Hollow last month, but just down the street this place is looking like a new winner. Another new place that just opened is Wild Slice Pizzeria at 580 Crossville Road in the Kroger center. This is everything you want… locally owned by Mike and Cristy Thomas. Mike is an industry vet who does a mean pie with a classic taste I would describe as upscale NY style with several house specialties. They also do baked sandwiches and paninis. Overall, this is a great place for famThomas family. ilies. These guys are a true family business and they are striving for that neighborhood feel. I write this because many places I normally touch on are more adult oriented but for those of you with kids who want to get a good meal in a family environment this is your place. They offer a lot of specials and weekly promos so visit them at www.wildslicepizzeria.com. ❍





Located in the Market Plaza at 1255 Johnson Ferry Road. The Avenue East Cobb is getting in EAST COBB on the love as well. Present any With the recently opened Studio Avenue store or restaurant receipt Movie Grill on Powers Ferry in East dated Feb. 14 at the management Cobb and other “dine-in” movie office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on theaters, the days of the old theater the 14th and receive Valentine’s candy seating are going away. To keep up and a rose, while supplies last. with the times, the GTC theater East Cobb is getting a Taqueria company, has been going through Tsunami and Stockyard Burger this some renovations and their spring. Fork U Concepts will be openThe Taqueria Tsunami location in downtown Marietta Merchants Walk Theater is in the ing Taqueria Tsunami in the former has been a hit for years soon East Cobb will have final stages of upgrades adding full reEinstein’s location on Johnson Ferry their own location. clining luxury seating to all Road and Stockyard Burger will be Loyal Q has a special menu for Feb.14 auditoriums. The completion should menu for two for $50. This will going in the Avenue East Cobb in the be finished by mid-March. Could a include one of their pick-three meat former Brixx location. covered. Muss & Turner’s will have a beer and wine license be far behind? special a la carte dinner menu featur- platters, two side items, two Stay tuned. ALPHARETTA/ROSWELL ing Creamy Celery Root Soup, Jumbo cornbread muffins, a bottle of wine, Valentine’s Day is Feb.14 and that and a chocolate dessert to share. In Alpharetta, another big box conLump Crab Cake and Shucked Raw means a run on red roses and lastBaked from scratch (by someone cept is shutting down local locations. Oysters for starters and Grilled Cobia, minute dinner reservations. For you else!) a heart-shaped cookie cake The Toys R Us location on North Lamb Chops, and Butternut Squash East Cobbers no worries, as Muss & from Ali’s Cookies will have your Point Parkway is closed as the retailer Risotto for the main entrees. Loyal Q Turner’s and Loyal Q have you sweetie saying “Aww… I love you too!” went into bankruptcy. That location is featuring a Red, White, or Pink By Tricia Morris

Knowing Isn’t Doing As Dr. Donald Hebb, discovered back in 1949: “Nerves that fire Often, when together, wire together.” we’re trying to The act of changing that wiring isn’t simply a question of using will change things, or digging we get stuck, “ N E RV E S T H AT power our heels in. For don’t we? FIRE TOGETHER, instance, say you Ann-Marie Giglio Why is that? want to quit Usually, it’s because we’re trying to WIRE TOGETHER.” smoking, or change a habit and that’s hard. As drinking, or watching too much TV. Samuel Johnson said: “The chains of Has it ever worked to simply say, “I habit are too weak to be felt until they quit!” as adamantly and with as much are too strong to be broken.” conviction as possible? My Habits build gradually, over time. experience taught me probably not. Or as said by John Dryden: “First, we On top of that, every failed attempt make our habits, and then our habits triggers another part of your brain, make us.” your Experiential Emotional Memory The first action creates a neural (EEM). Amongst other things, it pattern in our brain. The brain is now logs  every  failure. And then it shows wired for that action. Repeat the up with every new attempt, arguing action, and the wiring becomes more that you’ve failed at this before so connected to other wiring in the don’t try this again. It then warns you brain. Eventually, it’s a most efficient might fail again, and you should do pathway. the safe thing. Stop. If your EEM is


