Benfield Beat : News, Events & More!

From: Rep. Stephanie Stuckey Benfield <>: Town Hall meeting; Tax assistance: General Assembly 2012.

Mandala Exhibit at the Carlos Museum

From Emory: Public opening this coming Saturday, January 21, 2012. Click on the links for more information.  The Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University will showcase the sacred art of Tibet in the special exhibition Mandala: Sacred Circle in Tibetan Buddhism from January 21 through April 15, 2012.  The first public event is a lecture by Dr. Christian Luczantits, curator at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City, on Monday, January 23 at 7:30pm.  For more information, visit the exhibit website:, and see also the exhibit poster:

Proposed City of Brookhaven

Of possible interest to surrounding county residents from state rep. Mike Jacobs

Roof rats

A local resident has reported the presence of roof rats in our neighborhood and offers these tips:

1) closely trim back any and all branches of trees away from their roof lines, or shrubs and bushes well back from roof overhangs – should be at least 2 feet short of the roof overhand or no closer than six feet if it overhangs the roof. Also, do not feed pets outside – or at least don’t leave pet food unattended.

2) keep all pet food, to include bird seed, in metal containers; and

3) don’t leave trash out in only plastic bags.

4) keep yards raked and trimmed – at least don’t let branches and debris pile up that they can seek cover under.

DeKalb water rates increase

From the AJC: DeKalb water rates increase. By April Hunt, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 1:51 p.m. Wednesday, January 11, 2012. DeKalb County residents will see an increase in their water bills starting in January. The 11 percent increase that took effect Jan. 1 is part of a three-year plan to raise rates to pay for a $1.35 billion overhaul to the county’s aging water and sewer system. Rates increase by 11 percent in 2013 and 2014 as part of that plan.... [Read more]

Atlanta Recycling Center open to all

Now accepting electronics, styrofoam, and latex paint and offering paper shredding service.  "Atlanta residency NOT required. Open to all."  Located in Atlanta's old 4th ward at the Walden School, 320 Irwin St., Atlanta, GA 30312. Open the second Saturday of every month, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.  See flyer below and attached.

County trash and recycling schedule for 2012

The county sent around a brochure with the 2012 pick up schedule.  It is also available online (pdf).  This week, because of MLK day, Tuesday garbage pick up will be on Wednesday.  Recycling should also be picked up on Wednesday if we read the calendar correctly.  Thursday yard waste and Friday garbage pickup remain the same.  Everyone is encouraged to join the curbside recycling service.  Current participants are reminded to put mixed paper in the blue bin and everything else -- cans, bottles, and plastics -- in the blue bags.  Details can be found online

Druid Hills High School auction party

Event Date and Time: 
02/04/2012 (All day)

From the DHHS PTA

It’s going to be a good time and we want YOU there.
Yummy Eats, Great Music & Dancing

Saturday, February 4, 2012

59 Lakeshore Drive
Avondale Estates, GA 30002

$35 per person (adults only)

Proceeds benefit Academics - Arts - Athletics

Saving Boo Radley

For dog lovers from Janice Knight: I am writing to tell you the story of a little abandoned white pup. On Saturday November 5, 2011 Dana Jones and a very special lady friend had a beer and meal at Melton’s App & Tap just before it closed later that month. As they were leaving Melton’s they spied a small white dog tied to the building next to the Pet store that had closed for renovations. Being the softies that they are, Dana and Johanna went over to investigate. They immediately began to ask all around if anyone knew the dog or had witnessed the abandonment. Sadly, no one had seen or heard anything. So Dana looked into those sad brown eyes and said, “Well I wonder who you will go home with tonight?”, and promptly said, “Me!” And that’s how a sad little waif became Mr. Boo Radley of Harrington Drive, Decatur, GA!! “Boo” is now one happy guy with all the love and care he will ever need. The End. [see photos attached...]

