The 19 Places You Should Go In Georgia In 2017
Well, fellow Georgians, it’s been a wild year. One for the books actually. We’ve shared a ton of new and exciting places to visit in our great state, plus shed a deserved light on those tried-and-true destinations. As we prepare to close another chapter in our lives and wish 2016 well, we want to bring a bit of excitement to the year ahead. Let’s kick off 2017 with an ultimate bucket list—and name this year one for exploration and wanderlust. Here are 19 places in Georgia that deserve to be added to your adventure bucket list in 2017.
Feel like adding anything else to your 2017 bucket list? Share with us! Let’s make this year an exciting one for everybody!
Otherwise, if you’re looking for a unique New Year’s read in Georgia, check out The Georgia Superstition That Will Give You Wealth, Luck, And Happiness In 2017.
2017 Spring Sports with i9 Sports
The 2017 spring season is coming up soon! 2017 Spring programs include; Co-Ed Flag Football, Soccer, and Baseball. Programs are available for all boys and girls, ages 3-14 (varies by sport). www.i9sports.com
2017 SPRING LINE-UP
Co-Ed Outdoor Flag Football League – Saturdays or Sundays
- Kids Ages 4-14
- 7 Week Season, Starts 3/5/16 or 3/6/16
- Choose from Saturdays or Sunday afternoons – one day commitment
- Practice and Games played at South Forsyth HS
- Fee covers 7 weeks of play, jersey, flag belt, sportsmanship medal, and end of season trophy
- Volunteer Applications and Special Requests are accepted
Co-Ed Outdoor Soccer League- 2 Locations
- Kids Ages 3-10
- 7 Week Season, Starts 3/11/17
- Saturday Afternoons- one day commitment
- Practice and Games played at Souther Forsyth Middle School or Fowler Park
- Fee covers 7 weeks of play, jersey, sportsmanship medal, and end of season trophy
- Volunteer Applications and Special Requests are accepted
- Kids Ages 3-6
- 7 week Season, Starts 3/12
- Sundays- one day commitment
- Practice and Games played at South Forsyth High School
- Fee covers jersey and hat.
HONDA BATTLE OF THE BANDS
Honda Battle of the Bands (HBOB) is back and gearing up for its 15th annual Invitational Showcase that will be held on January 28, 2017 to spotlight the premier marching bands from the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). As one of the final events held at the Georgia Dome before the stadium closes its doors forever, HBOB will give eight bands the opportunity to display their showmanship on the Dome’s field one last time.
Pumpkin Festival at Stone Mountain Park (September 30- October 30, 2016)
Location: Stone Mountain Park
1000 Robert E. Lee Drive
Stone Mountain, GA
Time: Friday- Sunday, Regular business hours
Details: Take in all of the splendor that autumn provides with attractions, fun-filled games, shows, and more. Follow the life sized telling of The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin as you wind your way through Spookley’s A-MAZE-ING Adventure. Join Spookley the Square Pumpkin and lift his friends into the air for a Dance-A-Long Party Parade that dances through Crossroads, and then meet him at Spookley’s Pumpkin Patch Meet & Greet.
Get the entire family into the spirit with fall décor and special attractions at The Great Pumpkin Junction. Be the detective in the Trick or Treat Scavenger Hunt. Beat the clock with a tasty treat at the Pie Eating Contest and much more!
Plus, enjoy all of your favorite Stone Mountain Park attractions during Pumpkin Festival. Trek through the treetops on SkyHike®, one of the nation’s largest adventure ropes courses, or soar to the top of the mountain on Summit Skyride and take in the beautiful fall views from more than 825 feet above the ground.
10 Best Ways to Explore Atlanta Outdoors This Fall
There isn’t any better season to be in Georgia than the autumn. With beautiful vistas full of brightly colored fall foliage, blue skies, and cooler temperatures, nature gives Georgia’s residents and visitors plenty of reasons to get outside.
Here’s where to go:
Dunwoody -> Attend the Butterfly Festival at Dunwoody Nature Center – On August 20, two enormous tents will be set up at the Dunwoody Nature Center and filled with gorgeous free-roaming butterflies for families to venture inside and explore, first receiving instructions to ensure the safety of the friendly insects. Spend the day playing at the park after your butterfly experience. Don’t forget to pack a picnic!
