Rotarians learn about Kisatchie National Forest

Rotarian with the Program Rhonda Jones introduced Kisatchie National Forest Head Ranger Bradley Cooper at the Nov. 19 meeting of the Rotary Club of Natchitoches. Kisatchie is part of the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service and includes over 604,000 acres. Cooper summarized the history of the National Forest and the many responsibilities of a ranger.  Pictured from left are Jones, Rotary President David Guillet, and Cooper.

CITY OF NATCHITOCHES: Assistant Recreation Director

POSITION: Assistant Recreation Director – Recreation Department

DESCRIPTION: Assists the Recreation Director in performing a variety of complex professional and administrative work in planning, developing, scheduling, directing and implementing a year round, city wide recreation program.

QUALIFICATIONS: Bachelor of Science degree from an accredited university in Recreation or Parks Administration or other related field and at least 6 months related experience.

CONTACT: City of Natchitoches, Human Resources Department, located at 1400 Sabine St. 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 may be downloaded at http://www.natchitochesla.gov

DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION:

Applications will be accepted through December 9, 2019

The City of Natchitoches is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer.

Notice of Death – November 26, 2019

NATCHITOCHES:
Mr. Denarda Bush
January 28, 1990 – November 24, 2019
Visitation: Friday, November 29 from 6-8 pm at the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home, located at 318 North Street in Natchitoches
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 2 pm at the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel
Interment: Campti Community Cemetery

Harrell Roberson
March 17, 1924 – November 24, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, November 30 at 1 pm at Blanchard-St Denis Funeral Home
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 2 pm at Blanchard-St Denis Funeral Home
Interment: Memory Lawn Cemetery

Ora Coutee
November 26, 2019
Arrangements TBA

Minister Kelvin Porter
November 22, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, November 30 from 9-11 am at First Baptist Church, located at 1116 Amulet Street in Natchitoches
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 11 am at First Baptist Church
Interment: St. Paul Baptist Church Cemetery in the Bermuda Community

Claude Neal Rachal
July 30, 1952 – November 20, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, November 30 from 9:30-10 am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Cloutierville
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 10 am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church

Kenneth Wyatt
November 24, 2019
Arrangements TBA

Isaac Newson
November 23, 2019
Arrangements TBA

Edwin Kirkendoll
November 20, 2019
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 11 am at the Mt. Sinai Baptist Church in Campti
Interment: Campti Community Cemetery

SABINE:
Kathy Lorraine McComic
July 19, 1948 – November 25, 2019
Service: Wednesday, November 27, 2019 at 2 pm at Mt. Zion Baptist Church
Interment: Mt. Zion Cemetery

RAPIDES:
Ira Wayne Noland
July 6, 1936 – October 19, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, December 7 from 10-11 am at Kramer Funeral Home

RED RIVER:
William “Billy” Antoine Rogers
September 29, 1950 – November 22, 2019
Visitation: Friday, November 29 from 5-8 pm at Liberty Baptist Church
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 3 pm at Liberty Baptist Church
Interment: Thomas-Wren Cemetery

Roger Allen Longino
December 30, 1968 – November 24, 2019
Visitation: Friday, November 29 from 5-10 pm at Union Hall Baptist Church on Hwy. 71, south of Coushatta
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 10:30 am at Red River Elementary School
Interment: Union Hall Cemetery

City Council approves demolition of apartments on Second Street

The City Council meeting Monday night, Nov. 25, seemingly turned into a courtroom proceeding. It all revolved around an ordinance to declare the apartments located at 312 Second Street to be dilapidated, dangerous and unsafe and ordering their demolition and removal.

The Council voted to approve this ordinance with the exception of Council member Sylvia Morrow who thought the renovation of the apartments into low income housing would be beneficial to the City.

The rest of the Council members were dubious as to the length of time this process has been sitting before them with no work being done on the property to reassure them.

“It’s been dormant two-and-a-half years,” said Council member Dale Nielsen. “I don’t have anymore faith or trust that the project will move forward any faster than it has before.”

Council member Eddie Harrington said they’ve given the project so much time and asked, “At what point is enough, enough?”

