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The Newspaper of Lamar University

Vol. 94, No. 15 February 8, 2018

VITA helps LU students with taxes Cade Smith UP staff writer

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program will be assisting  LU  foreign  students with their taxes at the Neighborhood  Resource  Center  and  the Catholic  Charities  in  Beaumont starting today.  “VITA, sanctioned by the Internal Revenue Service, has been in existence for over 40 years and this will be our 10th year of operation  in  Beaumont,”  Jon  Kore-

jwa,  Lamar  VITA  director  of training and operations, said. “It is a free-of-cost program that provides  free  tax  filing  services  to residents and non-residents with income under $54,000.”  In  2017,  VITA  prepared  529 returns  system-wide,  including 65  foreign  student  returns. “We help students with their form 8843 to maintain their exempt status and be able to file the form  1040-NR  (non-resident),” Korejwa  said.  “The  8843-form return will be prepared with the

student and reviewed by another VITA person, electronically filed with  the  IRS,  then  the  form  is mailed  and  refunds  can  be  expected in eight to 10 days if direct deposit is available.” Korejwa emphasized that the service is available for all Lamar students. VITA site coordinator and LU alumnus Pavneet Singh is one of the members that assists with international student returns.  “I have been with VITA since the  tax  filing  year  2015,  and  I

have done between 500 to 600 tax returns for VITA,” he said. “I, along  with  a  team  of  other  tax preparers from VITA, help with the student taxes, mostly with international students.” Singh said that using VITA is easier for international students who  struggle  with  filing  their taxes.  “Most of the students are from Asia, and since I am from there it helps the students have less of a hassle  in  communicating,”  he said.  “All  of  our  volunteers  are

Finding her voice LU classes help local woman transition Sierra Kondos UP staff writer

Charity Goodwin was on the path to  becoming  a  cosmetologist  when she  began  experiencing  backlash from her teacher and peers because of the sound of her voice.  The  traumatic  experience  led Goodwin, who is transgender, to take matters into her own hands by taking  a  voice  class  to  “feminize”  her voice.  Lamar  University  Speech  and Hearing department offers a “Voices in  Transition”  program  free  to  the public. The program recognizes the needs  of  specific  and  culturally  diverse populations, including assessment  and  treatment  options  for transgender, transsexual and mutational falsetto people.  “Voice  in  Transition  is  what  we run under the voice lab and vocology clinic,”  Nandhu  Radhakrishnan, clinic director, said. “Voice therapy was  primarily  for  people  who  suffered from any voice problem, such as  vocal  nodules,  polyps  and  vocal fold paralysis. But recently in voice therapy, we not only treat patients, but  also  people  who  have  normal voices, so that they can enhance their voice and meet their daily needs.”  Radhakrishnan  said  that  speech and voice are areas of transition for the  transgender  community  when conforming to their new gender. “Unfortunately, these clients are less aware about our services and are unaware of the importance of learning to modify their voice and speech in a healthy fashion,” he said. Goodwin, a caregiver in the Beaumont  area,  utilizes  the  voice  class twice a week. “I  quit  a  Beaumont  college  last February (because) a student and a teacher both kept mis-gendering me and referring to me as a man,” she said. “I did not register at this school as  a  man  or  transgender  woman.  I registered as a woman and all of my documents reflect this. I never told any of the students I am transgender

certified  with  IRS  certifications and trained under supervision of highly experienced and qualified team  volunteers  which  gives competitive edge over other competitors  and  assurance  of  filing correctly.” VITA is also looking for additional volunteers who will assist with preparing student returns. “I  encourage  any  student  to join the VITA program, as it could be  a  resume  builder,  and  since See TAXES, page 2

SGA seeks to push student agenda Trace Cowan UP contributor

UP photo by Sierra Kondos

Charity Goodwin applies makeup before heading to her Voice in Transition class at LU. even  though  I  wasn’t  hiding  it,  but this isn’t the reason I was at school.” Goodwin  said  she  feels  that  her voice led to people referring to her as “he.”  Transgender  individuals  are addressed by their respective chosen names and the pronouns that correspond to their gender identification. Being misidentified by pronoun is a trigger for emotional distress. “I  understand  the  trigger  word thing now, because this is very hard to talk about,” she said.  Goodwin struggled at the college for five months before dropping out. “I was polite to these people and I kindly corrected them, but also had to  raise  my  voice  several  other times,” she said. “They kept embarrassing me by calling me ‘he’ in the classroom while others just watched, stared at me, or just completely ignored the situation all together.  “I reported the situation and it got worse. Corporate HR, the school director and the vice president of com-

pliance  all  told  me  there’s  nothing they can do but ask these people to not  misgender  me.  I  was  told  it would  surely  happen  again  so  I should  accept  this  because  people will  do  this  in  the  work  field.  I haven’t had an issue like this before, and I transitioned while working in the plants and refineries.  “They also said I sounded like ‘the old me,’ the guy I was before transitioning, so anyone could make that mistake. This did two things. First, it pissed  me  off  because  they  don’t know what ‘the old me’ sounded like and I told them this. Second, it just made me not want to talk in class or ask questions. I tried so hard to stay, but many (people) know the struggle I had and the tears I shed trying to not let this get to me, but they kept doing it.” Goodwin  said  she  felt  out  numbered in the classroom and the meetSee VOICE, page 2

Lamar University Student Government Association  president,  Dillon  Nicholson, and vice president, Madison Marino, are  pushing  to  improve  everything  from Lamar parking policy to student opportunities.  Nicholson led SGA House meeting Feb. 1 to discuss the group’s goals for the semester.  “We’re pushing for accountability across divisions,” Nicholson said. “We’re meeting with the dean of students to make sure that inter-fraternity counsel bylaws are legitimate  and  being  followed.  We’re  making sure the Setzer (Student) Center is opening on time and that it has what the students want.” Nicholson said SGA is hoping to improve Gray Library’s hours. “Other universities have their libraries open (until) 3 a.m. — we’ve asked students and they feel the Lamar library should be similar,” he said.  SGA  is  also  trying  to  find  solutions  to student  reported  problems  with  campus parking policy.  Marino said the organization takes polls to make sure the things they push for are actually wanted by students.  See SGA, page 2

UP photo by Trace Cowan

Madison Marion, right, and Dillon Nicholson host an SGA meeting in the Reaud Building, Feb. 1.

Krewes ready for Mardi Gras party Vy Nguyen UP contributor

UP photo by Vy Nguyen

Kathleen Fuller, left, and Anne Marceaux of the Mardi Gras committee of Southeast Texas sort through boxes of beads.

