Thrive October 2022

Page 1

Arts & Cultur

e SPECIAL INSERT: Lake Charles SPECIAL SECTION: 1952 1962 The community askedfor a hospital…The hospital’s origin goes back to 1947 when the Calcasieu Parish Medical Society filed a request with the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury to be permitted to operate a 75-bed hospital at the deactivated Lake Charles Air Force Base on a temporary basis. The Calcasieu Parish Hospital opened in that location on April 1, 1947 and it was stated that it would remain in operation until a new hospital could be built. In 1948, the U.S. Public Health Service approved a federal grant of $422,667 for the Calcasieu Parish Hospital Corporation to assist the new hospital project. The request was made by the corporation, which Dr. Walter O. Moss was president. To meet the healthcare needs of the community during the population influx in the 1940s and 1950s, a request by the Calcasieu Parish Medical Society was finally granted to build a hospital in Lake Charles. In December of 1949, a steering committee was developed to incorporate the non-profit organization known as Southwest Louisiana Hospital Association. Dr. Eleanor Cook, thedoctor in Lake Charles, aof the local medical community,on the Lake Charles MemorialHosptial medical staff. Did y kn The hospital was up and running fivedays before the official opening towelcome its first baby. Margaret JoyceMiller, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joe T.Miller was born at LCMH on October18, 1952 Mr. Miller was supervisor ofconstruction for the facility. F st Baby B n Grassroots fundraising efforts were launched to “request a donation from every resident.” Just two months after the launching of the fundraising drive, records show that over $620,000 had been donated and pledges were still to be collected. This incredible response from the community further illustrated the desire for a hospital of this nature.The area that was dedicated to build Lake Charles Memorial Hospital was situated in an up-and-coming neighborhood, Oak Park. Although there was another option of land to build the hospital, on the west side of Lake Charles near the lake, the planning committee thought it woulddirection the town was startingmove: 1953Department of PhysicalTherapy Opens 1963School of Medical Technology Opens Leading sponsored by Celebrate Ladies IN BUSINESS
2 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Rehabilitation Hospital of Jennings 24 Hour Nursing Care • Physical Therapy • Occupational Therapy Speech Therapy • Nutritional Counseling and Monitoring Case Management Call for a free assessment today. • Brain Injury • Strokes • Amputations • Burns • Major Multiple Trauma • Rheumatoid Arthritis • Joint Replacements • Hip Fractures • Osteoarthritis/DJD • Neurological Disorders • Spinal Cord Injury • Congenital Deformities • Systemic Vasculidities DIAgNOSeS THAT we TReAT Others who can benefit from inpatient rehabilitation are postoperative patients, accident victims and cancer patients. One Hospital Drive, Ste. 101 • Jennings, LA 70546 • Phone: (337) 821-5353 • Fax: (337) 821-5355 or 5366 •

Our breast health navigation team works together to provide accuracy and answers. With a thoughtfully prepared plan for diagnosis and treatment, the team works in tandem to ensure every patient receives timely resolutions along with personalized care.

Heather LaBauve, Nurse Navigator Stephen Castleberry, MD General Surgeon John VanHoose, II, MD Pathologist Matthew Ayo, MD General Surgeon Devin Seale, MD General Surgeon Adam 3
• 3D Mammograms • Breast MRI • Breast Ultrasound • Genetic Testing • Breast Seed Lumpectomy • Breast Health Navigation • Breast Ultrasound / Breast Biopsy COMPREHENSIVE BREAST HEALTH CARE IN YOUR Schedule your mammogram today. (337) 527-4256 |
community RECEIVE A VERA BRADLEY ON A ROLL CASE. when you complete a mammogram at the WCCH Breast Health Center in October. GET A MAMMOGRAM. Get a Gift. Limit one (1) per patient during the promotional giveaway period of Oct 1 - 31, 2022. While supplies last. Gifts provided by the West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Foundation.
Olsan, MD, Radiologist Rebecca Braud, MD Family Medicine

The community asked for a hospital…

The hospital’s origin goes back to 1947 when the Calcasieu Parish Medical Society filed a request with the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury to be permitted to operate a 75-bed hospital at the deactivated Lake CharlesAir Force Base on a temporary basis.The Calcasieu Parish Hospital opened in that location onApril 1, 1947 and it was stated that it would remain in operation until a new hospital could be built. In 1948, the U.S. Public Health Service approved a federal grant of $422,667 for the Calcasieu Parish Hospital Corporation to assist the new hospital project.The request was made by the corporation, which Dr. Walter O. Moss was president.To meet the healthcare needs of the community during the population influx in the 1940s and 1950s, a request by the Calcasieu Parish Medical Society was finally granted to build a hospital in Lake Charles. In December of 1949, a steering committee was developed to incorporate the non-profit organization known as Southwest Louisiana HospitalAssociation.

Grassroots fundraising efforts were launched to “request a donation from every resident.” Just two months after the launching of the fundraising drive, records show that over $620,000 had been donated and pledges were still to be collected.This incredible response from the community further illustrated the desire for a hospital of this nature.

area that was dedicated to build Lake Charles Memorial Hospital was situated in an up-and-coming neighborhood, Oak Park.Although there was another option of land to build the hospital, on the west side of Lake Charles near the lake, the planning committee thought it would best to build in the direction the town was starting to move: the southeast section. This would allow for easy access for medical care close to families moving to the area.

F stBabyB n

The hospital was up and running five days before the official opening to welcomeitsfirstbaby.MargaretJoyce Miller, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. JoeT. Miller was born at LCMH on 18, 1952 Mr. Miller was supervisor of construction for the facility.



Correction: In the announcement of the appointment of the West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital board of commissioners in our Sept. 2022 issue, Carol “Bobbie” Fountain’s name was misspelled. We apologize for the error.

Thrive is designed for people focused on living a happy, healthy life, one that is balanced, full of energy and contentment. Thrive readers want to make the most of every day and to be successful in all areas of their lives –family, health, home and career.

Submitted articles and photos are welcome. Thrive assumes no responsibility for unsolicited materials and does not guarantee any submissions.


Creative Director Barbara VanGossen


Sarah Bercier

Business Manager Katie McDaniel Stevenson

Advertising Sales 337.310.2099

4 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
When the construction was completed, Lake CharlesMemorialHospitalopeneditsdoorsto the public on beds, 20 nurses, and at a cost of $1,800,000. This not-for-profit institution was operated by theSouthwestLouisianaHospitalAssociation,
ial Hospital Opens Dr. Walter O. Moss was a trailblazer in the early formation of Memorial. His passion and dedication inspired the citizens of southwest Louisiana to make financial contributions toward the project of building a community hospital. He was the president of the Calcasieu Parish Hospital Corporation at the time Memorial was being formed. A Mem ial Legend From the beginning, Lake Charles Memorial has been community-driven. LCMH insert page 59
Managing Editor Angie Kay Dilmore Editors and Publishers Kristy Como Armand
and Layout
18 68 @thriveswla | Contents Regular Features 44 Business Buzz 58 Who’s News 72 Solutions for Life In This Issue Mind & Body 6-11 SPECIAL SECTION: Take Care of your Teeth 12 Benefits of Breast Cancer Support Groups 14 Dr. Tyson Green First in US to Perform New Foot Surgery 16 Vein Center of SWLA to Host Free Screenings in Sulphur Style & Beauty 18-22 SPECIAL SECTION: Money & Career 22-40 SPECIAL SECTION: Leading Ladies in Business 40 Family Works, Queen of Threads 42 Protect your Finances from Inflation Places & Faces 46-56 COVER SECTION: Arts & Culture57 SEAL Legacy Foundation 60 first person - Delton Carter, Lake Charles Fire Chief Home & Family 62-65 SPECIAL SECTION: HALLOWEEN 66 Make your Disney Vacation Magical Wining & Dining 68 Smoke & Barrell 70 Celebrate Seasonal Flavors!


Show in

We’re pleased to


YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN! a collaboration with McNeese Bayou Players OCT 19-22 | 7:30 PM and OCT 23 | 2:00 PM


IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE - a live KBYS FM radio show Auditions and Broadcast Times to be Announced on Facebook and our website.

NUNSENSE - Meshuggah Nuns

Auditions will be in December. Show dates in January. Look for announcements on Facebook and our website.


Details to be announced on Facebook and our website.

Follow us on Facebook for show dates, times and locations, as well as audition information for upcoming shows.

Make a note to bookmark our new website: 5
town since 1926!
announce the 2022-2023 96th Anniversary

October is National Dental Hygiene Month, so let's start this special section with some interesting dental statistics.

15–20% of U.S. adults from 33 to 44 years of age have some form of gum disease.

In adults between the ages of 20 and 64, 91% have dental caries and 27% have untreated tooth decay.

16% of people in the U.S. suffer from tooth erosion, the third worst in the world.

12% of Americans grind their teeth.

• Only 7% of Americans say they are happy with their teeth.

• 34% of Americans suffer from tooth sensitivity with one-quarter of Americans saying they experienced more tooth sensitivity during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eric A. Sanders Dr. Saima Khan
6 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Teeth Helping little smiles grow up to be big, healthy smiles! Helping little smiles grow up to be big, healthy smiles! We provide specialized dentistry for children and adolescents in a “child-friendly” environment and where parents are more than welcome to accompany their child to the treatment room. 2620 Country Club Road • Lake Charles, LA 70605 • (337) 433-kids (5437) WWW.SANDERSPEDIATRICDENTISTRY.COM Dr.

Straightening Out Common Myths About Adults and


Research shows that smiling can have an impact on numerous aspects of a person’s life, including their mood and how well they handle stress. More adults than ever are choosing to seek a straighter smile. In fact, according to the American Association of Orthodontists, one out of four orthodontic patients today are adults.

“Braces have evolved considerably since the adults of today were teens,” says Dr. Craig Crawford with Crawford Orthodontics. "Orthodontics is certainly not just for kids. We are able to deliver excellent results that not only improve the appearance of teeth, but also improve overall oral health, which is of more concern for adults. Crooked teeth or a bad bite can contribute to gum and bone loss, tooth decay, abnormal wear of the tooth enamel and surfaces, headaches and jaw joint pain."

You are Too Old for Braces to Work

It’s never too late to enjoy a straight smile. Misaligned teeth are never “too old” to be corrected. Braces work by applying gentle pressure on the teeth, gradually pushing them

to the correct positions. It is the same principle, whether the patient is 12 or 52.

You Need a Referral to See an Orthodontist

Some patients believe they need their dentist to refer them to an orthodontist, but that isn’t necessary. It’s common in the medical system to need a referral to see a specialist, but that is not the case for orthodontics. You can make the decision yourself and it won’t affect your coverage if you have insurance.

Braces Need to Be Worn for Years

Many patients tend to overestimate how long they will wear braces, regardless of age. Every treatment plan is different, but technology has helped accelerate the process and treatment today typically lasts between six months and two years.

Braces are Unsightly and Will Look Ridiculous on an Adult

An adult who is already self-conscious about their smile does not want to draw more attention to it during orthodontic treatment. They may also be concerned about maintaining a professional appearance. Fortunately, there have been many advances in orthodontic technology. Braces are much smaller than they once were and there are

a variety of options that do not require the traditional metal bracket and wire, Ceramic, tooth-colored braces are available and blend in with the teeth's natural enamel. They are also more comfortable than traditional metal. Another option is clear, removable aligners.

