Saturday, October 26, 2013

Take a Trip to Natchitoches for a Sons of the American Revolution Grave Marking Ceremony and Some Gator Bites

It's been a while since we took a little day trip, hasn't it?

Today, the fall weather was glorious and so Steve and I headed down to Natchitoches this morning to attend the 10 a.m.  Sons of the American Revolution Grave Marking Ceremony for Dr. John Sibley at the beautiful and historic American Cemetery.

We first visited the American Cemetery in 2011;  it was at that time that we found the grave of Dr. Sibley and subsequently discovered that our friend Jim Wells is a descendant of Dr. Sibley.  Small world!  Dr. Sibley served in the American Revolution as a surgeons mate; he moved from Massachusetts to North Carolina to Natchitoches and became an authority on the Indians in the region.  What fascinated me was his correspondence with President Thomas Jefferson and his work with Jefferson.  You can read more about Dr. Sibley here.

Dr. Sibley's grave has been honored four times now; he was previously honored by the D.A.R., and also by the North Louisiana Historical Society.

There was a nice crowd at the service this morning and a uniformed color guard.  Here are a few of them loading their muskets before the ceremony.

The air was brisk and cool and we needed jackets in the shade of the ancient trees.

There were speeches by dignitaries, a synopsis of Dr. Sibley's life and career, and then the  presentation of the wreaths by various organizations and chapters.

The cemetery is truly gorgeous and, in fact, tonight they're doing a Haunted History Tour that we wished we could have stayed for.

This precious young man, the great-great-great-great grandson (I believe he said) of Dr. Sibley was one of the speakers; I loved that he read his notes from his phone!  Such modern technology in such an historic context!  He did a great job, though, and was very personable and eager to visit with everyone after the service.

This is the marker that was placed today:

This is Jack Sibley, in the center, with the proclamation by the mayor declaring October 26, 2013 to be Dr. John Sibley day.

This portrait and copy of a letter from Thomas Jefferson to Dr. Sibley were on display:

A closer shot of the letter:

Many of the graves are crumbling and in disrepair, but it's still beautiful there.

I love the wrought iron fencing.  There used to be a lot of very old iron crosses throughout the cemetery but sadly many of them have been stolen.

We thought this marker was interesting:

Descendants of Dr. Sibley:

And here is all of the direct descendants of Dr. Sibley that were there today:

I love this shot of the youngster taking a photo of the new marker with his phone (that technology thing again!)

After the ceremony we headed down to Front Street to kill a little time before lunch.  We had alligator bites on our mind from The Pioneer Pub, but it was only 10:30 so we browsed the shops. I bought a  new olive wood spoon at Kaiffe-Frederick and some dip mixes in Cane River Kitchenware (where we grazed on samples like smoked pork loin, red beans and rice, and a creme brulee dip.)

Natchitoches is decorated for fall and for Halloween today but Christmas is just around the corner and crews have already been working to get the famous light displays up.

But today, it was all about Halloween and the scarecrows all up and down Front Street!

Here is an Uncle Si scarecrow:

The farmers market was still in progress down by the river and I was interested to note that they now take EBT cards:

Now I'm not about to begrudge anyone their fresh veggies, but you can also buy painted gourds, hand crafted jewelry, t-shirts, and other miscellaneous items at the farmers market.

We bought some smoked swiss cheese and some honey sticks.

Everyone in Natchitoches is always so friendly and this cute girl at the farmers market was selling jewelry.  She's all ready for Halloween!

I was mighty tempted by these huge fresh shrimp and they smelled so fresh!  But I knew we'd be there most of the day and even though the vendor promised he could pack them for travel I just didn't want to risk it.

As we were walking back up to Front Street we spotted a "noon moon" in the sky.  Can you see it?

Now can you see it?

Loved this decoration in front of the bank:

Here's another one of the scarecrows:

And this one is on her walker!

Freaky Farms in the roundabout:

It was such a glorious day even the ducks were taking it easy:

It was finally time for lunch so we headed to The Pioneer Pub, our favorite spot, and indulged in multiple orders of gator bites, one meat pie, and a cheeseburger.

Before heading home we took the top off the Jeep so we could savor the lovely day.  I love driving top-down; as we drove we could smell burning wood fires and the sharp pine of a lumber yard. You can hear the birds in the trees and just plain road noise.  And if I want to holler out to a grazing cow, I can!