SETX will kick off its 26th annual Mardi  Gras  celebration  at  5  p.m. today. The event continues through Sunday on Procter Street in downtown Port Arthur, with attractions including parades, concerts, carnival, street entertainment, food and arts and crafts. What started out as a casual conversation between friends 27 years ago  turned  into  an  annual  Mardi Gras festivity attended by thousands of SETX locals. Floyd W. Marceaux Southeast  Texas  Mardi  Gras  cofounder  and  treasurer,  said  Floyd W. Marceaux.  “We have a six-block area filled with vendors coming from all over the United States including music, games  and  attractions  this  weekend,” he said.  There  will  also  be  food  booths

serving BBQ, kabobs, hamburgers, hotdogs and more.  Marceaux said the carnival contains  State  Fair-quality  rides  for everyone to enjoy.  The first parade will be held Friday beginning  at 7 p.m. with a minimum  of  20  sponsored  parade krewes.-- The Saturday and Sunday parades will feature between 30-40 krewes, Marceaux said.  “Sunday is a little different,” he said.  “It’s  called  a  ‘truck  parade.’ This is where anyone in the community can enter their trucks and automobiles  into  the  parade. Sometimes,  we  get  to  around  40 participants.”  All Mardi Gras krewes are volunteers who create their own floats.  “There’s no salary paid in Mardi Gras,” he said.  There  will  be  several  concerts See MARDI GRAS, page 8



Thursday, February 8, 2018 University Press


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The University Press can be read online at Advertising rates can be found on the site, along with practically all information that a person might be looking for.

— Tony Kushner

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volunteering for VITA, several students have gotten jobs because they listed VITA on their resumes,” Korejwa said. “Working as a VITA volunteer strengthens interpersonal skills, financial methods, tax law and software training that are transferable into many employment opportunities.” The Neighborhood Resource Center, located at 2850 Gulf Street in Beaumont, is open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the Catholic Charities, located at 2780 Eastex Freeway, is open Mondays from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Along with VITA, H&R Block also assists students with their taxes. “The IRS wants to verify that the income that people claim on their taxes each year is correct,” Sandy Craigen, H&R Block tax associate, said. “They want to make sure that nobody is laundering money or being fraudulent on their taxes.” When doing taxes sometimes there are deductions that are made to reduce what is paid to the IRS, and filers need to make sure they are appropriate. That is when the expertise of the preparers can benefit



“I work best after the deadline has passed, when I'm in a panic.”

the student and help them avoid any filing problems, Craigen said. “Some of the ways that we can subtract what you owe is based on what we can subtract from your income,” she said. “If you are single or married, which is called your filing status, is one of many deductions that we can take away from your income to lower what you pay in taxes to the IRS.” The process on how to do your taxes with H&R block is similar to VITA. “The first thing you need to do before you arrive is to claim all of your income for the year,” Craigen said. “This would include W-2 forms from your job, interest from a savings account and retirement funds.” After claiming all income for the year, the next step is to bring all documentation. “When getting your taxes done from us, you will need to bring all documentation that claims income for the year — a valid state identification and a social security card — to be eligible to file,” Craigen said.

The cost to file taxes with H&R block depends on the credits present on the documentation that is given to a tax associate. “Some people have an education credit from going to school, there is also a child credit if you have any children,” Craigen said. “So whatever credit you have on your documentation depends on the cost of doing your taxes with us.” Craigen said she believes that people who are doing their taxes for the first time should do them in person, rather than online. “When filing taxes for the first time, people are not aware on how the process works to get them done,” she said. “When people do taxes online, they miss out on the one-on-one explanation on what goes into doing them, I feel like filing your taxes in person is the best way to understand that process.” The Neighborhood Resource Center location will close April 14, and the Catholic Charities location will close April 2. Federal tax returns are due April 17 this year. For more information, visit www. or call 880-2301.


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ings. “It was like I was the problem because they said I need to be more open and understanding — (that) people aren’t used to someone like me, whatever that means. In the end, they said as long as they apologize, it’s OK. Next time, instead of correcting them, they want me to tell them it hurts my feelings. I guess they didn’t figure that out already. I told HR they just gave them permission right in front of me.” Goodwin said she started experiencing anxiety and panic attacks. “The room felt like it was closing in and after the meeting I found it kind a hard to breathe,” she said. “I left school early that day and didn’t return the next day. I went back to school the following day but I was late because I didn’t want to go in. Those panic feelings were creeping back. Sure enough, I get called “he” two more times by my teacher. Most people don’t know this, but I was really depressed for a while after this.” Goodwin was diagnosed by both her doctor and her therapist with mild depression

and anxiety due to traumatic stress. “It really was the most humiliating thing I’ve ever been to,” she said. “I tried to get legal help and even talked to organizations. They couldn’t help me because Donald Trump rescinded the transgender guideline protections. I felt like I hit a dead end. I never went back to class and I dropped out. “There is a part of me that is ashamed that I quit and I’m sorry if I let anyone down, but I did fight as long as I could. It just mentally exhausted me and I felt so alone in that place. I just wish things had gone as well as in the male-dominated industrial field (that) I transitioned from male to female in.” The classes consist of a series of exercises to make trans men and women’s voices more reflective of their gender. Goodwin said her experience is a great example of why the class is important. “Our voices are important because they can out us as trans-people — the point is to blend in,” Goodwin said. For more information on the program, or to schedule an appointment, call the Lamar


February 8

A Dinner and Conversation Gray Library, 8th floor 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

February 8-11

The Vertical Hour Studio Theatre Today-Saturday - 7:30 p.m. Sunday - 2 p.m.

February 13

REDtalks: Gaining Global Competence Galloway, Landes Auditorium 3 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

February 26

Film and Southeast Texas Gray Library, 8th floor 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.

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“Recently, many students have complained that Lamar’s ticketing for parking violations has been too severe,” she said. “I’m trying to gather more data on that so I can have a discussion later on with someone at the Lamar police station.” SGA was a driving force behind the Setzer Student Center renovation, Marino said. “(In 2010) they took a poll to ask if students would pay more fees for the center to be improved, and the poll worked,” she said.  Nicholson said the SGA administration has a difficult job but tries to represent the student body. “We’re trying to make sure the students are represented in a realm which is ultimately controlled by people with six-figure salaries, doctoral degrees and, honestly, just people who are very qualified to do what they do,” he said. “However,

despite any given credentials, they still must listen to the students to do the best job possible.” Nicholson said there are limits to what SGA can accomplish. “We may see something and say this  is  what students want, but there’s a bottom dollar to worry about,” he said. “Our job is a matter of reconciling those two differences.”  Students have a variety of options to get involved with SGA.  “If the students want to participate they can join our Org Sync portal — it has our office times, meeting times for the House,  Senate, joint sessions, polls,” he said. “We’re also active on Facebook.”  Marino said students can represent their student organization and run SGA. Meetings are held on the first and third Thursday of each month in 104 Reaud Building.


