Monday, November 30, 2009

Better Christmas Tree Sales Expected This Year


MILTON, GA - We live in a world full of symbols, but few are more nostalgic to us than those of the holiday season...especially the traditional Christmas tree.

Sales of real trees fell 10% last year, according to the National Christmas Tree Association, even worse for artificial trees, which fell 35%.

But the trade association predicts improved sales this year, especially for "cut your own" tree farms.

If the day after Thanksgiving crowds are any indication, things are certainly looking up for Hunters' Christmas Tree Farm in Milton, Georgia.

"I think we're going to have a good season, I honestly believe that," says Gordon Hunter, whose family has run the tree farm for the past 19 years.

He predicts about a 10% increase this year.

Families may disagree about which tree they pick to cut down on Hunter's farm, but many we spoke with all agree they won't cut it out, no matter how bad the economy is.

"Oh, the tree definitely has to stay," tree customer Scott Davidson told 11 Alive News, "I mean, that's one part where we didn't even think about cutting back on."

"It's a tradition," customer Tricia Green told us, "we're cutting in other places with gifts and things like that, but not the tree."

Some customers were even buying two trees.

That's because the Hunter farm is one of many around the country that offer discounted trees for the public to donate to the "Trees for Troops" program.

The organization is expecting to provide more than 15,000 free Christmas trees to military families in the U.S. and overseas.

Hunter, himself a U.S. Navy pilot in the Vietnam War, expects his customers to contribute more than 125 trees to the project.

"I think the spirit for our military folks is very high," Hunter says, "People want to do something. This is a great thing to repay their families to donate a tree to military families on the bases."

To find out more about Hunters' Christmas Tree Farm, click here=>


By Annie Piekarczyk / Beacon Media

In 2006, Georgia adopted a resolution imposing “911” charges on landline and wireless telecommunications with billing addresses within the City of Milton.

The “911” system implemented in Milton, through an intergovernmental agreement with Alpharetta, has been capable of providing automatic number and location identification of a wireless connection. This particular service has authorized Milton to assess a $1.50 charge per month per telephone service subscriber.

“The purpose of collecting that fee,” said Assistant to the City Manager Matt Marietta, “is so we can support our 911 system.”

Then in 2007, the state made revisions to that resolution. The revision authorized charges for additional telecommunication services which include Voice over Internet Protocol service and any other type of communication messages that are capable of initiating a 911 emergency call.

Milton City Council recently voted on a resolution to continue collecting that $1.50 fee the City has been collecting all along. The change? This resolution continues that fee, but also clarifies the current charge through explicit language addressing Voice over Internet protocol (VoIP), a service where information, according to Marietta, “…runs through internet service rather than a landline or a cell phone.”

This fee will allow the City of Milton to support the provision of emergency 911 services, by providing funding which is currently provided by an intergovernmental agreement with the City of Alpharetta.


Each year, every year, Milton City Council votes on whether to continue its Solid Waste Collection Services. The ordinance has been renewed each successive year since its original enactment in 2006, and this year is no different.

The ordinance approves and establishes the regulation of solid waste collection services in Milton. It contains the requirement for an infrastructure maintenance fee to be paid to the city. The impact to residential constituents has generally been less than one dollar per month. That revenue is dedicated to the maintenance of infrastructure and, in particular, resurfacing of roadways.

“By approving this tonight,” Matt Marietta said on November 16, “[We are] maintaining what we had tomorrow with what we have today. Let us keep working with our citizens, our staff and our code enforcement to come up with a (more comprehensive and substantial process) to unveil to you.”

Santa Arrives In Milton Georgia For A Visit!

The New Milton Christmas Tree Donated By Protect Milton.

Double Click To Enlarge Screen

Sunday, November 29, 2009
Milton, GA

Santa landed right at 6pm to throngs of good little boys and girls this past Sunday night. Thanks to helicopter pilot and Milton resident Walt Linscott and Mayor Joe Lockwood, Mr. Claus was able to take time away from his work shop in the North Pole to visit at the Deerfield Place Shopping Center.

Pictures courtesy of Protect Milton.

Vintage Pizzeria Comes To Milton's Crabapple

Courtesy Vintage Pizzeria

During the search for their second Vintage Pizzeria and Bar location, Kara and Mario Gonzalez were drawn to the Crabapple area for its family oriented demographic, good school system and affluent residential communities .Founded in 2005, the original Vintage Pizzeria and Bar is located in Chamblee, Ga on Antique Row near the Dekalb Peachtree Airport, and is well known for its New Jersey influenced pizza as well as homemade Italian dishes, hoagies and a variety of salads. Kara has over 15 years of restaurant experience having done everything from serving, bartending,managing, accounting and wholesale food sales. Mario was a DeKalb County motorcycle cop when he met Kara but always loved to cook and had an interestin the restaurant business. A New Jersey native, he went back and worked ina New Jersey pizzeria for several months to learn how to make and hand toss the dough for Vintage's signature pizza. Two years after opening, they doubled the size of the restaurant due to the demand for their pizza,meatball subs and other dishes.

Housed in the former Foster's Grill location on Broadwell Road, the Milton restaurant has the same menu and same look and feel as the Chamblee restaurant - brick interior and exterior, exposed cedar beams, gas lanterns,a handcrafted bar and patio dining. The pizza oven has a window where you can watch up to 35 pizzas cook from your seat at the bar. Mario says "We have a full bar, ten beers on tap and an extensive beer and wine list - notonly is it important to have good food but to create a comfortableenvironment for a pleasant dining experience." Tuesday night is Family Night where kids ten years old and under eat free from the children's menu and Trivia Thursdays start on October 8. "It has been fun to see Chamblee customers who live in this area come into the new restaurant," Kara said.Vintage is opened for lunch and has a popular lunch special that features a fresh garden salad, giant slice of pizza with one topping and a soft drink for $6.95. Evening delivery is available - call 770-817-6000. Hours are 11:30am to 10:00pm Tuesday - Thursday, 11:30am to 11:00pm Friday and 12:00noon to 10:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. For more information or to see a full menu, visit

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Santa Flying Into Milton Tonight For Official Christmas Tree Lighting.

Santa has been able to take a break from his workshop to fly in and visit Milton this evening at 5:30pm. "I am looking forward to seeing all the good little boys and girls that live in Milton," Santa shared "I have heard that the new Christmas tree is as beautiful as those in the North Pole!"

The City of Milton will begin a special holiday tradition on Sunday, Nov. 29, at the city's inaugural Christmas tree lighting ceremony. Festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with a visit from Santa and carols sung by Hopewell Middle School students. At 6:00 p.m. sharp, the switch will be flipped to light up the branches of the beautiful 22-foot Deodar Cedar, a gift to the city from Protect Milton, Inc. Mayor Lockwood and members of the Milton City Council will be on hand to share in the celebration, which will take place at the corner of Highway 9 and Webb Road. Hot cocoa, coffee and cookies will be served, complements of Starbucks inside the Milton Target store.

