Library Receives Budget Increase for Longer Hours, Outreach Services, and Materials

Forsyth County Public Library is pleased to announce expanded weekday hours at all four of its branches, effective January 7, 2019.

Libraries will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday, giving patrons both earlier and later access to materials, computers, and all library services. The library will continue to be open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday.

“We’ve had frequent requests to open the libraries earlier and to keep them open later, especially from adult patrons who use the public computers and from students who are doing homework, researching papers, or working on group projects,” says Library Director Anna Lyle.

The 2019 budget adopted by the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners on December 6 includes funding for four additional part-time staff members that will make the expanded weekday hours possible, along with a full-time Outreach Specialist responsible for taking library programs and materials to events at local nonprofits and other organizations to serve children and adults who may not otherwise be able to visit the library.

“We’re grateful to the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners for including an increase in the 2019 budget to allow the library to provide expanded services to the Forsyth County community,” added Lyle.

In addition to adding staff for increased operating hours and outreach, the County’s 2019 allocation to the Library includes funding for increased benefits costs, a 4% merit increase for eligible employees, and $50,000 for new materials for the library’s collection to offset the end of SPLOST VI funds.

“This increase in funding will help the library serve the entire Forsyth County community, both inside and outside the physical walls of the library,” says Lyle.

For information on programs and services available at the Forsyth County Public Library, please visit www.forsythpl.org.

Operation Griswold 4th Anniversary

Operation Griswold 4th Anniversary

By Joey and Laura Tirico
Located at 104 Wolf Creek Court Cumming, GA 30028

Inspired by the hit movie Christmas Vacation, “Operation Griswold” was born three years ago! A work in progress, my wife and I have enjoyed decorating our home for the Christmas holidays since moving to Cumming over nine years ago. We immediately fell in love with the Norman Rockwell countryside setting and friendly people. It is those friends and neighbors who inspire us every year to make each Christmas even more special than the last.

The day following Thanksgiving, its lights, ladders, and action! Resembling the set of a major motion picture, Operation Griswold 4.0 (the fourth year) is underway! 25,000 lights currently adorn the front yard taking about 30 days to finish. It definitely gets the attention of all the neighborhood kids who are mesmerized by the overwhelming beauty of lighted candy canes, ice cycles, lighted wreaths and 23-foot tall decorated Christmas tree in our front yard. Parents comment on how it brings back such fond memories of childhood, making our efforts so worthwhile.

While the outside can probably be seen from outer space, the inside is a totally different story. Inspired by visits each year to the Biltmore House in Ashville, NC, the inside is an elegant array of formal dining and entertaining. Whether it’s an informal bonfire in the backyard with close neighbors or a formal dinner with family, we love our home and living in such a picturesque neighborhood. We wish all of our friends and neighbors in the Wolf Creek Subdivision and surrounding community a very Merry Christmas and Blessed New Year!

2018 Festival of the Nativity Begins Nov. 29 – Dec. 2

Celebrate the Birth of Christ by visiting the display of more than 800 nativities from all over the world.

The Gainesville Ward (Congregation) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints invite all families and friends to visit the exhibit of more than 800 nativities from all over the world.

The exhibit will be open from 6PM9PM on November 29th through December 1st at 1234 Riverside Drive in Gainesville.

Final exhibit on December 2nd will be from 3PM to 9PM. There will be many performances of various artists from all over Northeast Georgia throughout the festival. This community event is a gift from the congregation to all who believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God. Many have attended previous festivals in the past as part of their family Christmas tradition. This event is FREE to the public. Daytime tours can be arranged by calling 770-561-1199.

Celebrate the Holiday Season with the Gingerbread Man at Family Literacy Event

Preschoolers, toddlers, infants, and their families are invited to celebrate the stories of the season at Leap into Literacy with the Gingerbread Man, Wednesday, December 5 at 5:30 p.m. in the Cafeteria at Cumming Elementary School, 540 Dahlonega Street.

Admission to the event is free and advance registration is not required. While the program is designed for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers, children of all ages are welcome to attend with a caregiver.

The event is the second in the 2018-2019 Leap into Literacy series and will feature a puppet show, stories and songs in English and Spanish, early literacy activities, and a chance to take a photo with the Gingerbread Man himself!

Participants will also enjoy a simple dinner from Rosati’s Pizza and an authentic gingerbread cookie baked by Gasthaus Tirol that children can decorate with toppings courtesy of Ingles Markets.

After meeting the Gingerbread Man and practicing a few simple early literacy activities, children will also receive a free book to take home, courtesy of Scholastic, Inc.

