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'Miecznikowski' upends the senses

Produced in collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia and opening on July 14, the exhibit aims to explore identity and bodily agency

Kirstin Mitchell Website Sized 1130x420
Photo credit: Kirstin Mitchell
SEEING COLORS: Mitchell aims to create experimental environments that challenge common perceptions.

With grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Georgia Museum of Contemporary Art’s Working Artist Project (WAP) aims to provide support to artists living and working in Atlanta. Those selected receive a $15,000 stipend, a paid studio apprentice, $1,000 in art supplies, inclusion in the MOCA’s permanent collection, and a months-long solo exhibition of their new work. One such artist is Kirstin Mitchell, who was one of three artists selected in 2017 and is now presenting her solo exhibition Miecznikowski.


Covering the gamut of subjects from voyeurism and feminine sexuality to our relationship with nature, Mitchell creates experimental environments that challenge our perceptions. Through painting, photography, installations, and performance art, Mitchell’s work disarms the senses and defies easy description, creating a sensory experience that must be experienced in person to be understood, if it can be at all. Her latest, ‘Miecznikowski,’ is a culmination of Mitchell’s year as a WAP Fellow and aims to “touch on identity and the interruption of atmosphere,” while also paying homage to Polish folklore and blue-collar Southern history.


$8. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tues.-Sat., July 14-Sept. 8. Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, 75 Bennett St. N.W., Suite A2. 404-367-8700. http://mocaga.org.



More By This Writer

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  string(10029) "FESTIVALS 

ATL CLUCKFEST Nothing says down South like gerrymandering and fried chicken. In honor of that second thing, 25 of Atlanta’s best chicken eateries will battle it out for the title of the South’s best fried fowl. With 20 different restaurants in attendance you might wanna skip food for a few days beforehand, folks. $15-$35. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sat., Oct. 6. Candler Park, Candler Park Drive N.E. https://www.atlcluckfest.com.''

THE ORIGINAL STONECREST FEST Last year's inaugural Stonecrest Fest was a smashing success so the festival has returned for a sophomore outing. Food, merch, music, and the usual festival goodness should be expected, but attendees will also get the chance to experience the natural splendor of one of Georgia's two National Heritage Areas. Explore Arabia Mountain and learn the history of Flat Rock Archives, a community built by slaves where their descendants still reside. Free. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat. Oct. 6. Atlanta Sports City at Stonecrest Resorts, 8010 Mall Road, Stonecrest. http://www.stonecrestfest.com/.''

OKTOBERFEST ATLANTA Celebrate the coming of fall by enjoying German food, local beers, and (of course) German brews at this year’s Oktoberfest Atlanta. Once the alcohol works its inhibition removing magic, you can try your hand at a stein hoisting, a keg roll race, and a bratwurst toss, three of the German people’s most beloved national pastimes. *Lederhosen not required, but encouraged nonetheless.$15. 5-11 p.m. Fri., Oct. 12; 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat., Oct. 13; Noon-6 p.m Sun., Oct. 14. Historic Fourth Ward Park, 680 Dallas St. N.E. https://www.oktoberfestatl.com/.'' 48th

ATLANTA PRIDE FESTIVAL We aren’t called the gay mecca of the South for nothing. Things will kick off with a party at Georgia Aquarium Friday night, followed by the expected parades the next morning. Piedmont Park will be packed to the brim with food and merch vendors, so whether you’re gay or straight there should be something for everybody. Come loud and come proud. Free-$30. Sat., Oct. 13. 1:45 (Trans March) & 6 p.m. (Dyke march) 404-382-7588. Piedmont Park, 400 Park Drive N.E. https://atlantapride.org/.''

TASTE OF ATLANTA Until scientists discover a way to fuel human beings on solar power, a love of food will continue to be the one thing that unites all people. In celebration of this great equalizer, Midtown’s taste of Atlanta festival has returned for its 17th year, bringing with it plenty of delicious eats in tow. Some of ATL’s best food and drink offerings will be available, in addition to cooking and bartending competitions, celebrity chef talks, and kitchen workshops for the amateur Food Network star in all of us. Doctor’s note: This much good food in three days might be dangerous. $25-$190. Noon-5 p.m. Fri.-Sun. Oct. 19-21. Historic Fourth Ward Park, 680 Dallas St. N.E. http://www.tasteofatlanta.com.''

OWL-O-WEEN HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL In 1783 Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier introduced mankind to flight with his hot air balloon, and now you too can recreate this historic flight right here in Atlanta, hopefully with more success than Jean who died attempting to float across the English Channel. For those of us who prefer to stay firmly on the ground, there will be trick-or-treating for the kids, beer for the grown ups, and sword swallowing for the legions of freak-show enthusiasts sure to be in attendance. $6-$14. 6-11 p.m. Fri., Oct. 19.; 4-11 p.m Sat., Oct. 20.. Kennesaw State University Sports + Entertainment Park,, 3200 George Busbee Pkwy. N.W. http://owl-o-ween.com/.''

CURLS, KINKS + CULTURE FESTIVAL It’s been a long time coming, people. At last, a festival to uplift the complex beauty of black hair and, by extension, black people. Stock up on products to keep those curls healthy or even get that line-up fixed at Uncle Jimmy Male Grooming Bar. More than just a glorified saloon in a convention space, Curls, Kinks & Culture will also be providing a detox center, vegan food and drinks, martial arts and yoga classes, a dance battle, trap karaoke, and a best beard contest. Gentlemen, we suggest you start working on your chin curtains immediately. $5. Noon-7 p.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Georgia International Convention Center, 2000 Convention Center Concourse. http://curlskinksculture.com/.''

LITTLE 5 POINTS HALLOWEEN FESTIVAL AND PARADE ATL’s weirdo capital Little 5 Points is pulling out all the stops for Halloween this year, and quite frankly we’d expect nothing less. The titular parade will be marching down Euclid Avenue, which will be dotted with vendors, artists, and food trucks slinging their various goods. Killer costumes will be in abundance so don’t forget the masks, lest you be mistaken for a slasher victim by someone more appropriately dressed. Our advice: Bring the Michael Myers cutlery to look cool and to fight for parking. Free. Noon-11 p.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Little Five Points, Euclid Ave. N.E. http://l5phalloween.com.''

BROOKHAVEN ARTS FESTIVALFor the first time ever in recorded history there is something going down behind a MARTA station that you can bring your kids to. The Apple Valley Road fest features more than 140 artists of different backgrounds and mediums, food, live music, and a classic car show, proving once and for all that good things can happen in the shadow of public transit. Free. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat. Oct. 20, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 21. Brookhaven MARTA Station, 4047 Peachtree Road. http://brookhavenartsfestival.com/.''

PUBLIC AGENDA

PEACHES & PROHIBITION: A SPEAKEASY FUNDRAISER Break out the flapper dresses and high-waisted jackets, ladies and gents, because Peaches & Prohibition promises to deliver an authentic 1928 speakeasy experience rivaled only by time traveling back to the roaring twenties. Enjoy period-appropriate live music, savory appetizers, signature cocktails, and the knowledge that the proceeds benefit the Flourish Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing art education to underprivileged kids. Keeping with clandestine tradition, the location of this event will remain a mystery until you purchase your ticket, probably to keep the coppers from knocking down their door. $150. 8 p.m. Sat., Oct. 27. Secret Location in West Midtown. http://peachesandprohibition.org.''

MASQUERADE WINE AND DESIGN FOR A CAUSE Cross “supporting a good cause and protecting your anonymity” off your to-do list in one go by painting a mask with the ladies of AWARE, a female empowerment focused nonprofit. A ticket purchase will grant access to the night’s activities as well as free art supplies, masks, food and beer — as if a costume party could get any more awesome. $15-$45. 7-10 p.m. Sat. Oct. 27. Little Five Points Community Center, 1083 Austin Ave. N.E. 404-522-2926. https://www.eventbrite.com/o/aware-active-women-advocating-and-raising-empowerment-6294109499.''

SPORTS/HEALTH

WALK A MILE IN THEIR SHOES On average nearly 20 Americans per minute will experience physical abuse from a romantic partner. The Alma G. Davis foundation aims to eradicate domestic violence globally, and is celebrating survivors with this year's 5K run/1-mile walk. Those in attendance will get the chance to meet with survivors and hear their stories. $30-$150. 8 a.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Park Tavern/Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail, 500 10th St. N.E. 678-957-9464. http://almagdavisfoundation.org/what-we-do/walk.''

BOOKS

ATLANTA BLACK THEATRE FESTIVAL: AUTHOR’S CAFE Join prolific black authors Dr. Maisha S. Akbar, Sandra Davis, and Chris Scott for an intimate literary discussion. Food and drink will be in ample supply along with food for the soul. Free. Various times. Wed.-Sat., Oct. 3-6. Porter Sanford III Performing Arts Center, 3181 Rainbow Drive. https://atlantabtf.org/https://www.eventbrite.com/e/authors-cafe-oct-3-6-tickets-47036977867.''

