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Kids & Family

Moms and dads from East Cobb talk about issues that are important to families. Family-friendly events are also featured. Join in and share.

No tricks, just treats at Fall Festival of Fun

Children of all ages are invited to enjoy family-friendly festivities at the 15th annual Cobb County Fall Festival 4-7 p.m., Friday, Oct. 31. The event at Jim Miller Park will include arts and crafts, children’s games, a haunted trail ride, music, costume and coloring contests, treats and giveaways.

Miller Park is located at 2245 Callaway Road in Marietta. All activities are free, but there is a fee for concessions. For more information, call 770-528-8875.


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The Teal Pumpkin Project – will you participate?


FARE is thrilled that so many families across the country are planning to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project! The idea is simple –pick up some inexpensive toys, paint a pumpkin teal and place it and a free, downloadable sign from FARE in front of your home to show that you have non-food treats to hand out.

The campaign has been tremendously popular on social media – reaching nearly 5 million people on Facebook – and has been featured by national and local media across the country. Here are just a few of the articles, news clips, and radio spots that have helped promote this fantastic campaign for inclusion:

Teal pumpkins try to change Halloween for kids with food allergies (

How to Make Halloween Less Scary for Food Allergies (

Teal pumpkins make Halloween safer for kids with food allergies (

Teaching My Daughter to Be An Advocate With The Teal Pumpkin Project (Huffington Post Blog)

Teal Pumpkin Movement Has Roots in East TN (WBIR) 

A safe Halloween for kids with food allergies (Fox 5 News New York)

Teal Pumpkin Project for Kids with Food Allergies (Good Day Columbus)

For allergic trick-or-treaters, teal pumpkin to signify special goodies(Philadelphia Inquirer)

Teal Pumpkin Project Seeks To Include Kids With Food Allergies (CBS Los Angeles)

Teal Pumpkin Project: Halloween for Chicago kids with food allergies (Chicago Parent)

Flavor HD: The Teal Pumpkin Project and dishes with bugs! (WGN Radio Chicago)

You can download a flyer on FARE’s website to pass out, or share information via email or social media. Tools are available at

Share pictures of your Teal Pumpkin Project using #TealPumpkinProject!

(Reprinted from

Kennesaw State University Sports + Entertainment Park hosts two-day Owl-O-Ween


Kennesaw State University Sports + Entertainment Park will host the second annual Owl-O-Ween Hot Air Balloon Festival Oct. 25-26. Atlanta’s only hot air balloon event is also billed as Atlanta’s largest costume party and features tethered balloon rides.

This spectacular event attracted more than 20,000 attendees last year and has now expanded the number of balloons and attractions. It will be open two days to accommodate an expected 35,000 – 40,000 people.

Owl-O-Ween will feature more than 50 vendors, food trucks, 25 artisans and a special interactive children’s area. Entertainment will be provided by stilt walkers, fire breathers, ice sculptors, belly dancers, sword swallowers, roving buskers and art vendors. There will also be an Oktoberfest-inspired food court with German-themed entertainment and craft beer gardens. A choreographed hot air balloon glow will occur from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. on Oct. 25 and from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. on Oct. 26.

Cobb Travel and Tourism will be hosting the Costume Showdown both days, and attendees are encouraged to wear costumes, especially those participating in the hot air balloon trick-or-treating experience. Contest participants can campaign to gain votes through Facebook and Twitter. Celebrity judges will award contestants prizes ranging from cash to hotel packages.

“Sponsors make this community event possible. It is exciting to see so many people come together for such a fun festival,” said Marty Elliott, executive director of the sports and entertainment park.

The festival will transform the 88-acre KSU Sports + Entertainment Park and the 8,300-seat stadium into a mystical wonderland. “The beauty of hot air balloons glowing in the night really can’t be described; this is a must-see-to-believe experience,” said Andrew Miller, president of AeroSports Promotions Marketing, whose team booked the hot air balloonists for Owl-O-Ween.

All tickets are general admission and are free for children under the age of three, $5 for children age 12 and under and $12 for adults when purchased by Oct. 17. Prices will increase to $8 for children and $15 for adults on Oct. 18. Tickets are available at www.ticketalternative,, at Kennesaw State University’s on-campus bookstore or at the KSU Fifth Third Bank Stadium box office at 3000 George Busbee Pkwy., NW, Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The KSU Stadium box office information line is: 770-794-7810.