Orthodontic Treatment is More Painful for an Adult

Braces from the 20th century, when many of today’s adults had braces, may conjure images of metal brackets and wires that cause pain and discomfort to your entire mouth. Modern adult orthodontics utilize smaller, more efficient devices that are also gentler. A little orthodontic wax and pain relievers can help ease any discomfort. If clear aligners are chosen, there are no sharp edges at all – just smooth surfaces.

If you are ready to look into braces for yourself, the first step toward a straighter smile is a consultation. "Once you are properly screened for periodontal and dental health, there really is no age limit for braces," says Dr. Crawford.

And that's something to smile about!

For more information about braces for adults, call Crawford Orthodontics at (337) 478-7590 or visit 7


Oral Health

Leads to Overall Health

Your oral health is more important than you might realize. Your oral health can offer clues about your overall health and problems in your mouth can affect the rest of your body.

“There is a synergic relationship between oral health and overall health,” says Dr. Michelle Corcoran, dentist and owner of Peppermint Sage Dental Wellness. “Because the mouth is where your digestive tract begins, the mouth is a window into the health of the body.”


Like other areas of the body, your mouth teems with bacteria — mostly harmless. Because your mouth is the entry point to your digestive and respiratory tracts, some of these bacteria can cause disease.

Normally the body’s natural defenses and good oral health care, such as daily brushing and flossing, keep bacteria under control. However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease.

Certain medications — such as decongestants, antihistamines, painkillers, diuretics and antidepressants — can reduce saliva flow.

Saliva washes away food and neutralizes acids produced by bacteria in the mouth, helping to protect you from microbes that multiply and lead to disease.

Studies suggest that oral bacteria and the inflammation associated with a severe form of gum disease (periodontitis) might play a role in some diseases. “Gum disease is linked to heart disease, strokes, diabetes, bacterial pneumonia, and Alzheimer’s disease,” Dr. Corcoran says. “Gum disease is the most common chronic inflammatory condition in the world and the mouth can act as a portal of entry for infection. Ongoing inflammation in your mouth can allow bacteria to enter the bloodstream, which may lead to more inflammation in other parts of your body, such as causing clot formations leading to strokes and heart disease.”

Certain diseases, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS, can lower the body’s resistance to infection, making oral health problems more severe. “Some studies point to a reciprocal relationship between gum disease and diabetes,” adds Dr. Corcoran. “When you treat periodontal disease, many studies have shown a decrease in A1C levels, which indicates an improvement in your blood sugar levels.”

Dr. Corcoran also says pregnant women with gum disease have an increased risk for delivering preterm and/or low birth weight babies.

MAINTAINING GOOD ORAL HEALTH: In addition to brushing, flossing, eating a balanced diet, and getting regular checkups, Dr. Corcoran says another important factor in oral health that is just recently being recognized is preventing mouth breathing.

“Nasal breathing is better for you on so many levels; it helps prevent dry mouth (which decreases your risk of cavities), helps maintain a good mouth pH, and increases your nitric oxide levels naturally. When I see a patient come in who claims they eat very little sugar or processed foods, but still has cavities, the first thing I think is that they are mouth breathing. If they cannot pinpoint mouth breathing during the day, then they might be doing it at night while sleeping. At that point, if they meet certain criteria, I usually refer them to a sleep specialist to have a sleep study done. They may be snoring at night.”

Tell your dentist about the medications you take and about changes in your overall health, especially if you’ve recently been ill or you have a chronic condition, such as diabetes. And contact your dentist as soon as an oral health problem arises. Taking care of your oral health is an investment in your overall health.

Peppermint Sage Dental Wellness is located at 632 W. McNeese St., Lake Charles. To make an appointment with Dr. Corcoran, call 337-478-2960.

Sources: Dr. Michelle Corcoran and

8 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Mind & Body | Take Care of

What conditions can be linked to oral health?


This infection of the inner lining of your heart chambers or valves (endocardium) typically occurs when bacteria or other germs from another part of your body, such as your mouth, spread through your bloodstream and attach to certain areas in your heart.


Although the connection is not fully understood, some research suggests that heart disease, clogged arteries and stroke might be linked to the inflammation and infections that oral bacteria can cause.


Periodontitis has been linked to premature birth and low birth weight.


Certain bacteria in your mouth can be pulled into your lungs, causing pneumonia and other respiratory diseases.


A bone-weakening disease, is linked with periodontal bone loss and tooth loss. Certain drugs used to treat osteoporosis carry a small risk of damage to the bones of the jaw.

Other conditions that might be linked to oral health include eating disorders, rheumatoid arthritis, certain cancers, and an immune system disorder that causes dry mouth (Sjogren’s syndrome).

A approachnew todental healththat wholepromotes wellness!body 9
632 W. MCNEESE ST., LAKE CHARLES • (337) 478-2960

Regular Dental Care Keeps Teeth,

Gums & Wallet Healthy

Imagine biting into a delicious, juicy steak and trying to chew it with just your front teeth. These teeth aren’t meant for chewing, so you’d have a problem. Not having healthy teeth to chew your food increases your risk of choking and is also harmful to the teeth that are trying to do the job, which were not meant to handle the pressure of chewing.

Hopefully, this analogy will help you understand the need to keep all your teeth healthy, but it does take a commitment. “Most people accept that performing routine maintenance on their vehicles helps prevent bigger repair costs down the road, but don’t always apply the same concept of preventive care to their oral health,” according to Dr. Rolando Tapia with Robinson Dental Group.

With inflation reaching a record level this year, many people are cutting back on spending, but Dr. Tapia cautions against skipping regular dental visits as part of your personal budget cuts. “We understand it may seem like it won’t make a difference if your teeth and gums look okay to you and you don’t have any pain, but it’s important to look at the big picture. Routine dental exams and cleanings can keep your teeth healthy, which will help you save money over time buy preventing more serious – and costly – problems from developing.”

One of the biggest concerns is gum disease, or periodontal disease. According to Dr. Tapia, gum disease ranges from gingivitis, a mild and common form that causes inflammation of tissues around the teeth, to more serious forms like periodontitis, where the inflammation affects the connective tissue supporting the teeth. It’s estimated that half

of Americans over the age of 30 have periodontitis, and it’s the primary cause of tooth loss in adults.

“When someone has gum disease, they are basically suffering from a chronic, low-grade infection,” he explains. “This means the entire immune system is weakened and the whole body is at higher risk as a result.”

Gum disease can affect people of all ages. It may affect the entire mouth or can be limited to one or two teeth. The condition is caused by not brushing and cleaning teeth properly. Symptoms include bleeding gums, persistent bad taste in the mouth and chronic bad breath and loose teeth. “A sure sign your teeth need attention is if your gums are swollen, tender, and bleed when brushed,” says Dr. Tapia. “If left untreated, plaque will continue to build up, and the gums will recede. In advanced cases, some teeth may become loose and need extracting.”

He adds that problems such as gum disease, cavities and plaque buildup are all problems that, when left untreated, have the potential to progress into much more serious conditions,” says Dr. Tapia. “At that point, the condition will cost more in money and time to correct. This is why we stress preventive care. It really is an investment that will save you from much bigger dental expenses, not to mention pain and stress, in the future. Consistent dental care is the best line of defense for healthy teeth, gums, and your wallet.”

For more information on dental health, or to make an appointment, call Robinson Dental Group at (337) 474-3636.

• Brush, floss and clean your tongue every day. Plaque is the enemy. Brushing thoroughly at least twice a day and flossing once a day will help combat it. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles so you don’t harm the gum line.

• Change is good. Every three months, buy a new toothbrush and throw the old one away. Bacteria can accumulate and the bristles become worn, making brushing ineffective.

• Look for the seal. Choose oral care products that are proven safe and effective. They will be marked with the ADA Seal of Acceptance. The ADA reviews all advertising claims for any product bearing the seal.

• Limit sweet snacks & drink water. Eating sugary snacks can cause tooth decay. When you put sugar in your mouth, the bacteria in the plaque digests the sugar and turns it into acids, which can dissolve the tooth. In addition, drinking water will dilute and flush the sugar, acid and toxins from the mouth.

• See your dentist regularly. Regular dental visits and professional cleanings are essential to good oral health. Tartar, a rough, porous deposit, can only be removed when your teeth are professionally cleaned.

The good news is there’s plenty you can do to prevent gum disease. Robinson Dental Group offers the following tips for gum disease prevention:
10 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Mind & Body | Take Care of your Teeth

Find the Best Toothbrush for You

Roundup of Best Toothbrushes


Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 5100

Improve your gum health up to 100 percent with a safe and gentle experience vs. a manual toothbrush. Voted Best Overall by $89.95 on Amazon

BEST ADULT BRUSH CURAPROX – CS 12460 Velvet Toothbrush

Most people brush their teeth hundreds of times every year as an essential part of their daily routine. But how much thought do they put into the kind of toothbrush they’re using? Manual or powered? Hard or soft bristles? Angled or straight heads? One that cost a few dollars or a hundred dollars? How do you know which is best for your oral health?

Local dentist Dr. Erin Moore Seale with Seale Family Dentistry recommends a toothbrush that is easy-to-use with a soft bristled brush. “Firm or even medium bristles can cause enamel abrasion and gum recession which may lead to sensitivity or more severe long-term problems.”

Read on for more considerations when choosing a toothbrush:

WHAT’S YOUR COMFORT LEVEL? Look for a toothbrush that feels comfortable and is effective. The brush head size should fit easily into your mouth. For adults, aim for a half-inch wide and 1-inch tall. Children need smaller brush heads and larger handles. Dr. Seale says larger handles are also helpful for the elderly or people with arthritis.

PRESS PAUSE ON PLAQUE. Multilevel or angled bristles with rounded tips remove plaque better than conventional, flattrimmed bristles.


Dr. Seale says electric or batterypowered toothbrushes don't clean your teeth better than regular brushes.

“Research shows there is no difference in efficacy between a manual and electric toothbrush if the brusher uses it diligently.” Some evidence suggests that powered toothbrushes with rotating and oscillating bristles can be more effective than manual toothbrushes because they clean those hard-toreach areas. And they tend to be better for people with braces and people with uneven tooth surfaces. Some powered toothbrushes have built-in timers and sensors that tell you where to brush and if you’re brushing too hard. But Dr. Seale adds that brushing technique is far more important than toothbrush type. Ultimately, the decision is a matter of personal preference and how much you want to spend.

TIME FOR A NEW TOOTHBRUSH? Dentists advise you replace your toothbrush or change the brush head if the bristles look worn or every three to six months.

OPT FOR EXTRA ASSURANCE. Still unsure of what brush to buy? Look for a toothbrush with the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Approval. Or discuss options with your dentist.

AT THE END OF THE DAY, the best toothbrush for you will be the one you're most likely to use and is effective against cavities and gum disease.

