NSU to hold Part-Time Job Fair Aug. 31

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Northwestern State University’s Office of Job Location and Development is sponsoring a Part-Time Job Fair Thursday, Aug. 31 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Friedman Student Union Ballroom.

There is no charge to participate, but businesses should register by going to ccs.nsula.edu/job-fair registration.

All majors at NSU are welcome to participate. Students should bring resumes to the job fair.

For more information, contact Karen Loach at loachk@nsula.edu or at (318) 357-5430.

Sandbags are available

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Officials with the Natchitoches Parish Office of Emergency Preparedness, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office, Natchitoches Parish Government, Natchitoches Police and City of Natchitoches are constantly in contact with and monitoring information from Louisiana GOSHEP and the National Weather Service as Hurricane Harvey watch continues.

Sandbags are available for Natchitoches Parish residents to pick up at the Natchitoches Public Works, located at 110 Mill Street, from 8am-4pm.

Be Storm Ready, have water, flashlights, batteries, emergency supplies, food, medication, gas, paper towels, lantern, kitchen matches and a NOAA weather radio on hand for at least 72 hours.

BOM is title sponsor of Meet the Demons Athletic Scholarship Auction

BOM - Demons Athletics 2017

BOM is the title sponsor of the Meet the Demons – Athletic Scholarship Auction, Aug. 26 from 5-8 pm at the Natchitoches Events Center. Join Northwestern State for a fun-filled evening meeting and supporting over 300 student athletes that have chosen to represent Northwestern State University in their respective sports. Dr. Haley Taitano, NSU Associate Athletic Director for External Affairs/Senior Woman Administrator, accepted BOM’s $5,000 sponsorship.

Pictured from left are Stephen Van Sickle, Dewayne Chelette, Micah Foshee, Lyn Christophe, and Brooke Latham.

NCHS students and parents welcomed to 2017-18 school year

By Brooke Shirley

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Natchitoches Central High School hosted an Open House for the new school year Aug. 22. As students entered the school, parents were given a program with a list of every faculty member and their room numbers to make navigating the halls easier. The night was kicked off by the JROTC Color Guard presenting the colors proceeded by the String Orchestra playing “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Principal Bill Gordy said a few opening remarks before the assistant principals, counselors, and a heath center representative welcomed everyone and reminded parents of deadlines and upcoming events. The Alma Mater was then sang by NCHOIR with music played by the String Orchestra.

A few changes were implemented this year including an after school program for children to have the opportunity to make up for days missed and to get tutoring on subjects they might be struggling in. Another thing that the school is trying out is their Facebook page to allow better communication to parents as far as upcoming events or sport schedules. Just visit https://www.facebook.com/NatchitochesCentralHS/

Here are a few reminders the faculty asked to be shared:

If you want your child to take the ACT test on Oct. 28, they MUST be registered by Sept. 22 using the school code 191920. For more information, visit act.org.

Also, parents are being asked to fill out a survey if they haven’t already. It can be found at http://eprovesurveys.advanc-ed.org/surveys/#/action/27970/15906.

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It’s time to sign up for bus trips and away tailgating with NSU

Football Games

The NSU Alumni Association will provide buses, a tailgate, and an avenue to buy game tickets for the NSU vs. LA Tech and NSU vs. Grambling games. With the help of SGA and SAB, two student buses will be making the round trip for the LA Tech game, along with one alumni bus.

Registration for the LA Tech game ends Thursday, Aug. 31, and registration for Grambling ends Sept. 6.

All bus seats are first come first serve, and will be cut off after filled. The tailgate for the LA Tech game will be in the same location as three years ago…right next to the Lady Techsters Softball Complex, in Memorial Gym Parking Area in Zone 2.

Delicious Cajun food will be cooked by Demon Dad, Simon Guidry, and food will include pastalaya, jambalaya, and other cajun delicacies. Entertainment will be provided by the Paul and Pete Band from 3:30 to 5:30, and a pep rally leading us into the stadium at 5:30. Along with the band, we’ll have other amenities such as lawn games, port-a-cool fans, and cold beverages.

