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Playground construction begins; splash pad coming to Zachary Community Park

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- A group of children attending a summer camp at BREC's Zachary Community Park joined BREC officials and community leaders in a groundbreaking Friday, celebrating the next phase of construction at the park that will include a new playground, benches, shade, pavilion and eventually a spray pad.

The next phase of construction kicked off Friday at BREC’s Zachary Community Park with a groundbreaking ceremony that featured BREC and Zachary officials, children attending a summer camp at the park and residents from the community. BREC Superintendent Carolyn McKnight said the construction will include $730,000 worth of new park additions: a playground and equipment, and pavilions,… Continue reading →

School Board extends Devillier’s contract

The Zachary Community School Board approved at its June 16 meeting a three-year extension on Superintendent Scott Devillier’s contract. Earning a 3.4 out of a possible 4.0 on his annual evaluation, Devillier’s contract begins July 1 and ends in June 2018. The annual evaluation was discussed in executive session at two meetings in May. Devillier,… Continue reading →

Real estate agents ‘unlocking opportunities’ in Zachary

Photos provided by Sharon Phillips -- Zachary Chamber Executive Director Kate MacArthur, also the city's economic development coordinator, discusses the 'zone of influence' at an informational coffee held for area realtors, business and community leaders June 16.

The Zachary Chamber of Commerce hosted an informational coffee with area real estate agents June 16 at The Pointe at Americana to discuss working together for progress. Chamber Executive Director Kate MacArthur talked about recent planning and development activity in Zachary. The discussion — Unlocking Opportunities Together — outlined Zachary’s retail sales leakage report, trade… Continue reading →

Around Zachary for June 25, 2015

Tu parles Fran├žais? (Do you speak French?) If you have an interest in helping develop a Francophone group — people who speak French — the Francophone Alliance would like to hear from you. Francophone Alliances are nonprofits whose missions include promoting the language and culture of French-speaking countries by… Continue reading →

Zachary Sports for June 25, 2015

Photo provided by Tarik Beard -- Members of the Red Stick Boxing Club won four titles at the Hot Springs National Title Boxing Championship tournament. Gathered June 17-20 are, front row from left, Tavorian Anderson, Michael Anderson and Tafari Beard Jr.; and back row, Treyvean Beard and Shannon Helaire Jr.

Tafari Beard, of Zachary, is a teacher but his classroom doesn’t have any desks or a chalkboard and his students don’t learn from books. Beard’s classroom is BREC’s North 14th Street Boxing Facility in Baton Rouge and his Red Stick Boxing Club students are learning to be pugilists — boxers, in more common vernacular.… Continue reading →

More volunteers needed for Pennington research studies

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Emanuel Andrews, a community outreach coordinator for Pennington Biomedical Research Center, shares details about studies both current and upcoming with Zachary Rotarians at a June meeting.

Emanuel Andrews, a community outreach coordinator for Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, shared details about several research studies and clinical trials with Zachary Rotarians on June 11. “So many people have no idea what we do. Or they think that what Pennington does is based in science fiction,” Andrews said. “Our goal, and my… Continue reading →

EBR Sheriff’s arrests from June 9-15, 2015

The following Baker and Zachary residents were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office from June 9-15 GUIDRY, JOSHUA: 33, 22595 Tucker Road, Zachary, two counts of theft. HENDERSON, JOSHUA: 24, 1120 Sherron Ave., Baker, two counts of simple battery. TISDALE, LESTER: 52, 21170 Chaney Road, Zachary,… Continue reading →

Amateur radio club to participate in relay field day exercise

Members of the MissLou Amateur Radio Club — who are from Baker, Central, Zachary, the Felicianas, southern Mississippi and surrounding areas — will be participating in American Radio Relay League’s Field Day exercise from 1 p.m. Saturday lasting through most of the night, until 1 p.m. Sunday at Bluff Creek Fire Station, 15456 La. 959, in Clinton.… Continue reading →

Emily Nichols joins police force

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Emily Nichols, left, was introduced to the Zachary City Council and Mayor David Amrhein on June 9 by Police Chief David McDavid as the Zachary Police Department's newest officer. Nichols was born in Texas, raised in St. Francisville and resides in Zachary.

