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Postal Customer ECRWSS Atlanta,GA Permit #3241 PAID

1570 Holcomb Bridge Rd, Suite 910, Roswell, GA 30076 678.878.3188 kalemecrazy.net



Tripp Liles tripp@thecurrenthub.com

Mark Penstone mark@thecurrenthub.com

Carrie Kutney Art Director carrie@thecurrentplus.com

Tricia Morris (Social Chick) tricia@thecurrenthub.com


Frank Mack Di Chapman Jessica Diamond Spalding Negron Fred Mills Geri Laufer Beth Nitschke 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



The Month in Preview JANUARY 2017



Marietta Square Farmers Market

Disco Skate At Avalon

Saturdays There are plenty of farmers markets in the area but most are closed during the winter months. Not true however, over in Marietta where the farmers market is still open each Saturday. The market has an average of 65 vendors and hundreds of customers each week. Market customers have lots of variety to choose from including heirloom tomatoes, fruits and vegetables that are rarely, if ever, available from the grocery store. They also have lots of the staples such as potatoes, onions, tomatoes, squash, and beans in addition to Pattypan squash, heirloom salad mix, amazing cut flower arrangements, local honey, herbal soaps, whole grain breads, jelly, jam and preserves. Customers can also take home many live garden, yard and culinary herb plants, not to mention the fresh-squeezed lemonade that hits the spot on a hot day. For more info visit mariettasquarefarmersmarket.com.

night away (6 p.m. to 10 p.m.) to throwback disco tunes and all skaters dressed in their disco wear will receive $2 off an Avalon on Ice Ticket. Be sure to come in your There are a multitude of outdoor ice skating rinks grooviest outfit because best dressed will in the area but none more fun than the disco skate win a prize. Costume Contest will take place at 7p.m. Participants must theme party at Avalon. Get ready to hit the ice in be present at or around the ice rink in order to qualify. For more info visit your very best 70s inspired style! We will skate the www.experienceavalon.com.

January 14


Disney’s Peter Pan JR.

January 27 Roswell Youth Theater presents: Disney’s Peter Pan JR. Fly away to Neverland with Peter and the Darling children in this adaptation of Disney’s beloved animated film. Peter and his mischievous fairy sidekick, Tinkerbell, visit the nursery of the Darling children late one night and, with a sprinkle of pixie dust, begin a magical journey across the stars to Neverland. Their journey introduces them to the Lost Boys, Mermaids, Indians, and the infamous pirate, Captain Hook! Disney’s Peter Pan JR. is the perfect show for the child in all of us who dreamed of soaring high and never growing up. Roswell Youth Theater is a program of the Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic & Cultural Affairs Department that produces one musical and one play each year. RYT productions are open to youth ages 7 to 18 who are selected by audition. For tickets and info visit www.roswellgov.com/peterpan.



Atlanta Boat Show

January 12 Whether it’s sails or paddles, skis or motors, visitors will find the largest selection of boats and accessories at the 2017 Atlanta Boat Show, which docks at the Georgia World Congress Center for its 55th year Jan. 12–15, 2017. Expect even more boats, accessories and family fun this year at the Southeast’s premier boating event. Highlights include hundreds of the latest boats from many of the top dealers offering their lowest prices of the year. From pontoons to personal watercraft to bass boats and luxury cruisers, along with an amazing array of boating gear and accessories— there’s something for every budget and interest. Other features this year include the Let’s Go Fishing Center’s Big Bass Tank for live fishing demonstrations, a sailing simulator, the Boat School for educational seminars, and fun for the whole family at the Kids Zone. For tickets, times and more information, visit atlantaboatshow.com.


SHEN YUN 2017 with Live Orchestra

January 12 The People of ancient China have long held that their magnificent culture was a gift from heaven. Art was primarily a means to explore the connection between humankind and the higher universe. Through the universal language of music and dance, Shen Yun weaves a wondrous tapestry of heavenly realms, ancient legends, and modern heroic tales, taking you on a journey through 5,000 years of authentic Chinese culture. Its stunning beauty, purity, and tremendous energy leave audiences greatly uplifted and deeply inspired. Shen Yun cannot be seen in China today, where traditional culture has been devastated under 60 years of communist rule. Yet, Shen Yun, a non-profit performing arts company based in New York, is bringing the wonders of 5,000 years of civilization to millions of people across the globe. This performance is at the Cobb Energy Centre. Visit www.shenyun.com for more details.


Mice Tours

January 11 The Marietta Museum of History announces new tours for the smallest of visitors. Based on programs by the Smithsonian Institute’s Early Enrichment Center, tours will be offered to toddlers from age 3 to 5 and their parents. Different topics will be offered on the second Wednesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. and the cost is $5 per family (one adult and up to three children), additional adults and children are $5 each. The purpose of the tours is to introduce toddlers to history through very basic concepts like shapes, sounds, games, tools and jobs. Museum Mascots Murray and Etta are whimsical cartoon mice that will help convey the themes for the tours and provide a little fun. The tours will offer a variety of activities including story time and crafts. Reserve a spot for your toddler by calling the office Monday–Friday from 10–4 at 770-794-5710. For more info visit www.mariettahistory.org.


The Music of David Bowie

10 String Symphony

January 20

January 21

Unfortunately David Bowie passed in 2016, but his music will live forever. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra pays tribute to the one and only David Bowie this January to mark the anniversary of his passing. Join Conductor Brent Havens and a full rock band on a symphonic musical odyssey that explores the incredible range of David Bowie’s music including the hits Space Oddity, Changes, Under Pressure, Heroes, Rebel Rebel, Fame, China Girl, and more! This event is held at the Atlanta Symphony Hall. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster.

Matilda’s in Alpharetta has a great outdoor series called Under The Pines that features original music all summer but during the winter they’re still pumping out music albeit under a tent. In January they feature Nashville duo 10 String Symphony. They began as a partnership of mutual admiration—a much-needed creative release valve for Rachel Baiman and Christian Sedelmyer, two 5-string fiddle players and veteran sidemen of Nashville’s music scene. With the love of the 5-string fiddle and its musical possibilities as its focal point, the band’s mission statement was as clear as it was expansive: Two fiddles. Two Voices. Epic music. For more info visit www.matildasmusicvenue.com.


Callanwolde Arts Festival

January 23 & 24 This event is a two-day indoor arts festival on Jan. 23 and 24, which promises to become one of the premier partnerships of art institutions in the Atlanta area. The Callanwolde Arts Festival is a celebration for Artists by Artists, letting the artist have a voice in the creation and operations of the festival. This event will feature approximately 86 painters, photographers, sculptors, metalwork, glass artists, jewelers and more. The Festival includes artist demonstrations, live acoustic music, dance, and food trucks. The Callanwolde Arts Festival is organized by The Atlanta Foundation for Public Spaces, LLC and a board of experts in various artistic disciplines. For more info visit callanwoldeartsfestival.com.







Lumiere Lounge is a romantic, old world cocktail bar located upstairs in The Earl Smith Strand Theatre, Marietta. By Jessica Diamond

The New Year has arrived at last, and not a moment too soon for some of us! It’s time to leave the stress of last year behind and start fresh. As we write our resolutions, don’t forget to include a renewed sense of adventure and a growing curiosity for new experiences. You don’t have to go backpacking through Europe or trekking through the Amazon to get a sense of place and culture. There are plenty of opportunities to step outside of your comfort zone here at home. Reintroduce yourself to your hometown as the new 2017 version of you! The perfect date doesn’t need to cost half your paycheck. After the holidays it can be so important to get away and reconnect, but few are given the opportunity. The Earl Smith Strand Theatre on the Historic Marietta Square has your answer. The Strand has transformed one of its upstairs spaces into the Lumiere Lounge, a romantic old world cocktail bar that features specialty handmade drinks, a live pianist, silent movies playing on the wall and plush seating with an intimate, cozy atmosphere. It’s the perfect after-dinner drink spot and a

welcome departure from the usual loud and overcrowded bar scene. Best of all, this unique experience requires no cover charge. Walk right in and grab a drink! This well kept secret has been drawing more and more curious theatregoers, as well as adventurous passersby, for more than two years now and is still going strong. The Lounge is open Wed.–Sat. with live piano on Fridays and Saturdays. For dates and info: www.earlsmithstrand.org. Whether you go with your love or a group of your best friends, this could become your new favorite hangout. For anyone who hasn’t yet seen the fantastic display of lights in Centennial Olympic Park, there is still time! One of the most popular light shows of the year, the park is celebrating its 20th anniversary with the southeast’s first ever Chinese Lantern Festival. Artisans from

Atlanta Cask Ale Tasting in Sandy Springs returns Jan. 21 for its 13th year.


China have created unbelievable illuminated masterpieces that include lanterns, giant flowers, a three-story pagoda and a 200-ft Chinese dragon. Craftsmen and vendors will be selling food and other treasures as well as demonstrating iron wire weaving and authentic Chinese painting techniques. The festival also includes acrobats, dancers, theatre performances and much more. This installment will continue until Jan. 15, so be sure to get to Centennial before it wraps up! This is a can’t miss. Visit www.centennialpark.com for more info. January is also the month in which the world celebrates one of Atlanta’s most famous and beloved historical figures, Martin Luther King Jr. MLK Day is on the 16th but throughout the month of January, Atlanta will pay homage to this revolutionary civil rights activist and the contributions he made to the city, to the people of the United States, and to race relations around the world. Whether it’s participating in a 5K run, visiting one of Atlanta’s history museums or enjoying a parade, there are countless ways to celebrate the man and the month all around the metro area. This is an excellent opportunity to get the whole family out into the community to interact with others and learn about our nation’s history. Craft beer has been on the rise for years now and, as many enthusiasts will tell you, creating these brews is as innovative and labor intensive as creating a fine wine. Local beer lovers will be pleased to know that the Atlanta Cask Ale Tasting in Sandy Springs is returning for its 13th year and brings with it some of the finest cask-conditioned brews from the U.S. and the UK. This tasting is no joke and is considered one of the premier craft beer events in the southeast. A panel of judges will gather to award medals to the top beers, but visitors will also have the chance to vote for a “People’s Choice Award,” and name the crowd favorite. Those who come will enjoy tasting 50 rare ales as well as Five Seasons and Taco Mac. Set your calendar for Jan. 21 and prepare to be cultured in the most enjoyable of ways. Visit www.classiccitybrew.com/acat for information and tickets. They’re sure to go fast, so grab them now while you can! The holidays can put stress on your family and your bank account. Luckily, we live in a place that offers great opportunities for fun and adventure no matter what your budget. Whether your reconnecting with your loved one or taking the family to learn about their history, there is no excuse to stay cooped up this month no matter how frightful the weather gets. Happy New Year!




