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Live Better. Live Healthier.

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It may be time for you to take that important step

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towards a healthier and fuller life. Northside Hospital

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(404) 845-5457 Atlanta (404) 845-5457 • Forsyth (770) 292-4726

contents may / june 2015

on the cover

40 14 Adventures on a Budget

Affordable ways to connect with your family or friends this summer

18 A Place Like Home Top quality senior care at Savannah Plantation

28 Suwanee's Cutest Pup Contest Winner And the winner is...

32 Beauty Tips

Local celeb stylist talks about this year's style trends

55 Craft Pizza

Your Pie Suwanee offers customers opportunity to build their own custom pizza

64 How Beer Saved Georgia 4

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Steve Glass PHOTO BY:

empower 14 SBA News The Misadventures

of Stanley

15 Investment Strategies Advice

from Aileron Investment Advisors

16 Business Spotlight: Japanese Auto Repair 5-star reviewed auto repair shop 22 Business Spotlight:

Neptune Pool & Patio Services and supplies for your backyard paradise

24 “Here’s My Card” Business cards have a huge impact 5

contents may / june 2015

thrive 30 Dogs and Health The world's best medicine 36 Dust Off Those Cleats!

Enjoying America's favorite pastime

37 Planet Smoothie Five years in Town Center Park 38 5 Pre-Marriage Topics

55 5 5

Conversations to have before tying the knot



60 Restaurant Listings Best area dining options 62 The Grapevine Spring wines are in bloom 66 Suwanee Beer Fest 5 years by-the-numbers



50 Defeat is Sweet! Riverside Relay For Life

52 NGHS Art Auction Custom art for a cause

53 Celebrity Server Night

Students battle head-to-head to benefit N. Gwinnett Co-op

54 Suwanee Academy of

the Arts New preschool announced


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50 5 0

69 The Buzz 76 People & Places 86 Calendar

in every issue 08 Editor's Letter 10 Share



a note from our managing editor

Rachel Fasig

Managing Editor

he beginning of summer is one of my favorite times of year. I get so excited for days spent on the lake, weekend camping trips and backyard BBQ's. And, this summer I have an even bigger reason to get excited…I am getting married to the love of my life on May 16th! I can't wait for all the adventures we'll have together! Seeing the Hutchinson kids laugh and play at our lakeside cover shoot made me think about how someday we'll take our own children camping, kayaking, fishing and hiking. I'm marrying an avid outdoorsman who has given this California-raised girl a new perspective on life in the South….and I love it! Suwanee and its beautiful surrounding cities have so much to offer for adventurers like us. Just check out the"budget–friendly" tips on page 41 for some fresh ideas or fun reminders.

Speaking of budgets (yuck!), my fiancé and I recently went through premarital counseling at our church, and creating a joint budget was one of the most-emphasized topics. So, it came as no surprise when I read Laura Lebovitz' "Top Five Conversations To Have Before You Get Married" and saw "Money!" listed first. This article is a must-read for any couple that's seriously dating, and even as a refresher for those that have been married for years.. Your desires and goals change over time, so it's important to readdress some of these topics at every phase of your relationship. I learned about that in premarital counseling too :) This issue is jam-packed with juicy content, including: advice from a local stylist who beautifies the likes of Beyoncé and Gisele Bündchen; an interesting look at how "beer saved Georgia"; the inspiring way that Japanese Auto Repair came to life – beginning with an Iranian refugee's escape plan; the touching story behind Savannah Plantation's roots; the much-anticipated announcement of our 2nd annual Cutest Pup Contest winner and so much more! On our We hope you enjoy our annual 'Summer Adventure' issue and kick-off the season by creating long-lasting memories with friends and family. Have fun! I'll see you soon – next time as Mrs. Pillow (yep, you heard me! A pillow like you sleep on! Don't be jealous.)



Rachel Fasig

(almost Pillow)

Visit for some great web only articles and frequent updates.


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The Hutchinson Family photographed on April 14th at Old Federal Campground on Lake Lanier by STEVE GLASS.


Community. Culture. Lifestyle.





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comments about the mar / apr ‘15 issue

“I loved all the info on the summer camps available! We just recently moved to Suwanee so it's great finding out all of the awesome camps available to my kids this summer. They are even having a hard time picking just one (and so am I)!” DEVON BROCK

“Suwanee Magazine is my one stop for everything local! I used more than one coupon from the March/April issue to shop/save locally. Thanks!”

“Going to Bat for Kids was a terrific article. How wonderful to point this out! Summer camps and sports activities give children so much and every child deserves opportunities to participate. Kudos to all those involved in this article and bringing such an important subject to our attention! Great job Suwanee magazine!”



HOW TO REACH US: Email: Fax: 678-730-0691. Or join the conversation on facebook and twitter. Letters and e-mails should include full contact information. We reserve the right to edit letters for clarity and brevity. All submissions become the property of Veugeler Design Group and will not be returned. Submission constitutes permission to use photos and stories in all media.


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“I like finding out about the activities and events around the city for the family. My kids love Suwanee Magazine!” NICOLE RENO

Meet our feature contributors: Laura Lebovitz

Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist at GROW Counseling in Suwanee

Laura 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. Ed Szczesniak

Suwanee Business Alliance Board Advisor, "Class Clown" and Owner of Georgian Landscape Design

Ed has spent the past 14 years in what he calls “A hobby gone horribly out of control”. After spending his first 27 years in consulting with companies like IBM, Deloitte Consulting, and The Verity Group, Ed decided to take a few courses in Landscape Design as this was always a passion. One thing led to another, and now his company, Georgian Landscape Design, has emerged as one of the top landscape design / build firms in the state, having won “Best of Gwinnett” five times, and most recently the prestigious "Best of HOUZZ” in both Design and Customer Satisfaction for the third year in a row! Claire Addison

Manager and “Wine Connoisseur” at Beverage Superstore

Claire’s passion for wine education (or “obsession” as she confessed) developed while working at a steakhouse and wine bar in Tennessee. Having worked in restaurants and in customer service from a very early age, it was only a natural progression to quickly move into a managerial position. Before moving to Georgia and pursuing a certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers, Claire worked as a Bar Manager at PF Chang's and eventually found herself leaning towards the retail sector of the beverage industry. She joined the Beverage Superstore team three years ago and loves being able to introduce people to such a large variety of wine – especially wine styles that they'd never think they'd like! Michael Lundmark

Founder & President of Alpharetta's Jekyll Brewing

Michael is a self-proclaimed history buff, so it comes as no surprise that Jekyll Brewing is inspired by the rich traditions of the South. He knows and appreciates great beer and is excited to be part of a revolution that's making Georgia a destination for beer lovers worldwide. At Jekyll they are passionate about sustainability and preservation. All of Jekyll's grain is given to local farmers and they are proud supporters of the Big Creek Greenway that runs right next to the brewery. As a Suwanee resident, Michael supports the initiative to connect Alpharetta's greenway trails to Suwanee’s trails. When he’s not in the taproom or trying out Brewmaster and Co-Owner Josh Rachel’s latest concoction, he can usually be found on one of his favorite adventures: hunting, fishing, or chilling by the lake with his family and a cold Jekyll brew in hand!


ANGELA VEUGELER President / Editor-in-Chief RANDALL VEUGELER Vice President and Publisher RACHEL FASIG Managing Editor / LAURA CARTER Advertising Director /



PUBLISHED BY VEUGELER DESIGN GROUP 554 W. Main Street, Suite 200, Buford, GA 30518 For SUBSCRIPTION INQUIRES or BACK ISSUE ORDERS, call 678-482-2270. For ADVERTISING INQUIRES, call 678-482-2270, or email

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. ©2015 Veugeler Design Group. The editors welcome unsolicited manuscripts and photographs. Please email Rachel Fasig at


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15


The Misadventures of Stanley AKA “SuwaneeMan”



suwanee business community news & info.


Shad Hamedani, Co-Owner of Japanese Auto Repair and son of original Founder, Faal Hamedani

JAPANESE AUTO REPAIR Escape from Iranian Revolution leads to creation of award-winning, 5-star auto repair shop in Suwanee. pg. 16








{ BY: Ed Szczesniak / OWNER, GEORGIAN LANDSCAPE DESIGN } long time ago, on a planet far, far away (OK – maybe not a planet – but a town pretty far from here) the parents of SuwaneeMan (formerly known as Stanley), placed him in a space ship (shaped exactly like a ‛63 Chevy Nova) and sent him off in order to save him from certain doom as their planet ‘Gowanda‛ was about to blow up! (The neighbors claimed that Fred and Margaret just wanted to get rid of the kid as he was a royal pain and ate a lot- and it wasn‛t a planet anyway – just a crappy little town in upstate New York that was going downhill). After many light years of traveling the galaxies (yeah right – more like the interstates, sleeping in cheap motels, and eating a lot of Mickey D‛s) young Stanley landed in a far away land called ‘Suwanee‛ – (No, not the song one that‛s spelled Swanee and he really didn‛t ‘land‛ here...

He just had a flat tire on Buford Dam Road and just sort of stuck around after it got fixed). Soon after ‘landing‛ in this new land, Stanley discovered that he had acquired amazing (well sort of “OK”) superpowers far beyond those of mortal men and/or women. (Stanley was nothing, if not politically correct, even at a young age). He was able to ‘leap‛ to the front of the buffet line at any business gathering, ‘bend‛ up to 4 competitor‛s brochures in his bare hands, ‘stop‛ a speeding speaker from taking up time at a business meeting, and most importantly, Stanley could eat up to 26 ‘free‛ chicken wings at local business meetings. Well, it didn‛t take long for our little superhero to find himself surrounded by other superheroes on this new planet ‘Suwanee‛. They too had some amazing powers. The power of ‘friendliness‛, the power of ‘sharing‛, the power of ‘not taking themselves too seriously‛, and most importantly, the power of ‘helping each other‛. Stanley soon donned tights and a cape (seemed he had a thing for that silky feeling – but we won‛t go into that), and he began going to monthly meetings with these other superheroes. This ‘Legion‛ of superheroes formed a tightly knit group of evil fighters (actually they never really fought any evil, just kind of met and ate free food, drank free beer, laughed and talked a lot, but that doesn‛t sound as romantic) and they called themselves the “Suwanee Business Alliance” (as the Legion of Doom and The Avengers were already taken). Now, many years later (17 to be exact) this group of superheroes has grown to over 200 strong (well – some of them are strong, a lot of them are just kinda normal, and many of them are very pretty). They meet at least once a month, but always at different locations around planet Suwanee so that the bad guys can‛t track them (actually it‛s so that they get to sample different foods at new businesses around town...but let‛s just let them live their little fantasy). They seem to find new superheroes appearing every month – kind of “Guest Superheroes” if you will – and they always seem to have some new superpowers that the group can use. If you would like to discover your superpowers you can test your skills at the next superhero gathering – for free. You may even get to meet SuwaneeMan there! Just visit their secret website at ■

This ‘Legion‛ of superheroes formed a tightly knit group of evil fighters... and they called themselves the “Suwanee Business Alliance"...


