All roads lead to Rome, but not all roads lead to Sugar Mill Pond. The police had streets blocked for days along Shore Drive, and it was pedestrians only for the annual Fourth of July Independence Celebration, sponsored by The Advocate and others. Residents had their lawn chairs in the yard early awaiting the fireworks at 9 p.m., but, in the meantime, there were rides on ponies — with red, white and blue manes — face painting, live music by Cedryl Ballou and the Zydeco Trendsetters, and patriots galore enjoying the festivities by the lake. This was a hot event, folks, in every sense of the word. What we loved: SFC Heath Comeaux and SSG Toby Saltzman helping to fundraise for the Infantry. Follow me, gentlemen.

Grand reopening

After 40 years without a major renovation, downtown Lafayette’s Main Library showed off its new face-lift at a flag-raising ceremony and ribbon cutting. A project long in the making, the celebration marked the end of extensive remodeling and toil, and will house a collection of more than 170,000 books, meeting rooms, 80 public computers and Wifi. On hand to do the honors was Mayor Joey Durel, city government CEO Dee Stanley, university President E.J. Savoie, library mural artist Justyna Frederick and husband Stephen, Mary Morrison, LCVC’s Ben Berthelot, Advocate fans Greg Moroux and Gail DeHart, and Gail Smith, whom we’re told got the ball rolling. Said library supervisor Kathy Malloy, “Breathe in, breathe out. Let’s get it done.”

Patricia Gannon covers society for The Acadiana Advocate. She can be reached at or at