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A Publication of The Newnan Times-Herald

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William W. Thomasson Marianne C. Thomasson C. Clayton Neely and Elizabeth C. Neely Debbie Burns Brady

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Debbie Burns Brady

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FOR ADVERTISING INFORMATION call 770.253.1576 or email Newnan-Coweta Magazine is published bi-monthly by The Newnan Times-Herald, Inc., 16 Jefferson Street, Newnan, GA 30263. Subscriptions: Newnan-Coweta Magazine is distributed in home-delivery copies of The Newnan Times-Herald and at businesses and offices throughout Coweta County. Individual subscriptions are also available for $30.00. To subscribe, call 770.304.3373. On the Web: Š 2018 by The Newnan Times-Herald, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited.

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14 | Living a Life of Financial Freedom

The path to financial freedom starts with taking the first step. This Moreland couple helps amateur investors get started.

18 | The Angels at Angel's House

Coweta teen girls in crisis have a haven at Angel's House.

22 | Healing and Hope at Pathway Home

This residential program helps women learn the tools to be productive members of our community.

40 | Celebrating the Legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. Beyond the floats and marching bands,

Newnan's MLK parade celebrates a message of unity and growth.

51 | Gun Safety Classes Save Lives

Whether you're a weekend shooting enthusiast or have never picked up a gun, the Citizens Gun Safety Class offered by 26 | Darlings on Date Night the Coweta Sheriff Department will give Keep romance alive in your relationship with frequent you a fresh perspective on gun safety date nights. These Coweta couples share their favorite date night traditions. Lee-King Pharmacy and protecting yourself.


10 |

in this issue


12 | From the Editor 34 | Ask Coweta 36 | Coweta Lifestyles 44 | Coweta History 46 | Coweta Cooks! 54 | Coweta Home


56 | Coweta Sports 60 | Day Trip 64 | Coweta Gardening 68 | Around Coweta 70 | Blacktop 72 | Coweta Scene 74 | Index of Advertisers 74 | What’s Next

on the cover

Danielle and Alexander Barker plan for weekly date nights. Dinner and a stroll is their favorite date night combo. Learn how other Coweta couples keep romance alive. ➤ Darlings

on Date Night, page 26

Photo by Sara Moore


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24 First Ave, Newnan, GA 30263 | (770) 683-6282


H A P P Y 2 018!

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Embrace the New Year For me, January and February always feel a little bleak after the excitement of the holidays and before the signs of spring set in. Maybe it’s the annual commitment I make to myself to eat healthier and exercise more that weighs my enthusiasm down…and generally that’s the only weighing down I manage! Rather than feeling gloomy, let’s embrace the new year! We can start with the healthy, but flavorful recipes we’ve featured in this issue and get the clutter out of our houses with the tips in our Get Organized article. When it gets dark at 5:00, we have plenty of time to shape up our living spaces. If you’re a runner, you probably have the Angel’s House 5 or 10K on your calendar in early February. It’s a popular event with over 1,000 runners hitting the asphalt, and the proceeds support the Angel’s House’s hands-on mission of helping Coweta’s children in need of shelter and guidance. Read about what they’re doing and you’ll run a bit more joyously. Pathway Home is another resource in our community that deserves a light to be shone on their program. Adult women commit to a 12-month program to break free from addiction and pursue a more productive life by living at the Pathway Home and following their program. Supporting these two wonderful programs has a direct effect on your neighbors in need. Newnan’s MLK Parade gives you another reason to get outside in January, but it’s so much more than fun floats and marching bands. Newnan has a complex history and the road to unity was bumpy. The parade reminds us all that that work is ongoing and renews our commitment to it. The pages of this issue offer hope, inspiration and celebrate the spirit of our community – a pretty exciting way to kick off the new year. I hope you enjoy reading it!

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Senior Communities Centered Around Family january/february 2018 | 13

New York Times best-selling author Phil Town (left) and his wife, Melissa, have a passion for horses, along with their career of teaching about investing and financial freedom. The Towns reside in Moreland. 14 |

Living a Life of

FINANCIAL FREEDOM Moreland Couple Helps Everyday Investors Achieve Their Goals


estled in the small town of Moreland, Melissa we love,” Phil said. “We also sell the horses we breed, and Phil Town are enjoying their horses, nature, one of which is the Irish Draught, an endangered species and helping the everyday person learn the ins of horse.” and outs of investment. But horses aren’t the only business the Towns have a Phil – an Oregon native and best-selling author – and passion for. They own and operate Rule One Investing, Melissa have called Coweta home since 2011. Phil’s which specializes in teaching how to invest based on the personality and energy reflects Warren Buffett strategy. Buffett is his passion for his family, an investment strategist, and CEO/ horses, the outdoors and chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, financial freedom. The couple’s a real estate company. four children are now grown, Phil said he was introduced to the but their home boasts over 30 world of investing while working as horses and nearly 80 acres for a Grand Canyon river guide. After Melissa, along with trainer saving a wealthy man’s life, the man Sarah Beth Anton, to train thanked Phil by teaching him how horses. The equestrians even to invest. At this time, Phil said he had a horse to compete in the was only making $4,000 per year, Olympics in 2012. but what he learned would begin a Phil said he and his wife Photo Courtesy Phil & Melissa Town solid foundation for his knowledge decided to relocate to Coweta of investing. because they came down often to foxhunt. Once they “I started with $1,000,” Phil said. “It’s never about the found an available property, they both decided it was a money. It’s about what you know, and once you know good move, especially because of nearby equestrians. how to do it, it’s not rocket science.” Both Phil and Melissa said horses are a passion for Two of Phil’s New York Times best sellers, “Rule them, but also a business. Number One,” and “Payback Time: Making Big Money “We always wanted to create a life around work that Is the Best Revenge!” speak about the basics of investing

Written by KANDICE BELL | Photographed by SUSAN CRUTCHFIELD

january/february 2018 | 15

Photos Courtesy Phil & Melissa Town The Towns host a free monthly, investment seminar in Peachtree City. Hundreds of students attend to learn the ins and outs of investing.

“It’s never about the money. It’s about what you know, and once you know how to do it, it’s not rocket science.” 16 |

based on his knowledge. Phil has a third book coming out in March of this year, which his daughter Danielle helped him write. His books are available in nearly 14 languages. Phil doesn’t take all of the credit for his success. “Melissa keeps everything going,” he said. “This is a family business.” “We may be having dinner or out for a walk, and come up with different ways to do things,” Melissa said. “He comes up with the ideas and I figure out how to make them happen.” The couple believes it’s important to pay it forward and share their knowledge with people. Once a month for the past five years, they have hosted a free, threeday, interactive investment class in Peachtree City at the Wyndham Peachtree Hotel and Conference Center. “We taught our first class in 2008 in Singapore,” Melissa said. “We usually have 300-400 people in a class. They’ve come from everywhere in the world. We’ve had students from Croatia, Australia, and other countries. We actually had our first student from Coweta come to our last class.” Phil said the classes are fun to teach, and he also hosts a free podcast that has over 3 million downloads, “Invested: The Rule #1 Podcast,” which is listed in the Top Podcasts that Teach You About Money by U.S. News. “This information is nothing short of amazing, and it will change people’s lives when they learn it,” Phil said. “After all these years, we have thousands of letters from people thanking us for teaching them,” Melissa said. “Some of them have been able to retire early or put their kids through college. We’ve even received pictures of past students with their brokerage statements showing when they’ve made their first million dollars.”

“It doesn’t matter what you start with,” Phil said. “What really matters is that you start and learn how to invest properly.” Phil has made several appearances on national television shows and has even shared the stage with many American presidents. As far as life in Coweta, the Towns enjoy the small-town feel, along with getting know their neighbors in the community. “We’re really excited about being involved in Coweta County,” Phil said. “There are super good people with a large range of lifestyles. You have the rural lifestyle like here in Moreland, but I love the diversity. We’re friends with all of our neighbors. This is a friendly community. I’ve been all over the world and lived all over the United States, but I’ve never lived in a community like this one.” NCM

Financial/Investing Tips from Phil and Melissa Town

1. Pay yourself first. Put 5. Read Warren Buffett’s annual letter. away 10 percent of your 6. “As an investor and a citizen, earnings before paying you vote with your money what bills and live on what’s left. you want to see in the world.” 2. Invest in businesses while prices are low. 3. Learn how to invest properly. 4. Invest in real estate, stocks, and your own business all the same way. Every one of them is a business and if you treat them like a business, you can’t hardly help Phil Town's books are available in nearly 14 getting rich. languages.

Thank You Y Coweta

for a successful 2017!

For supporting us through donations and sponsorships For attending our events And special thanks to our Annual Sponsors

Because of your generosity you have helped us support the nonprofits through grants, educational tools, resources, and our programs such as Young Professionals In Philanthropy and our Community Service Team that benefits Coweta and it’s citizens. january/february 2018 | 17

Written by ANNIE SINGH-QUERN | Photographed by BETH NEELY


shelter for teenage girls in crisis, Angel’s House was created when the local community realized there was no place for children to stay during an emergency. Community partners joined hands to form a safe haven for such children, officially breaking ground in 2002. Two summers later, many residents, including Newnan native country Beck y Par ish, Angel's Ho singer, Alan Jackson, generously donated use Progra m Director time and talent to the new organization. Jackson and his wife Denise hosted a concert and raffled off their Corvette to help raise funds for the cause. They also gave name to the nonprofit. It was their hope that each and every child who seek refuge at Angel’s House will be surrounded by “heavenly and earthly angels.” Angel’s House has supported children from many walks of life, with over half coming from Coweta County. Over the years, the house became a welcome home for teen girls in state custody. Some who seek protection are taken from their homes because of physical abuse, sexual assault, neglect or risky behaviors, while others are between foster homes. Some stays are planned but others arrive in the flight of the night. Becky Parish, the shelter’s Program Director for over 10 years, remarked, “Many of the children who come to Angel’s House on an emergency basis walk in with only the clothes on their backs.” Mya is one child who sought protection at Angel’s House. According Eric and Angela Vielhaber, two of the house parents who live part-time at Angel’s House, greet the girls at the door every day when they get home after school.

january/february 2018 | 19

The living room (far left) is a perfect landing spot for the teens to hang out and chill, with all the comforts of home. In the dining room area (middle photo), a long wooden table that seats ten is reserved not just for family meals, but also serves as a meeting place. At right is one of the bedrooms decorated by volunteers. Each one features locally made art pieces, along with a desk for studying.

to Angela Vielhaber, one of the live-in house parents at Angel’s House, “We were able to look beyond the walls of her anger and frustration and see the beauty and potential Mya could not see.” Nurtured over time, “she began to emerge from the ashes of a broken and destroyed life,” continued Vielhaber. Keeping hard at her studies with a supportive team at Angel’s House beside her, Mya finally graduated from high school to begin college. Mya sums up her experience at Angel’s House, “Living at Angel’s House is like living with a family that you can connect with. They accept you for who you are.” As with Mya and other children - whether they remain overnight, a week, a month or a few years - the promise for these young lives in upheaval remains the same at the shelter: to tend to their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual needs by providing security, comfort, structure and healing. Comfort is offered in a house that looks like any other home. Staff at Angel’s House welcome each child as part of a “family” at the doorsteps. The front doors open to a tidy and spacious living room with comfortable sofas donated from the community. On one side of the room, framed motivational quotes spread across a wall. A couple of donated computers, shelves of books, games, and other comforts of home are placed throughout the open area, which is a perfect landing spot for the teens to hang out and chill. The fridge and pantry are abundantly stocked with donated goods. Each evening, the entire living area is filled with the aroma of home-cooked goodness such as chicken casserole, a house favorite. In the

