JAN / FEB ‘18
PHOTO BY TIM DRYDEN
King of the Ring: “Wanna” Walton
At just 11 years old and sponsored by Under Armour, Wanna has already made history as both a boxer and gymnast in the state of Georgia.
Atlanta Gom BBQ Korean BBQ is becoming increasingly popular in Gwinnett, especially the area known as "K-Town," but with oak wood burning grills at each table, this is one Korean BBQ joint that is striving to do it better than everyone else.
Get Fit Contestants, Amy Doherty (L) and Sheri Matt (R), will be working out at Alloy Personal Training Gym for Women. After beating breast cancer in 2015 Amy is determined to get ahold of her fitness and health again. Sheri will be turning 50 this year and wants to reclaim the athleticism and health she once had. Cheer them on and follow their journey at suwaneemagazine.com/getfit.
24 2018 Get Fit Challenge
Back by popular demand, after a six year hiatus, we are bringing back the Suwanee Magazine Get Fit Challenge. Follow the journey of six local contestants as they compete in this 90-day challenge to lose weight, get healthy and ultimately turn their lives around.
JAN / FEB 18
PHOTO BY JULIE PERDUE
PHOTO BY WALT WOODEN
Slow Pour Brewing Company
Gwinnett’s first brewery is officially open! Slow Pour Brewing in downtown Lawrenceville is brewing great beer and living by the motto that “nothing good happens in a hurry.” Stop by their tasting room to sit back and relax, enjoy a tour and try their Southern-inspired beers.
Special Kneads and Treats
A special bakery for special people, Special Kneads and Treats in Lawrenceville employs adults with disabilities and gives free birthday cakes to underprivileged people in the community.
14 Crux Fitness
Crux Fitness has one clear mission: embrace the suck and don’t take the easy way out.
18 SBA News
Reasons you should consider joining the Suwanee Business Alliance in 2018.
19 Investment Strategies
Aileron Investment Advisors answer the question, “Should I be maximizing my 401K or investing outside of my employer’s plan?”
46 Better You in 2018
Brand-Aid: Video Marketing
Veugeler Design Group explains four reasons why you need to incorporate video into your marketing plan for 2018, including the fact that businesses are 53x more likely to show up first in a Google search if they have video embedded on their website.
Deeper Life Coach and Founder of Write One Line, Scott Mawdesley, gives tips and insight into how to tackle personal goals in 2018.
49 Celebrating Valentine’s Day as a Family
Grow Counseling Family Therapist, Laura Lebovitz, gives tips for making Valentine’s Day a day for family traditions rather than another cheesy Hallmark holiday.
39 Eye Fitness
Dr. Christine Laube of Advanced Family Eyecare addresses common questions and concerns about eye doctor visits, contact lens wearing and dry eye in the winter.
42 Ask Henry
Our favorite Golden Retriever, Henry from Sugar Hill Animal Hospital, answers our readers' questions about cat health.
44 Pet Fitness
The vets at Tiger Tails Animal Hospital answer questions about how to know how to properly feed your dog and manage your pet’s weight.
45 Maintaining Ear Health
Dr. Matthew T. Gill of Suwanee Ear Nose and Throat talks about the importance of maintaining ear health and how to properly clean your ears (hint: it’s not Q-tips).
2018 Suwanee Beer Fest Preview This year the 8th annual Suwanee Beer Fest is taking place on St. Patrick’s Day and they have a lot more in store!
2017 Suwanee Wine Fest Exclusive Pics
The 4th annual Suwanee Wine Fest took place on November 4th, 2017 in Town Center Park. Over a thousand wine lovers came to the park to enjoy hundreds of wines, craft beer, local artisans, live music and more.
in every issue: 8 Editor’s Letter 65 The Buzz 72 People & Places 78 Event Calendar
a note from our managing editor
Make 2018 Your Healthiest Year Yet! Rachel Pillow
Managing Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
s we ring in the new year, it is always a great time to create new goals and think about how we can be the healthiest, best version of ourselves: personally, physically, relationally, spiritually, in business and every aspect of our lives, and that is exactly what our annual Health & Fitness issue is all about. As we recently celebrated our 7th anniversary as a magazine, we took the time to make plans for how we want to grow and continue to impact our community in 2018, and one such way was bringing back the Suwanee Magazine Get Fit Challenge!
We are very excited to kick off the Get Fit Challenge in this issue and follow the journeys of six Suwanee residents who are tackling their own goals to lose weight, build muscle, learn how to eat properly, and live long, healthy lives with their families. Flip to page 24 to meet our contestants and their trainers and get ready for an epic story as we follow their fitness journeys over the next 90 days. Their personal blog articles will be posted online at suwaneemagazine.com/getfit and follow us on social media for frequent updates on how they’re doing. We hope that our six contestants can be a source of inspiration and motivation for others in the community looking to make healthy lifestyle changes. If you’re looking for even more motivation to work hard, then you probably want to check out our cover story on page 32 about 11-year-old Javon “Wanna” Walton. He is the current State Champion in both boxing and gymnastics and is the only person in the state of Georgia to ever hold both titles concurrently. This kid is going places…actually he has already achieved more in his one decade of life than I have in my three. In this issue you will also find a new Brewery Spotlight, and what better way to debut this section than with Gwinnett’s first brewery, Slow Pour Brewing in downtown Lawrenceville. They are putting out some great beer over there, and maybe even more importantly, have finally given Gwinnett a brewery we get to call our own! Turn to page 56 to check out pics of their awesome brewery and Tasting Room and to learn more about their story. Speaking of beer, saying that we are excited for the 2018 Suwanee Beer Fest would be an understatement. We are stoked! (In fact, stoked might even be an understatement.) Suwanee Beer Fest is our favorite event each year, but even more so this year because it is taking place on St. Paddy’s day itself! Every year the event is always a “St. Paddy’s themed” event, but this year it will be a St. Paddy’s blowout, while still focusing on it’s primary goal: bringing you the opportunity to try the best and most exclusive craft beers on the market. Tickets for this event go on sale January 12th at noon at suwaneebeerfest.com – don’t wait, because it is sure to sell out early this year! Cheers to another wonderful year! We are so thankful for your continued support, from both our advertisers and readers, and we can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store.
ON THE COVER: Javon "Wanna" Walton photographed at Onward Athletics Boxing Gym on November 29th by Tim Dryden.
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Suwanee Magazine is published bi-monthly by Veugeler Design Group. Opinions expressed by the contributing writers and editors are not necessarily those of the publisher, editor or Suwanee Magazine. The publisher will not accept responsibility for submitted materials that are lost or stolen. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication. However, the publisher cannot assume responsibility for errors or ommissions. No part of this book may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission. ©2018 Veugeler Design Group. The editors welcome unsolicited manuscripts and photographs. Please email submissions to Rachel Pillow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
JAN / FEB 18
20 BRAND-AID: VIDEO MARKETING IN 2018
CRUX FITNESS 14 /// SBA NEWS 18
grow suwanee business community news and info.
ADVISORS Q&A 19
EVERYONE KNEADS TO BE KNEADED Special Kneads and Treats is a Lawrenceville nonprofit bakery that provides free, personalized birthday cakes for the less fortunate and employment for adults with specials needs. STORY AND PHOTOS BY: NATALIE STUBBS
Combining Tempa’s lifelong talent for baking with her husband’s shared desire to serve, their dream became a reality in January of 2014 when they opened their doors on the Lawrenceville square. With their first customers being a special needs group on a community skills trip, and their final customer being a wheelchair-bound child who had chosen dessert rather than dinner since their parents could only afford one, it was well affirmed that Michael and Tempa were following God’s will for their lives. Three years later, their lease was due for renewal and the Kohlers began praying about their next step. With new commercial ownership of their building, increased rent, and the need for a larger space, they began looking into other properties. After finding the perfect building and the demand of a hefty down payment, they began reaching out to the community and sharing their story. Through this outreach, their $350,000 down payment was paid completely by donations, the construction of a new BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT roof was donated, and the full remodel was graciously completed at reduced rates by various contractors. “God puts every person in our lives for a reason. You never know the opportunity they might bring,” Michael shared as he reflected on the Walking into Special Kneads abundance of God’s work and Treats is more than walking through this transition, “Every into a bakery; it’s walking into time we turn around, we feel a ministry. It’s walking into God’s hand. His confirmation walls filled with scripture, a and blessing that this is His kitchen full of smiles, and a door plan.” Special Kneads and that’s closed on Sundays for Treats opened their new, "God and family." Special Kneads and Treats is a almost 12,000 square foot 501 (c) (3) nonprofit with a core mission to provide location this past August, less birthday cakes for children whose families are not than a mile down the road in a position to provide one themselves, all while from their previous location. employing adults with specials needs. With 17 special needs adults The idea of their mission began in 2008 employed and 12 who when Founders, Michael and Tempa Kohler, were volunteer their time until wondering what would be the next step for their son, funds are available to begin Bradley, who was born with Fragile X Syndrome. Michael and Tempa Kohler, Founders of receiving a paycheck, Special As an adult with special needs, the options for Special Kneads and Treats Bakery Kneads and Treats still has employment and work programs become quite 154 adults on their waiting list. While limited after aging out of the school system. Then one afternoon, the Kohlers wish they had the ability to while Tempa was watching a talk show on TV, the host was hire more, they encourage their current interviewing a woman from a homeless shelter and learned employees to remain part of the team that it was her son’s birthday. When asked what the little boy for as long as they wish, even when they wanted for his birthday, he replied that all he wanted was to be need to take long breaks due to various able to have a birthday cake, and Tempa realized “I can make reasons. They have made sure to create a that happen!”
SPECIAL KNEADS AND TREATS
JAN / FEB 18
Each week the employees at Special Kneads and Treats get to use their creativity by decorating their own individual cakes.
"home away from home" atmosphere for these adults to feel comfortable to work at their own pace and find tasks they enjoy and strive at completing. “We try to find the best fit for everyone here, while taking it a step further to help them grow and reach their full potential. Then hopefully they can take the skills they’ve learned while they’ve been here and carry those into another job, if they choose to leave,” added Michael. Special Kneads and Treats partners with several local ministries, foundations, shelters and organizations to fulfill their birthday cake mission. By offering gift certificates to be redeemed for a free 13”x9” sheet cake, not only children, but special needs
individuals and elderly on low or fixed incomes can enjoy the luxury of a free, personalized birthday cake. Others in the community are also offered the chance to sponsor a birthday cake, by contributing only $7 per cake. Michael and Tempa are completely humbled by their amazing journey and find difficulty in explaining how everything has been provided for them every step of the way. “It’s not us, it’s ALL God. He gets all the credit. The only thing we can take credit for is being obedient,” they proclaim, “People always ask us what our business plan is and how we’re so successful, and we tell them that we don’t have a business plan, we have the Bible.”
