Red River Softball Makes History

For the first time in school history, the Red River Softball team will host a payoff game.  It will be Monday afternoon.

Plaquemines seeded #18 will be in town to play #15 Red River at the new softball field.  Gates open at 3:30.  First pitch at 4:30.  Come support the Bulldogs Softball team in the playoffs.


William “Buddy” Crow

A visitation celebrating the life of Buddy Crow, 68, will be held between the hours of 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM, Sunday, April 18, 2021 at Kilpatrick’s Rose-Neath Funeral Home.

Buddy was born on May 28, 1952 in Orange, TX to Burton Langdon Crow, Jr. and Dorothy Ellen Weems Crow and passed April 14, 2021 at his residence in Hall Summit, LA. He was the business owner of Twin City Iron Works. He loved his work and did many projects all over the area. During his lifetime, he loved to garden and was good at it. He loved to hunt and was an expert tracker.

Buddy was preceded in death by his parents and son, Blake Crow.  Left to cherish his memory are his sisters, Barbara Ann Crow and Linda Crow Feazell; brother, Robert Edward Crow; fiancé, Bridget McMellon; step-daughter, Taylor McMellon; and step-grandson, Owen Tate Rivers. He was also the “pawdaddy” to fur babies, Bella, 13 and Flip, 9.


Ice Bucket Delivered

Buckets of ice water were delivered Thursday at Red River High.  Recipients were the commander of JROTC and a representative of Lifeshare.

The goal of blood donations was exceeded at the recent blood drive at the high school.  Lifeshare’s Philip Maxfield told the crowd on Thursday, We had a goal of collecting 25 units of blood.  The final total was 30 units donated.  So today we get wet!”

Col Mark Duffield said, “You notice that the principal JC Dickey is not here.  He had said he would take the cold ice bath if the drive broke the school record.  That is 33 units, so we came up 4 units short of having Mr. Dickey here.”

The Ice Challenge had been issued prior to the blood drive.  Maxfield coordinates blood drives in Red River and surrounding parishes.  The supply of blood for hospitals is very low at present, therefore the drives are set up to help meet the need for whole blood and blood products.

Students who had donated during the blood drive had the honor of dousing Col. Mark Duffield and Philip Maxfield.  It was done during the lunch break so many students and some faculty members were on hand to witness the event.


Fire Board Adjusts Insurance Coverage

The Fire Department  Board has voted to keep most insurance coverage in place, however several adjustments were made to the police that will return about $5,000 in premiums.  The board had voted at the beginning of the year to renew all insurance coverage.  This was due to a short time frame for renewal to keep coverage in effect.

The agent from VFIS, Special Risk Insurance was at the meeting to explain in detail the coverage now in effect and discuss possible adjustments to save Premium money.  At the March board meeting it was discussed insurance coverage they were still paying for on property that had been sold or items that were no longer in service.

At the April meeting last Monday, Agent Keith Davidson discussed coverages and adjustments.  He said, “You will get money back form the deletion of buildings not owned and not used anymore.”  The total amount, after adjustments in coverage is made, would be about $5,000.

Highlights of the changes include dropping insurance coverage on the old fire station property in downtown Coushatta.  That was sold to the Sheriff’s Department several years ago but had remained on the Fire Department’s insurance policy.  Another change involved increasing the value of fire vehicles.  Davidson told the board that the value needed to be increased to the replacement cost, if damaged or destroyed.

The radio repeater station has been moved from property the fire department leased to the new fire station, however the insurance coverage was on the old location.  Davidson recommended those changes.  Liability insurance will be continued on the old tower site.  That is a requirement of the site lease.

A change the board made on the insurance policies was an increase in the deductible amount from $500 to $2500 in the event of a claim.  That was projected to save the department about $3,400 per year.  The board voted to keep the updated insurance in force for the Fire Department.


Multiple Graduation Ceremonies at NSU Next Month

Northwestern State University will hold six Spring 2021 commencement ceremonies Wednesday, May 5 through Friday, May 7 in Prather Coliseum.  Masks will be required, and social distancing and other health and safety protocols will be in effect while honoring Spring 2021 graduates.

Users can click this link nsula.edu/graduation/ to access more details,  information and Frequently Asked Questions regarding the Spring 2021 commencement format, which is being guided by COVID health and safety protocols.

