Edge of the Lake Magazine April | May 2024

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APRIL | MAY 2024
• SUMMER CAMP GUIDE • BUSINESS
TRAVEL
ART
LA-22-14248 Attorney Gordon McKernan Car Wrecks | Big Truck Wrecks | Personal Injury | Workers' Comp
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Welcome to spring, I for one am ready for some spring weather. After what felt like a very long winter, we are all ready to be outdoors again. Spring marks the start of our city’s cultural seasons. Free concerts will be taking place on most weekends around the Northshore, with festivals and block parties adding to the list of activities. Of course, our waterways, Tammany Trace, Tangi Trail and parks offer ample environments to participate in the plethora of outdoor fun.

All too soon it will be summer, parents will be looking for things to do to keep their children occupied. Summer Camps are a perfect opportunity for our children to try different things, we have put together our annual Camp Guide, check it out, and don’t forget to reserve your children’s camps now.

In this issue, we also learn more about the Northshore Food Bank as they look forward to celebrating forty years. We hear from Sarada and George Bonnett who took a trip to Ireland and they share their different experiences of the same trip. We also get to catch up with one of our clients Carol Fisher who was the first person to use our podcast studios here at Northshore Media. We are so excited that her podcast is up for an award. If you are interested in our podcast services or other media services go to northshoremedia.net to find out more information.

Enjoy the issue,

PUBLISHER Sarah Cottrell EDITOR Phyllis Dietrichson ART DIRECTOR Erich Belk STYLE DIRECTOR Patty Beal BEAUTY EDITOR Caitlin Picou CONTRIBUTING WRITERS George Bonnett Sarada Bonnett
Dowdy Nick Gagliano Jan Lantrip Elizabeth Lee René Miller Betsy O’Leary
Genest Smith STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Jerry Cottrell CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS George Bonnett Sarada Bonnett Johnny Chauvin Nancy Hale KEY ACCOUNTS EXECUTIVE Eloise Cottrell SENIOR ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Rebecca Blossman-Ferran Erin Bolton ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Debi Menasco The entire contents of this magazine are copyrighted by EDGE Publishing. @ 2024 with all rights reserved. Reproduction or use without permission of editorial or graphic content in any manner is prohibited. Please email comments or story ideas to edgepublisher@yahoo.com. EDGE PUBLISHING • 69170 HWY 190 SERVICE RD. SUITE 1 COVINGTON, LA 70433 • 985.867.5990 PUBLISHER
Charles
Liz
Cover photo Flowers - Nancy Hale

NO BONES ABOUT IT

At St. Tammany Health System’s Bone and Joint Clinic, fellowshiptrained physicians are experts in everything from pediatric orthopedics and sports medicine to osteoarthritis care and robotic-assisted total knee and hip replacement. What’s more, we offer on-site rehab and we’re backed by a world-class health system.

Along with our partner Ochsner Health, we provide a full range of care, connecting you to the very best, not just on the Northshore but in the country.

AUTISM CERTIFIED

Page 36 IRELAND 14 FLORIDA PARISH JUVENILE DETENTION CENTER FAMILIES 28 NORTHSHORE FOOD BANK HELPING 74 MY TURN BY CHEF LEE WEBB RESTAURANT REVIEW KIDS 18 SUMMER CAMP GUIDE 8 TANDEM CLINICAL RESEARCH RESEARCH SOCIAL AROUND TOWN 76 56 SECURITY CYBER 44 THE GIRLFRIENDS PODCAST 36 IRELAND- HIS AND HER TRAVEL 68 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ST TAMMANY NOW 62 TEA HEALTH 50 THE ART HOUSE ART
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CRITICAL RESEARCH, CLINICAL CARE

WWith all the more and Drug slows the gene therapy that can improve

Medical those of us there are implementing, process that starts in a research volunteers and effectiveness technique, improve

ith all the negative news in the world, it’s easy to miss the more hopeful headlines. For instance, in 2023, the Food and Drug Administration approved a drug that significantly slows the cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients, the first gene therapy for children with muscular dystrophy and a pill that can improve the symptoms of postpartum depression in as little as three days.

Medical advances like these can seem like miracles to those of us without science or medical degrees, but in reality, there are countless flesh-and-blood human beings devising, implementing, overseeing and participating in a regimented process that makes those so-called miracles possible. What starts in a laboratory eventually makes its way to the clinical research stage. This is where the participation of human volunteers is absolutely crucial to fine tuning the safety and effectiveness of every medical device, tool, surgical technique, diagnostic test, drug and technology used to improve the quality of or even save people’s lives.

When you think about clinical trials, do you picture them being conducted by impersonal, robotic scientists with clipboards and white lab coats who treat nameless, faceless participants like human guinea pigs? If so, get ready to rethink those stereotypes.

When being conducted clipboards participants

Full disclosure: trials back discovered little beer and deeper with two location offices in

Senior started her disciplines,

Full disclosure: I had a little bit of experience with clinical trials back in college when my friends and I brilliantly discovered that we could volunteer on occasion to earn a little beer money. But I came away with a fresh perspective and deeper understanding of this process after sitting down with two of the women who work out of the Covington location of Tandem Clinical Research, a company that has offices in New York, New Jersey and Florida, as well as four in Southeast Louisiana.

Senior Clinical Investigator Kristen Clinton, FNP-C, started her career as a nurse practitioner, working in various disciplines, including pediatric intensive care, urgent care, nephrology and allergy and immunology. But two things inspired her to transition into clinical research: a fascination with how medication works within the human body and family member’s health struggles.

EDGEatorial

all the negative news in the world, it’s easy to miss hopeful headlines. For instance, in 2023, the Food Drug Administration approved a drug that significantly the cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients, the first therapy for children with muscular dystrophy and a pill improve the symptoms of postpartum depression in

Medical advances like these can seem like miracles to us without science or medical degrees, but in reality, countless flesh-and-blood human beings devising, implementing, overseeing and participating in a regimented that makes those so-called miracles possible. What a laboratory eventually makes its way to the clinical stage. This is where the participation of human volunteers is absolutely crucial to fine tuning the safety ectiveness of every medical device, tool, surgical technique, diagnostic test, drug and technology used to the quality of or even save people’s lives. you think about clinical trials, do you picture them conducted by impersonal, robotic scientists with clipboards and white lab coats who treat nameless, faceless participants like human guinea pigs? If so, get ready to

disclosure: I had a little bit of experience with clinical back in college when my friends and I brilliantly discovered that we could volunteer on occasion to earn a beer money. But I came away with a fresh perspective deeper understanding of this process after sitting down of the women who work out of the Covington of Tandem Clinical Research, a company that has New York, New Jersey and Florida, as well as four

Clinical Investigator Kristen Clinton, FNP-C, her career as a nurse practitioner, working in various disciplines, including pediatric intensive care, urgent care,

“Most of us in clinical research have some sort of personal connection to a specific disease process for which we’d like to see some advancement in therapy. Mine is Parkinson’s. My grandfather had it, and I saw him go through the ups and the downs, so like others in this field, I want to figure out how to ease the suffering of not only the patient, but the family and caregivers.”

Once Kristen was established in her job with Tandem, she recognized what a valuable asset her mother-in-law would be. Barbara Clinton, BSBM, CAEd, spent 18 years working for Home Instead in-home senior care service, the last six of which serving as education director, teaching Alzheimer’s intervention to caregivers. Kristen credits her with having a gift for what she does as Tandem’s Alzheimer’s community liaison.

“We’re emotionally invested in the process and we firmly believe in education,” Barbara told me. “That’s why we can relate to patients, caregivers and the community on a very personal level. We’re passionate about what we do.”

Tandem proactively recruits prospective participants through marketing campaigns, but people also independently seek them out and physicians often refer patients, as well. While there are some studies that rely completely on provider referrals, most are a combination of referrals and individual volunteers.

People are motivated to participate in clinical trials by various factors. Some patients who are actively struggling with health issues are desperate for new treatment options for themselves, while others want to do their part so their children and grandchildren won’t suffer as they have. Still others may have insurance issues or no access to a preferred physician, so they are looking for guidance. Then there are those healthy individuals who are generous, pioneering souls that simply want to help alleviate the suffering of strangers and future generations.

(And yes, there are probably some who just want a little extra beer money!)

Tandem’s Covington office conducts phase I-IV trials that focus on gastroenterological issues, Alzheimer’s disease. depression and general health consultations, and other clinics on the Southshore showcase many more.

When I reached out to Dr. Adil Fatakia, Tandem’s chief medical officer, he added, “We really try to focus on problems that do not currently have any approved medical treatments. The opportunity to treat current patients with a difficult problem while also expanding the field of research for future patients is what Tandem Clinical Research is all about.”

Anyone interested in participating can peruse current and upcoming clinical trials listed on Tandem’s website, then fill out an online form, specifying what types of studies interest them. Next, if they qualify, they’ll set up an informal, in-person interview to discuss the individual’s overall health and specific concerns and goals to see if they’re a good candidate. If so, then they go on to do further screenings.

With all the more and Drug slows the gene therapy that can improve

Medical those of us there are implementing, process that starts in a research volunteers and effectiveness technique, improve

When being conducted clipboards participants

Full disclosure: trials back discovered little beer and deeper with two location offices in

Senior started her disciplines,

If participants have existing providers, Tandem will work in collaboration with them and can share the results of any labs, biopsies or imaging that are performed, with the participant’s approval. If they don’t have one, they are still eligible to participate. In addition to monetary compensation, which varies according to trial, they won’t be charged for any study-related visits, tests, procedures or medications, nor will insurance be billed.

Kristen laid out the benefits of the thorough screening process that’s given to prospective participants, regardless of whether or not they’re chosen for or choose to be involved in the study.

all the negative news in the world, it’s easy to miss hopeful headlines. For instance, in 2023, the Food Drug Administration approved a drug that significantly the cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients, the first therapy for children with muscular dystrophy and a pill improve the symptoms of postpartum depression in

“It’s possible to discover things that maybe weren’t on someone’s radar. If, for instance, they come in and say they have diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, we’re going to say, ‘You know what, you’re at risk for fatty liver disease. Let’s get a scan of your liver, no cost to you, and it’ll give us a good baseline.’ That could trigger going into a fatty liver study and getting a more comprehensive workup. Also, a lot of education goes into these consultations. In a case like this, we’d explain how this condition could lead to liver disease or other major issues, even cancer or cirrhosis, so we would discuss preventative care.”

