These were the moments that impacted lives in Rome. These were the milestones that everyone talked about and shared on social media. These were the happenings that made headlines. These were the big stories in 2017.
The Great American Solar Eclipse
Countless Georgians put on funny glasses and stared at the sun on Aug. 21 in hopes of glimpsing a rare solar eclipse as it moved across the afternoon sky, with many traveled to north Georgia in hopes of seeing the eclipse in totality. It was the first solar eclipse to cross from coast-to-coast in nearly a century.
Tropical Storm Irma
After battering the Carribean and coastline, Hurricane Irma became a tropical storm that swept up through Georgia. As evacuees travelled north and stopped in Rome, our local hotels and restaurants opened their doors as though they were family, helping them as much as possible in a time where people were forced to flee their homes.
Snow Day 2017
Much of Georgia was caught off card in the early hours of Friday, Dec. 8 when we were greeted with curtains of snow fluttering down. What was supposed to be a 20% chance of precipitation turned into a winter wonderland for a weekend!
The Atlantic Coast Conference Tennis Championship (ACC)
Rome rolled out the red carpet for the ACC Men’s and Women’s Championships! And we set attendance records as we shared our southern hospitality at the new Rome Tennis Center at Berry College – the nation’s largest hard court facility.
A Year of Film in Georgia
What a year for film! So many awesome movies were filmed in our state; Georgia is quickly becoming the new Hollywood! We celebrated the 15th Anniversary of Sweet Home Alabama, filmed at Oak Hill and Martha Berry Museum in 2002. And we launched our film tour.
Here are some more special Rome moments:
The Blue Angels at Wings Over North Georgia
Record crowds were drawn for this year’s Wings Over North Georgia airshow to see the legendary Blue Angels; they truely know know how to put on a show! Next year’s headliners will include the F22 Raptor and the A10 Thunderbolt II.
Burt Reynolds Visits for the Rome International Film Festival
A living legend came to Rome on a busy weekend in October. While being honored at RIFF, as well as celebrating the 40th anniversary of Smokey and the Bandit, Burt Reynolds got to enjoy our small town and even found a couple new favorite restaurants during his stay! November 10 will forever be Burt Reynolds Day in Rome to honor the legend’s visit to Rome!
Rome High School Defends Their GHSA Title with Another Undefeated Year
Rome High School continues its stellar record with two back-to-back GHSA titles and undefeated seasons, beating out all AAAAA teams around Georgia. This year, they shut out Warner Robins. We know they can they do it again next year!
Jamwich Awarded One of Top 100 Plates in the State
Jamwich has made waves in 2017, with several new offerings on the menu as well as awards; they show no signs of slowing down and have several big plans in the mix! We look forward to what they’ll accomplish in 2018!
Rome Officially Launches Its Own Brewery
Rome City Brewing Co. completed its transition from Brewhouse with the addition of a brewery to make local beers that each tell a story about Rome’s history. Additionally, these beers have not only popped up in several other Rome restaurants, but are beginning to appear elsewhere in Northwest Georgia too! Cheers to the new standalone brewery that will open in early 2018!
Other Moments, Milestones and Happenings
Collin McHugh – Houston Astros Pitcher & Berry College Alumnus wins World Series
Rome celebrates the 10th Anniversary of Rome River Jam
Going Caching returns to Rome for a giant annual Geocaching event bringing in cache hunters from around the world to return again in 2018!
The Roman Chariot turned a year old this year transporting visitors around Historic Downtown.
We celebrated the creation of a new attraction: the Garrard Park GE trail, which adds four miles of trails for outdoor recreation.
The Rome Shakespeare Festival drew large crowds during their amazing performances on the Town Green! See them live for two weeks in 2018 for free!
Berry College Vikings Football completes an undefeated season, but loses in the round of 16, marking more exciting growth in the relatively young football program.
We added monthly Flavor Tours to the list of things to do in Rome, giving tourists and locals alike a chance to sample Downtown Rome’s rich culinary scene!