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15




What should I look for when investing in a company? Answer:

We feel that unique concepts, logistics, and systems are equally as important as products.

For example, Henry Ford did not invent a new

product, but he did design an assembly line system that greatly increased the profitability of manufacturing automobiles. Similarly, Sam Walton did not invent the department store but he did significantly improve the design and logistics of operating one: a new Walmart is opened somewhere in the world every 11 days, a 15% markup is added to all items regardless of cost or size, and merchandise is sold and reordered 12 times a year. The little store from Arkansas is now the largest U.S. company in terms of sales. Walmart’s formula is significantly more profitable than one which might make a 30% markup but only turned the merchandise 4 times a year. The Walmart concept sells the same products as many of its competitors, but it uses a system that is much more efficient. Improving the logistics of ordering, taking delivery, distribution, pricing, tracking, and reordering thousands of different products is what made Walmart successful. John Deer (Deere & Co) changed farming forever in 1837 when it introduced the steel plow. The concept of farming with new tools – like assembly lines or the Walmart merchandising system, was an innovation which changed the productivity of the farm. Deere & Co is about to introduce driverless farm equipment which integrates computers, satellites, sensors, probes and monitors. That is a new concept. Likewise, Amazon is simply an internet department store which sells other company’s products. This too is a new concept, not a new product. When making a decision to invest in the stock of any company, it is important to evaluate the risks. We encourage you to SEND YOUR discuss any additions to your INVESTMENT portfolio with your trusted QUESTIONS TO: advisor before investing. ■ SUBMISSIONS@ SUWANEE MAGAZINE. The views expressed in this article are not necessarily that of COM Suwanee Magazine.


From L to R: Ricky Phosai, Shad Hamedani, Pejman Moshglani, Javid Siraj, Ben Onabajo, Tim McLaughlin and Raymond Moshglani

Business Spotlight:

JAPANESE AUTO REPAIR Founder's legacy lives on through son's determination { BY: Rachel Fasig }

In the lobby of Japanese Automotive Repair (JAR), you’ll notice a certificate stating, “2015 American Express Member Favorite” - a great honor for any recipient, but even greater for Co-Owner, Shad Hamedani, for reasons beyond most people’s comprehension. Over thirty years ago, Shad’s family was fearfully huddled in the bunker of an Iranian naval ship as he and his late father, Faal Hamedani, took turns navigating across the sea - far from Iran and the threat of death that was pursuing them during the Revolution. Hamedani’s story is a true testament as to how courage, risk and hard work pay off in a big way. With little more than the clothes on their backs, the Hamedani family was taken in by an Atlanta church


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15

whose members were temporarily housing refugees. With experience as a Mechanical Engineer in Iran, Faal knew precisely how to fix a vehicle - but did not know a single word of English. So, at nine years old, Shad quickly learned English and began teaching his father every day after school. After nearly a decade of working at various auto shops in Metro Atlanta, Faal Hamedani founded his first JAR shop in 1989 and subsequently opened four more in Metro Atlanta, including a Suwanee location in 1999. But, when his health took a turn for the worse he decided to sell all but the Suwanee location. The reasoning behind his father's decision: “We kind of grew with Suwanee,” Shad explained. "The best things about Suwanee are the small,


Japanese Auto Repair services with manufacturer parts at a price point 20-40% less than dealers.

family-owned businesses and the community that takes care of each other and has helped one another grow - and JAR has been part of that. Today, JAR is co-owned and operated by Shad Hamedani and Raymond Moshglani, a longtime family friend. But, both men will admit that Faal’s legacy still permeates the culture of their shop. JAR’s experienced technicians are very knowledgeable about the brands that they service: Lexus, Acura, Honda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Infiniti and Nissan. They are proud of the fact that every single part comes straight from the manufacturer, but that they can still operate at a price point 20-40% less than the dealers. “In this business, it’s so hard to find a reputable place that you can trust,” Shad confessed. Which is why he will actually “recommend that - Shad Hamedani, customers do Co-owner/founder their homework, Japanese Auto Repair call around, ask for written estimates, make sure the price they’re getting is competitive and that the quality is up to the right standards,” he explained. “I used to work at Lexus and learned firsthand what goes into the dealership environment and was able to bring that experience here,” he continued.

A car is a big investment, so it makes sense to properly care for it. JAR has several seasonal packages to ensure proper, preventative maintenance throughout the year. “We recommend that people adhere to the schedule that the car manufacturer put in place for their specific make/model… that’s how you keep high-cost repairs from happening.” They truly don’t want to see their customer’s pay huge amounts for services that could have been prevented. And, it’s clear their customers appreciate that when you search “Japanese Auto Repair” on Google and see a coveted 5-star rating on Google reviews. It is by operating with this type of integrity and honest work ethic that Shad, Raymond, and the JAR team will continue to keep Faal Hamedani’s hard-earned legacy alive. ■

JAPANESE AUTO REPAIR 920 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. Suwanee, GA 30024 (678) 482-5558

“The best things about Suwanee are the small, familyowned businesses and the community that takes care of each other and has helped one another grow and JAR has been part of that.”


Business Spotlight:

A PLACE LIKE HOME “Buford Belles” enjoy top quality senior care at Savannah Plantation { BY: Aoife Healy }

There is a purpose and reason behind everything they do at Savannah Plantation, an all-women’s personal care home in Buford, GA. The beautiful white columned, red brick building is home to 15 women, who have become lovingly known within the community as the “Buford Belles.” Each of these women receive top quality care in a comfortable and peaceful setting. When a person must entrust the care of a loved one to a third party, it can be difficult to find a place that will treat them like a person as opposed to just a number or tenant. Savannah Plantation strives for personalized attention for each resident. Because of this, their total capacity is just 15 residents. Ed Duda, Owner and Manager of Savannah Plantation founded the home in 1993. “It all started with my mother,” said Duda, “My mother was a widow nearing the age of 70 when I realized that we needed to start thinking about secondary care.” When Ed began his search for personal care homes in the area, he found two things: DeAnna Smith, Ed Duda and large, flashy homes with astronomical Caregiver, Bobbi Ricks costs, or a lower priced but run down facility. “I eventually came to the conclusion that if I wanted to give my mother a positive experience in her old age, I would need to create a third option on my own,” he said.


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15


“I eventually came to the conclusion that if I wanted to give my mother a positive experience in her old age, I would need to create an option on my own.” - Ed Duda, Founder of Savannah Plantation Duda purchased the expansive grounds in 1993 and his mother enjoyed a wonderful life in the home from 1995 to 2001. DeAnna Smith is the Compliance Manager at Savannah Plantation and has worked in nursing homes for over 14 years. She is a licensed nurse and oversees all care plans while managing the certified nursing assistants on staff. Deanna performs all potential resident assessments to determine if they will be a good fit with the current tenants and to assess their mental/physical capacities. “The difference between nursing homes and personal care homes is the type of care we can provide,” explained Smith, “We provide help with everyday tasks such as dressing, bathing, medication reminders, etc. but we do not provide rehabilitation services or around the clock medical care.” The potential tenants are assessed according to a 3-tier system: Tier 1: Slight Memory Loss, Tier 2: Moderate Memory Loss, Tier 3: Advanced Memory Loss/ Borderline Alzheimer’s. Each tier has its own price point according to the amount of specialized care needed. “Our biggest goal is to get our residents up, active and engaged!” said Smith. They have weekly group exercises that are designed specifically to help maintain handeye coordination. A musician comes in each Sunday to entertain and get residents dancing. The beautifully manicured grounds allow for plenty of gardening and outdoor activities. Students from the neighboring North Gwinnett High School regularly schedule visits to interact with the residents. “We also have a beauty parlor onsite,” shared Smith, “A beautician comes in twice a month to make sure the Belles are looking fabulous!”


Duda is committed to building connections with the residents, but equally important, their families. “At Savannah Plantation, we encourage the families to be as involved as possible,” said Duda, “We enjoy witnessing our residents making new memories with their loved ones.” Family and guests are always welcome at the holiday feasts. Two huge summer picnics are held on the grounds each year with the last one topping out at 160 attendees! People enjoy visiting because it is not a clinical environment- it feels like home. Over the course of twenty years, Duda has continually made decisions to improve and better the life of his residents while keeping costs manageable for their families. “Quality of care in personal care homes seems to have become more about money and less about humanity,” exclaimed Duda, “I see my mother in each and every tenant here at Savannah Plantation and that is what drives me to make sure the standard of care received is unparalleled.” ■


102 Level Creek Rd. Buford, GA 30518 (404) 680-6896



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Protect your world Auto • Home • Life • Retirement

Call me today to discuss your options. Some people think Allstate only protects your car. Truth is, Allstate can also protect your home or apartment, your boat, motorcycle - even your retirement and your life. And the more of your world you put in Good Hands®, the more you can save.

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Insurance subject to terms, qualifications and availability. Allstate Property and Casualty Insurance Co., Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Co., Allstate Vehicle and Property Insurance Co., Allstate Insurance Co., Allstate Indemnity Co., Northbrook Indemnity Co. Life insurance and annuities issued by Lincoln Benefit Life Company, Lincoln, NE, Allstate Life Insurance Company, Northbrook, IL. In New York, Allstate Life Insurance Company of New York, Hauppauge, NY. Northbrook, IL. © 2010 Allstate Insurance Co.


Call or stop by to see how much you can save.

