Archive - Happenings RSS Feed

Groove to the Motown Revue at the Strand


The gig:

There “ain’t no mountain high enough” that can keep you from coming to see this energy-packed, high-kicking show at the Strand! From the moment I heard the first actress sing for her mic check, I knew the dress rehearsal I was about to watch would be entertaining…and it was! Smiling from beginning to end, I felt like dancing in the streets after the last number. You don’t want to miss these power-house voices and explosive dances!

I had a chat with the director, Laura Gronek, about the show and why “America could use a little soul.”



Q & A with the director:

Q: What can people expect when they come see this?

A: Well this is the 5th year of doing this, so we have a strong production team that has been in the show before and a lot of incredibly talented community and professional performers, so everyone’s coming together to bring it their all.

The attraction is the high-energy dance, diva vocals, and tight harmonies… I compare us to almost a Vegas show or a revue in Pigeon Forge… that kind of tourist attraction.




Q: How did this show come about? You said you’ve done this for a few years now, so how did it all happen?

A: The former executive director of the theatre was a former high school teacher at Pebblebrook Performing Arts School, so after he retired from teaching, he came here to lead the theatre. It was in ruins, but he came and they renovated, and opened it back up in 2009.

He wanted to bring musical revues and give a community theatre opportunity to people in Marietta to have the stage. They’ve done several different revues over the years, a Vegas show, a Broadway revue, we have a pretty successful Christmas show that we’ve done for two years and we’re getting ready to do it again for a third year this December.

The Motown revue continues to do so well! It’s such an influential genre; the older generation, regardless of race, grew up with the music, and the younger generation we either know it from our parents or from movies…it’s everywhere! It’s a very permeating music.



Q: What’s your favorite thing about this particular show?

A: The way the different talents come together to put on this incredible show. There are strong dancers who can’t necessarily sing and there are strong singers who can’t necessarily dance, but we all work together and pull each other up to the same level and the result is incredible to see after just 3 weeks! Which is crazy…and sometimes I think we are!

The guide: 

Dates: July 3-July 26

Times: Friday and Saturday nights at 8pm with Sunday matinees at 3pm

Buy your tickets quick before they’re gone!


Celebrate with a Bang: Your Guide to 4th of July Festivities

savethe gig:

Tomorrow, it’s time to get your ‘Murica on and celebrate 239 years of independence. We can’t think of a better way to do it than by gathering friends and family together at one of these local Independence Day celebrations:



If you’ve already got a plan for the 4th, then this event is for you. On July 3, the City of Kennesaw is hosting a celebration of freedom, music and fireworks. Expect two stages of live music, festive street entertainment, food vendors, kid’s activities and, everyone’s favorite part of all, a fireworks finale starting at 9:30 p.m.

Need-to-know info

Location: Downtown Kennesaw
Contact: Kennesaw Parks & Recreation, 770-422-9714
When: July 3, 6 to 10 p.m.
Admission: Free


If your heart beats red, white and blue, you won’t want to miss the city of Marietta’s Fourth in the Park celebration. The fun kicks off at 10 a.m. and includes the Marietta Freedom Parade with an expected 2,000 participants, free live concerts, museum tours, arts and crafts show, food, carnival games and (of course) a not-to-be-missed fireworks finale. (Tip: Arrive early, crowds are expected to number around 30,000!)

Need-to-know info

Location: Marietta Square
Contact: Kennesaw Parks & Recreation, 770-422-9714
When: Festival runs from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., starting with the parade at 10 a.m. Fireworks begin at dark. 
Admission: Free



Come with an American flag in hand to wave on the parade that begins at 10 a.m. After the parade, head to The Park at City Center (101 Arnold Mill Rd.) to enjoy food, live music in the gazebo, children’s games, cake walk, arts and crafts, Adam the Juggler, and vendors of all types until 3:00 p.m. For the fireworks, plan to head to the Target shopping center at Hwy 92 and I-575 at dusk.

Need-to-know info

Location: The Park at City Center for the daytime celebration and the Target shopping center at Hwy 92 and I-575 for the fireworks. 
For more info:
When: July 4, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Fireworks begin at dusk.


