Christmas in the Pines Holiday Festival begins in Jonesboro

The tree has been lit, the Parade has been run and the fireworks exploded. Christmas in the Pines, one of north Louisiana’s favorite holiday festivals that will draw thousands of visitors to Jonesboro to see the millions of lights that adorn the town of Jonesboro has officially begun. 

The festivities began this past Wednesday evening with the lighting of the Christmas tree that is on the Courthouse lawn. Commemorating the event was the Jackson Parish Gifted and Talented Music Group who led the crowd that had gathered to witness the lighting of the tree with Christmas carols. 

On Saturday, Grand Marshall Bart Waggoner was introduced with a Coffee in his honor that took place at the Jonesboro City Hall followed by the annual Parade that was well attended despite the rain that fell continually. Several concerts, including one performed by the student choir of JP Gifted and Talented Music Group, Cornerstone Christian Academy, and Gracepoint Christian Academy students took place in the afternoon at the First Baptist Church in Jonesboro took place in the afternoon followed by a fireworks display that evening. 

Activities continue throughout December leading up to Christmas with Santa being at his “house” located on the corner of 4th Stree and Polk Avenue in Jonesboro each Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 5:00pm – 9:00pm. Carriage rides will also be available in the evenings on those days. 

Jimmie Davis State Park featured on KTVE – MyArkLaMiss

The Jimmie Davis State Park was featured on the KTVE-MyArkLaMiss special Destination Louisiane on Saturday. See below for a reprint of article that was published and video that ran that was authored by Aysha Decuir and Christina Jensen.

CHATHAM, La. (KTVE/KARD) — The Jimmie Davis State Park is located in Chatham, Louisiana. Some call it a waterfront refuge.

“Come early when you come in the summer because you will want a spot and you will want to enjoy the beach and enjoy this area of the park,” said Fouad Harb, District 3 Manager for Northern Region State Parks.

The state park is popular with families, cyclists, campers, fishermen and boaters.

“People come here with the primary purpose, they want to fish, they want to catch those nice, tasty beautiful fish in the state. Crappie, a visitor caught the largest size crappie in the park and the second largest bass was also caught here,” said Harb.

Hikers and bikers can also enjoy scenic areas.

“There is a kids hiking area, we also have a disc golf trail that is being finalized and it’s around 2 and a half miles long and that can also be for hiking,” said Harb.

The park also features lakefront cabins, group lodges or RV camp spots.

“This park has a very nice beautiful RV site and many of them oversee the water. We have 17 cabins here and we also have two lodges. We don’t only get people from the state, we get snowbirds people from out of state,” said Harb.

The park opened in the fall of 1996 and was originally named Caney Creek Lake State Park.

In 2003, it was renamed in honor of two-term governor Jimmie H. Davis.

To view the video segment click here

WHS Homecoming Court to be presented at basketball game on December 2nd

Weston High Schoolinvites you to come and celebrate the presentation of the 2022 Homecoming Court at 5:30 pm on Friday, December 2nd. The festivities will be conducted in the WHS gymnasium prior to the boys basketball game against Choudrant High School. Being crowned as Homecoming King and Queen is Mitchel Mathews and Emma Kate McBride. The Maids and their Escorts are: 

Senior Class:
Heili Bryant
Bra’naja Burns
Kinleigh Harvey
Landon Lutrick
Bryan McMillan
Dillon Pardue

Junior Class:
Baylee Broomfield
Alaina Trosclair
Quetzal Webster
Tayton Culpepper
Cooper Delaney
Rylee McBride

Sophomore Class:
Anslee Aldy
Olivia Marsh
Jacob Gill
Bryce Zehr

Freshman Class:
Jakayla Fourd
Arianna Marsh
Colton Blundell
Kason Roberts

Local youth organization MPAC comes to aid of needy in Jackson, MS

The Thanksgiving holiday is a reminder to all to be thankful for all we have received. Thanks to the benevolence of a local youth group, residents of Jackson, MS not only celebrated the weekend by counting their blessings of the past but what they have just received.

The beleagured city has been dealing with problems with their drinking water over the past several weeks but in a true act of benevolence, Making Provisions for All Children, Inc. (MPAC) a local youth organization founded and operated by Jackson Parish Police Jury member, Tarneshala “Niki” Cowans, came to their aid by bringing pallets of drinking water to be distributed.

“Mr. Stanley Welsey, the distributor there said that although the water has gotten better they still have a long road ahead of them,” said Cowans. “We wanted to do something to make a difference for them and I appreciate all the support we received.”

