The Candler Park neighborhood is just a few minutes east of downtown and situated just south of Poncey Highlands, east of Inman Park, west of Lake Claire and north of Edgewood.
Candler Park has undergone many changes over the past century. Archival records reveal that as early as 1874, African American neighbors founded the Antioch East Baptist Church on what is now Candler Park Drive (old Mayson Ave. North). Pioneering residents established the Mayson subdivision of homeowners, who developed nine acres of the current public park property into a thriving community. Maps and deeds of the area dating from the late1800s help to define the picture of a growing African American working class neighborhood in and around today’s Candler Park.
Candler Park is named after Asa Candler of Coca-Cola fame. In 1922, Candler donated 55 acres to create the public Candler Park and golf course in the location where much of it is currently located today. Candler is one of the larger parks in Atlanta and as such offers ample recreation opportunities for many different types of users from golfers, to bird watchers and festival-goers and offers a nine-hole golf course, swimming pool, football/soccer field, basketball and tennis courts, and a large playground.
The community has a history of activism and the park has been the focus at times. When the state DOT wanted to create a highway through the neighborhoods, residents let their voices be heard. That led to Freedom Park, with its walking/biking path, connecting the Carter Center Library to Candler Park.
Being central to and serving both Candler Park and Lake Claire means almost 3,000 homes call this space their neighborhood green-space. The Candler Park green-space, golf course, and other amenities are the eastern terminal point of Freedom Park but the bike/walk path continues on the northern edge of the park and connects with the Olmstead Linear Park on Ponce de Leon Avenue.
Freedom Park is one of the largest city parks in Atlanta, forming a cross shape with the axes crossing at the Carter Center. The park stretches west-east from Parkway Drive, just west of Boulevard, to Candler Park, and north-south from Ponce de Leon Avenue to the Inman Park/Reynoldstown MARTA station. Freedom Parkway, a four-lane limited-access road, runs through the park west-to-east from the Downtown Connector to the Carter Center, where the main road turns north towards Ponce de Leon Avenue, with a branch continuing east towards Moreland Avenue. The 207-acre Freedom Park was officially dedicated on September 19, 2000 with ribbon cutters Jimmy Carter, then-current Governor Roy Barnes, and Mayor Bill Campbell.
Candler Park offers a huge variety of restaurant fare. You can grab a burger and beer at The Vortex, enjoy some BBQ at Fox Brothers, have a micro-brew at The Wrecking Bar, enjoy brunch at the Radial Cafe, or have a meal at the highly acclaimed Flying Biscuit. Candler Park also offers some unique shopping offering everything from "lightly used" clothing at Rag-o-Rama to that hard to find album or single at Criminal Records or Full Moon.
This year marks the 17th anniversary of the beloved Fall Fest in Candler Park, a celebration of music and community kicked off with a 5k race and a tour of homes. It’s called the Fall Fest because it takes place in October. An estimated 15,000 daily festival goers are expected. The two-day festival features more than 100 booths showcasing locals artists and craftsmen, live performances by local bands, local food vendors, and family events, with the proceeds benefiting programs throughout the community.
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