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Conversations start here.

A Toast To Summer Festivals & Series

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HEALTH p 17

ENTERTAINMENT p 14

GARDEN p 24

FOOD p26

UNLIKELY FRIENDS BATTLE CANCER TOGETHER

STAY COOL ON THE RIVER

BRING ON THE BUTTERFLIES

AVALON IN ALPHARETTA

WWW.THECURRENTHUB.COM

The Sunset Sips series at the Chattahoochee Nature Center are a music lovers treat.

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PUBLISHERS

Tripp Liles tripp@thecurrenthub.com

Mark Penstone mark@thecurrenthub.com

Carrie Kutney Art Director carrie@thecurrentplus.com

Tricia Morris (Social Chick) tricia@thecurrenthub.com

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

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


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The Month in Preview MAY 2017

>>GET IN THE SWING

>>SAVE A LIFE

>>GIVE MOM THE PADDLE

Swing For Soldiers

Relay For Life

Mother’s Day Paddle

May 13

May 14

May 20

Relay for Life of North Fulton is a free family event featuring live Core Matters in Roswell is music, games, and activities with holding an event to benefit some on-site charges for food, service members and their beverages, and certain activities, families through the proceeds to benefit The American Wounded Warriors Project. On May 20 they will hold a Cancer Society. competition to see how many times they can swing a kettle Relay For Life is a community-based bell in 5 minutes. You can support them by making a volunteer-driven event held annually donation for every swing or make a general donation to in towns throughout the world. the cause by visiting http://bit.ly/WWPCoreMatters. Teams fundraise over several Wounded Warrior families and caregivers are provided comfort, care, and education to help support the recovery months in advance of their Relay by reaching out to friends and family for donations and by organizing mini fundraisers. On May 13, North Fulton of their injured service member. All programs are teams will set up sites around the Webb Bridge Middle School track and provided free of charge. This event has permission from take turns walking or running laps in memory of those they’ve lost to WWP to raise funds on their behalf. If you have any questions or need any further information, please contact cancer, in honor of those currently in a fight against the disease, and in celebration of survivors. The school is located at 4455 Webb Bridge Rd. in them at events@woundedwarriorproject.org. Alpharetta. 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.

There’s no better way to celebrate Moms than by getting outside and enjoying nature. The Chattahoochee Nature Center has a unique way to say thanks to your favorite mom or grandma! Spend an afternoon with a canoe trip for the whole family. You can paddle to the playgrounds at Riverside Park for a little R & R but be careful, they will be distributing water squirters to liven things up. Call 770-992-2055 x237.


>>MONUMENTAL AUTHOR

>>IS IT JAY WALKING?

MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

Atlanta Authors Presents…

Glover Park Concert Series

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May 20 New York Times best-selling author Bret Witter, who co-authored two #1 bestsellers, Monuments Men (the basis for the movie starring George Clooney) and Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat, will speak at the Roswell Library on Saturday, May 20 at 2 p.m., as part of the Atlanta Authors series. As a coauthor, Witter works with people who have inspiring true stories and vast knowledge to bring their experience to life in print. His latest book, Pure Heart: A Spirited Tale of Grace, Grit and Whiskey, for example, is the story of a woman who built traditional mountain moonshine into a unique and thriving business. He wrote the emotionally charged memoir with Troylyn Ball, who struggled to save her family by creating a new life and business in Asheville, North Carolina. The Roswell Library is located at 115 Norcross Street. There is no charge for this event, but you must register to attend at Eventbrite.com, search word Atlanta Authors.

Monthly Folks in Marietta will again be “dancing in the street” during the Glover Park Concert Series. The series features local and national acts on the last Friday night, April through September with a special Saturday show by the Symphony on the Square on Saturday, May 27. The concerts are free but if you are looking for a “frontrow seat,” a limited number of tables can be reserved for a fee. Table reservations are taken on a first-come basis (and will sell out quickly) on the first working day of each month beginning at 8:00 a.m. Visit Marietta.com for more details. >>NO MOSQUITOES ALLOWED

Summer Concert Series

Monthly Each month the City of Johns Creek hosts concerts at The Mark Burkhalter Park Amphitheater, which provides a delightful venue for the Summer Concerts. While food and non-alcoholic drinks may be brought in, contracted vendors provide a variety of catered food and beverages, including beer and wine. Seating is on a first-comefirst-served basis. Blankets and lawn chairs are welcome on the terraced lawn. The concerts are free. On May 12 Gump Fiction performs 90s hits while on June 23 local legend Shawn Mullins performs. Seating starts at 6 p.m. with shows starting around 7p.m.


>>CELEBRATE THE HOOCH!

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May 20 Paddlers of all ages and skill levels will take to the water on Saturday, May 20, for the 15th Annual Back to the Chattahoochee River Race and Festival. Organized and presented by Chattahoochee Riverkeeper (CRK) in partnership with the National Park Service, and the City of Roswell, the event is organized to celebrate the Chattahoochee and foster a sense of community around the river that serves 3.5 million Georgians and 70% of metro Atlantans. The race begins at Garrard Landing Park on Holcomb Bridge Road and includes competitive and recreational categories for Kayaks, Canoes and Stand Up Paddle Boards. This 8-mile course includes exciting Class I-II rapids and concludes at Riverside Park, the site of the free family-friendly festival, music and awards presentation. For additional info visit Chattahoochee.org. >>PARK THE ART

Alpharetta Art In The Park

May 20 Creativity hits the park in charming Downtown Alpharetta. This outdoor artists market features handcrafted work by local artists who create masterpieces right before your eyes.  Come enjoy the pottery, woodwork, metal work, jewelry creations, handmade children’s clothing, photography, watercolor, oil, soaps and lotions, mosaic art and much more. This event is held one Saturday each month May through September. Other events are Jun. 24, Jul. 29, Aug. 26, and Sept. 23. It is held on Corner of Main Street & Milton Avenue in Alpharetta.

>>PURPLE IS EVERYWHERE

Lavender Festival

June 10 The 7th annual Lavender Festival will return to the historic grounds of Barrington Hall on Saturday, June 10 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Inspired by Evelyn Simpson, a descendant of Barrington, this celebration of all things lavender will feature the many uses associated with this ancient plant. This free event will allow festivalgoer’s to experience classes and demonstrations, lavender food samples, arts and crafts, antiques, food vendors, children’s activities, and more. Barrington Hall is located at 535 Barrington Drive in Roswell. Parking is available at Roswell Presbyterian Church, with a trolley providing ongoing transportation between the parking lot and festival entrance. No festival parking is available at Barrington Hall. A small participation fee may be required for some demonstrations.

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MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

River Race Festival


From Hang Gliding To Costuming May Has A Lot To Offer By Tripp Liles

METRO EVENTS­ (

The month of May in my house is a sort of limbo month. School is still in but we can see light at the end of the tunnel. The warm weather is here, the pollen is almost off the cars and yes summer vacations are just around the corner. So before we take time away from home, there are plenty of activities in the metro area to keep you entertained. We celebrate our moms on May 14 and in our immediate neighborhoods there are numerous activities highlighted by several great events at the Chattahoochee Nature Center. But if you would rather explore a little, a short drive down to Dunwoody will get you to the Dunwoody Art Festival. This festival takes place over the weekend

Dunwoody Art Festival of May 13 and 14, and it attracts artists from across the nation. Each year over 50,000 are on hand to absorb the wide array of arts and crafts. Additionally, they have numerous food trucks, with the normal variety of uniquely fried items and other delectables to ruin a diet. And because moms are front and center, they have a dedicated area for kids with rides and ac-

Cloudland Canyon State Park

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tivities to keep them engaged. The festival is held at Village Parkway in Dunwoody. Now if Dunwoody doesn’t tick your box and you are thinking that you don’t spend enough time in your car, then the Mountain Art and Craft Celebration is your ticket. This event is held on Mother’s Day weekend just s short drive up I-75 at


MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

The Cloudland Canyon State Park has beautiful scenery with over 60 miles of 7 trails and is surrounded by numerous historical and scenic areas. Top amongst that list is hang gliding atop Lookout Mountain. Now what better way to show mom some love than by shoving her off a cliff? For more info visit www.mountainartandcraftcelebration.com. Back in the day, I used to be an editor at Marvel Comics so I’m somewhat an authority on various comic and pop culture conventions. There are usually two types of folks who attend, the watchers and the watchees. If you are not into costuming, do not underestimate the enjoyment of seeing grown adults have a great time dressing in costume with some hard core people even assuming a character. MomoCon is being held in Atlanta on May 25–28, and it was born from the passion of Georgia Tech’s anime club. With 28,300 attendees, and over 71,000 MomoCon turnstile clicks over the four-day event last year, MomoCon is one of the fastest growing all ages conventions in the country. Fans of Japanese Anime, American beautiful Cloudland Canyon State Park on Lookout Mountain. This has been an Animation, Comics, Video Games, and Tabletop Games come together to event with lots of potential, but timing has been bad in past years. Over 5,000 celebrate their passion by costuming, browsing the huge exhibitors hall, meeting people attended the inaugural event in 2013 during the peak of fall foliage and celebrity voice talent, designers, and writers behind their favorite shows, games, 70 exhibitors and vendors offered their wares. In 2014, the number of exhibitors and comics, and much more over this four-day event. This is a great place for and food vendors increased to over 100, and they added a several dozen kids and adults to enjoy a different side of life no matter what you decide to wear. musicians, Spoken Word performers, and a civil war group in costume. The For more info visit momocon.com. inconsistent fall weather prompted the decision to move the event to springtime, To keep up with all local activities and events visit our site at www.thecurrenthub.com. ❍ in hopes of more cooperative weather.


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ter during the two weeks of the Cuban Missile Crisis, the market lost only 1.2% and gained more than 10% for the remainder of the year. • The market opened up 4.5% the day after President Kennedy’s assassination and the year 1964 ended up more than 15%. • Already in the middle of the tech bubble burst, stocks fell 15% in the two weeks following the one to six months or longer. What we do know is that attacks on September 11, 2001, but the market reacting to these crises du jour, by trying to change regained all its losses within a couple of months. your investment strategy to protect yourself from the • And who could forget the most recent crisis when market’s fluctuations, more likely than not, will harm the Dow futures fell 900 points that fateful you in the long run. Tuesday night in November 2016 only to soar 257 Let’s review what history can teach us [these sumpoints the following day. maries are from Ben Carlson’s April 2017 article, Over the long term, fundamentals still drive the “How Markets Overcame Past Geopolitical Crises” in stock market. When seeking certainty in an BloombergView: uncertain world, stay the course—keep steadfast to • From the start of WWI until it ended, 1914-1918, your goals and your financial plan. the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up more Life’s a journey—navigate it than 43%, 8.7% annualized. wisely! • Five days after Hitler invaded Poland and WWII Robert Fezza, CFP® and Steve Siders, began, the Dow rose almost 10% in a single day. CFP® own Odyssey Personal Financial Advisors, 500 Sun Valley Drive, Suite A-6, Roswell, GA. Their firm specializes in • It only took one month after the attack on Pearl Harbor for the market to regain its losses of 2.9%. working with people who are serious about making progress towards their financial goals. Odyssey manages portfolios • From the start of the Korean War until it ended, greater than $250,000. 770-992-4444, 1950-1953, the Dow was up 60%, 16% annualized. www.odysseypfa.com. Securities offered through Cetera • When the world was on the brink of nuclear disas- Financial Specialists LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.

MONEY

FINDING CERTAINTY IN AN UNCERTAIN WORLD Meaningful Conversations about Money, By Robert Fezza and Steve Siders

“…In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Benjamin Franklin Franklin’s words ring true, especially now in the current state of rising geopolitical uncertainty: Brexit; rising protectionist sentiment; political elections in the U.S., France, and Germany; missile strikes in Syria; North Korea’s sabre rattling, etc. There is enough uncertainty in the world to shake even the most confident faith. In fact, a recent survey by the CFA Institute found that two-thirds of investors surveyed think that the current geopolitical events will negatively affect investment returns over the next 3-5 years, and 70% of respondents feel these events will impact market performance. What history has shown us is that markets react to the “crisis of the moment.” We don’t know how long these events will last—it could be one to six days or


WHICH NEIGHBORHOOD IS BEST? By Kirsten Ricci

new grocery store, shops, restaurants and approximately 300 apartments. The Roswell Planning Commission gave unanimous approval to the project that will have to go before council for approval. Ultimately the plan calls for 164,000 square feet of space with apartment units that average about 950 square feet. Pollack Shores Real Estate would be over the apartments with the two entitles having recently collaborated on The Battery Atlanta project at Braves’ SunTrust Park. Another big idea floating around is the idea of a hotel in the historic area of Roswell. A recent feasibility study commissioned by Roswell Inc has indicated strong demand for a business-friendly hotel on the city’s Historic Town Square. The study, which was funded by Roswell Inc, in partnership with Visit Roswell GA and Georgia Power, recommends a 90-room hotel be developed on the site adjacent to Founders Square, where Haigwood Studios is located, as part of a new mixed use development also containing retail, residential, and office space. Next steps for Roswell Inc include taking this data and working in partnership with local developers, property owners, and hotel operators to attract the right project for this area. I can’t predict what will be in the future for our area but there are a lot of exciting proposals out there so now the ball is in the Roswell City Council’s court. Hopefully, some unity consensus in the government is on the horizon or that number 5 ranking will be moving down. ❍

Recently, niche.com, a website that analyzes neighborhood and school data, released a study on the best suburbs in Georgia and many of the municipalities in our distribution area scored very highly. While Decatur won as top ’burb, Johns Creek came in second followed by Alpharetta at three and Roswell at five. So that’s 3 out of the top 5 in the state. Not bad at all. The ranking took into account factors like quality of schools, crime rates, housing trends, employment statistics, and access to amenities. All of these criteria are areas in which our neighborhoods excel and as I’ve been telling you, this is a very hot area for real estate. In Roswell there are several big projects on the horizon and now that the new city council race is over these guys have a lot of work to do. There is the redevelopment of the Southern Skillet location that you (the tax payer) paid nearly $5 million for, not to mention several empty retail centers. Many of the new members ran on promises of proper and targeted development so lets hope they get to work. There are several proposals that have been made and if you live near the Houze Road area in Roswell you’ll be interested to know that Fuqua Development is proposing a mixeduse development at Alpharetta Kirsten Ricci is a Roswell resident and a Highway and Sun Valley Drive where Berkshire Hathaway Agent who specializes an underused 18-acre shopping center in residential real estate in the north metro now sits. The development will be a major overhaul and expansion with a Atlanta area. She can be reached at 678472-3832, kirsten@roswellrealty.net.

11 MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

REAL ESTATE (


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TODAY, TOMORROW & FOREVER ARTS By Spalding Negron

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A Tribute to Patsy Cline by a true Georgia girl

Georgia’s own Katie Deal, yes that Deal, will close out the LIVE! in Roswell season on Jun. 10 with a tribute to one of country music’s most magical performers. This one-woman show features a live band, tight harmonies and a powerhouse singer. In this tribute, audience members will learn a little bit about Katie, a little bit about Patsy, and a lot about why Patsy’s music is loved by so many. Cline was known for her rich tone, emotionally expressive and bold contralto voice, and her role as a country music industry pioneer. Along with Kitty Wells, she helped pave the way for women as headline performers in the genre. She overcame poverty, an unsuccessful marriage, a devastating automobile accident, and significant professional obstacles, and has been cited as an inspiration by Reba McEntire, LeAnn Rimes, and other singers in diverse styles. Books, movies, documentaries, articles, and stage plays document her life and career. Katie Deal grew up in Georgia and is the daughter of Governor Nathan Deal. Upon graduating with a

country wowing fans with her uncanny portrayal of the legendary singer. Having sold out two national tours of A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline, Katie now takes the stage with her own story of how the music and style of Patsy Cline has changed her life forever. Katie Deal is a seasoned professional and member of the Actors Equity Association. As a singer-songwriter, she was awarded the 2016 Atlanta Society of Entertainers Recording Artist of the Year, and is also an Atlanta Country Music Hall of Fame Honoree. Tickets for “Today, Tomorrow and Forever” are $30 and are on sale now at www.roswellcac.com. Senior, student, and military discounts are available by calling the box office at 770-594-6232 or in-person during business hours. A festive pre-show cocktail hour provided by Top degree in Theatre from Piedmont College, she moved Jobs Staffing will be available in the lobby one hour to Memphis for her first professional theatre gig, and prior to show time. The event starts at 8 p.m. and it was there that she began portraying her childhood theater doors open 30 minutes prior to curtain. For more information, visit www.roswellcac.com. ❍ hero, Patsy Cline. Since then, she has traveled the


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STAY COOL WITH EVENING MUSIC ON THE RIVER

The CNC music series begins in May By Kelsey Hall

T

he days are getting warmer and the weekends filling up with plenty of summer plans. What better way to wrap up the busy weekend than a relaxing evening under the stars listening to live music with friends along the banks of the Chattahoochee River? Cool tunes fill the stage at the Chattahoochee Nature Center with the Sundays on the River concert series. Every second Sunday, bring a picnic and be prepared to enjoy a musical evening on the lawn at CNC. Whether it’s a girls’ night, date night, or a you night, nature will provide the perfect backdrop for the evening. Bring mom and listen to the smooth jazz sounds of Bob Bakert and his six-piece band on  Mother’s Day, May 14, then July 9, and Sept. Bring a picnic and some friends and sit around a decorated table at the Sundays on the River concert series.