20 |

dining room area, a long wooden table that seats ten is reserved not just for family meals, but homework and talking through issues that may need to be resolved in the group. Volunteers decorate the bedrooms in a trendy color scheme, and each one features locally made art pieces, along with a desk for studying. Live-in house parents take turns every seven days to be there for the kids 24/7. Structure is accomplished through house chores and showing respect for self and others. Like most able-bodied children in a family, the teenagers at Angel’s House are expected to participate in regular duties. Each child checks off chores from a list on the wall by the kitchen. Laundry is individually done on an assigned day. Beds are neatly made and belongings are put away in their rightful places. A typical weekday for the teens after rising is eating breakfast and hopping on the bus to school. A bowl of fresh fruit or other snacks await hungry mouths returning from a full day of learning. Tutoring is on a regular schedule, three times a week. Depending on the day, church is included in the activities. After dinner, the girls can choose to relax with a book, play cards, watch a show or play video games before turning in. On weekends, they sleep in like most teenagers, then enjoy a planned activity or a visit from family after chores are completed. With healing being a critical part of the recovery process of childhood trauma, individualized therapy remains a commitment for the teen girls. Every week, a counselor visits the girls on a one-on-one basis. Tending to the teens’ physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being helps prepare the youngsters for future positive living. Upon completing their stay, some children reunite with

Volunteers put together Abby’s Closet (left photo), which stocks books and other school supplies for the girls, free of charge. One Eagle Scout built private changing rooms for the girls to try on clothes when they arrive (center photo). Outside, volunteers built a firepit surrounded by bench swings (right photo).

their biological parents or relatives while others find another “family” in a foster home or group setting. The Angel’s House mission of helping to create a meaningful life for young hearts is sustained by the supporters of the local community. They receive many donations, which come from churches, individual donors, businesses and corporations. One creative boy scout built private dressing rooms for when the girls first come to the house and need to try on new clothes as an Eagle Scout project. An entire room in Angel’s House is dedicated to Abby’s Closet, which stocks books and other school supplies for the girls, free of charge. Abby’s Closet is a foundation named after 9-year-old Abby Bacho, who lost her life as the result of a car accident in Newnan involving a distracted driver in 2012. Other volunteers built a firepit surrounded by bench swings, where the girls can relax and make s’mores. In return, the teenagers give back to those in need in the community. This past Christmas, the girls carried out their holiday tradition by creating greeting cards to send to U.S. military personnel. The girls also volunteer every quarter with a food pantry ministry and send school supplies to an orphanage in Haiti. In February of each year, the nonprofit organizes its only fundraiser, Run for Angels & Chicken Q , a community gathering that drew a whopping 1,000 runners from around the county in 2017. After the run, hundreds of locals line up to get their BBQ chicken to take away or eat right on the spot. Since the first race in 2002, Huckleberry’s barbecue has provided the meat, and volunteers provide a variety of desserts. Last year, over Participants line up for the annual Run for Angels, a race that drew a whopping 1,000 runners from around the county in 2017. The Run for Angels & Chicken Q serves as the only fundraiser for the nonprofit. For some, the barbecue alone is enough of a reason to come out and support the charity. Last year, over 1,400 plates of barbecue were sold.

1,400 plates of barbecue were sold. Kelley Welden, president of the board of directors, attributed the success to a board committee of 14 members who devote their time and talent to planning the event for at least six months before runners take to the course. Additional funds stream in from over 100 sponsors and other supporters. “We have been blessed with an outpouring of love and support from this community for many years. Everyone working together is what makes this once-a-year event such a success. It all goes to support those girls who need stability, love and support,” Welden stated. The 16th annual Run for Angels & Chicken Q is scheduled for February 3, 2018, at First United Methodist Church in downtown Newnan. Run options are a 1-mile fun run and a 10K race. The race also serves as a timed qualifier for the annual Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta. Registration can be made at and through the nonprofit’s website, Angel’s House is part of the Georgia Baptist Children’s Homes and Family Ministries, Inc. To find out more about the mission of Angel’s House, please contact NewnanCoweta Angel’s House Program Director, Becky Parish, at 770-251-7050.

• Angel’s House has served 253 children (and families) si nce it opened it s doors in 2004. • In August 200 7, Angel’s House became a place of shelte r exclusively for teenage girls in crisis. • 62.5% of child ren who seek re fuge at Angel’s House ar e from Coweta County.

Healing and Hope at

Pathway Home O

Bonnie Wozniak, Pathway Home founder and Executive Director

n November 12, 2017, 31-year-old Ashley graduated from Pathway Home. It was a testament to a new beginning, and her freedom from addiction. She explained, “I was broken. Now I am free. Free from addiction. Free to begin a new life.” A 12-month, faith-based residential program, Pathway Home offers rehabilitation and restoration to 18- to 38-year-old women plagued with drug and alcohol addictions. Bonnie Wozniak, Pathway Home founder and Executive Director, started the nonprofit when she learned about the lack of common care and resources that women with addictions were offered. “It’s not okay that they had experienced such trauma as children when they had no choice and then were left to figure out how to succeed,” Ms. Wozniak stated. Since its inception in 2005, Pathway Home has been a light in the tunnel of darkness for women psychologically wounded from physical and sexual abuse, some abandoned as children. The mission exists to enable such women to discover and embrace their Godgiven purpose, and ultimately lead a meaningful life. Ms. Wozniak explained, “The women who come to seek help at Pathway Home are at a crossroad between life and death, plain and simple. Had they taken another step in the other direction, they probably would not be around today.” Ashley’s decision to seek healing at Pathway Home was out of a determination to break free from the bonds of addiction. She was a third-generation victim of chronic drug use. She confessed, “My mother introduced me to drugs. I had no place to turn.” Written by ANNIE SINGH-QUERN | Photographed by BETH NEELY

Ashley recently celebrated her completion of the Pathway program. Now drug-free, she is one step closer to regaining control of her life.

By the time she was 17, she was on her own, blazing a path of selfdestruction. A past resident of four different rehabilitation programs, Ashley had remained unchanged and trapped in the cycle of abuse. She confessed somberly, “I realized I was my mother.” Her mother just passed from an overdose. With its guiding principle in “Heart Care,” healing and transformation for the women occurs from the inside out. The criteria for entering the program at Pathway Home are an overwhelming desire to change and 100% commitment to the curriculum. “We teach the ladies to have a radical faith to match a radical darkness. Theirs is not a weak Christianity,” stated Ms. Wozniak. The first steps women embark upon is to forgive and deepen their faith in the Lord. They learn to forgive themselves and others who have done them wrong. For Ashley, it was her parents, and herself. “I asked God to change my desires and my heart. He poured his unconditional love in me,” the 31-year-old said. Once she surrendered herself to Him for guidance and support, she felt a sense of peace to continue in the program. A typical week at Pathway Home

begins with the women rising early. Encouragement in the form of daily devotions from the Bible starts off the day. Working out physically at a neighborhood gym and eating well provide a sense of mental wellness. Group discussions and individualized life coaching are also part of the weekly schedule. The curriculum is also geared to teach life skills, a discipline that was basically non-existent in the chaotic lives of the majority of women prior to the program. In Ashley’s previous world, it never crossed her mind to think of embarking on a simple task such as preparing a meal, much less trying to accomplish one. At Pathway Home, she learned to plan a menu, make a grocery list, cook, and share a meal with her fellow housemates. She said those kinds of small accomplishments made her realize how to really live day-to-day. According to Ms. Wozniak, one of the most empowering aspects of the program is for a woman to discover her God-given purpose in life. This begins around the ninth month and lasts for about six weeks. Life coaching is used to facilitate personal growth, with an emphasis on setting and achieving goals. Through individual sessions, strengths and gifts are uncovered, as well as weaknesses such as destructive patterns and behavior triggers. Because change begins and

At far left, Ashley reads her statement of purpose aloud in front of her friends and family at the graduation while Bonnie Wozniak celebrates. The ceremony acknowledges the struggles each lady has overcome and praises their victory over addiction. At left, Bonnie Wozniak washes Ashley’s feet and anoints her with oil as a part of her graduation ceremony.

january/february 2018 | 23

At the home, group discussions and individualized life coaching are part of the weekly schedule. Bonnie Wozniak makes time for each lady at the house to meet with her on a regular basis to check in and ensure that they are making healthy choices.

ow? n K ou Y id D

at Pathway Of the Women Home... ed xually assault • 87% were se as children. ced. • 83% are divor ts e or both paren • 55% had on icts. who were add

happens internally, the end result is a new perspective to life, and ultimately, a changed life. “Each lady forms a purpose statement that embraces the redemption story and gives hope and value,” she explained. Through this holistic approach to healing, women learn to make healthy choices and gain confidence and security. This further equips them to form healthy relationships. They are then empowered to live their dreams. At the end of the 12 months, hope and a newfound purpose help them prepare for a successful life ahead and to make a positive impact in the community. Ashley admitted that the healing journey does not always go smoothly. When she is having a challenging day, she finds the time to talk to one of the volunteer leaders or she asks Him to give her strength. In turn, she says, He exchanges her anxiety for peace. She shares her favorite biblical verse: “God is within her. She will not fail.” In the last three months of the program, the women become “interns” where they are given opportunities to carry out the values that have been instilled in them during their journey at Pathway Home – codes of honor, integrity and faith. Activities include leading morning devotionals, organizing the long grocery list and assisting women who are just coming on board at Pathway Home. This allows them to set a living example to the other women in the program. Being independent also helps prepare women in this phase of the program to immerse more smoothly into the community. Pathway Home has a program completion rate of 80%. Ms. Wozniak remarked, “Graduates are productive, positive citizens.” Some women have formed families and established careers or become entrepreneurs. Eight of the graduates have gone on to college to complete degrees, four to the Masters level. “We believe in our program because lives really change and that is our greatest desire,” stated Ms. Wozniak. Now, after her one-year journey at Pathway Home, Ashley is proud to say she is drug-free. She can now hold her youngest son in her arms at night with the hope to someday have custody of her two older boys. Now she can carry a driver’s license that will enable her to look freely for a job. And now she can take the next step to give back to the community that she never fathomed she would ever be a normal part of just a year ago. Ashley’s advice to other women who are struggling with addiction is to seek a path of freedom at Pathway Home. “You can be free,” she said. To find out more about Pathway Home and how you can support the daily needs of its women and the program, please contact Bonnie Wozniak at or 770-683-7325, or visit NCM

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Laura and Matt enjoy cooking one-of-a-kind meals in their kitchen.


Darlings on

Date Nights


verybody loves a great date night. The challenge these days is to find the time to have one! If you are a couple, whether dating or married, with or without kids, you’re probably pressed to take time out of your busy day to spend it with your significant other.

Relationship experts noted that date nights are one way couples show they care and are important to each other beyond the roles they may have as husband, wife, boyfriend or girlfriend. Spending uninterrupted quality time together allows couples to become and stay close. Once a week is recommended, but if it’s not feasible, then try twice a month, but make sure you dock the date in your calendar! Here, Coweta residents share their traditions and tips about date nights. We hope that you can nod your heads at their experiences, and attempt some of their recommendations, despite the many commitments and interruptions that life places in your paths.

FIRST DATES If you’re a couple, it means that you’ve had a first date and that it probably fared well! Laura Palmer, who has been married to Matt for three years, admitted that her initial date with him was “good, bad, fun

Written by ANNIE SINGH-QUERN | Photographed by SARA MOORE

january/february 2018 | 27

and embarrassing.” After their dinner together, she realized her car had a flat tire and asked Matt to change it. “It was a good test to see just how sweet he was... he passed!” she said. Amy and Adam Gardner agreed that couples should find ways to learn more about each other when they are on their first dates. With a liking for the outdoors, this couple recommended a fun activity such as playing mini golf, but struck the movies off the to-do list since it diminishes the chance to interact with each other.

DATE NIGHTS OUT AND ABOUT IN COWETA There is something to be said about going out on a date at night. Maybe it’s leaving the frenzy of the day behind, experiencing the abundance of what Coweta

28 |

TOP, Adam and Amy Gardner enjoy weekend date nights at Nic & Norman's in downtown Senoia, a stone's throw away from their home. ABOVE, After a dinner of their favorite dishes and cocktails, the content couple can easily hop into their golf cart and make their way back home.

Danielle and Alexander choose China Bistro for an exotic meal and Ashley Park for a leisurely walk.