Business Spotlight:


Neptune Pool & Patio comes to the rescue for all your backyard needs { BY: Michelle Fasig }

As the weather gets warmer and the days longer,

Owner Monica Pappas and Manager Lori Powell


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many of us look forward to kicking off our shoes, grabbing a cold beverage, and relaxing in our own, personal backyard paradise. But, imagine the horror when you pull back your pool cover to discover that the cold winter months have left your pool GREEN! You immediately think, “Summer is ruined!” Thankfully, there is one local store that can come to the rescue and service all of your backyard needs - Neptune Pool & Patio. Neptune Pool & Patio opened their doors a little more than a year ago, however, owners Monica and Nick Pappas are not new to the business. In fact, they own Neptune Pools, an award-winning, custom pool business with the construction office conveniently located directly behind the building. For several years they leased the space in front of the construction office, just South of 20 on Peachtree Industrial Blvd. But when the opportunity came to turn it into a pool supply store, the decision just seemed natural. According to Monica, “It made sense to sell supplies for our newly built pools.”


maintenance,” Powell shared. The common misconception is that pool maintenance is too tedious and time-consuming for pool owners, however if done correctly it takes 20-30 minutes and only needs to be done once a week. If the attentiveness and kindness of Monica and Lori are not enough to keep customers coming back, then the knowledge they possess about the industry surely will be. Monica has been by her husband’s side as Neptune Pool & Patio has steadily grown over the past 28 years and Lori first began her career as a pool attendant 13 years ago. Lori now holds the title of Certified Pool Operator (a certification that must be renewed every 5 years). Chemicals, parts, products and service techniques are constantly evolving within the market, and Neptune Pool & Patio sets the market- standard by remaining current on all training and materials. Regardless of your backyard needs, Neptune Pool & Patio ensures that your personal backyard paradise is nothing short of that: a paradise. ■


1230 Peachtree Industrial Blvd, Sugar Hill, GA 30518 (678) 765-6832 Having undergone a recent renovation, the interior of the store houses everything from pool chemicals, patio furniture, grills, pool games and unique items that Monica takes pride in selling, such as a wood-fired pizza-oven. “Most of our items are made in the US, and the Primo Ceramic Grills are made over in Tucker, GA,” explained Monica. On the counter sits one of the main draws of their business: a stateof-the-art WaterLink Spin Lab. Designed to test the water from your pool, this computerized water analysis lab will quickly and efficiently test pool water to tell customers exactly what they need. It’s simple: just bring in a sample of the water you would like to test and the machine quickly provides a detailed analysis. With Lori Powell, the Store Manager who has over 13 years of experience by your side, you are given an in-depth training on the chemicals you need and specifically how to use them. The experience is incredibly customized, and that is something they credit to the success of their business. While the water testing service is free, another service they provide for first time pool owners is an on-site consultation. For a small $85 fee, Powell herself will drive to your home to train you on the proper maintenance and care for your pool. “The most important steps are water testing and water

Just bring in a sample of the water you would like to test and the machine quickly provides a detailed analysis.



That tiny business card can have a HUGE impact { BY: Shay Harbaugh,

Assistant Art Director, Veugeler Design Group

The other day I met a gentleman and when we started talking I asked what he did for a living. He said, “Here’s my card.” I was very impressed with the look and design of his business card and added it to my collection. Yes, collection! Some people collect baseball cards, I collect awesome business cards. Once I got home I started looking through my business card collection and it hit me: this small 3.5” x 2” card can have a very huge impact on a business and quite possibly be one of the most important investments you can make for your company. For instance, no matter where you go, a tradeshow, conference or even the grocery store, your business card is what people are going to remember you by. It is something tangible they will walk away with from their encounter with you. Not to mention, it’s representing your brand, your business, EVEN YOU! If you’re thinking, “Well there’s not much you can do on something that small.” On the contrary, you can. From paper choices to die-cuts to unique printing techniques such as spot UV, embossing and foil stamps, the possibilities for an awesome, creative and custom business card design are endless. It can sometimes actually be

overwhelming with all the options. BUT, as graphic designers, it’s our job, not only to work on the design, to help you find the most effective and affordable solution, based on your company's needs and goals. Not every company needs rounded corners or a special die-cut, however, the overall design of your business card needs to speak to what type of business you have and the services you provide. Even in our technology and social media-driven age, business cards continuously hold the test of time because of their individuality and personality. They are a great networking tool that can help benefit your business through their professionalism, effectiveness, or fun look and feel. It’s easier to exchange business cards, as opposed to reaching for your phone, inputting someone’s contact information, and saving it to your contacts list. Not to mention, when you are looking down and typing it's easy to become absorbed with your phone rather than the conversation in front of you. So, put that phone away, hand someone your beautifully-designed card and engage in some real facetime connection! ■

From paper choices to die-cuts, to unique printing techniques such as spot UV, embossing and foil stamps, the possibilities for an awesome, creative and custom business card design are endless.


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15



Year's Biggest Beauty Trends

health. happiness. wellness.


And the winner is...


Sponsored by Pooch N Paws & Blue Grasshopper Creations! For our 2nd annual Suwanee Magazine Cutest Pup Contest we had 37 adorable dogs entered and thousands of votes roll in. Suwanee sure does love their cute pups! We have to give a BIG Thank You to our sponsors: Pooch N Paws Pet Boutique and Blue Grasshopper Creations! Pooch N Paws is Suwanee’s favorite boutique, pet supply, bakery and spa in Suwanee Town Center Park. Founded by Bob and Starla Pellegrino in 2010, the shop has developed into a community hotspot where fur babies and their people go for special treats and belly rubs by the Pooch N Paws amazing staff! Pooch N Paws generously donated a gift basket for our Cutest Pup winner valued at over $100! The Cutest Pup winner will also receive a custom, made-to-fit, bow tie and bandana, courtesy of Blue Grasshopper Creations (BGC). Founded by Ashely Boling, BGC specializes in making custom bow ties, bandanas, retriever sticks and accessories for your favorite furry pals. Her adorable creations can be found at


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thrive Pooch N Paws and have been spotted on pups of all sizes - at weddings, in photo shoots, for special occasions or just for everyday wear! In fact, Suwanee’s own office pup, Duke, is often seen sporting his custom bow tie whenever we have meetings and he needs to dress to impress!

Without further ado - Congratulations to the winner of the 2015 Cutest Pup Contest :

Wicket is a 6 year-old mixed Papillion and Pomeranian who loves chicken, peanut butter and hot dogs (hopefully not all at the same time)! He’s a therapy dog who has the alterego of a cat and loves people and being pet all the time.

Our runner-up pups were: Toby 2nd place Regan 3rd place


The world’s BEST medicine BY: Rachel Fasig

We all know that a bad mood can be instantly elevated at the sight of your family dog running towards you, wagging his tail, and treating you like the most important human being to ever walk this earth. But, did you know that, aside from making you smile, dogs actually have the ability to make our lives healthier overall? Read on for five surprising ways that your furry friend might be the best tonic out there. Dogs can improve your heart health: Dogs require exercise to lead long, healthy lives…and so do humans! Sometimes, we just need a good reminder of that. In which case, say the word “walk” in front of your dog and watch him drag your butt out the door with excitement. Dogs relieve stress: Playing with or petting your dog is known to increase the levels of oxytocin produced – the brain’s hormone that is responsible for feelings of love, closeness, security and calmness. Dogs can detect medical emergencies: Aside from the more well-known ability to act as “seeing-eye dogs,” they can also be trained to detect other medical conditions in their owners, such as seizure symptoms or low blood sugar levels in diabetics. Dogs can help with allergy prevention in children: Kids who grow up around furry friends tend to have fewer allergies because they develop certain immunities to pet dander, dust mites, grass and other allergens that animals can carry on their fur. Dogs are therapeutic: Many dogs are “employed” as trained therapy dogs in hospitals, schools, disaster areas, nursing homes, hospice care or counseling centers. Some schools will have children who are terrified of reading in public practice reading to their dogs. Over time, their confidence noticeably grows as the dog lends them a non-judgmental listening ear.

As if we needed even more reason to spoil our pups, we can now thank them for helping us lead healthy and happy lives. It’s too bad they can’t help mop their own muddy paw prints though. Maybe that should be the next trick we teach them! ■


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15


BY: Rachel Fasig


THIS YEAR’S BIGGEST BEAUTY TRENDS hat do Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian, Gisele Bundchen, Nicki Minaj, and supermodels Adriana Lima and Naomi Campbell all have in common… besides millions of dollars, amazing wardrobes and rockin’ bods? They have all had their hair styled by Brayden Pelletier, Owner of Just B Hair Salon in Duluth and International REDKEN Artist, Instructor, and Facilitator at REDKEN’s award-winning, advanced salon academy in New York City.


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Babs Gonzalez of Just B Hair Salon




Pelletier is at the

forefront of education, technique and style in the beauty industry so when our readers expressed interest in new hair and beauty trends, who better to sit down with than our very own local celeb stylist? Fresh off of working at New York Fashion Week and the MTV Video Music Awards, Pelletier was teeming with insight to share. But, do not let his impressive resume intimidate you. This his home and this is the community he has invested in. He embraces the diverse lifestyles of his Just B clientele, knowing well that they vary greatly from those of his celebrity clients. Pelletier adapts to his surroundings quickly and seamlessly, primarily by getting to know and truly understand his clients, their goals, and what is important to them. “You can change the color of your hair, the length or the style. A major change for most people would be making an adjustment in just one of those categories,” he explained. “It's about asking the right questions. Lifestyle is the most important thing to know about your clients, and how much time they want to spend on their hair everyday,” he continued.

Lots of celebrities are going short. The pixie cut is back, but with more texture. For longer tresses, you’re seeing a lot of texture as well – long fringe or deep side parts with side-swooped bangs.


We’re even seeing the popular rose gold hues incorporated into hair now. Copper, caramel and gold accents are trending for almost all hair colors and are best suited for those with warmer complexions. On the cooler side of the spectrum, we’re seeing silver, gray and icy platinum make a comeback.


Classic or dressed-up ponytails are huge right now. Many female celebrities were even wearing them at the Awards Shows this year.


