Update – Natchitoches Police arrest juvenile for making threats on social media

UPDATE:

Release Date: October 28, 2021

After a thorough investigation the Natchitoches Police Department has arrested a fourteen year old juvenile for making threats on social media earlier this week. The juvenile was placed under arrest for one count of terrorizing and was placed in the Ware Youth Center.

Terrorizing is a felony and carries a maximum prison sentence of not more than fifteen years.

If you would like to report suspicious activity contact the Natchitoches Police Department at (318) 352-8101 or if you have additional information in regards to this investigation please contact Detective Terry Johnson at (318) 357-3858. Remember all information given shall remain confidential.

Original Story – Natchitoches Police investigate social media threat to local school

The Natchitoches Police Department is investigating a social media threat to a local school after receiving several tips from the community.

On October 22, 2021 around 10:18 p.m., officers with the Natchitoches Police Department were made aware of a social media threat towards “Central High School.” Investigators have been working throughout the night and are conducting an extensive threat assessment to determine the validity of this threat and to identify the responsible party for making it.

This is an active investigation and we will release more details as they become available.

Please contact the Natchitoches Parish School Board at (318) 352-2358 or Natchitoches Central High School at (318) 352-2211 if you have any questions about school operations.

If you would like to report suspicious activity contact the Natchitoches Police Department at (318) 352-8101 or if you have additional information in regards to this investigation please contact Detective William Connell at (318) 238-3911. Remember all information given shall remain confidential.

ORIGINAL:

The Natchitoches Police Department is investigating a social media threat to a local school after receiving several tips from the community.

On October 22, 2021 around 10:18 p.m., officers with the Natchitoches Police Department were made aware of a social media threat towards “Central High School.” Investigators have been working throughout the night and are conducting an extensive threat assessment to determine the validity of this threat and to identify the responsible party for making it.

This is an active investigation and we will release more details as they become available.

Please contact the Natchitoches Parish School Board at (318) 352-2358 or Natchitoches Central High School at (318) 352-2211 if you have any questions about school operations.

If you would like to report suspicious activity, contact the Natchitoches Police Department at (318) 352-8101 or if you have additional information in regards to this investigation please contact Detective William Connell at (318) 238-3911. Remember all information given shall remain confidential.

How to report an anonymous tip via Natchitoches Crime Stoppers:

You can also report a tip anonymously by calling Natchitoches Crime Stoppers at (318) 238-2388. All tips remain confidential and the caller can receive a cash reward up to $2,000 for the arrest of an offender.

Corporal John Greely
Public Information Officer
Natchitoches Police Department

Release Date: October 23, 2021


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Indoor mask mandate to remain in place at Northwestern State

Northwestern State University’s indoor mask mandate will remain in place until Natchitoches transmission is below high or substantial, according to NSU Interim President Dr. Marcus Jones.

On Tuesday Governor John Bel Edwards announced the lifting of the statewide mask mandate with some caveats. K-12 schools must maintain a mask mandate or follow CDC guidance on quarantine. Institutions in the University of Louisiana System have been under a systemic mask requirement that precedes the Governor’s statewide mandate. The UL System guidelines require students, faculty and staff to wear masks in classrooms and other public indoor spaces in regions of high or substantial transmission.

“It is with an abundance of caution that we will continue to wear masks indoors,” Jones said. “NSU’s indoor mask mandates have played a role in the low numbers of COVID cases on campus and we will continue to mask up until COVID no longer poses a threat to public health.”

Thursday, Oct. 28 is the last day to qualify for the Shot for $100 campaign. NSU will host a COVID vaccine clinic from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday in Hanchey Gallery.

Information on NSU’s COVID-19 protocols can be found at https://www.nsula.edu/return-to-campus/.


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NSU Presidential Search: Jeremy L. Thomas

Thomas

Thomas hopes to return home to NSU and Natchitoches

• On serving as President:
Serving as President of Northwestern State University would be one of the highest honors I have received. Everything I’ve done so far in my career has been to obtain the skills, experience and life lessons to come back home and serve my alma mater.

• On making a long-term commitment:
If you want someone who will stick around – who isn’t using the opportunity as a stepping stone or a bridge to another destination – I’m your person. I consider Natchitoches our home, and if you put your trust and confidence in me, I’ll serve as long as this community will have me.