Date Nights Dos ands Don’t

Matt Laura & . lf e y & Adam rs u Be yo ther. - Am o h c a e y and enjo huck Have fun Loi and C r oment. m e th Alexande Stay in anielle & D ! e n o your ph Turn off

january/february 2018 | 29

Spending uninterrupted quality time together allows couples to become and stay close. has to offer, simply sharing the sheer magic of the night, or all of the above. Amy and Adam, who have been married for 20 years, are empty nesters who always try to have at least one date night per month. They enjoy weekend date nights at Nic & Norman’s in downtown Senoia, a stone’s throw away from their home. After a dinner of their favorite dishes and cocktails, the content couple can easily hop into their golf cart and make their way back home. For a fancy date, Laura and Matt recommended The Cellar at Firestone in downtown Newnan. Warmly lit

with its cozy booths and delicious food, this restaurant is always a sure bet for a romantic dinner. When friends call for a casual catch-up, the couple meet up at the upbeat Meat 'N Greet restaurant in the neighborhood. Newlyweds Gloria and Dave Whittington make time for date nights at least once a week. Being movie buffs, the couple head to the theaters at the Regal at Ashley Park or NCG at Fischer Crossing. Comedy, drama and historical fiction are some of the twosome’s favorite genres. Otherwise, they head out to experience the relaxed atmosphere and

Being movie buffs, Dave and Gloria Whittington head to the theaters at the Regal at Ashley Park or NCG at Fischer Crossing. 30 |

delicious food at Bee’z Eats. Loi Palmer, who has been married to her best friend, Chuck, for 31 years, revealed, “I feel like we live on a long date.” She and Chuck take advantage of the many wonders of historic Newnan, with its quaint antique shops, coffee spots, art galleries and concerts in the park. Occasionally, the couple enjoy a local play at The Newnan Theater Company before or after dinner. You may not always feel like leaving the comfort of your home, or if you have younger children, venturing out may not be feasible. You could carve


out a special time after the rest of the family retires for bed. Laura and Matt enjoy cooking one-ofa-kind meals in their kitchen. An extra special time together was an anniversary date hiking and creating a concoction of homemade gnocchi and lobster tails, paired with a bottle of Cabernet. “Consider that a date if we have the kitchen to ourselves and the baby is sound asleep!” Laura joked. Now that their children have left the nest, Becky and Mike Walpole enjoy their home by sitting out on their front porch to enjoy each other’s company in a simple yet meaningful way.

FAMILY DATE NIGHTS So, how do you make date nights work when time is a precious commodity and children are a big part of the family equation? Consumed with taking care of six “beauties” from ages one to 11, Danielle and Alexander Barker book babysitters for their daughters well in advance of a night out. If arrangements can’t be made, Danielle suggested, “involve the entire family on date nights.” Sky Zone in Newnan is a fun choice for this family for a weeknight getaway. While the kids play safely within sight, the couple finds time to catch up together – little time is better than no time! On a rare occasion that they do reserve a date night, Danielle and Alexander choose China Bistro for an exotic meal and Ashley Park for a leisurely walk. Danielle also recommended a planned day date if it proves difficult to set aside a regular time for a date night. She and Alexander meet every other Friday for lunch close to her office. The working mom finds this a good way to keep the communication and connection flowing between date nights.

SURPRISE YOUR DATE! Planned or unplanned, there is always room to add an element of surprise in your date night. When their children were young, Becky and Mike could find little time for frequent dates. Yet, for one of Mike’s birthdays, Becky decided to plan a surprise birthday present for her husband. She made reservations at a hotel, arranged a sitter for

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Chuck and Loi enjoy visiting all the quaint shops in downtown Newnan since they live close by. 32 |


their children, picked up Mike after work and whisked him off for a short weekend getaway. Mike loved the surprise element of the trip and the fact that he was able to relax as the weekend activities unfolded. Chuck likes to plan surprises for Loi. For their last wedding anniversary, he made a simple request for her to get prepared for a fancy date. His wife loved the mystery of guessing what her husband had planned. She also enjoyed getting ready for the night out, and seeing the look of satisfaction on his face that his surprise was a sweet success.

DATE NIGHT TRADITIONS If you’ve been together for a while, you more than likely have a date night tradition. Amy and Adam like

to cruise around after dusk during the holidays, to take in the color and glitter of the Christmas lights in Coweta county. Laura and Matt celebrate birthdays and anniversaries in a big way by escaping for a weekend rather than buying gifts for each other.

So, whether planned or spontaneous, at home or around town, dates nights can be done. You simply have to make it a top priority, as per Gloria and Dave. After all, what got you where you are today as a committed couple, probably all began with a date. NCM

e Nights t a D n u F k r a p S o Tips t

1 Get 10 index cards. r five. rtner; keep the othe 2 Give five to your pa emorable date night on each card. am 3 Jot down a wish for wing weeks. cards over the follo 4 Take turns drawing tice! prac 5 Put the desires into ike — by Becky and M

Relaxing on their back porch overlooking the lake, the couple enjoy each other's company in the double chaise lounge Mike made for Becky.

january/february 2018 | 33



Disasters Some dates never lead to another.


ost of us have had a date or two that just didn’t pan out the way we had hoped. As Valentine’s Day approaches, let’s look back and be grateful that we missed out on these dating disasters. We have used fictitious names for the dating partners to prevent embarrassment. Adrian S. recalled a frightening time when he was around 17 or 18. He had recently graduated from Newnan High School and was trying out his hand at a new online app called MySpace. For those of you who ADRIAN aren’t familiar with it, MySpace was a precursor to Facebook. Adrian, an upcoming musician, met a nice-sounding girl on MySpace and began a conversation with her online. We will call her “Jane.” After a few weeks, Jane suggested Adrian come to her house to meet in person. As Adrian pulled up to the address the girl provided, he was a little intimidated by the big, beautiful house and its three-car garage. “This can’t be right,” he said to himself as he checked the address. She didn’t mention

living with her parents. Since he had driven so far, he gathered his courage and knocked on the front door. Imagine his shock when the door was answered by a policeman in uniform! For a few moments, he took in the scene as he wondered what he might have done wrong. Why was a policeman there to meet him? With few choices, Adrian just forged ahead and asked if Jane was home. The man introduced himself as her father, explained that his daughter was across the street at her friend’s house, and began peppering Adrian with questions about how and where they had met. Once the policeman/father found out they had met online and she had given Adrian her home address, he was livid. His anger was not directed at Adrian, but at his daughter. “You seem like a nice young man,” he said to Adrian. “I suggest you go home and wait to hear from her. If, after her punishment, Jane still wants to date you, she will contact you.” “Fortunately, I never heard from her again,” Adrian said. “I wanted to be as far away from that situation as I could be!” Sierra B. related a couple of dating stories that were more pathetic than dangerous. A few years ago, “Dan” asked her for a date for over a year before she finally said yes. Written by SUSAN MAYER DAVIS

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After all that time asking her out, Dan took her out for barbecue and then told her she’d have to buy her own dinner! She was thankful for the $5 bill in her purse, but needless to say, it was that guy’s first and last date with her! “I’m surprised to find men who are willing to ask a girl out, and yet they are unwilling or unable to treat her to a nice evening. It doesn’t have to be fancy,” said Sierra. Even a picnic with PBJ sandwiches and chips or a stroll through a park would beat the date Sierra had with a different young man who took her to Wendy’s and then told her to order something from the dollar menu! Elke H. remembers a time in college when she was dating a man in a fraternity whose roommate had a terrible crush on her. Elke found the roommate, “Bob,” to be narcissistic and a braggart with all his stories of his wealth and accomplishments, etc. Apparently, other women felt the same, as he would always complain that he didn’t know why girls didn’t want to date him. After all, he said, he was good looking, well-educated, and had a great car. One of his favorite lines, often repeated, was “I feel like a bedspread because everyone turns me down!” Several months later, Elke ran

into Obnoxious Bob and tried to be civil to him. Somehow he tricked her into agreeing to go out with him. “I don’t know what I was thinking,” Elke said, “but I guess I was hoping he’d leave me alone if he got his one date, and besides, I just couldn’t figure out how to get out of it. I was really hoping he had changed since I last saw him.” ELKE When Friday came, Elke dutifully went to dinner with Bob, and he took her to a very nice restaurant and she hoped it wouldn’t be too bad being in his company. She might as well have hoped for a leopard to change his spots. Bob immediately started bragging about all he had and all he was, segueing into stories of all the dates that had gone badly for him, and cycling to feeling sorry for himself. Elke felt the pressure building up, feeling that she might explode at any minute. The moment, however, that she heard Bob refer to himself as a bedspread, she felt her dinner rise in her throat and she blurted out, “Bob, I think I need to go home. I feel a migraine coming on!” To his credit, he did take her home and went so far as to try to arrange another date. Elke’s pretend migraine began to manifest as a real one. She recovered soon, but to this day, this well-mannered Philadelphia girl feels the pain of her one sympathy date with Bob. From first dates to a date that almost didn’t happen: Cindy M. first met her husband, Chris, while out one evening with mutual friends. Chris was attracted to Cindy from the start and asked Cindy for her phone number. He wrote it down carefully and CHRIS AND CINDY asked her to look at it to make sure it was correct. “I needed my glasses to read it,” Cindy confessed, “but I didn’t want him to think I was old, so I glanced at the paper and told him it was right.” She went home and waited for his call. When two weeks had gone by without a call from Chris, she was pretty upset with him. What she didn’t know was that the phone number he wrote down was wrong, and he had spent the last two weeks searching for someone who knew her phone number! Fortunately, he got her number from a mutual friend, they did meet up again, and the rest, as they say, is history. Today they are a happily married couple and she wears her reading glasses whenever she wants! NCM

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So it is February 14 yet again! Every single year! It’s Valentine’s Day! Time to celebrate with a loved one by sending cards, flowers, candy, jewelry, and sharing romantic dinner dates. Cupid has his quiver ready to smother you with his arrows of love, and hearts and romance is in the air. Or maybe NOT…


s Valentine’s Day to you just another “Hallmark Holiday,” created by consumers and marketers alike? Not everyone finds themselves, whether by choice or by life’s realities, snuggled up with a partner, eagerly awaiting the material gestures of Valentine’s Day and the warm feelings of love. For many this is indeed the case and, as a result, can feel a sense of loneliness, despair, even hopelessness. However, that need not be so! There are a bevy of ways to have fun on this day, Written by KELLEY PITTMAN


either by having a relaxing day doing things you enjoy on your own or by celebrating with friends who are also in the same situation. A little history about Valentine’s Day… There are many myths surrounding the origin of this day. This one seems to be one of the most popular. According to, “Saint Valentine, the one frequently attributed with fathering Valentine’s Day, was a Roman priest during the third century, serving under Emperor Claudius. Emperor Claudius believed that single men made better soldiers than those married and with families, and passed a law, making marriage illegal for all young men. Valentine recognized the horror of this law and continued to marry young couples in secret, effectively defying his Emperor. When Claudius discovered Valentine’s acts of defiance, he had him killed immediately. Valentine was later canonized by the Vatican and, in the 5th century, February 14th was named his feast day, the day designated by the church to honor and commemorate a saint’s life.” Whether you accept this story or not, Valentine’s Day or, if you prefer, Anti-Valentine’s Day, does not have to be one of boredom or exclusion! In fact, the day after this day, February 15, has been declared National Singles Awareness Day. This day has been designed to serve as an “antidote” for the February 14 pressure to be romantic, the commercialism and the need to spend copious amounts of money on the traditional heart-shaped symbols of being in love. After discussing with my peers the strife of being single on Valentine’s Day, I have learned of many ways singles choose to spend these 24 hours. Some of these fulfilling and fun-filled suggestions are as follows:

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Go on a shopping spree. Find all the holiday deals and steals and indulge. Splurge on yourself with perfumes, bath treats, a swanky new dress or that new pair of heels you have been eyeballing. Think of all the money you are saving on those two-tiered boxes of “chocolate surprise-filled” nibbles. Get together for a day with your single friends. A day spent like this with others

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Have all your single friends draw a name from your punch bowl (not the one with the party punch), and then at a later date, deliver a bunch of flowers or box of candy, or any present you know your selected friend will enjoy. Not only is this fun and exciting and mysterious… it continues the celebration long after the hype of Valentine’s Day has ended. If gatherings are not your preference, go take a class for something you enjoy or have been wanting to learn. Take yourself to an art studio and paint a picture or create a ceramic masterpiece. Sign up for a dance class and learn to tap dance. Go to the gym and sweat at your favorite spin class. Find a wine tasting or a cooking class at a local store or restaurant. Regardless of your choice of activity, you are bound to meet new people who have similar interests. Who knows, you may find your next year’s Valentine’s Day companion. Maybe you are recently single and still getting over the breakup. Perhaps you still have some unwanted feelings of ill will lingering. Take Valentine’s Day to engage in ALL the activities your former partner did not like to do! Go eat at the restaurant he/she wouldn’t set foot in. Binge-watch the shows or movies he/she would never have tuned into. Listen loudly to music he/she cringed at. Even treat yourself to that hairstyle he/she thought was unbecoming and wear it with a smile! If you have the time, take a vacation day and go on a day trip. Go to visit the zoo or a museum. Go take a walk on a path near the river. Head to the mountains for a day in nature or jaunt to the nearby lake for a day of tranquility or boating. Taking a trip can be a nice change of scenery for you, taking you out of your routine and the potential of being surrounded by those awkward Valentine’s Day antics! By the time you return home your mind will be clear, your body refreshed, and Valentine’s Day will be OVER. Take on that project you have been wanting to do but have not had the chance. Invite some friends to join you and take on a DIY project. Bake those cupcakes for that upcoming bake sale you want to attend. Make that jewelry with your buddies for that Spring Festival coming up in a few weeks in March. There is truly nothing like a sense of accomplishment when you have a new creation, and how special to have shared it with your single friends. You can brag about it long after that Valentine’s Day bouquet has withered away for those revelers! Mainly, the message here is – take advantage of this day of being single to focus on YOU! You can be selfish and not feel guilty! Whether you choose to be flanked by your other comrades who also find themselves dreading the yearly reign of what St. Valentine started lo those centuries ago, or whether you prefer to spend your hours “disconnecting” and enjoying your solitude – February 14 does not need to leave you feeling like an empty box of chocolates! NCM

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Celebrating the Legacy F

The annual MLK parade serves as a backdrop for teaching community youths about the importance of culture, values and history.