Medical advances like these can seem like miracles to us without science or medical degrees, but in reality, countless flesh-and-blood human beings devising, implementing, overseeing and participating in a regimented that makes those so-called miracles possible. What a laboratory eventually makes its way to the clinical stage. This is where the participation of human volunteers is absolutely crucial to fine tuning the safety ectiveness of every medical device, tool, surgical technique, diagnostic test, drug and technology used to the quality of or even save people’s lives. you think about clinical trials, do you picture them conducted by impersonal, robotic scientists with clipboards and white lab coats who treat nameless, faceless participants like human guinea pigs? If so, get ready to

nephrology and allergy and immunology. But two things inspired her to transition into clinical research: a fascination with how medication works within the human body and

“Most of us in clinical research have some sort of personal connection to a specific disease process for which we’d like to see some advancement in therapy. Mine is Parkinson’s. My grandfather had it, and I saw him go through the ups and the downs, so like others in this field, I want to figure out how to ease the suffering of not only the patient, but the

Once Kristen was established in her job with Tandem, she recognized what a valuable asset her mother-in-law would be. Barbara Clinton, BSBM, CAEd, spent 18 years working for Home Instead in-home senior care service, the last six of which serving as education director, teaching Alzheimer’s intervention to caregivers. Kristen credits her with having a gift for what she does as Tandem’s Alzheimer’s community

Part of what Kristen and Barbara have done is to create a resource department that’s available to people as soon as they take part in the initial consultation, so they can feel secure that they have a care plan ahead of them, no matter what. Barbara explained why this is important.

“It can be a horrible thing when, for example, you’ve seen a neurologist and you’ve been given a diagnosis of dementia, and you’re left thinking, ‘Okay, now what?’ That’s been one of our goals, to be able to provide people with additional resources.”

disclosure: I had a little bit of experience with clinical back in college when my friends and I brilliantly discovered that we could volunteer on occasion to earn a beer money. But I came away with a fresh perspective deeper understanding of this process after sitting down of the women who work out of the Covington of Tandem Clinical Research, a company that has New York, New Jersey and Florida, as well as four

“We’re emotionally invested in the process and we firmly believe in education,” Barbara told me. “That’s why we can relate to patients, caregivers and the community on a very personal level. We’re passionate about what we do.”

Tandem proactively recruits prospective participants through marketing campaigns, but people also independently seek them out and physicians often refer patients, as well. While there are some studies that rely completely on provider referrals, most are a combination of referrals and

Along with community resources, like housing and support groups, Barbara and Kristen have built a referral network that includes physicians, nurse practitioners, social workers, physicians’ assistants and home health and hospice organizations. They also have relationships with NAMI (National Alliance of Mental Illness) Louisiana, the Alzheimer’s Association and multiple local Chambers of Commerce, each of which provides even more community resources.

Clinical Investigator Kristen Clinton, FNP-C, her career as a nurse practitioner, working in various disciplines, including pediatric intensive care, urgent care,

Lots of people are skeptical when it comes to pharmaceutical research, but the fact of the matter is, it isn’t free. Someone has to pay for it, and it’s most often either funded by the government or private industry. As a part of a system of checks and balances, independent clinics like Tandem are called upon by the sponsor to actually conduct the trials. To ensure safety and integrity, oversight is usually maintained by an Institutional Review Board (IRB) and the FDA. Tandem also has its own internal system of checks and balances, which includes a quality department, a regulatory department and a team of primary investigators, sub-investigators and specialists.

People are motivated to participate in clinical trials by various factors. Some patients who are actively struggling with health issues are desperate for new treatment options for themselves, while others want to do their part so their children and grandchildren won’t suffer as they have. Still others may have insurance issues or no access to a preferred

“If you don’t have safe, unbiased research, then we can’t have effective new therapies, and our mission is to keep medicine moving forward,” Kristen told me. “We remain transparent as a clinic team, and we also encourage patients to remain advocates for themselves, asking all the questions they want to make sure it’s a path they want to take for their health journey.”

Visit TandemClinicalResearch.com or call (985) 302-0470 for more information.

Spring is here! Just as our landscaping comes into bloom, so too will our opportunities to get out and enjoy what makes St. Tammany Parish so special.

The warmer weather and Spring season truly bring out the best of our beloved parish. I encourage everyone to spend a day on the Tammany Trace or one of our state parks and sleepy bayous. There is something for everyone to enjoy!

Preserving what makes St. Tammany so great will always be one of our top priorities. We have directed our litter teams to continue to keep our communities clean, focused our Public Works crews on clearing waterways of debris blockages to increase drainage and our Parish engineers and planners are focused on increasing our quality of life for generations.

I can proudly say that our parish is in a better state than it was four years ago, but there is more work to be done and I am excited to continue working for you!

As the 2023-2024 school year comes to an end, I want to take a moment to congratulate our graduating students who have reached a pivotal point in their lives. Whether you are entering universities, trade-schools, military services or the workforce, I look forward to seeing you succeed, along with your accomplishments and impacts on our community to come.

The impressive accomplishments of our youth are not possible without the support of their parents, loved ones, teachers and so many more inspiring people. I truly appreciate each of you for guiding our youth, which will help them grow and provide a better future for themselves and our parish.

If you have any questions or comments, I welcome you to reach out to me at President@stpgov.org or your Parish Council at Councilmembers@stpgov.org.

Serving as your Parish President continue to be one of my most humbling honors.

I am dedicated to making the best use of taxpayer dollars while holding true to my promise to improve response times and increase visibility in our community.

It is no secret that St. Tammany Parish continues to grow both in population and in the number of commercial businesses, adding to more traffic on our roads.

Upon first taking office, I quickly recognized a need for more patrol deputies and more centralized patrol district stations to help serve our residents, and I set out on a long-range plan to achieve both of those goals.

In 2021, we moved into what is now our permanent 2nd District Office near I12 and Highway 59, across from Fontainebleau High School.

In 2022 I restructured our patrol districts and added another patrol district to our growing west side. I am excited to say we recently moved into our new permanent 3rd District Office on East Brewster Road behind the Covington Target, and I encourage the residents in that area to stop by and check out our new building. The location was chosen as it provides easy access to Highway 21 and two separate I-12 exits.

On the east end of the parish, we have purchased a building on Oak Harbor Boulevard to serve as the new 1st District Station. A contract has been awarded and renovations on the 13,000 square foot building are expected to be completed before the end of the year.

The move to the new 1st District office will free up space at our building on Brownswitch Road to house the Training Division. This will allow us to vacate the aging Pearl River Training Facility, a more than 80-year-old former school owned by the school system.

We have also recently purchased the former Dollar General building on Highway 21 in the Bush community. This will soon become our new 4th District Office, serving the northern end of the parish. This will allow us to vacate the portable building that we currently occupy. We hope to start renovations on that building by end of summer or early fall.

As our parish grows, we grow.

EDGE February |March 2024 012
COMMUNITY LEADER
Mike Cooper St. Tammany Parish President Randy Smith St. Tammany Sheriff
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Keeping Our Families Safe

Juvenile Justice Reform has been in many headlines lately. Our parish is fortunate to have the Florida Parishes Juvenile Detention Center, a nationally-recognized and award-winning facility specially designed to house, educate and care for juveniles arrested and adjudicated delinquent for committing crimes.

“Our goal is to hire positive adult role models to work with the juveniles in our facility, to mentor and help equip them with tools for their toolbelts to be better and more productive citizens. This increases the likelihood of them being successful and avoiding adult incarceration,” said Joseph Dominick, the Executive Director of the Florida Parishes Juvenile Detention Center.

For the outstanding work in being a model juvenile detention facility, the Florida Parishes Juvenile Detention Center has been the recipient of the 2016, 2020, and 2023 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award, from the Center for Improving Youth Justice, a nationally recognized award in juvenile justice.

“Our work focuses on changing criminal thinking and

teaching appropriate behaviors to youth, while keeping the public safe,” says Dominick.

While Dominick is optimistic about his program, he also knows violent juvenile crimes are on a rise in the five parishes the Center serves. In 2020, there were 474 juveniles admitted to the center. This past year in 2023, that number rose to 718 admissions.

“We are seeing more violent crimes with juveniles using firearms and other weapons-related charges,” said Dominick. “Local law enforcement, the District Attorney’s Office and the Juvenile Judges are placing more violent juveniles in custody and taking them off the streets. Without our facility, there would be no placement for juveniles arrested in our area. Juveniles cannot be housed in adult jails and contrary to what some say, there are no other placements for these pre-trial youth. The state will not step in and other detention centers only house juveniles arrested in their parishes. Ultimately, and as crazy as it may sound, these kids would be arrested, issued a court summons, and released!”

EDGE February |March 2024 014
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Providing Tools for Juvenile Offenders

Dominick and his team have not let the increase in violent crimes dissuade them from their mission. They see each juvenile as a recoverable resource who needs the tools to cope in the community.

The Center works with the Tangipahoa Parish School System to have classes every day with the ultimate goal of having the juvenile offender graduate with a high school diploma. The Center also works with the Northshore Technical Community College to provide workforce training and certifications. This would result in the juvenile offenders able to obtain good paying job when they are released and have a pathway to success rather than returning to their old crime habits.

EDGE February |March 2024 015

The next program at the Florida Parishes Juvenile Detention Center is working to implement is a drivers education class. Without a way to get a license to drive, many juveniles would not have the necessary means to travel to work. This would help eliminate another barrier on their road to living a successful life.

That latest feather in the cap of the Center is the creation a fully functioning Robotics Program.

“We are proud to be the first and only juvenile detention center in the country to offer a robotics program,” said Dominick. “Through our partnerships with Northshore Robotics, and another local non-profit, Just 1 Voice, our students are learning how to code, create and plan robotic movements in a real-life application.” The goal is to have graduates with the robotics experience and knowledge to gain local employment opportunities at places such as Medline,

IntraLox and the Amazon Distribution Center in Slidell.

Dominick sees and experiences the many accomplishments as a result of his team’s and the community’s commitment to holding juvenile offenders accountable and providing real opportunity for rehabilitating them. Funding for the operation of the Florida Parishes Juvenile Detention Center comes from a three mil property tax in Tangipahoa, St. Tammany, Livingston, Washington and St. Helena Parishes. The renewal of the millage will be on the April 27, 2024 ballot in all five parishes.

“We have been very good stewards with the funds we receive. We will keep our communities safe from violent juvenile offenders while providing the tools and structure they need to have the opportunity to change their lives to be a protective members of our society.”

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Here’s to a bright future

Tabby Pediatric Patient

As champions of community well-being, our heartfelt commitment to advancing healthcare extends to our youngest patients. You’re never far from the care your child needs with Ochsner Children’s in Covington and Mandeville. We offer general pediatrics plus specialty providers across the Northshore region to help your family face anything, minor or major.

Schedule an appointment at ochsner.org/schedule

Ochsner Health Center for Children – River Chase 69318 LA-21 | Covington

Ochsner Health Center – East Mandeville

3235 East Causeway Approach Mandeville

Just a few spots left!

Specialty Camp Available This Summer: Cheer, Basketball, Drama, Dance & More

Learn the sport of a lifetime this summer

Swim Lessons

Swim Team

Water Park

Summer Memberships Available

NON-MEMBERS WELCOME CROSSGATESCLUB.COM/CAMPS 985.643.2049 | 200 N. MILITARY RD.

