Chestatee Artists Group announces new Folk School



The Dahlonega Chestatee Artists Group has opened registration for their upcoming Folk School from now until September 27, 2019. The first classes of the Folk School will be held the weekend of October 11 through October 13, beginning Friday evening at 7p.m. until 9p.m. and ending Sunday around 11:30a.m.

Credit: Beth Stull Morning Glow

There will be an informational meeting on Thursday, September 12 for those interested in learning more about the mission of Chestatee Artists, the Folk School, and to meet the instructors. The meeting will be at 6p.m., in the United Community Bank Community Room.

According to their website, a variety of categories will be offered to the public, “Our Folk School classes will be held in our beautiful city of Dahlonega twice a year with some of the finest instructors in many exciting categories. Leatherwork, watercolor painting, acrylic painting, wire wrapping, jewelry making, weaving and more.”

Instructor, Oscar Rayneri, teaching at Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts



For those who cannot attend in October, a second Folk School will be offered in March of 2020.





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Dahlonega City Council announces public hearing to discuss millage rate



The Dahlonega City Council will hold a public hearing on Thursday, August 15, to discuss setting the 2019 millage and the adoption of the 2020 Fiscal Year Budget. The meeting will take place at the Dahlonega City Hall at 4:00p.m., immediately before the City Council Work Session.

The Work Session will cover department reports from the following:

  • Dahlonega City Marshal
  • Historic Preservation Commission
  • Downtown Development Authority
  • Finance Department
  • Public Works Department
  • Water and Waste Water Plants Department
  • Cemetery Committee

Other topics to be discussed:

  • 2019 LMIG Off System Safety Vendor Selection for Signs & Stripes
  • Ordinance 2019-14 Dilapidated Structure
  • Memo RE DOR (Department of Revenue) Sales Tax Information
  • Banking Services Contract Renewal


Boil water advisory in effect for Crooked Creek Subdivision

Community, Health


According to a press release from the Lumpkin County Water and Sewerage Authority,

“LCWSA experienced a water main break in the Crooked Creek Subdivision which caused a localized loss of system pressure. When this occurs a potential health hazard may exist in these areas of zero pressure from backflow of water of unknown quality into the water system. In order to protect the public from a potential health hazard, all Crooked Creek residents that live on High Creek Drive, White Oak Trail and Oak Springs Trail that have experienced a water outage and/or low pressures are advised to “boil” all water prior to use for drinking, cooking, or preparing baby food. The water should be boiled for at least one minute after reaching a rolling boil. Once LCWSA has tested the water and confirmed that the water in the distribution system is safe for human consumption, LCWSA will post a message on Lumpkin County’s Website and at High Creek Drive to notify the public that the boil water advisory has been lifted. If you have questions please call LCWSA at 706-867-6580.” attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month for ad server. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and has between 15,000 to 60,000 per week Facebook page reach. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or visit

Dawsonville man charged with kidnapping, aggravated stalking


DAHLONEGA, Ga. – Lumpkin County deputies arrested Ryan Cookston, 31, of 6275 Auraria Road in Dawsonville last week on charges of kidnapping and aggravated stalking.

Sarah Stonecypher walked into the Waffle House on Aug. 5 and asked employees to call police to report a domestic violence situation.

When they arrived Stonecypher advised them that she had been staying at a domestic violence shelter with her children due to a family violence protection order against Cookston. She said she left the shelter at approximately 10:30 p.m. to bring clothes for her son to her mother-in-law’s house.

As she was returning to the shelter, she said she stopped briefly at the intersection and Cookston jumped into the passenger side of the car.

She said he had what appeared to be a knife in his hand and demanded she drive. According to the report, he began yelling at her about going to the shelter and for taking his child away from him. At one point, she said, she spotted a patrol car and tried to get the officer’s attention but was not successful. As they were driving, she said, he was punching holes into the back of the car seat asking who is in the trunk.

She complained about needing to use the bathroom and eventually stopped at the Waffle House, went in and had employees contact law enforcement.

