Blog Topic: In the Community

  • Culture Briefs: UGA Willson Center Announces 'Shelter Projects' Micro-Fellowship Program


    UGA's Willson Center for Humanities and Arts has just launched a new micro-fellowship program called "Shelter Projects," inviting graduate students and community-based artists to develop works that reflect their unique experiences during the pandemic. The call for submissions is open to all create media. 

    Read the official statement below. 


  • Culture Briefs: Boulevard Gardening Club Hosts Annual Roving Garden Party

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    Photo Credit: Barbette Houser

    Durwood Pepper, Jim Taflinger and their dog, Biscuit, in front of a painting Pepper created in honor of RA Miller.

    The Roving Garden Party, hosted annually by The Boulevard Gardening Club, is a festive event well worth donning your straw hat to beat the heat for. This year, these creative, urban gardeners offered up six gardens in the Lyndon-Cohen-DuBose corner of the Boulevard neighborhood, where visitors  could explore the concepts of renewal and new growth. Most of the homes on tour had been built within the past 10 years; the small, accompanying outdoor spaces offered lovely views into the early stages of making a garden.


  • Culture Briefs: Take a Tour of Historic Five Points Homes Sunday


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    The threatened demolition of 398 Milledge Circle—one of the stops on the tour—led to the creation of two new historic districts in Five Points earlier this year.

    Five houses in the new Milledge Circle Local Historic District will help ring in the holiday season this weekend as part of this year’s Gala Tour of Homes hosted by the Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation.

    This annual home tour, which is from 5–8 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 2, features homes in one of Athens’ newest historic districts, including two designed by noted Athens architect Fred Orr. The self-guided tour includes food at each home provided by local restaurants, beer and wine from local breweries and a silent auction well timed for holiday gifts.

    “There are so many beautiful neighborhoods in Athens, it’s always difficult to decide which to highlight for our annual Gala Tour of Homes,” said Tommy Valentine, executive director of the Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation. “But when Milledge Circle was named a local historic district, along with Castalia Avenue, earlier this year, our planning committee knew this was where we needed to be.”


  • In the Loop: Forum Tonight on Future of Athens Police


    Photo Credit: Savannah Cole/file

    Commissioner Mariah Parker will be among the panelists.

    Local political groups have organized a forum this evening on the future of policing in Athens in the wake of Chief Scott Freeman's forced resignation last month.

    The forum is from 5–7 p.m. at Hendershot's Coffee and Bar. It will begin with a happy hour and music from William Freeman Leverett and Foreign, followed at 5:50 p.m. by a panel discussion featuring interim police chief Mike Hunsinger, Commissioner Mariah Parker, Commissioner-elect Tim Denson, former mayor Gwen O'Looney and UGA law professor Russell Gabriel, moderated by yours truly. An audience Q&A will follow the panel discussion.

    The forum is sponsored by the Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement, Athens for Everyone and the Athens Immigrants' Rights Coalition. Those groups are calling for the formation of a police citizens' advisory committee and public input on the choice of a new chief.


  • In the Loop: Churches Sponsor Suicide Prevention Workshops


    Milledge Avenue Baptist Church and First Presbyterian Church of Athens are sponsoring two workshops—one for the public and one for faith leaders—on suicide prevention next week.

    The churches are bringing in Soul Shop, a faith-based suicide prevention program, to raise awareness of suicide as a public health problem and how to reduce the risk of suicide.

    First Presbyterian's parish nurse, Madeline Van Dyck, attended a Soul Shop conference in Atlanta.

    "The workshop boldy took on the mystery of suicidal depression and the heartache that surrounds it," Van Dyck said. "The presenter and the materials were able to frame for me a new understanding of the hold suicide has on a soul, and a crucial new step we all need to take to address desperation's call."


  • In the Loop: AADM Hosts Town Hall Meeting Thursday on Community Policing and Race Relations

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    Photo Credit: Savannah Cole

    Athens-Clarke County police held a cookout in the Columbia Brookside neighborhood off Hawthorne Avenue last week. Under Chief Scott Freeman, the department has held occasional cookouts as a way to improve relationships between police and local communities.

    The Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement will host a town hall meeting on community policing and race relations at the Athens-Clarke County library from 5:30–7:30 p.m. Thursday.

    Co-founder Mokah-Jasmine Johnson said that residents and community leaders are concerned that ACC police aren't doing enough to build trust and ensure safety in the wake of two recent incidents—an officer who hit a fleeing suspect with his car in June, and another officer who tackled a 10-year-old boy in July.


  • Culture Briefs: Photo Gallery: Project Safe's '70s vs. '80s Lip-Sync Battle, Groovy Nights


    UGA Vets 4 Pets & People performed Tina Turner's cover of "Proud Mary."

    Athens mayor-elect Kelly Girtz and others got their groove on Saturday at Groovy Nights.

    The 17th annual '70s- and '80s-themed lip-syncing contest, held at The Foundry this year, raised funds for Project Safe, a local nonprofit that works to prevent domestic violence and offers assistance to survivors and their children.

    Girtz—who played coy about his song selection last week—went with Madonna's "Express Yourself." 

    The county commissioner wasn't the only elected official on stage, either. Watkinsville Mayor Dave Shearon also got into the act.

    Both may be skilled at winning elections, but neither could take home the prize at Groovy Nights. That went to the MAMAs for their rendition of Prince's "1999."

    Flagpole photographer Savannah Cole captured the event.


  • In the Loop: Hundreds Rally to Reunite Immigrant Families


    Photo Credit: Savannah Cole

    Athens joined dozens of cities around the country in holding a "Families Belong Together" rally Saturday morning to urge the Trump Administration to reunite families separated at the border.

    More than 2,000 children were separated from their parents in June as the Trump Administration instituted a "zero tolerance" immigration policy.  Trump has since ordered families to be detained together, but many of the families initially separated are still apart. 

    Several hundred people participated in the Athens rally, which included a wire crate lined with dolls to represent children kept in cages at federal facilities. 


  • Culture Briefs: Photo Gallery: UGA International Street Festival


    Attendees dance outside of the Chinese booth.

    University of Georgia students from around the world celebrated their cultures Saturday at the International Street festival on College Square, and Flagpole photographer Jessica Silverman captured the action.


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