Sandy Springs seeks community input on Abernathy Arts Center

A image displayed at the Abernathy Arts Center in 2007. Encuentro de Dos Razas (Encounter of Two Races), Acrylic and oil on canvas. Photos courtesy of Abernathy Arts Center.

Credit: Abernathy Arts Center

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A image displayed at the Abernathy Arts Center in 2007. Encuentro de Dos Razas (Encounter of Two Races), Acrylic and oil on canvas. Photos courtesy of Abernathy Arts Center.

Credit: Abernathy Arts Center

Two months after residents opposed permanently closing a longstanding neighborhood arts center, Sandy Springs is turning to the community to help revive the facility.

The city will hold a community meeting to get ideas for future programming for the Abernathy Arts Center at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 13 in the Studio Theatre at City Springs.

A Sandy Springs statement said a short presentation will be followed by questions allowing for attendees to provided input on how to make the center more of an asset.

The start of the pandemic in March 2020 halted most in-person activities at the arts center but virtual events have continued to take place. The Abernathy Arts Center was used primarily for community arts classes, children’s camps, exhibits and cultural events.

Sandy Springs acquired the 4-acre property at 254 Johnson Ferry Road from Fulton County in September at a cost of $1 and considered transforming it into a cultural arts center on the Holocaust. But, during a City Council work session in October, some residents and artists said they were opposed to losing what they considered a neighborhood gem.

Last month, City Council approved a different location, the Heritage Building on Blue Stone Road, for the Georgia Commission on the Holocaust and planned memorial.

The Abernathy Arts Center site currently has four buildings. Three were built in the 1930s and renovated in 1974. The main building was constructed about 20 years ago. Two tennis courts, a playground and parking lot are also on the property.

Visit the city of Sandy Springs website for more information: sandyspringsga.gov

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