40 |

or 31 years, Newnan has proudly marched in solidarity during the Martin Luther King Jr. Parade. Sounds of joy, laughter, old Southern spirituals and the echoes of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. reverberate throughout the downtown corridors during the MLK Parade. Marching for a cause has its place in history and it is not absent from the hearts of servant-minded Newnan citizens. The Newnan MLK Parade is hosted annually by Newnan Chapter 483, Order of the Eastern Star (OES). Sara Clay Williams was Worthy Matron of the chapter when Cynthia Brittain Finney came up with the idea to have an MLK parade in 1986. Wilbon Clay, brother of Sara Clay Williams, who initiated the idea of the MLK Parade, was instrumental in persuading the city to allow the Order of the Eastern Star to have the parade in 1987. “This parade is unique because it’s the only parade in Coweta County that celebrates Black History and our leaders… The parade unifies all of our community,” said Mary Paige, current Worthy Matron of Newnan Chapter 483, OES. “I simply remember the pride everyone felt the first time we held the parade. It had been a long time in the making,” said Carole Newell, longtime educator, founding marcher in the MLK Parade, and current Chalk Level resident. “I was the leader of a Girl Scout troop, and we walked the entire route. It was amazing to see how the entire town turned out to see the parade. It was, and still is, a time of reflection and pride within the community. It has become a symbol of unity in the city of Newnan,” Newell said. The emphasis of unity within the community is what makes this parade stellar. The parade creates the backdrop for reminiscing and ruminating. Elders share with the youth the importance of culture, values and history. Paige recounted how the parade had persevered through rain, snow, and freezing rain. When the governor declared a state of emergency due to a hurricane in January of 2017, the parade was postponed until the following week. By then, “the weather could not have been better,” she said. Despite facing Mother Nature’s onslaught, Paige paralleled with the infamous Civil Rights marching song, “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around.” She said, “The fact that this parade has endured for so many years and through these calamities, my generation will not be the generation that drops the ball. The community looks forward to it, and

The parade has been a Newnan community feature since 1987. Multiple generations have participated in the parade, celebrating the unity it promotes.



we are not going to let them down.” The Newnan MLK parade is a public procession to celebrate and honor service, fraternal love and the power of communal wellness, and the life of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The parade begins at noon on January 13th at Newnan High School, and parades through downtown, up LaGrange Street, taking a right at North Court Square, then another right, and heading down Greenville Street. Every year before the parade there is an annual commemorative service often held at a local Newnan church. This year the service will be held at 7 p.m. on January 12th at Mt. Sinai Baptist Church, at 6 Lovelace Street. Youth are invited to share their skills in poetry, music and dance. There is no deadline to sign up for the parade, but pre-registration is appreciated. There is a $25 registration fee per float or group, and all money raised goes toward scholarships for local high school students.

Parade participants who wish to have their floats judged should be lined up on Armory Road next to the school by 9:30 a.m. Judging begins at 10:30 a.m. All other parade participants should be lined up by 11 a.m. The MLK parade has been honored to have some of  Newnan’s outstanding Black Americans to serve as the Grand Marshal. To name a few: Hamilton (Hamp) Bohannon, Josephine Rush, Carl Ware, Willie Lynch, Wilbon Clay, Rev. Grady Vaughn, Sanford Cousin and Mayor Pro-tem Cynthia Jenkins have all graced the stage as Grand Marshal. This year Winston Dowdell will be the honorary Grand Marshal.   As parade chairperson, Mary Paige emphasizes the need to express hope to future generations. Paige is adamant about ensuring this Newnan tradition continues to build unity and looks to see the parade return to its place of public notoriety; where news stations and other members of the press cover this historical Newnan celebration that unites the community for a

Winston Dowdell named Grand Marshal of 2018 MLK Parade Winston Dowdell has served as a member of the Coweta County Board of Education since January 2007. Dowdell retired from the Coweta County School System in December 2001, after a “They had a lot 38-year career in education. He retired after serving as the school system’s associate of people they superintendent of schools. At his retirement, the Coweta County Board of Education honored Dowdell for his service by renaming the Fairmount School of Opportunity as the could have chosen, Winston Dowdell Academy. and it’s an honor Dowdell is a native of Opelika, Ala. He earned his bachelor of science degree from to be recognized Alabama State University. He came to Coweta County in 1968 with four years of teaching experience  –  in Catoosa County and then Carroll County Schools. for service to His first job in Coweta was as a teacher at Grantville Brown School, and then at Moreland the community.” Elementary School. In 1974, as he completed an advanced degree at West Georgia College and was certified in administration and supervision, he became an assistant principal at - Winston Dowdell Newnan High School under Principal Holmes Cunningham. Dowdell went on to serve as principal of Fairmount and Eastside Elementary Schools. He moved to central office administration as assistant superintendent for student support and special services in 1989, and rose to associate superintendent in 1994, as Richard Brooks assumed the superintendency. Dowdell has also led an active civic life, as a steward of the Greater Mt. Zion AME Church, on the board of directors for the Newnan-Coweta Boys and Girls Club and the Bank of Coweta, and as a member of the 100 Black Men of West Georgia. He has also been board chairman of the Chattahoochee-Flint Regional Development Commission and a board member of the Newnan-Coweta Chamber of Commerce, the University of West Georgia Newnan Center, the Rutledge Center, the Coweta Clean and Beautiful Commission and the County Fire Commission. Dowdell also has been a United Way Trustee. His professional memberships include the Professional Association of Georgia Educators, Phi Delta Kappa and the Georgia School Superintendents Association.

greater good. Paige can be reached at Coweta County has come a long way; and for that reason, the community will not waver in celebrating justice, peace and unity in the MLK Parade. During the civil rights era, leaders of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and other Black organizations met in undisclosed Newnan locations planning and praying for justice. Jim Crow laws were mandated in Newnan. The theater downtown, The Alamo, ensured that “coloreds” sat in the balcony. A recollection from a source who chooses to go unnamed stated that coloreds “sat up there and would occasionally, ‘accidentally’ drop ice on those in the main seating area.” Even the Coweta County Courthouse that sits in the heart of the historic downtown square once glared with “COLORED ONLY” signs above certain restrooms and water fountains. The joy of justice and the celebration of community is not the only reason why the City of Newnan comes together to parade during the MLK holiday. Newnan comes together during this holiday to demonstrate family love, to honor generosity, the working together for good, scholarship and the brilliance of service. Several historical Newnan churches, Black Greek Letter Organizations (fraternities and sororities) the NAACP Branch 518, the Newnan Police and Fire Departments, the Buffalo Soldiers AMVETS Post 910, even local high schools bring out their drumlines and bands as the community comes together to march to the beat of respect, dignity, and their call to serve. The MLK parade for many serves as a celebration to continue in service. Martin Luther King, Jr. said in his sermon, Drum Major Instinct, “If you want to be important – wonderful. If you want to be recognized – wonderful. If you want to be great – wonderful. But recognize that he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. That’s a new definition of greatness… it means that everybody can be great, because everybody can serve… You only need a heart full of grace – and a soul generated by love.” NCM

MLK Parade Celebrates Civil Rights Advances – Nationally and in Coweta Newnan has an extensive history that many may not know. Newnan is home to a slave cemetery on Farmer Street with 249 grave depressions, according to archaeologists from The University of Alabama. No headstones are visible, and the remains of slaves who built the foundation of Newnan rest namelessly on holy ground. The lynching of Sam Hose in Newnan in 1899 brought onlookers from several counties and continues to be a dark moment in the county’s history. In the 19th Century, Newnan was a Black metropolis. The population was 50 percent Black. A mini Black Wall Street bustled with business on Pinson Street where black doctors, dentists, hairdressers and barbers practiced. In the 1960s, Newnan was a Freedom of Choice Schools system: students and their families decided on whether to integrate or not. Coweta County did not fully integrate until 1970, and according to the front page of The Newnan Times-Herald, the first day of fully integrated schools went off “without incident and with orderly calm.” january/february 2018 | 43


It was 1959, and Mt. Vernon First Baptist Church was getting a new pastor.


Not yet 30, Alfred Daniel Williams King was accompanied to Newnan by his parents, Martin Luther King, Sr. and Alberta Williams King. His sometimes bellicose father was one of the most prominent black ministers in Atlanta and his smiling, stately mother was the daughter of an earlier prominent pastor. Daddy King had a message for the Mt. Vernon congregation: “This is my son. I’m bringing him here. If you don’t treat him right, we have bread at home.” The father need not have worried about the son – or about the church in Newnan that had called the recent Morehouse graduate. A.D. King’s pastorate at Mt. Vernon was a happy one, a time marked by growth and progress for both preacher and congregation. “A.D. was a very pleasant person... a very congenial, downto-earth person,” said Georgia T. Jones, a retired teacher who remains an active member at Mt. Vernon. “He brought many things to us.” During A.D. King’s time in Newnan, his older, Boston University-educated brother, Martin Luther King, Jr., preached revival at Mt. Vernon. While the Kings were a respected, even revered family among black Baptists in Georgia, the international spotlight that would shine on them was around a corner as yet unturned. A.D. King was already married and had a family when he was called to Mt. Vernon’s pulpit. He boarded with Willie Jones Jenkins, a retired educator, when he was in town. “Her home was wonderful, very neat,” Mrs. Jones remembered.

Younger King brother was pastor at Mt. Vernon Written by W. WINSTON SKINNER 44 |

Rev. A.D. King, left, pastor at Mt. Vernon First Baptist Church poses for a photo at the church with his father, Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr., center, and his brother, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. around 1960.

Georgia Jones and her husband, William A. Jones, were active in the church. Both were in the senior choir and served as choir president at different times. They invited A.D. and Naomi King and their children home for lunch after church more than once. The King and Jones children enjoyed playing together, though Georgia Jones chuckled, remembering that her children grew weary of a favorite game of the King youngsters. “They always wanted to play church,” Mrs. Jones said. “My children would get a little tired of that.” A.D. King was a gifted pulpiteer, and Mrs. Jones also remembered his organizational skills and his pastoral manner. He organized Mt. Vernon’s deaconess board, and Mrs. Jones is the last living member of the original deaconess group. “As a young minister, he was thoroughly competent. I wouldn’t say he was at all perfect, but he always prepared his messages,” Mrs. Jones said. King also was good at finding resources for church events. A special choir observance was being planned. “We didn’t have robes,” Mrs. Jones recalled. King somehow arranged to borrow a set of black choir robes – enough for everyone. “That Sunday, we were well-attired,” she said. A.D. King remained at Mt. Vernon for a few years, then pastored in Kentucky before returning – after the assassination of his brother – to assist their father in serving Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. A.D. King, an accomplished swimmer, died July 21, 1969, in what was officially deemed a drowning accident. His death – like that of his brother – has been the subject of controversy in the years since their deaths. His widow worked for some years at the King Center. Three of their five children have died. Dr. Alveda King, their oldest daughter, is a prominent anti-abortion activist and one of the most visible AfricanAmericans supporting Pres. Donald Trump. Mt. Vernon continues to be a vibrant, active congregation, and A.D. King’s time there helped the church on its journey. “Many things we were behind on, he brought us up to speed,” Georgia Jones said. “He inspired the church a great deal.” NCM

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Photo courtesy of NASA/Bill Ingalls Gathered at the 2012 memorial service for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta are, from left: Alveda King, daughter of A.D. King; Father Frank Pavone; Naomi Barber King, widow of A.D. King; Dr. Cameron Alexander; Dr. Frederick D. Haynes III; Dr. Bernice A. King, daughter of Martin Luther King; Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed; Dr. Christine King Farris, sister of A.D. King and Martin Luther King; Ms. Raj Razdan; and NASA Administrator Charles Bolden.