• On my loyalty to Northwestern State University:
Even now, here, as the Interim President at Oklahoma City Community College, my band cape hangs on my wall in my office. My colleagues and direct reports know how much of a die-hard Demon I am, and if they ever forget, my backpack, my jacket, my umbrella, and my license plate holder are all reminders of my affection for Northwestern State University.

• On my commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education:
Oklahoma City Community College is one of the more diverse colleges in Oklahoma. We serve 17,000+ students each year, a number of whom are first-generation college students, and many have jobs and families to support. Since my time as interim President, we’ve made significant strides to better communicate our mission and vision to the community, we’ve opened up our campus (when Covid-safe) to guests to experience our hospitality and culture, and we’ve stepped out into the business community as significant sponsors and cultural liaisons for our student body. It’s my belief that a college education has the ability to change lives, families and trajectories for anyone who’s willing to do the work, and has a significant positive impact on the development of responsible citizens in our communities, too. There is no question that this commitment to servant leadership, to helping open up access for higher education to everyone who wants it, and to creating a culture where everyone is welcome, comes from the experiences, mentors and lessons I was fortunate enough to have at Northwestern State University.

• On my professional experience:
I’m in this for the long haul. I bring fresh experiences in the workforce. I bring energy and creativity to my role. I connect with students and elected officials alike. I have an understanding of technology, of modern culture, of work, and of the struggles that take place in higher education, not from a distant position, or from memories of experiences years or decades ago, but from my conversations and experiences I have daily with my staff, my colleagues, my board, and my family. I have two teenage daughters: They are our future student body, and growing up in their generation is very different. I’m dialed into that, as only a father experiencing it, can be.

• On my own experiences as a student:
I am, as my staff sometimes reminds me, a farm boy. I was the first one in my family to go to college, and as it has done for so many students who have come before or since, it changed my life, and the lives of my children, and likely of their children, and so on. I have always remembered the feeling of being a young student, taking my first steps onto campus: The fear, the excitement, the pressure, and the constant thought that I don’t know what I’m doing, but I’ll figure it out on my way. Of course, I know now that we all feel that way sometimes, that we don’t always have the answers. And that’s okay. That’s where great advisors, professors, mentors, and friends play such a huge part of the college experience: They help you find your way, and sometimes, just reassure you that it’s okay if “the way” has some twists and turns, or seems far off, or if you’re not even sure where you’re trying to go in the first place. Northwestern State University, and its top-notch people, helped nudge me to keep moving in the right direction. I can say confidently that I would not be where I am in my career today, asking to be your next President, without the help of the great faculty, staff, and community that surrounded me during my time as a student.

• On band:
Band is, and was, and always has been, a significant part of who I am. I was a trumpet player in the Spirit of Northwestern marching band, jazz ensemble, pep band, and concert band. (I was on the rowing team for a bit, too, FYI.) Band taught me leadership skills. Band gave me a support system. It made me a better musician, of course, but it also made me a better person. My daughters are band kids now, and whether they realize it or not, that’s because of Northwestern State University, too. I wanted my daughters to grow up in a system like what I experienced, and it’s my hope that they’ll continue on in band through college. In fact, my oldest will be a freshman at Northwestern next fall. The memories, the friendships, and the lessons are all lifelong.

• On my vision for a successful Northwestern State University:
As your President, it’s my hope to bring a number of lessons and experiences forward with me. It’s my hope to listen to all of you, to learn from you, and to build the path forward together that we believe is right for our families, neighbors, and community. But let me be more specific, if I may, and offer three things I believe Northwestern State University must be or do to continue its legacy of success:

– Be flexible. I’m sorry to say, there’s no going back to the pre-pandemic way of life. Despite the frustrations and struggles all of us in higher education have faced as we solved one problem or crisis after another over the last two years, there have been some important progressions in how we reach students, and we shouldn’t just roll those back at the first opportunity. Let’s continue to get better at educating students remotely. Let’s continue to improve technology, but also improve the way we use that technology to connect with students at any distance. And as we do that, let’s ensure that the in-person class offerings don’t just become live Zooms, either. Let’s be certain that the in-person experience – the one many of us know is unmatched in terms of engagement, mentoring and knowledge absorption – continues to be the most effective way to teach, and that we continue to innovate in this space, too. The services and course offerings we provide to our students must continue to evolve to meet them where they are.

– Secure alternate funding. This isn’t news to anyone, but we must continue to increase and strengthen the quality and quantity of our partnerships with organizations, community leaders, foundations, industries and private donors, to ensure we can help alleviate the financial strain placed on students who pursue a degree. Raising tuition is not always the answer to an institution’s problems. Let’s get creative, and let’s leverage the resources in and around our community.

– Adapt to the needs of our community’s evolving workforce. Working with our industry partners is nothing new at Northwestern State University, but let’s continue to make it a high priority. Our institution should set up our students for success, and it should set up our community employers for a reliable, educated, efficient, and prepared workforce. Colleges and universities sometimes get stuck in what they know and do, even when the world around them changes. Let’s keep a pulse on our community, and be sure we’re always in lock-step with their needs.

• In conclusion:
I’m confident Northwestern State University is moving in the right direction, but I’m hopeful you’ll agree with me that your next President should share your values, understand your community, and have a demonstrated capability and passion for connecting with students, elected officials, and donors alike. I believe if we work together, if we serve our students and community in everything we do, and commit to learning and adapting, we will accelerate Northwestern State University’s progress. My wife Rachel and I can’t wait to visit with you soon. Please know that I mean this with all of my heart: It would be the honor of my life to serve Northwestern State University. Fork ‘em, Demons.


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Robeline First Baptist Church will hold its 14th Annual Deer Fest this Saturday

Summer season has ended and that means one thing, deer season is upon us! The Lord has blessed us with 13 wonderful years of Robeline First Baptist Church’s Deer Fest! The 14th Annual Deer Fest “The LARGEST Opening Day Deer Contest” will be Saturday, Oct. 30!

RFBC conducts a weekend geared toward bringing all hunters and their families together for friendly contests, thousands of dollars in drawings, silent auctions, many deliciously homemade foods and, MOST IMPORTANTLY, showing the love of Jesus Christ. Over the past years, this event has grown into one of the largest opening day big buck/heaviest doe contests in Louisiana.


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Unexpected friendship gives Nanai perspective, purpose

Two years ago, Northwestern State defensive lineman Nathalohn Nanai was riding a stationary bike on the Demon sideline, staying loose during a game, when he felt a tap on his shoulder.

Then-9-year-old John Painter told Nanai he wore No. 51 on his youth football team – the same number Nanai still wears on his chest. That innocent moment between a nearly 300-pound defensive lineman and a child whose father had died a month earlier laid the foundation for a growing friendship that endures today.

“John is a great kid,” Nanai said. “Every time gametime comes around, he reaches out to me on Facebook messenger and says, ‘Hey, go get ’em today.’ He’s always here at every home game – him and his mom. It feels good to have a support system outside of your family. It’s always great seeing him when he’s running along the rail or giving me a casual high five. He’s a great kid, a really great kid.”

There are many who share the same description of Nanai, a 6-foot-3, 292-pound product of Shoemaker High School in Killeen, Texas.

“It doesn’t shock me at all,” defensive line coach Kevon Beckwith said of Nanai’s friendship with the Painters. “He’s a family guy. You look in the stands and see his family. He’s always talking about his family. When I got here, he helped me move into my house. He’s always looking to help. That’s part of his perspective. He just gives so much through his energy and his service. He’s on the SAAC Committee. He’s definitely a role model for the athletic program.”

Nanai credited his meeting Painter, a Leesville native, with helping adjust his perspective and with assisting him in becoming a leader.

While rehabbing a foot injury that cost him the first three games of the season, Nanai leaned on what he learned from watching Painter go through a situation few children have to endure at 9 years old.

“Obviously, you want to be out there fighting with your brothers,” Nanai said. “At that point in time, I focused on how I could make the team better – how could I come back as quick as possible and still be able to do what I’m capable of. I don’t want to take the little things for granted.”

Nanai’s brotherhood includes Painter, who Nanai calls “the little brother I never had.”

His other brotherhood is the NSU defensive line, which grew deeper with Nanai’s return against Incarnate Word in the Demons’ Oct. 2 Southland Conference opener. The Demons rotate their three-man line liberally, playing nine to 10 linemen per game.