The leaves are beginning to change and Louisiana is beautiful right now.

Nothing like a top down day in the fall.

The SIGIS Take a Trip Series:
Take a Trip to the 2012 Defenders of Liberty Air Show at BAFB
Take a Springtime Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden, LA
Take a Trip to Logansport, Louisiana
Take a Trip to the Lock and Dam on Red River
Take a Trip to the 2012 Barkus and Meoux Parade
Take a Christmas Shopping Trip to Second Hand Rose in Minden
Take a Trip to the Fourth Annual Barksdale AFB Oktoberfest 
Take a Trip to Grand Cane's Fifth Annual Pioneer Trade Day
Take a Trip to the 2011 Highland Jazz & Blues Festival
Take an Autumn Trip to Jefferson, Texas
Take a Fall Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden
Take a Trip to the 8th Air Force Museum at Barksdale Air Force Base
Take a Summertime Trip to Grand Cane
Take a Trip to Desoto Parish
Take a Summer Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden
Take a Trip to Natchitoches and Melrose Plantation 
Take a Trip to Ed Lester Farms and a Random Antique Stop
Take a Trip to the Norton Art Gallery and the Masters of Cuban Art Exhibit
Take a Trip to Natchitoches to See the Christmas Lights
Take a Trip to the Third Annual BAFB Oktoberfest 
Take a Trip to Natchitoches and Oakland Plantation

Monday, October 21, 2013

No Fear Common Core

I just bought my first copy of a No Fear Shakespeare play.  It makes me a little nauseous.
God bless Common Core, we now have to read Hamlet in grade 12 English as opposed to Macbeth.  Dear old Macbeth has replaced Julius Caesar in grade 10.  Because our textbooks do not align to this new expectation, we have been furnished with paperback copies of No Fear Shakespeare: Hamlet and No Fear Shakespeare: Macbeth.  I bought my own copy so I can highlight and mark it up without marking a library copy.

I sure don't mean to kick a gift horse in the mouth, but it seems to me if the whole goal of Common Core is to increase rigor and raise the level of critical thinking, shouldn't we read the REAL Shakespeare?  

Oh, I know.  These No Fear books have the real Shakespeare.  It's true.  They do.  But they also have a plain English translation side by side.

Some how,

"The question is:  is it better to be alive or dead?  Is it nobler to put up with all the nasty things that luck throws your way or to fight against all those troubles by simply putting an end to them once and for all?"
...does not have the same ring to it that

"To be, or not to be?  That is the question--
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And, by opposing, end them?"


Is this increasing rigor? 

No.  It isn't.

Which side of the text do you think students will read?


I will have to find another way to do that.

Meanwhile, I think I'll try for a grant to get some copies of the real deal.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

F. W. Leeds: Patriot

My son and I went to the museum today; we went to the Norton Art Gallery.  The last time I was there was exactly a year ago.  I wish I could say we went because John wanted culture and refinement, but it was an extra-credit deal for his college history class.

It's a great place to go on a Sunday afternoon, or any time, really.

I saw this today:

How absolutely gorgeous is that?  (Click on the picture for a better view.)  In person, if your eyes are good, you can really read what it says.  Breathtaking.

Need more explanation?

Even better, eh?!

I love that last line:  "It is a work which is not only beautiful in its own right, but also clearly demonstrates the type of patriotism which Leeds must have felt for the still young republic."

He did this in 1844.


EBT Card Panic and the Third World Country Syndrome

I haven't dipped my toes in the political pool for a while now, as you may have noticed.  I've become so disgusted with Republicans and Democrats alike; it's as if they've all thrown up their hands and decided to give up the fight and turn us into a third world country.  All the ranting and railing in the world hasn't stopped us from turning into a fast-food, service oriented country filled with a government-dependent-population too blind to see what has happened to them.

Going off the grid has never looked so good.

Case in point:  yesterday the EBT system went down for a while causing absolute panic in seventeen states.

My first clue that this was going on was yesterday, about 11, I went to my local grocery store to pick up some dog food.  The parking lot was near empty and I found a parking spot close to the front door.  Right inside the door was a sign that said the system was down and announced that the store could not process food stamp payments.

