Close to Home for Jan. 27-28

You’ve got a few hours over the weekend and are looking for a nearby diversion – something that doesn’t require reservations or a tank of gas. Welcome to Close to Home! Each week we’ll highlight the quick, quaint and quirky events in your neighborhood. Email submissions to

Health, Fitness Expo in Conyers

East Metro Atlanta Health and Fitness Expo. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. $5 parking. Exhibition Center, Georgia International Horse Park, 1996 Centennial Olympic Parkway, Conyers. Hosted by Alcovy Media, activities will include a 5K race and high-endurance fitness competition, vendor exhibits and children’s activities. Register:

  • East Metro Atlanta 5K Race. 8 a.m. Saturday. $30.
  • Tiny Trotters 5K (Steps). $15 for Tiny Trotters 5K.
  • Lil’ Leapers Obstacle Dash. Free.
  • VIP luncheon with American Ninja Ryan Stratis. $30 for adults, $17 for children (ages 12 and under). Each ticket is half off with one registration for the 5K, Tiny Trotters 5K (Steps) or Lil’ Leapers Obstacle Course Dash. Reservations:

Trains, Trains, Trains in Kennesaw

Trains, Trains, Trains. 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. $5.50 to $7.50, free for members and children ages 3 and under. Southern Museum, 2829 Cherokee St., Kennesaw. Shuttle will run continuously 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday from Adams Park, 2600 Park Drive, Kennesaw. About 10 model train layouts, including several that can be operated by children, take-home crafts, a LEGO Play & Build area and live bluegrass music. 770-427-2117 ext 3058,

Scavenger Hunting in Lawrenceville

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Historical “Sovereign Scavenger” Hunting. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Free. Gwinnett Historic Courthouse, 185 W. Crogan St., Lawrenceville. Pick up your list of historical items throughout the Historic Courthouse property to begin your scavenger hunt and get to know the history of Gwinnett County along the way. 770-822-5450,

Library Book Sale in Johns Creek

Friends of Northeast/Spruill Oaks Library Winter Book Sale. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, 2-4 p.m. Sunday. Northeast/Spruill Oaks Library, 9560 Spruill Road, Johns Creek. Children, teen and adult books and media will be sold. 770-360-8820,

Mapping Cherokee in Canton

Mapping Cherokee: Featuring the 20th Century Map and Photo Collection of Lat Ridgway. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday (closing day). Free. Cherokee County History Museum & Canton Visitors Center, Historic Marble Courthouse, Suite 140, 100 North St., Canton. See the extensive map and aerial photograph collection of land surveyor, Lat Ridgway who worked in Cherokee County during the 1950s to 1970s. 770-345-3288,

‘Willy Wonka KIDS’ in Decatur

Roald Dahl’s “Willy Wonka KIDS” by OnStage Atlanta Young Performers. 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday. $10 to $13. 2969 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., Suite A, Decatur. Tickets: 404-897-1802,

‘The Giver’ play in Roswell

“The Giver” based on the book by Lois Lowry. 11 a.m. Saturday. $10. Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest St., Roswell. When Jonas turns 12, he is chosen for special training by The Giver - to receive and keep the memories of the community. Presented by the Georgia Ensemble Theater Family Stage. Recommended for sixth grade and up. 770-641-1260,

Kennesaw Mountain events

January events. Free. 770-427-4686 ext. 0 or

  • “Civil War Sharpshooters.” 11-11:30 a.m. Saturday. Visitor Center, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, 900 Kennesaw Mountain Drive, Kennesaw. With heritage dating back to Europe, the American sharpshooter has been a vital component of every American conflict. This program will discuss the history of the sharpshooter and the role these men played during the Civil War and in the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain.
  • “Guided Assault Trail Hike.” 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sunday. Illinois Monument, Cheatham Hill. Park at Cheatham Hill Road. Learn more about the fateful Union assault on Cheatham Hill during this ranger-led hike. This trail is a one-mile round trip that is moderate to easy. This event will be cancelled if there is inclement weather.

College, Career Fair in Jonesboro

College and Career Fair. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Free. Clayton County Headquarters Library, 865 Battle Creek Road, Jonesboro. Open to all private, public and home school students and their parents to have the opportunity to talk with a variety of representatives from colleges/universities and technical/vocational institutions. Parents also will have the opportunity to ask questions at the information sessions. 770-473-3850,

‘Living in Poverty’ in Norcross

“Living in Poverty.” 1-4 p.m. Saturday. Free. OneStop Norcross, 5030 Georgia Belle Court, Norcross. Experience the struggles of living in poverty at this interactive simulation. Understand poverty’s effects and discuss ways to help those living in economic hardship. Light refreshments offered.

