Closed for Filming

The Decatur Rec Center will be closed to the public this Thursday and Friday for filming. For questions please email Lee.Williams@decaturga.com

Get Bouncy! Make Art! Have Fun! Decatur Arts Festival All Weekend Long!

SATURDAY, MAY 7, 10 AM-2 PM
DECATUR RECREATION CENTER, 231 SYCAMORE ST.

The Decatur Arts Festival brings the community together through a multi-day offering of live music, dance, comedy, theatrical performances, kids’ fest, exhibitions, and an expansive and diverse artists’ market.

On Saturday kids get their own mini-festival at the Decatur Arts Festival. Kids’ Fest celebrates the artist in all young people!  With plenty of creative activities, dance music, inflatables, and some fluffy surprises, this area will be fun for the young and young at heart.

Parents walk over with the kiddos and enjoy face painting, chalk art, dog kisses, sand art, and returning this year- Four Minutes of Fame! Kids will have four minutes on stage with a mic to do whatever brings them joy!

Get here early and start the morning with Flamenco performance at 10 am. Performers will showcase Flamenco songs and dances in this show designed especially for kids. Families are encouraged to gather around to capture some inspiration from the young performers, who promise to have the crowd cheering “Olé!” as they clap and stomp and twirl. 

King of Pops will be on-site all afternoon selling popsicles.

Thank You To All Our Kids Fest Vendors: Paint Love, Scraplanta, Lifeline Animal Project, Jumptastic, Topplin Tops, Sand Art Cart, Decatur Makers, Queen Art and Design, Color Wheel, and King of Pops.

May is Bike Month!

Come celebrate with us all month long and be sure to join us May 1st for our Kick-Off Ride! We’ll be partnering up with Georgia Commute Options for a casual paced 6 mile bike ride. We’ll begin and end at Decatur Recreation Center. Meet us at 10 a.m. and be sure to wear your helmet! This ride is not recommended for children.

Be a Recreatur! Kick-Off Meeting May 11, 6:30 p.m.

Collaborative public input is a critical component of the plan, and we need your thoughts and feedback on questions like:

  • Where do we need more parks, playgrounds, and other facilities?
  • What recreation programs do you want?
  • How can parks and recreation help address complex challenges facing our community?

If you’re unable to attend the meeting in person, please visit DecaturRecreatur.com for more information on how to participate.

Celebrate Earth Month!

Earth Month is upon us and we’re looking forward to Earth Day on April 22! If you’re still searching for fun activities and ways to celebrate, no worries—here are 10 ideas to help get you started:

  1.  Gather your friends and colleagues for a casual outdoor yoga or stretching session. This is a great activity to help you concentrate on mind-body wellness while connecting with the outdoors. Pro tip: Plan your session at sunrise or sunset for an even more beautiful and relaxing experience.
  2.  Have old outdoor gear, toys, or clothes that you’re looking to replace? Host a neighborhood clothing or toy swap. This is a great way to find a new home for items you’re looking to part with, snag some “new” goods, and reduce waste by diverting your unwanted belongings from landfills.
  3.  We’ve all heard of New Year’s resolutions, but what about Earth Day resolutions? Create a checklist with some short term and long term goals, or jot down some eco-minded ideas in a journal to inspire you to treat every day like Earth Day!
  4.  Nothing says Earth Day like a rejuvenating hike and litter clean-up combo! Whether you’re hitting the trail with a group of friends or going for a solo stroll around the neighborhood, this is a great way to get in your exercise for the day while helping to keep our planet beautiful.

    Join our Hiking Club on April 23 for an Earth Day hike around Sweetwater Creek State Park. Email Gael.Doyle@decaturga.com for more info!

  5.  Have old electronic devices or equipment sitting around? You’re not the only one! Host a drive at your workplace or school to collect e-waste and other materials that can be difficult to recycle.
  6.  Get crafty with some environmentally-inspired Do-It-Yourself projects! Transform your old T-shirts into fun reusable shopping totes, or create homemade stationary by making biodegradable seed paper.
  7.  Plant a tree, or two, or three! Get your hands dirty and plant some native flowers or trees to help restore local habitats and keep our planet beautiful.