"As we approach the anniversary of our city's incorporation, we are both grateful and proud of how far we've come in three short years," says Mayor Joe Lockwood. "This beautiful Christmas tree will light up the night through the holidays and serve as a lasting reminder of all we have to be thankful for." Lockwood continues, "I'm honored to share in the inaugural celebration of what is sure to become another beloved holiday tradition for our city."

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Handel Stumps in Milton

Courtesy Jonathan Copsey / Beacon Media

The house of Milton mayor Joe Lockwood was filled Tuesday night with guests from all over his new city, laughing, snacking and have a generally good time. Oh, and Secretary of State Karen Handel was there, too.

Lockwood threw open his doors to Handel to hold a fundraiser for her campaign for governor.

"What's always impressed me is how she's just not afraid to get in there and take care of things," said Lockwood. "That's something we need in our state and that's something we need in our next governor."

Speaking before the movers and shakers of Milton, Handel outlined her plans for the future and the differences between her and her opponents.

"We have a lot of good people in the race with good intentions," Handel said. "The next governor had better have a whole lot more than good intentions. Because the next governor will have a whole lot of challenges on her."

According to Handel, her experience can be classified as "real world" in lieu of political; instead of spending her working life gathering votes and tendering legislation, she was working in the corporate world, learning how to manage organizations. Prior to becoming Sec. of State, Handel was the head of the North Fulton Chamber of Commerce, which she turned around from a near-defunct group into the commercial success it is now.

One of Handel's biggest triumphs and controversies in her current position, has been the implementation of a voter ID system. Lengthy lawsuits have swung back and forth; however she claims the overall policy is sound and just plagued by vague execution, which is a legislative problem.

"I understand that policy is words on a piece of paper unless you know how to implement and execute."

Calls for Real Reform

Obviously taxes will be another big problem facing the next governor.

"We need to do tax reform in partnership with municipal [governments]," she said. "If the state takes a tax reduction at the state level and your council members and your mayor are forced to backfill it at the local level, that�s not tax reform. That�s called passing the buck." She promised to rebuild the tax code from the ground up to make Georgia more competitive on the national and global level and lessen the burden on taxpayers and small business.

In the end, Handel was asking for votes and money for the coming Republican gubernatorial primary, scheduled for July 20, 2010, and she needs Fulton County to come out big for her. With fully 10 percent of the primary vote, Republican-rich North Fulton will be important to any candidate. As it represents her base, it's crucial to her primary chances.

"The next governor is going to have to be someone who is determined and a tenacious problem solver," Handel said. "Someone who has been tested in a tough environment and has had to come up with practical solutions to very serious and real issues. We need someone who is going to have rock solid principles."

North Fulton Gives Thanks.

Courtesy Neighbor Newspapers

Every year we give thanks around the table for our blessings. Several residents shared their annual Thanksgiving messages with us. Best wishes for a happy holiday from the Neighbor Newspaper family:

Todd Ashley, MiltonExecutive Assistant District Attorney

When I awake each morning, I am thankful that God has given me another day to enjoy the many blessings He has bestowed upon me.

First and foremost, I am thankful for my family and friends. Without them, I would be lost. I am thankful for the opportunity to serve my community each day as a Fulton County assistant district attorney. A free society depends on enforcement of its laws and I am proud to serve along side the distinguished officers of north Fulton.

I am thankful for the men and women in the Armed Forces who provide the blanket of liberty under which we all live. I am thankful that we have a free press, free elections and the right to speak without fear of government reprisal.

And I would like to wish everyone a joyous holiday season.

Milton's Mechling earns personal financial rep status

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

November 23, 2009

MILTON - Terry Mechling, an Allstate insurance agent, recently earned the “Personal Financial Representative” title.“Our agency will continue to help people protect their autos, homes, lives and businesses.

But now we can offer additional financial services products, like mutual funds, variable annuities and variable universal life insurance to help families plan wisely for the future,” he said.The Birmingham Crossroads Agency is located at 980 Birmingham Road in Milton. Call 770-772-7228, or e-mail

Monday, November 23, 2009

Milton Plans Inaugural Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

Santa joins Milton officials to kick off the holiday festivities

The City of Milton will begin a special holiday tradition on Sunday, Nov. 29, at the city's inaugural Christmas tree lighting ceremony. Festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with a visit from Santa and carols sung by Hopewell Middle School students. At 6:00 p.m. sharp, the switch will be flipped to light up the branches of the beautiful 22-foot Deodar Cedar, a gift to the city from Protect Milton, Inc. Mayor Lockwood and members of the Milton City Council will be on hand to share in the celebration, which will take place at the corner of Highway 9 and Webb Road. Hot cocoa, coffee and cookies will be served, complements of Starbucks inside the Milton Target store.

The beautiful tree, grown at Moon's Tree Farm in Loganville, Ga., found its home in Milton on Oct. 24 as landscapers from The Rowland Company directed the planting of the 3,700 pound cedar. The tree was discovered by Skinner's Nursery, which also volunteered to transport the stately conifer to its new home. Known for their beautiful pyramidal shape and soft blue to gray/green needles on softly drooping branches, Deodar Cedar trees can grow as large as 50 feet high and 30 feet wide.

"As we approach the anniversary of our city's incorporation, we are both grateful and proud of how far we've come in three short years," says Mayor Joe Lockwood. "This beautiful Christmas tree will light up the night through the holidays and serve as a lasting reminder of all we have to be thankful for." Lockwood continues, "I'm honored to share in the inaugural celebration of what is sure to become another beloved holiday tradition for our city."

Thursday, November 19, 2009

New Poll Up.


With the City of Milton and CH2M Hill having severed their relationship, city hall is currently hiring for numerous positions.

With that in mind, do you believe Milton is better served by hiring employees who live within the city limits or not?

Have your say in the upper right hand corner.

Our last poll asked:

Who will you vote for in the 2009 Milton City Council election?

The results were as follows:

District 1

Karen Thurman - 56%
Bernard Wolff - 43%

District 3

Bill Lusk - 62%
Al Trevillyan - 37%

District 5

Tina D'Aversa - 39%
Joe Longoria - 61%

It should be noted that has correctly predicted the victors via our polls in the last three Milton elections.

Male German Shepherd Found.