MPAC is an upcoming youth organization that is geared to giving the local community’s youth a place to be empowered and help them enjoy being young. If you would like to be a part of this tremendous movement, contact Ms. Cowans at (318)475-0893.

LA Dept. of Health offering vaccinations Nov. 28 – Dec. 5 in Jonesboro

Region 8 directors of the Louisiana Department of Health announce that Vaccinations will be offered from 8:00am – 4:30pm beginning on Wednesday, November 30, and running through Friday, December 2 at the Jackson Parish Health Unit, located at 228 Bond Street in Jonesboro. To schedule an appointment call (318) 259-6601. Also, from 10:30 – 12:00pm on the following Monday, December 5th, you can get COVID-19 and Flu vaccines at the Jackson Parish Council on Aging, located at 120 Polk Avenue in Jonesboro.

BEN DUPREE – Modern Day Renaissance Man

He operates a successful deer processing business; he is a garbage man; he teaches concealed firearms classes, he is a farmer who sells his produce; he is an award winning author; he is pastor of his church. And he does all this while being blind. Yes, you read it right; Ben Dupree is functionally blind.

Dupree is a 42 year old graduate of Northwestern State University in Natchitoches with a master’s degree in education.

“After college I began work as a teacher, basketball coach and assistant principal. Then I began having these strange problems with my eyes. I had 20-20 vision but I began having difficulty keeping my eyelids open and I sought medical treatment. I was finally diagnosed with a rare condition, Blephrospasm, a condition that forced my eyelids to close,” Dupree explained.
“I go to Shreveport quarterly to have injections around my eyes so they can stay open.”

After doing something he was trained for in the education system that he absolutely loved, he was forced to have to give it all up after 10 years because of the diagnosis; he was declared functionally blind.

Kristin, Ben’s wife and mother of their two sons, is a registered nurse and the couple was faced with a “what’s next?” dilemma.

“Kristin encouraged me to do something I had always wanted to do, and that’s write a book. So I did and I eventually won an Excellence in Craft award from the Louisiana Outdoor Writer’s Association. I was a commercial fisherman for awhile, I cut and sold firewood and then I got into deer processing. The first year I processed a few deer for friends, an activity that took
place in my wife’s kitchen but she thought it best that I find another place to cut up deer and make sausage. My dad helped me construct a building in our back yard and from something that started simply five years ago, K&B Processing is in a fully operational building with concrete floor, drains and a custom trolly system and I expect to process 400 to 500 this season,” said

Serious health problems forced Kristin to have to give up her job in the nursing profession as a nursing instructor and today, she’s at home keeping records and handling book keeping for the family businesses. Sons Reagan, 15 and Michael 12, are home schooled and assist Dupree in his deer processing business and they take turns on Wednesdays helping their dad on the weekly garbage run, which was the next venture he explored.

The idea of developing a garbage collecting system for folks in the community took shape and today, Dupree has 92 customers throughout north Natchitoches Parish, furnishing cans and drum liners with each Wednesday designated as garbage collection day, garbage taken to the land fill in Natchitoches.

“I’m the only garbage man I know who has a master’s degree,” he quipped.

Rev. Jason Womack, pastor of Goldonna Baptist Church was called to pastor a church in another community recently and before he left, he advised Dupree, who is a licensed minister, to expect to be asked to be interim pastor.

“The church did ask me to consider the interim position which Kristin and I prayed about and I felt led to do. Then the church voted, in a unanimous vote, to call me as pastor. I explained that with all the businesses that I operate, they would have to consider me a bi-vocational pastor and they agreed,” he said.

He might have had to give up his profession of being an educator because of his functional blindness but being a renaissance man, he fits the definition of the word exactly…”a person with many talents or areas of knowledge.”


