Ribbon cutting held for new apartment complex in East Hodge

(KNOE) – The Louisiana Housing Corporation recently celebrated the grand opening of Village Homes Apartments in East Hodge. The new apartment complex has a total of 24 units and features affordable duplex-styled homes. They offer two-bedroom and three-bedroom apartments.

“This ribbon-cutting is not merely a celebration of the enhancements we’ve made but a testament to Fairfield Property Management’s vision of cultivating vibrant, sustainable communities,” said Managing Partner of Fairfield Management Edward Taylor. “Our extensive interior and exterior improvements are designed to enrich our residents’ lives, reflecting our belief that the essence of community living is about providing a foundation for dreams to grow and aspirations to be realized. We’re not just renovating properties; we’re elevating lifestyles and fortifying communities.”

LHC awarded $423,052 through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program.

“The LIHTC program helps raise property values and provides economic stability by creating jobs as well as producing affordable housing,” said LHC Interim-Executive Director Marjorianna Willman. “Developing quality and affordable housing does make a difference in communities, and I expect Village Homes Apartment to do just that.”

To learn more about Village Homes Apartment, click here.

Monday/Tuesday features heavy slate of games for local preps

NOTE: Due to the Jackson Parish Journal having to format for Sunday publication earlier in week, all game recaps from Thursday, December 7 thru Saturday, December 10th will be posted in the Wednesday, December 13th edition.  

The week begins with a bang for the five area schools in the Jackson Parish Journal coverage area as three play on Monday, December 11th and all are in action on Tuesday, December 12th. 

Prep Schedule for games December 11-12

MondayWestonDodson6:00 pm
MondayOCSSaline6:00 pm
TuesdayLincoln PrepJHHS5:00 pm
TuesdayDodsonMontgomery5:00 pm
TuesdayQuitmanSt. Mary’s5:00 pm
TuesdayClaiborne ChristianWeston5:30 pm

Weston High FFA members Beaubeouf and Colvin qualify for state competition

Molly Beaubeouf and Cejay Colvin

Weston High School FFA representatives Molly Beaufeouf and Cejay Colvin have qualified for the LDE state competition that will take place on on the campus of the University of Louisiana – Monroe (ULM) on December 15th. The pair of outstanding leaders qualified for state by each placing second in their designated category at area 1 competition held on December 5th with Beaufeouf entered in Public Speaking and Colvin in the Gulf of Mexico competition.

Former JHHS gridder Xavier Atkins up for Texas Football Player of the Year Award

Jonesboro native Xavier Atkins

Once a Tiger, Always a Tiger! That is the creed of the extended family who ever walked the halls of Jonesboro-Hodge High School. Now is the time to put your belief to work. 

This is a call to all Tiger fans to show support for one of the best football players who ever donned a JHHS jersey –  albeit for only a short time. 

Currently a vote is being held by the publication Dave Campbell’s Texas Football asking to name Mr. Texas Football Player of the Year. The choice is made from a list of ten candidates, which includes former JHHS gridder Xavier Atkins. 

When the door shut on Atkins prep career at JHHS, another one opened at Summer Creek in Humble, TX. Atkins not only went through it, he knocked it down, showing the Houston metro area and the state of Texas what locals and many across the state of Louisiana already knew. When it comes to playing linebacker you would be hard pressed to find anyone who does it better. 

The 4-Star LSU commit who led the entire nation with 180 solo tackles and the state of Louisiana with 219 tackles was named first team Class 2A All-State in both 2021 and 2022 while at Jonesboro-Hodge. 

Listed as one of the ten best in the state, Atkins is a cinch to be named to a third straight All-State team this year, the difference being he will be a member of the Class 6A All-State team in Texas.

Atkins has compiled sterling stats while leading Summer Creek to a 13-1 record. a #29 national ranking and #7 in the state of Texas and a spot in the Class 6A state semifinals. The 6’1″ 200 pounder leads his team with 63 solo tackles and 88 total tackles from his middle linebacker position. He also has 16 tackles for a loss, caused three forced fumbles and made two interceptions. 

His 2023 stats and his contribution to the Summer Creek football program qualifies him for the nomination as Mr. Texas Football Player of the Year. 

How can you help? It is simple. 

Click here !

You can vote as often as you want. 

Atkins may be playing for another team but he is still a JHHS Tiger. 

Once a Tiger, Always a Tiger!

Town of Saline Celebrates Decorating of 2023 Christmas Tree

Who doesn’t enjoy setting up the Christmas tree and decorating it with lights and ornaments. It is even more enjoyable when the whole town comes together to take part in the festive event.

That is what took place in Saline this past week as residents joined together for the decorating of the 2023 Town Christmas Tree. Adults and children alike all took part while also enjoying the fellowship brought forth by the upcoming holiday season.