“Just over a year ago, Leap into Literacy was formed as a partnership between Forsyth County Public Library, Forsyth County Schools, Georgia Highlands Medical Services, and Literacy Forsyth because we recognized that local families need help preparing their children for success in kindergarten,” says Tracy Walker, Programming Manager at the library.

The program is designed to reach families with children from birth to age five with a series of four free early literacy events each academic year. The events include a storytime or puppet show program designed for preschoolers, a nutritious meal, and education activities that give parents and caregivers the ability to continue early literacy practices at home.

Leap into Literacy organizers agree on the importance of early literacy in preparing children for success in kindergarten and the holidays offer a wealth of opportunities to help children practice early literacy skills.

“Families love to tell stories and share their memories around the holidays and when we tell traditional stories or sing traditional songs, we’re often using words that aren’t as common in our speech at other times of the year. Learning these less common words increases a child’s vocabulary, and that becomes a predictor of reading readiness and success for children as they enter elementary school,” explains Amy Chang, Title I Director at Forsyth County Schools.

Information about literacy, education and health services from the library, Forsyth County Schools, Georgia Highlands Medical Services, and Literacy Forsyth will also be available during the program.

“In addition to helping parents and caregivers teach pre-reading skills to their children, Leap into Literacy also aims to connect families with young children to other free and low-cost services in Forsyth County,” adds Walker.

Leap into Literacy is sponsored by Forsyth County Public Library, Forsyth County Schools, Georgia Highlands Medical Services, and Literacy Forsyth. Leap into Literacy is also supported by a Community Impact Grant from the North Georgia Community Foundation, as well as contributions from Scholastic, Inc., Forsyth County Public Library Friends and Advocates, Barnes & Noble, and other local businesses.

For more information on upcoming early literacy events, including the next Leap into Literacy event in the spring, please visit www.forsythpl.org.

Cumming Resident and Military Veteran to Bring Hounds Town USA Doggie Daycare Franchise to Local Area

Cumming Resident and Military Veteran to Bring Hounds Town USA Doggie Daycare Franchise to Local Area

As a member of the Marine Corps for 17 years, it was always difficult for Cumming resident Dave Robbins and his wife Ammee to leave their dogs in the care of strangers, especially when Dave was deployed to Iraq in 2004.

After working at AT&T for more than 18 years, Robbins was ready to take the leap to start his own business and came across Hounds Town USA, a fully interactive doggie daycare franchise that offers customers worry-free and reliable pet care service. Robbins saw a business model that was run by people who truly cared about dogs and their well-being.

“Hounds Town USA is a place where dogs can be dogs,” said Robbins. “As an owner, you can walk away feeling satisfied with the care and treatment provided by Hounds Town USA.”

Robbins sees the Cumming community as a great fit for Hounds Town USA because of the number of dogs in the area and lack of suitable doggie daycare options in metro Atlanta. Robbins plans to bring four Hounds Town USA locations to the Atlanta area in the next 10 years.

Founded in 2001 by former NYPD canine handle and commanding officer of Nassau County Police Department Mike Gould, Hounds Town USA has grown to seven locations, with another six in development and a strategic plan to grow to 50-plus units by 2023.

“Throughout my many years working with dogs, I noticed that humans often fundamentally misunderstand dogs and how they behave. They are social pack animals who need interaction to live a balanced life, and few dog daycare and boarding facilities share this mentality,” said Gould. “I created Hounds Town USA to offer a place for dogs to be dogs, and it has been embraced by both dog owners and potential franchisees like Dave. We know the metro Atlanta area is a perfect geographic area for our brand and we look forward to Dave growing the Hounds Town USA footprint in the Southeast.”

Since 2001, Hounds Town USA has offered a safe and welcoming environment for dogs to be dogs, with interactive doggie daycare, pet boarding, dog grooming, a pet taxi, and retail services. For more information, please visit https://www.houndstownfranchise.com/.

Operation Griswold 4th Anniversary Update

Operation Griswold 4th Anniversary

By Joey and Laura Tirico
Located at 104 Wolf Creek Court Cumming, GA 30028

Inspired by the hit movie Christmas Vacation, “Operation Griswold” was born three years ago! A work in progress, my wife and I have enjoyed decorating our home for the Christmas holidays since moving to Cumming over nine years ago. We immediately fell in love with the Norman Rockwell countryside setting and friendly people. It is those friends and neighbors who inspire us every year to make each Christmas even more special than the last.

