October Headwater Highlights

Vote for South Fork Volunteer Hero

A sweaty-gloved Bob Scott maintains the Confluence Trail.

A sweaty-gloved Bob Scott maintains the Confluence Trail.

We need your help voting to honor a quiet hero. Bob Scott on Armand Road is a steady presence on the confluence trail with his dogs and his 22" push mower. He's up for a $10,000 prize from Cox Conserves. "I was completely surprised," Bob says. I had no idea - they left a voice mail and at first I thought it was a sales call. I had to listen to it twice before it really registered!" Hear his own words on a 2 minute video here.

He inspires confidence, encourages trail users and opens the creek to new admirers with his daily routine.

Cox Conserves, the national sustainability program of Cox Enterprises, chose him as a finalist for their Hero Award. If you help us vote him the winner, he promises to give the $10,000 prize to the Conservancy.

Vote now- Make Bob our Cox Conserves Hero. Deadline is November 3rd.

After you vote, please share this video with your friends and neighbors. Your vote honors Bob's dedication and helps us raise $10,000 for the connected vision he supports.


Sunny Open for Cheshire Farm Trail

The ribbon cutting crowd gathers for a group trail tour. Joseph Cheshire leads the way. This pictures was also featured in the AJC's piece on the ribbon cutting

A new trail for urban nature lovers drew a cheering crowd on September 29. Partners snipped a kudzu ribbon to let 75 supporters explore the new Cheshire Farm Trail and bridges.

From Left to Right: SFC Board Chairman Bob Kerr, SFC Executive Director Sally Sears, Councilman Alex Wan, Sustainability Director Denise Quarles, Dept of Parks and Rec Commissioner Amy Phuong. Photo courtesy of Eric Bowles' Photography

The crowd stood beneath the 80 foot GA 400 ramp, celebrating the half mile trail created by a partnership of Georgia DOT, the City of Atlanta, The South Fork Conservancy, Lindridge Martin Manor Neighborhood and the Lindbergh LaVista Corridor Coalition.

 "What I found so exciting about this event was the number of people who showed up from all over the city representing so many different neighborhoods," notes LLCC President Henry Batten. "It was almost like a family reunion."

The kudzu cutting was so successful, it was repeated at the end of the event, with Home Depot friends with clippers.

From left to right: Home Depot Lindbergh Store Manager David Sharpton, Lieutenant Jeff Baxter APD, Director of Sustainability Denise Quarles, newly appointed commissioner of City of Atlanta Parks and Recreation Amy Phuong, Home Depot Regional Manager Jabarr Bean, Atlanta Council President Ceasar Mitchell, Center Forward Planning's Heather Alhadeff. Photo courtesy of Eric Bowles' Photography

... (to read the whole story, sign up to receive our printed newsletter). View more  of Eric Bowles' fantastic Ribbon Cutting Photos. 


SCAD To Create Confluence "Guardian" Art Under The Bridge 

I-85 overpass on the Confluence Trail

I-85 overpass on the Confluence Trail

Gregor Turk's sculpture class from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) paced beneath the hulking I-85 overpass on the Confluence trail, seeing a brighter future for this sometimes forbidding area. The students' idea?  Paint some of the columns linking them to the nearby creek. Use Georgia clay as paint base; then stencil images of water, native leaves and insects.

 

These beautiful installations will usher walkers through the underpass and on to the Confluence.

The idea took off. Students took it to neighborhood trail users, the local planning unit NPU F. Support grew quickly.

Today, a year after Gregor Turks' class examined the underpass, property owner Georgia DOT  said yes to the project. Now, all that stands between the students and their concrete canvas is fund raising. $20,000 needed for supplies, oversight and equipment.

A gift of dollars will make a scary space a treat to visit! Do you want to help bring these plans to life? Reply to this email or donate here. 


Old, New Cedars to Flourish On Trail

 

Alcoa employee Matthew Miller preps the trail side for the Deodar sapling.

Alcoa employee Matthew Miller preps the trail side for the Deodar sapling.

Dozens of stately Deodar Cedars have new baby relatives sheltering the Cheshire Farm trail, thanks to Trees Atlanta and volunteers from Alcoa.

The trees were almost invisible to motorists on I-85, hidden with 20 years of ivy and kudzu infestation. Trail builders got an up-close view of the tall cedars, native to the Himalaya, and noticed several were dead or dying.