It gets even better! The first two people to email alumni@nsula.edu will win a FREE bus trip with 2 tickets to a game (All inclusive bus trip, tailgating and game ticket).

Itinerary for Games:
• 12:30 P.M. Load Buses
• 1-3 P.M. Bus Trip
• 3-5:45 P.M. Tailgate
• 6-9:30 P.M. Football Game
• 9:30-11:30 P.M. Return Bus Trip

Cost for LA Tech Game:
• Alumni Tailgate + Game Ticket + Bus Ticket…$70 ($80 for Grambling Game)
• Alumni Tailgate + Game Ticket…………………….$40 ($50 for Grambling Game)
• Alumni Tailgate Only ………………………………….$20
• Student Tailgate + Game Ticket +Bus Ticket…$30

*INDIVIDUAL GAME TICKETS SOLD THROUGH THE NSU ATHLETIC TICKETING OFFICE!

All tickets will be in the general admission section. The bus will depart from the Collins Family Pavilion, and bus riders can leave cars in Prather parking lot. Pre purchased game tickets and tailgating wristbands can be picked up from the tailgate on game day.

For more information go online to northwesternalumni.com, or call Van Erikson at 318-357-4415 or email eriksonv@nsula.edu.

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Freightliner overturns at Campti Cut-off

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Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Deputies, Louisiana State Police, Natchitoches Regional Medical Center EMS arrived on the scene of an overturned eighteen Aug. 25. The rig was hauling woods chips on Hwy. 6 East at its intersection with Hwy. 486 (Campti Cut-Off).
La. DOTD was contacted.
The driver of the 2009 Freightliner was transported to Natchitoches Regional Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.

St. Paul MBC to hold Musician Appreciation Celebration this Sunday

St. Paul MBC

The Pastor, Officer and Member of St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church in the Bermuda Community in Natchez, cordially invites the public to honors it musicians: Sis. Barbara Walker and Bros. Abraham Helaire, Roy Woodard Jr. and Claude Williams, by attending the church’s annual Appreciation Celebration Sunday, Aug. 27 at 2:30 pm. Special guest is God’s Extra Annointed Ones from Colfax. For information contact Rosa Shields at 318-352-5047 or 318-652-0753.

Bridge over Bayou Amulet scheduled to re-open

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The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD), advises the public that LA 6 Business, from LA 494 to LA 1 Business, in Natchitoches Parish, is scheduled to re-open today, Aug. 25, at 5 p.m. to all traffic.

The road, from LA 494 to LA 1 Business, was closed due to an emergency pipe repair.

Notice of Death – August 25, 2017

Notice of Death 2017

Yvonne Sawyer
August 24, 2017
Arrangements TBA

LaKisha Jones
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at Evergreen Baptist Church in Hanna
Interment: New Hope Cemetery in Hanna

Rose Mary Youngblood
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at Faltine Baptist Church in Gloster
Interment: Faltine Cemetery in Gloster

Glynn Edward Kitchell 
February 25, 1935 – August 21, 2017
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at Marthaville Cemetery

George W. Spears
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at Shiloh Baptist Church in Mansfield
Interment: Shiloh Cemetery  in Mansfield

Virginia Kidd
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at Shady Grove United Methodist Church in Mansfield
Interment: Shady Grove Cemetery in Mansfield

Dr. Joseph Villard Jr.
July 27, 1928 – August 20, 2017
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 26 from 9-10:30 am at the John Kramer & Son Funeral Home with a recitation of the Holy Rosary in the Kramer Chapel at 10 am
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at St. Francis Xavier Cathedral
Interment: Greenwood Memorial Park

Alma Braxton
August 19, 2017
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 26 from 8-9:30 am at the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home in Natchitoches and Saturday from 10-11 am at the Ben Johnson Auditorium
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at  the Ben Johnson Auditorium
Interment: Rockford Baptist Church Cemetery on Old River Road

William Levi Berry
August 16, 2017
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 26 from 8-11 am at the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home
Service: Saturday, Aug. 26 at 11 am at the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel
Interment: Methodist Cemetery in Allen

 

Destination Downtown Events Canceled for August 26

DDHDBA events canceled

The City of Natchitoches would like to advise the public that all Destination Downtown events including the Home Tours have been canceled for Saturday, August 26, 2017. Destination Downtown Events will not be rescheduled. This cancelation is due to severe weather conditions that are predicted to make their way across Louisiana over the weekend.

