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Column: Georgia Trust to host Cupid at the Castle
by Sally F. White
Northside Neighbor Columnist
February 06, 2013 04:41 PM | 2689 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Sally White, Northside Neighbor Columnist
Sally White, Northside Neighbor Columnist
Cupid at the Castle will return to Rhodes Hall in Midtown Feb. 14 by popular demand.

A romantic setting at the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation’s restored Rhodes Hall will be available for Valentine’s Day wedding ceremonies and anniversary celebrations from noon to 7 p.m.

Couples can have the ceremony of their dreams for a fraction of the cost. Vows may be made under the magnificent granite arches of the front porch overlooking famous Peachtree Street, or in the beautiful Victorian-style Reception Hall.

All weddings, commitment ceremonies and vow renewals will include an on-site officiant, wedding coordinator, music, professional photography service, a champagne toast and special wedding cupcakes. Mini receptions may be held in the ornate parlor area.

Appointments are limited to 30 minutes per reservation and 35 guests per ceremony. Wedding ceremony couples should bring a valid marriage license. Reservations are $550.

All proceeds from these romantic events will benefit the trust, which maintains headquarters on the upper floors of Rhodes Hall. The castle-like stone manor was built in 1904 for Amos Rhodes, founder of Rhodes Furniture Co., and today, in its restored house-museum glory, has become an in-demand site for social and corporate events.

The trust was founded in 1973 and is one of the country’s largest statewide preservation nonprofits. It is committed to preserving Georgia’s communities and their diverse historic resources for the education and enjoyment of all. It is responsible for 102 Georgia Main Street cities projects, and trains Georgia teachers in 63 school systems to engage students in discovering state and national history through local historic resources. The trust also advocates for funding, tax incentives and laws aiding statewide preservation efforts.

Reservations and information: (404) 885-7812 or visit

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A special Share the Love Valentine-themed luncheon and fashion show Saturday at the Emory Conference Center Hotel in DeKalb County will partner K&G Fashion Superstore with United Cerebral Palsy of Georgia to present a unique, uplifting experience to reveal that true beauty lies within everyone. Local women and men with a variety of disabilities will be featured as models for the fashion presentation.

“We are thrilled to showcase people who have disabilities as our models,” said committee member and personal stylist Shayla Smith. “We want everyone to know that we all have the capacity for our inner beauty to shine through, and that being fashionable is something every person can achieve, regardless of age, body type or physical challenges.”

All proceeds will benefit United, one of the largest organizations in the state offering services for children and adults with a wide range of disabilities. Services include community living programs, personal support, after-school and out-of-school childcare, adult day programs, advocacy and more.

With the mission of “Life without limits for people with disabilities,” 88 cents of every dollar received goes to direct services, making it one of the most cost-efficient charities in the nation.

Tickets and information: (770) 676-2000, ext. 225 or visit

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The William Baker Festival Singers will perform a unique public concert, “Mozart and His American Contemporaries: Folk Music in the Americas During the Time of Mozart and Hayden,” Sunday at St. Benedict’s Episcopal Church in Smyrna.

The choral program will present diverse musical scores contrasting Mozart with American folk hymns and African-American spirituals along with a classical solo by organist Lynn Swanson, the singers’ associate music director. This unusual combination of music performed by the award-winning choral ensemble is hosted by the Pro-Mozart Society of Atlanta as part of both nonprofits’ ongoing classical music mission to entertain and educate.

A native Atlantan, William Baker has a legendary history of choral excellence across many Atlanta metro area counties. He studied at Mercer University, the University of Georgia and the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago, and sang in Atlanta Symphony Orchestra choruses under renowned director Robert Shaw.

He established the formal group as a nonprofit foundation in Atlanta in 1985 Although Baker now lives in Kansas, where the foundation has headquarters, he commutes weekly to Atlanta for rehearsals and concerts under the banner of his foundation, dedicated to discovering singers and developing professional-quality choral ensembles through training, concerts, tours and recordings.

The afternoon public concert is free to society members and only $15 for non-members.

Information: (678) 488-3591 or visit

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Set for Feb. 16, the Bows ArtSS Bash heralds the third year for a glittering showcase of local art hosted by Art Sandy Springs, a community nonprofit promoting the arts.