HOW MUCH CAN YOU SAVE If you lose? Meaningful Conversations about Money By Robert Fezza and Steve Siders


appy New Year! And with it come the New Year’s resolutions. What is on your list? Do you want to potentially save some big bucks this year? Here’s how. Get healthy! That’s right. By shedding

a few excess pounds and eating better you may be able to lower your cholesterol, sleep better, reduce stress and joint pain, and improve your energy level, your mood and your overall attitude. If the reasons above aren’t motivation enough— how about saving some cold hard cash?! It’s possible, but it’s up to you! We know a guy (46 years old) who lost some weight and improved his diet and in the process saved $795 a year by replacing an old life insurance policy. That is $7,950 real dollars over ten years—and it could be you! What if only 50 of the Current Hub readers were to make that change. That could be a combined savings of $397,500. How? Simply by replacing one Term policy with another with a better health rating (the way insurance carriers quantify the health of their policyholders). Do you need life insurance and/or do you already own life insurance? You could benefit by doing a comparison yourself. Contact your insurance agent or financial advisor and ask for a policy review. YOU NEED LIFE INSURANCE if you have children or a spouse who are dependent on your income to provide for their lifestyle and needs. YOU ONLY NEED TERM INSURANCE for the vast majority of circumstances (wealthy or not) to provide coverage for a period of time; 10 to 30 years for example. The term policy usually coincides with

the period of time other people are dependent upon your income—until your children are adults and living on their own and/or when you reach retirement. Term policies are the cheapest option since you only pay the true cost of insurance—no extra bells and whistles. ONLY PURCHASE FROM A+ RATED COMPANIES to protect your investment after comparing quotes. You want the company to be able to pay the death benefit to your beneficiaries when it is needed. What can you do now? Review your coverage. At Odyssey, we review our client’s life insurance coverage as part of our financial planning process. Get serious about your health and then do some comparison-shopping. You just might benefit personally as well as financially. We wish you and yours a happy and prosperous new year! Life’s a journey, navigate it wisely! Robert Fezza, CFP® and Steve Siders, CFP® own Odyssey Personal Financial Advisors, 500 Sun Valley Drive, Suite A-6, Roswell, GA. Their firm specializes in working with people who are serious about making progress towards their financial goals. Odyssey manages portfolios greater than $500,000. 770-992-4444, www.odysseypfa.com. Securities offered through Cetera Financial Specialists LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.


What do you do when you get cold in the winter? Bundle up in front of a fire, sit on the couch? Drink hot chocolate maybe? Animals have to find other ways to survive or keep warm during the cold winter months. Some leave their home to go south, where it’s warmer. Many birds fly south—have you seen sandhill cranes (pictured) flying in their famous “V” formation? What about you? You may need to get out yourself, to soak up some Vitamin “N” (N is for Nature!). So plan to visit the Chattahoochee Nature Center this winter. They have plenty to do during the winter months, both outdoors, and inside the Discovery Center, with the only Nature Exchange in the Southeast. When people were first thinking about flying through the air, they turned to what they knew best, the natural world, for inspiration. They looked at birds and butterflies and wondered how they worked, and how their flight could be mimicked. Today, while our airplanes don’t look like birds, there are many similarities—in the shape of the wings and the aerodynamics. Nature inspires and solves the problems of human beings. This is described as “biomimicry”, and it is a cornerstone of science and biology. The core idea is that nature has already solved many of the problems that challenge us. Animals, plants, and microbes are the consummate engineers. Engineering requires plenty of knowledge in the sciences, technology, and math as well as some outside-thebox thinking about applications. So this year the CNC has “Flying into the Future” slated for Sunday, Jan. 15 from noon to 4 p.m., which is their first

Family Fun Day of the year. Come ready to learn and test your tinkering skills with their STEM-themed partners and activities. They will feature two flying birds of prey shows, along with Biomimicry Activities with Georgia Tech, guided hikes, and more. Also in January is the Georgia Nature Photographers Association Exhibit, which runs through February. The Georgia Nature Photographers present this quarter’s gallery hanging that highlights award-winning photography taken throughout the state. These works will be available for purchase. Sled Races are offered throughout January. You can experiment with incline planes and friction as you race toy sleds. As scientists, you’ll repeat your experiment to get solid results, so be ready to race in the Nature Exchange. Last but certainly not least, the CNC hosts Winter Outdoor Scavenger Hunts in January and February. Search for the sights and sounds of winter along one of our forested trails and earn Nature Exchange points. These events only touch the surface on all that is on offer at the CNC. For more info on all the activities please visit their site at www.chattnaturecenter.org. ❍




A Wells Fargo location is the site of a proposed boutique hotel in Roswell. In development news there are a multitude of new proposals out there, The time to buy is though none more eye catching than now. Economic the proposal for a new boutique hotel prospects of a adjacent to Canton Street in Roswell. vibrant economy are “Canton Place” is slated for 37 causing lenders to Magnolia Street, which is now home to raise the cost of pura Wells Fargo location. It would feature chasing a new home. a 120-room boutique hotel, 8,000 sf of The average interest event space, restaurant with rooftop rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage access, and underground parking. rose to 4.13% in December. That’s not The project is being led by developer huge, about $6 per month for a 200k Claude Petty Jr., a Roswell resident and loan, but rates are inching higher so if his company Canton Place you’re on the fence you might give Development LLC. some thought to climbing down. I do They have hopes to break ground in not anticipate any sort of “cool off ” be2017, though there is a virtual cause buyers still outnumber sellers. marathon to run to get approval, espeAdditionally, rates are still low when cially in Roswell’s political climate compared to historical levels. The right now. At the time of press there annual average rate from 1972 through were no specifics with regard to cost or 2011 was higher than current rates, acrenderings available, though this type cording to Freddie Mac. of project has been rumored for years Overall the economic outlook is in the historic area of Roswell. Canton strong leading into the New Year. With Street has been an economic force for rates approaching the mid fours, these Roswell for nearly a decade but it’s enare still historically low numbers. What’s tering a new growing phase with even more encouraging is this strong Vickers Village going up on one end, market is encouraging millennials to and this proposal for the other, it is bejump into the housing market. ginning to take a new shape. And let’s On the local front there continues to not forget the City Green project and be a strong market as builders around the Southern Skillet development still metro Atlanta are adding to the new out there. 2017 could be home inventory. According to the transformative. ❍ National Association of Home Builders Kirsten Ricci is a Roswell resident and a the Atlanta market was No. 3 in the naKeller Williams Agent who specializes in restion with regard to single-family idential real estate in the north metro housing permits issued through October Atlanta area. She can be reached at 678-472of 2016. By Kirsten Ricci

3832, kirsten@roswellrealty.net.






the historic district is perfect for smaller wedding parties that want a modern, artistic venue.” Roswell is home to many great things. There are The wedding business is huge and it definitely wonderful neighborhoods, world-class parks and makes an impact on local businesses. According to a restaurants, but did you know that Roswell is also national study by WeddingWire the average wedding home to some unbelievable wedding facilities? Are has 120 attendees. In that survey of over 6,000 you or someone you know planning a wedding soon? couples, the average cost was nearly $30,000, so the If so, then keep Sunday Jan.15 open for the Roswell economic impact is significant to the local economy. Wedding Showcase. At this boutique event, Roswell has long been known as a great wedding presented by the Roswell Convention and Visitors spot for residents but now that attention is gaining Bureau, you can see the latest in fashion, food and ground regionally. yes, facilities from some of Roswell’s finest memory “Because Roswell’s venues offer a one-of-a-kind makers. experience, we have become a destination for brides “For 15 years, the Roswell Wedding Showcase has from all areas of Atlanta and some even come from grown steadily. This show is unusual as it promotes outside our state. Our city is also popular for only Roswell businesses,” stated Marsha Saum activities surrounding the wedding day, rehearsal Tourism Sales Manager of the Roswell CVB. “We’re of a lifetime of memories is a key component and dinners at one of our popular restaurants, proud our city has so many businesses that work to with Roswell’s unique history there are a multitude bridesmaid’s luncheons at a small bistro or teahouse assist the bride, groom, and their families with of ways to create your own history. and bachelor parties with high-speed go-karts. services that make their wedding one to remember “Roswell has over 35 unique event facilities to host Weddings are big business in Roswell and the multifor a lifetime. Roswell’s attractions add an element weddings and other special occasions. Brides can million dollar industry positively impacts the city’s that is not available in many places—the guests have choose from pre-Civil war era homes, gardens bursteconomy,” Saum said. fun things to do and see prior to and after the ing with color, water views, or a modern, yet rustic The Roswell Wedding Showcase will be held at the ceremony and festivities. There really is no better warehouse,” Saum said. “Brides are always looking DoubleTree by Hilton located at 1075 Holcomb place to have a wedding that Roswell.” for a ‘new’ location to surprise and impress their Bridge Road in Roswell. The admission is free. For When it comes to planning a wedding the creation guests. For instance, a recently opened art gallery in more info call 770-640-3253. By Spalding Negron

Flush Out 2016 with a Cold-Pressed Juice Routine


lthough our bodies are designed to self-regulate and detoxify, modern life has hindered this natural process immensely. Every day we breathe in harmful toxins, as well as poison our bodies with alcohol, caffeine, medications, and food preservatives. This kind of toxic lifestyle weakens our systems, leaving us feeling sluggish, tired, stressed, fighting skin breakouts, and even carrying excess weight. Our immune systems were never truly designed to deal with this kind of stress and our livers simply cannot keep up. A Kale me Crazy Juice Cleanse is the perfect way to give your body the boost it needs to have you feeling better.

