County by county news for Saturday


Miracle League Poker Run set for today

The “Wheels for Diamonds Poker Run,” a fundraiser for The Miracle League is 10:30 today at Mountain Motorsports, Conyers.

Motorcycle riders will travel a prescribed route starting at noon in Conyers and finish with dinner and entertainment at the Georgia Railroad Depot in Atlanta at 4:30 p.m. Riders will stop at checkpoints along the way to draw a card to complete their poker hand. The best hand will receive a $500 cash prize at the end of the run. Registration is $30, and covers food and entertainment.

Information: 770-760-1933 or Kenneth Musisi

Cobb to honor public safety heroes

In honor of Public Safety Week, the Cobb Chamber will present the 2012 Public Safety Employee of the Year Award, the Medal of Valor, Award of Merit and the Distinguished Achievement Award at a breakfast 7:30 a.m. Monday at the Cobb Galleria Centre, 2 Galleria Parkway.

Chris Allen, founder of Hunting for Heroes, an organization that provides recreational therapy and counseling for law enforcement officers severely injured in the line of duty, will be the guest speaker.

Information: 770-859-2350 or Ernie Suggs

Touch-A-Truck event set for today

Families are welcomed to experience a fun and educational Touch-A-Truck event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today at Town Center at Cobb.

Touch-A-Truck gives a hands-on opportunity to explore police cars, SWAT trucks, fire rescue trucks, front end loaders, a police helicopter and more.

Cost: $5(maximum $20 per family). Proceeds benefit the Cobb County Safety Village. Information: Kenneth Musisi

Health fair offers screenings

Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church-Health Ministry will hold a health fair 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. Oct. 6 at 566 Whitlock Ave. Marietta.

The health fair will offer free screenings for cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure, height/weight for body mass index. Flu shots will be available for $25.

Refreshments will be served.

Information: Emma Guice 404-790-1282 or Gwen Hunt 770-778-4292. Sandra Marshall Murray

Volunteer program seeks mentors

Cobb Mentoring Matters, a year-old volunteer mentoring program, is seeking mentors for this school year’s Cobb students.

Mentors go through an orientation and background check and are paired with a student at a local school. Mentors are asked to meet weekly with students.

Information: 678-594-7582 ext. 229 or Daarel Burnette II

Emory offers free Vitamin D class

Emory-Adventist Hospital at Smyrna will offer a free Vitamin D class 7 p.m. Oct. 23 at 3949 South Cobb Drive, Smyrna.

Dr. Madhu Vishwananth, Internal Medicine, will present this free class on the benefits of Vitamin D and ways to increase your consumption, exposure and absorption of this nutrient.

Information: 770-319-2025. Sandra Marshall Murray


Former Buford High football star hurt in wreck

Former Buford High football star Devin Durden, 21, was riding a motorcycle on Ga. 20 on Wednesday when a sport utility vehicle apparently pulled out in front of him near Gravel Springs Road, Channel 2 Action News reported.

Durden, a senior tight end at the Air Force Academy and the son of Buford High’s head girl’s basketball coach, was at home on a visit when the wreck happened.

Channel 2 reported Friday that Durden has undergone two surgeries since the crash. A family friend said Durden suffered a spinal cord injury that could leave him partially paralyzed. Mike Morris

Berkmar High student struck by vehicle

A Gwinnett County high school student was struck by a vehicle Friday morning on Champions Parkway at Cruse Road, according to police and school officials.

Gwinnett County police said the person that was hit was taken to a local hospital in critical condition.

Jorge Quintana, a spokesman for Gwinnett schools, said the person hit was a student at Berkmar High School.

The student’s name was not immediately available, and police have not released details on how the accident happened.

Mike Morris

One dead in Gwinnett wreck

One person was killed around 8 a.m. Friday in a single-vehicle crash on Steve Reynolds Boulevard near Beaver Ruin Road.

Gwinnett County police told the AJC that a vehicle ran off the road and struck a tree, and that one person was killed.

The identity of the person killed was not immediately available. Mike Morris

Free citizenship classes in Gwinnett

The Gwinnett County Public Library will offer citizenship preparation classes beginning Thursday.

The free 8 to 10-week courses, offered at the library’s Norcross and Suwanee branches, will feature lessons in U.S. history, government, politics, customs and other topics. It also will feature practice interviews and tests for those hoping to become U.S. citizens.

