The 22nd Uncle Earl’s Hog Dog Trials have come to an end, and preparations for the 2018 event are already underway. Winn Parish saw thousands of visitors come to compete and watch competitions, with some coming from as far away as Sweden. Locals noticed lots of familiar faces from prior years, and saw many new folks in town. It was noted that there were several younger competitors, leading some to believe there has been a ‘passing of the stick’ by some of the older, more experienced owners and trainers.
Some of the attendees arrived into Winnfield as early as last Thursday before competitions began on Monday, March 20th, and most did not leave until Saturday night, March 25th. The influx of tourists was welcomed with decorations throughout town and specials at many of the local shops and restaurants.
Head protection has come a long way since early football players wore leather helmets, Rotarians heard when WSHS coach Andy Pyles and Riddell representative Gary Morgan spoke to the local club March 8.
Parents have always been concerned about the safety of their children in sports and recent books and news coverage have brought an increased public awareness to concussions. But Pyles suggested that that when the total number of participants are figured into the national stats of sports concussions, other sports like soccer, lacrosse and even cheerleading post higher percentages.
From 9:00 a.m. until noon on Saturday, April1st, the LSU AgCenter will be presenting a timely education opportunity. Dr. Ron Strahan will be in Winnfield, helping residents prepare for a beautiful spring and summer presentation. Dr. Strahan is an Associate Professor in the School of Plant, Environmental and Soil Sciences at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. He has spoken all across the state, to Master Gardeners, civic garden clubs, and students, educating them about weed control and turf management, among other relevant topics.
While in Winnfield, Dr. Strahan will teach a class on how to create a thick, lush lawn. The class will be held at Town & Country of Winnfield, located at 401 East Main Street.
The Village of Atlanta, and others from around the Winn Parish, came to Atlanta High School to show their pride in the Bulldogs Basketball Team. For the first time in 20 years, Atlanta is the LHSAA Class C State Champions. To celebrate the title, school faculty, students, and governmental leaders in the parish hosted a very special tailgate party on Thursday, March 16. There were posters of support and balloons throughout the tailgating area. Grills were fired up and cooking burgers and ribs. Ladies brought pots of chicken and dumplings and other homemade dishes… all to celebrate the accomplishments of the AHS Bulldogs.
The team members humbly accepted congratulatory wishes from those gathered and took pictures with their youngest and oldest basketball fans. Coaches expressed their appreciation of the team’s commitment and their thankfulness for the support of the community.
The 1st Annual Autumn Michelle VanBlaricum Memorial Scholarship 5K Run/Walk and 1 Mile Fun Run will be held on April 22, 2017 in conjunction with the Louisiana Forest Festival. The run will begin and end at the Winn Parish Fairgrounds.
Autumn passed away at the age of 14, as a result of injuries suffered in a 4-wheeler accident. She was a student at Winnfield Middle School and very active in First Baptist Church and clubs at her school. She was even chosen to represent WMS as the 2013 Student of the Year. This run is to honor the memory of Autumn and help fund education for another deserving young person in our community.
The Winn Parish Master Gardeners will host a spring Luncheon at the First Assembly of God Church Fellowship Center on Hwy 167 N from11:00 until 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 1st. Tickets will be on sell for $25.00 each. Contact any Master Gardener for tickets or call Charlotte Page at 413-0579, Rita James at 663-4894 or Bonnie Bucklew at 471-9452.
Besides having a wonderful lunch there will be door prizes and a demonstration.
Hats are required and First, Second and Third Ribbons will be awarded.
With the growing need for emergency and medical professionals, Central Louisiana Technical Community College (CLTCC) has announced that they will be offering an EMT Basic Course at three of their campuses. The participating campuses are the Ferriday Campus, the Lamar Salter Leesville Campus, and the Huey P. Long Winnfield Campus.
Requirements for acceptance into the state and national EMS certified program are as follows: high school diploma or equivalent, right to review background check, drug screen, WorkKeys Assessment, physical exam, proof of immunizations, and professional liability insurance. The total projected cost of the course is $1,328, and includes tuition, EMS Registry Exam Fees, the cost of a background check, drug screen, physical exam, and professional liability insurance. There are payment options available.
Hog Dog week in Winn Parish is like no other week during the year. We welcome our visitors from around the globe and are proud to show them around. Winn Parish folks are happy to recommend their favorite items off the menus of our local restaurants. We can extol the virtues of the South’s iced, sweet tea, and tell you all about boudin, cracklins, and gumbo. We can quickly give you directions to our downtown area for shopping and church services, or to the nearest fishing hole or favored deer stand.
Winn Parish locals have watched the Uncle Earl’s Hog Dog Trials grow for over twenty years, to become the event that it is, today. It has become a community affair, with school, church, civic groups, and local businesses becoming involved. This year, the Winn Chamber is even hosting a special Spring Fling on Monday, March 20th.
The official 2017 Louisiana Forest Festival tshirts are now for sale! The shirts feature the “Shear” and are available in navy blue or green. Adult sizes S – XL are $20. Adult sizes 2X – 3X are $22 and $23. Youth sizes XS – L are $15.
On Thursday, March 9, 2017, Northwestern State University will dedicate the Jimmy D. Long, Sr. Student Services Center. The ceremony, honoring the memory of the Winn Parish native, will begin at 11:00 a.m. The 34,451 square foot facility is on the former site of West Caspari Hall and was completed in 2012. The $8.5 million Student Services Center Student Services Center was the first state-funded new building constructed on the campus in more than 30 years.