In four games since returning from injury, Nanai has recorded five tackles and pounced on a fumble at Houston Baptist. What would have been his second fumble recovery of the season, this past Saturday against Southeastern, was overturned by video review.

Nanai’s dedication to detail and doing the little things has earned him his teammates’ and Beckwith’s respect. It also reiterated one of fourth-year coach Brad Laird’s tenets he preaches to his team.

“You never know when somebody’s watching,” Laird said. “Our young men have the opportunity to be a role model. They never know when that will come. This situation happened during a game, and the relationship between them got closer and closer to the point where we had (Painter) and his family out for practice. This young man – he loves football – he’s grown to love Northwestern State football because of one simple thing. We say it’s simple as far as Nate communicating with that young man, and it has turned into a love for Northwestern State football.”

While Painter gained a big brother and a day that included him taking the practice field with Nanai and the Demons, the older half of the duo gained something that will stick with him for life.

“Meeting John and understanding what he was going through at such a young age, it puts things in perspective,” Nanai said. “Every day I’m out here, I try to be grateful. I’m taking it one day at a time, one snap at a time, one meeting at a time. I try not to overlook anything and to be grateful for everything I have in football and with my brothers on this team.”

Photos: Chris Reich/NSU Photographic Services


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Obit: Roland Newton Pippin Ph.D.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, October 30, 2021 at 1:00 PM in St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, 400 Camellia Boulevard, Lafayette, Louisiana, 70508, for Roland Newton Pippin, Ph.D., 78, who died on Saturday, October 23, 2021 at Sanctuary at Passages Hospice in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Interment will be in St. John Cemetery.

Reverend Michael J. Bordelon, M.Div., Rector of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, will conduct the funeral services.

Survivors include his son, Bradford Warren Pippin of River Ridge, Bradford’s wife, Monica and their two children, Delia Jane Pippin and Colin Bradford Pippin, as well as his nephews, nieces, and his brother, Roger Pippin.

Roland was preceded in death by his wife of many years, Jane Bradford Pippin, his parents, Robert “Pip” and Lula Pippin of Baton Rouge, and his brothers, Robert “Bob” and Ronnie.

Born on June 2, 1943, Roland Pippin was a native of Baton Rouge where he was raised with his three brothers. He graduated first from Louisiana College and pursued his Master’s Degree at Stephen F. Austin. He was awarded his Doctorate at Virginia Tech.

Roland met and married the love of his life, Jane Bradford, while teaching at what was then USL in Lafayette. They later moved to Natchitoches where they were members of Trinity Episcopal Church and where Roland taught Sociology at Northwestern University and volunteered in the community

Pallbearers will be Bradford Pippin, Jim Henry, Ron Pippin, and Harold Pippin.

Memorial contributions can be made in Roland Newton Pippin’s name to the American Cancer Society.

Martin & Castille-SOUTHSIDE-600 E. Farrel Rd., Lafayette, LA 70508, 337-984-2811


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BOM Welcomes Corey Gallion

BOM would like to welcome Corey Gallion to our Washington Street location. Corey is from Natchitoches, where he graduated from Natchitoches Central High School. Corey is currently studying at Northwestern State University and is looking to graduate soon with his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. In his spare time, Corey enjoys going hunting, fishing, to sporting events, and to trail rides with his family and friends.


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OPPORTUNITY: Accountant – Finance Department

POSITION: Accountant – Finance Department

DESCRIPTION: Performs technical and administrative accounting work in maintaining the fiscal records and accounting for the City. Prepares periodic reports and assists in the preparation of the annual and other State and Federal reports. Makes journal entries to balance and close monthly books in the general ledger, revenue and expense accounts; reconciles general ledger and subsidiary utility accounts. Reconciles bank statements. Assists in the preparation of the various year end reports.

QUALIFICATIONS: The successful applicant shall have graduated from an accredited four-year college or university with a degree in accounting or a business related field.

CONTACT: City of Natchitoches, Human Resources Department located

At 1400 Sabine Street or P.O. Box 37, Natchitoches, LA 71458-0037. Applications may also be picked up upstairs at City Hall located at 700 Second St., or you can download an application on line at http://www.natchitochesla.gov

DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS: Applications will be accepted through: November 12, 2021

THE CITY OF NATCHITOCHES IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER


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Riverdale Academy Visits Alliance

Alliance Compressors hosted students from Riverdale Academy of Coushatta for a plant tour on October 26, 2021. The student group was greeted by Michelle Brundige, Alliance Human Resources Manager, and was led on a plant tour by Craig Caskey, Continuous Improvement Manager.