This special toothbrush feels like velvet for your teeth, featuring 12,460 filaments that make brushing a daily ritual vs. a chore. Globally defined as the “gold standard” of manual toothbrushes, CURAPROX’s CS 12460 Velvet features incredibly soft filaments that are densely packed to remove plaque and debris from every nook and cranny in the mouth. $8.49 at &

BEST KIDS BRUSH Stesa Kids Toothbrush

Features soft bristles, dust cover, bright colors, and a suction cup bottom to make brushing fun. $9.99 for a 50-pack on Amazon

Dr. Erin Moore Seale & Dr. Collin Seale


1430 West McNeese Street Lake Charles, LA 70605 11

Support is Crucial

During Breast Cancer Journey

A diagnosis of breast cancer can immediately cause an avalanche of emotions. Feelings of fear, uncertainty and most of all, isolation.

Heather LaBauve, RN, BSN, OCN, nurse navigator with West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital’s (WCCH) breast health program, says support is crucial. “A woman who has just received a breast cancer diagnosis understandably has many questions, it takes a while for it to sink in and then process the information. I’m here with them throughout the entire process, from diagnosis, to a treatment plan and beyond.”

LaBauve is an oncology nurse of14 years, and has been focused on breast health navigation care the last three years. Her experience in oncology gives her the technical insight for diagnostics and treatment, but her current role as navigator brings to light the support that is needed once a diagnosis is given. “Part of what I do is letting them know that I am a constant support through this very uncertain time. I provide education at the time of diagnosis and help the patient and their families understand what to expect going forward,” she explains.

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in US women, according to the American Cancer Society. The good news is that thanks to increased awareness, screening and better treatments, deaths due to breast cancer have continued to decrease in older women since 2007.

“This is a major step forward in the breast cancer journey. More women are getting mammograms regularly, which means more women who have breast cancer are getting diagnosed at an early stage, which increases the chances for being cured,” LaBauve says.

Among her other tasks, LaBauve coordinates the Pink Crusade WCCH breast cancer support group. This is a free service to the community. It meets monthly and often includes a guest speaker as well as time for the attendees to visit and support each other. It is open to anyone with breast cancer as well as their family and friends.

Nancy Trammel was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017 and is currently cancer free. She began attending the support group almost immediately upon her diagnosis and continues to attend to provide support to the other women. “All of the women there are either going through the same thing or have gone through it already. We have a camaraderie. These women know what’s happening and can give their perspective on what to expect and how they handled it,” Trammel explains.

“We give each other strength.”

Clinical studies underscore the importance of support during a cancer journey. In a study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, the findings shows that social support can help increase breast cancer survival rates by up to 64% and decrease recurrence rates by up to 48%. Spouses, family, friends, and social support can all help to reduce the risk of recurrence.

Trammel says the guest speakers at the support group are helpful because they range from healthcare experts to self-help experts, so the attendees get a wide variety of information.

Her advice to anyone with cancer is, “Keep your faith. Keep fighting. Stay positive and stay busy.”

Support groups bring people together and provide a safe forum for exchanging perspectives, sharing concerns, and gaining confidence.

Peer support lets a person vent their frustrations, learn about new treatments, and exchange information. This can lead to better preparation for cancer treatment and empowerment. It reminds people that they are not alone.

“As women share their experiences in the support group, those who are currently undergoing treatment can benefit, since among the women, someone has likely had the same chemo, the same side effects, etc.”

explains LaBauve.

During COVID, the support group was suspended, but resumed meeting in March of this year. “We have a great group of ladies, many of whom are survivors and lend their experience to those who are currently undergoing treatment. Those who are in the battle now face anxiety about the treatments, the fear of recurrence, what the future will look like, and the survivors can give them a lifeline of hope and reassurance,” LaBauve says.

12 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Mind & Body


6:00 p.m.

WCCH Board

Open to women with


family and

For details, call (337) 528-7320


550 Sale Road Lake Charles, 13 Dr. Stephen J. Delatte Dr. Hugo St. Hilaire Acadiana’s Most Experienced Breast Reconstructive Surgeons337-269-4949 | DRDELATTE.COM OCTOBER IS BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH EXPERIENCE TRUST IN OUR FREE health care for lowincome, working uninsured! Are you over 40 & without health insurance? If you’re working at least 20 hours per week, you may qualify for a free mammogram
for information. 337-478-8650
OctoberisBreastHealth AwarenessMonth!
Crusade Breast Cancer Support Group of West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Meetings are held the 2nd Thursday of each month
Room No charge to attend
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month


First in U.S. to Perform New Foot Surgery

Dr. Tyson Green, podiatric specialist with Center for Orthopaedics, was the first surgeon in the United States to perform a new type of foot surgery using the InCore TMT system from Zimmer Biomet. This technique, which Dr. Green helped develop over the course of a year, is an advanced type of arthrodesis, or surgical immobilization of a joint by fusion of the adjacent bones.

Dr. Green explains that the TMT (tarsometatarsal) joints are complex joints in the midfoot. These joints connect the tarsal bones, which form the arch of the foot, to the metatarsal bones, the bones of the forefoot that connect to the toe bones.

“The midfoot is critical to the overall function of the foot and ankle. It serves many different functions, including transferring weight from the heel to the front of the foot, or forefoot, when you walk,” explains Dr. Green. “The multiple small bones of the midfoot are aligned to provide push-off power when you walk and flexibility for your feet to adjust to different types of terrain. Over time, this repetitive stress can lead to arthritis in the midfoot joints, which is the wearing away of the cartilage cushion between the joints.”

Midfoot arthritis is more common in women, in people with diabetes, in people who have had an injury to the foot, and in people who have arthritis in other parts of their body. “Patients often describe their symptoms as a ‘stabbing pain’ that gets worse when standing or walking, and/or when wearing shoes, especially if the shoe rubs on the top of foot,” says Dr. Green.

The first line of treatment for this condition is conservative, including anti-

inflammatory medications, injections, adjusting activity levels, and changing shoes. “For some, however, midfoot

“It’s been a very rewarding experience to see something I helped develop and test being used in surgery with our team in

Sharp, stabbing pain in the legs can be a sign of vein disease.

Poor circulation can cause itchy, irritated or discolored skin. Trust the specialists at CIS who treat the root of the problem with minimally-invasive, in-clinic procedures to restore both the health and beauty of your legs.

Schedule an appointment at the CIS Leg & Vein Center today.

pleased with their results.

Scan the QR code to learn more about vein disease.

14 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Mind & Body


women will get


Most women can survive breast cancer if it's found early. That is why it is so important to get mammograms every year. At CHRISTUS Health, our board certified providers offer each patient compassionate, quality care using the latest technology and treatments.

Schedule your appointment today by calling 337.508.1306 15
in 8
Let’s do something about it.
Mammograms matter. Make yours a priority. Assess your risk:

to Host Free Screenings in Sulphur

The Vein Center of Southwest Louisiana is offering free vein screenings in October, by appointment, at their Sulphur office, located at 250 Beglis Parkway, Suite 1 (Imperial Health Cardiovascular Specialists).

“Many people mistakenly think their leg pain and varicose veins are just normal part of aging, or a simple cosmetic

problem, but these may be signs of a more serious, underlying vascular condition,” says Dr. Carl Fastabend, founder and medical director of the Vein Center. Dr. Fastabend is the only fulltime, comprehensive vein specialist in Louisiana. He provides minimally invasive, painless, outpatient treatment options for vein disorders that deliver excellent results in a short period of time.

Symptoms that could indicate vein disorders include leg pain, tired legs, swelling in legs and/or feet, leg cramps, skin changes, itching, restless legs,

Meet the Newest Member of our Medical Team

Dr. Kyle Mauk, Podiatric Surgical Specialist

Imperial Health is proud to welcome Kyle Mauk, DPM, ABPM, FACFAS, podiatric surgical specialist, to our medical staff. He brings five years of experience to our group.

Dr. Mauk earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida, before earning a Doctorate of Podiatric Medicine from Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Dr. Mauk completed a Podiatric Medicine & Surgery Residency with Reconstructive Rearfoot and Ankle Certification at the University of Florida College of Medicine – UF Health in Jacksonville, Florida. He is dual board certified by the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons and the American College of Podiatric Medicine.

Call 312-8120 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Mauk.

Accepts all major insurances and Medicare.

burning sensation, spider veins and varicose veins. Also, if you have a family history of vein conditions and if you sit or stand for long periods every day, you are at increased risk of developing a vein disorder.

Call (337) 312-8346 for more information or to schedule your screening appointment in Sulphur.

Learn more about vein disorders and treatment at

16 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Mind & Body
501 Dr. Michael DeBakey Dr., 2nd Floor | Lake Charles | (337) 312-8120

The first known examples of jewelry originated in Africa in the form of shell jewelry, like the use of snail shells and ostrich egg shells, dating back nearly 75,000 years ago. Later, early jewelry was made from bone, teeth, stones, and similar materials. And later yet, consider Cleopatra and the early Egyptians. Jewelry was so im portant, they were even buried with it! Throughout time, jewelry trends have come and gone. In this special section, we highlight current jewelry trends, give a nod to our history with a look at vintage jewelry, and a sneak peek at a new Harry Potter line of jewelry. Timeless!

Humans have longed to adorn themselves since the days of early man.

18 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Style Beauty& LAUNCH PARTY at THURSDAY, OCT. 13 5-7PM STOP BY OUR BOOTH AT THE WOMEN’S COMMISSION FALL CONFERENCE OCT. 20 Bright The Future is Lake Charles (337) 474-1220

Wearing vintage makes a distinctive style statement. Anyone can select a piece of modern jewelry, but it’s so much more rewarding to go out of your way to track down a beautiful older piece that no one else has. And buying vintage is also more sustainable. The significant resources required to mine gemstones and precious metals make it hard to produce jewelry in an environmentally friendly way. Buying older jewelry is actually a “green” thing!

Vintage costume/antique jewelry is easy to find. Antique stores usually sell good estate jewelry; some contemporary jewelry stores have an estate section. Pawn shops only sell pre-worn pieces. Thrift shops carry costume pieces that are usually snatched up quickly. Of course, the biggest market is online. Do a Google search and . . . happy hunting!

and antique. Jewelry is considered antique if it’s 100-plus years old; jewelry is vintage if it’s less than 100 years old but more than 50 years old.

Costume jewelry — sometimes called fashion jewelry — is generally mass produced and made from various materials, including plastic, but typically not from precious metals. The name “costume jewelry” became popular in the 1930s. Women adorned themselves in inexpensive pieces that made them feel special without breaking the bank. For example, Bakelite, a fire-resistant plastic, was made into chunky, colorful jewelry in the 1930s and 40s and is still hugely popular.



Trends in Jewelry


A basic gold chain like a gold paper clip necklace may not seem like a bold wardrobe option. But layer on three chains, or five (or more), and it’s the fastest way to update your style quotient. Start with something delicate, add a herringbone chain (yes, they’re making a comeback), top it with a sparkly diamond cut necklace and now you’re making a statement. This look works best with simple basic chains, which also makes it an affordable way to rock a look that goes with everything! Bottom line –more is better!


The easiest way to add a punch of style to your wardrobe this season is to grab a bangle bracelet – the bigger the better! Start with a bold chunky metal style and then start layering them on. Griffin says don’t be afraid to mix and match metals and textures. It’s even better if each bangle tells a story – a jewel-encrusted anniversary gift, a thin bracelet to celebrate a promotion, and a diamond tennis bracelet. Start a collection that you can add to each year for a


One of the most eye-catching jewelry trends in 2022 involves color. Designers are infusing their pieces with every hue of the rainbow. Whether its colored metal or rich, saturated enamel, the vibrant hues are popping up everywhere. Jewelry pieces in juicy colors are joyful and fun and allow you to play with your look or match your clothing in a fresh new way – look for pink, green, even neon!