Summer camp guide

EDGE February |March 2024 019
U L Y 8 - 1 1 J U L Y 8 - 1 1 SECONDARY D A Y C A M P D A Y C A M P
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- 14 J U N E 3 - 6
CAMP AGES 5 - 14 M A Y 2 8 - 3 1 J U N E 1 0 - 1 3 J U N E 1 0 - 1 3 J U N E 1 7 - 2 0 GRADES 1ST -
GRADE
-
J U N E 3 - 6 J U N E 1 7 - 2 0 J U N E 2 4 - 2 7
ART 2.0 D MEDIA 2ND 6TH J U L Y 1 5 - 1 8 J U L Y 1 5 - 1 8 DANCE CAMP AGES 5 - 14 J U L Y 2 2 - 2 5 SECONDARY ART CAMP GRADES 7TH - 12TH
GRADES
SOFTBALL J
ELEMENTARY S.T.E.M. CAMP ELEMENTARY ART PRINTMAKING & CLAY GRADES 1ST - 2ND GRADE 3RD - 6TH BOYS‘ BASKETBALL AGES 5 - 14 GIRLS‘ BASKETBALL & FOOTBALL AGES 5 - 14 BASEBALL & CHEER CAMP AGES 5
14 VOLLEYBALL AGES 5
SOCCER
2ND
3RD
6TH
ELEMENTARY
DRUMLINE CAMP
5TH - 12TH

Bogalusa

Believe Summer Camp

Bogalusa High School, 100 M.J. Israel Drive, 985.516.1758 / believecamp.com

Bush

Splendor Farms- Horse Camp for Girls 27329 Mill Creek Road 985.886.3747 / splendorfarms.com.

Covington

Archbishop Hannan High School

Little Hawk Day Camp - Sports Camps

Archbishop Hannan High School 71324 Hwy 1077 985.249.6363 / Hannanhigh.org

Camp Abbey

Catholic Sleep Away Camp at Abbey Retreat Center 77002 K C Camp Rd. 985.327.7240 / campabbey.org

Camp Old Hickory

Summer Day Camp 73234 Louisiana Ave. rscafidel@live.com 985.892.4788 / campoldhickory.com

Christ Episcopal School Summer at CES

Featuring three options: Drama Camp, Wildcat Sports, and Creative Cats (traditional day camp experience), with select sessions in June and July for ages pre-k through teens (depending on camp session).

80 Christwood Blvd. 985.871.9902 / christepiscopalschool.org

Creating U Academy

Acting & Modeling Camp 69154 Hwy 190, E. Service Rd. creatingu@att.net 985.893.2218 / creatingu.com

Kehoe-France

Northshore Camp 25 Patricia Dr. 985.892.4415 / kehoe-francens.com

Kidcam

Summer Camps

Coquille Park, 13505 LA-1085 877-4KIDCAM / kidcamcamp.com

Northlake Christian School Camp Northlake Athletic & Enrichment Camps

May 28th – 31st Volleyball, June 3rd- 6th Boys

Basketball, June 3-6 Elementary Art Printmaking and Clay, June 10th – 13th Girls Basketball and Football, June 10th – 13th Drumline Camp, June 17th – 20th Elementary STEM Camp, June 24th –27th Soccer Camp, July 8th – 11th Softball Camp, July 8th– 11th Secondary STEM Camp, July 15th

– 18th Elementary Art 2.0 Marbling and Mixed Media, July 15th – 18th Dance Camp, July 22-25th Secondary Art Camp.

70104 Wolverine Dr. 985.635.0400 / campnorthlake.org

Northshore Humane Society

Summer Camp for Animal Lovers

Fun & educational activities centered around animals

Boys and Girls ages 6-13, May through July Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 4:00 pm. Before care (8:00 am - 9:00 am) and after care (4:00 pm - 5:00 pm) available.

20384 Harrison Ave

985.892.7387 / Northshorehumane.org

Playmakers Theatre Theater Camps

19106 Playmakers Rd. 985.893.1671 / playmakersinc.com

St. Paul’s Camps

Madagascar – A Musical Adventure Jr.! A single two-week camp will be held in June 17th through the 28th. A final performance will be held on June 29th for all campers in a 200 seat theater! Monday through Friday, 9am – 1 pm. Open to boys and girls aged 9-13.

STEM CAMP

Dive into the world of STEM with our immersive summer camp designed just for elementary school students! Students will engage in hands-on learning, tackle real-world challenges, and develop essential teamwork skills. From constructing bridges to programming robots, every day will bring new discoveries and exciting projects!

June 3rd -7th Session 1 June 10th-14th 2024

Session 2 - 9:00 am– 12:00 pm

Students entering 4th – 6th grade, girls or boys

SPORTS CAMPS

Boys Ages 8-14

Train with the top high school coaches and athletes on the Northshore! Prior experience in a sport is not necessary.

June 3rd -7th Basketball, June 6th -8th Football:

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OPENS IN MANDEVILLE MAY 2024 2985 U.S. Hwy 190 Mandeville, LA 70471 Cat5Pickleball.com THE NORTHSHORE'S ONLY INDOOR PICKLEBALL FACILITY! COMFORT, CONVENIENCE, COMPETITION, & COMMUNITY. DINK IT! www.christepiscopalschool.org > Sessions in June and July > Pre-k through teens, depending on camp Drama Camp Wildcat Sports Creative Cats The Lightning Thief The Wizard of Oz basketball, flag football, soccer, volleyball, wrestling arts/crafts, music, sports/games, chess, canoeing, science, robotics Register now for summer camp at Christ Episcopal School!

Offensive/ Defensive Line Camp, June 10th -14th

Football Camp, June 17th -21st Baseball Camp, June 24th -28th Golf Camp (offsite), June 24th –28th , Soccer Camp, June 24th – 28th Strength Camp, July 8th -12th Speed, Agility, Strength/All Sports Camp, July 11th Football Evaluation Camp, July 15th -19th Lacrosse Camp, July 15th – 19th Rugby Camp (touch rugby only), July 15th -19th Wrestling Camp, July 22nd 26th Cheer Camp Contact: sportscamps@stpauls.com or (985)778-9166

Registration for all Saint Paul’s summer camps: stpauls.com/student-life/summer-camp

St Paul’s School, 917 South Jahncke Ave, 985.892.3200, stpauls.com

St. Scholastica Academy

122 S. Massachusetts St. 985.892.2540 ext.129 / ssacad.com

YMCA - Summer Camp 71256 Francis Rd.

krissyc@ymcaneworleans.org 985.893.9622 / ymcaneworleans.org

Folsom

Big Sky Ranch- Farm Camp 15442 Jack Fork Rd. 985.276.0270 / bigskyranch.org

Zoo 2 U & Ponies 2 82089 Hwy. 25 985.769.8444, / zoo2uparties.com

Hammond and Ponchatoula

Camp Rec Center

Michael J. Kenney Center, 602 West Coleman Ave, Hammond, 985.277.5903

Sunshine Studio

Art camps

Sunshine Studio, 234 S.E. Railroad, Ponchatoula 985.373.0468 / sunshinestudioarts.com

Kidcam

Summer Camps

Chappapeela Sports Park, 19325 Hipark Blvd, Hammond 887-4KIDCAM, / kidcamcamp.com

Southeastern University

Roomies REC Camp - Student Activity Center

1850 N. General Pershing St., Southeastern University 985.549.5591 / Southeastern.edu

Madisonville

Madisonville Equestrian Center

Riding Camp

135 Vista St. Mandeville 985.778.6981 / madisonvilleequestriancenter. com

Maritime Museum

Aquatic Robotics Camp

133 Mabel Drive, Madisonville 985.845.9200 / lpbmm.org

Mandeville

Art Time

Art Camp 705 Asbury Drive 985.674.2023 / arttime.biz

Camp Girl Biz

5200 Hwy. 22, Suite 6 and 7 campgirlbiz@aol.com 985.705.9288 / campgirlbiz.com

Cedarwood School

Summer Camps and Aquatics

June 3th –14th June 17th – 28th July 8th – 19th 9 am–3 pm. Ages: 2 – 7th Grade, 607 Heavens Dr., Mandeville, 985.845.7111 / cedarwoodschool.com

Culinary Kids

Summer Camps

We offer week-long, full day sessions (May through August). from 9 am to 3 pm. Extended care available from 8 am to 5 pm, available either daily or weekly. The teaching kitchen and privacy-fenced yards provide excellent learning and playing environments for our campers. Teachers keep them busy with guidance from a customized curriculum that engages, teaches, and entertains all day long! May 27th- June 28th, July 8th – August 14th with Special Needs Camp July 1st – 3rd. 915 Marigny Ave., info@culinarykids.com 985.727.5553 / culinarykidsns.com

EDGE February |March 2024 023
EDGE February |March 2024 024 A ttac hed is a proof of y our ad that will run in the Febr uar y / Mar c h is s ue of E DGE of the Lake will r un as is unless we r ec eiv e c hanges by ( 1 5 2 0 2 4 ) a t5 : 0 0P M . P lease m ak e any c hanges or 985.727.5553 • culinarykidsns.com 915 Marigny Avenue - Mandeville SPRING BREAK & SUMMER CAMPS! REGISTER NOW

Franco’s

Summer Camp

Athletics, Swimming, Arts, Water Slide, Games and Activities

100 Bon Temps Roulé, Mandeville, 985.792.0200

francosmandeville.com/summer-camp

Kidcam

Summer Camps

Pelican Park, 63350 Pelican Drive, 985. 237.1616 / kidcamcamp.com

Louisiana Academy of Performing Arts Music Camp

Mandeville School of Music

105 Campbell Ave., #3 985-674-2992 / laapa.com

Mandeville Sports Complex

Summer Camp 23052 Hwy 1088 985.727.7277 / mandevillesportscomplex.com

Northlake Academy of Music Music Camps

Princess Camp June 3-7, Princesses & Pirates Camp

June 24th – June 28th

Singing with Storybooks July 15th- July 19th, Animals Action Music Camp July 29th- August 2nd All camps 9.30 – Noon.

375 Asbury Dr. 985.778.0786 / northlakeacademyofmusic.net

Northshore Gymnastics

Tiny Tumblers Summer Jamboree

1973 6th Street 985.624.8310 / northshoregymnastics.net

Pelican Athletic Club

Summer Camps

1170 Meadowbrook Blvd. 985.626.3706 / thepac.com

PRIDE, Youth and Community Resources

Overnight Camps

Positive Action Camp/ Positive Attitude Camp

Fontainebleau State Park, Mandeville 985.727.7710 / pacamp.org

30 by Ninety Theatre Theater Camps

880 Lafayette 844.843.3090 / 30byninety.com

Pontchartrain Yacht Club Sailing

140 Jackson Ave. 985.626.3192 / pontyc.com

School of Rock Music Camps

1872 N. Causeway Blvd, Mandeville 985.589.7625 / Schoolofrock.com

30 by Ninety Theatre Theater Camps

Campers will rehearse and perform a Broadway Junior Musical in just two weeks. Boys and Girls

,Ages 7-17

The Little Mermaid

May 27 – June 7, 9am – 3pm 7-17 Year Olds, 9am –Noon 5 & 6 Year Olds

Performances June 8, at 10am & Noon

Moana Jr

June 10 – 21

9am – 3pm [7-17 Year Olds, 9am – Noon 5- & 6-Year Olds

Performances, June 22, 2024 at 10am & Noon

Beauty and the Beast

July 22 – August 1

9am– 3pm [7-17 Year Olds]

Performances August 2-4, 2024 (Times TBA)

Broadway Bound

One-week intensive for campers who love musical theatre! You will work on a solo or duet along with several group numbers to be presented in your very own cabaret! Campers will study music, dance and musical theatre presentation from

June 24-28 9am – 3pm Boys and Girls :: Ages 7-17 – with two cabaret-style presentations on Saturday, June 29. 10am and Noon

Mean Girls Jr.

