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Keeping kids’ minds sharp over winter break

Keeping kids’ minds sharp over winter break

By Megan Nellen, Lower School Principal at The Walker School

1. Community Service: Use the break to plan community service ideas for the coming year. Kids can write flyers and notes asking neighbors to save and donate any holiday décor they plan on tossing out to be used next year for a family without a tree or decorations. Children of all ages can help make and deliver sandwiches for a homeless mission or shelter or make cards and pictures for a local nursing home.

2. Reuse, Recycle, Entertain: Collect leftover boxes, ribbons and paper and have your kids use them to build a robot or make a game. Each year at The Walker School second graders use cardboard to make arcade games.

Last weekend of roadwork until 2015

Last weekend of roadwork until 2015

(WXIA) -- Drivers in the Atlanta area: Just make it through this weekend, and then you'll get a much-needed break.

The Georgia Department of Transportation said it will suspend all construction-related lane closures from Dec. 23 to Jan. 2.

Until then, many of the usual areas will see crews hard at work through next Monday morning.

As always, all work is weather permitting. A complete list of closures and possible delays can be found at 511ga.org.

Cobb/Fulton counties
* Two eastbound lanes of I-20 will be closed for about one mile past Six Flags Parkway from 9 p.m. Friday to 9 p.m. Saturday for bridge joint and header replacement.

Coweta County
* One northbound lane of I-85 will be closed between two miles south of Highway 14 and McCollum-Sharpsburg Road from 8 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for barrier wall setting.

Fulton County Fire Rescue provides guidelines to prevent holiday fire hazards

Fulton County Fire Rescue provides guidelines to prevent holiday fire hazards

FULTON COUNTY, Ga. -- As residents string up the lights and ignite the candles, the Fulton County Fire Rescue Department encourages everyone to keep fire safety in mind.

According to the United States Fire Administration (USFA), fires involving Christmas trees caused more than $16 million in property damage per year between 2004 and 2008. Holiday lights and other decorative lighting caused more than $8 million dollars in property damage per year over that same time period.

Fulton County, community partners to provide for children in need

Fulton County, community partners to provide for children in need

ATLANTA -- The Fulton Department of Aging and Youth will host the “2014 Community Cares” Christmas Celebration on Friday, Dec. 19 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The event will feature an evening of family fun and distribution of toys. The Metro Family Fun Center is located at 1959 Metropolitan Parkway SW.

Community partners supporting the event with entertainment, food, resources and giveaways include Fulton County Aging and Youth Department, Office of Children and Youth, Walmart, Music Education Group, Treasure Chest, Inc., NFL Players Association, local fraternities and sororities and other community sponsors.

Mother of paralyzed football coach hosts fundraiser


UNION CITY, Ga. (WXIA) -- Mallory Magwood spends most of her time with her son, Jonathon, in treatment at Atlanta Medical Center.

"Every time I see him in the hospital I say I love you, Jonathan, but Jesus loves you more," she said.

He can't say those words back, not yet.

"He blinks his eyes twice for yes and once for no," Magwood explained.

Weekend roadwork: Once again, avoid I-20 on the west side

Weekend roadwork: Once again, avoid I-20 on the west side

(WXIA) -- Drivers are asked to avoid non-essential travel on Interstate 20 on Atlanta's west side this weekend.

Georgia Department of Transportation crews will perform several road projects on I-20 as well as other areas of metro Atlanta. Lane closures and delays are expected.

All work is weather permitting.

This weekend's work by county includes:

Cobb County
* Two northbound lanes of Cobb Parkway will be closed at the Chattahoochee River on Saturday from 7 a.m. to noon for pavement repairs.
* Two southbound lanes of Cobb Parkway will be closed at the Chattahoochee River on Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. for pavement repairs.

Union City football coach paralyzed at end-of-season celebration


UNION CITY, Ga. (WXIA) -- One minute, a Union City Football coach was smiling and celebrating with his team. An instant later, he was facing the reality of being paralyzed for life.

One misstep changed everything.

It was another season to celebrate for the Union City Eagles -- until the team, age 10 and younger, got a harsh lesson in how quickly life can change.

"Everyone that you talk to there, they are still in shock and disbelief that something like this could happen to a fine young man," said Dwayne Eberhart.

At the team's end-of-season banquet, Coach Jonathon Magwood suffered an injury as unexpected as it was harsh.

"He actually jumped into a foam pit and landed incorrectly and broke two vertebrae," Eberhart said.

Now the once-vibrant coach is possibly facing a lifetime of paralysis.