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Tim Hammett Lana Mobley Brewton-Parker College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate and baccalaureate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Brewton-Parker College.


s e p i c e R r New Yea


t’s that time again when we promise ourselves to eat healthier, but it’s cold and dark outside so we need comfort food and we’ve got a Super Bowl party to plan. Talk about mixed messages! We’re here to help with some recipes that hit the spot. Let’s start with the healthy – you don’t have to sacrifice flavor when minimizing calories! Clean flavors can charm your palate as you try to shed some of those holiday pounds. Substitute some of the high-fat

ingredients in your favorite pasta for healthier choices that still fit the bill as comfort food. Keep dinner simple with seared salmon over salad greens, or put an easy tortilla chicken soup recipe in your crockpot for a light, flavorful meal.

SEARED SALMON SALAD 1 salmon filet per person

1 ½ tbsp. olive oil Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste Mixed greens or chopped salad mix Garnish with your choice of slivered almonds, dried cranberries, Asian noodles, goat cheese, feta cheese, candied pecans, etc.


Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Season salmon filets with salt and pepper to taste. Place filets in hot skillet skin side up. Sear for 3 - 4 minutes and then flip skin side down for an additional 3 - 4 minutes depending on your preference in doneness. (You can finish your salmon with 45-second bursts in the microwave to achieve desired doneness, especially if your family has different preferences.) Remove skin from filet and place the filet on salad greens and garnish as you wish. It’s easy to change up the flavors in this simple salad to keep it interesting. Don’t be afraid to experiment. A light balsamic vinaigrette or Asian sesame dressing complements the flavors nicely.

SHRIMP, SPINACH & RICOTTA PASTA ½ lb. pasta (I use thin spaghetti noodles.)

4 2-3 ½ 1 ½ ½ ¾

tbsp. olive oil cloves of garlic, chopped cup 2% milk cup part-skim ricotta cheese tsp. salt package of baby spinach lb. peeled and deveined shrimp

Bring a large pot of water to boil and add the pasta. Cook the pasta to al dente and drain. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta cooking water to help thin the sauce later if needed. While the pasta is boiling, sauté the shrimp in 2 tbsp of the olive oil until pink — about 2–3 minutes . You can salt and pepper the shrimp as well if you like. Heat the remaining 2 tbsp. of olive oil in a large skillet and add the garlic. Cook the garlic over medium-low heat until soft but not browned — about 2 minutes. Add the milk and ricotta cheese and stir until relatively smooth (a whisk works well for this, and the ricotta may be a little grainy). Heat the sauce through and bring to a low simmer. The sauce will thicken slightly as it simmers. Allow to simmer 3–5 minutes until it thickens enough to coat a spoon, and then season with salt and pepper. Add the pasta and fresh spinach and stir into the sauce until the spinach wilts and the spinach and pasta are coated. If the sauce becomes too thick or dry you can add a small amount of the reserved pasta cooking water as needed. Finally, add the shrimp — it can be stirred into the sauce or placed on top. Grate fresh Parmesan cheese over the top of each serving. Serve warm. You can omit the shrimp or substitute chicken if preferred. —Submitted by Roxanne Wells, Moreland




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BACON MAC & CHEESE For that cold, dark night when you straight up need some comfort food, try this full-fat, full-flavor, adult version of mac & cheese. Nothing says comfort like cheese, pasta and bacon.

½ lb. dried cavatappi pasta 3 cups half & half 3 tbsp. butter 3 tbsp. all-purpose flour 2 cups sharp Cheddar, shredded (sold as an 8 oz. block of cheese) 1 cup whole-milk mozzarella, shredded ½ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, finely grated 1 tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped 1 tsp. fresh thyme 2 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped 1 ½ to 2 tbsp. green onion, chopped 4 cloves fresh garlic, minced (not the stuff in the jar) generous pinch of nutmeg (about ⅛ tsp. or less) generous pinch of cayenne pepper (about ⅛ tsp. or less) Kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste 6 slices of semi-crisp hardwood smoked bacon, chopped (feel free to use more if you'd like) 3 tbsp. seasoned breadcrumbs (optional) Salt to season the pasta water Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and lay each slice of bacon down with at least an inch of space between each slice. Place the baking sheet full of bacon on the lowest rack of your oven and let it cook for 8 - 10 minutes or until crisp but still pliable. It will crisp even further once it's baked, so don't crisp it too much at this stage. Drain on paper towels and chop into bite-sized pieces. Set aside. In a large pot, boil water for your pasta. Once it starts to boil, season with about a tablespoon of salt and stir to dissolve. Add the pasta and boil for 5 minutes. Reserve one cup of the pasta water in case you need it to thin the sauce later. Drain the pasta and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Don't toss the pasta around, just let it sit while you rinse it — this helps keep some of the starch in place. Drain the cold water and put the cooled-off pasta aside while you make the cheese sauce. Rinse the pot you boiled the pasta in with cold water then place it back on the stove over medium heat. Add the butter to melt — once it starts to foam/sizzle, it's ready for the flour. Add the flour and whisk vigorously until smooth and lump-free. Let this cook for 1 minute to get the raw flour flavor out. Add 1 cup of the half & half, 48 |

BACON MAC & CHEESE and continue to whisk vigorously until smooth, about 20 to 30 seconds. Add the remaining 2 cups of half & half and continue whisking. Add the rosemary, thyme, kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, cayenne pepper, nutmeg, and minced garlic — mix well. Taste it! Adjust the seasoning as you need to. Increase the heat to medium-high and allow the mixture to come up to a simmer — whisking the whole time. The mixture will thicken very quickly so don't walk away from it. It should take about 5 minutes to start simmering. Once the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, remove it from the heat completely. Add the Parmigiano-Reggiano and Cheddar cheese and stir gently until it's melted and smooth, about a minute or two. Either in the same pot or in a separate large bowl, combine the cooked and cooled-off pasta with the cheese sauce. Gently fold together until it's completely coated. Mixture should be slightly loose but very creamy and easy to work with; if it's too thick, thin it out with a little of the starchy pasta water. Fold in the basil and green onion. Transfer half of the pasta and cheese mixture to a lightly greased baking dish. Sprinkle ½ cup of the mozzarella cheese over the first half of the pasta/cheese mixture, then pour the remaining pasta/cheese mixture on top as a second layer— add the remaining mozzarella cheese on top. Gently swirl a spoon or butter knife thru the mac and cheese mixture to ensure the mozzarella cheese is evenly combined throughout the dish. Sprinkle the top with the bacon and breadcrumbs. Bake in a 400°F oven on the middle oven rack for 25 - 35 minutes, or until golden brown on top and bubbly all over. — Submitted by Katie Bodiford, Senoia


1 ½ 1 ¾ 1 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts tsp. salt tsp. pepper cup water cups chicken broth can (14.5 oz.) fire-roasted diced tomatoes can (11 oz.) whole-kernel corn with diced peppers, drained can (10 oz.) red enchilada sauce cup chopped onion can (4.5 oz.) chopped green chiles tsp. ground cumin tsp. chili powder

Super Bowl parties are all about the food and the commercials, unless the Falcons happen to make the big game. The commercials are out of our hands, but we can offer some great appetizer suggestions from local personal chef, Heather Reynolds.


cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional) sour cream tortilla chips, coarsely broken sliced avocado (optional)

Spray 6-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. In a nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken to skillet, sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until browned on both sides — approximately 4 minutes. Put chicken in slow cooker and add all other ingredients. Cover and cook on LOW heat for 4 hours or until chicken is easily shredded with a fork. Remove the chicken to shred and then return to the slow cooker. Stir in cilantro if desired, cover and cook for another 30 minutes on low heat. Top each serving with crushed tortilla chips, sour cream and avocado if desired.


PESTO CHICKEN CRESCENT ROLL 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and chopped into ½-inch pieces (about 2 ½ cups) ½ cup basil pesto 1 ½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese 2 cans (8 oz. each) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls Heat oven to 375°F. In medium bowl, mix cooked chicken, 1/3 cup of the pesto and the cheese. Unroll both cans of dough; separate into 16 triangles. On ungreased large cookie sheet, arrange triangles in ring so short sides of triangles form a 5-inch circle in center. Dough will overlap. Dough ring should look like the sun. Spoon chicken mixture on the half of each rectangle closest to center of ring. Bring each dough triangle up over filling, tucking dough under bottom layer of dough to secure it. Repeat around ring until entire filling is enclosed (some filling might show a little.) Brush remaining 1 tbsp. pesto on top of dough ring. Bake 18 - 22 minutes or until dough is golden brown and thoroughly baked. Cool 5 - 10 minutes before cutting into serving slices.

january/february 2018 | 49

CRANBERRY CHUTNEY BAKED BRIE 1 round wheel of brie 1 frozen pie crust Wrap the brie with the pie crust and bake in 450°F oven for 15 - 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly and top with cranberry chutney. Serve warm with crackers or small baguette slices.



1 1 ½ 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

16-oz. package cranberries cups sugar cup water cup orange juice cup golden raisins cup chopped celery medium green apple, chopped tbsp. grated orange peel tsp. ground ginger

SAUSAGE PIMENTO DIP 3 cups pimento cheese

1 1

(recipe below) lb. fresh sausage, cooked and crumbled cup panko bread crumbs


Newnan-Coweta Chamber Program


In a 3-quart saucepan over medium heat, heat cranberries, sugar, and 1 cup water to boiling, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Mash up the cranberries as they cook. Remove from heat and stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and refrigerate.

2 cups grated sharp yellow Cheddar (about 10 oz.) 2 cups grated aged white Cheddar (about 10 oz.) ½ cup finely-diced roasted red peppers or pimentos 1 cup crushed canned tomatoes or fresh tomatoes pulsed in a food processor ¼ cup of your favorite mayonnaise 2 tbsp. sour cream ¼ tsp. hot sauce ½ tsp. salt (optional) For the pimento cheese: Combine all pimento cheese ingredients (minus the salt) in the bowl

of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Process for about 30 seconds on low until you have a slightly creamy cheese spread. Taste, add the salt if you wish, and paddle 10 seconds more. Chill until you’re ready to use. For the baked pimento cheese and sausage: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Stir together the cold pimento cheese and the cooked, very well drained and cooled sausage. Press it down into a 1-quart baking dish or 8-inch cast iron skillet and top with the panko crumbs. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. The bread crumbs will not necessarily brown; they are there more to provide texture and to soak up some of the grease that rises to the top. When the baked cheese is done, it will be bubbling around all the edges. Serve this with saltines, Ritz crackers, or toast. I like some pickles on the side.



With the recent rash of horrific, random attacks on individuals and groups, it’s understandable that more people than ever are purchasing firearms in an attempt to protect themselves and their loved ones. An essential part of being a responsible gun owner is learning how to handle and use it safely and appropriately. Always thinking of the public welfare, the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office provides low-cost gun safety classes twice a month from March through October with a 3-part class. Session 1 covers the basic rules, laws, and techniques. In Session 2, participants practice shooting on a simulator range using laser guns in various scenarios. In Session 3, participants practice with their own gun (or one borrowed from the sheriff’s office) on a practice range. Photo: Adobe Stock

If you are wondering whether you need to attend a gun safety class, then you probably do. Male or female, experienced or a newbie, it’s a good idea to be reminded of the rules, the laws, and the expectations for a gun owner in Coweta County and – most importantly, perhaps – to familiarize yourself with the feel of your own weapon and find out if you are willing to shoot to kill if necessary. The head of the Coweta County Sheriff’s january/february 2018 | 51

“Don’t be afraid of hurting someone who is threatening you. If someone will break into your home when you are there, they are willing to hurt you, so you need to be prepared to fight back.”