By the time I got home it had hit my Facebook and Twitter feed.  I used the search function on Twitter and ran "food stamps."  Panic hardly describes it.  I was going to capture some of that mess but that's what Twitchy is for, so I didn't waste my time.  I honestly could not believe what I was reading as I thumbed through these tweets; everyone blamed it on the shutdown and everyone blamed the shutdown on the Republicans.  Riots and threats were predicted and panic was full blown.  The posts on Twitchy reflect a segment of what I saw yesterday.

The uneducated masses were all jumping to conclusions.  All the Republicans fault and it's all about the shutdown.  Neither of these assumptions were true.  And why is the first reaction to threaten riots?  Check your news sources, make some phone calls, find out the truth; why is the first response to go onto social media and threaten to start riots?

Third world country syndrome.

Jump to today.  I went back to the grocery store this morning (this time because I needed aluminum foil and ground beef.)  The parking lot was packed, the lines were long, and everybody was happy, happy, happy.  Except the cashiers, maybe.

What struck me about it, though, is what has been the subject of an ongoing debate about the food stamp program.  I have no way of knowing, of course, who was paying with food stamps and who wasn't, so this is all assumption, really.  But in these long checkout lines were baskets overflowing with Hot Pockets, frozen pizza, sugary sodas, sugary cereals, Little Debbies, chips, cookies, pop tarts, etc.  Little to no fruit or fresh vegetables.  Not much milk.  It was a quick, cursory glance - purely unscientific observation.  I give you that.  But we've all seen it.

It reminded me of the day Steve and I returned home from our summer vacation.  We'd been gone nearly two weeks and a stop by the grocery store was mandatory before we went home.  I was in line, watching the clerk scan my groceries and I was punchy-tired the way you get after ten hours in a car.  A young woman in line behind me had inched up into my personal space and was peering at my groceries with fascination.  When she saw the two packages of ribeye steaks come across she
couldn't restrain herself any longer.

"What is THAT?!" she asked.  "Steak?"

"Yes," I said.  "Ribeyes."

"What animal do that come from?!  Steaks!"

Curiously, I looked at her.  She truly wanted to know.  "Cows."

"Cows!  Cows make steaks!  Oh my!   Them's are expensive!  Lawd!"

Yes, they are.  An indulgence that I don't do all the time.

When the clerk told me my total, just over $100, I slid my debit card and punched in my code.

"Y'alls get food stamps?"  the young woman asked, her gold tooth glittering as she grinned at me.

"No.  I don't."

"Y'alls should gets food stamps!  That ways you don't have to pay for them groceries!"

It was too much in my current state of exhaustion.

"I can't get food stamps," I said.

"ooooooohh," she said, sadly.  "That's too bad."  She was shaking her head back and forth with a look of sadness on her face.

And yes, she had tattoos, a nice hair-do, and a full manicure.

All of which is to say this.  I don't begrudge helping the needy; truly, I don't.  I'm a charitable, giving person.  I understand why families were upset that they couldn't get groceries yesterday.

All the fuss yesterday seemed to be a foreshadowing of what is to come when this government finally goes broke, and it will.  The apocalypse is upon us.

If the government can give it to you, the government can take it away.  That wasn't the case yesterday with the EBT system, but people didn't know that.  They thought they'd been cut off.  I would suggest that people get ready for that.  The day is coming.

And in the meantime, I suggest that there should also be food stamp reform.  It's beyond contradictory that Michelle Obama's main initiative is obesity and healthy eating when we continue to allow people with EBT cards to fill their carts (and their children) with preservatives, processed foods, and sugary crap:

A 2012 study found that food stamps enable about $2 billion worth of junk food purchases each year, and that more than half of the beverages bought using SNAP benefits are sugary drinks.

Representative Phil Roe (R-TN) proposed just such a bill in September, which of course, prompted the liberals to scream foul.  Roe's bill would model the SNAP program on the WIC program.
Roe’s bill would change the model for food stamps to that used by the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, which provides food benefits for mothers with young children. WIC has significantly more restrictions on it, to ensure that mothers and children get sufficient calcium, grains, and fruit.

But the liberals, ironically, see it as a nanny-state move.  (That would be the same liberals who tell New Yorkers they can't have Big Gulps and trans-fats.)

Roe's bill doesn't even address that area of food stamp fraud where people sell their EBT cards for cash.  That was on Twitter, too, yesterday, and I know this exists.  Why do we live in a society where there is no shame whatsoever in boasting about how much money you get each month from the government for your groceries?  I remember when people used to be embarrassed about taking government handouts.

All in all it's enough to make me want to go off the grid.  What ever happened to self-reliance and independence?   The vitriol on Twitter yesterday also included demands from people not on food stamps for those who are to consider getting jobs and therefore not be dependent on the government.  Obviously there are some who can't do that.  But our politicians would be doing everyone a favor if they quit squabbling like petulant children and focus on job creation and restoring this economy rather than tearing the country apart.

And that includes Republicans.


And in a related story, from KSLA:
Shelves in Walmart stores in Springhill and Mansfield, LA were reportedly cleared Saturday night, when the stores allowed purchases on EBT cards even though they were not showing limits.  
The chaos that followed ultimately required intervention from local police, and left behind numerous carts filled to overflowing, apparently abandoned when the glitch-spurred shopping frenzy ended.  
Springhill Police Chief Will Lynd confirms they were called in to help the employees at Walmart because there were so many people clearing off the shelves. He says Walmart was so packed, "It was worse than any black Friday" that he's ever seen.
 Lynd explained the cards weren't showing limits and they called corporate Walmart, whose spokesman  said to let the people use the cards anyway. From 7 to 9 p.m., people were loading up their carts, but when the cards began showing limits again around 9, one woman was detained because she rang up a bill of $700.00 and only had .49 on her card. She was held by police until corporate Walmart said they wouldn't press charges if she left the food. 

And this from Rex Moncrief at Conservative Drink:

(Graphic via Pew Research)

Update 10/14/13:  Now a thread on Memeorandum.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Free Braveheart!

UPDATE:  This story now has a happy ending:  Braveheart was released by Caddo Animal Control and has now been formally adopted by the foster family that was caring for him!  You can keep up with the latest here.

Imagine being chained to a car and left in a storage locker for a week with no water and temperatures outside hovering around 100 degrees.

You're starving, thirsty, dehydrated, confused, and don't understand why this is happening to you.

It sounds like a plot for a Stephen King novel, but it isn't.  This is what happened to a four month old dog who is now named Braveheart.

Braveheart was discovered by the owners of the locker facility off Youree Drive.  He was as close to death as he could possibly be.  He was rushed to the emergency animal clinic, and later was later taken to Benton Animal Hospital where he miraculously survived.  The pictures posted by Lumberjack Rescue on their Facebook page are awful; if you want to see a starved, carcass of a dog, you can go look.  You can read more about his story here.

The good folks at Benton Animal Hospital have cared and nurtured Braveheart to the point where he was able to be fostered out to Ronda and Bo Spataro; Ronda works at the animal hospital and Braveheart has been going to work with her.

TSR LA Baby Mommas Rescue has also been involved in caring for Braveheart.  An auction was organized and many in the community have pledged and raised money for Braveheart's care, because really, nobody wants to see a dog abused and abandoned like this.

Braveheart was making a terrific recovery.  A video of him running across a green, grassy yard and playing with other dogs, tail wagging, eyes bright, was posted on social media last week.  It was a miracle!

Until yesterday.

Yesterday, Caddo Animal Control came and took Braveheart away from the Spataros, put him in a kennel, and abandoned him once again at Animal Control.  They said he is "evidence."  Property.  There's an investigation going on, you see, into the people that did this to Braveheart.

It defies common sense why anyone would take this dog away from a loving foster family where he is getting top notch care, and place him in a cold, soulless kennel.  His immune system is highly vulnerable and he is susceptible to the plethora of diseases in a pound.

The Spataros are devastated.  The community is outraged.  KTAL did a story on it last night which will bring you to tears.

What can you do?  Email everyone on the Caddo Commission and tell them, respectfully, that this dog needs to be returned to his foster family.  Keeping him at Animal Control is a death sentence.  The Spataros are responsible, professional people who will take care of the dog and restore him to health.  There are plenty of pictures that are "evidence"; to keep the dog in a kennel at Animal Control is just cruel and reaffirms his loss of faith in humans.  You can start with an email or phone call to Everett Harris and Charles Wilson.

Free Braveheart!

(Thanks to Chad Rogers at Dead Pelican for sharing Braveheart's story).

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Grade Ten Reading List

We have completed our first novel unit, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, in my sophomore English class, and because so many of you were generous enough to contribute to help raise the books we needed, I am working on a report for you about how that was.  My recap is not finished yet, but in the mean time...

