County by county news for Tuesday


Marietta 5th graders score big on writing test

Marietta City Schools fifth-graders scored eight points higher than the state average and four points above the metro average on the 2013 state writing assessment test, said district spokesman Thomas Algarin.

Of 683 students tested, 87 percent met or exceeded state standards which is up four-percent from last year. Marietta’s average score this year on the fifth-grade test was 221 or six points above the state average. Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Tuskegee Airmen exhibit on display

“The Tuskegee Airmen: The Segregated Skies of World War II” exhibit is on display through May 30 at Sweetwater Valley Library, the Austell Threadmill Mall Complex, 5000 Austell Powder Springs Road, Suite 123.

These display panels from the Kennesaw State University Museum of History and Holocaust Education may be viewed during library hours - 10 to 6 Mondays through Wednesdays and 11 to 6 Thursdays.

Information: or 770-819-3290. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Acworth Farmers Market to open

The Acworth Farmers Market will open 7 11 a.m. Friday on Main Street downtown in the parking lot by the railroad tracks. The market, sponsored by the Acworth Downtown Development Authority, will continue on Fridays through Oct. 25. The market will sell produce, bedding plants, baked cooks and jams. Information: Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Marietta to dedicate new park Thursday

Marietta will dedicate a new park, a block east of the Marietta Square, 3 p.m. Thursday at Anderson and Roswell Streets. The Joe Mack Wilson Park, named in memory of the former Marietta mayor and state legislator, is part of a $2.1 million streetscape improvement project on Roswell Street from Waddell to Rock Streets. The project was funded by federal transportation funds and SPLOST money. Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Bidding through Wednesday on truck

Bidding will continue until 9 p.m. Wednesday by Powder Springs on a 1998 Volvo garbage truck on

Registration is free.

Information: Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Football camp benefits efforts helping kids

Former Georgia Tech star running back Jonathan Dwyer will host a youth football camp at his alma mater, Kell High School in Marietta, May 31 through June 1 for youth ages 5-16. Fee of $60 includes meals and a T-shirt as well as gift bags, awards and players’ autographs.

Proceeds benefit the Jonathan Dwyer Neuro Feedback Lab at the Jacob’s Ladder Center.

The facility specializes in educating children diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, autism, PDD and Asperger’s among others.

Information: or 770-901-8872. Sandra Marshall Murray


GGC has its first Fulbright Scholar

Seijin Tranberg, a political science student who last week graduated magna cum laude from Georgia Gwinnett College, is the Lawrenceville school’s first Fulbright Scholar. Through the program, he will spend a year in South Korea before returning home to pursue a graduate degree.

Sponsored by the State Department, the 67-year-old Fulbright program offers graduates opportunities for career-launching study and research abroad. Information: 678-407-5000. Michael Alpert for the AJC

5 make National Merit Scholars list

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) has announced that five Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) seniors made this year’s National Merit Scholars list, with each earning a scholarship for $2,500. They include from Gwinnett: Duluth High’s John A. Kaffezakis; Mill Creek High’s Jeremy B. Hatcher; Norcross High’s Allison M. Fisher; Parkview High School’s Julian M. Menzel; and Peachtree Ridge High’s Katherine Li. Nancy Badertscher

Drug disposal box at Lilburn police

Lilburn has installed a white drug disposal box at its police headquarters lobby, 76 Main St., for disposal of prescription and over-the-counter drugs. Existence of the always-accessible box is intended to keep unwanted drugs off the street and from contaminating the environment if disposed of in toilets, sinks or trash. Welcome items include pills, ointments, lotions, epipens, inhalers and veterinary medications. Prohibited items include needles, biohazardous materials and illegal drugs. Information: 770-921-2210. Michael Alpert for the AJC

Duluth summer camps open May 28

Duluth Parks and Recreation day camps offer activities for ages 4-12 weekly beginning May 28 through Aug. 2. Each week is filled with activities including sports, crafts, and outdoor games. Specialty camps available for soccer and basketball. Summer Camp registration at Bunten Road Park, 3180 Bunten Road in Duluth. Info: 770-814-6981 or email Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Lawrenceville street work to be discussed

Lawrenceville and the Georgia Department of Transportation are holding a public information open house to discuss making Ga. Highway 20 two-way in downtown Lawrenceville, instead of existing one-ways Clayton and Perry streets.

The meeting will be from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. May 30 at Lawrenceville City Hall, 70 S. Clayton St.

Information: 770-963-2414.

