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November 24, 2015


For the eighth time, a panel of judges from the largest association of the exhibitions and events industry has awarded first place to the Cobb Galleria Centre in the Art of the Show competition from the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE).

Cobb Galleria Centre’s 2014 Annual Report won first place in the convention center promotion category. The Art of the Show contest recognizes excellence in promotional materials for the exhibitions and events industry, including venues and shows.

“The Art of the Show is one of the most prestigious competitions in the events industry, and we are extremely honored to once again receive this distinguished award in a very competitive category,” said Michele Swann, General Manager of the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority.

Of this year’s 190 submissions, 33 entries were honored for their creative use of several essential marketing elements needed to promote exhibitions and events.

About IAEE

Trusted since 1928, IAEE provides quality and value to its members through leadership, service, education and strong relationships. IAEE is the largest association of the exhibitions and events industry in the world, with a membership of show organizers, exhibitors and exhibition suppliers. Organizers of more than 20,000 exhibitions and buyer-seller events around the world are members of IAEE. Visit for more information.

About Cobb Galleria Centre The Cobb Galleria Centre is located in the beautifully landscaped 88-acre Galleria complex in prestigious northwest Atlanta. Cobb Galleria Centre is Atlanta’s premier convention facility with 320,000 square feet of event space, four exhibition halls, 20 meeting rooms, four executive boardrooms and a grand ballroom. Cobb Galleria Centre had more than 348,000 visitors to 635 events in 2015, resulting in an overall economic impact of $123 million. The Cobb-Marietta Coliseum and Exhibit Hall Authority governs Cobb Galleria Centre, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and Galleria Specialty Shops. For more information, visit and follow us on Facebook at, on Twitter at @CobbGalleria and on Instagram at

Cobb Chamber Introduces New Cost Saving Programs

November 24, 2015

Everyone knows that the Chamber is dedicated to helping your business succeed. Your passion is our passion and together we all achieve more. One of the many things we offer to members are exclusive cost-savings discounts! We help your company save thousands on office supplies, prescription drugs, workers compensation insurance and electronics!

Cobb Chamber members can save money by taking advantage of the following programs:

ADP Employee Solutions

From payroll and benefits to HR and compliance, ADP Employee Solutions offers small businesses a comprehensive set of services that improve everyday productivity while saving you both time and money. With expert guidance and support every step of the way, Employee Solutions allows business owners to focus less on day-to-day administration and more on what they do best—building a motivated team and growing a successful business. As a global leader that serves over 400,000 small businesses every day, ADP understands that employees are a growing company’s greatest asset.

Chamber members can receive preferred pricing for both new and existing members (discount applies as long as client is with ADP) + free 2015 year end W2s.

CBIZ Payroll

Growth and Success. Efficiency and Profitability. It’s likely these goals are top priorities for your business. It’s also likely that the daily distractions of financialand employee issues diminish your ability to focus on those goals.

CBIZ Payroll enables you to dedicate your time to critical business matters by providing custom solutions that help you manage your finances and employees. CBIZ offers clients exceptional quality and diverse capabilities with the personal attention your business needs and deserves, all with a single focus: your success.

Chamber members can receive an exclusive 20% discount and a free audit of the member’s current payroll services.

Drugs Don’t Work In Cobb

Increase productivity and reduce your company’s workers’ compensation premiums by 7.5% when you participate in the Drugs Don’t Work program. This program educates employers about the prevention, intervention and elimination of substance abuse in the workplace. As a drug-free workplace, you’ll increase productivity and reduce the cost of doing business. Your $100 annual tuition meets all five certification requirements of Georgia law and includes:

  • 12 issues of the “Drug-Free @ Workplace” employee (English & Spanish) and supervisor training newsletter. (This monthly newsletter meets your annual training education requirement)
  • List of treatment and counseling centers in your area. (Meets treatment center list requirement)
  • Fill-in-the-blanks substance abuse policy. (Meets all requirements of Georgia law)
  • Drug Free Workplace poster, window and door stickers. (Required by Georgia law)
  • Free legal advice from our drug free workplace attorney.
  • Drug free workplace consultation from our drug-free workplace experts.
  • Assistance in completing Application for Certification. This is $35 annually and will be collected separately by The State Board of Workers’ Compensation.


Group Transportation Services

Group Transportation Services (GTS) was founded in 1995 as a non-asset based third-party logistics Management Company, and has become the one-stop source for all transportation needs over 150 pounds. The modes they manage include less-than-truckload, truckload, air, international, parcel and expedite. The GTS extensive carrier network gives them the bargaining power to provide custom, cost-efficient transportation solutions. GTS only contracts with the most reliable and financially stable carriers.