3 UNIVERSITY PRESS Thursday, February 8, 2018

Putting off procrastination Staying organized, setting personal goals key to success My entire academic life can be summed up with one image — me, in my bed, at about 10 p.m., stressing about an assignment that I have had for a month, but haven’t completed for whatever reason. My goal at the beginning of every semester has always been to stop procrastinating. In fact, it still is. I have not conquered it, but this semester, I am devoting myself to change. Procrastination is always a popular new-semester resolution because a lot of students struggle with it. We might start off great in the beginning, but somewhere along the way, we lose the determination and revert back to old habits. So, what am I going to do differently this time around that will make me stick to my goal? First, I’m going to allot certain times of the week to school work. For example, if I have five math assign-


Olivia Malick UP staff writer

ments due at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, I won’t wait until noon that day to start them. I’ll set aside one hour each day (Monday-Friday) specifically for math homework. During that hour, I’ll rid myself of my phone or any other device that will distract me. Second, I’ll make little incentives for myself. I need some kind of motivation in order to stay on track. I’ll tell myself that if I complete all of my assignments for the week and turn them in on time, then I’ll treat myself to a movie or something that I want to buy. That way, I have something to look forward to. School work is not always exciting and while we are being rewarded with an education, sometimes we need a more trivial prize (and that’s OK). Third, I’ll make sure there are consequences for when I don’t achieve my goal. No more Netflix for the rest of the week (yeah it’s a bit harsh, but how else will I learn?). Fourth, I  need to realize that I will never be perfect. For a long time I deluded myself to believe that I work best under pressure. But, honestly, it was just an excuse to be happy with average work that I churned out in two hours. It would definitely be closer to perfect if I spent a whole week or more on the assignment. Five, I’ll ask for help when I need it. Sometimes

UPeditorial Let good vibes brighten bad times

In the current social climate with a seemingly constant stream of negative news, it can be easy to let it affect us. When we’re already stressed about our class assignments, jobs and personal lives, tragic stories do not incite feelings of hope. We have to keep in mind, however, that no storm lasts forever. Take a break. Breathe in and breathe out, and just remember that for all of the negative images surrounding us, there are stories of hope and prosperity, and sometimes we have to create our own. We’ve been told our whole lives that rainbows only appear after storms, yet we are still consumed by negativity. How do we beat it? We have to pick our battles. We cannot become invested in every matter that happens in the world. Yes, they are important, but if we spend our energy in every little battle, we will not have enough to win the war. The point is, we still have a lot of life to live, so we should enjoy it. We need to surround ourselves with people who make us happy, especially when we’re feeling down. It’s basic self-care. Get involved in campus activities and events. Be a force for good. Most of all, enjoy yourself. Dedicate some time each week to self-care. That could include anything from having your favorite treat to — whatever makes you feel better. We have made it through difficult times before, and we’ll make it through them again. Have hope that tomorrow will be a brighter day. We just have to keep our heads up and remember why we’re here.

Editor............................................Shelby Strickland Managing Editor.............................Cassie Jenkins Staff .................................................Hannah LeTulle .......................Keiosha Addison, Antonio Del Rio ...................................Sierra Kondos, Olivia Malick, ..........................................Matt Beadle,Cade Smith, ............................................................ Shane Proctor Business Manager ...............................Jason Tran Advertising Assistants....................Gabbie Smith ........................................................Eloisa Lopez Advisors Andy Coughlan and Stephan Malick Member of Texas Intercollegiate Press Association

UP graphic by Olivia Malick

it is frustrating when we don’t understand something and so we ignore it all together. I’ve certainly taken part in this because I didn’t want to admit that I didn’t understand something. Through maturity, I’ve realized that there is absolutely nothing wrong with asking for help, because I’ll finally be able to

learn what I didn’t know before and it won’t frustrate me anymore. Six, I need to keep in mind how happy my success will make me. Procrastination causes stress which can lead to depression, which isn’t good for anyone. By actually dedicating myself to something and achieving it, I can be

proud of myself, which creates a good habit of reminding me that I am capable of success. Lastly, I’m going to make my friends and family hold me to it. In the past, I have always kept these resolutions to myself so I was the only person I had to face if I didn’t succeed, and by that point, I was

used to facing myself with disappointment. By telling people my plans, extra pressure is added to make them proud of me, too. This plan will always be a work in progress, but I’m ready to change and reach my full potential. And I’m not waiting until tomorrow to start.

Friends are forever

It was 6 a.m. on a day I cannot recall, working a never-ending night shift like I had been for 11 months — my days were running into each other. I was asleep with my head on the table in the kitchen at the office when I heard a deep voice shatter my dream with, “Good Morning.” My eyes popped open immediately, thinking that I was going to get canned for sleeping on the job, but then I saw a bright vision and thought God had sent an angel to take me home. I was so tired that I thought, “What the hell, I lived a good life.” I watched as the figure walked toward me, it was my co-worker coming to relieve me — basically, my angel who arrives promptly at 6 a.m. to save me from the night time hell that I was still not accustomed to. But something about the way I


Sierra Kondos UP staff writer

Letters Policy

“I had never met anyone who was so nice and kind to me.” woke up and saw him emerge from the light changed the way I see him. From that day on, I did not call him by his name, I called him “Angel,” because that is what he became for me in many ways other than the morning rescues. Angel and I never really spoke much. He worked a morning shift and I was on nights. The most we exchanged was pleasantries and we went on about our day. But every day I noticed more about him. He was nice to everyone but he stayed to himself. He was shy, like socially-awkward shy. A few weeks later, I was moved to the afternoon shift and got off at 10 p.m. I was finally able to have some semblance of a social life. I decided to invite all my friends at work to play pool. I saw Angel, but I had forgot to extend the invite personally. I found him on social media and invited him to go play with us. He declined, but gave me his phone number. Our first conversation lasted three hours of him playing the game of “20 Questions,” which is always more than that, ranging from my favorite color to why I was passionate about New Orleans. Every morning when I woke up