Stylish hands everywhere are sporting the Toi et Moi ring – which is French for “you and me.” This sought-after style features two stones of any kind bound together by a precious metal. The modern take has designers mixing stones of different shapes and colors in a setting that symbolizes love and connection. What makes it extra special is upcycling a family heirloom or the diamond from your original engagement ring and adding a second stone such as a birthstone or an upgraded larger diamond. There are no rules here. Choose stones that have a personal meaning or tell a story and pair them in a dramatic new way for a look that is fresh and uniquely yours.

When Kimberly Griffin opened Legacy Jewelers in Lake Charles four years ago, she was intentional about offering everything from classic looks to trending jewelry options at every price point. She doesn’t overstock the store so she can scour markets for the latest trends and can keep her inventory fresh and fun. Griffin says, “We try to be on the forefront of what’s trending and what’s classic. You can marry those and it’s a beautiful thing!” Here’s a roundup of the top jewelry trends Griffin is seeing in a season where individuality shines.


For ladies who prefer silver over gold tone jewelry – this is your moment! Griffin recommends choosing a dramatic textural bangle for a bold style statement. It’s also a great base for an oh-so-trendy bracelet stack. Real silver will tarnish so be prepared to buff your pieces to keep them looking new or choose white gold as a low maintenance alternative. Mix new silver styles with your existing gold pieces to extend your jewelry wardrobe. Hoop earrings are back in a big way too so grab a pair in a silver metal for a fashionable look. Expert tip: choose rhodium plated styles for a longer lasting shine.


Diamonds grown in a lab used to be frowned upon by many in the fashion world. But Griffin points out they have the same physical and chemical structure as mined diamonds, but without damage to the earth. They shine as much as (if not more than) real diamonds and are an affordable way to invest in a timeless look. Once considered a great option to replace your ‘real’ jewelry while traveling, lab grown diamonds are now a trendy and beautiful choice for every day.

Legacy Jewelers is located at 3133 Ernest Street in Lake Charles, (337) 433-3375. Open M-F, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Follow them for style inspiration on Facebook and Instagram at @legacyjewelerslc or online at . Legacy carries both fine and quality fashion jewelry plus Mignon Faget, game day looks, and gift items. They also offer expert jewelry repair in-house.

Style & Beauty Bring
Toi et Moi

Pura Vida Offers New Harry Potter Line

Whether you prefer Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, or Slytherin, we can all agree on one thing . . . Harry Potter Jewelry is a magical way to celebrate your favorite house, characters, or the series itself! Pura Vida, offers a wide selection of Harry Potter jewelry rings, bracelets, necklaces, and more!

For every item sold, Pura Vida will donate 5% of the purchase price to the World Literacy Foundation, with a maximum donation of $25,000. Donations will help further the World Literacy Foundation’s mission to ensure that every child—regardless of geographic location—has the opportunity to acquire literacy skills and books to reach their full potential. 21
3133 Ernest St, Lake Charles, LA 70601 | 337-433-3375 | @LegacyJewelersLC WWW.LEGACYJEWELERSSWLA.COM Legacy Jewelers is set apart from anything else in SWLA with a Garden & Gun-vibe atmosphere & carrying items such as vintage designer bags, southern inspired candles, fine jewelry, & statement pieces, all while displaying driftwood & hunting trophies.

Money & Career Leading Ladies

Indeed, to get to where they are today, each of the Leading Ladies on our 2022 roster have had to boldly move forward in their own way and do something they had never done before. They do not fear taking their place at the proverbial table. They work hard and set the bar high on the measure of success. Collectively, they have impacted the lives of countless people through their professions, families, and community involvement. The Leading Ladies on this year’s list work in a wide variety of occupations – banking, healthcare, real estate, energy and petro-chemical industries, and non-profits. Read on for inspiration and advice from these exceptional leaders.

“I learned to always take on things I’d never done before. Growth and comfort do not coexist.”
Ginni Rommety – former chairman, president, and CEO at IBM
sponsored by
22 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
in Business

How does the Chamber SWLA Work for You?

You see the networking events and ribbon cuttings the Chamber hosts, but what you don't see is what happens behind the scenes to support business growth. The hardworking group of professionals play a critical role in keeping the economic engine of our region running. Currently, there are $44 billion in projects under

Why Join the Chamber?


Be a part of economic development growth in our region. Job growth means more customers for your business.

construction and $65 billion in projects pending, bringing the total new investment in our region to $109 billion. Over the past seven years, 9,491 new, permanent jobs have been added in our five-parish region as a result of our Chamber’s relentless support of job growth which means customer growth and stability for our members.


Make one-on-one connections with re gional business lead ers. It’s not just who you know, it’s who knows you.

BE IN THE KNOW: Stay informed about the latest news and oppor tunities within our community.

VOICE: Gain a say in what happens in govern ment through our advocacy efforts.

Mission Statement: The Chamber SWLA is the voice of Southwest Louisiana business community and promotes ongoing regional development to cultivate a highter quality of life for all citizens of Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, and Jefferson Davis Parishes.


Raise your rep utation through membership.

LEARNING: Exclusive access to a bevy of programs and training oppor tunities to increase your intellectual capital.


Stand out and get noticed in the community.


Increase your purchasing power through mem bers-only dis counts and perks.

For more information about Chamber SWLA membership, contact Paula Ramsey at or (337) 433-3632 23



Senior Manager – Environmental, Westlake Corporation Lake Charles S/N facilities

Paula McCain earned a BS in Chemical Engineering from Lamar University in 1984 and began her career in Industrial Water Treatment with direct account responsibility in the Orange, Beaumont, and Port Arthur, Texas areas. She took a six-year career break beginning in 1990 and was primarily a stay-at-home mom with only some part-time work in water treatment. In 1996, Paula applied for a job at the school where her children attended, hoping for a preschool position. When they saw her credentials, they offered her a high school chemistry/physics position instead. “I loved teaching, and between Runnels in Baton Rouge, St. Louis High School, and Bell City High School, I taught for 16 years.”

During her teaching years, Paula earned a MA in Teaching from McNeese State University. In 2012, she applied for and accepted a position with PPG Industries, now Westlake Corporation. “I began as a Compliance Engineer and have held various positions related to environmental compliance. In 2021, I was promoted to Environmental Manager for the Westlake Lake Charles S/N facilities.”

Paula says she works with a team of talented professionals – subject matter experts in their roles – and she never stops learning. “The biggest challenges for me and my team involve navigating the everchanging regulatory climate associated with environmental compliance.”

And she adds that preparation is key. “Being prepared allows you to be confident and to project that confidence in professional situations. And take your seat at the table! When I was first promoted to a supervisory

position that entailed attending leadership team meetings with management, the room was arranged with a long conference table and chairs, and overflow chairs were around the perimeter of the room. My first day attending, I sat in the overflow chairs, even though when I arrived there were seats at the table. My boss at the time – a strong woman who is now a plant manager – corrected me and offered the following advice that has stuck with me. ALWAYS confidently take your seat at the table [figuratively and literally].

On finding balance: You accept that sometimes you need to make sacrifices – both personal and professional – to meet goals. I am fortunate to have had a supportive husband of 34 years (and counting) with whom to navigate the ride and share the load.

Best advice: Make time for things you love outside of work – that helps you stay professionally energized and avoid burnout. Hobbies are great diversions. I participate in community theatre, and although juggling schedules when I am in a show can be a real challenge, the reward is totally worth it.

Who most inspires you? That is a tough question. There are many. But close to home and inspirational in my current career I will say Esther Liggio. Esther was the Environmental Manager when I first started at PPG, and her class, polish, and professionalism are second to none. I was lucky enough to work with and for Esther before her retirement and learned a lot about what a smart and strong leader looks like.

24 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Money & Career | Leading Ladies in Business


Executive Director, Calcasieu Community Clinic

Kayla Rigney has served as the Executive Director at the Calcasieu Community Clinic for the past 14 years. She says she started working at age 15 and studied at the “School of Life.” Prior to her current position, she worked as an administrative assistant, office manager, and a marketing representative.

The Calcasieu Community Clinic strives to keep people healthy so they can be produc tive in the workforce. They offer medical, lab, diagnostic, medication, dental and vision services to working citizens who for any reason don’t have health insurance. Kayla ap preciates that her role at the Clinic provides opportunities to help people in our parish. “Our biggest reward is serving those hardworking citizens who are the backbone of our community.”

Kayla says there have been numerous challenges over the past two years to provide continuity of services. Located in Hardtner Hall on the campus of McNeese State Univer sity, their services were interrupted in 2020 when COVID-19 closed the campus. But she and the Clinic staff formed workarounds to ensure patients continued to receive their medications. Then just when they were near ing the reopening the Clinic, Hurricane Laura had other plans. “We were out of the building until mid-March 2021,” Kayla says. “When we resumed regular Thursday evening clinics, we quickly realized that many of the patients we served in the past were no longer in the area. Rental properties across town were badly damaged, requiring many residents to relocate. Even now, two years after Laura made landfall in Southwest Louisiana, rental property is slow to be rebuilt, impacting our

residents who depend on it and limiting the numbers of people we can help; however, our staff and Board of Directors are committed to serving those in our community who need us.”

Navigating these challenges has taught Kayla to be flexible and open to change. “Often, change promotes growth,” she says. “Remaining flexible and finding creative solutions to providing patient care has been crucial. We defined a process should we ever need to work this way in the future.”

On finding balance: There have been times in my past work life when I had to travel for work. My husband, Bruce, kept the household running. My daughter, Kelsey was in college at the time. It would have been impossible to manage if our family had been younger.

Best advice: Show up, be on time, have a positive attitude, believe you can do anything you set your mind to. And most importantly, be flexible!

What woman inspires you most? I am most inspired by the attitudes and spirits of strong women who have been successful in our community. Those who decide what they want and work until they achieve their goal. Women who aren’t afraid to make mate rial sacrifices to achieve what makes them happy in their work-life. Those women who, when faced with a bump in the road, find ways to go around it and come out on the other side better for having gone through the experience. Hopefully ever woman reading this will identify and know that they are an inspiration, whether they feel that way or not.

sponsored by 25

Money & Career | Leading Ladies in Business

Faith SylveHooks

Faith Sylve Hooks began her career path at age 15 in New Orleans when she was awarded a two-part paid internship. The first portion was at a maritime law firm in New Orleans, followed by an assignment to the public relations officer at the Louisiana Supreme Court.

Faith graduated from high school at age 16 and went to work the next day in the hospitality industry to earn money for college. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Loyola University. Over the next two decades, she worked in a variety of areas, including positions in other legal and court systems, non-profit, and as a researcher for a private firm. She also gained extensive experience in the commercial construction/development field in Atlanta, Georgia before returning to Louisiana to serve as a director of education and then campus director in post-secondary education across the state for a family-owned allied health institute.

“The positions I held through this point in my career required extensive performance evaluation, along with adherence to very specific federal and state reporting regulations,” says Faith. “I discovered I thrived doing this type of work, but then faced a rude awakening. I created a department performance tracking system that was going to be presented at a national conference. I was told I would not be listed in the credits because I only had a bachelor’s degree. That pushed me to pursue a graduate degree.”

