The community nestled between a river and a railroad may not have its own City Hall, but it has Vinings Jubilee.
Billed as Atlanta’s first lifestyle center, the retail and restaurant destination was founded by Vinings resident Felix Cochran, no relation to this writer, 25 years ago.
The late Cochran researched the archives of what is now the Atlanta History Center to create the atmosphere of the old South in a community founded in 1838 by the Pace family.
“We added to his first vision,” said Mike Hammer, president of Vinings Jubilee developer, owner and manager Paces Holdings. “He had a good idea in 1986.”
The pedestrian-friendly site has become a landmark in the heart of the Vinings Village commercial district, he said.
“I’ve been here for 23 years and I’ve seen more people walking around the shopping area,” Hammer said.
He expects many residents to stroll over to the silver jubilee of Vinings Jubilee on Saturday.
“We think it will be people walking up to it and then walking home,” Hammer said about attendance, which he estimated at 1,000 to 1,500. “There hasn’t been a prior anniversary celebration. We figured after 25 years we should do one.”
The inaugural event’s organizers have been inspired by an outdoor concert venue in Buckhead.
“Our restaurants will offer a taste of Vinings for sale through different tents they will set up. We’ll have tables set up. It will have somewhat of a Chastain Park feel,” Hammer said.
Glenn Miller-era music will be provided by Memory Lane Jazz Ensemble featuring “a mystery musician who is a long-time Vinings resident,” Hammer said, while Yacht Rock Schooner will play light-rock favorites on a brand-new platform.
“We created a community-type area for events called the Tower Stage,” he said, “not just for the 25th anniversary but going forward.”
Also going forward are the efforts of the newly formed nonprofit Vinings Community Conservation Alliance, the evening’s beneficiary.
“We’re looking back 25 years and celebrating. But the VCCA is looking ahead to the next 25 years. That’s one reason we thought teaming up with them would be a good idea,” Hammer said. “We’re a developer. We’ve seen things that are reactive. The VCCA takes a proactive approach.”
Its president Cal Dortch said the nonprofit’s purpose is a long-range master plan for Vinings. The master plan is a product of input from residents,” he said.
If you go
• What: Vinings Jubilee 25th anniversary
• When: Saturday from 6 to 10:30 p.m.
• Where: 4300 Paces Ferry Road, Vinings
• Cost: Free admission; food and beverage extra
• Information: (770) 438-8080 or visit www.viningsjubilee.com