Freedom will be ringing loud and clear at the one of the largest fireworks extravaganzas in Metro Atlanta at Cauble Park in Acworth. Food vendors begin selling at noon; live music starts at 4 p.m. and continues until the fireworks begin at 9:30 p.m. After the big show, stay for the final concert until 11 p.m.

Need-to-know info

Location: Cauble Park in Acworth
Contact: City of Acworth, 770-917-1234
When: Live music beings at 4 p.m. Fireworks begin at 9:30 p.m.
Parking: There will be limited parking within Cauble Park. If lot is full, you will need to park downtown.


Happy Birthday, America!

Plan a Stress-Free Summer Bash

the gig:

Mobile Art PartyIf hosting a party is somewhere on your summer agenda, we’ve got a stress-free solution you’re sure to love: Mobile Art Party. It’s a painting party that comes to you! 

This genius little business, owned by local gal Tinya Smith, will take the work out of party planning. So, you know, you can actually enjoy the shindig you’re throwing.
During the art parties, which typically last from 1.5 to 2.5 hours, Tinya will walk you through creating one of the pre-chosen art pieces from her website. If a traditional canvas print isn’t your thing, wine glasses and wine bottles are in her upcoming party plans.
And, the best part: Tinya comes to you. She can bring the party (read: the paint, supplies and FUN!) to your home, a park or even a private room at a local restaurant. All you need to bring are the friends. Of course, a few tasty libations wouldn’t hurt either.
So whether you and your ladies are way overdue for a girl’s night out, you need to plan your nine-year-old’s birthday party or you’re in charge of your work’s next after-hours mixer, Mobile Art Party is sure to make your next gathering the talk of the summer party season. 

the guide: 

To reserve your party today, contact Tinya Smith at 404-314-3257 or email her at Visit her website at

WellStar Chemotherapy Center: Helping the Fight Against Cancer

Cancer just got a new Public Enemy Number One, thanks to WellStar’s new chemotherapy center, unveiled at the WellStar Kennestone Regional Medical Center in May.

the gist:

WellStar Health System is looking out for its cancer patients with its addition of a new state-of-the-art Outpatient Infusion Center at Kennestone, providing those undergoing chemotherapy with a higher level of comfort, amenities and emotional support, including room for visitors to accompany patients during their treatments.

The 6,600 square-foot area is divided into semi-private nursing bays, each with a nurse dedicated to four patients. Each patient area includes a media cabinet, adjustable lighting and a closet for personal belongings.

“The new Outpatient Infusion Center at Kennestone Hospital was designed with the patient in mind,” said Joel Helmke, vice president of oncology services. “Having someone there to hold your hand can provide healing and assures patients they are not alone in their fight against cancer.”

“They have put so much thought into the new center,” said Sherry Reid, a patient undergoing chemotherapy for ovarian cancer who only has two infusion treatments remaining. “They really thought of everything when they planned this space for people with cancer.”

the guide:

The new center is located on the WellStar Kennestone Regional Medical Center campus in building 340, just steps from the Cancer Center parking deck.

WellStar Health System is the largest not-for-profit health system in Georgia and serves a population of more than 1.4 million residents in five counties. 

For more information, call 770-956-STAR or visit

Popcorn Alert: $1 kids’ movies all summer long at Regal Cinema

the gig:

As a general rule, we’re all about getting kiddos out and about to explore the world and breathe in some good ol’ fresh air. But, let’s face it, there are times that chasing your kids around the park or splash pad just isn’t going to happen. (Hello, 90-degree days, we’re looking at you!) On those days, plopping down next to your kids in a dark, air-conditioned theater for a couple of hours is a perfectly respectable option.

And, thanks to Regal Cinemas 2015 Summer Movie Express, you won’t have to shell out big bucks to enjoy a show. Every Tuesday and Wednesday at 10 a.m. throughout the summer, you can catch popular movies from the past few years for just $1 per ticket. (The seating is first-come, first-served so plan to arrive a bit early!)