Lt. Col. Lenn Wood watches on as Jenny Lewis runs through a scenario on the shooting simulator at the Coweta County Sheriff's Office. Both Wood and Chief Deputy James Yarbrough have trained more than 200 citizens in gun safety over the last year and spoken to countless groups on a wide variety of topics relating to public safety. 52 |

Office gun safety program is Chief Deputy James Yarbrough, a veteran with 40 years in law enforcement, 24 of them spent here in Coweta County. He is assisted by Lt. Col. Lenn Wood. Together, they have trained more than 200 citizens in gun safety over the last year, and spoken to countless groups on a wide variety of topics relating to public safety. Cheryl Thompson recently completed the classes in order to become familiar with guns before deciding whether or not to purchase one. She said she was much more comfortable around firearms after the course. “One really needs to step back and put some thought into purchasing a gun – women especially, because some guns are very heavy and require a good amount of body strength in order to hold them steady for a length of time.” Cheryl mentioned that she felt soreness in her shoulders after visiting the firing range as part of the classes. Whereas Cheryl thought the recoil was mostly responsible, the sheriff’s deputies said that just the act of holding a gun at the ready for a while can cause noticeable muscle pain, because it strains muscles most of us do not use on a regular basis. Cheryl highly recommended the course, saying, “The more education the citizens receive, the better and safer our county will be.” Some people just will not be comfortable with a gun in the house. For these folks, Yarbrough encourages them to have some sort of plan should someone try to enter their home. “There are many things one can do whether or not they choose to own a weapon. For example, install a motion detector outside or a security system inside. Keep wasp spray or pepper spray handy (at least 2 million SKU) to spray in the intruder’s eyes, or purchase a Little League baseball bat to hit the intruder’s hands on the door or window as he enters, or strike any part of his body you have access to. Or employ the old standard – a noisy dog that

will scare off an intruder. Size isn’t as important as a fierce bark and growl  – along with a giant-sized water bowl on the porch! “Just remember,” Yarbrough continues, “whatever you use, make sure you are willing to apply whatever force necessary to protect yourself. Don’t be afraid of hurting someone who is threatening you. If someone will break into your home when you are there, they are willing to hurt you, so you need to be prepared to fight back.” In addition to the gun safety classes, the Coweta Sheriff’s Office also offers free classes to many groups in our county, ranging from self-defense for women and teenage girls to recognizing scams for senior citizens. With brazen attacks on churches lately, the sheriff’s office provides guidance to congregations on creating a safety team out of its members. “Know the law-enforcement people in your congregation, as well as the firemen, first responders, nurses, doctors and active or retired service members,” said Yarbrough. “We teach them how to observe who is coming into the church and how to spot potential trouble of any kind.” We are so fortunate in Coweta County to have this group of dedicated men and women who care about everyone in our community. They welcome your questions, your suggestions, and your feedback in order to keep everyone safer. And since it’s all free or low-cost, it is available to everyone and worth looking into. It could save your life. Class requirements: All participants must be 21 years of age or older, with the exception of 18-20 year olds, who may participate if accompanied by a parent or guardian. All participants must reside in Coweta County. Course size is limited, and pre-registration is required. A criminal history check or Weapons Carry License is required, and $10.00 fee must be submitted before the first night of class. This can be taken care of at the administrative entrance of the sheriff’s office. For more information, visit departments-r-z/sheriff-s-office/otherservices/citizens-firearms-fundamentals.

Standard Rules of

Safe Gun Handling 1. Assume all guns are always loaded. Even if they are not, treat them as if they are. 2. Never let the muzzle point at anything you are not willing to destroy. (For those who insist that this particular gun is unloaded, see Rule #1.) 3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target. THIS IS THE GOLDEN RULE. Violation of this rule is directly responsible for about sixty percent of inadvertent discharges. 4. Identify your target, and what is behind it. Never shoot at anything that you have not positively identified.

Coweta County Citizens Firearms Fundamentals FAQ Q: How can I find out the schedule of classes for gun safety? A: Visit Registration for 2018 classes begin in January and fill up fast. Q: Is the class just for women? A: Not at all. Men are encouraged to attend as well. Q: Do you ever suggest to a participant that they should NOT handle a gun? A: Yes, if they demonstrate an inability to follow the rules or handle a gun responsibly. Q: I saw someone in a public store with a gun on their hip and it frightened me. Is it okay to carry a gun in public? A: Yes, if they have the proper license. Q: What should I do if I find myself in an active shooter situation? A: If you can safely leave, do that immediately. If you can’t, find a place to hide and shelter in place. If the shooter is very close, it is often effective to “play dead.” Don’t try to be a hero.

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Photos courtesy Tara Wright


tidy house seems more like a dream than a reality. There are thousands of websites, blogs, articles, and Pinterest boards dedicated to the topic of organizing. Some are legitimately helpful, but most aren’t reasonable, requiring you to purchase a dozen new storage bins or committing extra time and money. While having too much stuff is an issue, the thoughts or emotions an item may evoke are really the problem. “I can’t get rid of this coffee mug. It was a Christmas present from a co-worker.” “I bought that shirt last year and still haven’t worn it, but I’ll hold onto it just in case.” It’s not really about the mug or the shirt. Instead it’s about the person who gave you the mug or the situation/event in which you might wear the shirt. “Having an emotional attachment to items is absolutely a problem for people,” said Nikki Weaver, owner of Keep or Go Professional Organizing in Newnan. “When people come across photo albums they want to tell stories… kids are also difficult because they find old toys that they want to keep and play with.” Tara Wright, owner of Nook & Cranny Services in Newnan, said emotional attachment is a major roadblock for her clients as well. Through a process of “Clutter Counseling,” Wright helps her clients work through these instances and achieve their organizational goals. When combating clutter and sentiment, both organizing professionals suggest talking about the positive results of decluttering. “It’s difficult for people to let go of items that they have assigned/ awarded sentimental value,” Weaver said. “Choosing to donate is a great option because it will help someone.” “Framing it as ‘Donating this will help someone,’ or ‘Selling an item means I can put money towards this,’ is the best way to go about decluttering,” Wright said. The traditional “3 Pile System” — Keep, Sell/Donate, Trash — has proven to be the most effective method for many families. If the “Keep” pile is substantially larger than the other piles, another round of sorting is best. After determining which items you are going to keep, you need to literally set a boundary. In other words, “A place for everything, and everything in its place.” “Utilize one space for items, like having one closet for linens rather

(top photos) Tara Wright, owner of Nook & Cranny Services, shows what her own closet looked like before she began organizing. Using storage bins and shelves she already had, Wright completely transformed the closet into an organized space.

AFTER Photos courtesy Nikki Weaver

(bottom photos) Once you have a designated space for items you are keeping, it is crucial to maintain order. The biggest problem areas are generally spaces like a garage, attic, basement, or closet.


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Photos courtesy Nikki Weaver


Streamlining clutter and finding a designated place for everything turns this desk into useful work space.

than having several places to store them,” Wright said. “Just setting a parameter is extremely helpful for cutting down on clutter.” If the items won’t fit within the parameter you’ve set, this is an indication that another course of the “3 Pile System” is necessary. As you sort through your personal belongings, it’s OK to take a moment to reminisce. In fact, Weaver and Wright encourage their clients to do so. “Remind yourself that you are getting rid of an item, not a memory or person,” Wright said. “Your personal belongings are not a reflection of you or the person who gave them to you.” Also, keep in mind that organizing does not require you to throw away everything. “Things just need to be sorted and organized into a box or designated space,” Weaver said. “However, having too many of the same thing, say for instance like 20 candles, is not necessary. Narrow it down to just a few, and donate the rest.” Using storage bins to keep your things organized really depends on the amount you want to downsize. Wright recommends storage bins if it will save space and keep things tidy. Otherwise, avoid using excess bins since they may lead to more clutter. “A lot of people think you have to spend a fortune to get things looking good and functioning well,” Wright said. “That can certainly help and make things aesthetically pleasing by having all the same containers, colors, etc., but it’s definitely not necessary.” What about those miscellaneous papers that collect on the kitchen counter? Wright says to opt for downloadable files, manuals and receipts rather than accumulating paper. “It’s really not necessary to keep hard copies of things that can easily be downloaded,” said Wright. Another good rule is establishing a term for how long you will keep a document before recycling it. Wright suggests a limit of 3 months for keeping things like receipts, notes and lists. After that, you probably don’t need it. Once you have a designated space for the items you are keeping, it is crucial to maintain order. The biggest problem areas are generally spaces like a garage, attic, basement, or closet. “Organizing is a never-ending process that requires consistent attention to prohibit the spaces from returning to areas of chaos,” Wright affirmed. NCM

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Written and Photographed by SARAH CAMPBELL

I Angela Anderson, here with daughter Reese, started the Coweta County Youth Volleyball League to give younger kids a chance to learn the sport.

f volleyball is your thing, opportunities abound for teens, adults, and even kids in the local area. The Coweta County Recreation Department has spring and fall leagues for ages 11 to 16, as well as an adult women’s league – when there is enough interest. The teams for teenagers are co-ed, though typically there are very few boys who play. New this year is the Coweta County Youth Volleyball League, which is open to girls in grades three through five. Just to the east in Peachtree City is a vibrant adult volleyball scene, with both spring and fall leagues, and A5 South club volleyball for teen girls and boys. Volleyball is a great sport for girls who didn’t get into league sports early, said Lance Dennis of the Coweta County Recreation Department. “I have people say – my kid is 11, she hasn’t played anything. Where do we start? I recommend volleyball,” Dennis said. “Late bloomers can start right then and they are right with everybody

Photo courtesy Coweta County Youth Volleyball League In ready position to receive a serve are Coweta County Youth Volleyball league players Maycen Torregrossa and Reece McLaughlin.

else,” he said. Kids who want to start softball/baseball, football, or soccer at age 11 would be way behind their peers, but in volleyball it’s not a problem. “They can jump in there and learn it in a hurry,” Dennis said. A volleyball camp to help players learn fundamentals is typically held near the end of the school year. Angela Anderson decided to start the Coweta Youth Volleyball League to give younger girls a chance to learn the sport. Anderson, who played in a church league as a child and played through high school, said she initially reached out to various churches in the area to see about setting up a church league, but there wasn’t much interest. So she decided to start her own league. “I thought – if I can get 12 girls I’ll be happy. I ended up having 18 so I was beyond happy.” For the first year, there were two teams that played against each other. All the girls practiced together. Practices, and then games, were

only one night a week, with an eight-week season. Anderson said she plans to add sixth-graders next year, because so many of the girls who played this year will be going into sixth grade. Anderson said her main goal with the new league is to “let girls learn about volleyball in a low-key atmosphere.” It’s a way to get introduced to the sport and have a good time. They kept score but “it wasn’t about who won or lost.” The league plays in the gym at Orchard Hills Baptist Church. In addition to helping younger girls learn to love volleyball, “I felt like this was a great way to partner with our home church and allow the community to see the great facility and people that make up Orchard Hills Church,” Anderson said. Any profits from the league go to the church’s children’s ministry. Two years ago, Coweta County re-launched its adult women’s volleyball league – which plays in the winter – and there were four or five teams, Dennis said. Last year there weren’t enough teams, he said. january/february 2018 | 57

Photo courtesy Coweta County Youth Volleyball League Above, the Rattlers (left) and Lightning (right) compete in the playoffs of the Coweta County Recreation Department’s fall volleyball league at the Hunter Complex. Above right, coach Lisa Downs of the Coweta County Youth Volleyball League helps Lily Downs with her serve.