Living the Green Life All Year Long at the Decatur Library

For our gardeners and the environmentally conscious from "stephanie"  via the Clairemont/Great Lakes Neighborhood Association : Over the past few years, the interest in living a more green and sustainable lifestyle has grown tremendously. The Oakhurst Community Garden Project, the City of Decatur, and the DeKalb County Public Library are pleased to announce their collaboration on offering you an exciting FREE series of classes in 2012. Topics include gardening for food and for the unpredictable environment, how to make your home more efficient, composting, and using what you have to lead a healthy life. Look for seminars and workshops that speak to information that is timely and current as well as leaving with a full list of resources that can be found at your local library and online. Events take place at the Decatur Library, 215 Sycamore Street Decatur, Georgia 30030. The family friendly compost workshop takes place at the Oakhurst Community Garden Project, 435 Oakview Road, Decatur, GA 30030. For more information about this series, please contact Andrea Zoppo,

MLK work day at Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve

Event Date and Time: 
01/16/2012 - 9:00am - 12:00pm

From Nature Preserve president Chris Beck: Join us on MLK Day at the Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve for a volunteer day from 9am-noon. Help us move mulch and save trees from English ivy. Please bring yard tools and a water bottle.

DeKalb legislator town hall

Event Date and Time: 
01/26/2012 - 6:30pm

Thanks to Decatur-Avondale Estates Patch: State Representative Mary Margaret Oliver (D-Decatur) and State Representative Stephanie Stuckey Benfield (D-Atlanta) will hold a town hall meeting with State Senator Jason Carter (D-Decatur) on Thursday, January 26, at 6:30 PM at the Decatur City Commission Chamber.  All DeKalb County residents are strongly encouraged to attend.

DeKalb's Alert System Gets Upgraded

From the North Druid Hills - Briarcliff Patch: The county's Code Red Emergency Communications will now send severe weather alerts to registered residents.[Read more]

10th Annual Let Freedom Ring Bike Ride

Event Date and Time: 
01/16/2012 - 10:00am
For our cyclists from Neil Norton:  Happy New Year everyone.  Below is the Let Freedom Ring! Ride invitation with a map.  Please note that I have slightly changed the route to go down Ponce de Leon instead of DeKalb Avenue that will utilize the new bike lane in Decatur.   Upon the day of departure if consensus is not reached to go the new route we will go the old route.  Please forward to your friends!  Neil

Join us for the 10th annual "Let Freedom Ring" MLK ride at 10am January 16th, 2012.  The ride starts in the City of Decatur at the Old Courthouse (Claremont and Ponce), goes east towards downtown along DeKalb Avenue, McClendon, Freedom Parkway Trail, to the MLK Center. Respects are given to the memory of Dr. King at his tomb and a group photo is taken. We then ride back to City of Decatur along the old Trolley Line through Inman  Park, Reynolds Town, Cabbage Town, Kirkwood, Oakhurst, then back to  downtown Decatur. For more information, contact Neil Norton or call 404-271-6526.

Rep. Hank Johnson’s E-Newsletter for Jan. 12, 2012

From U.S.Rep Hank Johnson: MLK Day; Mobile veterans; Summer jobs; Jobs; Free screenings; More vets; Consumers; Foster grandparents.

Free Emory lecture: Health consequences of climate change

Free and open to the public." Emory program in development studies presents "The health consequences of a changing climate: implications for development. George Luber, epidemiologist, National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  February 23, 2012, 12 noon, Anthropology Seminar room 206, 1557 Dickey Dr., Atlanta, GA 30322.  See flyer attached for more detail.  See campus map here."

Bicycle South Community News January 2012

For our cyclists: Decatur Church Street Bike Lanes Meeting - January 12th!  Tune-Up & Overhaul Specials. Starting at $42.95! 2012 Georgia Rides To The Capitol Ride - March 27th!

Flood Risk Information Open Houses Jan. 24, 31 (2012)

From Brian Shoun, DeKalb County’s new floodplain manager, and Carol Hayes, Burnt Fork Watershed Alliance, via the Civic Association Network:   Flood Risk Information Open Houses [will be] held on:
 1. January 24, 2012 from 5 pm to 8 pm at the Porter Sanford III Performing Arts & Community Center (3181 Rainbow Drive, Decatur, Georgia 30034)
 2. January 31, 2012 from 4:30 pm to 7:30 pm at the Reid H. Cofer Library (5234 LaVista Road, Tucker, Georgia 30084)

South Fork Conservancy tours

From Sally Sears, South Fork Conservancy, a partner with CHCA and MANA in the volunteer work on Ira B. Melton Park:

Ira B. Melton neighbors, the South Fork Conservancy has two tours planned for later this month.

Please join us if you can, to see what other sections of the creek can look like.

Sen. Steve Henson's Legislative Newsletter 1/5/12

From state senator and Minority Leader Steve Henson (DeKalb and Gwinnett Counties):

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