Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Halloween Traffic and Safety Tips Dunwoody

Halloween, when on a weekday, is one of the worst traffic days of the year.  With Halloween on a Friday, traffic will be a nightmare in metro Atlanta.  We suggest leaving work two hours earlier than normal.  If you live in Dunwoody and work in Cobb, head home by 3 PM at the latest.

And here is some great advice from the SDOC blog;

Finally, be prepared to meet some regional neighbors you don't see every day.  These last words I posted a couple of years ago but they've become fresh as I come off the costume parade at Coralwood last week:
With Halloween upon us, please keep in mind, a lot of little people will be visiting your home.

Be accepting. 
The child who is grabbing more than one piece of candy may have poor fine motor skills. 
 The child who takes forever to pick out one piece of candy may have motor planning issues. 
 The child who does not say "trick-or-treat" or "thank you" may be non-verbal. 
 The child who looks disappointed when they see your bowl may have an allergy. 
 The child who isn't wearing a costume at all might have a sensory issue (SPD) or autism.

Be nice. Be patient. It's EVERYONE'S Halloween.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

DeKalb Commissioner Race 2014 Wendy Butler

We are just a few days away from the election of our new District 1 DeKalb County Commissioner.  There are five names on the ballot, but only three of the five are actually valid candidates, so we'll take a look at the three.  We predict a runoff between two of these three:
Wendy Butler, Larry Danese, Nancy Jester.

Wendy Butler
Wendy Butler lives in Brookhaven.  Butler was an Elaine Boyer appointee to the Planning Commission.  Her stint on the Planning Commission is quite controversial, even today.  She is involved in a case where she supported a major developer over homeowners, and it seems as the case will be heard by the GA Supreme Court.  Here's some information regarding this issue:

Butler was Boyer’s appointee to the Planning Commission.  While there, her participation and vote for a development, caused controversy and an extended court battler.
The Druid Hill Civic Association (DHCA) maintains that she should not have been the Planning Commissioner for District 1 at the meeting that gave approval to the developer (Buckler) to move ahead with his planned development.  (Note:  Buckler is one of her chief campaign backers and is listed on various fundraisers as a sponsor.) 
In DHCA meeting minutes 7/20/2011, this little nugget is written (link: ):
“Land use was discussed. Rob Benfield was not present to give full details, so Bruce summarized the situation. DeKalb has stayed its lawsuit. It has been discovered that Wendy Butler, who is Elaine Boyer’s appointee to the planning commission, once worked with Bobby Buckler. Wendy had also resigned from the planning commission and her replacement had been named and trained. Wendy apparently pushed her replacement out of the way at the meeting. The County law department believes that Wendy was not a member of the planning commission at the time of the vote. Also, the motion would not be valid if made by a non-member. In terms of DHCA’s legal strategy, the best possible outcome from a lawsuit would be a ruling that upholds the validity of Wendy Butler’s motion but disqualifies Wendy Butler’s vote. In that scenario, the disqualification of Butler’s vote would cause the overall vote count on the planning commission to become 3-3. In the case of a tie, the decision reverts back to the staff decision, which was to deny. If the court were to invalidate Butler’s motion, then the motion and vote would both need to be repeated at a future planning commission meeting, and the outcome of the re-vote cannot be predicted. Wendy has hired a criminal lawyer, Bob Wilson, to defend her against the lawsuits that have resulted from the planning commission’s decision. Wilson managed to get a TV news crew to film him attempting to enter a closed-door planning commission meeting and being rejected at the door. At that meeting, the planning commission terminated Wilson’s engagement as the attorney for the commission. After that, three members of the planning commission re-hired Wilson to defend them personally.”
In their meeting minutes from 2012 they say:
“…fighting over Buckler’s Planning Commission advocate, Wendy Butler, who did not have the legal authority to be on the board and vote.”
The County joined Druid Hill Civic Association in the lawsuit against the planning commission and Buckler.  As of 2014 the Druid Hills Civic Association won in the Court of Appeals (  ; Here’s the link to the ruling itself: ).  The developer is appealing to the GA Supreme Court so we’ll see what happens.

BUTLER on GA State Roadway and Toll Authority
·       Article (& photo with Butler) about how the Authority decided to KEEP the tolls on GA 400:
BUTLER appointed to MARTA Board:
·       Mrs. Butler states that the State Road and Tollway Authority is doing preliminary engineering for the interchange of I-285 up GA 400 at McFarland.  That was included in the project list for the extension of tolls.  She suggested that MARTA staff work with some of the other agencies to advance the 400 Corridor project. 
·       (So she was part of the Tollway authority that decided to extend the GA 400 tolls through 2020 despite the promise to the public that the tolls would end in 2011, after the bonds were paid off.  Then, when on the MARTA board, before Gov. Deal made sure the tolls would end, she advised the board to go after funding that was coming in through the extension of the tolls.)

Our fears are that Butler is Boyer 2.0  Her close work with developers may not sit well with homeowners and homeowners associations.   

