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Well, it's Wednesday.

December 8 — Chad, Collin, and Amy are at it again with your Wednesday morning Draft.

🌧️ Rain this morning and dreary again with a high of 57°. Drier, at least, tomorrow.

🍩 Krispy Kreme fans rejoice! A pop-up shop is now open at 295 Ponce de Leon Ave., the site of the original location destroyed by arson earlier this year. The pop-up offers assorted doughnuts and bottled beverages seven days a week.

🍕 On the subject of indulging in Poncey-Highland area, Pielands, a new pizza and sub joint from restaurateur Billy Streck, opened this week at the corner of Virginia and North Highland. Whole pies, individual slices, salads, Italian-style subs, beer, wine, and specialty cocktails are on the menu

📬 If you're shopping online and want your packages to arrive in time for Christmas, these are the USPS and FedEx deadlines that you need to know.

🤖 Dunwoody’s Tastee Spoon has employed a robot, named Irie Milly, to help staff with their daily tasks. The robot can serve up to 12 plates at a time, and its name combines owner Raymone Williams’ mother's name with the word “irie,” a Caribbean term that means “cool.” 

🗳️ The Southern Poverty Law Center announced Monday that the Vote Your Voice program will put $100 million toward increasing voter participation across the Southeast over the next decade. The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta will administer grants for building voter engagement ahead of the 2030 redistricting process, civic engagement, and fostering a new generation of political leaders.
📸 This week's photo shout out goes to Rickey Bevington who is leaving her role as a senior correspondent with GPB to become president of the World Affairs Council of Atlanta and executive-in-residence at Georgia State University's J. Mack Robinson College of Business. Congrats, Rickey!

🕖 Today's Rough Draft is ⑤ stories ➼

•  A nine-year-old entrepreneur lands a Meta grant
• Christmas magic in small town Georgia
• Weekend music picks

• One Book, One Read club kicks off with ‘Caste’
• The quest for Atlanta's best avocado toast

Have a great day, see you Friday! 
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1. 'I was six years old and did not like my hair'

💸 Zoe Oli, nine, is the CEO behind a Sandy Springs business called Beautiful Curly Me, which creates 18-inch dolls named Leyla and Anika with curly or braided hair in different skin tones.

Meta (formerly Facebook) recently awarded Beautiful Curly Me a $4,000 grant as part of its $100-million investment in Black-owned small businesses. As previously reported, the state of Georgia was the largest recipient of the grants, receiving more than $5.6 million.

“It all started when I was six years old, and I did not like my hair,” Zoe explained to Meta’s COO Sheryl Sandberg in a recent Instagram live interview.

Zoe said her mother tried to console her by buying her a Black doll.

“I liked her, but she did not have hair like mine,” she said. Instead, the doll had straight, silky hair. “I still did not feel good about myself because of that.”

It was then that Zoe said she wanted to start a business. Today, the company also offers hair care products and books written by Zoe that aim to empower young girls.

Read the full story here.
*Win a Sweet Cheats Gift Card* 🍪Referrals are the best way to help Rough Draft grow. For every friend you refer, you'll be entered into a drawing to win a $50 gift card to Sweet Cheats. We are giving away three gift cards between now and Christmas. Share your personal referral link with friends via email, text, or all the socials.  Your link is: <<RH_REFLINK>>
Drawings will be held at midnight on Dec. 10, Dec. 17, and Dec. 20. 
2. Small town Christmas magic 

🎅 There’s something about Christmas in small towns that boosts the holiday spirit and makes the season brighter. 

Perhaps it’s because of the old adage, “there’s no place like home for the holidays,” or maybe it’s because small-town merchants go all-out to decorate their storefronts with special Christmassy touches.

Whatever it may be, our colleague Charles Seabrook finds himself drawn to Georgia’s small towns each year to savor their Christmas magic — peering into storefronts with Santas and elves of nearly every shape and size, and walking the streets decked with blinking lights and cherished, antique ornaments. Few churches are without manger scenes and green wreaths hanging from their doors.

Georgia has scores of small towns that transform into holiday showcases beginning in early December. No sooner is Thanksgiving over than city workers and townsfolk are stringing lights, decorating trees on town squares, and hanging garlands and ornaments from street lamps.