Atlanta -> Take a ride on Skyview Atlanta – On those fall days when it’s just too hot to explore outside, take a ride and see Atlanta’s outdoor space in a new way. Skyview Atlanta is open seven days a week but closes when there’s a threat of thunderstorms.
Marietta -> Explore the streets of Marietta during the Marietta Chalktoberfest – Downtown Marietta becomes awash with color on October 8-9 with around 50 professional artists that will be painting the streets. Additionally, there will be over 100 different types of craft beers to sample, live music from local artists, and plenty of delicious food for sale.
Morrow -> Take a step back in time and into a natural woodland habitat at Reynolds Nature Preserve – Discover the 146-acre natural woodland habitat that is dotted with spring-fed ponds, wetlands and more than three miles of hiking trails. Previously farmland, the preserve boasts old farm equipment, spring house and a barn dating back to 1867. The Nature Center houses live native animals and environmental displays.
Sandy Springs -> Occupy your whole family with a trip to Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area – Enjoy a day exploring a network of trails along the Chattahoochee River. For extra fun, plan your day around a visit to Morgan Falls Park where there’s plenty of space for kids to play while adults enjoy the view of the river.
Douglasville -> Take a self-guided tour of the Douglas County Butterfly Trail – Douglas County offers over 5,000 acres of recreational greenspace including Sweetwater Creek State Park, Boundary Waters Park/Aquatic Center, Pine Mountain Gold Museum Park, Dog River Reservoir Park, Clinton Nature Preserve and Foxhall Resort & Sporting Club. All six public gardens in Douglas County are registered with the Rosalyn Carter Butterfly Trail.
Kennesaw -> Take in the view from atop Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park – Hike the just a few or all of the 20 miles of trails that take you to the top of the mountain where you’ll see a great view of north Georgia and see the skyline of Atlanta in a new way.
Hampton -> See animals in their natural habitat at Newman Wetlands Center – Catch sight of more than 130 bird species and explore the tree-lined paths as you hear the sound of nature at the Newman Wetlands Center. Bring your walking shoes because there are 32 acres of wetlands and wildlife habitat to explore.
Atlanta -> Explore the Fernbank Museum of Natural History‘s new outdoor space -Opening late summer 2016, the Fernbank Museum of Natural History is expanding to the great outdoors with an all-new outdoor experience, WildWoods at Fernbank Museum of Natural History. The exhibit will feature elevated walkways, interactive exhibitions, incredible vistas, a wildlife sanctuary, a connector path to Fernbank Forest and immersive nature experiences.
Stone Mountain -> Spend the day at Stone Mountain Park – You can take a ride to the top, stay around the base and enjoy one of the park’s fall festivals, or take the challenge and hike to the summit! You can even reserves camp site or stay at the Park in the Marriott hotel located on the opposite side of the granite as the Summit Skyride. Families are also welcome to bring bikes and boats for fishing.
5 New Things You Can do at Georgia Aquarium This Summer
When you’re ready to fill your summer days with kid-friendly fun, Georgia Aquarium has added touch tanks, attractions and revamped shows that will make you want to head back for another visit.
Sea lions have arrived! You’ve probably seen their cute noses perched on billboards throughout the metro Atlanta area announcing their arrival. In person, they’re just as adorable. What you don’t see on the billboards is how talented they are. Now, included as part of your admission ticket is Under the Boardwalk, a show featuring California sea lions and their trainers showing off the talents of the animals in fun and often times laugh-inducing ways.
You won’t want to miss the Waddle Walk. Get your camera ready! The Aquarium’s African penguins have been trained to get their daily exercise in a new way, by strolling through the attraction’s Atrium.
You won’t see Deepo light up the silver screen any longer. Sure, you’ll still see him around the Aquarium but the 4D theater that hosted the show has been transformed into The 4D Funbelievable Theater complete with a new movie to see. The Theater is now showing Happy Feet 4-D Experience. Admission to the attraction is included with your admission ticket.
