style opportunities that is available in Dahlonega. As a consequence of this growth, there are already over twenty housing developments underway in the Lumpkin, Dawson, and northwest Hall County area.
A COLLEGE TOWN.
Dahlonega is home to North Georgia College and State University
, which is alsoThe Military College of Georgia (one of only six senior military colleges in the United States, along withTexas A&M, Virginia Tech, The Citadel, Virginia Military Institute and Norwich University). Equipping futureleaders in medicine, education, business andart, the university presently enrolls over 6,000students, and is in the process of completing$100 million in campus developments (includ-ing a state-of-the-art library, indoor recreationfacility, additional on-campus housing, andparking deck) in anticipation for a substantialincrease in the student body due to admissionschanges that now allow non-military male stu-dents to live on campus. This growth is not only bringing students to Dahlonega, but also an increase inprofessors, staff and jobs related to other community services.
ARMY RANGER TRAINING.
The 5th Ranger Training Battalion of the U.S. Army is located in Dahlonegaand serves as the “mountain phase” of the Rangers special operations training.
Along with the fine arts department at the university, the local community is a growing center for visual and performing artists. Along with a growing number of visual artists registered with theDahlonega Artist’s Council, popular musicians such as Widespread Panic lead singer/guitarist, John Bell,Sugarland lead singer, Jennifer Nettles, Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls, and Zac Brown of the Zack BrownBand make their home in Dahlonega, along with other lesser known talents who can be found performingat the many local music night spots. Dahlonega is also home to the Buisson Arts Center, which hosts artshowings and offer art classes. There are also several art galleries with active artists, including the BlueGallery, Kryder Gallery and The Olde Cannery Arts Center. An especially prized venue for the performingarts is the Historic Holly Theater, which hosts stage plays, musicals, specials shows, first run movies,concerts and much more, including a children’s theater and troupe (which performs on stage and travelsto national theater competitions).
As the gateway to the mountains of North Georgia,Dahlonega’s thriving tourism industry draws over a million visi-tors annually. The community hosts over ten local festivals ayear, several world-class cycling events each year, a month long“Old Fashioned Christmas” celebration.
GEORGIA’S WINE COUNTRY.
Another facet of tourism, as wellas a much beloved local amenity, is the growth of the vineyardindustry in the Dahlonega area, with five local wineries in opera-tion. With scenic views of the mountains, upscale restaurants,festivals, daily wine tasting, live music, and estate living,Dahlonega’s wine industry is changing the face of mountainliving.
In light of the fact that 93% of America’s 285 nonmetropolitain recreational counties gained population in the 90s, Leoard Sweet, in
, says, “People are migrating to small towns and rural areas, especially ‘recreational counties’ with a recreation andretirement base” (p. 123). That is certainly the case with Dahlonega/Lumpkin County, which has grown by 75% since 1990,and ispoised for continued growth.
NGCSU has been designated
The Leadership Institution of Georgia
DahlonegaNorth Georgia College and State University