Middle Georgia Community
Updated On: 10/30/2012 7:13:05 PM
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The largest state east of the Mississippi River, Georgia is blessed with mile-high mountains, a seashore of more than 100 miles along the Atlantic Ocean, sand clay plains and red Piedmont Hills. Rich in resources, character, and tradition Georgia and its 58,576 square miles is known as the Empire State of the South. Symbolic of this character and tradition is the city of Atlanta. Founded in 1837 as a site for the southwestern terminal of the Western and Atlantic Railroad, the city was first named Terminus. To honor the sitting governor, the name was changed to Marthasville, in tribute to his daughter. When it was discovered that the new name was too long to write on freight orders, the name was changed for the third and final time in 1847 to Atlanta. Today, the city stands as the reigning leader in the developing new South. It supports a viable international economy along with its strongly diversified regional foundations in banking, real estate, transportation, medicine and manufacturing. The city also has emerged as a major convention paradise and a booming tourist destination that offers an exciting variety of world-class hotels, attractions, events and dining oasis.
But Georgia is much more than just the big city. Recreational facilities abound throughout the state. Major man-made lakes, with hundreds of miles of shoreline, cover more than 300,000 acres. Eight major flood-control reservoirs, under control of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, cover 261,560 acres. Their by-products provide areas for pleasure boating, fishing and swimming. The Fabulous Golden Isles, with their miles of sandy white beaches, adorn Georgia's coast, offering year-round golfing and fishing. Deep in South Georgia, near Waycross, is the Okefenokee Swamp, an unconquered 660 square miles of federal preserve where wildlife and natural beauty are protected for public enjoyment. Savannah, hostess city of the South, was one of the first planned cities in North America. It gains much of its charm from its cobble-stoned river front section, broad avenues and many oak-shaded squares. The first settlement in Georgia was started in Savannah in 1733 when General James Edward Oglethorpe and a band of English settlers sailed into Savannah harbor. Savannah's famed Bull Street is one of the classic Avenues of America. In the Pine Mountain area of Georgia are Franklin D. Roosevelt's Little White House in Warm Springs and Callaway Gardens, which includes 11 lakes, and features water skiing, golfing, fishing and a unique country store.
Georgia has 63 state parks and historic sites. Most of Georgia's state parks, which are located within easy driving distance of every major population area of the state, offer tenting accommodations and nearly one-third of the state parks feature cottages for rent. The Georgia Historical Commission has set up 15 shrines to perpetuate Georgians' interest in their own history.
From a tiny hamlet of 50 people in 1940, Warner Robins has evolved into Georgia's tenth largest city with a population of approximately 63,000, according to the 2000 U.S. Census. Warner Robins takes great pride in the diversity and harmony of its people. Citizens from all 50 states and several foreign countries and all walks of life combine their talents, resulting in a community that is both progressive and spirited.
Located in Houston (pronounced house-ton) County, Warner Robins is easily accessible by both Interstates 75 and 16, giving the city major transportation patterns in every direction. A moderate climate produces an average winter temperature of 50.2 degrees, while the summer average is 82.4 degrees. The last freeze is usually about March 15, and the first freeze of autumn takes place around Nov. 15. Average annual rainfall measures 44.7 inches. Warner Robins is 365 feet above sea level.
With more than 140 civic and service organizations and more than 70 churches, residents have the opportunity to quickly become involved in community activities. Also, there are outlets for people with theater, art and musical interests.
The Houston Medical Center is a modern health-care facility with a 180-bed capacity and the most up-to-date equipment. More than 100 physicians and dentists cater to the health care needs of the community. Additionally, there are several fine nursing homes for the elderly in the city. An active Community Crisis Center serves as a source of information, counseling and referral to those in need.
Education is a top priority in Warner Robins. All schools are fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Instructors cater to students with special needs, and there is an exclusive program for gifted children.