Participate in staging Mean Girls, Jr for three performances! You will receive stage direction, musical direction, choreography, and all aspects of staging a junior production from an experienced team. Ages 12-17

July 8 – 18, 2014 9am – 3pm

Performances July 19-21, Times TBA 880 Lafayette 844 .843 .3090, 30byninety.com

Slidell

Creative Dance Dance Camps

58485 Pearl Acres Rd, Slidell 985.646.0171 / creativedanceslidell.com

Crossgate Family Fitness

Enjoy an exciting curriculum developed by our onstaff certified St. Tammany Parish School Teachers. Exciting themed Weeks, Field Trips and Special Events, Guest Speakers, Performances, Live Music and Camp Assemblies. Organized instruction in Tennis, Pickleball, Taekwondo and Sports Training.

EDGE February |March 2024 025

Engaging activities: Projects, Science Experiments, Educational and Group Challenges. Fun and Games with Splash Park, Swimming, Wibit, Spots Complex, Sports Field and More.

May 27th – August 16th Ages 3-13

200 Military Rd and 1311 Gause Blvd, Slidell 985.643.3500 / Crossgatesclub.com

Honeycomb Preschool Summer Camp

Art, Outdoor Activities, Weekly Themes, Science, Water Days. Special Guests. 6.30am- 6 pm, Breakfast, Lunch & Snacks Included, CCAP Accepted

Slidell 985 641 2111

Pearl River 985 250 9010 / honeycombpreschoolslidell.com

Gymnastic Plus

Fun & Fitness

58445 Pearl Acres Rd. 985.643.0914 / gymplus.net

Slidell Memorial Hospital and St. Tammany Fire Protection District No.1

Fit as a Firefighter Summer Camp Registration - Slidell 985.280.8529 / slidellmemorial.org

“WITTY, SASSY, SEXY!”
- Broadway World

Kidcam

Summer Camps

First Christian Church, 102 Christian Lane, Slidell 985.237.1616 / kidcamcamp.com.

Pope John Paul II

Summer Camps

1901 Jaguar Drive 985.649.0914 / pjp.org

Rembrandt Studio

1118 Brownswitch Road Slidell 985.645.9565 / rembrandtstudio.com

Slidell Little Theatre

Theatre Camp

2024 Nellie Drive, Slidell 985.643.0556 / Slidelllittletheatre.org

Tammany Yacht Club 1196 Harbor Drive, Slidell 985.649.5222 / tammanyyachtclub.org

*Camp dates, times & activities are subject to change.

REGIONAL PREMIER

THE BIG Split

April 5-27

Friday and Saturday 8 pm

Presidents and pandemics are the hot conversation points, and Julia and her partners at Sugarbaker’s interior design firm are now tackling 21st century challenges with wit, pluck, and style. The house of Sugarbaker may be divided this election season, but these Southern, smart, and sassy designing women prove that nothing truly unites us like laughter.

EDGE February |March 2024 026
Cutting Edge Theater TICKETS AVAILABLE ONLINE cuttingedgetheater.com PHONE 985.649.3727 TEXTING 985.285.6666 767 ROBERT BLVD. SLIDELL

COMMUNITY LEADERS

Dear Citizens,

The City of Slidell had another successful parade season! We take great pride in having family-friendly parades in Slidell and it was nice to meet and visit with so many people along the parade route. And the Olde Towne Merchant’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade was another great success! I would like to thank all our Mardi Gras krewes, Team Slidell, the Slidell Police Department and all the law enforcement agencies who made sure that everyone had a safe carnival season. And a special thank you to Keep Slidell Beautiful, Parks & Recreation, Public Operations and all the volunteers who assisted in parade clean-up.

We recently broke ground at John Slidell Park on our new Slidell Skatepark and Slidell Pickleball Courts. The skatepark will be 14,000 square feet and designed for skaters of all ages and abilities. And the new pickleball courts will consist of twelve new outdoor courts. Both projects are estimated to be completed in October 2024.

Spring has arrived which means that there will be plenty of festivals and events happening in the City of Slidell. Our Bayou Jam concert series continues in Heritage Park with a performance by Clifton Brown and the Rusty Bucket Band on Friday, April 5, and the Highschool Band and Choir Showcase on Friday, April 19. All concert are 6 to 8 p.m. and admission is free.

Our annual Salad Days student art exhibit is now on display in the George Dunbar Gallery at the Slidell Cultural Center at City Hall. The exhibit features the works of St. Tammany Parish student artists from kindergarten to 12th grade. We are fortunate to have so many amazing young artists in St. Tammany Parish. Gallery hours are Mondays through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Please call (985) 646-4375 to schedule a viewing.

And don’t forget about the City of Slidell’s Some Enchanted Evening! The Northshore Community Orchestra will perform on Saturday, April 27, at 5 p.m. in Heritage Park. Be sure to pack a picnic basket and enjoy great music on Bayou Bonfouca!

Spring is in full bloom across the Northshore, and while we have A LOT of great events happening this month, one that I want to focus on is our annual “Love the Boot” clean up week.

Tangipahoa is not just a fun place to live; it’s also a beautiful community. From our green spaces to our waterways, Tangipahoa Parish is a natural beauty, and as such, we refuse to let our community become a dumping ground.

Each April, our Keep Tangipahoa Beautiful team joins forces with local volunteers, schools, civic groups, and a host of other helping hands who lend their time and muscle to making our parish shine. During Love the Boot Week, we tackle roadside ditches, interstate exits, and heavily-traveled roadways where litter accumulates. We also walk neighborhoods, picking up scraps of trash. Our goal is not only to eradicate litter; it is also to set an example and take pride in our communities.

We invite you to join us in this initiative. We each play an important role in making our community the best it can possibly be.

For more information on how you can take part in Love the Boot Week in Tangipahoa, please check out https://keeptangipahoabeautiful.org/

Working together, we can Keep Tangipahoa Beautiful.

EDGE February |March 2024 027
Greg Cromer City of Slidell Mayor

Feeding the

Food insecurity is a real problem for individuals and families right here in Louisiana. According to the Louisiana Food Bank Association, approximately 683,110 of the state’s residents don’t have access to enough food to meet their basic needs. Sadder still, of that total, 234,120 are Louisiana children.

The good news is that the dedicated team and valued volunteers at the Northshore Food Bank (NFB) have been in the trenches feeding hungry residents of St. Tammany Parish for the past 40 years. But the group is not content to rest on their laurels. As stated recently by the NFB’s CEO Yvette Roussel. “We look forward to reaching more underserved areas to provide greater access to nutritious food to individuals and families in need in St Tammany Parish.”

Form Humble Beginnings to Expanded Food Programs

Back in May 1984, a group of nine churches created the Covington Ministerial Alliance. Bankrolled by only $75, they opened The Food Bank at 432 North Columbia in Covington (now home to the Dead Tree Art Gallery). Local pastors issued needy parishioners referrals, and in their first year of operation, the organization served 883 clients with 559 food boxes.

Almost 40 years later, the program has evolved into the Northshore Food Bank, which currently serves over 4,000 clients. On Monday, Tuesday and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to noon they distribute 1,100 food boxes and nearly 6,200 kid packs.

The group provides hungry residents with healthy food assistance via a dozen different programs. That’s particularly laudable considering that they relied solely on volunteers’

40 years of serving

St. Tammany Parish

Community,

efforts until 2011. That was the year they introduced the “Holiday Meal” program to ensure that hungry families had food to prepare for Thanksgiving dinner.

Since 2012, their staple food boxes of 18 nonperishable items are curated by a dietician. While those boxes serve as the core of their food distribution, the NFB does much more for the needy on the Northshore. In 2015, they launched the “Summer Stock” kids’ food program that helps feed schoolchildren during the summer months.

Casting a Wider Net

It is the working poor who often fall through the gaps in the safety nets of social services. The NFB addressed those needs in 2018 by adding their “Feed the Gap” program for those in the ALICE population. That acronym stands for “Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed.” The NFB hands out food boxes for those who earn too much to qualify for traditional government assistance but who still fall within 200% of the federal poverty guidelines.

The following year saw the introduction of the first Therapeutic Food Pantry at St. Tammany Cancer Center. The group partnered with hospital dieticians to stock the

pantry for chemotherapy patients and provide food boxes for their families. Also in 2019, the group began mobile distribution of special meal boxes of easy-to-prepare items for homebound seniors in collaboration with the Council on Aging – St. Tammany (COAST).

Even the COVID-19 pandemic didn’t stop the NFB’s expansion, because in 2020 they added more nonprofit partners to their Community Cupboard. This mobile distribution was designed to reach residents who were unable to get to the food bank.

The group had another banner year in 2021, launching the “Feel Better Food Bag” pilot program that morphed into the “Kids Weekend Food Program” in 2022. Eligible elementary schoolchildren at four Title 1 Northshore schools and the Covington Boys and Girls Club receive easy-to-open foods to sustain them over the weekend and ensure they have enough to eat.

The year’s second launch was their Type 2 Diabetes box packed with healthier options including whole grains, unsweetened cereal, no salt added and low sugar nonperishables for diabetic and prediabetic program participants.

families and

Straight From the Earth

The “Grow to Geaux Garden & Fresh Produce” initiative began their first satellite distribution site two years ago in Folsom. This partnership with a local co-op provides program participants with fresh produce, and the community garden produced more than 1,000 lbs. of fresh vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, cabbage, green beans, eggplant, and squash.

Just last year, the NFB added a second Therapeutic Food Pantry at Slidell Memorial Cancer Center to better serve cancer patients and their families. They also put on their annual Christmas Tree Kickoff, where sponsors decorated 40 holiday trees at the Covington Trailhead.

What’s In Store in 2024?

The group hit the ground running in 2024. They already opened a satellite distribution point in Slidell at St. Luke’s Good Samaritan Center. They held their 40th annual virtual Lenten run/walk, with participants pledging to walk or run 40 miles for the food bank’s 40 years of community service.

But they are eager to do further good works.

One source of their revenue is the Northshore Food Bank Resale Shop, the present iteration of what used to be the All Saints Thrift Store. Now, the shop is located in Covington in the former food bank warehouse on North Columbia Street.

The Resale Shop accepts donations of working appliances, some gently used furniture, clothing, jewelry, athletic equipment, antiques, home décor, purses, accessories, tools — and more. Those wishing to donate items can email photos of the items prior to delivering them to make sure all donations can be accepted, as used items like mattresses, car seats, and personal wear cannot be accepted.

12 nutritional programs to meet specific needs of our community

much more...