My neighbor was able to catch a male German Shepherd that has been wandering around our neighborhood, Oak Ridge on the Green off of Thompson Road (we back up to the Champions View golf course and Thompson Springs). I am including pictures. He is skinny, missing fur on his shoulders,un-neutered, very friendly, and knows how to "sit". I am not sure if it is the same dog that was wandering around here in August (I think that one was more black, but both un-neutered male, missing fur around neck). PLEASE forward this around! My neighbor and I both have two dogs and can't keep him. I want to avoid calling animal control so I am trying to find anyone who knows anything about this dog! Call me on my cell 404-931-7123.Thanks. Cindy

Many thanks to Cindy Hollingsworth for sharing information on this pup.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

HMS Eco-Explorers and Milton Milers Team up to Clean up

News From Tina D'Aversa

Dear Milton Neighbor,

Last Month the Milton Milers Walking Club and the D'Aversa Family adopted a one mile section of Bethany Bend Road east of Highway 9. The purpose of the Milton Grows Green Adopt-a-Road program is to encourage keeping our roads clean from trash. Adopting a road includes picking up trash and recyclables each quarter.

This weekend the Hopewell Middle School Eco-Explorers and teachers and a few Milton Milers came out to pick-up trash and recyclables.

Special thanks to Deborah Lajewski, Karen Brejcha, Jay Powell and Hopewell students and their parents for participating in the clean-up.

Milton Milers

The Milton Milers walking club meets Sunday and Wednesday afternoons at 5:00 PM to walk for health and wellness. Join your neighbors this Sunday, November 15, 2009, at 5:00 PM. Milton Milers meet at the Starbucks on Bethany Bend Road at Highway 9.

It is my honor to sponsor this group and to encourage healthy lifestyles. Walking is the number one exercise choice of health professionals to help keep you healthy.

Hopewell Middle School Eco-Explorers

The HMS Eco-Explorers members are middle school students and their teachers who care about the environment. Projects include: a school-wide recycling program, can-tabs recycling, environmental education, water conservation efforts, tree planting and protection and much more. HMS has adopted the section of road outside the school. A ceremony and sign planting is scheduled for December 1, 2009. HMS is proud to be a Milton Grows Green and Evergreen School.

To find out more about the Milton Milers, join us this Sunday at 5:00 at Starbucks on Bethany Bend Road for the 5 mile or the 3.5 mile walk.

To learn more about Milton Grows Green and the Adopt-a-Road program, visit

Protecting and Preserving ALL of Milton,
Tina D'Aversa
Milton City Council Member
District 5 at Large
678-457-0677 Direct ;

Courtesy This message was paid for by Tina D'Aversa.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


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To find out more about the wonderful restaurant Milton's, please click here=>

2009 better year for antiques 'mall'

by Bob Pepalis / Appen Newspapers

November 16, 2009 MILTON – Patty Jones, a dealer at Queen of Hearts Antiques in Alpharetta, thought at the beginning of this year sales would be up. It turned out she was right, as the owners of the Business told her sales are up 20 percent from last year.

Jones doesn't believe that no longer being in the midst of major renovations to the building's exterior, a project completed last year, could account for all of that improvement.

"I think it's up even with the economy the way it is. This store is where the economy is going as far as where the prices are so good," Jones said.

Queen of Hearts offers low prices like a Walmart or other discount store, she said.

"I was telling the owner the other day, I feel like that's what we are: A shop where prices are very reasonable, and that's why sales are up."

She said the antiques "mall" is a one-stop shop, with Christmas presents available for under $10, and furniture starting at $29 and going up to $1,000.

"It's a very good bargain place," Jones said.

A survey conducted by BIGresearch for the National Retail Federation bears out Jones' beliefs. According to the 2009 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, more than half of holiday shoppers say that sales and price discounts (43.3 percent) or everyday low prices (12.7 percent) will be the most important factor when deciding where to shop. Factors like selection (21 percent), quality (11.8 percent), convenience (4.9 percent) and customer service (4.4 percent) declined from last year.

And research by the International Council of Shopping Centers in its Consumer Holiday Spending Survey conducted with Goldman Sachs calls the big shopping day after Thanksgiving "Bargain Friday" instead of Black Friday. Bargain Friday apparently will be a very busy day, perhaps busier than any Friday after Thanksgiving since 2005, the survey reports.

According to the National Retail Federation's (NRF) 2009 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, U.S. consumers plan to spend an average of $682.74 on holiday-related shopping, a 3.2 percent drop from last year's $705.

But in the South, consumers plan to spend even more than last year's national average, $709.

"While last holiday season was filled with chaotic confusion, adjusting to uncertainty has now become routine for many Americans," said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin. "This holiday season will be a bit of a dance between retailers and shoppers, with each group feeling the other out to understand how things have changed and how they must adapt."

Monday, November 16, 2009

Suspect Maced, hit by car, Tasered

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

November 16, 2009 MILTON — Milton police arrested a 23-year-old man Nov. 1 who allegedly started a fight with another motorist for "no reason" and in the process was hit by a car, doused in the face with pepper spray by his own girlfriend and Tasered by Alpharetta police.

Police said the incident began at the intersection of Ga. 9 and Windward Parkway when Kaury B. Sickinger of Milton reportedly jumped out of his girlfriend's Honda CRV and began trying to goad another motorist into a fight. Sickinger then allegedly kicked and punched the man's mini van.

When Sickinger ran back to the car, the motorist called 911 began following them. He told police that while on Bethany Bend Road, Sickinger climbed out the sunroof and stood on top of the CRV at 40 mph taunting him.

Both parties pulled onto Old North Park Lane, according to the victim, and Sickinger again began beating the other man's car. The victim jumped out and pushed Sickinger to the ground, holding him down until he "began to apologize and agreed to pay for the damages."

Sickinger was just bluffing though, said the victim, because as soon as he got up, the fight was on again.

Here's where it gets really interesting.

"Sickinger's girlfriend then sprayed Sickinger with Mace, which caused him to get very angry," reported police. He then allegedly pulled out a knife "and told [the driver] that he better start running."

The chase was on, but didn't last long, according to police.

"While [the driver] was running for his life, Sickinger was so intoxicated that he ran into the passenger side rear quarter panel of a passing vehicle, which caused him to retreat back to [his girlfriend's] car," wrote investigators.

The pair then drove off. While the shaken driver was talking with a Milton police officer on Old North Park Lane, they apparently swung by again.

This time the Milton officer called Alpharetta police and told them to be on the lookout for the CRV. When they tried to pull it over, Sickinger allegedly ran out while the car was still moving. He was Tasered into submission.

But it doesn't end there.

While being questioned, police said Sickinger reportedly admitted to everything, save for having a knife.

"Sickinger acknowledged that he was very intoxicated and, for no reason, had tried to fight [the motorist]," wrote investigators. "He also acknowledged that he got on the roof of his girlfriend's car for no apparent reason."

On his way to jail, officers asked Sickinger to confirm he was in fact a Marine, a claim he made.

That apparently made him very upset, said police, and Sickinger began telling them he was also "on first offender status for bank robbery and attempted murder on a police officer."

He then began beating his head on the police car and allegedly told the officer "I'm going to kill you and anyone else I want."

Sickinger further drove home the point by saying, "I'll be out in no time," said Milton police.