In Warner Robins, Middle Georgia Technical Institute opened a branch in 1974 to serve as a manpower-training center for high school students and adults desiring to upgrade their job skills. Registration is required at the beginning of each quarter for a variety of courses in business, health and technical occupations. Macon State College's Warner Robins Campus is located off Watson Boulevard, across from City Hall and just a half mile from the main gate at Robins Air Force Base. At the Warner Robins Campus, Macon State offers the entire core curriculum of the University System of Georgia as well as the bachelor of science degree in Information Technology and courses leading to the bachelor of science degree in Business. Also, since 1970 the College has been helping military and civilian personnel at Robins AFB meet their higher education goals through the University System of Georgia's Robins Resident Center on base.
A variety of housing options make Warner Robins an exciting place to live. You can find a long-term home or simply make a good, short-term investment in the real estate market.
Condominiums, townhouses and apartment complexes are readily available for renters. Citizens of the Middle Georgia area are fortunate to have a year-round climate conducive to outdoor activity. Since its establishment in 1972, the Houston County Recreation Department has achieved an enviable reputation by offering a diverse selection of recreational opportunities for people of all ages including golfing, fishing, boating, youth sports, hiking and biking.
Macon, Georgia's sixth largest city is located about 15 miles north of Robins AFB. Its variety of entertainment, recreation, shopping and business opportunities are easily accessible via Georgia Highway 247 or Interstate 75. People have enjoyed Macon as a place to live for more than 12,000 years. Prehistoric Native Americans built their homes on the banks of the fertile Ocmulgee River, and it was here that explorer Hernando DeSoto performed the first Christian baptism in America in 1540. In the early 1800s, as trade bustled on the river and later on the railroads, Macon became known as the "Queen Inland City of the South."
Wealthy planters and businessmen built elaborate mansions of distinction, left untouched even by the devastation of the Civil War. The beauty and charm of these mansions now grace Macon's nationally acclaimed historic district. More than 500 buildings in Macon are on the National Historic Register. One of Macon's finest attributes lies in the abundance of cultural offerings available. Widespread community interest in all art forms has distinguished Macon as the cultural center of Middle Georgia. From classic symphony at the Grand Opera House to casual outdoor concerts, the city enjoys an exciting variety of cultural experiences.
Macon's oldest structures, the Ocmulgee Indian Mounds, are now part of a national monument and archaeological museum, housing artifacts and exhibits depicting the life and culture of the early Native American tribes who inhabited the area.
The city's range of recreational and shopping opportunities has helped it become second only to Atlanta as Georgia's leading convention city. Residents and tourists alike find that Macon has every positive amenity of a large city.
Citizens have long been concerned about the quality of education. Consequently, Macon has a progressive model public school system. A special aspect of this system is the magnet school program in which students in three elementary schools "specialize" in math/science, fine arts or literature and writing. Public schools are augmented by a number of diverse private and parochial schools.
Four colleges and a modern technical institute provide a spectrum of opportunities in higher education. The variety offered by Macon schools covers nearly every career and lifestyle. As the regional medical center for Middle Georgia, Macon has six major hospitals that offer the finest in health-care facilities. Every spring Macon goes through a transformation as its citizens get "In The Pink" for the internationally recognized Cherry Blossom Festival. With more than 275,000 Yoshino cherry trees, Macon is known as the Cherry Blossom Capital of the World. The festival takes place over a two-week period in March. Thousands of visitors join in the festivities to enjoy parades, arts and crafts shows, fireworks, hot air balloon rides and fashion shows.
Little Richard Says to Visit Historic Macon
"Anything you want to find, you can find it in Macon, Ga.," says the city's official Goodwill Ambassador, Little Richard. The self-proclaimed Architect of Rock 'n Roll invites visitors to sing along to "Tutti Frutti" at the Georgia Music Hall of Fame or escape into the antebellum South by strolling down Macon's wide avenues. From 275,000 blooming Yoshino cherry trees and dozens of antebellum mansions to remembrances of musical greats, Macon offers a whole lot of soul for visitors.
