Snellville Spirit Summer 2021

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Snellville, Where Everybody’s Proud to Be Somebody SUMMER 2021

20 Things to do July 4 | 4-10 PM in 20 Miles FIREWORKS! see pages 2 & 3

see pages 8 & 9

Experience Snellville see pages 18 & 19

Stone Mountain Park - 8.4 mi

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One of Atlanta’s favorite destinations for the entire family. Nestled in 3200 acres of natural beauty, Stone Mountain Park features family-friendly attractions and outdoor recreational activities. Seasonal events are offered throughout the year that will definitely delight every member of the family.

T.W. Briscoe Park - 1.6 mi Visit beautiful Briscoe Park and check out all the things it has to offer including two softball fields, two indoor rental rooms, four outdoor open-air pavilions, outdoor pool, 1.2 mile paved walking trail, 6-acre lake, tennis courts, basketball courts, and much more!


Creekwater Alpaca Farm - 5.6 mi The unique farm in Snellville, Ga. has been home to over 50 alpacas since 1993. We offer a safe, close up, hands-on experience unlike any other. Bring the family and enjoy petting the alpacas in their pen and seeing the bunnies and goats too! Guinea Fowl and Tolouse Geese also call Creekwater home. Enjoy it all with public or private tours. Visit our gift shop! Massage Envy - 1.6 mi Need a break from the daily demands on your body. Treat yourself to a massage or facial to keep your body feeling good. Our exclusive Streto Method was developed from more than 15 years of massage expertise along with the latest research on stretching techniques. Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament - 11 mi Welcome to our castles! It is our honor to provide you with an unforgettable experience of rivalry, feasting and fun! Epic battles of steel and steed, beyond the strength lies the power of charm.


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from Snellville City Hall Lenora Park - 5.8 mi

Lenora Park offers a wide variety of amenities such as a gymnasium, seven baseball/softball fields, fishing lake, dog park area, 18-hole Disc Golf Course, 1.5 mile paved trail, pavilion, playgrounds and much more. Yellow River Wildlife Sanctuary - 5 mi Explore one of Georgia’s most iconic landmarks at Yellow River Wildlife Sanctuary. Located in central Gwinnett alongside Yellow River, just minutes from Snellville. We are home to the original Bison herd, beautiful peacocks, pigs, albino wallabies, babydoll sheep, alpacas, bears, fallow deer, Eurasian lynx, spider monkeys, and much more.

Serenity Salt Cave - .2 mi Serenity Salt Cave is a stunning therapeutic cave, the first of its kind in the state of Georgia. The cave is constructed from natural pink Himalayan salt. The floor is comprised of several inches of pink Himalayan salt crystals. Great for special events such as birthdays, bridal parties and team building events.

Urban Air Adventure Park - 3.7 mi If you are looking for the best yearround indoor amusement park in the Snellville and Gwinnett County area, Urban Air Adventure Park is the perfect place. Come have some fun with us on the Go-Karts, Trampolines, Wipeout, Warrior Course, and zip line. An absolute must – check out the Skydiving attraction!


TOPGOLF - 15 mi There’s no pressure to have a good golf swing or score a lot of points. At TOPGOLF, we’ve made socializing a sport through a blend of technology and entertainment. No matter the occasion we believe that every great time starts with play, is fueled by food and drinks and moved by music.


Based in Snellville, we are north Georgia’s prime destination for craft beer and fine cigars. Whatever the weather, our covered patio and indoor lounge is the best place to enjoy delicious craft beers 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We have food trucks on site Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights and Sunday afternoons.

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Lincoln Fill Station - .9 mi

Niko’s Wine Corner - .9 mi

Dragon Queen Winery - 1 mi Veteran owned and operated. Has a large selection of wines that can be shipped to Georgia customers only. Stop in and try our new wines and the delicious wine slushies. Wine tastings end 30 minutes prior to closing.

Come visit Niko’s Wine Corner in Snellville and meet new owners Regina Koranteng and Seth Wiredu. They carry exotic beers that are not available in many package and grocery stores. In addition to the very extensive selection of great wines and craft beers, they have Gwinnett County’s first wine bar. Three Enomatic wine tasting machines provide an extensive and changing array of 32 amazing white and red wines. Weekly wine tasting events available.

Slow Pour Brewing - 7.8 mi Gwinnett County’s first brewery features the beautifully inviting tasting room and beer garden beckoning friends to sit and chat, in a family friendly atmosphere. Slow Pour offers delicious, innovative and original beers. Several nights a week there will be live music with food trucks on site. Dog friendly brewery.


Ironshield Brewing - 7.8 mi Proudly brewing authentic European ales and lagers. Come celebrate our One Year Anniversary on July 10, 2021. Live music from Nick & Mark and Coda Nova! Food truck options on site will include Azucar Cuban Food Truck and Pat’s Poutine! We will also have as part of the festivities, Axe throwing and a dunk tank to cool everyone off.


Tucker Brewing - 13 mi Proud to be named #4 Best Beer Garden in America by USA Today! Tucker Brewing Company is Georgia’s premium lager brewery, dedicated to making easy-to-drink, flavorful lager beers. This is a family owned lager brewery inspired by German brewing traditions and honors the Southern roots of its owners. We strive every day to create a warm environment where family and friends can come together to appreciate beer, food and life. Stars and Strikes Entertainment Center/Bowling - 5.4 mi This family entertainment center boasts over 30,000 sq. ft. of fun! Guests are greeted at Stars and Strikes with upgraded bowling, an exciting arcade and a full-service restaurant and bar.


Outrun Brewing - 11 mi We are a brewer owned and operated, small scale production brewery that focuses on approachable and highly drinkable small-batch brews. We put our own spin on a variety of styles, old and new. Our beer is brewed in house and only available in our taproom. We take our beer seriously, but not ourselves, and are dedicated to brewing rarities, untasted originals and re-imagined favorites.


The Complex Sports & Entertainment - approx 20 mi The Complex offers over 30 different sports games and activities all under one roof. From cricket to baseball, experience numerous sports like never before and new ones for the very first time.

Andretti Indoor Karting & Games - 16 mi Excitement at every turn, Andretti’s offers Karting, Andretti 7D Experience, Duckpin Bowling, Arcade, Racing Simulators, Two-level Laser Tag, Hologate and a dining bar. Join our E-club and be on the inside track for exclusive specials, promotions and just general awesomeness tailored to what you want to do!


Summer 2021 - Volume 46 Publisher/Editor: Kelly McAloon Editor: Brian Arrington

Finally - it’s time to celebrate summer

Snellville Spirit Magazine is produced by: Snellville Tourism & Trade Association

P.O. Box 669 • Snellville, GA 30078 Website:

I hope everyone is having a great start to the summer of 2021. This summer has been a long time coming.

Snellville Tourism and Trade Association’s mission is to promote business, tourism and events in the City of Snellville.

As we come out of the pandemic and we start to return to some sense of normalcy, the board, staff and volunteers of Snellville Tourism and Trade want to invite you back out to the great event schedule planned for the summer and the rest of 2021.

President Don Britt Vice President Billy Franklin Treasurer Kurt Schulz Secretary Kathy Emanuel Board Member Lucy DeForest Board Member Jared Eakins Board Member Melvin Everson Board Member Alice Snipes Board Member Andrew Yee Executive Director Kelly McAloon Administrative Assistant Jessica Manis

We are excited to see our friends and neighbors on the Towne Green and we look forward to promoting Snellville and the great things that are coming to our community. The Grove at Towne Center is well under way, and we are looking forward to what comes in the downtown in 2022 and beyond. On behalf of Snellville Tourism and Trade, I want to sincerely thank Chief Roy Whitehead for his true leadership in the City of Snellville. We appreciate all his work through his 17 years of service in the city and wish him all the best as he retires from serving 50 years in law enforcement. We will miss him, his stories and great sense of humor but know that he has prepared the police department well for this day coming and has left the city in goods hands, as Assistant Chief Greg Perry will take the helm on July 1. Check out our website for all the coming events for you and your family to enjoy. We hope to see you in Snellville soon. Don Britt,


President, Snellville Tourism and Trade

Connecting our Community to Celebrate Snellville 4

City Council Mayor Barbara Bender, Mayor Pro Tem Dave Emanuel, Cristy Lenski, Gretchen Schulz, Tod Warner and Solange Destang City Website: Magazine Design by Brian Arrington, Kelly McAloon and pcoxcreative Magazine Cover Design by pcoxcreative Contributing Writers and Photographers: Kelly McAloon, Don Britt, Brian Arrington, Gretchen Schulz, Barbara Bender, pcoxcreative, Melvin Everson and Meghan Meegan



MAYOR’S MESSAGE 6 Mayor Bender gives a heads up about city happenings.

