MVPs at Elementary School

From Red River Elementary Principal Shenell Deville.

Every month, we are recognizing staff members as our “Most Valuable Players” MVP. These faculty members are recognized for their attendance, positive spirit, team effort, and their motivation to do above and beyond.

For the month of March our MVP Staff are support staff members who serve in various capacities to assist staff and make sure our students are attended to. They demonstrate loyalty and when asked for their assistance, they are willing and ready. Our MVP staff are Paige Adams, Pre-K Paraprofessional, Carmen Murphy, Pre-K Special Education Paraprofessional, Betty Calhoun, Behavior Intervention Paraprofessional, and Cardarius Smith, Cafeteria Worker.

RRES Staff Recognition Committee awarded the staff with a treat bag with their favorite snacks, a duty free lunch, a certificate, and picture on the MVP spotlight bulletin board. In addition, our wonderful PAW Parents will present them with sweet treats from a local baker.

Men’s Conference April 6th at Cowboy Church

A full day of fun activities, great food and inspired teaching and preaching is all included in the fifth annual Men’s Conference. The date is April 6th at Cowboy Church at Lake End. And it’s all free.

The flyer for the event says come early and register starting at 8:00 am. Wear your favorite camo or old overalls, so you know it will be a casual event and a good time.

Teaching will be by Bro. Wayne Frazier of Elkhart, Texas. Guest speaker will be Chris Birdwell.

Among activities listed are a turkey shoot, skeet shoot, bait casting, washer pitching and more. And you won’t leave hungry. There will be a fish fry plus smoked chicken and all the trimmings.

Cowboy Church’s 5th annual Men’s Conference will be held April 6th. Cowboy Church is located at the intersection of LA Highway 1 and LA 174 at Lake End. Numbers to call for more information are 318-510-3523 or 318-652-0492.

Tobacco Factory Tour

By Sheila Peter

Recently during Winter Break RRHS’s Student Council traveled to New Iberia to tour the Tabasco Factory. The factory still stands on the original site of Tabasco’s invention in 1868 by Edmund McIlhenny. The company is still owned and operated by his descendants.

The recipe for the amazing sauce hasn’t changed in all those years. The peppers are picked and ground up into a mash the day of harvest and mixed with salt then placed in white oak barrels for up to 3 years. Afterward, the mash is strained then mixed with distilled vinegar for about a month before bottling for shipments worldwide.

On the day of the RRHS students visit, the factory had bottled 188,000 bottles of Tabasco by noon! Pictured: kneeling: Sponsor: Mrs. Sheila Peter, seated L to R: Jaydah Williams, Teanna Eason, Precious Drake, Celena Hardy, Standing L to R: Nya Grant, Isiash Demease, Erica Cason, Hannah Pickett, Ashley Evans, Aaliyah Bradley, Kelcee Bamburg, Savannah Campbell and Cerena Hardy.

Local Students Going to State Literary Rally

From Sheila Peter

Three students from Red River High School will travel to Baton Rouge to compete at the state level in the high school literary rally. The Rally is Saturday, April 6th. Pictured are L to R: Ashley Evans, Sagar Patel and Shaniya Beavers. Evans received a gold medal for Business English, Patel will compete in Health and Beavers in Accounting.

RRHS literary rally coordinator, Sheila Peter, stated that Red River had stiff competition as they were pitted against Loyola College Prep, Avoyelles Charter, North Caddo Magnet, Evangel Christian Academy, Winnfield Senior, Rapides, Many, Lakeview and Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts.

200th Win for Coach Martin

Congratulations to Earl Martin. The Red River Baseball coach racked up his 200th career win a few days ago. The Bulldog Baseball team defeated Negreet 13 to 2 giving Martin the win.

Bulldog Baseball is playing an all-away schedule in 2019. Martin said this was due to construction of the new, expanded sports complex at the high school. The old baseball field was the first area to be torn down. There will be a parking lot where the old field was located. New baseball and softball fields are being constructed on land acquired by the school board immediately east of the football field. They are expected to be ready for the 2020 season.

Coach Martin earlier announced that this would be his last year. He plans to retire at the conclusion of this school year. In his career at Red River, Martin has been an assistant football coach, the head soccer coach, and a member of the faculty in addition to his duties with the Baseball team.

The Journal thanks Kim Hogan for the photo and help with this article.

Two Red River Students Inducted Into Honor Society

Kaylee Antilley and Carmie Williams are among 233 newly inducted members of the Northwestern State University Chapter of Alpha Lambda Delta. The annual induction ceremony was held on Sunday in the A.A. Fredericks Auditorium. Alpha Lambda Delta recognizes the best and brightest members of the nation’s first-year college students. Students in Alpha Lambda Delta must have a grade point average of at least 3.5 after their first semester of full-time enrollment at Northwestern State.

