Publisher’s Letter

“People do business with people they like” was once an unwritten rule. Then online shopping shifted the way we buy from brick-and-mortar shops to a virtual store. As a result, the shop and eat local movements have emerged to reconnect customers and guests to the goods and services offered in their own community. Taking that idea one step further, the Decatur Living 2018 Holiday Guide is a look at the people who bring Decatur its most noteworthy eats and sought-after products and what’s new from them for the holidays. Get to know the local shop and restaurant owners as they share their holiday favorites and the top items that will make your holiday special.

Natalie Gregory

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Mark Your Calendar

Hops at the History Center

JANUARY 16, 5:30-8:00 p.m.

Please join the Dekalb History Center for a frank conversation with Claire Underwood Hertzler and Decatur’s Mayor Emerita Mary Elizabeth Wilson as they discuss growing up in Greene County under Sheriff Wyatt’s rule, including topics about race, law enforcement, and positive ways in which rural life can speak to today’s culture.

The High Sheriff of Greene book: $18.00
Member tickets are $5 / Non-member tickets are $10. Includes one drink ticket.
Historic DeKalb Courthouse, 2nd floor
101 E. Court Square, Decatur GA 30030

3rd Annual Lanta Gras Parade

JANUARY 26, 2-6:30 p.m.

Come build community through music Saturday, January 26th, for the 3rd Annual Lanta Gras Parade featuring over 25 Krewes and culminating in a musical celebration in downtown Kirkwood. The event is family-friendly, free, and celebrates the work of Lanta Gras, a non-profit that provides professional music lessons for neighborhood kids in need. For more information visit

Terrific Thursdays

November 1, 8, 15, 29 and December 6, 13, 20

Terrific Thursdays are back with special instore events, discounts and treats at more than 20 shops, restaurants and service providers. Participating businesses will stay open late offering beverages, snacks and special offers. Some of the planned events this year include annual traditions such as the Lighting of the Christmas Tree and Grand Menorah Lighting. Learn about these events and other holiday promotions at

Garden Lights, Holiday Nights

November 17 to January 6

Get in the holiday spirit surrounded by thousands of twinkling lights strung throughout the Atlanta Botanical Garden. This year promises to be special with new music, more lights, and the debut of the Skylights Lounge in the Skyline Garden. Find pricing, tickets, and more information at

Milk and Cookies with Santa on the Square

November 24, 2018 - 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Santa is coming out for Small Business Saturday: Share cookies and milk and take photos with Santa on the square while having your small business purchases wrapped for free. Santa will arrive at 10 a.m. on a Decatur fire truck at the East Court Square. Enjoy afresh baked cookie with milk or hot chocolate and have your wish lists ready. One digital photograph with Santa will be offered for each child. Can’t make it until later? Santa will be on hand until 3 p.m. The event is free, but reservations are requested to that the Decatur Business Association has enough cookies, milk and cocoa for all.

Small Business Saturday

November 24, 2018 - 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Santa’s visit is not the only exciting thing happening on Saturday. Support Decatur’s small businesses and visit the tent on the square for free gift wrapping, hot cocoa, snacks and a visit with Santa.

Decatur Holiday Marketplace and Café

Friday, December 7
5:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, December 8
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Support the students at Clairemont Elementary School as they host the 27th Annual Holiday Marketplace. This is an event you don’t want to miss. The school will host more than 100 local and regional artists offering handmade crafts, jewelry, paintings, photography, pottery, edibles, scents and more. Plan to grab some delicious homemade soup or desserts in the café while listening to live local music. All proceeds benefit Clairemont Elementary School’s educational programs funding teacher grants, supporting student field trips and much more.

The Nutcracker

December 8 to 24

Touted as the first new Nutcracker in 20 years, this revamped production takes center stage at The Fox Theatre. It’s sure to excite young and old alike with an all-star line-up of dancers, incredible costumes, and amazingset, lighting and projection designs. Find tickets and pricing at

Avondale Estates Christmas Tour of Homes and Holiday Market

Sunday, December 9
Tour of Homes: 3 to 8 p.m.
Market: Noon to 6 p.m.