IN THE TANK 25 Students compete in annual Shark Tank competition.

GOODBYE CHIEF 7 SPD’s leader retires after 50 years of service.

NEW BUSINESS 26 Check out two new businesses that opened in Snellville.

STAR SPANGLED SNELLVILLE GARDEN SALES 8 Fireworks 27 Community will shine bright to celebrate Independence Day. Garden plants a hit at SFM. WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT POST OFFICE LORE 10 Gwinnett 28 Mailing Technical College is investing in county’s future. letters has a storied Snellville history.



The Snellville Senior Center is open as pandemic eases.

CLUB SCHOLARSHIPS 30 School students were given funds by Commerce Club.

FUN ON THE GREEN 12 Earth, Wind and Fire tribute band to play Towne Green.

FOOD DISTRIBUTION 31 Local group comes together to help those in need of food.

MEET THE FARMERS 14 Get to know some of the vendors at the Farmers’ Market.

IRON LADIES 33 Women’s Flag Football National League plays locally.

GOAL SCORED 17 SGHS soccer player praised for elite play.

FOOD TRUCK FRIDAY 34 When are the popular food trucks coming back to the city?

TASTE TOUR 18 STAT debuts wine tasting tour in North Georgia.

FARMERS’ MARKET PICS 35 Scenes from the Snellville Farmers’ Market.

PARKS AND REC. 20 Check out the activities available at T.W. Briscoe Park.

SNELLVILLE SNAPSHOTS 36 Pictures from recent events in the City of Snellville.

TENNIS ANYONE? 23 Tennis lessons offered to hard court hopefuls.

SAVORY SUMMER 38 Two recipes to try on those warm Snellville days. 5


Mayor’s Message - Mayor Barbara Bender Snellville Police Chief Roy Whitehead, is retiring after 17 years serving our city as chief and 50 years in law enforcement. We honored him with a proclamation and plaque at our June 14 City Council meeting. He has instilled love for the community and public service into the culture at our police department and our officers show it everyday. We will definitely miss him and his stories. We wish him a happy, healthy and relaxed retirement as he certainly deserves it. The mark of any great leader is one who mentors and trains future leaders. Chief Whitehead has done just that with the Assistant Chief, Greg Perry. We look forward to working with Greg as he takes the reins on July 1. The Grove at Towne Center project is moving along well. We did hit rock in some areas but so far it has not caused too much of a delay on progress. Currently construction is happening on the residential housing and parking deck. Gwinnett County has selected Reeves Young as the contractor to build the library and work should begin in the coming weeks. The city will be putting out a request for bids on the public streets improvements that will be done around the square.

The downtown area will be quite a hub of construction activity in the coming months and I encourage everyone to make plans to change your traveling routes during this time. We will have at least four buildings and road improvements happening all at the same time. We will greatly appreciate your patience. I think the project will be well worth these growing pains. I am happy to report that the school safety speed cameras have done the job we hoped they would do. Through the many news reports, Facebook and Nextdoor posts, and the mailing of plenty of tickets, the word is out and speeds have been reduced. Our goal is to issue zero tickets in our three school zones. And just to set the record straight on the 35 mile per hour speed limit on Highway 78 – the city did not sneakily reduce the limit just before the cameras were installed. The Georgia Department of Transportation sneaked this in on us 35 years ago. The weekly Snellville Farmers Market is back in full swing with our largest vendor count in its 12-year history. Congratulations and a huge “thank you” to Gretchen and Kurt Schulz and all the volunteers that have worked so hard to bring local farmers and crafters to our community each week. Make plans to attend the upcoming events that are back. Visit for more information.

Snellville Police Department

^^^ GOODBYE CHIEF! - Monday, June 14, 2021 was proclaimed ‘Chief Roy Whitehead Day’ in the City of Snellville as Mayor and Council honored the chief with a proclamation for his 50 years in law enforcement and 17 years as the city’s top cop. Whitehead is retiring July 1. Current Assistant Chief Greg Perry will become chief and Lt. David Matson will be named assistant chief. Good luck and congratulations on your retirement, Chief! You will be missed!


Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

Snellville Police Department After 50 years of service, Police Chief Roy Whitehead to retire, Assistant Chief Greg Perry to take helm

By Brian Arrington Public Information Officer

After 50 years of service in law enforcement, and 17 years as the chief of police for the city, Roy Whitehead is retiring effective July 1. Assistant Chief Greg Perry will assume the duties of chief. “I am thankful for the opportunity to ROY WHITEHEAD have served this department, our city and this community,” Whitehead said. “We are an award-winning department that is successful because of the job our people do and how they demonstrate their caring and professionalism daily. I’m also proud of our facility, equipment and the successes we have enjoyed while creating opportunities for our people to excel and an environment that encourages their growth.” Whitehead, 69, graduated Cum Laude at the University of Georgia, attended Law School at Georgia State University and took master’s courses at The Citadel. He has completed more than 4,000 hours of advanced training in law enforcement, both in the military and as a civilian. As an officer, he has served in patrol, traffic and investigations divisions and spent 27 years as a chief in Snellville and Summerville, S.C. He served as vice chairman of the Georgia Peace Officers Standards and Training Council, chaired the Law Enforcement Advisory Committee for the Municipal Association of South Carolina and as a trustee for the South Carolina Insurance and Risk Financing Fund. Whitehead was also consultant to two independent contractors for the U.S. Department of Justice, served on the Advisory Board for the Georgia Public Safety Training Center at Athens, the Advisory Board for Gwinnett Tech, the Advisory Board of South Gwinnett and the support team for the Gwinnett County Treatment Court Program. He was also deputy coroner in Clarke and Oconee counties and substitute judge for the Recorders Court of Athens. He qualified as an expert witness for law enforcement in the Superior Courts of Georgia. In 2004, Whitehead was named chief of the Snellville Police Department, where he set out to make the department the best it could be. Whitehead said he wanted to implement various opportunities such as a K-9 unit, a motorcycle unit and a Special Response Team among others. He wanted to improve the quality of life of Snellville

residents by reducing crime and building partnerships with all segments of the community. Whitehead helped design the current police department and increased department salaries to draw more qualified officers. He bolstered the Citizens Police Academy and CPA Alumni association which just completed its 30th class. He created programs such as Public Safety Night, Shop with a Cop, Tip a Cop and others.


Under Whitehead’s leadership, SPD won the Governor’s Cup awarded in the Governor’s Challenge under the auspices of the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety the last two years. Perry, a Brookwood High School and Reinhardt University graduate, started his career in law enforcement with the Stone Mountain Park Department of Public Safety and joined SPD in 2002. “I am humbled to have the opportunity to lead the Snellville Police Department as the chief of police,” he said. “Chief Whitehead has placed the department in a tremendous position to provide the highest level of public safety for our citizens, and we will do everything possible to continue the police department in a positive direction. Perry, 46, rose through the ranks working on the DUI Task Force, as a motor officer, serving in leadership roles for the Special Operations Unit, the Accident Investigation Unit, the Special Response Team and has served as assistant chief since 2016. Perry has been named Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce Public Safety Officer of the Year, Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce Gold Medal of Valor winner, VFW Public Safety Officer of the Year, National Street Level Interdiction Officer of the Year – National Criminal Enforcement Association, National Largest Street Level Cocaine Seizure – NCEA and National Largest Street Level Methamphetamine Seizure – NCEA. “My ultimate goal is to continue to lead the Snellville Police Department in providing the highest level of professional policing for our community,” Perry said. “I have a desire to increase training for both the officers within the department as well as increase community outreach. There is also a desire to improve the equipment and technology that can be used by the Snellville Police Department to help reduce crime. We will be working on strategies to assist with recruitment and retention for the police department. We will also continue to build partnerships within our community.” 7