Information: Mark Farris at Jewish Family & Career Services of Atlanta, 770-677-9376 or

David Wickert

Gwinnett church to host fall fundraiser

The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Gwinnett will host an Upscale Yardsale from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at 12 Bethesda Church Road in Lawrenceville. Proceeds benefit the church


Kenneth Musisi

Name-your-price cat adoption this weekend

Planned PEThood of Georgia and Companion Animal Rescue League are partnering to host an end-of-season, name your price adoption event 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. today and 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Sunday at Planned PEThood at 2860 Buford Highway, Duluth.

All the pets have been spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped.


Former elections director gets two years’ probation

Former Fulton County Elections Director Sam Westmoreland must serve two years on probation after failing to register for drug court in Laurens County, Ga., a Superior Court judge ruled Friday. He’s scheduled to be released from the jail Saturday. Westmoreland, 43, resigned on Monday after officials found out he was locked up in the Alpharetta jail for failing to comply with probation terms stemming from a 2009 DUI arrest. He was later transferred to Laurens County, where he was charged with DUI in a 2008 collision with a tractor trailer. Johnny Edwards

International Walk to School Day Wednesday

Crabapple Crossing Elementary School will celebrate its 20th anniversary with International Walk to School Day 7 a.m. Wednesday at 12775 Birmingham Highway, Milton.

Students will be greeted by a Boosterthon DJ with loud music and lots of excitement. All walkers will receive charms for their backpacks and special handouts provided by the Metro Safe Routes to School office. Information:

Sandra Marshall Murray

Miracle League Poke Run set for today

The “Wheels for Diamonds Poker Run”, a fundraiser for The Miracle League is 10:30 a.m. today at Mountain Motorsports, Conyers.

Motorcycle riders will travel a prescribed route starting at noon in Conyers and finish with dinner and entertainment at the Georgia Railroad Depot in Atlanta at 4:30 p.m. Riders will stop at checkpoints along the way to draw a card to complete their poker hand. The best hand will receive a $500 cash prize at the end of the run.

Registration is $30, and covers food and entertainment. Information: 770-760-1933 or

Kenneth Musisi

Woodstock switches garbage hauler

The city of Woodstock will switch to a new residential trash-hauler the week of Oct. 15. The City Council approved the contract with Waste Management, Inc. replacing Advanced Disposal late last year. City officials say quarterly trash bills will drop, and that most residents won’t see a change in their pickup days. More info:

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Shore cleanup set for Lake Lanier

Keep Forsyth County Beautiful and the Lake Lanier Association are teaming up for the 24th annual Lake Lanier Shore Sweep 8 a.m.-1p.m. today at the Bald Ridge, Habersham and Port Royale marinas.


Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Cherokee Sheriff seeks citizen feedback

To maintain national accreditation, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office must survey citizens every three years. The survey will be available until Nov. 18.

Access the survey online at, or pick one up at the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office Headquarters at 498 Chattin Drive in Canton or at the South Annex at 7545 Main St., Suite 300, in Woodstock.

Andria Simmons


Man’s body found in abandoned building

Atlanta police homicide detectives are investigating the case of a body found Thursday night in an abandoned building on the city’s southwest side.

The unidentified victim was discovered in the building on the 900 block of Avon Avenue, off of Sylvan Road, police said. Investigators told Channel 2 that they believe the man, a person in his 40s, was killed in the building a few hours before the body was found about 7 p.m. David Ibata

Suspicious suitcase leads to evacuation

Authorities evacuated a Buckhead office building Friday following the discovery of a suspicious package.

According to Atlanta police dispatchers, a suspicious black suitcase was found near a loading dock of the Terminus complex, on Piedmont Road near Tower Place Drive.

The all-clear was sounded before 1 p.m. after officers discovered that the suitcase contained only clothing and other personal items. Mike Morris

Students get chance to create mobile apps

Youth Entrepreneurs Georgia is hosting a workshop 10:05 to 2 p.m. today to teach metro Atlanta students how to design apps for mobile devices. The “World Series of Innovation” seminar will be held at the Georgia-Pacific auditorium and conference center training facility.

Information: Jaime Sarrio

Annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s today

More than 3,000 people are expected at the Georgia Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association’s 19th Annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s.

The 5K walk will be held today at Atlantic Station . Check-in and on-site registration begins at 7 a.m. Following the walk, there will be a Art in the Park event at Atlantic Station.

Money raised during the event will be used in the care and support of those suffering from Alzheimer’s and for research in finding a cure for the disease, which is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Sheila M. Poole


Superintendent confronts questions

DeKalb County schools Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson fielded tough questions from parents Friday, who wanted to know what could be done about crowded classrooms, low teacher pay and too few math teachers.