The Saline Watermelon Festival Committee, who sponsors the annual event, wants to say thank you to all who came out and volunteered their time to help decorate the first real life tree that was donated by Mr. & Mrs. Steve Nelson. Thanks goes also to Kevin Crawford for setting up Christmas music, Eileen Murphy for spending helping bring festive cheer to downtown Saline. Can’t forget Tammy for buying the huge Santa & Snowman and everyone who donated lights & decorations. 

Memories of Decorating the Town of Saline Christmas Tree

Merry Christmas to All

Jonesboro Study Guild presents Christmas donation to DART

JSG President Christie Weeks (r) presents check to DART Rural Advocate Andrea Malone (l)

The town of Jonesboro and Jackson Parish is fortunate to have organizations who believe in supporting their community. The Jonesboro Study Guild (JSG) is one that has a long tradition of making benevolent acts that benefit residents of Jackson Parish. Once again the members have stepped up, this time when JSG President Christie Weeks donated a monetary “Christmas” gift to the Jackson Parish chapter of DART Rural Advocate Andrea Malone. 

The Domestic Abuse Resistance Team (DART) provides help to domestic and dating violence victims and their children in North Central Louisiana in the parishes of Jackson, Lincoln, Union, Winn, Claiborne, Bienville and Grant. DART provides leadership in educating its communities about domestic and dating violence and its consequences and creates and implements programs to prevent domestic and dating violence.

The Jackson Parish DART office also participates in the Men Standing Strong program. The rural advocate makes speaking engagements throughout Jackson Parish on topics including teen dating violence, elder abuse and bullying. Jackson Parish DART office erects the Silent Witnesses figures each year in October and holds a candlelight vigil to remember those who have been murdered by domestic violence.

At Christmas, activities include Angel Tree for the children and a Christmas luncheon for CCRT. During the DART Radiothon, Jackson Parish holds a bake sale and collects donations at the local Wal-Mart to raise additional funds.

The administration and staff of DART would like to thank the Jonesboro Study Guild for their help in achieving their mission. 




Naming Deer Stands Takes Imagination

Calling ‘em deer “stands” is a misnomer. Most of us don’t stand; we sit. It’d make more
sense to say we were going to climb a tree and hunt out of our deer “seat”, which could be a chair, or stool, or board nailed between two branches.

However, we need to accept the fact that we climb and sit down in deer stands. Even the hunting catalogs call ‘em deer “stands” so if they’re good enough for Cabela’s they ought to be good enough for us.

The first deer stand I ever used was one I built. By today’s standards, climbing and sitting in the one I made would get you seriously maimed, or worse. To reach my perch 12 feet up in the tree, I drove spikes into the trunk (that activity today would get me banned from the club by the timber company owning the land), and once I reached my desired height, I nailed a two-by-four in a fork of the tree for a place to sit. Admittedly, my hunts were of fairly short duration because the comfort level deteriorated rather quickly.

Today, while some hunters still construct their own stands, there are types of deer stands on the market that boggle the mind. There are box stands, ground blinds, climbing stands, lock-on stands, ladder stands, saddle stands and even one you pull on a trailer to your hunting site, hit a button and the stand on the trailer magically elevates for you to climb into and hunt.

Many of the stands we have used on our hunting club are stands members constructed and for sure, they’re better made and safer than the spikes-in-the-tree; two by four seat from my early days of chasing deer.

Interestingly, we named most of our stands to coincide with either the location or the
circumstances from which the stand originated.

One of the stands I used was a ground blind I built and it had been dismantled, moved and reconstructed at least three times. I dismantled and moved the stand to my former hunting club in 2001, and in honor of the devastating event that took place that year on September 11, I call this stand Ground Zero.

Another of my stands, a box mounted atop a ladder, rested against a tree that was literally covered in poisonous green vines when the tree was selected. It’s only natural that this stand was called Poison Oak.

Still another was a similar stand sitting against a tree on the banks of Sugar Creek, a
stream that periodically floods and brings with it debris from who-knows-where. While getting the stand ready to place on the tree, I noticed an old light bulb lying in the leaves. It had washed in from somewhere. The name of this stand? Forty Watt.

Another of my stands was a tri-pod and the day I put it up, a pretty orange Gulf Fritillary butterfly (I had to Google it to find out the name) came and lit on my finger. The tri-pod became the Butterfly Stand.

My good friend and hunting partner, George Seacrist, named all his stands from Running Wild to Bermuda Triangle to Indian Mound. One of his that caught my interest was a big roomy ground stand he set up down in the bottom along the creek. He called it Noah’s Ark.

A couple of years later, he set up a box stand on the ridge above Noah’s Ark and was
pondering with me one day about a possible name. Hmmmm….Noah’s Ark is down in the bottom. Why not Mount Ararat on the ridge? George liked it and that’s the new name it was given.