In other news, an ordinance was tabled which would amend and readopt a section of the Code of Ordinances “Stopping standing and parking of motor vehicles and traffic year round in the Historic District if the bus, RV or other large vehicle takes up more than two parking spots. Mayor Lee Posey said they’ll rework the ordinance and bring it back up for reintroduction at a future meeting.

“We might have been too aggressive with this,” he said.

Other agenda items included:

ORDINANCES – INTRODUCTION:

Execute A Second Lease Amendment To Water Tower Option And Lease Agreement With New Cingular Wireless CS, To Allow The Installation Of LTE Antennas, Associated Cables And Other Communications Instruments.

RESOLUTIONS:

Enter Into A Contract With Midwest Employers Casualty Company For The Workers’ Compensation Excess Coverage Policy For The City Of Natchitoches.

Execute Change Order No. One To The Agreement Between The City Of Natchitoches And Delta Specialty Contractors, LLC To Install A New Perimeter Fence And Repair Existing Fence At The Natchitoches Regional Airport LA- DOTD Project Nos. H.014056 (Bid No. 0619)

ANNOUNCEMENTS:
The next scheduled City Council meeting will be December 9, 2019.

Chad Deranger helps Rhodes Realty find homes for families

Chad Deranger has lived in 13 houses in 7 states throughout his 21-year career in the United States Air Force. So when it was time to retire, he and his wife Marne went town shopping.

Marne also served in the Air Force, for 23 years. The couple lived in places like Cheyenne, Wyoming; Cape Canaveral, Florida; Colorado Springs and Northern Virginia. Out of the whole country, they wanted to go back to Louisiana. Chad grew up in Ville Platte after all.

They love small college towns so they visited several places, but fell in love with Natchitoches. After four years at St. Mary’s, their daughter Hannah is enrolled as a freshman at Northwestern State University.

“I’ve always been interested in the real estate process,” said Chad. “Having moved so many times in my life I know what characteristics I like and dislike in an agent.

His military experience lent itself to this new job. He knows how to communicate with people from all walks of life. He’s also dealt with large budgets, so he understands contracts and finances. There may be different perspectives when it comes to the sale of property, but Chad can help sellers and buyers find common ground.

Chad’s favorite part about his job is helping first-time home buyers. It’s important to him to reassure them as he walks them through the process. On the opposite side of things, estates can be the most challenging part of his job. The family has lost a loved one and sometimes the property is a childhood home with many fond memories. Mitigating the process can be difficult when there’s a lot of people involved. But Chad says it can become rewarding when it’s done successfully and everyone walks away happy in the end.

One piece of advice Chad has to offer is that it doesn’t cost to look. “Sometimes people are afraid to waste our time,” he said. “But that’s what I’m here for.

Agents are available to show clients what’s on the market and help them get connected with a bank or mortgage broker. Chad knows it can be a scary process or seem like a daunting task. That’s only fair because it is the most expensive purchase people will make in their lives. But Chad says no one should feel like they’re signing their life away. It’s one of life’s most exciting moments when people become homeowners.

Chad is a member of the Knights of Columbus and Marne is a Master Gardener. Together they coach the girls’ powerlifting team at St. Mary’s Catholic School.

Chad chose to work at Rhodes Realty because he believes he can stand behind the product: helping people find a home.

“I believe in what they do,” he said.

Chad Deranger
Agent
Chad@RhodesRealtyLa.com
318.238.3733
318.214.1797

CONSAH will host 2020 Sigma Theta conference

Northwestern State University’s College of Nursing and School of Allied Health will host the 2020 Biennial Sigma Theta Tau International Beta-Chi Nursing Research and Evidence Based Practice Conference. The conference will take place Friday, March 13, 2020. Sigma Theta Tau is the International Honor Society of Nursing.

The conference targets professional nurses, graduate nursing students and nursing faculty who are internal and/or external (local, regional or state) to Northwestern State University. The conference will take place from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at the NSU’s Shreveport Nursing Education Center, 1800 Line Avenue. Nursing contact hours will be awarded. The event is jointly provided with NSU Nursing Continuing Education.