Owner of Just B Hair Salon

BRIDAL/ PROM STYLES: Soft, romantic textures, tousled curls and loose braids are huge right now. Updo styles that are sitting mid to low – not on top of the head with soft undone wisps to frame the face. 33

thrive Pelletier and the Just B stylists are mindful that a small change in their eyes might be a huge change to a client who does not necessarily follow trends. But, most do ask for a celebrity influence or advice on the latest hair trends - to which Pelletier said, “Trend is what you want to make of it. Not everyone has to be "trendy" but everyone needs to be aware of what's suitable. Suitability is bigger than trend in my opinion.” For example, fringe bangs are very popular right now. Some women will ask for bangs, but they might not realize, based on the shape of their face that it could actually make their forehead look larger. “It’s our job to customize. To ask ourselves, ‘What can we do to make the "trend" more suitable for them?’” he said. As you read through Pelletier’s top spring and summer hair trends, just remember that customization is key. He urges you to find a style influence, take elements from that, and incorporate it in a way that works for you. With a new blowout/styling menu, Just B clients now have a chance to try some of these new trends without committing to a long-term cut or color before they are ready. “Trend is what you want to make it,” Pelletier said. And, you don’t need to be a celebrity or supermodel to have fun and play with it. ■




April Miller }

Suwanee comes alive in the spring. As we


dust off those winter blues, our beautiful city begins to blossom all on it's own. Town Center Park will fill with families throwing frisbees, children running through the fountain, food trucks, festivals, races for charity, and so much more! There is nothing quite like this time of year – and it's my favorite season because it means: baseball is here! Our local parks echo with the sounds of bats cracking, gloves thumping and fans cheering on their favorite team. The first official baseball game was played in 1846 and quickly became America's favorite pastime. While there have been many changes to the game since then, it continues to fill stadiums and parks across the country. In the Spring of 2014, more than 16 million people played baseball or softball, making it one of the most popular team sports in the United States. And, we have many opportunities right here in our own backyard to enjoy the game. Whether you're grabbing a hotdog and catching the Friday night fireworks at a Gwinnett Braves game, or catching some rays at George Pierce Park while cheering for your

lots of your favorite characters from “the dark side.” At Bark in the Park fans are invited to bring their dogs with them to a game. Every Tuesday home game you can grab a friend and enjoy two tickets for the price of one. Kids eat FREE every Wednesday home game this season too! Of course you won’t want to miss Superhero Night Saturday, May 30th. With so many exciting events, it’s easy to grab the family and head to Coolray Field for some fun this summer. It's also a great reminder to grab a bat and ball, get outdoors, get active and make some memories! Whether you're tossing the ball to your kid in the backyard or participating in a competitive league, baseball is a wonderful way to get both vigorous and moderate exercise - offering many cardiovascular benefits as well. The game requires running, throwing, catching, swinging and helps to improve hand/eye coordination. It's

Gwinnett Braves Stadium in Lawrenceville

little ones, we can all agree that baseball brings some amazing memories for true lovers of the game. Attending a Gwinnett Braves game is fun for the whole family. They host themed nights, including Star Wars Night where you will see


I Suwanee Magazine I I MAY / JUNE 15

also a great way to connect with friends, learn how to be a team player and build sportsmanship. There are many leagues in the Suwanee area, for any age or skill level: from two years old through adult. You're never too old to bust out those cleats… just be careful sliding into home! So, lets do this Suwanee! Grab a bat, gather a few friends and join me for a friendly game of America's favorite pastime! ■


Team Planet Smoothie is excited to celebrate five years in Suwanee!

Planet Smoothie Suwanee celebrates five years {


Rachel Fasig }

showed them the benefits and the lower calorie count and they saw how much of that product our store was selling.” So, with Suwanee fueling their passion and energy for a healthy, natural lifestyle the Planet Smoothie pair doesn’t plan to slow down anytime soon. “We love being involved here in Suwanee,” they admitted, “plus this business is so much fun!” ■

On May 16th, Planet Smoothie in Suwanee Town Center Park will celebrate five years of business! Owners, Karen Strickling and Kristen Scott, are excited to see what the next five years could possibly bring to Suwanee and their store. “We’ve really enjoyed being involved in the community – supporting the local schools’ teams like Peachtree Ridge and North Gwinnett’s cross country teams, spirit nights, the Big T' Do… and we’ve developed a great partnership with Gwinnett Church as well,” said Scott. Their 5th Anniversary Celebration will give two smoothie-lovers a chance to win a Grand Prize of one year’s supply of Planet Smoothie juices! They’ll also be doling out other great giveaways and prizes, including shirts, mugs, free smoothies, coupons and more. Reminiscing about their Grand Opening Day, Strickling and Scott smiled at the memory of people literally sleeping outside the store’s door to win the Grand Prize. “It was crazy!!” Scott said. “We were so amazed! Planet Smoothie (corporate) said it was the best Grand Opening in the history of the company,” Strickling continued. The success of their Suwanee store has given them some leverage in the franchisebusiness-model operation. “We actually got Planet Smoothie to add “no sugar strawberries” to their menu,” explained Strickling, “we



BEFORE YOU GET MARRIED Here are some conversations to have before tying the knot that could help you get further on the path to a healthy and happy marriage! BY:

Laura Lebovitz, LAMFT BY: at GROW Counseling Laura Lebovitz, LAMFT at GROW Counseling

etting married and saying “I do” is a huge and wonderful milestone for future brides and grooms. It can be easy for couples to get swept along in the romance of wedding planning and forget to make sure they are taking steps for their relationship to become a happy marriage. Just having those feelings of love or “being in love” will not guarantee a healthy or fulfilling marriage.


Finances are the number one thing couples fight about. Having a plan to deal with finances before you get married could save you from arguments in the future. Do you handle money in a similar way or is one person the saver and the other the spender? How will you decide the budget and deal with any assets brought into the marriage?

Children! Many couples just discuss how many children they want to have and forget to talk about other important topics that relate to raising children. What type of parenting style do you want to have? What will you do if you aren’t on the same page? What type of school should they attend? How will you divide the responsibilities of taking care of them? How much will the in-laws be involved, and how will time be divided with the in-laws?

Your relationship! A wedding is the beginning not the

end of working towards a healthy relationship. It is so important to continue to meet each other’s needs after the wedding to continue to show care and build trust. How will you continue to help your relationship grow after you get married? How will you keep not only the friendship but also the romantic relationship flourishing? What does a fulfilling sexual relationship look like for both of you?

Work! Will you both continue to work once you are married,

and once you have children? How will the household chores be divided also?

Dreams for the future! Having shared goals and

wanting the same things out of life is essential for couples to continue to grow together. Explore what you want to enjoy doing together and apart. Talking about your career, family, individual, and spiritual goals now could help you be on the same page in the future.

Talking about these topics can make people feel vulnerable. Responding in a respectful and open way to your partner can help build trust in your relationship. Avoid criticism and calmly talk about any areas of disagreement. It is ok to have different opinions! Be honest with your partner about your answers and help them do the same by valuing each other’s opinions. Use these questions as the starting point of strengthening your relationship before tying the knot!


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PHOTOS BY: Steve Glass 40

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ith summer just arou nd the corner, it’s tim e to start making plan s! There are so man y options, and this issue we wanted to give yo u some ideas where yo u can connect with yo ur family or friends that don’t cost a thing (or are super cheap)! Write th em on your calendar so you have something to look forward to, or be spontaneous and ke ep the guide handy so you can choose one at the last minute! W e hope you find this gu ide useful, and that yo u make memories with family and friends th is summer that last! If you aren’t regular campers and want to give it a trial run, set up in the backyard! Pitch the tent, bring lots of blankets and/ or sleeping bags, lawn chairs to hang out in before dark, flash lights, snacks, and a story or two. If that’s a success, then head to a nearby campground like Shoal Creek, Lake Lanier Island Campground Campground, or Old Federal Campground to enjoy the great outdoors (and hopefully time away from electronics).


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Pack a basket or bag with sandwiches, drinks and snacks and set off to Sims Lake Park where you can find a spot in the grass or under the shaded pavilion. If you have little ones, bring bubbles for extra entertainment.

The Gwinnett County library has a summer reading program, or make your own. Take regular trips to the library and have your kids write down all of the books they read. If they hit certain benchmarks, reward them with a special treat!

Get up early and enjoy the beauty of nature. Many of the parks in Suwanee have soft surface trails, including George Pierce Park, Suwanee Creek Park and Settles Bridge Park, or take a drive and explore Laurel Ridge Trail on Lake Lanier, Amicalola Falls in Dawsonville, Tallulah Gorge in Tallulah Falls near Clarkesville or Sawnee Mountain Preserve in Cumming. For more options visit

Set out on the Suwanee Creek Greenway for some exercise and a great way to enjoy the outdoors.

Let each person pick their own toppings and enjoy coming up with crazy combinations. Then settle in for a family movie and some popcorn!


Kayak down the Chattahoochee or head to Dahlonega or Helen, and rent tubes (just $5 or $10 per tuber) . Link together as you float down the river, enjoying the scenery and company!


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Have a member of your family pick their favorite board game, and snuggle in for a fun night. Some of our favorites are Monopoly, Pictionary, Scrabble, Checkers and Sock Monkey.

There are lots of awesome free events in the park this summer! From Arts in the Park to Woofstock to Movies Under the Stars and more! See our calendar on page 86 for a full list!

The fountain in Town Center Park is great on a hot day and provides loads of free entertainment.

Surprise your kids with a fun, interactive hunt made just for them! For a variety of ideas and lists, from a rainy day indoor scavenger hunt to outdoor activities, road trip or dictionary scavenger hunts, visit and for treasure hunt clues and ideas try: treasure-hunt-kids-guide.

Color the driveway and play tic-tactoe, hopscotch, draw family portraits or outline a shadow of an object such as the mailbox or a bike. When the sun changes position, you’ll have captured a shadow!


Water Balloon Toss: Have your kids pair up (or pair up with them), standing right across from each other. Toss the balloon, and every time you catch it, take one step back until the balloon bursts.


Jump Over The Water: Shoot a stream of water from the hose near the ground and let the kids jump over it. Each time they make it, move it a little higher. Sprinklers: If you have them, turn them on and let the kids play! If not, there are great, affordable versions that hook directly to your hose. The grass gets watered and the kids will have a blast! Squirt Gun Fight: This may not be for all kids, but mine love it and it’s great on a hot day. I like the cylindrical foam water guns, as you can fill them up fast by sucking up water from a bucket. And if you are the one in the line of fire, they don’t hold nearly as much water as a super soaker!

Pack your beach bag with towels, sunscreen, water, snacks, life jackets, pails and shovels and head to one of the beaches on Lake Lanier Islands. Build a sand castle, bury your kids feet, throw a frisbee and enjoy swimming!