The next stand I build I’m going to call it the Ten Point Buck stand. Maybe if I name it
that, I’ll get that big one. If things turn out wrong, I guess I’ll just call it the Dang-I-Missed-Him stand.

”Some deer stands almost defy the imagination, such as this metal chair fastened to a tree.” Courtesy photo


CANEY LAKE – Bass are moving to deeper water with best catches made on jigs, spoons and soft plastics. Crappie have been best around the deeper tops on shiners or jigs and they will also be headed for deeper water out from the dam as temperatures drop. For information contact Caney Lake Landing at 259-6649, Hooks Marina at 249-2347, Terzia Tackle at 278-4498 or the Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
BLACK BAYOU – No report. Water is low. Contact Honey Hole Tackle Shop 323-8707 for latest information.
BUSSEY BRAKE – The water is low and overall fishing is slow. For latest information, contact the Honey Hole at 323-8707.
OUACHITA RIVER – Crappie have been best fishing jigs or shiners around submerged tops in the river and in river lakes. Bass are best in the cuts fishing shad imitation lures. For latest information, contact the Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE D’ARBONNE – With cooler weather dropping water temperatures, the crappie bite is on fishing the channels and channel edges in 14-16 foot water on shiners or jigs. Bass are moving to the secondary points and swim baits and soft plastics are picking up some nice fish. Catfish continue to be caught fishing cold worms and night crawlers off the banks. For latest information, call Anderson Sport Center at 368-9669 or Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE CLAIBORNE – The lake is down some seven feet as the result of the drawdown. Crappie are moving to deep water out from the dam with shiners taking the most fish while jigs are working fairly well. Bass fishing has fair this week as they too are starting to move deep. Billy Willis, Ruston, had one near 8 pounds. Boats can still be launched at the State Park launch.. For latest information, call Kel’s Cove at 927-2264 or Terzia Tackle at 278-4498.
LAKE POVERTY POINT – Catfishing has been good. Crappie fishing has improved on both ends of the lake with the south end of the lake as well as around the slips starting to improve. No report on bass. For latest reports, call Poverty Point Marina at 318/878-0101.
LAKE YUCATAN – The water is low and fishing is quite slow this week. A few slab crappie have been caught on jigs and shiners. For information, call Surplus City Landing at 318/467-2259.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Jackson Parish Library

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at both the Jonesboro and Chatham Branches of the Jackson Parish Library. Patrons will want to take advantage of seeing the incredible display of Christmas ornaments and figurines that adorn the tops of the cabinets at Jonesboro Branch, located 614 South Polk Avenue. 

Kids to Enjoy Fun with Food at Chatham Branch on Tuesday

Make sure to bring your children to Play-Grow-Read on Tuesday, December 12th. Two sessions of fun with food will be held at the Chatham Branch Library, located at 1500 Pine Street with the first beginning at 10:00 am and the second at 4:30 pm. 

Pics with Santa shown on JPL Facebook page

The pictures of your child with Santa that were taken during the presentations of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Island of Misfits Toys at the Jonesboro Branch earlier this month are available to be seen by visiting the Jackson Parish Library Facebook page. Here are a few examples. 

Art Club gets into Christmas Spirit

Attendees of the Tuesday / Thursday Art Club sessions at the Jonesboro Branch Library enjoyed getting into the Christmas spirit by making wreaths during craft time. Bring your child so they can participate in the fun. Art Club begins at 4:00pm.

Forest Haven Graduates 2023 CNA Class

2023 CNA Graduates

Forest Haven Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center in Jonesboro is proud to announce the graduation of the 2023 CNA Class. Earning their certifications after completing the requirements of the class taught by Amber Kornegay were: Kenijah Car, Kyleigh Harper, Lakeshia Hunter, Nyah Pierce, Kara Tims, Shari Calahan, and Tamera Wyatt. 

A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) is an important position in any healthcare setting with many responsibilities that make them an integral part in the process of caring for patients. Nursing homes and adult care facilities are often the most common places where nursing assistants are needed.

Deadline to purchase tickets for Saline vs Cedar Creek in New Orleans, Dec. 14th

The times have been set for the “Court of Dreams” games in New Orleans where Saline High School will play Cedar Creek in a girls and boys basketball game at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, home of the New Orleans Pelicans.

TICKET INFORMATION! Cost of tickets are $25.00 and parking passes are $20.00. Each ticket is good for both Saline vs Cedar Creek games AND the New Orleans Pelicans game against the Los Angeles Clippers. Each ticket purchased through the offer will receive a souvenir Trey Murphy jersey. 

METHOD OF PAYMENT! Due to all tickets being purchased through the school, cash will be the only method of payment accepted. Provide your information on the form shown below and fill out the table to the right to indicate how many tickets and parking passes you will need. Forms and payment must be submitted to the Saline High School office no later than 3:20 pm on Thursday, December 14th.