    Check out beecaturga.com for information on pollinator habitats around the city.

  8.  There’s no better time to get started on your spring cleaning than Earth Month! Use environmentally-friendly cleaning products to make your home spotless, and get rid of clutter by collecting gently used clothes, furniture, and other household items you no longer have a use for to donate to people in need.
  9.  Earth Day is a great opportunity for us to reflect on our own ecological footprints and consider ways in which we can reduce our  impact on a daily basis. A great way to start thinking about this is by going on “scavenger hunt” of your home or your workplace to search for areas where you can reduce waste, energy, and water use. Not only will you be conserving natural resources, but the savings you generate can help your wallet too!
  10.  Find some time to enjoy nature-themed books like Dr. Suess’s The Lorax—a great option for children and adults alike!

Be sure to join us April 23rd from 10-2 for our Earth Day Festival at the Decatur Rec Center. More info can be found here!

Celebrate National Walking Day!

Come walk with us! Decatur Active Living will celebrate National Walking Day on Wednesday, April 6th at 10 a.m. Meet outside the Decatur Recreation Center and be ready to walk 2-3 miles around Decatur.

The first Wednesday in April is National Walking Day and it encourages Americans of all ages to get out and stretch their legs and get their hearts pumping. The American Heart Association launched National Walking Day in 2007 as part of its efforts to promote healthy living.

Unable to join us? Wear your sneakers (or take them with you) to work, and at some point in the day, take a 30-minute walk. 

  • Take thirty minutes out of your day to go for a walk.
  • Find a trail near you or walk around your neighborhood.
  • You can also visit a local park or walk on your treadmill.
  • Take your canine pals with you, too. They need the cardiovascular workout, too!

Here are some great ways to make that 30-minutes more enjoyable:

  • Wear comfortable clothes.
  • Take a friend to pass the time.
  • Make sure to stretch those muscles.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Move your arms, too.
  • Make sure you have good posture.

Bikes & Brews Cancelled

Stay dry! Bikes & Brews will be back, April 15th, see you then!

Celebrating Women’s History with Ann Axtell Morris

Ann received her bachelor’s degree from Smith College in 1922. After graduating, she traveled to Paris for field training with the American School of Prehistoric Research in France. Ann entered professional life as an archeologist at a time when men largely did not include women in the discipline. In 1923, Ann married Earl Halstead Morris. Though an archeologist in her own right, Ann referred to her “career of being an archeologist’s wife,” eluding to the tactic of women archeologists to navigate institutional sexism and find a place for themselves. Smith College awarded Ann an honorary master’s degree in 1935. 

On their honeymoon, Ann and Earl excavated Mummy Cave, now inside Canyon de Chelly National Monument in Arizona, where they hired Navajo to work on the dig. From 1923 to 1929, and again in 1932, the Morrises excavated Canyon del Muerto. Ann developed methods to document architecture, petroglyphs and pictographs, and landscapes. Ann’s colorful drawings captured information that then-popular black-and-white photography would have lost. For example, while at Canyon del Muerto, she made watercolors of the cave and kiva wall paintings to “copy in full color and accurate detail as many of the hundreds of pictographs along the canyon’s gallery walls as possible.” In 1929, she illustrated the ancient art at Antelope House, Pictograph Cave, and Standing Cow Ruins. These paintings were exhibited at the American Museum. The couple worked on multiple sites during this time, including Mesa Verde in Colorado and Aztec Ruins in New Mexico. 

Starting in 1924, in cooperation with the Carnegie Institute of Washington, the Morrises spent five winters excavating the Mayan city Chichén Itzá in eastern Mexico. When Ann first arrived, archeologist Sylvanus Morley told her to babysit his six-year-old daughter and act as hostess to visiting guests. Ann, instead, convinced him to allow her to excavate a small, overlooked temple.  Ann also copied the Temple of the Warrior murals, which took four seasons. Her final illustrations were published in Temple of the Warriors at Chichén Itzá, Yucatan, coauthored with Earl and a French painter, Jean Charlot.

