Click here to learn about some of exciting cultural activities to do and places to visit in Grant Park.
It’s Friday in Atlanta, and you’re sick of dinner and a movie. Take a walk down Edgewood and you’ll see a sign for “Sister Louisa’s Church of the Living Room and Ping Pong Emporium.”
Known to savvy, ATL locals as “Church”, this bar is known for its quirky features like church organ karaoke.
“Church” was spontaneously founded in 2010 by a former divinity student named Grant Henry. (His alter ego is “Sister Louisa”, a fallen nun turned folk artist)
His bar became so successful, it’s open on almost every holiday. So if you have been searching for a hiding place during Christmas/Thanksgiving/50th birthday parties, now you know about Church.
I mean, if it’s good enough for Jessica Alba, it should be good enough for you.
Artwork, religion, and booze, y’all.No,this is not the service entry way.
Have a hankering for harmonicas?
How about doing a little this?
And listening to this? …….It will sound a little better after you’ve had a few
Don’t let the title fool you. There is next to nothing holy about this place
Not your cup of tea? Well, have a nice day, they aren’t changing for anyone.
So if you find Sunday services lackluster, try Jesus with a side of whiskey!
Looking for a place to spend a sunny day? Want to destress from a long day studying? Not far from Emory’s campus are dozens of green spaces, great for a spontaneous picnic or walk. Here are some of the best places to visit in Decatur and Druid Hills if Lullwater Park isn’t for you.
2013 was the first year that the Atlanta Foundation for Public Spaces came to the Old Fourth Ward, deciding that the neighborhood needed a special way to celebrate its sense of community. The resulting affair was the two-day Old Fourth Ward Arts Festival.
But with the sense of pride the neighborhood evokes for the event, the amazing turnout, and the sheer number of exhibitors and entertainers they’ve attracted, naturally they’re returning for 2014. And you’d never guess that this was a brand-new endeavor less than a year ago.
Yes, the word “arts” is in the festival’s title—and there’s certainly plenty of that. Local artisans (more than 60 of them) who specialize in everything from painting to glass blowing to metal crafting got their chance to shine at the 2013 festival, and more than that number are already registered for 2014: three months before the event. And the ranges of these artists encompass the range of the region as a whole. Some are literal, some are abstract, some are meta, some are wearable, some are juvenile.
To check out some examples, visit this page.
And in addition to the visual arts, the #O4WArtsFestival (yes, that’s their hashtag) hosts a myriad of entertainers. “Local musicians only, please,” the event’s official website reads. Seriously. Other organizations from the area that have turned up at the event include Angels Among Us Pet Rescue (that means PUPPIES) and restaurant booths representing all the awesome places in the O4W (that’s both food trucks and the classic brick-and-mortars of the area).
June 29-30, 2014.
The Tabernacle is making Atlanta news headlines after the concert hall’s floor collapsed during a sold-out January concert. An Atlanta fire marshal evacuated the hall, ushering out hundreds of Panic at the Disco! fans. To the disappointment of concertgoers and scheduled artists, the venue remains temporarily closed until further inspection. However, this historic grande dame has gone through many ups and down and has always come back to enrich downtown Atlanta. The fracture of the century-old flooring serves as a reminder of the venue’s rich history.
The Luckie Street concert hall has not always blasted rap, rock and techno beats. The elaborate four-story building once echoed church bells and songs of faith. Reverend Leonard Gaston Broughton first opened the downtown building in 1910 as a Baptist church, the Broughton Tabernacle. Broughton added an infirmary and nursing school dormitory adjacent to the church. The tabernacle grew, eventually serving 4,000 worshipers, but by the mid-1980s the church membership dwindled and the congregation relocated. During the1996 summer Olympics in Atlanta, the space was reincarnated as the House of Blues. When the House of Blues’ lease expired two years later, the building was rechristened as The Tabernacle, but this time home to a different kind of soul.
The pulpit is now a stage and The Tabernacle, as is known today, has hosted performances by Adele, Bob Dylan, Elton John, Prince and Nelly. While big enough to host top performers, its intimate atmosphere has not been lost – and neither has its elegance. Adorned with a crystal chandelier, stained glass windows, an ornate ceiling and tiled balconies, the venue merges the traditional with the hip.
And if the outstanding ambiance, acoustics, lighting and lineup aren’t enough, food and drinks are available at the multiple bars throughout the building.
The Tabernacle sits at the edge of downtown Atlanta near Centennial Park and is a regular stop for music-lovers. Now run by Live Nation Entertainment Inc., the world’s largest live music company, the historic concert hall is one of Atlanta’s and the nation’s top music venues. A crack in the floor might put the music on pause, but concerts have already been rescheduled and with a prayer, The Tabernacle will soon reopen for another chorus.