GAME INFORMATION! The Saline girls will play Cedar Creek @ 12:30 pm on January 5th followed by the boys game. ALL FANS WILL HAVE TO LEAVE THE CENTER AFTER THE BOYS’ GAME. Doors will open again at 6:00 for the Pelicans’ game, and the same ticket will get you back in!

The “It” Factor…

Have you ever wondered why some people are so successful no matter what they do? With some people it seems that everything they touch turns to gold. We all know folks who fall into this category and who seem to have something special that you just can’t put your finger on. You can’t measure it, but it’s something average people just don’t have. We call it the “It” factor!

Of course, there are some physical skills you can develop in a person that will help them to achieve great things. With help from the right mentor or coach, you can develop certain skills that may put you on the path to success by making you faster or stronger. But the “It” factor is something you’re born with. Let’s face it, the good Lord blesses certain people with abilities and skills others will never have.

Now, it’s doesn’t mean you can’t be successful, but those born with “it” just take success to another level. The “it” is the gift that allows people to do things you can’t explain. They do things instinctively while the rest of us wonder why and how they did it. We question what makes them so good? Let’s look at an angler who falls into the “it” category.

In the bass fishing world, it’s the man from Kalamazoo Michigan…. Kevin Van Dam (KVD), the man who many call the greatest bass angler to ever wet a hook. One day while having a conversation with Kevin’s brother, Randy, we talked about Kevin’s instincts and what makes him so good. Randy told me that even as a young kid, Kevin did things that defied explanation.

Kevin, Randy, and their dad fished often when the bites were few and far between. For reasons unknown, Kevin would switch to another bait and start catching fish immediately. This was something, according to Randy, Kevin did frequently. For no apparent reason he would pick up a different rod and just start whacking them while Randy and his dad just stood there in amazement shaking their heads and wondering why. Over his entire career, Kevin would zig when others would zag. These are instincts not all anglers have and is what separates the great anglers from the average ones.

In the bass tournament world, there are certain anglers who seem to always make the right decisions at the right time. It’s because, like Kevin Van Dam, they have the “it” factor on their side. In tournament fishing, this is the difference between those that win tournaments and those that don’t. If you’ll notice and look at tournament standings over the years, there are certain guys who seem to always be at the top.

Obviously they are good anglers, but they also have something special that allows them to win more often than others…. they have ”it!” You can’t teach it or learn it, you must be blessed with it. I’m not sure why God only hands “it” out to a select few. If you’re one of those who has this gift, be thankful. Because if you use it correctly, it will serve you well.

There’s a radio show that’s been on air for over 16 years. The Hook’N Up & Track’N Down Show that also has the “it’ factor as they cover all things related to the great outdoors. Rated as the #1 outdoor radio show in the Ark-La-Tex, you can catch this program every Wednesday from 11:00 till 1:00 CST on AM 1130 The Tiger or FM 103.3. You can also catch these guys on Facebook live or their web site at http://www.hutdshow.com. Till next time, good luck, good fishing and even though it’s cooler now, you still need to wear your sunscreen. Melanoma does not discriminate!

Steve Graf
Angler’s Perspective

Heritage Quilt Guild gifts Forest Haven resident Jimmy McConathy

Christmas came early for Forest Haven Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center resident Jimmy McConathy who received a special Veterans Quilt by the Heritage Quilt Guild of Jonesboro. As a member of the United States Armed Services, McConathy served in the Vietnam War. 

The Heritage Quilt Guild (HQG) meets at 9:30 am on the 1st Wednesday of each month at the Jonesboro-Hodge Methodist Church, located at 402 4th Street in Jonesboro. The non-profit charity organization provides a means for quilters and guild lovers to promote the appreciation and preservation of quilts and share the art so it can be handed down to others.


New 4-H Officers Receive Training

Twenty-one newly elected 4-H club officers from the area met at the Charles H. Garrett Community Center recently for Officer Training. Helping the leaders of area clubs learn more about their individual positions and how to work together to conduct a successful 4-H meeting was Jackson Parish 4-H Director Kristina Bourgeous, Megan Martin from Bienville Parish 4-H and Mrs Anita Williams, administrator of Gracepoint Christian Academy in Jonesboro.


Daily Devotional by Pam Ford Davis

The True Meaning of Christmas

Years ago, our children helped decorate the Christmas tree. We were living in a campground in southern California and managed to find room for a small tree. There was little expense.

April and Lee helped string popcorn and made colorful construction paper chains. The hanging of candy canes completed the decorating of our camper Christmas tree. Including children in Christmas decorating and cookie baking is memorable. Teaching them the things of God is much more important.

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord:

And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:

And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up (Deuteronomy 6:4-7 KJV).”

Teach the children.

“And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)

To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn (Luke 2:4-7 KJV).”