When planning for the future, the Kohlers aren’t sure what else is to come for their ministry, but know that they will continue to follow God’s plan. They would eventually like to utilize their current location as a distribution point and have a number of store fronts in the community, but they patiently wait for God to reveal their next step. In the meantime, another goal of Michael’s is to educate businesses on how they can hire individuals with special needs. No matter the type of business, he passionately believes there is absolutely something at any workplace these special adults can do – and it’s a win-win as businesses receive the help they need, while making an impact their community needs. In addition to birthday cakes, Special Kneads and Treats retails cupcakes (26 standard flavors and 6 seasonal flavors changing each month), cake pops, cheesecakes, and other delicious pastries. Tempa sums up their incredible story: “When you feel like you’re doing what you’ve been led to do, it truly blesses you.” ■
SPECIAL KNEADS AND TREATS 156 Scenic Hwy S • Lawrenceville, GA (678) 237-7147 specialkneadsandtreats.org
Dan LeBlanc, Owner of Crux Fitness
JAN / FEB 18
B U S I N E S S S P O T L I G H T
ocated on Moore Road off Peachtree
The mission of Crux Fitness is clear from the moment you step through the door. Written in large print on the wall are three words that complete the gym’s mission statement: “embrace the suck.” And that’s the one thing Certified Personal Trainer and Sports Nutritionist Dan LeBlanc expects of everyone who works out at Crux. “My trainers know they’re not allowed to go easy on anybody,” LeBlanc said. “We eliminate the possibility of someone taking the easy way out.” BY: ALICIA CARTER PHOTOS BY: KARL LAMB
Industrial Boulevard, LeBlanc opened Crux in June 2017 with the goal to help people reach their full potential. During a stint in the Navy following high school, LeBlanc took the long route to realizing his fitness potential and eventual calling. He had let himself go, and hit what he considered his rock bottom. “When people describe rock bottom it’s usually a chemical dependency or a substance abuse problem,” he said. “I was just unhappy.” After being transferred to Sigonella, Sicily, LeBlanc decided to make a change and began hitting the gym with a couple of work buddies. “They didn’t have an extensive knowledge of working out or anything like that. So we would go in there not really knowing what we were doing,” he said. “We were just pushing some weight around and it didn’t seem efficient to me.” Unsatisfied with the results he was seeing and frustrated with the amount of time it was taking to make progress, LeBlanc Dan Leblanc leads Michelle Edwards through decided to change a group class utilizing Crux’s H.I.R.T. system, which focuses on high intensity resistance training. his approach to working out. “The most difficult thing about it was I remember thinking, ‘It should not have been this hard to make this change,’” he said. “That’s when I really started digging deep and getting
into the physiology of everything — the biomechanics.” He threw himself into learning as much as possible and took on training gigs at Anytime Fitness in Buford and then Stage 3 Fitness in Suwanee when he returned stateside, but momentum was building for LeBlanc to open his own gym, and the seeds of Crux were planted.
THE H.I.R.T. SYSTEM
Crux specializes in group workouts utilizing the H.I.R.T. system: high intensity resistance training. “We structure our workouts and our entire program on breaking down muscle; and you can only do that through shorter, more vigorous resistance training,” LeBlanc said. The H.I.R.T. system focuses on targeted strength training for fat loss that breaks down muscle as quickly as possible so that the body can naturally restart the rebuilding process. “The faster it does that, the faster you can break the muscle down again, and the faster you repeat that cycle, the faster you will see results.” During a 45-minute group workout class, LeBlanc or one of Crux’s team of trainers, including Casey Robuck, Madison Barnhardt, and Roshawn Pryor, leads the group through a series of strength training exercises for a set number of reps that last a set number of minutes without rest. A quick glance at Crux’s Facebook page reveals snippets of early morning classes — usually filled with kettlebell swings, burpees, weighted squats, overhead presses and any number of ab exercises. These short glimpses into the reality of making it H.I.R.T. could be enough to intimidate any gym newbie. But while the trainers strive to push clients out of their comfort zones, LeBlanc assures that Crux’s workouts are designed to accommodate all fitness levels, noting their clientele ranges in age from 14 to 70. “The knowledge of our trainers and the way that we structure the workouts can be easily modified for anybody,” he said. “Something that’s difficult for me may not be difficult for you or vice
JAN / FEB 18
From left to right: Lauren Tomy, Roshawn Pryor, Dan Leblanc, Michelle Edwards, Jennifer Barbier and Madison Barnhardt
“My trainers know they’re not allowed to go easy on anybody,” Dan Leblanc said. “We eliminate the possibility of someone taking the easy way out.”
We structure our workouts and our entire program on breaking down muscle; and you can only do that through shorter, more vigorous resistance training.” - Dan LeBlanc, Owner, Crux Fitness
versa. So it’s a sliding scale that we can adjust for every single individual to make it tough no matter what. And we have an abundance of ways to do it.”
At the beginning of each class, Dan Leblanc or one of Crux’s team of trainers will go through each of the exercises, making sure everyone uses proper form.
THE "CRUX MOMENT"
Crux Fitness is a dream realized for LeBlanc — a turning point of sorts, which harkens back to the gym’s name. As he described it, a “crux moment” is a pivotal moment or a turning point. “I can very vividly remember my turning point — my crux moment,” he said. “And my goal is for anybody who comes to the gym and really commits and trusts us to do what we do, that they’ll look back in six months, a year, two years
and remember that their turning point was when they joined this gym.” And Crux is well on its way to being just that for many people in the community. A recent class was filled with varying ages, both women and men. Even though everyone was independently struggling through the workouts, they were all there for a unified reason: to better themselves. The camaraderie was palatable, and the tough yet encouraging leadership from LeBlanc pushed everyone through the workout. And while your body may feel like quitting, it all comes back to the
central theme of mind over matter. Or as LeBlanc puts it, embracing the suck. “I make sure that whatever they’re doing sucks as much as possible,” he said. “That’s where it gets fun for me.”
4140 Moore Road, Suite B116 • Suwanee, GA (678) 765-2630 www.ourcrux.com
SU WA NE E BU SI N E SS A LLI A NCE :
A LOCAL RESOURCE TO SUPPORT AND HELP GROW YOUR BUSINESS BY JULIE PERDUE President, Suwanee Business Alliance
2018 is going to be a great year and we hope that on your new yearâ€™s resolution list is a decision to join us this year (only $60) to meet new people, network, grow your business and give back in a BIG WAY to people in our community who so desperately need help! One of my favorite parts of being involved in this particular alliance is meeting people who are living their dream. Sometimes it is with tears in their eyes at their grand opening or ribbon cutting ceremony that they express the excitement and anticipation of having their own business in a great town like Suwanee where there is tremendous support. The excitement is contagious and Suwanee Business Alliance is here to be part of your journey, give you a voice and educate you about local resources to support and help grow your business. What do we need from you? We need you to be part of our group! We need golfers, sponsors and volunteers for our annual golf tournament held in April, our only fundraiser of the year. It is so much fun, no matter your skill level. We need you to attend our monthly meetings held at different businesses throughout the city, always the second Wednesday evening of the month. And we need your input to grow and make this alliance the best it can be! We will have some spots to fill on our board in 2018, so please let us know if you are interested in making a difference. We are friendly, warm, casual and welcome guests and door prizes. We are friends and business associates willing to do what it takes to help local entrepreneurs and vitalize our local economy. Imagine what you could bring to Suwanee Business Alliance! Go to Suwanee.org to join, ask questions and get more information.
JAN / FEB 18
BY: Bill and Cindi Porter, AILERON INVESTMENT ADVISORS
Q: Should I be
maximizing my 401K or investing outside of my employer’s plan?
depends. Listed below are just a few of the things you should consider before making that decision.
TAX IMPLICATIONS Contributions to a traditional
401K are not included in your taxable income, thus none of your contributions are currently lost to income tax. Also, important to note is your 401K provides tax deferral on the growth of those funds. Investing outside the plan may or may not allow for tax deferral.
CURRENT 401K MENU Some 401K menus offer a wide-array of options, others do not, making it difficult to diversify. If someone has very limited fund choices and has accumulated a substantial amount of money in their 401K, it may make sense to diversify elsewhere. The fees associated with your 401K should be considered and compared to the fees with other investment options. ROTH 401K OPTION Many 401Ks offer a Roth 401K option. It may make sense to take advantage of this option. Many workers are not eligible to contribute to a Roth IRA because of the income restrictions (2017 phase out begins at $118,000 single, $186,000 married filing jointly). The contribution limits are higher in a 401K versus an IRA. You may only contribute $5,500 ($6,500 if age 50 or over) to a Roth IRA. Depending on your employer’s plan, you may be able to contribute up to $18,000 ($24,000 if age 50 or over) in your Roth 401K. COMPANY MATCH If your company matches your contributions, you should contribute at least up to the percentage they are matching. When making decisions regarding where and how much to be investing, you should consult with your financial advisor. This is for education only. Before using this information in any way discuss it with a financial professional. There are many risks associated with stock trading. You may lose some or all of your financial investment. Securities and advisory services offered through Madison Avenue Securities, LLC (MAS), member FINRA/ SIPC and a Registered Investment Advisor. MAS and Aileron Investment Advisors are not affiliated entities.
Send your investment questions to: submissions@SuwaneeMagazine.com All the information in this letter is published in good faith and for general information purposes only. We do not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability and accuracy of this information. Any action you take upon the information is strictly at your own risk.
MARKETING TIPS FROM
VEUGELER DESIGN GROUP
4 Reasons to Incorporate Video into Your Marketing Plan for 2018
In terms of keeping up with trends, thereâ€™s no better place to look than social media. And currently, video is the name of the game. From Instagram Stories and Snapchat to Periscope and YouTube, sharing via video streams is dominating the social sphere. And to demonstrate the sheer power and influence that social videos have in todayâ€™s world, look no further than the state of pop culture. YouTubers and former Vine users have evolved into actual celebrities, whose millions of followers catapulted them onto red carpets, movie screens and stages across the world. But the rise of online celebrities and "influencers" shouldn't be too surprising given the fact that one-third of online activity is spent watching videos.