Atlanta’s CONTAGIOUS Band

Event Schedule ▼ 4:00 PM National Anthem Kriss Johnson ▼ 4:30 PM Metro Jazz Club ▼ 7:30 PM Atlanta’s CONTAGIOUS Band ▼ 9:30 PM





JULY 4 2021 TH

TOWNE GREEN FIREWORKS! ALL DAY ACTIVITY BAND – $10 Includes: Rock Wall, Train, Kahuna Water Slide, Basketball, Dry Slide, Obstacle Course and 9-Hole Mini Golf. For individual pricing please check out our website at:

JULY 4TH STAR SPANGLED SNELLVILLE CELEBRATION By Kelly McAloon Join us as Experience Snellville presents an unforgettable Fourth of July in the heart of Snellville on the Towne Green from 4 -10 p.m. We are so excited to be back celebrating Independence Day in Snellville! Star Spangled Snellville begins at 4:00 p.m. as Kriss Johnson kicks off the event singing the National Anthem. Family friendly entertainment, including the tastes and smells of some of your favorite festival foods along with a large playground of inflatables, the KAHUNA water slide, train rides, rock wall, shoot the hoop and 9-hole mini golf will be available throughout the day. Ride and play as often as you like with an all-day band for only $10.00. We will have a wide variety of food vendors on site to satisfy any appetite. Food vendors include Rey’s Cuban Café, Fratelli’s, Brown’s BBQ, Beren’s Frozen Custard, Ski Bob Sno Cones, N’Jay’s Frozen Pineapple Drinks, Monster Foods, Dolphins Water Ice Factory, Frozen Sweets and many others. Stop by for some of the favorite festival foods like hot boiled peanuts, funnel cakes, fried oreos and your favorite flavored shaved ice. We are excited to feature two bands that will ROCK the Towne Green throughout the day. Metro Jazz Band will take the stage at 4:30 p.m. followed by Atlanta’s CONTAGIOUS Band at 7:30 p.m. The fireworks display will begin when the sky becomes dark, approximately 9:30 p.m., and will be accented with patriotic music.


Come in your best red, white and blue, and bring your blankets and chairs to assure your seats for the music and fireworks show. Get to the Green early as space on the Green and surrounding areas fill up quickly. STAT would like to thank Snellville First Baptist Church for its continued support and allowing us to use their property to stage the fireworks and allowing folks to park in their parking lots.

Thank you to our


HKeystone SponsorsH

All food vendors will be set up on Oak Rd this year. There will be no food vendors or inflatables set up on the First Baptist side of the road. We also want to thank Snellville United Methodist Church for allowing residents to park in their parking lot during the July 4th festivities. Our partnership within the city is what makes Snellville such a great place to live.

HOur HotelsH

The Community Blood Bank will be on site July 4th for those of you who would like to give a pint of blood. The Community Blood Bank services those in need in our local area. A big thank you to all of our volunteers, police department and public works department who help make our events so successful. Many thanks to our 2021 Star Spangled Snellville sponsors who make these large events possible. Keystone sponsors: Walton Gas and E.R. Snell Contractors. Hotels: Hampton Inn & Suites, LaQuinta Inn & Suites and Intown Suites and to the City of Snellville. For more information visit our website at:

Kriss Johnson

Train Rides

Mini Golf

Rock Wall

Workforce Development

Workforce development on the rise By Melvin Everson V.P. Economic Development at Gwinnett Technical College Snellville Tourism and Trade Board Member The Economic Development Department at Gwinnett Technical College goal and aim is to prepare a workforce to meet the demands of the current and future labor market. As a result, this will enable business to grow and expand. Our motto is “Train to Retain.” We pride ourselves on educating and training a workforce that will enable the business community to continue to operate, grow and be a positive force for the local economy. Last year was a challenging time for us all. When the pandemic hit in March of 2020, it catapulted us into uncharted waters and they were quiet tumultuous. It caused economic turmoil to the likes of which many have never experienced. While adhering to COVID-19 protocols, the pandemic caused business to be more creative to stay open and many, no matter how creative they were, had to close leaving many unemployed. As a result, the economic engine of Gwinnett and North Fulton was headed for some stormy seas. But many were able to adapt and remain open. Their ability to oscillate played a major role in stabilizing the local economy. It was no different at Gwinnett Technical College. The pandemic caused us to think outside the box about how to provide the resource services to the business and industry community. The COVID-19 environment, strengthened our resolve and commitment to provide the best customer service to our businesses and industries. The pandemic afforded us new opportunities to think even more outside the box. From virtual meetings to cell-ed, the Technical College System of Georgia Economic Department continues to provide the necessary resources needed for our business partners to survive and thrive. As a result, many businesses decided to locate or expand their operation in our service area of Gwinnett County and North Fulton. Banks, auto parts manufacturing, nail salons, distribution centers, restaurants, South African Emporiums, etc. continue to open their doors of operations in Gwinnett and North Fulton. It’s imperative now more than ever that we explore new avenues of providing those services. With rapidly evolving improved technology, we’re confident when we emerge from this pandemic, we will be an even stronger resource conduit for our business and industry partners. Gwinnett Technical College, through the assistance of TCSG, welcomed the Advance Manufacturing Mobile Train Lab on campus. This lab enables us to be mobile with our training. For our partners, if you need us, please contact us and we will be more than happy to meet with and discuss ways we can assist you with our resources to make your business or industry more successful. For more information on Gwinnett Technical College visit


Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

City News members to be stimulated physically, mentally and spiritually,” Platt said. “But we will also maintain a safe environment while offering such programs for our members. While the center will reopen, not all previous programming will start back immediately. We will gradually add programs and special events.”

CASTO/MIDCITY JV, with the City of Snellville, close on purchase of land for The Grove at Towne Center

Senior Center re-opens after it was closed more than a year due to pandemic

A joint venture between CASTO and MIDCITY is pleased to announce that, with the City of Snellville, it has closed on the purchase of the land for Phase I of The Grove at Towne Center. Construction on the project’s $85 million first phase commenced in March. General contractors Hodges & Hicks, Fortune-Johnson, and Winter Construction, TSW Architects and Place Makers Design, along with architects Dynamik and Smallwood, are leading the construction and design of the town center. The project is expected to deliver late 2022/early 2023.

After being closed more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Snellville Senior Center has returned to regular hours.

“Every item we check off the list brings us one day closer to seeing The Grove at Towne Center open to our community,” said Mayor Barbara Bender. “It’s especially exciting to see physical evidence of this long-awaited project now that construction has begun!”

“We are thrilled to finally be re-opening the doors to the center and can’t wait to see our members,” said Senior Program Supervisor Kathi Gargiulo. “I believe our citizens are very excited and ready to get back to the programs they were enjoying prior to the pandemic and we are eager to serve them!”

In addition to closing on the land, the CASTO/MIDCITY JV also closed on its loan with US Bank, leaving only the continuation of construction and securing the ideal mix of tenants to fill the new retail, restaurant, and office space – a process that is already well underway.

Starting May 1, the Senior Center began slowly transitioning back into programming as the pandemic restrictions have been eased by state and federal leaders. However, Parks and Recreation officials wanted to make sure a full re-opening went as safely and smoothly as possible. Officials planned two events in May and allowed three groups to meet weekly. After filling two vacant staff positions to provide full service and more programming to members, the Senior Center opened Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting June 14.

“Watching a project come to life never gets old,” said Kirk Demetrops, President of MidCity Real Estate Partners. “Closing on the land sale is an exciting milestone that opens up the door for us to continue creating and adding to this project that means so much to the City and its residents.”