The City of Natchitoches would like to remind all citizens that in the event of severe weather to monitor weather conditions and stay alert.  Public safety is the City’s top priority, so residents are advised to remain indoors during heavy rainfall and heavy winds unless an emergency makes it absolutely necessary to be on the road.

Natchitoches Parish supports Voter Registration Week

By Brooke Shirley

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Registrars of voters across the state the week of Aug. 21-25 hosted Voter Registration Week activities aimed at registering eligible citizens to vote. The next regularly scheduled election in Louisiana is the Statewide Special and Open/Orleans Municipal Parochial Primary on Oct. 14, 2017.

Natchitoches Parish Registrar of Voters Office registered students at Natchitoches Central High School. Students had the opportunity to register to vote with the help of the League of Women Voters. These ladies are a part of a nonpartisan political organization encouraging informed and active participation in government. They strive to influence public policy through education and advocacy. To avoid interrupting any classes, students could register during their lunch shift or pick up the form to bring home for assistance completing it.

Louisiana was one of the first states in the nation to implement an easy, convenient online voter registration portal. Citizens with a valid Louisiana driver’s license can register online 24 hours a day, seven days a week from the convenience of their home or office by visiting https://voterportal.sos.la.gov.

Residents of Louisiana can also register in person at their parish Registrar of Voters Office, when they apply for/renewing their driver’s license at any Office of Motor Vehicles or when obtaining services at public assistance agencies and Armed Forces recruitment offices. Citizens wishing to register by mail can download and print the application

at http://www.sos.la.gov/ElectionsAndVoting/PublishedDocuments/ApplicationToRegisterToVote.pdf, or complete an application found at public libraries or through registration drives.

To register and vote in Louisiana individuals must:

be a U.S. citizen;

be at least 17 years old (16 years old if registering in person at the Registrar of Voters Office or at the Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles) to register and 18 years old prior to the next election to vote;

not be under an order of imprisonment for conviction of a felony;

not be under a judgment of full interdiction for mental incompetence or partial interdiction with suspension of voting rights;

be a resident in the state and parish in which you seek to register and vote; and
complete the process at least 20 days prior to an election if registering online or 30 days prior to an election if registering in person or by mail.

For a complete listing of activities in individual parishes, visit http://www.sos.la.gov/Pages/NewsAndEvents.aspx#faq166.

 

The Rapides Foundation Symposium Will Feature Wes Moore

RapidesFound Wes Moore

The Rapides Foundation will feature acclaimed author Wes Moore as the speaker at its fourth annual Symposium to be held Sept. 6 at the Alexandria Riverfront Center from 3:30-5 p.m. The Foundation presents the Symposium free of charge to the community as a way to gather around a topic of importance, and is a way to recognize the creation of The Rapides Foundation on Sept. 1, 1994.

The focus of the 2017 Symposium is “Transforming Communities” and Moore’s presentation will describe the transformative power of education and leadership and its impact on improving communities.

“Wes Moore is one of the most impressive speakers I’ve ever heard,” said Joe Rosier, president and CEO of The Rapides Foundation, “You really don’t want his presentation to end. He faced many challenges and had a difficult journey as a young person, but through family support, education and engaged mentors he became a Rhodes Scholar, decorated Army combat veteran, White House Fellow, and best-selling author, just to name a few of his accomplishments.”

Moore will share his personal story of overcoming adversity through education, embracing personal responsibility, and emerging as an inspirational leader. Through unforgettable storytelling, he inspires his audiences to see solutions instead of problems, overcome challenges, reach higher, lift up others, and find the power and purpose to achieve any goal.

