By Carlen Ruth Hultgren
The Atlanta Preservation Center (APC) will present its annual award-winning Phoenix Flies: A Celebration of Atlanta’s Historic Sites from March 2 through March 24. The three-week-long festival celebrating Atlanta’s cultural and historical resources will showcase 104 Preservation Partners offering over 200 events, including guided walking tours, lectures, storytelling, open houses, and more, all available to the public free of charge.
Over a dozen new partners have joined the celebration this year, including Atlanta Legal Aid located in the old Elks Club building downtown, the Atlanta Opera, Atomic Films/Pratt-Pullman Yards, the DeKalb History Center, the Freedom Park Conservancy, Hotel Clermont, UGA’s Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library, the Imperial OPA Circus, the Kronberg Wall, the Met/Candler Cotton Warehouses, Newport US/RE, Park Pride, the Patchwork Art & History Center, and the Plaza Theatre. The Ponce Condominium, Oglethorpe University, and the Whittier Mill Village are returning partners from past Phoenix Flies.
A highlight this year will be new tours of in-process or recently completed high profile rehabilitation projects in Atlanta, including a lecture and tour of the Pratt-Pullman Yards in Kirkwood, the Newport development tour of South Downtown, the Met/Candler Warehouses tour, and a guided tour through the award-winning, re-opened Hotel Clermont.
Other interesting rehabilitation projects showcased for the first time include two former church buildings that have been adapted into new uses. The Imperial Opa Circus/Atlanta Circus School is housed in the 1924 Grant Park Methodist Episcopal Church South and will offer an open house. The Kronberg Wall architectural firm located in the 1922 Bearden Temple AME Church in Reynoldstown will offer a lecture and tour. New partner Atlanta Legal Aid, headquartered in the old 1912 Elks Club building on Ellis Street, will offer a tour of the building and a photo exhibit.
There also will be a series of lectures at the APC that will focus specifically on historic preservation. The University of Georgia’s Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library will offer its “First Date with History” workshop at the Atlanta Preservation Center for the first time.
Several tours return to illustrate the history the city’s African American heritage and the revitalization occurring in the Sweet Auburn Historic District/Old Fourth Ward. Other events will showcase the developing West Side and Summerhill areas, as well as the revitalized Fairlie-Poplar Historic District.
Returning popular events include tours at Historic Oakland, Southview, Sylvester, and Westview Cemeteries, along with numerous churches and houses of worship. The popular fabulous Fox Theatre also returns this year, along with the Piedmont Driving Club and the Atlanta Woman’s Club. The Atlanta Preservation Center will again offer its open house, and tours of Atlanta’s historic neighborhoods.
All events are free to the public, but reservations are required for some events. Members of the Atlanta Preservation Center receive priority booking. Visit www.preserveatlanta.com for information for a complete list of events.
The Atlanta Preservation Center serves as the city’s private nonprofit preservation organization. It was founded in 1979 to promote the preservation of Atlanta’s architecturally, historically, and culturally significant buildings, neighborhoods, and landscapes through education and advocacy. For more information, please visit www.preserveatlanta.com or call 404-688-3353.