“We were very excited to re-open the center to serve our members and citizens again,” said Director of Parks and Recreation Lisa A. Platt, CPRP. “We want to make sure as we reopen that we are taking steps to be as safe as we can for the sake of our members health. We have been communicating with our members and the groups that utilize the facility.” Members will still be required to wear masks and social distance. There will be hand sanitizer throughout the facility and frequent cleaning will take place regularly. “Our job is to offer as many programs as we can for the

In addition to 50,000 square feet of shopping, dining, recreation, and business space, The Grove at Towne Center will also offer residential opportunities, a new Gwinnett County Library, a special use Mercantile Building and significant common areas including The Grove’s green. Apartments in The Grove will feature an upscale living experience that will appeal to a wide range of ages and life stages that wish to enjoy the convenience and luxury of an urban lifestyle. Offering walking access to retail, dining, the greenway system, and more, these apartments will combine the best of modern convenience with a quiet, peaceful setting. For more information and updates on the Grove at Towne Center project visit 11

The Music of Motown and Earth, Wind and Fire comes to Snellville FREE CONCERT

July 24 • 6-9 p.m. • Towne Green The Ray Howard Band is a classy and exciting Motown tribute band, specializing in the sound of Earth Wind and Fire, that also brings the sound of classic soul to life. The Ray Howard Band is the go to band for any corporate setting and a quality concert headliner for all venues. A native of Chicago, IL, Ray Howard formed the band in the summer of 2013, in Atlanta, GA, after releasing his debut CD “Love Notes.” He has toured with several R&B groups, sharing the stage with Gerald Levert, LoKey, Sounds of Blackness and Men at Large. Collectively, The Ray Howard Band members/vocalists have toured with well known top R&B and Contemporary vocalists & groups, appeared in recent movies, and starred in stage plays. The Ray Howard Band will put you in the mood of love and grooving, while at the same time make you move and dance to the beat throughout the night. Reserve a table for six people for $125. Tables are limited and available on a first come, first serve basis. Register online at or email STAT Executive Director Kelly McAloon at

n e w th i n g s

hap pening



S N E L LV I L L E 24 00 Main St ree t E .

www.fb cs nell.o r g


9:00AM & 11: 15A M



Presented by:

Concerts are FREE to the public and take place on the Towne Green in front of City Hall from 6-9 p.m.

July 24

The Ray Howard Band - Earth, Wind and Fire Tribute - 7-9 p.m. The Ray Howard Band - Motown Favorites - 6-7 p.m. The Ray Howard Band members/vocalists have toured with well known top R&B and Contemporary vocalists & groups, appeared in recent movies, and starred in stage plays. RHB can put you in the mood of love and grooving, while at the same time make you move and dance to the beat throughout the night. Their timeless old school ballads and reminiscent sounds take you back in time to the “good old days.” RHB specializes in a variety of Motown, R&B, Classic Soul, Funk, Jazz & Pop/Soft Rock. Be part of the Ray Howard Band Experience!!

Aug. 21 20-RIDE - Zac Brown Tribute from 7-9 p.m.

Sept. 18

20 RIDE is American Country/Folk music at its finest. The first Zac Brown Tribute Band of it’s kind, 20 RIDE is taking audiences by storm. This is not a wig wearing, lip syncing, pretending to play tribute. These are real players, doing the great music the way Zac does at all his concerts. Up close and personal, moving, and fun! With nine hit singles, two platinum selling albums, and countless fans, Zac Brown is quickly becoming a country music legend.

Purple Madness - Prince Tribute - 7 -9 p.m. Timeless Tina - Tribute to Tina Turner - 6-7 p.m. Purple Madness is the ultimate celebration of the most widely beloved entertainer and profoundly influential artist of all-time. Bobby Miller presents an electrifying performance that can be best described as, high energy and a “must see” performance. The Timeless Tina Tribute Show has the magic of audio and visual effects coupled with the raw undeniable talent of Chimere Scott and her band of musicians and dancers, this show promises a time that you won’t soon forget.

Reserve a table for six people for $125. Tables are limited and available on a first come, first serve basis. Register online at or email STAT Executive Director Kelly McAloon at


Snellville Farmers’ Market

Meet the friendly farmers of the Snellville Farmers’ Market Have you ever wondered about some of our farmers’ market vendors and the “other life” they lead when not at the market? We would like to introduce you to some of our vendors who have an interesting background or weekday jobs that may not be what you would expect.

Ty Cowart. of TyCo B Farms, has a farm on Lenora Church Road as well as a second farm near Alma in South Georgia. “Our family now stands, with the grandchildren, at the eighth generation farming and working the land,” Cowart said. “I was taught the practice and economics of farming by my grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles. The thrill for me is to continue to pass that wisdom down to my children and grandchildren. No matter my training, education and work, I have always come back to the farm.” So just what is that education and work that Cowart refers to? He is a graduate of the University of Georgia where he played baseball for the Dawgs. He also has a master’s degree from Georgia Southern University and a law degree from Woodrow Wilson School of Law. For 30 years he had a biomedical engineering business and was part of a team that developed and brought to market an implantable heart failure sensor. Now, when not farming or at the Snellville Farmers’ Market, you can find him teaching biomedical engineering to graduate students at Georgia Tech. Another vendor with a science and teaching background is Althea Grant-Lenzy of The Farm at River Walk. Althea has a Ph.D. in microbiology and works as a scientist at the Centers for Disease Control. She is also a professor of biology at Georgia Gwinnett College. Althea sells micro greens at the market, which, she says, she began growing to get her children to eat vegetables. The micro greens are in their “first-leaf stage”, Grant-Lenzy explains, and are very rich in nutrients. “They have the same flavor of a full-grown plant, but are more potent. The nutrients are so concentrated,” she said. Grant-Lenzy recommends using the micro greens in a salad or smoothie or to garnish meats. She also notes that her wheat grass is very popular with pet owners.

^^^ Aldo Ramos of Sunshine Farm.

^^^ Vanessa Garofalo, of

Soap Lily Bath Co., is a new vendor this year and got interested in making artisan soaps as a pandemic hobby.

<<< Althea Grant-Lenzy, of

The Farm at River Walk, has a Ph.D. in microbiology and works as a scientist at the Centers for Disease Control.

“I have cat owners who come weekly,” she said. “It helps to prevent hair balls.” Vanessa Garofalo, of Soap Lily Bath Co., is a new vendor this year. For years she has made bath bombs and scrubs, but became interested in making artisan soaps as a pandemic hobby. 14

SEE MORE pictures of the Snellville Farmers’ Market on Page 35.

Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

Snellville Farmers’ Market “This is my artistic outlet,” she said. “My soaps are all vegan. I keep my products as natural as possible.” During the week, you can find Garofalo at the Oxford College Library of Emory University where she is a teaching and digital projects librarian. Garofalo has a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in Library and Information Science. At Oxford College, she provides research assistance to students and faculty members, teaches research methods and creates digital learning projects. Edward Sezenov of Snellville Honey is a longtime vendor at the market where he sells honey and fresh eggs. Sezenov has a particularly interesting background. He grew up in Romania and studied veterinary medicine and served in the Romanian military. He came to the United States in 1981, but getting to this country was a long process. “It took me three years to get a visa,” he said. He first settled in Chicago where he worked for a German medical company. He came to Snellville in 1999 after a doctor recommended a Southern climate would help ease his son’s allergies. After moving here, Sezenov opened an endoscopy company. However, it had always been his dream to have a farm. “It was my dream from when I was 10 or 11 years old.” Sezenov was especially interested in beekeeping and 15 years ago decided to give it a try. “I thought I would get two hives for the fun of it,” he said. But those two have expanded to many. Edward’s honey is very popular with market customers because it is truly local — from Janmar Road right here in Snellville. Another longtime vendor with an interesting dual life is Richard Presley. He and his family own Presley’s Farm in Maysville. They sell pasture-raised beef and pork as well as vegetables. They also sell fresh eggs. All their meats are processed in a USDA inspected meat processing facility in North Georgia. In Presley’s “other life” he is the mayor of Maysville, a position he has held for 17 years. Maysville has a population of about 2,300 and sits on the line dividing Banks and Jackson counties.

^^^ Richard Presley and his family own Presley’s Farm in Maysville.

<<< Ty Cowart, of TyCo B Farms, has a farm on Lenora Church Road as well as a second farm near Alma in South Georgia. vvv Edward Sezenov grew up in Romania and studied veterinary medicine and served in the Romanian military.