“We hope as many people as possible from throughout Central Louisiana can attend, especially our civic, elected and faith-based leaders,” Rosier continued. “Anyone who has a concern about how to build up or make our communities better will have a great opportunity to hear a compelling message. Whatever your interest is, we believe you’ll find Wes Moore’s presentation to be very challenging and encouraging.”

The Symposium is free and open to the entire Central Louisiana community, but registration is needed. There are three convenient ways to register: by calling the Foundation at 318-443-3394 or 800-994-3394; registering on our website at http://www.rapidesfoundation.org; or emailing the Foundation at Events@rapidesfoundation.org.

Moore is the author of two best-selling books. His first book, “The Other Wes Moore” has been on the New York Times Best Sellers list seven straight years. A planned motion picture from Executive Producer Oprah Winfrey is based on the book, which tells the story of how educational opportunities, strong parental influence, mentors and a community support network helped Moore transcend the fate of a man with the same name who lived just blocks away and took a tragically different path to prison. Moore’s most recent book, “The Work,” debuted at No. 15.

He currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Robin Hood Foundation, one of the nation’s largest foundations with a sole focus on alleviating poverty. He is also the founder of BridgeEDU, an organization that provides support to students as they navigate to higher education. He is a decorated combat veteran and officer who served in the elite 82nd Airborne division of the Unites States Army. His military service inspired him to become a passionate voice for veterans, serving as executive producer and host of Coming Back with Wes Moore, a PBS miniseries about the challenges facing returning Iraq and Afghanistan vets. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Valley Forge Military Academy and the Johns Hopkins University. He was selected as a Rhodes Scholar, earning a MLitt in International Relations and Affairs at Oxford University.

The mission of The Rapides Foundation is to improve health status in Central Louisiana, and over its 23-year history has sought to support that mission by developing initiatives and strategies intended to impact our community for decades to come. The Foundation focuses its works in three strategic areas: Healthy People, Education and Healthy Communities. Since the Foundation’s inception in 1994, it has disbursed more than $200 million in grants. The Rapides Foundation serves a nine-parish area in Central Louisiana: Allen, Avoyelles, Catahoula, Grant, LaSalle, Natchitoches, Rapides, Vernon and Winn.

Alabama man arrested in Goldonna residential burglary

NPSO-Josh Cryer a

A joint investigation by Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Detectives and Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Detectives led to the arrest of an Alabama man in connection with a residential burglary in Goldonna according to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Victor Jones.

NPSO Patrol Division deputies responded to a reported residential burglary June 5 in the 300 block of Trichel Loop in Goldonna. They learned entry had been gained into his residence. Items in excess of $10,000 were reported stolen, which included two laptop computers, jewelry, clothing, gold coins, 30 pair of sunglasses, athletic shoes, clothing, medication and other items.

Deputies also learned while speaking with the complainant, when he was returned home he encountered a black Chevrolet Equinox or Trailblazer occupied by a male and female in his driveway.
When he questioned them as to what they were doing, they replied “just turning around because of a road washout.” NPSO Detectives also responded to the scene.

Deputies processed the crime scene, completed an offense report and forwarded the case to the NPSO Criminal Investigations Division for investigative purposes. During the next couple of weeks, detectives continued to investigate the burglary identifying a Josh Shane Cryar of Alabama as a person of interest. Detectives learned Cryar and his girlfriend had stayed in an old home place in the area for a couple of weeks.

As the investigation progressed, detectives learned Cryar had sold items in Rapides and Natchitoches Parishes, which were identified as items stolen in the Goldonna burglary. Detectives then obtained a criminal warrant for the arrest of Cryar signed by a Tenth Judicial District Court Judge. They then learned that Cryar was on the move and believed to be visiting relatives in the Deville area of Rapides Parish. Detectives summoned the assistance of Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Detectives to make the arrest. Rapides deputies responded to the area and arrested Cryar without incident.

As a result of the investigation:
Josh Shane Cryar, 37, of Foley, Alabama was transported and booked into the Rapides Parish Jail and later transferred to Natchitoches Parish charged with 1-count of Simple Burglary.