Dennis said that when he started working at the recreation department 24 years ago there was a big women’s volleyball league, but over the span of a few years it dwindled away to nothing. Dennis recalled one year that a league team was registering for the regional tournament and there were no other teams, so the Coweta team went straight to the state tournament. The next year, nobody signed up. “It just went kaput statewide,” Dennis said. But volleyball for teen girls is huge. “It seems like it grows every year,” Dennis said. For those who take volleyball very, very seriously, there is club-level volleyball through A5 South. Based in Peachtree City, the league has paid staff and teams travel to multiple tournaments – sometimes by airplane. Players must try out to make an A5 team. Serious volleyball on the level of A5 comes with a price – between $2,500 and $3,500 for younger players, and between $3,500 and $4,300 for older players, according to the A5 website. Fundraising opportunities and financial aid are available. For adults, the Peachtree City adult league is quite popular. All teams are co-ed, and at least two women must be on the court at all times on each team. Teams are often on the lookout for more female players, according to the Peachtree City Recreation and Special Events Department. The spring season starts around March or April, and the fall season begins in August. Open volleyball begins around February, once league basketball is over. During open volleyball, games are played as long as six people show up, and that’s the best way to meet other players and get on a team. Cowetans can buy a $60 pass to participate as an out-of-county player in open volleyball. Though there have been some rule changes over the years, volleyball is easy to learn and understand. “It’s pretty clean cut – there’s a not a lot of gray area in volleyball,” said Kevin Carlisle with the Coweta County Recreation Department. “It’s fun to watch, it’s easy to follow.” Carlisle said he’s seen parents who volunteer to coach, but say they know nothing about volleyball. “Once they get into it, once they see the kids learn so quickly, they adapt and learn – from the first practice to the last game. The parents end up loving it.” NCM 58 |

Coweta County Recreation Department Leagues 770-254-3740 For volleyball camp and fall leagues, contact Kevin Carlisle. For spring and adult leagues, Lance Dennis. Or visit and find the recreation department under the “Government” menu.

Coweta Youth Volleyball League or email

A5 South

Peachtree City Adult League 770-631-2525

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Photo courtesy Scarlett Inman Brooks Inman checks out the Tyrannosaurus Rex.

Wow. This place is awesome! That’s the kind of thing you might hear after a visit to the Tellus Science Museum. Located 90 minutes north of Coweta in Cartersville, the museum is a hit with kids and adults. It’s a Smithsonian Institution affiliate museum, with some items – including a moon rock – on loan from the Smithsonian. The museum has four very different galleries with a range of exhibits. There is also the planetarium with several shows through the day, the “solar house,” and the observatory, which is open for special events. There are various special events throughout the year, including a lecture series. After purchasing tickets, visitors are greeted by a huge skeleton of an apatosaurus – a hint of the wonders within the fossil gallery. There are casts of dinosaur skeletons – including a Tyrannosaurus Rex, pteranodons and a triceratops, as well as other prehistoric animals, from mammoths to fish, and the giant jaw of a megalodon, as well as smaller fossils of all kinds. Casts are made from actual fossilized bones found in various sites around the world – including several in the U.S. Though the casts are off-limits to curious hands, there are some fossils you can touch, including a coprolite – aka, fossilized dinosaur poop. The museum got its start as the Weinman Mineral Museum, and now features the original mineral displays in the Weinman Mineral Gallery. It’s a huge 60 |

The fossil display (above) – including full casts of dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals – is the highlight of a visit to the Tellus Science Museum in Cartersville.

collection, ranging from giant geodes to tiny gems, with a designated area specifically for minerals found in Georgia. There’s a display of common household products and the minerals they contain, and the amazing world of fluorescent minerals. There is one interactive exhibit where you can choose certain minerals and see what they create when combined. And there’s a massive display of the periodic table of the elements, with samples of every element that exists in nature – or one of its compounds.


A great way to spend a wintry day Written and photographed by SARAH CAMPBELL

Nathan Yeager and Brooks Inman (left) try out the fossil dig. Zoey Lankford and dad Corey (right) pan for gems.

Photo courtesy Scarlett Inman

january/february 2018 | 61

Photo courtesy Tellus Science Museum

Exhibits in the Science in Motion Gallery run the gamut from replicas of the first purpose-built automobile to space capsules and moon rocks.

The periodic table in the Weinman Mineral Gallery displays the elements themselves – or compounds containing them.

The Collins Family Big Backyard makes science fun for kids like Cody Burns, left.

Photo courtesy Jason Moulton

Cody Burns stands in front of one of the mineral gallery’s massive geodes.

Photo courtesy Jason Moulton 62 |

A special exhibit, Gem and Mineral Treasures from the Southeast, is on display through Dec. 4, 2018. The Millar Science in Motion Gallery shows vehicles from the earliest cars and motorcycles to replica space capsules. Exact replicas of some of the earliest automobiles are on display, sitting on mirrored bases so that the undercarriage of the vehicles can be easily seen. There are early motorcycles and even a replica of the Wright Brothers’ 1903 Wright Flyer. There is a Mercury capsule, replicas of the Apollo I capsule and Sputnik, as well as an astronaut suit and that moon rock – and the case used to collect it. Just off the Science in Motion Gallery is a small gallery for rotating exhibits. The current exhibit, “The World at Your Fingertips,” explores the history of telephones. It’s on display through June 10. For the younger set, there is the Collins Family Big Backyard, filled with science-based, interactive exhibits. From magnets galore to a laser piano and the ability to see the effects of sound waves, kids can learn science or just have fun. “They just go ham. They can build things, they can have fun,” said Jason Moulton, who has visited Tellus twice with son Cody. A temporary exhibit for kids, The Robot Zoo, is on display through May 6, 2018. Youngsters can also pan for gemstones, and get a taste of fossil hunting – with their own tiny gems and a fossil to take home. “Everybody loves the mining and fossil dig – Cody loves to mine for gems,” said Moulton. Brooks and Quinn Inman, who visited the museum two years ago with their grandmother and cousin, said the gem mining and fossil dig were their favorite parts of the museum. They also loved the dinosaurs. “I thought they were going to be small, plastic dioramas. They were actually really huge,” said Brooks, 12. “They overwhelmed me when I first saw them and I was totally amazed.” His cousin Nathan Yeager, 11, also loved the fossil gallery – especially the giant megalodon jaw and the information about the dinosaurs. At the Bentley Planetarium, you can take a tour of the night sky, or enjoy one of several rotating planetarium shows. For Moulton, the most impressive display in the museum is one that some visitors might not even notice – the pendulum in the lobby. The

Audrey Moncus checks out some of the touchable fossils in the fossil gallery.

We comprise a healthcare team which understands that women h special healthcareeneeds throughout their lives. Our specialists a comprise a healthcare team trained in the field ofwhich women’sunderstands medicine whichthat includes obstetrica women gynecological services such as pregnancy care, family planning ne have special healthcare needs and counseling, annual examinations and minor office surgical proce their lives. Inthroughout addition, specialized care is available in areas such as high ri and gynecological/urogynecological surgery. Ourpregnancy specialists are


trained in the field of women’s medicine which includes obstetrical and gynecological services such as pregnancy care, family planning needs and counseling, annual examinations and minor office surgical procedures.

pendulum swings constantly back and forth, and every few minutes, it knocks over a small block. “What you don’t realize is that as it swings, the earth’s rotation is turning the pieces – that blew my mind,” Moulton said. Quinn, 14, said he thinks he’ll enjoy the museum even more on his Dr. Lilibird Pichardo next visit, now that he is older. “I’ll probably actually take the time to read some of the stuff; I would probably get more out of it,” he said. Before, “I feel like I kind of rushed through it, trying to get through In addition, specialized is available in have everything.” We comprise a healthcare team which care understands that women areas such high are special healthcare needs throughout their lives. Ouras specialists Experiencing everything the museum has to offer takes several hours trained insaid theon field of women’s medicine risk which includes obstetrical and pregnancy – three hours at an absolute minimum. Jason Moulton their Photo courtesy ??? gynecological services such as pregnancy family planning needs andcare, gynecological/ first trip he and Cody were there for five hours and didn’t even go to a Gynecology Obstetrics Treatment and–counseling, annual examinations and minor offi ce surgical procedures. urogynecological surgery. planetarium show. • Annual Exams • Normal and High Risk • Menstrual Prob In addition, specialized care is available in areas such as high risk T. Cook • Colposcopies • Obstetrical Care Dr. William • PMS “If you’re going to go, make sure you have nothing else plannedand for gynecological/urogynecological pregnancy surgery. Gynecology • LEEP Procedures • 3D/4D Ultrasounds • Menopausal Pr that day,” said Quinn. We• comprise healthcare team which understands that women have AnnualaExams • Essure • Normal and High Risk • Urinary Incontin special healthcare needs throughout their lives. Our specialists are The museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week, except for • Colposcopies • Thermablation • Biophysical profiwhich les includes • Infertility trained in the field of women’s medicine obstetrical an major holidays. The solar house, which is designed for off-grid living, is • LEEP Procedures • Urodynamic Studies • Twins/Multiples gynecological services such as pregnancy care, family planning • Pelvic Painneed open for tours Thursday through Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. and counseling, • Essureannual•examinations Pregnancy and minor office• surgical Fibroidsprocedur In addition, specialized care is available in areas•such as high risk There’s a café on site and a gift shop. Sterilization • Thermablation pregnancy and gynecological/urogynecological surgery. Admission to the museum is $15.95 for adults; $11.95 for children • Urodynamic Studies 770-632-9900 • ages 3 to 17 and students with ID; and $13.95 for those age 65 and older. Dr. Marlo Carter Obstetrics 1267 Hwy 54 West Suite 3200 Fayetteville, GA 30214 Active-duty military are always free with ID, and their dependents • Normal and High Risk can receive half-price admission with ID. • Obstetrical Care Planetarium shows are $3.50 for the first show, and $2 for additional • 3D/4D Ultrasounds shows during the same visit. • Biophysical profiles Annual memberships are also available, at several levels. For • Twins/Multiples grandparents, a membership that includes admission for one named • Pregnancy adult, an adult guest and all grandchildren under age 18 is $110. NCM Gynecology Obstetrics Treatment Treatment • Annual Exams • Normal and High Risk • Menstrual Problems Dr. Matthew Ralsten, III • Colposcopies • Obstetrical Care • Menstrual • PMS Problems • LEEP Procedures • 3D/4D Ultrasounds• PMS • Menopausal Problems • Essure • Normal and High Risk • Menopausal Problems • UrinaryObstetrics Incontinence Gynecology Treatment t ou nd fi to • Thermablation • Biophysical profi les • Infertility • Annual Exams • Normal and High Risk • Menstrual Problem • Urinary Incontinence or n io at rm For more info • Colposcopies • Obstetrical Care • PMS • Urodynamic Studies • Twins/Multiples • Pelvic Pain • Infertility ts, rotating en ev l ia ec • LEEP Procedures • 3D/4D Ultrasounds • Menopausal Proble sp s, • Pregnancy nt • Fibroids ou • Pelvic Pain about disc • Essure • Normal and High Risk • Urinary Incontinen t si vi y, • Sterilization or at rv • Fibroids • Thermablation • Biophysical profiles Dr. Nicole • Infertility Quinn exhibits, and the obse • Sterilization • Urodynamic Studies • Twins/Multiples • Pelvic Pain 770-632-9900 • • Pregnancy • Fibroids • Sterilization 1267 Hwy 54 West Suite 3200 Fayetteville, GA 30214

rg www.tellusmuseum.o00. 57 or call 770-606-

Scan for Web Page

770-632-9900 • 1267 Hwy 54 West Suite 3200 Fayetteville, GA 30214


Not your average




rive down any neighborhood street or visit any plant nursery and you are guaranteed to see variations of pine, arborvitae, boxwood, and holly. Evergreens are a favorite for obvious reasons: hardy, year-round foliage that require little maintenance. What if there were options to step outside of your comfort zone while staying in the hardiness zone * ? Local garden expert Bob Lott has provided several suggestions for evergreen varieties. These plants push the boundary of expected, and redefine the concept of ever - “green.”

* Coweta County is Hardiness Zone 7, with localized microclimates ranging from 8 (warmer than average) to 6 (cooler than average).

RIGHT, Veatrice and Billy Murphy of Newnan love their Blue Ice cedar. The blue hue complements the evergreen privacy hedge along their house.

Written by MADELINE SCHINDLER | Photographed by BETH NEELY 64 |

LEFT, Evergreens are great companion plants in containers for the winter. An ‘Ascot Rainbow’ euphorbia makes a nice focal point when nestled among ornamental kales, violas and pansies. The euphorbia is a perennial, and can be moved to a permanent home in the garden after the seasons change for years of color.

