Jeff Syracuse

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Donelson School News

Beginning Monday, November 3rd, Metro Nashville Public Schools expands the school choice options for the 2015-16 school year.  The Optional Schools Application is now online.  For the first time, families with rising ninth and tenth graders have expanded options to choose their school and course of study as well.  In addition, the Nashville Metro Transit Authority StrIDe program allows 9th-12th grade students to ride MTA busses for free.  Visit each link for much more information.

At the beginning of this school year, the Nashville After Zone Alliance expanded to the McGavock cluster of middle schools.  Metro 3 created a great video, which talks about NAZA’s after school program activities.

Congratulations to the McGavock High School Band for making it to the finals in the 2014 Contest of Champions!  McGavock also did a great job of hosting the 36th Annual Music City Invitational Contest on Saturday, October 18th.  Ironically, that day was also my 20th High School Reunion in Marietta, GA.  Our class attended the homecoming game and as a former drum major, my band director (still there!) offered me the opportunity to conduct the fight song again.  I still remembered after 20 years!  It was a great time.  Music programs in our schools offer incredibly rewarding experiences for our kids and create memories for families that last a lifetime.

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Donelson Non-Profit News

The Donelson Gateway Project’s annual Fall Work Day will be on Saturday, November 8th at 9am.  Most of the help is needed at the Briley Parkway site, but we will be working at the Tollgate (Stewart’s Ferry) and Stones River Bridge sites as well.  We will be spreading pine straw and planting winter color.

The Friends of Two Rivers Mansion will host their annual Holiday Historical Tours on December 12th, 13th, and 14th.  This is an excellent opportunity to see the continued restoration progress and visit this unique historical treasure in Donelson decorated for the Holidays.

FiftyForward Donelson Station welcomed new a director, Angela Bryan, just over eight months ago and she is doing wonderful things at keeping our community center thriving and active.  The 28th Annual Donelson Fall Festival & BBQ fundraiser was a big success and included live music, children’s activities, a haunted theater, much more, and of course fantastic BBQ.  Congratulations to Angela and all involved in making it a success.  Coming up will be a Holiday Craft Fair on December 6th during the Donelson-Hermitage Chamber of Commerce’s 30th Annual Christmas Parade.  Contact Angela at to reserve a booth.

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Donelson Business News

Over the past couple of years, Donelson’s renewed economic development has shown promise and progress.  The redevelopment of The Crossings shopping center bringing new restaurants and businesses, to sidewalk infrastructure improvements, and new businesses in the community have been welcomed signs of an improving overall economy and renewed investment in Donelson.

The new life and vitality at the old Two Rivers Ford building when Ace Hardware moved in to the space along with Phat Bites, which became host for the weekly Hip Donelson Community Farmer’s Market, has been a real destination for both neighbors and visitors this summer.  The Market will return next May.  A wonderful addition to the Market has been the CedarStone Bank Entertainment Stage.  I’m thrilled to have been involved in helping book music and my thanks go to CedarStone for their sponsorship that has allowed us to make that happen.  You may have noticed that construction began recently for their new branch at the intersection of Donelson Pike and Lebanon Pike.  It is a welcome sight to see on a piece of land that has been empty for many years.  Just a few months prior, Wilson Bank & Trust opened their doors to a brand new branch on Donelson Pike next to JVI Secret Gardens.

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