Every year, April marks the true beginning of Atlanta's love affair with getting together en masse, even beyond the major festivals.
The crowd-fueled hoopla continues this Sunday with the debut of Atlanta Streets Alive 2016 — on a massive new route that stretches from Grant Park, past the Beltline's Westside Trail, to Westview.
For Streets Alive faithful and newcomers alike, here are some key aspects of the car-free gathering and other things to know:
- The anti-vehicle street party drew a combined 179,000 Atlantans to three events last year. This marks the first time a fourth Streets Alive event will be held in the same calendar year.
- Sunday's route will connect seven neighborhoods — Westview, West End, Adair Park, Pittsburgh, Mechanicsville, Summerhill, and Grant Park — via closures of Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard and Georgia Avenue. The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition expanded the former West End route after members of the Summerhill community — home to Turner Field — requested that Streets Alive come to their neighborhood, officials said.
- Expect more than 50 activities along the four-mile route, such as dancing (from Zumba to line dancing), sports, tours, a "pop-up chalk festival," and music by a cappella groups and bands.
- Organizers expect a relatively modest 20,000 attendees Sunday.
- The event kicks off at 2 p.m. with the Great Bicycle Parade, led by Atlanta's first Chief Bicycle Officer, Becky Katz, and ABC's executive director Rebecca Serna.
- The parade begins at Zoo Atlanta, and participants are encouraged "to dress up like their favorite zoo animals," officials said.
Southside Architecture Tour
In totally unrelated news, the College Park Historical Society is hosting its first tour of homes Saturday, April 23. Writes a supporter: "We're fourth largest nationally registered historic district (over 800 homes, businesses, churches) in Georgia. We're Atlanta's 'Best Kept Secret' ... southwest side, ITP."
Ten architecturally significant structures will be showcased, and tickets are $20. More info over here.
And in news unrelated to all of that, the HGTV show Flipping Virgins is now casting in Atlanta, seeking energetic, first-time flippers in the metro area. Ideal projects must have budgets of $100,000+ and be able to start before August.
Buford Highway Crawl
And in news ridiculously far afield from anything above, the MARTA Army is partnering with We Love BuHi for a Buford Highway Bus Crawl on April 27. Army leaders send the following:
"Teams of 16 will leave from Doraville on bus 39 every 12 minutes, lead by a valiant captain. Participants will taste restaurants along the international corridor and hear from speakers, including Amanda Rhein from MARTA, and Sally Flocks from PEDS. The event is currently SOLD OUT, but we will release an additional 70 tickets on Thursday at 10 a.m."