Faith earned a Master of Science degree in Leadership and Human Resource Development with a concentration in Workforce Development from Louisiana State University. In 2019, she founded Empowerment Business Solutions & Consulting, offering data and performance analysis to help organizations make informed decisions and present their stories in dynamic ways to key stakeholders.

Later that year, she joined the Alliance for Positive Growth (APG) as Executive Director. In this role, Faith Advocates for regional economic development.

“I really enjoy working to build bridges between groups of people from the private business sector and governing bodies to promote strong, beneficial growth in Southwest Louisiana.”

Like anything in life, her work does not come without challenges. She says the biggest is the “expectation of time.” “In project-based work, it is always a fight against the clock or what is feasible within the time given,” she says.

On finding balance: I’m still working on this one! My husband says I “crash” for a day or two after a major project completion. My daughter writes me notes every week that say, “You’re the best mom ever!” So, I must be doing something right.

Best advice: Define what success is for you and don’t compare it to what others are doing. Always present yourself as coachable, open to learning from both superiors and subordinates. Seek out strong mentors and integrate them into your life journey, not just the one avenue where you met them.

Who inspires you most? Dr. Dawn Greay (career educator), one of the earliest representations of an educated black professional woman in my community.

Awards & Recognition

• 2008 & 2009 Louisiana Board of Regents Approved Proprietary School Commission Solicitor

• 2012-2015 Louisiana Board of Regents Approved Post-Secondary Education Vocational Instructor & School Administrator

• 2015 Career Education Colleges & Universities Leadership Institute Graduate Dallas, TX

• 2017 & 2018 American Evaluation Association Conference Presenter Washington D.C. & Cleveland, OH

• 2019 Black Business Honors Award Recipient (2020 Nominee) Lake Charles, LA

26 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022

Industry Insider

Straight Answers to Your Questions on Industry and the Envi

What is the plan if an emergency occurs at local industry?

We work with local and state authorities to keep the public informed.

Scan QR to see how industry responds to an emergency.

Your leadership of APG is greatly appreciated and you’ve been a vital part of our organization’s growth and accomplishments. This recognition of your contributions is well-deserved.

Missy Amidon industry representative by 27
APG rowth org | ( 33 7 ) 6 02 678 8
Congratulations, FAITH!

Christy Papania Jones

Founder & Executive Director, St. Nicholas Center for Children

Christy Papania-Jones founded the St. Nicholas Center for children in October 2008 and has held the position of Executive Director since. She graduated from McNeese State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Early Childhood Education, a Master of Education degree in Guidance and Counseling, and an Education Specialist degree in Administration and Supervision.

She began her career at Immaculate Conception Cathedral School where she taught for one year before moving into the counselor position for the next 17 years. During this time, she had a son who was diagnosed with Autism. There were very limited resources and no true Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy services in Lake Charles. By her son’s third birthday, she and her husband, Chris, had traveled the country seeking specialists to provide him with the best future possible. That’s when they decided to bring a therapy center to Southwest Louisiana. St. Nicholas Center for Children transforms the lives of children with Autism, delays, and disorders by providing family support and therapy—ABA, speech and occupational—all under one roof. In addition, the non-profit provides registered line technicians at local schools, parent/staff trainings and free workshops for teachers and daycare providers through its outreach services. “Seeing children make progress in ways that are truly life changing is the most rewarding aspect of my vocation,” says Christy.

She attributes their clients reaching their fullest potential to the efforts of the talented and dedicated professionals she works with daily.

Christy says the greatest challenge right now is the temporary facility they are operating out of due to Hurricane Laura destroying their Ryan Street location. “We currently don’t have adequate space for all the children who need our services.

It’s difficult seeing children who need our help on the waiting list. And we’ll continue to get creative and make strides at securing a bigger space for those families.”

On finding balance: Balance is something I am reevaluating all the time.

I don’t know any woman who feels like they have a perfect work/life balance, and we all tend to be hardest on ourselves versus giving ourselves grace. I love to surround myself with people who lift each other up, pray for one another, and step-in where there is a need. I am blessed and thankful with a supportive family and friend group, and I know my children have a village they can turn to.

Best advice: It is more important to leave an impact on someone by how they feel after they have worked with you, rather than any measurement on a chart or a bank account. Someone will always come behind you and do it better; that’s ok. The best legacy is one where it was never about you in the first place.

Who inspires you most? St. Teresa of Calcutta. She showed through humility and charity what it means to love your neighbor. She said, “We cannot all do great things, but we can all do small things with great love.” It is easy to feel powerless in a world where so many things seem to be going wrong. We might feel too small or ordinary to make a difference, so why even try? Mother Teresa’s words remind us small actions have value, too. We only need to have a willing spirit and love in abundance.

Awards & Recognition:

• 2000 Louisiana School Counselor of the Year

• 2010 Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation Angel Award

• 2013 Women’s Commission of SWLA Jack V. Doland Outstanding Citizen

• 2015 National Catholic Education Association Distinguished Graduate— St Margaret Catholic School

• 2018 United Way Spirit of SWLA Award

28 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Money & Career | Leading Ladies in Business

Paula Ramsey is a Lake Charles native who studied nursing at LSU-E for three semesters but realized healthcare wasn’t her thing. She moved to Houston and embarked on a 20-year career in property management, consecutively working for two of the largest apartment property developers and management companies in Houston. She began as a leasing agent for Harold Farb Investments; three years later she was promoted to Leasing Supervisor, managing over 3,300 apartments. When two executives left Farb to start their own management company, Allied Realty/Bradley Apartment Homes, they brought Paula with them as their VP of Marketing. “Being there for 13 years from the very beginning and working alongside them to create one of the largest and most successful management companies in Houston was exciting and very rewarding,” she says. Paula was active in the Houston Apartment Association and earned certification as an Apartment Property Supervisor (CAPS) for Property Management by the National Apartment Association in 1994. In 1999, she received the first award given to a marketing


Vice President, Chamber SWLA

professional by the Houston Apartment Association. “I enjoyed my career in property management because I loved working with people. During the 1980s, Houston was a boom town. I met people from all over the country and the world. Living in Houston was some of the best times in my life.”

In 2004, Paula returned to Lake Charles and realized there were no large apartment complexes, management companies or jobs even close to what she had done in Houston. In 2005, she joined the Chamber SWLA as a volunteer, serving on the Ambassador Committee and chairing the Member Relations Committee. She was hired by the Chamber in 2008 as the membership salesperson. Paula was promoted to Vice President of the Chamber in 2011. “Working to grow our organization by bringing in new members and retaining current members are my primary responsibilities. I also enjoy working on member events.” Paula received her U.S. Chamber Institute for Organization Management certification from Southeast Institute at the University of Georgia in 2012. She served on the Board for

Louisiana Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (LACCE) for five years and as President in 2019. She says she enjoys seeing the difference the Chamber makes in our region and community. “Helping businesses succeed, especially small businesses, and often doing work behind the scenes for our community is exciting!”

On finding balance: Having a supportive husband and partner is one of the secrets to being happy at work and at home. Sharing responsibilities of running your home and raising your children (or in my case, child) is so important.

Best advice: It’s cliché, but true. Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. Don’t set your expectations so high that you only see negatives and shortcomings. Look for the good, the positive, in everything and everyone and you won’t be disappointed. Who most inspires you? Barbara Bush. In any situation, she was “real.” She was honest and straightforward while being a loving, affectionate wife, mother, and grandmother.

sponsored by 29

Dr. Ollie Normand

Senior Manager of Research and Development (R&D), at Sasol Lake Charles

Dr. Ollie Normand was passionate about math and science as a child and fell in love with chemistry in high school. She earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Trinity University in San Antonio and found her niche in research. Dr. Normand went on to earn her doctorate in organic chemistry from Texas A&M University, and afterwards began working for Sasol in the Analytical R&D department, which later led to a role with the Industrial Applications Research Team. “I led a team and developed new applications for Sasol’s products and worked with new customers to solve their technical issues. Some of the most exciting work I did in this role was developing sunscreen for crop protection and water washable crayons.”

In 2020, Dr. Normand assumed the role of Senior Manager in the Sasol Lake Charles R&D department. “I lead a team of scientists and chemists to deliver creative customer-focused solutions to technical challenges in a safe, profitable and sustainable way,” she says. “I work with smart, driven people to discover the latest technologies. I love problem solving and innovating but being able to lead and empower this team to technical success is inspiring and I love what I do because of them.”

Dr. Normand has published scientific articles and patented five inventions. Through her various roles, Dr. Normand says she’s learned the importance of building relationships by being honest and having integrity. “Hard work will get you far but being able to work with others will get you farther.”

The past two years have been challenging for Dr. Normand, with the pandemic, a global financial crisis, and two hurricanes hitting our area.

“Managing peoples’ safety over the past two years has been a complex situation to handle. But Sasol is a great company that truly cares about their employees and our employees are resilient. We have come out of these trying times stronger. Now we can focus on the work and have fun doing it.”

On finding balance: Balance is a constant struggle because the demands of being a perfect mother, employee, spouse, and taking care of yourself are more than time allows. I have learned to be compassionate with myself. I will make mistakes, there will be dirty dishes in the sink, too many nights of take out, and I will miss things in my children’s lives that I wish I didn’t. I don’t strive for perfection, but strive to be happy, to love my family with all I have, and to be a good role model for my children . . . this is my balance.

Best advice: Don’t wait for someone else to tell you when you’re ready for the next step. Women tend to wait to apply for higher level positions until they check all the boxes on a job-posting. Don’t wait until you’re perfect for the job. Learn to be comfortable with the uncomfortable and believe in yourself.

Who most inspires you? Ruth Bader Ginsburg was undeniably one of the most accomplished women’s rights activists in modern history, ensuring women could get access to state colleges, buy a house, and receive equal pay at work.

30 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Money & Career Leading Ladies in Business

Sasol’s Lake Charles Chemical Complex is positioned to create economic growth and pave the way for a clean energy future in Southwest Louisiana 31 Reducing GHG emissions 30% by 2030 • Increasing renewable energy use • Optimizing energy efficiency • Pursuing carbon capture use & storage INNOVATING FOR A BETTER WORLD

DanetteMcManus Brown

Real Estate Professional/Realtor/Home Matchmaker, Flavin Realty

Danette McManus Brown, a Lake Charles native, began her career journey in education. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Education, a master’s degree in Educational Technology, Master’s Plus 30 in Instructional Technology and a Specialist Degree in Educational Leadership all from McNeese State University and taught in Calcasieu Parish schools for 12 years. But real estate runs in her blood, she says. “My grandparents and parents were all brokers/realtors. After receiving my license in 2011, I fell in love with everything about it and ultimately decided to leave teaching behind and focus on my real estate career 100%.” Danette has worked in real estate for 12 years and is currently employed by Flavin Realty.

Buying or selling property is NOT for the faint of heart, but it can be so rewarding, Danette says. “What better feeling than seeing the faces of new buyers light up because they have found HOME? Or better yet, witnessing the emotional, bittersweet ‘Goodbyes’ of childhood homes or memories or the exchanging of keys and a lifetime of memories from a seller’s hand to a buyer’s hand?”