Individuals who wish to speak out on issues should send a letter fewer than 400 words in length to Letters to the Editor, P.O. Box 10055, Beaumont, TX 77710, or drop letters off at our office in 202 Carl Parker Building. The writer’s name, address, telephone number and ID number must accompany each letter. Letters received without this information cannot be printed. Letters may be edited for length, grammar, style and possible libel. Opinions expressed in letters are not necessarily those of the UP student management. Letters by the same writer on the same subject will not be published. Poetry and religious debates will not be published.

there would be a good morning text and the conversation would kick off again until midnight. In just a few short weeks, he knew almost all there was to know about me. I had never met anyone who was so nice and kind to me. I felt like his interest did not just reach skin deep — he wanted to know who I was. I talked to him and told him the things I loved and what I needed. When I voiced it, I realized how long I had been without, and how lonely I had been without someone caring enough to ask me about me. I felt new and invigorated with how I felt about myself. It gave me a new-found strength to go after everything I wanted. And I don't think Angel even knew what he did for me, by getting to know me and making me feel like who I am and what I love is important. The weeks that followed that first night was something I will never forget. I made a special friend who brought to light what I was missing in my life, and what I had always wanted but never received. I found things I honestly did not know existed anymore — human decency? Genuine interest? My new friendship taught me how I wanted others to treat me, and that if someone is genuinely interested in me, they will make an effort to get to know me. That’s the definition of friendship.

The opinions that appear in editorials are the official views of the University Press student management as determined by the UP Student Editorial Board. Opinions expressed elsewhere on this page are the views of the writers only and are not necessarily those of the University Press student management. Student opinions are not necessarily those of the university administration. ©University Press 2018

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Thursday, February 8, 2018 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

PFLAG to present ‘Rocky Horror’ shadow cast, Sunday April Marble UP contributor

UP photo by Noah Dawlearn

Yotzin Zambrano plays Riff-Raff, left, and Jill Waldrep plays Magenta in the PFLAG shadow cast of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” at The Gig, Saturday,

The Beaumont chapter of PFLAG will screen “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” with a full shadow cast, 8 p.m., Saturday, at the Gig on Crockett Street in downtown Beaumont. PFLAG (Parent and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) is the United States’ largest organization uniting families and allies with people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ). All proceeds will benefit Pride Fest 2018. “The show is a great way to support PFLAG and Pride Fest because you’re getting an entire night of entertainment for less than $20,” director Donny Avery said. “Our shadow cast will be in costume, lip-syncing to the music of the film, so you’re getting the best of the musical and movie.” The event will feature a pre-screening

party and raffle. “From about eight to ten o’clock, people are invited to come dance, and those who are over 21 can come take advantage of the cash bar,” Avery said. “During this time, we’ll also be raffling off tickets to Beaumont Community Players’ Valentine’s Day event, ‘Love Letters,’ that will feature local music favorite Book of Days, a decadent dessert and coffee bar.” Avery said the movie is a performance for the audience as well as the actors. “‘Rocky Horror’ has an interactive element that allows the audience to yell vulgar things to the cast and throw props at them, and we will be selling prop bags for $5,” he said. “We also encourage people to dress up and really immerse themselves in madness that is ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show.’” Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. For more information contact 2348590 or email beaumontpflag@gmail.


Early season crawfish with unique flair REVIEW Gabbie Smith UP contributor

I decided to try out Reel Cajun Seafood Restaurant & Bar in Port Arthur. Even though it’s still a little early in the season for crawfish, I decided to go with my boyfriend to check theirs out. This was my first visit. The restaurant is surrounded by a lot of other things in Port Arthur so that’s definitely a plus. It’s right off Twin City highway on the other side of The Port Arthur Little Theatre. The outside looks huge, but once one gets inside it’s smaller than one would think. When we first walked in we were instantly greeted by one of the staff. We went around 1:30 p.m. on a Saturday, so I expected to have to wait a while, especially since the parking lot looked full. However, we were sat almost immediately. The inside is nautical themed with fake fish on the wall and fish nets all around. We sat next to the bar which had at least six giant TVs. After a few minutes our waitress greeted us. She handed us our menus

Spring 2018

and took our drink orders. We skimmed the menu for a moment even though we knew we just wanted to get crawfish. The crawfish come in increments of three or five pounds, I got three. Reel Cajun has three different levels of seasoning for their boiled seafood — “Sort’A Hot,” “REELY Hot,” and “REELY Darn Hot.” I got “REELY Hot” and my boyfriend got the “REELY Darn Hot” because he likes to suffer for some reason. We heard from a few of our friends that the crawfish wasn’t done the typical way. At first I was skeptical because why mess with a good thing? However, I was pleasantly surprised. We waited no more than ten minutes for our crawfish. It came out hot and steaming in a big stainless steel bowl so I could tell it had just been boiled. The order comes with one piece of corn and two potatoes. It also came with the generic pink “crawfish” sauce, but I’ve never been a fan of that. At first, I was a little put off at how the crawfish looked. There were what looked like little pieces of garlic all

over it. However, after my first bite I was hooked — it was definitely different. It still tasted like the crawfish we’ve grown to know and love, but it had other levels of flavor that were different and unique. The spiciness was the perfect amount. The potatoes were cooked throughout and were full of flavor, and the corn was delicious. As it is the beginning of crawfish season, they were mostly pretty small. No matter the size of the crawfish they were all packed with flavor. The best part of this meal came at the end — all of the juice and seasoning is at the bottom of the bowl which your last few crawfish have just been sitting in, so the last few bites were more flavorful and spicy than any of the ones before. As is typical in early season they were pretty expensive at $9.50 a pound. But it was definitely worth it. I can’t wait to go back and try it again. Reel Cajun Seafood Restaurant and Bar is located at 7500 N Twin City Hwy. in Port Arthur. For more, visit their Facebook page.

