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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween comes early at Oakland Cemetery

Emory's Atlanta Young Alumni typically can be found mixing and mingling at the newest hot spot or local sporting event. But this past Saturday, October 24, you could find us in a cemetery.

That's right. In the spirit of Halloween, as well as a love for Emory's hometown, we ventured to Historic Oakland Cemetery in Grant Park for their annual tour. Picture something a' la "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" meets an afternoon at SweetWater in the 1880s.

Greeted by a gentleman decked out in 19th century garb, we were left to our own devices to walk the grounds until we stumbled upon a mini fair of beer, hot cider, and--who would have guessed--corn dogs! Being unseasonably cold (and we Emory folk dress to impress without concern for the weather), it was a nice surprise to find hot drink and beer to make you forget about the cold a bit.

Our group was led by a guide also donning 1800s-inspired regalia. We visited six specific grave sites. At each, an actor shared a monologue about the life and death of his or her character underground. Mixed with a bit of humor and a lot of history, we all enjoyed getting the back story on what lies beneath (or above, in the case of the sarcophagi and mausoleums).

After a couple hours (and some severely numb extremities), we headed to Six Feet Under across the street to warm up and enjoy some great food...mostly fried, of course. This event was a definite departure from a typical Young Alumni event, but was well worth bearing the cold for.

For anyone who's yet to go, I'd recommend a visit during normal daytime hours until the next nighttime tour. One tidbit we learned: fellow Emory alumnus Bobby Jones 27L rests there. Bring a camera, perhaps some paper, and charcoals (who doesn't love those childhood memories of making headstone etchings?), and I'll see you there!

-- Darrah Brustein 06C, co-chair, Atlanta Young Alumni Board

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