While the showing dates vary from theater to theater (click here to check the theater schedule nearest you), you can expect to find these big screen hits for little ones on this summer’s showtime list:

The Nut Job
Earth to Echo
Rio 2
How To Train Your Dragon 2
Mr. Peabody and Sherman
Book of Life
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb
Penguins of Madagascar
Madagascar 3
Dolphin Tale 2
Muppets, Most Wanted
Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
The Lego Movie
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water

Happy watching!

the guide:

Click here to check the Summer Movie Express schedule nearest you.

Summer Movie Express 1 Dollar Movies.ashx

Athens Summer Getaway

The gig:

This hip little city isn’t just good for a Dawgs’ game day during the fall. Athens maintains a charming vibe year-round with its delectable food variety, adorable coffee shops and stores, and charitable locals. Whether you choose to check out these spots before the big game or during the summer on the weekend, here’s our insider’s guide to the little nooks you don’t want to miss:

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Breakfast at Ike & Jane. There’s no better way to start your day in Athens than with a good cup of coffee and yummy jalapeno and bacon sandwich at Ike & Jane. Spicy isn’t your thing? No problem! The always-sweet workers are happy to show you their menagerie of donuts made at the crack of dawn every day, along with other tasty pastries and meals. 

Ike & Jane closes at 2 on the weekend, so you better get in there to grab the goodness before it’s gone! Check out their menu and hours here.


Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Brunch at Heirloom. Still hungry? No worries; Heirloom will make sure you are happily satisfied until dinner with their vast array of healthy and delicious meals. This cute little café is also a huge supporter of local farmers and uses only the freshest, high-quality ingredients for your enjoyment.

Lunch is also available at Heirloom, but in order to get their Pulled Pork Hash, you have to go there for brunch. Take it from someone who’s eaten it…the hash is a game changer and you must try it! For more information check out their website


Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Strawberry Picking at Washington Farms. Maybe strawberries sound a little crazy after just eating these incredible meals at Ike & Jane and Heirloom, but what better reward for walking off your food than picking some fresh strawberries along the way!

Strolling around beautiful Washington Farms isn’t too shabby in and of itself, but when taking home a bucket of your very own strawberries (and maybe even buying some refreshing strawberry ice cream) is in the picture, you know it’s too good to pass up. For other fun farm activities throughout the year, check out their site



Processed with VSCOcam with g3 presetLake Herrick at UGA. The campus at UGA is pretty fantastic and worth walking through. There are, however, some hidden gems some students may not even know about. Here’s an exclusive spot for you: walking around Lake Herrick.


Sure, you have a lovely view of the Intramural parking deck, but it’s easy to get swept up in nature when you walk along the numerous trails next to the lake and further into the mini forest. If you’re stuffed from all the delicious food you’ve been having all day, this is the perfect place to walk, run, or hook up an eno on the dock and just enjoy this little slice of heaven.



Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Dinner at Trappeze Pub. After your peaceful afternoon of strawberry picking and enjoying nature, you’re probably starting to get hungry again, so where should you go?

Downtown holds the jackpot of the Athens food scene, and one of its prized restaurants is this neat little pub. If one place could sum up the unique, intimate, and just-plain-cool vibe of Athens, it’s Trappeze. Its one-of-a-kind food is hard to forget and is a craving I have often.

If you’re stuck on what to order (since the menu is wealthy with delicious options), I would recommend the Trappeze Dubbel. You may be unable to move from being so stuffed, but oh, it is so worth it. To peruse through the other mouth-watering options look here


Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Mini Concert at Hendershots. So now you’re really stuffed but still itching for one more fun event before you end your lovely day in Athens; what do you do? Go to Hendershots of course! Hendershots is a lovely getaway or study spot during the day, but it’s a jam-packed, energized room of fun at night, too! Every evening, there’s a new event, whether it’s Open Mic Night, Casual Comedy, or a mini concert featuring local artists just sharing their hidden talents.

If you’re still a little hungry or need a late-night snack (which would be very impressive considering your menu for the day), Hendershots also has tasty little treats and coffee drinks you can sip on while enjoying the local musicians rock out. To check out the hip little coffee shop, go here


This list of activities and dining is just the tip of the iceberg; there are so many fun and exciting things happening in Athens, whether in the music, food, clothing or events scene. This can only mean one thing: you’ll just have to keep coming back again and again to experience all this great city has to offer!

