County by county for Saturday

Austell votes to buy greenspace equipment

Austell City Council members voted Monday to purchase more equipment to groom the city’s extra greenspace, resulting from their purchase of 19 houses after the September 2009 floods.

Costing $21,000, a new tractor with a bush hog attachment will be bought with 2011 funds from the special purpose local option sales tax, or SPLOST.

Earlier this year, city officials approved $1.1 million in SPLOST funding for seven pieces of landscaping equipment. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Vinings holds Wine Crawl today

The 8th annual Vinings Wine Crawl is today from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m., with portions of the proceeds benefiting Hosea Feed the Hungry.

Last year’s event drew 600 participants. The vent features great win and food specials, a raffle and entertainment.

Tickets are $6 in advance, $12 at the door.

Register at Noche, 2850 Paces Ferry Road. For more info, go to Nancy Badertscher

Powder Springs egg hunt today

A Community Egg Hunt will be today in Powder Springs.

This free event will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Trinity Chapel, 4665 Macland Road between Old Lost Mountain and Bullard Roads.

A petting zoo, games, prizes and around 50,000 eggs will be among the attractions.

The church also will hold Easter services on Sunday at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Information:, email or 770-222-7023. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Helicopter rides will benefit museum

The Marietta Museum of History will offer helicopter rides and a chance to look at eight aircraft at the museum’s aviation wing from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. today , South Cobb Drive and Atlanta Road.

Rides are $35 and proceeds will benefit the air museum. Museum CEO and founder Dan Cox said the museum is not oozing with cash, but is holding its own financially.

Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Church to have Easter meal today

A “Messiah in the Passover Seder” meal will be presented today in Smyrna.

This event will be at 6 p.m. at Welcome All Baptist Church, 460 Bourne Drive S.E., Smyrna.

The matzah ball soup and chicken dinner will cost $5.

Reservations through Green Acres Baptist Church: 770-436-6174. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Strand to hold musical theater camp

The Earl Smith Strand Theatre on the Marietta Square will have three sessions of musical theater camp June 4 through July 16 for students in fourth through 12th grade.

The one week sessions are $150.

Strand’s executive director Earl Reece developed the Performula musical theater lab that focuses on singing, acting and dancing.

Information: at the box office or Tucker McQueen for the AJC


4 indicted in $1 million Medicaid theft

A Gwinnett County grand jury has indicted the former owner of a health services company for allegedly stealing almost $1 million from Medicaid, the state Attorney General’s Office said.

Wanda Francis, who owned Diversified Family Solutions, and three employees were charged with fraud and racketeering. The company, no longer in business, had locations in Gwinnett, DeKalb and Fulton. In 2007 and 2008, the defendants fraudulently billed Medicaid for services that were not provided and went to elaborate lengths to conceal the scheme, the AG’s office said. Bill Rankin

Property assessment notices in the mail

Gwinnett County property owners will soon receive the county’s official assessment of their property’s value.

Chief Appraiser Steve Pruitt said the county mailed about 257,000 residential and 14,000 commercial annual notices of current assessment Friday.

Deadline for appeals is May 21. Information:;; 770-822-7200; or the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center in Lawrenceville. Joel Anderson

Good Samaritan church to hold health fair

The Good Samaritan Haitian Alliance Church will host a free Health and Family Fair from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on April 14 at 771 Davis Road in Lawrenceville. Attendees will received a variety of free health screening and information on various community resources. Information: contact Lisa Claude at 678-255-7511 or Sandra Marshall Murray

Lilburn scholarship applications due

The Lilburn Woman’s Club is accepting applications for four scholarships available to graduating seniors from Brookwood, Parkview and Berkmar high schools as well as Killian Christian School and Providence Christian Academy. Two additional scholarships are available to women reentering the workplace. Applications must be postmarked by Monday. Information: Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Mobile mammogram screenings April 16

The Care-A-Van Mobile from Gwinnett Medical Center is offering mammogram screenings April 16 at the Grayson Branch of Gwinnett County Public Libraries. The van will be at the site beginning at 8:15 a.m. Call to schedule your mammogram at 678-312-3444. Andria Simmons

Teacher may get free chicken for a year

A teacher in Gwinnett County can eat free for a year at restaurant chain Pollo Tropical by garnering the most online nominations from students and parents.

The company will award a teacher in each of the 15 counties it serves, including Gwinnett. Favorite teacher nominations will be accepted from May 2 until 5 p.m. May 31. The Gwinnett school generating the most nominations also wins $500 for its student activities fund.