JAN / FEB 18
Testimonials have the highest effectiveness rating for content marketing at 89%. -Social Fresh
Videos Allow You to Showcase Your Personality 1/3 of online activity is spent watching videos. -WordStream
But how does the current state of internet celebrity relate to your business? It comes down to one word: exposure. While well-written content is extremely effective and an important piece of the digital marketing puzzle, visual marketing is an increasingly desirable and game-changing marketing tool. It has been reported that marketers who use video grow revenue 49% faster than non-video users. And let's not forget that videos qualify as content, so they can help with your SEO and Google rankings in the same way a blog post can. Still not convinced video is right for your business? Here are four reasons to consider incorporating video into your 2018 marketing plan.
Video is a great way to introduce your brand to potential customers and offer a behind-the-scenes peek into your business. One of the best uses of video for business is through customer testimonials. Social Fresh reports that testimonials have the highest effectiveness rating for content marketing at 89%. Videos can also humanize the buying experience, enabling you to connect to your audience by showcasing your companyâ€™s personality through its employees and culture, aspects that can help you stand out from the competition. According to Video Brewery, 64% of people who visit a businessâ€™s website are likely to buy their product after watching a video.
Videos Encourage Social Engagement and Retention According to the Content Marketing Institute, audiences are 10 times more likely to engage, embed, share and comment on video content than blogs or related social content. And in today’s world of instant gratification, video content is the quickest and easiest to consume. While great written content is invaluable, not everyone is going to have the time or desire to read through an entire blog post, but most people will take the time to watch a video. WordStream reports that if both text and video are available on the same topic, 59% of people are more likely to choose video. And according to HubSpot, 55% of people consume videos thoroughly — the highest amount of all types of content.
Videos Boost Your Google Ranking The ultimate goal of digital marketing in any form is to increase the likelihood that customers are able to find your business and turn into leads. We use content and social media to help boost SEO, which directly affects where you show up in search engine results. So while videos may entice a visitor once they've found you, it's important to know how to use video to Businesses are get them 53x more likely to to your site in the show up first on first place. Google if they have a If you're video embedded on struggling their website. to increase your Google -Moovly ranking, let this statistic sink in: Businesses are 53 times more likely to show up first on Google if they have a video embedded on their website. But simply uploading a video isn't enough to land you at the top of the results, you must also incorporate SEO best practices to get there. Be sure to write interesting and effective titles and descriptions, and give customers a way to take the next step by including calls to action.
Marketers who use video have reported growing revenue 49% faster than non-video users. -WordStream
Videos Increase ROI What's the point of dedicating time and money to digital marketing strategies if you don't receive a good return on investment (ROI)? There's reason to be optimistic about how video can positively affect your ROI: 51% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI, and marketers who use video have reported growing revenue 49% faster than non-video users. If your business produces products, you have an even greater chance to improve ROI by incorporating video. Studies show that 74% of users who watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service subsequently bought it.
Even though small businesses aren't using video as a stepping stone to the bright lights of Hollywood, the rewards can be just as sweet. Video opens the door to increased exposure in the form of boosted Google rankings, more effective SEO and, ultimately, the ability to convert more leads and grow your business.
Alicia applies her decade of experience working in content creation and social media to help clients create a digital marketing strategy to reach more customers and generate leads. She blogs regularly for Veugeler Design Group about topics ranging from digital marketing strategies and website optimization to social media tips and tricks.
JAN / FEB 18
WE MAKE VIDEOS. CALL TODAY & LET US H E TELL YOULP R STORY!
Grow your brand with affordable HD videos. By using the right mix of visuals and audio, we can help you connect with your audience in engaging, entertaining, and impactful ways.
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Veugeler Design Group 678-482-2270 vdgatl.com
GET FIT Shonika Ochoa-Williams
ack in October we reached out to the Suwanee community to see who would be willing to commit to a threemonth fitness competition. We had recently made the decision to revive the Suwanee Magazine Get Fit Challenge, which we last hosted in 2012, and to our elation the response was overwhelming. We received submissions from a wide spread of the community — men and women in their 20s - 70s wrote in to express their interest in committing to the challenge and, hopefully, changing their lives. Many struggled with losing nagging baby weight, while others had recently overcome major health scares and were looking for a way to take back control over their
2018 SUWANEE MAGAZINE GET FIT CHALLENGE SPONSORED BY: 24
JAN / FEB 18
CHALLENGE Amy Doherty
bodies. The response from local businesses who wanted to contribute to the challenge was equally encouraging. It was wonderful to see our community rally around the challenge. In the end, it was difficult to choose only six contestants, but we feel we’ve landed on a group of people who will not only make a positive change in their lives, but also inspire the community around them. Follow along on the contestants’ journeys at suwaneemagazine.com and in upcoming issues of Suwanee Magazine.
2018 GET FIT CHALLENGE
CURRENT WEIGHT: 189
CURRENT WEIGHT: 309
GOAL: LOSE 40 POUNDS
GOAL: LOSE 90 POUNDS, REVERSE DIABETES
SHONIKA OCHOA-WILLIAMS AGE: 38
CURRENT WEIGHT: 221
GOAL: FIT INTO A SIZE 10
› Sue has experienced a rough few years. She has battled cancer and endured three hip replacements - one of which was to replace a defective part from a previous replacement. On top of the health scares she was dealing with, her mother, who she had been caring for, passed away in October of 2017. After overcoming so much, Sue is determined to make her health a priority in the new year. “It’s time to take care of me now,” she says. “This would be a great opportunity to get me started on the right track. I’m not afraid of hard work and I love a challenge!” Like many of the Get Fit contestants, Sue is struggling to regain control over her health and feels the challenge will give her the means and accountability she needs to finally make the change. She has worn the hat of caregiver for a long time, and we’re excited to give her the support she needs over the next three months to finally take care of herself. In the end, she hopes the challenge will help her “get healthy and fit again and to feel good about myself - I want to feel my muscles again.”
› Bill entered the Get Fit Challenge at the encouragement of his wife. He had been on an endless cycle of losing weight and gaining it back for far too long, and nothing seemed to stick. “I’d lose 50 pounds by either a crash diet or excessive exercise,” he says. “And then I’d stall and end up frustrated and give up.” Now at 55 years old, Bill finds himself 100 pounds overweight and was recently diagnosed with diabetes. “I’m looking for a lifestyle change that I can maintain,” he says. “I want to be around for my family and to be active in ministry for many years.” Bill is hoping that by entering the Get Fit Challenge he’ll learn how to balance exercise and diet in order to have long-term success - something that has eluded him in the past. He isn’t looking for a quick fix but to truly turn his life around and improve his quality of life. “I’m not looking to have a six-pack - I want to get to a healthy weight.”
› Shonika’s story is one that many women in the community can relate to. She’s a mother to two young boys, ages 7 months and 2 years, who wants to be able to physically keep up with her kids - a large feat with the energy of a toddler in the house! And while being able to run around and play with her kids is her top priority, she also wants to find time for herself, too; which is something that many parents struggle with, especially those with young children. “Participating in this challenge will allow me to get and remain focused on my fitness goals and getting back to ‘me’ time,” she says. While the number on the scale isn’t a major factor for her - she relies more on how her clothes fit - she does have a long-term goal that she hopes adopting a healthier lifestyle will help her obtain: “I just want to live as long as possible to be around to see my grandkids, and it all begins with getting fit and focused!”
SUE WILL TRAIN AT:
BILL WILL TRAIN AT:
SHONIKA WILL TRAIN AT:
JAN / FEB 18
CURRENT WEIGHT: 243
GOAL: LOSE 40-50 POUNDS
CURRENT WEIGHT: 185 GOAL: LOSE 20 POUNDS
CURRENT WEIGHT: 225 GOAL: LOSE 80 POUNDS
› While studying law in 2010, Kevin was at the pinnacle of his fitness. He was lifting weights routinely, running races and participating in triathlons on a regular basis. Then the reality of becoming a business owner set in. Now a practicing lawyer in Suwanee, Kevin is familiar with the late nights and long hours it takes to build a practice. “Having focused on growing my business the past few years, I lost sight of my health and fitness,” he says. “Late nights in the office meant pizza dinners, and I just couldn’t find the time, energy, or motivation to work out.” Now that he’s established his business, Kevin is hoping the Get Fit Challenge will help jump-start a recommitment to fitness. “With the motivation from and accountability to a challenge, and a team of professionals to help me, I know I can reach my goals,” he says. As a local business owner, Kevin is looking forward to sharing his experience with Suwanee Magazine readers, while also taking back control over his health. Though his ultimate goal is to adopt a healthier lifestyle for long-term fitness and health, Kevin would also love to look “trim and fit in a bathing suit out on the boat in summer 2018.”
› In 2015, Amy Doherty battled breast cancer. She describes it as “the fight of my life,” and although she’s currently cancer-free, she feels she never truly regained control of her physical health. And what better way to reclaim her body after kicking cancer to the curb than by getting back into shape? Amy entered the Get Fit Challenge with the hope it would motivate her to finally make the change she was having a hard time making on her own. “I need some accountability,” she says. “I can’t think of a way to be more accountable than to be part of this challenge where readers will keep me in-check!” In addition to obtaining a healthier lifestyle, Amy also wants to gain more energy, sleep better, and have a better outlook on life - all goals that can be achieved through implementing a regular workout routine. But the fight for Amy goes beyond just dropping pounds. “I want to build muscle, be fit, be healthier, look better and take back my life,” she says. “I want my kids to be proud of me and I want to live a longer, healthier life.”
› Sheri Matt is a former athlete who played soccer in college and has participated in 5Ks, sprint triathlons and two half marathons, the first of which took place two days before her 40th birthday. After being overweight for all of her 30s, Sheri wanted to be fit in her 40s. Things started off well after training for her half marathon and shedding some weight, but life got in the way, as it tends to do, and she began to put back on the weight. Sheri turned 49 in November and is determined to make her 50s a “fit and fabulous decade!” “I want to participate in the Get Fit Challenge because I want to be successful in losing weight and getting fit, and I have not done very well on my own,” she says. In addition to losing the weight, Sheri would like to have a healthy BMI and for her clothes to fit better. “I want to fit into clothes that don’t have an X in front or a W behind the size,” she says. And with Sheri’s sweet demeanor and overall positive attitude, there’s no doubt the Suwanee community will rally behind her as she takes these first steps to making a positive lifestyle change.
KEVIN WILL TRAIN AT:
AMY WILL TRAIN AT:
SHERI WILL TRAIN AT:
Follow along with the Get Fit Challenge online at suwaneemagazine.com/getfit, Suwanee Magazine’s Facebook and Instagram pages, and via #suwaneegetfit.