Intramural 8 on 8 OUTDOOR SOCCER


Entries Due February 9

Start Date February 11

Rules Meetin g February 9 1:00 PM

All rules meetings will be in the McDonald Gym Rm 117 ALL INTRAMURAL SPORTS ARE FREE! All currently enrolled SPRING 2018 LU & LIT students/faculty/staffff are eligible to compete in all leagues. For more information sign up online for each sport with OR e-mail us at or visit us at LAMAR.INTRAMURALS




UP photo by Gabbie Smith



UNIVERSITY PRESS Thursday, February 8, 2018

Chase, or be chased

Story package by Shelby Strickland, UP editor

UP editor learns life, love lessons in pursuit of story

Chivalry is dead. It is long gone, and has since been replaced with a little thing I like to call, “the intentional, but seemingly unintentional, pursuit of man by woman.” It’s simple, really. You meet a man that sparks your interest. You find yourself torn between the pressure of waiting for him to show interest, or allowing yourself to take the initiative and get his attention. You’ve already followed him on Instagram thinking you’d somehow shine above the rest of his notifications, and you’ve added him as a friend on Facebook (it goes without saying you checked his relationship status). You wait a couple hours and nothing. You immediately feel let down, because why wouldn’t a social media pursuit be enough? After pacing across your apartment floor 30-plus times, texting your girl gang seeking advice, following up with individual texts to each member of said girl gang to hear them reiterate their initial advice, and giving yourself at least 16 pep talks, you decide it’s time to up the ante. And so goes “the intentional, but seemingly unintentional, pursuit of man by woman.” Once upon a time, I, too, experienced all of these things. Granted, this time, my interest didn’t quite start on social media, or in a want for his attention — at least not at first. It happened last year, and when it did, my worldview was flipped on its head. I met a friend of mine, Nejc (pronounced Nates in English), at the front of the dining hall so he could swipe me in for a cup of coffee before going to class. While waiting to go inside, I asked Nejc what we were waiting for? He said Cormac, one of his cross country teammates from Ireland. In the distance I saw a guy who I assumed was Cormac. He had on runners, a track T-shirt, and was undeniably aesthetically pleasing to the eye. My jaw actually dropped. I picked it up before Nejc could see and we continued to wait. Minutes later he arrived. Cormac was very tall and carried the stench of sweat. He shook my hand and winked at me. My heart sank for two reasons. The first being that that was the cutest thing I had ever experienced, and the second being that I had an idea of what kind of guy I thought he was. I would now have to convince myself that I thought he was ugly to keep myself uninterested in an attempt to guard my heart. Let’s be real. What’s the typical stereotype for an exceptionally attractive athlete, and a runner at that? These exact thoughts ran through my head: First, he is most likely into himself. I mean, can you blame him? I would be too if I was talented and good looking. On top of that, I have heard it said a number of times that runners are selfish. Their training schedules revolve around themselves and what their bodies are capable of. This is absolutely an umbrella statement. A person’s personality trumps how people would classify them, but better to be safe than sorry. Second, he most likely prioritized his sport over anything else. That’s the reason he’s here at Lamar, and that’s what will keep him here (unless he’s chasing that green card if you know what I

UP illustration by Cormac Kelly

mean). Third, he most likely will not be chasing a green card. In my book, this means he’s not looking for a relationship. Why invest in a relationship that will most likely end after a year? That sucks. I realize I was getting ahead of myself, but scientifically speaking, it takes between 8 seconds and 3 minutes for a girl to decide if she’s into a guy or not. There is not a chance I’m alone when it comes to thinking ahead. These were important things for me to think through before deciding to wink back. I sat on my thoughts despite his looks and assertive wink. Since I decided there wasn’t a chance, I wasn’t interested either. Being the introvert I am, I had every intention of sipping coffee alone. I planned to listen to a podcast and to journal. It is very seldom that I get to catch up on things I enjoy, so an hour to myself before class would be ideal. I was wrong. I sat at a table in the middle of the dining hall, and both guys followed right behind. Cormac sat across from me and asked me question after question. “What’re you studying?” “Journalism.” “What do you plan to do with it?” “What do you mean?” I thought. “I don’t even know what my plans are for tomorrow, let alone two years from now.” This guy was already stressing me out. My anxiety had skyrocketed between having my morning interrupted and now thinking about the entirety of my future. I put an earphone in hoping that he would leave me alone, but

low and behold, I was wrong again. The questions kept coming. “What’re you journaling about?” “I keep a travel journal.” “What do you write about your travels?” “Where I stayed, who I met, all of the things I saw, how the trip changed me.” “That’s really interesting. Where all have you traveled?” I began naming the places and showing him the photos I had taken on some of my trips. He gave me a quick Instagram follow, grabbed his bag and left. This was the first time my morning coffee had ever exhausted me. Thank God he was gone. But not so fast. One. Day. Later. I received an Instagram DM. “We should grab coffee.” I decided to take him up on a cup. I felt that he owed it to me considering my coffee in d-hall went cold. We sat at Sertinos a week later and chatted for more than four hours. By the end of the night I was experiencing all of the things. All of the feelings, all of the angst and all of the caffeine. I had never been so wrong about a person. I wanted to get to know him more, but there was one problem: this guy was cool and for sure not into me. It was time that I made my first move — one that involved craftiness, cleverness and a job at the University Press. Each semester the UP publishes a magazine called UPbeat. In the magazine there is a section called “People.” Here, writers ac-

A photograph of Cormac Kelly from Shelby Strickland’s UP assignment in spring 2017.

cumulate a collection of photographs and quotes, and put together a story package of a person they find to be exceptionally interesting. What a coincidence. I had a work assignment and a new friend who fit the criteria of that work assignment. Are you picking up what I’m putting down? Backtrack. Remember that quick Instagram follow? I certainly took full advantage of it. Back into the DMs I not only slid — I ski jumped. “Hi, it’s me again. I know we had coffee, um, five minutes ago, but you know, I just remembered something and somehow it slipped my mind between being lost in your blue eyes and distracted by your Irish accent. Eh hem, well, I have a work assignment that I need a model for. You seem like the perfect fit for the job.” OK, it didn’t go quite like this. I played it surprisingly cool for how much I was sweating. So cool that he agreed to work on the assignment with me. We met up, I took his portrait (that I did not end up using for this assignment, by the way), and before leaving, he insisted we go to church and brunch the upcoming Sunday. Um, yes. Absolutely. What on earth? My heart actually imploded. I was in. I was more than in. We were in this thing. One night out of each following week he’d ask me on some sort of date. We went to the beach, a few breweries, Kemah Boardwalk and NASA. I had to let Houston know that there was no longer a problem. Cormac Kelly had fixed it — the problem being my attitude toward a person I didn’t know. One year later we are still dating and it all started with an “intentional, but seemingly unintentional, pursuit of man by woman.” For a year I have been getting to know a guy who shares my same ambitions, values and sense of humor. In a year we’ve traveled often (Ireland included, where