Suwanee Magazine


REI provided all the camping gear, kayaks, clothing and outdoor supplies for our “family adventure” photo shoot at Old Federal Campground on Lake Lanier. Whether you are an experienced adventurer, a hiker, backpacker, kayaker, cycler, stargazer, rock climber or somebody whose just beginning to explore the outdoors – REI has a program or class for you! They offer free, in-store classes at all five Atlanta locations. Their Family Adventure Program and Outdoor Classes offer a wide variety of outings from "beginning bike skills" to "learn to kayak" to "meteor shower evening hike" to "stand up paddleboarding yoga!" For a listing of classes or excursions in your area, visit Metro Atlanta area locations include Buford, Atlanta, Perimeter, Kennesaw and the newest store in Alpharetta. REI partners with nonprofits across the region and the country. Last year they granted $4.6 million to hundreds of organizations to help take care of the most loved outdoor places their members enjoy. In Georgia, they have donated $80,000 to local nonprofit organizations.


Celebrity Server Night

learn news from the area schools’ universe.



Riverside Elementary raises over $27,000 for Relay for Life BY: Angela Veugeler PHOTOS BY: Caroline Hahn and Tiffany Belflower

Friday, April 3rd was a memorable day for Suwanee’s Riverside Elementary school students and staff. They spent the two weeks prior raising funds and preparing for a mini Relay for Life to honor friends and family that have fought or are currently fighting cancer, and benefit the American Cancer Society. 3rd grade teacher, Lynne Franks, is an avid supporter of Relay for Life, and helped organize the event. Franks said that she got the idea from B.B. Harris Elementary in Duluth, and worked with other teachers and administrators to create it at Riverside. “While the Relay for Life team at the school has put on various fundraisers, this time was different,” she shared. The school

came together to really help the kids understand and relate to the fundraising event. They created a survivor video with Riverside students and staff who have survived cancer and played it during the morning announcements. Included in the video was Principal Ben Pope, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia when he was 15 and underwent treatment for two years. Riverside lost one staff member this year to cancer. According to Franks, “the survivor video made the word ‘cancer’ so real to the kids. When teachers asked students if they knew anyone who has suffered from cancer, they were amazed at how many of our own family and friends are affected.”

3rd grade teacher Lynne Franks shows appreciation for everyone's hard work.


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This was truly a characterbuilding event that brought out the best spirit from our students and staff members. - Organizer, Lynne Franks

3rd grade teacher, Riverside Elementary

thing we have ever done. The point behind it, the enthusiasm, the way the students all rallied and participated. It was truly an incredible thing to see.” 5th grade teacher Kyle Pullano kept the momentum going all day as DJ. Room moms and parents helped create costumes, banners and props. “It was a true example of what the RES family can do when called upon to help. What really made the day memorable is when three of our very own students walked the survivor lap. To see the respect that all of the students gave them was wonderful. We should all be truly proud of our children for what they did that day.” Franks also stated, “It was a great event to bring our school together to fight for a cure alongside those who are affected. This was truly a characterbuilding event that brought out the best spirit from our students and staff members. Showing concern for others is a character trait that kids got to see in action.” The school raised a total of $27,488. Riverside plans to make the mini Relay for Life an annual event. ■

After two weeks o f f u n d r a i s i n g efforts, reflection a n d s h a r i n g , on April 3rd, students lined the playground track with decorated luminary bags to honor and remember their family and friends who have had cancer. They also wore their names on their backs as they walked. Tiffany Belflower, PTA Vice President at Riverside, is at the school and involved with events on a regular basis. Belflower shared, “I am proud to be a part of Riverside Elementary School and everything that they do. That being said, the mini relay for life is probably the neatest


Students create custom art for a cause 8th Annual Relay For Life Art Auction at North Gwinnett High School BY: Debi West, NGHS Visual Art Department Chair

North Gwinnett High School has been hosting its annual Relay for Life Art Auction since 2008, and each year we have enjoyed watching it grow into one of the largest Relay for Life events at our school. We currently have over 400 Visual Art students, and this lesson involves each student "finding" a client then creating a piece of custom art for them and naming a price. The Purpose: This process teaches our students about careers in the Fine Arts and This piece had a big helps them develop bidding war. It went for their personal styles $150 and was made by and skill-sets. Clients student, Courtney R. range from family members, to our North Gwinnett staff members, to community members, and local businesses.

Then, the art pieces are auctioned off in a 1-hour event, where bidding wars are e ncourage d. So, students must remind their clients that they might get outbid.

Heidi and Debi. This is Debi's guitar from 1974. Heidi "artified" it - only for Debi to buy her own guitar back.

How it Works: Typically participants end up donating more to the Relay for Life team in order to receive their custom piece of art, or they go home with other art pieces that they love. Either way, it's a win/win situation with each artist and client going home happy, with the knowledge that their efforts made a difference in the world. The Outcome: Over the past 8 years NGHS has raised over $50,000 for the Relay team. This year was another incredible event that was held April 2nd, 2015. Over 1000 community members packed the North Gwinnett Commons and raised over $7,500 for Relay for Life this year! ■

Students to represent Southeast region Three North Gwinnett Lady Bulldog Players to play in 2015 Brine National Lacrosse Classic North Gwinnett High School girl’s lacrosse players Liz Blumthal, 10th grade midfielder, Samantha Gladstein, 10th grade goalie, and Haley Gorke, 10th grade midfielder, have all been named as 2015 Brine National High School All-American and have been selected to represent the Southeast Region at the 2015 Brine National North Gwinnett sophomores Haley Gorke, Samantha Lacrosse Classic to be held at the River City Sportsplex in Gladstein and Liz Blumthal. Virginia, June 29-July 2, 2015. The Brine National Lacrosse Classic brings the top high school lacrosse players in the nation to one venue, where regional teams will compete for national recognition in front of NCAA lacrosse coaches. For additional details, visit ■


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Celebrity Server Night Local athletes go head-to-head in a battle for North Gwinnett Co-op BY: Michelle Fasig

When the evening came to a close, On March 30th, football players North Gwinnet High School topped and cheerleaders from Lanier, the ranks by raising an astonishing North Gwinnett and Buford High sum of $8,000! Schools got the rare opportunity Overall, the event was a to compete against each other off tremendous success with all the playing field – and all for the three schools raising a combined benefit of local nonprofit, North $15,000. And, North Gwinnett Gwinnett Cooperative. Co-op is tremendously grateful to Partnering with local the 70 students and 75 volunteers restaurants, Tannery Row Ale that joined together to not only House, Friends American Grill raise much-needed funds, but to Suwanee, and Friends American drive awareness, and prove that Grill Buford, each team battled our community truly knows how to to reign supreme in an annual come together for a great cause. ■ challenge to raise the most money for North Gwinnett Coop: an organization that provides food, clothing, utility funding and prescription medication assistance to people in need. The student athletes took a break from being the stars on the field to trying their hand in food service. Patrons filled the restaurants as athletes worked as greeters, took drink orders, worked the buffet line, cleaned and bussed tables, took up non-perishable food items that were brought, sold raffle tickets and helped present raffle North Gwinnett High School cheerleaders ready to take items, and overall orders at Friends Suwanee created an atmosphere of eagerness and excitement. Attendees additionally got to participate in a 50/50 raffle and silent auction where winners could win or bid on “reserved premium seating to graduation” among other great prizes.


Lanier Longhorn football players enjoy a meal after an evening of serving at Tannery Row Ale House

Friends American Grill Suwanee

North Gwinnett students with trophy for being Celebrity Server Champions 53

Performing Arts Preschool at Suwanee Academy of the Arts to open in September Suwanee Academy of the Arts (SAA) has

announced the launch of its Performing Arts Preschool on September 8, 2015. Students will meet at SAA’s homelike studio where they will be immersed in an artful atmosphere of dramatic play, song and dance that will cultivate the fundamental skills they will need to be successful in their formal education, as well as foster the inspiration to soar. Boys and girls ages 30 months to 5 years are invited to take advantage of the Performing Arts Preschool’s alternative to traditional preschool offerings. Classes begin Tuesday, September 8, 2015. The school year will conclude in May, 2016. There will be in-house performances 2 times per year. Classes will be held Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Students will wear the PAP-approved uniform and be divided into age-appropriate groups. For more information or to schedule a tour, visit their website, or call 678-482-6333. ■


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66 2015




ssavor avor avo or

local food. craft beer. wine trends.


Your Pie Suwanee offers customers the opportunity to build their own custom pizza...


Aoife Healy P HOTOS BY:

Karl Lamb

55 53

Restaurant Spotlight

Your Pie Suwanee Think back to the good ol' days in a small town where the place to be was always the local pizzeria - think Mystic Pizzacirca 1988. Kids would hang out after school, families would head over on Friday nights, and everyone in the joint knew your name. Your Pie, Suwanee’s newest family-run pizzeria, is trying to reinvent those days in a big way! Melanie and Todd Walter are the owners/ operators of Your Pie Suwanee (YPS). “We want to provide a fun atmosphere,” explained Melanie, “We want it to feel like a bunch of friends standing around in a kitchen, cooking and enjoying great food!” The modern yet rustic decor lends to that relaxed feel. It’s a place where you would feel comfortable bringing a date, your mom for lunch, or a whole crowd of your closest friends! This

Step 1:

versatility makes it a great place for any occasion. When you walk into YPS, it’s all about you! No compromising, No sacrificing! You get exactly what you want, the exact way that you want it. Every part of your pizza is customized to your exact tastes. “That’s why personal sized pizzas are so great,” exclaimed Todd, “You never have to do without spicy jalapenos or the three helpings of meat that your dining partner may not be the biggest fan of.” Your Pie is the original brick oven down-the-line-concept pizzeria. Now let’s talk about that dough! The founder of Your Pie actually sat down with a brick oven manufacturer to test and try different variations of dough to come up with the perfect base for his pizzas. The finished product is Your Pie’s secret signature

Choose your DOUGH 56

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Step 2:

Choose your SAUCE


To go along with that personalized craft theme, YPS likes to rotate their beers on tap to feature different, local craft breweries. “Four times a year, Your Pie participates in what we call the Craft Series,” explained Todd, “ We have a featured craft special

Customers can choose from white, wheat or gluten-free dough, eight sauces, eight cheeses and more than 40 fresh vegetables and premium meats, such as Italian sausage and bacon.