Pictured are Craig Caskey and students from Riverdale Academy.


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Rotary Club presents Father Frank Fuller with ESGR Seven Seals Award

Rotarians Bob Gillan and Joe Sers presented Father Frank Fuller the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) Seven Seals Award for Support of the National Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense agency. The award is presented for meritorious leadership and initiative in support of the men and women who serve America in the National Guard and Reserve. Fuller was recognized for his 20 years of service in support of the Louisiana Military Community and their Employers. His actions are in keeping with the finest tradition of volunteerism (Pictured from left are Sers, Fuller, and Gillan).


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NPSB Lifts Mask Mandate for the 2021-2022 School Year

On Tuesday, October 26, 2021, Governor John Bel Edwards lifted the statewide mask mandate after Louisiana’s sustained improvement in terms of new cases, test positivity and hospitalizations. The Natchitoches Parish School Board has and will continue to follow the Governor’s guidance. Therefore, effective Wednesday, October 27, 2021, face coverings for students, staff and visitors are NOT required but are recommended and encouraged for unvaccinated individuals.

Per federal mandate, Kindergarten through 12th grade students and employees are still required to wear masks on school buses. If a parent chooses to have their student continue to wear a facial covering while on school grounds, NPSB officials and employees encourage them to do so and will support them in this decision.

The Natchitoches Parish School Board will continue to follow CDC Quarantine Guidance. In the event the community and/or school system’s positivity rate increases, guidance relative to mask mandate modifications will be considered and communicated. NPSB officials will continue to monitor data when making decisions relative to the safety of students and staff.


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Notice of Death – October 27, 2021

NATCHITOCHES:
Penny Ivey
October 08, 1947 – October 22, 2021
Service: Saturday, November 6 at 11 am at Westside Baptist Church in Natchitoches

Lucille Wardsworth
May 12, 1969- October 20,2021
Service: Friday, October 29 at 11 am at Pentecost Baptist Church in Natchez

SABINE:
James David Meshell
February 6, 1943 – October 26, 2021
Service: Saturday, October 30 at 10 am at St. Joseph Catholic Church

WINN:
George Wesley O’Bryan
September 18, 1956 – October 26, 2021
Service: Thursday, October 28 at 1 pm in the Southern Funeral Home Chapel


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Mask Mandate Lifted Except For Schools

Governor John Bel Edwards announced he will lift Louisiana’s statewide mask mandate in all settings except for K-12 schools, after sustained improvement across the state in terms of new cases, test positivity and hospitalizations. The Governor’s updated order is effective Wednesday, October 27th. It allows school districts to opt out of the mask mandate as long as they continue to follow the existing quarantine guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to better separate exposed students and faculty members from others and avoid outbreaks on campus.

CDC guidance still says everyone 2 years of age or older who is not fully vaccinated should wear a mask in indoor public places. And if you are fully vaccinated, to maximize protection from the Delta variant, wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area with high transmission. People who have a health condition or are taking medications that weaken their immune system may not be fully protected even if they are fully vaccinated. They should continue to take all precautions recommended for unvaccinated people, including wearing a well-fitted mask, until advised otherwise by their healthcare provider. At this time, in light of the Delta variant, CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status.

“Today, I am cautiously optimistic and very relieved that the worst of this fourth surge of COVID is clearly behind us, which is a direct result of the people of Louisiana who stepped up to the plate when we needed them to and put their masks back on, got vaccinated, and took extra precautions to stay safe. That’s why we are able to lift the statewide mask mandate,” said Gov. Edwards. “While the K-12 mask mandate will be in place, school districts can opt out if they follow the existing, evidence-based CDC quarantine guidance. This new order does offer a way for local leaders to end the school mask mandate, if they so choose. Let me be clear – Louisiana has been a leader in bringing students safely back into the classroom. And they have done that by following public health guidance including on masking and quarantine. Public health experts and I encourage schools to stay that course. But because case numbers are going down and have reached a new baseline I do believe it’s an appropriate time to give schools more autonomy. It’s not lost on me that while Louisiana has seen 18 children die of COVID, half of those deaths came in the last three months, as the much more contagious Delta variant surged throughout our state.”

