Students in West Baton Rouge Parish will have to make it to bus stops a little earlier this fall after the West Baton Rouge Parish School Board changed the start times for parishwide schools.

The School Board last week unanimously changed start times for all elementary schools and Devall Middle School to 7:30 a.m. and the start times for the district’s high schools and remaining middle schools to 8:05 a.m.

Superintendent Wesley Watts said the district is pushing up school start times — by at least 30 minutes — to help teachers avoid the daily traffic congestions along La. 1 and the Mississippi River Bridge.

“We were losing teachers because of the travel time it was taking them to get to and from work,” Watts said.

In addition to the new start times, Watts said the district is changing bus routes as well, segregating routes so that buses taking students in the north and south ends of the parish will no longer have to cross the Intracoastal bridge during their respective routes.

“Most of our buses used to start on the north end and then travel south on their routes,” Watts said. “Next year, buses on the north end will stay on the north end to pick up kids, and vice versa.”

Committee preps for exhibit

The Treasures of Pointe Coupee Exhibit steering committee is prepping for its sixth annual art extravaganza, opening Friday at the Poydras Center in New Roads.

Organizers will welcome 29 new artists among the 96 others who will exhibit artwork in the event, which runs two weekends: Friday to Sunday and June 5-7.

Workshops are planned for both Saturdays, with morning sessions focused on children and the afternoon sessions for adults. Workshops will be held in the Arts Council’s annex room at the Poydras Center.

Registration is open for those workshops. Contact Blanche Jewell at (225) 936-6509.

Treasures of Pointe Coupee is sponsored by the Arts Council of Pointe Coupee with support from local partners.

Theater presents ‘Annie’

Tickets are on sale for the Iberville Community Theatre’s production of “Annie.”

The musical will be performed at the City of Plaquemine Community Center with performances at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee.

Tickets are available online at www.wearethedifference.org. Tickets also can be purchased at Plaquemine Chiropractic Clinic, 24160 Railroad Ave., or Plush Beauty Salon across from the Post Office on Canal Street in Plaquemine.

Inaugural family celebration

Officials set aside a day to celebrate loved ones with the inaugural Family Day in the Park from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at Williams and Lee Park in Port Allen.

The event, which is free, will feature games, an inflatable, horseback rides, use of the park’s community pool, a band and DJs providing music.

Family Day in the Park is organized by West Baton Rouge Parish Council members Charlene Gordon, Barry Hugghins and Ricky Loupe, along with community members.

“This event is a way to bring the community together and have families enjoy a day of relaxed fun together,” Gordon said in a news release.

Families are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, food (grilling is encouraged) and drinks. No alcoholic drinks allowed.

Submit news to Terry Jones at (225) 326-6627 or tjones@theadvocate.com.