To nominate, visit (Enrollment in the Pollo Reward$ program is required.) Ty Tagami


Milton set to unveil master plan for parks

The draft version of Milton’s Parks and Recreation Master Plan, including the draft Birmingham Park Master Plan and draft Trail Plan revisions, will be unveiled at a town hall meeting at 7 p.m. April 16 in the City Council Chambers at City Hall, 13000 Deerfield Parkway, Suite 107 E. Plan consultants Moreland Altobelli Associates, Inc. are looking for any final public input after residents see the draft. The plan will be sent to the City Council in May.

Information: 678-242-2489 or Patrick Fox

School board begins community meetings

Fulton County school board members begin their community meetings this week, offering their constituents a chance to present local issues and concerns. Here’s the meeting schedule: District 1 at 7 p.m. April 16 at Roswell High; District 2 at 9:30 a.m. April 17 at Lake Windward Elementary; District 3 at 9:30 a.m. this Thursday at Riverwood International Charter School; District 4 at 6:30 p.m. April 16 at Stonewall Tell Elementary; District 5 at 9:30 a.m. April 17 at Shakerag Elementary; and District 7 at 9:30 a.m. this Friday at North Springs Charter High. Nancy Badertscher

Roswell worker wins Clean Air honor

Diane Taylor, human resources information manager for the City of Roswell, was recognized by the Clean Air Campaign this week for reaching the 25,000 commuter champion milestone in December. By logging her commute trips on the site, Taylor was found to have prevented more than 25,000 pounds of pollution from entering the atmosphere. Taylor used carpooling and a compressed work week to save 2,073 vehicle miles, prevent 1.04 tons of pollution from being emitted, reduce 1.26 tons of CO2 emissions and save $1,036 on fuel and maintenance. Patrick Fox

Alpharetta High to hold prom at the Fox

Alpharetta High School’s prom will be held this year at the Fox Theatre and will have an Egyptian theme. The prom is set for April 21. What’s it cost to attend a prom these days? Before spring break, tickets were selling for $60 for seniors and $65 for juniors. Nancy Badertscher

Art in the Park in Sandy Springs April 22

Sandy Springs is celebrating Earth Day with Art in the Park from 1 4 p.m. on April 22 at the Overlook Park Pavilion, 200 Morgan Falls Road. Pre-registration is required by April 19, visit . Information: 770-551-7766 or Sandra Marshall Murray

Forsyth residents wanted on water council

Interested in Forsyth County’s future water needs? The Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District seeks Forsyth residents to serve on the Lake Lanier Basin Advisory Council, one of a half-dozen such groups in metro Atlanta helping develop water resources plans. Residents must live in the river basin of the council they seek to represent and serve two-year terms. Info: Mark Woolsey for the AJC


Federal court puts calendar online

The federal appeals court in Atlanta this week began publishing its hearing calendars online. Before the change, approved by the court’s judges, the only way members of the public could find out when and where a particular case was being heard was to visit the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals clerk’s office or telephone the office to ask. The 11th Circuit, which hears appeals out of Georgia, Alabama and Florida, had been the only federal appeals court in the country not to post its calendars on its website ( Bill Rankin

School board to meet at Jackson High

The Atlanta school board Tuesday will hold its monthly meeting at Jackson High School, 801 Glenwood Ave. SE, Atlanta. The change of venue is to accommodate the large crowds expected at the meeting, where board members will discuss and possibly vote on a sweeping redistricting plan. The meeting starts at 6 p.m., speaker sign in is from 5-5:50 p.m. Information: Jaime Sarrio

Town hall on health and fitness Tuesday

Atlanta City Councilmembers Keisha Lance Bottoms and Cleta Winslow are teaming up with several organizations for a Town Hall Meeting on childhood health and wellness. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. on Tuesday at M. Agnes Jones Elementary School, 1040 Fair Street. For information, residents may call Councilwoman Bottoms’ office at 404-330-6054. Jeremiah McWilliams

Sheperd arranges McPherson tour

Residents who want to tour Fort McPherson can do so on April 13. Atlanta City Councilwoman Joyce Sheperd is coordinating community bus tours of the closed Army garrison southwest of downtown Atlanta.

The April 13 tour will run from noon to 2 p.m. All attendees must sign up by April 9 to save a spot. Contact Sheperd’s office at 404-330-6053 or email Jeremiah McWilliams


Recycling Day at Stone Mountain April 14

The Stone Mountain Rotary Club, in partnership with Stone Mountain Park, is sponsoring Electronics Recycling Day on April 14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the park’s East Gate entrance, located off Highway 78 at exit 8. Residents can bring in small electronics, including computers, CPUs, cameras, stereos, MP3 players, CD players, faxes or small kitchen appliances for free recycling, drop the items off at the Tommy Nobis Center Electronics Recycling truck, then park for free. Information: Donna Jensen at 404-433-6509 or Durl Jensen at 404-433-0498. Veronica Fields Johnson

Law student group to hold puppy day

Emory University School of Law’s Student Animal Legal Defense Fund will host a Puppy Day noon-1 p.m. on Monday at the Barcardi Plaza. Atlanta Pet Rescue and Adoption will bring puppies and dogs to campus that are available for adoption. Onsite adoptions won’t be available. Students can fill out adoption applications and discuss the process. King of Pops will sell $1 pops to benefit Atlanta Pet Rescue. Donations will be accepted. Information: Kenneth Musisi

Watson to hold legislative breakfast

Stan Watson, an at-large county commissioner in DeKalb, will host his monthly legislative breakfast today with a focus on this summer’s transportation referendum.