Texas-born Emily Nichols, 25, is the Zachary Police Department’s newest police officer. She was introduced to the Zachary City Council on June 9 by Chief David McDavid. Raised in St. Francisville, Nichols graduated from West Feliciana High School in 2008 and earned a bachelor of arts degree in criminal justice with minors in psychology and sociology from… Continue reading →

Classroom Spotlight: Northwestern Elementary School kindergarten

Photo provided by Martha Tassin -- Martha Tassin's 2014-15 classroom at Northwestern Elementary School in Zachary included kindergartners seated, from left, Erica Mayes, Charles Larkin, Milayja Nixon, Kristopher Naquin, Cooper Mitchell and Braylon Beauvia; kneeling, Laila Esnault, Beau Tate, Lydia Williams, Rayleigh Sebren, Stella Venable, Joshua Ruben and Christian Heughan; and standing, Bryce Gordon, Kenric Hilton, Amiya Williams, Jazmin Coleman, Alia Anderson, Megan Roussell and Max Thompson with Tassin.

The Zachary Advocate and Plainsman’s recent Spotlight Classroom was Martha Tassin’s 2014-15 kindergartners at Northwestern Elementary School. The students were asked: What is your favorite movie, and why? ALIA ANDERSON: “Finding Nemo” because the movie was funny with Dory the fish. BRAYLON BEAUVIA: “The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out… Continue reading →

Manuel named Lane Regional medical, surgical unit director

Neil Manuel

Neil Manuel, RN, BSN, has been named the medical/surgical unit director at Lane Regional Medical Center. Manuel will be responsible for coordinating all aspects of nursing care for the unit according to accreditation and professional standards, including patient satisfaction, quality assurance, staffing and physician relations, a news release said. A graduate of McNeese State University, Manuel… Continue reading →

Zachary Police arrests from June 11-17, 2015

The following people were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison or issued a summons by the Zachary Police Department from June 11-17. BOLIN, SHANE: 31, 3215 Myrtle St., Zachary, possession of marijuana. CARTER, SHAVANNA: 29, 3203 Singletary Drive., Apt. 124, Baker, bench warrant for failure to appear for general speed law and driving under suspension. Crittenden,… Continue reading →

Jazz in July for Zachary High singer

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Zachary High choir and drama student Alana Scott performs as Motormouth Maybelle in the ZHS musical production of 'Hairspray' in January.

Alana Scott, a Zachary High choir and drama student, received a huge honor following a recent performance at Festival Disney. Scott, who played Motormouth Maybelle in “Hairspray” and the Wicked Witch in “The Wizard of Oz” — both ZHS productions — was offered an opportunity to attend the Jazz in July Summer Music Program at the University… Continue reading →

Businesswomen attend Baker Chamber lunch

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Baker Chamber board members and guests attending a women in business networking luncheon June 18 included, from left, board member Pam Spencer, BREC Superintendent Carolyn McKnight, board member Julie McLin, board member Tierney Bennett, Baker Mayor Harold Rideau, Chamber Executive Director LaTania Anderson, board President Darnell Waites, board member Jonathan Williams, guest speaker Sen. Sharon Weston Broome, emcee Tiffany Dickerson and Baton Rouge Metro Councilwoman Chauna Banks-Daniel.