VITALITY MED SPA
2018 GET FIT CHALLENGE
ANTHONY WILKINS Anthony L. Wilkins is a National Academy of Sports Medicine (2005) and Titleist Performance Institute (2009) Certified Personal Trainer. He has been with Alloy Personal Training since 2005 and has been the co-owner of Alloy Personal Training for Women in Suwanee since 2016. Anthony was inspired to get into the health and fitness industry as well as open his own gym based on the life-long inspiration of his mother who is a breast cancer survivor.
1120 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. • Suwanee 678-926-3897
ANGIE WILLET Angie has been a Certified Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor for more than 18 years, and holds certifications with ESA, AFAA, and F.I.R.E. She has been with Stage 3 Fitness, which focuses on a three-stage workout — burn, build, repeat — for nearly four years. “Health and fitness are what I know and love, and it’s a big part of who I am. But people are my passion, so naturally this line of work is the best way to combine the two.”
686 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. • Suwanee 678-430-8054
DAN LEBLANC With more than 10 years experience in the fitness industry, Certified Personal Trainer and Sports Nutritionist Dan Leblanc opened Crux Fitness in June 2017, implementing the H.I.R.T. (high intensity resistance training) program. H.I.R.T. focuses on targeted strength training for fat loss that breaks down muscle as quickly as possible so the body can naturally restart the rebuilding process. In his career as a trainer, Dan has rendered over 10,000 personal training and nutrition counseling sessions, and taught thousands of group classes.
4140 Moore Road • Suwanee 678-765-2630
SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR HEALTH PARTNERS:
John Perry & Associates provided health assessments for the Get Fit Challenge contestants.
Restorative Health in Suwanee provided BIA testing for the Get Fit Challenge contestants. 29 29
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
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JAN / FEB 18
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Vitality Med Spa
310 Town Center Ave • Suwanee, GA 30024 678-394-0061 • www.vitalitymedspamd.com
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STORY BY RACHEL PILLOW
JAVON “ WANNA” WALTON HAS ALREADY MADE HISTORY: HE IS THE ONLY PERSON IN THE STATE OF GEORGIA TO BE NAMED STATE CHAMPION IN BOXING AND GYMNASTICS, AND CURRENTLY HOLDS THE TITLE IN BOTH SPORTS.
PHOTOS BY TIM DRYDEN
Javon Walton was nicknamed “Wanna” by his parents because he always said, “I wanna do that.” The name stuck at a very young age and has since become his professional moniker.
Wanna is currently the youngest member of Team Under Armour Next, of which thousands entered and only six were chosen.
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WITH OVER 66,000 INSTAGRAM FOLLOWERS, TENS OF THOUSANDS OF FANS ARE WATCHING THIS YOUNG ATHLETEâ€™S UNDENIABLE JOURNEY TO ELITE, PROFESSIONAL STATUS.
I wanna go to the Olympics and win a gold medal in boxing and in gymnastics.” - Javon "Wanna" Walton
- Wanna trains daily with his dad/coach, DJ Walton.
Wanna has been boxing since he was four years old and became sponsored by Under Armour at age eight. He started gymnastics at age five at Georgia Gymnastics Academy in Suwanee and still practices there four times a week. He has been used in multiple ad campaigns and boxes across the nation for Team Onward’s Fight Team. He is already at a Level 8 out of 10 in the USA Gymnastics Junior Olympics Program, on the path to go to the Olympics once he turns 16. Wanna claims to love both sports equally. “I want to go to the Olympics and win a gold medal in boxing and in gymnastics,” he said. And with over 66,000 Instagram followers, tens of thousands of fans are watching this young athlete’s undeniable journey to elite, professional status. So, what does this next-level, uber-talented 5th grader do in his spare time? Maintains straight A’s in Gwinnett County’s award winning and accredited Online Campus program…and of course hangs out
with his twin brother, older sister and younger brother. Wanna says that his family and supportive parents keep him grounded and motivated. “He really is self-driven though. Most kids I train I have to stay on top of, but not Wanna. He has always had such a drive and strong work ethic compared to other kids… we knew there was just something different about him,” said Wanna’s father and coach, DJ Walton.
admire Muhammad Ali and how he danced in the ring, the whole ‘float like a butterfly, sting like a bee thing’ – and I of course admire who he was outside of the ring,” said Wanna. After Muhammad Ali’s death in 2016, Facebook published a video to honor
ONWARD ATHLETICS ➜DJ and his wife, Jessica, opened Onward Athletics, a boxing gym and youth travel baseball program in Braselton to support their kids' dreams and help other youth in the area to always “move forward” towards their own goals. Aside from his own father, Wanna also looks up to Mike Tyson and Muhammad Ali. “In the ring I love Mike Tyson, I love his head movement. I love how every time he stepped in the ring he looked like he was going to rip someone’s head off. I loved his power. I also really
the incredible athlete and activist, and Wanna was featured in that video, as well as one of the faces of Under Armour’s Muhammad Ali Collection, which he said was a great honor.
➜ For the fourth year in a row Wanna will represent the state of Georgia in the 8-14 year old age group at the 2018 Silver Gloves Regional Championship in Maryland in January, - Wanna at Nationals, with the hopes of June 2017. qualifying for nationals for a third year. With Wanna’s busy schedule between training everyday and traveling across the nation for boxing and gymnastics, it was necessary for him to be homeschooled, which was not an easy decision at first, but his family has supported him every step of the way and Wanna has continued to excel in his academic career. “I have been a straight A student my whole life and that’s not going
JAN / FEB 18
- Wanna with his dad, DJ Walton, sister, Jayla, brother, Daelo and the champ, Evander Holyfield. to change,” said Wanna. “It has been so great to be part of a program like Gwinnett County Online so that he can be where he needs to be [for training or tournaments] but still has such individual attention from teachers,” said his mom, Jessica. It takes hard work though. “I train every single day between boxing and gymnastics” he said. Even when he is “playing outside” he is still usually running laps or doing pull-ups,” his parents said. But, it’s like he was just born to do this: an innate talent. “When I was two years old I saw a boxing match on TV and told my dad, “I wanna do that…but it wasn’t until I was four that he took me to the gym,” he said. Wanna’s father, DJ, was a boxer when he was younger, but then switched gears to football and track & field, but said his son has gotten him back into boxing. “Right when I started I realized that this is a forever sport for me,” Wanna said. "If somebody is interested in the sport, the first step to take is just to start training,” he advised. By age 11, Wanna has been featured on the Steve Harvey Show, has been to national championships for boxing, the regional championships for gymnastics, has been in Under Armour commercials that play during Monday Night Football on national television, and more. But despite these accomplishments and opportunities, he “is super grounded and crazy humble,” said his parents. “We really are so proud of all of our kids and support each of their own interests,” said Jessica. “Our other kids see how hard [Wanna] works and he motivates them in really good ways,” she continued. “It definitely takes discipline,” said Wanna, “I have to work really hard, but I have fun doing it.” This is just the beginning for Wanna and we look forward to seeing where this exciting journey takes him. ★
wellness and happiness
ASK HENRY 42 /// PET FITNESS 4 4 /// EAR HEALTH 45 /// BETTER YOU IN 2018 46 /// VALENTINE'S DAY 49
By : CHRISTINE LAUBE, OD Advanced Family Eyecare
It is often said that your eyes are the windows into the soul, a sentimental thought indeed, but in reality your eyes can be the windows into your overall health: which is why it is important to know how to keep them healthy & fit, just as you do the rest of your body.
Q: I have perfect 20/20 vision, is
it really necessary that I get my eyes examined?
Yes! Everyone should get their eyes checked every 1-2 years depending on their personal and family health history. Kids should be checked prior to entering kindergarten. School screenings are a great tool and pick up many visual problems but they should never be in place of a thorough eye exam. Some children suffer from farsightedness (difficulty reading near) or amblyopia (considered to be a “weak” or “lazy” eye by many) - both of which should be addressed at an early age so that the visual system fully develops. Once the area of the brain that is responsible for vision is developed, it is very difficult to improve one’s vision. This critical age is typically around 10. There are eye diseases, such as glaucoma, which are generally caught only by routine examination that have no symptoms but are sight threatening. In addition, routine dilated exams can be early detection and control verification for high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and other systemic medical conditions. Even if your vision is perfect, a comprehensive dilated eye exam should be part of your preventative medical routine.
Q: I am a full-time
contact lens wearer, how often should I clean them? I have a favorite case that I have used for years now, is that ok?
Contact lenses worn on any schedule greater than one day disposable need to be disinfected every day with an appropriate disinfection solution recommended by your eye care professional. The unfortunate circumstance about noncompliant contact lens wear is that it can lead to a very painful sight threatening condition known as a corneal ulcer. The American Optometric Association informs all contactlens wearers about a few simple rules and recommendations about contact lenses: 1. Carefully and regularly clean contact lenses as directed by your optometrist. 2. Rub the contact lenses with your fingers and rinse them thoroughly before soaking the lenses overnight in a multipurpose solution that completely covers each lens. 3. Store lenses in the proper lens storage case, and replace the case at least every three months. Clean the case after each use, and keep it open and dry between cleanings.
Q: Why do my eyes tear
up a lot in the winter?
Epiphora or excessive tearing is often a symptom of dry eye. During the winter, the humidity is much lower and dry eye is more prevalent due to the lack of moisture in the air. There are several layers to the tear film and if one or more of these layers are not functioning properly then the aqueous tears are over produced but don’t actually stay on the eye to keep it lubricated. The result is a dry but teary eye. Over the counter drops can sometimes worsen the problem if the wrong drops are used. A comprehensive ocular examination is helpful in determining the cause of the dry eye and a treatment regimen can be recommended.
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4. Use only products recommended by your optometrist to clean and disinfect your lenses. Saline solution and rewetting drops do not disinfect lenses. 5. Use only fresh solution to clean and store contact lenses. Never reuse old solution. Change the contact lens solution according to the manufacturer's recommendations, even if you don't use the lenses daily. 6. Always follow the recommended contact lens replacement schedule your optometrist prescribes. 7. Remove contact lenses before swimming or entering a hot tub. 8. See your optometrist for your regularly scheduled contact lens and eye examination.
Q: I do not like to have my eyes
dilated, it is inconvenient and my schedule is too busy. Why is it important for my eyes to be dilated?