“We are pleased to be able to celebrate our Spring 2021 graduates with a series of carefully-planned ceremonies,” said NSU President Dr. Chris Maggio.  “Our Fall 2020 commencement was a success and we feel it’s very important to celebrate these students who persevered to complete their degrees despite many unexpected obstacles. We appreciate everyone’s understanding and cooperation in honoring graduates while keeping health and safety in mind.”

Each graduate will be issued four guest wristbands that must be picked up in advance by the graduate with ID.  Children and others without wristbands will not be admitted due to capacity regulations in Prather Coliseum.  Guests must enter the coliseum together and be seated together to maintain social distancing protocols.  Masks will be required for everyone inside the coliseum, which will be cleaned after each ceremony. 

Guests of graduates with last names beginning with A-L should enter and exit the coliseum on the east side of the coliseum, which faces the NSU tennis courts.  Guests of graduates with last names beginning with M-Z should enter and exit on the west side of Prather Coliseum, which faces Caspari Street and the Kappa Sigma house.

Graduates should enter the main doors of the coliseum, which face Chaplin’s Lake, where they will check in and be escorted to their seats.  There will be no graduate procession.

Beginning at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 5, bachelor and associate degrees from the College of Nursing and School of Allied Health will be awarded.  At 2 p.m. May 5, graduate degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences, graduate and doctoral degrees from the College of Nursing and School of Allied Health and graduate and doctoral degrees from the Gallaspy College of Education and Human Development will be awarded.

Beginning at 10 a.m. Thursday, May 6, bachelor’s degrees from the College of Business and Technology will be awarded. At 2 p.m. May 6, bachelor’s degrees from the Gallaspy College of Education and Human Development will be awarded.

Beginning at 10 a.m. Friday, May 7, Bachelor of General Studies and associate degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences and bachelor’s degrees from the Louisiana Scholars’ College will be awarded. At 2 p.m. bachelor’s degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences will be awarded. 

Times and specific degrees are also listed here nsula.edu/commencement/graduationfaq/ under “When Is My Graduation?”

Graduates should have received an email through their student email account regarding armbands and pickup information and should select where they wish to pick up armbands. Each graduate will receive four armbands for guests that can be picked up at the location they selected during business hours (8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 8 am.-noon Friday) starting Monday, April 26.  Pick up location for College of Nursing students is the Student Services Office, Room 102, Shreveport.  Cenla students can pick up wristbands at NSU Administrative Offices, Suite 158 in Alexandria.  Leesville students can pick up wristbands in the Main Building Room 108. Natchitoches students can pick up wristbands in the lobby of the Student Services Center.

On Monday, May 3 and Tuesday, May 4, guest wristbands for graduation can be picked up by the graduate at the Student Services Center on the Natchitoches campus from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. On Wednesday, May 5, Thursday, May 6 and Friday, May 7, guest wristbands can be picked up at the Turpin Stadium Will-call booth from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. The ticket booth is located on the west side/southwest corner of Turpin Stadium. 

All ceremonies will be livestreamed at nsula.edu and will be recorded.


School Employee of the Month

The employee of the month for Red River Schools works at the central office.  Her nomination was submitted by Superintendent Alison Hughes.  The honor was presented this week at the monthly School Board meeting.

In the nomination statement, Superintendent Hughes said, “I am nominating a person who is a delightful candidate for Employee of the month.  She is involved in everything.  She is always quick to say “yes” to a request, does not mind hard work, and always smiles in the process.”

The April Employee of the Month is Kim Hogan, a bookkeeper for the school system.  Hughes noted that Hogan works everywhere in the schools, at ballgames, setting up chairs for graduation, etc.  “Her efforts and her enthusiasm are contagious and are noticed by everyone in our school system,” Hughes added.


Update on New School Central Office

The School Board Tuesday morning received an update on the construction of a new central office.  A representative of the architectural firm, Sherwood Bailey told the board their working schedule has the new building ready for occupancy around the first of next year.

Here is the schedule he laid out:

Advertising for Bids approximately May 11.

Bid opening June 8-11.

Special Board Meeting called to award the contract to a successful bidder.

Construction underway in Mid-June.

The contractor will have 199 calendar working days to complete the building.  Partial occupancy would come within 4 weeks of the end of the 199 day period.

The next scheduled meeting of the School Board will be May 10th at 4:30 pm.


Farm And Family Day Planned

The next Farm & Family Day at Clara Springs will be May 8th.  It will be held the day before Mother’s Day, therefore they are promoting the event as “Bring Your Mom Shopping.”

Clara Springs is seeking vendors.  They are looking for food, crafts, homemade goods, etc. to have a variety of options for people to shop from.

There will be food and craft vendors on site.  The camp said there will be a Rockin’ I Auction under the pavilion.

Hours are 9:00 am until 2:00 pm on Saturday May 8th.  Clara Springs Baptist Camp is located at 4420 Highway 177 near Pelican.  If you would like to know more information, please contact Mandi at 318-796-3875 or email mandi@clarasprings.com
This is the link to register: clarasprings.wufoo.com/forms/q1te8k040oq2nob/


Angler’s Perspective – Choices and Decisions

By Steve Graf

It does not matter what life throws at you, there’s always choices or decisions to be made. Some are easy and straightforward, and some are an educated guess while others are a calculated risk. Just like in the movie “Spiderman” we have a choice, but our choices or decisions have consequences. Some decisions we make are for selfish reasons but then some might be for the good of helping others. As an angler every day on the water is full of choices and decisions that lead us either to victory or just an average finish.

Today I’m going to walk you through what an angler goes through before and during a bass tournament. An angler’s choices or decisions are based on things like; time of year, the lake he’s on, watercolor, water temperature to moon phase. All these things can dictate bait selection. He bases his choices and makes his decisions off his pre-fishing time. Let’s start with maybe the most important element; what time of year is it?. For this article, let’s go with April. Here in the south, most of our waterways or lakes are warming up fast. Warm nights and warmer days really bring the water temps up into the lower to mid 60’s. In April we still have bass that have not spawned (laid eggs) yet. But if you look ahead for the next full moon, you’ll know when there will be another group of female bass ready to pull up shallow for the spawn. The general rule of thumb is that three days before and after the full moon is when fish are the most active but not all fish spawn at the same time.

Mother Nature is smart on how she replenishes our lakes and waterways. From February even into the month of May, there will be bass spawning during each of those months and it usually coincides with the full moon. Knowing this information allows you make an informed decision to either go shallow for spawning fish or find the first deep drop off leading into the shallow water where bass might be staging before pulling up for the spawn. Hence, we call these “staging fish”.  Some anglers like myself are very comfortable in shallow water while others like to find fish in the deeper water near the drop off. If your decision is to go shallow, now let’s decide what baits to throw. My first choice is to pitch, flip or drag a lizard. Then I’ll pick up a spinnerbait or maybe a shallow running crankbait. Creature’s baits like the V&M Baby Swamp Hog or a beaver style bait are also great choices. But don’t forget to have a frog tied on as well. Nothing draws a bigger more aggressive strike than a frog sitting over a bass on bed.

If you decide to go for the bass in pre-spawn or staging mode in deeper water, you can tie on a Texas rigged worm, a Carolina rig worm or a deep diving crankbait. A slow rolled spinnerbait or a swim bait is also a great choice. The pre-spawn fish might be a little easier to catch for two reasons, they might not have had the fishing pressure and are not as skittish as the bass that have moved up to spawn. A bass on a bed can be a difficult fish to catch and you can waste a lot of precious time on tournament day trying to trigger a bed fish into biting.

People have asked me how much luck comes into play in fishing? The luck part is when you hook a fish and just as you flip the fish in the boat, the hook falls out while the fish lands in the boat rather than in the lake. That’s luck! Good anglers seem to have instincts rather than luck and it seems like they always make the right choices and decisions. This is why pre-fishing can be so useful and help an angler on tournament day to make the right choices. Maybe he caught a lot of two-pound fish in an area, but the luck part is that when he got there on tournament day, three and four pounders had moved in. But his decision to start an event in that particular area is calculated based on the results of what he caught while pre-fishing.

While watching Major League Fishing a short time ago, MLF Pro John Cox made a tournament clinching decision by stopping in a small pocket 10 minutes before weigh-in. The result was John catching a four-pound bass, sealing the win for him on Smith Lake. Now this does not always happen but it’s a great example of an angler making the right decision on tournament day.

So, whether you’re a tournament angler or a weekend warrior, the decisions or choices you make on the water, can be the difference in having a successful tournament or one that you would rather forget. Till next time, stay strong, keep the faith in your abilities and the choices you make. Good luck and don’t forget to set the hook!