Cryar has since posted a $5,000 bond set by a Tenth Judicial District Court Judge. Deputies say while interviewing Cryar he admitted to his involvement in the burglary. Some of the items reported stolen have been recovered.

From the classroom to the car lot

 

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Arthur Dew originally taught Calvin Braxton Jr. at Natchitoches Central High School. Fast forward years later and Dew chose to buy his next car from Natchitoches Ford.

“I trust Calvin and his staff,” said Dew, who’s bought his last 5-6 cars from Natchitoches Ford. “Where else can you get good customer service and considerate, reliable salesmen. My salesman is always there to see what I need, not force me into buying something.”

Find hometown service and the best deals at Natchitoches Ford when you pick a car and pick a payment. Ford is America’s most trusted brand in cars, trucks and SUVs. Stop by the car lot at 7501 Hwy. 1 Bypass or call 1-888-309-0671. Payments are figured with $0 down + TTL at 75 months and 4.49% APR. See dealer for details.

“They show me appreciation,” said Dew. “And I appreciate them in return.”

Just Click each below to view!

2017 Lincoln MKZ: $539 (PC04044)

2016 Ford Explorer: $489 (PT19934)

2015 Chevy Cruz: $249 (UC86073)

2016 Jeep Wrangler: $539 (UT08878)

2015 Ford F-150 4X4: $499 (UT99003)

2016 Ford Fusion: $329 (PC91718)

2016 Toyota Camry: $289 (UC73287)

2016 Hyundai Sonata: $249 (UC73897)

2016 Nissan Altima: $280 (UC39196)

2016 Chevrolet Impala: $339 (UC27037)

2015 Ford F-150: $419 (PT25787)

2015 Dodge Charger: $379 (UC96344)

2017 Ford Escape: $429 (PT84487)

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Senior J.D. Almond is the Demons’ starting QB

8-19-17 scrimmage J.D Almond

The tradition of the Independence Bowl Foundation/Northwestern State Kickoff Luncheon in late August stretches back almost a quarter-century, so the Demons always try to make it extra special.

Thursday, the supporters from the Shreveport-Bossier area listening to NSU head coach Jay Thomas were delighted when he announced one of their hometown heroes, Haughton High School product J.D. Almond, will be the Demons’ starting quarterback in the season opener next Saturday night at Louisiana Tech.

Almond ended his junior season last November starting NSU’s final three games after he began the season sidelined by a bad case of poison ivy. This year, his August has been infinitely more active and impressive, although there were strong challenges from junior college transfer Clay Holgorsen and redshirt freshman Kenny Sears.

“It was heavily competitive and we believe we have three guys who can step on the field and move the offense,” Thomas said. “J.D. gives us the senior leadership. He has started games for us and this team believes in him, so we have a lot of confidence in him being our guy.

“Clay Holgorsen will also be ready to play. Kenny Sears really came on strong in the last week, doing a fantastic job to the point where he’s now in the mix,” said Thomas.  “We’d like to try to get the other guys some time on the field. It’s all about the game flow.”

The tipping point for Almond, said Thomas, were the intangibles.

“His leadership and work ethic is unmatched. He’s played games here. When you’re going into a big game like we are next week, you the steadiness, you need the confidence, and he brings that to the table. I’m excited for J.D. and there’s no doubt he’s going to do a good job for us.”

Thomas said the rest of the NSU depth chart will be solidified over the weekend. The Demons will practice Friday, have a mock game Saturday morning at 9 a.m. in Turpin Stadium, then ramp up preparations for Louisiana Tech.

He and the Demons coaches have been watching film of the Bulldogs already in preseason.

“You can’t help but do that. They’re so good,” he said. “The last couple of days we’ve been heating it up and next week we’ll really start game prep.”

NSU is keeping an eye on Hurricane Harvey and the weather spawned by the storm. Thomas anticipates perhaps adjusting the normal game-week practice schedule to accelerate game plan installation.