“We’ve really done a lot for this small town,” Presley said, giving credit to the City Council he works with. “The city has seen a lot of accomplishments in the area of infrastructure and remodeling.” Be sure to check out these and all the other vendors at the Snellville Farmers Market, held from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturdays, June 5 through Sept. 25 on the Towne Green, located across from City Hall, 2342 Oak Road. -Gretchen Schulz Councilwoman SFM Organizer


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High School Sports SGHS’s Agard named Soccer Player of the Year In its 36th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Gatorade recently announced Kadeem Agard of South Gwinnett High School as its 2020-21 Gatorade Georgia Boys Soccer Player of the Year. Agard is the first Gatorade Georgia Boys Soccer Player of the Year to be chosen from South Gwinnett High School. The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Agard as Georgia’s best high school boys soccer player. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National AGARD Boys Soccer Player of the Year award to be announced in June, Agard joins an elite alumni association of state award-winners in 12 sports, including Alexi Lalas (1987-88, Cranbrook High School, Mich.), Steve Cherundolo (1996-97, Mt. Carmel High School, Calif.), Abby Wambach (1997-98, Our Lady of Mercy School of Young Women, N.Y.), Heather O’Reilly (2001-02 & 2002-03, East Brunswick High School, N.J.), Matt Besler (2004-05, Blue Valley West High School, Kans.), Jack Harrison (2013-14, Berkshire High School, Mass.) and Mallory Pugh (2014-15, Mountain Vista High School, Colo.). The 6-foot, 155-pound senior forward scored 43 goals and passed for 12 assists this past season, leading the Comets (17-4-2) to the Class AAAAAAA state semifinals. The Class AAAAAAA Player of the Year, Agard recorded seven goals and four assists in four postseason games. A two-time Gwinnett County Super 6 selection, he recorded 14 multi-goal games including six hat tricks in his prep career. Agard has volunteered locally as a youth soccer coach. “Kadeem had an incredible year. Kadeem had stats that you won’t see everyday. Kadeem is hardworking and well deserving of this award,” said Christian Vasquez, head coach of South Gwinnett High. Agard has maintained a weighted 3.61 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a National Letter of Intent to play soccer on scholarship at Mercer University this fall. The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track and field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.

^^^ WINNERS - (Top) The South Gwinnett High School Boys’ Varsity Soccer Team was given a proclamation by Mayor and Council in May for recently making it to the Final Four of the Class 7A State Tournament for the first time in school history. The team is led by Head Coach and Gwinnett County Coach of the Year, Christian Vasquez, assistant coaches Abel Mendez and Lexie Luther, with the assistance of Manager Princess Amoako. The team members are: Robel Abesolom, Nathaniel Adeojo, Alexis Calvillo, Erik Calvillo, Adrian Cuenca, Kymar Denton, Freeman Dessin, Nick Fabra, Bryan Gonzalez, Nahom Kebede, Loe Le, Caleb Luo­Garner, Anthony Maldonado, Tresor Ngoga, Kevin Portillo, Jorge Evan Remigio, Caleb Rolon, Tyler Tott, Kenechi Walker, Gwinnett County Player of the Year Kadeem Agard, Gwinnett County Scholar-Athlete of the Year Sekou Agard, Co­Captains Haris Huskovic and Jacob Rolon. The team is credited with “uplifting, inspiring and dazzling us all throughout this challenging school year, and for exceeding the standards of hard work and dedication in scholastics and athletics.” (Above) Councilwoman Cristy Lenski, a SGHS teacher, gave the proclamation to the team and is pictured with all of the players on the team she taught. To date, Gatorade Player of the Year winners’ grants have totaled more than $2.7 million across 1,117 organizations.



At the heart of Gwinnett County beats the pulse tures and dynamic traditions have helped shap has countless opportunities for you to explore.

Sample traditional Southern cuisine and the m the paths that wind around the scenic lake at B shopping area in Gwinnett County, which offers

The Greenway Trail will provide residents and v heart of the downtown with future connections

Enjoy an evening with us at an outdoor concert Towne Green.

Stroll through the award winning Famers’ Mark sure to find all the fresh produce, baked good a

Snellville is an oasis in the Atlanta suburbs, ful trip today, and leave Snellville viewing your ow

Come Stay & P


e of a vibrant city. In Snellville, diverse culpe our story. No matter your interests, the city

many flavors Snellville has to offer - stroll along Briscoe Park or shop in the second-largest s something for everybody.

visitors alike with a safe and fun path into the s to Gwinnett’s vast trail system and beyond.

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ket every Saturday morning where you are and fresh meat you will need for the week.

ll of rich history and inspiring ideas. Plan your wn world in a whole new light.

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COMING IN AUGUST Day Trip Wine Tours to North Georgia’s Wine County. Visit for upcoming wine tours.

What’s Going On? Snellville Parks and Recreation Snellville Senior Center

Briscoe Park is open daily 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. 770-985-3535 Oak Road Park 1925 Oak Road (Passive neighborhood park) Park office is open Monday - Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Masks and social distancing are mandatory to enter building until further notice. For more information on registration and classes, check out the Parks and Recreation Department on Snellville’s website at Please “like” our Facebook page for more information on our upcoming events and happenings: Snellville Parks and Recreation is partnering with GGLeagues to offer the ultimate Esports gaming experience for all ages. There will be a summer and fall league for Madden21, Rocket League, Fortnite & Super Smash Bros. For more information and registration info visit Lego Camp at Briscoe Park will be July 19-23, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Camp is $295 per child ages 5-10. To register visit: com/registration/new/90125 Briscoe Park is partnering with the non-profit, Generals Athletic Club, to help offer a variety of sport programs and mentorship to the Snellville and Shiloh community. Visit for more information. Registration for All-In fall soccer is now open! Visit www.allinfcsnellville. com for more information on how to register!

safety guidelines. Limited spots are available for swim lessons. Call the park office for more information at 770-985-3535. If you are interested in tennis instruction, clinics, and/ or tournaments/leagues conducted by certified tennis instructors at Briscoe Park visit or call 470-417-4547 for more information. Outdoor tennis courts are available on a first-come-first-served basis without lights daily from 6 a.m. - 10 p.m. Not all of the courts may be available at all times if tennis Instructor or USTA team are utilizing the courts. The Snellville Senior Center is the place to be for active adults that are 55 and older. Located next to Snellville City Hall, the Senior Center is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. There are numerous classes for seniors to take part in. Call the Senior Center at 770-985-3580 for class times, dates and fees. Aerobics are free with membership and take place Mondays and Thursdays. Pilates are also available for $3 per class on Fridays. Call for times Painting classes are offered Thursdays and a pack of four classes is $28. The classes run from 1 to 3 p.m. A group meets Tuesday at noon for crochet and knitting. The meeting is free with membership. Spanish classes are offered for beginners, intermediate and advanced speakers throughout the week. There are card-making classes, piano, sewing and other classes as well.

National Youth Flag Football is now taking registrations for the Fall season starting in October. Practices and games will take place on Sundays. For more information visit

Beginning computer, smartphone and tablet classes coming soon.

Ladies of Pearl will be looking for players for women’s adult kickball in July. Please visit for more information.

Billiards, Bingo and an exercise and weight room are also available and free to members.

Registration for fall Men’s and Co-ed adult softball will open in July. Visit for registration info.

Membership is $25 for Gwinnett County Residents, $15 for City Limit Residents and $30 for those outside of Gwinnett County. This year fees will be prorated after June 1, 2021. Please stop by our center or visit our website at to view our bimonthly newsletter located under Parks and Recreation for additional classes and events.

Briscoe Park Pool is now open! Pool hours are Monday-Thursday, 12-6 p.m., Friday-Sunday, 12-7 p.m. The pool will have extended hours for July 4 at 12-8 p.m. Pool capacity is 150 patrons and there are COVID-19 20

Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

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Parks and Recreation Tennis instructor brings knowledge to park courts <<< Anthony Evans, right, has been the certified U.S. Professional Tennis Association instructor at T.W. Briscoe Park where he has built a large following of those wanting to learn the sport.

A flourishing tennis program was always on the minds of staff at Briscoe Park. “We received requests daily regarding tennis lessons and I had to send them to another park since this was not something we offered,” said Debbie Puette, Administrative Assistant at Briscoe Park. All that changed when Anthony Evans, a United States Professional Tennis Association certified tennis instructor, approached Snellville Parks and Recreation about becoming the permanent Briscoe Park tennis instructor. Briscoe Park was the closest park in his community that had tennis courts and he wanted to offer a tennis experience that was unlike any other tennis experience. “I’m trying to replicate the feeling of watching your favorite athlete into a feeling that you are the athlete and I’m here to watch you perform your best.” Evans said. Evans grew up in the Bronx, NY and attended Pratt University in Brooklyn. He found his way to the game of tennis when he didn’t make the college basketball team at Pratt University. “Luckily Pratt had the only permanent indoor facility in New York so I practiced every single day on a wall or with a ball machine.” Evans said. He moved to Georgia in 2019 to raise his youngest daughter.

“My experience with patrons, residents and staff has been the reason our tennis program continues to grow,” he said. And the staff and patrons agree. “It’s tennis with discipline and results. It’s more than just tennis, it’s boot camp tennis!” one of Evans’ students Sonia Rivera said. To learn more about tennis at Briscoe Park visit or call 470-417-4547. -Meghan Meegan, Parks and Recreation Program Coordinator

Evans started as the permanent tennis instructor at one of the craziest times in world history — the COVID-19 pandemic. But that didn’t stop Evans from continuing his craft and coming up with ways to grow the tennis program at Briscoe Park. Even though tennis is one of the most “COVID-19 safe” sports, it was a slow start during the pandemic with Evans only conducting about three to four lessons every few weeks. Now tennis is booming at Briscoe Park. Evans trains more than 70 adult and junior patrons. He offers private and group lessons both on the courts and indoors. He conducts beginners (and advanced beginners) clinics for both adults and juniors. He recently held a beginners adult and junior singles tennis tournament with about 10 participants in each. Next up is the beginners adult and juniors doubles tournaments on July 17 and 18. He even came up with the idea to create the Briscoe Park Tennis Club which gives players exclusive access to the courts and allows you to play with other members of the club. Evans definitely has a heart for his community which is what inspired him to offer two sets of free tennis clinics to the Snellville Senior Center members.

^^^ COURT QUEENS - Congratulations to the girls 18U tennis team out of T.W. Briscoe Park on a successful season. This was the first season playing at the 18U Level for the team which has players ranging from 13-16. During the regular season the team played six matches, three at T.W. Briscoe Park, and finished first place in their division. The team won round one of the playoffs against The Brookfield Country Club. The team members are: Keira Turnley, Kai Turnley, Trinity Porter, Alexandra Turnbough, Katherine Grados, Anastasiya Speyer, Tashauna Mitchell and Ami Dodd Mungin. Sondra Turnbough is the team captain.


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Student Entrepreneurs 2021 Shark Tank winners named The results of the 2021 Snellville Entrepreneurship Alliance’s Shark Tank student entrepreneur contest are in. Malcolm Frandsen, of Brookwood High School, was awarded $1,300 to fund his lawn care business; Trase Lee, of South Gwinnett High School, was awarded $1,000 for his photography business; Noila Rahimjon, of BHS, was awarded $400 for her skin care line; and Lena Tata, of Grayson High School, was awarded $300 for her clothing business. The contest, based on the popular TV show “Shark Tank,” encourages local students to create a business and “pitch” it to a group of local business professionals who divvy up a pile of money to give the student businesses a boost. The judges for this year’s Shark Tank were: Renea Johnson, owner of Get Stranded Hair; Chris Turner, representing Sunrise Rotary Club; former Councilman Bobby Howard; Shark Tank veteran Kathy Emanuel, former Mayor Tom Witts; Snellville Tourism and Trade Executive Director Kelly McAloon; Ashley Franklin of Walton EMC; and Greater Eastside Chamber of Commerce President Marianatte Refour.

^^^ SHARK TANK WINNERS - From left, Shark Tank 2021 winners Noila Rahimjon, of Brookwood High School, Trase Lee, of South Gwinnett High School, Economic Development Director Eric Van Otteren, Malcolm Frandsen, of BHS and Lena Tata, of Grayson High School. Tata was named Entrepreneur of the Year at the May 24 meeting of Mayor and Council.

Outstanding Selection of Wine and Craft Beer Wine Tasting Event Every Thursday Evening Occasionally Meeting with Wine Makers Daily Self-Service Wine Tasting Machine Bring Food to Dine and Enjoy a Glass of Wine

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RIBBON CUTTINGS ... In Snellville >>> More on Ribbon Cuttings ... If you are are opening a new business in Snellville, give us a call, we’d like to meet you and welcome you to Snellville! Call 770-985-3517 for more information.

^^^ WEDDING BELLS - City and Snellville Tourism and Trade officials welcomed the newest business to the city recently - 2 Hearts Wedding Chapel and Boutique - located at 2320 Henry Clower Blvd., Suite C in New London Plaza. The business offers all anyone needs to get married from apparel, to event space to an ordained minister. Owner Margaret Tate and her family and friends were joined by Mayor Barbara Bender, City Councilman Tod Warner, Economic Development Director Eric Van Otteren and STAT Boardmember Alice Snipes. For more information visit 2heartsweddingchapel. com. Welcome to Snellville!

^^^ CHEERS - City officials, including councilwomen Solange Destang, Cristy Lenski

and Gretchen Schulz, joined Snellville Tourism and Trade officials in a ribbon cutting ceremony at Niko’s Wine Corner, 2118 Scenic Highway North May 21. Niko Patel has owned the wine shop for 12 years and sold the business to Regina Koranteng and Seth Wiredu. The name will remain the same. For more information on Niko’s Wine Corner, visit Welcome to Snellville Regina and Seth! Good luck Niko!

26 26

Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

Community Garden

Seedling sale at SFM deemed success A huge shout out is in order for the Community Garden @ Snellville Greenhouse Team! Beginning in February, the team planted vegetable, herb and flower seeds, which they nurtured throughout the winter and into the spring in the garden greenhouse. They recently sold their seedlings at just $2 for a four-pack at four Snellville Farmers Markets, raising about $4,500. Proceeds from the sales will support the garden, including expenses such as equipment purchases and repairs, new tools, electricity to support the greenhouse operations, and mowing the grass in the garden. Located in Briscoe Park across Marigold Road from the Snellville Recycling Center, the garden is totally self-supporting and receives no funding from the city. Members of the greenhouse team include Wes and Lucy Nettleton, Brian and Ellen Hughes, Kathleen Keyes, Martha Whitman, Maggie Van Buren, Dick Kennedy, Rob Stewart and Barb Bosco. “We made way, way, way more this year than in previous years,” said Nettleton, the lead master gardener for the team. “When we first started doing plant sales we were excited if we made $1,000.” “That’s because we’re getting a good reputation,” said Kennedy, also a master gardener. “We had lots of returning customers.” In addition to selling plants at the Snellville Farmers’ Market, the gardeners also donated plants to a Gwinnett County Master Gardener Association plant sale. The association has awarded a $500 grant to the garden for the past few years. Plant donations were also made to the Southeast Gwinnett Co-op garden, McDaniel Farm Park, the Slow Pour Brewing Company community garden and Discovery High School. All plants that still remained after those donations were given to the Gwinnett County Extension Service to share with school gardens. Snellville residents - the next time you are in Briscoe Park or at the Recycling Center, take a few minutes to drive by the garden and see all the thriving vegetable plants and beautiful flowers. You will be proud that your city is home to this garden. -Gretchen Schulz Councilwoman Garden organizer

>>> (Top) Hundreds of plants for sale at the Snellville Farmers’ Market. (Middle)

The greenhouse team at the market: Front row, from left are Maggie Van Buren, Mary Black of Gwinnett Extension Service, Sharon Noy, Lucy Nettleton; back row, from left are Dick Kennedy, Wes Nettleton, Brian Hughes and Ellen Hughes. (Bottom) A bed at the Community Garden. 27 27

Snellville Historical Society

Snellville’s post offices rich in history By Jim Cofer Snellville Historical Society With the recent move of the Snellville Post Office to facilitate the downtown development project The Grove at Towne Center, it is fitting to look back at how Snellville citizens have received their mail since the 1830s. A close second behind roads for transportation in the County was the need for U.S. Postal Service, especially since many of the early settlers migrated here from other states and countries and desired to communicate with relatives back home. The National Archives documents several post offices serving Snellville and southern Gwinnett that have come and gone over the past 175 years with many of the names corresponding to one-room schoolhouses or general stores. These post offices include Rockbridge, Caleb, Garner, Webbville, Rosebud, Luxomni, Gloster and others. Others not so familiar include: Grapevine, Mahala, Villaking, Victory, Algernon, Pirkle, Orient, etc. Centerville had its own P.O. from 1879 until 1903 when it was closed. (It is interesting to note that the central post office for Snellville is now located in Centerville, with only a satellite office in our town.) In the late 1800s and early 1900s, mail was delivered in southern Gwinnett by postmasters and carriers on horseback or riding in buggies, starting at a central point like Lawrenceville, riding radially out through several communities that didn’t have post offices, and looping back. Sometimes, ^^^ Mail was delivered by horse and they would make “mail wagon in the 19th century. pouch dropoffs” at country stores, where farmers could pick up or send mail. These early mail handlers were not federal employees as is done today, but rather contractors who might change frequently depending on profitability of the contract. Snellville residents did not have their own post office until town co-founder James Sawyer opened one in his wooden store and became Postmaster in 1884. Rather, they had to send/receive mail from Yellow River, Lawrenceville, Centerville, or Stone Mountain in Dekalb County. Specifically, most of Tom Snell’s letters (discovered in 2012) back to England in the 1870/1880s were postmarked from Yellow River with a few being postmarked at Stone Mountain. Since Snell spent much of his early work years as a farm laborer in the Hewatt Road and Five Forks communities, Yellow River would have been his nearest Post Office. (As a side note, the federal 28 28

application to establish a P.O. inadvertently puts to rest the age old debate as to who named Snellville. Sawyer voluntarily penned in that name in the blank asking the location of the proposed post office.) The location of Snellville’s first post office ^^^ Sawyer Store was the original post would certainly have been office in Snellville. in Sawyer’s wood frame store in the southwest corner of the intersection of current day Highways 78/124 with him as postmaster. Later, he moved the old store and replaced it with the two-story rock store which was Snellville’s icon until torn down in 1960s. The longevity of Sawyer’s post office is not known for sure; however, it is known that there were periods when Snellville did not have its own P.O. A 1903 News Herald article listed Mr. James C. Lanford as Snellville Postmaster and R.L. Shell as carrier. The National Archives lists Lanford as P.M. as of May 23, 1901 and the notation “N.B. April 14, 1905” and Sawyer again after that. The News Herald announced on May 2, 1907 that the Snellville Post Office will be closed immediately. Carrier Shell continued to serve Snellville patrons but as Route 6 out of the Lawrenceville P.O. Mrs. Nell Grizzard Gunter filed to re-open the Snellville post office on March 22, 1932, and she is shown as the Postmaster in a summary of Gwinnett post offices on July 30, 1935 — the new P.O. must have opened sometime between these two dates. A summary of all Snellville Post Offices and Postmasters is presented in the table on the next page and discussed in the following paragraphs. Aubrey Peters opened Snellville’s first gas station in 1931 and also operated a grocery store in the old Pate Building just two doors north of his Pure gas station. Peters operated Snellville’s post office from the back corner of that Pate Building. He served as Postmaster in 1942, while his wife Avis was the postal clerk and spent full time in the store. The Peters made a small profit from the sale of stamps and other postal products. In order to keep the volume up and ensure the Office’s viability, Mrs. (Avis) Peters would campaign with all of the locals to make sure that mass mailings like wedding and graduation invitations passed through the local P.O. Peters sold the store, and the Hewatt bothers operated the grocery for several years, with Mrs. Vera Gilleland Nash appointed as Postmistress, a job that she held for 23 years from 1943-1966. The Post Office was located in the back left corner of the store, occupied just 25 square feet, and contained 50 boxes (only half were rented). Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

Snellville Historical Society

^^^ Vera Nash was postmaster of Snellville for 23 years. Later, the P.O. moved across Highway 78 to the George C. Brooks Building near corner of Ga 124 and Lenora Church Road with Mrs. Nash still the Postmaster (title changed somewhere along the way). The Post Office shared the building with the Jerry Moon Insurance Agency. While in this building, there were no direct mail deliveries from the Federal Government; rather, Mr. Pass of the Grayson P.O. brought the pouch of Snellville mail by as part of his daily route.

^^^ The former U.S. Post Office on Oak Road.

Long-time resident George C. Brooks became the first congressionally-approved carrier in modern times circa 1965-1966. Mr. Brooks was a 50-year employee of Sears Roebuck who attempted to carry the mail part time and work at Sears full time. With the city starting to grow, Mr. Brooks realized that he could not do both jobs, so he resigned as carrier and returned to Sears full time. Barbara Rawlins filled in as clerk, substitute carrier, Postmaster replacement, and has the distinction of being the first full-time rural carrier, serving 574 boxes. Dennis Williams began as full-time carrier in 1967 as soon as his appointment was finalized by his congressman. Charlotte Nash served as a substitute carrier during this period as well. That first year, Mr. Williams drove his own vehicle, covering 84 miles and serving 480 boxes. He served for 22 years, retiring in 1989, and drove a government-furnished vehicle the last 6 of those years. He states that, due to the city’s growth, a new route was added approximately every year resulting in 25 routes by his retirement. Williams served in three P.O. facilities: Brooks Building, Snellville Plaza, and Oak Road offices. Snellville’s first post office building that was dedicated just to that purpose was built, beginning in 1966 and finished in 1968, in the Snellville Plaza Shopping Center. Leon Phillips, a WW II veteran and member of a local family, succeeded Mrs. Nash as Postmaster in 1967 and moved the office into the new building in 1968. As of 1972, the P.O. served 415 city boxes and 1350 rural boxes, employing two rural carriers. Dennis Williams was a full-time carrier, assisted by auxiliary carriers Charlotte Nash and Kathryn Bird. The Snellville P.O. moved to its location at 2250 Oak Road. in 1983, and to its current location on Wisteria Dr to facilitate development of The Grove at Towne Center in 2020.

^^^ The current post office on Wisteria Drive. Summary of Snellville’s Post Offices and Postmasters Postmaster James Sawyer James C. Lanford James Sawyer Nell G. Gunter Gladys Barry Snell Aubrey W. Peters Vera Nash Frank Leon Phillips Clarence Robinson Robert M. Bamford Tina Handrop Theophanes Best Beverly Alexander Yolanda Ligons

Service Dates 1884-1901 1901-1905 1905-1907 1932-1940 1940-1941 1942 1943-1966 1966- 1986 1986-1990 1990-2009 2009-2014 2014-2018 (est.) 2018 (est.)-2019 2019-present

Facility Sawyer’s Store Sawyer’s Store Sawyer’s Store Pate Bldg. (assumed) Pate Bldg. (assumed) Pate Bldg./Peters Store Pate/Hewatt’s Store; Brooks Bldg. Snellville Plaza and Oak Road 2250 Oak Road 2250 Oak Road 2250 Oak Road 2250 Oak Road 2250 Oak Road 2440 Wisteria Drive

29 29

Snellville Commerce Club Scholarships


By Brian Arrington, Public Information Officer A five-story, 102-room Hampton Inn & Suites will be built in the city following a unanimous vote by the Mayor and Council earlier this year. The 64,400-square-foot building will be located in Park Place, a development located at the corner of Pharrs Road and Scenic Highway which recently saw the grand opening of Cracker Barrel, Freddie’s, Zaxby’s and Aspen Dental. There had been concerns the hotel would cause traffic issues at the busy intersection, but, according to the developers, daily trips would be reduced by nearly two thirds of what was previously approved for a 12,000-square-foot restaurant.

Inn & Suites by Hilton within the city. Finally, Hampton Inn & Suites, under the Hilton (Hotels) umbrella, has a reputation for being a high-quality brand and product that would be an asset to the city for many years to come.”

