Art Rilling And His Game Ranch: 50 Years an Atlanta Tradition

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Softcover, 436 Pages.
Signed by Duncan Dobie

Featuring over 400 pages and 200 photos Duncan Dobie's latest book tells the story of Art Rilling’s Stone Mountain Game (1962-1982), and later the Yellow River Game Ranch (1983-2012), during the 50 years that he operated this one-of-a-kind animal park. Art Rilling's Game Ranch was truly an Atlanta treasure. Originally inside Stone Mountain Park from 1962 to 1982, and later relocated to Highway 78 and the Yellow River in Gwinnett County, it was a magical place where visitors could walk wooded trails and have the rare opportunity to see and feed free-roaming deer and other friendly animals.

For children, a visit to the Game Ranch was always an exciting adventure. If they weren't interacting with goats, lambs, potbellied pigs or other farm animals in the barnyard area, they could play with their favorite flop-eared rabbit in the popular "Bunny Burrows."

Visitors could see and learn about dozens of different animals including buffalo, bears and mountain lions. Some of the luckier children might even get to feed a fawn from a bottle, or get a glimpse of Georgia's most illustrious groundhog, General Beauregard Lee. At the end of the day no one wanted to go home. The dream Art and Barbara Rilling shared way back in the early 1960s came to fruition a million times over!

In the summer of 2020, during the height of the pandemic, Art and Duncan began working on this book. Art was 92. Sadly, he fell and sustained a head injury during the 2020 Christmas holidays. Art passed away on Jan. 4, 2021. 

Art Rilling and Duncan shared a special friendship for more than 40 years. Duncan took thousands of photos at the Game Ranch and many of his photos appear in the book. The Game Ranch story is unique. No other zoo in the country ever attempted to run an animal park where free-roaming deer and other animals could mingle with visitors in a large, wooded 15-acre area. And now, because of bureaucrats, government restrictions and new laws, it can never be done again. Art’s old Game Ranch may be gone forever, but its legacy will endure for years to come. 

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