Cobb Chamber Members can save an average of 10 to 35 percent on shipping annually.

Healthy Business Alliance

The Healthy Business Alliance program harnesses the collective purchasing power of Chambers of Commerce to negotiate advantages on group insurance and related products and business solutions – often with discounted pricing or exclusive benefits – offered through recognized, reputable companies.

Purchase your employee benefits and business solutions through local insurance agents – so you’re supporting professionals in your community that you know and trust. The Cobb Chamber has made it easy for you to find and purchase the plans you need by participating in this statewide program available to more than 148 Chambers, serving more than 150 counties throughout Georgia.

Office Depot

Take advantage of one of the great benefits of being a Chamber member! The Cobb Chamber has partnered with Office Depot to bring you exclusive discounts on office supplies, products and services. Through the program, you will receive:

  • Up to 45% off items companies purchase most frequently: ink and toner, paper and general supplies
  • Up to 10% off almost everything Office Depot stocks in stores and the Business Solutions Division annual catalog
  • $0.025 black and white, and $0.024 color copies
  • Discounts on cleaning and breakroom products, copy and print, furniture, technology and more



Automate your business and spend more time with family! The Cobb Chamber has partnered with Soffront Software Inc. to provide small- and medium-sized businesses the most efficient and effective CRM on the market. Soffront’s integrated suite of sales, marketing and service automation, along with their tab system architectural design, enables clients to work on multiple customers, projects, leads, or customers’ issues simultaneously.

  • Get $399 on-boarding and personal CRM training FREE with semi-annual subscription
  • Get 10% immediate discount per license (use coupon code “cobbcoc”)
  • Get enrolled in Referral Partnership Program – earn money immediately

Sign into the Members Only section on the Chamber’s website to learn more about these exclusive offers!

Contact Josh Jones at 770-859-2354 or if you have any questions about the cost savings programs


Town Center Community Improvement District Launches First CID Bike Share System in Georgia

November 23, 2015

The Town Center Community Improvement District (CID) kicks off its new bike share system today, the first ever to be launched by a CID in the state of Georgia. Bikes are now available for use 24 hours a day, all year and are parked at three convenient docking stations located along the Noonday Creek Trail, a seven-mile concrete path system in the Town Center Community in Kennesaw, Georgia. The Town Center CID partnered with Zagster (, a leading provider of private and public-private bike sharing systems in the U.S., to implement and maintain the bike share system.

Working with Cobb County DOT, Town Center CID has placed stations in key locations where they will be convenient, compatible with the environment and provide easy access to prime destinations in the district.

These include:

  • Future home of Town Center Park, on Town Center Drive, behind Town Center Mall;
  • Bells Ferry Trailhead, between Cobb Parkway and the intersection of Barrett Lakes Boulevard and Duncan Road; and
  • Future home of Aviation Park, at Cobb Place Boulevard and Barrett Lakes Boulevard.

“Great communities provide commuters, residents and visitors with transportation options, along with new and enriching things to do,” said Tracy Rathbone, executive director of the Town Center Community Improvement District. “The Zagster bike share system offers everyone who spends time in this area a fun and easy way to get to their favorite destinations. It’s an exciting chance to connect with our vibrant community, getting people out of the car and out of an everyday routine. We want to help create memorable experiences here, along with new, healthy habits!”

“Bike sharing is a great, and versatile, way to help communities address needs, like last mile connectivity, as well as create opportunities for better health for residents and overall sustainability in a region,” said Timothy Ericson, co-founder and CEO of Zagster. “We’re thrilled to be working with the Town Center CID to make the program a success in Kennesaw and elsewhere in the region.”

As Easy As Borrow, Unlock, Ride & Return

Starting today, bike share memberships are available on or may be set up using the Zagster mobile app. Membership is free and open to everyone over 18 with a valid credit or debit card. The first hour of riding is free and each additional hour is $3 with a maximum cost of $24 per day. The bike may be returned to any docking station in the CID.

Once riders set up an account, they can text the unique ID of a bike to receive an access code that unlocks it. Riders can use the code for the duration of their rental to lock and unlock the bike anywhere along their trip. Once the bike is returned to a Zagster location, the touch of a button ends the rental and releases the bike for the next rider.