BLACK BAYOU – Crappie fishing has improved on jigs and shiners. No report on bass or bream. Contact Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707 for the latest information.
BUSSEY BRAKE – Bass fishing continues to be quite good with the best catches made on fake frogs around the pads. A couple of fish over 10 have been reported along with several 8 and 9-pounders. Crappie fishing has been good also on jigs or shiners.
OUACHITA RIVER – The water is low with no current and fishing has in general been fairly shown. A few crappie have been caught and catfish are fair on jugs and in traps. For the latest information, contact the Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE D’ARBONNE – Crappie fishing had continued to be good along the edges of the deeper channels on shiners or jigs. Bass fishing has improved along the channel edges on crankbaits with the Corney Creek area producing the best. in the channels on shiners. Bream are slow while catfish are biting cold worms fished off the banks. For the latest information, call Anderson Sport
Center at 368-9669 or Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE CLAIBORNE – Crappie fishing has been good in the deeper channels with shiners seeming to be preferred over jigs. Bass has been fair fishing crankbaits off the points. A few catfish have been caught on cold worms. The bream and stripers are slow. For the latest information, call Kel’s Cove at 927-2264 or Terzia Tackle at 278-4498.
CANEY LAKE – Best bass fishing has been fishing deep water with jigging spoons and tail spinners working best. Soft plastics and deep diving crank baits have been producing some of the bigger bass in the 7 to 8-pound range. Crappie fishing continues to be the best fishing the deep tops on shiners or jigs. No report on bream or catfish. For information contact Hooks Marina at 249-
2347, Terzia Tackle at 278-4498, or the Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE POVERTY POINT – Crappie fishing has improved both around the slips and on the lower end of the lake on shiners or jigs. Catfishing has been good on a variety of baits. No report on bass or bream. For the latest reports, call Poverty Point Marina at 318/878-0101.
LAKE YUCATAN – The water is quite low. While both crappie and bass fishing has been fair, some really big fish are being caught. No report on bream or catfish. For information, call Surplus City Landing at 318/467-2259.

Weston High Cross County Youth Team holds year end banquet

The Weston High Cross Country Youth Team held thier year end banquest recently where head coach and sponsor Cyndi Pardue handed out several awards to her team. Each member of the team received medals while several others who were deserving earned special awards. The varsity team also took part in the celebration but will receive their awards at the spring athletic banquet in May.

“I am so proud of all our young participants who gave it their all this fall,” said Pardue. “I would like to thank all the parents and sponsores for helping us throughout the season and special thanks goes to Ebenezer Baptist Church for letting us use their church gym for our celebration.”

2022 WHS Cross Country Youth Team Special Award Winners

MVP or (most valuable runner):  Anna Pardue and Miriam Shuler. They both placed in the top 10 at every meet this year.
Most Improved- Jax Davis, Cameron Pardue, Rylee Sonnier, and Landry Thomas
100% award- Elsie Flynn, Brooklyn Johnson, Eli Jones, and Jeremiah Jones
Best Teammate- Aubrie Allen and Sam Jones
Biggest Heart- Raegan Hall, James Lewis


JPL Chatham Branch offering free Holiday Recipes on Friday

Mark your calendar for this upcoming Holiday Workshop, December 2 at Jackson Parish Library/Chatham branch. Three LSU AgCenter Area Nutrition Agents, Shannan Lang Chevallier, Cathy Schimmel Judd, and Kimberlyn Jones will help you get ready for the holiday by sharing holiday recipes and delicious food samples. Please call 318-249-2980 to reserve your spot.

Library enters float in Christmas in the Pines Parade

SNAP Coordinator to be at Chatham Branch on Friday 

Oh, the Shame of Zeroing

It doesn’t matter how good you think you are or how many tournaments you have won, there will come a time when you just can’t figure the fish out and you come to the scales with nothing. This is the number one fear amongst all anglers who fish in tournaments. Anglers will literally wake up in a cold sweat at night when they have this nightmare. But let’s take a deeper look at the psyche of what goes through an angler’s mind as the day unfolds and they come in with no fish in the live well.

           Very few times an angler left the ramp on tournament day because he did not feel good about his game plan. Most anglers usually have a good idea about what and how they’ll catch them on that particular day. But as the day unfolds and the clock is ticking, if an angler does not have fish in the live well by 10:00 AM, at some point he starts to second guess his game plan. He starts thinking (which is usually not a good thing) about how he should have started out deep rather than shallow, how he should have thrown a topwater bait early instead of a worm. Maybe he should have run up the lake instead of staying on the south end or how he should have fished the grass instead of the bushes. But no matter what, pressure starts to build especially when the clock strikes one o’clock with no fish in the box and a weigh-in time of three o’clock. For me, I tell myself, “If I’m going to catch them, I’ve only got two hours to figure them out!”

         The next thing you know it’s two o’clock and you still have nothing to show for all the casts you’ve made. It’s at this point most anglers start to panic and start to visualize coming to the weigh-in with a big fat zero. You start to fish too fast and make bad casts, you get hung up more often and have to go and retrieve your bait in places you can’t get to. So, then you end up breaking off whatever bait you’re throwing, with the internal clock in your head moving faster, as you waste even more time looking for another bait and having to re-rig. It’s during these high-pressure times that you backlash a reel so bad that you have to put it away so that you can cut the backlash out when you get home. Then with only minutes to go, you hook the fish of a lifetime, only to watch it come off and swim away right before you get ready to swing it into the boat. A fitting end to a very frustrating day!