Masks will still be mandated by federal regulation, including on mass transit and in health care facilities. They will not be mandated in most places, including government buildings, college and university campuses and businesses. School districts may opt out of the mask mandate if they choose to, but only if they continue to adhere to CDC quarantine guidance.

“We are encouraged about our current COVID trends, but remain mindful of our profound loss as a result of the last surge and cognizant that we will remain vulnerable to an equally damaging surge unless more of our friends, family and neighbors choose to get vaccinated,” said State Health Officer Dr. Joseph Kanter.

Local governments and private businesses may choose to continue to require and enforce mask requirements under the Governor’s order, which goes into effect on Wednesday, October 27.


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Podcast: Dr. Steve Horton, Executive Director of LSMSA

October 27, 2021

Dr. Steve Horton joins Billy West Live and discusses the history of the establishment of The Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts.

Dr. Horton proudly invited everyone to visit the campus of The Louisiana School and tour the new residential dorms that were recently occupied by the students for the fall 2021 Semester. The LSMSA provides a rigorous academic curriculum for students who apply and are accepted


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Take the NPSB Broadband Speed Test Today to Help Connect Our Community

The Natchitoches Parish Broadband Commission was formed to bring together local and state leadership along with other community leaders with a common goal of finding a way to connect all students of NPSB to broadband. The Commission’s goal is to execute a broadband infrastructure project that would bring fiber to the home by providing a fixed broadband connection.

This idea was brought about by the COVID-19 Pandemic. All students were assigned an iPad for virtual learning, however many students in rural areas of our parish experienced difficulty connecting to the internet. Broadband is basic infrastructure and yet many of our neighbors lack access to it.

The state legislature passed HB648 that will allocate funding to rural communities for broadband infrastructure. These grants will be awarded based on need and the lack of available access to affordable and reliable high-speed internet. In order for our area to receive allocated funding for broadband, we need your help in gathering accurate data on the current status of your broadband connection. We need this data to help make our case for these funds.

Please take a few seconds to complete the speed test by clicking the link below. Please DO NOT use your cell phone to take the test unless you are connected to your home’s WIFI. If you do not have Internet available at your home, please select the “NO AVAILABLE SERVICE” option.

We need as many tests completed as possible to obtain good data and improve our chances to obtain funding for critical infrastructure. To take the speed test, please visit https://ineedspeed.org/. Thank you for helping us connect our community.


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St. Mary’s Beta Hosts Halloween Carnival

The Beta Club at St. Mary’s Catholic School will host its 6th annual Halloween Carnival on Saturday, Oct. 30 from 5:30-8 pm on the school campus. Costumes are encouraged! Enjoy carnival games, a haunted house, trunk or treat and more. Tickets to participate in each carnival game are $1/piece. Come join the fun at this community event and bring your friends!


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Rotary Club learns about NSU Women’s Basketball

Rotarian with the Program Ron McBride introduced NSU Women’s Head Basketball Coach Anna Nimz who introduced her Assistant Coaches Leasa Ailshie, Mike Brown, and Mike Pittman at the Oct. 26 luncheon. Coach Anna provided an overview of all eligible players for the 2021-2022 season and answered questions. Pictured from left are Ailshie, McBride, Nimz, Pittman, and Brown.


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NSU will screen Indigenous-made films for Native American Heritage Month

The third annual Native American Film Club offers a mix of contemporary documentaries and fictional films. This year’s theme is ‘Respect for Earth and Each Other.’

Northwestern State University will celebrate Native American Heritage Month by screening indigenous-made films in November.

“Over 500 federally acknowledged American Indian nations exist just within the U.S. and can be very different, but a common thread is that many American Indians share an ethic of respect and responsibility for the environment and other beings. This year especially, people of all ethnicities have environmental and public health concerns on their minds. We chose Indigenous-written and -directed films that address these topics,” said Dr. Rebecca Riall, acting coordinator of ethnic studies at NSU.

“We’re excited to continue co-hosting the Native Film Club,” said Center for Inclusion and Diversity coordinator Brittany Blackwell Broussard. “Our work at the Center seeks to highlight voices and experiences of minority groups that are too often overlooked. Through these films and discussions, we hope to spark the students and the community as agents of change.”

