As the anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing approaches, please share your memories of where you were and what you remember about that day. Do you recall watching the event on television? Which news anchor do you remember reporting on the event? Was anything else special happening in your family at the time? Send your memories of that day, July 20, 1969 to Valerie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Popular meeting place, Crema Espresso Gourmet, has been a busy corner in Dunwoody for several decades. People have passed through the intersection going back to the early settlers and beyond, as the spot was adjacent to the Hightower Trail. The Hightower Trail was used by the Creek Indian Nation to travel from Augusta to the Shallow Ford on the Chattahoochee River and into the Georgia mountains. Directly across Mount Vernon Road, at the entrance to All Saints Catholic Church, sits a historic marker commemorating the trail.
The first business on the corner of Jett Ferry Road and Mount Vernon Road was a small country store and gas station, with the typical Coca-Cola sign painted on one side. It was built and run by Joe Kelly. Next owners of the store were Georgia Carpenter Anderson and husband Offalee Anderson. Georgia grew up at her family’s home just down Mount Vernon Road, built by her father, Cicero Carpenter.
Later, the store was run by Olan Sparks, then finally by Mr. Wilson. The name that is best remembered as being painted on the building is Sparks Grocery.
The home of John and Mary Donaldson was behind the small store. They owned a dairy in the 1930s and 1940s, located along today’s Dunwoody Club Drive where Orchard Park Shopping Center sits, but their home was up on the hill. Dunwoody Club Drive was once known as Old Lawrenceville Road and County Line Road.
In 1976, Dr. James Anchors bought the property and transformed the country store into an office for his chiropractic practice. When he moved his business to Orchard Park Shopping Center after 22 years, his daughter Kim Anchors opened Marimay Gift Shop in the small building. Marimay was named for Kim’s maternal grandmother, Mary Josephine May.
The next business on the property was java u coffee shop, and it was at that time that the old cinder block building was demolished to make way for a new modern building. That change happened in 2006, and New York Butcher Shoppe took over the space in 2010.
Crema has been open since 2013 and has become a popular spot to have coffee, a snack or a meal. Often you will see people relaxing and chatting with friends, but it also stays busy with local business and non-profit meetings, as well as individuals working on their laptops. Crema is one of my favorite places in Dunwoody. Still, the nostalgic side of me wishes we still had a country store close by, with one of those upright coolers where you reach in and get a cold beverage.