DeKalb Commissioner Race 2014 Larry Danese

We are just a few days away from the election of our new District 1 DeKalb County Commissioner.  There are five names on the ballot, but only three of the five are actually valid candidates, so we'll take a look at the three.  We predict a runoff between two of these three:
Wendy Butler, Larry Danese, Nancy Jester.

Larry Danese
Mr. Danese has run for office a few times.  Sometimes as a Democrat, sometimes as a Republican.  It's hard to spin this issue but Danese supporters say he ran as a Democrat  because he was late getting to the Republican HQ to qualify.  He did win 43% of the vote as a Democrat, an 'accomplishment' listed on his web site.  Of course my cat could get 43% if it was the lone Democrat on a DeKalb District 1 ballot.  Larry served on the DeKalb Planning commission for District 6, appointed by Democrat Kathy Gannon.  Larry served in the mid 2000's when Dunwoody and other parts of DeKalb saw huge growth in apartments.  According to published reports Larry favors keeping the CEO form of government, something unique in the State of Georgia. Larry seems to have the support of the Save Dunwoody posse in Dunwoody.  You can see Larry's responses to a Save Dunwoody Q& A HERE. When asked about what statewide legislation can impact Dunwoody (see link) he says he is not aware of anything.  he does mention improving our school district.  We suggest Larry ask around about Dunwoody's desire to create an independent school district.  We don't think Larry can win.  He lives in Brookhaven, same as opponent Wendy Butler.  In a runoff, Butler would handily defeat Larry.  A vote for Larry is really a vote for Wendy Butler.  Larry ran for mayor of Brookhaven in 2012.  In a written response to the Brookhaven Patch (see HERE) Larry said, "I personally know many of those in our county government", when asked how, if mayor, Brookhaven would get along with DeKalb County.  It's his close relationships with Democrat Kathy Gannon and others in DeKalb that concern us. 

Chicago Activists Unchained, Destroy Black Leadership

Monday, October 27, 2014

Dunwoody Cross Country Advances to State Championships

Many of the Wildcats concluded their season on Saturday at the Region 6-AAAAA Championships at Druid Hills Middle School.  With cool temperatures for all four races and the team rested, tremendous performances were seen all day long.  In total, 44 Wildcats ran a season best time!  What a great way to end the "regular" season and push us on to the State Championships!

The Boys Varsity race started the day and the Wildcats were led by Cadmiel Velazquez, who had his best race of the season and finished 10th, and was followed right behind by Blake Tiede, who showed tremendous grit during his race.  The boys team finished 3rd behind Clarkston and Druid Hills, which qualifies them for the State Championship meet at Carrollton MS in Carrollton, GA on November 8th!

The Girls Varsity race followed, and allowed for some of our hardworking runners to get the spotlight and send their team to the State Meet.  The Wildcats successfully defended their Region title, winning the title for the third year in a row! Six Wildcats placed in the top 10 of the race, led by the group of Ally Womble, Ellie Conoley, and Shanel Stewart.  The Wildcats will look to get back on the podium in two weeks at the State Championship.

Blake Tiede

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Dunwoody Girls Volleyball Advances to Final Four

The Dunwoody girls volleyball team defeated Camden County Saturday night to advance to the Final Four, playing Wednesday night at Dunwoody High School.  The Lady Wildcats won game 1,3, and 4 for a 3-1 game win.

The team looks great, playing with lots of emotion.

Come out Wednesday night and cheer on the team.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Tailgate Party for Dunwoody Volleyball 5 PM Saturday

The girls volleyball team hosts another playoff match Saturday (Oct 25) at 7 PM.  Parents, friends, classmates, and team supporters will be gathering at 5 PM in the school parking lot for pre-match gathering.  

Let’s all get together for a tailgate at 5:00 Saturday for some pre-game festivities. Bring your tents, chairs and corn hole.

Bring your own food and drink. The baseball team grill will be available for our use if you are so inclined.  


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Dunwoody Volleyball Playoffs Saturday 7 PM Dunwoody High School

Dunwoody is seeded #2 in the state playoffs Great 8 finals.

The opponent is Camden County at 7 PM at the Dunwoody High School gymnasium.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dunwoody Girls Volleyball Wins Again

The girls volleyball team at Dunwoody High School won Tuesday night, advancing to the next round of the playoffs.  They will play Saturday at Dunwoody High School.

Dunwoody volleyball

Dunwoody gym

Dunwoody volleyball

Dunwoody volleyball

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Haunted Farm Tour for Boy Scouts in Dunwoody

Support Dunwoody Boy Scout Troop 477 and gain access to Dunwoody's public private park/farm house.  This is a rare chance for taxpayers to actually have permission to enter and enjoy this publicly owned land, so don't miss it.

Saturday, Oct. 25, from 3 to 9 p.m., at the old Donaldson-Bannister Farm (4831 Chamblee-Dunwoody Road)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

CEO Ellis? Commissioner Lee May?

How soon after a hung jury does Mr. Ellis head back to his head-honcho desk at DeKalb County? Does Lee May have an empty box on the floor, ready to move out of Ellis' office?  