The Saturday evening auction with a sumptuous cocktail buffet by Avenue Catering Concepts will be staged at the Motor Cars of Georgia showroom on Roswell Road to benefit ArtSS in the Open community projects. Displayed throughout the auction area will be lavish paintings, small sculptures, photography, printmaking and artistic jewelry created by local artists offering a broad range of styles and prices.

Prior to the exhibition-sale, featured art will have been curated by a two-person panel of recognized authorities: bash chair Lauren Bernazza, program director of the Abernathy Arts Center in Sandy Springs, and Ellen Kierr Stein, a mixed-media artist at Artists Atelier of Atlanta.

Patrick Dennis, artist/gallery owner and president of the Atlanta Foundation for Public Spaces, serves as the final judge for three ribbon-level awards plus an honorable mention and Best in Show recognition to be announced at the bash.

“We invite Sandy Springs residents and neighbors to join us for a festive evening to discover the talents of local artists and add new works to their personal collections as they support our on-going outdoor art initiatives,” ArtSS president Cheri Morris said.

The volunteer nonprofit Art Sandy Springs is dedicated to showcasing and developing local artistic talent in all areas — visual art, performing arts, music, landscape and culinary arts — within the city of Sandy Springs and its environs. The organization is currently focusing on outdoor art.

A 2012 juried outdoor sculpture sponsored by Art Sandy Springs could be installed in the Playable Art Park at the Abernathy Greenway Linear Park later this year. Prior ArtSS-sponsored outdoor art is on public display at the Sandy Springs Library.

Tickets and information: (404) 256-3949 or visit

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Frederick O. Scheer, a member of the Atlanta World War II Round Table, will be the featured speaker for the organization’s annual luncheon Feb.16 at Petite Auberge restaurant in DeKalb County.

Scheer served in the Fifth Infantry Division in World War II and landed on Utah Beach in France July 10, 1944. He was captured while unloading an ammunition site and spent the rest of the war as a prisoner in Stalag IV in Aldorf, Germany.

Scheer has related his experiences in a biography titled “A European Sojourn: 1943-1945.” A reception before the annual banquet will feature nostalgic WWII music by Stew Magee’s Dance Band with vocalist Jill Berry.

The nonprofit round table hosts public luncheons 10 times a year, September through June, with an annual Saturday reception and banquet in February to review their patriotic programs and encourage current ex-military, their families and friends to join their patriotic mission.

The round table was organized in 1986 with the objective to review and record the experiences of World War II veterans and to pass on to posterity the knowledge of and the price — human and material — that was paid for the preservation of freedom in the U.S. and the world.

Part of the uniqueness of the organization is the diversity of its membership. Including both men and women, there are retired officers and enlisted personnel from all branches of the military along with family and friends who gather to share and remember.

Through the years veterans of other U.S. combat missions have also joined the round table discussions. As key elements of the members’ patriotic undertaking, more than 200 experiences narrated by active participants during the war are preserved on DVDs and kept available in the Atlanta History Center’s library for future generations of Americans.

Reservations are requested for the annual reception and banquet.

Reservations and information: (770) 436-4254 or visit

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In partnership with Bank of America, the Atlanta History Center in Buckhead is hosting a series of free third Saturday and Sunday monthly admissions starting Feb. 16 and continuing through June 30.

The events are in conjunction with the center’s on-loan exhibition, “Slavery at Jefferson’s Monticello: How the Word is Passed Down.”

With activities ranging from education and family programs to museum theater performances and a series of dedicated genealogy programs, guests of all ages may examine the key themes associated with the exhibition, such as ancestry and social and political history.

The exhibit was organized by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello, Va., in partnership with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Special festival-style programs throughout the exhibition months at the center will educate and entertain guests of all ages and be offered at regular admission prices.

A ticketed teacher workshop, “Summer Institute on Slavery,” will be offered in June. Some of the themed programs are: “Struggles and Strides: The Early Fight for Civil Rights,” “Citizens and Soldiers: The American Civil War” and “Juneteenth: The First Day of Freedom.”

Founded in 1926, the center is an all-inclusive destination featuring the Atlanta History Museum, two historic houses, the Centennial Olympic Games Museum, 22 acres of historic gardens, the Kenan Research Center and the Grand Overlook event space.

Tickets and information: (404) 814-4000 or visit

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