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Amanda Simmons

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Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington is offering a Women’s Self-Defense Class on May 30 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Viking Drive Substation located at 2510 Viking Drive in Bossier City.

The class is offered at no charge to residents of Bossier Parish and is limited to 40 applicants.  Daughters and female siblings 14 years and older may enroll as long as they are accompanied by an adult.

Photo courtesy of the Bossier Sheriff's Office

Photo courtesy of the Bossier Sheriff’s Office

Although there is no cost for the class, the Bossier Sheriff’s Office is asking for your support of their food bank program, Operation Blessing, by bringing canned goods or non-perishable food items as donations.

Also, be sure and wear comfortable clothing because of the “hands-on” training.

“This is one of our most popular classes because it helps heighten ladies’ situational awareness and encourages them to become more alert to their surroundings to avoid becoming victims of crime,” said Sheriff Whittington.  “It also gives ladies some basic skills and confidence to protect themselves at home or in the community so they’re prepared in case of an emergency.”

Call the North Louisiana Criminal Justice Academy at 318-965-3525 to register.

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Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington awarded Alexandra Mitchell of Parkway High School an academic scholarship from the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Scholarship Program Wednesday morning.

Alexandra plans to attend Centenary College, major in pre-med and become an obstetrician/gynecologist. SheriffLogo

The Sheriff’s Scholarship of $500 is made possible by the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Honorary Membership Program (LSHMP).  Louisiana Sheriffs provide scholarships to graduating high school students from each parish where the Sheriff is an affiliate of the Program.

Qualities such as academic achievement, leadership, and character are considered in making selections of Sheriff’s scholarship recipients.  Selectees must be permanent residents of Louisiana and enrolled as full-time, undergraduate students within the state.  Scholarships will be awarded in 64 parishes throughout the state.

“I applaud Alexandra and all of our high school graduates who have reached a proud milestone, and I wish all our Bossier Parish seniors the best in their future endeavors and success as they leave high school,” Sheriff Whittington said.

“Academic awards by the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Scholarship Program to Louisiana students demonstrate what the LSHMP is all about,” Sheriff Whittington said.  “This is one of our finest accomplishments, and it invests in Louisiana’s future and gives something back to our community.  This would not be possible without the kind and generous support of Bossier Parish’s Honorary Members.”

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The Bossier City Police Department is planning to conduct a safety checkpoint on Thursday, May 21, 2015 at a location south of I-20 in Bossier City.bossier city police

Officers will be looking primarily for motorists who fail to wear seat belts or don’t have children placed in required safety restraint systems. Violators will receive citations.

The checkpoint is being conducted as part of the Bossier City Police Department’s participation in this month’s “Click It or Ticket” seatbelt enforcement effort and is funded by a grant from the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission.

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Team advances to world competition in July

The Benton Middle School Archery Team competed in Louisville, Kentucky at the 2015 National NASP Archery Tournament. Their team score of 3,357 points earned them 3rd place against 201 teams in their division.archery

Over 12,000 archers competed from across the United States in the three day tournament. BMS will be competing at the 2015 NASP World Tournament in Nashville, Tennessee July 23-25.

BENTON MIDDLE SCHOOL 2015 NATIONAL ARCHERY TEAM
ABBIE RUTLEDGE
AIDAN HAIRE
JOSH FARRIS
KAITLYN MISENHEIMER
RILEY DANIELS
NATHAN HARDIN
AVERIE HALVERSON
ANNA ROBINS
HUNTER SANFORD
TUCKER GIBBS
LUKE STEPHENS
BRANDON CARRIGAN
KAYLA LYNCH
KENDALL FOWLER
TONY LEON
TREY WINKLER
LAKE BRADFORD
DALTON DIEL
KENDALL ORMS
MAKENZIE CHAFFIN
DOUGLAS GRAHAM
GANNON MATLOCK
EMORY KISER
COLTON MALONE

COACHES: TERRIE STREETMAN and JESSICA BENOIT

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House Bill 707 has been returned to the legislative calendar.

The decision was made Tuesday during a House Civil Law and Procedure Committee meeting in Baton Rouge. HB 707, known as the “Marriage and Conscience Act,” would prohibit the state from denying any resident, nonprofit or business a license, benefits or tax deductions because of actions taken “in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction” about marriage.
Mike headshot (cropped)
The decision essentially ‘kills’ the bill this session. State Representative Mike Johnson, R-Bossier City, who authored the bill, opposed the committee’s decision, but was outvoted 10-2.