“Little Monsters” Halloween Party at Book Exchange


Book Exchange invites all the area’s little ghosts, goblins and monsters to a Halloween party on Saturday, October 25th from 11am until 12:30pm at the Canton Highway bookstore. In addition to treats and refreshments, children are invited to participate in a costume contest, with prizes awarded for best monster, cutest, and scariest costumes.

Local elementary school teachers and co-authors of children’s books, The Butter Bean Lady and Sophie May and the Shoe Untying Fairy, Rosalind Bunn and Kathleen Howard will lead a story time. Appropriate for Halloween, they’ll share the tale in their latest release, The Three Monsters, available as a hardbound, beautifully illustrated children’s book.

Please RSVP by Oct. 24th. For more information call 770-427-4848 or visit the store’s Facebook page at BOOK EXCHANGE/MARIETTA, GA.

Cobb County 2016 SPLOST Vote Scheduled November 4

Did you know that less than 35% of voters in the July 2012 primary election were parents of school aged children (between the ages of 25 and 49)? This data is available on the Georgia Secretary of State website. Our elected officials make decisions about education and other issues that are important to our children and our community. Election results determine which individuals will make decisions that directly shape your child’s education.

As parents, we devote an enormous amount of time and energy contemplating and worrying about our children’s future. Are they receiving the best education and participating in activities that will prepare them for challenges ahead? Are their friends a good influence and are they making good choices? And so on, and so on! We know that education has a direct impact on their future.

However, are you aware of how many individuals in government office directly influence the quality of education our children are provided? Here are just a few of the leaders who have a direct impact:

• The Governor: The Governor is one of the single, most significant decision makers in education. With the assistance of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget, the Governor develops and submits an annual statewide budget proposal for review and approval by the legislature. The Governor also has “line-item” veto power, which he can use to remove appropriations he opposes. These tools allow the Governor of Georgia to play a strong role in establishing priorities for the use of state resources. In
other words, important decisions about how much money is allocated and how many resources are provided for our state’s education are made in the Governor’s office!

• The State Superintendent of Schools: The State Superintendent of Schools is the administrative head of the Georgia  Department of Education. The Superintendent oversees the state’s K-12 public education system and is charged with  establishing the policies and managing operations of the system. The office determines how federal education dollars are allocated, the type of standardized testing administered, how our teachers are evaluated and the type of standards they must meet. All these decisions directly impact your school and your child’s education.

• The Georgia General Assembly: The Georgia General Assembly consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives, both of which we, as voters, elect. As elected members, their main role is to propose and vote on legislation, including the state budget, that can and does impact the way our schools function and how our teachers educate.

• The Cobb County Board of Education (BOE): The Cobb County BOE members have full authority to control and manage the public schools within the Cobb County School District. They hire your school system’s superintendent, make our school system’s budget decisions, determine the property taxes which fund our schools and manage the implementation of the education  SPLOST dollars.

In short, guided by the policies and budget provided by the State, the Board of Education sets the direction of the Cobb County School District.

As parents, our lives are extremely hectic and it’s difficult to prioritize except when it impacts our children and their future. With this in mind, one of the most important tasks you can accomplish this November is to vote and have the opportunity to “elect” or to “hire” the individuals you believe will make the best choices for your child’s education!

Georgia’s Secretary of State is making the voting process easier than ever:

• Absentee Ballot: Any voter in the state of Georgia can request an absentee ballot for any reason. Applications must be received by October 31st and all ballots must be returned by 7:00 p.m. on November 4th. Election officials request that submissions of absentee ballot applications be turned in as soon as possible.

• Advance Voting: Throughout Cobb County, there are advance voting locations, many of which open October 13.

• Sample Ballot: You can print your very own sample ballot before Election Day. Use the sample ballot to help make decisions ahead of time, so you are well-informed and efficient.

• Polling Place Information: Enter your address and zip code on the “My Voter Page” on the Secretary of State website. This option will provide you the address of your polling place – Effortless!

To Summarize, If You Want a World Class Education – Hire the Right People! Get Out and VOTE on November 4th! For more information, visit the Georgia Secretary of State website at


(Written by Chana Wade and Kristine Schwartz, East Cobb County Council of PTAs. Chana Wade is a Co-Chair for the East Cobb County Council of PTAs. She lives in the Woodlawn Place Subdivision with her husband, Scott, and children, Jackson and Gracie, who attend Mount Bethel Elementary School. 