Together, Ann and Earl wrote many studies on ancient lifeways within the American Southwest and Mexico, including one on Native American sandals that their archeologist daughter Elizabeth Ann expanded upon years later. Ann herself wrote two popular books, Digging in the Southwest (which upended conventional thinking about the Anasazi people) and Digging in the Yucatan. Ann intended the books to have a popular audience, in order to educate the public about the field. The publishers, however, marketed the books to older children because they did not recognize that women could write literature about archeology for adults.

Ann and Earl Morris had two daughters, Elizabeth Ann and Sarah Lane. Elizabeth studied Anthropology at the University of Arizona, and following in her parents footsteps, became an Archaeologist and Professor at Colorado State University.

Image credit: Gift of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, 1958. © President and Fellows of Harvard College, Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University, 58-34-00/2.1347

Morris, Ann Axtell
1931 Digging in Yucatan. Junior Literary Guild. New York City.
1933 Digging in the Southwest. Doubleday, Doran & Co.

Sources:
Burgh, Robert F.
1957 “Earl Halstead Morris, 1889-1956.” American Anthropologist, Vol. 59, Iss. 3.

Lister Florence, C. and Robert H. Lister
1993 Earl Morris & Southwest Archaeology. Western National Parks Association.

Theis, Aaron
2013 “Ann Axtell Morris: Art in Archaeology of the Southwest and Mesoamerica.” Archaeological Institute of America.

https://www.nps.gov/people/ann-axtell-morris.htm

Use Monday to Stay on the Right Track

New routines can take some time to get going. If you’ve been trying to make your day more active, use this Monday to check in on your progress and to stay on track. Did you use January to make a new resolution? Consider Mondays instead! You can resolve to keep moving and try new activities every week. You haven’t fallen off the wagon yet! You might just need to make some minor adjustments.

Staying active can become second nature to you no matter what your fitness level is. In the beginning, keep track of how often you get up and move throughout the day and how much time you spend moving.

Experts recommend 150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week, or about 30 minutes per day, five days a week. You can build up to that kind of goal over time. For now, draw up an hourly schedule and note when you get up and what you do. If you find that you’re sitting for a long period of time, find an activity that will help break up that block of time.

You can use every Monday to reset your practice, add to it, or change it up if you want to do something more or less challenging. Changing your lifestyle is not a sprint – it can be done incrementally, over the course of time. You can hit the “reset” button every Monday and reach new goals every week!

Here are a few simple exercises that will keep you moving throughout the day:

Mini workoutsWhenever you can find a few moments, do quick exercises in short bursts that will get your heart beating and muscles moving!

Chair yogaIf you can’t leave your desk, take some time to stretch and prevent yourself from getting stiff. Bonus: A little yoga will help you reduce stress!

WalkingWalking is real exercise. Consider organizing or walking a Monday Mile. But if you can’t find the time to do that, take short walks throughout the day. Park your car further away from your destination instead of finding the closest spot. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walk during conversations or meetings at work. Every step counts!

It’s never too late to start being more active on a daily basis. Monday is a great day to start adding a little bit more movement to your day that can continue through the rest of the week!

Scott Park Garden Club

Scott Park Community Garden is excited to announce that we have been awarded the Food Well Alliance 2022 Community Garden Grant! Decatur Active Living applied for the grant in November 2021 and will use the funds to fix and update our 3 bin composting system.

Established in 1992, this urban oasis, hidden away in the “backyard” of the Decatur Recreation Center, features an organic community garden that brings residents together, keeps them active, and provides urban greenspace therapy. The composting system was well used and started to age and deteriorate. Composting has so many benefits, not only to the surrounding garden but to the environment as a whole. The soil becomes more nutrient dense and helps the plants grow. It combats erosion, reduces greenhouse gases and helps to filter local water sources. By maintaining a well working garden the benefits of having a community garden can shine through. Community gardens strengthen community ties, educate not only about gardening but interacting with community members from various backgrounds.

Be sure to stop by the garden and watch our progress as the new composter is being built!