Teach children the true meaning of Christmas.

“And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins (Matthew 1:21 KJV).”

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

To have your Business Services, Job Opportunities, Items for sale, Wanted to Buy and Public / Legal Notices published – send an email to: jpjjacksonla@gmail.com. Possible costs are dependent on content. 


100 Year History of JHHS Football – Wonderful Christmas gift for father, son, brother, uncle or just a great friend. Relive the memories, players and teams in this comprehensive season-by-season review of Jonesboro-Hodge High School football from 1919 – 2019. Cost of book is $25.00 each or $40.00 for two. Free shipping. To order call 318-480-1206 or send email to jpjjacksonla@gmail.com



Jackson Parish School Board Meeting Minutes
December 4, 2023

The Jackson Parish School Board met in regular session at 11:00 a.m. on December 4, 2023 at Jackson Parish School Board, 315 Pershing Highway, Jonesboro, La.

The following were present for roll call: Calvin Waggoner, Dennis Clary, Paulette Belton, Rick Barlow, Gerry Mims, Mary Saulters and Wade McBride

Absent: None

May Saulters gave the Invocation.

Paulette Belton led in the Pledge of Allegiance.

The meeting was called to order by Calvin Waggoner.

Motion was made by Mary Saulters, seconded by Wade McBride and carried to approve the minutes as presented from the Regular Scheduled Meeting held on November 6, 2023.

The Board recognized Amy Hay who presented information on 2022-2023 School Performance Scores.

A motion was made by Dennis Clary to name Mary Saulters as Vice-President for 2024. A motion was made by Wade McBride to name Gerry Mims as Vice-President for 2024. A roll call was taken with the following votes cast:
Gerry Mims – Calvin Waggoner, Wade McBride, Rick Barlow, Gerry Mims, Paulette Belton
Mary Saulters – Dennis Clary and Mary Saulters

Gerry Mims was named Vice-President for 2024.

Dennis Clary reported to the Board on the meeting of the Executive Finance Committee held prior to the Board meeting.

A motion was made by Mary Saulters, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried to approve for payment the following bills: General Fund, Federal Program, School Food Service, Sales Tax, Special Education, District Maintenance bills.

A motion was made by Wade McBride, seconded by Paulette Belton and carried to approve payment to D2I in the amount of $19,250.00 for our District Annual Data Package that assists in analyzing data-driven school improvement plans, January 1, 2024 – December 31, 2024, to be paid from 2023-2024 ESSER III funds.

A motion was made by Mary Saulters, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried approving the Differentiated Compensation Allocation stipend for the fiscal year 2023-2024 to be paid to highly effective teachers (using the 2022-2023 evaluation ratings). The total allocation for this funding is $76,414, to be paid from the Differentiated Compensation Allocation fund.

Presentation of Monthly Financial Report by Kristi Bass, Business Manager.

Wade McBride reported to the Board on the meeting of the Building and Grounds Committee held prior to the Board meeting.

A motion was made by Rick Barlow, seconded by Gerry Mims and carried accepting low quote of $193,380.00 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations, to be paid from Weston District funds. (Pending Act 397 funding)

A motion was made by Rick Barlow, seconded by Paulette Belton and carried approving Change Order No. 1 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations to reduce the cost of total project by $36,780.00.

A motion was made by Gerry Mims, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried accepting low quote of $109,387.76 from Canon Services for materials and labor to replace cooler and freezer equipment at all schools and Central Office, to be paid from School Food Service funds.

A motion was made by Gerry Mims, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried to adjourn at 11:25 a.m.


Death Notice

Dorothy L. Wingert
September 12, 1948 – December 5, 2023

wingertMrs. Dorothy L. Wingert of Jonesboro, LA, was born on September 12, 1948 to the late Harvel Gray and Louise Gray Rumbaugh. On December 5, 2023, she left her earthly body and was made new as she entered the gates of heaven and will be rejoicing for eternity.

Dorothy loved fiercely, was full of generosity and always put others before herself. Her husband, two daughters, grandchildren, and great grandchildren were her most treasured blessings. Her door was always open.

Due to her resilience and quick wit, she worked from the bottom to the top, being named as one of the first female department managers at Stone Container. After her career, she spent her time with her family, attended church, sang for the lord, and enjoyed crafting, gardening, and fishing. She loved the Lord with all her heart and was an intercessor for the ones she cherished. Her personal relationship with God was one to be admired. Despite her battles she left a legacy of unwavering faith. To her family, which she affectionately adored, she was a gift. To know her was to love her. She had an enormous heart and wonderful sense of humor. Those around her knew they could depend on her support at any time. Her infectious smile and contagious laugh will be dearly missed.

