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Column: Forward Arts Foundation hosting benefit exhibit, sale
by Sally F. White
Northside Neighbor Columnist
May 29, 2013 01:22 PM | 3135 views | 0 0 comments | 30 30 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Sally White, Northside Neighbor Columnist
Sally White, Northside Neighbor Columnist
Contemporary Southern pottery and handmade objects will be spotlighted in the June 6 through Aug. 10 “Summer Swan Invitational” exhibit and sale hosted by the Forward Arts Foundation at the Swan Coach House Gallery in Buckhead.

The selections will include finely crafted functional pottery for cooking and serving as well as new decorative clay pieces created in the current design movement toward the use of brightly painted and colorfully glazed ceramics. Artists working in wood, metal, glass, cement, sculpted clay, felt and crochet and knitting will be represented in three-dimensional objects. Even fanciful outdoor items will dot the grounds around the gallery entrance.

“This year we will be replacing and adding new work throughout the run of the show. We want everyone to shop the ‘Summer Swan’ several times to discover new pieces. We will fill in more items as the sale progresses,” said Marianne Lambert, gallery curator.

This summer exhibition is sponsored by foundation member Sarah Kennedy. Co-hostesses for the June 6 opening night reception are: Mary Hopkins Nunnally, Peaches Page, Betsy Pritchett, Laura Wallace, Mary Rose Taylor, Wendy Benson, Jane Black, Bet Pope, Terrell Boyle and Mary Johnson.

The nonprofit foundation supports the visual arts in Atlanta with sales from the gallery, Swan Coach House Gift Shop and Restaurant located on the campus of the Atlanta History Center in Buckhead.

Information: (404) 266-2636 or visit

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Music aficionados are reminded that Dan Britt, vocalist and former executive director of the Atlanta Lyric Theatre, is continuing his series of AGF (A Great Friend) Music Series first Thursday cabaret evenings June 6 with a free performance at a space on Commerce Drive in Buckhead.

Britt and pianist Amy Holloway started the musical ball rolling with “Simply Music and Laughs” in April and soprano Lea Lanier Johnston will join the group as another talented local performer who has moved on, but enjoys sharing her talent with friends and the public for an hour or so of impromptu music.

The staging space is the former office location of the Atlanta Lyric Theatre and the intimate Byers Studio Theatre. Since the Lyric has moved to the Cobb County Civic Center, the space was tempting for Britt and his musical buddies to rally for free monthly session.

“I have created a new company, A Great Friend LLC, offering personal home care services and located my offices and training center in the complex where I used to perform with the Lyric.” Britt said. “It brought back great memories and the desire to keep on singing for pleasure. I am recruiting other performers to join me in sharing music. And I am sponsoring the free Thursday sessions as a gift from my AGF company!”

Reservations and information: (404) 605-8448 or visit

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The annual Lost Oasis benefit for Fernbank Museum of Natural History in DeKalb County June 8 will spotlight an exciting “Wild Safari” theme to reference the new Extreme Mammals summer exhibition at the museum campus on Clifton Road.

“Eat like a lion, laugh like a hyena, socialize like a butterfly and dance your tail off!” Guests will join the fun mood by becoming party animals and donning cocktail attire with a wild side — tusks, tails, spots and stripes — as they imbibe in exotic cocktails and delicious cuisine, participate in a unique silent auction and a prize giveaway.

The fundraising evening is hosted by the creative Artemis Guild, a philanthropic group of young, civic-minded professionals who support and advance children’s education at Fernbank through volunteer projects.

The honorary co-chairs for 2013 are Ryan Smith Dunlap and Sam Dunlap with two Artemis member couples, Kirsten Travers-Uyham and John Uyham and Reid and Kirk Willingham serving as overall co-chairs.

Added recognition of patron-level attendees will include admission to an exclusive VIP martini and dessert room during the Lost Oasis gala. Proceeds will directly support after-school programs, outdoor education, exploratory science classes, family enrichment and engaging programs inspired by Fernbank’s children-orientated NatureQuest exhibit.

Accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, Fernbank is one of the largest museums in the Southeast and home to the world’s largest dinosaurs. Only at Fernbank can you come face-to-face with dinosaurs, explore the development of life on Earth through landscapes of present-day Georgia, connect with cultures from around the globe, engage in a variety of hands-on and rotating exhibitions and experience the incredible five-story IMAX film theater.

As a private nonprofit, the museum inspires lifelong learning of natural history through dynamic programming to encourage a greater appreciation of our planet and its inhabitants.

Tickets and information: (404) 929-6404 or visit

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Seventeen big-hearted business professionals have been competing since March to earn the title of Man & Woman of the Year in support of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Georgia chapter. The benefit contest will culminate June 8 with a Grand Finale Gala announcing the two 2013 Atlanta winners at the Loews Hotel in Midtown. The announcement evening will feature a cocktail reception, silent and live auctions, dinner and entertainment.

Candidates compete in honor of local children who are blood cancer survivors. Seventeen Atlanta contestants were nominated by an 11-member volunteer, business-oriented committee headed by Cynthia Alford.

Inspiration for the 2013 fundraising effort are Boy of the Year Watson Dufresne, a 7-year-old Johns Creek resident who recently completed treatment for leukemia, and Girl of the Year Mya Moore, an 8-year-old Lithonia resident in remission from lymphoma. Families and friends of the two will be recognized at the finale gala, where Vikki Locke and Kelly Stevens of B98.5 FM will be the emcees.

The society is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The mission is: cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. The organization funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.

The Georgia chapter has a variety of local programs including financial assistance to patients statewide. There are three Man & Woman of the Year Georgia benefit events scheduled in 2013 — the Atlanta contest, along with ones in Savannah and Augusta.

Atlanta event tickets and information: (404) 720-7803 or visit

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The annual Magnolia Ball has become a gracious tradition for preservationists and friends in metro Atlanta who are dedicated to preserving the historic Bulloch Hall property in Roswell. This year guests will dine and dance away the evening June 8 at the Country Club of Roswell as supporters focus on raising funds to reconstruct a 19th-century carriage house on the historic site.

Bob Hagan will be recognized for his longtime support of restoration and preservation of Bulloch Hall.

“We are fortunate to have an 1800s lady’s carriage donated to Bulloch Hall by Dr. and Mrs. Herb West,” said Pam Billingsley, the site coordinator and event chairwoman. “The valuable antique will be on display in the newly constructed carriage house scheduled to open this coming fall.”

Northsider Brook Hagan McGee and her husband Tyler are members of the ball committee.

Friends of Bulloch Hall, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, is the nonprofit hosting the annual benefit, which commemorates the restoration and preservation of the childhood home of President Theodore Roosevelt’s mother, Mittie Bulloch. Bulloch family founder James Bulloch came from Scotland in 1728 and his son, Archibald Bulloch, was instrumental in Georgia’s signing of the Declaration of Independence. James’ great-grandson, James Stephen Bulloch, was one of the original settlers in Roswell and built the outstanding Greek Revival home on a hilltop in 1839.

Today the historic property is owned by the city of Roswell and operated by the nonprofit Friends organization as a house museum and educational resource. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Bulloch Hall is open for daily tours and school programs.

Tickets and information: (770) 992-1731, ext. 2 or visit

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A variety of music will waft among the picturesque grounds of historic Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta’s Grant Park community June 8 for the third annual Tunes from the Tombs music festival.

Two main stages will feature bands and musicians from Atlanta and beyond performing an eclectic blend of music from every genre, including American, jazz, rhythm and blues, soul, funk, classical, country and blues.

Planned as an outdoor family event, it will have something for everyone. Buskers and street performers will also entertain visitors in and around the extraordinary monuments, mausoleums and Victorian-style garden.

To soothe the spirits, beer and wine and local Atlanta food trucks will be serving a variety of tasty festival fare.