Alpha Lambda Delta first-year honor society was founded in 1924 at the University of Illinois and has over 280 chapters in the United States. The local chapter of Alpha Lambda Delta was established at Northwestern State University on March 10, 1965. The mission of the Society is to encourage superior academic achievement; to promote intelligent living and a high standard of learning and to assist students in recognizing and developing meaningful goals in society.

Officers for 2019-20 are Katelyn Kennedy, president; Jonathan Magnano, vice president;

Mikala Clark, secretary; Aubree Lampert, treasurer; David Thibodaux, scholarship chair; Christina Gilbert, historian/webmaster; Sheridan Duet, service chair; and Peyton Harville, faculty liaison.

ETC… for Wednesday, March 27th

Cheerleading Tryouts are scheduled next week for Red River High School. A flyer posted at the school said, “Get ready to cheer!!! Looking for Girls & Guys.” Tryout clinics are April 1st through 4th with the tryouts Friday April 5th beginning at 5:00 pm. The non-refundable tryout fee is $10.00. For more information, call Alice Everett at 932-3313 during school hours or email

“It’s time to move on,” said Louisiana U.S. Sen. John Kennedy. He made the comments after reading the summary of the Mueller Report that was sent to congress by Attorney General Barr. Kennedy said, “Here’s the bottom line: After 22 months and 2800 subpoenas, Mr. Mueller and his team of 19 lawyers and 40 FBI Agents found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians and declined to prosecute anyone for obstruction of justice.”

Get your taxes done for free at the Red River Council on Aging. Contact Mary Braswell at 932-5721 for information on an appointment. Braswell does tax work on Tuesdays and Thursdays during tax season.

Here are a couple of dates to add to your calendar:

April 23rd – A Community Blood Drive at Red River Council on Aging.

April 25th – the Community Health Fair at Red River Council on Aging.

Although these events are to be held at the COA building on Front street, they are open to everyone in the community.

Combat Flag Presented to High School

Jonathan Marston grew up in Red River Parish. He is a graduate of Hall Summit High School and a former commander of the National Guard unit at the Coushatta armory. Marston returned home last Friday night with a flag flown in combat to present to the high school.

Marston was a guest at the Military Ball last Friday night. Currently he is the First Sargent of Charlie Company of the 155th Armored Brigade at Natchez, Mississippi. He brought with him a beautifully cased American Flag and Certificate stating that it had been flown in combat over the classified base where Marston’s unit was stationed on August 4th, 2018.

Marston said his unit had been deployed to Kuwait, Syria and Iraq on a classified mission in the fight against ISIS. “We were being transported from Kuwait to an undisclosed location in Syria aboard an Air Force C-130 when the plane came under fire,” said Marston. His described what happened, “The pilot performed a fast descent combat landing and we hit hard. Our unit engaged the enemy and drove them back about 150 miles to a much smaller area.” He said this is the last stronghold village held by ISIS.

Red River High Principal JC Dickey accepted the flag. “We’ll find a special place in the gym trophy case to display it,” said Dickey, “This is a high traffic area and most of the people in the parish will see it when they come to ball games.”

Train Blocks Hwy 509

Workers headed to International Paper’s Mansfield Mill Thursday had to take a detour. Highway 509 was blocked at LA 1 by a Union Pacific freight train. Here is the notice from the state highway department:

ROAD CLOSURE: LA 509 at intersection of LA 1, Red River Parish

The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development advises motorists that, effective immediately, LA 509 at its intersection with LA 1 in Red River Parish is closed due to a train derailment. The railroad company is on site assessing the situation, working to return the rail cars to the track. Motorists are advised to expect possible traffic congestion on LA 1 as equipment is being moved into the area.

The Journal spoke with Burt Malenado, Union Pacific Safety Manager on the scene Thursday morning. Malenado said that no cars of the train left the tracks but there was a problem with several. He said it is difficult to get to the derailment site. A number of big trucks lined both sides of Highway 1 just north of LA 509. They had been used to transport heavy equipment to the scene.

New Autism Support Group

A new support group for parents and families of children with Autism has formed in this area. A local pastor will speak at their April meeting. And the organizer is trying to get the word out in Red River.

Lela Harvey told the Journal the group is “Voices 4 Autism.” Harvey said, “That’s the name of the autism parent support group. Because we as parents of children that have been diagnosed with autism are their the voices. That is why I named it Voices 4 Autism.”

Bro. Clyde Miley from Red River Cowboy Church is scheduled to be a special guest at the April 6th meeting. Harvey said he will speak on the Therapeutic Riding Program at the church. It is available to anyone with Autism.

Also scheduled to be at the April meeting will be Jay Bamburg, Clinical Director of Behavioral Specialists of Louisiana.

Voices 4 Autism will meet April 6th from 2:00 to 3:30 pm at the Natchitoches Parish Library, 3rd Floor meeting room. For additional information call Lela Harvey at 318-529-0638.