they call me the yellow rose of Texas), ran some races, smiled plenty and laughed even more. The guy I know now is even cooler than I thought he was a year ago at Sertinos. I’ve been perpetually dazed. I’m learning what it looks like to love fully, not just Cormac, but people in general. In doing so, I’ve also learned a few things about myself since last year in the dining hall. First, I was much more selfish than the boy I thought was selfish, especially with my time. Cormac says he was interested when we chatted about my travels at the dining hall, but my idea of even a friendship was clouded by misconceptions of who I thought he was. Or maybe I felt pre-let down so I tried to avoid any sort of relationship with Cormac initially altogether. I would certainly change how I approach a situation like this in the future, but I wouldn’t change this one for a second. Thank goodness Cormac looked past my rude demeanor. Second, working at the University Press is so fun. It always has been, but even moreso now that Cormac works alongside me. Maybe it is a conflict of interest, but I find it exciting to collaborate and create with someone you’re dating. That goes for any job. Granted, I was the favorite until Cormac came along, but I’ll settle for second if it means writing and illustrating together. Lastly, and most importantly, if a boy winks at you be aware that you too could find yourself in my situation. Maybe it won’t begin with a social media message, but don’t discount the numerous other things that wink could lead to. Maybe a green card, maybe love. Or if you’re lucky, both. There is always the potential for an “intentional, but seemingly unintentional, pursuit.” This one was started by Cormac and hastily followed-up by yours truly. From his side or yours, who’s to know. But as the Irish say, “Have the craic. Go for it.”

Page 6

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL The Lamar University Lady Cardinals used a balanced scoring effort to move into sole possession of first place in the Southland Conference women’s basketball standings with a hard-fought 7965 victory over the visiting Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks in the Montagne Center, Saturday. The Lady Cards had five players score in double figures as they moved a half-game ahead of the Ladyjacks. The win also extended LU’s school-record home winning streak to 25 games. LU rallied from a 35-30 halftime deficit in front of a spirited crowed that featured more than 50 Lamar women’s basketball alumnae on a day when three former LU greats became the first women’s basketball players to have their jerseys retired. The Lady Cards also pulled out the win on a day when its top two scorers, Moe Kinard and Chastadie Barrs, saw limited minutes due to foul trouble. Freshman guard Jadyn Pimentel stepped up to fill the void left by Barrs, finishing with 17 points. Kiandra Bowers continued her hot play, posting her eighth double-double of the season and 32  of her career, as she had 14 points and a game-high 17 rebounds. DeA’ngela Mathis also had 17 points for LU while Baileigh O’Dell had 11 points off the bench and Kinard added 10. The Lady Cardinals had a 4332 rebounding edge against the Ladyjacks, who came into Saturday’s contest outrebounding their opponents by an average of 2.8 per game. Mathis contributed to LU’s total with nine rebounds. LU outscored SFA 49-30 in the second half. The Lady Cardinals outscored the Ladyjacks 15-6 in points off turnovers over the second half. Barrs was held scoreless, but had a game-high five assists and four steals in just 19 minutes. The Lady Cards wrapped up their four-game homestand when they hosted Northwestern State at 7 p.m., Wednesday. Scores were unavailable at print time. The Lady Cardinals will hit the road to face Sam Houston, Saturday at 3 p.m. The game will be broadcasted on ESPN3.

Thursday, February 8, 2018 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

UPsports roundup

UP photo by Matt Beadle

LU freshman Jadyn Pimentel prepares to drive on an SFA defender during Saturday’s, 79-65, victory in the Montagne Center. MEN’S BASKETBALL Senior Zjori Bosha scored 18 points and pulled down 10 rebounds, junior Josh Nzeakor added 16 points and 11 rebounds to guide Lamar University to a 76-54 victory over Stephen F. Austin, Saturday in the Montagne Center. The victory snapped a 10game slide against the Lumberjacks which dated back to the 2012 Southland Conference Championships. In addition to Bosha and Nzeakor, senior James Harrison scored 13 points, while junior  Nick Garth scored 11. SFA scored the first basket of the game. LU followed with a free throw from senior Colton Weisbrod  and a basket from Bosha. The Cardinals would push their advantage to four points before SFA rattled off a small 7-2 run to take a one-point lead. That small advantage would last 28 seconds and would be wiped out by a Bosha three-pointer. Bosha’s three sparked an 18-4 run that saw LU surge out in front by 13 points. The Cardinals didn’t allow the lead to slip below double figures for the rest of the half

as they pushed the advantage to as many as 16 before taking a 13point lead into the locker room. SFA trimmed the lead down to single digits, 43-34, just two minutes into the second half but LU responded with two free throws from Harrison and Bosha. After allowing their guests to pull within nine points, the Cardinals rattled off an 11-2 run to take an 18-point lead with 11:33 remaining. The Lumberjacks never got closer than 14 after that as LU pushed its lead to 20 with just over seven minutes remaining. The Cardinals built their lead to as many as 23 points before closing out the game 76-54. The Cardinals travelled to Natchitoches, La., Wednesday to take on Northwestern State. Scores were unavailable at print time. The Cardinals will play Sam Houston State in Huntsville, Saturday at 6:15 p.m. following the girls game.

MEN’S TENNIS The Cardinals, defeated Jacksonville State, 4-2, Saturday at The Woodlands Country Club. LU jumped all over JSU to open singles play winning three

of the first four opening sets. Courts 1 – 3 were all lock in tough battles as they all went to a tiebreaker. Big Red got the edge in two of those three matches and easily won the opening set on court four. Freshman Nicolas Mayr wasted little time tying the match back up after his straight-sets victory over Paolo Cucalon, 6-2, 6-1. With the match all tied up, the Cardinals could focus on the battles at 1 – 3 singles. Senior Benny Schweizer was looking to give the Cardinals their first lead of the match, but was forced to a third set. Schweizer posted the 7-6 (74), 4-6, 6-2 decision. Junior Sebastian Santibanez would give the Cardinals back the lead and LU wouldn’t surrender it for the rest of the match. LU’s first team victory came from freshman Arthur Serafim who edged the Gamecocks’ Guillermo Agost, 7-5, in the opening set to take an early advantage. The opening set decision seemed knock the wind out of JSU’s sails as Serafim cruised to a 6-4 decision in the second set. The Cardinals return to action Monday, Feb. 12, at 10 a.m. when

they travel to Hattiesburg, Miss., to take on Troy on the Southern Miss campus.

