Letters in the key of life 

Yo Brendan! 

Word is you’re headed to church retreat to begin your high school senior year. I’ve been asked to write a letter of encouragement. You’ll get several from friends for you to read this week. Mine is a humble C+ at best, but I’m honored to be asked …  

You were born the day after I coached my final Little League game. For 10-plus years I had that privilege; most fun I’ve ever had. 

The day before you were born, we lost in the semifinals of the state championship, and if I’d have done just a couple things differently — like called time and talked to my pitcher Scarf one batter earlier — I feel certain we’d have been in the finals. And the team that won it all was better than we were but … they might not have been better than us two-out-of-three, not right then. Not on those days.  

So the next day driving up I-49, thinking about nothing other than what I have just told you, coming home after a week in South Louisiana and wishing I could turn back the clock and wishing I’d gotten my lard butt off the bucket and gone to the mound in the top of the ninth — your dad calls. 

Saw his name on the screen and knew what it was about.  

You had arrived on the scene. 

I felt better right then. 

Even though our little team of 14-year-olds didn’t quite get it done, they did as good as they possibly could have. Still, I was sad over the ending. 

And then your beginning made me happy. 

Harmony of the universe and all that. God is like that sometimes.  

I would have loved to have seen you more as you grew up into the wonderful young man you’ve become. 

But I’ve gotten to “watch” you a lot through pictures and mostly through stories from your mom and dad. Every time they mention you, their voices are filled with joy and laughter and gratitude. Every time. It’s been fun to listen. And see. 

Seems all the stories have had happy endings. We’ve been blessed. 

I have a picture posted on my wall of you at age 3-ish sucking down a milkshake at a Shreveport burger joint, your eyes bulging and your cheeks working overtime. I have another picture of you running the bases with a batting helmet on, all business. I remember Brad pushing you into the pool and I remember us playing baseball outside your house.  

Since then, you have learned the joy of live theatre. Learned how to do long division. Figured out how to try and not be scared on a first date. Learned a lot—but you’re just beginning. Keep your mind and heart open for all God is teaching you. 

I am proud of you and love you because your mom and dad are proud of you and love you. There is never anything you could do, good or bad, that would make us love you more or less. We accept you right now as you are and are grateful for you being you. 

Maybe you get the point of all this, which is that I have always been a Brendan cheerleader and that will always be the case. It has made me proud when your parents have called me with a “Little Teddy” update. You were almost named that, but it would have been a disservice to you. You are a Brendan, and a really, really good one. 

A wise man once told me: Be kind. Love God and your neighbor. Don’t be too hard on yourself. That’s it. Enjoy this life you’ve been given. 

Your friend always, 

Uncle TA 

Contact Teddy at teddy@latech.edu 

TappedTober in Natchitoches Oct. 15

It’s Official! TappedTober is back for 2022 presented by the Cane River Waterway Commission! Clear your calendars for Saturday Oct. 15 as we once again rock the Natchitoches Riverfront Stage. This annual event is known for its family-friendly environment, top-notch entertainment, and ever-expanding beer and wine tasting selections, without missing a second of everyone’s favorite fall activity, football, on the gigantic riverfront screen. Headlining this year’s musical lineup is country legend Tracy Lawrence, brought to you by Cunningham Insurance and Ameriprise! Visit our website at www.thetappedtober.com or find us on Facebook @Tappedtober for the latest information.

Proceeds from this event will support the Natchitoches Regional Medical Center Foundation & the NRMC Cancer Center in their efforts to improve access to healthcare in our community!

The ticket link is below.


Thomas Bush was our top picker in Week 4 of the Pick ‘Em Contest – $250

SBJ Pick ‘Em Week 4 Contest Winner – Thomas Bush


Our Week 4 winner of the $250 in the Shreveport-Bossier Journal High School Football Pick ‘Em Contest was Thomas Bush.

There were 12 contestants who hit all 10 games. For the fourth straight week the contest tiebreaker came into play. Bush’s total points prediction was closer to the mark than the other finalists, earning him the $250.

Now there’s another $250 prize on the line. You have until Friday afternoon at 4 to enter this week’s contest. Anyone has the chance to win the $250 prize as the week’s top predictor of local prep football games.

Participation is very simple for anyone able to access this link:


The Pick ‘Em portal opens to a menu of game-by-game matchups, with an easy click to pick winning teams for each contest. Two local games will be used as tiebreakers, with participants predicting the total points scored in those games.

You can finish faster than the time it takes you to read this story start to finish!

Entries are open now to predict local games this week.

Every participant will receive a FREE Journal subscription if you’re not already signed up for the easily-navigated, convenient 6:55 a.m. daily e-mail.

Nutella Browned Butter Blondies

This flavor style is much more my fall vibe.  Give me something with browned butter, and it’s hard for me to not say OH YES.  Swirl that batter with some warm Nutella and you’ve really got something special.


  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup Nutella


Make the brown butter:  In a small heavy bottomed sauce pan over medium heat melt the butter.  Stir continuously.  Cook for 5-10 minutes or until the butter is foamy and turns medium golden brown. (This actually took me longer than 10 minutes, but I kept the heat very low.  When the butter browns it will separate and become foamy).  Keep a close eye on the butter as it will burn easily.  Remove from heat and transfer to a medium bowl and let it cool to room temperature.  

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease 8×8 pan.  When the butter is room temperature mix the butter, sugar, and brown sugar on medium speed until combined.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Whip until light and fluffy.  

Mix in flour and salt just until the flour disappears.  Do not over mix.  Spread mixture into 8×8 pan.  Top with dollops of Nutella and swirl with a butter knife or toothpick.  Bake 25 minutes.  

Cool before slicing.

Ashley Madden Rowton is a wife, mom, and contributor to Webster Parish, Natchitoches Parish, and Shreveport-Bossier journals, as well as a published cookbook author.

