Tim Byrd’s “Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom” at Little Shop Tomorrow

15 05 2009

Decatur resident Tim Byrd will debut his new middle readers pulp adventure series, Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom, with a signing at Little Shop of Stories tomorrow night at 7pm.

Question for Tim:  How does one tell the difference between a normal frog and a “frog of doom”?  You know, just in case I come across one down by Peachtree Creek.

Thanks to Amanda for sending along the info!





2009-10 Decatur Budget Schedule

8 05 2009

Linda Harris passes along a release from Andrea Arnold detailing the public meetings related to the 2009-10 budget, the revised 2008-09 budget and the 2009 millage rate.

The following are important dates in the budget schedule for the City of Decatur’s Fiscal Year 2009-10 budget process, subject to City Commission approval.

May 18, 2009  – Formal Presentation of Budget to City Commission and Adoption of Tentative 2009 Millage Rate

June 1, 2009 – Public Hearing on Proposed FY 2009-10 Budget and Revised 2008-09 Budget and 2009 Millage Rate at 7:30 pm at Decatur City Hall

June 8, 2009 – Public Hearing on Proposed FY 2009-10 Budget and Revised 2008-09 Budget and 2009 Millage Rate at 6:00 pm at Decatur City Hall

June 15, 2009 – Public Hearing and Scheduled Adoption of Proposed FY 2009-10 Budget and Revised 2008-09 Budget and Adoption of Final 2009 Millage Rate at 7:30 pm at Decatur City Hall

All public hearings on the City budget will be held at Decatur City Hall located at 509 N. McDonough Street. Read the rest of this entry »





9th Graders Volunteer at Glenn Creek This Weekend

24 04 2009

glenn-creek-2

glenn-creek-1

From DHS teacher Chris Billingsley…

More than thirty 9th grade Decatur High School students in Mr. Beau Dominguez and Chris Billingsley’s social studies classes will be volunteering at the Glenn Creek Nature Preserve Saturday morning from 9:00 until 1:00.  Students  will be building trails, spreading mulch, removing evasive plants and other types of physical labor.  Students will also be seeking sponsors for their efforts.  If you would like to sponsor a student for $1 per hour and up, please contact Mr. Chris Billingsley at cbillingsley@csdecatur.net for more information.

All money raised on Saturday will be donated in honor of the three DHS parents who lost their lives to cancer during the school year.  One of the students suggested Our Lady of Perpetutual Cancer Home near Turner Field as the charity.   Thanks for all your past support.





Report: Terrell Bolton Took 56 Unapproved Comp Days

20 04 2009

Atlanta Unfiltered does some top-notch digging and turns up records that show embattled DeKalb Police Chief Terrell Bolton took 56 unapproved comp days between October 2007 and his “firing” by CEO Burrell Ellis earlier this year.

Nothing shows dedication to a community or a cause like unapproved days off!





Strong Support for 5th Avenue as 4/5 Academy?

26 03 2009

Garrett comments over on CSD Mom’s Reconfiguration blog that the most vocal support by parents at last night’s listening session was for Option#13, which calls for converting vacant 5th Avenue Elementary into the city’s new 4/5 academy.

Among the 13 options, #13 is the most costly upfront at more than $9 million to execute.

What do you think?  Is 5th Ave as 4/5 the best solution?

I’m still unsure of what to support.  And I don’t think I’m alone.





“Reduce, Reuse” Suggestions

20 03 2009
Scott sends in a pic of an old BTTF Delorean

Scott sends in a pic of an old BTTF Delorean

Apparently, even the AJC can’t believe the sheer, unbridled green-ness of our city.

In detailing the decrease in the cost of our trash pickup this year – thanks to an increase in recycling rates (first reported on the Decatur blogs) – the AJC’s April Hunt starts her article with three little words: “Only in Decatur.”

Damn straight!  And just wait ’til the city unveils its trash-powered Delorean police cars (thanks Doc Brown!)…then everyone will marvel in our unsustainable growth rate in sustainability initiatives!

But seriously, major props go out to everyone in decreasing the amount of trash we generate as a city by 40% since the implementation of the “Pay-As-You-Throw” program.  You are truly professional recyclers.  But, this is no time to get cocky and rest on our bins.

Due to the lack of demand for recyclable materials thanks to the global recession, the city warns that this fee decline could only be temporary.  Why?  Because our partner in recycling – Latham Home Sanitation – is having a harder time selling these materials on the back end.  So that means someone has to pick up the loss-of-revenue slack.  And the suppliers (us) are the only ones left.

Therefore I join the city’s efforts to reemphasize the first two actions of that age-old, overused adage “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”.  So I ask you gentle readers, in what ways do you actively “reduce and reuse” to decrease the amount of garbage (be it trash or recycling) that goes on to the curb?

I’ll get the ball rolling and state the most obvious: reusable grocery bags.  Additionally, we’ve recently begun using washable dishcloths instead of disposable sponges.

What else should I be doing?





Hiking the Beltline

9 03 2009

Over the weekend, AsianCajuns’ Catherine and Lauren hiked 6-miles of the future Beltline with some good friends in tow.

Their photo journal documents the fascinating urban environment along this much-talked about abandoned track.  Its not to be missed.

I’m thinking I need to get in on one of these Urban Hikes.

You know what’s even more daring than an urban hike?  A suburban hike.  Go stroll those great unused sidewalks along US 78 for a couple miles and in short order you’ll see what I mean.





Decatur Wi-Fi Is “Complete”

27 02 2009
Click for full-sized image

Click for full-sized image

According to an update to the city’s Wi-Fi page in January, our extensive wi-fi network is finally finished!

After two years of network design and construction, the City’s wireless network is complete. The network consists of 190 wireless mesh radios over approximately 4 square miles within the City limits. The radios are attached to a variety of structures including Georgia Power utility poles, traffic signal poles, city-owned poles, and government and commercial buildings.

The network provides outdoor, high-speed Internet access to devices with wireless networking capabilities. For indoor access, most users will need a device called a CPE (consumer premise equipment) or wireless modem to strengthen the signal.

There’s also a new map (above) that shows more specific signal strength along our streets.  From the looks of it, I seem to have some of the worst signal strength on our street.  Oh well, all’s fair in love and wi-fi distribution.

If most indoor users will need an extra “CPE” to have a chance of accessing the wi-fi network, I still think it would be a good idea for “Get the Speed” to have neighborhood “fairs” or something so interested residents can test it out in their homes without having to order one, find out it doesn’t work for them, and then have to return it in the mail.  That’s just too much effort for most people.

In terms of comparison shopping, if you signed up for the 12-month high-speed access plan and needed a CPE, your total monthly cost would be somewhere around $30.  That’s about 12 bucks cheaper than my current Comcast.





Good Turnout For 5th Earl Fundraiser

31 01 2009

In response to another post, Rusty Diamond comments on the great turnout at Parker’s yesterday for the 5th Earl fundraiser.

David has some pics over at InDecatur to prove it.





Emily Saliers Weighs In On Trackside Fire

25 01 2009

MyATLtv has a statement from the Indigo Girls’ Emily Saliers on the destruction of Trackside.

“I was very sad to learn about the fire at Trackside. Eddie Owen (of Eddie’s Attic) was running Trackside when he asked me and Amy to come play there, many years ago. We considered Trackside part of our home base and had many wonderful nights playing there, crammed up in the corner, with our other Atlanta musician friends, having a blast. More recently, Trackside had been a place to just stop in for a beer and a couple games of pool or darts and hang out with the locals, listening to the jukebox, or watching sports on the television. I feel like I have lost an old friend just as, I am sure, many others do as well.”

Emily sure is right.   On this site alone, in addition to 49 heartfelt comments,  the original DM Trackside/5th Earl fire post has thus far received an astonishing 7,500 hits, with an incredible 4,397 people viewing it on the very first day.  Also, over 700 people have clicked over to Facebook to view pics of the damage.  Incredible.

Hopefully, this obvious widespread concern by residents across Atlanta provides some comfort to the owners and employees of these two well-loved Decatur spots as they attempt to pick up the pieces and determine next steps.