Deputies did locate a screwdriver on the passenger side floor board of her car that appeared to have blood on it. When they took Cookston into custody, they discovered he also had a warrant out of Forsyth County, and transported him to the Lumpkin County Detention Center.


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Award-winning pub gears up for annual Shucking for Shamrocks fundraiser

Community, News


Shenanigan’s Irish Pub, located right off the historic Dahlonega square, is getting ready for their annual Shucking for Shamrocks fundraiser with some beneficial renovations.

Renovations at Shenanigan’s Irish Pub (Photo Courtesy of David Jordan)

The owner, Deb Rowe, told FYN that the most significant changes made to the pub was enclosing the patio, protecting their outside courtyard from water drainage from the street, and adding new ramps, making the entire patio and courtyard wheelchair accessible. Rowe explained how the community will benefit from the new improvements, “Now, everyone can get from the courtyard, to the deck and to the patio; the courtyard is all accessible.”

Renovations at Shenanigan’s Irish Pub (Photo Courtesy of David Jordan)

The renovations have taken place just weeks before their upcoming 11th annual Shucking for Shamrocks fundraiser event, which Rowe started as a way to raise money for research on Muscular Dystrophy, Multiple Sclerosis, and Cystic Fibrosis. The weekend-long event includes a silent auction and fresh Florida oysters that are shucked on-site. Rowe revealed that this year they are extending the event space into their parking lot, giving them an additional 40×40 square feet of room.

Rowe also explained that during the first year of the fundraiser, they raised $6400, which has grown to $40,000 ten years later, “Originally, the first few years we were raising $6,000 to $8,000, and it was just for Muscular Dystrophy. Then my sister was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, and even though Cystic Fibrosis is relatively rare, I know several people who have it.” In 2018, Shenanigan’s earned the Community Involvement Award from the Georgia chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for their contributions resulting from Shucking for Shamrocks.

Fresh oysters are the main item on the menu during Shucking for Shamrocks

The event will be from August 31 until September 2, and community members are encouraged to sign up to volunteer for the event, “Above and beyond making donations to the silent auction and spending money at the event, we have an inter-active volunteer sign-up link [on their Facebook page]. We really just need additional bodies to help.”

Lady Indians push forward with 5-4 win against Panthers

Sports, Team FYN Sports

A couple of hits for the Panthers and mistakes from the Lady Indians allowed Union County to get on the board first at Tuesday night’s game. Although both teams played a solid game, in a theme that seems to be recurrent for the Lady Indians this season, Lumpkin started to come back in the bottom of the fifth for an overall 5-4 victory.

The first couple of innings displayed the defensive strength of both teams. Both teams put the ball into play during their first at-bats, but couldn’t get anything on the board before the other would get the third out. The Lady Indians defense had an especially great three up, three down for the top of the second inning.

Union County starting pitcher Megan Bright pitched a total of four strikeouts after 4 2/3 innings. Starting pitcher for the Lady Indians Natalie Robinson stayed in the entire game and pitched a great six innings with two strikeouts.

Runners started to score for Union in the top of the fourth after a double by center fielder Mary Wischmeyer. A single to right field by third baseman Caley Davis advanced Wischmeyer to third, who was then able to score after the ball got past Lumpkin catcher Natalie Schubert. An error by Lumpkin first baseman Hannah Pulley gave the Panthers time to get another run on the board, as did when the ball got past Schubert again. At the end of the inning the Panthers were ahead 4-0.

Center fielder Mary Wischmeyer got things started off for the Panthers in the top of the fourth with a double.

The Lady Indians left two stranded in the bottom of the fourth, but fought to keep the Panthers back in the top of the fifth. Second baseman Alyssa Pulley played an exceptional inning defensively, with a pop up catch for the first out, a diving catch for an attempt at the second out, and a running catch to get the third out.