The day following Thanksgiving, its lights, ladders, and action! Resembling the set of a major motion picture, Operation Griswold 3.0 (the third year) is underway! 25,000 lights currently adorn the front yard taking about 30 days to finish. It definitely gets the attention of all the neighborhood kids who are mesmerized by the overwhelming beauty of lighted candy canes, ice cycles, lighted wreaths and 20-foot tall decorated Christmas tree in our front yard. Parents comment on how it brings back such fond memories of childhood, making our efforts so worthwhile.

While the outside can probably be seen from outer space, the inside is a totally different story. Inspired by visits each year to the Biltmore House in Ashville, NC, the inside is an elegant array of formal dining and entertaining. Whether it’s an informal bonfire in the backyard with close neighbors or a formal dinner with family, we love our home and living in such a picturesque neighborhood. We wish all of our friends and neighbors in the Wolf Creek Subdivision and surrounding community a very Merry Christmas and Blessed New Year!

17 Ways to “Fall” into Fun at the Library

It may not feel much like autumn here in our corner of the world, but make yourself a pumpkin-spiced coffee and start marking your calendar for a season full of fall fun at Forsyth County Public Library.

Here’s a peek at what’s in store for those who love creating fall crafts, listening to spooky music, and curling up with a spine-tinglingly good book:

From the Sublime to the Spooky
Tuesday, October 2 at 6:30 p.m.
Sharon Forks Library

Part of the Music to Your Ears music appreciation series with Dr. Esther Morgan-Ellis of the University of North Georgia, this program shares sublime pieces by Antonio Vivaldi and Joseph Haydn, as well as music that will give you goosebumps!

Frankenstein: Mary Shelley’s ‘Dare to Scare’ and the Questions It Continues to Raise
Thursday, October 4 at 6:30 p.m.
Hampton Park Library

Lyn Froehlich of the University of North Georgia presents the first of two discussions about this creepy classic in our series on The Great American Read.

Science Fiction: Aliens, Animals, and Artificial Intelligence
Saturday, October 6 at 3:30 p.m.
Post Road Library

Dr. Austin Riede of the University of North Georgia will lead a discussion of the allegorical representations of animal, alien, and artificial life in our favorite science fiction books in our series on The Great American Read.

Adult Crafting: Felt Owls
Sunday, October 7 at 2:00 p.m.
Sharon Forks Library

Create a felt owl to decorate your home for fall! No crafting or sewing experience necessary.

Community Arts and Music: Spooky Spectacular
Sunday, October 14 at 2:00 p.m.
Sharon Forks Library

Get in the mood for Halloween with spooky songs and music in this family-friendly concert presented by the South Forsyth Middle School Chorus and other student musicians.

Día de los Muertos with Coco
Wednesday, October 17 at 1:30 p.m.
Post Road Library

Make Día-inspired crafts, play games and watch the Disney Pixar movie Coco (Rated PG).

Frankenstein Rocks!
Friday, October 19 at 2:00 p.m.
Cumming Library

Literature students from the University of North Georgia will join tweens and teens in grades 4 and up for a celebration of literary monsters. Create your very own painted rock monster masterpiece!

Murder at Skull Manor Costume Ball
Friday, October 19 at 5:15 p.m.
Sharon Forks Library

Teens in grades 6 – 12 are invited to wear their favorite costumes and help us solve the mystery of the Murder at Skull Manor.

Random Fandom: Haunted Library Maze
Friday, October 19 at 7:30 p.m.
Post Road Library

Teens in grades 6 – 12 can share their favorite chilling fandoms, tell scary stories in a deserted library, and explore our “haunted” library. Feel free to come in cosplay for your favorite fandom!

Ghost Hunting 101
Saturday, October 20 at 5:30 p.m.
Hampton Park Library

Learn about the methods and devices used during paranormal investigations from Southeastern Institute of Paranormal Research, then go on a ghost hunt in the library! Adults 18+ only, advance registration required.

Adult MakerDay: Clothespin Wreaths
Sunday, October 21 at 2:00 p.m.
Post Road Library

Create a reversible clothespin wreath using holiday-themed scrapbook paper and decorate your space for both fall and winter!

Outdoor Survival Skills with Mark Warren
Tuesday, October 23 at 7:00 p.m.
Sharon Forks Library

Mark Warren is author of Secrets of the Forest and director of Medicine Bow, a primitive school of earthlore. Our discussion will cover plant identification and medicinal uses, fire creation techniques, tracking animals, and other survival topics.

Trick-or-Treat Storytimes
All FCPL branches

Between October 25 and October 31, each branch will host Trick-or-Treat storytimes for young readers to wear their costumes and join a costume parade. Check the Event Calendar at www.forsythpl.org for specific dates and times.