Choosing a Cleanse Package

Kale me Crazy Juice Cleanse 4 Tips to Make the Most of Your Cleanse • Keep hydrated, drink lots of water and herbal tea (especially detox tea) • Do gentle exercises such as walking or yoga to help stretch your organs, muscles, and tissues to release more toxins • Treat yourself to a massage or trip to the sauna • Every time you get hungry, drink lots of water and more juice until you feel full again. Remind yourself of the ultimate goal of having a clearer mind, more energy, and overall healthier glow.


seeds and eat raw. During your Cleanse Start with Kale me Crazy shots, warm water and lemon each day. Drink a juice every two hours or when you feel hungry. Keep drinking water and natural herb cleansing tea in between your raw juices. For a deeper detox, give your body rest and only do light exercise such a yoga or meditation. If you wish to lose more weight then you should exercise more heavily. Post Cleanse What you put into your body after your cleanse is very important. Ideally you want to keep the detoxification process going on as long as possible, therefore try to eat raw fruit and vegetables for a long as possible. The first day after your fast, start with a juice, smoothie or just by eating a piece of fruit. Then during the day add raw leafy greens, vegetables, salad and more The Cleansing Process fruit. Eat raw, vegan or vegetarian and Pre Cleanse avoid alcohol, coffee, or any other To make the most of your juice processed food. cleanse, start to eliminate meat, dairy, Frequency starchy foods, caffeine, refined sugar, Repeat this Cleanse as many times as and alcohol 2 –3 days before your you like. It is always good for your body cleanse. This way, your body won’t go to eliminate as many toxins as into shock in the change of diet and possible  and fill and flush it with raw will ease into the detoxification process. and high amounts of vitamins, Fill up on leafy greens, fruit, nuts and minerals and enzymes. Our Cleanses have been formulated to include a wide variety of fresh produce, focusing specifically on those plants traditionally praised for their ‘cleansing’ properties. Rich in essential plant micronutrients, each juice contains a different nutrient profile that nourishes your body and supports detoxification and healing. During a Kale me Crazy Cleanse, you will have 6 bottles (16 ounces) to consume per day, consisting of over 12 pounds of fresh natural produce. The juices act as a meal replacement throughout each day, giving your digestive system a rest and flooding your body with bio-available nutrients. During this process, you will not consume any solid food, and we recommend avoiding caffeine, alcohol, sugary drinks, and anything fried or processed.

Kale me Crazy offers three different package levels. The KMC, the Rainbow, and the Go Green. The primary difference between each package is the concentration of fruit and vegetable juices in each drink. Pick one package for each day you plan on cleansing. If this is your first time, start with the KMC and then advance to the Rainbow and later to the Go Green. Depending on your schedule and whether you want to juice over several days or weeks, Kale me Crazy offers 1- and 3day package quantities. Juices are prepared daily from fresh produce and will last for 3 days when properly refrigerated. If in need of additional help, stop by the restaurant where our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be happy to coach you through the process and provide a sample taste of each of the juices. To start your Cleanse, call our store a day in advance, order online through our Kale me Crazy App (available in both Apple and Android—text KALEMECRAZY to 33733 to download), or visit us at 1570 Holcomb Bridge Rd, Suite 910 in the Connexion Plaza next to Starbucks. ❍

Benefits from your Cleanse • Elimination of toxins and sick or dead cells from your body • Reduced inflammation, which helps prevent diseases • A rewired mind and body that craves a healthier way of living • Improved eating habits and overall lifestyle choices • Clearer mind • An increase in energy • Clearer skin, hair, and eyes • Weight loss




KALE ME CRAZY Call: 678-878-3188 e-mail: roswell@ kalemecrazy.net visit: 1570 Holcomb Bridge in Connexion Plaza download app: text KALEMECRAZY to 33733 order online: kalemecrazy.net



THE NEW ROLE OF FACEBOOK IN OUR LIVES Learn more about us on page 29.

The most heavily watched Facebook Live feed in 2016 was Candace Payne in a Chewbacca mask. By Tricia Morris

Way back in 2012, Facebook and Twitter were in a corporate fight to be our social media focal point. In that election year the newly re-elected Barack Obama tweeted a photo that went viral with over 500,000 re-tweets within a few hours. Conversely over on Facebook the same post had less than 100,000 shares. This was a wake up call to the folks over at Facebook that they needed to get into the “news” game. And boy did they. Here we are 4 years later and Facebook has all but wiped Twitter from the social media battlefront. Facebook was a major player in the past election but not for the reasons they were hoping for. After the election they have come under fire for creating a platform for confirmation bias and allowed “meme-makers” and folks obsessed with hyperbole to rule the day. It was so bad that even Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook CEO) was contradicted by his own employees regarding the company’s role in the election. I’m sure Facebook had no intention to create such a poor system for information dissemination but it didn’t become so big and imposing by accident either. It has made a big push to become the new “local newspaper.” Since 2012 Facebook has remade its system to make it easier to share and promote stories and help them spread rapidly. In the process they grew to more than five times the size of Twitter. Facebook also has a major effect on things locally. It’s almost hard to remember a time without Facebook. One click onto someone’s Facebook page and you can learn their life story—their likes and dislikes, relationship status, what they ate for breakfast and much more. What started out as a way for

better or worse. For example, the East Cobb Mom’s Exchange, is full of posts ranging from questions on daily life (what to make for dinner or where to buy this or that) to health and wellness. With over 5,000 members it’s one of my greatest sources of information next to Google. Groups like these are great for business. Many people have started their businesses because of word of mouth. While there is usually a no advertising policy, one shout out to a business can be as big a push as going on Shark Tank. A mention about the baker who made the cutest birthday cake can lead to so much business that an actual brick and mortar store gets opened. People get passionate for what they believe in and this can lead to success. On the flip side, the negative comments can break a small business. A local restaurant had a group that dined at its establishment. The group’s experience was not that good—with a myriad of issues that were so trivial you wonder what could’ve made them happy. Instead of going to management, they went to Facebook. They completely destroyed this place by giving it a one star rating and saying they’d never go back. They ripped apart the food, the atmosphere, the music, and the service. They asked their friends to share with their friends about how

bad it was which led to comments from people who 15 had never been there saying they would never dine there. Some comments were made by people who said they’d never give it a try because of the negative commentary that they read. It all started with one negative comment and resulted in the restaurant’s Facebook page being taken down, loss of business, and eventually a change in concept. This is an extreme example but it happens. People don’t realize how mighty the written word is. Unfortunately the “bad” tends to outweigh the good. Sadly, some businesses may never get the chance to redeem themselves. No one looks at the “other side of the story” and we tend to follow along with the general consensus. So remember when you post that there is power in information. There is also good news. The most heavily watched Facebook Live feed this year had nothing to do with politics, rather it was a video of a woman, Candace Payne (pictured), dressed in a Chewbacca mask laughing uncontrollably. It was a beautifully delightful moment capturing someone who was very happy doing a small thing. So maybe there is hope. Who knows where we’ll be in four years time but love it or hate it, Facebook is not going anywhere anytime soon. ❍ JANUARY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

college students to share their life, Facebook has now turned into more a dominant social media platform for Baby Boomers and/GenXers. There is a Facebook group for everything from support groups to pages dedicated to nothing but cats. Facebook makes expressing yourself very simple with status updates. Between posting your latest dinner flub or showing off your engagement ring, Facebook is a common way that people communicate these days. It is a lot harder to feel embarrassment through the Internet rather than in person, so people find it easier to “vent” their feelings on Facebook. As we all know, emotions ran high over the presidential election and differences of opinions led to loss of friendships. “After being diagnosed with breast cancer last year, Facebook was a big help in my life. Closed groups can offer a safe place for people to find support, ask questions, and get answers from others who have been through the same experiences,” said Laura Moore, a Roswell resident. “It can also be very therapeutic to in turn help others who come to you. These groups are also great to connect with local members who have meetings and get-togethers to share common experiences.” On the business side it can be a game changer for

CLEAR YOUR MIND, INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY LaVida Massage can be a powerful ally in your healthcare regime. after receiving a massage. The emotional balance massage provides can often be just as vital and valuable as the more tangible physical benefits. Budgeting time and money for massage at consistent intervals is not only an investment in one’s health, but I truly believe it is an investment in the health of your business. And remember: just because massage feels like a pampering treat doesn’t mean it Peggy Davis, CEO LaVida Massage is any less therapeutic. Consider massage as a necessary piece of your health and wellness plan. Johns Creek East Cobb Alpharetta Getting a massage can do a 12460 Crabapple Rd 4880 Lower Roswell Rd 10945 State Bridge Rd world of good; with our fast Alpharetta GA 30004 Marietta GA 30068 Johns Creek, GA30022 paced schedules, and the highly 678.624.9091 770.973.6385 770.740.0654 stressful world that we live in today, massage therapy is one of Consider massage therapy a necessary piece of your the best ways to relax and wellness plan! LaVida Massage has several convenient promote overall wellness, both locations to choose from—see the box above. ❍ physically and mentally.

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reasons we seek it out (a treat, stress relief, pain management), Like many busy working moth- massage therapy can be a powerers, I was short on time and long ful ally to you in your healthcare on responsibility. Running a regime. business, running from meeting Experts estimate that upwards to meeting, picking up my of ninety percent of disease is children up from school, stress related. And perhaps nothpractices, etc, picking up the ing ages us faster, internally and house—bottom line, I was worn externally, than high stress. ou—physically and mentally. While eliminating anxiety and Then a friend suggested I get a pressure altogether in this fastmassage. “A massage?” I paced world may be idealistic, thought, “I don’t have time for massage can, without a doubt, such a luxury!” But my wise and help manage stress. This patient friend persisted and translates into: booked a session for me. She in- • Decreased anxiety. sisted it would make me feel better. Guess what? It did. Not • Enhanced sleep quality. only did it force me to stop and • Greater energy. take an hour for myself, but I • Improved concentration. truly felt better afterwards. I felt • Increased circulation. relaxed and energized… and • Reduced fatigue. clear headed. Furthermore, many who reguRegardless of the adjectives we larly receive massage often report assign to massage (pampering, a sense of perspective and clarity rejuvenating, therapeutic) or the By Peggy Davis, CEO LaVida Massage