YOUR PIE FEATURES A CRAFT SPECIAL WHICH INCLUDES A LIMITED TIME ENTRÉE AND CRAFT BEER which includes a limited time entree and craft beer.” Now through June 10th, the craft special is featuring a slider pizza with a selection of Sweetwater beers. Make that combo a little sweeter, and finish off with one of their eight delicious gelato flavors.

Your Pie's staff builds your custom pizza from scratch.

Step 3 :

Choose your CHEESE

Step 4 :

Choose your TOPPINGS

Step 5 :


Your Pie is the original creator of a brick-oven, down-the-line pizzeria concept.

recipe! “It has the perfect amount of crunch and crisp with none of that soggy chewiness,” said Melanie, “It’s truly different from any other pizza on the market!” Maybe pizza isn’t your thing- don’t worry, YPS has your back! They offer a variety of salads and paninis that can be customized to the same standard as their pies. “My personal favorite is the BBQ Chicken salad,” shared Melanie, “It has the perfect balance of cilantro, red onions, chicken, and mozzarella- I’m addicted!”

Owners of Your Pie Suwanee: Melanie and Todd Walter.

Every few months, Your Pie holds a “Craft-Your-Own Month” where customers submit their own ideas for a new signature dish to be placed on the menu. The winning recipe is placed on the Your Pie menu nationwide for a limited time. “We love getting customer input in all areas of our business,” said Todd “If our customers have great ideas, we want to hear them!” “Since opening our doors last November we feel we have had the opportunity to become so much more involved within the community,” said Melanie, “We have formed relationships with nearby business owners and have had the chance to give back to the local schools!” Your Pie Suwanee regulars can tell you that it is truly a family run business that values the full customer experience. This is evident in not only the quality of the food they provide but in the friendly and caring way in which they serve it! ■


3370 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd Suwanee, GA 30024 (470) 266-1112 suwanee


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LISTINGS BEST AREA DINING OPTIONS FROM FINE DINING TO FUN FAMILY FARE Dollar signs indicate the typical cost per person before drinks, tax and tip.

$ UNDER $20 $$ UNDER $35 $$$ UNDER $50 $$$$ MORE THAN $50

The Curry Pot

3370 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd • Suite 114 Suwanee 470-266-1520 $ The Curry Pot offers the best of traditional Indian vegetarian and non-vegetarian cuisine. They aim to give you a glimpse of India and it’s rich cultures through the food. All of their food is freshly prepared and cooked to order; there is always something to suit everyone. They offer vegetarian, lamb, chicken, and seafood dishes at the spice level of your choosing: mild, medium or spicy, and even a lunch buffet 7 days a week starting at $8.95.


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Suwanee Park Tavern 340 Town Center Ave. • Suwanee 440-266-1516 I $$

Suwanee Park Tavern is a family-friendly restaurant and tavern located in the heart of Suwanee. At Suwanee Park Tavern the focus is on excellent cuisine with the warmth and charm of Southern hospitality.



1500 Peachtree Industrial Blvd Suite 100 • Suwanee 678-541-0645 I $$ Cinco is authentic, Latin-infused Mexican Cuisine served in a familyfriendly setting. With a unique menu, Cinco offers an upscale variety of Mexican dishes that are carefully prepared from scratch. Weekly specials include: Kids eat free Monday & Tuesday, daily drink specials, Sunday brunch and an adjoining After Five lounge that offers live music, fresh tapas and over 60 specialty martinis!





350 Town Center Avenue • Suwanee 678-985-4377 I I $$

Specializing in pizza, pasta and other authentic Italian dishes. Ippolito’s candleit, romantic restaurant provides a fine-dining environment. The menu features antipasto, Chicken Francese, Shrimp Scampi, Salmon Gabriella & more.

Your Pie

3370 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd • Suwanee 460-266-1112 I I $

Your Pie is a fast-casual pizza franchise, inspired by the Italian Island of Ischia. Specializing in personalized pizzas, chopped salads, and Panini’s, Your Pie encourages the customer to be as creative as they want to be against the backdrop of authentic ingredients. Customers choose the combinations and Your Pie delivers to your table hot from the brick oven.

Gulf Coast Grill

Suwanee Pizza Tavern

Bringing the taste of the coast to Suwanee, Gulf Coast Grill serves fresh seafood ranging from salmon, mahi, shrimp, oysters, grouper, catfish, crawfish and crab; as well as sirloin, sausage and chicken with a Cajun twist.

Suwanee Pizza Tavern is known for their made-from-scratch wood-fired Pizza, Garlic Knots, Wings, Sandwiches, Pastas, and friendly atmosphere. The open pizza pit showcases their wood-fired oven where you can watch their pizza chef create your pizza. The dining area is perfect for a family outing, or you can head over to their signature bar with your friends to watch your favorite sports on the flat screen TV's. Visit Suwanee Pizza Tavern, your local upscale pizza tavern!

3463A Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd Suwanee I 678-765-8270 I $

1500 Peachtree Industrial Blvd Suite 150 • Suwanee 678-546-0823 I



Greek Island Grill & Bar

3320 Lawrenceville Suwanee Rd • Suwanee 678-926-3616 I $

Greek Island Grill offers an authentic and eclectic blend of Greek and Mediterranean flavors. From their fresh baked pita, to chargrilled kebobs, with a view of their open kitchen, and wonderful crafted libations coming from their beautiful bar, you will feel as if you are truly in the Greek Islands.


Friends American Grill

3890 Lawrenceville Suwanee Road • Suwanee 678-765-6477 I $

Friends is a neighborhood grill and bar featuring a wide variety of American food items, as well as liquor, beer and wine. They are a great place for families as well as to just get a couple of drinks. They were voted "Best of Gwinnett" as well as a "Readers Choice Winner" in the Gwinnett Daily Post.


2941 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd • Suwanee 678-765-636 I I $ Schlotzsky’s offers a wide variety of freshly baked bread, delicious hot sandwiches, Artisan flatbreads, specialty pizzas, toasted wraps, freshly tossed salads, gourmet soups, and more! Schlotzsky's taste remains true to their roots by using the highest quality ingredients to make the world’s best sandwich.



Claire Addison



is finally here! The winter chill has receded and we are now relishing the warmer weather and the sun shining on our faces. But, weather isn’t the only thing that changes throughout the seasons. We choose our foods, the clothes we wear, and our drinks of choice based on the season we are in. In the world of wine, the spring and summer months beg for cool, crisp wines that cool our palates and compliment crisp salads and fresh fruits. This spring, find a new love for white wines in Rosé wines, Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Viognier, and Sauvignon Blanc.

are in bloom...

My primary choice for the spring and summer months is, without a doubt, Rosé wines. Fortunately, the stigma that all pink wines are sweet has faded into the pas t as Amer ican palates shift towards a drier style that mimics the French Provence Rosés. These wines can be fermented from just about any red grape. The unique color of Rosé comes from the limited contact that the juice has with the skins of the grape. These wines are usually dry,

Banshee Rosé With a bouquet of fresh flowers and just picked strawberries, Banshee Rosé has a pleasant juiciness and succulent fruit character of peaches, red berries, and starfruit.


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This spring, find a new love for white wines in Rosé wines, Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Viognier, and Sauvignon Blanc.

Peitra Santa Pinot Gris Peitra Santa Pinot Gris is crisp and refreshing with flavors of mangos and peaches with hints of citrus. with some wonderful raspberry and strawberry notes. Last spring, I couldn’t get my hands on enough Rosé wines. Rosé wines drink well alone or paired with food, and usually have a year or so in the bottle to experience the full freshness of the season One of my favorite representations of the style is the Banshee Rosé from California, made with Pinot Noir Grapes. And, I’m not alone in my love for the rosé style. Interestingly enough, Beverage Superstore even carries the Jolie-Pitt Miraval Rosé, if you’d like to see what Brad and Angelina have been up to. Another popular, and perhaps more wellknown choice for spring and summertime sipping is Pinot Grigio. This lovely, light-bodied, white wine is most recognizable from Italy, although it has been grown in various places with great success. I usually prefer my Pinot Grigio to be light yellow, with more citrus notes, although some almost have a stainless steel taste, indicative of the stainless steel tanks where the wine is fermented. One of my favorites is the Peitra Santa Pinot Gris from California.

Thirdly, the infamous Riesling grape is the most versatile wine I’ve ever come across. Riesling can vary from the driest white, to the sweetest Late Harvest variety. Usually snappy citrus notes are balanced with lively acidity, making it a perfect “patio pounder” to share with friends at cook-outs, or sitting on the front porch in the evenings. Rieslings are most commonly grown in Washington State, Oregon, Alsace, and Germany and are usually very value-priced. And of course, Chardonnays should never be left out of an article about white wine. Although the trend over the past 15 years has leaned towards heavily oaked, very buttery tastes, I’ve recently noticed a resurgence of the un-oaked style. These wines are very crisp, with more green-apple and tropical fruit notes, leaving you thirsty for another sip. I enjoy sharing these wines with people only to have them come back astounded by the difference between oaked and un-oaked Chardonnays. As the weather changes, I encourage you to branch out and try a white wine that will quench your thirst in the heat of the forthcoming summer. Celebrate the sunshine with a new favorite style! ■

Jolie-Pitt Miraval Rosé Miraval Rosé is a beautiful light pink color with a fantastic bouquet of white fruits, strawberries and floral notes. The mouth is complex with raspberry and wild strawberry notes, wild herbs, citrus and wet stone flavors.





he story of beer in Georgia is almost as old as the state itself. With the explosion of craft breweries across the United States and right here at home, beer has taken a new place in the spotlight. Craft beer drinkers now enjoy a vast selection brewed right in their own neighborhoods. As of 2014, craft breweries have an all-time high market share of 11 percent of all beer sales. In Georgia alone, it is expected that over forty craft breweries will be in operation within the next year. With craft beer on the rise, Georgia consumers appear to be returning to their roots - when beer was a part of everyday life - and yearning to learn more about the history of beer in the Peach State. Originally, Georgia was intended as a colony for debtors. That’s right; our prestigious history starts with broke people who went to jail for being broke. James Oglethorpe experienced the imprisonment of a dear friend of his who had fallen on hard times. Due to the nature of prison in the 1700s – not good, by the way – Oglethorpe’s friend passed away. In response, Oglethorpe made it his life mission to save other prisoners and not condemn them to a life of James Oglethorpe, founder of the colony of Georgia.