Free Saturday Morning Live Shows for Kids at The Strand!

strand2the gist:

The Earl Smith Strand Theatre is launching a series of free live performances for kids on Saturday mornings. The Saturday Morning Live series runs every Saturday through June and July, and includes nine shows total. Saturday Morning Live is always free for everyone to attend, so bring the whole family!

 “Ms. Noodle Head has Georgia on Her Mind”, Tattling Tales (JUNE 13 @ 10AM & 12PM) Ms. Noodle Head is all set to make Georgia a shining example for the rest of the nation as she proves how much Georgia is on her mind. She takes everyone on a year-round tour of fun festivals throughout the state; and along the way she tells some interesting legends about our Peach State.

“The Princess and the Pea”, A Company of Friends Theater (JUNE 20 @ 10AM & 12PM) 

The hilarious Royal Jester weaves a story of zany conflict as the Queen’s Mother wishes Philip to wed and take on responsibilities as future King, but the Queen feels no one is good enough for her baby! Laughter, music and mayhem abound in this engaging story with a twist.

Miss Gail and the Jumpin’ Jam Band (JUNE 27 @ 10AM & 12PM) 

Miss Gail and the Jumpin’ Jam Band gets kids up and moving with original music.  The band is a group of crazy performers made up of professional musicians. They are a great combination of silly, crazy fun with a foundation of great music that is developmentally appropriate for even the youngest kids.

Strand Theatre“A is for Anansi, B for Brer Rabbit, C for Coyote”, Mama Koku’s Storytellin’ (JULY 4 @ 12PM & 2PM) 

Getting little ones excited about telling stories is the driving force behind these interactive tales. Oral language really gets rollin’ once Mama Koku starts tellin’, and the children are encouraged to tell along, sing along, and read along too.

“Out of Africa: Journey to the Americas”, Ritmo Blu World Percussion (JULY 11 @ 10AM & 12PM) 

Ritmo Blu guides students along the slave trade routes of the 1880’s, stopping to point out the impact Africans had on the music, instruments, rhythms and dances of Brazil, Cuba, Puerto Rico and the United States.

Havana Son (JULY 18 @ 10AM & 12PM)

Children learn about rhythms and styles of music from different Spanish speaking countries. Packed with facts about countries, their capitols and populations the program makes learning fun! Children participate by singing, clapping, dancing and playing percussion instruments.

“Diggery Digger’s Dino Adventure”, Sean Driscoll (July 25 @ 9:30AM & 11AM) 

Come along for a rocking dino adventure with Diggery and save the human race. Combined with intriguing magic and rocking music, this is the Story Ship’s most memorable adventure.

“The Adventures of the Gingerbread Man”, All Hands Productions (August 1 @ 9:30AM & 11AM) 

In this 40 minute show, you’ll follow this little troublemaker as he makes narrow escapes from unsuspecting cookie lovers. There are lots of characters to meet in this wacky, fun-filled show!

the guide:

For more information or tickets, visit or the Box Office at 770-293-0080 or 117 North Park Square, Marietta, Ga 30060.

The Box Office is open Monday through Friday from 11AM to 6 PM, and two hours before the show.

The historic Earl Smith Strand Theatre is a multi-use performing arts and events facility. The theatre is governed by the Friends of the Strand, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and depends on the financial support of private and corporate donors. The Strand’s mission is to serve the community with cultural entertainment for a diverse audience and to promote economic health in the City of Marietta and Cobb County.

Training in Arms: the hard, real way to learn what matters

Think Melissa Top Agent.comBy age 21, Melissa Krudwig was deployed to Southwest Asia, serving with the Army Air Defense Artillery. Several wartime deployments later, she left the military as a senior captain. Given her tough-as-nails background, it’s no wonder Melissa is now called the “Bear of Real Estate.” Here’s what else the military taught her:


“I don’t give up,” says Melissa—which is good, given that just weeks after her first closing, the market crashed. “I had to make it or break it. Thankfully, the military taught me to persevere.” Her team was recently named Number One Sales Team again for 2014 for Keller Williams Signature Partners and was listed as a Top Ten Team in the Southeast Region. How’s that for persevering?


