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Piedmont Park Conservancy Supports the Vote in 2020 Election

With over 134 zip codes represented in its visitors, Piedmont Park is a beautiful representation of Atlanta and the surrounding area. Piedmont Park is the most visited attraction in Atlanta bringing people of every age, race and income together which is why the Piedmont Park Conservancy has chosen to use its voice and channels to encourage all Atlantans to vote. This November, Piedmont Park and the Piedmont Park Conservancy will support the vote in many ways including serving as a polling location, encouraging and supporting staff voting, and joining the Georgia Support the Vote Coalition.

Piedmont Park as a Voting Location

On Tuesday, November 3, Magnolia Hall (1320 Monroe Drive) will serve as one of Atlanta’s several voting locations. A well-known location to many locals, Magnolia Hall is conveniently located by the parking garage and sits central in the Park. Additionally, Fulton County placed a Mobile Voting Bus at the Charles Allen Gate entrance in the Park on October 27 as another way to encourage early voting.

Conservancy Encourages Staff to Vote and Volunteer

While Piedmont Park will serve as a polling location, many Conservancy staff members live in other districts. The Conservancy offers three hours of paid time off for voting on Election Day or on other days if used for early voting. In an effort to further engage our team in the vital democratic process, the Conservancy is offering a paid day off for anyone that volunteers as a poll worker or who spends the day with a verified nonpartisan GOTV (Get Out The Vote) organization.

Conservancy Joins the Georgia Support the Vote Coalition

The Conservancy joined the Georgia Support the Vote Coalition, a nonpartisan coalition of over 150 Georgia business and community leaders committed to safe, fair elections. Coalition members are expected to help make it easier and safer for Georgians to vote in November by informing, encouraging and enabling their employees and communities. Share our posts on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram to further promote voting by November 3!

Do Your Part

While we have the right to vote, voting is not always easy. The Piedmont Park Conservancy implemented several measures to both enable the community and its team to more easily cast their ballots in the upcoming election. If you already voted, thank you for doing your part! If you have not voted yet, there is still time! Election Day is tomorrow, Tuesday, November 3.

Find Your Voting Location

Check Your Absentee Ballet

However you choose to vote, thank you!

duck swimming in lake clara meer in piedmont park

Feathered Friends: Fall Bird Migration in Piedmont Park

While fall migration through Georgia may not be as spectacular as springtime migration, it is still a sight to behold. Starting as early as August, many birds make their way south in preparation for the winter season. During migration, these birds use “stopover habitats” as resting places on their long journey. Stopover habitats are places to eat, sleep, and recharge, like a hotel room on a long drive.

Photo Credit: Clay Fisher

So, when fall migration peaks in late September and October, who is checking into Georgia, and who is checking out? Feathered friends including a few sparrow species, multiple duck species, kinglets and cedar waxwings come to Georgia. These species have been nesting up north all spring and summer long. We also have some species checking out in search of warmer weather. Warblers, thrushes, orioles and more will begin their journey south.

Photo Credit: Clay Fisher

How can you spot these travelers, and maybe even help out? While most of these birds will do the bulk of their traveling at night, you can still spot them while they stop for food. In fact, with the losses in stopover habitat, you can ensure a sighting by turning your backyard into a migratory bird oasis! Plants such as elderberry, sumac, and dogwood provide berries. Hackberry and American beautyberry provide nutrient-rich fruits. Providing a feeding place or birds helps fuel them up for their long journey, or help them recharge after it.

Photo Credit: Clay Fisher

So grab your binoculars and field guide, and observe! Don’t forget that the best way to observe wildlife is to stop, look, and listen. 

Author: Dana Buskovitz, Piedmont Park Conservancy Education Coordinator

Want to learn more about animals, plants and all things science? Follow our education team on their Instagram @piedmontlearns.

Stay Active. Stay Healthy. Stay Safe.

Getting some fun in the sun is so important for your mental and physical health, and Piedmont Park is the perfect space to enjoy some quality time in the outdoors. Staying safe and healthy is a top priority, and luckily we have four great tips on how to make sure we can all share the Park and feel safe!

The first tip is to remember to stay AT LEAST 6ft. away from other groups. With over 200 acres of Park to explore, everyone can enjoy. Maybe you’ll even find a new favorite spot!