CITY MARSHAL’S OFFICE OUTSTANDING BENCH WARRANTS – August 25, 2017

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City Marshal Randy Williams wanted to inform the following people that they have outstanding bench warrants through the Natchitoches City Marshal’s Office. The names on this list did not pay their fines in full nor did they return to court on the court date they were sentenced to by City Court Judge Gahagan. These individuals will need to clear up their fines and bench warrant fees at the City Marshal’s Office located at 373 Second St. to stop any further actions:

FINE PAYMENT (F):
Latarus Calvin, 812 Woodyard Dr #2, Natch, La – DWI
Gabriel Green, 238 Scarborough St, Natch, La – Simple Battery
Laquanda Joseph, 1414 Hwy 1 Apt 205, Natch, La – Exp MVI, Turning Movement
Derrick Pye, 808 Dorothy St, Natch, La – No DL
Otis Smith Jr., 1101 Clarence Dr, Natch, La – NSB, No DL
Karly Williams, 298 Vienne Rd Lot 12, Natch, La – TBS, Exp MVI
Charles Pye, 808 Dorothy St, Natch, La – Exp MVI
Devonte Aaron, 517 Sanford/845 Posey Rd, Natch, La – (2) No DL, NSB
Corinthia Davis, 2348 Hwy 6 Lot 5, Natch, La – TBS
Keisha Farley, 2599 Hwy 71, Campti, La – TBS, DWI
Aqualious Harris, 500 North St K-4, Natch, La – Speeding
Niki Booth, P.O. Box1201, Many, La – TBS
Rebecca Ellison, 140 Wilkerson Rd, Natch, La – TBS
Jarvis Lacey, 170 Beverly Rise, Natch, La – SPOM
Henry Malancon, 308 Daffodill St, Goryville, La – No DL
Brittany Penegar, 1785 Fish Hatchery Rd, Natch, La – TBS, DP
Markell Roy, 151 Melissa Place, Natch, La – Simple Battery
Katrice Brimsey, 500 North St K-4, Natch, La – Exp MVI
Patricia Scroggins, 210 Fairgrounds Rd Apt 5, Natch, La – TBS
Fredrick Anthony, 1501 Amulet St, Natch, La – DP
Angelina Aquinaga, 4921 Hwy 3278 Lot #18, Natch, La – Exp MVI

Trial (T):
Calvin Calhoun, 1501 Jones St, Coushatta, La – TBS
Darrin Hall, 1533 Grayson St, Natch, La – Unlicensed Driver, LM
Demika Daniels, 166 Cedar Grove Dr, Natch, La – TBS
Harold Remo, 106 Harry Dr, Natch, La – No Vehicle Registration
Dominique Moses, 500 North St J-1, Natch, La – TBS
Julie Williams, 1230 Old Robeline Rd Apt C109, Natch, La – DP, SCDP
Trayvontrell Akins, 247 Lake Dr, Natch, La – TBS

School’s back in session: Need a loan?

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Allied Financial is offering Back-to-School Loans (Title, Personal, Auto and Collateral) starting at $300.

A local independent loan company, Allied Financial has served Natchitoches and surrounding communities for over 20 years now. It’s also family owned and operated. Clay Jackson’s father Tandy started Allied Financial almost 30 years ago. Originally located in Coushatta, the Jackson family moved their business to Natchitoches a little over 20 years ago.

“It’s all about keeping money local,” said Clay. His father first opened a local insurance agency with Allied Financial conducting the premium financing. As time progressed, Clay researched other financing options to offer to the community. With history in the car insurance industry, he started financing cars, which allowed the business to expand.

Allied Financial Manager Susie St. Andre and Assistant Manager Krista Sesvold have experience in the loan business.

“We enjoy helping people make ends meet,” said Sesvold.

The business is based on the relationships they form with their clients. It may start with a car loan, but once people learn about Allied’s other loan options, they soon come back. Whether you need money for moving, money to stay current on rent, or any other reason life may throw at you, Allied Financial is here to help.

Stop by the office at 1300 Washington Street or call 318-354-7526 today.

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Robeline Heritage Queen announced

Baylee Ray Robeline Queen 2017
The Robeline Heritage Society is proud to announce our 2017 Robeline Heritage Queen: Baylee Ray.