TechLab: FrankenToys
Thursday, October 25 at 4:30 p.m.
Hampton Park Library

Explore circuits, robotics, programming, and animation as children ages 7 to 14 embrace their inner mad scientists and transform old toys into something new!

Library Haunted House
Friday, October 26, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, October 27, 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Sharon Forks Library

Dress in your Halloween costume and prepare for a screaming good time as you wander through spooky rooms packed with literary scares! The whole family is welcome to attend this program, but be warned, you will be spooked. Younger children may want to wait outside.

Harry Potter and the Party at the Post Road Library
Sunday, October 28 at 1:30 p.m.
Post Road Library

Wizards and Muggles of all ages are invited to catch the Hogwarts Express and join us for a celebration of all things Harry Potter! Dress in your house colors (or Death Eater best) or any costume from the Potter-verse for our costume parade.

Frankenstein: Monster and Myth
Tuesday, October 30 at 6:30 p.m.
Post Road Library

Dr. Melissa Schindler of the University of North Georgia presents the last of our discussions about this creepy classic in our series on The Great American Read.

After all that, if you’re still in search of fall fun, please visit the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Story Walk on the Scarecrow Trail at Warbington Farms, 5555 Crow Rd, Cumming. Our staff adapted the classic tale of The Three Little Pigs and built scarecrows representing the pigs and the big, bad wolf. If you like what you see, you can vote for the library in the Warbington Farms Scarecrow Trail contest while you’re there.

If you have questions about any of these programs, please visit the Ask Us desk at any Forsyth County Public Library branch or visit www.forsythpl.org.

Cumming Tailgate And Watch Party UGA vs FLA

Cumming Tailgate And Watch Party UGA vs FLA

North Fulton’s hottest ticket for October will be the Cumming Tailgate Party, sponsored by Troncalli Subaru of Cumming. We will be hosting a tailgate and game watching event for the University of Georgia Bulldogs vs the Florida Gators football game on October 27, 2018. The event will be held in the courtyard area at the Lakewood 400 Antique Mall in Cumming.

This will be an outdoor event complete with large screen outdoor LED TV, cornhole contests, DawgTalk broadcast on-site, music, game gear booths, and fun and games for all ages.

Gates open at 10:00am for folks who want to arrive early and set up their tailgate (Tailgate Spots are limited) and bring your own supplies just as you would on game day. Plenty of pre-game action and fun-filled tailgating with friends in an open air environment.

More Information and Tickets are Now Available Now

www.cummingtailgateparty.com or www.EventBrite.com (Search Cumming Tailgate Party) and Must Be Purchased in Advance. Tickets are just $10 per person or $50 for a Tailgate package (4 Tickets plus 10×10 tailgate spot).

TICKETS ARE LIMITED, SO REGISTER EARLY

About Taco Entertainment:
Taco Entertainment plans and hosts sporting events, on-site broadcasts and live stream video production services in North Metro Atlanta area.
Contact: Joel “JT” Thompson: tacoentertainmentllc@gmail.com
Follow us on Twitter (@CummingTailgateParty), Instagram (@CummingParty), and Like Us on Facebook.

About Georgia Bulldogs vs Florida Gators
The Florida–Georgia football rivalry annual rivalry game between the Florida Gators and the Georgia Bulldogs. The game was first played in 1915, and has been played every season since 1926, except for a war-time interruption in 1943. This match-up between SEC opponents is one of the most prominent rivalry games in college football, and has been held in Jacksonville, FL since 1933, with only two exceptions, making it one of the few remaining neutral-site rivalries in college football. The game attracts huge and has earned it the nickname of the “World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party”, although that name is no longer used officially.

Preschoolers Will Have A “Doggone” Good Time At Early Literacy Event

literacy event

Preschoolers Will Have A “Doggone” Good Time At Early Literacy Event

Leap into Literacy, a local partnership formed to help Forsyth County preschoolers develop early literacy skills for kindergarten launches into action next week for the second year of storytime and parent education programs.

The 2018 – 2019 series begins with a visit from Biscuit, the beloved book character created by Alyssa Satin Capucilli, in the cafeteria of Cumming Elementary School on Tuesday, October 9 at 5:30 p.m.

Families with preschoolers are invited to Leap into Literacy with Biscuit to enjoy dinner provided by a local donor, stories and songs in English and Spanish, and to practice simple early literacy activities. Children will have a chance to meet Biscuit, take a photo, and even receive a free book, while supplies last.

Admission to the event is free and advance registration is not required. While the program is designed for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers, children of all ages are welcome to attend with a caregiver.

“Leap into Literacy is a partnership between Forsyth County Public Library, Forsyth County Schools, Georgia Highlands Medical Services, and Literacy Forsyth that started because we recognized that local families need help preparing their children for success in kindergarten,” explains Tracy Walker, Programming Manager at the library.

The program is designed to reach families with children from birth to age five with a series of four free early literacy events each academic year. The events include a storytime or puppet show program designed for preschoolers, a nutritious meal, and education activities that give parents and caregivers the ability to continue early literacy practices at home.

Other organizations agree on the importance of early literacy in preparing children for success in kindergarten.

The library just received a Community Impact Grant from the North Georgia Community Foundation in support of Leap into Literacy. Thanks in part to the grant, the Leap into Literacy with Biscuit event on October 9 will include demonstrations, hands-on activities, and take-home materials delivered in English and Spanish.

“We want to help families understand the importance of practicing the five basic skills of early literacy – reading, talking, singing, playing, and writing – with their children. Leap into Literacy events give parents tips on how easy it is to include those skills in their everyday routines at home,” explains Walker.

Leap into Literacy partners also want to help families with young children access other free and low-cost services in Forsyth County. Information about literacy, education and health services from the library, Forsyth County Schools, Georgia Highlands Medical Services, and Literacy Forsyth will also be available at Leap into Literacy with Biscuit.

For more information on upcoming early literacy events, including the next Leap into Literacy event in December, please visit www.forsythpl.org.

Northside Hospital Announces New Sports Medicine Network, Welcomes Dr. Vonda Wright

Northside Hospital Announces New Sports Medicine Network, Welcomes Dr. Vonda Wright

Northside Hospital is pleased to announce the creation a new network of experts and facilities to provide comprehensive medical, surgical and concussion care.

From injury prevention, athletic training, physical therapy and sports performance services, to orthopedic surgery, orthobiologic treatments and diagnostic imaging, the new Northside Hospital Sports Medicine Network offers circumferential care and personalized services based entirely around the needs of athletes and active people of all ages and skill levels, from little league to weekend warriors to professional athletes.

The Network represents the consolidation and expansion of three physician practices – Northside Cherokee Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, Northside East Cobb Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine and The Orthopedic Sports Medicine Center of Atlanta.

Vonda J Wright, MD, MS, FAOA, has been named chief of Northside Hospital Sports Medicine and was selected to build and lead the new Network.

“At Northside Hospital Sports Medicine Network, we put the athlete and their family in the center of a comprehensive program of health as we harness the power of mobility to optimize performance from the ball field to the board room and empower a lifetime of health,” said Dr. Wright.

Dr. Wright is board certified in orthopedic surgery and sports medicine and is an internationally recognized authority on active aging and mobility. She joins Northside from the renowned University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Sports Medicine Program, where she served as the inaugural medical director of the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex and maintained a practice focusing on minimally invasive arthroscopic and reconstructive surgical techniques of the shoulder, hip and knee.

An innovator and researcher, Dr. Wright also was the founding director of the Performance and Research Initiative for Masters Athletes (PRIMA) and her pioneering research in mobility, musculoskeletal aging and hip arthroscopy is changing the way we view and treat sports injury and the aging process. She has written five books, is the author and contributor to multiple peer reviewed journal articles and is frequently consulted by the media as a sports medicine authority.

As a team physician, Dr. Wright served as the head team physician for the University of Pittsburgh Football team and Olympic Sport teams, the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and the Pittsburgh Penguins Elite Youth Hockey system. She is a team doctors for the World Rugby 7’s and medical director of the Pittsburgh Triathlon and PGA Players Doc.

“The launch of the Sports Medicine Network builds on Northside’s strong clinical legacy of excellence and innovative care,” said Dr. Wright. “There are exciting opportunities ahead as we build a truly special environment for our patients, staff and physicians and I am honored to be a part of it.”

The Northside Hospital Sports Medicine Network includes a team of clinical experts – orthopedic sports surgeons, non-operative sports medicine doctors and physician assistants – who provide high-tech, high-touch evidence-based musculoskeletal care and offer a full complement of surgical and medical consultants, a comprehensive sports concussion program, sports nutrition, physical therapy and a sports performance and innovative research initiative.

Locations include Atlanta, Alpharetta, Buckhead, Buford, Cumming, East Cobb, Holly Springs, Midtown, Roswell and Woodstock.

For more information about the Northside Hospital Sports Medicine Network, call 1-855-NH-SPORT (647-7678).