The Town Center Zagster system features the Breezer Uptown, an award-winning, lightweight cruiser bike specifically designed for city riding. All bikes come with baskets, adjustable seats, seven gears, an attached lock and front and rear lights for night riding.

“Town Center CID’s leadership to bring Zagster and the bike share system to their area will undoubtedly be successful and capture a market with unmet demand. It will also serve among many catalyst efforts to continue the transformation of the CID area,” said Faye DiMassimo, Director of Cobb County Department of Transportation.

Uniting Bike Trails Through Cobb and Beyond

The bike share program will be expanded in phases. Phase one includes three stations and a total of 20 bikes. In 2016, additional locations will be added throughout the Town Center CID, including the KSU campus, to assure easy access for students.

“Cobb County is home to nearly one-fourth of the trail network in the metro Atlanta region,” said Mason Zimmerman, Chairman of the Board. “The Town Center CID is working with a variety of civic and local government partners to connect Cobb trails to each other through the Cobb Greenway Project and then to trail systems in Cherokee and Fulton, including the Atlanta BeltLine,” he said. “We’re the first CID to put a district-wide program in place and are excited to be at the forefront of this growing transit option.”

For more information on Zagster, the station locations, and updates on the program, including membership registration and docking station map, visit Town Center’s bike share program website:

About the TCCID

Founded in 1997, the Town Center Community Improvement District is dedicated to the betterment of the Town Center area through transportation infrastructure, safety improvements, beautification and other projects that enhance property value by increasing interest and investment in the community. The Town Center CID utilizes funds from voluntary commercial real estate taxes to implement its projects. For more information, please visit

About Zagster

Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., Zagster is a leading provider of private and public-private bike sharing systems for tenants, employees, guests, students and residents across North America, with a focus on smaller cities. More information about Zagster is available at

American Builders 2017 Celebrates Completion of Structural Concrete at Atlanta Braves’ SunTrust Park

November 23, 2015

On November 17 American Builders 2017 celebrated a significant milestone on the Atlanta Braves’ SunTrust Park: the contractor has completed the new stadium’s structural concrete.

“The structural concrete is the backbone of the ballpark—it’s what holds everything together and allows for the exhilarating fan experience the Braves are creating with the aesthetics of SunTrust Park’s design,” said American Builders 2017 Project Director Chris Britton.

Surrounded by the massive stadium structure, workers enjoyed a special luncheon to recognize their hard work and perseverance that continue to keep the ballpark on schedule and within budget.

“This is an important milestone in the construction of SunTrust Park, as it means we are moving closer and closer to Opening Day 2017 when this beautiful ballpark will open to our fans,” said Mike Plant, Atlanta Braves Executive Vice President of Business Operations. “The American Builders 2017 team and all of the contractors have worked incredibly hard to reach this point so quickly, and this moment is a testament to their dedication to this project. We are so thankful for all they have accomplished and congratulate them on this achievement.”

To date, the construction team has logged more than 845,000 man hours on the new ballpark.


Homer, the Braves mascot, joined the celebration to congratulate the team on the project’s progress.



“The SunTrust Park team has worked diligently to reach this milestone in just over two years since the announcement of this unprecedented project. I am proud of the progress we continue to make and excited about the possibilities this development presents to the future of Cobb County,” said Cobb County Chairman Tim Lee.

The project team honored the workers with an appreciation lunch, raffle prizes, and recognition for outstanding performers in safety and quality. Homer, the Braves’ mascot, was also on hand to congratulate the team on the project’s progress.

Additionally, Courtney Turner, a representative of Kids’ Chance, thanked the workers for supporting the organization’s mission to provide educational scholarships to the children of Georgia workers who have been seriously, catastrophically or fatally injured in work-related accidents. The SunTrust Park project team has committed to fund two five-year scholarships for Georgia students affected by construction-related accidents.

In just under one year from placing the first cu yd of foundation concrete, American Builders 2017 has poured 43,000 cu yds to complete the stadium’s structure. That equates to emptying 14 concrete trucks on the jobsite every calendar day for one year.

SunTrust Park is scheduled to be complete and welcome its first visitors on Opening Day 2017.

About American Builders 2017

American Builders 2017, a joint venture between Brasfield & Gorrie, Mortenson Construction, Barton Malow Company and New South Construction Company, provides construction management and general contractor services, specializing in professional sports construction. The team has more than 225 years of construction experience and has completed more than 330 sports projects, including football stadiums, baseball parks, soccer stadiums, basketball arenas and more. American Builders 2017’s ballpark experience includes Target Field, Coors Field, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Turner Field, Minute Maid Park, PNC Park and Coolray Field as well as SunTrust Park, which is currently under construction.