The next tip is to make sure your circle is small. We’ve all been missing our friends and loved ones, and Piedmont Park is the perfect space to safely meet up with a SMALL group of your favorite people.

Getting fresh air is amazing for your well being, but remember to bring a mask and put it on when going through high traffic areas. This way, we can all feel safe and enjoy the Park!

Finally, let’s make sure we’re keeping it clean. Whatever you bring into the Park should either leave with you or end up in a trash or recycling bin. We’ve recently installed new recycling bins and trash cans to help make Piedmont Park green and clean!

Enjoy the last few weeks of summer and get outside and enjoy Piedmont Park. If we all remember these few rules, the Park will remain safe and open for everyone to enjoy.

Author: Olivia O’Brien

Five Fun and Distant Family Activities

Have some summer fun in the Park with your family! Here are five socially distant  activities you can do in the Park.

  • Connect with Nature

Download our Backyard Birding activity, and see how many types of birds you can spot in Piedmont Park. You can also use our “iNaturalist Companion” download to take a hike around the Park.

  • Family Picnic

If you’re in the mood for a more relaxing day, sit on the Front Lawn and have a picnic. All you need is a blanket and a cooler full of your favorite foods.

  • Scavenger Hunt

Another great idea to keep the whole family entertained is a scavenger hunt. Download our Piedmont Park Nature Scavenger Hunt. We recommend starting your journey at the Welcome Plaza.
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  • Family Field Day

For an active experience, host a family field day! Bring a frisbee, soccer ball or football, and visit one of the many open fields at the Park to play all day.

  • Arts and Crafts

Finally, just have a quiet day with your loved ones. Find a shady spot and do some arts and crafts. Bring a mat for easy cleanup and finger paint. You could also make your own giant bubbles, impression sculptures with fallen leaves or beaded sun catchers. The possibilities are really endless.

We hope you are inspired by some of these activities and have a great day spending quality time with your loved ones! 

Want more? Find several family fun activities on our online learning hub. Also, receive updates and stay connected with live readings, YouTube activities and more by subscribing to our “Connect and Learn” Instagram page: @piedmontlearns

Author: Olivia O’Brien

We Need More Hands- Volunteer With Us!

Piedmont Park has been fortunate to be open as a resource for all Atlantans to access fresh air and beautiful greenspace. Although, more visitors naturally means more trash and litter. We are currently seeking small groups (no larger than 10) or individual volunteers to help clean and beautify Piedmont Park.

Watch our video highlighting team member, Michael Paul, who started as a dedicated volunteer for the Piedmont Park Conservancy.


If you are healthy and willing, please volunteer for the Piedmont Park Conservancy in the coming weeks. Tasks include trash pick up, mulching, weeding, pruning and removing invasive plants. Volunteer support relieves some of the pressure on our full-time landscapers and helps to maintain the Park as a beautiful oasis. Special volunteer guidelines apply. 

If you are interested in volunteering please email volunteer@piedmontpark.org for more information.

The Future is Green (Video)

As our community begins to look forward, we have learned that there are things we can control and things we cannot. Making sure that we protect and invest in Piedmont Park is something we can control together as a community. We ask that you look toward this future with us.

Piedmont Park adds value to our city in many ways such as boosting our economy, contributing to our physical and mental health, and serving as Atlanta’s epicenter of culture. We must gather our resources together to preserve and enhance the Park so that we can ensure a bright and healthy future for our city. We believe that the success and health of future generations of Atlantans is linked to the prosperity and overall welfare of Piedmont Park. 

This is why the Conservancy works everyday to develop Piedmont Park as a cleaner, greener and healthier piece of essential urban infrastructure. For us to continue to provide this vibrant pathway of sustainable health and success for our community, we need your support. We rely on you to help us fulfill our mission of inspiring life in the heart of Atlanta.

Consider making a donation today and help us ensure that ‘Our Future is Green.’

Winter Works (Video)

Winter is the Conservancy’s time to shine! From restoring playgrounds and historical buildings to planting trees and raking leaves (so many leaves…), the Piedmont Park Conservancy is as busy as ever.

The winter months are crucial to building the foundation of a healthy park that leads to a beautiful spring, summer and fall to be enjoyed by all visitors.