Living in DeKalb is never dull; its a Made-for-TV reality show playing out in reality, funded in part by Dunwoody taxpayers.  Of course all of DeKalb funds this ongoing fiasco.  Before long we'll forget about Lee May taking orders from Obama and setting up early voting in Democrat areas only, but a photo of Lee May carrying a cardboard box with his pencil pouch and notepads and picture frames as he vacates his office should be front page material for The Crier and provide a lifetime of memories.

Stay tuned as we bring you up to speed on the commissioner's race, including a piece on the Butler Buckler Druid Hills zoning issue and a special report on how Michael Bell scammed DeKalb taxpayers to enrich himself and other friends and family.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Dunwoody Full of Events Saturday, Some Think Too Many?

Saturday, October 18 is set to be a busy day in Dunwoody. 

Event #1 CV Classic 5k and Fun Run, Peachtree Middle School (free health screenings by Northside Hospital) 
(advertised in The Crier on Sept 10 and Sept 17, advertised on Aha! Connection August 12, for those curious of such things, and emails sent to the feeder schools in mid August, FYI for those interested in such things)

Event #2  Peachtree Middle School Fall Festival  (on the Dunwoody CVB web site HERE)

Event #3  Tour de Dunwoody at Dunwoody Elementary School (a bike ride)

Event #4  Run Your Happy Tails Off  Another 5k race, 100 yards away from the CV Classic, but self-contained in Brook Run Park (dogs included)

Event #5  All Saints Catholic Church Fun Run for Kids and Festival  9 AM

Event #6  Great day of Service.  See HERE

These events and more can be found at the Dunwoody School Daze calendar HERE and  the Aha! Connection HERE.  A couple of council members were recently kicking the idea of ONE official Dunwoody calendar.  The Dunwoody CVB has a HUGE budget and spends lots of money on web development so maybe they can do it.  Or, maybe it is left in the hands of the private sector?

All these events are competing for the same things:  1. Money 2. People

The problem we have is does any entity get to claim a day for their event?  Long-time readers may recall when Lemonade Days tried to have a certain weekend (actually someone proposed a 45 day block) set aside and no other events were to be scheduled.  Of course that idea died quickly.  On one hand we have the CVB working to bring people to Dunwoody and put heads in beds and all that, then we have some wanting a day reserved only for their bike ride or whatever.  The CVB usually doesn't get involved with school festivals and such.  They seem to work mainly with the businesses in the Perimeter.

In regards to school festivals and events, there is a need to get the schools to communicate more.  Elementary school moms, for the most part, have not learned to play with the other schools kids in the sandbox yet.  Life is all about the elementary school, and the middle and high schools are irrelevant.  Many elem. moms plan to send kids elsewhere after 4th or 5th grade so they could care less beyond the K-5.  But things change and many of those kids do go to PCMS and/or DHS.  Then many see the bigger picture.  But that's a different post for a different day.

All these events on one day is a sign of an active and vibrant community.  

Monday, October 13, 2014

Rampart, This is Squad 51. We Need Nurse Dixie McCall to Help with Ebola

 A few weeks ago we posted about the silliness of bringing Ebola victims into the USA instead of sending mobile labs to treat in Africa.  Hey, don't fault us - we were just relaying best practices of isolation.  Of course isolating folks and restricting travel is out of the question with our current leadership, so no need to prepare for anything.  After all, none of here got SARS or MERS.  And do know millions die every year from diarrhea and the flu.  So set aside your fears of Ebola, right?

After our post we received a couple of comments and several emails.  And we were also shown the Washington Post op-ed letter from the head nurse at Emory.  The nurse reminded us all how paranoid and stupid we are about everything.  We were told of the great benefits (over two months ago) of bringing the virus to Atlanta.  Nowhere did we hear why the nurse and other staff could not be flown to Africa to treat it.  Surely the CDC has mobile units that can be flown around the world.

People responded viscerally on social media, fearing that we risked spreading Ebola to the United States. Those fears are unfounded and reflect a lack of knowledge about Ebola and our ability to safely manage and contain it.  said Nurse
"Lack of knowledge"?  Yes, we lack knowledge and so does Emory and the CDC.  That's why they welcomed the virus here, because they lack knowledge, right? 
We can either let our actions be guided by misunderstandings, fear and self-interest, or we can lead by knowledge, science and compassion. We can fear, or we can care. said Nurse
I'll let my actions be guided by everyone's (Gov't, Emory, other medical experts) 'misunderstanding'.

I'll continue to 'fear', but that doesn't mean I don't 'care'.

So what happened to the patients treated at Emory?  I hope they are doing well and fully recovered.  But, is the virus still in them?  Can they transfer it now or in the future?  it's a simple question i haven't seen answered.

Many of our "unfounded" fears and "lack of knowledge" issues concern how the virus is transferred.  How many times have we been told it is not airborne?  Now we hear the virus does exist in even tiny droplets of water.  In normal-speak we call that a SNEEZE.  But don't worry, people don't sneeze in public.  No one would ever sneeze on an airplane, MARTA train, or anywhere else.  No one would sneeze into their hands, pick up an item at the supermarket, then put it back down.

Hopefully the Ebola virus is eliminated soon.