Trees Atlanta's Brian Williams found five tall saplings, and led the volunteers to plant them close to the Lindbergh Drive trail entrance. 

Got clippers? Ivy Cut!

Got clippers? Ivy Cut!

 

The group also began freeing the older trees from the debilitating clutches of English Ivy. Planting trees and clearing vines is hard work, and we're immensely grateful to this cheerful team for accomplishing so much. Also, here's a BIG shout out to Trees Atlanta for donating the saplings and leading the effort.

Cedrus deodara are hardy, slow growing trees with a broad canopy, fat cones and richly scented needles, likely to provide shade for generations of hikers. 


The Cheshire Family: History Lives In The Present

by Celia Lismore

The Cheshires attend the Cheshire Farm Ribbon Cutting. From left to right: Curtis Cheshire, Joseph Cheshire, Barbara (Bebe) Cheshire

I grew up driving up and down Cheshire Bridge Road, never knowing the Cheshires were not only still around, but full of life. When I sat down with Bebe, Curtis, and Joe Cheshire, I hoped I was in for a treat- I wasn't disappointed. Bebe, full of energy, launched immediately into a lively discussion.

"When I heard about what you all were doing down there on Peachtree creek, I got so excited," says Bebe. "If I had a million dollars, I'd use it to clean up Peachtree Creek." An avid historian, Bebe deeply recognizes the significance of the creek, especially within her own family.

The two sons of Hezekiah Cheshire and Sarah Goodwin Cheshire, Napoleon and Solomon Jerome (born in the early-mid 1800s), settled their families on either side of the North Fork of Peachtree Creek. They built a bridge to provide access to each others' homes, inspiring the name Cheshire Bridge Road. Napoleon's classic 18th Century home commanded the hill adjacent to the Cheshire Farm Trail Head until the death of his maiden daughters, Cora and Carrie Mae, in the 1940s (information gained from Bebe's book The Spirit of Rock Spring).

Napoleon Cheshire's Farm House (used to stand across the street from the Cheshire Farm Trailhead on Cheshire Bridge Road)

"Oh they were just the cutest old maids there ever could be," remembers BeBe. Cora and Carrie lived in the house until their death, leaving it nearly unaltered. Growing up in the shadow of this grand house, Bebe, a daughter of Wright family, grew up playing in the creek with the Cheshire kids.

 "Our mother forbid us from playing in the creek, so we had to sneak down there," recalls Curtis Cheshire. "But she always found out. We asked her how she knew and all she would say was that 'A bird told me.' This bird mystified us for years until she admitted our dirty socks were what gave us away."

 These families were tied together by their membership at Rock Spring Church on Piedmont Road. More than a church, the building was and still is a community center. Bebe, active at Rock Spring and in the Atlanta community, says she'd love to do what she can to support the effort to restore Peachtree Creek.


Summer's End On The South Fork

By Donna Davis, Cedar Chase Association

Golden Rod in its glorious bloom

I have a routine.  Every day when I get home and get changed, my dogs and I rush outside for a round of fetch and a treasure hunt on the Confluence trail.   While we've all been busy enjoying the cooler days of Autumn, the insect life has been working hard on the trail ensuring we'll have a colorful season and a brilliant spring.   And, those treasures?? Much easier to find in the Autumn when the vivid hues of summer are fading to a softer more mature palate providing just the right back drop for the jewels popping up along the trail these days.

In recent days, I've come across eye poppingly gorgeous clumps of Goldenrod so heavy they bend the stalks supporting them.  Check out this dazzling display resting softly on a fallen log just waiting to be discovered and appreciated!  

Bee enjoying argeratum

 

Just a few steps ahead I stumbled upon some very busy bees at work pollinating late summer Ageratum, preparing it for next year's stunning entrance.   Doesn't the purple remind you of an early Autumn sunset?

And, if you're worried there might not be any flowers for you to see, the trees always provide a cornucopia of delightful secrets for you to find.  I just LOVE Autumn.... Not only do our trees provide beauty and grace, they also shelter some of the most delicate and hard-working inhabitants of the trail.

So grab your gear...whatever that is (kids, dogs,  cameras...) and go treasure hunting while Autumn is still working hard to make it worth your while!   Happy Hunting!

Posted on November 4, 2014 .