“We are a 365 days a year Park.”

See what members of the Piedmont Park Conservancy operations team had to say about maintaining the Park in the winter.


Year-round support from park passionate individuals is essential to help us achieve our mission of keeping Piedmont Park clean, green, safe and active.

Behind the Stalls: Celebrating Lorenzo’s 20th Anniversary

“Watch your step,” he warned as a team member was walking down the stairs, leading to the freshly mopped floors.

Lorenzo was in the middle of doing his daily clean up. After taking out the trash, mopping the floors and cleaning all the bathrooms in Piedmont Park, he was only halfway done with his job for the day.

“In a way, Lorenzo touches everybody, because the bathrooms are the first thing people look for when they come to the Park,” Terrell Henderson, Piedmont Park Conservancy’s Director of Special Events and Outreach said. “We always get compliments on how good the bathrooms are for a public park.”

Twenty years ago, Lorenzo was working for the City of Atlanta as a professional landscaper when he met Chris Nelson, the former COO of the Conservancy.

“It seemed like a nice organization,” Lorenzo recalled. “Chris said, ‘work with us.’ I told him, ‘Give me two more weeks, and I’ll be there.”

It has been history ever since. Now Lorenzo continues to do his favorite work, maintaining the park and making it “real clean” through landscaping and cleaning all the bathrooms in the Park, which he does every day.

After his clean up, he joins the other landscapers and helps with tasks such as raking the leaves, changing the doggy bags, or picking up litter in places that most people rarely pay attention. Driving in the golf cart, he always waves hello to passersby and asks them how they are doing.

“I like to see the outside, the Park beautified, the change in colors, the butterflies, birds and nice people coming through the Park,” Lorenzo said.

lorenzo holding card

A Christmas Card from Lorenzo’s Favorite Person from the Park

As one of the longest working employees of the Conservancy, Lorenzo was able to witness how the Park has improved over the years alongside him. Lorenzo hopes to continue to see improvements in the Park and believes that he will work at the Conservancy until he retires.

“I just like being here.”

The Conservancy is thankful for Lorenzo continuing service at the Park and are looking forward to seeing him for hopefully another 20 years. Thank you, Lorenzo!

Author: Jessica Vue

Want to read more stories about Piedmont Park Conservancy staff? Visit our Facebook page at: facebook.com/PiedmontParkATL

The Greenbuild Conference Tours the Six Springs Wetlands

On Nov. 18, attendees of the Greenbuild Conference, the largest annual event for green building professionals worldwide, stopped by Piedmont Park to tour the Six Springs Wetlands and its unique stormwater management.

“This is a great opportunity to showcase the work that Piedmont Park Conservancy has done,” Howard Wertheimer, VP and COO, said. “Not only do we have the Wetlands, but we also have Greystone as a LEED certified building.”

The tour was led by Chris Nelson, former VP and COO of the Piedmont Park Conservancy until 2014. Conservancy staff members also joined the tour, which highlighted the innovative techniques used during the stream and wetland restoration of the Six Springs.

“Out of all the projects I have had the opportunity to work on, the restoration of Clear Creek and its accompanying tributaries and springs was my favorite,” Nelson said.

The Wetlands were taken over by kudzu and other invasive plants, until the North Woods Expansion Stream Restoration project took place in 2008 during the Park expansion.

The tour was attended by people from across the United States and the globe including California, New York, Philadelphia, Ohio, Georgia, Japan, France and London.

“Before the restoration began, it appeared to be just an ordinary overgrown mess of kudzu and other invasive plants,” Nelson said. “With the removal of the invasives, tons of discarded debris and the daylighting of the springs, it is now considered to be one of the premier areas for birding and for experiencing and connecting with nature in the Park. For me, it’s that hidden gem waiting to be explored.”

The system was formerly a concrete flume that was replaced with large boulders, imitating natural channel design techniques. The group observed and walked over the rocks, circling back to the bridge that rises above the Park.

“The Park contains an incredible wetland eco-system made up of a number of underground springs that continue to feed Lake Clara Meer and contribute to the flow of Clear Creek,” Nelson said. “A large number of these springs can be seen in the designated Six Springs area behind Magnolia Hall.  Its unique water system supports the most diverse plant and animal life found in the park and Midtown.”

