Many’s new head football coach comes highly recommended

By DOUG IRELAND, Journal Sports

Almost a month to the day of Jess Curtis’ stunning departure from his alma mater to become the new coach at Natchitoches Central, Many High School has his replacement, and while Dillon Barrett isn’t a high-profile name, he has turned heads in three seasons as coach at Grant High in his hometown of Dry Prong.

Barrett, 30, was 15-12 in three seasons leading the Cougars, steering them to a pair of rare playoff appearances for the school. He took over a program that was 1-9 in each of its seasons prior to Barret’s return to his high school alma mater.

Before he coached the Cougars, the school had never hosted a playoff game but did in 2020 and 2021. Grant went 8-3 in 2021. The Cougars started 4-1 last fall but despite a high-scoring offense, faded in the district season.

He is regarded as a disciplinarian who is committed to strength and conditioning training – mirroring Curtis’ approach in those areas.

Barrett takes the helm of a Many powerhouse that has won two straight state championships and played in four straight state title games, while making at least the semifinals of the playoffs in all but one of the past 10 years. Many hasn’t lost a district game in 10 seasons. Curtis steered the Tigers to their first state title in 2014.

Barrett, however, is different from his predecessor with a much more wide-open offensive approach, generally leaning toward the passing attack but with a productive running game as well.

Barrett helped Ole Miss win the Sugar Bowl to end his senior season in 2015. He played in 10 games as a tight end as a graduate transfer, after playing the same position at Lamar. He was a quarterback in high school and at Fort Scott (Kansas) Community College.

LaMar Gafford, the former Alexandria Town Talk sports journalist now producing his content, said that Many has hired well. Gafford was first to report the news Tuesday.

“He’s one of the bright up-and-coming minds in this area. Doing what he did at Grant, that’s no easy task. He gave them hope where there had been very little,” said Gafford. “He took them to two playoffs and narrowly missed another this past year.

“He rejuvenated the program and brought excitement to the community, the whole parish, really. He’s a young guy with great energy. The players will definitely want to play for him, that’s for sure.”

“He’s done a very good job of developing players with their strength and conditioning program,” said Gafford. “Grant has a good chance to sustain what he’s built there.”

He’s had players advance to college teams, something that Grant has rarely done, and Gafford said there are more prospects Barrett has helped develop in the Cougars’ senior class of 2024.

As far as Barrett’s brand of football, Gafford said it will be fun to watch.

“He’s going to spread you out in some ways. They’ve had a quarterback who can sling it around, and he’s had a running back to provide a ground game that created problems for defenses. He’ll coach to his talent. The Many faithful will probably see more passes than they’ve seen in a while, but the running game will still be a big part of their offense,” he said. “They score some points.

“Although he played some safety along with tight end in college, he was a quarterback in high school and he is all about developing players at that position,” said Gafford. “I think he’s more offensive minded, honestly. But that Many defensive DNA is strong and I don’t expect to see them having anything less than a really good defense going forward.”

It’s a good fit for Many, Gafford believes.

“He did a lot at Grant. It’s a tough job and he gave them hope, and his teams competed far past expectations every season, even the last one,” said Gafford. “He transformed that program in a short time, in remarkable fashion, and I think he’s going to do really well at Many.”

Among the talented Tigers returning in 2023 are defensive back Tylen Singleton, defensive lineman Swazy Carheel and running back Jeremiah James.

Contact Doug at

Natchitoches man arrested with 2.27 pounds of meth

Sabine Parish Sheriff Aaron Mitchell announces the arrest of Eric Lamar Samuel, 51 of Natchitoches late Friday night, Feb. 3.
Sabine Parish Sheriff Patrol Deputy Jeriah Steinke stopped a vehicle for speeding 70/55 on LA Highway 6 west of Many around 10:30 pm. After a short investigation, Deputy Steinke located a bag containing suspected methamphetamine under the passenger seat. The meth weighed approximately 1,031 grams or 2.27 pounds. The estimated “street value” of the meth is approximately $10,000.
Samuel was booked into the Sabine Parish Detention Center for Possession with intent to distribute schedule II (Meth) and Speeding 70/55.
No bond has been set at this time by the 11th Judicial District Court.
Sheriff Mitchell and Chief Deputy Brad Walker commend Deputy Steinke and the Patrol Division for keeping this large amount of drugs out of our community.