Conference topics will center around the title of this year’s conference which is “Minding Nursing Through Service, Research and Best Practices.” Nursing scholars are invited to present on topics related to service, transformation or leadership. The deadline to submit abstracts is Nov. 22.

For more information, contact Heather Hayter, lead nurse planner and continuing education coordinator, at hayterh@nsula.edu.

The One That Got Away

By Brad Dison

Concetta Franconero was young and in love. But, as often is the case, her father didn’t approve of her beau, Walden Cassotto. Concetta was a somebody. Walden was a nobody. In the 50s, 60s, and 70s, Concetta recorded hit songs in multiple languages and became an international music and movie star. Concetta’s father, George, though not her manager, advised her on which songs to record and which to turn down. Concetta and her father disagreed on many song choices but, as it turned out, most of her hits were songs she had turned down but her father convinced her to record anyway. This happened time and time again. It seemed that father knew best.

Concetta and Walden first met when her manager hired Walden, an aspiring singer and songwriter, to help write songs that would fit her voice. Concetta and Walden soon fell in love. As I said before, Concetta’s father DID NOT approve of Walden. To George, Walden was a hanger-on and would never amount to much. An aspiring singer and songwriter was no match for his star of a daughter.

One evening George overheard Concetta and Walden making plans to elope. George was infuriated. He wouldn’t, he couldn’t stand by and watch his daughter marry a nobody. He acted quickly, grabbed a gun, burst into the room, and led Walden out, all the while threatening him to never come near his daughter again. And so it was. The whirlwind romance came to an end at gunpoint.

Through the passing years, Walden and Concetta only saw each other a couple of times and on a professional basis only. Walden eventually married someone else. Concetta also married …four times, each ending in divorce. In her biography Concetta wrote that not marrying Walden was the biggest mistake of her life. You probably know some of Concetta’s hits such as “Who’s Sorry Now,” and “Where the Boys Are,” and may have even seen her starring in the movie of the same name. You probably don’t recognize the name Concetta Rosa Marie Franconero, but you will recognize her stage name, Connie Francis. …and Walden Cassotto, the nobody who wasn’t good enough for George’s daughter, recorded several hit songs of his own. Have you ever heard “Splish Splash,” “Dream Lover,” “Mack the Knife,” and “Beyond the Sea?” You know Walden Cassotto by his stage name…Bobby Darin.

Be sure to check back in next Tuesday for the next piece in this series.

Volleyball — NSU falls to Sam Houston State in Southland semifinals

CONWAY, Arkansas – With the exception of one set, the Northwestern State volleyball team was unable to overcome mid-set dips in production in Saturday afternoon’s Southland Conference Volleyball Tournament semifinal against Sam Houston State.

Despite double-doubles from conference Player of the Year Hannah Brister and senior Alexis Warren, the third-seeded Lady Demons fell to No. 2 seed Sam Houston State 3-1 (25-22, 25-23, 23-25, 25-22) at the Farris Center on the campus of Central Arkansas.

“It was another good one in a long list of competitive matches against Sam Houston State,” fifth-year head coach Sean Kiracofe said. “Our matches against them are always worth the ticket.”

Brister collected her second 20-kill, 20-dig double-double of the tournament, registering 27 kills and 21 digs while Warren added 13 kills and 17 digs in her final match at Northwestern State.

Each of the first two sets played out in similar fashion – the teams trading points early before Sam Houston State (18-12) used a mid-set rally to gain the momentum and hold off several NSU pushes.

The Bearkats pulled ahead methodically in the opening set after the teams traded the first six points of the match. Sam Houston State built its largest lead of the set at 17-12 in large part because of a 5-2 run after a Darria Williams kill brought Northwestern State (20-12) within 12-10.

The Lady Demons immediately answered with a 4-0 push to cut the lead to one on a Brister ace, but back-to-back kills by Brenne Chausse re-established the Bearkats’ three-point lead, giving them enough cushion to pull out a three-point win in the opening set. Brister knocked down six kills on 10 error-free swings in the opening set, but the Bearkats limited NSU to a .171 hitting percentage in the opening stanza.