Dilation of the eyes is important because it allows the eye doctor to thoroughly examine the inside lining and structures of the eye. Without dilation the pupil of the eye constricts and restricts the view inside depending on the amount of light shined into the eye. Unfortunately, there are many conditions both ocularly and medically which can effect the retina of the eye and ultimately oneâ€™s vision or health. Conditions such as retinal detachment, retinal and brain tumors, diabetes, hypertension, sickle cell and glaucoma are just a few to mention. Some conditions may not have any initial visual symptoms and patients may not realize a sight threatening or medical condition is looming. The effects of dilation usually last between 2-4 hours
with an increased sensitivity to light and some difficulty reading at near. Newer technology in the market, known as the Optomap exam, enhances and elevates the level of examination of the retina, as well as digitally imaging the widest view of the retina. Because it does not require dilation it is preferred by many patients, however, it is not to be confused with taking the place of dilation of the eye because it does not allow the doctor to see the retina in a 3-dimensional view or the far reaches of the eye. â–
Dr. Christine Laube, O.D. Advanced Family Eye Care Dr. Laube earned her Bachelor of Science from Ohio University and her Doctor of Optometry from Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tennessee in 1999. Having some traumatic eye exams growing up she decided to dedicate her profession to providing the most comprehensive and caring treatment for every patient. Dr. Laube wears RGP contact lenses and is therefore very familiar with the most challenging specialty contact lens fits.
HENRY ANSWERS ALL YOUR PET-RELATED QUESTIONS...
Q: I have a cat that
loves to get into the bathroom garbage and play with dental floss. I have also noticed she is very attracted to string and I am afraid she may have eaten some. What do I do now? A: Cat ate string? First, let’s talk about what type of string. Unfortunately, it turns out that yarn is very dangerous for cats. So is string. And dental floss, fishing line, Christmas tinsel, Easter grass, ribbon, and any similar long, thread-like item. These items, when ingested by cats or kittens, have the potential to lead to a life-threatening condition called gastrointestinal obstruction due to linear foreign body. The condition is every bit as scary as its name implies.
So what happens if your cat eats string?
Linear (thread-like) items wreak havoc when one end of the item becomes snagged or anchored somewhere in the body. A common place for this to happen is under the tongue — the linear item can become wrapped, and thus anchored, around the base of the tongue and then swallowed. However, the tongue is not the only place where linear items can snag. If any portion of a linear item becomes anchored anywhere in the gastrointestinal tract, problems can occur. The intestines will try to work the linear
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Despite popular belief that yarn makes a great cat toy, it can actually
be extremely dangerous and even life-threatening to your pet.
item through and towards the anus. But if the item is anchored, it can’t be moved. Instead, the intestines move themselves, and natural intestinal motility causes the intestines to become bunched up. This bunching may lead to life-threatening blockage of the intestines that requires surgery or endoscopy to correct. As the intestines bunch, pressure placed on them by the foreign body or by the bunching itself may cause perforations in the intestinal walls. Thin, strong foreign bodies also have the potential to directly lacerate the intestines. Intestinal contents (including loads of bacteria) can then leak through the perforations and lacerations, leading to sepsis and death.
What to do if your cat eats string:
Because of this risk, feline access to thread, yarn, string, and other linear items should be absolutely forbidden. If the item makes it
through the intestines without anchoring, it may pass into the stool. Sometimes a small portion of a very long piece of thread or string will protrude from a cat’s anus. In such cases, pulling on the string can have catastrophic consequences. If the string is long enough, traction on it can cause lacerations or serious damage to the walls of any portion of the gastrointestinal tract with which it is in contact. So, if you find your cat with a dangling string, my recommendation is to very carefully cut the string near the anus. Monitor the cat carefully until the entire thing comes out. If any unusual symptoms occur — especially vomiting, loss of appetite or lethargy — or if you have any doubts about the situation, seek immediate veterinary attention. The best thing to do to keep your cat safe is to try and keep all the enticing string like objects away from your cat!
Instead of retrieving it from the closet or garage when it’s time to transport your kitty to frightening and
unknown locations, treat the cat carrier as furniture. It becomes a fixture, like a chair or a sofa, that is placed where your cat enjoys hanging out. It shouldn’t magically appear only when it’s time for vet visits.
Get your cat comfortable in the waiting room.
Q: I know my cat needs to go
the vet but he gets so STRESSED out! It makes me not want to take him to the vet but I know he needs to go. Do you have any tips or tricks for making taking him to the vet easier? A: No one looks forward to vet visits. Generally, no aspect of these outings is the high point of the day for cats or their owners, whether it’s extricating kitties out of hiding places, stuffing cats into carriers, or cats being poked and prodded by veterinarians. Although the visits are not pleasant, cats need veterinarianhealth checks at least once a year. Additionally, illness, teeth-cleanings, and changes in behavior can warrant additional vet visits. Here are some tips:
You can make the waiting room experience a little more tolerable by positioning the carrier so that it faces a wall or back of a couch or chair. Although it’s not always possible, seek out a quiet place to sit that is animal-free. Cover the carrier with the towel and stay with your kitty - reassure her by talking softly to her and letting her smell your fingers. Cats usually don’t feel social when they’re in veterinary clinics. Politely discourage other cat lovers from becoming overly friendly with your kitty. Attention from strangers can be stressful, especially for cats who are trying to be inconspicuous.
Henry's helper is Sarah Smith, RVT PRG-C at Sugar Hill Animal Hospital. Sarah joined the Sugar Hill family in May of 2014, after graduating from Gwinnett Tech’s Veterinary Technology program with a degree in applied animal sciences. A lover of creatures of all shapes and sizes, she has 3 dogs, 5 cats, many reptiles and chickens! Her special interest lies in helping pet parents cope with end of life decisions. So that she would be better equipped to serve people along this journey, she earned a certification as a Pet Loss Grief Recovery Specialist and then formed a support group for grieving pet parents. Please visit notjustapet.org for more information.
Acclimate your cat to the cat carrier. The cat carrier can become fun to hang out in instead of an evil, threatening place. Change your kitty’s negative association with the carrier by converting it into a place where good things happen. Do this by playing with your feline around the carrier, throwing favorite toys in it and dragging toys around it. Placing small towels or clothing that have your scent on them in the carrier will also help reassure her. Tossing in treats that your cat adores can help change her point of view about it as well. Cats willingly settle into carriers when there is no negative stigma about them.
Make your cat like car rides.
The time to help your cat adjust to car rides is after she easily hangs out in the carrier. Put soft towels along with an item of clothing that has your scent on it in the carrier. Your scent will help comfort the little one. Cover the carrier loosely with a towel. Start a couple of weeks before vet visits. Place the towel-covered carrier, with the cat inside, on the floor behind the front seat. Reassure your cat with a calm voice. Repeat this a few times, and when she seems relaxed, start the car but do not drive it. After she is acclimated to the sound and vibration, drive the car a short distance. Repeat this every day, taking her on short car rides. To reduce the possibility of motion sickness, don’t feed her for several hours before hitting the road.
PET FITNESS Tabitha Tanis, MS, DVM
It is a big responsibility to be in charge of another being’s health and fitness. Most of us find it difficult to maintain our own mental and physical well-being, much less that of our pets! As with any undertaking, in the beginning you are faced with an overwhelming wealth of information, some of it seemingly contradictory. How do you make sense of it all and separate the hype from actual science? How do you make a plan that is right for your pet, and not the pet on the food commercial? How will you know if what you’re doing is working? The good news is that once you decide to get started, you have a valuable resource close at hand. Getting headed on the right path is as easy as visiting your veterinarian to establish a wellness plan. We are here to not only provide care during times of illness, but also to help you make smart decisions about the daily life of your pet. Your veterinarian brings you the benefit of real-life experience. Each family we see gives us feedback about what does and does not work for them, so that we can in turn give you honest guidance about what is most likely to help you succeed on your own journey. A typical wellness visit will start with you giving us an idea of you and your pet’s regular routines. Next describe their current diet: what they eat and how much of it, and don’t forget to include any treats or “people” food they receive. Lastly we will ask you to share any concerns you have about their health, including their behavioral health, and any changes you have noticed lately. By combining their own observations with the invaluable information you have provided, they will be able to make recommendations that are tailored to you and your pet’s needs. Your vet will help you determine their ideal body weight, establish a healthy diet choice
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and feeding plan, and craft a fitness plan that fits the health needs of your pet, while also keeping your family’s schedule and preferences in mind. Taking this step will leave you feeling equipped with useful information, achievable goals, and a sense of purpose that will set you and your pet up for success. And don’t forget to tell your veterinarian about all those accomplishments at your next wellness visit; we love a good success story! ■
Tabitha Tanis, MS, DVM Cat Clinic Veterinarian As a child, Dr. Tabi was known to attract kittens from far and wide, in spite of her severe allergies to animals. With the help of allergy shots, Tabi was able to overcome her allergies which enabled her to pursue a career in veterinary medicine, rather than human medicine – her back-up plan. Although she has always had a special affection for cats, she also enjoys working with dogs, as well as several small mammals and exotics. Dr. Tabi also spent two years studying viruses affecting chickens while earning her Master’s degree at the University of Georgia, before completing her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine there in 2009.
MAINTAINING EAR HEALTH BY: Matthew T. Gill, M.D., Suwanee Ear Nose & Throat
Cerumen, or earwax, is produced by special glands in the skin lining the outer portion of the ear canal. It has unique properties that promote ear health. It helps to trap foreign debris and transport it away from the eardrum and out of the ear. Earwax also has anti-microbial properties and prevents the skin of the ear canal from becoming too dry.
Is it OK to use Q-tips to clean my ears? You've probably heard it said, "Don't stick anything in your ear smaller than your elbow." This is sage advice. Q-tip usage can lead to a myriad of problems. Most commonly, Q-tips push the wax deeper into the ear canal where it can become impacted against the eardrum. Frequent Q-tip use can also cause significant skin irritation leading to chronically "itchy" ears or even ear infections. A worst-case scenario involves someone bumping their arm or falling with a Q-tip in their ear causing a traumatic injury to the eardrum or delicate middle ear bones necessary for hearing. If I shouldn't use Q-tips, how do you suggest cleaning my ears? In most cases it is not necessary to
"clean" your ears, as the wax naturally migrates out of the ear. This is due to the way wax is produced in the ear, and is augmented by normal jaw movement which helps to propel wax along the ear canal. Earwax that is visible at the opening of the ear canal can be gently wiped away. That being said, certain individuals may be prone to wax impactions due to frequent use of ear plugs or hearing aids, or due to anatomic considerations (e.g. narrow ear canal or excessive hair that traps wax). In such cases mineral oil, olive oil, or OTC wax softening drops (e.g. Debrox) can be used to soften the wax. Check with a doctor first if you have a history of eardrum perforation or tympanostomy tubes as most wax softening drops are not meant to reach the middle ear. Stubborn wax may require removal by a physician.