The old dolphin show is gone. What we’re sure will comes as good news to many parents, Georgia Aquarium has put to rest its heavily theatrical dolphin show and replaced it with the new AT&T Dolphin Celebration. Relying heavily on educating the audience about dolphins and their behavior, the new show incorporates popular music, high flying acrobatics, splashes and abundant use of colored lighting to show off the tricks and stunts dolphins are beloved for being able to accomplish.
The ray touch tank is back! Situated on the second floor of the Aquarium’s SunTrust Pier 225, the tank features various species of rays ready for your soft two-fingered touch.
Before you go, note that the dolphin and sea lion shows happen throughout the day at preassigned times. Check the Aquarium’s calendar for showtimes.
Taste of Atlanta Tickets go on Sale June 28
Bring on the booze, barbecue, banana pudding and buttermilk. Taste of Atlanta returns to Midtown this October 21-23 for three days of culinary indulgence.
The homegrown festival is gearing up for its 15th year and to celebrate the milestone, they’re adding a new event. Race for the Taste, a 5K run will take place on Saturday, October 22, 2016, inviting festival goers to burn off some calories in preparation to indulge.
Tickets for the 2016 festival go on sale June 28 at TasteofAtlanta.com and start at just $25.
Free Toddler Program Returns to Avalon in March
Toddlers and their caregivers can set the date for fun at Avalon.
Each Tuesday morning, March through October, the mixed use development in Alpharetta will be hosting its Little Acorns program in the Plaza.
Each event, happening from 10 a.m. to noon, includes a different theme and entertainment may include face painters, storytellers, arts and crafts and magicians.
There’s no need to RSVP for the events. Be sure to check Avalon’s social media feed for rain out information in the event of inclement weather.
Avalon on Ice Adds Three Theme Nights in January
How do you make ice skating with your friends at Avalon even more fun? Add in movies, music and a bright glow!
On January 7th from 5-9 p.m. skaters are invited to dress up as their favorite movie character and skate to music from some of Hollywood’s best soundtracks. All skaters dressed as a movie character will receive $2 off an Avalon on Ice ticket.
Go retro on January 14th from 5-9 p.m. during Disco Skate. Dress up in your favorite funky outfit inspired by the 70s and skate to the sounds of disco all night long! Two dollars from every ticket purchased during this event will benefit Hope Atlanta.
Dress in your brightest neon colors and hit the ice on January 21st from 5-9 p.m. Glow sticks welcome! All skaters dressed in “festive neon attire” will receive $2 off an Avalon on Ice ticket. This event benefits Atlanta Ronald McDonald House Charities!
Atlanta’s 8 Best Places to See Holiday Lights
Ready to peep at some holiday lights? These seven Atlanta spots are aglow with the best light displays in the metro area.
Garden Lights, Holiday Nights at Atlanta Botanical Garden (November 14, 2015- January 9, 2016) – Get your tickets early for this annual holiday attraction, which sees over one million LED bulbs fill each area of Atlanta Botanical Garden with holiday cheer.
Holiday In The Park at Six Flags Over Georgia (November 21, 2015- January 3, 2016) – Combine the fun of the rides at Six Flags Over Georgia with Christmas cheer and you get Holiday In The Park. Plus, it’s much easier to wait in line when it’s cooler outside.
Magical Night of Lights at Lake Lanier Islands (November 27, 2015- January 3, 2016) – Revamped for this holiday season, the annual Lake Lanier Islands display features millions of twinkling lights plus the opportunity to visit Santa’s Village.
Fantasy in Lights at Callaway Gardens (November 13, 2015- January 2, 2016) – Billed as one of the world’s “Top 10 Places to See Holiday Lights,” by National Geographic Traveler, Callaway Gardens features millions of lights in themed displays winding throughout their grounds.
Country Christmas Nights at The Rock Ranch (December 11-23, 2015) – Take a ride on the Christmas Express as you wind your way through cow country and enjoy an evening in the wholesome family-friendly environment that is The Rock Ranch.