The event is open from 1 to 8 p.m., and attendees can take a complimentary guided mini-tour of the cemetery and have their fortunes read by Robyn Avalon.

Parking will be available for free along the streets and for $5 at the Grady Health System lot. Oakland’s green initiative encourages attendees to ride MARTA to the King Memorial Station.

All proceeds benefit the nonprofit Historic Oakland Foundation, which raises funds for the cemetery’s upkeep and events.

The 48-acre garden-style cemetery was founded in 1850 and is one of the largest park spaces and a significant cultural site in metro Atlanta. When Oakland was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976, the foundation partnered with the city of Atlanta to preserve, restore and enhance the cemetery and share the historic area with the public as a cultural resource and an island of tranquility in the heart of the burgeoning city.

Information: (404) 688-2107 or visit

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For 19 years admirers of the colorful hydrangea genus have been invited into private Atlanta gardens by the American Hydrangea Society members to enjoy springtime blossoms and learn about the beautiful flowering plants.

June 8, the society will invite the public to six private gardens featuring a variety of hydrangea in different types of settings, from Japanese gardens to cottage gardens — both large and small. The tour begins on Harris Trail in Buckhead and will venture into Toco Hills and the Northlake area, both in DeKalb County.

All of the gardens will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., rain or shine. The tour ticket also includes a one-year membership in the society.

Gloria Ward is the 2013 tour chairwoman. Marianne and Joe Baumgartner are serving as the membership co-chairs.

The nonprofit society was formed in 1994 by Atlantan Penny McHenry and other Southern garden enthusiasts who loved the colorful flowering plants and wanted to study and learn about the genus hydrangea, its species and cultivars, as well as its culture, habits, hardiness and performance. Members receive informative newsletters and can attend three yearly meetings featuring special speakers expanding knowledge about the different species.

Tickets and information: (770) 956-7734 or visit

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Once again philanthropic Atlantans will show their moves on the dance floor for the fourth annual Dancing Stars of Atlanta June 15 at Loews Hotel in Midtown to benefit the Alzheimer’s Association’s Georgia chapter.

The high-stepping affair mirrors popular TV shows “Dancing with the Stars” and "So You Think You Can Dance" by pairing a dozen Atlantans with professional dancers for the one-night gala and dance competition spotlighting the city’s outstanding residents.

This year a special tribute performance by Leslie McLeod and her professional dance partner, Melbin De La Cruz, will be dedicated to McLeod’s friend and fellow volunteer, Pat Williams, who was diagnosed with dementia in 2012.

The People’s Choice Award will go to the 2013 contestant who raises the most individual dollar votes, and the Judge’s Choice Award will be given to the volunteer dancer with the highest performance score. All funds support the Alzheimer’s Association programs in Georgia.

The event leaders are returning from last year: overall chairwoman Toni Moceri, founder of Toni Moceri & Co.; and co-chairwomen Jenny Pruitt, co-founder and CEO of Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby’s International Realty; and Joanne Truffelman, founder and chairwoman of TG Madison.

The 2013 cast of volunteer dancers from the business, professional and volunteer sector are: Lamar Campbell, Jimmy Carlos, Drs. John Connors and Jay Faber, Lisa Fuller, Regina Griffin, Angela King, Dr. Marshall Nash, Lisa Rayner, Mateo Restrepo, Rabbi Ron Segal and Melanie Turner. Each participant will be trained by and paired with a professional dancer from the four host studios: Allure Dance Atlanta, Arthur Murray Dance Studios, Ballroom Dance Club of Atlanta and Valeo Dance & Fitness Club.

Dance champions Nancy Senner and Cory Thompson will serve as co-hosts for the benefit evening.

With seven offices statewide, the association’s Georgia chapter serves more than 200,000 people in the state living with Alzheimer’s disease. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., with no cure or treatment to slow its progression. The Georgia chapter’s mission is to eliminate the disease through the advancement of research and to enhance care and support for individuals, their families and caregivers.

Tickets and information: (404) 728-6046 or visit

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