Is ear candling safe? This may sound like a bright
idea (no pun intended) but ear candles have been reported to cause serious injuries (e.g. burns and eardrum perforations). They are unlikely to aid in earwax removal and what proponents claim as wax being removed from the ear is probably just wax from the candles themselves. Stay away!
When should someone have their ears cleaned by a physician or other healthcare provider? If you have tried conservative treatment options such as wax softening drops without relief, it is worth getting your ears checked out. A variety of options are available for safe earwax removal.
When should I see an ENT? Persistent ear pain, drainage, muffled hearing, or vertigo could be signs of a more serious underlying problem that warrants appropriate evaluation. Otolaryngologists (ear, nose and throat physicians) have extensive training in the diagnosis and management of ear disorders. â–
Matthew T. Gill, M.D., Suwanee Ear, Nose & Throat Dr. Matthew T. Gill is board certified in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery and has been practicing since 2011. Dr. Gill earned his undergraduate degree from Baylor University where he graduated with distinction from the Honors Program. He received his medical degree from the Medical College of Wisconsin, where he was honored with the Thomas W. Grossman Award in Otolaryngology. Dr. Gill went on to complete an otolaryngology-head and neck surgery residency at Louisiana State University in Shreveport, Louisiana.
YOU CAN DO IT!
Ways to adopt a “can-do” spirit to become a better version of yourself in 2018. BY: SCOTT MAWDESLEY
Deeper Life Advocate & Coach
s a deeper life coach, I must admit that I love the reset of the New Year and the hopes and dreams that come with each new resolution! Although I love the optimism, it also makes me sad that for many, much of the optimism will turn to frustration and disappointment as they quickly give up their resolutions and return to the same old way of living. But, I want you to know that this year can be different and I want to share a simple idea that can make 2018 your best year yet! In my personal growth and in coaching extensively with others, I have found that often resolutions are grand ideas that are just too difficult to accomplish. We try hard for a few weeks but then walk away with the realization that we just can’t do it. When we set too big of goals, they usually end up being too hard and we quit for good reason. However, this year, I want to propose a simple way of looking at your resolutions and goals that will give you a “can-do” spirit to become a better version of yourself in 2018. The principle I want to share is perfectly illustrated by the story of my company “Write One Line”, which started because, like most people, I believe in the power and benefits of writing in a journal. The problem is I could never be consistent! So, one day I decided I would make it super simple! I’ll take 60 seconds to “Write One Line” each day in my journal. It honestly didn’t matter what I wrote, it mattered that I wrote, and guess what? It worked! Why? Because when I set the goal my first thought was, “I can do that!” and now
that hundreds of people have begun the “Write One Line” practice, the number one thing I hear from them is the response, “I can do that!” and this is the key. This “I can do that!” response is what will help you reach your 2018 goals. As you sit down in the next few weeks to set your goals and resolutions, I want to encourage you to filter them through the mindset of “I can do that!”
HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLE GOALS: If you need to start exercising, don’t start with a halfmarathon goal, start with a 15 minute walk 3-4 times a week. You can do that! If you need to start eating better, don’t begin with a vegetable diet, choose one food you can remove from your diet that would bring the biggest health benefit. You can do that! If you need to strengthen your marriage, don’t start with a date night every week, start with a date night once a quarter. You can do that! If you will shift your mindset from setting big overwhelming goals that lead to “I can’t do that!”, and instead set small, simple, “I can do that!” kind of goals, you will discover that not only will you accomplish your goals, but in the end, 2018 SCOTT MAWDESLEY will become your best Scott is Founder, year yet! You can do it! Deeper Life Advocate & Coach at “Write One Happy New Year! ■ Line”, an organization
dedicated to leading people into a deeper, more meaningful life. Go to writeoneline.com for more information.
JAN / FEB 18
FAMILY MAT TERS By Laura Lebovitz, LMFT, Grow Counseling
Celebrating Valentine’s Day as a Family Throughout the year, parents often ask me how they can further their relationships with their kids and find ways to connect more as a family. Sometimes as schedules get busy, it can be hard to set aside time to make the ones we love feel special. It can be easy to become caught up in the day-to-day routine and pass over little moments of possible connections despite our best intentions. Even in all the busyness of life, we all love feeling like we are cherished and special to our families.
lthough Valentine’s Day is traditionally seen as a time to connect with your partner, it is the perfect opportunity to connect with the entire family! We can all use Valentine’s Day to tell our loved ones, including our kids, how much we appreciate that they are in our lives. Setting aside some extra special time on this day of love and kindness can help you connect with your kids even more than usual.
Here are some easy and fun ways to celebrate the day: Create a tradition of family date nights.
Spending quality time with the ones you love is the best way to create memories and connect more as a family. Find a fun Valentine’s Day date to go on as a family. Take a pottery class or find a new activity to try in your community. You can also stay cozy at home and try a dessert bake off, watch a movie, make a fun craft, or just dance around the house to cheesy songs about love!
Find meaningful gifts.
While a box of chocolates and silly cards can be fun, you do not need these to truly celebrate Valentine’s Day. Celebrate this Valentine’s Day with meaningful and heartfelt expressions of love. Try to think about the gifts that would be most meaningful to each member of the family. Giving gifts based on what means the most to your kids can help them feel even more special on Valentine’s Day! Think about what would connect most with your kids - kind words, spending time together, extra hugs, or even just a small
but simple gift. For kids who connect through kind words, give them handwritten valentines or letters of appreciation to express to them how wonderful it is to have them in your life. You can also have them write what they appreciate about the other members of the family to get the whole family involved!
Practice love and caring for others.
Share the love you feel with your family with others in the community. Valentine’s Day is a great day to make love visible to everyone in the world around us. Take some goodies and homemade cards to a nursing home, soup kitchen, hospital, or a local police station. Volunteering is a great way to not only bond as a family but also give back to those in need. What a wonderful way to teach your kids about love and spreading love to others!
LAURA LEBOVITZ, LMFT Laura is a licensed marriage and family therapist who works in the Suwanee area at GROW Counseling. She received her Masters of Family Therapy from Mercer University School of Medicine. She works with children, adolescents, young adults, and families dealing with a variety of concerns. She specializes in working with anxiety, autism, self-harm, life transitions like divorce, and building healthy relationships within families.
60 2018 SUWANEE
local food. craft beer. wine trends.
BEER FEST PREVIEW
LAWRENCEVILLE'S SLOW POUR BREWING COMPANY 56 R E S TA U R A N T S P O T L I G H T
ATLANTA GOM BBQ:
Authentic Korean cuisine cooked on your own personal oak wood-burning grill in the heart of “K-town.” STORY AND PHOTOS BY RACHEL PILLOW
he Korean lifestyle has knit itself into the fabric of Gwinnett County, earning certain parts of North Gwinnett the nickname “K-town.” Drive around areas of Duluth and Suwanee and you will see Korean restaurants on every street corner, making it hard to choose which ones to try. As selfprofessed newbies to the Korean food scene, a couple of us ventured over to Atlanta Gom BBQ on Old Peachtree Road in Suwanee to try authentic Korean BBQ for the first time, and it’s safe to say that new enthusiasts were born that day.
a Korean twist, and the first of its kind in metro Atlanta. Well, when we found out the owners, Tae Kim and Chon Moon Kim, also opened Atlanta Gom BBQ in September of 2016, we knew it would be a great dining experience.
PERSONAL OAK WOODBURNING GRILL
Upon arriving we were promptly greeted by the restaurant manager, Julia Yu, who walked us through the menu and explained exactly how Korean BBQ dining works. The first thing we noticed was that every table has a personal oak wood-burning grill where patrons cook their own meat. “We are the only Korean BBQ restaurant that uses oak chips for our grills rather than gas and there is definitely a difference in the taste of how the meat turns out,” Yu explained. And that difference she was referring to can only be described as a distinct
place in Atlanta,” said Yu. “Even our all-you-can-eat options use the same quality of meat as any of our a la carte dishes,” she continued.
FINEST QUALITY SIDES
Similarly, their sides are the finest quality, with most being made from scratch in-house. “We have a special homemade steak dipping sauce that is similar to a soy or ponzu sauce, but is completely made from scratch and unique to our restaurant,” said Yu. With every order guests receive a variety of sides including pickled veggies, kimchi, lettuce (to wrap meat and make lettuce wraps), rice cake wraps, sauces and more. Part of the fun is mixing and matching different combinations to find out what you like best. One of the most surprising things to us was that every meal started with a complimentary “omelette.” As the grill fires up at your table, your server will crack a couple eggs, add in some cheese and green onions and serve as your appetizer. Then “dessert” is a complimentary Korean soup that cleanses the palate when you’re finished. Guests can also enjoy a variety of beer and wine to complete their meals.
If, like us, you are not accustomed to cooking your own meal at a restaurant, Yu and her experienced staff will walk you through it and help cook some of Atlanta Gom BBQ stands As the meat cooked on the oak wood-burning grill, our server cracked a couple of eggs over the the meat at your table flat stove-top and made us a simple, yet delicious cheese and onion omelet starter. prominently in the Assi until you know how you Plaza Shopping Center, like it prepared. But, a well-known Asian supermarket yet subtle smokiness and crispiness once you can overcome that surrounded by Korean shops, to some of the most tender, melt-ininitial trepidation, we highly businesses, salons, retailers, your-mouth cuts of meat that we recommend you dive in and DIY. karaoke bars and restaurants. have experienced. It will certainly be one of the most Admittedly, approaching a To add an additional layer unique, fun and delicious dining shopping center where nearly all of flavor, the thick cut pork belly experiences you have ever had. of the signage is written in Korean special is smoked in an open oak Then, if you really want to top can be intimidating for those wood fire for hours before it comes off your “K-Town” experience, unfamiliar with the culture, but to the table. “We pride ourselves on venture a few steps over for Atlanta Gom BBQ’s ambience and using the most high quality meat late-night Korean karaoke and staff were extremely inviting and available: from our ribeye steak drinks…but just promise that approachable. to the Korean marinated beef rib, you’ll record it and share it with Some of you may remember to our charcoal grilled brisket – us on social media. our article on Gom Shabu Shabu, a everything is the best quality that Japanese Hot Pot restaurant with you will get out of any Korean BBQ
JAN / FEB 18
We are the only Korean BBQ restaurant that uses oak chips for our grills rather than gas and there is definitely a difference in the taste of how the meat turns out.â€?