Atkinson has been giving her state of the school system address at high schools across the county, this time at Dunwoody High. A sample of the mood: one frustrated man asked Atkinson if she’d considered breaking the school system in two.

Atkinson said that wasn’t even on her radar. Instead, she’s focused on cutting expenses to keep up with falling tax receipts, while doing what she can to maintain adequate staffing. Ty Tagami

Clarkston holds community celebration

Clarkston plans to turn last year’s Celebration of Community in an annual event with a return of the city showcase next month.

The event will feature food and entertainment from the community. It runs from 7 to 10 p.m. today at the Clarkston Community Center.

Tickets are $40 for individuals and $60 for pairs.

Information: 404-508-1050 or April Hunt

Superintendent to address Tucker parents

DeKalb County schools Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson will give a “state of the system” address 6 - 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Tucker High School.

She will speak about progress during her year-long tenure and the challenges ahead.

Atkinson will field questions. Email questions for her to:

Ty Tagami

Program examins Black Native Americans

A program examining the history of black Native Americans will be held Oct. 6 at the Wesley Chapel branch, 2861 Wesley Chapel Road.

The daylong “When Tribes Meet” features storytelling, book discussions and crafts.

Librarians Mia Buggs and Veronica Winley received a $1,000 national library award to host the event. Information:

April Hunt

Drug take-back coming in DeKalb

The Avondale Estates, Decatur and DeKalb County police departments will accept prescription drugs for safe disposal at an event 10 - 2 p.m. Saturday at the police stations.

The Drug Enforcement Administration’s Drug Take-Back Day allows residents to safely get rid of unwanted, unused or expired medicines.

Avondale’s station is at 21 N. Avondale Plaza, and Decatur’s police office is at 420 Trinity Place. DeKalb is accepting medicines at its south precinct station, 1816 Candler Road. April Hunt

Register now for Recycle-Bowl

Registration for Keep America Beautiful’s second annual Recycle-Bowl competition is through Oct. 9. Schools can register at to win prizes.

ONE DeKalb – Keep DeKalb Beautiful will provide ten 22 gallon bins to help calculate and transport recyclables.

Information: 404-371-2654 or

Kenneth Musisi


Henry road project gets $1.26 million boost

The Henry County Board of Commissioners approved a budget amendment of $1.26 million for a transportation project on Fairview Road in northern Henry County.

The project is being overseen by Henry’s Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax program.

Funds were taken from two other road projects in the area and allocated for the Fairview project.

Monroe Roark for the AJC`

Community Gardens of Henry hosts luncheon

Community Gardens of Henry is hosting its annual “Assisted Living Day” luncheon on Thursday, Oct. 4 at 11 Heritage Village Community Garden for Seniors – Heritage Park, 101 Lake Dow Rd., McDonough.

Guests will be entertained by Lamar Worthy, the Singing Cowboy; Union Grove High School Choir, and Henry County Jazzercise Dancers. Information: or or 678-772-0004. Sandra Marshall Murray

Country Club plans charity event

Eagle’s Landing Country Club is sponsoring a charity car and bike show and motorcycle ride on Sunday. Proceeds benefit MDA — Augie’s Quest, Fellowship of Christian Athletes and ClubCorp Employee Partner Care Foundation.

There will be vendor booths, entertainment by The Leadfoot Band, an auction, concessions, a kid’s zone, etc.

Information: Anne Belcher: 770-389-2000 x117 or

Nancy Badertscher

Henry museum hosts family day

The Henry County Military Museum at Heritage Park, 101 Lake Dow Road, McDonough will host the second annual Gold Star Family Day today.

There will be a public ceremony at the Veterans Wall beginning at 1 p.m. followed by a private ceremony in the museum.

Information: 478-284-2766.

Arlinda Smith Broady

Learn Henry history from the talking “dead”

McDonough Arts, a nonprofit organization, will host the second annual “Spirits of McDonough City Cemetery Tour” from 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 20 and 2:30 to 4 p.m. Oct. 21.

The tour provides an entertaining look at the history and heritage of Henry County through the people who experienced it.

Tickets: $10 adults, $5 children (12 and under). Information: 404-660-3813 or

Kenneth Musisi

New center helps unemployed in Fulton

Fulton County residents looking for work can get help at the Adamsville Workforce Development Resource Center, 3700 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, Atlanta. Hours are from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.

Offices help job seekers sharpen interview skills, fill out online applications, update resumes and upgrade job skills. Information: 404-613-6381. Johnny Edwards

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