As a former educator who enjoyed teaching a classroom of 30 children, Danette says she feels like she can teach anyone anything. “Education plays an integral part of the real estate industry as the market changes daily. As a realtor, it is my obligation to seamlessly explain the real estate process to my clients and help them navigate through the journey.”

Danette coaches her clients through each step, from pre-approval, house hunting, and gathering lender documents to the home inspection, appraisal, and finally the closing. “Whew!  What a ride!”

Danette has been elected to the 2023 SWLAR Board of Directors. She’s been recognized as a Top Producing Agent, an ABR Representative and serves on the Community Involvement Committee.

On balance: I definitely feel torn sometimes. Due to the demands of the job, prioritizing is essential. Allowing myself permission to take time to relax and not work is something that I work on daily.

Best advice: We are all SUPERWOMEN!  But even the infamous Superwoman had to take her cape off sometimes! Let your hair down and REJUVENATE often. Our worlds rely on us to keep them moving, no rest for the weary.

Who most inspires you? My mother, Dixette Williams, was and continues to be my inspiration. She was such a beautiful person inside and out; but what baffles me to this day is no matter the situation, she remained calm, cool and collected. Her greatest asset was her ability to show love and compassion towards others, stay poised, strong and passionate. If I shoot for just a few of these qualities every day, I call it a great day!

32 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Money & Career Leading Ladies in Business

Kay C. Fox

Vice President of Marketing and Member Services, Beauregard Electric Cooperative, Inc.

Kay Fox is the VP of marketing and member services and manages the communications and billing department at BECi. Her goal is to serve the community with integrity. “We focus on great customer service while providing a local face to our cooperative,” she says. “As an electric cooperative, we are owned by the members we serve, and they are our number one priority.”

Kay began her career at McNeese State University, where she holds a bachelor’s degree in communications and a master’s de gree in education. She says, “I enjoy working with the public and never meet a stranger.” Soon after graduation, she was hired by Mc Neese and worked there for six years until she and her family moved back home.

Kay was hired by BECi in 1995 after the cooperative created a public relations posi tion where she served in that capacity until she was promoted to vice president in 2007. She finds her role rewarding because she never works the same day twice. “My job does not allow me to sit behind a desk for eight hours – and I love it! I educate electric coop erative members in positive ways to reduce their energy usage, explain rates and billing options, work through natural disasters, and communicate to our members how power restoration works.”

It is during times of natural disasters that Kay faces the greatest challenges. “With un certainty, it is imperative to inform the com munity of our restoration efforts and to let members know that we will work diligently to restore power to all. I’m always honest, even if the results are tough. If you are honest, people learn to trust you which is important in a job like mine.”

Kay is currently the SWLA Chamber Chair. She also serves on several committees and boards and has been selected Rotarian of the Year.

On balance: I don’t allow my personal life to suffer because of my work. I believe you can be a successful mother and wife if you work hard and dedicate your life to your family. Fortunately, I work for a company that puts family first. My husband, Nick, and I have three children and two grandchildren.

Best advice: Love what you do. Don’t fear hard work or get discouraged. At times you’ll need to keep an open mind; and when you do, you’ll be rewarded. Don’t get stuck in the same routine and be ready for change –change is good and healthy sometimes.

Who most inspires you? Years ago, I admired Sandra Day O’Conner because of her tenacity and strength to survive among a predomi nantly male workforce. But I look back now and realize that my mother made the great est impact on my life. I developed my public speaking ability, my work ethic, strength, and aggressiveness to make right decisions from her. Even after losing my mother in 2010, I have never lost her traits and her ability to lead others, care for my community, and love my family.

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Nikole Walston

Optimization Manager, Phillips 66

Lake Charles Manufacturing Complex

Nikole Walston grew up mostly in West Texas, the daughter and granddaughter of mechanical engineers who worked in the oil business. She followed suit and graduated with a mechanical engineering degree from Texas A&M University in 1995. While in college, Nikole worked several internships in a variety of petro-chemical settings that afforded her hands-on experience. She later earned a master’s in international business from the University of Texas at Dallas. After college graduation, she worked as a maintenance reliability engineer and subsequently, a project engineer. Over time, Nikole worked at three refineries with three different companies where she built expertise and drove improvement through positions of increasing responsibility on projects, operations, and business planning. “Each job piqued my interest to learn more about the process and the business, leading me into planning, economics, and operations,” Nikole says. She has served as Optimization Manager at Phillips 66 since May 2021.

Nikole says she loves the variety and complexity in refining. “No day or year is the same and there are endless opportunities to make a difference. I enjoy working with teams to make changes that improve the way we do things through more efficient or effective processes, or new and improved facilities.”

Of course, she admits, things never go exactly according to plan. “That’s why our jobs are needed! Our focus then is on mitigating the risks and finding solutions. In operations, that often means working through equipment issues to run safely, reliably, and adjust associated feed and product forecasts. In projects, that means juggling people and financial resources to meet the goal.”

Out of necessity, Nikole has learned much about decision making over the years. “I collect stories and data from a variety of perspectives. I ask others for their ideas on improvement. Of course, as an engineer I like to see charts and graphs of data to support decisions as well. And I trust my gut.”

On balance: You CANNOT do it all. Choose the most important things and let go or let others do the rest. Disconnect from work for a bit every day to connect with your significant others and take time for yourself to recharge. Embrace your time off and take vacations away from work.

Best advice: Work hard but also focus on connecting with those around you – employees, peers, superiors, and industry colleagues. Be authentic. Sit AT the table not the back row, and confidently speak up. Address conflicts head on, diplomatically of course. Bullies will not stop until you stand up to them. And don’t be afraid to ask for what you want, but also ask what your employer wants from you and be open to alternate career paths.

Who most inspires you? I found the author Sheryl Sandberg inspirational in her book Lean In. Not only is she insightful on the ways women unintentionally sabotage their success, but she offers advice to present your best foot forward. She also offers practical tips to balance demands of both home and work.

34 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
sponsored by Money & Career Leading Ladies in Business 35 We’re STRONGER TOGETHER Toll Free: 800.367.0275 Celebrating powerful women that power our workforce. P R OV I DING NG LIVES. 22-0002_33 © 2022 Phillips 66 Company. All rights reserved. @Phillips66Co At Phillips 66, supporting our people, our environment and our communities guides everything we do. Call us today at (337) 990-5621 or visit our website www. rivePTLA to nd out more information. 4141 Common St., Lake Charles, LA 70601 (337) 990-5621 Co-Owner: Katherine Stewart, PT Co-Owners: Ashley Hornsby, PT "We help new mom's return to the lifestyle they love and build con dence in their bodies without surgery or medications." Let us help you through your postpartum healing process. We provide therapies to help with the following conditions a er delivery: • Episiotomy and C-Section Scar Pain • Diastasis Recti or Abdominal Separation • Urinary Incontinence • Tailbone pain • Prolapse • Breast Feeding Conditions and Mastitis


Vice President & Director of Human Resources, First Federal Bank of Louisiana

Mallie Bowers began her banking in 2004 as a teller at a small community bank in Natchitoches, La. She mastered her role quickly and was promoted to supervisor. After getting married, she and her husband moved to St. Augustine, Fl. so he could finish graduate school. During this time, Mallie worked at another community bank. Two years later, they moved back to his hometown of Sulphur, La. and Mallie accepted the position of Branch Supervisor at the First Federal Bank Sulphur Branch in 2008. A few years later they opened a new branch in Carlyss. “I was honored to help open that branch and learned so much about building a new branch and the operations involved. Along the way, I learned the lending side of banking, and grew as a leader and banker. In 2014, I applied for an internal recruiter position in the human resources department. I was promoted to my current role as HR Director in 2018.” Mallie was selected for Banking on Leaders of Tomorrow in 2017; attended the Louisiana Banking Leadership School in 2018; and was awarded the 2021 Young Bankers Impact Award.

Mallie says working in Human Resources can be stressful, especially these last few years considering all we’ve we been through in SWLA. “The silver lining is having a front row seat in being there to support people. Some days, we just push paper but other days we get to speak into people’s lives, provide guidance, support and help others with their careers and in their life. The most rewarding part of my job is supporting young bankers and watching them grow through their journey. I was once in their shoes and if it wasn’t for the men and women who helped me along the way I wouldn’t

have the career I do today. Empathy is a key to being a great leader. To take yourself out of a situation and focus on someone else’s perspective is important in any position, whether dealing with a customer, an employee, a boss, etc.”

On finding balance: I’ve worked in banking my daughter’s entire life. Banking is a great industry for working parents. Management at First Federal Bank understands the importance of family and raising children. My husband and I were present for various school functions. It wasn’t always easy. I missed a few events; but I used them as teaching opportunities. I taught my daughter that with responsibility comes sacrifice, and if you’re striving for something bigger and better, the occasional sacrifices are worth it in the end.

Best advice: Have confidence, support other women, be empathic, and be yourself. I’ve been told I’m too emotional. But the more I think about it, I realize my emotions are who I am – a byproduct of my passion. I can’t change that.

Who most inspires you? My Aunt Julie Hebert grew up in Berwick, La. and attended Nicholls State University. After college, she moved to San Francisco to pursue her love of theater arts. She’s made an amazing career for herself doing something she loves.

36 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
sponsored by Money & Career Leading Ladies in Business
From left: Julie Miller, Loan Production Manager, Mallie Bowers, Human Resources Director Catherine Furs, Private Banker, Jennifer Pugh, Security Operations Officer Shonda Wells, Electronic Services Manager From left: Regina Buller, Carlyss and Vinton Branch Manager, Lender Karen Hatch, McNeese Branch Manager, Lender From left: Melissa Dickson, CRA Coordinator, Shana Maxfield, Lender Crystal Reyes, Compliance Officer, Shavon Robinson, Asset Quality Manager Debra Lewis, Lender 37 WOMEN WHO MEAN BUSINESS. First Federal Bank of Louisiana proudly supports women in business throughout our organization and in our community. Join with us in celebrating women in business across Southwest Louisiana. (337) 433-3611 |


Career Leading

Women are RedefiningSuccess in the Workplace

Women have not only carved out a place for themselves in the business world but are helping to reshape long-held beliefs about what success in the workplace really means in America.

Study after study shows that women today are more successful than ever before. From an education standpoint, they’ve taken the lead. Women make up 54.3% of college students and each year earn nearly 60% of the bachelor and master degrees awarded in the U.S., along with 53% of the doctoral degrees. America’s educational elite is becoming as disproportionately female as it once was male.

This trend is having a definite impact in the workplace. Today women hold half, or according to some reports, more than half, of the managerial and professional positions in the workplace. They are succeeding not only in positions in industries traditionally considered appropriate for females but also in areas that historically have been male-dominated such as manufacturing, engineering and financial services.

Breaking Through the Glass Ceiling

Baby Boomers were the first generation of women to enter the workforce in significant numbers. “These women brought into the workforce not only their university degrees but also new sets of expectations,” explains Keri Forbess-McCorquodale, MS, LPC, LMFT, CEAP, Director of Solutions Counseling & EAP. “Their idea of success was to get married like their mothers and have careers like their

fathers. Their goal was to be superwomen who successfully juggled challenging, meaningful and well-paid careers with a beautiful home, smiling children, and handsome husbands. And don’t forget squeezing in volunteer work.”