The second set followed suit as the teams split the first six points. This time, the Bearkats made their run earlier in the set.

An Ashley Lewis kill started a 5-1 run that provided enough cushion for Sam Houston State to hold off the Lady Demons, whose defense and passing improved throughout the set. NSU pulled within two at 17-15 on a Williams kill and with one at both 23-22 and 24-23 on Sam Houston State errors.

However, an Ashleigh Traylor kill gave Sam Houston State a 25-23 set win and a 2-0 lead in the match.

A faster start in the third set gave Northwestern State its largest lead of the match, a 10-5 advantage on a Warren kill. The lead dissipated after a 7-1 Berakats run, setting up a back-and-forth final half of the set. Neither team was able to create more than a two-point advantage, which was the final margin after Warren snapped a 23-all tie with a kill and Williams knocked down the clinching point.

“Because the previous two matchups were so close, we came out with a different look to see what, if anything, would be created from it,” Kiracofe said. “In the third, we went back to what we normally do. Despite those changes, I think the third set just came down to the determination of this group.”

NSU built a 10-7 lead in the final set before Sam Houston State rattled of 10 of the next 13 points to take a 17-13 lead. The Lady Demons’ defense, fueled by a pair of combo blocks from Warren and fellow senior Kourtney Seaton, pulled NSU within one on a pair of occasions, but the Bearkats answered each time to clinch their third win of the season against the Lady Demons.

Saturday’s match marked the end of the NSU careers for Warren, Seaton (6 kills, 4 block assists), Megan Lohmiller (17 digs) and Cayman Sutton (29 assists, two service aces). The quartet helped the Lady Demons reach three straight conference tournaments and notch just the fifth 20-win season in program history.

“I couldn’t be more proud of what this senior class has done for the program,” Kiracofe said. “It’s been great getting to work with this group for four years, and I can’t put into words how much they’re going to be missed.”

Photo: Senior Alexis Warren (foreground) delivered a double-double in her final collegiate match. Credit: Bradley Whiting/UCA Athletics

Employment Opportunities at Outpatient Medical Center Inc.

Outpatient Medical Center Inc. is a non-profit federally qualified health center that has been serving the community for 42 years. OMC Inc. provides the community with quality comprehensive medical, dental and behavioral health services.

Employment opportunities currently open at Outpatient Medical Center Inc. are:

LCSW/Social Worker – Licensed Professional Counselor
Job Summary:

He/She shall have primary responsibility for coordinating all psychosocial assessments, treatment plans and interventions in accordance with policies, procedures and protocols established by OMC Inc. standards of practice and licensing and certificate and other regulatory agencies requirements. Responsible for implementing, assessing problems and determining appropriate types and methods of treatment, and implementing intervention methodologies. Acts as Program Consultant to staff members with or without professional training.

EMS Specialist
Job Summary:

Under the direction of the Information Technology Manager, the EMS Specialist performs all general IT functions, supervises IT related accounts receivable functions, and establishes appropriate internal controls necessary to ensure accurate reporting of data and the preparation of electronic reports. The EMS Specialist will provide vision and strategic leadership in the development and implementation of the required technology and information services necessary to ensure compliance with all Federal, State and local regulations. The position supports the business operations to improve the quality of service and cost effectiveness.

Administrative Assistant
Job Summary:

Provides detail-oriented administrative support to the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) as needed to support the execution of center-wide policies and leadership of the Health Center.

For More Information contact Natosha Johnson-Payne at njohnson@outpatientmedical.org or 318-352-9299 ext. 3204

Monroe natives aiming for strong performances as Northwestern State visits ULM on Tuesday

After playing multiple games this season in which Northwestern State “guarded down” against smaller teams, the roles will be reversed Tuesday when the Demons head to ULM for a 7 p.m. game.

NSU (2-3) will see a Warhawks team (2-2) with six players standing at least 6-foot-8, including 7-foot-1 center Chris Efretuei.

