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LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga., Feb. 3, 2009 -- A new dining experience is coming to historic downtown Lawrenceville, with the opening of Sperata on the Square in mid-February.
Chef Chris Hope, who with his wife, Petra, own and operate Sperata in
historic downtown Buford, says the new restaurant in Lawrenceville will
maintain the same high standards as the Buford restaurant with its classic
French style cuisine, but will be more in the manner of a high class grill.
Hope says: "Unlike our Buford restaurant entrees will be under $25
but we will bring many of the most popular appetizers, salads and some
entrees with us to Lawrenceville,"
Sperata on the Square will be open seven days a week, including a Sunday
Brunch which will feature a Sunday Carvery. Petra Hope, who manages their
restaurants, explains: "The chef will carve the featured meat for
each guest who will then chose their vegetables from a self service buffet."
Chef Hope states: "Our mission is to create a memorable dining experience by optimizing the three essential ingredients of food, service and atmosphere. We strive to make the food exciting and innovative using only the finest product available; the service first class, yet subtle and friendly; and the atmosphere sophisticated, yet comfortable."
The Hopes plan to have Sperata on the Square open by mid-February for lunch only. They expect to open the bar and for dinner hours before the end of February.
Emory Morsberger, CEO of Morsberger Group which owns the historic building where Sperata on the Square will be located , says: "We are excited to have such a world-class restaurant here in historic Lawrenceville on the square. With the Aurora Theatre, the unique shops and the variety of restaurants offered, downtown Lawrenceville is becoming more and more the place to come for lunch, dinner, shopping and entertainment."
FEB. 3, 2009 -- The recent protests by Vietnamese residents in Gwinnett over a vote today on the location of a garbage transfer station is bringing new attention to the immigrant and minority communities in Gwinnett.
Expected to be brought to a head today at the 2 p.m. meeting of the county commission, the agenda item about the transfer station will not be the only item that the commission hears. But it may draw the largest crowd of protestors that the commission has seen in ages.
The congregation of the Holy Vietnamese Martyr's Mission, with 4,000 worshipers, meets at the former location of Tim Timmers' Chevrolet, and naturally the congregation doesn't want the adjacent site used for waste transfer. The church has been vocal in its opposition, even drawing the support of the Catholic Archbishop of Atlanta, William Gregory.
We would suppose that if any similar congregation, minority or not, was meeting at that site, they would also oppose the granting of a permit for the location of such a business at the adjacent site. It's very much a NIMBY ("Not in my back yard") question.
Since 1990, Gwinnett County has continued to see spectacular growth, most markedly in the minority communities. Up until about 1990, about the only minority group was African-Americans. However, even that group had fallen in size from five per cent in the 1970s to only about two per cent in 1990.
However, since 1990, many minority groups have moved into Gwinnett, no doubt attracted by affordable housing and good schools for their offspring. These minorities came in droves, to the point today that Gwinnett is the most diverse county in Georgia. By 2007, the Census estimates show in Gwinnett about 52 percent white; about 20 percent African-Americans; 17 percent Hispanic; about nine percent Asian; and 1.6 percent other. No other county in Georgia, and few in the nation, has such an ethic mix.
What has happened to the minorities moving into the country? If they come from overseas, they in general have not become fully-integrated into community activities. They live and work here, spend money here, send their kids to schools. But all too often, they do not fully participate in our society.
It's seen in two areas: many minorities are not registered to vote, and at the same time, do not get involved in local politics.
The African-American community, it's good to say, is registered to vote, and usually fully participate in the governmental processes. We are now seeing African-American candidates for offices, with some holding city or state offices.
But that is not the case with Hispanic, Asian and other minorities, to any great degree.
What it takes to get minorities more involved in the society are issues, such as the one the Vietnamese church is now facing. While some protesting the location of a waste transfer station may be registered to vote, we suspect most are not. While they may protest, they cannot at present deliver much of a bloc of votes to any issue. Perhaps during this protest period, this minority will come to realize that they need more participation in our process of government. Perhaps this can encourage minorities to become more involved, by participating more in local activities of all sorts, from playground sports to school PTA's, to community festivals and governmental activities.
We stand with the Catholic Vietnamese congregation in opposing the location of a waste transfer station near their church. We urge the commissioners to deny this permit, for the good of the overall community. We also urge this Vietnamese church, and other minority groups, to become more involved with activities around them, for their own good.
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Editor, the Forum:
The media did it to themselves by losing sight of their original purpose. They decided to use entertainment to help pay the bills and they decided that it was their job to help shape society around their own vision of utopia and social change.
Some of the social change of the last 60 years has been good and some has been disastrous. Much of the good social change would have happened anyway. The news media is certain it couldn't have taken place without their help. The news and entertainment media's promotion of liberal and socialist ideals has done tremendous harm, but they will never see it that way.
It has now reached the point where the news media, both print and broadcast, have lost credibility with the portion of the public that are educated, literate and who think for themselves.
The rest do not read the paper and pay little attention to TV and radio news, getting much of their information about politics and current events from the entertainment media. They are unable to distinguish the difference because the line between news, commentary and entertainment has disappeared.
I will certainly not mourn the demise of the AJC nor The New York Times. They are simply reaping what they have sown.
Loves name of Ground Hog Junction for Braves Stadium
Editor, the Forum:
"Ground Hog Junction!" I love It! Especially since the politically-correct
crowd got rid of the Hog Mountain community name, replacing it with Dacula.
Remember the old "You are entering Unincorporated Hog Mountain Community"
signs that went up several years ago? I also think the term "Village"
is getting a little overuse.
Suggests dog owners submit thoughts to county on ordinance
Editor, the Forum:
Rescue groups with foster homes in Gwinnett County will have more than
just health and behavioral issues to worry about if the county is successful
in changing the dog barking ordinance in Gwinnett. Under the new guidelines
dogs that might bark more than five times for 30 seconds during any 30
minute interval would be a violation.
Several years ago, Georgia Archivist Greg Jarrell found Georgia's copy of the Declaration of Independence at the State Archives while looking for other historical documents. Dated March 2, 1777, it is believed to be one of 13 handwritten documents sent to the 13 original colonies following the Continental Congress' adoption of the Declaration of Independence from Great Britain. This copy, which survived the Revolutionary War and the Civil War, likely was placed in the State Archives when it opened in 1918.
Mr. Jarrell will speak to students of Georgia Gwinnett College on Tuesday, February 3 at 2 p.m. at the Cisco Auditorium (in Building C.)
Suwanee's downtown master plan unveiled on Feb. 10
What might the Buford Highway/Russell Road intersection of the future look like? How might Old Town residents enjoy easier access to the Suwanee Creek Greenway and other parks and open spaces? How can commercial and residential uses in the Old Town area be expanded?
The initial answers to these and other questions will be offered at the February 10 Downtown Master Plan meeting. The public is invited to provide feedback on the initial downtown concept plan to be presented during the 6:30 p.m. meeting at the Suwanee Crossroads Center, 323 Buford Highway.
This will be the first public glimpse of the new streets, greenways, open space, and future mixed uses proposed through the ongoing Suwanee Downtown Master Plan. Interactive stations will be set up to allow participants to provide feedback on various segments of the plan. This feedback will be used to shape the final Downtown Master Plan, which will be presented in April.
Cagle, Johnson to speak at Norcross Town Hall Meeting
Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle heads the speaker list at the first Norcross Town meeting of 2009. Norcross Mayor Bucky Johnson will also present the state of the city address. Both speakers will accept questions after their remarks.
The meeting will be February 10 at 7 p.m. at the Norcross Community Center.
Items to be discussed among others include the state budget local impact; transportation; property taxes; water at Lake Lanier, Tax Allocation Districts and educational funding.
New London Theatre to present Mystery of Edwin Drood
New London Theatre will present the Tony Award-winning musical comedy, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, opening on February 13 and continuing through March 1. The play is being directed by long time Atlanta area theatre director/producer Scott Rousseau and produced by Leslie Raab..
The Mystery of Edwin Drood is the hit Broadway musical by Rupert Holmes based upon Charles Dickens' unfinished last novel. Every night will be different as the audience votes on the ending.
The presentation takes place Friday through Sundays at the theatre in Snellville. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 on the day of the show. Tickets can be purchased either online through the website or at the theatre box office. For more information go to www.newlondontheatre.org, e-mail NLTSnellville@yahoo.com, or call 770-559-1484.
Gwinnett County Public Library invites the community to join together
to create a collaborative portrait of Snellville. Members of the public
are encouraged to design a block and to add it to an elaborate, 8' x 8'
mosaic in the lobby of the Snellville library branch.
Dahlonega's Bear-on-Square Festival set for April 17-19
The 13th annual Bear on the Square Mountain Festival will be a weekend of music and art held around the Historic Public Square in Dahlonega.
From April 17-19, old time and bluegrass music will fill the downtown square and nearby Hancock Park. The festival opens on Friday as the musicians for the street jams start gathering around the Historic Public Square around noon. There will be on-stage performances on Saturday and Sunday at the Main Stage Tent in Hancock Park by local, regional, and national musicians with headline acts including the Claire Lynch Band, The Freight Hoppers, and the duo of Beverly Smith and Carl Jones.
The Mountain Marketplace around the square is being sponsored this year by John C. Campbell Folk School and will include a juried artists' market of traditional crafts, artists demonstrating their craft throughout the marketplace as well as a heritage folk life area featuring John C. Campbell Folk School artists demonstrating such crafts as blacksmithing, basketry and more.
Extensive music workshops, the Sunday morning Gospel Jam, a street dance, the Live Country Auction on Friday evening, family activities, and of course, food, complete the offerings during the festival. For more information about the festival, including event times and locations and a complete list of sponsors, visit www.bearonthesquare.org.
Bear on the Square Mountain Festival, Inc., which stages the show each year, is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit cultural arts organization whose mission is to preserve and celebrate the culture of the Southern Appalachians through the presentation of music, traditional craft, and folkways. Tax deductible donations are welcome and can be sent to P.O. Box 338, Dahlonega, Ga. 30533.
William Louis Jones first attained recognition as a professor of science and agriculture at the University of Georgia and later as a journalist, serving as editor of the Southern Cultivator and then as editor of Henry W. Grady's journal, Southern Farm. He was also the first director of the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Station (later the Georgia Experiment Station in Griffin). Through his writings on scientific agriculture and in his role as a professor, Jones influenced scores of Georgians and other southerners.
Born on a large plantation in Liberty County in 1827, Jones was a graduate of the University of Georgia in 1845. He studied medicine at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, in New York, receiving the M.D. degree in 1848, but soon decided to pursue a career in science. In 1850 Jones enrolled in the Lawrence Scientific School of Harvard College in Cambridge, Mass. A year later, he returned to Athens to serve as the professor of natural history at his alma mater. In July of that year, he married Mary Williams, a native of Athens.
An ardent supporter of the Confederate cause, he enlisted in a state militia unit in 1863, and became the chemist in charge of the gunpowder works in Augusta. Jones returned to the university in 1866 as the Terrell Professor of Agriculture.
As a spokesman for the application of scientific methods to farming and as a sage advisor on agricultural matters, Jones won acclaim as the state's leading authority in the field. In 1886 he returned to the university, again as Terrell Professor, and two years later became director of the new Georgia Agricultural Experiment Station. Within two years, however, the station's board of directors had decided to deprive him of autonomy and to relocate the station in Griffin, actions that prompted Jones to resign.
Meanwhile, since 1886 he had been penning columns for the Atlanta Constitution and, since 1887, serving as editor of Southern Farm. When he retired in 1892, Jones was known throughout the South for his efforts to enlighten southern farmers about the importance of applying scientific principles to crop production. He died in Atlanta on August 22, 1914.
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