"Then he explained how once he was out, he was going to 'walk up behind you and cap you in the back of the head.' He stated that he could do all of this due to his training from the Marine Corps," said one Milton officer.

Sickinger was charged with aggravated assault, obstruction, 2nd degree criminal damage to property and making terroristic threats. He remains in Fulton County Jail on a $51,000 bond.

Transportation plan recommendations unveiled in Milton

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

November 16, 2009 At the Milton City Council Nov. 9 work session, Transportation Master Plan consultants Kimley Horn presented a look at recommendations for improving traffic in Milton, and especially Crabapple.

Large-scale, Kimley Horn and Milton's Transportation Stakeholders Advisory Committee (TSAC) recommended widening corridors around Milton to try and pull commuter traffic away from the interior, rural parts of the city.

In Crabapple, council was shown what would happen in the year 2030 based on traffic estimates if no improvements were made to the already packed intersection of Birmingham Highway, Crabapple, Mayfield, Broadwell and Mid-Broadwell roads. As many could guess, it becomes a parking lot, with a roughly eight minute delay per car.

To combat that inevitability in the short term, Kimley Horn recommended signal timings that could speed up traffic east and west on Crabapple and Mayfield roads. Longer term, north- and southbound left turn lanes on Broadwell Road and Birmingham Highway could also help with delays, knocking them down from 500 seconds to 50 seconds per person in 2030.

Reconfiguring the east-west Crabapple and Mayfield corridor to include a left turn instead the right turn lane there already would help with pedestrian safety, said consultants. That area could then be used for wider sidewalks or parking.

Consultants were also confident about a northern bypass around the intersection, but its southern counterpart is more contentious because of neighborhood opposition.

Council was asked to weigh the recommendations and give the consultants comment by Nov. 16. Kimley Horn's people will then present a final version of their recommendations Nov. 20 and give a final report Dec. 14.

Council weighs adopting Partial Plan

by Jason Wright / Appen Newspapers

November 16, 2009 Milton – At the Nov. 9 City Council work session, Milton's Comprehensive Plan Advisory Committee (CPAC) head George Ragsdale asked city council for guidance in regards to a wrinkle the group has encountered.

As part of its work on the planning document, CPAC learned Milton needs to adopt either the Partial Plan Update council approved Dec. 15, 2008 or replace the Focus Fulton 2025 plan — the city's current planning document — with a much larger and more complex "agenda." The Focus Fulton plan must be replaced by Feb. 12, 2010.

CPAC recommended Milton adopt the Partial Plan Update, given it was already approved by the city and the state Department of Community Affairs and Atlanta Regional Commission in February, 2009. It can then be used as the base for the Comprehensive Plan, the first draft of which will come to council sometime in January.

Council agreed that was the best plan, and members pledged to review the document again before a possible adoption in late November or early December.

Ragsdale also discussed the time line for bringing a final plan to council. It is a massive undertaking to bring together a truly comprehensive plan that integrates the city's still-under-construction Transportation Master Plan and council's own work plans, he said. Further complicating matters are the coming holiday season and the fact that council will have a new member, Joe Longoria, who will replace Councilwoman Tina D'Aversa after being elected Nov. 3. Milton is also in the process of hiring city employees to replace CH2M HILL OMI staffers since that contract has been dissolved.

Ragsdale said the committee could have a first draft of the Comprehensive Plan to council eight weeks after it adopts the Partial Plan Update.

Holiday season alive and well in Milton

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

November 16, 2009 Milton is stepping up its holiday activities this year, promising two dates for family fun.

Linda Blow, volunteer coordinator for the city, said Milton will hold its first tree lighting Sunday, Nov. 29 at 5:30 p.m. at the site of the city tree's new home, the corner of Webb Road and Ga. 9. Blow said the event will include an introduction by Mayor Joe Lockwood, music by local carolers and the tree lighting at 6 p.m.

But that's not all. Milton will hold its second Christmas in Crabapple event Dec. 5 from 4 to 8 p.m. in downtown, historic Crabapple. This year's event features holiday music, hot cider, hot chocolate and s'mores by the fire. Members of Milton High School's Choir will once again sing Christmas carols and horse drawn carriage rides are free.

And for the little ones, Santa Claus will be on hand for any photos ops.For information visit or contact Linda Blow at 678-242-2500.

Looking For Some Local Refreshment? Check Out Beverage Depot!

Last Olde Blind Dog Cruisin' Of The Year!

Double Click To Enlarge Image.

Write-in votes range from serious to comical

By Rachel Kellogg / Neighbor Newspapers

In Milton’s Nov. 3 municipal elections, the write-in votes for city council District 3 favored Al Trevillyan, who campaigned heavily for incumbent Bill Lusk’s unopposed seat.

Lusk won the race with 2,216 votes, and, according to Fulton County Board of Elections Director Barry Garner, Trevillyan received 920 write-in votes.

Trevillyan could not be reached for comment.

According to the write-in race summary report, other notable write-in votes in District 3 went to Goofy and Ted Nugent, while two Milton citizens voting in the mayor’s race threw their support behind Atlanta candidates Mary Norwood and “Kaseem” Reed.

A “Dirt Road Repairman” was also given a vote for mayor, and 2008 Presidential candidate Bob Barr gained a vote in Milton’s District 1 race.

Several write-in voters gave unopposed incumbents in Roswell, Alpharetta and Milton a beating by casting a ballot for “Anyone Else.”

In Alpharetta, Debbie Gibson received eight votes and R.J. Kurey received two votes for Doug DeRito’s unopposed Post 1.

Other write-in votes in Alpharetta went to Glenn Beck, George Bush and cartoon dads Peter Griffin and Homer Simpson.

White gloves and big ears were a big hit for write-in voters in all three cities, where Mickey Mouse received a total of nine votes for various seats.

Always a side-kick, Donald Duck received one vote in each city, while an indistinct D. Duck gained two votes in Roswell.

Car Break Ins In Milton

Stock Photo


Please see the following and be on the look out. Many thanks to the Milton residents who shared this information with us!

About 4:15 this morning, there were people going through our neighborhood off S. Thompson Road looking for unlocked cars and taking whatever they could. (In our case, a GPS). My husband saw a dark 2-door car (looked like a Ford Focus) and we called the police.

So, please pass this along to your network to remind everyone to lock their cars in their driveway and keep valuables out of site.

Sheila Pineyro
Country Ridge

Friday, November 13, 2009

Karen Handel for Governor Party.

Double Click To Enlarge.

News From Tina D'Aversa

Dear Milton Neighbor,

I am proud to support my friend and long-time colleague, Karen Handel for Governor of our great state of Georgia.

Please join your neighbors and friends at the home of Mayor Joe Lockwood and Dawn Lockwood to show your support.

I look forward to seeing you Tuesday at 6:00 to celebrate Karen Handel for Governor (invitation below).