Blue Ice Cypress


Noted for its icy blue-gray hue, the Blue Ice cypress can be used as a focal point or contrast within a landscape. Lott recommends the Blue Ice cypress as an alternative to the blue spruce. “The spruce doesn’t grow well here because of the hot climate,” Lott said. “The blue spruce is quite popular in the North and West, and people who move here from those regions will often request the Blue Ice cypress because of the resemblance.” The Blue Ice cypress prefers hot, humid climates, making it the perfect match for Georgia summers.

Giant Leopard Plant


“The Giant Leopard Plant is not commonly requested by customers, but it’s a pretty hardy plant,” said Lott. According to Lott, the Giant Leopard Plant is considered a semievergreen plant that keeps most of its leaves during the colder months. The flower stalks of this large perennial can grow to be almost four feet tall, and are topped with bright yellow blooms in late fall. The leaves can be as wide as 18 inches across, and some varieties have bold yellow spots. The Giant Leopard plant requires weekly watering and partial sun.

Agave Americana


(Century Plant) The Agave Americana is a perennial evergreen with bluish-gray, spiny leaves, native to Mexico and part of the Southern U.S. This hardy perennial grows in sandy soils and thrives in hot, dry climates. Several species of agave can be grown in Georgia, especially toward the southern part of the state. While not a candidate for the typical garden, the Agave Americana is ideal for succulent gardens and rock gardens. Caution: The sharp spines on the tips of the leaves can be hazardous to people and pets.

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LEFT, Nora Melville, 5, of Newnan, enjoys going on a treasure hunt for tea olive bouquets for her mother, Liz. The Melville family have several of the large evergreen shrubs around their home, and Liz describes the scent as “heavenly.”

Fatsia (Paper Plant)


Sweet Osmanthus (Tea olive)

The Sweet Osmanthus, also known as Tea Olive, is an evergreen shrub/small tree with pleasant smelling blooms whose scent rivals gardenias and roses. The Sweet Osmanthus is native to parts of Asia, from Southern China to Japan, but also grows well in the Southern U.S. The fragrant shrub blooms in the fall, sporadically throughout mild winters, and again in the spring. Sweet Osmanthus is less well-known for its foliage; the real impact is the fragrance from the tiny, mostly hidden flowers.


Heuchera (Coral bells) Heuchera, commonly known as coral bells, are small, mounding evergreen perennials with colorful leaves ranging from lime green, pink or purple ruffles, or variegated stripes. Many varieties also sport tall stems of white or pink bell-shaped flowers in early summer, and they are excellent “filler” companion plants in winter pots. The vibrant heuchera is native to North America and grows well in neutral to slightly acidic soil. With over 30 species of heuchera, there is something for every garden. When selecting a variety to plant, consider the USDA Zone – Coweta County is located within Zone 7. The hardiness of the plant depends on the variety of heuchera. ‘Ascot Rainbow’ Spurge


66 |

According to Lott, Fatsia is one of the most underutilized plants for shady spots in the garden, and despite its tropical look, it’s hardy enough to thrive in Georgia. Large, broadly-lobed leaves make a bold statement in any garden, and it serves well as a standalone shrub or as a garden backdrop. Some varieties have vividly variegated leaves. In late fall, large clusters of white flowers bloom above the showy foliage. The flowers are followed by shiny black berries, which attract birds. In colder climates, Fatsia is grown as a houseplant, but with Zone 7, it stays lush and green year-round.

(Euphorbia) Unique, chromatic color year-round? Groundbreaking. The ‘Ascot Rainbow’ variety of spurge, also known as euphorbia, is an evergreen perennial of ornamental interest. The plant’s flowers and foliage transition from a creamy lime green color to a vibrant pink/ purple hue in the colder months. ‘Ascot Rainbow’ requires little maintenance and is both heat- and drought-tolerant. This evergreen is great for winter container gardens or in mixed borders. Caution: The entire plant is highly toxic if ingested.

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7412 E. Hwy 16 • Senoia (1 mile west of GA 85)

Every bride and groom needs help planning their special day, and your business can be part of it! Let them know how you can help by placing your ad in this special full color, glossy magazine.


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The Bridal Planner will be published on Sunday, February 4, 2018 to home delivery paid subscribers of the The Newnan Times-Herald plus 2,500 additional copies will be distributed throughout the year to advertisers and locations in Coweta, Fayette, Troup,

Carroll and Douglas counties plus various other outlets. Also, with an average of over 600,000 page views per month on, this section will be seen by thousands of future brides and grooms for an entire year!


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FRIDAY, JAN. 12, 2018

january/february 2018 | 67







1-4 8-11

Martin Luther King Jr. Parade Historic Downtown Newnan | Noon FREE

Newnan’s 31st annual MLK Parade celebrates black history in our community and the advances in civil rights for all citizens.

Third Annual Newnan Robert Burns Scottish Heritage Celebration

13, 26-27

A Scottish-heritage weekend of activities to celebrate Newnan’s ties to sister city Ayr, Scotland. Enjoy Celtic music, dance, food, drink and more. Enjoy a Friday night stage show and after party at Newnan Theatre Company, Saturday afternoon ticketed Whisky Tasting followed by a free Ceilidh Celtic Concert — both at The Cellar; a Saturday evening, free Community Auld Lang Syne Sing-A-Long on the Court Square, and the ticketed annual Burns Supper and Dance Saturday night at the Newnan Historic Train Depot.

We Found Love and an Exquisite Set of Porcelain Figurines Aboard the SS Farndale Avenue by David McGillravey and Walter Zerlin, Jr.

Newnan Theatre Company The Farndale Ladies are back! Flushed by their “successes,” the stalwart veterans of the Dramatic Society are poised to conquer yet another dramatic idiom: their current production sails the luxury ocean liner SS Farndale Avenue into the world of thirties musical comedy. Details, prices, and times at

The Black Market Trust

The Nixon Centre | 7 p.m. | $15-20


The Black Market Trust’s musical roots run deep, and their new album “Just One of Those Things” reflects that. The band features the Django Reinhardt-inspired gypsy sound of acoustic instruments, and infuses classics from the Great American Songbook with intricate vocal harmonies inspired by The Beach Boys, and other artists.



A Newnan Outlander Adventure Stage Show and After Party Newnan Theatre Company | 7:30 p.m. $20 (ages 12 & under $10) Whisky Tasting The Cellar at Firestone | 3:30 p.m. | $25


Ceilidh Celtic Concert

The Cellar | 4:30 p.m. | FREE Community Auld Lang Syne Sing-A-Long Newnan Courthouse Square | 6:15 p.m. | FREE

Burns Supper and Dance

Historic Train Depot | 6:30 p.m. | $48



Run for Angels & Chicken Q

First United Methodist Church Newnan 8 a.m. | $15-25

16th annual 5K/10K Road Race and 1-Mile Fun Run benefitting Newnan’s Angel’s House children’s shelter. The 5K & 10K races are Peachtree Road Race qualifiers. Chicken Q plates available starting at 10 a.m. for $10/plate. 68 |



The Olate Dogs Variety Show The Nixon Centre | 3 p.m. | $15-20

Olate Dogs is an American dog-trick act featuring father-and-son trainers Richard and Nicholas Olate, who won the seventh season (2012) of America's Got Talent. Olate Dogs features four different five-minute acts that include tricks such as dogs jumping rope, going down slides, and riding scooters.

Amor Towles Lecture

The Nixon Centre | 7 p.m. | $15-20


Born and raised in the Boston area, Amor Towles graduated from Yale College and received an MA in English from Stanford University. His thesis at Stanford, a short-story cycle called “The Temptations of Pleasure,” was published in 1989 in Paris Review 112. Mr. Towles’ first novel, “Rules of Civility,” was published in 2011. His second novel, “A Gentleman in Moscow,” was published in 2016, and was on the New York Times bestseller list for over forty weeks.

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Open Enrollment Begins January 3rd, 2018 | (770) 599-0228 Located at 6675 East Highway 16, Senoia, GA 30276

Photo by Sonya Studt

Photo by

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Email us your photos of life in and around Coweta County and we may choose yours for a future edition of Blacktop! Photos must be original, high-resolution (300 DPI) digital photos in .jpg format, at least 3”x 5” size. Please include your name so that we can give you credit for your photo in the magazine!

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Beth Headley



in Newnan


(770) 254–3823 Investment and trust services are offered through United Bank’s Wealth Management Services department and do not include brokerage services that are regulated through FINRA, NASAA, SIPC, and the SEC. United Bank and its representatives do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. Clients should consult their tax and/or legal advisor for advice and information concerning their particular situation. This information is not intended to serve as a recommendation or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any particular product or service. It does not constitute advice and is issued without regard to any particular objective or the financial situation of any particular individual. Investment and Trust products are: not FDIC-insured, not bank-guaranteed, may lose value, not a bank deposit, not insured by any federal government agency.

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INDEX OF ADVERTISERS 92.5 The Bear................................................... 73 AllSpine Laser & Surgery Center.................. 9 Arnall Grocery Company...............................36 Atlanta Gastroenterology..............................25 Atlanta Market Furniture and Accessories................................................... 37 Avail Dermatology............................................. 2 Berkshire Hathaway....................................... 76 The Boyd Gallery............................................. 67 Brewton-Parker College................................45 Carriage House................................................ 67 Charlie’s Towing............................................... 67 Charter Bank..................................................... 47 Christian City.......................................................11 Coweta-Fayette EMC..................................... 75 Coweta Charter Academy............................69 Coweta Cities & County Employees Federal Credit Union.................................. 67 Coweta Community Foundation.................. 17 Digestive Healthcare of Georgia, P.C.......... 6 Fine Lines Art & Framing...............................36 Georgia Bone & Joint......................................31 Georgia Farm Bureau.....................................59 Insignia of Newnan..........................................13 Jack Peek’s Sales............................................. 71 Kemp’s Dalton West Flooring.......................59 Lee-King Pharmacy.........................................39 Main Street Newnan........................................12 McGuire’s Buildings........................................65 The Newnan Centre........................................13 Newnan First United Methodist Church.............................................................59 Newnan Theatre Company...........................12 The Newnan Times-Herald.......................... 67 NuLink....................................................................7 NuWay Realty...................................................25 Pain Care.............................................................. 5 Pontoni Hair Design & Skin Care................ 37 The Print Shop Gallery...................................38 Progressive Heating & Air Conditioning..................................................50 Real Talk on the Square.................................53 Schultz Family Dental.....................................39 Southern Crescent Women’s Healthcare.....................................................55 Speak Now Georgia......................................... 3 Stephanie Fagerstrom State Farm............. 67 StoneBridge Early Learning Center...........59 Sweetland Amphitheatre ............................... 4 Treasures Old & New.....................................35 United Bank................................................39, 72 University of West Georgia............................ 8 The Women’s Specialists of Fayette..........63 Yellowstone Landscape................................ 67 74 |

march / april preview



Working on your green thumb?

Meet Coweta's Master Gardeners and learn the tricks of their trade.

Earth Day Celebrating Earth – and cleaning it up – in April.

Tree City U.S.A. What this distinction means, and the trees we love best.


Magazine Advertising Deadline February 2, 2018

Next Publication Date: March 2, 2018

For more information on advertising opportunities in Newnan-Coweta Magazine, please call


Trusted. Dependable. Innovative.


Coweta-Fayette EMC’s subsidiary, Relyco Security Resources, not only offers you peace of mind through their home automation and security systems, they have a trained and dedicated staff ready to work with you on home energy solutions. We can even install a charging station for that new electric vehicle you purchased. Quick response. Reliable products. That’s the C-F EMC difference. Facebook “f ” Logo 770-502-0226

CMYK / .eps

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CMYK / .eps

Coweta / Newnan Office JC


Alizia Stargell

Cell: 770-755-8507 Office: 770-254-8333

Cell: 678-836-4288 Office: 770-254-8333

Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS)





Mattie Holmes

Bo Kersey

Cell: 678-614-3757 Office: 770-254-8333

Cell: 404-493-1551 Office: 770-254-8333





© 2017 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently operated subsidiary of HomeServices of America, Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, and a franchisee of BHHS, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® If your home is currently listed with a Broker, this is not intended as a solicitation. Equal Housing Opportunity.

Profile for The Times-Herald

Jan:feb ncm 2018  

Jan:feb ncm 2018