I'll tell you what's up

Cheryl LeBlanc Babin

Blood Drive with Valentine Chocolates

A blood drive will be held at First United Methodist Church in Gonzales on Sunday, Feb. 13, from 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Blood donors receive a box of Valentine chocolates. “Your donation of blood can make a big difference in the life of someone you may never know,” said a church spokesperson. “Consider being a blood donor to share the gift of life.” The Celebration Center at 224 W. Constitution St. adjacent to the church will be open for your convenience. For questions, call the church office at 225-647-4678.

Memorial Scholarship fundraiser

On Dec. 5, 1982 Charlotte Hana Kamiya entered our world and brought with her a “sunshine” personality that would last until her untimely death Oct. 5, 2010. Charlotte entered the Critical Care ICU at OLOL on Sept. 20, 2010 and remained there until her passing. She suffered from interstitial pulmonary fibrosis. It was rapidly progressing and her lungs lost elasticity and covered with a scar tissue that prevented the absorption of oxygen. All attempts to find causes were inconclusive.

The Charlotte Kamiya Memorial Scholarship Fundraiser will be a jambalaya plate lunch Friday, Feb. 25. The plate lunch is $6 and includes jambalaya, salad and a dessert.

VOLUNTEER INFORMATION

Ticket book/s (20 to a book) will be delivered to the site volunteer.  Call Ruth Hanson at 225-673-8434 or e-mail Lura Kamiya at lkamiya@lctcs.edu to provide contact name and arrange for delivery of how many ticket books are needed.

Contact Hanson  or Kamiya to provide a ticket sale count by Feb. 18, and arrangement for tickets to be picked up.   

Lunches will be delivered to the site or if preferred may be picked up from the Gautreau-Williams American Legion Post 81 located at 421 E. City Park Street in Gonzales.  

All donations will go towards a scholarship to the LSU School of Social Work in her memory. This will help her family reach their goal to keep “Char’s” dreams ongoing, thus spreading her sunshine and smiles to others through education and future social workers. Visit the LSU website at www.socialwork.lsu.edu  and click on Remembering Charlotte.

Mardi Gras Gala

The Ascension Fair Association Mardi Gras Gala will be held on Friday, Feb. 18, at the Gonzales Civic Center beginning at 8 p.m.

With the support of the Ascension Parish community and corporate sponsors, the Ascension Fair Association aims to provide tutoring programs for area youth, financial literacy programs for parents, and community enhancement activities for citizens in need.

The Ascension Fair Association Inc. is a community-based organization formed by a group of concerned citizens to bring economic growth and recreational activities to the Prairieville community during the 1950s.

To become a sponsor, purchase tickets or additional information visit www.ascensionfair.com or contact Gloria Burns at 225-939-6861 or Sharon Morris at 225-955-4683.

AARP tax help offered

AARP is providing tax assistance for federal and state income tax filers at the American Legion Post 81, located at 421 E. City Park Ave., Gonzales.

The tax counselors assist each Wednesday and Friday with the exception of Good Friday between 9 a.m. and 11: 30 a.m. They will assist through April 9.

It is important to bring proof of identification, last year’s tax return and tax documents such as W2 and 1099 forms, home insurance documents and home mortgage insurance premium documents for 2009 and real estate information.

New items of importance for taxpayers this year are deduction for taxes paid for new vehicles purchased after mid February 2009.

The assistance is free and made possible by AARP, American Legion Post 81 and AARP volunteers.

Center Based Respite offered

COEA The Arc of East Ascension is now offering: Center Based Respite to individuals with developmental disabilities. For more information, call 225-621-2000 ask for Ascension Center Based Respite. Adult Day Health Care to elderly individuals who are functionally impaired. For more information, call 225-621-2000 ask for Ascension Elder Care Center.

American Legion Wednesday bingo

The American Legion Post 81, 421 E. City, Gonzales, holds bingo every Wednesday night. Everyone is welcome. Children are welcome, but must buy at least a $5 book.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and bingo starts at 7:30 p.m.

Stiles to address Ascension GOP Roundtable

Wilbur “Bill” Stiles, district director for Congressman Jeff Landry, will be the keynote speaker at the Ascension GOP Roundtable, sponsored by Ascension Republican Women.

The Roundtable is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 17 at noon at Kamal’s Kafe, 13091 Airline Hwy. in Gonzales.  Socializing is from 11:30 to 12 p.m. followed by the meeting.

Stiles, a former assistant district attorney in the 16th Judicial District, holds a B.S. in Political Science from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and is a graduate of the LSU Law School. 

Cost for the buffet style lunch is $13, ice tea, tax and gratuity included.  The Roundtable is open to the public and guests are welcome. Reservations are requested. Phone 225-644-5728 or e-mail: ARWrUS@aol.com  or postmaster@ascensiongop.org

Summer Nurse Tech Internship Program offered

Ochsner is now accepting applications for its Nurse Tech Internship Program which will be held from June 6 through July 29 at Ochsner Medical Center – Baton Rouge. The internship program will include orientation, clinical case review and preceptored clinical rotations. All senior level Registered Nurse students who will graduate from a National League of Nursing or Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education accredited program between August 2011 and August 2012 are eligible to apply. Students must be able to work full-time from June 6th to July 29th and must complete the selection process and attend orientation.

Students can apply online by logging on to www.ochsner.org/careers. The deadline to apply for the program is Feb. 28.

The Perkins Rowe Barnes & Noble Bookstore will host children’s author Cornell P. Landry and book “One Dat, Two Dat, Are You a Who Dat?” on Saturday, Jan. 22 at 3 p.m.