“During wartime, you see real problems. So now, if a deal begins to fall apart, we problem solve for our clients,” she says. “In the military, you either solve it or keep the problem.”


“After leaving the military, real estate emerged as a natural way to keep serving,” says Melissa. “We don’t work for the dollar transaction. We serve our clients because our reputation and integrity matter. I was taught that at an early age, and it still guides me today.”•

Military Care PackageMilitary Care Packages:

The Think Melissa Team annually sends care packages to deployed service members. Drop new magazines, sunscreen, toiletries, thank-you notes, hard candy, etc. at Aqua-Tots Kennesaw or BounceU Kennesaw by June 30, 2015. To help, call 770-310-3269.

the guide:
Call Melissa Krudwig, the “Bear of Real Estate,” and the Think Melissa Team for all of your Luxury Home needs at 678-631-1729 or 770-310-3269,

Think Melissa NEW LOGO

In Search Of Summer

By: Candice Rose

Running through a sprinkler, watching clouds float by, sipping lemonade: It’s the simple pleasures of summertime that stand out in vivid relief as the very best of times. Inspired by summers gone by, we’ve put together three trips — a day trip, a weekend getaway and a full-fledged week at the beach, all within Georgia — because no matter how much time you have (or don’t), there is always time for appreciating summer’s simple pleasures.

the gig:

A Day Trip to Serenbe    

Serenbe Wine

the guide:

Where: About 30 minutes south of the Atlanta airport.                                                                                

What: Serenbe is a serene community where you can do just about anything — or happily nothing at all.        

The No-Plan Plan: Show up on a sunny day and see what adventures await you! You’ll find miles of trails that cut through woods and meadows. Stop by and say hello to some super sweet farm animals, and if you’re lucky, the miniature donkeys will make an appearance.  Then, rediscover the childhood pleasure of carefree bouncing; there are two in-ground trampoline treasures! Peruse the quaint shops and stop by Selborne Sweets for hand-dipped ice cream. Saturday’s Farmers and Artists Market is a must-do. This eclectic market featuring farm-fresh goodies and artisan-crafted wares runs every Saturday morning from 9 a.m. to noon, May through October. Also, don’t miss the fried chicken served up by The Farmhouse restaurant. This divine dish is exclusively served during weekend lunches, so be sure to make a reservation.              

Serenbe food Web
Price and Accommodations: Want to turn your day trip into an overnight visit? Choose from a variety of accommodations including rooms at the inn, cottages and rental homes. Rates start at $275/night. 

Special Offer: Special tasting menu at The Farmhouse + an overnight stay at the Inn for $155!  Offer good only on Thursday or Sunday, must be booked by July 1, 2015, and does not include tax, gratuity or alcohol. This offer is exclusive to Little Black Dress readers, so be sure to mention us! | 770-463-2610 | 10950 Hutcheson Ferry Rd. Chattahoochee Hills, GA 30268

the gig:

A Weekend Trip to Callaway Gardens

bfly 091


the guide:

Where: Located in Pine Mountain, just outside of Columbus, Georgia.                                                  

 What: Founded in the 1950s, Callaway was a modest garden of azaleas. Now, the garden has grown into a sprawling resort.                                                                                                           

The Garden Getaway Itinerary: Friday Evening: Hit the trails before the sun sets. Azalea Trail and Mountain Creek Trail are two of our favorite places to stop and smell the roses. Afterward, swing by The Callaway Gardens Market to check out goodies from local purveyors. Then head to the Gardens Restaurant for a memorable meal overlooking the lake. Saturday: Swing through the trees with a trip to the TreeTop Adventure Zip Lining and Obstacle Course. Next up is lunch at Robin Lake Beach Bar, followed by soaking up the sun and splashing in the water. Sunday: Head to the golf course or wile away the day casting a line in the Falls Creek Lake. Or, simply catch up on some reading, sip a cool beverage and take in the magnolias, oaks and fresh air. Be sure to check the event calendar for more info on some of Callaway’s signature summertime events, such as July’s Star Spangled Beach Party and the Sky High Balloon Festival during Labor Day weekend.  
balloon festival
Price and Accommodations: Four types of accommodations: Mountain Creek Inn, Southern Pine Cottages, Mountain Creek Villas & Vacation Homes, and The Lodge and Spa. Prices vary by type of accommodation; rooms start around $110. All overnight rates include Gardens admission, Fitness Center and Wi-Fi access. Extra fees for activities like boat rental, golf and zip lining.
Special Offer: Receive 10% off Summer Beach Trip Package, when you mention Little Black Dress Magazine. Call or visit site for package details. |1-800-852-3810 | 17800 US Highway 27 Pine Mountain, GA 31822