10. This year, look for a high energy show from Bakert as he performs classics from Sting, Stevie Wonder, Van Morrison, Buffalo Springfield, and even some favorites from the American Songbook. The opening act May 14 is  John Cable,  a member of John McEuen’s String Wizards, who currently performs all across the country. Look for Americana, country and folk influences in his songs. On June 11,  Billboard smooth jazz artist Carol Albert will perform  selections from her new album, including current smooth jazz hits “Mas Que Nada” and “On My Way” with her band.  A keyboardist and vocalist, Albert is an Atlanta native who has been featured on WCLK, SIRIUSXM Watercolors, and national smooth jazz radio stations worldwide. Her opening act,  Cadyn Lexa, is

an 11-year-old pop, rock, and soul singer/songwriter from Atlanta. With a voice well beyond her years, she has performed professionally since she was eight years old. Lexa also writes original compositions with her family and friends that she will perform on the CNC stage, the Ben Brady Pavilion. Later in summer, on Aug. 13, come listen to the American jazz sounds of Gwen Hughes. Hughes and the Native Land Band will put classic hit records into an exhilarating, funky setting that will make the audience dance and sing along.  She brings everything from the birth of the blues in Mississippi to the birth of jazz in New Orleans to country music in Virginia,  the funk of Georgia, and the Southern rock of Florida. Between songs, Hughes will lead the audience on a freewheeling and  fun history lesson of why the South is such a


ENTERTAINMENT­ (

MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

Carol Albert will perform selections from her new album at the CNC on June 11.

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Every seat is a good one at the Ben Brady Pavilion and lawn at the Chattahoochee Nature Center.

breeding ground for iconic recording artists. Book your tickets now and plan a great evening with CNC this summer at the Sundays on the River Concert Series. Shows are every second Sunday 6:30 – 9:30 p.m., May through September. Gates open at 6 p.m. Tickets are on sale now at CNC and Freshtix.com. CNC members save ten percent on tickets. Learn more at chattnaturecenter.org. ❍

WOULD IT BE OK IF YOU NEVER HAD TO DIET AGAIN? You know how people are always on a diet? And everyone knows that the minute they stop their diet, the weight will come right back—maybe with a couple extra pounds attached. Most people would love to take weight off one time and keep it off forever.

Ann-Marie Giglio, owner of Core Matters PAID PROMOTION

taking fewer meds, they have more energy—sometimes in as little as 28 days—and all they have done is to eat matters. It’s not something we should deprive ourselves of. Rather, we should properly. Most people don’t really want to eat food in the correct amounts, with balanced nutrients, at the correct time, suck their meals through a straw. Nor should they—unless they made that according to our own body’s specific meal themselves, correctly. And most needs, and our own tastes. people want something that is easy. Is it really that simple? Yes. We know, because we see it at CoreMatters Well, what could be easier than eating all the time. After we teach people how food? You are going to eat anyway, so why not eat correctly? to eat, they have reported to us that We attach a lot of drama to food. their cholesterol dropped 70 points, or Some of it’s useful, like when we their triglycerides dropped 70 points, celebrate with it, or we find simple or they went from Pre-Diabetic to no pleasure in its tastes and smells. Some signs of diabetes, their pants are too of it’s not so useful, like guilt, and big, their knees stopped hurting, or reward. But what if we think of food as they are sleeping through the night, information for a moment? To the their blood pressure is down, they are Well, you can. I’m here to tell you,

STOP DIETING! Why? Because food

body, that’s what it is: information that the brain uses to grow, to repair, and to maintain the body. The brain sends each molecule where it’s needed, in the quantities needed, and at the times it is needed, like fat molecules to the brain to rebuild cells or carbohydrates to the muscles to fuel movement. Every single molecule you put into your mouth has a role to play in creating your health and your body composition. We really are what we eat. The food choices you made three months ago determined the condition of your current batch of red blood cells! And the choices you make today are creating your future bones, skin, and organs. Food is powerful. It is medicine. It is you. Learn to eat correctly, and you’ll be in charge. You will no longer need to “diet”. Instead, you will own a diet. If you need help and are ready to learn, give us a call at (404) 435-6367. Let our Balanced Habits nutrition program be the last “diet” you ever do: Yours!

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


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THE RIVER ROCKS IN ROSWELL ENTERTAINMENT­ (

Cellist Ben Sollee performs June 3

much as he entertains through his innovative Celebrate the warm style as a cellist; conveyweather as the City of ing genre-bending Roswell kicks off the songwriting. 2017 Riverside Sounds July 1 – The Concert Series in May. Fritz: The Fritz are This series of six free masters of outdoor concerts will be improvisation and their held at Riverside Park, music may range from 575 Riverside Road in hard driving soul to proCatch Lera Lynn Sept. 2 Roswell, on the first gressive rock. Saturday of the month from May to August 5 – Rob Ickes & Trey October, 7 – 9 p.m. Hensley: Ickes and Hensley have “We are excited to bring more origi- taken what they’ve explored on stages nal artists back to Riverside Sounds across the country and the world into this year,” said Beckie Hawkins, the studio, and the result is a set that Cultural Services Manager of the expands their already wide-range Recreation, Parks & Historic and palette. Cultural Affairs Department. “This September 2 – Lera Lynn: Singeryear, we have a great mix of music gen- songwriter, co-producer, and res, including blues, Americana, pop, multi-instrumentalist Lynn rock, and funk.” embellishes her Americana roots with There will be food trucks at each a mix of spacey, left-of-center rock and concert from 6 to 9 p.m. and guests are experimental pop-noire.  may bring their own picnic and chairs. October 7 – Southern Avenue: May 6 – Webb Wilder: A bluesy Southern Avenue is a fiery young blast of baritone bombast. Equally Memphis quintet that embodies its versed in two glorious worlds, Rock home city’s soul, blues, and gospel and Roll. Webb has described the traditions while adding a youthful spirit music he makes as, “Rock for Roots and dynamic energy all their own.  fans and Roots for Rock fans.”  Visit roswellriversidesounds.com June 3 – Ben Sollee: Known for a and learn more on social media by fol360 degree approach to his art, lowing #RiversideSounds. ❍ Kentucky native Sollee educates as By Spalding Negron


health&wellness

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presented by

UNLIKELY FRIENDS BATTLE CANCER TOGETHER

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hen Andy Hite, Cobb County police captain and father of two, found out he had a tumor in his throat at the age of 46, he was shaken. “I thought I had strep throat. I had just finished a 9-mile run and felt great minus my throat being a little sore,” said Andy. “I never smoked or used tobacco.” The days following the diagnosis were a blur. An aggressive and difficult treatment regimen including chemotherapy and radiation began. Though he had the loving support of his wife, his sons, friends and colleagues, there was no way for them to completely understand what he was going through. And without that understanding, cancer patients can often feel alone. Then, he met Buddy Harris. At 91years-old, he faced a similar diagnosis. “We were both a little early to our treatment that day,” Andy recalled. “He looked upset, and I wasn’t doing too well myself. We looked at each other and just started laughing.” An unlikely friendship formed between the two, who had four decades between them. Meeting before or after treatment every day, Andy and Buddy shared the difficulties of their cancer diagnoses and treatment. Each of the men seemed to think he was gaining more from the conversation than the other. “He’s got so much knowledge and life experience,” said Andy. “He’s lived through so much. The telegraph and telephone, the internet, the wars; it’s just incredible.”

CANCER SUPPORT

Andy Hite and Buddy Harris met during their radiation treatments.

Meanwhile Buddy is inspired by Andy’s selfless service to his community and the risk that he takes every day to ensure the safety of the people he cares about the most. Lisa Bruggeman, lead radiation oncologist at WellStar Kennestone Hospital, believes that the relationship between Andy and Buddy has helped both cope with the emotional aspects of cancer. “They’re both going through similar things, and I think it really helps them to have one another,” said Bruggeman. “They can share their feelings and challenges, and they push one another to fight harder.” The patients completed their radiation treatments in March and plan to continue their relationship over

lunches in the future. They already have a gathering at Buddy’s home on the books so the families can meet. “It’s a rare and special occurrence to know someone for a short period of time and be able to understand what they’re going through and have deep discussions about what really matters in life,” said Harris. “Some people are just meant to meet.” WellStar Cancer Center offers a range of emotional and spiritual support for cancer patients including one-on-one counseling, support groups, healing services, courses on mindfulness and symptom management as well as yoga, tai chi and more. For more information about WellStar’s Cancer program, call 1-877-366-6032 and press option 0. ❍

A cancer diagnosis is a life-changing moment. The cancer journey can be overwhelming with challenges both physically and mentally, and the path through treatment can sometimes be a lonely one. “Cancer isn’t just a medical diagnosis. It touches every aspect of a person’s life, from diet to relationships,” said Jennifer Kilkus, Ph.D. clinical psychologist at WellStar Psychological Services. One important way for a patient to emotionally manage a diagnosis is to be surrounded by a strong support system. Support groups, where patients can discuss and share feelings and stories with others who are experiencing similar challenges, are great sources of this support. “Talking with other people whose lives are affected by cancer can create normalize feelings of stress, fear, and isolation that many people experience,” Dr. Kilkus said. Although her patients can sometimes be hesitant, she said that patients who join support groups quickly learn that others are experiencing similar thoughts and fears and have similar questions. “The biggest thing I want people to know is that it’s normal to struggle and it’s a sign of strength to ask for help,” said Kilkus. WellStar has many different free programs available to help patients and family members facing cancer. For more information call the Cancer Connect Line at 1-877-366-6032 and press option 0.


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JUST TWO HOSPITALS IN THE COUNTRY ARE CERTIFIED IN COMPLEX CARDIAC SERVICES

WellStar Kennestone is one.

WellStar Kennestone Hospital’s cardiac program is one of only two programs in the United States to receive the Joint Commission Gold Seal Disease-Specific Certification for Heart Valve, Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery (CABG) and Congestive Heart Failure. This means WellStar patients across the state have access to the highest levels of care, close to home. “Our unwavering focus on patient care sets WellStar apart from other health systems,” said Barry Mangel, M.D., chief cardiology officer at WellStar Health System. “We are able to provide excellent cardiac care that is making an impact on the health of our community. We have highly skilled physicians and caregivers who are all working toward a singular goal— getting our patients back to their lives.” As one of only two hospitals to receive Joint Commission Gold Seal Disease-Specific Certification for these three areas, WellStar continues to show leadership in patient-centric cardiac care through innovative treatments, technologies and approaches. An example is the CardioMEMS™ device offered to stage three heart failure patients with frequent readmissions. This implantable device measures a patient’s pulmonary artery pressure and heart rate through a sensor that is implanted in pulmonary artery. This al-

lows physicians to wirelessly manage heart failure. Coordinating care can be a challenge for patients, particularly those with multiple chronic illnesses. WellStar has created individualized clinics to develop care plans centered on the patient and the patient’s family, which acts as a support system. The care plans are developed by a multidisciplinary group to reduce the amount of follow-up appointments and streamline the access to multiple healthcare professionals through the Comprehensive Care Clinic and Structural Heart Clinic. The Joint Commission is an independent, not-for-profit organization that accredits and certifies nearly 21,000 healthcare organizations and programs in the United States. Joint Commission accreditation and certification is recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects an organizations commitment to meeting certain performance standards. To receive this two-year certification, healthcare organizations must invite the the Joint Commission teams to survey the desired programs and evaluate the clinical teams, processes and outcomes. To see the full list of certifications and accredited hospitals, visit https://www.jointcommission.org ❍


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rgan, tissue and eye donors were honored and celebrated at the fifth annual WellStar Kennestone Hospital flag raising ceremony with partners Life Link® Georgia and the Georgia Eye Bank.

The service was part of a national effort by Donate Life America to honor those who have given the gift of new and improved life to thousands of people in need of organs and tissue. Donor families were invited to attend this ceremony to honor their loved ones and tell their stories. “Hosting the flag raising that honors and celebrates those donors, who give the gift of life, is very important to us,” said Laura Garlow, trauma program manager at WellStar Kennestone Hospital and co-chair of the Hospital Donation Advisory Committee. “These flag raisings help the family of the donors heal by sharing their stories. It also helps us recognize our team members for their role in sharing the gift of life, hope and love.” Farrah Arnold helped raise the Donate Life flag in honor of her husband, who died in 2011 and whose organs helped save the lives of many others. A single organ donor can potentially save the lives of eight people and improve the lives of 70 more through tissue donation. The need for organ donation is growing each day. More than 118,000 men, women and children in the United States wait for an organ donation and more than 5,500 of those waiting are living in Georgia. “It is an honor and privilege to partner with WellStar Kennestone Hospital to raise the Donate Life flag,” said Tina Kroeppler, LifeLink® liaison. “This flag is a symbol for so many. It is a sym0bol of gratitude for donor families as they honor their loved ones and the generous gift of life they have given, a symbol of support that hospital staff have for the life-saving work and hope for recipients. This event is a beacon of hope for all.” WellStar works closely with LifeLink® Georgia, a nonprofit organization that coordinates the recovery of lifesaving and life enhancing organ and tissue for transplantation therapy as well as the Georgia Eye Bank. For information about registering as a donor, visit www.donatelifegeorgia.org. ❍

MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

WELLSTAR KENNESTONE HOSPITAL CELEBRATES ORGAN DONORS

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CALENDAR OF EVENTS East Cobb Health Park, 3747 Roswell Road NE, Marietta Community & Education Room *Free parking Diabetes Education Wednesdays: May 10, 3:30–8:10 p.m. & May 24, 5:30–8:40 p.m. Recognized by the American Diabetes Association, this program includes a range of topics to assist adults living with diabetes. The WellStar Diabetes Education Center is staffed with nationally certified diabetes educators and a licensed social worker. Physician order is required; class is often covered by insurance and financial assistance is available. Call 770-793-7821 to register.

Joy of Parenthood Thursday, May 11, 6–9 p.m. Expecting parents learn about newborn behaviors and care including holding techniques, diapering, feeding, dressing and bathing. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; cost is $30.

Breastfeeding Basics Saturdays: May 13, Jun. 10, Jul. 8 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Taught by certified lactation consultants, this one-day introductory class helps you make an informed decision about breastfeeding. It covers the breastfeeding skills and techniques to ensure a successful breastfeeding experience for mother and baby. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; cost is $35.

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Free breastfeeding support Mondays: 9:30-11 a.m. Free Mommy & Me group for mothers who breastfeed; lactation consultant is available to facilitate supportive discussions over a variety of topics. No registration required; mothers are welcome to come and go at any time during the session. Call 770-793-8088 for more info. The Truth About Fibroids and PCOS Tuesday, Jun. 13, 6–8 p.m. Two of the most common reproductive conditions affecting a growing number of women are uterine fibroids and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). This program presented by a WellStar professional will provide participants with facts on Fibroids/PCOS as well as care plans for each condition. Free; call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register. Understanding Birth Friday, June 16, 6–9 p.m. & Saturday, June 17, 10 a.m.– 5 p.m. Expecting mothers and their partners take a twoday journey through childbirth including labor and delivery, breathing and relaxation, hospital procedures and Cesarean birth. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; cost is $55.

