About the Dekalb History Center in Decatur, GA
A Popular Wedding Venue on Historic Decatur Square
Most nights and weekends, the Dekalb History Center, located near the main Decatur Courthouse provides a preferred venue for upscale weddings, catered events, and fundraisers. If you’ve attended events at the handsome, neoclassical building, you understand why you need to book weekend events at least a year in advance. The columned granite building, built in 1898, offers Decatur area residents an elegant venue in the heart of the city.
As a non-profit organization, the museum relies on event fees and memberships for upkeep and preservation of the courthouse itself, the historical archives stored there, and several other area buildings from the Civil War period.
Visit http://www.dekalbhistory.org to see the latest tours, exhibits, and membership opportunities.
The Security Situation
Petty Thefts, Late Night Confrontations, Trespassing
The museum enjoys its prominent location in Decatur Square with the inviting lawns and easy access to the region’s premier nightlife, but the popular public space has a few security challenges. Because of the museum’s proximity to one of Decatur’s primary train and bus stations, museum staff need to be extra careful working late hours and remain vigilant of occasional transient populations that pass through park grounds.
Historically, the museum has enjoyed a peaceful coexistence with Decatur Square’s park inhabitants. That changed in the Spring of 2017 after the Museum found itself dealing with a sudden spike of unauthorized intrusions, confrontations, and petty thefts.
“Managing events late at night meant our staff had to be in a lot of places at the same time–not all of them exactly secure.”
Most of the crimes occurred while wedding parties were enjoying themselves a little too much and not being careful about leaving doors open and valuables unprotected. This created easy opportunities for lost cell phones and purses.
In more troubling instances, museum staff found themselves confronting angry individuals about sneaking into museum property to store belongings. It was after these confrontations the non-profit History Center decided to invest in a few sensible security upgrades to protect staff, safeguard event attendees, and improve building management.
120 Year Old Granite Building gets Surveillance Cameras, Key Pads, and Door Closers.
After looking up security solutions online, History Center staff sent out an urgent request to NT Security and other local, independent providers to explore video surveillance and access control solutions that would not only provide adequate safeguards but also fit the budget and exceed service and support expectations.
At the first opportunity, NT Security was on-site to perform a full security assessment. Within a week of the initial inquiry, NT Security provided a detailed quote for cameras, keypads, door closers, and support options. Parties agreed to a negotiated contract, and got all the necessary hardware, wiring, and control consoles up and running.
“The best thing about it is how easy it is to use. If it were something complicated that required a lot of hardware, we never would have used it. The system is completely dummy proof.”
– Museum Staff
Two of the unique challenges faced in this security installation included 1) using the fewest possible cameras to meet tight budget requirements and, 2) installing vandal-proof cameras, key pads, and wiring in a historic granite building without compromising the aesthetics of a historic landmark. Museum staff were adamant about maintaining the historic qualities of the building and were pleased with Nick’s professional installation.
The rapid deployment quickly put an end to the Museum’s problems allowing staff to focus again on running one of Decatur’s most popular event venues.
The Dekalb History Center selected NT Security not only because of competitive pricing, five-star reviews, and quick installation but also because of the direct, professional service provided by Nick Tinsley. It was important to the museum to work directly with local, trusted professionals instead of dealing with inexperienced hired hands you often get with bigger providers. If they ever needed to, knowing they could get Nick on the phone for service or repair was reassuring to Mallory and the History Center team.
Video Surveillance Means Strong Deterrence Plus Easier Events Management
All within a tight budget and rapid deployment window, NT Security was able to help the Dekalb History Center quickly address the immediate safety issues for staff, vendors, and guests and get facility management operations back on track.
“The positioning and coverage of the cameras is excellent. We never could have figured that out on our own. I thought we were going to need lots of cameras, but Nick was able to capture even more area than we wanted with fewer cameras than we anticipated.”
– Museum Staff
Since then, the client has been delighted to discover the many extra benefits even a basic video surveillance and access control system can provide for efficient and effective facility management.
- Remote entryway monitoring.
Remote access control means the on-duty site manager can quickly check if it really is the delivery guy needing access to the basement. If it’s not the delivery guy, there’s no need to go downstairs and confront a stranger.
- Quick resolution of customer disputes.
In the past, when there was a dispute about misuse of the facility or whether participants had overstayed their rental contract, it was always an unpleasant case of he-said-she-said. No longer. With easily accessible video footage, contract compliance issues are settled quickly and painlessly.
- Addressing false alarms remotely.
Nobody wants to get a false alarm call in the middle of the night but they happen. But, instead of getting out of bed and driving down to inspect the cause, off-site staff can simply pull up video of the facility and put everyone’s mind at ease.
- Automatic door closer.
Bridal parties and groomsmen usually have way too much on their minds to worry about whether they left that basement door open or not. Now, nobody has to worry about it.
- Pin code entry simpifies rental space management.
Convenient electronic keypad entry to rented spaces means no more lost keys or physical hand-offs and retrievals. Each new lessee simply gets a pin code that expires after the event.
- Solving non-crimes and minor mysteries.
The only “crime” experienced by the Center since the NT Security installation involved a distraught complaint about missing pile of bridal gifts. Turns out it was the father of the bride who had simply taken it upon himself to secure the couple’s gifts elsewhere. Phew! It was quick and easy access to video footage which solved this mystery without a call to the Police.
- Easier event management.
With a large capacity spread across multiple levels, the History Center can host very large events with hundreds of participants. With limited staff on-hand to monitor facility usage, keeping track of what’s happening and who’s coming & going is now much easier. On-duty site managers can easily monitor it all from their phone or office computer.
So, while the need for crime deterrence prompted the Dekalb History Museum to invest in video and access control solutions, the center now enjoys the unexpected benefits of easier event management and more efficient staff workloads.
Why Work With A Local Security Professional
Working with a local and independent security professional like NT Security means your non-profit organization or business has direct access to a highly trusted resource who will work within your budget, timeline, and requirements. NT Security responds quickly to your security urgencies.
NT Security is a highly reviewed 5-star security installation company owned and operated by Atlanta area native Nick Tinsley. Nick has been providing custom video surveillance, access control, and alarm monitoring solutions to Atlanta businesses and non-profits since 2001.
The NT Security philosophy is simple: be attentive to the customers’ needs, respond to requests in a professional and timely manner, and always be ahead of the curve in providing reliable and affordable security for Atlanta area businesses. For years, our wonderful customers have consistently given us five-star ratings for our outstanding customer service, professionalism, and affordable rates.