District – Overall
Winnfield 3-0 20-4
Lakeview 7-1 20-7
Mansfield 3-3 10-6
Jonesboro-Hodge 3-4 9-12
Red River 2-4 11-15
Many 0-6 1-16

District – Overall
Zwolle 6-0 28-2
Negreet 4-2 11-14
Stanley 2-3 17-9
Florien 2-3 13-16
Converse 0-6 7-21

District – Overall
Hornbeck 5-0 24-6
Ebarb 4-3 19-13
Pleasant Hill 3-3 9-21
Evans 2-3 10-12
Siimpson 0-5 8-17

District – Overall
Lakeview 7-0 22-2
Winnfield 6-0 16-9
Mansfield 4-3 13-11
Red River 3-4 7-13
Many 1-7 8-19
Jonesboro-Hodge 0-7 3-20

District – Overall
Florien 5-1 28-2
Negreet 5-1 15-12
Zwolle 5-2 21-12
Converse 1-5 16-20
Stanley 0-7 6-19

District – Overall
Evans 6-0 21-7
Hornbeck 3-2 20-8
Simpson 3-3 17-10
Pleasant Hill 3-3 16-13
Ebarb 0-7 10-20

GeauxPreps Power Ratings for Sabine Parish Teams

Tuesday February 7, 2023
Ranking  Team             Record   Power Ranking
#36         Many              1-16         20.83
Ranking Team              Record   Power Ranking
#1           Zwolle            28-2       54.45
#12         Ebarb             19-13     41.93
#26         Florien           13-16      37.49
#27         Negreet         11-14      36.71
#38         Pleasant Hill   9-21       30.18
Ranking Team              Record   Power Ranking
#21         Many              8-19          28.88
Ranking Team              Record   Power Ranking
#6           Florien            28-2        51.50
#9           Zwolle             21-12      46.72
#18         Pleasant Hill    16-13      43.76
#23         Negreet           15-12      40.43
#32         Converse        16-20      35.26

#33         Ebarb              10-20      34.80



Tuesday, January 31, 2023


Negreet – 31 (12-12) (4-1)

Converse – 30 (15-20) (1-5)

Simpson – 59 (17-9) (3-2)

Ebarb – 26 (10-18) (0-6)

Winnfield – 57 (15-9) (6-1)

Many – 14 (8-18) (1-6)

Hornbeck – 50 (19-8) (2-2)

Pleasant Hill – 25 (15-12) (3-2)

Zwolle – 68 (21-10) (5-1) McKayla Price – 22 points, Kalijah Smith – 16 points, 2 – 3’s, Brianna Lambert – 15 points, 3 – 3’s, Kourtney Sepulvado – 5 points, Justice Howard – 4 points, Kayla Kimbrough – 2 points, 1 – 3, Daisy Sepulvado – 2 points and Addison Burr – 2 points.

Stanley – 25 (6-18) (0-6)


Negreet – 45 – (11-11) (4-1)

Converse – 44 (7-20) (0-6)

Ebarb – 63 (19-12) (4-2)

Simpson – 30 (8-16) (0-5)

Winnfield – 84 (19-4) (7-0)

Many – 40 (1-15) (0-7)

Hornbeck – 66 (23-6) (4-0)

Pleasant Hill – 33 (6-20) (2-3)

Zwolle – 58 (26-2) (6-0)

Stanley – 40 (16-9) (2-4)

Thursday, February 2, 2023


Florien – 61 (28-2) (5-1) Latoya Holmes – 26 points, Jay Richardson – 14 points, Grace Rutherford – 7 points, Kate Ellzey – 7 points, Lehr Turner – 4 points and Marleigh Sparks – 3 points.

Zwolle – 44 (21-11) (5-2) McKayla Price – 23 points, Brianna Lambert – 10 points, Kalijah Smith – 6 points, Kayla Kimbrough – 3 points and Alana Sepulvado – 2 points.


Zwolle – 85 (27-2) (7-0)

Florien – 46 (13-16) (2-4)



Converse – 35 (16-20)

Starks – 29 (17-12)

Hornbeck – 50 (20-8) (3-2)

Ebarb – 46 (10-19) (0-7)

Lakeview – 49 (22-2) (8-0)

Many – 22 (8-19) (1-7)

Negreet – 36 (6-19) (0-7)

Stanley – 20 (13-12) (5-1)

Pleasant Hill – 52 (16-12)

Summerfield – 49 (16-14)


Hornbeck – 52 (24-6) (5-0)

Ebarb – 46 (19-13) (4-3)

Lakeview – 69 (20-7) (7-1)

Many – 58 ( 1-16) (0-8)

Stanley – 59 (17-9) (2-4)

Negreet – 44 (11-12) (4-2)

Summerfield – 67 (12-20)

Pleasant Hill – 45 (6-21)



Southwood – 66 (14-15)

Zwolle – 58 (21-12)

Help support the MHS Fighting Tiger Band

The Many High School Fighting Tiger band will travel to San Antonio soon and band members are raising funds to make that happen.
Here are several ways the community can get involved:
1. A pulled pork fundraiser will be held Friday, Feb. 10 beginning at 10:30 am in front of Tractor Supply in Many. These massive sandwiches will be cooked by the one and only Shannon Self. 
The sandwiches are big enough for two meals, and come with chips, a snack cake, and a water for the bargain price $12. 
2. If you are a small business owner around town, you can donate a gift card to be raffled off. Band members have started gathering these but, would love to keep business local!
3. Hug a band kid and make a donation. These kids really do work hard to keep games fun plus they put in endless hours going to competition and just giving the band director grey hair.
4. There will also be a banquet Saturday, March 11 that will feature a fabulous meal, plus lots of entertainment. Alumni are encouraged to attend but this event is open to the public. $15 for a ticket or $20 at the door.
Your favorite band kid would love to help you with whatever decision you make. 

A sunny side up lesson in yolklore

(Editor’s Note: In light of the new year’s eye-popping egg prices, we go back to 2012 to explain, in this timeless salute to something both incredible and edible, why we are not chicken to pay whatever price is necessary for this fabulous food.)
I am the shell of a man.
That’s because my insides are mostly eggs.
And that goes for you and you. And you too.
Break us and we bleed yellow.
You don’t think so? I beg to differ. Hang with me and I’ll prove that not since Dean Martin has something been so versatile, so good, and yet, despite a fair amount of fame, still so underappreciated.
Seriously, did somebody say something about an egg? If you did, I’m listening. Eggs get my attention. Were it not for eggs, the world would be a much less happy, less tasteful and less interesting place. What kind of question is “Which came first, the chicken or the … other chicken?”
See? You almost GOTTA have eggs!
I am so proud that after 35 years, the Egg People — that wonderful group of egg enthusiasts who tout this white-shelled miracle of nature — have brought back the jingle originated in 1977, “The Incredible Edible Egg.” Listen for it. The song is updated in both style and lyrics, but the message remains the same: Eggs Rock!
Think of how deeply this tiny food has embedded itself into our culture. There are eggs in cakes, in pie crusts, in brownies, in egg salad and in breads. Eggs help to hold the crust onto its first cousin, the chicken. (Maybe instead of “first cousin” it should be “mother once removed.”)
Eggs are in cookies and creams, in fried rice, and in demand. That’s why the United States production of 75 billion eggs a year is an impressive yet big-picture moderate 10 percent of the world’s supply.
We are an egg society.
Think of this food’s adaptability, if you will. It can be boiled and poached and scrambled and fried. And that’s just at breakfast! What a wonderful thing to wake up to.
It can be served sunny side up, over easy, yellow hard, yellow runny. Omelet, you say? Fine!
It can even be split into either yellow or white. How many everyday foods offer you TWO colors in such a small package? The egg is the fruit of the barnyard.
I could rest my case. But I won’t. Because not only is the egg versatile, it’s good for you. You’ve got 13 essential nutrients in a single egg, the egg publicists tell me, which might be a lie but hey, I’m buying it!, because they know I can’t tell a nutrient from a nutria. But I did grow up around chicken snakes, and not once did I see a sick one.
A large egg contains just 70 calories and has six grams of protein. My sources tell me that this is another “plus” in the “healthy food” column. In other words, an egg as a food is a “good egg.”
See? The word even lends itself to playfulness. You can be a good egg or a bad egg. Some people are egg heads. Some have egg on their face. Or a goose egg on their forehead. Some people put all their eggs in one basket, walk on egg shells, lay an egg, egg others on or protect their nest egg.
“Last one in’s a rotten egg!”

It’s a beautiful word, a beautiful food, and you’ll likely enjoy one today, even if it’s disguised in another food. Which is another reason to love the egg: it’s a simple food of delightful complexity. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Mystery is the egg’s “coop” de gras.

Ship Shape

By Brad Dison

It was 1945, the last year of World War II.  The USS LSM-51, a medium sized amphibious landing ship of the Navy’s LSM class, was stationed at San Pedro Bay, Leyte.  This 203 ½ foot ship was built to haul a maximum of five medium tanks, three heavy tanks, six amphibious landing craft which used tank tracks rather than wheels, or 9 amphibious wheeled landing crafts called DUKWS.  Most of us recognize DUKWS because of their use as tourist attractions in places like Branson, Missouri and Hot Springs, Arkansas.  LSM-51 had a compliment of four officers and 54 enlisted men. 

Captain Potts ran a tight ship.  One of Captain Potts’s favorite punishments on the ship was scraping and repainting.  Captain Potts and his officers meted out this punishment often and for the smallest infraction, because it kept the ship’s paint fresh.  You know the term “ship shape.”  Every day someone was busy scraping and repainting some part of the ship.

John Kann and Joe Sherrill seemed to be in trouble more often than not.  As a punishment for some offense long forgotten, John and Joe were given the task of scraping and repainting part of one side of the ship.  Using ropes, other enlisted men lowered John and Joe down the side of the ship and tied the ropes off.  The enlisted men raised and lowered John and Joe throughout the process.  Finally, after hours of scraping and repainting, their work was done and their punishment completed.  John and Joe were pulled back up onto the ship and returned to their regular duties.  During the same time period, other seamen received the same punishment at different locations on the ship.

Some days later, while under radio silence, the LSM-51 received a morse code message via signal lamp from another ship which carried the Task Group Commander.  The signalman decoded the morse code and wrote down the message.  The seaman looked at the message with confusion.  He must have made a mistake.  He relayed the message to Captain Potts, who was equally confused.  Captain Potts told the signalman to have the message repeated.  He flashed his morse code to the other ship and waited.  Again, he translated the morse code and wrote down the message.  It was the same message as before.  The signalman relayed the message to Captain Potts.  Captain Potts had full confidence in his signalman and told him to ask the other ship to repeat the message once again.  With full undeviating concentration, the signalman watched as the other ship blinked its signal.  This time, the message was longer, but the signalman was still confused.  He relayed the message to Captain Potts.   

Confused and irritated that the message provided no answer, the captain got into a dingy and rowed away from the ship.  He wanted to look at the ship to see if that would solve the confusing messages.  It only took a glance.  The captain returned to the ship in a state of near rage.  He demanded to know who was responsible, but no one confessed.  Determined to learn the identity of the culprit or culprits, he asked who had been painting on the side of his ship.  Since the scraping and repainting punishment had been meted out so regularly to so many of the seamen, the captain and officers were unable to determine who could be guilty.  No matter what punishment the men received, no one confessed.  Well, not until more than 50 years had passed.  Finally, in the late 1990s, John and Joe no longer feared the reprisals of the Navy and confessed.  John argued that it was he who came up with the idea.  Joe claimed that the idea was his.    

The confusing message that the other ship kept sending LSM-51 was… “How much do you want for it?”  In orange chromate rust inhibitor, in letters more than 5 feet wide and 10 feet tall, John and Joe had painted on the side of LSM-51 the words, “FOR SALE”.



Barron Road Bridge temporarily closed

The Sabine Parish Road Department announced on Feb. 6 that the Barron Road bridge is temporarily closed. Structural issues were found during a routine inspection. The department will gather more information and develop a plan for repair and will post updates to keep the public informed.

Sabine Parish Sheriff announces scholarship opportunity for high school senior

Sabine Parish Sheriff Aaron Mitchell announced the availability of a $500 college scholarship for a Sabine Parish graduating high school senior.
The scholarship is made available each year through the Louisiana Sheriff’s Honorary Membership Program to help defray the cost associated with higher education. One scholarship is awarded in each parish where the sheriff participates in the Honorary Membership Program.
To qualify for a scholarship, the recipient must be a permanent resident of Louisiana, plan to enroll as a full-time undergraduate student, and agree to use the scholarship at a Louisiana institute of higher education.
Applicants must be eligible for admission to the school indicated on their application.
The deadline to apply is Monday, April 3, 2023. Completed applications should be mailed to the Sabine Parish Sheriff’s Office, Attention: Sherri Bennett, P.O. Box 1380, Many, LA 71449 or they can be delivered in person to the Sabine Parish Sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Division 850 San Antonio Ave Many, LA 71449.
Scholarship winner will be announced by Monday, May 1, 2023.
Complete scholarship guidelines, criteria, and the application can be obtained at

Natchitoches man wanted for Sabine Parish thefts

Sabine Parish Sheriff Aaron Mitchell reports two recent felony theft cases were solved by Detectives at the Criminal Investigations Division.
In mid-January, a 31′ travel trailer and a 10’x12′ portable building were stolen from two victims who live near the Sabine-Natchitoches Parish line, close to Marthaville. The travel trailer contained two firearms.
Detective Don Flores investigated the cases and was able to develop a couple of suspects.
Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Detectives assisted Detective Flores with the case.
Detectives obtained and executed a search warrant on Jan. 27 on Richard Jordan Loop in Natchitoches Parish off of Hwy. 120 where detectives located the portable building.
Detectives located the travel trailer on Feb. 3 at a gas well location in Desoto Parish. The two firearms were not inside.
An arrest warrant was obtained for Timothy Dustin Meshell, 38 of Natchitoches, for Theft over $25,000 and 2-counts of Theft of a firearm.
Meshell is wanted at this time. If you have any information of Meshell’s whereabouts, contact Detective Flores at 318-590-9475 or submit an anonymous tip through our Sabine Parish Sheriff App.
Detective Flores said the investigation is ongoing and more arrests and charges are pending.
Sheriff Mitchell and Chief Deputy Brad Walker commend Detective Flores and thank Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Detectives with their help in this investigation.

10 Budget Friendly Ways to Make Memories with your Children

Since becoming a single mom I am routinely asked for advice on how to travel with kids on a budget or how to stretch your dollars when you are entertaining children. Well, to be frank, I always hear… how can you even afford to travel being a single mom?

I always cheerfully share my tips and tricks with anyone who asks, simply because I know that single parents have to guard every single penny in their budget. Every penny that is misspent literally takes resources away from our children.

First and foremost, I cannot take any credit for anything good that has happened to me or my daughters. God provides for us continuously. I stay in constant prayer that God shows us favor, wisdom and mercy. Aside from this, I was raised by very wise parents who were masters at stretching dollars and cents to provide for their children.

I hope these practical tips can be translated through the ages of your children. They are basic, helpful and truly become second nature once you incorporate them into your life.

1.) The grocery store is your friend. When we travel anywhere we always have a small cooler for sandwiches, drinks and snacks. Eating out and convenient store snacks can eat away at your memory making dollars. My daughters have always enjoyed a roadside picnic at a random roadside park or rest stop. (Safety first, if it feels creepy don’t stop!)

2.) When you eat out, you do not have to order appetizers and desserts. Or even cokes. You can drink water, it is free and it is healthy. (My daughters are cringing right now but I am adamant about these savings. A family of three can save upwards of $10 just by cutting costly drinks.) Also, entrees are so huge, there is no shame in sharing a meal with your child. If you choose to eat out please always remember to tip your server. It is not their fault that your budget is tighter than your pants after a big meal!

3.) Most people have a debit card that they routinely use. Choose one that makes your money work for you. I choose to use my BOM Rewards Checking Account debit card. I save the points until there is enough to purchase a hotel stay or two. The points add up quickly when you use it for all of your normal expenses and bills that allow credit card payments. Right after my divorce this was the sole reason we were able to take a few trips.

4.) When you choose a hotel, choose one that offers a free breakfast. Most of them do, it is normally very tasty, and they are all kid friendly. I love sitting in a crowded hotel lobby eating breakfast with dozens of screaming kids while the parents knowingly smile at each other boasting that it was a free meal.

5.) If you choose a destination months in advance you may want to take advantage of opening a Christmas Club account. You can dedicate a small amount each month that you will deposit into your account. Typically you cannot pull the money out until later in the Fall. This money can be used for gas, food or attractions. This is another method that I have used on numerous occasions to enjoy a small getaway with my daughters.

Sometimes out of town travel is just not in your plan. Don’t let that deter you from enjoying time well spent with your children.

6.) You can always take advantage of staying local to make memories. One of our favorite things to do is bring our boring supper to the River Bank and enjoy the view of the River while we dodge the scary geese.

7.) Local libraries and churches are always a haven with numerous programs that focus on the family. Typically each of them have free or low cost educational opportunities and group activities that children love.

8.) Make it a habit to take a daily stroll with your children. It is truly a great way to unwind and let them share the details of their day. Some of our best memories are from sitting on our porch or walking down the street. You can also take advantage of local parks and playground equipment. Again, this is a great place to bring your supper for a change of scenery. No one is ever too old to enjoy swings and a jungle gym!

9.) Go visit family out of town. When I was growing up my parents would always visit family on the weekends with me and my siblings in tow. Every so often we would even spend the night. These days people are spending less and less time face to face because of social media and other distractions. Nothing replaces family time.

10.) Take advantage of local walking trails. Most towns are expanding their outdoor walking spaces. Let your children research the trails and chances are they will have more fun than you!

Last and definitely not least, your children just want to spend uninterrupted time with you and typically they do not care how you do it, they just want you. Whether you spend money on travel or just taking long walks together… as long as it involves you, they are happy. They may not realize it until many years later but time invested in family is never wasted.

“Above all, love each other deeply because love covers a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.”
1 Peter 4:8-11

Depending on the age of your children, there are always many local opportunities that are free or very low cost to the parents. Our local libraries are always the go-to for programs and activities that are fun and educational. Our churches always have a variety of youth groups, children’s classes, and a safe place for children to hang out.

At the end of the day, your children just want to spend time with you. Whether it is walking the dog in the neighborhood, sitting together in church or eating supper with you at the family dinner table. They just want your presence.

OPPORTUNITY: Accounting Technician

Position: Accounting Technician
Location: Natchitoches, LA
Job Type: Classified
Department: Northwestern State University-Business Affairs
Job Number: 170232
Closing: 2/6/2023 11:59 PM Central

Supplemental Information
Northwestern State University is currently accepting applications for an Accounting Technician in Business Affairs.

No Civil Service test score is required in order to be considered for this vacancy.

To apply for this vacancy, click on the link below and complete an electronic application,

The successful candidate will be subject to a background check, as a condition of employment.

*Resumes WILL NOT be accepted in lieu of completed education and experience sections on your application. Applications may be rejected if incomplete.*

For further information about this vacancy contact:

Benetrus Brooks
Northwestern State University – Human Resources
200 Sam Sibley Dr. – St. Denis Hall


Three years of experience in bookkeeping, accounting, payroll, or numerical computation.

College training will substitute for the required experience on the basis of thirty semester hours for one year of experience.

An Associate Degree in Accounting, Accounting Technology, or Business from an accredited college or university will substitute for two years of the required experience.

Training in a vocational-technical school or military school in Accounting, Accounting Technology, or Business will substitute for up to one year of required experience on the basis of one month of training for one month of experience.

NOTE: Any college hours or degree must be from an accredited college or university.

Job Concepts

Function of Work:
To provide the full range of paraprofessional accounting services.

Level of Work:

Supervision Received:
Generally from higher-level fiscal or administrative position.

Supervision Exercised:
May supervise lower-level paraprofessional fiscal or administrative positions.

Location of Work:
May be used by all state agencies.

Job Distinctions:
Differs from Accounting Specialist 2 by responsibility for preparation of basic-level financial reports.

Differs from professional accountants by assisting accounting professionals in the performance of various tasks within the accounting process.

Examples of Work

Maintain operational functions at the cashier window, reconciling cash and cash items daily for deposit.

Communicates with student, parents and other customers regarding questions or problems.

Responsible for physical handling, control, and appropriate account coding of all University’s monetary transactions

Compiles monthly business reports for the bursar concerning but not limited to revenue forecasting, delinquent accounts, petty cash, and departmental advance.

Analyzes and compiles data and prepares monthly reports reflecting actives and stats for accounts receivables.

4H Cookery Contest Sabine Parish: February 20

Sabine Parish 4-H will hold a Commodity Cookery Contest on Monday, Feb. 20 at the Sabine Parish Extension Office.
Check-In: 1-1:30 am. Judging Begins at 2 pm.
Division Rules
1. You may enter only 1 dish in each division…sweet potato, rice, and pecan.
2. Age Divisions are 4th -5th graders, 6th -8th graders, & 9th -12th graders.
3. The dish must be cooked and transported on ice in a closed “Tupperware” type disposable container with a hard top.
• Rice Commodity
Dish must contain a minimum of one (1) cup of cooked rice.
Wild rice is NOT cultivated rice in Louisiana and should not be used for this contest. Dishes containing rice products such as rice cereal, rice flour, etc. must still contain 1 cup of cooked rice to accompany the other products. Rice Krispie treats do not meet contest requirements. Examples: Jambalaya, Fried Rice, Rice Pudding, Rice-Stuffed Bell Peppers, etc.
• Sweet Potatoes Commodity
Dish must contain a minimum of one (1) cup fresh, frozen, or canned sweet potatoes.
Examples: Baked Sweet Potato, Sweet Potatoes Bisque/Soup, Sweet Potato Cupcakes, Sweet Potato Scones, etc.
• Pecans Commodity
Dish must contain a minimum of one (1) cup of pecans.
Examples: Roasted Pecans, Pecan Pie, Sugared Pecans, Pecan-crusted Chicken, Pecan Pralines, etc.
The Recipe: 20 Possible Points
Recipe Rules
The recipe should include the following parts:
A. Name of Recipe
1. Your name, school, grade, and dish category should be on the back of your recipe.
B. List of ingredients in order used in instructions
1. No abbreviations are used
· Measurements should be spelled out.
· EX: tsp = teaspoon
2. No brand names are used
· Tony Chachere’s = Cajun seasoning
· Velvetta Cheese = Pasteurized cheese
· Rotel Tomatoes = Diced tomatoes with green chilies
3. Include the size and weight of cans, packages, etc.
4. Specific measurements stated
· For example, do not say “small onion” instead say “1/2 cup chopped onion”
· For example, do use the say “salt/pepper” to taste, use specific measurements
C. Instructions for combining ingredients
1. Clear instructions for every step of combining and cooking the ingredients
· Cannot say “mix all ingredients” or “mix ingredients 1-5” in the recipe directions. Must list all ingredients in order of use that is in the ingredient list in the directions.
2. Short, clear, concise sentences
3. Correct food preparation terms to describe the combining and cooking process
4. Size of bakeware, cookware, and serving dishes stated
· For example state pan size used such as “13 x 9” or “9 x 9”
· Skillet size used such as “12-inch skillet”
· Do not have to list mixing bowl sizes
5. Temperature and cooking time stated
· For example, do not say “chill” instead say “chill for 20 minutes”
6. Number of servings
7. Total preparation time
D. Dish meets contest and division rules/requirements
E. Other Rules/Tips
1. If using prepared packaged items such as gravy mix, cake mix etc. must list ingredients needed to prepare and instructions for preparation.
2. If using sausage, be sure to list cooking method in directions
3. The food should be exhibited in a normal-sized container not to exceed 18” to allow adequate space for all entries. You will be asked to remove items not directly related to the dish such as placemats, flower arrangements, and figurines. Non-edible items are not to be used as garnish.
No serving utensils will be allowed.
Scoring Criteria:
Taste: 70 possible points
• Does the finished dish have a flavor that appeals to most people?
• Do the flavors blend well together?
The appearance of Dish: 10 possible points
• Does the finished dish look appetizing?
• Is the product cooked correctly, or does it appear to be burnt?
Bonus Additions: 10 possible points if submitted
• Instruction pictures – at least 3 pictures must be submitted with the 4-H member completing the instructions given in the recipe.
Examples: stirring the pot of cooking beef, chopping vegetables, mixing pie ingredients.
• Finished Product pictures – at least 2 pictures must be submitted of the completed dish. One picture can be the finished product as a whole and one picture needs to be a plated portion. Example: picture of the whole casserole in the dish and one picture of the casserole served on the plate ready to eat.
• Dish Summary – A paragraph summarizing the 4-H member’s experience must be submitted with recipes and pictures. Minimum of 5 sentences! Does not have to be typed, but the writing does need to be legible. Examples of things to include are challenges the 4-H member had while completing the dish, skills they have learned, and why they have chosen that specific recipe.
• Does the summary follow general paragraph standards? Example: Introduction sentence, 3 body sentences, and a conclusion sentence.
• Garnishments and added extra decorations will not be factored into scoring.

OBIT: Wilton “Bro. Tony” Drayton Anthony

June 26, 1935 – February 1, 2023

My home is in heaven. I’m just traveling through this world.

-Billy Graham

Wilton Drayton Anthony passed from this life to his Heavenly home on February 1, 2023, after a short battle with Lymphoma.  He is survived by his devoted daughters, Cheryl Elizabeth Ricer and husband Fred and Carole Michelle Harlien and husband Heath; his beloved grandsons, Michael Bryce Morgan and his wife Megan Molina Morgan, Peyton Anthony Hargrove; and granddaughter, Karsen Harlien; his loving brother, Charles Anthony and wife Clarene and a sister-in-law, Bonnie Anthony (Jimmy); along with countless nephews and nieces that he loved deeply and unselfishly.

He is preceded in death by his darling beautiful wife, Flo; his parents, Drayton Hoy Anthony and Zelma Blackwell Anthony; his brothers, Jimmy Anthony and Robert Anthony; Furman Anthony, Howard Anthony, Elmore (Buddy) Anthony, MG Anthony, Mack Anthony, and Gordon Anthony; and his sisters, Rose Anthony, Juanita DeLatin Blackwell, and Betty DeLatin Hopkins Lafitte.

Bro. Tony (as he was known by many who loved him) was born on June 26, 1935, in Negreet, Louisiana. He graduated from Florien High School in 1953.  He was awarded a scholarship to play basketball at Louisiana College and later East Texas Baptist College. This was a great accomplishment as he was the first in his family to attend college. He received a Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education and Religion. Bro. Tony pastored his first church, Pleasant Hill Baptist, while still in college.  During his time at East Texas Baptist, he met Florene King, who became his wife on September 3, 1955. Later on, he earned a Master’s Degree in Theology from Southwestern Theological Seminary.

Together, Bro. Tony and Ms. Flo served at the following churches:

Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, Pleasant Hill, LA (1954-1955)

Magnolia Baptist, Ragley, LA (1955-1959)

Baptist Church, Groves, TX (1959-1961)

Bethel Baptist, Lake Charles, LA (1961-1967)

McDonald Memorial Baptist Church, Orange, TX (1967-1971)

First Baptist Church, Port Neches, TX (1971-1983)

First Baptist Church, Mount Pleasant, TX (1983-1989)

First Baptist Church, Arcadia, LA (1989-1998)

Siloam Baptist Church, Many, LA (1998-2023)

Bro. Tony served the longest at Siloam Baptist Church and considered Toledo Bend his home. He introduced the congregation here to many new ideas. For the children, he began Children’s Time during morning worship, Mystery Trips, Basketball and Cheer Camps, Pool Tournaments at Belinda’s as well as Lawnmower Races and the Mutt Strut. The teenagers had never heard of Centrifuge, nor had ever been snow skiing. Under Bro. Tony’s leadership, each year they made the trip either to Angel Fire, New Mexico, or Monarch Pass, Colorado, to enjoy the slopes. Also, it never failed that the old, white church bus pulled out headed to Ridgecrest, North Carolina, and returned home with youth and adults whose lives were forever changed by summer camps at Centrifuge. He never missed the children or youth sporting events and even announced the home games at NHS for many years. The adults were not left out. They, too, would board the bus for a fish fry at Clara Springs or a long weekend to Branson or Ridgecrest.

Bro. Tony had a vision to build a new sanctuary and a Family Life Center. This new construction brought new members and families into the congregation. He set high goals for his church, and failure was never an option. He was not only a leader, but he was also a friend.

His life’s purpose and impact were powerful for the kingdom of Heaven. Bro. Tony led and baptized thousands to faith in Jesus Christ. He united many couples in holy matrimony and dedicated infants to the faith. He was always there for anyone in need no matter the day or time. His family—immediate, extended, and church—relied heavily upon him and without fail. Not only did he carry them with dignity and grace, but he also uplifted and upheld everyone he encountered as a steadfast example of Christian faith, hope, and love. He set a high bar for the vocation of pastor by his example. His wit was quick; his humor, endless; his smile, enduring; his heart, forever light; and his influence everlasting.

Visitation will be held at Siloam Baptist Church, 35480 Hwy. 191, Many, LA, on Saturday, February 4, from 5-8 PM. The service will be on Sunday, February 5, at 2 PM also at Siloam Baptist Church. Burial will follow at Antioch Baptist Church Cemetery in Florien, LA.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations to the Siloam Baptist Church Youth Fund in memory of Bro. Tony be mailed to Siloam Baptist Church, 35480 Hwy. 191, Many, LA 71449.

To plant Memorial Trees in memory of Wilton “Bro. Tony” Drayton Anthony, please click here to visit our Sympathy Store.

It’s just a cupcake!

The legendary former coach of the Dallas Cowboys, Jimmy Johnson, made a statement one time that really stuck with me. To summarize, he said that he could take a great coach and make them a great CEO due to their ability to motivate people.

As a guy who has worked both as a coach and was Louisiana Director of Manufacturing for Holloway Sportswear, I have to agree with his statement. So how does this relate to tournament bass fishing? Today, I’ll give my perspective on how these two are related.

While overseeing six factories with 95 percent of the staff being women, I discovered that some of the techniques used to motivate players during my coaching days also worked for motivating a work force. The one thing a player needs in order to perform at a high level is motivation.

This also holds true for an employee, whether working for a company or working for him or herself. It might be even more important for someone who is self-employed because they don’t have that person above pushing them to be better. They must be self-motivated in order to be successful. 

But while taking over a Holloway factory in Ville Platte due to issues with previous management, I found out really quick that people just want to be appreciated. The factory had major personnel issues due to a lack of leadership, making the people working there very unhappy. Employees were writing letters to the president of Holloway expressing their displeasure. 

My first goal was to make them feel appreciated. As Halloween came around, I decided to order 300 cupcakes and pass them out during the last break of the day. I took a cart full of cupcakes and made my way around the factory and personally gave one to each employee and told them thank you for doing a great job that week.

The reaction was nothing short of amazing! As I stood by the back door of the factory while the employees clocked out and left, so many told me thanks for showing appreciation for what they did that week, and that they had never been told that by a manager ever before. 

I thought to myself, “It was only a cupcake!” It made me realize that it doesn’t take much to make people feel special. Over that year of running this factory, we did more things like this quite often and the production numbers increased 40 percent. Factory morale was at an all-time high and if I needed an order to go out on time, all I had to do was ask and they would deliver, all because they felt appreciated. 

Tournament bass fishermen are no different! While all anglers have egos and want to win every time they back their boats in the water, in reality they know that won’t happen. But bass tournament trails that pay way down in the standings are usually the most successful and have the greatest following.

Why? Many of today’s tournament anglers just hope to get a check! Even if it’s only enough money to help pay for gas or maybe their hotel, they consider it a successful tournament if they just get a check or “a cupcake.”

This is what motivates them to come back and fish again and follow a tournament trail — the cupcake! Eighty percent of any tournament trail is made up of the guys that never win. The other 20 percent that complain because they want a bigger payback don’t understand the concept that the 80 percent that aren’t winning are the reason there is a tournament trail to begin with. 

Bottom line is this, we all want to be appreciated and it usually doesn’t take much effort on someone’s part for this to happen. Some anglers are perfectly happy finishing in 40th place and getting a $200 check, even if it only covers their entry fee. Most don’t fish for the money; they fish for enjoyment, and nothing is more enjoyable than walking across a tournament stage and getting a check in front of your peers — even if it is only a cupcake.

Until next time, good luck, good fishing and don’t forget your sunscreen. Also make sure to schedule regular dermatologist appointments. If you don’t have a dermatologist, find one!

Contact Steve at

There is a far frozen field

I began to write this last week. Back when the cold was at my toes and the ice would be on my nose if I was outside too long. Back when one of my students honked at me around 7:15 Thursday morning as I was taking a picture on the side of the road. She’s a good driver and only honked. I’m glad I didn’t distract her out there and she careen into me. After all, I was just taking a pic of that far frozen field.

I’ve written about this field before. Back in the summer, I wrote a column about the far green of that field. Even though the ice is there in January (it’s just muck now), the halo of orange still hangs there just above the horizon as the green (now frozen) 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 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. I can smell the dirt and nearly feel the touch of dew. The trees move and their inhabitants go 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 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. I see the brown now. If the ice is melted, the field is dull 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 (now frozen) 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.

Notice of Death – February 2, 2023

Patricia Ann Carter Rachal
Jan 7, 1950 – Feb 1, 2023
Service: Monday, February 6 at 2 pm at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home
Ronald James Roque
January 26, 1965 – January 26, 2023
Service: Friday, February 3 at 11 am at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Isle Brevelle
Doris J. Williams 
Service: Saturday, February 4 at 11 am in the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel
Sammie L. Kitchen
Service: Saturday, February 4 at 12 pm at the Martin Luther King Recreation Center
David Ford
Service: Saturday, February 4 at 11 am at the Church of Latter Day Saints of Winnfield
Mary Mitchell
Service: Saturday, February 4 at 2 pm in the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home chapel in Natchitoches

Catherine DiGeorge Rushing
Arrangements TBA