Bird photography topic for LSU Retirees Club

The Rev. Gerald Burns, a retired pastor, spoke about bird photography March 9 to the LSU Faculty and Staff Retirees Club.

Getting the right shot takes patience and persistence, sometimes for years, he said. His field trips usually start between 3:30 and 4:30 a.m. He calls nature the “first” Bible. His photos can be found at

Providing refreshments were Kathy Bosworth, Carolyn Crawford, Pat Dale, Cheryl Geiger, Pat McDermott and Marion Territo. On March 23, the group toured the Atchafalaya swamp, learning about its history and wildlife. The club holds monthly meetings and tours during the academic year. For details, contact

Scarton, Merrill teach at La. Bonsai Society

Jim Scarton showed slides of bonsai styles around the world at the Louisiana Bonsai Society’s March 17 meeting. He also brought two juniper bonsai for show and tell.

Howard Merrill showed three bonsai. The flowering almond was started from nursery stock and it is full of buds and blossoms. The crape myrtle is old with some deadwood on the trunk that was decaying, leaving a hole that gives it a very old look. He did the group planting over 20 years ago to resemble a forest.

The Spring Bonsai Show will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 18-19 at the Baton Rouge Garden Center, 7950 Independence Blvd. There will be bonsai for sale, raffle and a bonsai lecture 2 p.m. both days. Admission is free.

LBS, a not-for-profit organization open to all who are interested in bonsai, meets on the third Tuesday of each month at the Baton Rouge Garden Center, 7950 Independence Blvd. For information, call Lowell Tilley, (225) 272-6744 or

Local clubs participate in GFWC district event

The Lagniappe Woman’s Club and the Literary and Civic Club participated in the General Federation of Women’s Clubs District 6 annual meeting March 18 at Susan Chenevert’s home.

Guests included State President Angela Cutrera, State Corresponding Secretary Johnnie Taylor and arts and crafts judge Courtland Cross.

Gynne Klimavicz was named Chairwoman of the Year. Joan Houghton-Bonds spoke on “Women, War and Wages.” Arts and crafts winners included Polly Williams, Carolyn Lantz, Cathie Ryan and Lana Merliss.

VIPS volunteer speaks to Altrusa meeting

Monica Pannwitt Bradsher spoke of her involvement with Volunteers in Public Schools to Altrusa International of Baton Rouge on March 16 at Drusilla Seafood Restaurant.

Bradsher has been actively involved in the “Building A Legacy, Book-By-Book” program in which people can donate between $25 to $1,000 to provide books and services for children in East Baton Rouge Parish schools.

Bradsher also spoke on having worked around the world. While in India in 1963, she met Henry Bradsher, then the Associated Press bureau chief for South Asia. They married three weeks later.

She later joined the staff of the National Geographic Society. The Bradshers retired to Baton Rouge, Henry’s home town. Both are volunteers in the public schools.

President Jackie Robbins welcomed guests Jane Silvey and Bradsher.

Elected to the 2015-16 board of directors were Robbins, president; Janie Starks, vice president; Amy Drago, secretary; Carol Davis, treasurer; Cathy Craddock and Donna Embree, directors. Elected to the foundation board of directors were Diane Bezdek, president; Marti Didier, vice president; Jo Ann Morgan, secretary; Cherryl Alford, treasurer; Mary Eleanor Cole, Craddock, Carmel Streater and Dawn Meng, directors.

For information on VIPS, call (225) 226-4700. For information on Altrusa, contact Lynn Nettles, (225) 752-9246, or Didier, (225) 939-0460.

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.