MICHAEL BESCHLOSS, THE PRESIDENTS OF WAR Michael Beschloss will discuss and sign his forthcoming book on the Oval Office, this time focusing on America’s wartime presidents. He’s been called one of the greatest White House historians by the Carter Center, who are presumably experts on the matter. $38-$43 includes copy of book. 7-9 p.m. Tues., Oct. 16. The Carter Center, 453 Freedom Pkwy. N.E. 404-420-5100. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.eventbrite.com/e/michael-beschloss-presidents-of-war-book-talk-and-signing-tickets-48230158703/amp. 

COMEDY

THE VILLAGE THEATRE’S 10th ANNIVERSARY: ’50s VERMIN & ACTION SHOW Ten years ago a dozen friends decided to put on shows for fun, inadvertently birthing the iconic Village Theatre, now one of Atlanta’s premier venues. To celebrate a decade in the business the Village is presenting the Action Show, a blend of comedy, special effects, and live performance that aims to lampoon that most hallowed of American traditions: watching TV. $10. 8-9 p.m. Fri., Oct. 5. The Village Theatre, 349 Decatur St. S.E. 404-688-8858 http://villagecomedy.com/event/vts-10th-anniversary-50s-vermin-action-show/. 

FILM

ATLANTA HORROR FILM FESTIVAL The planets have aligned, spawning Atlanta’s bloodiest film festival for the 12th year running. Showcasing a dozen indie flicks and even more short films, there should be something for slasher die-hards and pants-wetting novices alike. And please, leave your chainsaws and machetes at home, people. $25-$50. Times TBD. Thurs.-Sat., Oct. 25-27. Synchronicity Theatre, 1545 Peachtree St. N.E. http://www.atlantahorrorfilmfest.com. 

THEATRE/OPERA

NICK’S FLAMINGO GRILL Inspired by Atlanta’s first integrated nightclub, Nick’s Flamingo Grill is a story about race, jazz, and brotherly love set against the backdrop of an America fresh off its victory in WWII. Of course a play about jazz wouldn't be complete without some original ’50s- songs provided by playwright Phillip DePoy and jazz pianist Tyrone Jackson. $45. Through Oct. 28. Alliance Theatre, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4650. https://alliancetheatre.org/production/2018-19/nicks-flamingo-grill.''"
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~~#000000:__ATL CLUCKFEST__ Nothing says down South like gerrymandering and fried chicken. In honor of that second thing, 25 of Atlanta’s best chicken eateries will battle it out for the title of the South’s best fried fowl. With 20 different restaurants in attendance you might wanna skip food for a few days beforehand, folks. ''$15-$35. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sat., Oct. 6. Candler Park, Candler Park Drive N.E. https://www.atlcluckfest.com.''~~

~~#000000:__THE ORIGINAL STONECREST FEST__ Last year's inaugural Stonecrest Fest was a smashing success so the festival has returned for a sophomore outing. Food, merch, music, and the usual festival goodness should be expected, but attendees will also get the chance to experience the natural splendor of one of Georgia's two National Heritage Areas. Explore Arabia Mountain and learn the history of Flat Rock Archives, a community built by slaves where their descendants still reside. ''Free. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat. Oct. 6. Atlanta Sports City at Stonecrest Resorts, 8010 Mall Road, Stonecrest. http://www.stonecrestfest.com/.''~~

~~#000000:__OKTOBERFEST ATLANTA__ Celebrate the coming of fall by enjoying German food, local beers, and (of course) German brews at this year’s Oktoberfest Atlanta. Once the alcohol works its inhibition removing magic, you can try your hand at a stein hoisting, a keg roll race, and a bratwurst toss, three of the German people’s most beloved national pastimes. *Lederhosen not required, but encouraged nonetheless.''$15. 5-11 p.m. Fri., Oct. 12; 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat., Oct. 13; Noon-6 p.m Sun., Oct. 14. Historic Fourth Ward Park, 680 Dallas St. N.E. https://www.oktoberfestatl.com/.'' __48th__~~

~~#000000:__ATLANTA PRIDE FESTIVAL__ We aren’t called the gay mecca of the South for nothing. Things will kick off with a party at Georgia Aquarium Friday night, followed by the expected parades the next morning. Piedmont Park will be packed to the brim with food and merch vendors, so whether you’re gay or straight there should be something for everybody. Come loud and come proud. ''Free-$30. Sat., Oct. 13. 1:45 (Trans March) & 6 p.m. (Dyke march) 404-382-7588. Piedmont Park, 400 Park Drive N.E. https://atlantapride.org/.''~~

~~#000000:__TASTE OF ATLANTA__ Until scientists discover a way to fuel human beings on solar power, a love of food will continue to be the one thing that unites all people. In celebration of this great equalizer, Midtown’s taste of Atlanta festival has returned for its 17th year, bringing with it plenty of delicious eats in tow. Some of ATL’s best food and drink offerings will be available, in addition to cooking and bartending competitions, celebrity chef talks, and kitchen workshops for the amateur Food Network star in all of us. Doctor’s note: This much good food in three days might be dangerous. ''$25-$190. Noon-5 p.m. Fri.-Sun. Oct. 19-21. Historic Fourth Ward Park, 680 Dallas St. N.E. http://www.tasteofatlanta.com.''~~

~~#000000:__OWL-O-WEEN HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL__ In 1783 Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier introduced mankind to flight with his hot air balloon, and now you too can recreate this historic flight right here in Atlanta, hopefully with more success than Jean who died attempting to float across the English Channel. For those of us who prefer to stay firmly on the ground, there will be trick-or-treating for the kids, beer for the grown ups, and sword swallowing for the legions of freak-show enthusiasts sure to be in attendance. ''$6-$14. 6-11 p.m. Fri., Oct. 19.; 4-11 p.m Sat., Oct. 20.. Kennesaw State University Sports + Entertainment Park,, 3200 George Busbee Pkwy. N.W. http://owl-o-ween.com/.''~~

~~#000000:__CURLS, KINKS + CULTURE FESTIVAL__ It’s been a long time coming, people. At last, a festival to uplift the complex beauty of black hair and, by extension, black people. Stock up on products to keep those curls healthy or even get that line-up fixed at Uncle Jimmy Male Grooming Bar. More than just a glorified saloon in a convention space, Curls, Kinks & Culture will also be providing a detox center, vegan food and drinks, martial arts and yoga classes, a dance battle, trap karaoke, and a best beard contest. Gentlemen, we suggest you start working on your chin curtains immediately. ''$5. Noon-7 p.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Georgia International Convention Center, 2000 Convention Center Concourse. http://curlskinksculture.com/.''~~

~~#000000:__LITTLE 5 POINTS HALLOWEEN FESTIVAL AND PARADE__ ATL’s weirdo capital Little 5 Points is pulling out all the stops for Halloween this year, and quite frankly we’d expect nothing less. The titular parade will be marching down Euclid Avenue, which will be dotted with vendors, artists, and food trucks slinging their various goods. Killer costumes will be in abundance so don’t forget the masks, lest you be mistaken for a slasher victim by someone more appropriately dressed. Our advice: Bring the Michael Myers cutlery to look cool and to fight for parking. ''Free. Noon-11 p.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Little Five Points, Euclid Ave. N.E. http://l5phalloween.com.''~~

~~#000000:__BROOKHAVEN ARTS FESTIVAL__For the first time ever in recorded history there is something going down behind a MARTA station that you can bring your kids to. The Apple Valley Road fest features more than 140 artists of different backgrounds and mediums, food, live music, and a classic car show, proving once and for all that good things can happen in the shadow of public transit. ''Free. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat. Oct. 20, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 21. Brookhaven MARTA Station, 4047 Peachtree Road. http://brookhavenartsfestival.com/.''~~

~~#000000:__===PUBLIC AGENDA===__~~

~~#000000:__PEACHES & PROHIBITION: A SPEAKEASY FUNDRAISER__ Break out the flapper dresses and high-waisted jackets, ladies and gents, because Peaches & Prohibition promises to deliver an authentic 1928 speakeasy experience rivaled only by time traveling back to the roaring twenties. Enjoy period-appropriate live music, savory appetizers, signature cocktails, and the knowledge that the proceeds benefit the Flourish Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing art education to underprivileged kids. Keeping with clandestine tradition, the location of this event will remain a mystery until you purchase your ticket, probably to keep the coppers from knocking down their door. ''$150. 8 p.m. Sat., Oct. 27. Secret Location in West Midtown. http://peachesandprohibition.org.''~~

~~#000000:__MASQUERADE WINE AND DESIGN FOR A CAUSE__ Cross “supporting a good cause and protecting your anonymity” off your to-do list in one go by painting a mask with the ladies of AWARE, a female empowerment focused nonprofit. A ticket purchase will grant access to the night’s activities as well as free art supplies, masks, food and beer — as if a costume party could get any more awesome. ''$15-$45. 7-10 p.m. Sat. Oct. 27. Little Five Points Community Center, 1083 Austin Ave. N.E. 404-522-2926. https://www.eventbrite.com/o/aware-active-women-advocating-and-raising-empowerment-6294109499.''~~