- Atlanta Gom BBQ Manager, Julia Yu
SLOW POUR BREWING COMPANY
GWINNETT’S FIRST BREWERY INVITES YOU TO
SLOW DOWN, TAKE A ” STEP BACK AND ENJOY. “
BY RACHEL PILLOW / PHOTOS BY WALT WOODEN ur name is based on the notion that nothing good happens in a hurry and that the most important moments in life should be shared with friends over a good beer,” said John Reynolds, Co-Founder and Master Brewer. Slow Pour Brewing, located in downtown Lawrenceville in a historic auction hall, is proud to be Gwinnett’s first brewery. The Georgia craft beer scene has been on the rise for several years, especially in Atlanta, but Gwinnett County has been in need of a place like this: a craft brewery to stake their name to. Working as a QA Analyst in the IT industry for 15 years, Reynolds said he slowly began to feel like “life was being sucked out of [him] every day in corporate Southernality, Slow Pour’s deliciously America.” Roughly five hoppy, yet easy-to-sip Session IPA. years ago he began home brewing as a hobby and really enjoyed the process of creating unique recipes.
JAN / FEB 18
Chase Medlin, Brewery Consultant (L) and John Reynolds, Co-Founder and Master Brewer (R) give a behind-the-scenes tour of their 10-barrel brewing system. We visited on a day when they were brewing a Dunkel style lager, soon to be released to the public.
In 2015 he was laid off and confessed, “It ended up being the best thing to ever happen to me.” Reynolds, along with his brother-in-law, bought the historic Lawrenceville building on Clayton Street in 2015 and began the two-year process of renovating the space and transforming it into a brewery and 3,000 square foot tasting room, open Thursday through Sunday. The brewery opened its doors in September of 2017 and celebrated with a huge grand opening party complete with a special live performance from chart-topping country band, A Thousand Horses. Some might recognize another “A Thousand Horses” tie-in to the brewery: Southernality is the name of the band’s debut album and the name of Slow Pour’s deliciously hoppy, yet easy-to-sip Session IPA. Staying true to their roots, a sense of Southern charm seeps into everything that Slow Pour does.
Slow Pour Brewing’s grand opening party on October 28th, 2017 had over 1,000 attendees and an exclusive concert with country band, A Thousand Horses.
Spent grain is given to local farmers to feed cattle or to use as compost. One of those people is Paul Priest, a middle school teacher in Buford who has a huge garden where he uses Slow Pour’s spent grain as compost. He then sells vegetables from his garden to restaurants in the area, including Local Republic and Strange Taco in downtown Lawrenceville who then use that produce in dishes at Slow Pour Brewing’s special events: a true circle of life mentality.
Slow Pour Brewing recently utilized a mobile canning system to package two of their flagship ales: Cotillion Blonde and Nostalgia IPA. “We will package more of our beers in the near future, but we just started distributing a couple weeks ago, so are starting to make ourselves known first,” said Reynolds. All beers in their Tasting Room, however, are available to take home at $10 per crowler (a 32 ounce aluminum can filled with your favorite brew and sealed onsite). While much of the original historic building (previously an auction house) was renovated, they intentionally left original walls to create a space that screams of rustic charm.
Reynolds is a Gwinnett native and UGA alum who grew up in Suwanee when “the only thing we had was a McDonald's, a gas station and the Falcons complex.” Now, he is committed to making an impact in “We want the community that him. Slow Pour people to feel raised Brewing has formed completely strategic partnerships comfortable with other local here and make businesses, so they can themselves at continue to help each grow and evolve. home. Bring other Whether it’s from food in, grab a their Peachin’ to the beer, sit back, Choir Blonde Ale that relax, play is infused with a salted some games peach puree hand-crafted and stay by Lawrenceville’s Local Republic and Strange awhile.” Taco chef, Scott Smith, to - John Reynolds, Co-Founder their spent grain that local and Master Brewer. farmers use as compost or cattle feed and then sell food back to restaurants in the area, they are committed to being an integral part of the local community. Popular downtown Lawrenceville restaurants, Local Republic and Strange Taco, also partner with Slow Pour Brewing by offering catering services for their events. During normal Tasting Room hours, guests are allowed to bring food into the brewery, get it delivered there, or order from a service like UberEats. “We want people to feel completely
JAN / FEB 18
comfortable here and make themselves at home. Bring food in, grab a beer, sit back, relax, play some games and stay awhile,” Reynolds said. And in case anyone was wondering, yes the beer is very good. It’s no wonder, too, given Brewery Consultant Chase Medlin’s eight years of professional brewing experience and four years of home brewing experience prior to that. “We brew beers that we like to drink, what we’re interested in. It’s about scratching your own itch,” Medlin said. And although the brewing process can be laborious, as we saw when we visited on a “brewing day,” the team at Slow Pour is all about having fun. “I can’t ever imagine going back to the corporate world now,” said Reynolds as he stood at the helm of his 10-barrel brewing system, perfecting a Dunkel that we are eager to soon try. ■
JAN / FEB 18
EAT, DRINK BE IRISH!
The 2018 Suwanee American Craft Beer Fest Returns to Town Center Park this St. Patrick's Day, March 17th! BY: ALICIA CARTER / PHOTOS BY: KARL LAMB, PAUL PERDUE
craft beer, backyard games such as cornhole and The Suwanee American Craft giant jenga, wine samples, and food for purchase Beer Fest returns for its eighth year from local restaurants and food trucks. There will on Saturday, March 17, 2018, from 1-5 also be a 2018 Home Brew Competition hosted by p.m. in beautiful Town Center Park Brew Depot. The VIP Experience includes early in Suwanee, And this year there’s even entry to the fest (beginning at noon), rare and more reason to celebrate: While Suwanee exclusive beers, access to a private Beer Fest has always taken dining and tasting area, food catered place around St. Patrick’s by Marlow’s Tavern and more. In Day, 2018 marks the first addition to the St. Patrick’s festivities, year the beloved beer games, tasty brews and food, there festival will take place on the will also be live music by Atlanta's actual holiday! And even though favorite party band, The Geeks, and craft beer is the name of the 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM Joe Hall (back by populardemand game, attendees are encouraged
SUWANEE AMERICAN CRAFT BEER FEST MARCH 17, 2018
from Suwanee Wine Fest.). to come decked out in all things TOWN CENTER PARK While there is much merriment green, shamrocks, Irish garb and to be had at Suwanee Beer Fest, any other St. Paddy’s gear. suwaneebeerfest.com it’s also a time to give back to the Recognized as one of the community. Proceeds from the biggest and best craft beer event will support Cooper’s Crew, festivals in the Southeast, a Suwanee-based organization created in Suwanee Beer Fest features unlimited samples honor of Cooper O’Brien, who lost his battle to of more than 350 craft beers — more than enough a rare form of cancer at the young age of 14. to sate the appetite of thirsty hopheads. The beer Cooper’s Crew provides funding for research and selection will have something for everyone and development to find a cure for childhood cancer ranges from hard-to-find seasonals to perennial as well as scholarships for young men and women favorites, as well as local brews mingling with facing challenging circumstances. So while you’re national breweries. And in keeping with the sipping samples of your new favorite craft brew or spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, the event will feature a participating in a hopped-up version of an Irish jig, performance by the Drake School of Irish Dance and the sweet sounds of bagpipes. remember that a portion of the proceeds will benefit Mark your calendars because tickets go on a great local cause. Cheers! sale January 12th at suwaneebeerfest.com. General Admission includes unlimited samples of
BIGGEST GET READY FOR GWINNETT’S
LIVE MUSIC FROM
JATOLAENTAH'SAFALVOLRITE & , COVER BAND THE GEEKS!
ST. PATRICK S DAY PARTY! Suwanee
A M E R I C A N
C R A F T
ON ST. PADDY’S DAY!
TICKETS MARCH 17TH E L A S N O S u wa n e e A M E R I C A N C R A JAN. 12TH ‘18 ! N O O N @ SUWANEE TOWN CENTER PARK
TICKETS ARE LIMITED & WILL SELL OUT!
SUWANEE WINE FEST EXCLUSIVE PICS
THE BUZZ 66 /// PEOPLE & PLACES: 72 ///
events from in and around suwanee.
EVENT CALENDAR: THINGS TO DO IN JANUARY & FEBRUARY 78
NORTH GWINNETT BULLDOGS WIN STATE CHAMPIONSHIP
On Friday, December 15th, the North Gwinnett Bulldogs defeated the Colquitt County Packers in the Class AAAAAAA championship football game at North’s Tom Robinson Stadium in Suwanee. With 5:50 left in the game, North took the lead with a touchdown, but kicker Cameron Clark missed the extra point. The Packers wasted no time driving down field for a touchdown and taking the lead, making it a 17-16 game and setting them up to win their third potential state championship in four years. ➜
ARO T FRO M IN AND
ith only 0:49 seconds left to play and three timeouts, North quickly marched down the field into Packer's territory. The Bulldogs got some help when a defensive holding call, two illegal substitution penalties and a passinterference call against Colquitt County kept them in the game as time was expiring. This gave North the opportunity to kick a field goal with no time left on the clock. After
missing a previous extra point, Clark was given the chance to redeem himself and did. He made a 38-yard field goal for the win, setting off a huge on-field celebration. “There wasn’t much going through my mind,” Clark said. “I was just trying to focus as much as I could. My kicking coach, he tells me every day that it might come down to a game-winning kick and he puts me in those scenarios, so he was a big part of it.” This is the first state championship won in North Gwinnett’s history. The team finished the season (14-1), while Colquitt County finished (11-4).
Suwanee Kroger Celebrates Grand Re-Opening ■ On December 6th, the Suwanee Kroger located at 400 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. celebrated a grand re-opening with a ribbon cutting. The store has been remodeled and upgraded to better serve the community and offer a nicer shopping environment, including the addition of a Murray’s Cheese counter, a burrito bar, more modern deli and installation of ClickList® shopping. ClickList® enables shoppers to place their order online and pick up at the store or have their order delivered right to their door. To find out how ClickList® works or place an order, visit Kroger.com/onlineshopping.
