Home Headlines VR plans host of activities for Georgia Cities Week

VR plans host of activities for Georgia Cities Week

Villa Rica will be observing Georgia Cities Week in a big way this month, with a major event planned each day designed to showcase the many ways city government impacts the daily lives of citizens.

The week of events, which begin April 23, will include Mayor Gil McDougal reading to children at the library; a kids-only special called meeting of city council; fun at the city’s parks; all to be capped Saturday by the West Georgia Jazz Festival.

Georgia Cities Week runs April 23-29. The event was conceived by the Georgia Municipal Association to celebrate Georgia’s cities, focusing on community achievements, successful community projects and infrastructure enhancements – as well as the city employees and volunteers who work behind the scenes to make cities like Villa Rica great.

The city’s celebration gets under way at 3 p.m. Monday, April 24, at Gold Dust Park, 646 Industrial Boulevard, with several kid-friendly events. Among the activities scheduled will be touch-a-truck, featuring service vehicles from across the region. Other activities will include free fitness class demos as well as a Peek at Pickleball for all ages on the Gold Dust Park tennis courts. Also, an artist will do a project with Seniors who might wish to participate.

On Tuesday at 11 a.m., Mayor McDougal will be reading to children at the Villa Rica Public Library, 869 Dallas Highway. It will also be a great opportunity for parents to learn about the many after-school educational options for their children offered through the library.

On Wednesday, April 26, there will be a special opportunity for elementary school students to get a peek at how city government works. At 10 a.m., the mayor and members of City Council will gather at the Holt-Bishop Justice Center at 101 Main St. for an official special called meeting. Students will get to see how city government meetings operate, including how elected officials debate the issues facing the city. However, on the agenda for this meeting will be a discussion of what should be Villa Rica’s official ice cream flavor.

On Thursday, April 27, residents are invited to have Coffee With a Cop from 9-10 a.m. at Dunkin’ Donuts, 135 Commerce Drive. Those who attend are encouraged to have a dialogue with law enforcement about their concerns on a variety of topics. But that’s not the only police-related activity scheduled Thursday for Cities Week.

From 2-4 p.m. that day, residents and potential police recruits are invited for the Donut Dash, a chance to complete the physical agility test required for all officers. The event will be held at Powell Park, 524 Leslie Drive, and participants can run the obstacle course, which will include running, jumping hurdles, negotiating a flight of stairs, climbing a wall, and dragging a 150-pound dummy. Refreshments will be served, and prizes will be awarded to top finishers. Those who want to participate are encouraged to register by emailing [email protected] with their name and telephone number.

On the evening of April 27, from 3-7 p.m. at the public library, members of the city staff will be hosting the final citizens’ public input meeting. Throughout April, these meetings have been held at various venues across the city to inform the public of several ongoing projects, as well as to receive their input on these and other matters.

Friday, April 28, is Arbor Day, and the staff at Pine Mountain Gold Museum will be planting more than 100 trees of multiple species. And residents can help! Please join them from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the museum, located at 1881 Stockmar Road, for other events as well, including identifying tree species and herbarium activities. If you haven’t been to the Gold Museum since you were in school, you will be amazed at the changes and attractions that have been added.

Cities Week will end April 29 in Villa Rica with the West Georgia Jazz Festival, the city’s official start of a season of free downtown concerts designed to both entertain residents, and to promote tourism for the benefit of downtown shops and restaurants.

Four bands have been scheduled for the rain-or-shine event, to be held at The MILL amphitheater, 106 Temple St. At 4 p.m. KymBerli Dee will take the stage, followed by the Mar-Tans at 5 p.m. At 6 p.m., Tray Dahl and the Jugtime Ragband will go on, followed at 7:30 by the Festival’s headline act, jazz violinist Ken Ford.

The Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) notes that cities like Villa Rica provide an elevated level of service than do most governments. What’s more, cities are generally rated higher by the public than any other level of government. Despite this fact, many residents are unaware of how city services impact their lives.

GMA’s Georgia Cities Week is part of an ongoing effort to raise public awareness about the services that cities perform and to educate the public on how city government works.