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Discussing the people, events, and issues of our region with area writers, artists, entertainers, and news makers. From arts events to political activity, find out what's happening in northeast Louisiana.

""I didn't want this story to die", says Genaro Ky Ly Smith.  The author and instructor at Louisiana Tech University reveals in explaining why he wrote about his grandfather's life. 

The Land Baron's Sun: The Story of Ly Loc and His Seven Wives, chronicles the life of Smith's grandfather in poetry.  Loc enjoyed the respect of being a South Vietnamese Army commander, but after the fall of Saigon, he experienced the pain of being imprisoned in a re-education camp.

The Monroe Chamber of Commerce serves as an advocate organization for both large and small business.  The chamber is currently seeking new members to join in promoting business and the economy of the city of Monroe. 

"From supporting local initiatives that better the business community to meeting with the state's delegation, the chamber keeps members informed of what's taking place," says Wynn Lawrence, co-chair of the membership campaign. 

Dissension, Tension, and Laughs at Ballyhoo

Jan 22, 2015

In the midst of the wartime era in the late 1930's, a German-Jewish family living in Atlanta is focused on the societal event of the season.  The Last Night Of Ballyhoo is presented by the Louisiana Tech University Theatre Department beginning January 28.

"Atlanta had two groups of German Jews at the time," says Associate Theatre Professor Paul Crook, who directs the play.  "The story tells the dissension of the two groups, and what a family member observes from interacting with the other group."

Acadie: Then and Now

Jan 20, 2015

The journey of Acadians across the globe is documented in Warren and Mary Perrin's new book, Acadie: Then and Now, A People's History. 


The couple researched the Acadian population for the past three years.  Their stories and discoveries highlight the resolve and commonality of the culture wherever people have settled.  Mary Perrin describes the book as an encyclopedia of Acadian and Cajun culture.  Warren Perrin says preserving the French language is critically important to carry the Acadie heritage to the next generation. 

Jenny Ellerbe

The ancient American Indian culture applied practical skills to a variety of objects and raw materials.  A collaboration between Masur Museum of Art and Poverty Point World Heritage Site presents a number of interactive demonstrations of several resources used by the ancient people.

"The event is held in conjunction with our current exhibit, Shared Earth by Jenny Ellerbe," said Masur Director Evie Stewart.  "The work includes artifacts from Poverty Point and it just worked out to where the field day was scheduled prior to Poverty Point being named as a World Heritage site."

Understanding Anesthesiology

Jan 15, 2015

Many patients fail to talk to their anesthesiologist before a surgical procedure.   Dr. Zeke Wetzel, St.Francis Medical Center Department of Anesthesiology Vice Chairman, says a simple conversation can help lead to a better outcome. 

"Be honest, don't minimize any medical condition you may have," Wetzel said.  He recommends to make your doctor aware of your full medical history.  This information helps tailor a plan of anesthesia during surgery. 

Wetzel encourages parents to have the same type of conversation on behalf of their children, should they have to have surgery. 

Discovering What Works In Parenting

Jan 13, 2015
Courtesy photo

Parenting can be a challenge.  Finding what works depends on several factors.  This weekend, the Children's Coalition of Northeast Louisiana hosts the "What Works" conference at the Monroe Civic Center.

"It's really important that all children have caring adults in their lives," said Coalition Executive Director Lynn Clark.  "We've reached out to educators, nurses, social workers, and others to create a nurturing environment in their professional lives for children."

Gardening Through The Ages

Jan 12, 2015
P. Hatch

Every generation passes along it's share of folklore and fact when it comes growing a garden.  Peter Hatch,  former Director of Gardens at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello, is the keynote speaker in the Northeast Louisiana Master Gardeners' Association 5th Annual January Seminar on Saturday.   He presents an informative lecture based on his book, A Rich Spot Of Earth: Thomas Jefferson's Revolutionary Gardens.  

Intake Site Sought For Area Homeless

Jan 9, 2015

The plight of the homeless is an issue where some local organizations want to make a difference in the new year.  Continuum of Care Coalition's Sarah Johnson says she's hopeful of developing a centralized intake site in Monroe.

House Of Horror Mixes Dancing & The Dead

Jan 7, 2015
Strauss Theatre Center

A sleazy Wall Street broker finds himself stranded during a business trip in London.  He wanders his way to a mysterious house.  Seeking shelter, he soon encounters some paranormal creatures that deliver an arcane message through dance.