“For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Dorothy is survived by her husband of 31 years, John Wingert of Jonesboro, LA, two daughters, Michelle Brown of Ruston, LA, and Angie McDonald(Don) of Ruston, LA; five grandchildren, Tiffany McBride(Adam) of Quitman, LA, Breanne Senn(Daniel) of Shreveport, LA, Brandon Bryant(Mallory) of Choudrant, LA, Sadie Brown of Ruston, LA, and Garrett Brown of Ruston, LA; four great-grandchildren, Tripp and Harper McBride, Eliot Bryant, and Beatrice Senn; and one brother Tommy Gray(Elaine) of Quitman, LA. She is also survived by a host of other family, friends, and church family.

After visitation of friends and family on Thursday, December 7th, the Celebration of Life service was held on Friday, December 8th, at North Hodge Assembly of God in Hodge, LA. Burial followed in the Gayla Traina Cemetery under the direction of Paradise Funeral Home in Jonesboro. 

Serving as pallbearers were Daryl Hollis, Jerry Bryan, Waren Hingle, Johnathan Hayes, Daniel Rogers, and Steve Miles, with Lane Tippen and Donnie Know as honorary pallbearers. 

The family would like to extend a special thanks to those who helped with transportation, to and from doctor’s appointments, treatments, and cure, including Mrs. Andrea Woods, Mrs. Edwina Pardee, the staff at Jackson Parish Hospital, Mrs. Kim Brunson, the staff at Mercy Medical Health Center, Bro. Geary Phillips, and the church members at North Hodge Assembly of God

Police Jury calls for Special Meeting on Wednesday, December 6th

The Jackson Parish Police Jury has called for a Special Meeting to be held at 12:15 pm on Wednesday, December 6th in the Nathaniel Zeno, Jr. Meeting Room of the Jackson Parish Administrative Building, located at 160 Industrial Drive in Jonesboro.

On the agenda are four items to be considered by JPPJ members Todd Culpepper (President), Lewis Chatham, Amy Magee, John McCarty, Tarneshala “Niki” Cowans, Regina Rowe and Keith Burris. 

Agenda Items

1. Introduce and review proposed 2024 budget.
2. Consider and Approve the hiring of Kimberly Lord for Maintenance Supervisor in the Maintenance Department.
3. Consider and approve 2024 Holiday Schedule.
4. Consider and approve the 2024 Solid Waste dumping fees increase.

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance, please contact Emmett Gibbs, Secretary/Treasurer at (318)259-2361 Ext. 3 describing the assistance that is necessary.

Jackson Parish Schools to take part in Safe Schools Louisiana program

The Jackson Parish School District will be taking part in the Crimestoppers Safe Schools Louisiana program. The announcement was made in the statement shown below that was posted on the JPSD facebook page on Monday, December 4th. 

JPSD Statement

Due to the requirements of Louisiana Senate Bill #207, Act #334, in the next two weeks, your student in grades 6-12 will be presented with information on how they can help make their school and community safer by reporting dangerous or concerning behaviors. 

The Crimestoppers Safe Schools Louisiana anonymous reporting solution will be presented to our students, and they will be able to download the mobile app, once it is released for Louisiana, if they have a mobile device. There will also be a 30 second spot regarding this app on the district and school social media pages.

Students can use the Safe Schools Louisiana App to report bullying, suicide concerns, depression, sexting, stealing, threats, cutting, abuse, dating and domestic violence, fights, drugs, alcohol, weapons or other types of dangerous situations that threaten their safety or the safety of others for the purpose of prevention and interventions. 

Safe Schools Louisiana will help keep our students and our schools safer by:
Creating a positive school culture or climate
Giving students a voice to share concerns
Gathering information to then proactively address concerns
Preventing tragedies from the personal level to the community level
Building trust within our school community

Please encourage your student to use this life saving technology to better our schools and community. You may also visit the Safe Schools Louisiana website to learn more about this program at www.safeschoolsla.com

Local schools in final regular season tournaments of the year this weekend

One final weekend of “tournament time” is on tap for area schools as JHHS, Quitman and Saline all play in their final tournaments of the regular season. The Jonesboro-Hodge girls and boys will take part in the West Ouachita Tournament that runs from December 7 -10, while Quitman and Saline venture to Ruston to play in the Cedar Creek Invitational which is played as a round robin for the girls and a double elimination tourney for the boys beginning on Thursday, December 7th. 

In girls actions Quitman plays Carroll High out of Monroe at 4:30 pm on Thursday to open the Cedar Creek Tourney with Saline playing host Cedar Creek at 5:45 pm. IOn Friday, Saline plays Haughton in the first game at 4:00 pm with Quitman squaring off against Summerfield at 6:30 pm. The tourney ends on Saturday with Cedar Creek playing Quitman at 5:45 pm. On the boys side, Quitman and Saline will meet at 5:15 pm on Friday with the remaining schedule depending on who wins and who loses. 