Around Town Tours of Historic Macon invite visitors to get lost in time but not around town when they purchase discounted attraction packages that can include trolley transportation and savings of up to 25 percent off general admission prices. In addition to the magnificent National Historic Landmark Italian Renaissance Revival style Hay House, circa 1855-59, tour guests travel back in time year round to see Macon's antebellum Greek Revival style mansions, historic churches, exciting music and sports halls of fame and African American highlights. To explore independently, visitors can pick up self-guided walking tour brochures in several languages at the Convention and Visitors Bureau, as well as suggested themed itineraries such as antiques shopping, African American culture, architecture, dining, Civil War heritage, theatre, children's activities, outdoor enjoyment and music.
The first stop for music is the Georgia Music Hall of Fame, highlighting the state's rich musical heritage, including Macon's own Little Richard, Otis Redding, the Allman Brothers and other Capricorn Records' artists. Here, music lovers listen to the tunes of these and others from throughout the state (such as Ray Charles, Brenda Lee, and REM) at CD stations, in a video theater, and in simulated radio shows. This 43,000 square feet state-of-the-art facility houses a Tune Town of life-size buildings representing a Rhythm & Blues Revue, Jazz & Swing Club, Country Cafe and Gospel Chapel each filled with memorabilia and artifacts. A 2,400 square feet Music Factory offers the nation's first dedicated children's music museum within the Hall.
For children as well as the mystic soul searcher, Ocmulgee National Monument offers 12,000 years of Native American heritage in the heart of the historic South. Miles of nature paths, ancient Native American mounds and even the only reconstructed Earth Lodge in the country provide an excellent outdoor adventure for all ages and cultures.
As a premiere tourist destination for African Americans, Macon also offers visitors soul-stirring attractions like the Tubman African American Museum. The largest museum of its kind in Georgia, its annual Georgia Pan-African Festival each May and year-round interactive exhibits encourage young and old to immerse themselves in African American art, history and culture.
"They've got the restored Douglass Theatre where I used to sing and go as a boy," says Little Richard, elaborating on one of Macon's other African American landmarks. In addition to him, other great performers like Ma Rainey, Duke Ellington and Cab Callaway brought soul to the theatre during its run from 1921 to 1974. It was restored in 1996 as a state-of-the-art film, performance and meeting venue. Along with large format or 3-D films, visitors can see live musical and theatrical performances in the theatre where musical legend, Otis Redding, was discovered.
Across the street, athletic performances are the specialty at the spectacular Georgia Sports Hall of Fame. The 43,000 square feet. museum features interactive exhibits in football, basketball and golf, a NASCAR simulator, a 205 seat theatre featuring an emotional 10 minute film and an Atlanta Olympics and Paralympics area. After a full day of sightseeing, soul searchers can bask in the glow of North America's only nightly illumination tour, Lights on Macon...Historic Intown. The same brilliant designer who created Disney's Electric Light Parade designed this tour to reveal the magical splendor of antebellum architecture preserved in historic Macon.
Preservation is again featured at The Museum of Arts and Sciences, Macon's window on the world. It includes not only the fossilized skeleton of a 40-million-year-old whale discovered near the city, but also an enclosed three story habitat where live animals like tamarins and alligators make their home around a huge man-made Banyan tree.
Summer brings a culmination of song and soul with Mid-Summer Macon, a three-week program of arts performance, exhibition, and education for all ages at Wesleyan College, the world's first college chartered specifically to grant degrees to women.
Fall brings four favorites: September's Ocmulgee Indian Festival, Georgia Music Week and Macon Music and Heritage Festival and the 147 year-old Georgia State Fair, the longest running fair in the country. Even Jack Frost can't compete with December's White Columns and Holly-Christmas in Macon with its fabulous Holiday Tours of Homes.
For those more interested in sports than festivals, each April through July, the Macon Knights Arena Football team brings the city's newest sport to life in the Coliseum. Even when the visitor is an opposing team, southern hospitality typifies the Song and Soul of the South and is a year-round commodity in Macon, Ga.! As Little Richard says, "Tell 'em that the Architect of Rock 'n Roll sent ya' and told you to have a good time!"
Known as the "Crossroads of Georgia," Perry is located in the geographic center of the state where U.S. Highways 41 and 341 intersect with Interstate 75. The city, with an estimated population of over 10,500 in 2004, serves as the county seat of Houston County. Located only 18 miles south of Robins Air Force Base, Perry was founded in 1824 and was named for naval war hero Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry.
Perry began as a regional center of agriculture and remained so until the 1960s and 1970s. While many farms still remain in south Houston County, the area has diversified itself into a center of manufacturing excellence. Firms like Frito-Lay, Northrop-Grumman, Southdown and Riverwood International, Weyerhaeuser all operate major facilities in the Perry area. A quality labor force, excellent schools, and a cooperative business climate all contribute to the recent successes in Perry.
Perry features over 1,300 hotel and motel rooms and is a favorite stop for many tourists. With four interstate exits, it is a convenient place to stop and visit for the thousands of people who pass by on Interstate 75 daily. The downtown area has been renovated with a Colonial Williamsburg theme.
The major tourism draw in the Perry area is the Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter, located in the southern end of Perry. The fairgrounds is home to the Georgia National Fair, an annual event that has brought more than 2,250,000 visitors to Perry since 2000. 2005 was a monumental year, as the fair surpassed 400,000 visitors for the first time. A new 65,000 square foot conference center opened in 2001. The 686-acre complex has nearly 20 separate buildings and venues, with the Reeves Arena seating nearly 8,000 people for concerts. One of the cleanest and most attractive facilities in the nation, the Georgia National Fairgrounds has won many state and national awards for excellence in promotions and agricultural education.
All of the city's schools are all fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and by the Georgia Accrediting Commission. In 1999, Perry opened a new middle school, a new elementary school and the new Perry Primary School that serves all children K-4 through first grade. In addition to the excellent Houston County Schools system, Perry has one of the finest private schools in the state. The Westfield school is a Christian, non-denominational college prep school that serves students from 11 surrounding communities.
Centerville, located just minutes from Robins AFB, was chartered as a city in March 1958. The city has experienced rapid growth the past few years that includes a 400 home development. This development offers homes ranging from five bedrooms to a retirement village. The growth has been in both new homes and establishment of new businesses. Centerville offers affordable housing, a new shopping mall and easy access to Interstate 75. Centerville provides all essential services including outstanding fire and police protection. Centerville is a friendly town with quiet neighborhoods that provide a positive atmosphere for comfortable living.
Fort Valley, in the heart of peach growing country, is the county seat of Peach County. It is only about 20 miles west of Robins AFB. The city is one of Georgia's largest producers of peaches, but residents raise a variety of crops including pecans, cotton, corn, oats, soybeans, plums, apples and chestnuts. Industry is as varied as the agriculture, ranging from a large peach industry to the Blue Bird Body Company. The company's Wanderlodge Division is the largest manufacturer of school and mass transit buses and motor homes in the world. Fort Valley State University, a part of the University System of Georgia, is well recognized for its programs in the agricultural field. Secondary schools are modern and accredited. This small city boasts a public library, a renovated courthouse and an organized year-round recreational program, featuring many public facilities for sports activities.
Located midway between Macon and Perry, Byron is about 15 miles north-northwest of Robins AFB on Interstate 75. Being so easily and directly accessible to area cities, Byron is identified as a growing, small residential center with a pleasant hometown atmosphere. The city has natural gas and sewage systems, modern subdivisions, ample schools and churches, library facilities, retail outlets, municipal services, banking, shopping and recreational facilities, religious and educational programs and civic clubs.
Cochran is the only incorporated town in Bleckley County, about 25 miles southeast of Robins AFB. The town has a population of approximately 12,000 people. It is home to Middle Georgia College and Lithonia Lighting Company, the world's largest manufacturer of florescent lighting fixtures. It employs about 1,200 people.
The public schools include pre-K through 12 and are rated among the top in the state of Georgia, with SAT scores averaging over 1000. A joint city-county recreation program offers programs for adults as well as youth. Facilities include a gymnasium, lighted athletic fields and tennis courts and two public golf courses. Camping and RV facilities are also located nearby. Yearly cultural events include a pumpkin festival in the downtown area and a semi-annual bluegrass festival. Cochran is an attractive, small southern town with plenty of amenities and a charming atmosphere.
Twenty-seven miles south on Georgia Highway 247 is Hawkinsville and Pulaski County. Hawkinsville is largely agricultural. Its prime crops are cotton, peanuts, grain, livestock, timber and pulpwood.
Hawkinsville is recognized as the "Harness Horse Capital of Georgia" with two privately owned race tracks, six standard-bred brood farms and one thoroughbred brood farm in the county. The annual Hawkinsville Harness Festival held in April is a major event. It includes the Pig Ribbin' BBQ Cookoff, arts and crafts, a carnival and many other exciting elements.
One high school and two elementary schools are fully accredited and offer a diversified curriculum. Hawkinsville has two industrial parks and also has superior telecommunications with a fiber optic network that rivals larger metropolitan areas. A well-rounded recreation program is offered as well as two golf courses, hiking trails, wildlife management areas and access to the Ocmulgee River.
Eastman, the county seat of Dodge County, is about 45 miles southeast of Robins AFB. Eastman is largely industrial and features several large companies that employ more than 3,000 people. A superior educational system is highlighted by a high school that has won multiple School of Excellence awards. The Heart of Georgia Technical Institute campus opened in 1995, with a complete aerospace program including a flight trainer, one of only three pilot training programs in the state of Georgia. In town, a regional library is available with Peach Net access, an adult learning center, and boasts a Certified Library Community Program. Eastman is home to the Dodge County Hospital, a progressive 94-bed facility. It was the first hospital in the nation to initiate Telemedicine and is the pilot program for a helicopter trauma transport center. Eastman features numerous recreational facilities, scenic attractions, a public lake with fishing areas and yearly cultural events.
Milledgeville, Georgia's Antebellum Capital, is approximately 50 miles from Robins AFB. Located in Baldwin County, it was Georgia's capital from 1803 to 1868. Many beautiful buildings survive from that period including the Old Capitol and the Old Governor's Mansion.
The area has a diversified manufacturing base, producing everything from aerospace products to heat pumps, carpet yarn to worsted wool. Milledgeville and Baldwin County are centrally located in Georgia with easy access to Interstate 75, Interstate 20 and Interstate 16. The county sits on U.S. Highway 441, a major north-south artery, and the proposed Fall Line Freeway, a major east-west highway will pass within five miles of downtown Milledgeville. The county's municipal airport has a 5,000-foot runway.
Educational excellence is a major community priority in Baldwin County. The community is served by a progressive public school system, two colleges, a technical institute and a well-respected private academy. Georgia College and State University is the fourth largest senior college in the University System of Georgia. Georgia Military College is housed in the Old Capitol building and is one of only six military junior colleges in the U.S. It also maintains a middle school and a high school.
Lake Sinclair, a 15,000-acre lake in northern Baldwin County, provides fishing, boating, sailing, skiing and swimming for water sports. In addition, many residents have permanent homes or weekend retreats along the lake. There are more than 500 motel rooms in Milledgeville, camping facilities and condo rentals on Lake Sinclair and several bed and breakfasts are also available to visitors. Milledgeville provides a variety of entertainment, recreation, shopping and business opportunities for the Oconee area.