Slow-starting Saints can’t overcome mistakes at Carolina


CHARLOTTE, N.C.  – The New Orleans Saints got a head start on next weekend’s game in London, heading out on a flight over the Atlantic following their 22-14 loss Sunday at Carolina.

It was the first time they’ve started early this season.

Carolina blanked New Orleans (1-2) in the first half and frustrated the Saints throughout. The Jameis Winston-led offense has posted only 10 first-half points in its three games. Their best chance in the first two periods Sunday was a 30-year field goal, blocked by the Panthers.

A bright spot: early in the fourth quarter, New Orleans finally extended its NFL-best streak of consecutive games without being shut out to 324. But the Saints were not able to seriously threaten the Panthers (1-2), who beat New Orleans for only the fourth time in the last 15 tries.

Carolina pushed out to a 13-0 halftime advantage and did not falter. After Will Lutz missed a 48-yard field goal in the third period, New Orleans closed to 13-7 on a 5-yard Mark Ingram TD early in the fourth quarter, cashing in a 10-play, 89-yard drive with 12:31 left.

A half-minute later the Panthers expanded the spread on a 67-yard Laviska Shenault Jr. reception from Baker Mayfield, with two Saints missing tackles to spring Shenault.

A field goal four minutes later padded the spread to 22-7. New Orleans stayed alive with 2:22 remaining when Winston hit Marquez Calloway on a 4-yard toss after completions of 38 and 48 yards on the previous two snaps.

But Carolina chewed up all but the last few seconds and won for the first time in 10 games.

Saints coach Dennis Allen, who turned 50 on Thursday, acknowledged frustration with his team’s performance.

“The turnover (Carolina’s first score, a 44-yard Marques Haynes fumble return) was a big play in the game. Obviously, the two missed field goals were big plays in the game. That is 13 points. We get back into the game and give up the explosive pass, missed tackle and the game was kind of out of hand at that point in time,” said Allen.

“We’re going to have to regroup and we’re going to have to get better,” said the first-year head coach. ”We’re beating ourselves with penalties, and we’re beating ourselves with turnovers.”

Allen declined to criticize Winston or Lutz, saying he had faith in both veterans.

Winston threw for 353 yards on 25 of 41 aim, getting intercepted twice, once on a Hail Mary at the end of the game.

The Saints were flagged seven times for 58 yards and did not force a Panthers’ turnover. New Orleans lost despite outgaining Carolina 426-293.

The Saints absorbed some injuries at the receiver position during the afternoon, and had only two healthy wideouts at the end of the game. That situation will have to be addressed before next Sunday’s contest in London against Minnesota.

File photo by PETER FOREST, Journal Sports

Federal case illuminates the collusion between the feds and Facebook

By Royal Alexander/Opinion

A civil case has been brought in federal court by Attorney General of Louisiana Jeff Landry and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt regarding the relationship between the federal government and Big Tech—here, Facebook.

The question regarding freedom of speech has always been how these enormous social media sites choose to “moderate”—in fact, censor—the content of speech and whether, either by their own doing or as a result of pressure from the federal government, or both, the tech giants are suppressing certain speech which is virtually always conservative speech.

U.S. District Judge, Terry Doughty, of the Western District of Louisiana, recently ruled that full discovery requires the disclosure of additional email and other communication between Dr. Anthony Fauci, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, and several of the public affairs staff at the Department of Health and Human Services.

What led Judge Doughty to require the additional disclosure?

Well, while there are a number of email communications discovered thus far that would otherwise seem benign—if they didn’t involve active coordination between the largest social media company in the world and U.S. government officials—there are several additional emails that are more concerning—and may represent only the tip of the iceberg of improper collusion. These emails involve high-ranking White House officials.

In one example, after Pres. Biden claimed that social media sites and “Covid misinformation” were resulting in “killing people,” a senior staffer at Meta (a Facebook spinoff) sent an email to U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, which stated “it’s not great to be accused of killing people” but Meta was committed to finding “a way to deescalate and work together collaboratively.”

A week later that same Meta official sent another email to Murthy stating that “I wanted to make sure you saw the steps we took just this past week to adjust policies on what we are removing with respect to misinformation.” The email concludes “…you (Surgeon General) have identified 4 specific recommendations for improvement and we want to make sure to keep you informed of our work on each.”

This is all much too cozy.

This incestuous relationship between the federal government and Facebook and Big Tech creates a toxic coordination between government and huge social media sites to suppress critical information millions of people need to know to make good, well-informed personal decisions. That’s irrefutable censorship of free speech.

Facebook’s presence in American society is so widespread and prevalent as to bear all the trappings of a government entity—a public utility. These emails clearly establish that Facebook is functioning as an arm of the government, a “state actor” in legal parlance, and as the functional equivalent of the Thought Police of the State. Therefore, it should be held to the same prohibitions on censorship as the Government.

Facebook pretends that it is a neutral arbiter operating an information exchange platform. In fact, in March of 2020, Mark Zuckerberg stated that “I just believe strongly that Facebook shouldn’t be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online … Private companies probably shouldn’t be, especially these platform companies, shouldn’t be in the position of doing that.”

However, when you fast forward to today, we see that Zuckerberg and Facebook have become captives of the Thought Police at Facebook and do regularly make editorial content decisions in the composition of its news feed through its algorithms, and those decisions are often not objective and fair to all points of view.

I note that while our 1st Amendment prohibits the suppression of speech by local, state, and federal governments, government censorship is not the only kind. Private sector suppression of speech is just as threatening, chilling, and destructive. This is particularly true where Big Tech platforms become news editors and make common cause with the Deep State and the National Democrat Party.