The 26th Annual Avondale Estates Christmas Tour of Homes and Holiday Market is sure to add to the wonderful holiday spirit. The Tour of Homes features houses that have been sensitively restored or renovated to preserve the character of historic Avondale Estates. Trolleys transport guests to six of the city's most interesting homes. Continue the festivities in the clubhouse by shopping for everyone on your list. Browse jewelry, art, clothing, Christmas ornaments and more. And when you work up an appetite, stop by the Market Café for a delicious treat or two before mingling with local writers at the Authors’ Corner.

A Christmas Carol

December 12 to 24

Watch this classic tale by Charles Dickens come to life as the Alliance Theatre performs on the road at the beautiful Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center. Learn the true meaning of the season after watching Ebenezer Scrooge’s metamorphosis. Find pricing and tickets at

Bonfire on the Square

December 13, 2018 - 7 to 8 p.m.

Join your friends and neighbours for one of the most festive events of the year - roasting marshmallows around a giant bonfire on the square. The only thing that could make this evening sweeter is the live performances of the student choral groups and other holiday music. The event is free, but reservations are encouraged to ensure the Decatur Business Association has enough marshmallows and roasting sticks. Reservations will be open on the DBA website once the event nears.

Fernbank After Dark Holiday Party

Friday, December 14, 2018 - 7 to 11:30 p.m.

Celebrate the holidays with the last of the monthly series of fun for ages 21 and over at the science center. Get exclusive after-hours museum access to exhibits such as “Winter Wonderland” and “Nature’s Superheroes: Life at the Limits.” Enjoy live music by Alex Gutherie, blending soulful vocals, story-rich lyrics, and the organic synergy of the 70’s southern blues bands. It’s high-energy soul country at its gritty best; a mix of humorous and heartfelt lyrics put to driving melodies. Find pricing and tickets at

Susan G. Komen’s Bubbles and Bling

Saturday, February 16

Join Susan G. Komen Greater Atlanta for their 6th annual Bubbles and Bling. The annual eclectic cocktail party is taking you back to disco nights. All proceeds from the event benefit Susan G. Komen Greater Atlanta as they work to enable our community to detect and survive breast cancer by facilitating access to quality care, providing education and supporting research. Get your groove on and help afford lifesaving breast health services to those who would not otherwise be able to afford them. For tickets or to learn more, visit

AJC Decatur Book Festival

August 31 to September 2, 2018

The festival for every book lover! The AJC Decatur Book Festival is the largest independent book festival in the country and one of the five largest overall. Since its launch, more than 1,000 world-class authors and hundreds of thousands of festival-goers have crowded the historic downtown Decatur square to enjoy book signings, author readings, panel discussions, an interactive children’s area, live music, parades, cooking demonstrations, poetry slams, writing workshops, and more. Find schedules, presenting authors and more festival information:

Avondale Estates Farmers Market

Every Sunday through October 28

The Avondale Estates Farmers Market (AEFM) is an outdoor farmer’s market with various local vendors selling fruits, veggies, eggs, cheese, meat, baked goods, prepared foods, coffee, pasta, jam, sweet treats, handmade goods and more. Located in the parking lot of My Parents’ Basement, 22 North Avondale Road, and will continue to be open each Sunday through October 28.

Midsummer Night’s Dream

September 5 to October 21

It’s a date-night trifecta with Shakespeare, the Alliance Theatre and the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Take in one of Shakespeare’s best comedies with one of Atlanta’s finest theatre companies outdoors at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Get tickets at

Candler Park Movie Night

September 8

7:30 to 10 p.m.

Watch Coco under the stars at Candler Park with your family and friends. This is a free, community-building event. Arrive early with your picnic blanket and basket and enjoy an al fresco dinner before the movie begins.

Atlanta BeltLine Lantern Parade

September 22

7 p.m.

Walk the BeltLine from Krog Street Market to Piedmont Park in the glow of thousands of paper lanterns. Don’t be fooled by the call to bring your “homemade” lantern, this is an event you can join with or without your own lantern. If you fall into the “bring your own” camp, join one of the many lantern workshops around the area. These lanterns are akin to New Orleans Mardi Gras floats drifting in the Atlanta night air. Get details at

Fall Fest in Candler Park

September 29 to 30

This festival kicks off with a Saturday morning 5K and 1-mile Fun Run and continues with two days of live music, local food and art. Join the fun and see a full list of events at

AES Runs the World 5K

September 29

8 a.m.