TRACK AND FIELD Prep for the 2018 Southland Conference Indoor Track & Field Championship continued Saturday with the finale of Notre Dame’s Meyo Invitational, in South Bend Indiana. The Cardinals had two top 3 finishes, including Thai Williams’ third consecutive second place finish in the 60-meter dash. Joining Williams at the top was Jamie Crowe, who ran a time of 14:25.17 to finish third in the men’s 5,000m. Williams began her journey to a second-place finish on Saturday, she ran a 7.57 in the prelims, the third-fastest time of the day. In the semi-finals her time dropped to 7.62, but it was still enough to advance to the finals, where she ran a 7.56. Also competing in the semi-finals on Saturday after a stellar performance in the pre-lims is Dominique Taylor, who ran the 60-meter hurdles. Her time of 8.595 qualified her for the semifinals, where she ran an 8.75. Katy Whiteoak and Katie Buckley both ran the 3,000m for the first time as collegiate runners, with Whiteoak logging a time of 10:06.09 and Buckley coming in at 10:31.82. Georgia Tuckfield ran a 5:02.47 in the women’s mile, her second-best performance. On the men’s side, Crowe came in third in the men’s 5K on Friday, and O’Bonna represented the Cardinals with a fifth-place finish in the triple jump with a mark of 15.09m. Saturday the Cards’ men competed in the Meyo Mile, where Cormac Kelly ran a 4:08.68 in his first collegiate race in the event. He came in 11th. Matthew Arnold and Keith Fallon ran the Ryan Shay 3K on Saturday, with Arnold turning in an 8:19.71 in his first time running the event and Fallon racing an 8:31.47, his second-best performance in the event. O’Bonna rounded out Saturday’s competitors as the lone Cardinal competing in a field event. He came in 14th in the long jump with a 6.80m jump.



UNIVERSITY PRESS Thursday, February 8, 2018

‘Playing without fear’ ture and that’s great for now. The kid won a 5A championship two years ago as a senior in high school. She hit a three-run homer, so she knows about big games and winning.” Bruder said the team will rely on new leaders this year. “We are going to need some new kids to step up, instead of relying on those kids who either graduated or are not there we are going to have to have some freshmen doing some great things,” she said. “I’ll tell you what I love about freshmen and transfers. There are no scouting reports on them. Nobody knows who these young kids are. They have an opportunity to get up there and make a name for themselves — hit pitches that they may never see again. They have a (chance to make a) difference, to impact the team right now, and I think that’s pretty cool.” Besides having the element of surprise, Bruder also said this is the fastest and hardest working team she has coached in six years.

LU softball to start season with young roster Cassandra Jenkins UP managing editor

Last year’s Lamar University softball team was one for the books. The 2017-18 squad went to the Southland Conference tournament before being defeated in game three. However, their postseason continued after being invited to the National Invitational Softball Championship and making it all the way to the title game. But, this year’s team will be very different. After the loss of senior all-conference pitcher, Ciara Luna, and ejection of two junior key players (Sable Hankins and Brittany Rodriguez) the roster was left empty, only to be filled by 16 freshmen, sophomores and junior college transfers to form the second youngest team to set foot on the LU Softball Complex field. “This is team six,” head coach Holly Bruder said. “We started the program in 2013, so we’re still young, but we don’t use that as an excuse. This is #TeamSix. That’s what we’re doing this year and this is the second youngest team I’ve had since we started the program. Just because we’re young and inexperienced does not mean we are not good softball players. It does not mean we’re not going to win games. “Some of our decision making and inexperience shows in practices and games, but we will be a young club that I think will get better as we go. We have already proven that through the fall and into spring, now, but, no wins or losses yet so it’s hard to tell.” Bruder said a tough non-conference schedule will help the young team learn quickly and prepare them for a tough season. “In 2015, we went to a tournament, (the) Sand Dollar Classic in Orange Beach,” she said. “They treated us very well. (They had) quality teams and we want to play quality teams.” Bruder said LU finished No. 89 last year out of 265 teams in the RPI index. The coach said she wants the team to gain experience by play-

UP photo by Cassie Jenkins

Junior catcher, Paige Holmes helps prepare the young freshmen team at practice, Tuesday at the LU Softball Complex. ing some of the best teams in the country. “We are going back to Sand Dollar Classic, and we’re playing Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech on day one — very good teams.,” she said. “We are also playing Alabama and Lipscomb University, which were both top 40 winners — one won a national championship. Then on Sunday we’re playing Ole Miss., FCC champs from last year. We’re getting on the ground running from the getgo. “Then were going to Mississippi State and UTSA who also have great RPIs and programs. My philosophy in February is to challenge my kids as much as we can, and make March, April and May a little bit easier because we’ve already seen some of the best of the best.” Bruder said she has high, but realistic, hopes for this year’s team. “I think the faces change, the

names and numbers change, but our expectations of winning do not change,” she said. “Our shortterm goals are focusing on February. How good are we going to do in February? We’re playing four tournaments, one of them we’re hosting. Five games at each tournament give or take, playing 15-20 games. I want to get as much experience as we can. “Go 20-0? Absolutely. But I want to get experience and keep getting better through those games. I want to see us grow. I want to see us hit. I want to see us pitch well. I want us to not make routine errors. My short-term goal is just to keep getting better, stay positive and, hopefully, win along the way.” After February, Bruder said her goals are to make strides hitting in March and starting off undefeated in the Southland Conference. “I want us to start off conference, 8-0, 10-0, 12-0,” she said.

“Historically, we have done that in the past. We’ve been 9-0, 12-0, 10-1, something like that. That still remains a short-term goal for us.” Bruder said the thing she loves most about this year’s team is their mentality. “We have a great attitude,” she said. “We work very hard in practice. Some of our practices are three to four hours. There is no complaining. We hit the weight room right after. From 2:30-7 p.m., these kids are either working out or playing softball. There are no complaints. No laziness. I love where our mindset is. Can we back that up with talent? We’ll find out this weekend (at the Sand Dollar Classic).” In terms of offense and defense, Bruder said she will need new players to step up in order to have a well-balanced team. “I have probably my best hitter right now as a sophomore,” she said. “That’s great for the fu-

“I think having some underdogs and kids who have never been seen is pretty awesome,” she said. “People will look around and say, ‘This team is pretty good, who are these guys?’ “Young kids want to learn. Young kids usually learn at a rapid pace – I love seeing that. I hope that mentality doesn’t change. I hope when it comes time to play games, that we play with no fear.” Bruder said she hopes to see a lot of fan support this year and that people will come out to watch the team. “The fans have been very supportive,” she said. “I love that Beaumont is supporting softball. We hand deliver our season tickets. We love fans in the stands. “I’m asking fans to be a little patient. We are going to try a couple little things this season. We have a young club. We might lose some games that we have traditionally won, just because we’re learning and growing. But, I appreciate the support and hope that they continue to support us throughout the thick and thin.” LU opens the 2018 season, Friday, facing Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech on the first day of the Sand Dollar Classic in Gulf Shores, Ala. The home opener is a doubleheader against nationally-ranked Washington Huskies at 2 pm. Feb. 19.