the gig: 

A Week Away From it All at The King and Prince

Cocktails Lobby

the guide:

Where: St. Simons, Georgia, on the Atlantic coast.

What: A historic seaside resort on the stunning St. Simons Island. 

The Simple Pleasure Schedule: With over 75 years in the hospitality biz, this newly renovated gem of the Golden Isles is the perfect blend of historical charm and the latest luxuries. Here, life moves at a slower, more serene pace. Soak in the sun and catch a deck-side bite to eat by the ocean-view pools. Then, schedule a sublime massage treatment at The Royal Treatment Cottage. Once you’re relaxed and rejuvenated, it’s adventure time. Biking, fishing, kayaking, horseback riding and shooting school are some of the many options. Or, rediscover your inner artist with painting and photography classes. Dining is always delicious at ECHO, the oceanfront restaurant and bar, where you’ll enjoy live music and ocean-fresh seafood.

Swimming Pool, The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort.  St. Simons Island, GA.

Swimming Pool, The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort. St. Simons Island, GA.

Price and Accommodations: From oceanfront suites to beach villas and homes, the King and Prince offers accommodation options perfect for a romantic getaway, family trip, or large event. Rates begin around $265.

Special Offer: King and Prince is offering Little Black Dress readers a free one-level upgrade on the accommodation of your choice. So, if you book a partial oceanview villa, you’ll be upgraded to an oceanview villa! Be sure to mention Little Black Dress Magazine when you call to book. | 912-638-3631 | 201 Arnold Road St. Simons Island, GA 31522 


Local Memorial Day Events

the gig:

It’s Memorial Day weekend. The unofficial start of summer, and the perfect time  to enjoying cookouts, sun and pool time with friends and family.

But amidst all the revelry, let’s not forget that paying tribute to the fallen soldiers who made our way of life possible is what Memorial Day is really all about. With this in mind, we’ve rounded up a list of local events commemorating those who have given their lives for our freedom. 


Smyrna Memorial Day Ceremony, Monday at 9:30, 20th Century Veterans Memorial, 2800 King Street, Smyrna

After a ceremony honoring local veterans, stick around for music by the 116th Army Band, Georgia National Guard, a cookout at the nearby American Legion post and other patriotic activities for the whole family, including a display of military equipment and vehicles.


Marietta Memorial Day Ceremony, Monday at noon, Marietta National Cemetery, 500 Washington Ave NE, Marietta 

To pay tribute to the more than 10,000 veterans who are buried at the 140-year-old Marietta National Cemetery–and all who have given their lives for our country–the National Memorial Day Association of Georgia will host a ceremony on the cemetery grounds. In addition the live music, the event will include a posting of the colors, prayers, and a gun salute.


Kennesaw Mountain Memorial Day Events, Sunday & Monday, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, 900 Kennesaw Mountain Drive, Kennesaw

Wow your little ones (but warn them of loud sounds first!) with artillery demonstrations and cannon fire this Sunday and Memorial Day at 11 a.m., noon, 2 p.m., and 3 p.m. at the Visitor Center at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield. Military memorabilia, including a Veterans’ Uniform Display will also be on showcase from 9:30 am – 4pm on both Sunday and Monday. 


Woodstock Memorial Day Ceremony, May 25, 10 a.m., The Park at City Center, 101 East Main Street, Woodstock

A bevy of local veterans’ groups (including the American Legion and Marine Corp League) will join together in a ceremony, including live music, to honor the lost lives of military service members 




Page 1 of 3212345»102030...Last »