The parish has now ordered the new Shakespeare plays we must do: Hamlet for grade twelve and Macbeth for grade ten.  Julius Caesar is a goner. Et tu, Brute?   I received word that they are now in and we'll be able to get started on those on schedule.  This is good news.

When we started the year, this was the list from which I was to choose our reading material.

Question:  What two books would you choose from this list to use in a 10th grade classroom?  And do the demographics and average reading level of your class factor into that choice?  (I'm taking Macbeth off this list because we are required to do that one.  We will do Macbeth and two more).

·         1984- Orwell
·         The Book of Lost Things- Connolly
·         The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime- Haddon
·         The Death of Ivan Ilyich- Tolstoy
·         A Doll’s House- Ibsen
·         Falling Leaves- Mah
·         Fast Food Nation- Schlosser
·         The Glass Menagerie- Williams
·         The Grapes of Wrath- Steinbeck
·         H-The House of Spirits- Allende
·         H-How the Irish Saved Civilization- Cahill
·         H-Idylls of the King- Tennyson
·         The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks- Skloot
·         H- Inferno- Dante- J. Ciardi version
·         The Joy Luck Club- Tan
·         Life of Pi- Martell
·         Macbeth -
·         H-Midnight’s Children- Rushdie
·         My Sister’s Keeper- Picoult
·         H-The Namesake- Lahiri
·         One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich- Solzhenitsyn
·         H- One Hundred Years of Solitude- Marquez
·         Phantom of the Opera- Leroux
·         The Picture of Dorian Gray- Wilde
·         H- The Poisonwood Bible- Kingsolver
·         The Prince- Machiavelli
·         The Seagull- Chekhov
·         So Long a Letter- Ba
·         A Thousand Splendid Suns- Hosseini
·         Things Fall Apart- Achebe
·         Three Cups of Tea- Mortenson
·         Trifles- Glaspell
·         True Grit- Portis
·         H-Turn of the Screw- James
·         Twelve Angry Men- Rose
·         H- The Woman in Black- Hill

The "H" designation is for Honors classes.   My honors class is next semester.

Vote now.

And thank you.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Take a Trip to the Sixth Annual Barksdale Oktoberfest

The sixth annual BAFB Oktoberfest celebration is in the books and it just keeps on getting better each year!  The volunteers and groups that worked on this year's festival outdid themselves.

The Oktboerfest celebration is a huge fundraiser for Operation Bright Holiday which sends airmen home for Christmas.  Last year they were able to send 43 airmen home all over the world for Christmas.

There were a few changes this year:  the tent set-up was different and much better.  There was much more room and even at the peak there was plenty of seating.  

There was a beer garden area this year with high tables and umbrellas.

Inside, there was an expanded jumble of activities for the kids, called "Kinderfest," which included a jump rope contest, Bingo, and other kid-friendly activities.  

When we arrived, I had to go find my friend Rose; she's always working at the entrance, so she was easy to find:

She's one of the sweetest, strongest ladies I know, and is great fun!  We found someone to take our picture for us:

She had work to do, though, so I had to move on.  

Near the entrance, and later moved to the middle of the dance floor, was a huge collection box for donations for the Operation Bright Holiday fund.

I really wanted to see that thing just stuffed with cash by the end of the night!

Also new this year was a home-brew competition.  

There were three contenders set up in tents on the deck by Hangar 2.  There was a raspberry Oktoberfest, an IPA, and I missed what the third one was.

I walked around and took some pictures (which rubbed a blister on my foot because I was wearing ridiculous shoes) and gave a silent nod to my friend Joy as I walked by the Hangar.  We lost Joy to cancer last month and this was the first Oktoberfest without her.  I missed her.

Your $25 ticket to Oktoberfest included your dinner, an Oktoberfest mug, a raffle ticket, and two beers.  Quite a deal!  All the food was set up inside, near the Kinderfest activities, and it was excellent.  I remember the first year: it was set up outside the club on the deck.  They basically had potato salad, brats, and pretzels.  They've come a long, long way in six years!  This year we had jaeger schnitzel, brats, cucumber-dill salad, German potato salad, buttered green beans with fried onions, and a huge pretzel.

I also bought a commemorative mug; even though they gave us plastic ones with our ticket, I liked the big, glass one.  Steve bought a t-shirt and I bought a mug.  Go figure.