Lights of LIFE (November 26- December 31, 2015) – This budget-friendly holiday attraction showcases a college campus decorated with holiday lights. As a bonus, children can meet Santa, ride a pony and take a train ride on select dates.
Holiday in Lights at Centennial Olympic Park (November 21, 2015- January 3, 2016) – Downtown Atlanta’s holiday light display at Centennial Olympic Park is 100% free to see from the ground. For an added holiday treat, ride SkyView Atlanta and see the lights from the air.
Holiday Light Spectacular at Atlanta Motor Speedway (November 27- December 30, 2015) – Head to Hampton to drive through a spectacle of lights. While you’re there, get your picture taken with Santa and enjoy carnival rides and games.
8 December Daytona Beach Getaway Deals
Ready to get away and play? Dayton Beach offers fun in the sun at a discounted rate through the end of the year.
Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort (100 North Atlantic Avenue, Daytona Beack, FL) – Through December 31, 2015, as part of the resort’s Sun & Fun package, you can get a room for as low as $105 per night.
El Caribe Resort & Conference Center (2125 South Atlantic Avenue, Daytona Beach, FL) – Rates at El Caribe Resort & Conference Center in Daytona Beach starting at just $64.00 per night plus tax. Stay Sunday-Thursday and save 25% this autumn.
Residence Inn by Marriott Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort (3209 S Atlantic Ave, Daytona Beach, FL) – 15% off all rooms at Residence Inn by Marriott Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort. Ask for group code LPR through December 24, 2015.
Roomba Inn & Suites (133 S Ocean Ave, Daytona Beach, FL) – Through December 28, 2015, stay 2 nights and get 1 free at Roomba Inn & Suites, Daytona Beach. Not valid on special/event dates.
Howard Johnson Inn & Suites at Destination Daytona (1635 N US 1, Ormond Beach, FL) – Through December 31, 2015, stay 2 nights and save 15% on a standard room at Howard Johnson Inn & Suites at Destination Daytona in Ormond Beach. Stay 2 nights and save 25% on a suite.
Ocean Court Motel (2315 S Atlantic Ave, Daytona Beach, FL) – Through December 20, 2015, get a room rate of $49 per night plus tax at Ocean Court Motel in Daytona Beach.
To see more Dayton Beach deals, visit the Daytona Beach CVB here.
Larger Than Life LEGO Exhibit Coming to Atlanta Botanical Garden, Gainesville
How big is big? More than 375,000 LEGO bricks have been locked into place creating 27 larger than life sculptures as part of the Atlanta Botanical Garden, Gainesville‘s first temporary exhibit- Nature Connects: Art with LEGO Bricks.
Each of the 14 installations features a nature theme involving plants, animals or people and is designed and built by Sean Kenney. The New York artist has created LEGO artwork for major corporations such as Google and Mazda, and has been featured in The New York Times and on ABC’s “Good Morning America”.
Signature creations that are part of Nature Connects include a 6-foot-tall praying mantis (made up of more than 42,000 LEGO bricks) and a swallowtail butterfly with a 5-foot wingspan, Hummingbird with a Trumpet Flower (more than 31,500 bricks) off the Promenade, and a Duck and Ducklings.
Nature Connects will run September 19, 2015– January 3, 2016. There is no charge in addition to a regular admission ticket to see the exhibit.
What’s only $2 and provides your child with a creative craft that guarantees zero clean-up at home? Michaels Kids Club events!
The events are back this August on the following dates:
- August 1 – Rain Stick
- August 8 – Duck® Tape Pencil Pouch
- August 15 – Perler Backpack Dangler
- August 22 – Pencil Topper
- August 29 – Bookmark
All craft events happen run 10 a.m. to noon and are for children after 3 and older. Supplies are included with the cost of each event.
Dad’s Garage and Friends Bringing All-Star Comedy to The Fox Theatre
There will be laughs. Guaranteed.
Dad’s Garage has found their forever home and now they’re in the mood to celebrate. Their second annual all-star comedy extravaganza is set for June 13, 2015 at The Fox Theatre.