~~#000000:__===SPORTS/HEALTH===__~~

~~#000000:__WALK A MILE IN THEIR SHOES__ On average nearly 20 Americans per minute will experience physical abuse from a romantic partner. The Alma G. Davis foundation aims to eradicate domestic violence globally, and is celebrating survivors with this year's 5K run/1-mile walk. Those in attendance will get the chance to meet with survivors and hear their stories. ''$30-$150. 8 a.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Park Tavern/Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail, 500 10th St. N.E. 678-957-9464. http://almagdavisfoundation.org/what-we-do/walk.''~~

~~#000000:__===BOOKS===__~~

~~#000000:__ATLANTA BLACK THEATRE FESTIVAL: AUTHOR’S CAFE__ Join prolific black authors Dr. Maisha S. Akbar, Sandra Davis, and Chris Scott for an intimate literary discussion. Food and drink will be in ample supply along with food for the soul. ''Free. Various times. Wed.-Sat., Oct. 3-6. Porter Sanford III Performing Arts Center, 3181 Rainbow Drive. https://atlantabtf.org/https://www.eventbrite.com/e/authors-cafe-oct-3-6-tickets-47036977867.''~~

~~#000000:''__MICHAEL BESCHLOSS, __''__THE PRESIDENTS OF WAR__'' Michael Beschloss will discuss and sign his forthcoming book on the Oval Office, this time focusing on America’s wartime presidents. He’s been called one of the greatest White House historians by the Carter Center, who are presumably experts on the matter. $38-$43 includes copy of book. 7-9 p.m. Tues., Oct. 16. The Carter Center, 453 Freedom Pkwy. N.E. 404-420-5100. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.eventbrite.com/e/michael-beschloss-presidents-of-war-book-talk-and-signing-tickets-48230158703/amp. ''~~

~~#000000:__===COMEDY===__~~

~~#000000:''__THE VILLAGE THEATRE’S 10th ANNIVERSARY: ’50s VERMIN & ACTION SHOW__ Ten years ago a dozen friends decided to put on shows for fun, inadvertently birthing the iconic Village Theatre, now one of Atlanta’s premier venues. To celebrate a decade in the business the Village is presenting the Action Show, a blend of comedy, special effects, and live performance that aims to lampoon that most hallowed of American traditions: watching TV. $10. 8-9 p.m. Fri., Oct. 5. The Village Theatre, 349 Decatur St. S.E. 404-688-8858 http://villagecomedy.com/event/vts-10th-anniversary-50s-vermin-action-show/. ''~~

~~#000000:__===FILM===__~~

~~#000000:__ATLANTA HORROR FILM FESTIVAL__'' The planets have aligned, spawning Atlanta’s bloodiest film festival for the 12th year running. Showcasing a dozen indie flicks and even more short films, there should be something for slasher die-hards and pants-wetting novices alike. And please, leave your chainsaws and machetes at home, people. $25-$50. Times TBD. Thurs.-Sat., Oct. 25-27. Synchronicity Theatre, 1545 Peachtree St. N.E. http://www.atlantahorrorfilmfest.com. ''~~

~~#000000:===__THEATRE/OPERA__===~~

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  string(10439) " Owloween  2018-10-10T14:13:59+00:00 owloween.jpg     What's happenin' in ATL this month  9981  2018-10-10T14:08:34+00:00 October 2018 arts agenda laureneleathers@gmail.com Lauren Leathers Mat Shankute  2018-10-10T14:08:34+00:00  FESTIVALS 

ATL CLUCKFEST Nothing says down South like gerrymandering and fried chicken. In honor of that second thing, 25 of Atlanta’s best chicken eateries will battle it out for the title of the South’s best fried fowl. With 20 different restaurants in attendance you might wanna skip food for a few days beforehand, folks. $15-$35. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sat., Oct. 6. Candler Park, Candler Park Drive N.E. https://www.atlcluckfest.com.''

THE ORIGINAL STONECREST FEST Last year's inaugural Stonecrest Fest was a smashing success so the festival has returned for a sophomore outing. Food, merch, music, and the usual festival goodness should be expected, but attendees will also get the chance to experience the natural splendor of one of Georgia's two National Heritage Areas. Explore Arabia Mountain and learn the history of Flat Rock Archives, a community built by slaves where their descendants still reside. Free. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat. Oct. 6. Atlanta Sports City at Stonecrest Resorts, 8010 Mall Road, Stonecrest. http://www.stonecrestfest.com/.''

OKTOBERFEST ATLANTA Celebrate the coming of fall by enjoying German food, local beers, and (of course) German brews at this year’s Oktoberfest Atlanta. Once the alcohol works its inhibition removing magic, you can try your hand at a stein hoisting, a keg roll race, and a bratwurst toss, three of the German people’s most beloved national pastimes. *Lederhosen not required, but encouraged nonetheless.$15. 5-11 p.m. Fri., Oct. 12; 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat., Oct. 13; Noon-6 p.m Sun., Oct. 14. Historic Fourth Ward Park, 680 Dallas St. N.E. https://www.oktoberfestatl.com/.'' 48th

ATLANTA PRIDE FESTIVAL We aren’t called the gay mecca of the South for nothing. Things will kick off with a party at Georgia Aquarium Friday night, followed by the expected parades the next morning. Piedmont Park will be packed to the brim with food and merch vendors, so whether you’re gay or straight there should be something for everybody. Come loud and come proud. Free-$30. Sat., Oct. 13. 1:45 (Trans March) & 6 p.m. (Dyke march) 404-382-7588. Piedmont Park, 400 Park Drive N.E. https://atlantapride.org/.''

TASTE OF ATLANTA Until scientists discover a way to fuel human beings on solar power, a love of food will continue to be the one thing that unites all people. In celebration of this great equalizer, Midtown’s taste of Atlanta festival has returned for its 17th year, bringing with it plenty of delicious eats in tow. Some of ATL’s best food and drink offerings will be available, in addition to cooking and bartending competitions, celebrity chef talks, and kitchen workshops for the amateur Food Network star in all of us. Doctor’s note: This much good food in three days might be dangerous. $25-$190. Noon-5 p.m. Fri.-Sun. Oct. 19-21. Historic Fourth Ward Park, 680 Dallas St. N.E. http://www.tasteofatlanta.com.''

OWL-O-WEEN HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL In 1783 Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier introduced mankind to flight with his hot air balloon, and now you too can recreate this historic flight right here in Atlanta, hopefully with more success than Jean who died attempting to float across the English Channel. For those of us who prefer to stay firmly on the ground, there will be trick-or-treating for the kids, beer for the grown ups, and sword swallowing for the legions of freak-show enthusiasts sure to be in attendance. $6-$14. 6-11 p.m. Fri., Oct. 19.; 4-11 p.m Sat., Oct. 20.. Kennesaw State University Sports + Entertainment Park,, 3200 George Busbee Pkwy. N.W. http://owl-o-ween.com/.''

CURLS, KINKS + CULTURE FESTIVAL It’s been a long time coming, people. At last, a festival to uplift the complex beauty of black hair and, by extension, black people. Stock up on products to keep those curls healthy or even get that line-up fixed at Uncle Jimmy Male Grooming Bar. More than just a glorified saloon in a convention space, Curls, Kinks & Culture will also be providing a detox center, vegan food and drinks, martial arts and yoga classes, a dance battle, trap karaoke, and a best beard contest. Gentlemen, we suggest you start working on your chin curtains immediately. $5. Noon-7 p.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Georgia International Convention Center, 2000 Convention Center Concourse. http://curlskinksculture.com/.''

LITTLE 5 POINTS HALLOWEEN FESTIVAL AND PARADE ATL’s weirdo capital Little 5 Points is pulling out all the stops for Halloween this year, and quite frankly we’d expect nothing less. The titular parade will be marching down Euclid Avenue, which will be dotted with vendors, artists, and food trucks slinging their various goods. Killer costumes will be in abundance so don’t forget the masks, lest you be mistaken for a slasher victim by someone more appropriately dressed. Our advice: Bring the Michael Myers cutlery to look cool and to fight for parking. Free. Noon-11 p.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Little Five Points, Euclid Ave. N.E. http://l5phalloween.com.''

BROOKHAVEN ARTS FESTIVALFor the first time ever in recorded history there is something going down behind a MARTA station that you can bring your kids to. The Apple Valley Road fest features more than 140 artists of different backgrounds and mediums, food, live music, and a classic car show, proving once and for all that good things can happen in the shadow of public transit. Free. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat. Oct. 20, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 21. Brookhaven MARTA Station, 4047 Peachtree Road. http://brookhavenartsfestival.com/.''

PUBLIC AGENDA

PEACHES & PROHIBITION: A SPEAKEASY FUNDRAISER Break out the flapper dresses and high-waisted jackets, ladies and gents, because Peaches & Prohibition promises to deliver an authentic 1928 speakeasy experience rivaled only by time traveling back to the roaring twenties. Enjoy period-appropriate live music, savory appetizers, signature cocktails, and the knowledge that the proceeds benefit the Flourish Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing art education to underprivileged kids. Keeping with clandestine tradition, the location of this event will remain a mystery until you purchase your ticket, probably to keep the coppers from knocking down their door. $150. 8 p.m. Sat., Oct. 27. Secret Location in West Midtown. http://peachesandprohibition.org.''

MASQUERADE WINE AND DESIGN FOR A CAUSE Cross “supporting a good cause and protecting your anonymity” off your to-do list in one go by painting a mask with the ladies of AWARE, a female empowerment focused nonprofit. A ticket purchase will grant access to the night’s activities as well as free art supplies, masks, food and beer — as if a costume party could get any more awesome. $15-$45. 7-10 p.m. Sat. Oct. 27. Little Five Points Community Center, 1083 Austin Ave. N.E. 404-522-2926. https://www.eventbrite.com/o/aware-active-women-advocating-and-raising-empowerment-6294109499.''

SPORTS/HEALTH

WALK A MILE IN THEIR SHOES On average nearly 20 Americans per minute will experience physical abuse from a romantic partner. The Alma G. Davis foundation aims to eradicate domestic violence globally, and is celebrating survivors with this year's 5K run/1-mile walk. Those in attendance will get the chance to meet with survivors and hear their stories. $30-$150. 8 a.m. Sat., Oct. 20. Park Tavern/Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail, 500 10th St. N.E. 678-957-9464. http://almagdavisfoundation.org/what-we-do/walk.''

BOOKS

ATLANTA BLACK THEATRE FESTIVAL: AUTHOR’S CAFE Join prolific black authors Dr. Maisha S. Akbar, Sandra Davis, and Chris Scott for an intimate literary discussion. Food and drink will be in ample supply along with food for the soul. Free. Various times. Wed.-Sat., Oct. 3-6. Porter Sanford III Performing Arts Center, 3181 Rainbow Drive. https://atlantabtf.org/https://www.eventbrite.com/e/authors-cafe-oct-3-6-tickets-47036977867.''

MICHAEL BESCHLOSS, THE PRESIDENTS OF WAR Michael Beschloss will discuss and sign his forthcoming book on the Oval Office, this time focusing on America’s wartime presidents. He’s been called one of the greatest White House historians by the Carter Center, who are presumably experts on the matter. $38-$43 includes copy of book. 7-9 p.m. Tues., Oct. 16. The Carter Center, 453 Freedom Pkwy. N.E. 404-420-5100. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.eventbrite.com/e/michael-beschloss-presidents-of-war-book-talk-and-signing-tickets-48230158703/amp. 

COMEDY

THE VILLAGE THEATRE’S 10th ANNIVERSARY: ’50s VERMIN & ACTION SHOW Ten years ago a dozen friends decided to put on shows for fun, inadvertently birthing the iconic Village Theatre, now one of Atlanta’s premier venues. To celebrate a decade in the business the Village is presenting the Action Show, a blend of comedy, special effects, and live performance that aims to lampoon that most hallowed of American traditions: watching TV. $10. 8-9 p.m. Fri., Oct. 5. The Village Theatre, 349 Decatur St. S.E. 404-688-8858 http://villagecomedy.com/event/vts-10th-anniversary-50s-vermin-action-show/. 

FILM

ATLANTA HORROR FILM FESTIVAL The planets have aligned, spawning Atlanta’s bloodiest film festival for the 12th year running. Showcasing a dozen indie flicks and even more short films, there should be something for slasher die-hards and pants-wetting novices alike. And please, leave your chainsaws and machetes at home, people. $25-$50. Times TBD. Thurs.-Sat., Oct. 25-27. Synchronicity Theatre, 1545 Peachtree St. N.E. http://www.atlantahorrorfilmfest.com. 

THEATRE/OPERA

NICK’S FLAMINGO GRILL Inspired by Atlanta’s first integrated nightclub, Nick’s Flamingo Grill is a story about race, jazz, and brotherly love set against the backdrop of an America fresh off its victory in WWII. Of course a play about jazz wouldn't be complete without some original ’50s- songs provided by playwright Phillip DePoy and jazz pianist Tyrone Jackson. $45. Through Oct. 28. Alliance Theatre, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4650. https://alliancetheatre.org/production/2018-19/nicks-flamingo-grill.''    Owl-O-Ween Hot Air Balloon Festival FLOAT ON: On the ground or in the air, Owl-O-Ween has something for everybody.                                    October 2018 arts agenda "
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Feast your eyes on legendary adult film actress and alleged Donald Trump affair survivor, Stormy Daniels, as she bares it all at Atlanta’s Pink Pony Gentlemen’s Club. Daniels is in the midst of a nationwide tour, Make Atlanta Horny Again, presumably spurred on by the media fervor stemming from her allegations that President Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen paid her $130,000 to keep quiet about their 2006 affair. Obviously it wasn’t enough, because Daniels has spent the last seven months making as many TV appearances as the President himself. Regardless of what side of the isle you sit on this industry veteran won’t disappoint, as owner Dennis Williams promises “we’re going to keep politics out.” Those in attendance can expect a patriotic theme as well as a special appearance from a certain 45th President himself (actually, an impersonator. But still.) 

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  string(8690) "Right across from the Intrenchment Creek Water Reclamation Center and the Atlanta Police Department Pistol Range lies the largest piece of untouched land inside the Perimeter, a site that has an unsettling past, a convoluted present, and an uncertain future.

The old Atlanta Prison Farm, or the “Honor Farm,” was once an experimental 300-acre prison, a legacy reflected in the handful of dilapidated cell blocks and guardhouses still standing on the property. Local graffiti muralists have reclaimed what remains of the penitentiary by covering it with some of the most stunning graffiti the city has to offer, and for years since its closure, hundreds of hikers, artists, and ne’er-do-wells alike have braved trespassing fines and injuries to tour the site. To understand how such a popular and untouched piece of land (most of it densely forested) has remained undeveloped in our rapidly expanding city, it’s necessary to start with the Civil War.

In 1863, the city of Atlanta first proposed purchasing the property for use as a cemetery, a plan that would be dashed by the South’s defeat two years later. The Prison Farm’s next steward was the federal government, who planned on building a POW camp on the site in 1918. Their ownership, too, would be short-lived, as the property was sold to the city of Atlanta just a year later, and was quickly established as an honor farm, the first of its kind.

The initial concept of the honor farm was to allow the most trustworthy prisoners to work off their sentences as laborers for the state. City officials were so committed to the idea that the prison lacked any real security, forgoing guns and cell bars entirely. On paper this seems like a surprisingly progressive idea, but the reality was much more sinister. “This is not a happy place historically,” says Atlanta artist Scott Petersen, a frequent tour guide for the Prison Farm property. “This was a site back in chain gang times, where people were lynched. They were hung. Where blacks were incarcerated for very minimal offenses like whistling at a white woman or breaking curfew. And the excuse was that since they were convicts, they lost their human rights and could be sold and purchased. And they were sold into a form of indentured servitude.”



Prisoners spent their time completing construction projects for the state and farming the land, eventually producing enough food for the prison to become self-sustaining in 1935. From here records become spotty at best, with the last recorded evidence of the Prison Farm’s use as a penitentiary coming in the form of a 1971 health inspection report. It’s unclear how much longer the land remained in use, and it was officially shuttered in 1995.

For the past 23 years, despite its wide acreage and scenic views, Prison Farm has remained entirely abandoned. The city of Atlanta has maintained ownership of the land since its closure, even though the site now sits within the borders of DeKalb County. Over the years DeKalb has expressed interest in adopting the Prison Farm land, but a political stalemate between the two parties has resulted in all 300 acres remaining unused.



Nearby residents have also expressed a desire to see the Prison Farm land utilized, with Scott Petersen having a particularly impactful relationship with the space. In addition to giving hiking tours of the land to curious urban explorers, Petersen has been advocating for the Prison Farm since 2003, establishing the Save The Old Atlanta Prison Farm campaign as way to drum up public interest in seeing the farm turned into a park. Partially through Scott’s efforts, a deal to purchase the old Honor Farm was nearly reached in 2004.

“Unfortunately, at the time, Vernon Jones was the CEO of DeKalb County and Shirley Franklin was the mayor of Atlanta,” Petersen says. “Those two personalities just did not get along, so the deal fell apart more on ego than it did on money.”

After the deal fell through, the only significant development on the property came in the form of a devastating fire in 2009. The blaze was so intense that firefighters on the scene let it burn itself out, a decision that led to a complete roof collapse in one of the main buildings. Smaller fires would continue to break out over the years, but the worst would arrive in 2017.


 
Over the years, the Prison Farm had become a popular, if illegal, dumping site for all manner of refuse, with the most popular being tires that grew into massive piles flanking the entrance and southern side of the main building. Last year one of these mountains was set aflame, kindling an inferno that took more than 24 hours to extinguish and produced smoke that could be seen from the windows of planes flying into Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

Since then, Atlanta has made significant efforts to clean up and secure the property, installing fences, concrete barricades, cameras, and motion detectors.“I think it stopped the dumping from being really bad,” Peterson says when asked about the new security. “I mean, when they were dumping tires it was like thousands of them. It was like a freight train's worth of tires back there.” Yet despite the city’s investment in cleaning and sealing off the property, there’s still been no word from Atlanta officials on future plans for the Farm. The closest thing to an update officials have released in the last 14 years has been the Department of City Planning’s 2017 release of a book entitled The Atlanta City Design: Aspiring to the Beloved Community. Within its pages, the Department of City Planning proposes combining the Prison Farm, Constitution Lakes, and Southside Park Atlanta into one 600+-acre regional park.



Kathie Gannon, DeKalb County Commissioner of Super District 6, says there is a major opportunity for land usage where the Prison Farm is located. “Any time there are 300 acres of undeveloped land inside the Perimeter under common ownership, there is a major opportunity. I’d like to work with the city of Atlanta to plan for this large area and build this trail connection which I believe will be mutually beneficial to citizens in the vicinity. In the meantime, I’m hopeful that the city of Atlanta will be a responsible steward of this property.” Gannon worries about the lack of any significant plan or zoning controls for the land. She’d like to see the property revert to a farm, specifically “a large organic farming operation with small acreage plots leased off to individual farmers.” Says Gannon, “I think it could create entrepreneurial opportunities and be a great source of farm to table food for Metro Atlanta restaurants and the Atlanta Community Food Bank.”

Petersen and his Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm campaign’s proposal has probably been in the works the longest, and is also easily the most ambitious. In addition to cleaning up trash and preserving the graffiti murals, the plan also includes playgrounds, hiking trails, a community garden, soccer fields, and markers that commemorate the Prison Farm’s storied history.



The final group to make a play for the future of Prison Farm is the Atlanta City Police Foundation. The ACPF has remained tight-lipped on their potential plans (they declined to comment for this article), but rumor has it that they would use the vast majority of the land for an expanded training facility, leaving only 20-30 acres for public use.
Despite having visited a handful of times myself, I’d be remiss if I didn’t try and warn curious readers away from Prison Farm. Even before the dramatic security increase, setting foot near any of the main buildings carried a hefty $400 trespassing fine, and with motion detectors and cameras now monitoring the site, your odds of getting away with it are slim to none. If you’re interested in learning some history and seeing the more unspoiled parts of the property, your safest bet is booking a tour with Scott Peterson himself.

Meanwhile, with so much legal red tape and so many different groups vying for control, it’s hard to predict what will become of the site in the future, if anything at all. We can only hope that whoever eventually renovates the property does so with the public’s best interest at heart and makes an earnest effort to remember what happened on the Atlanta Prison Farm, one of our city’s most overlooked and unsung historic markers.

If you’d like to see this 300-acre no man's land be put to use, I suggest following the Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm Facebook page, as well as contacting both the Atlanta and DeKalb County parks departments."
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  string(10300) "~~#000000:Right across from the Intrenchment Creek Water Reclamation Center and the Atlanta Police Department Pistol Range lies the largest piece of untouched land inside the Perimeter, a site that has an unsettling past, a convoluted present, and an uncertain future.~~

~~#000000:The old Atlanta Prison Farm, or the “Honor Farm,” was once an experimental 300-acre prison, a legacy reflected in the handful of dilapidated cell blocks and guardhouses still standing on the property. Local graffiti muralists have reclaimed what remains of the penitentiary by covering it with some of the most stunning graffiti the city has to offer, and for years since its closure, hundreds of hikers, artists, and ne’er-do-wells alike have braved trespassing fines and injuries to tour the site. To understand how such a popular and untouched piece of land (most of it densely forested) has remained undeveloped in our rapidly expanding city, it’s necessary to start with the Civil War.~~

~~#000000:In 1863, the city of Atlanta first proposed purchasing the property for use as a cemetery, a plan that would be dashed by the South’s defeat two years later. The Prison Farm’s next steward was the federal government, who planned on building a POW camp on the site in 1918. Their ownership, too, would be short-lived, as the property was sold to the city of Atlanta just a year later, and was quickly established as an honor farm, the first of its kind.~~

~~#000000:The initial concept of the honor farm was to allow the most trustworthy prisoners to work off their sentences as laborers for the state. City officials were so committed to the idea that the prison lacked any real security, forgoing guns and cell bars entirely. On paper this seems like a surprisingly progressive idea, but the reality was much more sinister. “This is not a happy place historically,” says Atlanta artist Scott Petersen, a frequent tour guide for the Prison Farm property. “This was a site back in chain gang times, where people were lynched. They were hung. Where blacks were incarcerated for very minimal offenses like whistling at a white woman or breaking curfew. And the excuse was that since they were convicts, they lost their human rights and could be sold and purchased. And they were sold into a form of indentured servitude.”~~

{img fileId="7374" align="center" desc="NO CHAIN GANG: During its heyday, inmates at the Prison Farm would harvest all manner of produce. PHOTO CREDIT: AJC Photographic archive" width="600"}

~~#000000:Prisoners spent their time completing construction projects for the state and farming the land, eventually producing enough food for the prison to become self-sustaining in 1935. From here records become spotty at best, with the last recorded evidence of the Prison Farm’s use as a penitentiary coming in the form of a 1971 health inspection report. It’s unclear how much longer the land remained in use, and it was officially shuttered in 1995.~~

~~#000000:For the past 23 years, despite its wide acreage and scenic views, Prison Farm has remained entirely abandoned. The city of Atlanta has maintained ownership of the land since its closure, even though the site now sits within the borders of DeKalb County. Over the years DeKalb has expressed interest in adopting the Prison Farm land, but a political stalemate between the two parties has resulted in all 300 acres remaining unused.~~

{img fileId="7373" align="center" desc="A VANDAL’S DREAM: Originally a housing unit for inmates, the main building has become the most popular target for graffiti artists visiting the Prison Farm.  PHOTO CREDIT: Jordan Ososki" width="600"}

~~#000000:Nearby residents have also expressed a desire to see the Prison Farm land utilized, with Scott Petersen having a particularly impactful relationship with the space. In addition to giving hiking tours of the land to curious urban explorers, Petersen has been advocating for the Prison Farm since 2003, establishing the ~~[http://www.savetheoldatlantaprisonfarm.org/|~~#000000:Save The Old Atlanta Prison Farm~~]~~#000000: campaign as way to drum up public interest in seeing the farm turned into a park. Partially through Scott’s efforts, a deal to purchase the old Honor Farm was nearly reached in 2004.~~

~~#000000:“Unfortunately, at the time, Vernon Jones was the CEO of DeKalb County and Shirley Franklin was the mayor of Atlanta,” Petersen says. “Those two personalities just did not get along, so the deal fell apart more on ego than it did on money.”~~

~~#000000:After the deal fell through, the only significant development on the property came in the form of a devastating fire in 2009. The blaze was so intense that firefighters on the scene let it burn itself out, a decision that led to a complete roof collapse in one of the main buildings. Smaller fires would continue to break out over the years, but the worst would arrive in 2017.~~

{img fileId="7372" align="center" desc="FROM THE ASHES: What remains of the Prison Farm’s upper levels following the 2009 fire is a mess of copper piping, charred lumber, and hidden pitfalls. PHOTO CREDIT: Jordan Ososki" width="600"}
~~#000000: ~~
~~#000000:Over the years, the Prison Farm had become a popular, if illegal, dumping site for all manner of refuse, with the most popular being tires that grew into massive piles flanking the entrance and southern side of the main building. Last year one of these mountains was set aflame, kindling an inferno that took more than 24 hours to extinguish and produced smoke that could be seen from the windows of planes flying into Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.~~

~~#000000:Since then, Atlanta has made significant efforts to clean up and secure the property, installing fences, concrete barricades, cameras, and motion detectors.“I think it stopped the dumping from being really bad,” Peterson says when asked about the new security. “I mean, when they were dumping tires it was like thousands of them. It was like a freight train's worth of tires back there.” Yet despite the city’s investment in cleaning and sealing off the property, there’s still been no word from Atlanta officials on future plans for the Farm. The closest thing to an update officials have released in the last 14 years has been the Department of City Planning’s 2017 release of a book entitled ''The Atlanta City Design: Aspiring to the Beloved Community''. Within its pages, the Department of City Planning proposes combining the Prison Farm, Constitution Lakes, and Southside Park Atlanta into one 600+-acre regional park.~~

{img fileId="7371" align="center" desc="ATLANTA, INTERESTED AGAIN?: This proposed design was a welcome break from the official silence concerning the Prison Farm, but it remains to be seen if the plan will ever come to fruition. PHOTO CREDIT: Department of City Planning" width="600"}

~~#000000:Kathie Gannon, DeKalb County Commissioner of Super District 6, says there is a major opportunity for land usage where the Prison Farm is located. “Any time there are 300 acres of undeveloped land inside the Perimeter under common ownership, there is a major opportunity. I’d like to work with the city of Atlanta to plan for this large area and build this trail connection which I believe will be mutually beneficial to citizens in the vicinity. In the meantime, I’m hopeful that the city of Atlanta will be a responsible steward of this property.” Gannon worries about the lack of any significant plan or zoning controls for the land. She’d like to see the property revert to a farm, specifically “a large organic farming operation with small acreage plots leased off to individual farmers.” Says Gannon, “I think it could create entrepreneurial opportunities and be a great source of farm to table food for Metro Atlanta restaurants and the Atlanta Community Food Bank.”~~

