Beauregard Town honors Montanaro

Melanie Counce Montanaro received the Community Spirit Award at the Beauregard Town Civic Association's annual members meeting Jan. 30 at Beauregard Gallery and Bistro.

This award, given annually in memory of Alexandra Engler, recognizes an individual or individuals "who contributed time, effort, spirit and community service resulting in the betterment of Beauregard Town."

Michele Deshotels, awards committee chair, and Bonnie Hunt, Engler's mother, presented the award.

Davis Rhorer, Downtown Development District director, spoke about downtown's progress and projects of the past year. Gabriel Vicknair, DDD assistant executive director, gave an update on phase two of the Downtown Greenway that will extend through the neighborhood. Reed Richard, BREC interim assistant superintendent, and Angela Harms, BREC assistant director of planning and engineering, gave an update on Expressway Park. Angela Whitaker, of the Department of Corrections, discussed improvements to DOC headquarters property. Metro Councilwoman Tara Wicker spoke regarding opportunities and challenges facing District 10 and the neighborhood.

'Forgotten Baton Rouge' topic for Woman's Club

Author Douglas Villien and retired art professor Ronald Kennedy spoke Feb. 2 to the Woman's Club.

Villien spoke about his book, "Forgotten Baton Rouge." He told how he came to possess rare photos when his grandparents died, which inspired him to research the people and events depicted.

Kennedy displayed his work and told how it related to three important events in black history: slave ships leaving Africa for the United States, the Selma marches and the integration of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas.

President Lana Merliss and member Schuyler Marin led a Valentine's Day trivia quiz, which Carol Haase and Jude Wilson won. Debbie Harris and Jane Dimattia were coffee chairwomen, and Lois Saye and Carolyn Chaney were greeters. Providing refreshments were Elaine Atkinson, Diane Finley, Winnie Gill, Vickie Johnson, Phyllis McKay, Karen Rimes, Cynthia Swanson, Kathleen Young and Chaney. Margaret Rome and Dimattia poured coffee and punch.

St. Jude observes World Marriage Day

St. Jude the Apostle Catholic Church commemorated 34 couples' milestone anniversaries to celebrate World Marriage Day on Feb. 4.

The. Rev. Trey Nelson presided, and Deacon James Morrissey assisted at the special Mass where the honored couples processed in together to reserved seats. Nelson recognized the couples celebrating anniversaries ranging from 10 years to 65 years, then officiated as the couples renewed their marriage vows.

A reception followed in the parish hall. Each couple received a corsage and boutonniere, a commemorative marriage certificate and a keepsake program. A display was set up to view wedding photographs the couple had brought, along with a picture taken that day of the couple.

The St. Jude Marriage Encounter Ministry hosted the event. World Marriage Day began in Baton Rouge in 1981 to promote the sacrament of marriage. It is celebrated each year on or around the second Sunday of February all around the world.

Honored couples were as follows: 65 years, Frank and Jacqueline O’Quinn, Ed and Pat Ryan; 63 years, Bill and Elaine Aubin; 60 years, Vincent and Marie Cannatella, Merlin and Cecilia Juneau; 55 years, Philip and Elizabeth Bruder, Ted and Rita Devall, Marvin and Beverly Lyons; 51 years, Mabini and Lourdes Pampo Sr.; 50 years, Jimmy and Mary Jane Clark, Charles W. and Maria Lyons; 45 years, Eric and Pauline Kelty; 41 years, Alexander and Jadwiga Georgiev; 40 years, Aubrey and Mercedes Jones, Meinrad and Denise Lang, Minos and Jo Ann Ponville, Wieslaw and Barbara Stryjewski; 35 years, Mark and Fran Bell, Russell and Paula Kelly; 30 years, Russell and Paula Babin, Cliff and Connie Durand, Billy and Melinda Francioni, Peter and Lynne Truxillo; 25 years, John and Susan Nunn, Mike and Mary Salario; 20 years, Scott and Victoria Terry; 15 years, Andrew and Lauren Brown, Edward and Nicole Martin, Danny J. and Gail McConnell, Ryan and Alison Nesbit, Chris and Lindsey Stelly, Benjamin and Allyson Vogt; 10 years, Irby and Mary Hornsby, and Eugene and Marissa Jimenez.

Terrarium growing topic for Orchid Society

Zach Goodnow spoke about growing orchids in terrariums Jan. 18 to the Baton Rouge Orchid Society.

In February, the society is presenting a series of one-hour workshops on orchid basics for staff of local garden centers and nurseries. The goal is to train them to be certified orchid advisers who can better assist customers on the culture of orchid plants they purchase. The workshops are from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Wednesday at the Burden Center, 4560 Essen Lane, and are open to the public free of charge.

Upcoming workshops feature Chip Thompson and Danna Spayde teaching about Phalaenopsis, with a potting demonstration on Wednesday, Feb. 15, and Terry Rehn speaking on Cymbidiums and Oncidiums on Feb. 22.

The society will hold its monthly meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 15, at the Burden Center. Dennis Wollard, of Lafayette, will demonstrate how to make corsages of various types of orchids. Visit the society's web page,, for information or to subscribe to the monthly newsletter.

100 Black Men youths assist homeless

The 100 Black Men of Metro Baton Rouge’s mentoring program, Project Excel, had more than 40 mentees distribute 300 bags of nonperishable foods and toiletries to the homeless Feb. 4 along North Boulevard.

This event sought to prove the significance of assisting those in need. This initiative supports 100 Black Men’s mission to develop model programs that build the community by enhancing the lives of African-American youth.

The chapter is an affiliate of 100 Black Men of America. Project Excel works with middle and high school males to develop essential life skills and improve academic performance and citizenship. Project Excel is sponsored by the Dow Chemical Promise Grant and the DOW African-American Network.

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.

Follow George Morris on Twitter, @GWMorris.