There was an overflow of support and opposition Tuesday to what could potentially be the most controversial bill of the legislative session.

Johnson says the bill will protect people from state government penalties if they have a sincere belief that marriage is between a man and a woman. However, those against HB 707 say it will allow discrimination and have a negative impact on the state of Louisiana.

The Bossier Press-Tribune is awaiting a response from Rep. Johnson on the committee’s decision.

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Overton Brooks VA Medical Center will host its 5th Annual VA2K, a walk/run event to promote health and fitness, Wednesday, May 20 at noon. The event will take place at the Medical Center’s main entrance.

This is a nationwide event occurring at VA facilities across the U.S. on May 20.

“This is an awesome opportunity for us to promote the health and well-being of both our Veterans and employees,” Dr. Moona Tanga, Director, Occupational Health Program and Wellness Program, said. “The course is only 1.24 miles with most individuals finishing in less than 30 minutes. Even the slightest bit of exercise is key for the mind, body and soul.”

Participants are encouraged to bring donations for the medical center’s Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) program. Donations may include T-shirts, body wash, deodorant, shower shoes and other clothing and toiletry items. Medical Center staff will distribute these items to Veterans receiving assistance through HCHV, a VA program dedicated to ending Veteran homelessness throughout the community.

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Commuters this morning may have noticed a plume of black smoke rising just east of Highway 3, about a mile south of Benton High School.

Courtesy Photo | Bossier Sheriff’s Office

Courtesy Photo | Bossier Sheriff’s Office

A call came in at 5:50 a.m. about a fire that was started by lightning striking a tank battery, causing a fire in three tanks, according to Bossier Sheriff Haz-Mat personnel at the scene.  Two of the tanks were 300-barrel fiberglass salt water tanks, which were completely destroyed. The other tank is a 210-barrel steel crude oil tank.

Bossier Sheriff’s Office Haz-Mat, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and Benton Fire District # 4 were all on scene.  Haz-Mat personnel said there was no other property damage, all materials were contained, and no one was injured.

The destroyed tanks are at RC Adkins Site # 8 Tank Battery, located just off La. Hwy. 3 near Festervan Farms, and the site is owned by Keva Energy, of Kingwood, Texas.

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The 2015 Katy Build tennis tournament will take place on May 22-24 at the Bossier Tennis Center.

The weekend includes meals, Family Kick-Off Night, exhibition games, auction/raffle. The goal is to raise funds for the Katy Build Project that will eventually provide additional housing in Bossier City for first time veteran homeowners.KBuild2

The Katy Build story began in 2011 when Fuller Center for Housing of NWLA partnered with Asbury United Methodist Church in Bossier City. They built a home in honor and memory of Katy Watkins, a servant leader Asbury’s youth group who lost her life along with two others in 2006 in an automobile accident.

Katy was very involved in the church and gave much of her time to making a difference in the lives of those around her. This partnership represents much of what Katy is about – love and service for our fellow neighbor.

This joint partnership would offer such a gift to the Bossier City community. Since 2011, two homes have been constructed on Katy’s Corner, located in the Scott-Dickerson neighborhood in Bossier City.

Funds raised at this year’s tournament will go toward funding future homes in honor and memory of Emily Perdue and Molly Reed in this neighborhood. First Bossier and Simple Church have joined this Katy Build partnership.

For more information or to register, visit http://www.kbtennistourney.org/ or contact the Bossier Tennis Center at 213-2108.

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With a single cut, the Anna P. Tooke Memorial Library on Fairview Point Road in Koran officially opened.

Courtesy Photo: Pictured (From left) are Tooke library branch manager Mary Sanders and Bob Brotherton hold the giant scissors that snipped the ribbon during Thursday ribbon cutting ceremonies. Bossier Parish Director of Libraries Heather McEntee and library board president Dr. Tom Carlton join members of the Anna Tooke family and other parish officials for the event.

Courtesy Photo: Pictured (From left) are Tooke library branch manager Mary Sanders and Bob Brotherton hold the giant scissors that snipped the ribbon during Thursday ribbon cutting ceremonies. Bossier Parish Director of Libraries Heather McEntee and library board president Dr. Tom Carlton join members of the Anna Tooke family and other parish officials for the event.