Toastmaster’s Club in College Park

Ardyss Toastmaster’s Club. 1:30 p.m. Saturday. Free. College Park Library, 3647 Main St., College Park. Adults are invited to learn how to become effective communicators and listeners and better speakers and presenters. Register: 404-762-4060.

‘Sandcastles’ in Avondale Estates

“Sandcastles”: Black History Tour (BHT) Show. 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday. $12/adults, $6/students. DeKalb School of the Arts, Kyle Theater, 1192 Clarendon Road, Avondale Estates. “Sandcastles” follows the life of Anna Madgigin Jai Kingsley, a slave turned plantation owner in Spanish Florida. After facing extreme racism and the death of her husband, she finds herself fighting for her land and fighting for her family. This original play was written by the creative writing students of DeKalb School of the Arts and is directed by Shana Hunt-Martin. BHT is presented as a touring show for schools and community organizations. Bookings:,

‘Beauty and the Beast Jr.’ in Decatur

Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast Jr.” by OnStage Atlanta Young Performers. 3 p.m. Saturday. $10 to $13. 2969 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., Suite A, Decatur. Tickets: 404-897-1802,

Throwback Night in Stockbridge

Throwback Night 2018: Moments in Time. 5:15 p.m. doors open, 6 p.m. Saturday. Free. Community Bible Church, 2001 Jodeco Road, Stockbridge. Sing and dance through the 1950s through the 1990s, covering memorable songs by performers in full costume. Seating is first come, first serve. 770-914-0808,

Dancing fundraiser in Marietta

Georgia Metro Dance Theatre (GMDT)’s Dancing with the Stars of Marietta. 7-9 p.m. Saturday. $20 to $55. The Earl & Rachel Smith Strand Theatre, 117 N. Park Square, Historic Marietta Square, Marietta. “Celebrities” from Marietta have been paired up with choreographers to perform high-energy dance numbers. To raise funds for GMDT, the public can help their favorite celebrity team win the People’s Choice mirror ball trophy by voting early at (and by voting on mobile devices during the event). Judges will select the performance that merits the Judge’s Choice award. Tickets: 770-293-0080,

Atlanta Community Choral Festival

Atlanta Community Choral Festival. 8 p.m. Saturday. $10. Emerson Concert Hall, Schwartz Center for Performing Arts, 1700 N. Decatur Road, Atlanta. 404-727-5050,

Koresh Dance Company in Dunwoody

Koresh Dance Company. 8 p.m. Saturday, 5 p.m. Sunday. $25 to $38. Morris & Rae Frank Theatre, The Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta (MJCCA), 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, The Koresh Dance Company was founded in 1991 by Israel-born choreographer and artistic director, Roni Koresh. 678-812-4002,,

Summer Camp-A-Palooza in Buford

Summer Camp-A-Palooza. 1-5 p.m. Sunday. Free. The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center, 2020 Clean Water Drive, Buford. Children and parents will be able to view camp schedules, meet staff in themed costumes, play summer games, go on a scavenger hunt and make crafts. 770-904-3500,

Children’s Concert in Clarkston

“Around the World in 60 Minutes”: Annual Children’s Concert by the DeKalb Symphony Orchestra. 2:30 p.m. doors open, 3-4 p.m. Sunday. $5 online or at the door. Gymnasium, Georgia State University, Clarkston campus, 555 N. Indian Creek Drive, Clarkston. WSB-TV’s Nicole Carr will lead listeners on a magical musical adventure that will explore a variety of cultures. The concert also will feature the Decatur School of Ballet, African drummer Aly Camara and Scottish bagpiper John Recknagel. Tickets: 678-891-3565,

Roswell Roots Festival

Roswell Roots Festival. The city of Roswell will host this 17th annual festival throughout February in conjunction with Black History Month. The festival includes seven exhibits and more than 20 events relating to art, food, live music, storytelling, history, education and community engagement. Roswell Roots has grown into one of the largest, most comprehensive celebrations of black history and culture in the Southeast and has been awarded the “Gold Award for Best Cultural Event” by the Southeast Festival and Events Association.

  • Roswell Roots Unity Concert. 3-5 p.m. concert, 5:30-6:30 p.m. reception Sunday. Free. Roswell United Methodist Church, 814 Mimosa Blvd., Roswell. Hear several local choirs, including contemporary choirs from Chapel Roswell, Zion Missionary Baptist Church and Holcomb Bridge Middle School and guest choir, New Life Presbyterian Children’s Choir.

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