Protecting and Preserving ALL of Milton,
Tina D'Aversa
678-457-0677 Direct
Courtesy This message was paid for by Tina D'Aversa.

The Beacon's Commemorative Thanksgiving Edition

The Beacon's Commemorative Thanksgiving Edition, publishing on Sunday,November 22 will be dedicated to honoring our local North Fultonservicemen and women. If you have family or friends from North Fultoncurrently serving, or have served recently in the U.S. Armed Forces,please email their name, photo and short bio to: Beacon will publish as many as possible.Please forward this information to anyone you know who may be able tohelp with this request.If you're interested in advertising in this special edition, email

Thursday, November 12, 2009

City Manager Responds To Deer Issue.

NOTE: We would like to thank City Manager Lagerbloom for reaching out to us. We did not contact him prior. We appreciate his quick attention to this matter.

Hi Tim,

Good afternoon. We talked briefly today about the City and how our staff responds to injured or dead animals near the roadway. First, our staff is committed to being responsive. You should have seen that in action this morning. As soon as the Public Works crews were notified, they handled the removal. I understand there was some confusion this morning about public versus private property; and potentially Milton’s call center interpretation of what that actually is. It’s terribly difficult to write scripts for each and every situation the call takers deal with – but you can be certain there now will be a script for dead animals.

Without a doubt, we are cautious about private property rights and never want to infringe upon a citizens’ rights to their property – at the same time we want to be exceptionally responsive. This is one of those areas where a healthy dose of common sense should prevail. I’m committed to being ultra responsive - and leading a staff with that same attitude. One of our five employee core values is “It’s not in my job description – is not in our vocabulary”. If I can ever be of service, please don’t hesitate to contact me.


Christopher J. Lagerbloom
City Manager
13000 Deerfield Parkway, Suite 107A
Milton, GA 30004
O 678.242.2488
F 678.242.2577

Dead Deer In Yard - Milton No Help.

By Tim Enloe;

We received a report today from a resident on Bethany Road. Evidently, a deer was hit in the middle of the night and now lay in the front of a family's yard. A call was made to the City of Milton and an employee was reached. The citizen requested that public works come and remove the deer. The employee responded that they were not allowed to go onto private property, but if the family in question were willing to pull the deer onto the road, they would be happy to come get it. When pressed about this response, she relayed that she was "just the messenger."

One has to wonder if this animal had not been hit in an open road neighborhood, but in another residential node, if the response would have been the same.

More and more, it appears that the families who reside in our open road neighborhoods play second fiddle to the over all majority. This is a dangerous road to take as these residents are the ones who will ultimately define what this city becomes. Tread lightly...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Blood Coming To Council In Milton

Courtesy Jason Wright / Appen Newspapers

The smoke has cleared in Milton following an election campaign that seemed as though it could turn into a professional wrestling match at any minute - and there is a new member coming to City Council.

Joe Longoria defeated incumbant Tina D'Aversa by a margin of about 60 to 40 percent Nov. 3, putting an end to the most publicized race of the campaign season. All that press was due to D'Aversa sending Longoria taxpayer funded e-mails urging him to drop out of the race and a subsquent ethics charge against her from former Councilman Neal O'Brien.

Longoria will join in January sitting council members Bill Lusk and Karen Thurman, who were voted in by similar margins.

D'Aversa, Al Trevillyan and Bernard Wolff promoted themselves late in the campaign as a slate, with fellow council members Julie Zahner Bailey and Alan Tart supporting their bids. Lusk and Thurman were supported by Mayor Joe Lockwood, who also backed D'Aversa. Lockwood ran unopposed.

The morning after his win, Longoria said it couldn't be chalked up entirely to D'Aversa's disastrous e-mails and all the bad press that followed.

"Obviously it factored in some," he said. "We won by a pretty good margin, so I don't think you can account for the gap strictly based on ethics issues."

Longoria said instead that "most of Milton is ready to listen to something new."

"I think that hit on a couple a key elements that got people thinking and wondering," he said. "The first is trying to imagine a Milton that isn't making every single decision based on this idea of density of development."

Throughout the campaign, the losing slate promoted their standing as the so-called "protectors" of Milton and accused the others of consorting with developers to bring big business and sewer into the city — a touchy subject that never seems to totally go away, despite it being put to rest last September.

"Real early on, people were thrown into two camps — either you were pro-development through real high density or you weren't," Longoria said. "The real concern has to do with the health of Milton as a city based on our revenue and our ability to grow based on that revenue, our ability to provide services based on that revenue – all while keeping Milton the way that it is today."

Lusk chalked up his win to name recognition and what he deemed "negative" campaigning by Trevillyan. He said the tenor of this year's race was entirely different from when he ran in 2006.

"That all backfired. I think people in this city are sick of negativity, the name calling and slander," he said. "They're just as anxious as we are to move the city forward and cut out this childish, sophomoric behavior."

Thurman said she believes voters wanted someone with experience, a strong point she campaigned on throughout the race in her bid against Wolff. The councilwoman agreed with Lusk, as well, and said she tried to keep things positive in the campaign.

"People understand we need leadership that's reasonable and sees the whole picture," she said. "Leadership that isn't obsessed with just one part [of running a city]."Lusk and Thurman said their next four years will involve implementing the still-in-process comprehensive and transportation master plans and getting Milton a working and expanded parks system — all on a shoestring budget.

"It's not going to be easy," said Thurman. "We've got to be creative."

Longoria agreed, and said he's excited for the "work at hand." That was a sentiment shared by all the winners."We've got to get our teeth into some of the real issues out there," said Lusk.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Chapman Orthodontics Joins

Chapman Orthodontics is the orthodontic practice of Dr. James C. Chapman. After practicing in Roswell for 7 years, Dr. Chapman relocated his office to the Downtown Crabapple area of Milton in July 2009. He and his staff are thrilled with the new office and with the opportunities that the new location can provide, including becoming more involved with the community. Dr. Chapman has already become a Business Partner with Crabapple Crossing Elementary and Northwestern Middle Schools, and he has also joined the Milton Business Alliance.

To find out more about this wonderful new Milton Georgia business, please click here=>

Longoria Eager To Join Milton City Council

By Rachel Kellogg; Neighbor Newspapers

Joe Longoria, music lover, tennis player and software designer, will join Milton’s city council in January when he takes over the District 5 seat.

Longoria and his family moved from Dallas, Texas to Milton in 1998 when he sold his software company to a local tech firm.

“As part of the sale, I moved here to help the company integrate the software,” he said.

Now Longoria works as the regional director and product manager for Actimize, a software company in Alpharetta, but software and computers are more than a job for the father of three.

When his children, Joe, Jason and Jennifer, were young, Longoria would play computer games with them.

“We used to play a game called King’s Quest every night,” he said. “I would kind of spin it into a bedtime story for them.”