Management books coached women in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s to act more like men in order to succeed. The message was that women had to work even harder than men to be taken seriously, in effect, behaving more like a man.

“Many women succeeded in doing just that and began achieving success at the same level as men. But it was only after careers were well established that some women began to realize that cracking the glass ceiling might not be all it was cracked up to be,” says ForbessMcCorquodale. “Women had proven they could make it in the workplace, but at what price? Many successful working women have begun to reevaluate what they really wanted from their careers, and what they were willing to sacrifice to get it.”

Women at the Very Top

By now, plenty of women were supposed to be occupying the corner office -- the coveted symbol of real success in corporate America – but it’s not working out that way. There’s a greater percentage of women in business at all management levels today except senior-level positions. The share of woman-led Fortune 500 companies hit a record high this year, with 44 female CEOs at the helm of some of the largest corporations in the U.S. That’s only 8.8%. After four decades of the women’s movement, when business schools annually graduate thousands of qualified young women and the managerial

pipeline is overflowing with capable, talented female candidates for upper-level positions, why are there still so few women at the very top?

According to the latest research, the reason for many is that they’ve seen the view from the top and have decided they don’t like it. They are voluntarily taking steps back down the ladder they fought so hard to climb. “Ironically, now that they have proven they can do it, many women are reevaluating their goals and rejecting the offer of greater power at work. It’s not about talent, dedication, experience or the ability to make it; it’s a choice to redefine how they want to ‘make it,’” says ForbessMcCorquodale.

Today’s women are equal to their male counterparts in education, experience and skill, but when it’s a painful choice between the client crisis and the child’s birthday party, the business trip or the school play, a woman is more likely to put her family first. “Instead of focusing on the next rung of the corporate ladder, more working women are realizing they have options, and they have the power and confidence to say, ‘I can create my own version of personal success,’” says ForbessMcCorquodale.

Following their Own Path

One way women are taking control of their own success is by starting their own businesses. Women have always owned businesses, but the pace has picked up in recent years because women are better educated and have more corporate experience than before. The Center for Women’s Business Research reports that 65% of the women

38 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Ladies in Business

who have started businesses in the past decade learned the ropes as managers in big corporations. They aren’t running away from the corporate world as much as they are running toward work that matters to them. Women now own a 50% or greater stake in 48% of privately held companies. Women start more than twice as many new companies every day as men do. And those businesses are successful.

Forbess-McCorquodale says corporate America is finally taking notice of what they are losing when women choose to leave their companies, taking their talent and training with them. “Companies striving to remain competitive are working to make changes in order to recruit and retain more women in leadership positions.”

As a result of efforts at many companies, traditional top-down hierarchical organizational structures, generally led by men, are giving way to a more collaborate, team-oriented approach that emphasizes communication, networking and balance – all of which are characteristics women tend to

gravitate to more easily to than men, according to Forbess-McCorquodale.

Volumes of research back her up. After all, it was never proven that acting like men made women more adept leaders. In fact, research shows the ability of women to lead is more fully realized when they allow themselves to act based upon their intuition, rather than when they try to model male leadership traits. Women view power differently than men do, seeing it in terms of influence, not rank. Studies have shown that women are better at team-building, communication, forming alliances, mentoring and seeing the big picture. Successful women seem to also have a great sense of personal responsibility, tend to be very thorough and extremely efficient. But women’s strengths are not limited to these “softer” skills alone. Several recent studies found that female bosses scored higher than men on a majority of leadership skills, including those not considered traditionally female, such as planning, goal-setting and facilitating change.


The Future of Women in the Workplace

Now that women have become proven leaders who can meet the increasingly complex challenges that business face today, will there ever be more women in the top corporate leadership positions? Maybe, say the experts, if the rules change, and only if the next generation of females wants it.

Forbess-McCorquodale says that women today can be proud that after years of struggle, the perception of women in the workplace has changed, making it an exciting and challenging time to be a woman in the workforce. Women are finding their own paths to success, creating their own management style and writing their own rules. Women continue to face the challenge of balancing work and their personal life, along with the wage gap. However, the new generation of working women is armed with the knowledge that success is no longer a one-size-fits-all achievement. Rather, it is about having the confidence and freedom to define what success means to them.

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Queen of T hreads

Family Works from INITIAL stitches to bustling business

Queen of Threads, a charming monogramming and more shop on Nelson Rd. in Lake Charles, was first established in 2013 when Amanda Moreno told her mother, Kandy, that she wanted to buy a monogram machine. First, they purchased a single-needle machine to see if they enjoyed monogramming. They made a monogrammed headband for Kandy’s niece who wore the gift to school. “Everyone loved it and wanted to know where to get them,” Kandy said. “We soon had to come up with a business name. I thought of Queen of Threads because my maiden name is Queenan.”

Kandy says she loves sewing and taught herself how to applique fabric. She started by making custom burp clothes. “My friends would give them as gifts and then the recipient would in turn order more for their friends. I loved working with the customers and helping their ideas come to life. Soon after, I purchased a six-needle machine and began learning how to do more and sell items that I made.”

Business grew by word of mouth and the pair worked out of their home. Amanda created a Facebook page and within a year, they opened an Etsy shop. “Six to eight months went by before we sold a single item on Etsy – a monogrammed fleece headband,” Kandy said.

“But sales picked up and orders grew.” At this time, Amanda began teaching school, so I worked alone, filling local and online orders. I hired my first employee to help fill Etsy orders and I also purchased an additional machine.”

In 2015, Kandy met Doug Gehrig, retired owner of several local McDonald’s franchises. He suggested Kandy work out of one of his empty offices. “He mentored and guided me, and suggested I work the business into a store environment. Business continued to grow, and I hired a second employee. And in 2017, we moved into our current location at 4031 Nelson Rd.”

Amanda put her teaching career on hold to help her mom with the business. She helped create a business website and designed an inventory system to work with their pointof-sale system. She oversees all receiving and entering of merchandise as well as many other duties, like training employees, monogramming, and customer service. Kandy says of her daughter, “The business has grown so much; I could not have done it without Amanda. It’s been great to have a younger perspective on things and having her here allows me to be away at different times to care for my mom.

The best times are going to market and buying new things for the store.” Kandy adds that her husband has also been supportive and helpful.

Amanda said she and Kandy love to brainstorm together. “I like to find new ideas and oversee the daily monogramming process behind the scenes. Mom likes to design and work with merchandising. We both take part in working with customers which we believe contributes hugely to our success.” The downside is that the pair rarely takes a family vacation, as it is difficult for them both to be away at the same time. And she admits that the day-to-day routine can be challenging. “We both wear many hats. It can become stressful.” Kandy adds that while they occasionally disagree, they always work it out. “Because we’re family.”

Queen of Threads offers monogramming on most items sold in store or customers can bring in their own items to be monogrammed. They also offer services for business customers, such as logos. They offer a baby registry service and carry a wide assortment of baby gift items and children’s clothing up to a size 8. They sell backpacks, duffels and travel pieces to monogram. For more information, find them on Facebook, Instagram, and online.

Queen of Threads, Amanda and Kandy
40 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Money & Career

The BEST Protection is EARLY Detection.

All women are at risk for breast cancer, however that risk increases with age. Though breast cancer may not always present symptoms right away, over time it can cause changes in the look and feel of the breast including:

• A new lump in the breast.

• A change in the size and shape of the breast.

• Pain in the breast or nipple that does not go away.

• Red or swollen skin on the breast.

• A nipple that is very tender or that turns inward.

• Any other type of fluid coming from the nipple that is not milk when nursing a baby.

A mammogram is the best test for finding breast cancer early, sometimes detecting the disease up to three years before it can be felt.

Schedule your annual screening mammogram today.

Memorial Hospital | 1701 Oak Park Blvd. | 337.494.4755 Memorial Hospital for Women | 1900 West Gauthier Rd. | 337.480.7444

Amanda Ellington, MD 337.494.4868

Amanda Ellington, MD, Breast Surgeon Southwest Louisiana's expert in everything 'breast' will present "Lumps, Bumps and Your Ta-Ta's" on October 20th at the 2022 Women's Commission. Join Dr. Ellington as she shares ways to reduce the risk of breast cancer, help with managing the abnormal screenings and how to keep the "girls" healthy.

Protect your Finances from INFLATION

Consumers are feeling the impact of inflation from the gas pump to the grocery store and everywhere in between. Inflation—an extended period of rising prices—can take a real bite out of your budget.

According to Tessie Dupuis, banking officer and manager of Lakeside Bank’s Oak Park branch, higher prices mean many people are needing to find ways to stretch their income. “Periods of rising prices can be unpredictable, and there’s no way to accurately predict how high inflation might climb or how long it will last. Learning how to adjust can help you rethink the way you spend—and potentially find money to save.”

She offers some strategies for protecting your finances from the worst impacts of inflation.


Having a budget is always the best way to keep costs under control and is even more important during a time of inflation. By tracking spending, you can identify where there have been significant increases, as well as where you can save money.


If you’re spending money in places that are enjoyable but maybe not essential, taking a break or pausing things like subscriptions, memberships, dining out and more can help you shift this spending to cover higher costs for necessary expenses, such as food, gas, utilities and others.


Paying down debt, especially variable debt, like credit cards, lines of credit, personal loans, and variable rate mortgages, should be a priority during a time of inflation. The money you’re spending on interest could help you cope with rising costs. Look for a lower interest or 0% APR transfer option for credit card debt which would give you time to pay back what you owe with no interest. A personal loan is another option that could consolidate high interest debts at a lower fixed rate.


As challenging as it may be during a time of rising expenses, having an emergency fund with three to six months of expenses set aside is more important than ever. This easy-to-access money will help you overcome any immediate and unexpected financial challenges.


Feeding your family isn’t something you can cut from your budget, so it’s important to find ways to shop wisely to find savings.

• Follow weekly sales and use coupons to plan budget-friendly meals.

• Swap out brand-name items for generic products as much as possible.

• Buy in bulk to get needed items at a lower unit price.

• Incorporate more meatless meals and more low-cost staple items into your meals, such as pasta or rice.


This is a good time to review your homeowners and car insurance policies for opportunities to save. You can also shop around with other companies to see if a better rate is available.


Yes, inflation is high, but if you’re budgeting, cutting costs where you can, and saving, you’re a step ahead of many others.

42 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Money & Career 43 DraftKings Sportbook at Golden Nugget offers the premier sports betting experience in Lake Charles. Place wagers on professional football, basketball, baseball, hockey, golf, soccer, tennis, motorsports racing, cycling, boxing, UFC and more with real-time odds, point spreads and over/unders. GAMBLING PROBLEM? PLEASE CALL 1.877.770.STOP 2550 GOLDEN NUGGET BLVD. | LAKE CHARLES, LA 70601 | 1.844.4.NUGGET | NOW OPEN Wager. Watch. Win. HOURS OF OPERATION: MONDAY-FRIDAY | 10:00AM - 11:00PM SATURDAY - SUNDAY | 9:00AM - MIDNIGHT



CSE Federal Credit Union Wins Two Marketing Awards

CSE Federal Credit Union (CSE) won two Excellence in Marketing Awards at the Louisiana Credit Union League’s annual conference held in New Orleans, LA. Each year the Louisiana Credit Union League recognizes outstanding credit union marketing and communications efforts through the Excellence in Marketing Awards. Categories range from digital advertising to community events and beyond.