Baylee is the oldest daughter of Brian and Christi Ray. She and her three younger siblings all raised here in the Robeline area.

Baylee graduated from Many High School this past year, where she served as an FCA Leader and ran track. Baylee is now a freshman at Northwestern State University where she is a nursing major and plans to graduate in 2021.

Baylee is also an extremely active member in her church, Robeline First Baptist, where she teaches a Sunday school class. She has also been active on mission trips. Some of which include visiting Houston’s 5th ward, traveling to south Louisiana after the “Great Flood” to help remove debris and clean out damaged homes. There are also plans to visit Nicaragua later this year.

The 26th Annual Robeline Heritage Festival will kick off Oct. 6 at 5 pm. There will be hayrides, free hotdogs and gospel music by local talent. The evening will be wrapped up with a performance from 4 Days Late. Opening ceremonies will begin Oct. 7 at 10 am with the parade starting at 11 am. There will be a treasure hunt and clues will be provided throughout the day. There will also be plenty of food, arts and crafts, games for the kids and musical entertainment. Charlie Farley will take the stage at 8 pm.

Ponderings with Doug – August 25, 2017

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My fellow nerds gathered at the airport. We jumped on the plane. We landed in Nashville. We checked into the hotel. We grabbed our official eclipse glasses. The hotel was so cool they had two pair of glasses for our room. Monday we waited and waited.
The funny thing about a total eclipse is the waiting involved for the two and half minutes of totality. It was worth every second of waiting.

At the appointed hour we walked out and gazed upwards as the moon made its appearance across the face of the sun. The moon was going rogue. The moon was dancing in the face of the diva. The moon was photobombing the sun’s selfie. The moon was mooning the sun.

It took over an hour for totality to start. As we were waiting for totality we noticed the one cloud in the sky was headed in our direction. Even that one cloud couldn’t mess up the event. Totality happened at announced hour. When it did it was spectacular. The night bugs starting singing. The sky looked like a sky at sunset except it looked that way for 360 degrees. In the field where we were, with a bunch of other nerds, there was absolute silence. The sun is yellow through the eclipse glasses, the corona is silver. Totality ends with the “diamond ring.” It is like a giant flashbulb goes off and the world is back to bright and the sky is back to bright blue.

We were so excited; we are planning our totality nerd reunion for 2024. This time I’ll only need to drive to find it. The next North American total eclipse can be seen in parts of Texas and Arkansas. We can call it the “Bubba eclipse.” I likely won’t be around for the one is 2045, but it goes over Orlando and has been dubbed the “Disney eclipse.” There is another full eclipse in 2019, but it is in South America. We have found a cruise ship that sails out of Tahiti and sails for 15 days and will anchor in the area of totality. Do you think I can get a yard pass to see that eclipse?

It was worth all the work to get to Nashville. God willing I will see another one before I leave this world.

I had friends who were watching the eclipse in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. The eclipse there was 99%. You would think a 99% eclipse would be fairly spectacular. It was not. At 99% there was no viewing of the corona. There is no taking the glasses off and looking at totality with the naked eye. Yes you can do that and we did. There is no “diamond ring” light burst at the end of totality. There were no bugs singing, there was no seeing the colors of sunset everywhere on the horizon. There was no hushed silence in the face of dusk at 1:30 in the afternoon. There was too much sunlight at 99% to see anything cool.

In terms of eclipses, you need totality to get the great experience.

The folks watching the eclipse in the Smokey Mountain National Park had awesome views of totality. Some of them were in the right place to see it all. Some of them stopped in the tourist traps thinking they were “close enough” to have a good view of the eclipse. Some of them may have been happy with the 99% and would do it all again to see the moon cross the sun’s path. Some of you saw 90% and you didn’t have to leave Natchitoches. It was awesome for you.

But that one percent made all the difference in the cosmos between partial and total. Believe me total is worth the trip. The Methodists will be taking a church trip on Monday, April 8, 2024 to see totality.

The spiritual lesson is easy. Giving your life 99% to Jesus is not good enough. In terms of following Jesus and eclipses you must be all in to get the full impact.