Atlanta park trivia

Impress your friends with these fun facts about Piedmont Park, Oakland Cemetery, Grant Park, and Woodruff Park
home of the goats
Illustration by John S. Dykes

1892 | Home of the Goats
Everyone knows that the UGA–Auburn football rivalry is the oldest in the South. But they forget that the first gridiron tilt between the two took place in Piedmont Park. On February 20, 1892, the Tigers beat the Georgia Goats 10–0 and—legend has it—debuted their new “War Eagle” cheer. The chant stuck. Thankfully, the original UGA mascot did not.

Hallowed Ground
Illustration by John S. Dykes

2003 | Hallowed Ground
Founded in 1850, Oakland Cemetery is the city’s oldest burial ground and park—and, in many ways, a symbol of the Old South. But in 2003 the park was the scene of a quiet but bold statement when former mayor Maynard Jackson, the great-grandson of slaves, became the first black person since 1867 to be buried in a plot on the cemetery’s original six acres.

walk on the wild side
Illustration by John S. Dykes

2010 | Walk on the Wild Side
Parks are a great place to spot urban wildlife, but people strolling through Grant Park—home to Zoo Atlanta—might want to be extra alert. In recent years, a silverback gorilla cracked its glass enclosure, and a bongo antelope escaped its pen. Scariest of all: In 2010 a deadly female tiger rattlesnake slithered from the grounds and was killed in front of a family’s house 100 yards away.

Battle of the Hollywood Stars
Illustration by John S. Dykes

2013 | Battle of the Hollywood Stars
A memorable moment in Will Ferrell’s “Anchorman 2” was the cameo-packed news team fight scene with Jim Carrey, Will Smith, Tina Fey, and Kanye West. But the real star was Woodruff Park, standing in for New York’s Central Park as the battlefield.

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This article originally appeared in our June 2015 issue.