The Demons had to stay in front of smaller teams like Centenary and Louisiana College, but coach Mike McConathy hopes his squad can create the same problem for the lengthy Warhawks.

“I’m hopeful we can be as effective against ULM as Louisiana College was against us because they were so much smaller,” McConathy said. “ULM had beat (Louisiana College) handily earlier in the year, and coach (Keith Richard) does a great job.

“He’s beefed up their lineup, but they also have guys who shoot extremely well on the perimeter. They are extremely talented and execute so well.”

One Demon who won’t mind facing larger opponents is junior forward Larry Owens.

Owens, a Monroe native who checks in at 6-foot-7, 300 pounds, said he’s excited for the challenge of battling the trees back in his hometown.

“It’s going to feel good to go back home and play in front of people who know us as a whole,” said Owens, a star at Carroll High School just across Highway 165 from ULM. “ULM is a good team with a lot of height, and I’m ready for the challenge.

“I’ve played against a lot of smaller people, now I’ll be playing against people my size or bigger, and that’ll help me.”

Owens, who has improved his midrange game in the offseason, is shooting 60 percent from the field in his 10 minutes per game, and most expect his impact to increase as better matchups against larger post players are on the horizon.

Wossman High product C.J. Jones had help collapse on Owens during one of Monroe’s fiercest high school rivalries with Carroll High, but Jones has become close with Owens as teammates.

Jones, a primary point guard starter the past two seasons who has a pair of starts this year, has anticipated the Demons’ return to Monroe all season.

“It’ll be a great feeling to play in front of friends and family that hadn’t seen me in a long time,” said Jones, whose father Casey played at ULM and averaged nearly 10 points and six assists as a senior under coach Mike Vining. “ULM’s advantage is its size, but ours is quickness, and we’ll try to beat them up and down the floor.

“I’ve been working on staying aggressive on the break, and as defenses attach more to our shooters, that’ll open up space for the point guards.”

Owens and Jones are two of just five Demon upperclassmen with Division I experience entering the season.

“It’s always important to have Louisiana players, and going home will be a big deal for them,” McConathy said. “C.J. didn’t play in the Rice game (not by design), but he responded extremely well and worked hard on things we talked about him needing to do.

“Larry gets extra work and will continue to do so. He has a high ceiling. Both of these guys are integral parts to our program, and we’ll need them at the tops of their games.”

As freshmen, Owens and Jones helped NSU to a 76-61 win in Fant-Ewing Coliseum in 2017-18. ULM returned the favor this past season, topping NSU 80-52. The road team in this series has recently had the upper hand, winning 11 of the last 17 games.

One potential key Tuesday could be NSU starting quickly on the road.

The Demons have built solid leads in the opening minutes in four of their first five games.

Those leads include scoring the first eight points against Rice, building a 7-3 lead at Texas A&M and an 8-4 edge at Tulane.

While the Demons have had a six-day rest to recalibrate from the early season, ULM hasn’t played in 12 days, coming off a loss at Mississippi State.

“This is one of the best schedules we’ve ever had because it allows you to correct things we’re not doing well,” McConathy said. “We were able to settle down after not playing well against Tulane and fighting to beat Louisiana College, but we got to work on improving things we weren’t doing well.

“We rebounded well early but hadn’t rebounded well in the last couple of games. As for ULM’s (break), 12 days is a long time, but I know that Richard maximized every day, and I don’t think it’ll effect their edge.”

ULM is one of nine Louisiana opponents the Demons will face this season. NSU is 2-1 against in-state foes this season, topping Centenary and Louisiana College and falling to Tulane.

Photo Credit: Chris Reich/NSU Photographic Services

Natchitoches Junior High students volunteer at Food Bank of Central Louisiana

The Natchitoches Junior High School JAG conducted community service at the Food Bank of Central Louisiana. JAG members packed non-perishable food items for the backpack program.

Pictured are Ronald Smith, Callie Encalade, Sean Moran, Mariah Largent, Shakela Pier, Samantha Bradley, Zamarion Payton, Caiden Baines, Kaedynce Ware, Sole’ Lynch, Zamarion Washington, India Tousaint, Tiffany Davis, Joseph McDowell, Jessie Vazquez, Jabarran Brown, ForTrevious Viree and Amare Warren.


