Friends of the Animals wins NFCU donation

Friends of the Animals Baton Rouge has received a $10,000 donation from Neighbors Federal Credit Union as part of NFCU’s Choose A Charity Contest.

Neighbors invited area residents to vote on a local nonprofit to win the prize. The nomination period was Sept. 21-30. Other finalists were Alzheimer’s Services of the Capital Area, Dreams Come True Louisiana, Families Helping Families of Greater Baton Rouge and Mental Health Association of Greater Baton Rouge. Voting took place Oct. 1-14.

More information about Friends of the Animals is online at

AMIkids receives grant for youth job training

Local nonprofit AMIkids Baton Rouge has been awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to implement a new program to prepare kids for careers in the culinary and construction industries by providing vocational training and job placement. The award is for $530,000 over three years.

The AMIkids Careers Program will help kids earn industry-recognized certifications. The program includes teaching the kids job-readiness skills like interviewing, communication and workplace etiquette. AMIkids staff will assist each kid in obtaining job interviews with prospective employers, and follow up with them for 12 months after they leave the program to help them secure and maintain employment.

Cyber security topic for LSU retirees’ meeting

FBI computer forensic examiner Scott Downie spoke about cyber security to the LSU Faculty and Staff Retirees Club Oct. 12.

He said hackers are interested in personal information they can sell, such as email and street addresses, Social Security numbers and birth dates. Prevention includes using longer passwords and two forms of authentication. Complaints can be directed to the FBI or the Department of Homeland Security.

Kathy Bosworth, Joy Bagur and Armando Corripio provided refreshments. The club holds monthly meetings and tours during the academic year. Contact

Lupus Foundation holds annual golf tournament

The Louisiana Lupus Foundation held its 28th Annual Golf Tournament and Silent Auction Oct. 12 at Dumas Memorial Golf Course in Baker.

First-place winners were Alfred Sanders, Donald Evans, Todd Smith and Gregg Kennedy. Max Coleman won longest drive, and A.W. Azoney won closest to the pin.

Lamar Advertising was major sponsor. Other sponsors include Our Lady of the Lake Foundation, Enterprise Car Sales, Courson/Nichols and Steamship Pilots Association of New Orleans and Baton Rouge.

Subway franchise owners Walter and Eloise Morgan provided lunch, and Tommy Williams provided a jambalaya dinner.

Butterfly Society holds local awareness events

The Butterfly Society, a domestic violence awareness organization, held several events in October. On Oct. 13, they met with Baker Mayor Harold Rideau, Darnell Waites, staff and city officials when a Butterfly Society garden was planted at City Hall dedicated to victims and survivors of domestic violence.

The Butterfly Society and Greater Mount Olive Baptist Church hosted “Hands Off: Community Standing Together Against Domestic Violence” on Oct. 4. Baton Rouge Community College staff and students took part in “Painting The City Purple: Raising the Awareness of Domestic Violence” Oct. 1.

Sweet potatoes topic for Master Gardeners

Andrew Barocco spoke and showed slides about the LSU sweet potato breeding program to the East Baton Rouge Master Gardeners Oct. 13 at the LSU Botanic Gardens.

Barocco, who is the Master Gardeners horticultural scholarship recipient, said the sweet potato is the highest yielding plant in the world and has a high nutritional value. LSU has produced the world’s first variety that is both ornamental and edible, plus easy for home gardeners to produce.

“Just let one of them sprout at the beginning of summer — April through June — then cut and plant the slips when they’re about a foot tall,” Barocco said.

Two or three nodes of the cutting should be in sandy soil, with full sun required, he said. Fertilizers should be low in nitrogen: 8-24-24 or 6-20-20 are good choices that will help produce a crop in 90-120 days, depending on variety.

The Master Gardener program is under the aegis of the LSU AgCenter. Visit

Photographic Society gets animal photo tips

Wildlife photographer Steve Uffman gave tips for better animal photography Oct. 15 to the Louisiana Photographic Society.

The Louisiana native and world traveler emphasized using the histogram to find the right tonal combination of aperture and f-stop, especially for extreme lighting conditions. He emphasized pre-planning locations and focal lengths to be prepared when wildlife appear and noted manual and automatic camera features each have advantages.

In monthly competition, first place in Level A for both color and monotone went to Cathy Smart. First place in Level B color went to Jane Patterson, and Level B monotone went to Darrel LaBlanc. LPS meets on the third Thursday of the month. All photo enthusiasts are invited to attend. Visit

Highland Cemetery topic for ELHA meeting

Kenny Kleinpeter spoke Oct. 15 to the Edward Livingston Historical Association about the gravesite and surroundings of his cousin, Zachary Pickney Kleinpeter, who died in 1857 in Monroe and is buried at Highland Cemetery in Baton Rouge.

Kleinpeter worked with state archaeologists on this project as well as others to gain and record information.

ELHA will hold a planning meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 19, at the Livingston library. Jay Schexnaydre, family researcher, historian and tour guide, will speak on “An Irish Name for a French Family” at 11 am. Saturday, Dec. 12, at the library. Afterwards, the group will have lunch at a restaurant in French Settlement.

La. Bonsai Society discusses techniques

Jim Scarton, Howard Merrill and Lowell Tilley led discussions when the Louisiana Bonsai Society met Oct. 20.

Scarton led discussions about bonsai that members brought to the meeting for show and tell. Merrill showed how he developed phoenix graft style bonsai by connecting a juniper plant to deadwood to develop a bonsai that looks very old. Tilley showed how to convert plant defects into features by creating deadwood. Unusual or undesirable growth can be converted to deadwood to make the bonsai look better and older.

Members observed a moment of silence in memory of past President Allen Gautreau, who died Oct. 8. Gautreau willed many of his bonsai specimen to club members, and Merrill distributed some of them at the meeting. They also discussed the fall bonsai show to be held Nov. 7-8 at the Baton Rouge Garden Center.

LBS meets on the third Tuesday of each month at the Baton Rouge Garden Center, 7950 Independence Blvd. For information contact Tilley, (225) 272-6744 or

Compiled by Advocate staff writer George Morris. The “Community” column runs every Tuesday and Friday in The Advocate. Items should be submitted to “Community,” Advocate eatplaylive section, P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821, or emailed to Events should be submitted in a timely fashion. By submitting photos to The Advocate, you agree that they can be published in any of The Advocate’s print or digital publications.