Lafayette Animal Aid wins national award

Lafayette Animal Aid has received the Crusaders for Canines Award by Best Friends Animal Society, one of the only national animal welfare organization dedicated exclusively to ending the killing of dogs and cats in America’s shelters.

The award was given July 17 at the Best Friends Animal Society National Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

Lafayette Animal Aid in Lafayette Parish is an active partner in Best Friends Animal Society’s No More Homeless Pets Network, which supports animal rescue groups.

Helped by nearly $13,000 in grants from Best Friends Animal Society and a willingness to work cooperatively with local shelters, LAA has been able to pull more than 420 animals from the shelters, spay/neuter them and put them up for adoption over the past two years, making significant year over year gains.

LAA ( is one of the largest animal rescue organization in the region.

Capitol Park Museum Friends celebrate year

Awards were presented for the past year when the Friends of the Capitol Park Museum held its annual reception and meeting July 28 at the museum.

President Josh Dickerhoof presented the President’s Award to Tom Bergman, Volunteer of the Year to Caryn Roland, New Member Award to Bonnie Budyach, Shining Star Award to John Harp and Committee Chair of the Year Award to Holly Strange.

Dickerhoof also reviewed two of the year’s fundraising events: the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade and Night at the Capitol Park Museum. Louisiana State Museum Director Mark Tullos spoke on changes at the museum, including the mobile friendly website for the state museum system.

4theKids donates $20,000 to hospital

4theKids Baton Rouge donated $20,000 to Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital on Aug. 3. The third annual donation was double last year’s total.

In 2012, Sydney Saia and Elizabeth Sherman founded 4theKids, an organization of teenagers raising money to improve the children’s hospital facilities in Baton Rouge. 4theKids promotes the construction of a local free-standing children’s hospital. This year’s donation was raised through T-shirt sales, “Coeur-sage” bracelet and boutonniere sales, Abby and the J’s Teen Concert event, the annual Charity Estate Sale and by being selected as LSU Kappa Sigma Fraternity philanthropy of the year.

For information or to donate online, visit

3 area girls honored at Intl. Junior Miss event

Three Baton Rouge area girls from The Crowning Moment placed in International Junior Miss competition July 20-25 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

Caitlin Hager, of Baton Rouge, won first place in Princess Talent with her vocal performance to “Defying Gravity,” won queen in Spokesmodel and won the national queens’ title of America’s Junior Miss Princess plus $850 in scholarships. She placed in the top 15 of the Princess division overall.

Kailah Fresina, of Zachary, won fourth place in Junior Princess Talent with her vocal performance to “With A Smile and A Song.”

Ailynn Fresina, of Zachary, won National Appearance Award, given for making the most appearances against all of the contestants in the Princess division.

Area competitors Layna Baker and Anna Claire Reily also were among the 300 contestants. Pageants are held for girls ages 4-24. Competition included interview, fun fashion and evening gown.

The Crowning Moment offers youth mentoring and pageant coaching to girls across the Gulf Coast. For information, visit

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