Rec Sports kicks off busy spring semester Cassandra Jenkins UP managing editor

Lamar University’s Recreational Sports begins their busiest semester with numerous events and clubs. The spring semester will focus on intramurals and sports clubs from basketball and football to cricket and ultimate Frisbee. “As normal, our stable sports are basketball, outdoor soccer, 8on-8 cricket outdoors, flag football and volleyball,” Jason Harrington, coordinator of intramural and sports clubs, said. “This year, for flag football we are going to do 7-on-7 instead of 4on-4. We are also doing 4-on-4 volleyball. We try to keep these sports year-round where our participants can play the same sports they love both fall and spring.” Harrington said the spring semester focuses a lot on basketball games, and events including tournaments, shootouts and obstacle courses. “We are going to have a qualifier tournament for basketball, which is this Sunday,” he said. “Whoever wins that tournament, we are going to send that team to represent us at the regional tournament, which will be at the end of March at Texas A&M.

“We also have scheduled free throws and three-point shootouts. We’ve done those for the past couple years, but we’re looking to add a few new things, like a two person three-point shootout. We’re looking to do a basketball obstacle course as well, like you see in the All-Star games.” Besides intramurals and sports clubs, Harrington said Rec Sports will add some events for residence halls. “We have dodgeball which starts next week,” he said. “We have water basketball and 4-on-4 volleyball. Students can sign up through their resident directors or RA’s to talk to them about getting on a team and representing their hall so they can earn points.” The Rec Center will also host the Fit Games, Harrington said. “(There’s a) National Rec Sports and Fitness Day every year — this year it is Feb. 22 — but we are going to have our own Fit Games, Feb. 21,” he said. “Three-point and free-throw shootouts are on-the-spot registration. People can just come out, sign up and play. Overall winner, best time for Fit Games, or most free-throws or three-pointers will win a championship T-shirt.” Some new clubs will also be

introduced this semester, including a Muay Thai class, Harrington said. “Muay Thai is sports kickboxing, competitive kickboxing,” he said. “They are still working out some things in order to practice and possibly compete. It is martial arts that come from Thailand. They are really getting things together this semester for that.” Harrington said almost all teams compete off campus at some level during the semester. “We have basketball, baseball, tennis, wrestling, archery, ultimate Frisbee — and they are all competing,” he said. “Soccer is looking to have a tournament or two to go to this semester. All of our clubs should be active and travelling this semester. Some of them hope to make it to national tournaments, so that’s something we are looking forward to.” Harrington said although basketball and dodgeball deadlines have already passed, there are still plenty of sports to sign up for this semester, including outdoor women’s soccer which will start Friday. Students can sign up for clubs via,, by visiting the rec center, or can email

UP photo by Hannah LeTulle

Student yogis practice power yoga, a fitness-based Vinyasa practice, in the Sheila Umphrey Recreational Center fitness studio, Jan. 25.

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Thursday, February 8, 2018 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

Beaumont celebrates ‘Year of the Dog’ Antonio Del Rio UP contributor

Chinese New Year begins Feb.16, and kicks off with the celebration of the Year of the Dog. Beaumont’s observances started early on Feb. 3 with revelry at the Event Centre in downtown. More than 200 people gathered to feast on delicacies, watch dance performances, singing, violin concertos, and even a cello version of the Oogway Ascending Theme from Kung Fu Panda celebrating Eastern and Western Chinese themes. The Chinese Association of Southeast Texas has been hosting New Year’s events for 26 years in Beaumont. “We are celebrating Chinese New Year by displaying Chinese heritage,” event supporter Grace Liu Anderson said. “We celebrate by making and serving traditional food, music, dancing, with some modern interpretations.” The celebration showcased around 20 different performances and more than 30 participants. Anderson and her children performed at the event, with Anderson performing the first movement of a famous Chinese violin concerto called the “Butterfly Lovers Violin Concerto.” “The Chinese Association of Southeast Texas, and donations, are mainly responsible for funding and bringing the celebration to Beaumont,” Anderson said. “Our goal each year is to share our tradi-

tions with the community here and for our culture to be remembered and recognized.” Beaumonters Julio De Leon and Matthew Lambert went to the celebration for the first time. “This was both our first time coming to the celebration for us both and we are glad we came,” De Leon said. “The $10 to get in was well worth the entire experience. This is a beautiful celebration because, I dig all of the decorations, time and effort put into this. I really enjoyed the dance performances. Those kids are talented. I wish I could dance like that.” Lambert said the food was his favorite thing. “The food was so good that it made me want to call my momma,” Lambert said. “I originally heard about the event through a friend at work. I was forwarded the Facebook event page. I’ve always had an interest in different cultures and their history so I figured I would check out a New Year’s event different from what I’m use to celebrating. I told Julio about it and we decided to come check it out. I don’t think we had any real idea what to expect. I really enjoyed myself though, and I will be going next year.” Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, or simply the Lunar New Year, is an important festival marking the start of the new year. It begins on the second new moon after the Winter Solstice

Courtesy photo

and ending on the full moon 15 days later. It is marked by visits to family and friends, special meals, fireworks, and gift giving. The story of Chinese New Year is steeped in legend. One legend is that thousands of years ago a monster named Nian (“Year”) would attack villagers at the beginning of each new year. It was discovered that the monster was afraid of loud noises, bright lights, and the color red, so those discoveries were used to chase the beast away, and now they are

used in celebration. The celebration ushers out the old year and bring forth the luck and prosperity of the new one. Young people are given money in colorful red envelopes. In addition, Chinese New Year is a time to feast, visit family members and honor those who have passed. For more information, email the association of Chinese Students & Scholars at Lamar University at caostbeaumont


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over the weekend. Longneck Road and Boogie Kings will play Thursday. Honky Tonk Jones and Roger Creager Band will play Friday. The 4 Ramblers, Little Nathan and The Zydeco Bigtimers, William Clark Green, and Kevin Fowler will be featured Saturday, and J.A.G. and Kenyun and the Zydeco Masters will conclude the festivities on Sunday. Gates will open today at 5 p.m., Friday at 6 p.m., Saturday at noon and Sunday at 8 p.m. Entry tickets are available for a $1 special, today. Regular tickets are $15, Friday-Saturday and $10, Sunday. For more information, call 721-8717, or visit

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University Press February 8, 2018  
University Press February 8, 2018  

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