367,842 pounds of food provided through resale shop proceeds

18,305 miles driven to make remote distributions and procure food donations

Feeding By Numbers

Statistics don’t lie. Just in 2023 alone, the food bank:

• Distributed 367,842 lbs. of food purchased with proceeds from sales of items donated to the Resale Shop.

• Handed out 6,191 food bags via various child food programs.

• Driven 18,305 miles safely on procure food donations and remote distributions.

• Increased by 48% the number of patients served through local cancer centers since 2022.

While these numbers are indeed impressive, CEO Roussel and Development Director Ginger Kunkle continue their quest to increase the number of hungry and needy individuals and families they can reach through their many community outreach programs.

Come for the Fun and Sign Up to Volunteer

To celebrate, Roussel and Kunkle announced their upcoming 40th anniversary community celebration and resource fair that will be held on April 21 at the food bank. All program participants and community members are invited to attend

and learn more about the resources available to those most in need of assistance.

Wondering just how you can help? There are myriad ways to get involved and lend a hand. Schools, fraternities, and sororities with members in need of service hours are encouraged to volunteer at the food bank or Resale Shop. Schools and groups can also host food drives at their events. You can check the NFB’s social media accounts monthly to learn which items are most needed. Donations tend to decline from January through March and from June through August, so those months are the most crucial to donate.

Short on time? No problem! The food bank also needs monetary donations, sponsorships, third-party donations, grants, and event support. You can even host food bank dinner parties where guests donate the cost of a dinner, and the host gives the donations to the Northshore Food Bank.

Not sure where the need is greatest? That’s OK, too. You can call (985) 327-0044 to learn more about the opportunities for volunteering, donating, hosting, and sponsoring. Help the Northshore Food Bank stamp out hunger and food insecurity in southeast Louisiana.

6,191 food bags distributed through kids food programs
EDGE February 032
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Break out the dancing shoes: It’s Springtime in Covington and that means free live music galore. On April 4th, Grammy award winner Wayne Toups kicks off the Rockn’ the Rails Thursday night concert series with a Cajun good time at the Covington Trailhead. On the 11th, it’s Molly Taylor and the Honky Tonk Angels, the 18th is Jump Hounds and on the 25th is Bottoms Up.

Saturday mornings and across the street from historic Covington Cemetery # 1 on Columbia Street, our Farmer’s Market is a gem unto itself. While you’re there, grab a cup of Coffee Rani coffee, pull up a chair and tap your toes to a live band cranking out tunes from the gazebo … 52 Saturdays of the year. Each Wednesday at the Covington Trailhead, a modest market opens through lunch time where our local pickers and grinners pick and grin on stage in an acoustic jam session.

On the third Friday of each month, we gather at the foot of Columbia Street along the beautiful banks of the Bogue Falaya River – the area that served as a loading dock throughout the 19th and mid 20th centuries when Covington was a port city – to listen to some of south Louisiana’s finest musicians. This concert series is not so much about “who” is playing but more about sitting with friends and enjoying some cheese, crackers and perhaps a bottle of vino. That said, the performances are eclectic and the artists are incredible.

On April 21st and May 19th, you can join me for a little cardio, a little core work and a lot of fun at Zumba with the Mayor (free, thanks to St. Tammany and Oschner Health Systems). Beginners are welcome: If you’re moving, you’re doing it right.

On May 18th, the St. John’s Fools of Misrule host their annual Fool’s Fest at the Covington Trailhead. It’s a full day of free music with The Chee-Weez, Eli Howard & the Greater Good, Wes Jeans, the inimitable Dash Rip Rock and PJ & the Bear.

You might need two pairs of dancing shoes.

Spring is here! Just as our landscaping comes into bloom, so too will our opportunities to get out and enjoy what makes St. Tammany Parish so special.

The warmer weather and Spring season truly bring out the best of our beloved parish. I encourage everyone to spend a day on the Tammany Trace or one of our state parks and sleepy bayous. There is something for everyone to enjoy!

Preserving what makes St. Tammany so great will always be one of our top priorities. We have directed our litter teams to continue to keep our communities clean, focused our Public Works crews on clearing waterways of debris blockages to increase drainage and our Parish engineers and planners are focused on increasing our quality of life for generations.

I can proudly say that our parish is in a better state than it was four years ago, but there is more work to be done and I am excited to continue working for you!

As the 2023-2024 school year comes to an end, I want to take a moment to congratulate our graduating students who have reached a pivotal point in their lives. Whether you are entering universities, trade-schools, military services or the workforce, I look forward to seeing you succeed, along with your accomplishments and impacts on our community to come.

The impressive accomplishments of our youth are not possible without the support of their parents, loved ones, teachers and so many more inspiring people. I truly appreciate each of you for guiding our youth, which will help them grow and provide a better future for themselves and our parish.

If you have any questions or comments, I welcome you to reach out to me at President@ stpgov.org or your Parish Council at Councilmembers@stpgov.org.

Serving as your Parish President continue to be one of my most humbling honors.

EDGE February |March 2024 034 COMMUNITY LEADERS
Mark Johnson City of Covington Mayor Clay Madden City of Mandeville Mayor
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Exploring Ireland’s Museums, Murals, Masterpieces and pubs.

SARADA’S Travel Experience

Pack your sense of humor and a sturdy umbrella because Ireland awaits with lively charm and unpredictable weather. My husband and I embarked on a trip with friends that would soon become the best trip either of us has ever been on. However, we see things differently, and our itinerary is completely different. Ireland lends itself to just that. George and I will write about very different experiences, but I promise we were on the same trip.

Our friend Mark worked on our flights and excursions, taking day trips from Dublin by bus or train. Giving us the stability of having a home base. It worked like a charm. I recommend going right before the beginning of “peak” season to cash in on all the discounts. The day we left to return home, our hotel room doubled in cost, and so did the flights.

Once in Dublin, where the wit is as sharp as the accents, you will want to stroll along the River Liffey. Don’t be surprised if a Dubliner stops you for a chat—after all, they’re

EDGE February |March 2024 036
Artful Wonderlust of

the masters of conversation, making small talk an art form. The people we met all across Ireland were incredibly warm and inviting.

Our first day trip was to Waterford, and we took the train. The trip was roughly two hours. It gave us plenty of time to see the countryside, including a golf course with sheep in the middle of the fairway. I’m not even sure what you would call that in golf terms. Once we made it to Waterford, we took a tour of the plant. It was so informative and cool to see the artisans at work. Waterford is Ireland’s oldest city and was founded by the Vikings in 914. A must-see.

The next day, we took a bus trip to Galway and the Cliffs of Moher. Guys, if you have any type of motion sickness, I recommend you skip it or find another way to travel. That’s all I will say about that, although I might still be green from the experience. Galway had the most vibrant street culture, with open-air shops and colorful old buildings, some dating back to 1232. The Cliffs of Moher view was stunning and one you want to add to your bucket list.

We took a train to Tullamore and then on to Athlone. Athlone is situated on the river Shannon, which provides spectacular views. While you can’t go to Ireland without visiting Sean’s Bar the oldest bar in Ireland, I quickly tired of the pub and wanted to see more of the sites and architecture. You must visit the Church of Saint Peter and Paul and then have a craft cocktail made with the freshest ingredients at Maisie’s.

The next day, while everyone else went and got on another bus, I chose to stay back and truly explore Dublin. The city is incredibly clean, and I felt safe navigating it alone. I started at Marsh’s Library, the first public library in Ireland, in 1673. You will want to visit Saint Patrick’s and Trinity College, but leave time to explore the city of Dublin. It’s a tapestry of hidden treasures waiting to be discovered. As the trip concluded, the memories of a city after my heart remained. The depth and charm could only be uncovered by venturing beyond the well-trodden paths. This adventure left an indelible mark on this traveler’s soul.

GEORGE’S Travel Experience

I reached into my carry-on for the emergency change of clothes I’d packed. It was 5:30 AM in a Dublin airport men’s room, and I was covered below the belt by coffee I’d spilled on myself during the flight. This trip was beginning just as I’d imagined. The coffee might or might not have been of the Irish variety.

With a fresh pair of jeans, I emerged from the bathroom to join the rest of our travelling party. We were four: two couples, soon to be joined by a third. And we were finally in Ireland, embarking on an adventure we’d spent years planning. (In these pages, I’ll refrain from using last names just in case Interpol has recently subscribed to this magazine).

I’m told my wife is also writing an article about this trip. Gentlemen readers, please know that your attention is far better spent on this version of events. As it turned out, we husbands of the trip had a remarkable propensity for finding the truly important, culturally significant things around Ireland. It didn’t take us long to discover that the entire country is full of the world’s most amazing pubs and breweries and whiskey distilleries. Also, it seems they have some really old buildings.

We were in Dublin for nine glorious days. Some days we took day trips to some of the other fascinating cities throughout Ireland, other days were spent entirely in Dublin. Our first was such a day. After a “Full Irish,” the most indescribably amazing breakfast anyone has ever broken fast with, we headed to the Jameson distillery on Bow Street for a secret whiskey tasting. Nestled in a private, dimly lit room resembling a library with more whiskey bottles than books, we sampled one glass after another of that golden elixir. The bartender provided a fascinating oratory on the history and significance of Jameson, and with every sentence it became more apparent that we might need to move to Ireland.

For several years, Mark and Jerry (the other husbands) and I have enjoyed an occasional Guinness at the Tap Room in Covington. As luck would have it, the Irish are partial to that beer as well. It’s commonly found in pubs, restaurants, libraries, kindergartens, etc. We located the mothership on day three when we visited the Guinness brewery. As we arrived on the campus, our senses were immediately and warmly welcomed by the delicious aroma of roasting wheated something-or-other wafting through the misty Irish afternoon. It was at this point that my wife started describing Ireland as my Disneyland. She wasn’t wrong.

The Guinness tour was very much like the one at Jameson – a very private room with a very knowledgeable bartender/lecturer and glass after glass of beers that made you sad you’d never tasted them before. Each one came with a different story of that beer’s provenance and with another almost subliminal suggestion that, yes, we needed to move here. That night, some guy on the street was telling us about his house. It’s just outside Dublin, and I bought it sight unseen for 50 euros.

For the next day or two, we were occupied with day

trips out from Dublin. The first of these was to the Cliffs of Moher, an astonishingly beautiful place with views of some of God’s most amazing creations. We took picture after picture of the scenery, until we realized what a thirsty business photography is and we headed inside to the cafe for a Guinness. Standing in front of the beer cooler, we were horrified to discover they sold only nonalcoholic beer and overpriced wine and champagne. Pro travel tip: the Cliffs of Moher are amazing, but make sure your wife isn’t susceptible to motion sickness (see her article) and BYOG(uinness).

In Galway, we saw Viking towers and ancient churches and one particular coffee shop that sold their drinks in little paper cups that were remarkably well-suited to the addition of an airplane bottle of Jameson. It was a town that had obviously been well-planned.

Tullamore was a brief train ride from Dublin, which presented us with more idyllic scenery and the everfamiliar sight of men playing golf with sheep. In that small town resides the Tullamore D.E.W. distillery. This tour held in store more tasting and edification by a tour guide dedicated to his craft and its whiskey. This

experience came home with us, though, as there was a bottle of 12-yearold that kept eyeballing me until I rescued it from its perch upon the shelf.

That night, as with many others, we spent the evening singing and dancing along with live, traditional Irish music (called trad music there) in a pub called The Brazen Head. This is the oldest pub in Dublin, est. 1198. They make the claim to be the oldest in Ireland, but there’s a riff here between them and a place called Sean’s Bar, which we also investigated. Sean’s claims history since 900AD. In the end, who were we to side with one or the other. Seeing that a little beer and ‘baccy wouldn’t do us any ‘arm, we smoked handsome Peterson pipes, drank dark, silky-smooth pints, and made lifelong friends with perfect strangers in both places.

Our last day was spent in Saint Patrick’s and Christ Church cathedrals. The architecture of these two landmarks is breathtaking in its scope and scale. I’ve been to the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, and I think I’ll probably remember St. Patrick’s when my name is called.

I’ve now been to ten countries in Europe. Without hesitation, I’ll tell you with absolute certainty and conviction that Ireland is the best of the lot, and it’s not even close. If I could ask the almighty for one thing, it would be to have two-weeks advance notice when my time comes, that I might see Ireland once more.

So, you can have your Paris and its cheeses, you can keep your Venice and its gondolas. As for me, I’ll have a fireside Guinness with me wife in our house just outside Dublin. I hear it’s lovely.

EDGE February |March 2024 041
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PODCAST PODCAST

When NorthShore Media Group decided to offer podcast services we felt like it was right in our wheelhouse. Podcasting is an audio based, long form way of telling exciting stories or exploring interesting subjects. It is not that different from what we already through our radio stations across the Northshore. We posted information about our new podcasting services on our website and got an almost

NORTHSHORE MEDIA GROUP
EXCLUSIVE

Since it was our first podcast contract, we were curious to see who we were working with. A quick Internet search revealed they were actually heavy hitters in the world of podcasting.

Our podcast studio was barely built out. We had a gorgeous space, thanks to Steve and Jeff at Niche Modern Home. They listened to what we wanted and created a room that comfortable and functional. We invested in great equipment. But we thought it would take more time to fill the pipeline of new podcast customers. Even if this request was for our most basic service, were we ready?

I guess we were ready enough. Fast forward a few months. The first episode of this podcast, a large part of which was recorded in our studio, came out. For two weeks, it ranked #1 on Apple Podcasts in the entire US, UK, and Canada. Since then, it has continued to do quite well.

The person who recorded in our studio was Carole Fisher. She was a new member of the Northshore community and through this podcast she shared her personal story, hoping to shed light on the epidemic of domestic violence.

In the podcast, Fisher recounts a gripping account of breaking free from an abusive ex-boyfriend who would be arrested years later for murder. The Girlfriends collaborates with NO MORE, a global nonprofit dedicated to ending domestic and sexual violence. The podcast tells the true story of a group of women who formed a club to put a murderous ex-boyfriend behind bars. The story illuminates the ways women can unite to protect each other when systems of justice fail them. Distributed

CAROL FISCHER

by iHeart Podcasts, anyone can listen to it on all major podcast platforms.

Unlike your typical true crime, The Girlfriends is not about the murderer, Bob. It’s about his wife, Gail, and the other women who dated him who could have suffered the same fate. It’s about Gail’s sister Alayne, who never gave up the fight for justice. And it’s about the gratitude she felt when she learned that a sisterhood of women in Las Vegas and New York were on her side.

Hosted by Carole Fisher, one of the girlfriends, the series is hard-hitting and empowering. Set to an original choral score by Luisa Gerstein from Deep Throat Choir, the voices of women are literally at the center of this true justice series.

The podcast’s launch in the United Kingdom earned a ranking of #38 of all podcasts Globally, and #44 of all podcasts in the United States. For two weeks, it ranked #1 on Apple Podcasts in the US, UK, and Canada.

Since our first effort, Northshore Media Group has entered into contracts with other local businesses and individuals to produce their podcasts. Businesses that range from healthcare, to tourism, and mental health. We’ve also contracted with individuals who feel like they have a story that needs to be told. Each contract varies in scope in terms of what we provide. Northshore Media Group can simply provide the studio and equipment, like we did with The Girlfriends. Or we can script, produce, and edit a turnkey podcast. It really is up to what the business or individual wants or needs.

Either way, podcasting is an exciting new tool in the Northshore Media Group arsenal of marketing options used by local businesses to build their brand. For more information about our podcasting and other marketing services go to northshoremedia.net.

To hear Carol’s story, look for Season 1 of The Girlfriends wherever you get your podcasts.

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JOHNNY CHAUVIN
The Northshore's full-service podcast solution. Studio Rental Production Distribution NORTHSHOREMEDIA.NET NORTHSHORE MEDIA GROUP NM • •

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Polished Gem

A LOOK AT THE REFURBISHED ART HOUSE

I’m ashamed to admit it, but I’d never stepped foot inside the St. Tammany Art Association’s Art House in downtown Covington before now. I’ve lived on the Northshore for a decade, and while I was certainly very familiar with the organization’s role as a hub for local and visiting artists, as well as host of countless festivals, arts markets, kids’ camps and classes for all ages, I honestly didn’t realize it resided in such a cool building, which is open to the community. It took mother nature’s wrath to open my eyes.

On August 29, 2021, just as the STAA (like all of us) was finally on the road to recovering from the challenges brought on by the pandemic, Hurricane Ida hit. She was tough on a whole lot of Northshore residents and businesses, mainly due to toppled trees, but the Art House seemed insulated from all that, nestled snugly in the heart of the relatively treeless historic district. After all, its over 225-year-old building had maintained its structural integrity through countless other hurricanes, not to mention the multiple catastrophic fires that ravaged the district in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

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But as Cathy Deano, the current president of the STAA board, explained during my recent visit, the historic structure’s luck had finally run out.

“Ida just peeled off that tin roof. It was laying in the courtyard when I got here, and when I looked inside, water was just pouring in. It took about a week to get a tarp on, so it sustained even more rain damage and all the sheetrock and ceilings were coming down. Of course, we had trouble with insurance and faced a lot of other challenges, so, long story short, it took us over two years to complete renovations.”

Along with her role with the STAA, Cathy is the owner and co-founder of Painting with a Twist, which she started 15 years ago with a fellow Mandeville Middle School mom and now has a whopping 238 franchisees. She earned a degree in interior design and has served on the boards of multiple local non-profits, so combine all that with her entrepreneurial spirit, and it made perfect sense when she said, “My business is supporting art in the community.”

To celebrate the long-awaited reopening, at the time of my visit, they were hosting “Art Bienvenue,” a delightful exhibition of members’ work representing a wide array of styles and mediums. Luckily, they weren’t hosting an exhibition when Ida struck, so no art was damaged, but both stories of the front portion of the building took a beating.

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Cathy was kind enough to show me around, just as crews were putting the finishing touches on the upstairs rental unit, making sure to credit former Covington mayor Keith Villere, who serves as STAA’s vice president and had worked with FEMA before, with spearheading the efforts to get crucial federal funding. That money, along with insurance and a few grants, finally allowed them to replace the roof and drywall throughout the gallery spaces, update the electrical and HVAC systems, plus refurbish the heavily damaged upstairs rental unit with everything from drywall to appliances.

If it weren’t for her telling me all about the damage against the soundtrack of incessant hammering coming from the second floor, I wouldn’t have known anything had ever been amiss. The main gallery is positively pristine with smooth gray walls, clean lines and muted tile floors.

“The space and the lighting, the colors of the walls, all of it was done to amplify the art,” Cathy explained. “All of it was specifically chosen according to standards for art galleries.”

On the left side of the space, a pair of beautiful, rustic wooden doors with large inset window

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panes reveal a quaint, New Orleans-esque courtyard just outside. An all-brick exhibition space, aptly called the brick room, just off the main gallery, has a similarly picturesque rustic door and courtyard situation. Straight back from the main entrance, a hallway and sitting area act as extensions of the main gallery, displaying even more art and leading to a rear doorway to the cavernous bricked pottery studio which, like the brick room, was graciously untouched by the storm.

While the art is certainly the star of the show, I couldn’t help but be charmed by the building itself. Exploring it with fresh eyes is to go from being completely immersed in the satisfying symmetry of the contemporary gallery spaces, to then being repeatedly and pleasantly surprised by historic character. Notice I said historic character and not original character, as its architectural highlights, like exposed brick and antique doors, were not showcased in its original, utilitarian incarnation as the Bernard Barrere General Mercantile. Photographic evidence shows that, as its name implied, it wasn’t exactly a chic boutique. Instead, it was dark and boxed-in with every inch of its floor space and walls packed with inventory which an old advertisement describes as “staple and fancy groceries, dry goods, clothing, hats, shoes, feed, etc.” They were clearly displayed not for aesthetic effect or ornamentation, but to maximize access to and movement of the merchandise. A far cry from today’s purpose and vibe.

The 10,000-square-foot building has served as homebase for the non-profit organization since the early 2000s, and it’s such a perfect fit that it’s hard to believe there was a moment in the wake of the storm when cutting their losses and moving elsewhere was a possibility. But it’s understandable, considering the circumstances. Centuries-old buildings are not cheap or easy to maintain in the best of times, but add to that not only the hassle and expense of the cleanup, but also the huge reduction of their revenue streams. While community members like Southern Hotel owner Lisa Condrey-Ward and the Masonic Temple generously provided temporary spaces to hold a limited number of exhibitions and classes, the STAA has barely been able to keep their heads above water. Fundraisers had to be postponed and they suffered additional loss of income when Ida temporarily rendered the upstairs rental property uninhabitable.

So, why in the world didn’t they just sell this chunk of prime real estate for a tidy profit?

“I like to go check out art organizations in other cities and no one has a space like this, even in bigger cities,” Cathy told me. “We were able to buy it through one of our patrons, so we’ve got this million dollar building in the center of Covginton, and we just couldn’t ask for a better space. So, the board ultimately came together to save it because it’s so important to us and the community.”

It’s going to take time to completely right the ship, but they’re well on their way, and even implementing some fresh ideas. The STAA is planning to add a retail element to the gallery, extend their theater program into Mandeville, and they’re actively advertising the gallery as an event rental space. Along with providing a gorgeous backdrop for showers, reunions or business meetings, it’s more affordable than most and you have the freedom of choosing your own caterer. So, it sounds like all the hardship wound up having some positive impact, afterall.

“It has refocused us and inspired us to get creative,” Cathy admitted. “Like with Covid, like with Katrina, like when you suffer personal losses, once you get through it, you feel stronger.”

A week after my initial visit, I returned with my 18-year-old son. We strolled around town, bought some vinyl at Black Flower Apparel & Records, then stopped in at the Art House. My son was stunned. “Why have we never been here before?!”

I don’t know! But I’m hoping to rectify the oversight by encouraging everyone to check it out for themselves and explore the ways to help support this community gem as it continues to recover. Why not consider donating a few dollars or holding events here? You can also step up and become a member, attend a fundraiser, or volunteer to work in the gallery. And then, of course, there are all the cool programs and events.