No matchups or game times have been reported at the West Ouachita tournament. Weston and Dodson High Schools are both off this weekend. 


Gerry Mims voted to be Vice-President of Jackson Parish School Board for 2024

Gerry Mims was named Vice-President of the Jackson Parish School Board for 2024. The action was taken at the regularly scheduled meeting that was held on December 4th in the conference room of the Jackson Parish School District Central Office. 

The session opened with Amy Hay presenting information on 2022-2023 School Performance Scores followed by chairman’s of various committees which met making recommendations for the panel of Calvin Waggoner, Wade McBride, Rick Barlow, Gerry Mims, Paulette Belton, Dennis Clary and Mary Saulters to adopt.

Approved were the following:

(1) Payment of General Fund, Federal Program, School Food Service, Sales Tax, Special Education, District Maintenance bills.
(2) Payment to D2I in the amount of $19,250.00 for our District Annual Data Package that assists in analyzing data-driven school improvement plans, January 1, 2024 – December 31, 2024, to be paid from 2023-2024 ESSER III funds.
(3) Approve the Differentiated Compensation Allocation stipend for the fiscal year 2023-2024 to be paid to highly effective teachers (using the 2022-2023 evaluation ratings). The total allocation for this funding is $76,414, to be paid from the Differentiated Compensation Allocation fund.
(4) Accept low quote of $193,380.00 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations, to be paid from Weston District funds. (Pending Act 397 funding) 
(5) Approve Change Order No. 1 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations to reduce the cost of total project by $36,780.00.
(6) Accept low quote of $109,387.76 from Canon Services for materials and labor to replace cooler and freezer equipment at all schools and Central Office, to be paid from School Food Service funds.

For an entire copy of the minutes of the meeting see the Classifieds section. 

Tuesday Tilts: Quitman only area school to emerge victorious

Area fans of most local schools got to see three games for the price of two on Tuesday but had to make short trips to see their favorite team play. The exception was Jonesboro-Hodge being at home and Quitman playing only a varsity girls and boys game while the rest saw their junior varsity teams in action. As it turned out playing two turned out better as only Quitman High emerged victorious in both of their games, while JHHS, Weston and Saline all lost their varsity contests. 

Quitman  56 Calvin 45 (girls) Cali Deal continued her recent scoring spree and Quitman broke open a close game by outscoring home standing Calvin 14-6 in the final quarter. Deal poured in 31 points on 10 of 18 shooting from the field while also nailing 10 of 13 free throws. Her scoring outburst marked the second time in the last three games that the lanky lefthander eclipsed the 30 point barrier and upped her average to Jackson Parish best 22.9 points per game. Anna Leach also reached “double digits” in scoring with 10 points followed by Jaleigh Burns who scored seven. Taylor Borland finished with four, Ali Claire Palmer tallied two and both A.J. Gray and Morgan Cheatwood made a free throw to round out the scoring for Quitman, who improved to 7-6 on the year.The loss dropped Calvin to 7-5 and ended their three game winning streak. 

Quitman (7-6)1111201456
Calvin (7-5)11919645
QHS Scoring: Deal 31, Leach 10, Burns 7, Borland 4, Palmer 2, Gray 1, Cheatwood 1
CHS Scoring: n/a

Quitman 63 Calvin 53 (boys): The boys game played out much like the girls before as Quitman outscored the Cougars 21-14 in the final frame to break open a tight game that had eight lead changes. With four players reaching double figures in scoring, Quitman had their way inside the arc, connecting on a remarkable 17 of 23 (74%) field goals. while adding seven baskets from beyond the three point line. Logan Ponder led the balanced attack with 16 points with Eli Walker adding 14. Gavyn Caskey pitched in 13 and Noah Leach tallied 10 as Quitman became the first Jackson Parish school to win 10 games on the year. Larson Thomas also came up big with six points, his second highest total of the year, on the strength of a pair of three pointers. Braden Marten and Brayden Smith also scored two points each.

Quitman (10-4)1615112163
Calvin (6-6)141781453
QHS Scoring: Ponder 16, Walker 14, Caskey 13, Leach 10, Thomas 6, Marten 2, Smith 2
CHS Scoring: n/a

Choudrant 37 JHHS 35 (girls): McKenzie Bradford nailed three 3-pointers to lead a spirited Lady Tiger rally that came up just short as JHHS lost their fifth straight to fall ot 2-7 on the year. Class B Choudrant won their second in a row over a team from a higher classification following their victory the Tuesday before over Class 3A Union Parish to improve to 5-8 overall.Morgan McGee canned three treys in the first half to finish with a team high 11 points and Tyya Davis also ended with nine points. Jalenya Jackson finished with five and LeRonda McGuire added a free throw for JHHS. Choudrant was led by Reese Brown who scored 16 points that included six in the final frame to keep JHHS at bay.  