The regular band for this event is Dallas-based AlpenMusikanten, and boy do these guys stay busy this time of year!  They are constantly doing Oktoberfest events all over the country.  They are a lot of fun and really work the crowd.  They play literally everything from Johnny Cash to traditional polkas.  The kids loved them, too!

By this time the crowd was about at its peak:

I was told they sold over 800 tickets and I believe most of them showed up.  I know some people buy tickets just because it's a good cause and don't actually attend, but I think they had a huge crowd last night.

Steve's son Josh and his "Feyonce," Heather, came with us; this picture is a little blurry but I like it anyway:

They are getting married next month and we are very excited!

After dinner the dancing started picking up a bit.    DJ Larry asked me if I'd learned the "Thriller" dance yet; of course not.  Maybe by next year.  Larry is a great DJ and we love his tunes!  He knows how to keep the crowd on their feet all night long.

We did the Chicken Dance a couple of times, and they played The Wobble, of course, but I skipped that one!

Steve did the Hokey Pokey, and Heather and I did the "Electric Slide."

Yes, I'm barefooted.  Had to come out of those shoes.

One minor glitch this year was that, for some reason, they kept blowing breakers.  The band never missed a beat, though, and just kept on playing whenever it happened.  Eventually they figured out to have someone near the box and so the electricity would come right back on.  Through the night, though, the crowd kind of got into it and so whenever the lights would go, we'd all whoop and cheer and then they'd come back on and we'd carry on.  I caught these guys trying to diagnose the problem:

Another fun crowd-moment was when they played "Freebird" we all held up the flashlights on our phones, swayed back and forth, and sang along!

The night would not be complete without the annual Oktoberfest games and this year they had a yodeling contest and a yard-drinking contest.  If they did the keg roll this year, I missed it.  And I guess they decided not enough folks were dressed up for the costume contest.  I won that one two years in a row!  Both years I won gift certificates for fine meals at the casinos.  Last year, I lost to a guy dressed like a keg!  No costume contest this year though.  Boo.  

But the yard drinking contest was fun and they had a lot of participants for that one!

And here they go:

Watch the guy in green:


They also had a shield decorating contest and this one was the winner:

It was excellent and I thought very well done.

Shortly after that it was time for the "Guacamole Song" which required volunteers:

And, of course, the Hand Jive was next:

Col. Anderson absolutely ROCKS the Hand Jive every year!  

The night went on, we danced, we took a "selfie":

...and before you know it, we were again at the end of the night.  

First to come, last to leave - EVERY year!  And that's the way we roll.

I spoke to one of the organizers last night about the possibility of making online donations to Operation Bright Holiday and when I get that information from her I will post it here if anyone is interested in helping to send an airman home for the holidays.  By the end of the night their collection box was by no means full but people were dropping bills into it all night long.  I have no idea what they ended up raising but all the tip jars at the beer stands were designated for Operation Bright Holiday as well.  Kudos to all the volunteers and organizers this year, and thanks for your hard work!  We had a ball!

Once again, we survived Oktoberfest!  Until next year...

The SIGIS Take a Trip Series:
Take a Trip to the 2012 Defenders of Liberty Air Show at BAFB
Take a Springtime Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden, LA
Take a Trip to Logansport, Louisiana
Take a Trip to the Lock and Dam on Red River
Take a Trip to the 2012 Barkus and Meoux Parade
Take a Christmas Shopping Trip to Second Hand Rose in Minden
Take a Trip to the Fourth Annual Barksdale AFB Oktoberfest 
Take a Trip to Grand Cane's Fifth Annual Pioneer Trade Day
Take a Trip to the 2011 Highland Jazz & Blues Festival
Take an Autumn Trip to Jefferson, Texas
Take a Fall Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden
Take a Trip to the 8th Air Force Museum at Barksdale Air Force Base
Take a Summertime Trip to Grand Cane
Take a Trip to Desoto Parish
Take a Summer Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden
Take a Trip to Natchitoches and Melrose Plantation 
Take a Trip to Ed Lester Farms and a Random Antique Stop
Take a Trip to the Norton Art Gallery and the Masters of Cuban Art Exhibit
Take a Trip to Natchitoches to See the Christmas Lights
Take a Trip to the Third Annual BAFB Oktoberfest 
Take a Trip to Natchitoches and Oakland Plantation