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homelessness or death in prison. Oglethorpe approached the King with a model of a military colony between the Spanish in Florida and the English in South Carolina. In this proposed colony, debtors could come and work off their debt. The King gave permission but on the caveat that rules and requirements had to be set in order to determine who could go. If you were going to get out of jail for free, this is how you had to live: Rule number 1: No Alcohol. That’s right, the worst rule you could possibly have. That rule alone most likely turned off many before they even heard the others. The rest of the rules included no gambling, no slavery, no Catholics, and no lawyers. After establishing his rules and loading up the first round of soldiers, James Oglethorpe and his right hand man, William Horton, brought their first crew over to Georgia to settle. At this point they were pretty gung-ho and expecting to be “the best colony ever.” However, the first problem to emerge revolved around hydration. No alcohol consumption meant no beer - which in turn left the local water supply as the only source of hydration. The problem with local water was dysentery. The problem with dysentery was t h a t p e o p l e started dying. Once James Oglethorpe realized how badly this had turned out, he left for England to beg the King for permission to change the rules. But when he left, Oglethorpe put his right hand man, a local favorite, busybody, and friend Major William Horton – temporarily in charge.

They figured out that if people drank beer and not just the local water sources, then they didn’t get sick.

Georgia Historical Marker honoring Major William Horton, founder of Georgia's first brewery on Jekyll Island in 1738.

By the time Horton was given control, the people had learned that they were the only colony living under such a strict set of rules. South Carolina right up the coast looked like Mardi Gras everyday compared to what was going on in Georgia. Rebellion began to stir amongst them, but in an effort to reduce bloodshed, they actually asked Holton for permission before going about the business of stirring a revolution. Horton gave the people permission… with one requirement: nobody dies. The result was a bloodless revolution that brought beer to Georgia! The only issue was that the guy ultimately in charge, James Oglethorpe, was in England when all of this happened. When he returned to assume control of Georgia he discovered that the rules no longer applied and they had gone behind his back. Oglethorpe was furious with Horton and demanded his resignation to which Horton essentially replied, “Hold on a second. Everybody might be tipsy, but nobody’s dying anymore. You’re welcome.” Oglethorpe realized Horton had a point: he was going to be famous, everybody was doing well, and Georgia was going to be successful. So as a reward for his excellent leadership, Major Horton was given control of what became Jekyll Island, Georgia. Horton, who saw firsthand how necessary beer was for survival, got to the island and decided that it would be a great place for a brewery. So in 1738, Major William Horton founded the South’s first brewery on Jekyll Island. With that founding, beer became an integral part of colony life in Georgia. New arrivals to the colony were given a welcome package that included 44 gallons of ale. Yes, 44 gallons. They figured out that if people drank beer and not just the local water sources, then they didn’t get sick. The brewing process actually made the water safer to consume. In the end, beer single-handedly saved Georgia. And today, we’re committed to honoring history by carrying on a rich tradition – beer consumption for your health! ■






,176 2miles

FESTIVAL attendance:

The longest distance a beer lover has traveled to attend the festival.*





seconds Time it took for VIP tickets to sell out in 2015.


5300 OVER

# of enthusiastic



who dedicated their time to make the 5th annual event a success.




OVER 56,000





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to Kingdom Kids to grant wishes for children with terminal illnesses.


*Dr. Jim Burnette, son of Suwanee Mayor, Jimmy Burnette, heard about Suwanee Beer Fest and traveled 2,176 miles from his home in Riverside, California to attend the event!


2015 BEER FEST HOME BREW CONTEST The Home Brew Contest,

sponsored by Brew Depot, saw 100 home brewers enter over 250 different styles of beer into the heated competition. Judging took place prior to Suwanee Beer Fest with the finalists of each category making their way into the "Best in Show" heat at the event. Congratulations to Bill Gillespie who ran home as "Best in Show" with his Premium Bitter. In second was Ryan Boling with his IPA and third place was Jay Young in the fruit beer category. Bob Carlton, owner of Brew Depot, donated $1000 of the competition proceeds to the event's benefitting charity - Kingdom Kids. Veugeler Design Group, the marketing arm behind Suwanee American Craft Beer Fest, raised much-needed funds for the organization as well. Together, over $10,000 was donated, in order to grant wishes for terminally ill children in Gwinnett and Forsyth County.


“Hop Dang Diggity” crowned Georgia’s Best BeeR! Congratulations Jekyll Brewing: winner of the inaugural Brew Battle powered by DraftServ Technologies! Hop Dang Diggity quickly took the lead and stayed there almost all day, as thousands of beer lovers poured their favorite Georgia brew. Terrapin's peanut butter chocolate porter, Liquid Bliss, rose to the top of the Leaderboard for a few minutes, but Jekyll's powerhouse of an IPA came out strong in the end in the ultimate showdown of Georgia's best beer! The Fresh Market, Presenting Sponsor, is now proudly selling Jekyll's signature brews in all seven Metro Atlanta locations.


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citybuzz news and events

from in and around suwanee.


In People & Places...




Paul Perdue

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Suwanee Town Center celebrates art Suwanee SculpTour is a 1- mile walkable art exhibit located in Suwanee Town Center. As part of the City of Suwanee’s public art initiative, the exhibit is designed to bring the community together through imagination and curiosity. The 2013-15 Suwanee SculpTour has officially ended, but 2 of the 14 pieces from the 22- month long exhibit Iron Canopy will remain in Suwanee as part of the City’s permanent by Phil Proctor art collection. The Suwanee Public Arts Commission, using donated funds, purchased “Iron Canopy” by Phil Proctor as the People’s Choice award winner. Dick Cunningham, of Ippolito’s, purchased “Who Let the Dogs Out?” a collection of sculptures by Jim Collins. "We're purchasing the scuplture in memory of our granddaughter's Uncle Rob," said Cunningham. He plans to donate the works to the City where they will remain in Suwanee Town Center Park for the next two years. Throughout Suwanee, more than 20 public art pieces are on permanent display. The 201517 Suwanee SculpTour exhibit will feature 17 artworks in and around Town Center, and officially opens May 16th as part of the Arts in the Park Festival.

Meyrick Murphy takes the big screen Meyrick Murphy, a 10-year old from Cumming, GA was anxiously waiting for the April 21st release of the independent film, “Chasing Ghosts.” Unlike other children her age who line up to see their favorite actors and actresses grace the big screen, she was waiting to see herself on the big screen; however, this was not her first time. Meyrick Murphy, is an aspiring actress who discovered her passion for the spotlight in first grade. She began her career by acting in school plays and knew it was a path she wanted to pursue. Now, at age 10, Murphy’s resume already lists numerous projects that any seasoned actor would be thrilled to have. Local viewers of the AMC Networks mega-hit “The Walking Dead” might be familiar with a young character named Megan who first appeared in Season 6, episode 4 “Live Bait.” She delivered a performance over a series of three episodes that left critics raving. With her most recent project “Chasing Ghosts” being widely made available for DVD and Digital Download, there is no doubt that this young talent will continue on her path to become a household name.

Friends American Grill named April, 2015 Small Business of the Month by the Gwinnett Chamber Friends American Grill was awarded small business of the month for the month of April by the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce. Friends was founded in 2010 by Suwanee residents Suzanne Cartwright and Ray Stanjevich, and has locations in Suwanee, Buford, Dacula, Dawsonville and Winder. Plans are also under way to open Friends restaurants in Canton and Bethlehem.


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Winning Snap Suwanee photos on exhibit at City Hall Suwanee appears fun, outdoorsy, artsy, and snowy in the dozen winning photographs that comprise the 2015 Snap Suwanee exhibit currently on display at City Hall, 330 Town Center Avenue. Sixty entries were received for this year’s annual community photo competition. The winning photographs will be on display until February 2016. “Snap Suwanee has become one of the City’s favorite community engagement projects,” says Public Information Officer Lynne DeWilde. “It’s always fun to see what strikes our photographers as noteworthy from year to year. This year’s winning photos capture moments one doesn’t see every day in Suwanee – from a hot air balloon in Town Center to snow to a paddleboarder on the Chattahoochee. They also capture those moments that are more ubiquitous, including folks interacting with public art and utilizing Suwanee parks as backdrops.”

Four Ladies In Hats At The Lake By Carla Hoff

The winning photos and photographers:

‘A Beautiful Fractal’ - Diana Duffield ‘Christmas at Town Center’ - Sean & Zane Tackett ‘Four Ladies in Hats at the Lake’ - Carla Hoff ‘Heal the Past. Live the Present. Dream the Future.’ - Terri Lynn Bealle ‘Inspired’ - Lesa Kelley Osborn ‘Little Smokie – Pig in the Park’ - Connie White ‘Never Forget!’ - Sharron Callahan ‘Paddleboarder on the Chattahoochee’ - Kelly Haggard Olson ‘Past Meets Future: International Space Station over Historic Suwanee’ - Kristen Fredriksen ‘Magical Moments’ - Dallas Gillespie ‘A Walk in the Woods’ - Steve White ‘Winter in Old Town’ - Sandy Weaver

Never Forget

By Sharron Callahan

Paddleboarder on the Chattahoochee By Kelly Haggard Olson

Friends is a strong supporter of our community, hosting multiple events and fundraisers throughout the year that benefit organizations such as the North Gwinnett Co-op, Toys for Tots, Relay For Life, and Ansley's Easter Brunch which goes to support the family of 3 year-old Peyton Greene, who is battling cancer.