The free event will feature representatives from MARTA, the state transportation department and the Atlanta Regional Commission.

The breakfast is from 9-11 a.m. at Chapel Hill Middle School on Dogwood Farms Road in South DeKalb. Registration is not required. April Hunt

Easter egg hunt for kids Sunday

The “Easter Egg-travaganza” runs from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Wade Walker Park, 5584 Rockbridge Road.

In addition to the egg hunts for children up to 10 years old, the event features Georgia State University mascot, “Pounce,” as well as face painting, games and snacks. April Hunt

Avondale Estates has busy Easter weekend

Avondale Estates is holding its annual Easter Egg Hunt, Dog Parade and Antique Car Parade this weekend. The egg hunt is today from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Lake Avondale. The dog parade is also today from 11 a.m. until noon at the Avondale Estates Community Club, 59 Lakeshore Drive.

The car parade is Sunday, 2:30 p.m. with the lineup beginning 1:30 at the Twin Oaks Shopping Plaza, 2853 E. College Ave., and the parade ending at Willis Park. To enter contact Lamar Hart at 770-496-9928 or Bill Banks for the AJC

Lemonade Days in Dunwoody April 18-22

The Dunwoody Preservation Trust will host Lemonade Days, its annual fund raising event, from April 18-22, at Brook Run Park, 4770 N. Peachtree Road, Dunwoody. Activities will include a Bike Ride Around Dunwoody, amusement park rides, concessions, craft show, live music and a petting zoo. Proceeds will be used to restore the Donaldson-Bannister House and Farm. Information: Veronica Fields Johnson


County needs $50 million to float lirbary bond

Fulton County must somehow raise $50 million before it can float an $85 million bond to build a new main library, part of a construction program approved by voters. The commission may have found a shortcut. Prompted by Commissioner Robb Pitts, the board voted 4-3 to use $27 million in anticipated Beltline Tax Allocation District proceeds. The county attorney is looking into whether the $50 million must be from private sources, a question raised by Commissioner Liz Hausmann. Commissioner Tom Lowe questioned whether the library should still be built. Johnny Edwards

County coaches on foreclosure

Fulton County will hold a free information session Monday for residents in danger of losing their homes to foreclosure. It starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Southwest branch library, 3665 Cascade Road, S.W., Atlanta.

Attendees can get information on foreclosure prevention and contacting U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department-certified housing counselors. Information: 404-613-7944. Johnny Edwards

Clayton water board approves budget

The Clayton County Water Authority board this week approved its FY 2012 budget of $94.2 million at a two-day planning meeting at Chateau Elan. The budget is 4.5 percent higher than last year. The board recently raised its water rates 5 percent citing lower revenue and higher costs. Even with rate hike, Clayton residents pay one of the lowest water rates in the region, authority spokeswoman Suzanne Brown said. The meeting ended Friday. Tammy Joyner

Peachtree City approves funding for repairs

The City Council of Peachtree City approved a measure to spend $203,000 to fix leaky roofs and broken air conditioners at the Tennis Center.

Community Services Director Jon Rorie recommended a plan to put an acrylic/urethane coating on the roof, remove the skylights, fix the gutters and service malfunctioning HVAC units. Jill Howard Church for the AJC

Police ask help in stopping vandalism

The Fayetteville Police Department is asking for the public’s help in stopping vandalism and theft at vacant properties.

The increased number of empty homes and businesses has made them easy targets for thieves. A recent incident of appliances and fixtures being stolen from a house while an unsuspecting neighbor watched prompted police to issue a notice asking anyone seeing individuals at an abandoned property to call 911 so officers can determine if the activity is legitimate. Jill Howard Church for the AJC

Deadline for t-shirt design contest Friday

The deadline approaches for a prom t-shirt design contest being held at Fulton County’s Westside High School. The t-shirt is to be designed to fit with the theme of “Vegas nights.” The color should be purple and design should be on the front and back. The winning designer gets two free prom tickets. Submissions are due by Friday. School officials suggestion to participants: Keep it classy. Nancy Badertscher

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