The Baker Chamber of Commerce hosted a well-attended networking luncheon for women in business June 18. Titled “Women of Purpose,” the luncheon included Baker, Baton Rouge and Zachary area business owners and professionals representing a host of industries: banking, catering, education, finance, fundraising, health care, marketing, media, ministry, parks and recreation, petrochemicals, politics and printing, among others.… Continue reading →

Local golfers to play in AJGA tourney

Stewart Perilloux

Area junior golfers will compete for the third consecutive year in the St. Francisville Area Foundation Junior tournament Monday through Thursday at The Bluffs Golf Club in West Feliciana Parish. The tournament is part of the American Junior Golf Association, which has an annual membership of about 6,000 junior golfers. This year’s 54-hole stroke… Continue reading →

Baker Police arrests from June 10-18, 2015

The following people were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison by the Baker Police Department from June 10-18. ARDOIN, GALVIS: 39, 4453 Stewart St., Zachary, loitering. BROWN, DARRELL: 28, 12145 Plymouth Drive, Baton Rouge, theft of goods. BROWN, RONALD: 32, 3828 Dalton St., Baton Rouge, bench warrants for failure to appear for speeding, driving… Continue reading →

‘Khaki and Kin’ art exhibit celebrates life

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Zachary native and artist Kathleen Davis with her butterfly paintings at the Zachary Branch Library June 12. Davis' artwork as well as art from two of her six children and six of her 47 grandchildren is on display through June in an exhibit called 'Khaki and Kin.'

This month’s art exhibit at the Zachary Branch Library includes a collection of work by three generations of Kathleen Mills Davis’ family. Davis, who was born and bred in Zachary, said she only agreed to submit some paintings for her own exhibit if she could submit artwork by her children and grandchildren. The collection of… Continue reading →

Council sets millages meeting

The Zachary City Council at its June 9 meeting scheduled a public hearing and special meeting for July 15 to consider of two ordinances concerning the city’s 3.17 millage rate. The last time Zachary’s millage rate changed was in 2000, when officials rolled back the rate from 3.29. The city has the authority to… Continue reading →

Zachary chamber seeks new ZFest host

Zachary Plainsman archive photo -- The sun sets on the ferris wheel at ZFest in 2013.

The Zachary Chamber of Commerce says it will no longer host the Zachary Arts and Music Festival, according to a news release. “We thank the Zachary community, its members and volunteers for working together, supporting and attending ZFest for the past nine years,” chamber Director Heather Prejean said. “It’s a joy to host and promote an event… Continue reading →

Around Zachary for June 18, 2015

Stacy Gill

The East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office has received numerous reports of a telephone scam in which residents receive a phone call from an individual claiming to be an EBRSO deputy calling in reference to outstanding warrants, according to a news release. The caller asks the resident to pay fees to avoid incarceration and… Continue reading →

Zachary Sports for June 18, 2015

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Zachary High girls basketball Coach April Barnes, center, goes over the day's itinerary with instructors prior to the start of her summer basketball camp for area youth June 5.

Kenny Almond pointed to a slogan on the back of his T-shirt that read “Old School is Cool.” For Almond — a Hall of Famer and 40-year high school basketball coach who will begin his second year at the helm of Zachary’s Broncos in the fall — his approach to teaching the… Continue reading →

LSU announces dean’s list, chancellor’s honor roll

LSU has announced students named to the dean’s list and the chancellor’s honor roll for the spring 2015 semester. Undergraduate students enrolled in at least 15 credit hours who earned grade-point averages of 4.0 during the semester are listed on the chancellor’s honor roll, while undergraduates who earned a gpa of 3.5 to 3.9 in at… Continue reading →

Long-term acute-care coming to Zachary

A ground-breaking ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. June 23 to celebrate the construction of AMG Specialty Hospital’s new long-term acute-care facility on Lane Regional Medical Center’s campus. Festivities will take place on Carpenter Road near the corner of McHugh Road in Zachary. AMG Specialty Hospital will provide treatment for patients with medically complex needs… Continue reading →

EBR Sheriff’s arrests from June 3-8, 2015

The following Baker and Zachary residents were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office on June 3-8. ANDERSON, KRISTOPHER: 20, 1033 Chemin Drive, Baker, possession of marijuana, resisting an officer and contraband in penal institution prohibited. DAVIS, TIMOTHY: 42, 18733 Samuels Road, Lot 268, Zachary, domestic abuse battery. DRAKE, KEONDRICK: 32,… Continue reading →

