Junior High Prom

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Prom is a special occasion. But it isn’t just reserved for high school Seniors!

Students attending Red River Junior High School held their prom on April 14th at the Red River Junior High Gymnasium. The gym was beautifully decorated for the occasion.

There was Royalty in attendance. Members of the Royal Court were:
6th Grade: Prince – Nehemiah Harris Princess – Kamiera McDonald
7th Grade: Prince – Darius Solton Princess – Jaedynn French-Solton
8th Grade: King – Jamilleun Wilson Queen – Talasia Smith
Overall Best Dressed Male – Ronderion Thomas
Overall Best Dressed Female – Jaedynn French-Solton
Best Dressed Couple – Zintayvious Smith & Jaedynn French-Solton


You May Get Less News With Social Media Changes

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If you follow The Journal on Facebook, have you noticed that our articles are coming farther apart? Have you noticed that some don’t show up in your feed for a few days? Facebook has made changes recently in how they show you posts from people you are friends with or folks you follow.

The Journal feeds all stories in each issue together every Wednesday and Friday morning. Many readers take advantage of this free subscription. They also are assured of getting the news on a timely basis.

Other readers tell us they prefer getting their articles from social media. And that is great with us. They enjoy sharing them with friends and acquaintances. The purpose of this post is to alert social media readers that changes recently put into place by Facebook may be limiting the news you receive and the timeliness of receiving those articles.

So if you wish to receive The Journal by email each Wednesday and Friday morning, free subscriptions are available. And there is no charge. Just go to our website, www.RedRiverParishJournal.com, and click on the “Subscribe” button on the menu bar. You can share articles from the email as you have been from your social media page. You can be reassured we do not merchandise the email list to people wishing to sell you stuff.

Awards Program is May 15th

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Darlene Martin is a Career Teacher at Red River High. Seniors are making plans for their last days in the classroom and for Graduation. She notified The Journal that a special awards ceremony will be held prior to graduation.

Martin said, “Red River High School will host a Senior Awards Program on May 15, 2018 at 5:30 p.m. in the school auditorium. This program will honor our seniors and their accomplishments while at RRHS. All awards and scholarships will be presented to students during this program rather than during the graduation ceremony.“

Graduation is scheduled for May 22nd at 6 p.m. at the Pat Strother Memorial Stadium (weather permitting).

Get Tested!

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Recently The Journal reported on the program offering Red River High School students information on Sexually Transmitted Infections. That presentation told students that northwest Louisiana, including Red River Parish, have very high rates of STIs.

The Nursing Supervisor of the Red River Health Unit, Yashica Turner passed along that free testing for Sexually Transmitted Diseases and STIs if available at the Caddo Parish Health Unit. Those extended hours testing sessions are Thursday April 26th from noon until 7:00 pm and Saturday April 28th from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm.

Turner says the Red River Health Unit also offers these tests every day during their regular operating hours. Turner added that there would be a charge for tests at the local health unit.

CASA celebrates success stories and the advocates behind them

CASA of Central Louisiana held its annual Awareness Social April 19. It was a powerful program filled with a celebration of success stories and a silent auction to raise funds for the CASA program, which serves Natchitoches, Red River and Sabine Parishes.

The speakers were two former foster youth miracles:

Jarvis Spearman is a 23-year-old social work major and graduating senior at Grambling State University. He was raised in the foster care system along with his siblings. He works with the Methodist Children’s Home in Ruston as an alumni staff and life skills specialist. He’s worked in the Chafee Independent Living Skills Program for the past 4.5 years. He also serves as president for the Louisiana Youth Leadership Advisory Council (LYLAC).

“I never had a stable life and I came into the foster care system at 6 years old,” said Spearman. “I never had the love and support I needed so I had to find it for myself.”

Htet Htet Rodgers is a rising senior at Northwestern State University. She entered the foster care system at 13 years old, where she found her forever family. She believes all youth should receive the love and support her forever family gave to her and wants to be an advocate for those who don’t. She is a member of the National Foster Youth Institute’s eadership Corps and a federal reviewer for the Children’s Bureau.

“The foster care system was a haven I didn’t know I needed,” said Rodgers. “I got a forever family, but many other kids didn’t.”

Now Miss CENLA, Rodgers has decided that her platform will be foster support when she competes in the Miss Louisiana pageant this summer.