JHHS (2-7)8661535
Choudrant (5-8)13491037
JHHS Scoring: McGee 11, Davis 9, Bradford 9, Jackson 5, McGuire 1
CHS Scoring: Brown 16, Pyle 9, Swift 5, Jones 4, Nugent 2

Choudrant 52 JHHS 50 (boys) Symeon Malone scored of his team tying high 10 points in the fourth quarter to pace JHHS to a 16-9 advantage in the final frame but a 19-11 third quarter by Choudrant was too much to overcome as the Tigers fell to 2-4 and saw their two game winning streak broken. Choudrant beat their fifth straight team from a higher classification won their sixth straight to improve to 9-5 on the year. Damarious Burns also finished with ten points for JH as Za’Mauryian Palmer and Landon Boston both ended with eight points on the night. Dewayne Palmer scored six, Spencer Strickland finished with four points and both Chase Leonard and Bradford tallied two each.

JHHS (2-4)914111650
Choudrant (9-5)16819952
JHHS Scoring: Malone 10, Burns 10, Z. Palmer 8, Boston 8, D. Palmer 6 Strickland 4, Leonard 2, Bradford 2
CHS Scoring Jones 25, Soto 11, Cameo 9, Stevens 6, Cage 1

West Ouachita 54 Weston 49 (girls): Trailing 45-39, homestanding West Ouachita went on a 13 point run to steal the victory over Weston who led for most of the contest. Lainee Trosclair made four 3-pointers en route to a team high 16 points with Carly Jo Griffin adding 11 in the contest. Carlynn Waters and Anslee Aldy both scored seven followed by Lexie Millien who finished with four. Raelynn Shell and Nadia Siadek scored two each. Weston fell to 7-6 with the loss while West Ouachita won for the first time after six straight losses to open the season. 

West Ouachita (1-6)1216111554
Weston (7-6)111913649
Weston Scoring: Trosclair 16, Griffin 11, Aldy 7, Waters 7, Millien 4, Siadek 2, Shell 2
West Ouachita Scoring: n/a

West Ouachita 72 Weston 50 (boys): The homestanding Chiefs won their second straight after opening the season with six straight losses. Weston fell to 7-6 on the year after losing their third in the last four games. No individual scoring was reported.

Castor 62 Saline 51 (girls): Alaya Gray scored 11 of her team high 20 points in the fourth quarter to help Saline outscore Castor 17-14 but a 37-20 deficit at the half was too much to overcome. Kacidy Sims finished with 14 points Alana Gray added 11 for the Lady Bobcats who dropped to 4-10 on the year. Rayaunnah Pearson scored four and Jordan Williams made a basket to round out the scoring for Saline. Castor, who improved to 7-2 on the season was led by Kalena Smith who drained four 3-pointers and scored 20 in the contest while Sky McMullen and Ambree Collinsworth also reached double figures in scoring with 18 and 10 points respectively.

Saline (4-10)119111751
Castor (7-2)2017111462
Saline Scoring: Alaya Gray 20, Sims 14, Alana Gray 11, Pearson 4, Williams 2
Castor Scoring: Smith 20, McMullen 18, Collinsworth 10, Shirley 5, Jordan 4, Rice 3, Gray 2

Castor 63 Saline 40 (boys): The homestanding Tigers opened the game by taking a 13-4 lead after one and blew it open by outscoring Saline 24-13 in the final quarter A The scoring doldrums continued for the Bobcats who lost their third straight to fall to 7-6 on the year. Trent Ledbetter and Eli Ferguson both scored ten to lead the Bobcats while Gavyn Dailey ended up with eight for Saline who has now failed to score more than 46 points in their last four games. Conner Roberts and Bryce Davis finished with four each, Elijah Calloway made a three pointer and Maddox Williams sank a free throw. Castor won for the first time in five tries to improve to 3-8 on the year. 

Saline (7-6) 41581340
Castor (3-8)1314122163
Saline Scoring: Ledbetter 10 Ferguson 10, Dailey 8, Roberts 4, Davis 4, Calloway 3, Williams 1
Castor Scoring: Warren 19, Gilcrease 16, Bolyer 7, Carmouche 6, Bryant 4, Austin 2, Hays 2

J-HES announces Student, Faculty and Support Staff of the Month

Jonesboro-Hodge Elementary School gives a “shout out” to the student, faculty and support staff member of the month for December. Congratulations are extended to:

December Student of the Month: Oliver Cox -2nd Grade
For excelling in his studies and always being respectful to peers and teachers.

December Faculty Member of the Month: Mrs. Alberta Foster – 3rd Grade Sci/SS
For her smooth transition to elementary from high school and positive disposition.

December Support Staff Member of the Month: Ms. Pam Jack – Paraprofessional
For always going above and beyond and being willing to help with any task.