One of summer's best traditions is going to Theatre Baton Rouge to see a special performance of its musical to benefit Volunteers in Public Schools.

A good crowd filled the theater for Disney’s “Newsies,” the story of a ragtag group of newsboys (and girls) who, led by the charismatic Jack Kelly, take on newspaper magnates Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst. The newsies go on strike when Pulitzer and Hearst raise the upfront cost of the papers.

Along with telling the story of how a small, committed group can change the world, “Newsies” features lots of singing and dancing. Stand-out cast members included Austin Ventura as Jack Kelly, Thomas Luke as Crutchie, Joey Roth and Grayson Barraco as the Jacob brothers, Rebecca Smith as Katherine Plumber and Brandy Johnson as Medda Larkin.

Among those in the audience were Coletta Barrett and Sister Helen Cahill, Robyn Merrick, Susan Eaton, Marilyn and Wayne Davis, Phyllis and Lee McLauren, Sue Rainer, Harriett Babin Miller, Jackie Creghan, Dr. Frederic and Susan Billings, Karen and Mike Zobrist, Monica and Henry Bradsher, Kendall Hebert and daughter Hannah, Mary Ann Sternberg and Ron Boudreaux, Nancy and Rob Ginn, Lela Mae Wilkes, Willie Johnson and Jenola Duke, who for many years served as VIPS executive director.

Missing this year was Eula Smith. This lovely lady, a former teacher and longtime adviser to VIPS, passed away on June 8. She’ll be greatly missed not only by those involved with VIPS but many other organizations who were lucky enough to benefit from her volunteer efforts.

Summer Social

Plaquemine’s Krewe of Cypress fêted its debutante coterie at a Summer Social on June 23 at the home of Mercedes Doré. The young women will be formally presented at the krewe’s Presentation Ball on Nov. 30 and will also take part in its Mardi Gras Ball Feb. 8.

The debs include Emma Courtney Allemond, daughter of krewe members Amy and Jason Allemond; Sarah Claire Caballero and Hannah Elizabeth Hargrove, granddaughters of krewe members Janet and Charles Bujol; Margo Alyse Crockett, daughter of krewe member Lydia Crockett; Ashley McCabe Edwards, daughter of krewe members Jane and Kevin Edwards, and granddaughter of founding members Janie and Jerry LeBlanc; Madison Grace Montgomery, cousin of krewe members Patrice and Bert Allain and Morgan Allain; Allee Elizabeth Thibodeaux, niece of krewe members Lora and Dale Brown; Katherine Grace Schlueter, daughter of krewe members Tina and Robert Grant, and granddaughter of founding krewe member Peggy Grant; and Karoline Elizabeth White, daughter of Heather Melancon and krewe member Kynan White.

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