Natchitoches Parish District Attorney Billy Joe Harrington spoke about the benefits children like Spearman and Rodgers receive by having CASA advocates that give them a voice.

“I love to see these success stories,” he said. “Our system couldn’t make it without all the CASA advocates.”

Become a CASA Advocate and help CASA of Central Louisiana ensure that every foster child has a caring competent volunteer in all judicial proceedings. If you are at least 21 years of age, respect the inherent rights of children to grow up with dignity in a safe environment, and would like to advocate for a child’s best interests in court, become a CASA Advocate today! For more information call (318) 238-2446.


Superior Livestock Cattle Auction Happening – today!


LIVE from the Natchitoches Event Center

57,000 cattle are expected to be auctioned today at the Superior Livestock Gulf Coast Classic Cattle Auction taking place today at the Natchitoches Events Center. More than 300 cattlemen from across the country are attending the live video auction which will feature calves on cows, feeder cattle, weaned cattle, and bred stock cattle. All cattle will remain on the farm until delivery. The auction will continue until approximately 5:00 p.m.

Organizer Emily Smith stated that “the auction is usually held in larger cities like Fort Worth. Bringing this many people from states like Montana, South Dakota, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana is great for the area.”

The cattle auction is being broadcast live online at SuperiorLivestock.com.

For more information, please contact Emily Smith at (318) 471-2771.

Health Fair is Thursday

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The annual Community health fair is coming next Thursday. The Red River Council on Aging urges everyone to come by and get your blood pressure checked. The information is free. There will be a small charge for blood work.

Vendors include home health, Christus Coushatta Health Care Center, rehab centers, LaChip, Acadian On Call, hospice, medical technology, among others. The MLK Health Center’s dietitian will be offering obesity counseling and they will be performing B.M.I. tests.

Christus Coushatta Health Care Center will offer blood tests including a Lipid Profile including cholesterol and the Comprehensive Profile that includes sodium, potassium, protein and other components of your blood. There is a modest charge for the blood work.

Get information on staying healthy Thursday April 26th at the Community Health Fair. The location is the Council on Aging 1824 Front Street. Hours are 8:30 am until noon.

Property Owners Ask For Help With Roads

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Tommy and Carolyn Ashworth came before the Red River Parish Police Jury this month to ask for help with Owens Road, which runs by their property. They live north of Hall Summit.

Several of the problems with Owens Road outlined by Tommy Ashworth include culverts that were not put in, the material used in road repair, ditches that have not been cleaned out, and a large hole that holds water all of the time. Ashworth said the situation is made worse by traffic from natural gas exploration in the area.

Ashworth said, “I hate to see the police jury put SP 2 or something onto the roads that will just be washed away. That is a waste of the taxpayer’s money.” And Ashworth added, “I think the gas exploration companies should share the cost of damage repair.”

Then Ashworth volunteered to help. He asked, “What is your policy on individuals doing work to clean out a ditch or do other work? Do I need a permit? Do I need to get permission ahead of time.”

Jury President Shawn Beard promised workers would be out to assess the situation. Beard said, “Everything you mentioned is being addressed as we speak. I can’t think of anything that is not being worked on right now.” Beard added, “We are looking at the best way to solve it, the most economical way to fix the road.

That lead into a discussion of the ordinance the police jury is drawing up to require companies who damage roads to fix them. Beard gave members of the jury the draft of ordinances under consideration. “Take these ordinances home and read over to make sure we have everything in here we want,” Beard told jurors, adding “I think this is a pretty good solution to everything we have been talking about.”

The police jury will consider adoption of the ordinances at the May meeting. The jury will meet May 7th at 6:00 pm. The meeting is held on the third floor of the courthouse and is open to the public.

Crusade Starts April 29th

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It’s time for the second annual Red River Crusade organized by the Red River Baptist Association. There will be a special kick-off service on Sunday and nightly meetings Monday through Saturday.

The kick off will be Sunday April 29th at 6:00 pm. It will be held at First Baptist Church in Coushatta.

The rest of the week will take place at the Fairgrounds. Each evening there will be a free hamburger supper at 6:00 pm. Revival services begin at 6:30. The Evangelist is Sam Moore. Music is by WeRCalled. And there will be a special youth night on Wednesday May 2nd.

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