Well Smyrna-Vinings (and you too Cumberland Community Improvement District), the time has come to say au revoir. This will be my final post as the Smyrna-Vinings Patch Local Editor as later today I will ease on southward down Atlanta Road towards the city to assume the same responsibilities with Midtown Patch.
While I’m excited about the challenges ahead, I’m saddened a bit at bidding goodbye to this wonderful area, Smyrna-Vinings. It was 14 months ago last week that I helped birth this Patch, and this will be article No. 2,318 that has been published since.
A lot has changed during this time. Smyrna has four new city council members, and Smyrna middle school both have a new principals, Vinings Jubilee has a new Tower Stage, and the Jonquil City has opened one new major development (The Crossings) and is on the verge of breaking ground on another (Jonquil Village).
But in many other ways, not much has changed. Smyrna’s governing body still has its vocal opponents who question why their tax money is spent taking down apartment complexes such as Hickory Lake and Smyrna Commons. Proponents of a balanced school calendar for Cobb haven’t given up their fight, and afternoon rush hour traffic through the heart of the Vinings Village remains at times sluggishly brutal.
And both local communities continue to innovate, giving back to others and celebrating life in Smyrna-Vinings.
When Smyrna-Vinings Patch launched on Nov. 24, 2010 it changed the media landscape for this area. Never before was the magnifying glass aimed at city and local officials 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I remember during a city council meeting this past fall in the midst of election season when Mayor Max Bacon commented that “Patch is a lot things, but they seem to do it fairly.” It wasn’t the first or last time I felt that what we were doing was for the betterment of this area, but in some ways it validated to me that folks knew that Patch was here to tell the story of an evolving Smyrna-Vinings in a fair and balanced fashion.
Of course, not all our readers felt that way as both pro and anti government Patch users came to the site to express their displeasure with the editor and the site’s coverage. I will be the first to admit that as I learned this job, this area and its residents, mistakes were made. But my intentions I tell you were honest and true and overall, the critics were in the vast minority. I’m truly thankful for the many kind words that were expressed to me about Patch along the way.
Certainly the speed of life has changed and we’ve demonstrated that here with what I hope were timely postings of stories, photos and videos. Never before was there a place to daily celebrate the little accomplishments, whether through our Whiz Kid features or through our announcements section. Never before was there a place online where community members could come together to discuss, debate and review.
And so, now is my time to step away from my post as editor. But I will be leaving this site in the more than capable hands of interim editor, Sydney Busby. Many of you already know Sydney personally and even if you’ve only been an occasional visitor to the site, you’ve seen the vast array of outstanding coverage that she has provided here. I have no doubt that she will do an excellent job and I encourage you to reach out to her with your thoughts and story ideas.
I have enjoyed every minute I spent as editor mostly because I have met many amazing people in Smyrna-Vinings. I have documented significant moments here and hopefully brought a life to the digital Smyrna-Vinings.
But now it is time to move on, relinquish the reins and allow a new editor the chance to breathe their own life into Smyrna-Vinings Patch. I won’t be far and my Patch email will remain the same should you wish to reach me. But for now, the best way to reach the Smyrna-Vinings editorial staff will be at Smyrna@Patch.com.
I hope that you as a community will continue to read, continue to ask questions and continue to debate. Smyrna-Vinings Patch is just a vehicle for many of the conversations already happening daily on the streets of this great area. Keep the dialogue going. And who knows, a certain Midtown Patch editor might pop in from time to time with his thoughts and comments about this great community that he will forever feel a connection with.
Thanks again Smyrna-Vinings…and we’ll see you on down the road.