Magnet Schools of America has named the Iberville Math, Science and Arts Academy-West campus a 2013 Magnet School of Excellence.

MSA-West is the only high school program in Louisiana to receive the award, officials said in a news release.

Magnet School of Excellence is the top award given to a group of select magnet schools. Magnet School of Distinction is the second-highest award of recognition.

Elvis Cavalier, chief academic officer for the Iberville Parish school district, along with several staff members, will receive the award.

during a ceremony May 5-8 at the 31st National Conference on Magnet Schools in Tulsa, Okla‘Country’ meet and greet

Plaquemine Mayor Mark “Tony” Gulotta has declared Wednesday Nolan “Country” Ruiz Day in honor of Ruiz’s devotion to his family and the nation during World War II.

Ruiz participated in the first daylight bombing raid on Berlin in World War II. On his unit’s return flight to its base in England, Ruiz’s B-17 was shot down and its crew members were captured and held as prisoners of war.

Members of Friends of The Plaquemine Lock will host Ruiz at a meet and greet reception from 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. Wednesday.

The event is free and open to the public.

Collection day

Keep West Baton Rouge Beautiful and Dow Chemical Co. join in sponsoring West Baton Rouge Parish Household Hazardous Materials Collection Day from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Louis Mouch Jr. Multi-Purpose Arena, 152 Turner Road, Port Allen.

For a complete list of eligible items, call (225) 490-8549 or Small business workshop

LSU’s Stephenson Disaster Management Institute is hosting a free workshop for small business owners and nonprofit managers in Port Allen from 8 a.m. until noon March 12 at the Port Allen Community Center.

The workshop is free and open to the public.

Attendees will learn how to mitigate and prepare their business before a disaster hits and how to recover during the aftermath to help reduce loss of business time and revenue.

Registration is now open. For information, call Caitlin Sonnier at (337) 233-6473.

Hospice open house

Pointe Coupee Hospice will host an open house, “Introduction to Hospice Care,” from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. March 12 at its hospice center, 350 Hospital Road, New Roads.

Dr. Jack McNulty, founder and president of Palliative Care Institute of Southeast Louisiana, will serve as guest speaker. Call (225) 618-4534.

Cooking class

The West Baton Rouge Museum will host at 10:30 a.m. March 12 “A Battle for Food,” a demonstration class on Civil War-era cooking.

The event will feature expert open-hearth cook Gayle Smith, who will guide participants in open-hearth cooking techniques using the types of food and recipes reflecting the changes and shortages during the Civil War between 1861 and 1865.

Space is limited and registration is required. To sign up, call (225) 336-2422, ext. 15.

To submit news about Iberville, Pointe Coupee and West Baton Rouge parishes, contact Westside Bureau Chief Terry Jones by phone, (225) 326-6627; fax, (225) 344-0099; or email,