The bats were hot for the Lady Indians in the bottom of the fifth, started off by a single to left field by shortstop Evee Dornhecker. Third baseman Lauren English followed with a double, and the Lady Indians got their first run of the night. Schubert hit a single to center field for the second run, and first baseman Hannah Pulley drilled a single to the wall at center field to score courtesy runner Kelsey Marshall and right fielder Haley Voyles. When the dust settled at the end of the inning the Lady Indians had tied the game 4-4.

Lauren English hit a double in the bottom of the fifth to get the first run of the night for the Lady Indians.

A couple of easy outs kept the Panthers from scoring any more runs in the top of the sixth. When the Lady Indians came back up to bat in the bottom of the inning, English hit another double to bring in a RBI and the final run. The Panthers were unable to get anything else past the Lumpkin defense, and the game ended after the top of the seventh inning.

Lady Indians head coach Joe Jones said of the game, “Offensively we waited a little while to adjust, but we finally got some big hits with runners in scoring position and I’m proud of us for sticking with it.”

The Lady Indians will head to Chestatee tonight for a 5 p.m. game. They will be back home on Thursday to face Chestatee again at 5 p.m.


Taylor announces plans to run for re-election in 2020

Election, Politics


Current Post 5 councilwoman, JoAnne Taylor, has confirmed that she will run for re-election for Dahlonega City Council in 2020.

Taylor told FYN that her most important accomplishment during her current term was, “Tax reduction of 5.14% for the proposed 2020 budget.” She further explained that the City Council will hold a public hearing on Thursday, August 15, at 4:00 p.m., followed by a City Council meeting on September 3 at 6:00 p.m., “to adopt the budget resolution.”

According to Taylor, water, sewer, sanitation, and recycling costs for in-city residential customers will not increase, “We will continue a high level of service, make needed infrastructure improvements, and deliver new amenities to our community within the proposed budget.”

Taylor credits the tax reduction to the “teamwork and focus by the Mayor, City Council, and dedicated Staff on reducing costs,” and she also explained that her main focus item was reducing costs, “I have participated in all budget meetings. I also lent my business expertise to the staff in evaluating much-needed new financial application software…The new application, when fully implemented, will increase overall efficiency and improved citizen communication.”

Taylor also expressed to FYN her appreciation for being voted into the City Council, “I have been enormously privileged to be a public servant to Dahlonega. My $400 salary, net taxes, has been donated to local not-for-profits. I am grateful for the opportunity I’ve been given to serve.”

If re-elected, Taylor said her main focus would be, “Containing costs and managing growth while preserving the very special place we call home, Dahlonega.” Taylor further explained that she would focus on continuing to add amenities to Dahlonega, such as the Gold Adventures All-Abilities Playground in Hancock Park, the Farmers Market, and the Wimpy Mill picnic area, “We need to balance the significant costs of infrastructure, such as stormwater management, with providing improved amenities…I will continue to welcome feedback from our citizens, a vital form of government. Thanks in advance for your support!”

Gold Adventure All-Abilities Playground in Hancock Park.

City Council votes in favor for Occupational Tax amendment

Community, Police & Government


The Dahlonega City Council voted in favor, 6-0, of the amendment to “increase occupation tax rates to defray general fund expenses,” after a public hearing held on Monday. City Councilman, Bruce Hoffman, motioned for the proposed ordinance, and Councilwoman, JoAnne Taylor, seconded the motion.

The cost of a business license in Dahlonega is based on the number of people employed by the business. Taylor explained to FYN that, “The City’s fee structures are all being examined since some have not been changed in over 15 years. This fee change does not affect businesses with one employee. The change puts Dahlonega in the average for cities our size. We expect a small impact to our General Fund revenues.” 

A public hearing was held on Monday, August 5, before the City Council meeting to, “accept comments on the proposed new occupation tax schedule to be incorporated into the City’s code pertaining to occupation taxes.” According to Taylor, “We held a  public hearing on this topic [proposed Occupational Tax amendment] but to date have received no feedback.”

According to the ordinance outline, the tax increase is expected to bring in an additional $13,900 in revenue to help alleviate the “increased cost for general fund operations.” Changes went into effect on Tuesday, August 6, 2019.
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