By Fred Mills

The Temptations were one of the most successful music groups in history, having sold tens of millions of albums… when albums were a thing. Today there is only one surviving original member, Otis Williams, but the group’s music lives on in the form of many tribute acts touring. Bringing the unforgettable songs of the Temptations to the Roswell Cultural Arts Center on Feb. 4 is A Temptations Revue featuring former lead singer of the Temptations (1998–2003) and Grammy Award Winner, Barrington “Bo” Henderson. This dynamic and driving tribute spans more than a decade of Temptations classics—every one of the songs performed are among the most recognizable and culture-defining songs in pop music history. The show features five of the best male vocalists performing Motown music in the U.S. today, all of whom have sung with many of the other 22 male vocalists to have fronted The Temptations since its inception back in the early 1960s, including the late great Richard Street and Ali-Ollie Woodson. A Temptations Revue exhibits the great harmonies and choreographed dance steps that made The Temptations famous and features a six-piece back-up band that is a show in itself. The musicianship is second to none and many of the players have backed-up or opened for many of the original Temptations. Who is Barrington Henderson? Well if you don’t recognize the name, you most certainly have heard the voice. With a professional career that spans more than two decades, Barrington Scott Henderson, aka “Bo” is a diverse singer, songwriter, and producer who seemed destined for a career in music. Born in Washington, PA and raised in a musical family, his first exposure to music came from his mother, Joyce St. Amie, a jazz vocalist who has performed with jazz greats, including Miles Davis. Joyce came to realize that her son shared her passion for music when he was three. By age five, Bo had learned to play several different instruments. This memory reviving show spans more than a decade of Temptations classics; every one of these songs will set you to reminiscing: My Girl, Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone, Get Ready, Ain’t Too Proud To Beg, Just My Imagination, I Wish It Would Rain and so many more. “I grew up listening to the Temptations’ music with my parents, said RCAC coordinator Donna Clayton. “Their music has a broad appeal across generations and all walks of life, and we expect ‘A Temptations Revue’ to sell out.” For more info and tickets to ‘A Temptations Revue’ visit roswellcac.com. ❍



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ellStar Health System partnered with LifeLink of Georgia and organizations across the country to spread the message that organ, eye and tissue donation saves and heals lives. On New Year’s Day, the Donate Life Rose Parade float entitled ‘Teammates in Life’ included thousands of handwritten messages of love, hope and remembrance of organ donors from across the country, including several from WellStar leaders. The annual float is just one way WellStar and LifeLink garner attention for the importance of organ donation. Throughout the year, these organizations work closely with organ donor families and organ donor recipients. In December, several WellStar hospitals were recognized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration for their continued efforts to promote registering as an organ donor. The highest ‘Platinum’ honor was awarded to WellStar Kennestone Regional Medical Center and WellStar Atlanta Medical Center. Other hospitals honored included WellStar Cobb, Douglas, North Fulton and Paulding hospitals as well

Dan Woods, WellStar Kennestone Hospital president, wrote a message honoring WellStar’s organ donors which was displayed on the annual Donate Life Rose Bowl Parade float on January 1st.

ble for 132 organ transplants and thousands of tissue donations in 2016. LifeLink is a nonprofit organization that coordinates the recovery of lifesaving and life enhancing organs and tissue for transplantation therapy. “The life-saving value of registering to be an organ, tissue and eye donor cannot be overstated. There is significant need for organ and tissue donation in this state,” Kroeppler said. “Currently more than 4,900 Georgians are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant. We are so grateful to the people who choose to give the gift of life, and we hope the parade float helps us reach more people with this important message.”

The parade float

WellStar Health System partnered with LifeLink of Georgia to spread the message of the importance of organ donations through a New Year’s Day float in the Rose Parade.

as WellStar West Georgia Medical Center and WellStar Corporate. “WellStar is committed to being there for the needs of our community,” said Dan Woods, president of WellStar Kennestone Hospital. “We want to share the importance

of organ donation and the message that organ donations are gifts of life that keep families together.” Tina Kroeppler, hospital liaison for LifeLink of Georgia, said 41 organ donors from WellStar hospitals gave the gift of life and were responsi-

The 2017 Donate Life parade float depicted a spectacular Polynesian catamaran, which was propelled by a team of 24 organ, eye, and tissue transplant recipients rowing in unison with strength gained from their donors. The sails of the vessel featured 60 floral portraits of donors interwoven with Polynesian designs and patterns. Just as the donors’ gifts empower the lives of others, the sails help power the catamaran on its journey. Twelve living donors walked alongside the float carrying flowers in celebration of

WellStar Kennestone Hospital Ranked No. 3 Hospital in Georgia by U.S. News & World Report

WellStar Kennestone Hospital is one of the top rated hospitals in Georgia. According to U.S. News & World Report, which publishes an annual review of hospital performance, Kennestone ranks third in Georgia. “This ranking and the ratings we received from other national organizations are a testament to how hard our team members work to deliver the worldclass healthcare our patients deserve every day,” said Dan Woods, president of WellStar Kennestone Hospital. “We are proud to serve such a supportive community and we are excited to serve this community for many years to come.” Scores are based on a variety of patient outcomes and care-related factors, such as patient safety and nurse staffing. Kennestone Hospital achieved the highest rating possible in seven procedures or conditions categories. These categories include Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Colon Cancer Surgery, Heart Bypass Surgery, Heart Failure, Hip Replacement, Knee Replacement and Lung Cancer Surgery. U.S. News & World Report publishes a series of “Best” consumer guides focusing on health, education, and finance. According to the organization, more than 90,000 patients are admitted to U.S. hospitals every day. The purpose of the organization’s list of Best Hospitals is to help the consumers make the right choice when their care calls for special expertise, or if age, physical ailments or a chronic condition add appreciable risk to their treatment or procedure. the life they have given to others and the quality of life they continue to enjoy themselves. The ocean waves showcased 1,000 white Akito roses, individually dedicated in memory of specific donors. Vibrant i’iwi and ‘amakihi birds perched amongst a lush landscape of tropical flowers and palm trees while a pair of tikis, representing light and life, abundance and peace, peered out of the jungle. The float exuded life with colorful, exotic blooms grown in Hawaii especially for the occasion. For more information about becoming an organ donor, visit www.donatelifegeorgia.org. ❍



JANUARY FITNESS & HEALTH COMMUNITY CALENDAR East Cobb Health Park, 3747 Roswell Road NE, Marietta Community & Education Room *Free parking Yoga Understanding NEW! Birth Tuesdays, Jan. 10– Friday, Feb. 17, Mar. 28, 12:15-1:15 p.m. 6–9 p.m. and This yoga class will help creSaturday, Dec. 3, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. ate body awareness, strengthen Expecting mothers and their partand stretch muscles and tissues, imners take a two-day journey prove balance, posture and coordithrough childbirth including labor nation. Strong emphasis is placed on and delivery, breathing and relaxproper alignment in postures. Breath is ation, hospital procedures and Ceincorporated to improve focus and insarean birth. Community & Education crease energy. Postures and sequencing room. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to change from week to week. Appropriate register; cost is $55. for all levels of students. There will be no class Mar. 21. Diabetes Education Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; Thursday, Jan. 26, 3:30–8:10 p.m. cost is $82.50/free for members of Recognized by the American DiaWellStar Health Place. betes Association, this program includes a range of topics to assist adults Tai Chi living with diabetes. The WellStar DiaThursdays, Jan. 12–Mar. 30, 12–1 p.m. betes Education Center is staffed with Tai Chi is a mind-body practice that has its nationally certified diabetes educators roots in ancient China. They are designed and a licensed social worker. Physician to cultivate the body’s vital energy (known order is required; Class is often covered as “chi”) and improve the flow of this energy by insurance and financial assistance is through the body. Through movement, available. Call 770-793-7821 to register. meditation, and breath, participants learn how to enhance and increase this energy Breastfeeding Basics and direct its flow. Gentle, graceful, and re- Saturdays, Jan. 14, Feb. 11, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. peated movements sometimes known as Taught by certified lactation consultants, “moving meditations” are the crux of the this one-day introductory class helps you class. There will be no class on Feb. 9. Call make an informed decision about breast770-956-STAR (7827) to register; cost is feeding. It covers the breastfeeding skills $82.50/free for members of WellStar and techniques to ensure a successful Health Place. breastfeeding experience for mother and baby. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to BLS for healthcare providers register; cost is $35. Saturdays, Jan. 28 and Feb. 11, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. This one-day Basic Life Support course for Joy of Parenthood medical personnel offers two-year CPR Thursday, Jan. 12, 6–9 p.m. certification, training in automated exterExpecting parents learn about newborn nal defibrillator (AED) and choking relief. behaviors and care including holding techCall 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; niques, diapering, feeding, dressing and cost is $60. bathing. Community & Education room. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; Free breastfeeding support cost is $30. Mondays: Jan. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 9:30–11 a.m. The Circle of Health: Free Mommy & Me group for mothers Heart & Lungs 101 who breastfeed; lactation consultant is Tuesday, Feb. 28, 6–8 p.m. available to facilitate supportive discusKicking off WellStar’s Speaking about sions over a variety of topics. No registraWellness for Health Aging series for 2017. tion required; mothers are welcome to The heart and lungs are connected. Over a come and go at any time during the seshealthy dinner and dessert, learn how resion. Call 770-793-8088 for more info. ducing the risk of disease in one organ has a positive effect on the others. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; cost is $10.




WellStar Kennestone Hospital is the only hospital with a pediatric unit in Cobb County and is staffed with a team of pediatric specialists. Leading the team, pediatric hospitalists—like Dr. Carrie Stinson—are pediatricians who work in the hospital’s unit, caring for children who are admitted because of infections that may require antibiotics, respiratory illnesses, dehydration and post-operative care.