If you are a fan of Goodnight Nola and Happy Jazz Fest, you will love his latest tribute to Louisiana culture: One Dat, Two Dat, Are you a Who Dat? Landry will be in the children’s department for a special reading of his latest creation and will sign copies afterwards. It’s an event Saints fans of all ages are sure to enjoy.

Class of 1966 to hold reunion

Gonzales High School class of 1966 will hold their class reunion April 9 at the KC Hall in Gonzales. Music will be provided by Kenny Fife and Bac Trac. For more information, call Olin at 715-2365 or Mark at 715-8050.

Diversion Mardi Gras Boat Parade

St. Jude Krewe of Diversion Mardi Gras Boat Parade is set for Feb. 26 at noon. Boats line up on Diversion Canal under Hwy. 22 bridge and travels down Diversion to Amite River and ends at Mannies. All proceeds go to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Pre-registration is at Mannies Friday, Feb. 25 at 6:30 p.m. Boat participation is $35 per boat. Boats and costumes will be judged 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. Krewe of Diversion King and Queen for 2011 is Mr. and Mrs. Roland Doucet.

For details or questions, call David or Vivian Stevens at 698-3127.

 BNI to meet

The Ascensions Producers Chapter of BNI meets every Thursday morning at Frank’s Restaurant on Airline Highway in Prairieville. Meetings begin promptly at 8:30 a.m. and end at 10 a.m. Visitors are welcome. For information or a reservation, call Tommy Joyce, president at 225-313-3258 or Nan Riffe, vice-president at 225-644-8005.

American Legion Wednesday bingo

The American Legion Post 81, 421 E. City, Gonzales, holds bingo every Wednesday night. Everyone is welcome. Children are welcome, but must buy at least a $5 book.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and bingo starts at 7:30 p.m.

Weekend VFW Post 3693 bingo

VFW Post 3693 offers bingo every Friday and Saturday. Everyone is welcome. Children six years and older are welcome, but must buy at least a $5 book.

Doors open at 6 p.m., bingo starts at 7:30 p.m.

Stashbuilder’s Quilt Guild to meet

Stashbuilder’s Quilt Guild is meeting at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 21, at St. James Lutheran Church, 1415 E. Hwy. 30, Gonzales. All levels of experience are welcome. Join us for fellowship, education and service. For more information, call 936-2238.

TOPS LA 422 meet every Thursday

Take Off Pounds Sensibly LA 422 Prairieville meets on Thursday evenings. Private TOPS weigh-ins are from 5:30-6 p.m. and meetings are from 6-7 p.m. Visitors are welcome to attend their first TOPS meeting free of charge. To find out more information about TOPS, call 647-2606.

Alzheimer’s or dementia caregiver meetings

Caregiver Network Groups for caregivers and family members of people with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia meet monthly and are free to the public. In Gonzales meetings are held on the first Tuesday of each month from 11 a.m.-noon at Church of Gonzales, 13423 Hwy. 431 and in Donaldsonville meeting are held on the third Monday of each month from 5-6 p.m. at the D’Ville House at 401 Vatican Drive. The meetings provide caregiver mutual support and practical caregiving techniques, as well as update community resources available to caregivers.

The meetings are sponsored by Alzheimer’s Services of the Capital Area, 3772 North Blvd., Baton Rouge. Call Alzheimer’s Services office at 225-334-7494 or 1-800-548-1211 for questions.

Become a Mentor

Face to Face Enrichment Center, located in Gonzales, is recruiting suitable adults to serve as COPE Project mentors. The Community Organizations and Programs that Empower youth Project also known as The COPE Project is a mentoring initiative designed for children, ages 4-18, of prisoners. The COPE Project allows qualified mentors to create quality, one-on-one relationships with children of prisoners and to serve as caring role models; thereby contributing to the mentee's future success.

Selected mentors must be willing to provide a minimum of bi-weekly one-on-one mentoring to their selected mentee match. Mentoring activities may include visits to the zoo, sporting events, museums, and other pre-approved sites. Mentor applicants must also agree to extensive background checks. 

They are also recruiting mentees, ages 4-18. Mentees must have at least one incarcerated parent to participate in the program. If interested, call 225-644-9992 or e-mail TheCOPEProject@yahoo.com

Free Screenings Offered

The Parish of Ascension offers free blood pressure and glucose screening every Friday from 8-10 a.m. at the Ascension Parish Health Unit, 1024 S. E. Ascension Complex Blvd., Gonzales, across from Courthouse East off Worthey Road. For more information, call 225-644-4582.

Recruit Military Opportunity Expo

A “Recruit Military Opportunity Expo” will take place Thursday, Feb. 17, from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Louisiana Superdome, 1500 Sugar Bowl Drive, New Orleans.

A free hiring event for veterans who already have civilian work experience, men and women who are transitioning from active duty to civilian life, members of the National Guard and reserves, and military spouses.

Produced by Recruit Military in cooperation with The American Legion and Purple Heart Services.

To register for the event or for more information on Recruit Military Veteran Opportunity Expos, visit recruitmilitary.com

Ascension Council on Aging events

• Feb. 9 – Canasta, Donaldsonville 9:30 a.m.; Hearing Tests, Brown’s Hearing Center, Donaldsonville 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.; Fast Exercise, Gonzales 10:45 a.m., Donaldsonville 9:30 a.m.; Line Dancing. Gonzales 1:00 p.m.; Singing w/ Bill : Gonzales 9 a.m.

Send your upcoming events to Cheryl LeBlanc Babin, lifestyles editor, at lifestyles@weeklycitizen.com, call 225-644-6397, fax 225-644-2069 or drop by or mail to The Gonzales Weekly Citizen, 231 W. Cornerview, Gonzales, LA 70737.