Heart Fit Wellness: Strength and Balance Fridays – 9 a.m. Designed specifically for cardiology patients, this class integrates strength and flexibility exercises to improve balance and stability for daily living activities using a combination of body weight exercises, hand weights, resistance bands and fitness balls. Must attend a free Wellness Consult at WellStar Cardiovascular Medicine prior to participating. Call 470-956-9524 or email heartfitcoach@wellstar.org to schedule a consult; $69 for eight classes.

YOGA (Register now for summer session) Tuesdays, Jun. 27–Sept. 19 Yoga helps create body awareness, strengthen and stretch muscles and tissues, improve balance, posture and coordination. Strong emphasis on proper alignment in postures. Breath is incorporated to improve focus and increase energy. Postures and sequencing change weekly. Appropriate for all fitness levels. There will be no class July 4. Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; free for members of WellStar Health Place; $82.50 for non-members.

Heart Fit Wellness: Zumba GOLD® Fridays – 10:30 a.m. Designed for cardiology patients, experience the latest “feel happy” Latin rhythm dance fitness party. Based on the principle that a workout should be fun and easy to do, Zumba Gold® is exercise in disguise for active older adults. Must attend a free Wellness Consult at WellStar Cardiovascular Medicine prior to participating. Call 470-956-9524 or email heartfitcoach@wellstar.org for information or to schedule a consult; $69 for eight classes.

TAI CHI (Register now for summer session) Thursdays, Aug. 3–Sept. 14 Tai Chi is a mind-body practice that has its roots in ancient China. Designed to cultivate the body’s vital energy (known as “chi”) and improve the flow of this energy through the body through movement, meditation, and breath. This class features gentle, graceful and repeated movements sometimes called “moving meditations.” Call 770-956-STAR (7827) to register; free for members of WellStar Health Place; $52.50 for non-members.

In April… CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION: PINWHEEL GARDEN In April, WellStar East Cobb Health Park joined with businesses to bring attention to National Child Abuse Prevention month, an effort headed by local child safety organization Revved Up Kids. A “pinwheel garden” at the Health Park’s entrance off of Roswell Road celebrated the right to a real childhood. The team at WellStar is working to ensure the children in the community grow up in a nurturing environment with equal opportunity for healthy growth and development.


DEALING WITH A HAIRY DILEMMA By Beth Nitschke

Before my children headed for the beach this past spring break, I talked to my daughters about the uncomfortable (in many ways) subject of waxing. Though the clinical removal of body hair is centuries old and is a normal practice among women around the world, I have encountered some moral outrage from fellow parents on this subject. Some parents I’ve discussed this with think it’s somehow unhealthy for their moral development. I suspect, however, that the conclusions being jumped to merely indicate the normal thought process of the average American. When we think of a bikini wax, for example, the mind tends to wander to sex. We presume that any woman or girl getting such a treatment is expecting that someone will see the area.  But, in my humble opinion, that is just the wrong assumption.  It is nearly summer, after all, people are swimming and wearing bathing suits, shorts, and are even planning on going away to camp.  Would it be more appropriate for young girls with visible body hair to have it seen?  I think not.  Hair removal does not necessarily have to do with the sexualization of young girls.  Think of the embarrassment one would feel, and how uncomfortable it would be to wear a bathing suit… are we all supposed to walk around the beach in wet suits all summer? It simply is not culturally acceptable to have visible body hair in certain trying to be perfect, and we surely areas; underarms, legs, upper lip, etc. don’t want to lead our kids into Why would it be a bad or taboo thing thinking of “grown-up” things. I to discuss getting rid of it? No one honestly believe, however, that young wants to talk to their child about such ladies of a certain age should be given things, but no one wants their child every tool they can to feel selfpicked on either. Better to be criticized confident and lovely. My daughters are for waxing than ostracized for not. 14 and 12, that magical age during In whatever way parents deal with which they eat, yell, and start turning this “hairy” dilemma, waxing is actually into the women they will become. They a great option for younger girls. They, also happen to be dancers, which in itafter all, will be dealing with the issue self is another reason and opportunity for the rest of their lives, and need to to talk about hygiene and appearance. become accustomed to the procedure Leotards and pink tights are not and the pain involved. Personal care exactly the most modest attire. No starts early, and we can’t give them too matter your stance on the subject many tools! remember that just talking to your kids I guess the outrage comes from good is important. Before we know it they’ll intentions; we don’t want to overbe out from under us and on their emphasize outward appearance or own… hair or no hair. ❍ 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.

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MODERN MOM (


LIFE… 50+ (

MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

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YOU GOTTA LOVE YOUR BUNS By Di Chapman

We have a plethora of choices for words to use in place of the term “buttocks” in our culture, don’t we? Like buns, derrieres, rumps, booties… the list goes on and on. These are terms used particularly in describing a lady’s behind, if I may say so, as most are associated with our gender. I’ve heard males referring to other men’s buttocks on occasion, usually while teasing. But I’d venture to guess that the usual male discussion of a “back view” refers to a woman’s bottom. I couldn’t help but think about this topic after writing my last column, where I talk about the struggle to get my buns into my jeans after I had put on weight. For a woman, it’s a

devastating situation when, first, you can’t pull them up, and next, you jump around your room to somehow get them past your thighs, at which point it becomes clear that the zipper may never connect again. Finally, you jump onto the bed, lie flat, suck in your stomach and tug until, eureka, it zips. Then it hits you. There’s no way in heck you can get off the bed. Hence, I’ve decided we must discuss the real reason we women go through such stress and machinations when it comes to our back sides. I think it’s pretty simple. Ladies, we’re nervous that our fannies appearances aren’t perfect, but we need to understand that our “walking away” view is a powerful secret weapon, mesmerizing to men. Guys, we love the idea that you can be hypnotized by our rear views, and whether a gal’s butt is full-figured, tiny, round, peach-shaped, tight or jiggling, you can’t help but watch it move. God bless you. There some examples of women who we can learn from. In both cases, the stars of the show, so to speak, are their butts, who’ve made famous the ladies who just so happened to be attached to them.

DID YOU SEE JENNIFER LOPEZ? THAT BUTT!

IT’S NEVER TOO LATE TO HAVE FUN!

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PAID PROMOTION

aby boomers are retiring in record numbers and many are challenging a number of popular stereotypes about retirement and aging. The desire to be more active as they age is also driving many changes in what they are seeking, especially in the amenities that retirement communities offer, such as:

opportunities for residents to interact? • Thinking outside the box. Many communities offer unique social activities such as outdoor group adventures. • Fun! Is there a full slate of activities and opportunities to stay active and enjoy life?

When it comes to fun, St. George Village residents really know how to kick up their heels! Every day, they prove it’s never too late to do new things, make new friends and live life to the fullest. Let’s go! We offer opportunities year• A range of social activities that will round to travel to destinations both help them stay engaged and that local and farther away. Take in a align with their interests. Gwinnett Braves game, visit lovely Gibbs Gardens. or enjoy shopping and • Various ways the community brings dining during an overnight stay in a residents together. For example, does it host community happy hours? Are Victorian bed-and-breakfast in Watkinsville. Hop on our chauffeured there holiday parties? Are there fitness facilities? How do they create bus for a few nights in historic Charleston, where you’ll tour a tea

plantation and experience a horsedrawn carriage ride, or Chattanooga, where you’ll visit the Tennessee Aquarium and more. A good time is always had by all! Let’s learn something new. Enroll in an intellectually stimulating program like Great Decisions, a national discussion group on world affairs. Or attend one of our free technology workshops, where you’ll find out how to get the most out of your smartphone or tablet to connect with your family, friends and the world. Let’s party! Every season brings new reasons to celebrate at St. George Village. Attend a concert, enjoy a holiday feast or dance the night away at one of our themed events like our Hawaiian Luau, featuring live entertainment. Fun is always on the menu at St. George Village! Come see all that we have to offer. Take a tour, stay for lunch. Call Stacy at 678-987-0402 for a

confidential appointment. Find more details about our community, lifestyle and residents at www.stgeorgevillage.org. Follow us on Facebook and Pinterest, too!

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


23 MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

If Kim Kardashian can tote her rump around with pride, surely you can, too.