Notice of Death – November 25, 2019

NATCHITOCHES:
Minister Kelvin Porter
November 22, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, November 30 from 9-11 am at First Baptist Church, located at 1116 Amulet Street in Natchitoches
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 11 am at First Baptist Church
Interment: St. Paul Baptist Church Cemetery in the Bermuda Community

Claude Neal Rachal
July 30, 1952 – November 20, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, November 30 from 9:30-10 am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Cloutierville
Service: Saturday, November 30 at 10 am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church

Kenneth Wyatt
November 24, 2019
Arrangements TBA

Isaac Newson
November 23, 2019
Arrangements TBA

Marie Bacon
November 13, 2019
Arrangements TBA

Joseph Marion “Pat” Henry, Jr.
August 13, 1928 – November 19, 2019
Visitation: Tuesday, November 26 from 5-7 pm at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home
Private family services will follow at a later time

Edwin Kirkendoll
November 20, 2019
Arrangements TBA

WINN:
Gay Marie O’Neal
August 02, 1959 – November 24, 2019
Service: Tuesday, November 26 at 11 am at Iatt Baptist Church

RAPIDES:
Richard C. Vercher
December 23, 1938 – November 21, 2019
Service: Tuesday, November 26 at 1 pm at John Kramer & Son Funeral Home

Christine Roberts Floberg
January 19, 1928 – November 23, 2019
Service: Tuesday, November 26 at 2 pm at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church in Pineville

Ira Wayne Noland
July 6, 1936 – October 19, 2019
Visitation: Saturday, December 7 from 10-11 am at Kramer Funeral Home

Regional OMV and Public Tag Offices to Reopen Monday

Throughout the weekend, representatives from the Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles and the Office of Technology Services have worked to restore network connections and customer services across the state. With significant progress in the network restoration, OMV officials anticipate opening eight main regional offices on Monday, November 25, 2019. In addition, all Public Tag Agents will be open and available to assist with vehicle registrations only.

The regional offices to reopen include:

Baton Rouge – 7701 Independence Boulevard, Baton Rouge, LA 70806
New Orleans – 100 Veterans Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70124
Shreveport – 9310 Normandie Drive, Shreveport, LA 71118
Lake Charles – 951 Main Street, Lake Charles, LA 70615
Alexandria – 5602 Coliseum Boulevard, Alexandria, LA 71303
Monroe – 5171 Northeast Road, Monroe, LA 71203
Lafayette – 3241 N.W. Evangeline Thruway, Lafayette, LA 70507
Thibodaux – 1424 Tiger Drive, Thibodaux, LA 70301

Locations for Public Tag Agent offices can be found at: www.dps.louisiana.gov/autotitle.nsf.

While many systems are back online, OTS technicians will be at each location to troubleshoot any issues. The public is asked to exercise patience and conduct only vital time sensitive OMV business during the limited regional openings. Non-critical personal OMV needs should be held until the system is fully stabilized and expanded to all field offices. Additionally, the LSP Fingerprinting and Background Check and Concealed Handgun Permit offices will not be open to the public at this time.

Troopers will continue to exercise discretion when encountering recently expired driver’s licenses and vehicle registrations during the limited regional openings. The Office of Motor Vehicles and the Department of Public Safety appreciate the public’s patience and cooperation during this restoration process.

Public safety and professional service to the citizens of Louisiana remains a top priority.

Ponderings with Doug – November 22, 2019

The Thanksgiving tradition has been to have the meal where my in-laws live. In the thirty years of marriage, I have eaten Thanksgiving in Levelland, Odessa and Georgetown, Texas. We had Thanksgiving once in Overland Park, Kansas. We missed Thanksgiving when they lived in Minnesota. This year the family is descending on the in-laws who live in Gibsland, Louisiana now.

In previous years, I did not pay attention.

