Both the Clarke and Oconee county school districts announced Tuesday night that schools will be closed Wednesday in anticipation of possible snow early this morning.
The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for central Georgia (including Athens) until 10 a.m. Wednesday. There is a 70 percent chance of precipitation, with a predicted low of 23 degrees. One to two inches of snow is possible.
"Plan on difficult travel conditions, including during the morning commute on Wednesday," the advisory says.
Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency in 83 counties, including Clarke. Non-essential state employees are not expected to report to work on Wednesday.
Photo Credit: courtesy of Akademia Brewing Co.
Akademia Brewing Co.'s beers will soon be available at on draft at other restaurants, as well as bars and package stores, in Athens and Atlanta after the local brewpub partnered with Georgia distribution company Modern Hops.
The first local locations where Akademia's beer will be sold are Catch-22 Gastropub, Blue Sky Bar and the growler shops at both Five Points Bottle Shop locations. By the end of the year, Akademia hopes to branch out throughout Athens and Oconee County, metro Atlanta, Augusta and Savannah, Akademia owner Matt Casey said a news release.
Win or lose, Athens-Clarke County police want you to know there will be no riots in the streets of Athens tonight after Georgia plays in the college football national championship game.
The department called a news conference earlier this afternoon to discuss plans for public safety downtown. The game is in Atlanta, but local police expect a crowd along the lines of a typical UGA home game—potentially tens of thousands of people, according to Sgt. Epifiano Rodriguez.
It's true: Everyone's favorite homophobic-yet-delicious fast-food chicken chain is coming to downtown Athens.
Rumors that Chick-Fil-A would move into the prime space at the corner of Broad Street and College Avenue most recently occupied by burger chain Five Guys have been confirmed by documents filed with the Athens-Clarke County Planning Department.
The building is in the downtown historic district, and Chick-Fil-A has applied for permission to make changes to the facade:
A lot more is riding on Monday's college football championship than school pride.
As is often the case for politicians thirsty to show their love for the home team during key games, Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox and Athens Mayor Nancy Denson have placed a friendly wager on the outcome of the Georgia–Alabama game.
Photo Credit: courtesy of Creature Comforts
One of Creature Comforts' most popular seasonals, Koko Buni, is back in cans and on draft as of Tuesday.
The well-balanced milk porter (6.5% ABV) brewed with toasted coconut, Ecuadorian cocoa nibs from Condor Chocolates and an Ethiopian coffee blend from 1000 Faces can be, like many of Creature Comforts' special releases, notoriously hard to find, so snatch some up if you see any.
Photo Credit: Joshua L. Jones/file
While most Athens residents would prefer to talk about repealing campus carry, an influential gun-rights group will be lobbying state legislators to expand the law next year.
Buried in AJC political reporter Jim Galloway's Sunday column are these words from John Monroe, vice president of GeorgiaCarry.org:
Longtime Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services administrator Kent Kilpatrick has been named the department's new director.
Kilpatrick has been the interim director since Pam Reidy left in June 2016. ACC Manager Blaine Williams announced late Friday that he made the title permanent.
A University of Georgia bus driver was arrested last week after leaving his handgun in a residence hall restroom, according to UGA police.
Brett Michael Davis, 30, stopped at Brumby Hall to use the men's room on the morning of Dec. 6, according to the Athens Banner-Herald. He took his gun out of his holster and placed it on the railing of a handicapped stall, then left without the gun.
Fifteen minutes later, he returned for the loaded weapon, but an administrator at the dorm had already seen it and called police, who were on the scene when he returned.
Photo Credit: Nicole Adamson/file
More than a dozen inmates at the Clarke County Jail have been turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement since the Clarke County Sheriff's Office reversed its policy in July and started holding undocumented immigrants for ICE.
The Red & Black reported that the reversal came about because of "changes to the Department of Homeland Security’s policy."
“In light of these changes, and in keeping with our role and responsibility for community safety with respect to the detention of individuals with outstanding warrants, we now recognize ICE detainers that are supported by a warrant for arrest or warrant for removal or deportation,” Captain Hayden Hodges of the Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
At ICE's request, the sheriff's office will now detain inmates at the local jail for up to 48 hours after they're scheduled to be released. ICE has made 17 such requests and picked up 13 inmates, Hodges told Flagpole.
Photo Credit: Matt Hardy/file
A Madison County woman was sentenced to 25 years in prison for hitting a killing a University of Georgia graduate student and another cyclist while driving intoxicated and distracted, according to the Athens Banner-Herald.
Judge Eric Norris sentenced Whitney Baker Howard, 32, to a total of 31 years. She will serve the last six on probation. Howard was convicted of two counts of felony vehicular homicide and several other charges in October.
Howard's SUV crossed the center line on Athena Drive while answering her phone is September 2016 and hit Ashley Block and Mitchell Enfinger, killing Block and seriously injuring Enfinger.
The Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement will host a "Know Your Rights" workshop at 5:30 p.m. today at the Athens-Clarke County Library to educate people on how to file complaints under the city's anti-discrimination ordinance.
Speakers will include lawyers Nancee Tomilson on civil rights and John Beasly on workplace discrimination, and ACC Attorney Bill Berryman on the "bar admittance" ordinance, which bans bars from denying entry based on factors like race, gender identity or sexual orientation.
Saturday, newly sworn-in Superior Court Judge Regina Quick will host the first of several "Access to Justice Pop-Up Clinics" from 9–11 a.m. at the Rocksprings Community Center.
Photo Credit: UGA Athletic Association
For all of Georgia running back Nick Chubb's accomplishments on the football field, what his ancestors did may be even more impressive.
The Atlanta news website Saporta Report ran a story Monday on the Chubb family history, and it is incredible.
In 1851, eight Chubb brothers, all freed slaves, moved from North Carolina to Madison, GA, about 30 miles south of Athens, then settled near Rome, founding an unincorporated community called Chubbtown.
The Athens-Clarke County Commission will vote tonight on a deal to sell Strong Street and a city-owned parking lot between Strong and Dougherty Street to Hotel Indigo for a development that will include hotel rooms and office space.
The deal calls for ACC to sell the property to Athens Hospitality Holdings LLC, the company that owns Hotel Indigo, for $3 million. Athens Hospitality Holdings would then build a new five-story development on the property that would include 45 hotel rooms; office space for the ACC Economic Development Department; 8,000 square feet of meeting and event space; 7,000 square feet of coworking space where entrepreneurs and startups could rent desks, offices and conference rooms; a street-level restaurant; a rooftop bar and 60 underground parking spots. Strong Street would be closed and converted into a courtyard.
Photo Credit: Nicole Adamson/file
Dozens of tenants—presumably, mostly University of Georgia students—have left reviews online saying were taken for marks when they signed leases at The Mark, the newest of several luxury student housing developments downtown.
The Mark advertises itself as "high-end living" with "luxurious amenities"—including a golf simulator, tanning beds, game room, rooftop pool and self-serve Starbucks—and "well-appointed with luxury finishes unrivaled by other student accomodations in Athens," like granite countertops and stainless-steel appliances.
But The Mark has received just 1.6 stars out of five on Google—far lower than nearby complexes like 909 Broad (3.7), the Flats at Carr's Hill (3.9), Uncommon Athens (4.7) or The Standard (3.4), which was built by the same company as The Mark, Athens-based Landmark Properties, but is now under different ownership.
Photo Credit: Lord & Stephens
Former ACC commissioner Charles Carter died on Thursday morning at the age of 91.
The Winterville native, a cattle farmer, represented District 1 in rural eastern Clarke County from unification in 1991 until his retirement in 2006.
“He was a man of few words, so when he spoke, everyone listened,” said Sharyn Dickerson, who worked for ACC when he was a commissioner and now represents District 1.
Photo Credit: Nicole Adamson
Democrats won shocking victories in two special elections for Athens-area state House seats on Tuesday, winning the conservative-leaning seats in spite of well-funded opposition from Republicans.
In District 117, Deborah Gonzalez overcame Republican opponent Houston Gaines' $200,000 war chest and much-publicized support from Democratic Athens-Clarke County Mayor Nancy Denson.
As of 9 p.m., Gonzalez led Gaines 53 percent to 47 percent, with some Clarke County precincts left to be counted, but all the votes in staunchly Republican Oconee, Jackson and Barrow counties have been counted, leaving Gaines no chance to catch up.
Likewise, with all Oconee precincts reporting, Jonathan Wallace avoided a runoff by winning 56percent of the vote in District 119, which historically leans even further to the right than 117. (Both districts were specifically drawn to elect Republicans.)
An Athens driver was found guilty Wednesday of plowing into a group of cyclists on Athena Drive last year, killing one and injuring at least two others.
Whitney Baker Howard, 32, was found guilty on 11 counts, according to The Red & Black, including two felony counts of homicide by vehicle in the first degree, six felony counts of serious injury by a vehicle, one count of driving under the influence of drugs, one count of improper lane change and one count of endangering the life of a child.
Republican Houston Gaines had raised nearly $200,000 as of last week for his Athens-area House District 117 race, outpacing Democratic opponent Deborah Gonzalez nearly four-to-one.
In documents filed Monday with the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission, Gaines reported raising $196, 251 and had $140,436 on hand as of Oct. 23, 15 days before Election Day, Nov. 7.
It's a common strategy for candidates with such overwhelming fundraising advantages to keep some of their powder dry to ward off future challengers.
Gaines' list of contributors is a Who's Who of powerful, connected Republican politicians and business interests in Athens and Atlanta.
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