By Ann-Marie Giglio

louder than the brain part that sees possibility, it wins every time. Unless you learn some skills. That’s why digging in your heels and saying, “I quit!” is only the first step. The second step is information gathering. The internet makes everyone pretty good at this. So good, in fact, that people are now very confused. That’s because they mistake their information collection for an education. Knowing isn’t doing; and information is not a skill. If you’d like to break the chains of habit, work with an educated professional. We’re happy to help. It’s our “why”! Call us at Core Matters in Historic Roswell for a free consultation today at 404-435-6367 or visit our site at ourcorematters.com. Ann-Marie Giglio is founder and CEO of Core Matters located at 1144 Canton St, Suite 104 in Roswell.

www.ourcorematters.com CoreMatters 1144 Canton Street Suite 104 Roswell, GA 30075 404-435-6367


was one of eight slated to close in Georgia. Liquidation sales could begin very soon so keep your eyes open. Alpharetta is getting a new taco concept in the coming months as California-based Chronic Tacos announced they are opening at least two Atlanta area locations in the coming months, with one of those confirmed in Alpharetta. It will take over the Tom + Chee location in A Chronic Tacos location in Huntington Beach CA. Stone Walk, off North Point Drive near the mall. The location already has a facebook page that gives a Feb. 12 opening date. Chronic Tacos are largely a California brand so it will be interesting to see how they fare in a crowded marketplace. The metro area has not been kind to out-oftown Mexican chains such as Barnacoa, Mojo Burrito, and even Qdoba have struggled. In Roswell there is a great new pizza place in the Kroger center on Woodstock. Wild Slice Pizzeria is in the old Brickhouse location and I have to say they did a great job on the makeover. It has a very modern look and is the labor of love of local couple Mike and Cristy Thomas. These guys are all about creating a family atmosphere. It is a fast casual concept that serves great pizza and several varieties of sandwiches. Wild Slice has plenty of games for the kids and the menu has kid portions to boot. The couple met in college and the establishment is the result of many years in the industry by Mike, who handles the back of the house operations. Cristy is a teacher at Esther Jackson Elementary who also runs the front of the house. Wild Slice is located at 580 E. Crossville Road in Roswell, their site is www. WildSlicePizzeria.com. Let me end this month’s column with some good news for our local veterans with disabilities. The City’s Recreation, Parks, Historic, and Cultural Affairs Department has been Wild Slice Pizzeria’s Mike and Cristy Thomas with children awarded a $21,080 VA James and Sarah. Adaptive Sport Grant to create a Veteran’s Adaptive Softball League and Veteran’s Adaptive Cycling League, both of which will begin in spring 2018. To learn more about the City of Roswell’s adaptive programs for veterans, contact Will Crook or Jessica Leonard, Adaptive Recreation Specialists, at wcrook@roswellgov.com or jleonard@roswellgov.com. ❍


A FESTIVAL ROOTED IN HISTORY From left: Pound Cake Cook-Off, Soul Food Cypher, and Untold Stories of Native Roswell. Below: Negro League and Open Hearth Cooking

Soul Food Cypher February 15, 7:30pm, Red Door Playhouse, $5 By Fred Mills This year, Roswell Roots is introducing a brand new The 17th Annual Roswell Roots Festival takes spoken word element to the place throughout February and is presented by month-long festival on Thur., Feb. 15, at 7 p.m. at Red Door the City of Roswell in conjunction with Black Playhouse. Soul Food Cypher is History Month. Roswell Roots has grown into an evening event showcasing one of the largest and most comprehensive the craft and ingenuity of freestyle rap and testing the celebrations of black history and culture in the limits of spoken word. Soul Southeast and has been awarded the “Gold Food Cypher is open to all ages Award for Best Cultural Event” by the Southeast to attend, but space is limited. To purchase tickets, visit Festival and Events Association. The festival celebrates the contributions of Roswell’s African www.roswellroots.com. American citizens, both past and present. This year it includes For more information, call 770-641-3705. seven exhibits and over 20 events relating to art, food, live music, storytelling, history, education, and community engage- LIVE! In Roswell /Jane ment. Selected events follow: Powell, the Goddess of Soul

Southern Sweets—4th Annual Pound Cake Cook-Off and Marketplace February 10, 12:30 – 3:30pm, Bill Johnson Community Activity Building, FREE Guests are invited to taste pound cake and vote for their favorite entry. Competitor categories include professional, amateur, youth, and healthy. First and second place will be awarded in each category as chosen by a panel of judges. A People’s Choice Award will also be given to the participant with the most votes from guests. In addition to pound cake, they will have original collections of work from artists and makers at the Roswell Roots Marketplace next to the Pound Cake Cook-Off from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The marketplace is a one-day event alongside the Pound Cake Cook-Off that allows makers to sell and display their goods that celebrate Black history and culture.