Southeastern names Baker, Zachary area students to honors lists

Southeastern Louisiana University has named 4,017 students to its honors list for the spring 2015 semester. The honors lists divide students into three academic levels. To be named to the president’s list, students must have earned a 3.5 or higher grade-point average. Students on the dean’s list have earned a 3.2 to 3.49, and honor roll students… Continue reading →

Firefighter focus: Cody Shaffer

Photo provided by Karen Phillips -- Zachary Firefighter Cody Shaffer

Zachary firefighter Cody Shaffer, 20, is an operator on Engine 813 at the Zachary Fire Department. Born in Zachary and a resident of Pride, Shaffer graduated from Central High School in 2012. He has worked the past two years as a career firefighter with the ZFD. During those two years, Shaffer said, his most frightening… Continue reading →

East, West Feliciana, Zachary students qualify for national Junior High Rodeo

Photo provided by Rashan Sanchez -- Four area students qualified to compete in the National Junior High Finals Rodeo in Des Moines, Iowa, June 21-27. The middle schoolers, from left, are Zeb Corkern, of Zachary; Koby Sanchez, of Ethel; Grant Foster, of Ethel; and Ashley Austin, of Zachary. The four are members of the Louisiana Junior High Rodeo Association.

Four area students who belong to the Louisiana Junior High School Rodeo Association have qualified for the 11th annual National Junior High Finals Rodeo on June 21-27 in Des Moines, Iowa. Ashley Austin, Zeb Corkern, Grant Foster and Koby Sanchez finished in the top four of their rodeo events after competing against contestants throughout Louisiana.… Continue reading →

Area graduates receive scholarship award

Photo provided by Chelsea Gstohl -- Destiny Wilson, right, a recent graduate of West Feliciana High School, accepts a $500 scholarship award from Pelican State Credit Union Jackson Branch Manager Katherine Scales.

Recent high school graduates Hannah Ducote and Destiny Wilson were each granted $500 scholarship awards from Pelican State Credit Union. Ducote is a member of Pelican State Credit Union in Zachary, and Wilson is a member of the credit union in Jackson. The girls are two of 13 college-bound students across the state to receive… Continue reading →

Baker Police arrests from June 4-9, 2015

The following people were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison by the Baker Police Department from June 4-9. ACOX, EBONY: 25, 1737 La Annie Drive, Apt. 34, Baton Rouge, simple criminal damage to property, disturbing the peace and fugitive through East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office. ANDERSON, KRISTOPHER: 20, 1033 Chemin Place Drive, Baker,… Continue reading →

Zachary resident named to Upper Iowa dean’s list

SheriAna Robinson, of Zachary, has been named to Upper Iowa University’s 2014-15 spring dean’s list. To be honored, the undergraduate must have earned a minimum 3.5 grade-point average for the semester and be enrolled as a full-time student.… Continue reading →

Zachary Police arrests from June 4-10, 2015

The following people were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison or issued a summons by the Zachary Police Department from June 4-10. BARUTI, AKILI: 32, 1925 N. 3rd St., Baton Rouge, bench warrant for failure to appear for disturbing the peace with offensive words. DIES, AUBREU: 24, 23333 Elberta Lane, Zachary, theft. DOSSEY, DANIEL: 29,… Continue reading →

Zachary teams on summer basketball roll

Advocate staff photos by STACY GILL -- Braylon Jones, of Zachary's A team, dribbles past DeMarco Branch, of Feliciana Dream, a team from East Feliciana Parish, during a summer league basketball game June 11 at Zachary High.

Zachary High coach Kenny Almond launched his first summer basketball league in Zachary this summer, giving incoming freshmen through seniors a chance to compete over the summer break. The league includes two Zachary teams, two from Denham Springs and one each from Central, East Feliciana, Parkview and Mentorship Academy, a Baton Rouge school. Each team is… Continue reading →

Volunteer firefighters provide vital aid to staff

Photo provided by Sharon Phillips -- The Zachary Rotary Club welcomed volunteer firefighter Jordan Charlet and Chief of Volunteer Operations Michael Kimble May 28. Gathered, from left, are Rotary member Terry Gomez, Charlet, Kimble and Rotary President-elect Mindy Head.