Ribbon cutting ceremonies were held May 14 at Bossier Parish’s newest library. Bob Brotherton, grandson of Anna Tooke and a member of the Bossier Parish police jury, said the library ribbon cutting might just be the second biggest piece of news to hit the small south Bossier community in decades.

“The biggest news event happened in 1979. It’s reported, it’s recorded, it’s on the Internet. If you go to the Internet you can pull up ‘Koran Sighting’ and you will see Bigfoot was sighted running across an open field in Koran, Louisiana. That was exciting news,” Brotherton said. “I don’t know who saw him or what they had been drinking.”

“This library is the next biggest thing that has happened for this community, and I’m proud that our family has a little something to do with it,” he added.

Brotherton and five other family members each donated one-half acre for a total of three acres to get the library project off the ground. He said the library is something his grandmother, a retired school teacher, would have been delighted to see bear her name.

“She knows what we’ve done and I know she’s happy so many people will enjoy it,” he said.

Heather McEntee, director of the Bossier Parish library system, said the Tooke family’s donation removed the major obstacle standing in the way of bringing the library project from dream to reality.

“We thank you for believing in and supporting the library’s vision, mission and value, and allowing us the opportunity to build this library in honor of your grandmother,” McEntee said to the family members attending the event.

“We thank you for giving us the opportunity to give to the parish a state-of-the-art community center where patrons can imagine, explore and discover their worlds,” she added.

“It is a new and exciting program for this part of the parish, this permanent library,” said Dr. Tom Carlton, president of the parish library board. “I am appalled when I drive by and see the old building. This is a building which will last well into the 22nd century.”

“One of the major parts of the police jury is economic development and community involvement. This is a great example of what can happen in a community as we work to attract new families and get new businesses to set up shop,” said Jack Skaggs, president of the Bossier Parish police jury.

“I don’t know of another library where you can get a cup of coffee, check out a book and sit in a wooded environment to read while your children play in a playground,” he said.

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Heart of Hope-A Sanctuary for Women will be hosting its Fourth Annual LifeCycle on Saturday, June 6, 2015 @ 8 a.m.

Heart of Hope LifeCycle is a benefit bicycle tour for all ages and skill levels. We offer an event for the Lycra loving, hardcore cyclists, as well as a fun and non-intimidating event for leisure cyclists and families. LifeCycle is more than just fundraising; our goal is to encourage cycling and fitness in the region while educating our kids and community on cycling safety.HeartOfHopeLOGO

LifeCycle rode onto the scene in the Shreveport-Bossier area in 2012 and has proven itself to be a very promising event, drawing participants from six states over the past years. Event sponsors and volunteers put this event on the map in a big way with all proceeds going to benefit Heart of Hope-A Sanctuary for Women, a non-profit maternity home in Keithville, LA. Cyclists raved about the event saying that it exceeded their expectations from start to finish.

Pre-event activities begin at River City Cycling, Saturday, May 30, 2015, with packet pick-up.  We will also be hosting our annual Carb-Load Dinner at Heart of Hope on Friday, June 5th starting in the gym @ 5 p.m for a $5 donation at the door. Packet pick-up, registration, and LifeCycle merchandise will also be available Friday evening. Saturday morning breaks daylight with registration/check-in beginning at 7a.m., and the staggered launch of the 28, 42, & 66 mile routes starts at 8 a.m. The Family Fun Ride, which includes the 5 and 14 mile routes, will launch at 9 a.m. Don’t fret, if 5 miles sounds like too long of a stretch, we have “cheat turns” that will cut that a little shorter if you or your lil’ ones get tired.

Registration will be capped at 500 registrants this year. Registrants receive an event T-shirt, goody bag, ticket for door prizes, and access to all event day activities. LifeCycle offers breakfast snacks, fully stocked rest stops, a Youth Bike Safety Clinic hosted by Think First, SAG for each route, and a post ride lunch that will make all of those miles worthwhile.

Heart of Hope is a non-profit organization that is largely volunteer-driven. Participation in this benefit tour and the donations raised will help provide hope and a future for young women facing an unplanned pregnancy. For more details about Heart of Hope LifeCycle please visit: www.ridelifecycle.org or call (318)925-4663.

IF YOU GO:
Who: Heart of Hope-A Sanctuary for Women
What: Heart of Hope LifeCycle
When: Saturday, June 6, 2015
Where: 10420 Heart of Hope Way, Keithville, LA 71047
Why: Benefit Bicycle Tour for Heart of Hope