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Georgia’s state parks are among the best places to explore our mountains. One of the first I visited was Vogel, which is among the oldest in the state’s system. It’s simply impossible to believe this historic, verdant haven is just over 20 miles away from rollicking Helen. And I’ll put the views in Cloudland Canyon, Tallulah Gorge, Fort Mountain, and Black Rock Mountain state parks—especially when the leaves turn—up against anything in New England.
My neighborhood has a walkability score of zero. At least, this is how we’re evaluated by Walk Score, a rating service that asserts “walkable neighborhoods are one of the simplest and best solutions for the environment, our health, and our economy.” Now, I don’t disagree with its premise. I just disagree with the currently accepted definition of walkable.
Our public high school had students from more than 65 different countries. A decade after graduation, my older son still has friends who are Indian, Brazilian, Korean, and American of all colors. Ramadan became as familiar a part of the academic calendar to him as Thanksgiving and Passover.
Humans shape buildings, but they also shape us. This year’s edition of our annual Groundbreakers Awards is dedicated to visionary architecture. Of course, the soon-to-be-iconic Mercedes-Benz Stadium immediately comes to mind. But more subtle revolutions—New Urbanist communities, historic renovations, sustainable construction—are also changing the way we live.
My first assignment for Atlanta magazine was about throwing a houseboat party on Lake Lanier. Back then I’d never been on a houseboat, let alone Lake Lanier. And the story was due in February, when no one’s out cruising. But I would’ve accepted almost any job to get a byline in Atlanta.
When there wasn’t obvious conflict, the producers of Fix This Kitchen would gin some up. Continuity was key, as I came to understand later. Clothes you wore one day might need to be worn again on another. The shot of my pregnant wife unloading those boxes from the delivery truck? They were empty.
The stories behind SunTrust Park and Morris Brown College embody the odd dichotomy that is Atlanta—the fascination with the shiny and new, which often diverts our attention from the institutions that make us who we are. When we’re at our best at Atlanta magazine, we’re shining a light on both ends of that spectrum.