Screenings are free and open to the public, however, participants must pre-register. Social distancing and mask wearing will be enforced. Attendees must pre-sign up for specific films at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D49A8AB22AAFDC25-native1

Tues. Nov. 2, President’s Room, Student Union, 5:30 PM: L’Eau Est La Vie: From Standing Rock to the Swamp and Awake: A Dream of Standing Rock. In these two documentaries, meet Indigenous and ally “water protectors.” Pizza will be served. Discussion to follow.

Thurs., Nov. 11, Lucile Hendrick Room (downstairs), Student Union, 5:30 PM: Cherokee Word for Water. Wilma Mankiller was the first modern female Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma. This fictionalized film, based on real events, follows her rise to leadership as she fought to build a 16-mile water line to a remote Cherokee community, relying mostly on volunteers. Refreshments served. Discussion to follow.

Thurs., Nov. 18, Lucile Hendrick Room (downstairs), Student Union, 5:30 PM: Blood Quantum. In an alternate 1981, the brutalized Mother Earth unleashes a zombie plague to which Indigenous people find themselves immune. A Mi’qmaq community faces difficult questions regarding their responsibilities to themselves and others as they battle the undead. Warning: gory, not for children. Refreshments served. Discussion to follow.

Dr. Mark Melder, head of the School of Social Sciences and Applied Programs, said that the Native American Film Club is an annual event that aims to be meaningful for Native audiences while also approachable to everyone.

“This year is the first year that Native young people have been able to see themselves represented in their own stories on mainstream television, with the first two major Native-made television series emerging. Being seen in an authentic way matters. Representation matters. The Native American Student Association helped choose the films for this year. We tried to choose films that are informative, interesting and leave the audience understanding that Native peoples are resilient and very much part of contemporary life,” Melder said.

“The NSU Native Film Club provides an outstanding opportunity for students, faculty, staff and community members to watch and discuss films by Native directors that they might not otherwise have the chance to see,” explained Dr. Allison Rittmayer, chair of NSU Diversity Committee and associate professor of English and film. “Through these four films, audiences will gain a sense of the variety of Native perspectives on the relationship between humans and the land, and on the responsibilities we have to each other. It is vital that we support the work of these artists and continue to expand the opportunities for Native representation in film, television and beyond.”

This is the third year for the film series, which is co-sponsored by the American Indian and Indigenous Studies, Center for Inclusion and Diversity, School of Social Science and Applied Programs, Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; English, Foreign Languages, and Cultural Studies; Anthropology; Pre-Law and Paralegal Studies and the Native American Student Association.


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Lunchtime Lagniappe: “The Ghost of East Hall”

Join the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame and Northwest Louisiana History Museum as Debbie Dietrich-Smith, Chief of Historic Landscapes from NCPTT, discusses one of Northwestern State University’s oldest traditions: The Legend of Isabelle the Ghost at the museum on Friday, Oct. 29 from 12:15-12:45 pm.

Have you heard of the ghost who lives on the NSU campus? Every incoming freshman learns her tale. But what exactly is the legend, and how has the legend changed over the years? This presentation will look at the life, loves, and tragedy of the young woman who died at her own hand by a dagger to the heart. It will visit the places on campus she has inhabited and share how she was “moved” from building to building by students. It will explore the ways students have celebrated her existence and shared her story for over 125 years. Come learn about the Ghost of East Hall, NSU’s oldest inhabitant.

State regulations regarding masks and physical distancing will be followed.

Please visit our website or call (318) 357-2492 for more information.

Free and open to the public.


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NSU Drumline and Steel Band to perform Friday

The NSU Drumline and Steel Band will present Drums Along the River on Friday, Oct. 29 at 6:30 p.m. at the Fleur de Lis stage in Downtown Natchitoches. Admission is free and open to the public. In case of rain, the concert will be in Magale Recital Hall.

The Drumline will perform stand cadences, traditional school songs and show music from the Spirit of Northwestern production titled “Inferneaux.”

The Steel Band is comprised of instruments from the island nation of Trinidad and Tobago with unique timbre and infectious dance beats. The program will include some island classics such as “Limbo” and “Jump in the Line” as well as some current hits like “Levitating” by Dua Lipa and “Stay” by Kid Laroi.


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