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Welcome to the Porch Press, Neighborhood News for Southeast Atlanta

Grant Park Spring Tour of Homes

By Christy Simo Get a glimpse of the evolution of Grant Park through 165 years at the 41st Spring Tour of Homes May 16–17, 2015. As the “living small” trend continues to gather steam, the tour has selected homes that showcase how creatively thinking about a smaller footprint in Grant Park can be a big deal. Throughout the last century and a half, residents have found innovative ways to grow their intown dwellings while keeping the neighborhood’s personality intact and without losing the property’s historic character and charm. This year’s tour features 12 homes and sites, as well as a “meet the builder” [read more...]

EAV Scavenger Hunt Returns

By Carlen Hultgren In support of the EAV Strut set for Saturday, September 26, the Save the Strut neighborhood group has brought back Scavenge for the Strut. Starting at 1:30 pm on Saturday, May 23, teams will get their lists and start the hunt. This is a walking scavenger hunt in and around the village. Families, friends and neighborhood groups are encouraged to join. The excitement starts and ends at Argosy at 470 Flat Shoals in East Atlanta. Teams will meet again at 4:30 pm to collect the booty and see which group has collected the most items. Teams of four can [read more...]

Miss Maynard Jackson 2014-2015 Crowned

By Dr. Lashundra Hill Marianne Williamson once quoted, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be?” One of Maynard Jackson’s own has displayed all of these characteristics of being powerful, an inspiration to others, brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and definitely fabulous. Sydney Long has risen to the top; on Friday, October 24, she was crowned Miss Maynard Jackson for the 2014-2015 school [read more...]

Zoo Atlanta Receives Major Gift from Woodruff Foundation

By Keisha Hines Zoo Atlanta has been awarded a $20 million grant from the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation in a dramatic show of support for an unprecedented expansion of Atlanta’s oldest cultural destination. The grant will match other gifts for the project on a 1:1 basis up to and including a commitment of $20 million. The campaign, entitled “A Grand New View for Zoo Atlanta: Elephants, Events & Expansion,” will facilitate the transformation of the 1921 Cyclorama building, entrusted to the Zoo’s stewardship by Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed in July 2014, and the property immediately surrounding the historic structure. Both Mayor Reed [read more...]

Historic Oakland Cemetery Tunes Into Atlanta’s History

By Pamela Henman Before Georgia On My Mind, there was simply “Georgia.” Before Music Midtown, Atlantans reveled at the Music Festival of 1883. Amateur historians and musicians alike learned something of note on Sunday, November 30 at historic Oakland Cemetery’s special-topic tour, “Bandmasters, Fifers, Composers, and More: Oakland’s Music Makers.” “Bandmasters, Fifers, Composers, and More: Oakland’s Music Makers” debuted as a one-time special topic tour in September. At this encore performance, tour guide Pat Powers introduced attendees to both famous and lesser-known musicians buried at Oakland Cemetery, tying them into Atlanta and state history. Stops along the hour-long tour included the final resting [read more...]

34th Grant Park Candlelight Tour of Homes

By Sonia Fuller The annual Grant Park Candlelight Tour of Homes, scheduled for Saturday, December 13 and Sunday, December 14 from 6:00pm to 10:00pm, is just weeks away and includes a whole weekend of fun-filled activities. Each year, close to a thousand people from near and far make the trek to share in some of Grant Park’s history and hospitality. The tour organizers hope you’ll help light up the park with your holiday lights, welcoming visitors into Grant Park during this special weekend. Approximately ten of Grant Park’s fabulous homes are included in this year’s tour, along with the more than a [read more...]

Front Page News
  • Grant Park Spring Tour of Homes By Christy Simo Get a glimpse of the evolution of Grant Park through 165 years at the 41st Spring Tour of Homes May 16–17, 2015. As the “living small” trend continues to gather steam, the tour has selected homes that showcase how creatively thinking about a smaller footprint in Grant Park can ...
  • EAV Scavenger Hunt Returns By Carlen Hultgren In support of the EAV Strut set for Saturday, September 26, the Save the Strut neighborhood group has brought back Scavenge for the Strut. Starting at 1:30 pm on Saturday, May 23, teams will get their lists and start the hunt. This is a walking scavenger hunt in ...
  • Miss Maynard Jackson 2014-2015 Crowned By Dr. Lashundra Hill Marianne Williamson once quoted, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?’ Actually, ...
  • Zoo Atlanta Receives Major Gift from Woodruff Foundation By Keisha Hines Zoo Atlanta has been awarded a $20 million grant from the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation in a dramatic show of support for an unprecedented expansion of Atlanta’s oldest cultural destination. The grant will match other gifts for the project on a 1:1 basis up to and including a ...
  • Historic Oakland Cemetery Tunes Into Atlanta’s History By Pamela Henman Before Georgia On My Mind, there was simply “Georgia.” Before Music Midtown, Atlantans reveled at the Music Festival of 1883. Amateur historians and musicians alike learned something of note on Sunday, November 30 at historic Oakland Cemetery’s special-topic tour, “Bandmasters, Fifers, Composers, and More: Oakland’s Music Makers.” “Bandmasters, Fifers, ...
  • 34th Grant Park Candlelight Tour of Homes By Sonia Fuller The annual Grant Park Candlelight Tour of Homes, scheduled for Saturday, December 13 and Sunday, December 14 from 6:00pm to 10:00pm, is just weeks away and includes a whole weekend of fun-filled activities. Each year, close to a thousand people from near and far make the trek to ...
  • Oakland Cemetery’s Halloween Tour Event Broke Records in 2014 By Pam Henman Designed to enlighten, not frighten, Oakland Cemetery’s Capturing the Spirit of Oakland Halloween tours boasted record attendees for two weekends in October. “We had an astounding turnout this year, with tickets selling out faster than ever before,” said Mary Woodlan, director of special events at Historic Oakland Foundation. “It’s ...
People and Places
  • Recycle. Reuse. ReStore. By Cher Hains Spring is in full swing, and it’s a perfect time to get outside and enjoy the weather. It’s also the time of year when many thoroughly “spring cleaning” their homes. Before throwing away unwanted items, remember that the Atlanta Habitat for Humanity ReStore accepts household items like furniture, ...
  • Boulevard Oak Cut Down II By Nancy Leighton One of the two ancient oak trees in front of the CVS Pharmacy at 520 Boulevard will not be leafing out this year to shade the parking lot and the street because they had to be cut down. By last summer, the leaves in the crown of one ...
  • Prison Farm Earth Day Party By Jordan Ososki Save The Old Atlanta Prison Farm (STOAPF) hosted another successful event in their efforts to preserve the largest green space inside the perimeter. On April 22, a group of local residents gathered to celebrate Earth Day at El Mexicano Restaurant, just north of the Old Atlanta Prison Farm. ...
  • Trail Guides Needed By Joe Peery Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm is looking for volunteers to help with trail building and maintenance around the Intrenchment Creek Park and beyond. We are also looking for assistants to help guide the growing crowds who are visiting the site. Small stipends are available for those who ...
  • Retail Resurgence in Grant Park By Philippe J. Pellerin   Only six months ago, three of Grant Park’s historic buildings looked very different. What were once abandoned and dilapidated buildings at 760 Confederate Ave, 464 Boulevard SE and 330 Ormond St are now charging back to life. This resurgence is due to a growing demand for retail ...
  • Beaty Awarded for Excellence in Teaching Martial Arts By Sam P. Williams East Atlanta resident and 3rd-degree black belt Renard Beaty has been chosen to receive an award for Excellence in Teaching Martial Arts. As an awardee, Kyo Sah Nim Beaty will be inducted as an Ambassador to the Martial Arts, an honor granted by one of the largest ...
  • East Atlanta Strut Wants YOU By Michelle Rice Is the East Atlanta Strut worth saving? The Strut can’t survive without a few more volunteers. Specifically, there are openings for volunteers to work on sponsorship, to help with festival logistics, and to help with public relations and marketing. If you’re interested, please send a note to EAVStrut@gmail.com. If ...
Schools and Children
  • Soap Box Team Soars By Shane Ferrell The Drew East Lake Eagles Soap Box Derby racing team is preparing to compete in the Soapbox Derby Gravity Challenge in Akron, Ohio on May 14 through May 16. Drew Charter School has unofficially participated in this race before but are now taking it to the next level. This ...
  • New Program Offers the Art of Movement by Toni Martin Furthering their commitment to children’s experience and expression of the art of dance, Dance 411 is introducing a comprehensive Early Childhood Development program. The “My First Steps” program fosters cognitive learning through dance, creative movement and educational playtime. For little ones eighteen months to 4 years old, this ...
  • GPNA to Provide College Scholarships By Kristin Andris The Grant Park Neighborhood Association this year will offer $500 scholarships to two high school seniors residing in Grant Park. To be considered, students must have at least a 3.0 GPA, a record of community involvement, and three letters of recommendation. One female student and one male student will ...
  • Jaguar Engineers By Shelley Carter Maynard Jackson High School (MJHS) Engineering Program needs help from the community, specifically individuals or companies who work or are retired from engineering, technology, construction, or design fields. Volunteers from the community could support the program through participation on an advisory board. The program at the new high school ...
  • Jackson High School to Hold Art Extravaganza in East Atlanta By Henry Bryant On Friday, March 27 an arts extravaganza from Maynard Jackson High School will be coming to the East Atlanta Library. Students will present visual arts and performances at a special evening reception that will take over the library. The event will begin at 6:00pm and include refreshments. Everyone ...
  • Annual ANCS Auction at the Georgia Freight Depot By Carrie Teegardin The Atlanta Neighborhood Charter School’s annual auction—always one of the best neighborhood parties of the year—returns to the Georgia Freight Depot this year. The party will be held Saturday, March 7 from 5-11 pm at the historic Depot, which is near the state Capitol building and Underground Atlanta. The ...
  • Jackson High School Siblings Recognized By Kimberly Willis Green Maynard Jackson High School siblings Askari Flewellen and Uwezo Flewellen II recently spoke with more than 90 youth ministers at Princeton University about inspiring their peers to give back to their community. The two brothers were members of GivingPoint’s leadership program at the GivingPoint Institute (GPI) held ...
Rocking Chair Reflections
  • Ruminations About Teacher Pay Duke Bradley, III, Ph.D. As Executive Director of Atlanta’s Wesley International Academy, I am often asked about our school’s approach to teacher pay. Although a casual redirection to our salary scale would probably answer the question that most people want to know, “How much will I make?,” spreadsheets full of numbers ...
  • The Flu Poem By Bob Titus If you’ve got a cold And fever too Then you know What you must do Don’t go to work Don’t go to school For if you do, you are a fool Get snuggled up in your bed And take something strong for your head The flu makes doctors and others rich And you can make others really sick So ...
  • Want to Make a Difference? By CJ Clark Do you want to give back to your neediest neighbors? Would you like to serve your community without opening your wallet? Yes? Me too! The idea is to find the neediest and the most at-risk home owners and perform basic repairs or tasks that they are not able ...
  • An Open Letter from Maynard Jackson High School’s Principal By Stephanie Johnson It is with pride that I want our community to share the celebrations, accomplishments and goals for 2015 and beyond as we work to create a school community that provides multiple opportunities for student achievement through globally competitive academics, athletics, extracurricular activities, and service. I want to begin ...
  • EAV Prison Farm  By Rich McKay Atlanta environmentalist Scott Petersen says that dangers lurk about 1.3 miles from East Atlanta Village on property that he says should be a park. About a half dozen run-down buildings on the old Atlanta Prison Farm off the Moreland Avenue corridor, are attractive nuisances attracting so called “urban explorers” ...
  • Yoga, Friendship, and Mental Illness By Danny Szemple   When I first began my internship at Holy Comforter’s Friendship Center I had only ever done yoga twice in my life, both times with the gentle “prompting” of a girlfriend in college. While I would probably never admit this to her at the time, the truth is I ...
  • 2014 Legislative Session Update  by Senator Nan Orrock, District 36 I am honored to serve my neighborhood of Ormewood Park, Grant Park, Benteen Park, Glenwood Park, and all of District 36, a vast sweep of Atlanta, since my 2006 election to the Georgia Senate. As your voice in the Senate, I urge you to contact ...