During the tour, the group heard the city of Atlanta: People jogging, people on scooters and dogs barking wedged between the ecosystem that the Park has preserved over the last 30 years, making Piedmont Park the true green heart of Atlanta.

If you’re interested in scheduling a tour, you can email tours@piedmontpark.org. The Park hosts free historical tours at 11 a.m. on Saturdays during the Green Market until November 30th.

If you are interested in supporting the Park, you learn more about membership at piedmontpark.org/membership.

Author: Jessica Vue

Testing on Treats: Children and Teens Become Scientists for Halloween

For October’s Homeschool Day, students of all ages learned the scientific method with the help of Halloween candy.

K – 5th Grade’s White demo activity, where grade students learned about density, the scientific method and how to make a hypothesis

6th – 12th Grade’s demo activity, where middle and high schoolers learned how to apply the scientific method and create

Walker’s jack-o-lantern, featuring a hydrogen peroxide solution.

Dana Buskovitz, education coordinator, and Kaycee Walker, assistant education coordinator, collaborate together on a science lesson plan for each Homeschool Day, which started one year ago.

“We started Homeschool Day because we wanted to reach out to all students,” Dana said.

The lesson plan was Halloween inspired, just in time for the upcoming holiday. However, there was a twist.

Grade school students hypothesized which candy bars would sink or float.

Middle and high schooler students hypothesized which type of solvents would dissolve candy corn the fastest.

Students were not allowed to eat the candy! But they were able to play with their food as they performed science experiments.

Grade schoolers completed a STEM challenge to construct a cube from gummy drops and toothpicks.

Middle and high schoolers built catapults out of forks, spoons, popsicle sticks and rubber bands. They then competed in a candy corn launching contest to see whose would go the farthest.

If you would like to join the Conservancy for next month’s Homeschool Day, you can register at piedmontpark.org/homeschool. If you would like to sign up for a field trip in the Park, you can schedule a field trip at piedmontpark.org/field-trips.

Author: Jessica Vue

Events

Winter, I Wonder, Land! Distance Learning Day in Piedmont Park

Distance Learning Days with Piedmont Park Conservancy

Once a month, the Conservancy will host a themed “Distance Learning Day” where homeschool students, distance learning students, and any other interested students can come to Piedmont Park for a field trip. Groups will be kept socially distanced from one another for the program. Maximum capacity is 30 students. Use the link below to reserve your spot today!

https://forms.gle/AXezmA3DKwVSshjJ7

 

December 15th: Winter, I Wonder, Land!

Have you ever wondered about some of the most classic winter phenomena? How do animals stay warm, how does snow form? Why does salt help with ice? Answer these questions and more with us!

 

Daily Schedule

10:00am- Check in begins for first program

10:30am-12:00pm: Kindergarten-5th grade Program

12:00pm- Check in begins for second program

12:30pm-2:00pm: Middle/High School Program

 

Additional Information

  • Please plan to wear a mask during your educational experience, and keep socially distanced from other student groups.
  • Program cost is $7 per student. Payment is due at check-in. Cash or check payment preferred. Card payment accepted with 3% transaction fee.
  • Picnic areas in the Park are available on a first-come-first-serve basis; bring sack lunches to enjoy before or after your program!
  • We look forward to having your students in the Park for Distance Learning Day. For more information or questions regarding the program please contact the Education Coordinator, Dana Buskovitz

fieldtrips@piedmontpark.org / 404-875-7275 ext. 325

Green Market (Local Farmers Market)

PLEASE NOTE: Green Market has been moved to the Park Tavern parking lot. A map can be found here. If you plan on parking in the lot, please pay the attendant.

New protocols have been put in place to create a healthy and safe environment for Market attendees. Attendees and vendors will be required to wear masks, all vendors will be spaced out appropriately and hand washing stations will be available.

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Voted one of the top five farmer’s markets in Atlanta by Access Atlanta, Green Market encourages sustainable communities in the most basic way – by providing shoppers with direct access to local farmers and small businesses. Come walk the market and enjoy the fun every Saturday from 9 am – 1 pm.

Enjoy local farmers, bakers, jams, preserves and artisan goods. There is something for everyone. While you shop, you can enjoy prepared foods and drinks for breakfast and lunch.

Dogs are welcome.