And just this month, paperwork was filed “There is a need in the city for a quality limited-service hotel Outback ^^^ CONGRATULATIONS - Every year the Snellville Commerce Club awards two $1,000 scholarships to a student activetoinbring eitheran FBLA or the DECA in the Scenic Highway Commercial Corridor as there are very Steakhouse Park this program. Students must demonstrate academic success and have been engaged in the community. Commerce Club officials are proud totopresent fewyear’s options for travelers to utilize while staying in the area,” said Place. FBLA/DECA $1,000 Scholarship to Angie Zaraza Gomez from South Gwinnett High School (left) and to Reagan A. Patterson (right) from Brookwood Planning and Development Thompson. “Eastside High School. Gomez will beDirector attendingJason Oglethorpe University and working toward her dream of owning her own accounting firm one day. Patterson will be Medical Center, adjacent restaurants, retail businesses and attending Cornell University where she will major in Social Statistics and minor in International and Comparative Labor through their school of Industrial neighboring residents could all benefit from having a nice Hampton Labor Relations. ■ Affordable nightly, weekly and monthly rates ■ Average suite features over 300 square feet of comfortable living area ■ Each room includes a separate living area, ample work space with desk, remote control cable tv with HBO or Showtime, iron and ironing board, and in-room hi-speed Internet access ■ Apartment size kitchen with refrigerator, two-burner stovetop, full size microwave, in-room coffee maker, in-room toaster, dishes, cookware & utensils, and a well-lit kitchen table/work area ■ Interior corridors with key card access for added security and always clean & friendly service

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770-982-5250 770.982.5250 1785 Circle • Snellville, Georgia 30078 www.Presidential CrestwoodSuites .com

Food Distribution

Food drive gives out 1,300 food boxes to needy It is the efforts and drive of Dana Cureton that brings many food distributions not only to Snellville, but to neighboring cities. Cureton is the founder of Claudine’s Closet and their mission is to partner with business organizations to feed and cloth those who are less fortunate. Claudine’s Closet was started in 2019 to aid the less fortunate, (abuse victims, displaced individuals including veterans or anyone that needs assistance). When asked why she does this, Cureton said, “I was taught by my Grandmother it’s better to give than receive. I live by 1 Corinthians 13:13 daily - and now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” Food drive officials want to thank Lowe’s in Snellville for allowing them to have the food distribution in their parking lot on a busy Saturday morning and to all the wonderful volunteers, elected officials and Snellville Tourism and Trade board members who came out to help load the trucks, cars and vans. Special thanks to Coach Bryan Lamar and more than 30 South Gwinnett High School football players that volunteered their time to help others in need. We have such a compassionate community in Snellville, people who really care about the well being of others. Lettum Eat and Overcomers House in Snellville are other organizations who help feed those in need as well. The Southeast Gwinnett Co-op is another resource that provides help with food insecurities. Give Hunger the Boot collects food that is brought directly to the Southeast Co-op to aid in their mission as well. - Kelly McAloon, Executive Director Snellville Tourism and Trade 31 31


National and Local Sports

Women’s Flag Football National League come to Snellville The WFFN - Woman’s Flag Football National League, owned by Norman Carter III - brought over 250 professional women flag football players to South Gwinnett High School campus in May that represented 9 states across the country. The Women’s Flag Football Network National League is the first true national women’s flag football league. The season will be played seven vs. seven style and consist of 10-12 games played across the country over a span of three weekends in spring and summer 2021. The WFFN National League will consist of teams representing Atlanta, Boston, Bay Area California, Carolina, DC-Maryland-Virginia (DMV), Florida, Texas, Southern California and Mexico. Each team will play games on Saturday and Sunday for each leg of the season. The three legs of the season were Atlanta in May, Dallas in June and New Orleans in July. The top teams will advance to the championships that will be held in California. To learn more about Women’s Flag Football National League visit

<<< MEET THE COACH - Ryan Patterson played baseball at South Gwinnett not too long ago and now he is the Comets’ head coach. Patterson, 26, becomes the fifth head baseball coach at South since 1964, when longtime coach and field namesake John Sawyer began his tenure. ‘It’s shocking. I didn’t expect it to happen at all, especially so quickly,’ Patterson told the Gwinnett Daily Post. ‘I’m more excited than anything.’ Patterson played at South for Steve Teschner, who was head coach from 2007-18 and was the successor to Roger Parham, the head coach between Sawyer and Teschner. Eric Jones has been the Comets’ head coach the past three seasons.

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2021 Snellville Food Truck Fridays • 4-8 pm

Snellville Tourism and Trade (STAT) is proud to announce this year’s next two Food Truck Friday’s!

Keystone Sponsors:

Bronze Sponsors:

HOTEL SPONSORS: Hampton Inn & Suites, LaQuinta Inn & Suites and the InTown Suites

AUGUST 6 Love at Wurst Sight Atlanta Seafood The Patty Wagon Sunshine Alchemy Gyro Chef Mediterranean South of Philly Frozen Sweets Kona Ice

Join us for a wide variety of food trucks, music, fun and games with DJ Lee.

SEPTEMBER 3 Big House BBQ Hole in the Wall Uptown Food Truck 6 Packsubs Vietnamese Kajun Asian Frozen Sweets Kona Ice

THANK YOU for making our first two Food Truck Friday’s in May & June a BIG SUCCESS! 34

We will continue to adhere to all social distance guidelines – Multiple sanitizing stations

Snellville Farmers’ Market continues to WOW the community!

Snellville Farmers Market takes place 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturdays, June 5 through Sept. 25 on the Towne Green, located across from City Hall, 2342 Oak Road. 35

Experience Snellville ... Food Truck Friday

Mom’s Night Out! Swingin’ Medallions

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Tribute


Many thanks to Team Snellville Volunteers,

... Come Stay and Play with Us! Snellville Farmers’ Market

Memorial Day - Remembering those who Fought for our Freedom

Snellville Police Department and Public Works


Summer Recipes

Baked Feta Pasta

Cook Time: 35 minutes Servings: 6

Ingredients: 8 ounces dried cavatappi pasta or pasta of choice 2 pints cherry tomatoes 8 ounce block feta cheese 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 1/4 teaspoon sea salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper 2 garlic cloves minced 1/4 cup packed chopped fresh basil plus more for serving Instructions: 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the cherry tomatoes in an oven-safe dish. Pour the olive oil on top and season with salt and pepper. Toss until well combined. 2. Place the feta block in the middle of the baking dish surrounded by the cherry tomatoes and flip a couple times to coat it with the olive oil and seasoning. 3. Bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes until the cherry tomatoes burst and the feta cheese melts. 4. Immediately add the garlic and basil leaves to the cooked tomatoes and feta and toss everything to combine. 5. Transfer the cooked pasta to the baking dish and toss to combine. Garnish with more fresh basil and serve warm.

Chicken Curry

Ingredients: 1 lb. of Chicken thighs 1 small onion 1 Garlic clove 1 Roma tomato 1 stalk of scallion (green onions) ½ tsp dried thyme leaves 2 dash of ground Allspice 1 1/2 Tbsp of Curry powder (Blue Mountain) Salt and pepper Preparation: Cut chicken into 2-inch cuts and set aside. Cut onions and tomatoes into medium dice pieces. Cut scallions into small bias pieces. Mince garlic and set aside. Instructions: Combine all the ingredients. Heat 2 Tbsp. of Canola oil in the skillet and add the mixture to the pan when its hot. Sauté the chicken until brown. Turn frequently. Add a ½ cup of water, stir and cover with a lid and simmer for 3 minutes. Add salt and pepper to desired taste. Serve with 1 cup cooked white rice. -Chef Nicola Kong Summit Chase Subdivision

-Teresa Williamson Woodberry Subdivision First Baptist Church Snellville member

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Where Everybody’s Proud to be Somebody

YOU’RE MORE THAN A NUMBER. As your hometown natural gas provider, we treat you like our neighbor because we are your neighbor.

Visit or call 770-427-4328




Snellville Tourism & Trade P.O. Box 669 Snellville, GA 30078

Snellville, Where Everybody is Proud to be Somebody.

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