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July 2nd, 2008

Veterans share insights

“Right now, we have troops deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and as we speak today some of those men and women are putting their lives on the line,” said the Savannah, Ga., native, who flew 100 combat missions over North Vietnam. “When it’s hard and it’s tough and sacrifices have to be made, the very best we have will step forward.”
Taylor said many people do not know how fortunate they are to be living in the U.S., but visiting places such as The Philippines and Turkey opens one’s eyes.

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Another set of pay raises

But, now that Jindal has put the kibosh on an indexed pay raise for state legislators that would have added millions to the state’s annual payroll, it’s high time to take a look at some of the others that, so far, the state’s public is fine with. The governor’s desk is littered with a whole slew of pay hikes that should be double-checked. Is working in a state office in Louisiana about money or public service?
Remember, Jindal has line item veto authority, so he is far from powerless.
Economic Development Deputy Secretary Steve Grissom is set for a $94,040 boost. Total salary: $237,500.

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July 1st

Lennox: Team change hasn’t hurt

“The last few games, I’ve been slacking,” admitted Lennox after a night in which she made points inside, outside and seemingly everywhere else at the Sun’s arena in Uncasville, Conn. “Maybe this will help break me out of a slump.”
Slump, you mean Lennox is in a slump?
According to the latest league statistical report, the 5-8 guard is ranked No. 3 in the WNBA for scoring average at 19.9. The only two players ahead of her are Diana Taurasi (24.7) and Cappie Poindexter (23.6), both from Atlanta.

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Jindal comes through with veto of raise

It would have made Louisiana legislators the highest-paid in the South and the 14th highest-paid in the country.
In a state famous for its poor roads and rampant illiteracy, boosting legislators’ pay should not be a funding priority.
Louisiana residents immediately recognized this, and an outcry rang out across the state.
Lawmakers tried defending the raise by bemoaning how long it’s been since their base salary has increased. The concept of a pay raise was never the problem; it was the way the Legislature went about it that raised the ire of state residents.

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Attendees eat up Fest fun

Also in line was Skyelar Scott. Recovering from the two minutes of fast peach eating, the 7-year-old looked at her hands and commented, “I’m slimy.”
Ruston High students Linda Cross and Cody McCullin also waited in line, experiencing the feeling of fullness.
“I didn’t eat anything before this,” Cross said. “But I’m full. This was my first time to enter, and it was harder than I thought it would be.”
McCullin said his strategy for eating peaches at an accelerated rate was to start with the center and then move toward the ends.

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Thriving despite tough times

While I’ve lived in Ruston for over 20 years now, I’m not a true native — only the son of one. My father was born and spent his first nine years in Farmerville before moving to Ruston. He went on to graduate from Louisiana Tech before moving to New Orleans, where I was born and raised, and lived there 34 years before proudly making a beeline back to Ruston upon his retirement in 1991.

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June 30th

Community made Peach Fest a success

It can be said without reservation that this year’s festival was a rousing success.
It was the first time the event has been a true weekend affair, running from Friday-Sunday. The schedule change held many benefits, not the least of which were better compatibility for people traveling from out of town and less hassle for downtown merchants facing closed streets and rerouted traffic.
After a brief bout of rain Friday afternoon, Mother Nature cooperated for the duration of the festival with sunny skies and even the occasional breeze.

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Get creative at art gatherings

While it seems there are plenty of local art workshops available for children, I have noticed that affordable adult programs have been slightly lacking. That’s why I’m excited about the Brown Building, an art class space in its infancy, which is currently being overhauled.
Located at 303 W. Georgia St., Ruston, the gallery will host art activities several times weekly for adults in a laid back environment.
Beginning Tuesday, informal art classes on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays will be ongoing.
The schedule is as follows:
• Monday, noon-1 p.m.— Visual Venting

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Peach Festival delights

Early in the day, crowds were thick at festival attractions like Railroad Marketplace, the Antique Car Show, the Diaper Derby and the Civic Center’s Arts and Crafts Show. Although the intense midday heat sent many running for the comfort of their air-conditioned homes, Saturday night’s Peach Jam brought them back with performers Mason Granade and headlining act Asleep At The Wheel.
Sunday’s lineup has more fun in store, including the always entertaining Pet Show and Peach-Eating Contest.

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Former ’Dogs help youngsters

Ruston’s Wesley Boersma, David Boersma, Aaron Boersma and Tim Kennedy also provided support.
“It went well for being a first-time camp, I thought,” Moats said. “We’ve had a lot of participation, and we are pleased with the way things have gone.”
The camp attracted an estimated 70 participants.
Included on the daily schedule were three-hour sessions in the morning and afternoon, intermixed with an early morning breakfast, lunch break and early evening dinner.
A luau, Madden interactive tournament and additional free times were also featured on the schedule.

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