Michael Alpert for the AJC

Briscoe Park pool opening

Snellville’s Briscoe Park pool opens May 25, with swim lessons beginning there in June. Pool hours are noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and noon to 7 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Admission: $4 for swimmers age 4 to 49, $1 otherwise. Information: 770-985-3535. Michael Alpert for the AJC


Court denies lawyer a light sanction

The Georgia Supreme Court has rejected Roswell lawyer Dale Calomeni’s request that he receive a reprimand from a State Bar review panel for violating ethics rules, saying such discipline is insufficient. The court said Calomeni mishandled funds that were to be put in a trust account for a client, exposed his clients to improper contact with a disbarred lawyer and pressed forward with a lawsuit contrary to the direction of his client’s son, who was directing the litigation. The least severe sanction, as requested by Calomeni, is not strong enough, the court said. Bill Rankin

Alpharetta kids in Special Olympics

Fifteen athletes from Alpharetta Elementary School participated in the Special Olympics Summer State Games at Emory University last weekend. Student athletes from the north Fulton school competed in track and field events. Athletes ran in a variety of dashes and the softball throw. Participating were: Jacob Smith; Layke Reynolds; Harrison Elrod; Jair Franklin; Matthew Michniewicz; Cole Lackey; Trevor Smith; Madelyn Hoyland; Gibby Durdan; Ethan Bromelow; Paloma Flores-Alvarez; Krisha Devarakonda; Muadh Kamal; Michael Astorga and Nicole Zbrzezniak. Nancy Badertscher

Cherokee may add 2 days to school year

Students in the Cherokee County School District may be in school longer next year. Superintendent Frank Petruzielo told school board members that because of estimated tax revenue growth, he’ll recommend restoration of two previously-cut instructional school days as part of next year’s proposed budget. That would increase the school year to 175 to 177 days and reduce furlough days for 4,500 district employees from eight to six. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Forsyth to give tour of treatment plant

Forsyth County officials are inviting the public to tour the county’s newly-expanded and upgraded water treatment plant. The open house is set from 2- 4 p.m. Thursday at the plant, 2255 Antioch Road. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Golf tourney to help rescue animals

A charity golf tournament at Country Club of the South in Johns Creek will raise money for Angels Among Us Pet Rescue. The nonprofit rescues dogs and cats from high-kill shelters and places them within a network of foster homes.

The “FORE Paws” tournament starts at 9:30 a.m. on June 10 at 4100 Old Alabama Road. The entry fee is $150 for a single player or $500 for a foursome. Information: Johnny Edwards

Forsyth to hold public hearing on pawn shops

The Forsyth County Board of Commissioners is holding a fourth public hearing on its revised pawn shop ordinance at 5 p.m. June 6 at the County Administration Building, 110 E. Main St., Suite 200, Cumming. Proposed revisions address shops’ licensing requirements, record keeping and retention, including photo and fingerprint identification of those presenting merchandise. Information: 770-781-2101. Michael Alpert for the AJC


Sajan George to give education speech

Today is the deadline to register to hear Sajan George discuss the future of education at the Georgia Public Policy Foundation’s leadership breakfast. The breakfast is set for 8 a.m. Thursday at The Georgian Club, 100 Galleria Parkway, Suite 1700, Atlanta 30339.

George is CEO and founder of Matchbook Learning, a blended model of school launched nationally in 2011 to initially target the bottom 5 percent of under-performing public schools. Previously, he was managing director with Alvarez & Marsal (A&M), where he led a group of turnaround professionals in assisting under-performing education institutions at the local, state and federal levels. Register at Nancy Badertscher

Police investigate man’s shooting death

Atlanta police are investigating the shooting death of a 27-year-old man found lying in the street late Saturday night.

Officers discovered the man just before midnight in the 1200 block of Metropolitan Avenue in southeast Atlanta.

The victim appeared to have been shot at least once and was pronounced dead at the scene, APD spokesman John Chafee said

Anyone with information on the shooting is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 404-577-8477 or Atlanta police at 404-546-4235. Christian Boone

Spraygrounds open throughout Atlanta

Atlanta’s Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs recently opened its four outdoor community Spraygrounds, a fun and popular way for kids to cool down and beat the spring and summer heat without swimming.

The four Spraygrounds are located at: D.H. Stanton, 213 Haygood Ave; Center Hill. 2305 Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway; Historic Fourth Ward, 702 Ralph McGill Road; and Perkerson Park, 770 Decker Ave.

All Spraygrounds are free and open to the public from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Atlanta has 12 public pools, which will begin opening on May 25. Ernie Suggs


PAWS Atlanta offering low-cost pet clinics

PAWS Atlanta, a DeKalb County animal welfare group, is offering weekly low-cost pet health clinics.

The group, formerly known as the DeKalb Humane Society, can provide spay-neuter services as well as vaccinations and pet dental cleanings.

Information and to view available animals: April Hunt

Donations requested for college students

Donations for college-bound students are being sought. They can include gift cards, household items and toiletries and will be distributed to 100 needy students who begin college this fall. Government drop-off spots are the Maloof building, 1300 Commerce Drive; the DeKalb Superior Court Clerk’s office in the county courthouse on McDonough Street ; and the Porter Sanford performing arts center, 3181 Rainbow Drive.

Donations also will be accepted at the 1st Class Barber Shop inside Stonecrest Mall and Nick’s Barber Shop, 4830 Redan Road. Information: 404-964-4936. April Hunt

Dunwoody creating Internet videos

Dunwoody is debuting a series of informational Internet videos showcasing individual city departments on the city’s YouTube channel,

Planned are videos on Public Works, Community Development, Municipal Court, Finance and Administration, Police and Office of the City Manager, with each introducing the department’s head, discussion of responsibilities, projects and how to reach the department. Information: 678-382-6700. Michael Alpert for the AJC

Summer program offered at Art Institute

The Art Institute of Atlanta — Decatur will offer a four-day summer program aimed to help high school juniors build new skills in the fields of design, culinary, media arts or fashion June 10-14.

The deadline for registration is May 31. Information: www., or contact Mavia Fleury, 404.942.1807,

Mea Watkins

Brookhaven Beer Fest scheduled for June 8

The third annual Brookhaven Beer Fest will be 3 to 8 p.m. June 8 at Apple Valley Road behind the Brookhaven Marta Station, 4047 Peachtree Road, N.E. The festival will feature more than 150 beers from around the world, live music, and food vendors. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Atlanta Fundraising Foundation. Admission price of $35 includes a commemorative driving glass and unlimited beer tastings.

Information and tickets: Mea Watkins

Decatur Library to hold book sale

The Friends of the Decatur Library will host a book sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 25 on the front lawn of the library, 215 Sycamore St., Decatur. Thousands of gently used fiction, nonfiction and children’s books, DVDs and CDs will be available for purchase. Prices start at $.50 and only cash and checks will be accepted. All proceeds benefit the programs and collections of the library. Admission is free.

Information: 404-370-3070. Veronica Fields Johnson


Ex-county manager is new housing director

Former Clayton County county manager Wade Starr is the new executive director of the Clayton County Housing Authority. Starr, 60, was given a three-year contract to run the agency last week in a 3-2 vote by the housing authority board. Starr became a consultant to the housing board in February, shortly after losing his county manager’s job. The previous executive director of the housing authority, Linda Valentine, retired from the position in March. Starr will get $70,000 a year. His salary will jump to $77,000 a year if his contract is renewed. Tammy Joyner

Conviction upheld in son’s beating death

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday upheld the murder conviction imposed against Jamall DeCarlos Mathis for the 2009 beating death of his 17-month-old son.

Mathis, who was 18 at the time of the murder, was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole after being convicted by a Clayton County jury. At trial, a medical examiner said the injuries to the baby, Ja ‘Mari, were consistent with him having been repeatedly struck on the head. Bill Rankin

Balloon experiment gets results for kids

Balloons were launched by students at Morrow Middle School as part of an Earth Day Project and classroom studies on wind and the atmosphere. Sixth grade student Julie Nguyen released her helium balloon with high hopes the balloon and an attached message would travel far and be mailed back to her. Police Officer Joseph Genson did more than mail the message back. He drove more than 40 miles from his Oxford, Ga., home to return the message to Nguyen. Two other messages were later returned to the school from Forest Park, Ga., and Social Circle, Ga. “This project provided a better understanding of the power of wind currents,” said Deon Pennyman, a sixth grade teacher and coordinator of the project. Nancy Badertscher

Local artists to hold art classes

Try your hand at painting at the Arts Clayton Gallery Canvas & Corks classes. Arts Clayton provides supplies, refreshments and beverages. Local artists lead the classes. Artist Ada Astacio will teach the first Canvas & Corks on May 31 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Following the first class, Canvas & Corks will be held at the gallery the last Friday of each month and will be taught by different artists. Cost: $35 a person. Details: Arts Clayton Gallery at 770-473-5410 or go online to Tammy Joyner

Summer reading program to begin

Clayton County’s annual Summer Reading Program begins Friday. “Digging into Reading” and “Beneath the Surface” are free programs that encourage young people up to the age of 18 to read and listen to books for fund.

The program ends Augs 10. However reading folders may still be brought to the library until Aug. 31. Groups can register by contacting Janice Arcuria at the Clayton County Library System, at 770-210-5238, 770 473-3858 fax or by email at or call 770-473-3850 or any Clayton County Public Library. Tammy Joyner