The Zachary Volunteer Fire Department was initially formed in 1931 with a full staff, but as more career firefighters were hired, the volunteer department dwindled, Chief of Volunteer Operations Michael Kimble said. “In 2004, the volunteer department was reorganized, starting with five personnel, but that number quickly grew to 20 within a year,” Kimble said while speaking… Continue reading →

Copper Mill students cultivate greenhouse project

Photo provided by Michael Van Sickle -- Hannah Jane Thompson, of Zachary, displays a freshly sprouted plant while seated next to her team's handcrafted miniature greenhouse. The Upper Iowa University-Baton Rouge Center recently partnered with Copper Mill Elementary in Zachary to further promote STEM projects, such as the Greenhouse Project, with young students.

The Upper Iowa University-Baton Rouge Center has partnered with Copper Mill Elementary School teachers in Zachary to promote STEM programming and projects with young students. “We want to reach out to local schools to increase the enthusiasm and engagement of students in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) courses and experiential learning at an early age,” said… Continue reading →

Vacation Bible School ends in messy fun

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Girls rejoice Friday after learning they won a fundraising competition over the boys during First Baptist Chuch's Vacation Bible School in Zachary, held June 1-5.

More than 400 youth from Zachary and surrounding areas attended Vacation Bible School at First Baptist Church in Zachary June 1-5. The boys and girls, ranging from 3-year-olds to sixth-graders, were led by 125 adults under the direction of the Rev. Stephen Byrd in learning from the Book of David, participating in arts and crafts and learning… Continue reading →

Around Zachary for June 11, 2015

Stacy Gill

In 2012, Zachary Youth Park began hosting U.S. Specialty Sports Association tournaments, creating opportunities for more youth to play baseball competitively at their age levels. Over the next two weekends, the USSSA state tournament will be held at the Youth Park on Mount Pleasant Road. “This is the largest state tournament the park has hosted… Continue reading →

Zachary Sports for June 11, 2015

Advocate staff photos by STACY GILL -- Baton Rouge and Zachary area youth taking part in a football drill with former Zachary High Bronco football player Quindon Turner, who will return in the fall as the Freshman Offensive Lineman Coach while attending Southern University. The boys attended ZHS Coach David Brewerton's football camp June 1-5.

In early June, as the heat of summer begins to strain air conditioners, it’s hard to think about football. But for 25 boys from Zachary and the Greater Baton Rouge area, football was in full force during Zachary coach David Brewerton’s football camp June 1-5 on the practice field beside Bronco Stadium. In… Continue reading →

Seniors submit letters of intent

Photo provided by Juterh Nmah -- Zachary High High School seniors celebrated National College Signing Day May 1 by submitting letters of intent. Gathered, front row from left, are Meagan Thierry, who plans to attend Southeastern Louisiana University;  Endonezia Spears, University of Louisiana at Lafayette; Chris Carrier, LSU; and Bailey Valentine, University of Louisiana at Lafayette; and back row, Myiah Smothers, University of Louisiana at Lafayette; Kendall Stewart, University of Louisiana at Lafayette; Salena Gaines, LSU; Zonobia Dunbar, Baton Rouge Community College; Angelle Carter, University of Louisiana at Lafayette; Cameron Davidson, Southeastern; Cathy McLeod, Dillard University; and Eddie Veal, LSU.