~~#000000:Petersen and his Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm campaign’s proposal has probably been in the works the longest, and is also easily the most ambitious. In addition to cleaning up trash and preserving the graffiti murals, the plan also includes playgrounds, hiking trails, a community garden, soccer fields, and markers that commemorate the Prison Farm’s storied history.~~

{img fileId="7370" align="center" desc="COMMUNITY EFFORT: The Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm campaign’s blueprint lacks the scope of the Department of City Planning’s design, but rivals it in the sheer amount of amenities it would add to the park. PHOTO CREDIT: Scott Petersen" width="600"}

~~#000000:The final group to make a play for the future of Prison Farm is the Atlanta City Police Foundation. The ACPF has remained tight-lipped on their potential plans (they declined to comment for this article), but rumor has it that they would use the vast majority of the land for an expanded training facility, leaving only 20-30 acres for public use.~~
~~#000000:Despite having visited a handful of times myself, I’d be remiss if I didn’t try and warn curious readers away from Prison Farm. Even before the dramatic security increase, setting foot near any of the main buildings carried a hefty $400 trespassing fine, and with motion detectors and cameras now monitoring the site, your odds of getting away with it are slim to none. If you’re interested in learning some history and seeing the more unspoiled parts of the property, your safest bet is booking a tour with Scott Peterson himself.~~

~~#000000:Meanwhile, with so much legal red tape and so many different groups vying for control, it’s hard to predict what will become of the site in the future, if anything at all. We can only hope that whoever eventually renovates the property does so with the public’s best interest at heart and makes an earnest effort to remember what happened on the Atlanta Prison Farm, one of our city’s most overlooked and unsung historic markers.~~

''~~#000000:If you’d like to see this 300-acre no man's land be put to use, I suggest following the ~~[https://www.facebook.com/atlantaprisonfarm/|~~#000000:Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm~~]~~#000000: Facebook page, as well as contacting both the Atlanta and DeKalb County parks departments.~~''"
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  string(11363) " COVER  2018-07-12T15:35:02+00:00 COVER.jpg   When I was a kid growing up on the wrong side of town, I rode past the still functioning farm every Sunday on my way to church. Saw the livestock and the prisoners working. There's a lot of potential there. Just please don't turn it over to a totalitarian regime like the "Friends" of Piedmont Park, who have pretty much ruined it. In the early 1950's, when I was 3 or 4 years old, my father was the Assistant Warden and Agricultural Consultant at the Honor Farm. My mother was a secretary at the Farm. We lived in a house across Key road. The house was built by the prisoners with my father overseeing the project. I got my first haircut, by a prisoner at the Farm. I remember an old prisoner I called Teddy (He gave me a little ceramic teddy bear in a swing.). I can remember sitting in the yard with him.  He wore leg braces and said he had been hit by a car while he was on vacation. I understand that back then any sentence greater than 90 days went to the state prison. Teddy was a homeless alcoholic, and he would come and go. Homeless people were arrested and prosecuted for vagrantcy or pubilic drunkenness. They got a bed and 3 meals a day and the satisfaction that they wewe able to grow and raise their on food. I could continue for hours about what I remember but typing on a cell phone is not easy. My dad was a guard there for many years until he retired. He came there under Atlanta’s plan of improvement in the early 1950’s.

H . H. Gibson was the warden at that time. Wow, I wish I could've spoken to you as a source for this article. Thank you so much for sharing your perspective. I think this was a good idea...although the police wrongly arrested people the idea itself would work today.  We have no plan for able bodied homeless people in this city. By having agriculture, people can see life grow an flourish from the work they did.  Having it on the honor system is even better...I'm seeing more and more able bodied people bumming for money and not going to work...so yes I think reopening the prison farm as a prison farm is good idea and would lower the incarceration rates.  A deep dive into the tumultuous history and future of ATL’s biggest vacant property  7369  2018-07-15T09:00:00+00:00 Atlanta Prison Farm: Decaying, beautiful, and shrouded in mystery laureneleathers@gmail.com Lauren Leathers Mat Shankute   2018-07-15T09:00:00+00:00  Right across from the Intrenchment Creek Water Reclamation Center and the Atlanta Police Department Pistol Range lies the largest piece of untouched land inside the Perimeter, a site that has an unsettling past, a convoluted present, and an uncertain future.

The old Atlanta Prison Farm, or the “Honor Farm,” was once an experimental 300-acre prison, a legacy reflected in the handful of dilapidated cell blocks and guardhouses still standing on the property. Local graffiti muralists have reclaimed what remains of the penitentiary by covering it with some of the most stunning graffiti the city has to offer, and for years since its closure, hundreds of hikers, artists, and ne’er-do-wells alike have braved trespassing fines and injuries to tour the site. To understand how such a popular and untouched piece of land (most of it densely forested) has remained undeveloped in our rapidly expanding city, it’s necessary to start with the Civil War.

In 1863, the city of Atlanta first proposed purchasing the property for use as a cemetery, a plan that would be dashed by the South’s defeat two years later. The Prison Farm’s next steward was the federal government, who planned on building a POW camp on the site in 1918. Their ownership, too, would be short-lived, as the property was sold to the city of Atlanta just a year later, and was quickly established as an honor farm, the first of its kind.

The initial concept of the honor farm was to allow the most trustworthy prisoners to work off their sentences as laborers for the state. City officials were so committed to the idea that the prison lacked any real security, forgoing guns and cell bars entirely. On paper this seems like a surprisingly progressive idea, but the reality was much more sinister. “This is not a happy place historically,” says Atlanta artist Scott Petersen, a frequent tour guide for the Prison Farm property. “This was a site back in chain gang times, where people were lynched. They were hung. Where blacks were incarcerated for very minimal offenses like whistling at a white woman or breaking curfew. And the excuse was that since they were convicts, they lost their human rights and could be sold and purchased. And they were sold into a form of indentured servitude.”



Prisoners spent their time completing construction projects for the state and farming the land, eventually producing enough food for the prison to become self-sustaining in 1935. From here records become spotty at best, with the last recorded evidence of the Prison Farm’s use as a penitentiary coming in the form of a 1971 health inspection report. It’s unclear how much longer the land remained in use, and it was officially shuttered in 1995.

For the past 23 years, despite its wide acreage and scenic views, Prison Farm has remained entirely abandoned. The city of Atlanta has maintained ownership of the land since its closure, even though the site now sits within the borders of DeKalb County. Over the years DeKalb has expressed interest in adopting the Prison Farm land, but a political stalemate between the two parties has resulted in all 300 acres remaining unused.



Nearby residents have also expressed a desire to see the Prison Farm land utilized, with Scott Petersen having a particularly impactful relationship with the space. In addition to giving hiking tours of the land to curious urban explorers, Petersen has been advocating for the Prison Farm since 2003, establishing the Save The Old Atlanta Prison Farm campaign as way to drum up public interest in seeing the farm turned into a park. Partially through Scott’s efforts, a deal to purchase the old Honor Farm was nearly reached in 2004.

“Unfortunately, at the time, Vernon Jones was the CEO of DeKalb County and Shirley Franklin was the mayor of Atlanta,” Petersen says. “Those two personalities just did not get along, so the deal fell apart more on ego than it did on money.”

After the deal fell through, the only significant development on the property came in the form of a devastating fire in 2009. The blaze was so intense that firefighters on the scene let it burn itself out, a decision that led to a complete roof collapse in one of the main buildings. Smaller fires would continue to break out over the years, but the worst would arrive in 2017.


 
Over the years, the Prison Farm had become a popular, if illegal, dumping site for all manner of refuse, with the most popular being tires that grew into massive piles flanking the entrance and southern side of the main building. Last year one of these mountains was set aflame, kindling an inferno that took more than 24 hours to extinguish and produced smoke that could be seen from the windows of planes flying into Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

Since then, Atlanta has made significant efforts to clean up and secure the property, installing fences, concrete barricades, cameras, and motion detectors.“I think it stopped the dumping from being really bad,” Peterson says when asked about the new security. “I mean, when they were dumping tires it was like thousands of them. It was like a freight train's worth of tires back there.” Yet despite the city’s investment in cleaning and sealing off the property, there’s still been no word from Atlanta officials on future plans for the Farm. The closest thing to an update officials have released in the last 14 years has been the Department of City Planning’s 2017 release of a book entitled The Atlanta City Design: Aspiring to the Beloved Community. Within its pages, the Department of City Planning proposes combining the Prison Farm, Constitution Lakes, and Southside Park Atlanta into one 600+-acre regional park.



Kathie Gannon, DeKalb County Commissioner of Super District 6, says there is a major opportunity for land usage where the Prison Farm is located. “Any time there are 300 acres of undeveloped land inside the Perimeter under common ownership, there is a major opportunity. I’d like to work with the city of Atlanta to plan for this large area and build this trail connection which I believe will be mutually beneficial to citizens in the vicinity. In the meantime, I’m hopeful that the city of Atlanta will be a responsible steward of this property.” Gannon worries about the lack of any significant plan or zoning controls for the land. She’d like to see the property revert to a farm, specifically “a large organic farming operation with small acreage plots leased off to individual farmers.” Says Gannon, “I think it could create entrepreneurial opportunities and be a great source of farm to table food for Metro Atlanta restaurants and the Atlanta Community Food Bank.”

