The Theatre, which is has been in ever-more-dire financial straights in the past couple of years and which many had feared might have to go dark for good within days, was the recipient on Saturday of a $10,000 donation from the Imlay Foundation.
“One of their (board) members had read in the newspaper about the problems we were having, and sent us the check,” Theatre founder Palmer Wells told Around Town on Monday.
The private Imlay Foundation was formed by John Imlay Jr. in 1989 to support charitable organizations in Atlanta and Scotland. Venture capitalist Imlay has given financial backing to more than 120 technology companies in the past two decades, including Internet Security Systems and Tradex Technologies Inc., and was recently described by the Atlanta Business Chronicle as “the closest thing Atlanta’s tech community has to a godfather.”
Imlay was the founder of Management Science America, which gave birth to more than 300 CEOs and almost 100 companies before being sold by Imlay to Dun & Bradstreet Corp. for nearly $400 million.
The donation will be enough to cover this week’s expenses associated with Wednesday’s opening of new play “Flyin’ West” by Atlanta’s Pearl Cleage, which runs through April 8. Although the actors are usually paid during rehearsals, the director and those in charge of costumes, sets, lighting, sound, etc., are not typically paid until opening night in the theater world. Thus, the unexpected Imlay donations will go far toward helping the Theatre cover the opening-night costs, Wells said.
The new play looks at the memories and hopes of four female ex-slaves hopeful of better lives in the West just after the Civil War. The theater had a full house for a preview show Sunday and another is expected for the final dress rehearsal today, Wells said. He’s optimistic as well that the 230-seat venue will be full when the curtain goes up on Wednesday. For tickets, call (770) 422-8369.
THE REAPPORTIONMENT MAP for the Cobb School District drawn by state Rep. Earl Ehrhart (R-Powder Springs), which received the needed majority of signatures from Cobb’s 14 state representatives, has hit a serious snag in the Georgia Senate — namely state Sen. Judson Hill (R-east Cobb).
Hill complains that it takes Post 5, represented by Cobb school board member David Banks, and jumps it over the city of Marietta and into the Osborne High School area.
“My issue is that the ‘Ehrhart map’ does not accurately reflect the interests of the people of east Cobb and northeast Cobb that I’ve spoken with or who have called or emailed me because it stretches the Fifth district across I-75 and across U.S. 41 and doesn’t accurately keep the community of interest that it’s required to do,” Hill told Around Town on Monday.
The map needs three of Cobb’s five senators to approve it, but given that House Democrats don’t like the map those votes aren’t expected to come from Cobb’s two senators, Doug Stoner (D-Smyrna) and Steve Thompson (D-Marietta). That leaves Hill and Sens. Lindsey Tippins (R-west Cobb) and Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock).
“Lindsey has deferred to the senators representing east Cobb which are me and Chip Rogers, and it’s always been mine and Chip’s desire to keep the communities of interest and to accurately reflect the interest of the people in east Cobb, but also balancing the federal laws that we have to comply with as we go about redistricting,” Hill said.
Hill said he was working with state Rep. Ed Setzler (R-Acworth), chairman of the Cobb Legislative Delegation, to come up with a suitable alternative.
“If I had my way I would keep the Fifth district east of I-75,” Hill said. “We may have to make some adjustments to get support from the House and the Senate, but it’s my strong desire to keep the Fifth representing east of 75 and definitely not into the Osborne High School district.”
Meantime, the map drawn for the Cobb Board of Commissioners, known as “the Golick map” after author state Rep. Rich Golick (R-Smyrna), was approved by the House and also has the three needed signatures in the Senate from Hill, Rogers and Tippins, Hill said. It now goes before the full Senate for approval.
“I would expect it to be coming up on the Senate floor for a vote in the near future,” Hill said.
Both maps have to be approved before the end of the legislative session.
POLITICS: Cobb Commission Chairman candidate Larry Savage will present his version of the “State of the County” at a reception from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday at Schillings on the Square. …
Georgia Attorney Gen. Sam Olens and his wife, Lisa, will host a fundraiser in support of Van Pearlberg for Cobb Superior Court judge from 5-7 p.m. Thursday at their home, 1788 Chadds Lake Drive, NE.
With St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner, Olens and Cobb District Attorney Pat Head will host a “Go Green for Green” fundraiser March 15 for Cobb Superior Court Judge Rueben Green from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the offices of Brock & Clay at 49 Atlanta St., in Marietta. Honorary hosts include Superior Court administrator Tom Charron and lawyers Hylton Dupree Jr., and Gary Eubanks.
MORE POLITICS: The Georgia Tea Party snagged the signature of presidential candidate Ron Paul late last week on its “Marietta Declaration,” which describes “more than a century of governmental abuses of constitutional authority,” according to Georgia Tea Party head Tom Maloy of Powder Springs. The Declaration was unveiled at a press conference here Feb. 18 and sent to all nominees and President Obama hoping for their signatures, but to date, Paul is the only one to put his “John Hancock” on the document. …
Newt Gingrich on Monday was endorsed by more than a dozen Georgia clergymen, including the Rev. Ike Reighard, senior pastor at Piedmont Baptist in northeast Cobb and new head of MUST Ministries in Marietta; and the Rev. Thomas Chapman, senior pastor at Praise Tabernacle in Powder Springs. ...
The Cobb County Young Republicans will have a Super Tuesday viewing party this evening at Johnny McCracken’s just off Marietta Square, reports Steven Ellis.
MITT ROMNEY pretty much wrote off Georgia for Super Tuesday. But he might have misjudged the depth of his support, at least in east Cobb. That part of the county is the heart of the 6th Congressional District now represented by U.S. Rep. Tom Price (R) and represented from 1993-99 by Gingrich, and gave most of its votes to Romney during the 2008 presidential primary. And Romney’s Georgia Steering Committee is chaired by east Cobb’s Olens.
In the “old” 6th, as it was configured prior to the recent congressional redistricting, Romney won 39 percent of the votes in the 2008 primary. That was well ahead of eventual nominee John McCain’s 31 percent and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s 26 percent. (The rest of the votes, 4 percent, went to Ron Paul). And recall that Romney was running as a conservative alternative to McCain. If the “new” 6th had been in place during the 2008 primary, Romney would have won 41 percent of votes, McCain 34 percent and Huckabee 22 percent.
AROUND TOWN columnist and author Joe Kirby will be helping lead a tour of the D-Day and Battle of the Bulge battle sites this summer in France, Belgium and Luxembourg. The trip will depart Atlanta on July 4 and return 10 days later after exploring Omaha and Utah beaches, Bastogne, Verdun, Mont St. Michel and the Bayeux Tapestry, capped by three nights in Paris. The trip is being organized by Marietta travel planner Mark Chesney and will be led by Marty Morgan, former historian at the National D-Day Museum in New Orleans. Cost is $3,462 per person, plus air. For more information, contact Chesney at (770) 984-2504 or Kirby at (770) 428-9411, ext. 229.
ROSWELL STREET BAPTIST CHURCH pastor emeritus the Rev. Dr. Nelson Price is donating his 6,000-volume personal library to Shorter University in Rome. Price, a longtime member and former chairman of the Shorter board, also plans to donate manuscripts of a quarter century’s worth of his sermons and copies of his Sunday MDJ Editorial Page columns.