Dublin is one of Georgia's special places; the best of the past has been blended with modern developments to create a unique town whose natural charms lure visitors and new residents from distant places. Dublin and Laurens County have a moderate climate and are strategically located in the middle of Georgia at the intersection of Highway 441 and Interstate 16. The area offers a sound economy based on a diversified industrial base, strong agri-business sector and a regional health-care center including the Carl Vinson V.A. Medical Center and Fairview Park Hospital.
While shopping in our historic downtown Dublin Main Street, take the Walking Tour and visit the Dublin-Laurens Museum. Shopping is also pleasant at the Dublin Mall, which houses over 30 stores. Additional shopping centers are located throughout Dublin and charming specialty shops can be found on historic Bellevue Avenue.
Dublin and Laurens County are well known for outstanding recreational and entertainment facilities including tennis, bowling, racquetball, parks, a four-movie theater, camping, fishing, hunting, fitness centers and much more! Serious golfers and duffers alike will be challenged by Laurens County's three golf courses. Pleasant weather conditions allow for playing all year long, and golfers may choose to play the 9-hole course at Green Acres Country Club and the 18-hole course at Dublin County Club, both private courses, or the 18-hole public course at Riverview Park. The first three weeks in March, Dublin is known for its St. Patrick's Festival, with the World's Largest Pot of Irish Beef Stew, road races, concerts, bicycle rides, arts and crafts, and much more! Other county events include Dexter's Possum Hollow Arts and Crafts Fair and 5K Run/Biathlon, East Dublin's "Spirit Run," and Dublin's Antique Fair, Show and Sale.
Dublin and Laurens County are one of the finest places to live in America. You'll like our easy-going, unhurried lifestyle. The welcome mat is always out. Come visit Dublin and Laurens County—where you'll find a wee bit of Ireland in Georgia!
With six professional sports teams, more than 200 entertainment and cultural attractions and thousands of restaurants, Atlanta can best be described as "exciting, entertaining and enjoyable." The city is a mecca for sports fans. Turner Field, located just south of the capitol, is the home of the 1991 and 1992 National League champions and 1995 World Series winners the Atlanta Braves baseball team, while the Atlanta Falcons football team plays its home games at the Georgia Dome. Downtown, next to the CNN Center, is Philips Arena, home of the Atlanta Hawks basketball team and the Atlanta Thrashers hockey team. Georgia Tech's Yellow Jackets keep college football and basketball in the offing, and the annual Peach Bowl is played in Atlanta. Atlanta was also the site of the 1996 Olympic Games.
Atlanta has long been known as a prime site for meetings, conventions and trade shows and is consistently ranked as one of the top five convention cities in the country. Atlanta earned this reputation with its first-class hotels, transportation and meeting facilities, and continues to host more than 3,100 conventions annually, bringing more than 3.5 million visitors to the city.
Atlanta is much more than a meeting destination. The city has developed into the entertainment and cultural center of the South with more than 19 million visitors arriving each year to experience the abundance of attractions, culture and entertainment.
Why has this southern city become a hot spot for culture and entertainment? Simply stated, Atlanta has more restaurants, professional sports teams, entertainment venues and cultural attractions than any other city in the Southeast. Many of these attractions are within 10 minutes of downtown and almost all are accessible via MARTA, Atlanta's rapid rail and bus system.
Atlanta is Entertaining
Atlanta is also home to world class museums and performing arts centers including the High Museum of Art, SciTrek—the science and technology museum, and Fernbank Museum of Natural History, Atlanta The Alliance Theater, The Fox Theater, Rialto Theatre for Performing Arts and Woodruff Arts Center. Established in 1913, the Atlanta Convention and Visitor's Bureau is a private, non-profit organization created exclusively to market metro Atlanta and Georgia as the premier conventions, meetings and leisure destination in the regional, national and international marketplace, and favorably impact the Atlanta economy through conventions and tourism. For more information, contact the ACVB at (404) 521-6600, (800) Atlanta or visit their website at http:// www.atlanta.net. Atlanta enjoys a moderate climate and accessibility to anywhere in the world from one of the nation's busiest airports—Hartsfield International.