According to Art House Coordinator, Maggy CaseEymard, whose great-grandmother was one of the original founders, “We have a huge number of classes and camps coming up. We also have Spring for Art on Saturday, April 13th from 6:00 -9:00 p.m. That evening we will have an exhibition opening, featuring the work of Alan Gerson, along with a new member gallery. And our first fundraising event, ‘Live at the Art House,’ will be held on April 20 with music by Flow Tribe.”

Everything can be found on their website atsttammany.art. Art House doors are open Wednesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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A Lifestyle Guide to Surviving (and Thriving) After Losing Your Tech Device When Your Laptop Goes Missing:

IMAGINE THE SCENARIO: you’re cruising home from your local coffee shop, the taste of that triple-shot, low-foam, extra-hot pumpkin spice latte still lingering, a sense of satisfaction in the air. But then, panic sets in. Your laptop, your digital lifeline, is not where it’s supposed to be. In that moment, as you rush back, hoping against hope that someone turned it in, the weight of what you might have just lost hits you. It’s a situation no one wants to find themselves in, yet it’s increasingly common in our tech-driven world. So, what do you do if your laptop—or any important device, for that matter—goes missing?

FIRST THINGS FIRST: KEEP CALM AND TAKE IMMEDIATE STEPS

Make the Call: Speed dial your IT crew (or the tech-savvy friend in your life) the moment you realize your gadget has gone AWOL. They’re the knights in digital armor who can start the process of securing your virtual kingdom from potential invaders by changing passwords, locking access to sensitive applications, and, if necessary, remotely wiping your device to ensure that your data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.

Password Parade: It’s time to change every password you’ve ever created. Start with the essentials— financial services, email accounts, anything work-related and then move on to social media and other sites. Utilizing a password manager to facilitate this process will help ensure that each account is secured with a unique, strong password. Having a password manager setup now will make your life during this process much easier. The quicker you change your passwords, the better you protect yourself against unauthorized access. This might feel like redoing the locks on every door you’ve ever known, but in today’s digital age, where our lives are intertwined with various online platforms, this step is non-negotiable.

Legal Loop: If your missing device held more secrets than just your Spotify playlists (think sensitive personal or client info), you might need to make a few more calls, potentially even to a lawyer, to ensure you’re covering all your bases and complying with any legal obligations. Ensuring compliance with legal obligations isn’t just about protecting yourself; it’s a gesture of respect and responsibility towards those whose data was entrusted to you.

PRE-EMPTIVE STRIKES: THE ART OF DIGITAL SELF-DEFENSE

As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In the context of cybersecurity, this couldn’t be truer. Taking proactive steps can drastically reduce the risks associated with losing a device.

Fortify with Encryption and Backup: Think of encryption as your digital diary lock, and regular backups as your safety net. Encryption ensures that even if someone gains physical access to your device, the information remains secure. Regular backups, whether to an external hard drive or a cloud service, ensure that you can recover your digital life even if the device itself is irretrievably lost. This dynamic duo ensures that your private thoughts (or, more likely, files) stay that way, and that a digital mishap doesn’t mean you lose everything.

Embrace the Power of Remote Control: Equip your device with the ability to phone home. The ability to locate, lock, or wipe a device remotely is an invaluable tool in the event of loss or theft. Many services offer this capability, providing peace of mind that you can respond quickly to secure your data if your device goes missing.

Physical Measures and Cyber Hygiene: Simple habits, like using multi factor authentication (MFA) for all logins and setting a PIN or password that locks your device after a short period of inactivity, can provide significant protection. Be mindful of where and how you use your device in public spaces to reduce the risk of theft. Additionally, always logging out of websites and applications when you’re finished using them can prevent unauthorized access, even if someone manages to get their hands on your device.

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BEYOND THE DEVICE: UNDERSTANDING THE BIGGER PICTURE

In our interconnected world, the loss of a laptop or any device is not just a personal inconvenience; it’s a potential gateway for cybercriminals to access wider networks and sensitive data. The implications can stretch far beyond the initial panic, affecting not just the individual but their workplace, clients, and anyone whose data was stored on the device.

For professionals, it can mean the loss of critical work data, intellectual property, or sensitive client information, potentially leading to reputational damage and financial loss. For individuals, it can mean the exposure of personal information, leading to identity theft or the loss of irreplaceable digital memories. It’s a stark reminder of our vulnerability in the digital age and the need for vigilance.

EMBRACING A CYBER-SMART LIFESTYLE

Knowledge is power, especially in the realm of cybersecurity. Staying informed is your best defense in the ever-evolving world of cyber threats. Dive into resources, attend workshops, and follow tech blogs to keep your digital literacy sharp. And remember, the most stylish accessory you can pair with your tech is a robust suite of security measures. This isn’t merely about safeguarding your gadgets but about protecting your digital legacy.

THE ROLE OF CYBER INSURANCE

In the same way you’d insure a valuable piece of jewelry or artwork, think about protecting your digital assets. Cyber insurance can be a modern necessity, offering a safety net against the potential financial fallout of digital disasters. Cyber insurance has become an essential consideration for both individuals and businesses. These policies can provide coverage for the costs associated with data breaches, including legal fees, notification costs, and even ransom payments in the case of ransomware attacks. Review your coverage options and ensure that you’re protected against the financial ramifications of cyber incidents.

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WRAPPING UP: A CALL TO DIGITAL ARMS

Losing a laptop can feel like a disaster, but it doesn’t have to be a catastrophe. By taking the right steps immediately after discovering the loss and by implementing preventive measures, you can protect yourself, your data, and your digital life from potential threats. Remember, cybersecurity is a continuous process, requiring vigilance, education, and adaptation to new threats. By embracing a proactive and informed approach to digital security, you can turn a digital nightmare into a minor hiccup on your tech journey. So, take the time now to review your security practices, consult with your IT crew (or the techsavvy friend in your life), and ensure that you’re doing everything you can to safeguard your digital world. Because when it comes to cyber security, the best offense is a good defense.

ABOUT RENÉ MILLER:

Rene Miller is owner and co-founder of Ener Systems, an IT services and security company serving small to mid-size businesses in the Greater New Orleans Area.

Rene is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional, has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of New Orleans and has helped hundreds of businesses experience extraordinary growth while maximizing e ciency. He uses his tech prowess and business management expertise to help businesses develop IT strategy that aligns with their objectives. He holds 12 industry certifications and is the author of “Operation Hacker to Slacker – How to Combat the Chaos of Cybercrime to Protect Your Data, Money & Business”, and co-author of the publication “The Secret To Hassle-Free Computer Support Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love My Computer!” Rene has been featured in two documentaries now streaming on Amazon: “Cyber Crime: The Dark Web Uncovered” and “CyberCrime Investigations”.www.EnerSystems.com

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THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF Tea Tea

JAN LANTRIP

Nothing could be more lovely than a nice tall glass of refreshing blueberry tea, especially knowing how incredibly healthy this drink can be. Tea comes in an infinite variety of flavors, colors and blends: from Scottish Caramel pu-erh tea to Caio Amaretto black tea to Wedding Blend white tea. Tea is purely the leaves of an evergreen bush or small tree called Camellia Sinesis and is comprised of an array of compounds, including alkaloids, polyphenols, amino acids, and other violative organic compounds. The potential health benefits of tea have been attributed to these compounds –particularly to the anti-oxidant activity of polyphenols contained in the tea leaves.

There is unequivocal evidence that tea can make a positive impact on our health. Unlike many other beverages we drink, tea contains no salt, fat, carbohydrates or calories and is free of preservatives. Flavonoids, which naturally occur in tea, act as antioxidants – compounds that neutralize our bodies’ free radical molecules. Damage to our cells by free radicals, over time, is believed to contribute to the development of many chronic diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.

Tea is also a very good source of antioxidants, providing higher levels of antioxidants per serving than most fruits and vegetables. The antioxidant activity in one cup of loose leaf tea is equivalent to 5-6 glasses of orange juice or 3-4 apples. Although tea should not replace produce in our diet, it certainly should be a part of a healthy diet.

CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH

Research has led to compelling evidence that tea’s antioxidant activity can have a positive impact on cardiovascular health. Studies from the U.K. found that people who regularly consume three or more cups (6 oz) of black tea daily have a significantly reduced risk of both heart attack and stroke. A major study published in September 2006 in The Journal of the American Medical Association found that consuming five or more cups of green tea daily was associated with a 26% lowered risk of

death due to cardiovascular disease. Drinking high quality black tea and green tea can improve cholesterol levels and blood vessel function by reducing oxidative damage, all of which are risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

CANCER

Many epidemiologic studies have found that tea drinkers have a reduced risk of cancers of the colon, breast, ovary, prostate, skin, and lung, as well as cancers of the digestive system and mouth. Preliminary evidence suggests that the flavonoids in fresh fruits and vegetables and in loose leaf tea act as potent antioxidants that combat free radical damage, inhibiting uncontrolled cancer cell growth, and promoting programmed cell death or apoptosis, which could play a significant role in staving off cancer.

IMMUNE SYSTEM

Studies published by Harvard University and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston found that tea contains an important compound called theanine. Theanine is a unique amino acid that strengthens the immune system to fight infections from bacteria, viruses and fungi.

Human clinical trials in Europe and in the U.S. found that after drinking five cups of black tea daily for two to four weeks, participants’ immune cells produced up to four times more interferon than at baseline. This is very exciting news indeed because interferon is a protein that improves our immune response. These findings suggest that drinking black tea provides the body’s immune system with natural heightened resistance to both viral and bacterial infections.

BONES & TEETH

A recent study published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that bone mineral density (BMD) was significantly higher in women who drank three or more cups of tea per day, versus those who did not drink tea.

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The English Tea Room & Eatery 734 E Rutland St, Covington, LA englishtearoom.com 985. 898.3988

Tea contains naturally occurring fluoride, which can help protect tooth enamel, and the rich flavonoids in tea are believed to greatly inhibit the plaque-forming ability of oral bacteria. A study showed 63.7% fewer cavities with black tea consumption.

Tea can also help reduce the risk of kidney stone development. Thousands of men and women participating in tea studies have shown an 8-14% decrease in kidney stones.

CAFFEINE

Tea contains one third to one half less caffeine than coffee. Actual caffeine levels in tea are dependent upon the blends and strengths of the brew, but in general a single cup (6 oz) of black tea contains approximately 40 mg of caffeine. Some green, oolong, and white teas contain less caffeine than this, and herbal teas such as rooibos contain no caffeine.

For most of us, caffeine is a regular part of our daily routine. But you may want to take a look at just how much caffeine you are consuming, especially if you are bothered by headaches, insomnia, anxiety, restlessness, and heart palpitations. Your caffeine habit should not exceed 400 mg a day. In south Louisiana, one cup of strong coffee can contain a full day’s limit of caffeine.

Tea lovers who are caffeine sensitive can consider brewing fewer tea leaves and using cooler water, which extracts less caffeine from the tea. Choosing green or white teas is also helpful, since they have a lower caffeine content than black tea. Shortening the steeping time will reduce caffeine content even further.