Petersen and his Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm campaign’s proposal has probably been in the works the longest, and is also easily the most ambitious. In addition to cleaning up trash and preserving the graffiti murals, the plan also includes playgrounds, hiking trails, a community garden, soccer fields, and markers that commemorate the Prison Farm’s storied history.



The final group to make a play for the future of Prison Farm is the Atlanta City Police Foundation. The ACPF has remained tight-lipped on their potential plans (they declined to comment for this article), but rumor has it that they would use the vast majority of the land for an expanded training facility, leaving only 20-30 acres for public use.
Despite having visited a handful of times myself, I’d be remiss if I didn’t try and warn curious readers away from Prison Farm. Even before the dramatic security increase, setting foot near any of the main buildings carried a hefty $400 trespassing fine, and with motion detectors and cameras now monitoring the site, your odds of getting away with it are slim to none. If you’re interested in learning some history and seeing the more unspoiled parts of the property, your safest bet is booking a tour with Scott Peterson himself.

Meanwhile, with so much legal red tape and so many different groups vying for control, it’s hard to predict what will become of the site in the future, if anything at all. We can only hope that whoever eventually renovates the property does so with the public’s best interest at heart and makes an earnest effort to remember what happened on the Atlanta Prison Farm, one of our city’s most overlooked and unsung historic markers.

If you’d like to see this 300-acre no man's land be put to use, I suggest following the Save the Old Atlanta Prison Farm Facebook page, as well as contacting both the Atlanta and DeKalb County parks departments.    Patricia Villafañe BETTER DAYS: Visible from Key Road, this building is the first sign of just how much remains in disrepair on the property.                                    Atlanta Prison Farm: Decaying, beautiful, and shrouded in mystery "
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Sunday July 15, 2018 05:00 am EDT
A deep dive into the tumultuous history and future of ATL’s biggest vacant property | more...
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  string(7168) "It has long been known that the two most conducive substances for creativity are alcohol and pancake syrup, so any event that combines the two is a no brainer. The Pancakes & Booze Art Show brings its brand of creative celebration to more than 35 cities across the globe, and is swinging into ATL this weekend. Guests can drink to heart's content with more than 100 up-and-coming local artists, and jam to live music by local DJs. They’re even doing body painting. Just don’t call us when awoken hungover and blue skinned like a rejected extra from Avatar. Did we mention the pancakes are free? $10-$15. 8 p.m. Fri., July 13. Georgia Railroad Freight Depot, 65 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. 404-656-3850. https://www.pancakesandbooze.com/atlanta.''

For those who never miss a new comic book day but regularly forget to pay their water bill, Atlanta Comic Con is the place to be this weekend. Geeks from all corners of the multiverse descend upon Atlanta for a three-day celebration of comics, sci-fi, fantasy, anime, and whatever else the nerdy heart desires. Comic creator signings, sales, and cosplay contests round out the activities for the weekend, along with celebrity Meet and Greets by Sean Astin (The Lord of the Rings), Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek: The Original Series), Matthew Lewis (Harry Potter), and Sean Young (Blade Runner), and more. Cosplay isn't required, but wouldn't you feel naked without it? $30-$60. July 13-15. Noon-midnight. Fri.; 10 a.m.-midnight. Sat.; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. Georgia World Congress Center Hall C1, 285 Andrew Young International Blvd N.W. 404-223-4000. https://atlantacomiccon.com.''

Actor and comedian Erik Griffin brings abrasive observational comedy to The Punchline on Friday. Purse clutchers beware — nothing and no one is sacred, according to Griffin anyways. The more chill-minded will recognize Griffin from the role of Montez on Comedy Central’s “Workaholics”, a beloved show that just wrapped up its seventh and final season. Griffin recently released debut televised comedy special, “The Ugly Truth”, so this set is sure to be chock full of fresh, funny material. $25. 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. Fri., July 13. The Punchline, 3652 Roswell Road N.E. 404-252-5233.http://www.punchline.com/shows.asp?showdate=7/13/2018.

The inaugural Atlanta African American Book Festival shines a light on the often underappreciated works of African American authors, as well connecting them with the readers who make their work possible. More than 70 authors from various genres will be in attendance, providing writing workshops, book sales and signings, panel discussions, and live readings. The festival is free of charge, so avid readers should definitely make it a part of weekend festivities. Free. 10 a.m. Sat., July 14. Georgia State University, 55 Gilmer St. Capital Suite. https://www.aaabookfest.com.

Earth Day may have been a few months ago, but every day is a good day to show some love to Mother Earth. Join Trees Atlanta and Atlanta Memorial Park Conservancy for Forest Restoration Volunteer Day, held monthly. The organizations are putting in work to ensure local parks remain pristine and beautiful. Trees Atlanta will provide supplies, and volunteers are encouraged to bring closed-toed shoes, gloves, and a tree huggin’ attitude.Free. 9 a.m. Sat., July 14. Atlanta Memorial Park, 650 Wesley Drive. 678-871-0612. http://atlmemorialpark.org/.

Art curator Katherine Jentleson leads a guided tour of Outliers and American Vanguard Art, an exhibit cataloging the unsung works of more than 200 self-taught American artists. Attendees can explore Howard Finster’s exhibit, Paradise Garden, alongside Tina Cox (executive director of Paradise Garden) and Merrie and Dan Boone (Curator of Folk Art). Paradise Garden features 46,000 pieces of art from different mediums, covering the gamut of subjects from the Southern Baptist experience, pop culture deities like Elvis, and U.F.O’s. $100-$150. 9:30 a.m.–6 p.m. Sat., July 14. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4400. https://www.high.org/event/road-trip-to-paradise-garden/.

Second Self Beer Co. is dropping its latest summertime treat: Havana Night. And to celebrate, they’re throwing a Havana Night Block Party. TBooze shall flow in abundance, and Second Self Beer Co. sweetens the deal by providing cigars from Trinity Cigar Co. and a classic car show. The brewery will extend hours for the event, staying open until 10 p.m. so attendees can spend Saturday night the American way: Drunk. Free. 2:30-10:30 p.m. Second Self Beer Company, 1317 Logan Circle N.W. 678-916-8035.https://www.atlanta.net/events/detail/havana-night-block-party/114807/.

In 1993, a small group of African American female photographers met in Atlanta to discuss the best spread artistic message, and thus, sistagraphy was born. Now, more than 25 years later, the sistas’ reunite to celebrate creativity and uplift artistic voice through an exhibition titled The Silver Lens: Sistagraphy Celebrates Arts and Activism. Hosted by the Auburn Avenue Research Library, the event will feature works by a variety of artists and panel discussions concerning activism and the future of women in photography. Free. 3-5 p.m. Sun., July 15. Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History, 101 Auburn Ave. N.E. 404-613-4001. http://www.afpls.org/events-aarl.''

Looking for a break from the headache-inducing CGI chaos of summer movie season? Why not take a trip back to 1988. Oh, how the ‘80s were a much simpler time, when a pre-insanity Roseanne had just hit the airwaves and America only had to worry about one George Bush. Precious natural resource Tom Hanks had a breakout year as well, staring in Penny Marshall’s Big, Now playing at Regal Cinema in Atlantic Station for two nights. Thirty years later and there are still plenty of laughs in this age-changing comedy. So, maybe offer this to the kids as an alternative to seeing Incredibles 2 for the third time. Or just leave the kids at home and enjoy the nostalgia trip solo.$13.61. 2 p.m. & 7 p.m. Sun., July 15. Regal Atlantic Station Stadium 18, 261 19th St. N.W. 844-462-7342. https://www.fathomevents.com/events/tcm2018-big-30th-anniversary.