May 1, traditionally the deadline that colleges require admitted students to submit a letter of intent, was declared National College Signing Day, thanks to the efforts of first lady Michelle Obama, who, in 2014, said she felt every student who worked hard to achieve the milestone of going to college should receive the same enthusiastic support as athletes… Continue reading →

Zachary student wins LSU writing contest

Zachary’s Raegan Douglas, who will return to Northwestern Middle School in the fall as an eighth-grader, has been named the grand prize winner of the 2015 LSU Young Adult Literature Conference and Seminar Writing Contest for her essay “My Own Skin,” which focuses on works by author Sharon Flake. Douglas’ award included a $75 gift as… Continue reading →

Tiny Steps program leads tiny tots toward exercise

Photo provided by Tiffany George -- A BREC Tiny Steps Class of 3- to 5-year-olds recently ended its year in May. Youths in the program, seated, from left, included Ella James Bordelon, Austin Collette, CoraLynn Schwartz, Scarlett Masterson, Kaden Lynch, Jack Todd, Owen Bailey and Tyler Jett; kneeling, Abel Aldy, Heidi Crochet, Emerie Hanson, Kaiden Hunt, Blayne Strawbridge, Grace Thompson, Avery Gaines, Elias Cruz and Bayleigh Whittington; and standing, Micaela Rosales, Jeremy Richardson, Stetson Hearld, Kylee Dukes, Jack Thompson, Kylee Bowen, Autumn Phelps, Helena Sowa and Lyla Etue; and Tiny Steps instructors, from left, Myrtle McDavid, Rebecca Reeves, Talitha Schwartz and Myrtle Wade. Not shown: Brice Adams, Charlie Hicks and Sarah Kent.

BREC’s Tiny Steps program promotes physical fitness and health through exercise, organized recreational games, creative art projects, singing and dancing. In Zachary, a Tiny Steps class of 3-, 4- and 5-year-olds recently ended its year. Some of the youths will head to kindergarten in August, but many will return to the Tiny Steps program, which moved… Continue reading →

Zachary Boy Scouts earn Eagle ranking

Advocate staff photo by STACY GILL -- Luke Francis Mondello, left, of Boy Scout Troop 472 in Zachary, receives a certificate of recognition from Zachary School Board member David Dayton on May 5 for earning his Eagle rank. Mondello is one of several scouts who have recently earned the rank.

Several Zachary Boy Scouts earned their Eagle rank while attending Zachary High School from 2013 to this year. The Scouts were acknowledged with certificates of recognition by the Zachary School Board on May 5. Some of the Scouts graduated in 2014 and were away at college, unable to attend the board meeting, while others graduated on… Continue reading →

Baker Chamber to host Women in Business luncheon

Senator Sharon Weston-Broome

The Baker Chamber of Commerce will host its first Women in Business luncheon June 18 at Advantage Charter Academy, 14740 Plank Road. Sen. Sharon Weston-Broome, District 15, is slated to be the guest speaker, and local comedian Tiffany Dickerson, known as the “Mic Chick,” will emcee the event. The luncheon begins at 11 a.m.… Continue reading →

Students ace accounting certification

Photo provided by Brandi Austin -- Accounting II students Kirkland Sheppard, left, and Herchiel Devalcourt recently took and passed the Intuit QuickBooks Certification User exam at Zachary High School.

Zachary High School students Herchiel Devalcourt and Kirkland Sheppard received their Intuit QuickBooks software certifications during the school year. Accounting teacher Brandi Austin said the students were the first to complete the certification in at least seven years. “I am so proud of these two students. This test is extremely hard,” Austin said. Throughout… Continue reading →

McNeese announces spring honor roll

Brandon J. Robert, of Zachary, was named to the McNeese State University honor roll for the 2015 spring semester. The honor roll lists undergraduate students earning at least a 3.0 or B average while carrying 12 or more semester hours.… Continue reading →

EBR Sheriff’s arrests from May 21-June 2, 2015

The following Baker and Zachary residents were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison by the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office from May 21 to June 2. ANDERSON, PATRICK: 51, 5002 Myrtle St., Baker, notification of sex offenders and duty of offenders to notify. BURGE, BRANDON: 18, 5330 Rolling Acres Drive, Baker, possession of marijuana.… Continue reading →