Having a child in the hospital can be stressful. Taking typical Atlanta traffic and distance to the hospital into account, that stress is often compounded. With an inpatient Pediatric Unit at WellStar Kennestone Hospital that opened a little more than a year ago, families appreciate the care their children receive from a team of pediatric specialists and the reduced stress from the care available close to home. “Our unit is uniquely equipped to handle all medical emergencies for even the smallest patients,” said Carrie Stinson, M.D., associate medical director of WellStar Pediatric Hospital Medicine. The pediatric team provides attentive and compassionate care for children from birth up to 18 years of age, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Leading the team, pediatric hospitalists are pediatricians who work in the hospital’s unit, caring for children who are admitted because of infections that may require antibiotics, respiratory illnesses, dehydration and post-operative care. “We are here for babies, children and teens if they need continued care after a trip to their pediatrician’s office, the Emergency Department or an operation,” said Dr. Stinson. “We communicate with their primary pediatricians so that the transition to care outside of the hospital is seamless.” She said hospitalists at Kennestone take the time to educate families on their children’s diagnoses and give them tools to prevent further hospitalizations in the future. “We help our patients heal so they can go home, but our team also focuses on helping the kids with the stress and anxiety of being away from home and the need to keep things lighthearted and fun, too,” Dr. Stinson said. “Parents appreciate the one-on-one care for their children from people who love kids. And, the patients love the extras like the window washers who dress up like Spiderman, cuddly stuffed animals and visits from Santa in December.” The inpatient Pediatric Unit is one of many services for children in the community provided by WellStar. Its hospitals have separate Children’s Emergency Departments that deliver comprehensive, child-focused care by pediatric specialists. Families have access to outpatient pediatric care, such as after-hours care, rehabilitation, low-dose imaging and more at WellStar Pediatric Center in Kennesaw. WellStar also offers pediatric orthopedic surgery at WellStar Windy Hill Hospital. For more information about WellStar’s pediatric services, visit wellstar.org or call 770-956-STAR (7827). ❍







TIME FOR HEALING Minimally invasive treatments for spinal pain


or golfers, there’s nothing like a round on the course with friends. The peace and quiet. The comradery. The competition. The frustratingly simple game becomes more than a hobby for many. It becomes an important part of life. But for some golfers, chronic pain gets in the way of the swing. And so many other activities that make life worth living. The National Centers for Health Statistics estimate 76.2 million Americans suffer from persistent pain—which is pain that lasts for more than 24 hours. It’s common for those with chronic pain to experience depression and trouble concentrating, low energy levels and the inability to sleep well. The pain and these side effects often lead to a reduced enjoyment of life, stopping people from enjoying their weekly tee times or whatever they love to do.

Some patients have too much pain to get through physical therapy. For them, minimally invasive spinal treatments can help block the pain while receiving the therapy needed to heal. Such treatments can include epidurals, a form of injection therapy, facet joint injections and radiofrequency ablation. They are useful for patients living with long-term chronic pain as well patients with new pain from an injury. These treatments can also be a good solution for patients who cannot take medication for chronic pain. “We’ve had patients incapacitated with pain because of a disc herniation,” Dr. Haba said. “One patient—she was in pretty bad shape. She was completely miserable. We did an injection and she was 100 percent better. She didn’t need to have surgery and or take pain medication longterm.” These treatments are available close to home at the Outpatient Surgery Center at WellStar East Cobb Health Park. The procedures typically take Sadik Haba, M.D. less than 20 minutes and sometimes Sadik Haba, M.D., a WellStar pain as few as five minutes. With help from a pain specialist— medicine specialist in East Cobb, can sometimes paired with physical help patients get their swing back, therapy—the body can finally heal and allowing them to live life to the fullest. patients are able to return to the “People don’t need to live in pain things they love, including the pursuit and most patients don’t need surgery,” of a hole-in-one. he said. Dr. Haba’s final words: “The body Dr. Haba, who most commonly has potential to heal itself and we help treats patients with pain in the neck, lower back and middle back, said 80- that to happen.” WellStar Pain Medicine at WellStar 90 percent of patients with herniated East Cobb Health Park at 3747 discs and spinal stenosis find relief Roswell Road, Marietta. To schedule through non-surgical means such as an appointment, call the Spine Center physical therapy, medicine and pain at 470-956-9000 or visit interventions. www.wellstar.org.

ETERNAL EXHAUSTION Rheumatologist helps patients manage lupus


any people experience fatigue and joint pain from time to time. In most cases, the body is able to heal within a few days. But if fatigue recurs—especially after several good nights of sleep—it can signal something more serious, such as lupus. This autoimmune disease limits the body’s ability to distinguish between its healthy tissues and foreign threats. The immune system overreacts, attacking healthy organs. Although lupus affects men and Xena Whittier, M.D women, it is more frequently discovered in women 15 to 44 years old. The cause of lupus is not known. Symptoms can vary from person to person, but increased fatigue, consistent joint pain and swelling and recurring rashes are most commonly associated with lupus. “Because lupus is a systemic disease, it can affect any part of the body,” said Xena Whittier, M.D., a physician at WellStar Rheumatology Associates. “Some people can get rashes. Others can experience kidney issues.” A primary care physician can perform preliminary tests, but a specialist, known as a rheumatologist, will make the ultimate lupus diagnosis. Even when in remission, lupus can often flare up. Patients need to remain vigilant in monitoring their condition and receiving treatment. “Treatment is directed to what’s going on in your body. We customize treatment for each patient,” Dr. Whittier said. The earlier lupus is found, the more treatable it is. Dr. Whittier notes that some patients see improvements in their quality of life as soon as treatment begins. “I recently had a young woman come in with fatigue and generalized joint pain,” she recalled. “She had trouble doing her job, but she’s had a great

response to medication. She feels that her functionality has improved and that she isn’t as debilitated as before. At work, she finally is able to focus on a task again.” Lupus symptoms are also common in other illness, which complicates detection. Knowing the few basic signs as well as paying constant attention to changes in your body, however, allows you to take action and look for help before the condition develops further.

Rheumatology in East Cobb The team at WellStar Rheumatology Associates works with patients to manage the symptoms of autoimmune diseases, arthritis, vasculitis, connective tissue disorders and problems related to joints and soft tissues. Rheumatologists are subspecialists who are board certified after additional medical training consisting of three years in a medical residency after medical school and an additional two years in a fellowship. Some of the more common conditions they treat include lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and gout. For more information or an appointment, contact the practice at 770-420-1690.

Pregnancy with lupus Lupus shouldn’t stand in the way of patients who want to become mothers or grow their families. When a woman with lupus decides to get pregnant, the disease needs to be inactive for six months before the pregnancy. Rheumatologists can help the patient come off of certain medications while pregnant, find alternatives to help manage the condition and monitor the antibodies that can affect the fetus throughout the pregnancy. “Even though lupus pregnancies are considered high-risk, many patients have successful pregnancies when followed closely,” said Xena Whittier, M.D., a rheumatologist at WellStar Rheumatology Associates in East Cobb.

LIFE… 50+ (



DIVING INTO A BLACK HOLE 2017 will be the year of the great clean out… maybe. By Di Chapman

We all have one. Whether it’s under the kitchen sink, under the beds, or in the closets. Or boxes in the storage room, harboring VHS tapes circa 1995. I’m referring to black holes in the home. These black holes are not the same ones as in space, but they act in much the same fashion, sucking in everything around them. In my house, we have two or three black holes that call to me for attention. I would LOVE to respond with gloves, garbage bags, and vacuum, but doggone it, digging those things out is akin to hard labor. Sure, there’s a sense of accomplishment with the task completed. But, being the night owl I am, when I accomplish

clean-outs like this, I’d rather have been over indulging in the kitchen. Think about it. You put the finishing touches on the clean-out, haul away all the junk that needs to be trashed or shredded, and THEN, over the next few months watch the space fill up again. I love that expression, “No matter how big your home, you’ll always fill up every space.” We humans are a funny

bunch. We can’t wait for more space, only to cram it full after move-in. Consequently, I’ve decided that in 2017 I must clean out my closet. Mind you, it was a hard choice between that and the storeroom. At least with my closet I don’t have to fling around 35-pound boxes like wrecking balls. And, honestly, I don’t think it needs much work. (Whew.) And when it’s compared



faiths or no faith at all. A non-profit entity owned by Catholic Continuing Care Retirement Communities, Inc., we are dedicated to providing the highest quality senior living lifestyle to our residents, including worship opportunities for all who wish to participate in them. Our chapel hosts a daily Mass as well as weekly services and Bible studies for a variety of faiths. We cordially invite you to come see why St. George Village is a community The benefits of friendship and faith of friendship and faith. Experience our are many. These connections can help: warm and welcoming environment, • Increase your sense of belonging and take a tour, and stay for lunch. Call purpose Stacy at 678-987-0402 for a variety of opportunities to delight your confidential appointment. • Increase your odds of living a • Boost your happiness and reduce mind, body and spirit with neighbors healthier, longer life anxiety and stress Find more details about our who share your interests. The opportu- community, lifestyle and residents at We recognize the benefits of • Improve your self-confidence and nities to make new friends are endless www.stgeorgevillage.com. Follow us on friendship and faith at St. George self-worth here: attend one of our exercise or edu- Facebook and Pinterest, too! Village. Part of our mission as a Life • Help you cope with traumas, such as cational classes, work out in the fitness Plan community is supporting and endivorce, serious illness, job loss or the couraging our residents to engage fully center or pool, walk the trails or put in death of a loved one St. George Village a raised bed garden, play bridge or join in life by providing opportunities to • Encourage you to change or avoid 11350 Woodstock Road with other residents on a community strengthen existing connections and unhealthy lifestyle habits Roswell, GA 30075 volunteer project. foster new ones. • Increase your level of contentment 678-987-0402 Additionally, St. George Village For example, St. George Village is a and reduce the chance that you’ll place where you can experience a wide offers a warm welcome to people of all experience depression stgeorgevillage.com


t every age, we form and maintain connections that are the glue that strengthens and enriches our lives. As we grow older, our connections through friendships and faith take on roles of increasing importance to our health and happiness.


