By Amy Wenk

amywenk@reporternewspapers.net

Sandy Springs’ first tourist attraction will open in February.

At their Nov. 17 meeting, the Sandy Springs City Council approved a lease with the Georgia Commission on the Holocaust for the “Anne Frank in the World: 1929-1945” exhibit.

The museum is currently located in downtown Decatur but its lease expires this month.

When it comes to Sandy Springs, the exhibit will occupy Suite-A-209 in the Parkside shopping center at 5929 Roswell Road, above Chef Rob’s Caribbean Cuisine. It will open around Feb. 1 and will remain in the city for a minimum of three years.

“The build-out is in progress,” said Dist. 2 Councilmember Dianne Fries, who has been actively involved in procuring the exhibit. “It’s getting down to paint and carpet, so we are getting close.”

The lease stipulates the city make a $50,000 annual payment to the Holocaust Commission.

The city has said it will not fund the exhibit but raise money from the community. Mayor Eva Galambos Aug. 18 appointed resident Gary Alexander to spearhead the fundraising campaign.

Fries said the city looks to raise $135,000 to cover startup costs for the exhibit.

“We’ve been trying to concentrate on raising money for the first year, and we are still about $40,000 shy of where we would like to be,” she said. “From years going after this, $75,000 is the minimum that we need to raise and comfortably we would like $100,000. That extra money would be for programs.”

The Anne Frank exhibit consists of more than 600 photographs and 8,000 words. It chronicles Frank’s life from her freedom in 1920s Germany, to exile in the Netherlands, to hiding in a secret annex above her father’s business in Amsterdam, to her death in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.

“This exhibit serves as a powerful reminder to our residents and visitors of the Holocaust’s history and the endurance of Anne Frank’s story,” Mayor Eva Galambos said. “It also shows what we need to do each and every day to triumph over bigotry, hatred and prejudice in today’s society. This is one of only three such displays in the world. We are so proud to showcase it in Sandy Springs.”

If you would like to contribute to the Anne Frank Fund, please make your checks payable to the Friends of Sandy Springs — Anne Frank Park, 7840 Roswell Road, Building 500, Sandy Springs, GA 30350, attn: Gary Alexander, Chair of Fundraising.

If you have questions, e-mail Gary Alexander at garypalexander@bellsouth.net or Dist. 2 Councilmember Dianne Fries at dianne.fries@sandyspringsga.org.