February 17, 8 p.m., Roswell Cultural Arts Center, $30 An evening of classic R&B songs, blues tunes, jazz standards, and gospel anthems from the Goddess of Soul. Let Jane Powell captivate you with her playful personality, spicy sense of humor, and soulful style. To purchase tickets, call (770) 594-6232 or visit www.roswellcac.com.

ROSWELL ROOTS Through February 28 www.roswellroots.com

Roswell Roots College Fair February 25, 2 – 5 p.m., East Roswell Recreation Center, FREE Start your college search at the Roswell Roots College Fair! Open to the public, the Roswell Roots College Fair allows Untold Stories of Native students to interact with Roswell admission representatives from February 18, 3 –76:30 p.m., a wide range of higher Roswell Visitors Center, education institutions and conFREE nect with resource groups as Take a step back in time for a well as Greek letter view of life in Roswell from organizations. This is your those who lived it. Listen as opportunity to obtain free Roswell residents share their college admission counseling. stories of growing up in Student pre-registration is Roswell’s Black community. strongly encouraged at www.roswellroots.com Open Hearth Cooking &

Living History with Clarissa Clifton

Negro League Sports Memorabilia

February 24, 10 a.m., Smith Plantation, FREE Living history interpreter and open hearth cooking expert Clarissa Clifton will demonstrate making traditional southern food in the cookhouse hearth. Clarissa will define and discuss “Southern Poverty Food,” including its perception, the concept of Farm to Table, and present day southern food trends.

February 25, 3 p.m., Roswell Branch Library, FREE Come to the Roswell Branch Library for a glimpse into the past and view a collection of sports memorabilia generously put on display by a local resident. The display highlights the athletic accomplishments of the Negro League. A brief video accompanies the display. Sponsored by the Crumley family. ❍

By Jon Copsey

you can discover what it is, perhaps help your child learn what colors are on their object, what shapes they see, or perhaps where it came from. Sharing this information and their object with the Nature Exchange Naturalist can help start. As the only one of its kind Parents may also want to them earn points to start their in the Southeast, it is filled with encourage their child to begin own trading account. Nature exploring the outdoors with a kid-friendly storybooks, field Exchange encourages nature bit more freedom. At home or guides, and activities. Parent study and builds math, science, and child can be engaged with on a nature hike (not at CNC), encourage them to find one ob- language skills, and much one another for quite a long more. ject they really like. Together, time as they learn indoors. Nature Exchange also offers scavenger hunts, usually most are suitable for young children with parent assistance. The more things you find, the more points you can earn. The Chattahoochee Nature Center connects people with nature. Daily indoor and outdoor activities encourage exploration and a connection with the plants and wildlife that call the Chattahoochee River home. From now until the end

Winter is the perfect time to be outside. The plants have all gone dormant and reveal amazing hidden secrets behind them. What does winter divulge? One thing you can see is plenty of nests and the animals that live in them. Squirrels bound along the ground and birds fly through the air. Just like people, animals bundle up in the winter; they have fur and feathers that help them get through the cold nights. Kathryn Dudeck, wildlife director at the Chattahoochee Nature Center, said birds of prey—called “raptors”—can deal with cold by puffing themselves up. “Raptor feathers weigh more than the entire bird skeleton, so you will often see the birds fluffy in cold weather,” Dudeck said. “They can control each feather individually so they raise their feathers to trap the warm body heat, creating an insulated ‘parka’ for them. This is why down jackets are so popular with people.” But what else can be seen in the winter woods? Fairy houses and gnome homes. At CNC, the wooded trails have dozens of secretive tiny homes dotted throughout, made by the tiny fairies and gnomes (with some human help). Children can explore nature while they search for the houses made by the fairies, there’s even a small book shop and a fairy hospital. In the free play area, children can make their own fairy houses. If the weather is steering you indoors, CNC’s Nature Exchange is a great place to