Longoria also reads techno-thriller novels by Michael Crichton and Tom Clancy, but his involvement in the Boy Scouts takes up most of his free time.

“I’ve served as a commissioner and a district chairman,” he said. “Both my sons were Boy Scouts and got to be Eagle Scouts.”

Longoria said he and his wife of 25 years, Brenda, love to dance to live music.

“I enjoy country and western dancing, but I listen to rock and roll stations on the radio,” said the music fan who listens to everything from Green Day and Third Eye Blind to Boston and Kansas.

“The beauty of having three kids is that you get exposed to a wide variety of things,” he said.

Before joining the football team in high school, Longoria played in the marching band, and he is still musically inclined.

“People might be surprised to know I have a drum kit in my basement,” he said. “On a stressful day, I’ll put on my headphones and bang on the drums.”

In his spare time, Longoria also plays doubles tennis matches at Crooked Creek, the subdivision where he lives.

“There’s always something going on in my community,” he said. “The reasons I became interested in city council parallel the reasons I got involved in the homeowners association at Crooked Creek.”

Longoria said his position as treasurer for the homeowners association at a time when the community was going through renovations helped him see the kinds of challenges the city faces.

In January, Longoria said he is looking forward to helping Milton build up parks and green space and helping with the city’s revenue challenges.

Wieland Homes settles Clean Water Act violations with EPA

By Péralte C. Paul; The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A Wieland Homes affiliate, John Wieland Homes and Neighborhoods of the CarolinasInc., also is a part of the settlement, one of the largest levied against a homebuilder this year.

"We changed our procedures five years ago as soon as they notified us," chief executive John Wieland said Monday. "We have not been cited since."

The violations cited allegedly occurred at 25 construction sites in Georgia,Tennessee and the Carolinas between 1999 and 2004, the EPA said.

They included not obtaining permits or obtaining them after construction began. Inother cases, violations included failure to prevent or minimize pollutants,including silt and debris, from going into storm-water runoff.

"Improving compliance at construction sites is one of the EPA's national enforcementpriorities and this is one of the EPA's largest settlements with a homebuilder forstorm-water violations at construction sites," said Davina Marraccini, an EPAspokeswoman.

As part of the settlement, Wieland has implemented several storm-water compliance programs throughout the company's operations.


Wieland Homes fined for building wall across stream

By STACY SHELTON; The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Monday, February 02, 2009

John Wieland Homes and Neighborhoods, one of metro Atlanta's most respected homebuilders, must pay a $150,000 fine to the state for impounding a stream in the cityof Milton without a permit.

Wieland built about an 18-foot-high retaining wall across a tributary of CooperSandy Creek. The creek feeds the Little River, which empties into Lake Allatoona, awater source for metro Atlantans. The wall created a stormwater detention pond tohold back muddy rainwater.

Bert Langley, manager of the EPD's Mountain District office, said the state wouldnot have allowed Wieland to build the wall, but will not force the developer toremove it. EPD's investigation started last May.

The Wieland project, called the Braeburn Development, is at the intersection ofBirmingham Highway and Crabapple Road. The project is designed for about 53,000square feet of offices, 45 houses and 49 townhouses.

Milton District’s new Eagle Scouts named

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

2009-11-10NORTH FULTON — The Milton Boy Scout District (the cities of Roswell, Alpharetta, John’s Creek and Milton) is proud to announce its newest Eagle Scouts, who passed their Board of Review on Oct. 22. Brandon Burton of Troop 2000 is sponsored by The Church of the Hills. His project was the construction of an outfield chain link fence for the ball field located at the Church of the Hills Ian Allison of Troop 69 is sponsored by Alpharetta First United Methodist Church. His project was the construction of a two light picnic tables, the painting of a basketball court and four square play areas for the Methodist Youth Center at Alpharetta First United Methodist Church.

Lusk's labor of love in Milton

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

November 10, 2009

Milton Councilman Bill Lusk shows off a marker he is repairing to commemorate veterans in Milton for Veterans Day, Nov. 11. It is one of 90 such crosses Lusk paid for and built himself in the workshop of his business, Lusk and Associates Inc. Every year, the councilman repaints and repairs each marker.

The crosses are placed on Deerfield Parkway in Milton the week before and after Veterans and Memorial day. To include a loved one, visit the city's Web site,

"Still a lot of people don't realize they can have a marker out there for a deceased member of their family," said Lusk.

And as for bankrolling the project himself — he wouldn't give a figure for how much he's spent — Lusk said its just "part of being a patriot."

"Recognizing these folks who put their lives on the line, somebody's got to do this," he said.

Milton Council OKs extension for service delivery strategy

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

November 10, 2009

Also at the Nov. 2 meeting council unanimously approved asking for an extension of the county's service delivery strategy, a contract agreed upon every 10 years between Fulton and its respective cities.

The service delivery strategy is now in mediation, which means a 120-day extension. The main issue involves Sandy Springs and cities in South Fulton fighting with the county over water rates – but all of North Fulton is affected because the contract is county-wide.

If the mediation is not successful, it will go to court for a decision.

The deadline for the extension was Oct. 31, so City Manager Chris Lagerbloom said asking was more of a formality. Fulton cities are on both sides of the issue, he said, so there was no reason to expect any formal extension.

"We just needed to demonstrate publicly where he stand," he said.

Plans shape up for Bethany Bend high.

by Candy Waylock / Appen Newspapers

November 04, 2009 Milton — Architects gave a first glimpse of the proposed Bethany Bend high school site last week, showing off the building and site plans during the first community information meeting before a crowd of about 150.

The school will be situated on a 65-acre parcel. However, 25 acres will remain undisturbed. Nearly half of the usable acreage will be used for the athletic fields, open grassy areas and landscape. These dimensions, noted Frank Destadio of the Parsons construction firm, are in line with other high schools in the area.

The $70 million school can house up to 1,900 students and is on schedule to open in the fall of 2012. It will relieve overcrowded conditions at Milton High School, which is projected to have nearly 2,800 students by 2011.

While the building is essentially Johns Creek High School, the Bethany site will have its own "signature" similar to Milton's columns and Johns Creek's clock tower. Early drawings show a front façade similar to a ski lodge, with heavy beams, dark woods and stone accents.

Its look will mirror somewhat the Kings Ridge Christian School compound directly across the street, which was designed by the same architects.

Selecting a signature look for a high school is a relatively new standard for Fulton Schools, which began using community design committees when Milton was built several years ago. Prior to that, architects drew up plans and submitted them for approval to the board with little community input.

"We are not trying to put the Johns Creek High School here in Milton," said Destadio. "This is your school, and it's important you let us know how you want it to look."

Outside of the façade, however, the inside will mirror the other high schools, following educational specifications approved by the school system.

The Bethany Bend high school site will be a two-story building incorporating a "Main Street" design to connect all the major assembly areas with lots of natural light. A new feature of the school will be the "sports complex," which can seat up to 3,700 spectators and accommodate football, soccer, track and field, softball, baseball, lacrosse and tennis.

Recycle your election signs in support of a greener Milton!

The recent election season was more spirited than ever, and colorful campaign signs still dot our yards and roadways. But with the elections over, now it’s time to pick up our signs. American Recycling, a subsidiary of Waste Pro, USA, is providing a quick and easy way for residents to dispose of their campaign signs and be environmentally responsible at the same time. If you’re not planning to return your campaign signs to the candidate you supported or retain them for your own use, simply drop them off at any of the city’s three fire stations by Friday, Nov. 13. American Recycling will pick up the signs for recycling at no cost to the city. We thank American Recycling for their partnership and generosity to the city, and we thank you for helping keep Milton green and beautiful.

Station Locations

Fire Truck 1 located at:
2970 Webb Bridge Road
Alpharetta, GA 30004

Fire Station #41
12670 Arnold Mill Road
Milton, GA 30004

Fire Station #42
15240 Thompson Road
Milton, GA 30004

Fire Station #43
750 Hickory Flat Road
Milton, GA 30004

Milton Council approves vehicle for chief

Courtesy Appen Newspapers

At its Nov. 2 meeting, Milton's City Council unanimously approved a $20,500 supplemental lease agreement with the Georgia Municipal Association. The money will be used to buy Police Chief Deborah Harrell a Ford Explorer for use while on duty, said Finance Director Stacey Inglis.

Inglis said Harrell has been driving her personal vehicle on duty so that Milton's force can have a spare car in case of emergency. The city is going with a capital lease to help manage cash flow, said Inglis. The interest rate is 3.9 percent, and the city will pay $7,200 year for the truck, she said.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Milton Georgia - City of Hors....Schools?

Signs Of Protest On The Bethany Bend Site - 11.09.09.

By Tim Enloe;

In a city which normally harbors topics along the line of sewer or equestrian related airs, one has to wonder if the Milton constituency has unknowingly taken their eye off the eight ball in the dark corner.

Come the fall of 2013, Milton will have a total of nine public schools within it's borders.

They are:

1. Summit Hill Elementary.

2. Birmingham Falls Elementary.

3. Crabapple Crossing Elementary.

4. Cogburn Woods Elementary.

5. Hopewell Middle School.

6. Freemanville Middle School (2013).

7. Northwestern Middle School.

8. Milton High School.

9. Bethany Bend High School (2012).

Currently, that is one less than the City of Alpharetta who holds a population of 49,903 as of 2008 and a square mileage of 21.4 according to Milton? A mere 15,156 heads and a square mileage of 39; almost twice that of the former yet less than half of their population...and in a few years we will carry the same amount of schools?

When Bethany Bend High School opens, there will be a major attendance shift with the majority of Milton kids going there while Milton High School will cater to the Roswell crowd.

Oh, and to my neighbors off of Cogburn, sell now or buy some ear protection and plastic bags. The noise will be horrendous and roadside trash will increase three fold.

I have heard the argument numerous times; Fulton doesn't consider school placement by city, it is by the county as a whole. This, in itself, is problematic.

Consider the City of Milton's Vision Statement for example, "Milton is a distinctive community embracing small-town life and heritage while preserving and enhancing our rural character." Right. Phrases such as "small town life" and "rural character" normally give one a feeling of little traffic, quiet, small population and the like. With the infamous FBOE at the wheel, more people will come into the city to attend public schools and not pay a dime for the city funded streets. Oh, you thought the wonderful clan at the FBOE shared in the cost of road improvements? Nope. Dangerous traffic and obnoxious noise will help to push out those whose properties give Milton it's unique feel. They, of course, will sell for the highest and best use just like you would. So forget the mission statement; under the current approach, it is not realistic.

In 2003, the FBOE actually helped kill some of our "rural character" when they kicked out seven families at the corner of Freemanville Road and Birmingham Highway for the "needed" new Milton High. Those families were in tears as board member Katie Reeves slept easy. The old Milton High wasn't fit for students in '03, but today it is ok for the inner city kids...even though no improvements have been made...

Then there are the countless hours given by not only our elected city officials, but also by unpaid city volunteers, from CPAC to the Design and Review Board along with other city apointed committees. All working diligently to insure what we should put where in our humble town to make it the best it can be. Does the FBOE have to follow our requirements or answer to us in any way? Hell no they don't. Can they place a school anywhere they want? Why, Hell yes they can.

I know what you are thinking, "The school board brings alot of money to our city!" Think again, they don't bring a single dime to any city in which they are located. With Milton, however, this is even more deterimental due to our having such little retail to cover the city's expenses. Did I mention that the FBOE is the largest land owner in Milton? Troubling, to say the least.

Mark my words; in less than ten years, you will see another high school built in Milton. This time it will be in the Birmingham Crossroads area.

As I close with this piece of brain fodder, I leave you with a few points. First, I appreciate the education I received from the FBOE thanks to taxpayers like you. I appreciate the teachers who helped make me who I am today - I wish you were paid more but the FBOE spends money like every day is Christmas and harbors zero accountability. I hold no ill will towards the future of America; these kids go where the system points them. However, in a free society, we all have to answer to someone, including the FBOE. The clock is ticking...

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Milton Voters to D'Aversa, Zahner Bailey: "Enough!"

Milton voters turned out in record numbers Tuesday to deliver a message to embattled incumbent Councilwoman Tina D’Aversa and her Julie Zahner-Bailey backed slate of council candidates, Bernard Wolff and Alex Trevillyan: “Enough!”

Courtesy John Fredricks / Beacon Media

Milton voters turned out in record numbers Tuesday to deliver a message to embattled incumbent Councilwoman Tina D’Aversa and her Julie Zahner-Bailey backed slate of council candidates, Bernard Wolff and Alex Trevillyan: “Enough!”

Newcomer Joe Longoria, along with incumbent Council members Karen Thurman and Bill Lusk won a resounding victory by capturing over 60 percent of the vote collectively.

The results were a mandate for Mayor Joe Lockwood’s new centrist governing coalition. They also represented a bitter repudiation of Zahner-Bailey and her council colleague Alan Tart, who also backed the hapless ticket. Zahner-Bailey and Tart are now clearly in the minority on Milton’s new City Council, which takes effect in January.


In sad rendition typical of her campaign, even on the day after a crushing defeat, Councilwoman D’Aversa could not bring herself to accept any level of accountability for the electoral debacle that she facilitated. Instead she blamed the media for her humiliating collapse. Below is an excerpt from an email she sent to supporters on Wednesday:

“John Fredericks, who is the publisher and owner of The Beacon discredited me with lies and hurt our campaign. While none of his allegations were factual, he still reached many readers who may have called my intentions to question. I want my friends and colleagues to know that I did nothing inappropriate when I contacted Mr. Longoria about the election and discussed a board position in the city…The Beacon’s tabloid style reporting…struck fatal blows for our campaign. It was impossible to recover from the scores of lies and negative information that was circulated [to Milton voters].”