One method used at The English Tea Room to remove and reduce caffeine content from the tea is to brew the tea

bag for 30-40 seconds and then discard the initial brew. Take that same tea bag and re-brew it with fresh hot or warm water for 2-3 minutes. The ‘rinsing out’ of the tea bag dissolves the water-soluble caffeine in the leaves. The first brew is discarded and the resulting “re-brew” has less caffeine, especially with a lower water temperature and a reduced steeping time.

It turns out that tea not only has less caffeine, but it also contains three additional stimulant substances that may promote a type of positive synergistic effect: theophylline, theobromine and L-theanine.

Theophylline and theobromine are both related to caffeine and belong to a class of organic compounds called xanthine. They have several physiological effects on the body. Theophylline relaxes smooth muscles in our airways, making breathing easier, while also stimulating both the rate and the force of heart contractions. Theobromine can also stimulate the heart, but it has a mild diuretic effect and improves blood flow throughout the body. This leads to a net reduction in blood pressure.

L-Theanine is a unique amino acid that promotes calmness and relaxation. It works in synergy with the natural caffeine in tea leaves to promote a mindful state of alertness and ability to focus. The caffeine content in tea is thought to absorb more slowly in the body than caffeine from coffee or energy drinks. This gentle relaxant promotes a longer period of increased alertness without the jittery rush and crash. So, drink tea for your good health, and drink it often. What other civilizations have known for centuries, modern science is now confirming.

PHOTO GARRETT MCANN

United Way of Southeast Louisiana thanks our Top 10 Most Generous Workplaces from St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and Washington Parishes. These generous companies and their employees are making an impact that will resonate for generations to come.

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St. Tammany NOW

TRANSPORTATION PLANNING IN OUR REGION

St. Tammany NOW brings you the latest economic development information and business and industry insight in our community provided by St. Tammany Corporation, the economic development organization for St. Tammany Parish. St. Tammany NOW highlights who and what makes the St. Tammany business community thrive and illustrates the opportunities to diversify and fortify our economy.

In this issue, we will discuss how transportation planning works in our region and how it supports economic development. To give a broad overview, the key focus areas under the umbrella of transportation planning include highway safety, public transport, traffic congestion management, long- and short-range planning, road and infrastructure maintenance, cyclist and pedestrian safety, and freight transport. Studies have shown that investments in each of these categories support economic development by directly increasing jobs, stimulating additional investment from the private sector, and improving overall interconnectivity and access, which has positive impacts on the workforce and overall supply chain.

What is the New Orleans Regional Planning Commission (NORPC)?

To outline the importance of transportation and infrastructure planning, we look to the New Orleans Regional Planning Commission, the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for southeastern Louisiana. The NORPC serves the people of eight parishes in our region: Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, and Tangipahoa.

The Regional Planning Commission is led by a board composed of local elected officials and citizen members from the parishes it serves, as well as the Louisiana Secretary

of Transportation. The eight officers are the Parish Presidents of each parish, and each parish has appointed citizen members representing a cross-section of industries. Representing the Northshore, St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper is the Secretary of the board, and Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller is the Second Vice Chairman. Other members from St. Tammany include Parish Councilmen Jeff Corbin and Pat Burke, plus citizen members including Stirling Properties Senior Advisor and St. Tammany Chamber of Commerce President Chris Abadie and myself.

This group meets on a monthly basis to discuss issues that affect the multi-parish metropolitan area and cooperate on transportation, economic development, and environmental planning for the region.

What is an MPO?

Metropolitan Planning Organizations are responsible for coordinating transportation planning and funding across multiple jurisdictions in an urbanized area, like the New Orleans metro region. This responsibility includes the creation and implementation of long-range Metropolitan Transportation Plans and four-year Transportation Improvement Programs, which are critical for keeping up with regional growth and maintenance of existing infrastructure assets. MPOs are required by federal law in areas with a population of 50,000 or more. The RPC’s Transportation Policy Committee serves as the MPO for four such areas: New Orleans, Hammond-Ponchatoula, Mandeville-Covington, and Slidell, the latter three of which are on the Northshore.

What are examples of the New Orleans Regional Planning Commission’s priorities on the Northshore?

Two of the eight parishes in the RPC’s region (St. Tammany and Tangipahoa) and three of the four urban areas (Hammond-Ponchatoula, Mandeville-Covington, and Slidell) are located on the Northshore. In 2023, the

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RPC was awarded a Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation and is developing a regional safety action plan for St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and St. John Parishes. The plan will identify factors that contribute to road accidents, both behavioral and infrastructural, and propose countermeasures that can be implemented using the federal grant funding, ultimately making our communities safer for everyone who uses the roads.

Additionally, in 2023, the RPC assisted the City of Mandeville with a comprehensive update to their 2007 bike and pedestrian master plan. The plan applied existing best practices, design standards, and policies to existing and projected characteristics of the city, resulting in a plan that will increase mobility, connectivity, and safety for people who are walking and cycling in the city. The RPC’s regional perspective is also infused into the report with considerations for interconnectivity with the entire parish.

What does transportation have to do with economic development?

One of the key priorities of economic development is to boost our community’s economic competitiveness, and

achieving that goal can take many different forms, including working with education and training partners to support workforce and talent development, understanding the needs of small business owners and sharing resources to support their growth and success, and recruiting new businesses to increase investment and jobs to grow our overall economy.

Fundamentally, economic development is about creating the conditions for economic prosperity, investment, and wellpaying jobs so that our residents can enjoy a better quality of life. Part of the process of creating those conditions is working with entities like the RPC to lay out the vision for the region’s future, create a plan that aligns with that vision, and allocate resources to make the vision a reality.

In fact, in addition to its role as an MPO, RPC is designated by the U.S. Department of Commerce as the Economic Development District for the five parishes of Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, and St. Tammany. The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) requires the RPC to create and update a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) in coordination with local economic development organizations, like St. Tammany Corporation, and with input from a cross section of business, industry, and civic representatives. The CEDS

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is updated every five years and provides a blueprint for developing projects that could be eligible for federal funding.

The Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy tailored for southeast Louisiana lays out a plan to support critical issues including entrepreneurship, emerging industries like tech, legacy industries like healthcare and tourism, resilience following natural disasters, and equity and inclusion.

For more information on the crucial work and planning that the RPC does in our region, visit NORPC.org.

St. Tammany Corporation continues to be a resource hub for businesses and consistently shares timely, relevant information related to our economic landscape and upcoming business resource programming on our online platforms. Stay connected with St. Tammany Corporation on Facebook and LinkedIn at @StTammanyCorporation, our website at StTammanyCorp.org.

This article is a special collaboration between St. Tammany Corporation and the New Orleans Regional Planning Commission. Special thanks to Jeff Roesel, Executive Director of NORPC, for providing information and fact checking. Elizabeth Lee is the lead staff contributor for St. Tammany Corporation.

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THANK YOU TO OUR COMMUNITY for voting for us Reader’s Choice three years in a row. We are grateful for your support. Locally owned and operated, state licensed and insured we are proud to offer electrical services to our surrounding communities. Call us today! 985.778.7385 info@turtle-electric.com
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our turn: by Chef L We

ABOUT CHEF LEE WEBB

In every issue, EDGE of the Lake invites a local chef or restaurateur to visit another eatery on the Northshore.

Ten years ago, after building a wood-fired brick oven by hand in his backyard, Lee Webb turned his lifelong passion for cooking to the art of making pizza. He studied great bakers and chefs for years and used all that knowledge and enthusiasm to open Pomodori Pizza. This cozy brick oven pizzeria, located next to the Causeway Branch of the St. Tammany Parish Library on Highway 190 in Mandeville, offers a nice selection of antipasti and salads, but pizza is definitely the star. Customers can choose from classic ingredients, like a number of authentic Italian meat toppings, like fresh fennel sausage, as well as an array of gourmet cheeses. Or they can pick a more inventive creation, like the pear & prosciutto pie.

I’d not only heard of Parish Tacos, I’d eaten there before. It’s the ultimate comfortable neighborhood taqueria. I would describe it as Louisiana-Mex, and it’s obvious that so much love goes into this food and that it’s all made from scratch.

It’s definitely a casual lunch place, but it’s got cool, locally curated art on the walls. You order at a counter in the back, where they have the regular menu, plus specials listed on a blackboard, and they bring the food to your table. We went there midday on a Friday on this particular visit and there was a steady stream of customers coming in, but there was a minimal wait.

The menu has a wide selection to choose from with a lot of locally sourced seafood and other fresh ingredients, and a lot of things are creole-infused. I ordered the blackened catfish tacos off their special Lenten menu and I make sure I always get the traditional Mexican street corn, which is so good. It’s flash fried and perfectly charred, then coated with chimichurri sauce and parish seasoning (creamy garlic sauce with parish seasoning and vinegar), topped with a house-made creme fresh, cotija cheese and pickled red onions.

The portion of fish was generous and the presentation was fabulous. Everything was cooked to perfection and wellseasoned. One of my other favorites is their signature braised brisket birria. The flavor is incredible. It’s coated in a housemade mole sauce, then slow braised until it’s almost the texture and tenderness of pulled pork. Then, it’s shredded and served with melted cheese on a grilled tortilla with fresh onions and cilantro.

They offer a nice selection of bottled beers and their margaritas are made with a secret recipe of fresh ingredients and served on the rocks. But I chose one of the traditional Mexican colas, which are flavored with real sugar. It’s amazing, even the Mexican Dr. Pepper tastes better.

There’s a reason this place maintains a five-star rating on Google, which is a hell of an achievement. I think if they ever decided to turn it into a food truck, people would actually go seek them out. They’re killing it!

parishtacos.com
PARISH TACOS
985.206.9011

Northshore High School participated in the Read Across Abney event alongside various members of the local community. The event was held in celebration of Read Across America and Dr. Seuss Day, where community members took turns reading to students at Abney Elementary.

STPPS’s first underwater robotics team, the Northshore Swim Shadies, competed in their first ever competition at LSU. They won 1st place in the Mission course, 1st place in the Interview/ Technical Design Report, the Specialty award for the team that showed the most Ingenuity, and were named Grand Champions of the High School class

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Three Saint Paul’s School seniors have been named National Merit Finalists in the scholarship program and will advance in the competition. The Saint Paul’s School Finalists are, William Coles, Joseph Mire and Preston Olivier.
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More than Fore held their annual Golf Tournament at Beau Chene Country, the benefit raises money for St. Jude.
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The St. John’s Fools of Misrule held it’s annual twelfth night walking parade along the streets of Covington

Everyone mixed and mingled at the first WYES Northshore Spring Fling presented by LCI Workers’ Comp held at the Mandeville home of Jen and Seth Smiley on March 1st. All proceeds benefitted WYES, our local PBS member station.

Photos by Abby Photo.

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You Night Empowering Events and Northshore Media Group held their first Sheroes & Heroes Award event honoring and recognizing professionals and volunteers for their outstanding contributions to cancer care.

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The St. Tammany Chamber of Commerce presented several prestigious awards, including the Tammany Award, the Community Leadership Award and two Community Partner Awards, during its annual Installation & Awards Luncheon

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