Featuring a series of improv games, skits, animated pieces and an improv jam to end all jams, the all-star lineup includes sidesplitting, Dad’s Garage and Friends will include well known acts:
- Collin Mochrie (“Who’s Line Is It Anyway” / “The Drew Carey Show”)
- Gary Anthony Williams (“The Boondocks”)
- Fred Willard (This Is Spinal Tap / “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy)
- Amber Nash (“Archer“)
- Mark Meer (Mass Effect)
- Lucky Yates (“Archer” / “Frisky Dingo”)
- Cedric Yarbrough (“Reno 911″)
- Mats Eldøen; Too Many Cooks – reworked as a musical
- Strongbox (“Homestar Runner”)
- The Atlanta Opera
- danceDanceDANCE and more!
“With year one we weren’t sure what to expect, but after selling out The Goat Farm with two amazing shows, we knew we were onto something special,” says Dad’s Garage Theatre Artistic Director, Kevin Gillese. “The energy is so electric, everyone in the room knows that they’re a part of something big- nights like this don’t come around very often.”
General Admission tickets will start at $25, before fees and taxes. Tickets will be available at the door, but are subject to availability. For more information about Dad’s Garage and Friends, visit dadsgarage.com or call 404.523.3141. Tickets are available online through the Fox Theatre box office, foxtheatre.org or to avoid service charges, purchase at the Fox Theatre box office at, 660 Peachtree Street NE.
Decatur Arts Festival (May 23 & 24, 2015)
Location: Downtown Decatur, GA
Time: Saturday, 10:00 AM- 6:00 PM
Sunday, 11:00 AM- 5:00 PM
Details: Downtown Decatur comes alive Memorial Day weekend with 160 artists displaying their work and continuous musical entertainment. Fine Arts Exhibition, Kid’s Festival, Theater and Literary Arts, New Dance, Artists Market and more.
For More Information Visit:
Atlanta Dogwood Festival (April 10-12, 2015)
Location: Piedmont Park
400 Park Drive Northeast
Time: Friday, Noon- 10:00 PM
Saturday, 10:00 AM- 11:00 PM
Sunday, 10:00 AM- 6:00 PM
Details: Spring is in the air and that can only mean one thing in Atlanta: the Atlanta Dogwood Festival is back! The Dogwoods are in full bloom, and hundreds of artists from around the country will set up their tents for the 79th Annual Atlanta Dogwood Festival.
An Atlanta staple for more than 75 years, there is something for everyone at the Atlanta Dogwood Festival. Virtually every kind of art imaginable is represented at the festival, with a nationally renowned-juried Fine Artist Market that includes sculpture, paintings, pottery, jewelry, photography and much more.
In addition to the fine art for adults and art collectors, there is a Kids Village featuring huge inflatables, arts & crafts and face painting for all ages, as well as the ever-popular 24-foot rock-climbing wall.
Sponsor booths are located throughout the Festival that will have everything from live radio remotes to great prizes and interactive games. No pet dogs are allowed at large outdoor events like the Atlanta Dogwood Festival, according to City of Atlanta ordinance.
Music has become an essential feature of the weekend’s festivities, and this year will be no different! A wide array of diverse musical offerings will fill the springtime air throughout the weekend! The full schedule of music and entertainment will be announced soon. And when you get hungry, follow the delicious smells, of funnel cakes, gyros, crab cakes, onion rings, kettle corn and much, much more!
Atlanta Dogwood 5K:
Participants will start at the corner of Charles Allen Drive and 10th Street then follow a path along Piedmont Ave. past the Atlanta Botanical Garden and the Ansley/Morningside neighborhoods, then head down Monroe Drive to the finish at the Piedmont Park. Advance registration is strongly encouraged. Limited onsite race day registration is available. Click here to register online at Active.com
The Atlanta Dogwood Festival welcomes families on opening day for Family Friday to enjoy special family-oriented entertainment on the Lake Clara Meer Stage. In the Meadow, kids and adults can both have fun with an unlimited ride wristband good for all rides and inflatables. Visitors will receive discounts with select food and beverage vendors with the wristband. And to top it off, we’ll have puppeteers performing onsite on Friday too! Buy your wristband ahead of time here.