About SunTrust Park

SunTrust Park is being developed by the Braves in partnership with the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum and Exhibit Hall Authority and will be completed by Opening Day 2017. Located in Atlanta at the intersection of I-75 and I-285 in the bustling Cumberland CID, SunTrust Park will flow directly into the surrounding development, creating a vibrant atmosphere with unique shops, restaurants, offices, residences and entertainment venues that are accessible 365 days a year.

Cobb County P.A.R.K.S. Holiday Shenanigans

November 20, 2015

christmas-clip-art-christmascandycanesCome join Cobb County P.A.R.K.S. as they present two awesome, family fun events this holiday season!

Candy Cane Hunt

Saturday December 5, 2105 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Kids will be hunting for candy canes with prizes awarded to all competition winners! Other activities include: gingerbread houses, musical chairs, arts and crafts, charades, food vendors and free pictures with Santa!

Mable House Art Center 5239 Floyd Road Mableton, GA 30126 Call 770-819-3285 for more information!

Jingles and Jammies

Saturday December 12, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Arts and crafts, storytelling, refreshments and a visit from Santa Claus! Don’t forget to wear your PJs!

Ward Recreation Center

4845 Dallas Highway, Powder Springs GA, 30127 Call 770-528-8885 for details!

We hope to see you there!

Holiday Happenings at the Art Station-Big Shanty

November 19, 2015

christmas-tree-clipart-vl4buxwkThe Art Station has a lot of great holiday events for you and family to get in the spirit this year! Check them out below!

2050 Kennesaw Due West Road

Kennesaw, GA 30152


Winter Wonderland

Friday December 4, 2015 3-4 p.m. or 4- 5 p.m.

Get snowed in with this fun winter themed workshop! Must pre-register

Ages 2-13, cost is $5.

Santa’s Studio

Friday December 11, 2015 3-4 p.m. or 4-5 p.m.

Ho! Ho! Ho! In this Christmas themed workshop kids will create a fun and festive craft just in time for Santa! Must pre-register.

Ages 2-13, cost is $5.

The Gift Box

Shop open from November 20- December 16, 2015.

Hours are: Monday-Thursday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Shop local this year and give a gift they will remember! Everything is made with love by a local artist! And while you’re shopping bring the kids for FREE holiday card making, cookies and cocoa!

Cobb Galleria Centre Is Honored With ConventionSouth’s Annual Readers’ Choice Award

November 18, 2015

Award button QuarkIt is with honor that the publishers and editors of ConventionSouth, the national multimedia resource for planning events in the South, present Cobb Galleria Centre with a 2015 Readers’ Choice Award.

ConventionSouth readers and fans have voted to decide the best meeting sites in the South, and it is no surprise to us that Cobb Galleria Centre has been selected to receive our annual Readers’ Choice Award,” said Convention South Publisher J. Talty O’Connor. “The value in receiving this prestigious recognition is that it comes from the United States’ top meeting professionals who hold events in the South. These planners demand the highest level of customer service and quality facilities, and they have contributed in determining that Cobb Galleria Centre indeed displays the commitment to professionalism, creativity and service that they require.”

Cobb Galleria Centre is among 180 convention and visitor bureaus (CVBs), meeting facilities and hotels located across the South to receive this year’s Readers’ Choice Award. Throughout the year, meeting professionals nominated the meeting sites they believe provide exemplary service for group events. The nominated sites are then compiled onto an online ballot where meeting professionals and fans are asked to vote for the best of the best. More than 5,000 voters participated this year in the selection process – the highest vote count ever recorded.

Since creation in 2001, this is the sixth time that Cobb Galleria Centre has received the award, making it an even greater honor to present it with a 2015 Readers’ Choice Award. Cobb Galleria Centre will be featured as an award recipient in the December 2015 Awards Issue of ConventionSouth magazine. This exciting issue will also showcase some of the most talented meeting professionals in the nation as ConventionSouth also presents planners with its annual “Meeting Professionals To Watch” designation. “Featuring peer advice and trade secrets from our Meeting Professionals to Watch in 2015, our Awards Issue is one of the most popular must-read resources within the meetings industry,” O’Connor said.

Celebrating over 30 years as a leading meeting planning resource, ConventionSouth magazine is based in Gulf Shores, Ala., and is distributed to more than 18,000 meeting professionals located across the country who book meetings held within the South, according to O’Connor.

A complete list of award winners can be found online at:


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