Have fun while supporting the Avondale Elementary School Education Foundation (AESEF). Register now for the 2nd annual AES Runs the World 5K and (new!) Fun Run. This year’s event also includes a one miler for little legs and those who want to run or walk, just not too far. Runners and walkers are welcome! Funds raised will continue to build STEM programming and outdoor spaces (Chromebooks, STEM garden, etc.) and to help build a new playground. Register at

Decatur Tiny House Festival

September 29 to 30

Tiny House Atlanta, MicroLife Institute and the City of Decatur are excited to bring the Decatur Tiny House Festival back for its 3rd year. Tour more than 25 tiny houses, listen to guest speakers, bring your little ones to visit the Kids Corner, see local and national vendors and enjoy food from local restaurants and food trucks. The event is held in downtown Decatur at 105 Electric Avenue. VIP and General admission tickets can be purchased at

YEA! Event for Young Emerging Artists 2018

Sunday, September 30

2 to 6 p.m.

This wildly popular one-day arts event has been embraced by local students grades K-12 as a way to showcase their creativity and talent to the public. Shop at the juried outdoor artists market or enjoy live performances at a stage in Harmony Park at Oakhurst Village! Tents line Harmony Park, packed with student artists showing off a bounty of jewelry, paintings, photography, drawings, culinary delights, and handcrafted goods, all for sale. On a stage in the center of the area is a nonstop line-up of high energy performances from wild-and-wooly rock combos to blues acts, singer-songwriters, soloists and more. Find more information at

Oakhurst Porchfest 2018

Saturday, October 13

12 to 6 p.m.

Porchfest, the ultimate grassroots music festival, is an afternoon when porches all over the neighborhood become stages and people meander from yard to yard, listening, hanging out and connecting with their neighbors. It’s the largest organic, free-range, crowd-sourced music festival in Georgia, and is what Georgia’s music tourism bureau called “very likely the most diverse lineup of any festival” in the state. This unique and not-to-be-missed experience boasts of 445 performers on 185 porches. To learn more about Porchfest, the lineup or to get involved as a host or performer, check out

Decatur Craft Beer Festival

October 20

12 to 5 p.m.

Enjoy an afternoon of beer tasting and music on the square in downtown Decatur, Georgia. Each general admission ticket includes a special tasting glass and unlimited sips from more than 80 breweries. Rock out to live music throughout the festival, while a DJ keeps you moving between sets. Get the ultimate beer festival experience with a VIP ticket. Tickets on sale in September and sell out fast. Check out for more information and to purchase tickets.

2018 Open Streets Emory Village

October 28 

2 to 6 p.m.

Walk, bike, skate or roller board to the place where North Decatur and Oxford Roads meet in Emory Village. No cars allowed. This is the annual active gathering of people taking over the streets. Among the festivities, enjoy the Halloween costume parade (including a renowned pet competition), Glenn Church’s Trunk or Treat, circus acts, games to play, music and much more. This free event is organized by Emory Village Association in partnership with neighborhoods and local businesses.

ArtWalk | Decatur Wine Festival 2018

Friday, November 2

Wine and art belong together. That’s why the Decatur Wine Festival kicks off with ArtWalk. Each art spot features the work of one (or more) artists. Visit any or all of the participating locations. The event is free and open to the public. Updated locations for this year’s Art Walk will be available closer to the date of the event. Get more details at

Decatur Wine Festival 2018

November 3 

12:30 to 4:30 p.m.

On the square in Downtown Decatur • Rain or Shine Taste wines from around the globe, sample delicious food from Decatur- area restaurants, and enjoy tunes at metro Atlanta’s largest outdoor wine festival. Proceeds benefit the Decatur Arts Alliance, which produces the Decatur Arts Festival and many other arts events, free to the community each year. Tickets available at Check out the wine list and find out more at

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors

November 18 to February 17

Social media is already buzzing about this exhibit. The High Museum of Art features the most comprehensive exhibit to date of this worldrenown Japanese artist. Sell-out crowds flock to see her art, which includes transportive mirrored rooms. Tickets go on sale to members August 27 and the general public September 17. Purchase your tickets early because they are sure to sell out! Find more information at

Winter 2018 DL Exclusives

Meet the people who make Decatur the hot spot for local shopping and dining

Pro tips to shop, eat and give the best of Decatur

Living and Giving Local

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