City of Suwanee Election Results
■ All incumbents won re-election results in Suwanee this past November to serve another four-year term. The City of Suwanee functions under a Council-Manager form of government and the City Council is comprised of six elected officials, including Mayor Jimmy Burnette, Mayor Pro Tem Doug Ireland, Dick Goodman, Beth Hilscher, Dan Foster and Linnea Miller. JAN / FEB 18
Suwanee Wine Fest Donates to Annandale Village ■ The 5th annual Suwanee Wine Fest took place on Saturday, November 4th, 2017 at Suwanee Town Center Park. Each year the organizers have partnered with local nonprofit, Annandale Village as their benefitting charity. A portion of proceeds from ticket sales has been given to Annandale to support their award-winning programs and services. Annandale Village is a residential and nursing facility off of Satellite Blvd in Suwanee that provides life assistance to adults with developmental disabilities such as Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, acquired brain injuries and more. Thanks to much-needed fundraising, Annandale's residents, affectionately called Villagers, are able to live as independently as possible in a comfortable, secure environment with nurses and assistance on staff 24/7, if needed.
Think you have the cutest pup in Suwanee? ■ The annual Suwanee Magazine Cutest Pup returns! The winning pup will win a variety of amazing prizes to primp, spoil, feed and beautify your pup PLUS a feature in the 2018 March/April issue of Suwanee Magazine. Submit your your photo photo and and entry entry Submit from January January 8th 8th –– 22nd. 22nd. Then Then from tell all all your your family family and and friends friends tell to vote vote daily daily from from January January to 24th –– February February 7th 7th for for your your 24th cute pooch! Details are avaialble at suwaneemagazine. com and on our facebook page: facebook.com/ suwaneemagazine.
2017 Cutest Pup in Suwanee Contest Winner, Stamford the Goldendoodle.
Ground-Breaking Book Written by Suwanee Resident ■ Taming Idiopathic Toe Walking is a ground breaking new book that provides a non-invasive, efficient and effective treatment strategy for children and adolescents who display atypical toe walking. Written by renowned Occupational Therapist, Ileana S. McCaigue, OTR/L, the book serves as a definitive manual for children and adolescents who display atypical toe walking behaviors. Idiopathic toe walking walking is is often often associated associated toe with Autism Autism Spectrum Disorders, with ADHD, Specific Specific Learning Learning Disability, Disability, ADHD, Developmental Delays Delays and and other other Developmental disabilities with with sensory sensory processing processing disabilities difficulties that that can can occur occur with with typical typical difficulties children as as well. well. Inspired by the children overcoming of toe-walking by numerous children during her years of practice, McCaigue’s professional expertise and personal experiences are fused into a vitally powerful resource. This book offers an alternative treatment strategy to “calm” the toes, and enable a typical walking pattern in those challenged with idiopathic toe walking. The ultimate goal is the prevention of tendon shortening and resultant limited motions of the ankles and feet from prolonged toe walking that can ultimately lead to the need for injections, bracing or at worst, surgery, to remediate the muscular imbalance. McCaigue’s mission is to help children in the least restrictive and most effective and efficient way. Taming Idiopathic Toe Walking is available to purchase on Amazon.com.
Local Artist Receives Women in the Arts Recognition Award â– The Suwanee Creek Chapter of the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) presented the Women in the Arts Recognition Award to Vickie Johnson, President Emeritus of the North Gwinnett Arts Association. The purpose of the Women in the Arts Recognition Award
is to recognize and honor a woman who has made significant achievements at the community level in her artistic field. The award is designed to recognize worthy women for outstanding achievements in the nonperformance arts including fiber arts design and creation, fine arts and sculpture design and
JAN / FEB 18
creation, music composition, literature and drama authorship, artisan design and creation. The recipient has contributed to her artistic field in an outstanding manner beyond mastery of technique. This may include innovative design work, featured exhibitions, publication, research, and technique development. The criteria for this award are strict, and not all nominations are successful. Professional women in the arts are eligible for this award as long as they have demonstrated outstanding contributions to their field as outlined above. Vickieâ€™s passion for the arts has shown through in all that she has accomplished, from an award winning art teacher in the Gwinnett County Public Schools System to her diligent efforts to bring art to the city of Suwanee. Vickie has served on the Public Arts Commission for the city of Suwanee, and has spear-headed the recent opening of the North Gwinnett Arts Association Center for the Arts. She has coordinated a partnership with the city of Suwanee and the Center serves as the welcome center for the city of Suwanee.
Construction Firm Reeves Young Celebrates 65th Anniversary with Ribbon Cutting for New Office Complex in Sugar Hill ■ On November 3rd, Reeves Young, a commercial construction firm, held a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the company’s 65th Anniversary and occupancy of their new 50,000 SF facility. Initially Reeves Young planned to lease out half of the facility, but the firm has been growing rapidly and will occupy the entire two story building. Since moving from Suwanee, GA to Sugar Hill, GA last January, Reeves Young has hired 94 employees- a trend the construction management firm sees continuing through 2018. ”Something special is happening at Reeves Young”, says CEO Eric Young, “we are growing 24% a year, expanding into new markets and growing our geographic reach - clients have seen what we do and they are giving us opportunity to build great projects - this year we are renovating Centennial Olympic Park and Chastain
JAN / FEB 18
Amphitheater and building a high-rise hotel in Nashville. We’ve hired great people and they are building the business.” Reeves Young was founded by Bill Reeves in 1952 with the purchase of one of the first hydraulic excavators in the area. This new technology changed the region's construction capabilities and set the tone of entrepreneurialism that still leads the company today. Reeves Young provides vertical (buildings), horizontal (turn-key site development) and Water Resource (water treatment/recycling) construction services. Their portfolio features projects for Government, Higher Education, Faith-based and Corporate clients. They are pioneers of eco-engineered sustainable, on-site water treatment facilities (known as WaterHubs) for university and corporate campuses.
Greater Atlanta Christian School Earns Recognition as an Apple Distinguished School others locally in Atlanta and peers across the globe, ■ Greater Atlanta Christian (GAC) School in to share their work. Norcross has again been recognized as an Apple “We see the Apple Distinguished School Distinguished School for 2017-2019. The school designation as an external confirmation of the has been recognized every year since 2010 for its great things GAC teachers are transformative integration “We believe Apple accomplishing. They are incredibly of technology for students’ Distinguished Schools are adept today in educational benefit. Apple recently said, “We believe Apple some of the most innovative technological thought and best practices that are taking our Distinguished Schools are some schools in the world. They students further,” said GAC of the most innovative schools are centers of leadership President Dr. David Fincher. “What in the world. They are centers and educational excellence an honor to be recognized for the of leadership and educational that demonstrate our vision forward-thinking practices of our excellence that demonstrate faculty,” he continued. our vision of exemplary learning of exemplary learning Nationally-recognized as a environments.” environments.” premier Christian institution, GAC students in grades - Apple Inc. Greater Atlanta Christian is a 4-12 each have a MacBook PK-12 independent school in Norcross, Georgia, Air to create, collaborate and investigate. Younger offering top-rated academics, fine arts and students, grades K-3, use iPads and a variety of athletics, in an environment that builds character educational apps. Today’s students now craft and faith, with joy and purpose. interactive multi-media presentations in all subject areas, take on research projects and collaborate with
Kiwanis All American 5K
Saturday, November 11th TOWN CENTER PARK
PHOTOS BY: KARL LAMB
Jonny and Xena 5K Fun Run
Saturday, October 28th TOWN CENTER PARK
PHOTOS BY: KARL LAMB
JAN / FEB 18
ON THE SCENE
Jolly Holly Day
Friday, December 1st TOWN CENTER PARK
PHOTOS BY: PAUL BARA
December Suwanee Business Alliance Holiday Meeting Thursday, December 14th CITY HALL
Suwanee Classic Car Show Sunday, November 5th TOWN CENTER PARK
PHOTOS BY: KARL LAMB
PHOTOS BY: ANGELA VEUGELER
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Suwanee Wine Fest Saturday, November 4th TOWN CENTER PARK
PHOTOS BY: KARL LAMB
people & places
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buzz A R E A
E V E N T
SUWANEE BEER FEST TICKETS ON SALE! ____________________ ____ Friday, Jan. 12th @ NOON ____________________ ____
For more information and to purchase tickets, go to SuwaneeBeerFest.com.
MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. DAY
For more information visit icerinkatsugarhill.com January 2018.
Gwinnett County Schools Holiday
GWINNETT COUNTY SCHOOLS HOLIDAY
HAPPY FEAT NIGHT TO SHINE PROM ________ ________________ Gwinnett Church ____________________ ____ For more details, to register or sponsor a guest visit happyfeat.org.
GWINNETT COUNTY SCHOOLS BACK IN SESSION
GREATER ATLANTA CHRISTIAN SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE
BRING ONE FOR THE CHIPPER CHRISTMAS TREECYCLING
________________ ____ 10:00am-4:00pm __________________
________________ ____ 10:00am-4:00pm __________________
For more information, go to Greateratlantachristian.org.
Sims Lake Park Suwanee Magazine
5:00pm-9:00pm ________________ ________
ICE RINK @ SUGAR HILL OPEN __________________
THINGS TO DO THIS JANUARY & FEBRUARY
JAN / FEB 18
4TH ANNUAL SUWANEE HALF MARATHON ________ ________________ 7:00am ________________ ________
Town Center Park ____ ____________________ To register go to active.com.
14 23 17 VALENTINE'S DAY
TASTE OF COLLINS HILL ___________________ 6:00pm - 9:00pm ___________________
Collins Hill High School Commons Area ____ ________________
THE SUSAN CHAMBERS DANCE COMPANY PRESENTS DANCIN’ AND SINGIN’ THE NIGHT AWAY 2018
Infi nite Energy Center ________________ ____
For more information, go to ChambersPerformingArts.com.
For more information go to Tasteofcollinshill.com.
25 19 PRESIDENT’S DAY GWINNETT COUNTY SCHOOLS STUDENT HOLIDAY
THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF DISNEY ON ICE
_____________________ 5:00pm _____________________
Infinite Energy Center ___________________ Purchase tickets @ DisneyOnIce.com.
22 28 thru
GWINNETT COUNTY SCHOOLS EARLY RELEASEELEMENTARY & MIDDLE SCHOOLS
GREATER ATLANTA CHRISTIAN SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE
________________ ____ 10:00am-4:00pm __________________
For more information, go to Greateratlantachristian.org.
Save the Date!
ON ST. PADDYâ€™S DAY! March
SUWANEE AMERICAN CRAFT BEER FEST ____ ________________________________________ 1:00pm-5:00pm (VIP opens at Noon) ___________________________________________
Suwanee Town Center Park ___________________________________________ For more information and to purchase tickets, go to SuwaneeBeerFest.com
CHRISTMAS DAY 80
JAN / FEB 18
Published on Dec 29, 2017