When preservationists successfully rescued the Fox Theatre from demolition in the 1970s, it was a watershed victory in a city better known for bulldozing architectural relics than for upholding them as landmarks.
In 2003, to honor that effort, the Atlanta Preservation Center hosted the first Phoenix Flies celebration. Fourteen years later Phoenix Flies (March 4-26) has grown into a citywide commemoration of Atlanta’s man-made historic sites, with free tours and lectures held in places both obvious (Oakland Cemetery) and not (neighborhood coffeehouses in old buildings). This year the organizers will pay homage to the role women have played in keeping Atlanta’s—and America’s—historic fabric intact. About 300 free events are planned throughout the month, and many will showcase places that were safeguarded largely thanks to Atlanta women—from Mtamanika Youngblood, longtime leader of Old Fourth Ward preservationist efforts, to media magnate Anne Cox Chambers.
This article originally appeared in our March 2017 issue.