Taking its name from the 1978 comedy cult classic, the Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival is now in its 10th year and shows no sign of stopping anytime soon. For a few short hours this Sunday, the humble tomato will be rightfully elevated to celebrity status, and that alone might be worth celebrating. Atlanta chefs will be serving up a myriad of dishes starring the tomato, complemented by tomato-based drinks from local mixologists, and live music from G. Love and Special Sauce. All proceeds from the event go toward Georgia Organics, a farm-to-table non-profit dedicated to connecting Georgia farmers with Georgia families. Hopefully, through attending the everlasting question of whether a tomato is a vegetable or fruit will be answered, but either way it should be a great time. $70-$75. 1-5 p.m. Westside Provisions District, 1198 Howell Mill Road. 678-974-1940.
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~~#000000:For those who never miss a new comic book day but regularly forget to pay their water bill, __Atlanta Comic Con__ is the place to be this weekend. Geeks from all corners of the multiverse descend upon Atlanta for a three-day celebration of comics, sci-fi, fantasy, anime, and whatever else the nerdy heart desires. Comic creator signings, sales, and cosplay contests round out the activities for the weekend, along with celebrity Meet and Greets by Sean Astin (''The Lord of the Rings''), Nichelle Nichols (''Star Trek: The Original Series''), Matthew Lewis (''Harry Potter''), and Sean Young (''Blade Runner''), and more. Cosplay isn't required, but wouldn't you feel naked without it? ''$30-$60. July 13-15. Noon-midnight. Fri.; 10 a.m.-midnight. Sat.; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. Georgia World Congress Center Hall C1, 285 Andrew Young International Blvd N.W. 404-223-4000. https://atlantacomiccon.com.''~~

~~#000000:__Actor and comedian Erik Griffin brings abrasive observational comedy to The Punchline on Friday. Purse clutchers beware — nothing and no one is sacred, according to Griffin anyways. The more chill-minded will recognize Griffin from the role of Montez on Comedy Central’s “Workaholics”, a beloved show that just wrapped up its seventh and final season. Griffin recently released debut televised comedy special, “The Ugly Truth”, so this set is sure to be chock full of fresh, funny material. ____''$25. 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. Fri., July 13. The Punchline, 3652 Roswell Road N.E. 404-252-5233.''__~~''[http://www.punchline.com/shows.asp?showdate=7/13/2018|~~#000000:http://www.punchline.com/shows.asp?showdate=7/13/2018~~]~~#000000:.~~''

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~~#000000:In 1993, a small group of African American female photographers met in Atlanta to discuss the best spread artistic message, and thus, sistagraphy was born. Now, more than 25 years later, the sistas’ reunite to celebrate creativity and uplift artistic voice through an exhibition titled __''The Silver Lens: Sistagraphy Celebrates Arts and Activism''__. Hosted by the Auburn Avenue Research Library, the event will feature works by a variety of artists and panel discussions concerning activism and the future of women in photography. ''Free. 3-5 p.m. Sun., July 15. Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History, 101 Auburn Ave. N.E. 404-613-4001. http://www.afpls.org/events-aarl.''~~

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  string(7626) " Roundup Cover  2018-07-13T00:15:15+00:00 roundup_cover.jpg     Comics, beer, tomatoes, Tom Hanks, and more 7402  2018-07-13T09:00:00+00:00 It’s the freakin’ weekend laureneleathers@gmail.com Lauren Leathers Mat Shankute   2018-07-13T09:00:00+00:00  It has long been known that the two most conducive substances for creativity are alcohol and pancake syrup, so any event that combines the two is a no brainer. The Pancakes & Booze Art Show brings its brand of creative celebration to more than 35 cities across the globe, and is swinging into ATL this weekend. Guests can drink to heart's content with more than 100 up-and-coming local artists, and jam to live music by local DJs. They’re even doing body painting. Just don’t call us when awoken hungover and blue skinned like a rejected extra from Avatar. Did we mention the pancakes are free? $10-$15. 8 p.m. Fri., July 13. Georgia Railroad Freight Depot, 65 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. 404-656-3850. https://www.pancakesandbooze.com/atlanta.''

For those who never miss a new comic book day but regularly forget to pay their water bill, Atlanta Comic Con is the place to be this weekend. Geeks from all corners of the multiverse descend upon Atlanta for a three-day celebration of comics, sci-fi, fantasy, anime, and whatever else the nerdy heart desires. Comic creator signings, sales, and cosplay contests round out the activities for the weekend, along with celebrity Meet and Greets by Sean Astin (The Lord of the Rings), Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek: The Original Series), Matthew Lewis (Harry Potter), and Sean Young (Blade Runner), and more. Cosplay isn't required, but wouldn't you feel naked without it? $30-$60. July 13-15. Noon-midnight. Fri.; 10 a.m.-midnight. Sat.; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. Georgia World Congress Center Hall C1, 285 Andrew Young International Blvd N.W. 404-223-4000. https://atlantacomiccon.com.''

Actor and comedian Erik Griffin brings abrasive observational comedy to The Punchline on Friday. Purse clutchers beware — nothing and no one is sacred, according to Griffin anyways. The more chill-minded will recognize Griffin from the role of Montez on Comedy Central’s “Workaholics”, a beloved show that just wrapped up its seventh and final season. Griffin recently released debut televised comedy special, “The Ugly Truth”, so this set is sure to be chock full of fresh, funny material. $25. 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. Fri., July 13. The Punchline, 3652 Roswell Road N.E. 404-252-5233.http://www.punchline.com/shows.asp?showdate=7/13/2018.

The inaugural Atlanta African American Book Festival shines a light on the often underappreciated works of African American authors, as well connecting them with the readers who make their work possible. More than 70 authors from various genres will be in attendance, providing writing workshops, book sales and signings, panel discussions, and live readings. The festival is free of charge, so avid readers should definitely make it a part of weekend festivities. Free. 10 a.m. Sat., July 14. Georgia State University, 55 Gilmer St. Capital Suite. https://www.aaabookfest.com.

Earth Day may have been a few months ago, but every day is a good day to show some love to Mother Earth. Join Trees Atlanta and Atlanta Memorial Park Conservancy for Forest Restoration Volunteer Day, held monthly. The organizations are putting in work to ensure local parks remain pristine and beautiful. Trees Atlanta will provide supplies, and volunteers are encouraged to bring closed-toed shoes, gloves, and a tree huggin’ attitude.Free. 9 a.m. Sat., July 14. Atlanta Memorial Park, 650 Wesley Drive. 678-871-0612. http://atlmemorialpark.org/.

Art curator Katherine Jentleson leads a guided tour of Outliers and American Vanguard Art, an exhibit cataloging the unsung works of more than 200 self-taught American artists. Attendees can explore Howard Finster’s exhibit, Paradise Garden, alongside Tina Cox (executive director of Paradise Garden) and Merrie and Dan Boone (Curator of Folk Art). Paradise Garden features 46,000 pieces of art from different mediums, covering the gamut of subjects from the Southern Baptist experience, pop culture deities like Elvis, and U.F.O’s. $100-$150. 9:30 a.m.–6 p.m. Sat., July 14. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4400. https://www.high.org/event/road-trip-to-paradise-garden/.

Second Self Beer Co. is dropping its latest summertime treat: Havana Night. And to celebrate, they’re throwing a Havana Night Block Party. TBooze shall flow in abundance, and Second Self Beer Co. sweetens the deal by providing cigars from Trinity Cigar Co. and a classic car show. The brewery will extend hours for the event, staying open until 10 p.m. so attendees can spend Saturday night the American way: Drunk. Free. 2:30-10:30 p.m. Second Self Beer Company, 1317 Logan Circle N.W. 678-916-8035.https://www.atlanta.net/events/detail/havana-night-block-party/114807/.

In 1993, a small group of African American female photographers met in Atlanta to discuss the best spread artistic message, and thus, sistagraphy was born. Now, more than 25 years later, the sistas’ reunite to celebrate creativity and uplift artistic voice through an exhibition titled The Silver Lens: Sistagraphy Celebrates Arts and Activism. Hosted by the Auburn Avenue Research Library, the event will feature works by a variety of artists and panel discussions concerning activism and the future of women in photography. Free. 3-5 p.m. Sun., July 15. Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History, 101 Auburn Ave. N.E. 404-613-4001. http://www.afpls.org/events-aarl.''

Looking for a break from the headache-inducing CGI chaos of summer movie season? Why not take a trip back to 1988. Oh, how the ‘80s were a much simpler time, when a pre-insanity Roseanne had just hit the airwaves and America only had to worry about one George Bush. Precious natural resource Tom Hanks had a breakout year as well, staring in Penny Marshall’s Big, Now playing at Regal Cinema in Atlantic Station for two nights. Thirty years later and there are still plenty of laughs in this age-changing comedy. So, maybe offer this to the kids as an alternative to seeing Incredibles 2 for the third time. Or just leave the kids at home and enjoy the nostalgia trip solo.$13.61. 2 p.m. & 7 p.m. Sun., July 15. Regal Atlantic Station Stadium 18, 261 19th St. N.W. 844-462-7342. https://www.fathomevents.com/events/tcm2018-big-30th-anniversary.

Taking its name from the 1978 comedy cult classic, the Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival is now in its 10th year and shows no sign of stopping anytime soon. For a few short hours this Sunday, the humble tomato will be rightfully elevated to celebrity status, and that alone might be worth celebrating. Atlanta chefs will be serving up a myriad of dishes starring the tomato, complemented by tomato-based drinks from local mixologists, and live music from G. Love and Special Sauce. All proceeds from the event go toward Georgia Organics, a farm-to-table non-profit dedicated to connecting Georgia farmers with Georgia families. Hopefully, through attending the everlasting question of whether a tomato is a vegetable or fruit will be answered, but either way it should be a great time. $70-$75. 1-5 p.m. Westside Provisions District, 1198 Howell Mill Road. 678-974-1940.
http://www.killertomatofest.com/.    Brian L. Christian PICTURE PERFECT: Sistagraphy celebrates 25 years of art and activism with newest exhibition: ‘The Silver Lens.’                                    It’s the freakin’ weekend "
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Friday July 13, 2018 05:00 am EDT
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Article

Saturday June 30, 2018 09:42 am EDT
The committee requests 10,000 good Samaritans to help with the big game week | more...
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