One is Kim Kardashian, whom I’ve seen extremely close up while waiting right behind her in an airline Jennifer Lopez and Cameron Diaz show off their pert behinds boarding line. I had a really at the 2012 Oscars. good look at her ample bodalicious maximus, and I’m here to tell you that I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s big and shaped like a peach standing up on one end. It protrudes backwards, not sideways, which makes the side view look like she’s wearing a beach ball behind her. I wanted to size it up like a director in a film, using my hands to “frame the scene,” but decided to forego the possible security faux-pas. I still cannot figure out her very different, ample rump, but I do know that “Kim lookalikes” surgically alter and pad their derrieres around the world. Ouch! The other is Jennifer Lopez. Years ago, Jennifer was an Oscar presenter, and when she walked across the stage to announce a category winner, my jaw dropped, and I’m sure everyone else’s did, too. She wore a long, simple, flowing, white clingy dress, with her body’s lumps and bumps well-defined for all to see. As her big rear-end jiggled all across the stage, the “backside” cameramen must have swooned. Needless to say, this footage didn’t escape Jennifer. Her intense personal training regimen and diets started shortly thereafter. However, Joan Rivers had plenty to say in her armchair analysis of Jennifer Lopez’s walk across the Oscar’s stage. If I may, I will paraphrase some of her comments: “Did you see Jennifer Lopez? That butt! That butt!” exclaimed Rivers, in the way only she could express. “Do you know how many men would love to have that butt sitting on their laps?” A wise woman, that Joan Rivers, she is definitely missed. Girlfriends, the jury is in. You need to love your badonkadonks or whatever you call them. If Kim Kardashian can tote her rump around with pride, you surely can, too. If Jennifer Lopez wore that flowing booty-revealing dress on stage, you can, too. We shouldn’t be asking ourselves the question, “Does this make my booty look big?” Rather, we should make the proclamation, “Dang, this makes my butt look good!” Girlfriends, you’ve got it going on back there. Strut it! ❍


MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

24

BRING ON THE BUTTERFLIES

GARDEN ( Butterflies are in decline across Georgia and particularly in urban areas due to increased use of insecticides and weed-killers, and decreased habitat. A monarch butterfly visits a zinnia.

Ambassadors of Nature: Butterflies need our help. butterflies, the large orange butterflies with black stripes, are “as American as STOP blanket spraying for mosquitoes! apple pie, having once been found in Did you know? Non-selective poison backyards across the country. sprays kill not only mosquitoes, but Generations of schoolchildren have also all butterflies and honey bees, reared monarchs in classrooms, watchnative pollinators, and “good bugs” ing in wonder as striped caterpillars (those that eat bad bugs, plus, they are transform into large orange and black not good for your toddlers, children or adult butterflies. The monarch’s multipets, either. A more surefire method to generational migration is legendary—a rid your garden and neighborhood of journey of more than 2,000 miles from mosquitoes is to empty all containers of Canada to Mexixo, undertaken by standing water (each time it rains) and animals weighing less than a single add mosquito dunks to ornamental gram.” ponds and water features. Butterflies are in decline across Georgia and particularly in urban areas due to increased use of insecticides and weed-killers, and decreased habitat. Human intervention can help. By Geri Laufer

MO N ARCH B UT T E R FL IE S According to the Center for Biological Diversity, Monarch

Monarch caterpillar


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SWALLOWTAIL BUTTERFLIES Big Tiger Swallowtails are either yellow or black, and Black Swallowtail butterflies have a black ground with exquisite iridescent blue spots. Both have an elongated back lobe so the two wings resemble a swallow’s tail, and both are threatened in Georgia.

Swallowtail butterfly (above) and caterpillar

PLANTS FOR LARVAE PLANTING A BUTTERFLY GARDEN: LET’S HELP THE BUTTERFLIES! When planting a butterfly garden, choose two kinds of plants. Children love to help with this kind of garden, where they can see their results. For in depth info on food plants for many more kinds of butterfly species, try www.ButterflyWebsite.com or www.TheButterflySite.com.

NECTAR FLOWERS FOR ADULT BUTTERFLIES Butterflies drink nectar from a variety of flowers by unrolling their proboscis and having a sip. Many of these flowers are bright and showy annuals, making it easy to have a successful and colorful butterfly garden: Clover Cosmos Lantana Aster Zinnia Coneflower Milkweed Thistles Phlox Butterfly Bush Verbena Heliotrope Garlic Chives

Don’t forget the larvae. Immature caterpillars eat specific kinds of leafy plants. For example, Monarch Butterflies only lay their eggs on: Butterfly Weed Swamp Milkweed Black Swallowtail caterpillars feed on plants in the Carrot Family, or Apiaceae, so the Butterfly Garden may have some veggies in it as well. The list includes: Queen Anne’s lace Carrots Parsley Dill Fennel Parsnip Anise Large or small, fanciful or utilitarian, a butterfly garden this summer is the way to go.

Butterfly eggs

Queen Anne’s Lace

Geri Laufer, author. Photos: Wikimedia Commons, Derek Ramsey, Victor Korniyenko, Kenneth Dwain Harrelson, Didier Descouens, Vladlen, and Melissa McMasters.


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CORPORATE AMERICA GOES SMALL TOWN FOOD (

Current Hub columnist Frank Mack with Marc Taft, Chef/Owner of Chicken and the Egg, in Marietta. By Rev. Frank Mack

As many of you know, I like the small guys, the ones who put their own money and reputations on the line each and every day. I state this because this month I’m going corporate but not just any corporate, I’m hitting Avalon in Alpharetta. It’s undoubtable that Avalon has arrived, which is not a surprise. They modeled the place on the best of our small towns. It’s the corporate answer to the call for community and togetherness. Not a thing wrong with that by the way. Its success is based literally, and rests squarely on, food and community. The two greatest social drivers on earth after sex, art, and our own egos. It’s a multi million-dollar bet made by everyone from the Alpharetta officials to the guy whose livelihood now depends on rents being paid. That’s business and how it works. The people who designed and built Avalon bet more than a couple of dollars on this and it is fantastic in its simplicity. Let me draw the bottom line for you. Our town centers and our communities are changing and this concept is what people want. This literally defines live, work, play. Yet through all of the big names and concepts none of it exists without guys like Marc Taft, Chef/Owner of Chicken and the Egg in Marietta. He’s opening up a fantastic little place in Avalon called Brine Seafood Shack. It is a tiny 1900 square foot space that holds all the usual stuff but no freezer. Not in a Marc Taft joint—he serves only the absolutely freshest food around from the best providers he can find. The Brine menu was created by Taft and chef David Connolly of the Michelin-starred Spiagga in Chicago. It is a Cape Cod goes to Malibu type seafood menu with the fish being geo-tagged so they know the source. Even before Brine opened I had been to Avalon many times and I have been trying to get my head around it. They pipe in Muzac and in all honesty the retail portion is beyond me but over time I keep finding little gems. Now in my


27 MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

heart I still love my town squares to be more organic. Whether it is the Marietta Square, Downtown Alpharetta, or Roswell, old is my thing. Still, I am the local restaurant guy and a hungry guy looking for a great meal. Believe it or not Avalon, with a lot of great places already speaks to me right through a 1900 square-foot restaurant run by a local guy, one of our best, a farm-to-table purest, and an original chef who is second to none. It’s where corporate America meets Main Street. All hesitation aside, Avalon is a living, booming, rolling local success story. It’s an economic driver that is sorely needed. They’ve built a walkable old-fashioned downtown for profit and it’s working. Let me point out that after a long afternoon of asking everybody what they liked about it, all agree it’s the good food and ample parking. Without these two elements nothing else matters. And that brings me to Canton Street in Roswell. A big dollar investment by mostly little guys that is languishing, being endlessly choked off by the most obvious need of all… parking. Ask anyone doing business or eating down there. What do they want? More parking. Ask anyone watching the fiasco of Roswell’s politics and zoning wars and it’s always centered on one word. No. So bad is the problem in fact, our great local talent like Taft is paying the massive rent at Avalon rather than opening his “shack” elsewhere. That’ s good for Avalon. It’s good for Alpharetta and it’s good for the county. But I live in Roswell and own a business here and I am worried about all the small local businesses like mine. The dysfunction within the government is choking all of us who invest here. But up at Avalon the engine keeps purring along. Try any of the dozen really fantastic restaurants they have. If you can make it there you can make it anywhere. We’re just lucky to have these folk so close to us. Ain’t that a peach? ❍

Above, Brine Seafood Shack is open in Avalon, with a menu created by Owner Marc Taft and Chef David Connolly. At right, Avalon has good food and ample parking. Roswell has the good food, but parking is choked off by zoning wars and politics.


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COMMUNITY

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THE COMMUNITY NOTEBOOK

Beni’s Cubano will open in May, between Tin Lizzy’s and Chico’s at The Avenue East Cobb. By Tricia Morris

EAST COBB/ROSWELL The Avenue East Cobb will be getting another restaurant this month. The team behind Tin Lizzy’s Cantina, Gypsy Kitchen and The Big Ketch Saltwater Grill will open Beni’s Cubano between Tin Lizzy’s and Chico’s. Featuring homestyle Cuban cooking with a chef ’s touch, the cuisine at Beni’s incorporates authentic recipes showcasing the robust, bold flavors of Cuba in every bite. Guests will also be able to sip on traditional cocktails or a Cuban coffee as they would in Havana. Don’t forget Mother’s Day is May 14. At the Avenue East Cobb, if you shop at any store between May 11 and 13 and spend $150, you will receive a $25 gift card. Spend $300 and receive a $50 gift card. The folks at Fab Fingers and Foot Massage are offering a gift card special. Spend $60 and receive an extra $10. Spend $100 or more and receive an extra $15 per hundred you spend. I also have a few new openings to tell you about this month in East Cobb. A new women’s apparel and accessory boutique called Shopaholic Boutique opened last month in the Parkaire Landing Shopping Center. All the merchandise is brand new with everything being $10 and below. Help support this local family-owned business. Have you gone for a “spin” lately? CycleBar East Cobb (4880 Lower Roswell Rd ) opened in March. There are 55 custom bikes in the Cycle theatre with two big screen TVs that show your stats. The low lights and heart-thumping music offer a “night club” feel. In case you’ve been living under rock, traffic in Atlanta has been exponentially


(the basis for the movie starring George Clooney) and Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat, will speak at the Roswell Library on Saturday, May 20 at 2 p.m. as part of the Atlanta Authors series. The Roswell Library is located at 115 Norcross Street. There is no charge for this event, but you must register to attend at Eventbrite.com, search word Atlanta Authors.

Cinderella’s story has been told time and time again, but finally her brother Bob will make his debut.

Roswell Youth Theatre invites you to discover the exciting untold journey of Cinderella and her long lost twin brother, Bob, in Twinderella, at the Bill Johnson Community Activity Building on May 13. Twinderella is a tale about Cinderella and her brother Bob living in the same kingdom except with different wicked stepfamilies. Cinderella’s cruel stepmother and evil stepsisters make her rotate tires and polish bowling trophies while Bob’s evil stepfather and cruel stepbrothers force him to make dried herb wreaths and organize their sock drawers. Cinderella’s story has been told time and time again, but finally her brother Bob will make his debut. The show is delightful and humorous for all ages. Performances will be held on May 13 at 2 and 7 p.m. General admission tickets can be purchased with cash or check at the door for $8. Roswell Youth Theater (RYT) is a program of the Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic and Cultural Affairs Department and produces one musical and one play each year. RYT productions are open to youth ages 8 to 18 through an audition process. The Bill Johnson Community Activity Building is located in Roswell Bret Witter, best-selling author Area Park at 10495 Woodstock Rd. in Roswell. For more information about RYT or Twinderella, please contact This month you’ll have a great opportunity to see a best-selling author Leslie Kelley at 770-641-3987, or in person. New York Times best-selling lkelley@roswellgov.com. author Bret Witter, who co-authored two #1 bestsellers, Monuments Men Continues on p30

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worse with the bridge collapse. Many of you commuters have been in bad shape. The folks at Primrose School of Roswell North did something cool to help parents who were dealing with the additional stress. They served spaghetti dinners to help ease the burden of the I-85 traffic on parents. On a Tuesday evening in April, the halls of Primrose School of Roswell North were filled with the appetizing smell of fresh spaghetti and garlic bread, boxed up and ready to be handed out to parents. The staff at Primrose Roswell prepared individual healthy, appetizing dinners that parents pre-registered to pick up when they picked up their children. Think of this as Snowmageddon… without the snow! The City of Roswell’s Fire Department is pleased to accept a donation of a 2016 GMC 2500 HD pickup truck, valued at approximately $45,872, from Carl Black Roswell. This is the fourth such donation from the dealership, which graciously replaced the original truck donated in 2008. The earlier trucks were used to tow the department’s Fire and Life Safety Center, also known as the smoke trailer. With approximately $9,000 worth of equipment in the truck, the Fire Department only incurred half the cost of the equipment as Carl Black donated the rest.


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Community Notebook, continued from p29

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ALPHARETTA/JOHNS CREEK The City of Alpharetta has announced its selection of Morgan Rodgers as its new Director of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Affairs. Rodgers, who currently serves in a similar role for the City of Roswell, will took the helm of Alpharetta’s award-winning program in late April. Rodgers has been a leader in the recreation and parks industry for more than 40 years and has served five southeastern cities during his career. In 2014 he was named Director of the Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic and Cultural Affairs Department after serving the department in various capacities since 1989. Rodgers holds a Bachelor of Science in Recreation and Parks Administration from Clemson University and is also an accomplished author. “We are excited to bring Morgan’s leadership and energy to the Alpharetta Recreation and Parks Department,” said Alpharetta City Council Member Jason Binder, the Council’s liaison for recreation and parks.  “His addition to our great team will foster the dynamic growth of our parks, recreation and cultural amenities for the community.” The City of Alpharetta is launching a campaign to highlight the many positive things that residents and visitors love about the North Fulton city. The campaign, Alpharetta Proud, seeks to turn a spotlight on the community by asking residents and visitors to tell what makes them proud to be part of Alpharetta and to share that message with the world. Alpharetta Proud will officially launch on May 4 during the community’s largest event, the Taste of Alpharetta. During the event residents and visitors will have the opportunity to get a fun photo and share what makes them Alpharetta Proud. The photos and comments will be compiled into a mural that will develop during the event and will be displayed during future community festivals and happenings. Participants

Morgan Rodgers is the new Director of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Affairs for Alpharetta.

will also have opportunities to get tshirts and other gear to show the world they are Alpharetta Proud. The campaign will run throughout the year, so residents should be on the lookout for opportunities to show that they are Alpharetta Proud. In Johns Creek the city will be holding a public meeting on May 18 from 7 to 9 p.m. at City Hall regarding the proposed widening projects along the McGinnis Ferry Road and Jones Bridge Road corridor. The public is invited to attend to receive updates and ask questions.

The Mark Burkhalter Amphitheater in Newtown Park, Johns Creek.

Additionally, the public is invited to attend Johns Creek park design meetings to provide final input on proposed designs and meet architects for BellBoles Park, Morton Road Park, State Bridge Park, Cauley Creek Park, and Technology Park Linear Park. There are several meetings throughout the month at the various parks. For specific times visit www.johnscreekga.gov. ❍


By Spalding Negron

Georgia Ensemble Theatre (GET) has announced a special lineup of shows for the Company’s 25th Silver Anniversary Season. Artistic Director Bob Farley says of the coming season, “Our 25th Silver Anniversary Season is going to be one big party all season long. Each play I have selected to celebrate this occasion has been chosen as a tribute to our subscribers, donors, sponsors, and supporters.” GET marches into its 25th year stronger and with more programming and outreach than ever before. The 2017-2018 season will be a huge celebration focusing on great music and big laughs, whisking audiences from the Caribbean to GET Artistic Director Bob Farley Atlanta to Hollywood to Paris and ending with the most popular musical in the theatre’s history. In addition to the main stage subscription series, GET will produce the four-play Family Stage: Adventure Series, a four-concert Big Band series and an outdoor concert-version musical this summer. Georgia Ensemble Theatre is the artistic home to more than 2500 season subscribers, as well as dedicated individual ticket buyers, theatre students, artists, and educators who frequent the Roswell-based company throughout the year. The new season begins in September with a smash hit Broadway musical It’s Your Party. In this production GET will bring the house down with a rousing calypso-flavored score and highly charged dance from Atlanta’s most revered musical theatre director and choreographer, Ricardo Aponte. Picture The Lion King and The Little Mermaid brought together with exhilarating Caribbean rhythms. Experience this romantic The Joe Gransden Big Band Series will theatrical experience right here in Roswell before have four shows in the 2017-18 season. its upcoming Broadway revival. Other shows in the series will be Morningside by Topher Payne in October with Tenderly—The Rosemary Clooney Musical kicking off 2018. The Family Stage series begins in September with a production of The Jungle Book. In total the series will have 3 other shows. Additionally, GET has had great success with music as of late so local jazzman Joe Gransden will have a big band series with shows in October, December, and two shows in 2018. Also this summer they will feature a special show at the Chattahoochee Nature Center with Ring of Fire, The Music of Johnny Cash on July 13-29. These shows promise to be popular with last years’ stage production being one of the most successful in GET’s history. Georgia Ensemble Theatre is the Official Resident Professional Theatre Company at the Roswell Cultural Arts Center in historic Roswell, located at 950 Forrest Street, Roswell, GA 30075. For more information visit their site at get.org. ❍

MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

GEORGIA ENSEMBLE THEATRE HAS A SILVER ANNIVERSARY

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MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

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Summer Series & Festivals Heat Up Summer By Tripp Liles

Rockin’ at the River Walter Reeves, Rockin’ at the River’s Honorary Chair, brings a renowned celebrity presence with a green theme to this annual gala and celebration that supports The Chattahoochee Nature Center. Enjoy an evening of food, music, and cocktails at the beautiful Ben Brady Lakeside Pavilion at the CNC. Dance and enjoy desserts on the green roof overlooking the beautifully lit grounds. Bid on the unique experiences in our live and silent auction. All proceeds support CNC’s efforts to connect people with nature and preserve our vital water source, the Chattahoochee River. No better way to kick off the summer! chattnaturecenter.org/ratr/

This 3-day event will host more than 90 colorful artisans from around the country who will showcase their works in Downtown Alpharetta. This much anticipated festival will feature live music, cultural arts performances, entertaining children’s activities, and a variety festival cuisine. alpha.splashfestivals.com

ALPHARETTA MAY 27 – 29

Can you believe that school is almost out? Seems like we were just buying new school clothes and here we are in shorts already. Our summer is close enough to touch and that means most of our best outdoor festivals and events are upon us. There will be plenty of backyard BBQs and picnics to be sure but we’re positive you will not be browsing the Internet for ideas on keeping busy so we’ve created a handy list of our picks for the best events to keep you entertained throughout the summer. It’s hard to beat Atlanta in the summer and you would be hard-pressed to find a better place to be than right here. We have access to one-of-a-kind events, and a multitude of wonderful things to eat, watch or simply admire. Music lovers, film buffs, foodies, book worms; whatever floats your boat, feed your passion with a short trip to these local exciting summer events, ranging from the traditional to the eccentric. Back to the Chattahoochee River

Race and Festival

Atlanta Jazz Festival

ROSWELL/CNC; MAY 13

Sundays on the River Live music fills the stage at The Chattahoochee Nature Center the second Sunday of the month from May through Sept. In May, Jul. and Sept. listen to the smooth jazz sounds of Bob Bakert and his six-piece band. Billboard Smooth Jazz Artist Carol Albert will be performing selections from her new album with her band in June. Gwen Hughes brings from the birth of the blues in Mississippi… to the birth of jazz in New Orleans… country music in Virginia… the funk of Georgia… and the Southern rock of Florida… it all comes back to The South and to you in August. www.chattnaturecenter.org.

If you think getting into a music festival is out of your budget this year, check out the cost of the Atlanta Jazz Festival: $0. While the main part of the festival is Memorial Day weekend, every day in May will feature a free jazz event at jazz clubs, neighborhood parks and locally owned restaurants as part of 31 Days of Jazz. The Memorial Day weekend events all happen at Piedmont Park. THE ATLANTA JAZZ FESTIVAL is regarded as one of the country’s largest FREE jazz festivals. www.atlantafestivals.com

ROSWELL/CNC; MONTHLY MAY THROUGH SEPT.

ATLANTA’S PIEDMONT PARK; MAY 26-28

Paddlers of all ages and skill levels will take to the water! The FESTIVAL, held at Roswell’s Riverside Park from 10am to 3pm, is FREE and family-friendly. Racers and others will enjoy LIVE music plus an array of exhibits that include local artisans and farmers market vendors. For the kids: Frisbee dog demonstration, face painting, balloon artists and other familyfriendly activities.

ROSWELL; MAY 20


33 MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

From left, Mike Steffas, Leycei Hendrix, Isabel Dymond, Marla Hendrix and Stephen Hendrix at Sunset Sips, April 27.

Sunset Sips Stop in at the CNC for evening hours with a side of sunset. Chill out with live local music, 127 acres of nature to enjoy and a cash bar. Bring your picnic to enjoy this music lovers treat, it is a laid back, family-friendly event. May’s performer is Heidi Pollyea, an Atlanta based singer/songwriter. She performs on piano, guitar and “a lil’ banjo.” Other Sunset Sips Concerts coming up include: Jun. 22 Sainte Jane, Aug. 24 the Electromatics, and Sept. 28 the Crooked Wits. www.chattnaturecenter.org

ROSWELL MAY THROUGH SEPTEMBER

Lavender Festival The Roswell features the many varieties, uses, and folk remedies associated with lavender. On the grounds of Barrington Hall. Enjoy Demonstrations in the Carriage House, children’s activities, The Zen Zone—yoga, Pilates, aromatherapy, meditation and reflexology, music by Davin McCoy and others, fine art, crafts, antiques, specialty foods, and lavender beer! Free admission.

ROSWELL; JUNE 10

Atlanta

Food & Wine Festival

Named “the only indispensable culinary Festival in the country,” by Josh Ozersky of Esquire, the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival features nearly 100 classes, carefully-curated Tasting Tents and delicious evening dinners and events, all designed to showcase Southern food, drink and culture. It’s the creation of the dynamic Atlanta entrepreneurial duo, Elizabeth Feichter and Dominique Love. The pair first joined forces almost 10 years ago to run Corporate Community Outsourcing, a philanthropic consulting firm created by Love after leaving her post managing The CocaCola Company’s corporate giving. atlfoodandwinefestival.com

MIDTOWN ATLANTA; JUNE 1-4


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Decatur

MAY 2017 THECURRENTHUB.COM

Macon Film Festival BBQ, Blues & Bluegrass Festival

Surrounded by a rich musical and Southern culture, the Macon Film Festival celebrates independent films from around the world in multiple historic theaters in the city’s downtown district. The festival features film screenings, celebrity guests, special screenings and workshops throughout the four-day festival. www.maconfilfestival.com

MACON; JULY 20-23 Grant Park

Summer Shade Fest

The sights, sounds, and smells of classic southern BBQ from metro Atlanta staples along with 7+ hours of original live blues and bluegrass music from aspiring and accomplished local/regional/and national acts to Decatur, Georgia in the heart of Oakhurst. Fun for all ages; kids 12 and under get in free. www.decaturbbqfestival.com

DECATUR; AUGUST 12

Miss Mary’s Ice Cream Crankin’

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Art and music lovers flock to Grant Park each August to bid adieu to summer at the Summer Shade Festival. Two days of outdoor fun planned for all ages including a 5K Run for the Park, food trucks, craft beer, Kids Zone,  and a music line up that just gets better every year. Bring your blanket, bring the whole family, but don’t bring any pets, and spend summer’s final weekend at the Grant Park Summer Shade Festival. www.summershadefestival.com

There is no better way to end the summer than The 12th Annual Miss Mary’s Ice Cream Crankin’. This is the premier event for ice cream lovers and families. Taste more than 100 flavors of homemade ice cream, dive into eating contests, enjoy live music, and let the kids work off their energy in the Kid’s Korner. All of this goes to a great cause to benefit The Drake House in Roswell. www.missmaryicecream.org

ATLANTA; AUGUST 26-27

ROSWELL; AUGUST 27


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