In truth, social media has become our modern-day public forum. It’s also true that the greatest virtue of free thought and free speech is that all kinds of ideas are thrust into the rough and tumble of the marketplace of ideas where the best idea prevails. It is this collision of, this testing of, speech and thought in a free and open exchange that produces the best results—and leads the nation to wise and popular policy results on challenging national issues.

I’m looking forward to seeing what new email or other communications are recovered by turning over more rocks in this lawsuit.

BPPJ: Meeting of September 21, 2022

Bossier Parish has seen its share of good fortune in receiving state and federal money to help fund parish projects, and Parish Administrator Butch Ford told members of the police jury that the parish hopefully will have success in funding requests to the state’s capital outlay program.

“We’ve given the list of our requests for capital outlay funding to our legislators and hopefully we’ll be hearing positive things from those requests,” Ford said. “We have received some money from the state Department of the Treasury, and this year we received $500,000 for the LA Hwy. 3 at I-220 project.”

A pair of parish parks have already received notice of approval for Treasury grants including $75,000 for additional athletic fields at South Bossier Park and $25,000 for a future park at Kingston Rd.

Also received in 2022 was $300,000 for water and sewer service to the new Teal Jones sawmill project.

A $700,000 federal grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Land Water Conservation Fund will be used for improvements and additional facilities at Parish Camp on Lake Bistineau.

Ford said most requests for capital outlay funds are targeting infrastructure needs of the parish that will help facilitate growth and alleviate traffic problems.  Financial assistance from the state is being sought for projects including:

  • Bossier Parish east/west corridor from Benton Rd. to Airline Dr.; cost estimate $8.2 million.
  • Improvements to LA Hwy. 3 (Benton Rd.) would add additional lanes from Brownlee Rd. through the I-220 interchange to Viking Dr.; cost estimate approximately $15 million; police jury received $500,000 for the project in 2022 from capital outlay.
  • Improvements to LA Hwy. 157, LA Hwy. 3227 to U.S. Hwy. 80 in Haughton; cost estimate $16.4 million.
  • Construction of new pavilions at South Bossier Park; cost estimate $192,960.
  • Expansion of the north collection system of Consolidated Waterworks/Sewerage District #1; cost estimate $18.8 million.

“We’ve heard nothing from capital outlay about these projects,” Ford told jury members. “We’re trying to find any pot of money we can before we have to go out and borrow money to get these done.”

Also during Wednesday’s meeting, police jury members:

  • Tabled adoption of the Haughton Metropolitan Planning Commission Zoning Map until Oct. 19.
  • Approved the Minor Plat for Catherine Vanwinterswyk, located in Section 5, Township 18 North, Range 12 West, Bossier Parish; located off Stockwell Road.
  • Tabled a proposed plat and site plan for Robella Office Park subdivision, located in Section 33, Township 19 North, Range 13 West, Bossier Parish; located on the corner of Wemple Road and Old Brownlee Road.
  • Approved the plat of the proposed development of Willow Creek at Benton subdivision, Unit No. 2A, being a resubdivision of Lots 19, 20, and 2000, Willow Creek at Benton subdivision, located in Section 24, Township 20 North, Range 14 West, Bossier Parish; located off Old Plain Dealing Road.
  • Scheduled a public hearing on October 19 to consider approval of the plat of the proposed development of Belmere subdivision, Unit No. 7, located in Section 4, Township 19 North, Range 13 West, Bossier Parish; located off Aaron Lane.
  • Scheduled a public hearing on October 19 to consider approval of the plat of the proposed development of Providence Classical Academy subdivision, being a resubdivision of Tracts 1 and 2, Minor Plat for Bonomo Investment Company, LLC, located in Sections 4 and 5, Township 18 North, Range 13 West, Bossier Parish; located off Old Brownlee Road.
  • Scheduled a public hearing on October 19 to consider approval of the Minor Plat for Caddo-Bossier Parishes Port Commission, located in Sections 27 and 34, Township 22 North, Range 13 West, Plain Dealing; located on the corner of LA Highway 3 and Rocky Mount Road.
  • Scheduled a public hearing on October 19 to consider approval of the site plan for Teal Jones saw mill, located in Sections 27 and 34, Township 22 North, Range 13 West, Plain Dealing; located on the corner of LA Highway 3 and Rocky Mount Road.
  • Accepted reports from meetings of the Policy and Procedures Committee and the Road/Subdivision Regulations Committee; adopted change policy manual for concerning employee sick leave.
  • Adopted a resolution designating the Parish Administrator to act on behalf of the Bossier Parish Police Jury in all matters pertaining to Bossier Parish capital outlay project – improvements to LA Highway 3 (Benton Road) and I-220 interchange, planning and construction, FP&C project No. 50-J08-22-01.
  • Adopted a citizen participation plan/citizen complaint procedure, and approve the appointment of the Parish Administrator as citizen complaint officer in connection with the FY 2023 Louisiana Community Development Block Grant Program.
  • Approved the recommendation of the Bossier Parish Industrial Tax Exemption Program review committee, in the matter of the ITEP application of Sierra Frac Sand, 350 Ballard Road, Plain Dealing.
  • Approved applications for renewal of Bossier Parish beer/liquor licenses for 2023, subject to approval by the health department.
  • Adopted an ordinance, as previously approved on November 17, 2021, authorizing the Parish Administrator or Parish President to execute a cooperative endeavor agreement pursuant to La. R.S. 48:2037 between Tim James, Inc., and the parish of Bossier authorizing Tim James, Inc., to construct, maintain and operate, at its expense, a toll bridge and necessary feeder roadways across privately owned lands.
  • Approved a service and usage agreement between the Bossier Parish Police Jury and the Town of Plain Dealing in connection with Carstarphen Heights subdivision.
  • Approved a service and usage agreement between the Bossier Parish Police Jury and the Town of Plain Dealing in connection with Demoss Hill subdivision.
  • Approved certificate of substantial completion for Project No. 2021-109, Consolidated Waterworks/Sewerage District No. 1 expansion of wastewater collection system – Airline Drive.
  • Approved change order No. 4 for Project No. 2021-109, Consolidated Waterworks/Sewerage District No. 1 expansion of wastewater collection system – Airline Drive.
  • Approved supplement No. 1 to the proposal of Beast Engineering, LLC, for resident engineer inspection services (Disaster Relief), RFP 2020-112, DR 4263 PW 910 Paved Roads, Task Order No. 6.

Goalline stand ignites Demons’ SLC-opening win

SOARING FOR SIX: Javon Antonio hauls in the second of his two touchdowns Saturday against Lamar.

By JASON PUGH, Special to the Journal

NATCHITOCHES – A goalline stand by Northwestern State’s defense unleashed a torrent of big plays for its offense Saturday afternoon in the Demons’ Southland Conference opener against Lamar.

Buoyed by those big plays, NSU built a three-score lead and held off the visiting Cardinals, 35-27, at Turpin Stadium, securing the Demons’ first win in a conference opener since 2018, and their first victory after three lopsided losses this season, all on the road.

“We have a lot to play for,” said senior defensive lineman Isaiah Longino, whose fourth-down tackle for loss sealed the pivotal second-quarter goalline stand. “We understand our problems. We knew we were missing tackles. We weren’t being physical. We had to flip the switch this week.”

Lamar (0-4, 0-1) sprinted to a 10-0 lead in the first quarter, scoring on its opening drive after going 3-for-3 on third downs, including Nick Yockey’s 8-yard touchdown pass to Jalen Dummett to open the scoring.

That was Lamar’s lone touchdown until the fourth quarter, thanks in large part to Longino and the Purple Swarm’s defensive line.

Trailing by 10, the Demons (1-3, 1-0) stood tall after Kristian Pugh returned an interception to the NSU 7 on the penultimate play of the first quarter.

The Purple Swarm bowed its collective back, stopping Lamar three times inside the 1-yard line, including one that was negated by an offside call.

Longino and Ronnie Caldwell combined for the final stop, dropping RJ Carver for a 1-yard loss on the second fourth-and-goal.

“Coach always tells us when we come of the field, ‘Bow up. You’ve got to bow up,’” defensive tackle Maurice Campbell II said. “It’s a sudden change. We’ve got to get the offense the ball back. That’s what we did. They didn’t score.”

From there, the Demon offense ignited, scoring touchdowns on three straight drives before running out the final 58 seconds of the half.

Following the goal-line stand, the Demons followed new starting quarterback Zachary Clement on a nine-play, 98-yard scoring drive that Javon Antonio culminated with a 49-yard, catch-and-run score after Clement scrambled wide right and found Antonio free near the Lamar sideline.

Clement went 28-for-49 for 366 yards and a career-high-tying three touchdown passes. He added 51 rushing yards, including a 35-yard touchdown run that capped NSU’s 21-point run in the second quarter.

Clement was 3-for-3 passing on third down for 83 yards and a touchdown on the drive.

“You saw some big plays on third down not only with his arm but also with his legs,” fifth-year head coach Brad Laird said. “That prompted us to get some rhythm and momentum late in the first half to lead us to victory.”

Clement established a career high in passing yards for the second straight week after throwing for 214 in three quarters of work at Southern Miss on Sept. 17. His 366 yards are the sixth-most in school single-game history and the second-most by a Demon quarterback in a game at Turpin Stadium.

His 49-yard pass to Antonio opened the floodgates for chunk-play touchdowns. Northwestern averaged 46.4 yards on its five scoring plays Saturday.

The shortest of the Demons’ scores was a 13-yard pass from Clement to Antonio over the middle with 6:41 to play in the second quarter, giving NSU a 17-10 lead it never relinquished.

Playing his first home game since April 1, 2021, Antonio caught a season-best nine passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns. It was the fourth 100-yard receiving game of his Demon career, which covers nine games.

“The coaches were telling us, ‘It’s coming. It’s coming. It’s going to get there,’” Antonio said. “I was looking at the O-line, and they were looking at me. I said somebody’s gotta step up and make a play. I was that guy today. Props to the O-line for holding up the line of scrimmage.”

As the Purple Swarm built on its second-quarter stop, the Demon offense went into big-play mode again in the third quarter.

First, Clement found Scooter Adams all alone in the middle of the field for an 80-yard touchdown pass before Kennieth Lacy ended the third quarter with a career-long, 55-yard scoring run.

Buoyed by Lacy’s career-best 83 yards on the ground, the Demons rushed for 179 yards on just 20 carries, averaging nearly 9 yards per tote. Those numbers came despite starting the game with 27 consecutive passing plays.

NSU’s first rush came on third-and-15 from its 32, trailing 10-7. Clement scrambled for 15 yards to keep alive a drive that ended with his second scoring connection with Antonio.

“Seeing them stop those guys, especially after a turnover like that, it really gave us confidence,” Clement said. “We’ve been telling each other all week, ‘We’re going to pick each other up.’ We’re going to pick up the defense when we need to, and they’re going to pick us up.

“I’ve never been part of (27 straight passes to open a game). We threw it a lot today, but it worked for us.”

While the Demons dominated the middle part of the game, Lamar closed to within a score on a 16-yard pass from Michael Chandler to Major Bowden with 1:52 to play.

However, NSU recovered the ensuing onside kick and punter Scotty Roblow pinned Lamar deep after a three-and-out to secure the Demons’ first home-opening victory since a 34-7 blasting of Grambling in 2018.

Contact Jason at pughj@nsula.edu

Photo by CHRIS REICH, Northwestern State

Run the City: Byrd holds off Shreve rally, remains undefeated

STINGING THE GATORS: Byrd quarterback Lake Lambert (12) accounted for two touchdowns (one passing, one rushing) Thursday against Captain Shreve. Lambert piled up 142 rushing yards and 71 passing yards. (Photo by KEVIN PICKENS, Journal Sports)

BY ROY LANG III, Journal Sports

 Stacy Ballew’s team boasts a 4-0 record. His heart? Ballew isn’t sure it’s winning the battle.

“They’re going to give me a heart attack,” Byrd’s head coach said following his team’s 25-20 victory in the battle for Shreveport bragging rights and the District 1-5A opener.

Maybe the 2022 version of the Byrd-Captain Shreve rivalry didn’t have it all, but it was close.

Byrd built a 17-point lead in a dominating first half before Captain Shreve stormed back and thought it took the lead with a long touchdown pass in the fourth quarter. However, it was called back due to one of the night’s 23 accepted penalties. Shreve later missed a field goal before Byrd cemented the victory with an 8-yard touchdown run by Devon Strickland.

“You can be proud of the effort, but not the outcome,” Shreve head coach Adam Kirby said. “We’re young and we have to learn how to overcome some adversity and come out better to start the game. We can’t wait until we get punched in the mouth to answer the bell. We have to learn how to be the aggressor.”

The teams, both undefeated entering Thursday, will try to make you think this is just another game, but this rivalry hits different. The game was interrupted by a streaker who emerged from the visitor’s stands, featured Mayor Adrian Perkins on the sideline and left a couple of Shreve seniors, who won’t get a shot at revenge on Byrd (at least in the regular season), in tears long after the final whistle.

“It’s a crazy week,” Byrd quarterback Lake Lambert said.

Lambert led all players with 142 rushing yards. He also completed 4-of-7 passes for 71 yards and added a rushing touchdown and a 44-yard scoring strike to Jackson Dufrene.

“(Byrd-Shreve) is an awesome atmosphere,” Lambert said. “I’m going to miss it a lot.”

A 49-yard field goal from Abram Murray helped Byrd build the 17-0 halftime advantage.  

Shreve’s offense struggled to solve a quick, physical Yellow Jackets defense in the first half, particularly in the passing game. However, Kenyon Terrell found his groove in the final 24 minutes. He compiled 215 yards through the air and a pair of touchdowns — one to Cam Wilson and one to Marquez Stevenson — as the District 1-5A battle turned into a dog fight.

A go-ahead scoring pass to Keaton Flowers was called back due to an illegal man downfield with 8 minutes left. A missed 37-yard field goal set up Strickland’s clincher.

“We didn’t open it up (in the first half),” Kirby said. “That’s on me. I’m the head coach. We have to find a way to get our best athletes involved.”

Jayden Edwards totaled 136 yards on 16 carries for the Gators. Stevenson hauled in four passes for 80 yards.

The Yellow Jackets may be unblemished, but that doesn’t mean there has been a lack of drama. In the just the past two weeks, Calvary and Captain Shreve had late opportunities to tie or take the lead on Byrd.

A win is a win, though, right?

“Every week is a roller coaster,” Ballew said. “I’m ready for us to play good all the way through the game. My message to our team is: ‘Don’t give me a heart attack.’”

Contact Roy at roylangiii@yahoo.com

Byrd 25, Captain Shreve 20

Score by quarters

Captain Shreve | 0 | 0 | 12 | 8 | – 20
Byrd | 7 | 10 | 0 | 8 | – 25

Scoring summary

B – Lake Lambert 1 run (Abram Murray kick)
B – Murray 49 FG
B – Jackson Dufrene 44 pass from Lambert (Murray kick)
CS – Cam Wilson 15 pass from Kenyon Terrell (kick failed)
CS –Marquez Stevenson 57 pass from Terrell (run failed)
B – Devon Strickland 8 run (Strickland run)
CS – Terrell 15 run (Jayden Edwards run)

Individual statistics

Rushing – CS (37 rushes-208 yards), J. Edwards 16-136, Terrell 15-61, Keaton Flowers 1-10, Jemarlon Otis 5-1. Byrd (44 rushes-334 yards), Lambert 24-142, Malachi Johnson 3-84, D. Strickland 10-67, Dixon Poirier 1-25.

Passing – CS, Terrell 13-31-1, 215 yards, 2 TDs. Byrd, Lambert 4-7-0, 71 yards, 1 TD.

Receiving – CS, Stevenson 4-80, Jordan Wiggins 2-62, Flowers 2-30, Wilson 3-35. Byrd, J. Dufrene 3-63, Tyler Nichols 1-8.

There is a far green field

There is a far green field. And come morning, if you look to the East, you’ll see a halo of orange light hanging just above the horizon where this green gives way to piney woods.

It is the sight of this field that brings me quiet contentment every weekday morning that rolls. So long as the time is right, and the earth is not still wearing its black veil, I am privileged to see the best of my Father’s world.

McGraw said it when he wrote of living where the green grass grows. Babcock said it when he wrote “in the rustling grass I hear Him pass.”

And I write of it when I say I hear His poetry in the wind over the meadow. I feel it as if it were something tangible. I feel it when I roll down my window and slow to as much of a crawl as traffic will allow and I can smell the dirt and nearly feel the touch of dew and the trees moving and their inhabitants going about His business.

And the clouds move over, breaking only to let the sunshine in. There are streams somewhere beyond that horizon, further past, on up ahead of what I can see. The green gives way to make room for more wonders. Rivers and mountains lie far beyond. And then a vast blue sea. And beyond more that is green and more that brings me hope. They all tell me the Earth is good.

And I have turned off the radio and I dare not speak because my voice, the voice of a man, pales in its significance to the mastery and beauty of my Father’s world.

So I move on. Into man’s world. Into the negotiations of the day and the hubris of all of our best-laid plans. That world is an ugly one. It is dark and gray and pitiless. It is tiring, and it makes me sad.

I pass the field again, many hours later, but it no longer holds the same promise. The orange glow has left it abandoned. The green is a duller shade and the sun has begun its retreat on the other side.

We’ve all lived our days, dealt with their difficulties, and are left to ponder the point of it all. The hurry. The rat race. The problems. All of it is man’s creation. All of it is man’s world.

But it’s ok. Because we move on to family. On to smiles. On to Our world. We enjoy that time. And I know I get to see the far green field once more a few hours later, but I realize I’m just as happy looking out at that splendor as I am here surrounded by these walls.

Because not only is that My world but so too is it my Father’s World.

And that’s all right by me.

Josh Beavers is a teacher and a writer. He has been recognized five times for excellence in opinion writing by the Louisiana Press Association.

Bossier Parish Library: Construction is progressing

Construction is progressing and the future home of the new Bossier Parish Library System’s central branch and expanded history center is beginning to take shape.

Cost of the new 39,000 square-foot facility located at the corner of Beckett St. and City Hall Dr. is $10 million, and features will include a film and music studio, a separate teen area, and larger children’s areas. More in-depth displays will also be available to patrons in the expanded history center

Pam Atchison was ‘born’ at Shreveport Regional Arts Council


Sometimes I get really busy – thinking I’m “burning the candle at both ends” – and need to get a little rest. Yeah, right. Then I meet people like Pam Atchison, and realize just how little I’m actually getting accomplished.

Atchison, the executive director of Shreveport Regional Arts Council, has been a tireless advocate for the arts in our community. Many people do not realize how fortunate the Shreveport-Bossier area is to have such a vibrant arts community.

You’ll marvel at how much has been accomplished under the directorship of Atchison — and it sounds like she’s just getting started!

How did you get involved with SRAC?

I like to say that I was “born” at Shreveport Regional Arts Council in 1982 … before that, I was a high school theatre, speech, debate teacher in Duncanville, Texas and Mountain Brook, Alabama. When my husband took a position in Shreveport, I would be required to teach a “core subject” and theatre or speech would have been an elective. I wasn’t certified in other subjects. The executive director for the Shreveport Regional Arts Council was Kip Holloway (who later became executive director for the Red River Revel) – and he “hired” me as a contracted Theatre Artist touring the Caddo Parish Public Schools through Arts in Education. Later, I became the Arts in Education director, and in 1986, I was promoted to executive director.

What are some things you are most proud of that SRAC has accomplished?

Goodness, it’s hard to know where to begin. I think the creation and sustaining of the ArtBreak Student Arts Festival is one of the most important because it is the “portal” for young artists to enter the Arts World and see their work taken seriously. As I just explained, in the early 1980’s there were few full-time teaching positions in the Arts…but those positions were threatened by budget cuts in 1983/84. We created ArtBreak as an advocacy tool to communicate the importance of curriculum-based Arts Instruction. The festival has helped to encourage Caddo and other schools to employ Visual and Performing Arts instructors starting at Elementary School through high school.

Public Art is a major resource for the community – murals – one of the largest in the nation, “Once in a Millennium Moon” on the AT&T building downtown, sculptures, and most recently, the new LED programmable lights on the Bakowski Bridge of Lights on the Texas Street Bridge – with monthly Glo Fests to celebrate the artists who have programmed Light Shows – are signature works that define our region.

The nationally renowned Creative Placemaking initiative to transform the long-neglected western edge of downtown Shreveport into a vibrant 9-block “uncommon” area known as Shreveport Common is a major advancement for SRAC because it enables artists to take centerstage in the revitalization  — working with 36 community partners to accomplish 26 major priorities such as creating Arts Studios at the Andress Arts & Entrepreneur Center, the Caddo Common Park with its new Performance Pavilion opening on Nov. 11 and designed with artists. In order to equip artists to live, work and play in Shreveport Common, SRAC has developed an award-winning Entrepreneurial Training Program.

ARTSPACE is a phenomenal center for the Arts in downtown Shreveport. The fact that we’ve compelled our Academy Award and Emmy Winning director, William Joyce, to serve as the artistic director and bring nationally renowned artists such as Nick Cave, FriendsWithYou, Dennis Wolf Bat, and Chip Kidd, to exhibit at ARTSPACE is remarkable.

There is so much more…

What makes Shreveport such a vibrant arts community?

The artists! Truly, vibrancy comes from the actions of the artists … experiencing their performances at the Strand Theatre, in the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra, Shreveport Opera, Highland Jazz & Blues, the Red River Revel, or Music Prize event … or soon in Caddo Common Park can change your spirit! Meeting an artist at the Downtown Art Walk and learning about their work … going to the Andress Art Center, Agora Borealis, or C&C Mercantile to shop for unique artworks … seeing an exhibition at the Norton Art Museum, the Meadows Museum at Centenary, the East Bank Gallery, ARTSPACE, the Central ARTSTATION, Nader’s or Bailey’s Gallery. Then there’s the plethora of theatre and dance in our community – mostly all local artists directing, choreographing, and acting/performing at Shreveport Little Theatre, Marjorie Lyons Playhouse, LSU-S Blackbox, Emmet Hook Performing Arts Center, and the Riverview Civic Theatre. And, oh my goodness, the number of authors, poets, novelists, and spoken word artists is amazing. Let’s not forget the incredible filmmakers … and opportunities to celebrate them at Film Prize and Robinson Film Center. Clearly, I could go on and on … but our vibrant arts community starts with a talented professional – and high quality avocational – cadre of artists and is sustained by the many arts organizations who commit to support and feature “local” artists.

What changes have you seen in the local arts scene over the past 10 years?

The primary change that I’ve seen is a newfound respect for what artists bring to our community and a clearer understanding of what arts organizations contribute to making the region “live-able.” This includes the Economic Impact of the Arts as reported by the Shreveport-Bossier Convention & Tourist Bureau, the role of the Arts in Development as reported by the Downtown Development Authority and the Shreveport Common, Inc. Board of Directors, the importance of Arts in Education and Arts Education as seen in the burgeoning arts opportunities offered to and through Caddo Parish Schools (and Private, Charter and Home School Associations). There is also the role of Arts in Medicine as seen at Feist-Weiller Cancer Center. As the arts offerings become even more accessible, affordable, or with free admission, there is tremendous participation by diverse audiences … who are loving the immersive engagement – with diverse artists who are creating unforgettable arts experiences.

What’s your dream destination? 

The “completion” of the Uncommon, Unpredictable, Uncensored, Unimagined, Uncanny downtown cultural niche, Shreveport Common. This area is destined to fulfill the “dream” of a place where all people will come to “stumble upon the fun.”

What are the top three things on your bucket list?

Actually, I’m not keen on the idea of a “bucket list” – it implies that once you complete the list, you’re a “goner” – there’s nothing left to do! There is so much to do … we are just getting started! However, I’ll share a few of the next dream priorities that will require “mega” teamwork and reap huge results!

  1. The completion of a state-of-the-art MAKERSPACE for area Artists, Creatives, Tinkerers, and Shreveport Common/HUD CHOICE Neighbors. The MAKERSPACE will open endless possibilities for imagining, designing, creating, and fabricating new works! 
  2. The creation of an annual outdoor – in Caddo Common Park – SHAKESPEAREAN Theatre Festival set in a Renaissance themed performance area that is “home grown” with area artists and incorporating the neighborhood Social Service Organizations in managing and hosting the productions.


  3. The LED Illumination of Texas Street from the Bakowski Bridge of Lights through downtown, to Texas Avenue and Shreveport Common, and across the Common Street Viaduct… creating a major entry to downtown from I-20 at the Common Street/Line Avenue exit!

 Contact Harriet at sbjharriet@gmail.com

Independence Bowl donates $45,986 to local teachers


The Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl – in conjunction with Extra Yard for Teachers and a grant from the Louisiana Department of Revenue – has donated $45,986 to local teachers.

The donations were spread to 46 different teachers across five different Parishes – donating to 20 teachers in Bossier Parish, 16 in Caddo, three in DeSoto, one in Red River and five in Webster – and supported 54 projects.

Each project funded by the Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl was posted on DonorsChoose.org by local educators and voted on by an independent committee. The nearly $46,000 of donations is the first part of just under $56,000 in total funding to local educators and schools by the Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl in 2022.

“Teachers are so important in building future leaders of our community, and there were so many wonderful projects submitted by teachers across five different parishes,” said Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl Executive Director Missy Setters. “We are so fortunate that with the help of Extra Yard for Teachers and a grant from the Louisiana Department of Revenue, we were able to help so many teachers and donate nearly $46,000.”

The Independence Bowl Foundation began working with Extra Yard for Teachers to fund local teacher projects in 2021 and donated a total of $11,243 to local teachers last year. With the $45,986 donated this year, the Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl has donated $57,229 to local teachers the past two years.

“The Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl is more than just a game, and it is so important to give back to the community that has supported us for 46 years running,” continued Setters.

Along with funding, each teacher who receives funding from the bowl will receive two game tickets to the 2022 Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl in December, and the teachers will be recognized at the game.

In addition to the nearly $46,000 donated to local teachers, the Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl will also donate $5,000 each to two schools, one from Caddo Parish and one from Bossier Parish, during bowl week in December.

The schools will be awarded the grant based on submissions from each school about a plan or program to promote teacher retention, recruitment or recognition. Schools will be required to submit their projects or programs by Friday, Oct. 28. All project submissions will be judged by an independent committee, and the winning schools will be recognized during bowl week.

The love languages at 30

The global phenomenon that is the “love languages,” an idea introduced in 1992 by pastor and counselor Gary Chapman in his bestselling book, The 5 Love Languages, has turned 30. 

Back in the turbulent, free love, Jackson 5 vs. Osmond Brothers, psychedelic, protest-filled, the-Baltimore-Orioles-were-really-good, “Were you at Woodstock?” 1960s, the saying from lots of young people was, “Never trust anyone over 30.” 

Seemed a good idea at the time. 

Then those people turned 30 and learned how much it costs to get a roof replaced and a new transmission and they moved on to other causes, like “Never trust a roofer” or “Never trust a mechanic” and other idiotic trivialities, like “Never trust anyone who claims they’ve been to Woodstock.”  

Then a bunch of those teens from the ’60s turned into roofers and mechanics, so what are you gonna do? 

Funny how life experiences change your way of thinking. 

But human nature never changes. It’s why you can read a poem by Blake or Yeats (a fave) or Elizabeth Barrett Browning, “How do I love thee?, let me count the cornbreads…” and it means the same — and feels the same — to the reader today as it did all those years ago. 

So from what I’ve heard and learned from experience is that you can trust some people over 30 — my mother comes to mind — and you can trust the 5 Love Languages, which are “Hot Water Cornbread, Sweet Cornbread, White Cornbread, Yellow Cornbread, and Cornbread-Inclusive.” 

I am just joshing. Those are someone’s love languages, I’m sure. I’ll fair catch at least two of them. 

But the real love languages as proposed by Chapman are these: 

  • quality time 
  • words of affirmation 
  • acts of service 
  • gifts 
  • physical touch (not like football tackling or boxing but intimate stuff like holding hands; I shouldn’t even have to write this but I know how some of you think so work with me here). 

    Those are good languages. 

    The thought of a love language might seem silly to the great unwashed, but if you study the love languages, you might find that Chapman was onto something. We all want to be loved in a significant and specific way. I might not need you to touch me often but I might need you to affirm me. You might not need a gift from me; the gift might instead be quality time with you. 

    I might not need you to love the New Orleans Saints; but I might feel loved, genuinely, if you say, “I’m sorry the Saints didn’t win”. If you bet on them, a nice follow-up might be, “I’m more sorry they didn’t cover.”  

    Some hard liners will say it’s stupid — until they discover that what they craved and needed wasn’t a mansion on the hill and sweet cornbread after all. Instead, it was a person who listened and affirmed them and gifted them with the cornbread of their choice. 

    Contact Teddy at teddy@latech.edu

Red River Revel Arts Festival Returns October 1-9

Celebrating its 46th anniversary this year, the Red River Revel Arts Festival returns Oct. 1 – 9. The Red River Revel Arts Festival is the largest outdoor festival in North Louisiana, attracting tens of thousands of locals and visitors to “Celebrate the Arts” together.

The Red River Revel Arts Festival brings an extensive array of exciting and unique experiences to the Shreveport Riverfront. This multi-award winning festival features more than 75 juried visual artists from across the country, over 80 musical, theatrical, and performing arts entertainment on two stages, over 20 vendors serving delicious food, and an area dedicated to introducing children to the arts. Each day will offer new experiences and memories, so get ready to revel!

Here’s your guide to the 46th Annual Red River Revel Arts Festival.


Artists from across the country make the Revel their home the first week in October. Whether you are an avid art collector or a novice, you can enjoy and celebrate the arts of the Revel. Over 75 juried artists will have one-of-a-kind works of art including painting, jewelry, photography, pottery and more. The wide price range of pieces allows for shopping options to fit any guests’ budget. Stroll down Art Alley to view the varied artworks of established artists, visit the Emerging Artist Tent to see up and coming artists and their work, and support local artisans in the Market Area. Some artists rotate during the week, so guests are encouraged to return to see who is new in these areas. Plan your shopping before heading to the Revel by previewing the artists’ portfolios at redriverdrevel.com/rrr/artists.


The Red River Revel Arts Festival is synonymous with bringing in chart-topping names in music from across the country along with your favorite local and regional acts and this year is no different! With over 80 performances on two stages, music will fill Festival Plaza every day of the Revel! Headliners for the 46th Annual Red River Revel Arts Festival include:

· Everclear. Pop/Rock, 8:30 pm – 10:00 pm on Thursday, October 6

· Neal McCoy. Country, 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm on Sunday, October 2

· Big Freedia. Bounce/Hip-Hop, 8:30 pm – 10:00 pm on Saturday, October 1

· The Motet. Funk/Fusion/Jam, 8:30 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 8

· Mannie Fresh. Hip-Hop. 8:30 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. on Friday, October 7

The music schedule includes local, regional, and national musicians along with cheer/dance group performances, martial arts and gymnastic demonstrations, theatrical performances and more! View the full entertainment schedule at redriverrevel.com/rrr/music-lineup.


Bring your appetite to the Revel! The Red River Revel Arts Festival is a place where one may find unique menu items such as boudin balls, jerk chicken, blackened catfish, bacon caramel donuts, chicken and waffles, funnel cakes and more! Food stations are operated by local nonprofit organizations, booster clubs, schools and other community groups along with for profit vendors. Mouthwatering menus can be found at redriverrevel.com/rrr/food

Kids’ Activities

The Red River Revel Arts Festival is dedicated to providing an opportunity for children to experience first-hand performing and visual arts. Children can channel their inner artist at the sand art station, build art structures at the Bricks4Kidz tent, and show off their creativity at the Junior League of Shreveport-Bossier’s Artist for a Day activity! The fun doesn’t stop there! Children can become an archaeologist in the mock geological dig, use their imagination in Shreve Memorial Library Land, shop for the perfect ingredients at the Brookshire’s Mini Grocery Store, and put their physical health to the test in the Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport obstacle course. And don’t forget about face painting!

Stilt walkers, magicians, and balloon animal artists will be throughout the festival bringing joy to everyone!

Many of the kids’ activities are free with admission, while others may be ticketed or have a nominal fee. Check out all of the kids’ activities at www.redriverrevel.com/rrr/kids-activities.


The Red River Revel Arts Festival officially opens Saturday, Oct. 1 and runs through Sunday, Oct. 9. The festival hours will be 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday – Wednesday; 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Thursday – Saturday; and 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Sundays.

Daily admission is $5 during peak hours and days, which is 5 p.m. to close Monday – Friday and all-day Saturday and Sunday. Admission is free from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday – Friday.

A $10 Reveler Pass allows guests access into the festival any day/time.

Military and First Responders with a valid ID receive one free admission any day/time of the festival.

Children ages 12 and under are free of charge any day/time of the festival. (Children must be accompanied by an adult.)

Location: Festival Plaza, 101 Crockett Street, Shreveport, Louisiana

Parking: Free parking is available after 5 p.m. on weekdays and all day on weekends on metered spots in downtown Shreveport. Free parking is available in designated Revel parking lots. Parking maps can be found at www.redriverrevel.com.

Free Shuttles: A free shuttle will run on Thursday and Friday, Oct. 6-7, from 5 p.m. – 10 p.m., as well as 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. on both Saturdays, Oct. 1 and 8. The free shuttle will be running in a loop around downtown allowing Revelers to park wherever they like in downtown Shreveport and attend the festival, downtown restaurants, and attractions. For shuttle routes, stops, attractions, and special downtown deals, visit downtownshreveport.com/revel-plus-deals-downtown.

Come join us for Art, Music, Food, and FUN at the Revel!

A huge thanks to our sponsors: Chase Bank, Pepsi Beverages Company, City of Shreveport, Junior League of Shreveport-Bossier, and The Alta & John Franks Foundation.