Funded by a grant from The Home Depot Foundation, the park was designed by award-winning landscape architect Mack Cain of Jacobs, and planned in cooperation with a steering committee of veterans from the Korean and Vietnam wars and the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Originally conceived in 2000 with the help of the Atlanta Vietnam Veterans Business Association, the park began as a small garden honoring veterans from the Vietnam War. Much has changed since then and it was the right time to develop the dedicated area into a more comprehensive and inclusive Veterans Park.
In the early planning stages for the newly expanded park, the committee determined it be designed not as a traditional veterans memorial but as a unique gathering place encouraging reflection, personal connections to veterans and a celebration of the lives of those who have sacrificed to secure our freedom.
Aside from the National Infantry Museum in Columbus, the center will become only the second Georgia museum to host a sacred soil ceremony of this nature.
“To have a sacred soil ceremony during the dedication is a unique opportunity, and one that will make Veterans Park truly grounded in history,” center President and CEO Sheffield Hale said. “The history center is honored by this opportunity provided by our veterans.”
In addition, soil from Germany, France, Italy, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iwo Jima, Saipan, Wake Island, Tarawa, Pelelui, Guam, the Philippines, Vietnam and Korea will be on display in the center while the remaining portion will be placed in a time capsule beneath the seal of the U.S. located on the main walkway of the park.
The center also will host its annual Military Timeline family event Saturday at 11 a.m. (see Sally White’s column for details).
Information: visit www.atlantahistorycenter.com.
The 36th annual Atlanta Jazz Festival will be Saturday through Monday at Piedmont Park, 400 Park Drive, Midtown. The event will feature Cecile McLorin Salvant, Dominick Farinacci, Meshell Ndegeocello, Jose James, Tia Fuller, Aruan Ortiz, Gretchen Parlato and Rudresh Mahanthappa.
Admission is free.
Information: visit www.atlantafestivals.com.
Brew at the Zoo
Zoo Atlanta, 800 Cherokee Ave., Atlanta, will host Brew at the Zoo Saturday from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. The event will include samplings of food, beer and wine at stations staggered throughout the zoo, plus music and games.
Tickets are $38 for members, $43 for non-members and $85 for VIP admission, which includes a Brew at the Zoo T-shirt and access into the air-conditioned VIP lounge with exclusive beer and wine tastings.
The event is only for guests 21 and older and will take place rain or shine.
Information: visit www.zooatlanta.org.