(L to R): Heather; Ray Stanjevich, Owner; Cedric; Scott Kibler, Membership Services Coordinator with the Gwinnett Chamber




Sugarloaf Ballet nominated as a Top Business by Gwinnett Chamber Sugarloaf Ballet has been recognized as one of the top businesses in metro Atlanta with a nomination for a 2015 IMPACT Regional Business Award, presented by BB&T. “The IMPACT Regional Business Awards celebrate premier organizations in critical industries that are driving economic development and job creation, while enhancing our quality of life,” said Dr. Dan Kaufman, President & CEO of the Gwinnett Chamber. Sugarloaf Ballet is a nonprofit performing company founded by Lori Zamzow-Wire with a mission to professionally inspire young artists through excellence in performing arts education. Sugarloaf Ballet includes student, pre-professional and college level companies, and gives over $20,000 each year in scholarships for students in financial need. “We are incredibly honored to be nominated for this award,” said Sugarloaf Ballet Artisitic Director Lori ZamzowWire, “We believe in the power of the performing arts to not only transform individual lives but also uplift the entire community, and that is why we are committed to providing professional instruction and productions in Gwinnett and the entire MetroAtlanta area.” The IMPACT Regional Business Awards will take place on Thursday, May 13th at Gwinnett Center. For more information, visit


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KSG Parkour hosts Pink Parkour Event to fight cancer As part of the initiative aimed at improving the lives and health of everyone they can reach, KSG Parkour is hosting a Pink Parkour Event on Saturday, May 23rd at 1pm benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. The Pink Parkour Event will showcase guest speakers, parkour coach-led instruction, games, activities, raffles and much more. A portion of the proceeds will go directly to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation; a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to achieve prevention and a cure for breast cancer by providing critical funding for research and increase public awareness about good breast health. KSG Parkour’s motto states, “There is only the choice to help and that is a choice I can live with.” KSG aims to help as many people as they can through fitness or philanthropic events. The fitness members of KSG Parkour have each chosen a fitness goal to overcome and each time their goal is reached, they pledge to donate to cancer research. Additionally, KSG heads the ‘LEAP Sponsoring Kids to Get Fit’ Program for children in less fortunate circumstances to be able to participate in the KSG Kids Fitness programs where they will get the opportunity to have fun running, jumping and swinging their way to fitness. For more information, please visit

the buzz

Top TV personality and nutrition expert leads seminar at Stage 3 Fitness Stage 3 Fitness is continuing their efforts to help people change their lives through various events such as the Nutrition Transformation Seminar they hosted last month. Over 175 people were in attendance to kick off their new 8-week Nutrition Transformation program. Attendees learned how to change their lives by eating in 3’s! Stage 3 Fitness’ Nutrition Transformation program educated clients on how to stabilize blood sugar, increase metabolism and lose body fat through a simple eat in 3’s nutrition program. Jake Williams, owner of Stage 3 Fitness, has partnered with Mark Macdonald, a leading authority on nutrition and wellness, and the author of the New York Times bestselling book Body Confidence, and his new release Why Kids Make you Fat… And How To Get Your Body Back to help educate the Suwanee Community on how to transform their bodies. Macdonald knows what it takes to lose weight the right way and achieve life-long body confidence. He is a regular contributor to CNN/HLN and Dr. Oz, a National Ambassador to the American Diabetes Association, Chair of the International Board of Nutrition and Fitness Coaching, and a top presenter for IDEA, the world's largest fitness organization.

City of Suwanee reveals plan to install 24/7 ‘fast’ charging station for electric vehicles. Partnering with the Charge Georgia Rebate Program, the City of Suwanee is working to install an electric vehicle fast-charge station at Town Center for public use. This will be the first fast-charge station to be installed by a municipality in Gwinnett County. “It’s really exciting to be able to offer an environmentally sensitive service such as this,” says Public Works Director James Miller. “The electric vehicle station also serves to give folks another reason to come to Town Center and further promotes downtown Suwanee,” states Miller. The dual-head, level-three charging station is expected to be installed by the summer, and will be available for 24/7 use, capable of providing an 80 percent charge to most electric vehicles in under 30 minutes. Two parking spots at the back corner of City Hall on Savannah Square Street will be reserved for electric vehicles using the station, which will have two connectors, one which will serve SAE J1772-enabled vehicles while the other connects to CHAdeMO-enabled vehicles.


Finders, Keepers!

Suwanee’s annual program, Art on a Limb, kicks off in May. Throughout the month of May, the City of Suwanee will hide two art pieces each day along the Suwanee Creek Greenway or at Sims Lake and White Street parks. Those who find the artwork – this year, clay hearts created by Suwanee area resident Tina Waltke – get to keep them. The red clay hearts, with handwritten loving words etched in it, will be hidden daily (two pieces at a time) along the Suwanee Creek Greenway and at Sims Lake Park and White Street Park throughout the month of May. Suwanee’s Art on a Limb program is an annual celebration of art and nature that allows those who find the trail treasures to keep them. “I love the idea of Art on Limb,” Waltke says. “It’s a sweet and giving concept, to give people something, while also encouraging them to explore Suwanee’s trails and parks!”

the buzz

Arts in the Park returns to Suwanee Town Center Park

Saturday, May 16th, 10:00am to 5:00pm The North Gwinnett Arts Association continues the tradition 16 of great art in Suwanee with their 5th annual Arts in the Park festival that so many community members look forward to each year. This free, family-friendly festival showcases about 50 juried artists and is a great show to find the perfect art piece you’ve been looking for! Art enthusiasts will also have the opportunity to see the masters at work with live art demos all day long. Situated at the beautiful Suwanee Town Center surrounded by upscale retail shops and restaurants, the festival complements a day of shopping for the whole family. In addition to great art, festival-goers will enjoy SculpTour: Suwanee’s walkable public art encounter with a live piece built onsite! Art activities for the community – including Paint-A-Wreck, Pollock Painting & Do-ityourself tie-dye shirts! Uptown Entertainment will provide live DJ music for the themed “Peace, Love & Arts in the Park” event and live music at the end of the show provided by Clyde's On Fire. Returning food vendors are The French Truck, Hobie Kettle Popcorn, Williamson Bros BBQ and many more! There will be an award winning Chalk Walk Competition open to Elementary, Middle and High school students from 10am to 3pm – all competing in different categories. The winner will be announced at 4:00 PM. Art pieces will remain on display throughout the festival (weather permitting). There will also be professional street artists at work creating longlasting 3D chalk drawings around Town Center Park. New to Arts in the Park this year are wood sculptors’ Jeanette Pierce and her father, John Pierce. MAY

You may be familiar with the Pierce family name as Jeanette’s grandfather George Pierce Sr., was one of Suwanee’s first mayors. The Pierce’s are looking forward to participating in this community event and showcasing their beautiful handiwork – such as beautiful yet functional bowls made entirely of natural wood. Proceeds from Arts in the Park directly benefit the Rosemary Benavides Williams Student Art Scholarship. The North Gwinnett Arts Association (NGAA) awards the art scholarships to collegebound high school graduates majoring or planning to major in the field of visual arts.


people&places on the scene...

Spring into Color 5K Dash Saturday, April 4th TOWN CENTER PARK PHOTOS:



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Shamrock Run 2015 Saturday, March 14th TOWN CENTER PARK PHOTOS:


She Moves 2015 Saturday, April 11th TOWN CENTER PARK PHOTOS:



SBA March 2015 Meeting Wednesday, April 8th SALON GRECO PHOTOS:


Georgia SPCA Run for the Rescues 5K, Fun Run & Festival Saturday, March 28th TOWN CENTER PARK PHOTOS:



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Suwanee Beer Fest 2015 Saturday, March 14th TOWN CENTER PARK PHOTOS:



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Jubilee Shopping Center Easter Egg Hunt 2015 Sunday, March 29th




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people & places


people & places

Annandale's Jazzy Thing 2015 Saturday, April 25th



Food Truck Friday Friday, April 3rd





upcoming suwanee area events

May 2015 1 31


May 2nd


Oct 3rd

Art on a Limb May 1st-May 31st

Find a hidden, red clay heart on one of Suwanee’s trails or parks, and it’s yours to keep!

Suwanee Farmers Market Saturdays 8:00am-12:00pm Town Center Park


Star 94 Woofstock May 9th 12:00pm-7:00pm Town Center Park

For more information, visit


Lanier Islands Full Moon Party May 2nd 7:00pm-11:00pm Sunset Cove

Live music from the Fly Betty Band, food and beverage specials


Cinco De Mayo May 5th


Cinco De Mayo Celebration May 5th 2:00pm-10:00pm Cinco Suwanee

Food and drink specials, live music & more!


Oh Gussie! Cookbook Talk & Signing May 8th 7:30pm-8:30pm Gwinnett Public Library Kimberly Schalpman of Little Big Town will be discussing and signing her cookbook


Ladies Night Out May 8th 6:00pm-8:00pm HealthSource Suwanee Open to all the ladies in the Community

9 9

LanierWorld May 9th opens for the season Lanier Islands Thyroid & Weight Loss Lecture May 9th Sugar Hill Spine & Wellness


Mother’s Day May 10th


May Suwanee Business Alliance Meeting May 13th 6:00pm-8:00pm Suwanee Pizza Tavern


Arts in the Park May 16th 10:00am-5:00pm Town Center Park For more information, visit


Planet Smoothie 5th Anniversary Party May 16th 8:00am-7:30pm Planet Smoothie Suwanee Prizes and Giveaways


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Wine Pairing Dinner with Goldschmidt Vineyards May 20th 7:00pm Tannery Row Ale House


Last Day of School! Gwinnett County May 21st


Red, White, Bluegrass & Bach May 22nd 7:00pm-9:30pm Town Center Park Memorial Day Event and Concert


Pink Parkour May 23rd 1:00pm KSG Parkour

Call 678-956-7712 to register, walk-ins welcome. Ages 6 & up


Memorial Day May 25th


The Royal Dance Academy Spring Show May 28th 6:00pm-8:30pm North Gwinnett High School

29 thru 31

Georgia Cup Basketball Final May 29th-May 31st Suwanee Sports Academy For more info or tickets, visit


Melanoma Awareness Event May 30th 1:00pm-5:00pm Town Center Park For more information, call Frantz Hilaire at 678-977-6329


June 2015 3

Charles Martin, New York Times Bestselling Author June 3rd 7:00pm-8:00pm Books for Less, Buford Charles Martin, NYT Bestselling author of 10 novels


Food Truck Friday June 5th 5:30pm-9:30pm Town Center Park Music begins @ 7 pm


Movies Under the Stars June 6th 7:00pm Town Center Park

Family movie @ 7 pm; second movie will start about 8:45 pm


June SBA Meeting June 10th 6:00pm-8:00pm Tannery Row Ale House


Teddy Bear Picnic June 20th 1:00pm-3:00pm George Pierce Park Community Recreation Center

Ages 3-up, $5/child, parents free, pre-register by 6/15, call 678-277-0910.



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Father’s Day June 21st

Suwanee Magazine May-June 2015  

Suwanee Magazine May-June 2015 edition. For Suwanee Georgia and surrounding cities.

Suwanee Magazine May-June 2015  

Suwanee Magazine May-June 2015 edition. For Suwanee Georgia and surrounding cities.