152 Luckie Street
Atlanta, GA 30303
It’s a Saturday afternoon and you’re wracking your brain to come up with a cool, fun, and, let’s be honest, cheap date for your special someone. Then, suddenly, an epiphany: Oakland Cemetery! The most romantic spot in Atlanta, right?
Or, maybe you’re thinking, “Never would I ever bring a date to a place filled with creepy dead people and their creepy ghosts.”
But, Oakland Cemetery is a pretty awesome place. Founded in 1850, Oakland is the final resting place for a lot of famous, and not-so-famous, Atlantans, including Gone With the Wind author Margaret Mitchell, golfer Bobby Jones, and Atlanta’s first African American mayor, Maynard Jackson.
Oakland is a public cemetery, meaning that, for a while, every Atlanta citizen was buried there. Those who either did not or could not purchase a family plot were buried in a 7.5-acre area known as Potter’s Field. Admittedly creepy factor: A Georgia State geological study conducted in the 1970’s revealed 17,000 bodies buried in the field, laid next to and on top of one another. Although strange to think that if the dead did walk in Atlanta then 17,000 would rise from the same spot, Oakland Cemetery is impressive.
The cemetery is located on the southeast side of the city, just a few blocks from the King Memorial MARTA station. It’s situated between Grant Park and Cabbagetown.
Walking through the cemetery is like walking through the city’s history. And, after a century and a half, Oakland Cemetery has seen Atlanta through some pretty major changes, most notably its massive population growth. When the cemetery was founded, Atlanta’s population neared 2,500. Today, more than 420,000 people call Atlanta home.
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Not only does Oakland Cemetery have a historical cool factor, it’s a beautiful park in its own right. The cemetery’s caretakers have gone to painstaking efforts to ensure that Oakland and its gardens age gracefully.
Back in the day, families tended to their own plots and planted their own flowers. Today, all of Oakland’s 38 acres of gardens are tended by three good-hearted ladies and a band of weekend volunteers with some serious green thumbs.Throughout the year, they plant and prune among the headstones and green spaces, resulting in a truly beautiful patchwork of gardens that just happen to grow near some dead people.
Huge, ornate mausoleums framed by rose bushes and perfectly pruned shrubs sit among small, humble (and sometimes hilariously inscribed) headstones and fragrant flowerbeds. The gardens at Oakland make for a fascinating, pretty, and peaceful stroll through the cemetery on a sunny afternoon.
And totally not scary. Or morbid.
Seriously, consider Oakland as a fun, free date option. Just maybe stick to the rules and get out of there by dusk, or, you know, your date may surprise you with a zombie flash mob. But if you’re into that sort of thing, that’s cool, too.
For more information on Oakland Cemetery, including directions and park hours, click here.
Atlanta’s urban connector the BeltLine is still a work in progress, but it has a few elements ready for public use, and one of the most rewarding is the Eastside Trail. The trail runs from the intersection of Monroe Drive and 10th Street (at the southeast corner of Piedmont Park), all the way to Irwin and Krog Streets in Inman Park, and passes by quintessentially Atlanta sites like Freedom Parkway and the Historic Fourth Ward Park. Walk it, bike it, rollerblade it—no matter what, get out into the fresh air. In its entirety, the trail adds up to about 2.25 miles.
If you’ve gone the north-to-south route on the trail, it’s a short jaunt over to Condesa Coffee (480 John Wesley Dobbs Ave) for your mid-afternoon caffeine fix. But Condesa’s not quite your average coffee shop: The baristas are dressed to the nines. They make latte art. They serve simple but elegant plates of breakfast food and sandwiches. And there’s a full bar. It’s still all about the coffee, featuring espressos and cappuccinos and all the other “o”s, but Condesa is certainly a step up from your neighborhood Starbucks. Plus, if it’s a nice day out (which hopefully it has been, if you’ve been walking for two miles), sit outside: facing east, you can see infinite green space; facing west, you’ve got a lovely view of the Atlanta skyline.
No visit to the O4W/Sweet Auburn area is complete without an acknowledgment of the late great Dr. King and his life’s work—after all, this neighborhood was his stomping grounds for quite some time. Less than a half mile from the coffee shop, you can explore a multitude of aspects of Dr. King’s legacy: from Ebenezer Baptist Church, where he preached, to the “I Have a Dream” World Peace Rose Garden, which features King-centric poems by Atlanta students, to the beautifully serene reflection pool outside the tombs of Dr. King himself and his wife, Mrs. Coretta Scott King.
Learn more about the King Center here.
It doesn’t get much more American than this. Finish off your day at burger and beer hub The Corner Tavern, whose Edgewood location (464 Edgewood Ave) has a special every. Single. Day. Of. The. Week. On Thursdays, there’s breakfast for dinner and bar trivia. Friday is crab legs night. On Saturdays, stop in for live music. No matter what day you choose to have your O4W adventure, you can always find some excitement going down in the Corner Tavern.
Get a walk-through of the day’s spots with this map: