Flavor of Louisiana raises $77,000 for student scholarships

Northwestern State University’s third annual Flavor of Louisiana, the university’s popular spring seafood extravaganza, was a resounding success, according to organizers. The March 22 event drew about 750 guests and raised more than $77,000 for student scholarships and academic programs.

“We are tremendously grateful to our guests, to our sponsors and to the 100-plus volunteers who helped make our event memorable,” said Jill Bankston, CFRE, director of Development. “It took a lot of teamwork to pull together an event of this magnitude, but the positive feedback we have received and the success of the event made it all worth the effort.”

In addition to dozens of booths featuring seafood dishes prepared by chefs from throughout the region, academic departments organized booths that featured raffles, silent auctions and items for purchase to raise money for their individual programs.

Matt DeFord, chair of the Department of Fine and Graphic Art, said he and his colleagues raised about $500 through raffles and sales of original art.

“It was amazing,” DeFord said. “We plan on using the funds to benefit a student in the form of a scholarship.”

For the last three years, Flavor of Louisiana has been presented in partnership with the Louisiana Seafood Board which donates all the seafood items for the chefs to prepare. Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser has been a supporter of the event since its inception and this year was the recipient of a special honor. Northwestern State President Dr. Chris Maggio presented Nungesser with the Nth Degree to recognize meritorious service to the university, to the city of Natchitoches and the state of Louisiana.