Dr. Bill Witherspoon, co-author of the popular Roadside Geology of Georgia, will explain how climate change has been an enduring part of Earth history, affecting Georgia’s mineral deposits, landscapes, and biology at The Nature Club Dine and Discover on Feb. 22, 7–9p.m. at the CNC.




of February, see the Enchanted Woodland Trail, full of fairy houses and gnome homes in the woods. For more information on this program and others, visit www.chattnaturecenter.org. ❍

The Enchanted Woodland Trail at CNC has fairy houses and gnome homes to find and explore. Photo by Chattahoochee Nature Center

Children can learn about the world around them in the Chattahoochee Nature Center’s Nature Exchange. Photo by Christy Cox/ Chattahoochee Nature Center



THE GREAT By Tripp Liles



sales are growing more than online. In 2016, retail sales grew $128B excluding items like fuel and autos. Online sales added a healthy $53B, but in-store sales added an even healthier $75B.   The simple fact remains that business for the brick and mortar folks is robust. That doesn’t apply to everyone. There are big brands, like Sears and KMart, which have major problems. Those issues have everything to do with the fact that their brands are The average answer given was close to 30% for on- not relevant to a new generation. To those of us who grew up with those iconic brands, watching them die line sales. Not one single respondent came close to seems terrible and makes it easy to believe the myth the real answer of 9.1%. Read that carefully, it’s not 91% but just nine point one percent…that’s right, less that retail is dying. But in fact those brands are dying due to poor business practices. Unfortunately many than 10% of all U.S. retail sales are e-commerce related. Those are the stats according to the most re- of the old brands are stuck in outdated strip centers cent report from the U.S. Department of Commerce and large shopping malls whose time has come and gone. that covered the first three quarters of 2017. It is important to note these things because the reI bet you, like many others, believe the hype that Amazon and other e-retailers are taking every dollar tail market around us is continually evolving and what is going to be successful in the future has to do from the brick and mortar businesses. To be clear, Amazon is doing very nicely but in fact, in-store retail with how and where retail is built. The strategy to

uring my research for this article, I asked 43 local residents, business people, and elected officials the following question: What percentage of all U.S. retail sales go to online merchants versus brick and mortar?

Development in downtown Alpharetta continues as this new development across from city hall opens in 2018.

succeeding in today’s retail world is a matter of improving the customer experience.

THE TRANSFORMATION There is no better example in the changing landscape than what is happening in Alpharetta. The North Point Mall was once the crown jewel of the area and now the sexy new beast is Avalon, which is practically a stone’s throw away. Most of you have probably been to both and it’s not hard to see that the experience at each location is completely different. Avalon has what people want, which is connectivity. Simply put, the mixed-use concept is the way forward, but that oftentimes gets complicated in local politics. As our outdated shopping centers age, they will need to transform or die a slow death. Roswell in particular has a bad problem with outdated shopping models. The city is full of them but the fixes are not easy. In speaking with area developers there was a continual theme of not wanting to deal with Roswell politics. I spoke to one developer who stated that they looked at several area investment opportunities but decided against investing because any purchase of existing retail real estate would certainly require a mixed-use component. That leads to much higher density requirements and that’s where things get derailed in local politics. The “anti” crowd is against everything and when a developer is looking at investment that sometimes goes well north of $100m they tend to avoid communities who demonize them. So the strip centers sit. I get it. Nobody likes construction and the headaches associated with it, but we live in a capitalist society and property owners have every right to maximize value. If our local economy is going to hold it’s own, or better yet grow, then there needs to be an adjustment in thinking in Roswell. Every decision on construction can’t hinge on density but rather it must be judged on total value and what it brings to the market place. The irony here is that two age groups agree that the experience is the key to successful retail. A higher percentage of young (less than 35 years) and old shoppers (older than 65) cite the need to see, touch, feel, and yes, even live near the shops they frequent. This appears to be indicative of age groups that have more time on their hands to go to stores and shop around. They are also less likely to have kids in the house so that cool condo sitting in the middle of Continues on page 34