This newspaper stated repeatedly during the election that Zahner-Bailey controls about 1,000 votes in Milton, and Tart about 200, mainly in his Avensong district. They delivered their vote: 1,229. The problem was, their opponents garnered nearly 2,000. This does not bode well for the minority Council members, who are both up for election in 2011.

The normally politically savvy Zahner-Bailey made a few blunders in the last weeks of the campaign that accelerated her candidate’s electoral clock cleaning. One was not advising D’Aversa to come clean on her alleged ethics violations early, and to drop the strong-arming tactics, especially those with respected area businessmen.

The other fatal faux pas was convincing her slate to boycott a well-publicized media debate at the campaign’s eleventh hour. Voters can be forgiving for a lot of things. Not showing up for debates by the fourth estate is not one of them. That single decision, made in an arrogant vacuum, openly snubbed voters who may have wanted an opportunity to hear what the candidates had to say. It put the proverbial nail in their coffin and their slate paid dearly for their debate no-show on Election Day.

In the end, we suspect Zahner-Bailey will reinvent herself for 2011, and most likely find a way to win re-election. She may have politically botched this time - she most likely won’t next time. And if she does win, she can probably pull Tart along with her.

But the fact remains that come next year she will control only two votes out of seven on Milton’s City Council. It’s the minorities’ minority.

Milton Equestrian Group Founded.

Friendship compliments of their equestrian lifestyle
Milton, Georgia

Whether you are an active equestrian, own a farm or simply want to protect Milton's equestrian heritage, please email to become a part of the Milton Equestrian Group.

Laura Bentley

Found Pup.

A beautiful brown lab wandered into our yard off Thompson Road yesterday around 4:00 pm. We checked her for a micro chip but no luck. I am trying to find her owners.
Angel Murr
Many thanks to Tara Chambers for sharing this information.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Growing Popularity

By Joan Durbin / Neighbor Newspapers

Milton produce market attracts residents and stars.

The circa 1930s red building with the open porch on the corner of Hickory Flat Road and Birmingham Highway is a Milton landmark.

“I remember seeing it as a kid when it was Buice’s Country Store and the Buice family lived across the road,” said Jim McClure, the structure’s current owner.

The building at Birmingham Crossroads has in recent years housed an antique store and a gift shop. But its latest incarnation as Birmingham Produce and Market is close to its bucolic roots. The market sells a variety of fresh produce, free range eggs, local honey, baked goods, jams, jellies, pine straw and firewood. Some of the grocery items are produced on the owners’ land in Milton.

“We have 10 acres, kind of a mini farm. We have two horses and a whole yard full of chickens,” McClure said. “We keep bees, and we raise our tomatoes and blueberries. So we try to sell eggs and honey and our produce when it’s in season.”

The store also sells seasonal produce from other local farmers or growers around the state when available. On the shelves are jams and jellies from northeast Georgia. “We try to buy everything we can from as close as we can,” McClure said.

McClure and his wife Karen opened the market in March.

Natives of the east Cobb/Roswell area, the couple moved to what was then unincorporated northwest Fulton County in 1996 seeking “peace and quiet, a more rural, country atmosphere,” McClure said. In commuting to his fertilization and weed control business in Roswell, McClure watched the old Buice building’s evolution.

“I saw it up for sale several times,” he said. “Most recently, a developer had plans to demolish it and the gas station nearby and build some kind of drug store there.”

The McClures bought the building and land behind it. “My vision for the place is to create a working farm in the rear five-acre tract, grow some vegetables for the store and use it to teach kids about the rural, agricultural lifestyle,” McClure said.

Despite a bad economy, the store is doing well, he said, “breaking even and more.” And its quaint charm has attracted more than just locals. Last week, a scene for an upcoming Hollywood film was shot at the market with stars Brooke Shields and Kris Kristofferson giving unsuspecting customers quite a surprise.

According to, the family-friendly movie, originally titled “Destination Home,” has been renamed “The Greening of Whitney Brown.” It is about a privileged Philadelphia teenager “who gets back in touch with herself when financial hardship forces her parents to relocate the family to her grandparents’ house in the country.”

Milton Mayor Joe Lockwood was surprised and pleased at the movie crew’s choice of location, saying the market “definitely hits the look that I think Milton is all about. I think it’s a perfect fit that will put us on the map for that look and feel. I can’t wait to see it in the movie.”

Milton Milers Walking Club November 8, 2009.

News From Tina D'Aversa

Dear Milton Neighbor,

I am pleased to announce that the Milton Milers walking club is on the road again. Join your neighbors this Sunday, November 8, 2009, at 5:00 PM. Meet at the Starbucks on Bethany Bend Road at Highway 9.

It is my honor to sponsor this group and to encourage healthy lifestyles. Walking is the number one exercise choice of health professionals to help keep you healthy. Special thanks to Susan Wells and Buffie Trent at the Milton Super Target for providing water to the Milton Milers.

Bulky Trash Amnesty Day Sponsored by Milton Grows Green is this Saturday. See below for information.

Veteran's Day 2009! Celebrate our service men and woman! I wish you all a happy veterans day! Whether you are a veteran or you know a veteran. It is a perfect time to celebrate the service to our country!

I look forward to seeing you Sunday at 5:00 for the 5 mile or the 3.5 mile walk.

Protecting and Preserving ALL of Milton,

Tina D'Aversa
Milton City Council Member
District 5 at Large
678-457-0677 Direct


Milton Milers November 8, 2009, 5:00 PM

Bulky Trash Amnesty Day November 7, 2009

Bulky Trash Amnesty Day is the perfect time for fall cleaning. On Saturday, Nov. 7, 8:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m., residents in Milton, Alpharetta and Roswell can bring items to the City of Roswell Public Works Division at 1810 Hembree Road to drop off without incurring any fee. This event is co-sponsored by the City of Milton's Public Works Department with the assistance of volunteers from the Milton Grows Green committee. This event has become very popular, so please expect delays.

Some of the items that will be accepted are:·

Tires - must be off the rim, automobile tires only; limit 4 per car.· Sofas· Tables· Refrigerators· Chairs · Washers · Dryers · Televisions · Deactivated cell phones· Computer equipment

The following items will not be accepted:· Paint · Household hazardous waste · Any fluids including motor oil and anti-freeze· Household batteries · Construction and demolition materials · Yard waste

Materials will only be accepted at the site on the day of the event and only during the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Please note that the line will be cut off at 2:00 p.m. For more informationContact Milton Grows Green at

Celebrate Veterans Day 2009, November 11, 2009.

Courtesy Tina D'Aversa 13568 Weycroft Circle Milton GA 30004