Backyard Barbecue and Brews:
This popular ticketed area sold out last year delighting attendees with plenty of Southern flavor. Held in a spacious tent overlooking the Main Stage, Backyard Barbecue & Brews showcases local craft beers, wine and barbecue and picnic fare from some of the city’sfavorite restaurants and chefs. You’ll also find picnic-style seating, activities like corn hole and access to private bathrooms. Get your tickets in advance here.
For More Information Visit:
Atlanta Area Easter Egg Hunts (2015)
- Acworth – Easter Egg Hunt
- Marietta – Easter Egg Scramble at Laurel Park
- Roswell – Annual Easter Egg Hunt at Smith Plantation
- Alpharetta – Children’s Easter Eggstravaganza
- Alpharetta – Spring Family Festival at North Point Mall
- Atlanta – Atlanta Fringe Festival Easter Art Hunt at Springvale Park
- Atlanta- Spring EGG-stravaganza at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History
- Buford – Underwater Egg Hunt & Bunny Bonanaza
- Chattahoochee Hills – Serenbe Playhouse presents the 3rd Annual Easter Egg Hunt
- Cumming – Warbington Farms EGGstravaganza
- Decatur – Decatur Easter Egg Hunt
- Duluth – Easter Egg Hunt at Rodgers Bridge Park
- Holly Springs – Community Easter Egg Hunt at Barrett Park
- Lawrenceville – Easter Egg Hunt at Bass Pro Shops
- Lawrenceville – Illuminated Egg Hunt at Rhodes Jordan Park Community Recreation Center
- Lilburn – Easter Egg Hunt
- Marietta – Cobb County Eggstravaganza Under the Stars
- Marietta – Easter Eggstravaganza at Powers Ferry UMC*
- Peachtree City – Easter Egg Hunt at Shakerag Knoll
- Roswell – Flashlight Easter Egg Hunt
- Sandy Springs – Community Egg Hunt
- Smyrna – Flashlight Easter Egg Hunt & Movie By Moonlight
- Sugar Hill – City of Sugar Hill Easter Egg Hunt
- Suwanee – Egg-stravaganza at George Pierce Park
- Alpharetta – Easter Egg Hunt at Alpharetta United Methodist Church*
- College Park – College Park Easter Egg Hunt
- Avondale Estates – Easter Egg Hunt and Dog Parade
- Cumming – Taste of Forsyth and Easter Egg Hunt
- Cumming – Warbington Farms EGGstravaganza
- Cumming – Preschool Easter Egg Hunt at First Baptist*
- Dahlonega – Forrest Hills Resort Lunch with the Easter Bunny and Egg Hunt
- Duluth Egg-streme Easter Fun at McDaniel Farm
- Kennesaw – Easter Egg Hunt at Smith-Gilbert Gardens
- Marietta- Easter Egg Hunt at Mt. Bethel United Methodist Church*
- Marietta – Northeast Cobb Community Egg Drop
- Milton – Community Egg Hunt
- Lawrenceville – Easter Egg Hunt at Bass Pro Shops
- Lawrenceville – Underwater Egg Hunt at Bethesda Park Recreation Center
- Marietta – Easter Eggstravaganza at East Cobb UMC*
- Norcross – Community Easter Egg Hunt
- Pine Mountain – Easter Egg Hunt at Callaway Gardens
- Riverdale – The City of Riverdale’s 4th Annual Easter Egg Hunt
- Stockbridge – Eggciting Hike Hunt at Panola Mountain State Park
- Union City – Easter Egg Hunt
- Atlanta – Bunch and BeltLine Egg Hunt at PARISH
- Atlanta – Easter Egg Hunt and Brunch at Park Tavern
- Atlanta – Bunny Brunch and Egg Hunt at two urban licks
- Atlanta – Easter Brunch, Petting Zoo, and Egg Hunt at the Mandarin Oriental
- Cumming – Easter Egg Hunt at Christ Community Church*
- Cumming – Easter Sunday Family Celebration at Midway UMC*
- Lawrenceville – Easter Egg Hunt at Bass Pro Shops
- Warm Springs – Easter Egg Roll and Hunt at Roosevelt’s Little White House Historic Site