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Mike Tasos: A little vision can go a long way
Mike Tasos

In the past 25 years I have called Cumming “home,” it is becoming increasingly difficult to feel “homey” here.

It appears Mayor Troy Brumbalow is trying to do something along these lines with the project designed to pump some life into what could someday be a village-type environment.

He, perhaps, has a good amount of “vision.” But no matter how much he has, he’ll need a bunch more. 

Why? There’s bound to be lots of folks who like things the way they used to be. 

Take a look around town. “The way things used to be” has left the station. I may be alone here, but downtown Cumming is downright cringe-worthy.

On the square, your choices for dinner consists of Sal’s Place, Happy Family and Village Burger. The latter occupying the corner on Hwy. 20 as you head west. I wish the proprietors well. Several other eateries have taken the dirt nap there.

Of course, you can always take a step back in time and get a prescription filled at Goodson’s. It’s an old-time drug store where customers are treated like old friends. 

OK, I’ll even throw in Dairy Queen and that’s the list of downtown businesses on or near the square.

As a frequent traveler, I find it refreshing to leave the interstate and see what is possible when those in charge of running a city’s show have (there’s that word again) vision. 

Recently in Dahlonega, I marveled at what a vibrant downtown could be. Stores, restaurants, a theater and so much more. I think I saw a horse-drawn buggy.

As it is now, your best shot of doing business downtown would involve jury duty, litigation or a tax bill. The new courthouse is a magnificent structure. However, I’ve never been inside.

And I hope I never have to.

But by golly, don’t we have a dandy jail house! Involved in a trial or wearing handcuffs, our facilities here are top-shelf. 

We’ll treat you right.

On the other hand, take a drive toward Lake Lanier and look on the right before you get to Samples Road. You’re going to do a double take.

Think of Iron Eyes Cody’s commercial back in the ’70s. It showed how progress was equated to destroying what was once beautiful. The commercial faded to black with the distinctive-looking Native American looking into the camera with a tear slowly running down his cheek.

If Iron Eyes could look at what used to be Lanier Golf Club, he’d cry a gusher. 

As an ex-member, it’s hard to remember all the good times spent there. I’m not alone in my sentiments. 

It looks horrible. That’s not progress. It’s downright devastation.

The new owners are showing a caring spirit and a willingness to work with the community. They’re in the process of suing a county commissioner who’s representing her constituents by trying to impede the construction.

Whoa. You mean there’s an elected official trying to do right by the people who elected her. Wouldn’t it be nice if all the members of Congress could find time to legislate instead of trying to bring down a president?

This is the longest I have ever lived in one place and for the first time I’m thinking of fixing up, packing up and selling. Now any realtors reading this should avoid me like the plague. I’ll let you know when I’m ready to head north towards the mountains.

We look like we are having to pay for the sins of previous civic leaders. Crime, sprawl and rampant growth are rapidly catching up with us.

Love my view of the woods. Welcome the deer and critters we feed. I just have a fear of what we’re going to be in a few years.

I don’t want to leave. But I just might. 

Hurry, Mayor Brumbalow. We need lots of help here. 

Mike Tasos’ column is published every other Sunday.  Next week is Easter. Let’s enjoy it before the government decides to call it “Darned If We Know What Day It Should Fall” Sunday. Comments can be sent to He is also on Facebook.