My job was to drive the family to the meal and back. I was in charge of nothing. As the designated preacher, I offered grace before the meal most years. I knew where my place at the table was and waited until the appropriate moment to fill my plate and eat the feast.

Not so this year. I am paying attention. I have noted the guest list. There are only eighteen people attending this event. That is down a considerable number from previous years. It seems that hotel accommodations pose a challenge in north Louisiana. Some of the family, now has family of their own and their family trumps the in-law family. There is the usual sickness, pregnancy, and pouting that goes on with big family gatherings. I don’t know where those eighteen people are going to eat in our small camp house.

Speaking of eating, I have never paid attention to the menu. The food is always fantastic. I have never noticed that the menu is set in stone and “thou shalt not request any deviation from the Palmer family Thanksgiving menu.” This is the very reason we have meetings of the committee that married into this family. All of us interlopers talk about the main family and their obsessive ways. I asked if we could have “peas” this year and was informed that we always have green beans. I have also been informed that we shall have three pumpkin pies, three pecan pies, and two cream cheese pies. It is the law of the Palmer Thanksgiving meal.

You can’t change the menu. An in-law is not allowed even to comment on the menu or tell what they liked in their family Thanksgiving tradition.

I am adding mini-meat pies from Natchitoches to the Wednesday pre-feast feast. I am being a good husband and shopping for the ingredients for the proscribed Thanksgiving meal. I even have the privilege of selecting and purchasing one of the turkeys.

I am thankful that this year I won’t have to drive six hours to Thanksgiving. They are all coming this way. I am thankful for my bride’s large loud family. I am thankful for a menu that has not changed in their family since John Smith was a little pilgrim.

I am thankful that I had to move a mini refrigerator out of storage into the house so that there would be adequate beverages for the family. I am thankful that I discovered an early Christmas present coming my way. It seems we have so many family members coming that my bride is installing a television on the patio under the father in law pergola.

I am thankful that I live in this great community in this great nation. I am most humbly grateful for my faith in Christ. I am thankful for all the Christians in my family tree and for my mom who drug me to church when I didn’t want to go. I am thankful for my wife, my kids, my dogs and for FUMC, Natchitoches!

I hope you have a list of the blessings in your life. They are unique to each of us. As I reflect on my list, I have discovered that it is hard to be mad when you are glad. Discovering the many ways that you are blessed is one way to make your soul glad!

Have a happy Thanksgiving.

Weyerhaeuser Grant Supports Local Food Pantry

Weyerhaeuser’s Giving Fund Grant Award was recently given to the Cane River Food Pantry.

Weyerhaeuser supports communities where they have a significant presence or business interest. They concentrate the majority of their giving fund in affordable housing and shelter, education and youth development, environmental stewardship, and human services, civic, and cultural growth.

The Cane River Food Pantry applied for the grant to be able to purchase a refrigerator so they could grow their outreach to the community. Being able to add a refrigerator to the food pantry gives the pantry a chance to receive eggs, cheese, and other items from the USDA for free and those items will be a great addition to the pantry’s distribution to our community.

The Cane River Food Pantry would like to thank Weyerhaeuser for the grant, the community for support financial and through volunteer hours, and Lynda Hammett for writing the grant.

If you are in need of assistance please contact the food pantry at 318-357-8296 or come by the offices at 220 Amulet on Tuesdays from 10-12. If you or a group your in are interested in volunteering or supporting the food pantry please contact us.

Pictured is Donna Greene, Director of the Cane River Food Pantry.

CITY OF NATCHITOCHES: Assistant Recreation Director

POSITION: Assistant Recreation Director – Recreation Department

DESCRIPTION: Assists the Recreation Director in performing a variety of complex professional and administrative work in planning, developing, scheduling, directing and implementing a year round, city wide recreation program.

QUALIFICATIONS: Bachelor of Science degree from an accredited university in Recreation or Parks Administration or other related field and at least 6 months related experience.

CONTACT: City of Natchitoches, Human Resources Department, located at 1400 Sabine St. 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 may be downloaded at http://www.natchitochesla.gov

DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION:

Applications will be accepted through December 9, 2019

The City of Natchitoches is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer.