With a combined 54 years in LGBT Atlanta media, a core team offers up a fresh fruit.

By Mike Fleming,
Peach ATL Co-Publisher

IF THE BEST GIFT WE can give ourselves is change, why is it sometimes such a difficult, bittersweet process? Well, usually the greatest growth doesn’t come easy, but take heart, because there’s another saying: The more things change, the more some of the best parts stay the same.

Take Atlanta’s only weekly LGBT magazine. You may notice some changes in the gay nightlife and entertainment resource that you picked up this week, including the Peach ATL name on the cover.

The good news is that Peach is a change that will go down sweet. Like a fresh summer fruit, Peach will taste familiar and all good. Atlanta will not skip a beat on its weekly guide to gay culture, clubs and cocktails, boys and beers, DJs and drag.

Right about now, our more jittery readers might be thinking, “Who are you and what have you done with our weekly LGBT magazine?” It’s a fair question, but relax and keep reading.

MOST OF THE MAJOR PLAYERS that you know from the former weekly, which stopped publishing after its July 5 issue, are still at the helm, as we have been for years now.

I personally shepherded the old David as Editor from 2004 – 2009 while simultaneously serving on the staff at Southern Voice, the precursor to Georgia Voice. I returned to this staff as Editorial Director in 2015 after helping run the online news source Project Q Atlanta, for which I still own an interest.

My co-publisher William Duffee-Braun was a founder of Fenuxe before moving his talents to raise the game at David Atlanta four years ago. He is also founding publisher of Goliath Atlanta, our sibling monthly men’s magazine. It was under his talents and vision as Sales & Development Director that David Atlanta returned to the quality that tempted me back into the fold.

William and I are confident that our mix of skills and experience is the right one to keep the good traditions alive while forging new ones – not only in the weekly print publication, daily website and social media presence, but in our personal commitment to the community, its organizers and its events.

Together, the two of us are responsible for the improvements you’ve seen over the last two years at both David Atlanta and Goliath Atlanta, including the work of talented Art Director Tanner Gill and veteran Senior Sales Representative Russ Youngblood, who was with the old publication most of its 20 years. Both of these dedicated local gay men remain on staff at Peach ATL, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

WE’LL MISS OUR DEAR FRIEND David Thompson, the owner of the now-defunct David Atlanta. He is the only person on the former staff who will not transition to Peach ATL. It was his decision to move on from the publication that prompted William and I to start the new company.

In some ways, David was the heart of our old office. A teddy bear with a wicked sense of humor, he generously provided opportunities for each of us to do what we love in our careers. Ultimately, illness influenced his decision to shut down operations and leave his daily duties, but Peach ATL moves forward with his blessing.

At a time when the future of gay media in Atlanta was on unsure footing, he made sure that Atlanta readers would continue receiving their weekly gay resource, and that advertisers would continue to get the best deal in town for reaching LGBT Atlanta’s most frequent, reliable and loyal audience.

David remains in Atlanta as a business consultant while he takes care of himself as much as he has of others. The transition provides him more time to fight some of the burdens that contributed to his illness.

WHEN IT COMES TO YOU, Peach ATL is like a good remix: Much of the song remains the same, only with new energy. We will continue bringing you local gay culture, events, viewpoints, and just-for-fun features.

Contributors who readers love remain as well. In this issue, look for a Joining Hearts preview, two thought provoking opinion pieces, Peach Scene photos, as well as the popular Hey Daddy! column, which continues in Peach ATL.

We also offer new weekly features like the Lineup calendar, the cheeky Peach List, a Big Peach map and guide to Atlanta’s gayest destinations, Oh My Stars horoscopes, and Peach Pits, which welcomes your commentary on all things fab and not-so fab about gay life in Atlanta.

Enjoy our inaugural edition, and please reach out with your ideas. Like a beautiful queen with decades under her belt, our guys are here like always, only with a fresh face.

And in this case, the saying is true: Change is the best gift we can give to you.