to say, my sister’s, it’s downright blowing sunshine. My sister’s is the ultimate black hole. As you stand and gaze into it you’d wonder when the A-Bomb blasted. However, and I don’t know how she does this, but she knows exactly where everything is inside of it. And I mean everything. Nonetheless, I love her closet. Interestingly, my sister and I have had “interchangeable” clothing all of our adult years. I say “interestingly” because physically we couldn’t be more different. She is a petite, shapely younger sister, inheriting my mother’s tiny stature. I, on the other hand, became a giraffe with threefoot legs and orangutan arms with knuckles dragging on My sister tells me that I should quit looking like “a the ground. I’m 6.5 inches rocker” from the 80s and get rid of my inventory taller than she. Somehow, I of black jeans. “Colors, Diane, Colors. That’s where can wear her blouses, sweaters, blazers and jackets, we’re at right now. Ditch the black.” as well as skirts. We have to nix the pants. High-water is not my style. She has a fashion zeal that results in an amazing inventory that I can borrow from when I visit her in California. When she is off to her office, we talk over the phone while I stand in front of her closet looking at an over-stuffed jumble of clothes and shoes while she directs me to a piece of clothing she thinks I might enjoy wearing. Behold the ultimate black hole of a closet that is cosmically organized in its proprietor’s mind. She knows exactly where every pin, shoe, scarf and piece of clothing resides within. My closet is in need of a clean-out as well, but not due to massive overcrowding with jumbled shoes. No, mine is in need of an update. My sister tells me that I should quit looking like “a rocker” from the 80s and get rid of my inventory of black jeans. “Colors, Diane, Colors. That’s where we’re at right now. Ditch the black.” She has spoken. So, I’m staring into my closet. “It doesn’t look that bad,” I’m thinking. It’s certainly not a vortex that will suck me in like my sister’s. Perhaps my clothing from another time far, far away would make a charity happy. Perhaps I can step up my game and part with my “fat” clothes. (Men, it’s a chick term.) Wait. Maybe some day I’ll be back into them. I’ll hang on to them. Then there are the professional clothes I haven’t worn in years. I pledge to let some go. I work from home ergo I rarely need them. Exercise clothes suffice. Well, hold on. So what if my blazers have fat padded shoulders? I look to the shelves above. They’re neatly stacked with different containers of handbags and accessories. They look perfect. Success! Ah, what the heck. My closet, good, bad, or ugly, will be cleaned out next year. That was simple. Door’s closed. Alas, I’ve got other black hole to dive into. Boxes in the storeroom haven’t been cleaned out since 2000. There’re plenty of VHS tapes in there. Besides, swinging those babies around will give me some exercise. Good thing I’ve got plenty of clothes in my closet for that. ❍




by Geri Laufer

A GUIDE TO KEEPING HOLIDAY PLANTS ALIVE Toss some, keep tender ones in pots, and plant several outdoors for years of enjoyment!

toss. Add them to your compost pile!

fter the holidays, evaluate ORCHIDS your plants to make sure Some people have a knack with they are worthy of the time Orchids, and get Phalaenopsis to you lavish on them. Some may rebloom each year. However, due need to be composted right away. to their specialized care requirements, most of us should Toss out after the holidays treat them as long-lasting but POINSETTIA ultimately disposable Did you know? living bouquets. Or join Poinsettias are grown the Atlanta Orchid for their colored Society and learn more. leaves (bracts) CYCLAMEN surrounding the tiny Fragile Cyclamen are yellow flowers in the nearly irresistible to center and more than Cyclamen Mites, which 60 million are sold in then spread to your a 6-week period each Cyclamen is beautiful in the other houseplants, so year. Can you get moment but problematic to avoid the hassle and toss them to rebloom? care for after the holidays. them after bloom. The short answer is Container plants to grow for years “yes,” immediately followed by “why would you want to?” Let the CHRISTMAS CACTUS experts grow these. This succulent will bloom reliably each Thanksgiving or FORCED TULIPS Christmas so long as it is given Tulips look great on the table, but will not rebloom, even in the plenty of direct sunshine and summer vacations outside. It’s OK garden, so they are an obvious

Our Atherton Place Family

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 • MARIETTA, GA 30060 • athertonplace.org

Kalenchoe comes in many colors and make great houseplants if given enough sun. Take them outside each summer for a vacay. Photo: Lionel Allorge/Wikimedia Commons to forget to water it occasionally, too! KALANCHOE

Ditto that for Kalanchoe, another succulent houseplant with bright flowers that is is simple grow, given dry soil and lots of sunshine. MEYER LEMON

Citrus trees yield fragrant blossoms followed by big, tasty fruits. Make sure 1. provide a large container with good drainage; 2. potting soil that has no wetting

Christmas Cactus are so long-lived, and so forgiving of spotty watering, that they are handed down from generation to generation. Peter Coxhead/Wikimedia Commons agents; 3. add a tablespoon of epsom salts twice a year for magnesium-loving citrus. NORFOLK ISLAND PINE

Not really a pine, keep this tender houseplant in bright light or sun, but away from cold weather. Water when the surface of the soil feels dry to the touch. DYK? It gets 100 feet tall in New Zealand!

Plant outside to thrive in garden



This well-know culinary herb can be clipped into cones or allowed to grow naturally, making a large PAPERWHITE NARCISSUS These small, fragrant jonquils are hardy in metro- evergreen shrub in a sunny spot in the landscape. Be Atlanta gardens, so keep them alive after the blooms sure to add some garden lime to the soil when planthave faded, then plant them in the garden and mulch ing rosemary. After-care extends your enjoyment of holiday with compost. plants, in some cases for years. Treat most of them as CHRISTMAS ROSE (HELLEBORES) houseplants until Spring, then plant the hardy ones These hardy perennials belong outside in the in the ground and keep the others in containers for garden, so after enjoying the winter flowers indoors, next year. ❍ find a place with filtered shade and well-drained, organic soil and plant them outside to enhance your landscape.


tered section of your garden, and wait for a surprise when it reblooms each summer!


Everyone in metro-Atlanta knows azaleas! The only tip is to avoid shocking your greenhouse-raised, forced-to-bloom, woody ornamental outside in the cold. Wait until mid-March and it can join other azaleas in your yard. HYDRANGEA

Another woody ornamental, care for Hydrangeas indoors until the Ides of March, then plant outdoors in a bit of afternoon shade. GARDENIA

A broad-leaf evergreen, fragrant gardenia is one After Amaryllis blooms fade, cut down the stalks more woody ornamental for the landscape. It grows and continue to water and provide sunshine to the well in acid soil and afternoon shade, proving long, strap-like leaves. Then plant outdoors in a shel- blossoms for years. AMARYLLIS

A wonderful gift, white, blue or pink Hydrangeas must be babied until the danger of frost is past in April, and then can be planted outdoors in the landscape. Photo: James DeMers/Pixabay



platter that consists of baba ghanoush, hummus, tabbouleh, and homemade falafel. It comes with fresh baked pita as well. To finish off your meal the Cedar Grill has assorted sweets and Turkish coffee, which for me is the perfect way to end a wonderful meal. For those with pure food indulgence in mind, visit The Cedar Grill and sate your desires with

their changing internationally and seasonally inspired small plates. These guys love food, lots of different food, just like you. They are open for lunch and dinner and offer a daily special to tantalize your taste buds. ❍

The Cedar Grill 1497 Alpharetta Hwy Alpharetta, GA 30009 678-404-7558 www.thecedarsgrill.com


Mosa take great pride in sharing experiences they enjoy with their n the last ten years our family. community has dramatically When you walk in you are enhanced its culinary immediately engulfed with the smells offerings. It wasn’t long ago that of fresh baked breads and pita coming from the traditional handmade brick if you wanted something other oven. There’s something about than fast food or a chain homemade breads that make us all feel restaurant you had to drive south good inside. If you’ve never tried a to enrich your taste buds but Turkish meat and cheese or veggie pie, thankfully, those days are gone. then you’re in for a big treat. Every One of my favorite new restaurants order is made from scratch and then in Alpharetta is Cedar Grill on cooked to a beautiful golden brown. I Alpharetta Hwy just south of North love the meat and veggie pie but the Fulton cheese is my preferred choice. Hospital. I’ve also had the mixed grill that conThe Cedar sists of beef, chicken, and kofta (a Grill is an homemade minced beef kabob) that’s upscale in- very tasty that comes with two sides of ternational your choice. There’s a lot of food here so delicatessen and restaurant, with a dis- I recommend splitting it with another tinct menu that includes authentic person and that way you can also order Middle Eastern ingredients as well as the Turkish pie as well. North African, (precisely, Moroccan). If you’re looking for something a Father and son owners Sharif and little lighter I recommend the veggie By Mark Penstone






It’s January, let’s get right to it. I resolve to never ever serve sour political conversation at table. That right there will improve the taste of dirt. You can join me if you like on this one. Raise your right hand, or left, and repeat after me. No politics, not at dinner, not with breakfast, or sack lunches. Not with so much as a candy bar or at the fast food greasers, or with nice people ever! Say it now and mean it. Now about the rest of it. I announce these resolutions: ONE I am expanding this column. Restaurant openings are all well and good but come on. There’s a bunch more to talk about. America cooks, and cooks well. There are delectables to discover and they aren’t where we’re looking. TWO I am getting down into where it’s coming from, who’s making it, finding just how close to home I can get good, fresh, healthy food. While keeping my dollars, my spending, close to home as well. It’s all local to me, folks. We’re in this together. All hands on deck and every purchase counts. THREE Searching for local production stories from farms and homes, backyards, or rolling coaches. I’m hitting the countryside looking for the little guy. I’m an unabashed cheerleader for talent pulling on bootstraps. FOUR Then telling you what I found, what’s good about it, who is doing it and if done right. Why this matters? Making it my mission to find and talk about great food and supporting local business is how this column began. That will remain. That I won’t stop. The people behind the stories are in our editorial DNA at the Current Hub. There are stories all around that need sharing. Despite the fact that they do not meet the restaurant review molds we are used to. To do this right, I have to move on to include a bigger picture. The micro businesses hiding right there in front of us. Things are changing people. How we eat is changing right before my eyes. Perhaps you don’t notice because you have no time. Give yourself a break, it’s ok. We are all overloaded. Besides, it’s my job. I got this. Here’s an example of how we’re going to tackle food editorial in the coming year. I am right now sitting on a story about Heike Sellers. I have been eating her pastries, breads, and pies for a year. I found her first at the Roswell Farmers Market. She bakes really well and I keep going back. But that’s not the “wow” part of her story. The wow to me is somehow, someway, she got permitted, zoned and licensed, to do this business from her home located in Alpharetta and get this—she’s making it successful. That’s a home business plan story that may impact a lot of people’s thinking. But it’s food too. Its about thoroughly fresh, it’s all farm to table, it’s as local as the red clay and pine trees. And that right there, to me is the key. Supporting local people with every decision, with every purchase I make. That’s my mantra, that’s what I am selling. And I am going to do it into a headwind of industrial mass production being slopped from drive through windows that is killing us with terrible food. It’s addicting us, generation after generation, to, frankly, garbage. That’s horrifying and I am witnessing it with my own eyes. My hometown in St. Charles, Illinois had among the first McDonald’s in the country. I have watched us go from that kind of meal


being the rare “treat” to it being a staple in our diet. How did that happen? And I am wondering what the heck we are doing to ourselves with the overcooked greasy processed unnatural things we eat. By the looks of things what it’s doing to us isn’t good. Personally, I’ve quit smoking, drinking, and most fast food. If you have a resolution for a better diet be gentle with yourself. Cold turkey, no pun intended, is great but one small step. One less bad sack of food per week to start. Check your waist for confirmation of a job well done. Who knew chicken nuggets were the end of civilization? Ok, that’s a bit of a stretch. But it doesn’t disguise my sadness at empty tables in really good restaurants or unsold products in local farmers markets. In America people are growing top quality, world-beating food, cooking it with passion, art and talent and happy to serve all. I now provide example number two, Mr. Bill Greenwood has invented a new pie. It’s made from a new kind of flour from local growers just so he can mill his own for The author with Bill a totally unique Greenwood crust. That’s right here at Greenwood’s on Green Street in Roswell. Entrepreneurs creating new things from scratch. It’s a whole new thing in food and I haven’t headlined it yet, arrgh. Or yet another example is my favorite meal this month. At Las Costas Nayaritas, located at 1085 Holcomb Bridge Road, you will find some of the most honest and complete from scratch Mexican cooking anywhere. The $9.95 seafood lunch buffet kicked my teeth in. And no one, but no one ever made a name in the review racket by saying “buffet” much less “Mexican seafood buffet.” I do not care. Laugh if you want. But if you’re smarter, take a listen. It was great,

The Alpharetta Flour Artisan, Heike Sellers

comparable to the priciest seafood in town, and it never stopped coming. These guys say to heck with the soft blue ambiance of valets and well manicured, made-up hostesses. It’s about the food! This is a bring the family or coworkers and eat the best meal of your week type of place, it’s cheap, it’s way different. Honestly, I nearly walked out first time I went but the better judgment of my publisher pushed me to stay. I don’t regret it. Thrown in for nothing, you get immersed in our Latino neighbors and their friendly culture. The place has been around for some time but it’s new to me and I bet you too. How the heck have we lived here, this long, and never knew about this place? About half a million of us drive by it every month. But now you know. Beyond the buffet, Las Costas Nayaritas features a full menu as well. They feature whole plate, head on fish dinners, with most running $10 to $15, highlighted by the Pina Costena, which is a half pineapple stuffed with sea food and cheese then baked. This is a diet breaking sin you shouldn’t try to resist. They also have a full menu featuring traditional Mexican fare, a full bar and a kids menu to boot. Food, what we eat and how. It’s a trillion dollar industry with some good, some bad. It’s America reinventing itself. It’s vital to our economy, our existence even. As the year progresses we’ll look closer. Happy 2017. I’ll be darned if I know how, but we made it. ❍





“Garden Lights, Holiday Nights” is in its sixth season at the Atlanta Botanical Garden.

Recently, on an outing with her church youth group to a roller-rink, my 12-year-old daughter spent her hard-earned dogwalking money on a poop emoji pillow. Seeing my son cuddled up with a poo is deeply troubling. How, we as a society, have devolved into sending cartoon pictures of our feelings to express ourselves, then to capitalize on the irony of such images, I will never completely understand. How can a tongue sticking out of a smiley face ever replace one’s true reaction to a photo? And honestly, though I know all kids have a proclivity for potty humor, why is there a need for a poop emoji? It seems that we are collectively abandoning the written word for crude hieroglyphics. I may be the only one who perceives this as a problem, but it seems that we’ve all lost the value of writing and expressing our thoughts and feelings with well-crafted sentences, and it goes well beyond the emoji. I confess that I long ago abandoned the seasonal chore of having my children write thank-you notes, (even to the relative that ironically sent a stationary set for Christmas.) I can distinctly remember back to my high school days, when my friends and I read Jane Austen novels and fell in love with the notion of sending letters, hand-written letters, to friends and potential paramours. My best friend once lamented the fact that she had

received a “dear Jane” letter from a boy typed in a Word document, rather than hand-written (the audacity!) to inform her that they were not right for each other. And this occurred before the advent of email! How easy it has become to type out a quick, curt note to express our dissatisfaction over some matter or other, not even putting the effort into an e-mail anymore; just a quick, thoughtless “thumbs-up” emoji will suffice to let someone know we’re happy about something; or are we? I have labored over teaching my children how to write in cursive, going back and forth between proper pencil holding, letter spacing, good penmanship… resorting even to a program called “Handwriting Without Tears,” (apparently, it’s a universal peeve,) and then resolving that since typing is the way to go, we should just focus on word-processing skills. Now, it’s not even that, but fast texting ability that matters most. I can’t help but think that our current generation is completely losing the ability to put a well thought out thesis on paper. I’ve experienced this in my own entrance back into higher education, with classmates lamenting the fact that we have to put a 500-word essay together to describe how the circulatory system works. I can’t help but think that cave drawing is going to be the next big 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.




The year 2016 was a landmark year, one in which I passed the mid-century mark in life. I’m a firm believer that 50 is the new 40 and that we as people define our age, not numbers… but the two numbers five and zero put together are still ugly. It’s one of those birthdays that make us take note and in this instance start a new column on getting old, or refusing to. While yes, I did join the big five oh club this year, I do not feel old. There have been many moments in my life where I’ve felt old though. Most of these moments are not physical but rather mental. The first example happened 25 years ago when teenagers started wearing extremely baggy jeans. Remember those? The first time I saw that I said “Look at what that kid is wearing!” I then looked around and noticed ALL of the kids were

wearing them. Here I was in my skinny 1980s sytle jeans thinking that at 25 I was still “hip” but upon further reflection the denim fashion world had passed me by. That was the first time I really felt old. There are other times when age is a factor and it’s the small interactions that sometimes get me. For instance, when I pass through the Starbucks drive-thru and the rather hipsterish barista says: “Hey dude how’s it going?” Now that’s a salutation I can handle. He called me “dude” or even better sometimes it’s “bro” or on a really good day it’ll be “brah,” all of those make me feel cool. There are the days, however, when I’m greeted with a “Good morning sir.” Sir, that one still gets me. In my rule book you should not be called sir while your father is still living and mine is. Dude still works for me. The year 2016, however, had many more of these moments. Perhaps this was just my being more observant due to the fact that I now have

reading glasses and I can actually see things three feet in front of me, or perhaps some old age wisdom is creeping in. Slowly. There is, of course, the physical side of aging as well. I make all sorts of strange noises and I probably need to have a serious emissions check. My wife and son often wonder why, when reclining at night in my chair, I sound like a 1973 Ford Pinto. And it’s even worse when hitting the bed. With all of the reflection and contemplation of this year though, I can say through my 50 years there are few things I regret. I have a wonderful wife, a worldclass son, a family that is second to none and I don’t work for a living because I get to do this. So here’s to a fantastic 2017. And yes, I did buy a convertible last year. It is not, however, a midlife crisis car. It’s just cool. ❍



PIZZERIA LUCCA STARTED AS A DREAM WITH A BACKYARD BRICK OVEN brick oven in their backyard, and they began making true Neapolitan pizza at home. Soon they were having family and friends over frequently and were regularly baking pizza for 15–20 people, who routinely said, “This is the best pizza I have Diana and Vic Bernardini ever had.” Not long after that, the thought of owning their own Neapolitan pizzeria was conceived. Vic and Diana began to search for the perfect spot for their venture, and decided on historic Roswell because of the vibrancy of the town and the established food culture. They began construction in December 2015, excited to be working together to bring authentic Neapolitan pizza to Roswell and its residents. Vic and Diana feel their purpose in life is to bring

Pizzeria Lucca 96 Bulloch Avenue Roswell, GA 30075

www.pizzeria-lucca.com 470-294-1222 Winter Hours Monday thru Friday Open for dinner 4:30 to 9 p.m. Saturday Open for lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. family and friends Sunday Open for lunch and together around a table for fabulous food, dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. wine, music and conversation. They want nothing more than to bring people closer by sharing the simple pleasures of spending quality time while eating a wonderful meal in an authentic Italian environment and look forward to having you as their guests at Pizzeria Lucca. ❍


Vic is an Italian-American foodie who has lived in major cities throughout the world and has frequently visited Italy’s Neapolitan pizza making region. He has experience dining at the finest restaurants throughout the world, but he has been most obsessed with pizza. Throughout his travels, he has consistently sought out and experienced pizza restaurants with exceptional reputations for quality. Vic began making pizza more than 15 years ago in his family kitchen. As he practiced, he quickly became obsessed with pizza making because what seemed so simple—combining dough, sauce and cheese—was actually both art and science. He began reading, experimenting, seeking pizza professionals, and honing his skills, eventually hand kneading his own dough, making his own sauce using San Marzano tomatoes and acquiring the freshest and finest ingredients he could find. Vic met Diana. On their second date, he spoke about his obsession for making pizza and they realized they shared a passion for enjoying great food and fine wine with family and friends. As their relationship grew, Diana encouraged Vic to build a





EAST COBB/ROSWELL First off we have a correction from last month. As many of you noticed we gave the wrong address of the Super Target closing in Roswell. The Super Target located in east Roswell/Alpharetta located at 2600 Holcomb Bridge Road will be closing on Jan. 28. We apologize for the error. Brunswick Zone Bowling on Delk Road has closed to become Bowlero. Bowlero is a hyped up bowling and entertainment “fun-factory” featuring glow in the dark lanes, old school games, and more. The chairs are made from repurposed ski-lift rocking chairs, the bar is from an old Chevy pickup and an indoor food truck made from a reclaimed Airstream trailer. It’s fun. It’s hip, and it’s the new wave of bowling. The menu features the ultimate bar food including the Behemoth Burger, featured in USA Today as one of America’s top burgers. The burger is 5 lbs., 14 inches ’round and served with the works. You’re going to need to go bowling after finishing this bad boy off. Eggs Up Grill, out of Pawley’s Island, South Carolina, opened on Shallowford Road in the Publix Shopping Center. Eggs Up Grill is only open for breakfast and lunch (’till 2 p.m.). The restaurant’s lengthy menu includes eggs, breakfast sandwiches, pancakes, waffles, and French toast as well as burgers, sandwiches, wraps, soups, and salads. Looks like East Cobb will get two more dentist offices. One is opening in the former White Tiger Martial Arts on Lower Roswell. It’s next door to Baskin Robbins. Could this be on purpose? The second one is opening (along with an orthodontist) in the former Baked location on Johnson Ferry. If you’re looking to make your New Year’s Resolution to come true by working out more then consider joining up at Boot Camp in the Park. Our readers will receive $25 OFF a six session starting in January. You’ll do cardio, strength training and more. See www.bootcampinthepark.org for more details. Each year many of the area’s small businesses do great things for the community and 2016 was no different. Odyssey Personal From left – Anne Simpson, Janeen Blecker, Robert Fezza, Jan Ingersoll, Steve Financial Advisors of Siders and Rose Burton Roswell was pleased to provide supplies and donations to HomeStretch, a Roswell based charity that offers hope—helping local homeless families get back on their feet and into permanent, sustainable housing. This was Odyssey’s 12th Annual Holiday Outreach in support of local charities, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the help of their generous and kind clients. Together they have donated in excess of $28,000 over the


teenagers, are currently in the foster care system in 31 Georgia. Many of these children shuffle their belongings in garbage bags when they are removed from their homes. Totes 2 Tots aims to change that by giving every foster child in Georgia a new or gently used backpack, duffel bag, or suitcase. Since Totes 2 Tots launched in 2003, the annual volunteer event has collected and distributed more than 48,000 bags. Georgia Cancer Specialists (GCS) is hosting the 15th annual Totes 2 Tots drive to collect backpacks and suitcases for foster children in Georgia. Donations of new or nearly new backpacks, duffel bags and ALPHARETTA/JOHNS CREEK suitcases will be accepted at locations across the True to the Alpharetta Rotary Club’s motto, state. On Friday, Jan 13 you can make a donation at “Service Above Self, ” dedicated Rotarians gave their the GCS location in Alpharetta at 3330 Preston Roswell Mayor Jere Wood, and the RWC members. time, talents, and financial support to build a Ridge Road Suite 110) or the Johns Creek location at years. This year Odyssey donated $3,000 in cash and greenhouse and garden boxes for the students at The 6300 Hospital Parkway, Suite 300. ❍ supplies, including a matching contribution by Cottage School. The Alpharetta Rotary Club Odyssey’s partners Robert Fezza and Steve Siders. members’ intention for committing to the project The team at Odyssey was excited to partner with was to provide a much-needed structure in which HomeStretch to help homeless families with students develop horticultural skills and knowledge immediate needs. To learn more about their mission that can be utilized in a variety of ways throughout of bringing stability into the lives of those they serve their adult lives.   Rotary President, Jason Binder and to find ways that you can help, please check out said, “This greenhouse will always be a part of The their website www.homestretch.org. You, too, can Cottage School’s Horticultural and Culinary Arts prosupport a safe comfortable place for these parents grams. I am proud that Alpharetta Rotarians took and children to live while learning how to rebuild this project from concept to reality. It is a wonderful their lives. feeling to be involved with people helping people.” Speaking of charitable work. Roswell Mayor, Jere More than 13,000 children, from infants to Members from the Alpharetta Rotary Club and Cottage School staff. Wood recently recognized the Roswell Women’s Club for surpassing the $2 million mark in donations. Since its inception in the spring of 1948, the Roswell Woman’s Club (RWC) has focused its efforts exclusively on the betterment of Roswell and the neighboring communities in North Fulton. Since 1997, RWC has hosted 18 showcase home tours, one Rockin’ Roswell CHAIRity Event, one Mardi Gras Ball, and several partnerships with local businesses. The grand total raised and disbursed has surpassed $2 million dollars and counting. Great work ladies!



Was 2016 The Worst Year Ever? Nah. Let last year be an inspiration to do better, not a reason to do the opposite.

We live in a world of ever changing media technology that has coincided with the utter bankruptcy of our traditional media, economic, and political institutions. Being that 2016 was an election year, we went into meltdowns over “fake news” and “post-truth” is now a thing. This year of never-ending turmoil hit us locally as well, but we still have more to be thankful for than ever before. Think this is going to be another negative look at the world? Think again. By Jessica Diamond


The Tranquility of Canton Street on a December morning...

his area ain’t what it used to be, kids. I should know. I’ve lived in Roswell my entire life and even though I’ve been privileged to see a larger than average portion of this world, I’ve never felt much desire to live elsewhere. Now, with everything that’s going on in the world, I can say with all certainty this isn’t the Roswell I knew as a kid. This isn’t the city that raised me. This place has evolved into something almost unrecognizable. The Roswell I live in today, well… it’s better than ever. Not where you thought I was going with that, is it? For those of you who keep up with the news, I’m guessing you assumed I was going to complain about falling standards, changing values, and the rise of corruption and crime in our “sleepy little town.” After all, in the world of media, change is bad. Change is scary. Every negative event is a symptom of some larger social cancer that has conspired with those who disagree with us to bring down society as we know it. Yesterday was golden and tomorrow is doomed. It’s an old song, but we just love to sing it. I won’t tiptoe around the fact that 2016 has been a tumultuous year for everyone. North Metro Atlanta is not immune to the wave of tension and uncertainty that has rocked the country, and by extension, the global community. Locally, we have born witness to some truly unusual and even tragic occurrences.

do on the weekends except go to the movies and everyone’s parents sat in terrible traffic every day to get to their office jobs in downtown Atlanta. Roswell was a good place to grow up… but it wasn’t an exceptional place. It felt like any other suburb. Today, I am so grateful to be back in my hometown as an adult. As I walk down the scenic streets of the historic district, I pass families of every ethnicity, religion and orientation imaginable enjoying food from local, independent restaurants and shopping at artisan boutiques. I see an abundance of life and opportunity in the place we never even used to stop our car. I get up in the morning and wonder which park trail to explore or which café to visit. I watch as local artists are given the tools and recognition to bring unique character to our city and encourage the imagination with public displays of art. I enjoy local theatre productions, improv shows and open mic nights among audiences of every age and stage. Then, on the weekends, I hit the town with my college friends, many of whom have moved to the area and found excellent job opportunities nearby. I am watching my city grow and thrive in a way I never would have imagined as a ten-year-old kicking rocks around my cul-de-sac. When I look up from the bundle of nerves and worry that is my newsfeed, I see a world that has opened up in ways it never could have in any age before. I see a place that is, of course, imperfect and always in need of forward momentum, as any person or place should always be. But more importantly, I see a place that has truly grown into its time and continues to adapt. Despite the division that many of this year’s events have caused, it is crucial to remember that we are living in the most peaceful, prosperous and innovative times in history. We are also living in an age where information is plentiful, varied and coming at us in every direction. Continues on page 34


We’ve woken up to hear that several people were killed while waiting for a bus on Alpharetta Highway when a car lost control and plowed into the bus stop. We sat helplessly as two teenagers were found murdered behind a local grocery store. We were baffled to hear of a deadly shootout on Atlanta St. just minutes away from the heart of downtown. We were outraged to learn that a Roswell’s city council member has been charged with the solicitation of a minor. Reports of an elderly woman being kidnapped and a mother of two found dead in her estranged husband’s home only added to our growing grief and shock. All of these happened right here in nice quiet Roswell. Such violent and terrible stories sound strange to the ear because for us, this is not the norm. Events such as these are highly irregular in this area and it’s unnerving to hear of so many negative things happening in such a short span of time. It’s tempting to dwell on such things and allow them to compound in the mind until you find a need for some kind of resolution or conclusion. For many, that conclusion is that the world has simply gotten worse. The big bad world has invaded our little Mayberry and things will never be like they were. This is a believable picture when we allow fear to color it. I, for whatever my opinion is worth, see something very different when I look around my hometown. When I was growing up, we never set foot on Canton Street. It was pleasant to drive through and look at the old buildings and antique shops, but we never stopped the car. It was barely a blip on the radar as we made our way to a big box store to shop or to a chain restaurant for supper. The kids I went to school with looked more or less like me. If there was a student of color or a student who wasn’t some type of Christian, everyone noticed. Art was something that was done at school for 20-30 minutes, or at camp, and theatre was something old people went to on Sunday afternoons. There was very little to



Downtown Alpharetta, (above) Marietta Square, and Johns Creek Parks and Trails are all examples of what makes our hometowns wonderful places to live.

It can be overwhelming and even misleading. The media is an everevolving machine that is designed to produce the information we want to consume. It has become so good at this that we have come full circle and are using social media to populate the news outlets ourselves. While this opens up a wonderful range of possibility, it also carries new and unprecedented danger. Anyone who has ever been in a relationship can attest that communication is at once the greatest asset and the greatest challenge in creating a bond between people. If you neglect to consider the humanity of those you’re communicating with, it’s unlikely your message will be understood. So what can we do to address the things that worry us and keep the city moving forward? The answer is pretty simple. Seek answers by getting involved. Be informed and aware of what’s happening around you rather than relying on what’s flashing red across your computer screen. Did you hear about the protest held at City Hall when a young woman’s jaw was broken by a police officer? Chances are you did and when you read the headline, you had an immediate emotional response. This is what the media intends to do. Now you are emotionally invested in the story whether you have all of the information or not. The media reported that a Black Lives Matter protest was taking place at City Hall in response to an issue of police

brutality. What some media sources might not have told you is that video evidence showed the woman in question resisting arrest after drugs were found in her bag. The woman then struck the police officer in the face. Her jaw was broken as the officers attempted to restrain her and de-escalate a violent situation. Furthermore, the protestors in question were, in fact, not representatives of the BLM movement as they claimed to be. Black Lives Matter of Greater Atlanta was purposefully and intentionally not associated with the case. What this story did accomplish, however, was to overshadow a considerably more positive story that also took place that evening at City Hall. A group of residents from the Groveway Community, a historically AfricanAmerican neighborhood that has been in Roswell for many generations and has made great contributions to the city, was being honored that night with the renaming of a city park. Messaging is a powerful tool and can be used to help and to hurt quite effectively. The best way to use our power of communication to better our community in the coming year is to get involved and ask questions. Be your own investigative reporter. The best way to give back is to first know what is needed. You are part of what makes my city a wonderful place to live. Now, I challenge you to use your power to make 2017 the best year yet. ❍

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The Current Hub Jan 17  

The Current Hub for January 2017

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The Current Hub for January 2017