Kristine Schwartz is a Co-Chair for the East Cobb County Council of PTAs. She lives in Northampton Subdivision with her husband, Brian and her children, Jacob, Emily, and Harris who attend Simpson Middle School and Mountain View Elementary School.)

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Halloween Spooktacular coming to the Y


Children and parents are invited to join the McCleskey-East Cobb Family YMCA for its Halloween Spooktacular at 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 24.

Children ages 12 and under are asked to come dressed in their favorite Halloween costumes. All children can participate in carnival games, crafts and a costume parade. Every child who attends will receive prizes and healthy treats.

“Our Halloween Spooktacular is a great family event for our community,” says Kristen Gauvreau, senior membership director at the McCleskey-East Cobb Family YMCA. “We provide a safe, fun and engaging time for parents and children to participate in Halloween fun.”

The Halloween Spooktacular costs $5 per child, and will be held from 6-8 p.m. in the McCleskey-East Cobb gym, 1055 East Piedmont Road in Marietta. Game tickets are included in the registration fee. Food can be purchased for a nominal fee. Parents must accompany children and there is no cost for them.

To learn more about the McCleskey-East Cobb Family YMCA’s Halloween Spooktacular, contact Gauvreau at 678-564-2120 or


Cobb County’s only corn maze open at Still Family Farm


Still Family Farm, LLC, located just west of Atlanta in Cobb County, opened Corn on the Cobb to the public on September 6, 2014. Corn on the Cobb, an 11- acre fall attraction, includes a corn maze, hayride, pumpkin patch, heirloom tractor display, kiddie zip, and various additional activities designed to create fun family memories for local residents.

Special events such as Paint a Pumpkin and Scarecrow University are also being offered throughout the fall season. In addition, Two By Two Farms will display some of their farm animals at Corn on the Cobb on select days.

“My cousins and I have lasting memories of running these grounds in our youth, as do the generations before us and our children today,” says Leslie Still Oubre, co-founder of Still Family Farm. “Creating an attraction that gives others the opportunity to add to their own family story naturally grew from those childhood experiences. We are excited to be able to connect with our neighbors in such an organic and enjoyable way.”

Corn on the Cobb is located at 5630 Macland Road in Powder Springs and will be open Friday afternoons and evenings, Saturdays and Sunday through November 2, 2014. Special arrangements can be made for large groups. Admission is $15, and children ages four and younger are free. Directions and exact operating hours are available at

The land upon which Still Family Farm operates has been in the same family for eight generations. It was established to present opportunities for local residents to create lasting memories by connecting them to each other through the surroundings, the land, and the area’s history. Still Family Farm was founded by cousins Leslie Still Oubre and Jeffrey Still with the vision of becoming a community destination where families and neighbors can share the good food, great stories, and deep roots inherent to the Farm.


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Mt. Zion UMC Preschool Bazaar is Oct. 17-18

The Mt. Zion UMC Preschool Bazaar will be held October 17-18, 2014, 9am-2pm daily.

Over 30 vendors, silent auction, bake sale and raffle both days.  Vendors include Stella & Dot, Thirty-One, Origami Owl, Lulu & Junebug, Tupperware and more. Items including jewelry, children’s clothing, hair bows, household items, holiday decorations and much more.

Don’t miss the ‘Party in the Patch’ on Saturday October 18.  Bring the whole family for bounce houses, face painting, food and fun. More information on the Mt. Zion facebook page:


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Register now for Ultimate Cheer Fest 2014

Cheerleaders Doing Routine --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Cobb County PARKS and CheerTyme staff will present The Ultimate Cheer Fest 2014 Sunday, Nov. 2, at the Cobb Civic Center. This cheerleading competition is open to all recreation cheerleaders and the registration deadline is Wednesday, Oct. 15. There will be two divisions, “Show Only” and “Competitive Recreation.” To download the registration packet, click here.


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Mt. Bethel Christian Preschool Fall Festival


Bring the whole family out to celebrate Mt. Bethel Preschool’s Annual Fall Festival on October 11 from 10-2 pm. From bounce houses and pony rides to face painting, festival games, live DJ, silent auction, BBQ and more – this is the family festival of the season! Tickets may be purchased the day of the event for cash only. The festival will be located in the Mt. Bethel United Methodist Church parking lot located at 4385 Lower Roswell Rd., Marietta, GA 30068. For more information, please visit

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