In this month's Travels with Charlie, Seabrook sets out to explore some of his favorite small towns, from Adairsville to Zebulon and all points in between.
3. Rough Draft's weekend music picks

More live music and seasonal events coming down the pike this weekend with lots of multi-night stands at The Eastern, The Earl, Variety Playhouse, and more. Get out of the house and see a show before the holidays kick into high gear.

Fri., Dec. 10
🎹 Chicano Batman w/ Los Retros @ Terminal West
🎄 TT Mahony & Jeffrey Bützer perform “A Charlie Brown Christmas” w/ Chad Shivers & the Frigidaires (Fri., Sat., and Sun.) @ The Earl
🪕 Billy Strings (Fri., Sat., and Sun.) @ The Eastern

Sat., Dec. 11
🎤 Sa-Roc: The Sharecropper's Daughter Tour (above) @ City Winery
🎸 The Wood Brothers (Sat. and Sun.) @ Variety Playhouse

Sun., Dec. 12
❄️ A Big Love Holiday with Dynamo Deb Bowman @ City Springs
🎸 Tipling Rock, Olen, and Vinny Masino @ The Masquerade (Purgatory)
🎄 Trans-Siberian Orchestra: Christmas Eve and Other Stories (3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. shows) @ Gas South Arena.
4. One Book Club

📚 In January, The Fulton County Library System, in collaboration with the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library Foundation, will launch One Book, One Read. The county-wide book club is designed to encourage reading, promote critical conversations, and build community.

Many of Fulton’s 34 libraries, as well as various individual community members, will host book clubs across the county.

The series kicks off with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson’s “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents,” examining the current state of race politics and its harrowing history. The book’s core resides in comparisons between the caste system in India, the American race system, and the rise of the Third Reich in Germany.

A reading guide will be available this month with additional resources, guiding questions, and background on the author. Book clubs will meet independently in January and February. On March 27, clubs will meet at the Auburn Avenue Research Library, where Wilkerson will be in attendance to lead a lecture about the book and more.
*Win a Sweet Cheats Gift Card* 🍪Referrals are the best way to help Rough Draft grow. For every friend you refer, you'll be entered into a drawing to win a $50 gift card to Sweet Cheats. We are giving away three gift cards between now and Christmas. Share your personal referral link with friends via email, text, or all the socials.  Your link is: <<RH_REFLINK>>
Drawings will be held at midnight on Dec. 10, Dec. 17, and Dec. 20. 
5. The quest for the best avo toast

🥑 For as long as there have been millennials overpaying for Instagram-worthy avocado toast, people have been arguing over the virtues and cost of avocado toast.

We'll take a break from today's regularly scheduled coffee segment to address a question that's on everyone's mind. Who has the best avocado toast in Atlanta?

Taste is in the mouth of the beholder, but here are a few of our favorites.

① The Select Restaurant + Bar in Sandy Springs offers a light, refreshing take on the cult classic, layering avocado hummus, radishes, basil, and arugula on grilled sourdough. 🥬

Cultivate Food and Coffee on Howell Mill Rd. blends avocado, heirloom cherry tomatoes, citrus-pickled red onions, red peppers, balsamic reduction drizzle, avocado oil, and avocado mayonnaise aioli over two slices of toasted baguette, served with kale. 🍅

West Egg Cafe offers pastrami-smoked salmon, avocado, arugula, and whole grain mustard vinaigrette on toasted rye. 🍞  

Muchacho serves up a thick slice of sourdough bread topped with arugula, radish, and a light dusting of spicy togarashi seasoning. 🔥

Corner Cafe in Buckhead sits two eggs over easy atop creamy guacamole, goat cheese, and red pepper flakes on multigrain toast. 🍳

Of course, this is merely a taste of what the city has to offer. Drop us a line on Instagram and let us know who you think has the best avo toast in town.

Oops, we moved too fast

Some corrections from previous Drafts:

 On Monday, some versions indicated Michigan was #1. The Alabama Crimson Tide are. 

 On Monday, we misspelled the last name of the former U.S. Senator who announced he's running for Governor. It's David Perdue, not Purdue. 
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