         Then it’s time to head for the weigh-in and you hope everyone is gone by the time you get there…but that’s never the case. It’s funny how when you have twenty pounds of fish in the live well, no one ever asks how you did. But when you have zero, it seems everyone in the tournament, including their grandma, wants to know what you’ve got. But oh, the shame and embarrassment of having to say, “Zero!” It just doesn’t get any worse than that! So, it’s at this time you head straight for the boat ramp, load your boat, tuck your tail between your legs, pull your cap down low so maybe no one recognizes you, and head home. If you want to see who did not catch fish that day, watch the parking lot at the ramp and see just how fast an angler can load his boat and get out of there.

Hope you enjoyed hearing about the misery of what an angler goes through on those days when he just doesn’t catch them. But the thing that’s great about the end of a tournament is it means there’s an opportunity for redemption at the next event. Forget it and move on because that tournament is over and there’s nothing you can do to change the outcome of that event.  Till next time, good luck, good fishing and don’t forget your sunscreen.

Steve Graf
Hook’N Up & Track’N Down Show 
Tackle Talk Live     

Daily Devotional by Pam Ford Davis

NOTE: Pam Ford Davis publishes Devotionals in Mature Living Magazine, Devotions for the Deaf, The Secret Place, Coosa Journal, Mary Hollingsworth’s The One Year Devotional of Joy and Laughter, Jo Krueger’s Every Day in God’s Word. You can find more of her inspirational work at::

Wiped the Slate Clean

The final period of the school day was almost over and the clock on the wall held my attention.
I was in the 7th grade and my homeroom teacher had asked two of us to stay after school.
He wanted help cleaning the classroom and assigned chores.
I think one of mine might have been to dust off and clean the large blackboard on the front wall.
The eraser left visible reminders of recent writing; water cleared away all that remained.
I wiped the slate clean!
The LORD removes all sin from our darkened hearts.
“I, only I, am He who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake,
And I will not remember your sins (Isaiah 43:25 Amplified Bible).”
He doesn’t remember my sins; why do I?
I’m forgiven.
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life]. But all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ [making us acceptable to Him] and gave us the ministry of reconciliation [so that by our example we might bring others to Him], that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting people’s sins against them [but canceling them]. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation [that is, restoration to favor with God] (2 Corinthians 5:17-19 Amplified Bible).”







Business Services, Items for Sale, Job Openings, Public / Legal Notices

To have your job opportunities, business services, items, or any Legal/Public Notices, Advertisements for Bid, Requests for Proposals, and/or Quotes listed – send an email to:


stewart stump removal cardStump Removal and Grinding: Call James Stewart at (318) 243-1009 or (318) 768-2554 for your stump removal and grinding needs. Free Estimates! 





jh bookBook – “100-year history of JHHS football”  Comprehensive year-by-year description of the first 100 years (1919-2019) of JHHS football. Includes categorial individual and team top ten rankings. Perfect Christmas gift for that family member or friend who would enjoy remembering their “glory days”. The cost is $25.00 per book plus $3.00 for shipping and handling. To order call (318) 480-1206. 


commerative plateCommemorative Plates – Beautifully etched china plates commemorating Jonesboro-Hodge High School and Jackson Parish. To order contact Wilda Smith at (318) 426-6511 or Barbara Johnson at (318) 450-5561.















JPJ not to publish today – Sunday, November 27, 2022

Due to unforeseen technical difficulties, the Jackson Parish Journal will not publish today – Sunday, November 27, 2022.

The Jackson Parish Journal will proudly resume publishing on Wednesday, November 30, 2022 at 6:55 a.m.

Make sure to get your news at 6:55 a.m. every day of the week in the fall by subscribing for FREE by clicking HERE.

All JPJ articles are free and always will be free!

Construction on Jonesboro Senior Village set to begin next week

After months of pre-planning and meetings, Jeff Glover, managing partner of the MGM Development Group has reported that final closure on the long awaited financing package took place this past Friday and that construction is now officially set to begin next week on the Jonesboro Senior Village. A drive down Industrial Drive in Jonesboro shows that clearing the land has already taken place for the planned 50 unit, gated, certified green retirement community. Plans call for the expected the developmentto be completed by late 2023.

“I can’t tell you how happy we are that we have finally been able to get the financial package pushed through,” said Glover. “I am very excited that soon we will see actual construction on the development begin.”