34 The Myth, continued from page 32 Avalon looks pretty sweet when you don’t have a stroller in tow. Alpharetta is a city where decisions have been a little easier due to several exits on GA400 that were ripe for growth. But their downtown has been transformed; yes with some political handwringing, but in the end it is moving into the 21st century. There is a new parking deck, a new mixed-use project going up right in front of the new City Hall complex and their economy is booming as a result. Roswell on the other hand, had some success nearly a decade ago with the transformation of Canton Street but that energy is dying and while there is a new mixed-use concept opening this spring there is a disjointed feel to the whole area that is not quite sure what it wants to be. Roswell has what is essentially a new government in place, with a rookie mayor and six council members that have little government experience among them. It will be interesting to see where things go as they face several projects that require bold decisions. Among them is the old Southern Skillet location near city hall. As she recently stated in her address to local business leaders, mayor Lori Henry said, “It’s the number one question I get asked almost every day… What’s happening with the Southern Skillet location?” Time will tell, but a much larger proj-

From the cover: Callie Strain and Kim Kopp of k + c curated a full-service interior design business located in City Antiques in Roswell. “As designers we understand the value in having a brick-and-mortar retail source for eclectic, curated finds that you can see, touch, and feel.”

ect will be the only profitable way forward and mixed-use will have to be part of the equation. Roswell does have one new project that was surprisingly approved last year in the form of a new mixed-use project at the corner of Alpharetta Hwy. and Sun Valley Drive. The Fuqua Development project is taking the place of an outdated strip mall and will contain a grocery store, office, retail, restaurant space and up to 300 apartment units in a four-story complex. In total it’s an $80M project that brings approximately 400 jobs. Only time will tell if that is an outlier or a sign of things to come.

The Southern Skillet location near Roswell’s City Hall has been virtually empty for years. Your tax dollars bought it several years ago but the city is still in contemplation on the future.

THE SHOPPERS Beyond their physical location, a retailer these days must provide more that just product. Consumers want to experience something and the “touch” factor is key, especially amongst women. According to a consumer survey by Retail Dive last year the female shopper wants the ability to see, touch, and feel items. Two-thirds (66%) of female shoppers say trying-it-out is a deciding factor for shopping in stores versus online. Shopping for products with a high fashion quotient—think apparel and accessories or home furnishing—is a likely driver. “Take furniture as an example. The consumer wants to sit on it, touch it, feel it. If they are looking for a new Nikon camera? They’re going for the lowest price online. The cameras aren’t different but the price is,” said David Bercaw of City Antiques in Roswell. “We’re unique, we provide an experience to shopping, if all you’re looking for is a product number and the cheapest price then you’re probably going online. We’re big on repurposing here and that makes our product unique.” Retailers must also have the right store strategy. A compelling experience is key to shoppers’ demands and that becomes an easier task when the retail complex is a close-knit community with a shared interest. The ability to see, touch, feel, and try out items is the top reason why consumers choose to shop in physical stores versus online. With 62% of shoppers wanting to kick the tires,  retailers must take full advantage and up their game to create compelling

The Fuqua development on Alpharetta Hwy. in Roswell will be the largest project in the city next year with more than $80M in investment.

As our outdated shopping centers age, they will need to transform or die a slow death. shopping experiences. This is the main reason why developers seek mixed-use concepts. It’s the most popular concept they can lease, and consumers, especially those who are opposed to such development, need to understand these vital aspects to the local economy. To that end Roswell INC, the publicprivate partnership that serves as the economic arm for the city is in the process of a three-year study to find out what does work locally. With one Super Target location recently closed in east Roswell, many residents are unsure where the future is headed. “We’re excited about this three-year opportunity because we’re going to be able to know where people are shopping and in what shopping centers. We’re going to know that the tale of two Targets in Roswell is so drastically different in the city of Roswell,” said

Steve Stroud, president of Roswell INC. “How do we change that? How do we recruit the right kind of retail for Roswell? This survey will help provide answers.” These are vital issues we’re dealing with as the economy continues to grow our micro economy must keep up. The retail sector is huge to our economy. Last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, locally we spent over $525M on apparel and services and over $800M in local restaurants. By any standard that’s a lot of money. So the next time a development is proposed, let’s try to see the whole picture. A healthy economy is in all of our shared interests. ❍

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the Current Hub for February 2018

the Current Hub feb. 2108  

the Current Hub for February 2018