This year, CSE won a first-place award in the $250$500 Million in Asset Best Annual Report category. The marketing team also won second place in Best Newsletter.

The Louisiana Credit Union League (LCUL) is a statewide network comprised of credit union professionals. It is a non-profit, professional trade association that exists to serve credit unions in Louisiana. LCUL is dedicated, through cooperation, to promote, protect and perpetuate the credit union movement. LCUL provides member credit unions with quality leadership to achieve positive results in the areas ranging from governmental affairs to research and information.

If you would like more information about CSE, please contact Morgan Martel, Marketing Communications Specialist, at 337-562-3161.

SOWELA Announces “Next Start” Initiative

SOWELA has announced a new “Next Start” initiative for currently enrolled and prospective students. The initiative allows current students to add another course to their Fall 2022 schedule or for new students to sign up for Fall classes. Enrollment for the Next Start option is open now and will end on Wednesday, October 5, 2022.

Next Start classes cover topics in accounting, criminal justice, history, English, business and more and last eight weeks. Interested students can visit next-start for more information or to sign up.

Next Start classes are available online or in a hybrid format and at all SOWELA locations in Lake Charles, Leesville, Jennings and Oakdale.

For more information or to apply online, visit www.sowela. edu. Anyone needing additional assistance can contact the One Stop Enrollment Office at (337) 421-6550 or onestop@

McNeese Tailgate Sponsored by Legacy Jewelers, Chick-fil-A, and Lake Charles Toyota Legacy Jewelers, Chick-fil-A, and Lake Charles Toyota sponsor a Tailgate Party on the east side of the stadium prior to every McNeese State University home football game. The community is welcome to this kid-friendly event – food, music, jump houses, photo-ops.  Legacy Jewelers is also the music sponsor for the 2022 football season and hosts the entertainment for the Friday night Block Parties.

McNeese SHRM Student Chapter Receives National Award

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has awarded the McNeese State University SHRM student chapter a 2021-2022 Superior Chapter Merit Award designation for providing superior growth and development opportunities to its student members. This is the third year in a row that the SHRM chapter has received an award.

The SHRM Student Chapter Merit Award program encourages the development of more effective student chapters and distinguishes outstanding activities and projects. Chapters are recognized based on operations, chapter programming and professional development of members, support of the human resource profession and SHRM engagement.

The McNeese SHRM chapter has a full year planned for 2022-2023. Among the activities are professional programming, including sessions on local internships and getting that first job in human resources, and collecting toys for Toys for Tots in November.

17th Annual DJWC Cancer Walk

The DeRidder Junior Woman’s Club will be hosting their Annual Cancer walk on Saturday, October 15, 2022. The walk will be held on the Beauregard Parish Fairgrounds located at 506 West Street here in DeRidder.

Welcoming Ceremony will begin at 8:00 a.m. All monies collected stays here in Beauregard & Vernon parish for residents. In the past 16 years the club has given over 130,000.00 to patients stricken with cancer.

Shirts for the walk can be purchased downtown DeRidder at Beauregard Credit located at 101 N Washington Street. Also, this year the club is selling unfinished memory ribbons that can be purchased at the Greater Beauregard Chamber of Commerce for $20 located at 111 N Washington Street. Ribbons will be placed at your business, home or downtown. All ribbons will be moved to the fairgrounds that morning of the walk to be displayed and picked up by the family.

If you’re interested in being a sponsor or more information, call (337) 375-1953.

SOWELA and McNeese Partner to Enhance Student Engagement

SOWELA Technical Community College students can now attend all McNeese Athletics sporting events for free with a student ID as part of an initiative between the academic institutions to enhance student engagement. SOWELA students will not need a ticket to attend events but must show their SOWELA student ID upon entry to access the athletic competitions.

In addition, McNeese Athletics donated 200 tickets for each home football game to SOWELA faculty and staff. On Saturday, October 15, SOWELA will host a student tailgate spot located in The Grove along Common Street. Students and alumni can watch SOWELA social media pages for more details.

SOWELA has four transfer agreements with McNeese State University giving SOWELA graduates the opportunity to continue their education at a four-year university as a junior. During the 2021-2022 academic year, half of SOWELA graduates transferring to a fouryear university transferred to McNeese.

44 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022

Peppermint Sage Dental Wellness Partners with McNeese Athletics

McNeese Director of Athletics Heath Schroyer has announced a partnership with Peppermint Sage Dental Wellness to become the Official Dentist of McNeese Athletics.

Owned and operated by Lake Charles native Dr. Michelle Swift Corcoran, DDS, Peppermint Sage Dental Wellness provides the highest standard of dental care in a soothing environment which strives to give the healthiest smile in the most gentle manner.

A graduate of Barbe High School in Lake Charles, Dr. Corcoran received her undergraduate degree from Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge and continued on to LSU School of Dentistry in New Orleans where she earned her Doctor of Dental Surgery. But her education has not stopped there. She continues to seek out continuing education opportunities in order to stay up to date on the latest in dental treatment best practices and advances in dental equipment and technology. She is committed to bringing the best in dentistry to her Lake Charles clients, and it shows!

Peppermint Sage Dental Wellness is located at 632 W. McNeese Street in Lake Charles.

CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital Earns 5-Star Rating for Quality

CHRISTUS Ochsner Health Southwestern Louisiana is proud to announce CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital has earned five stars from The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)

Overall Hospital Quality Star Ratings in the July 2022 Hospital Care report, which includes 2021 performance data. CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital is one of only six hospitals in Louisiana and one of 429 hospitals across the nation to receive the five-star rating.

The Overall Hospital Quality Star Ratings are assigned to hospitals by CMS. According to, the more stars, the better a hospital performed on quality measures, including mortality, readmissions, safety, patient experience, and timely and effective care. The rating indicates how well each hospital performed, on average, compared to other hospitals across the nation.

The Care Compare tool can be used to access ratings and information for CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital by visiting https://www. 45 BANK with the BEST MYLKSB.BANK | (337) 474-3766 LAKE CHARLES: Nelson Rd. and Oak Park Blvd. SULPHUR | MOSS BLUFF thankyou! Voted Best Bank in the American Press People’s Choice Awards

Places & Faces

46 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Celebrate

Arts & Culture

OCTOBER is National Arts & Humanities Month and Thrive magazine is taking full advantage of the opportunity to spread the word about all the fabulous arts and cultural organizations and activities we enjoy right here in Southwest Louisiana. From its earliest days and continuing today, our region has been a hotbed for the arts – the heartbeat that has brought energy and entertainment to SWLA through music, dance, theater and visual arts. This vital arts community took a hard hit over the past two years, forcing art promoters to creatively find new outlets and avenues to provide our community with cultural experiences. The boards and directors of local arts organizations were up to the challenge, ensuring that no matter the storms that come, art is alive and thriving in Southwest Louisiana. In this special cover section, we celebrate the arts and spotlight a small sampling of the extensive arts opportunities in and around the Lake Area. When it comes to arts and culture, there is always something new and exciting to experience in our corner of the state!

Gators will be on the Geaux Again!

Be on the lookout for gators in the Lake Area. The Lake Charles Symphony has launched the return of the very successful Gators on the Geaux public art display, 20 years after the original campaign.

“After the hardship our region has faced over the past two years, it seemed like the perfect time to bring back the Gators,” said Beth Dawdy, Executive Director of the Lake Charles Symphony. “Gators on the Geaux showcases the culture and creativity of Southwest Louisiana in a really fun, engaging way.”

Sponsors of Gators on the Geaux receive a life-sized, fiberglass Gator to display at their business or residence. The Gators are transformed into unique works of art by local artists and then delivered to the sponsor for public display. Several sponsorship options are available.

The original Gators on the Geaux art project included 70 gators. Although some of these originals are still on display, many have been damaged or destroyed by the elements, including several hurricanes over the past two decades.

“We have received many requests to bring them back and the 20-year mark makes the timing feel right for a resurgence as our community is coming back strong from the natural disasters of 2020 and 2021,” said Beverly Jones, president-elect for the Symphony’s Board of Directors.

The first new Gator was unveiled at a Comeback Party in September. It was painted by local artist Candice

Alexander who said her design was inspired by the hurricane recovery that Southwest Louisiana has faced. It features many recognizable symbols, including pelicans, pistols like those on the I-10 bridge, cardinals, a hurricane, a flag, and pieces of glass from the Capital One building. The Gator will be on display in Alexander’s shop until it is auctioned off. Raffles for the Gator will take place during the 2022-2023 Symphony Season, Oct. 2 -April 16.

Another popular feature of Gators on the Geaux will also make a comeback – the Gator Hunting Map. This map will be available online and in print to help guide “gator hunters” across the community to view all the Gators on the Geaux. “Technology advances, such as social media, will make the new Gators on the Geaux a much more interactive experience, which will also benefit the sponsors of the Gators,” said Jones.

“Getting a Gator for your business or organization is a great way to support not only the Lake Charles Symphony, but also the arts in our community,” added Dawdy. “Local artists will benefit from participating and the public display will add a new cultural destination to our region.”

The Gators on the Geaux fundraiser benefits the Lake Charles Symphony and is conducted in partnership with the Arts & Humanities Council of SWLA and Visit Lake Charles.

Gator on the Geaux sponsorship options and artist applications are available at

First Gator revealed at the Symphony's Comeback Party last month. Created by Candice Alexander 47

Recovery SpotlightLake Charles Little Theatre

Over the course of its 95 years, the Lake Charles Little Theatre has lost every one of its homes to God’s elements — fire, water, wind — but the show still goes on.

Hurricane Laura destroyed the Lake Charles Little Theatre’s (LCLT’s) 813 Enterprise Blvd. venue – its home for 35 years – and flattened the theatre’s historic adjunct building next door.

However, it’s been said that a community theatre is not the building itself, but the people who take part – and since the storm, LCLT has proven that time and again.


Despite hurricane destruction that left it homeless, LCLT has soldiered on by producing plays, underwriting local cultural events, and partnering with other organizations.

These efforts have advanced the theatre’s mission to offer opportunities to see and participate in live theatre.

Along the way, the theatre engaged in combat drama with its insurance company. A year-plus legal joust, with the force of the court, allowed LCLT to recover what it now calls an equitable return on the coverage.

It also has rebuilt and replenished its volunteer board of directors — adding an educator, a former Arts Council executive director, and two past LCLT presidents — as it explores its path for the future.

Most importantly, here and now, the theatre has found alternate places and pathways to offer entertainment and acting opportunities.


The LCLT’s creative adaptation began even before Hurricane Laura’s destruction.

The shutdown and pandemic had already made 2020 miserable, reducing the theatre’s audience to zero. Looking for a way to reach Southwest Louisiana, LCLT turned to McNeese State University community radio station KBYS and its general manager, David Wynn. LCLT arranged to record local actors performing It’s a Wonderful Life, the holiday film classic, in bit-by-bit, Covid-conscious segments. KBYS sanitized the microphone between each performer, assisted in adding sound effects to the assembled show — and aired it just before Christmas.

The LCLT has partnered with KBYS several times since to “see it on the radio.” The LCLT also was an underwriter of Paul Strickland’s McNeese visit for 90 Lies an Hour and the Banners special presentation of August: Osage County.


LCLT has returned to live-audience presentations, in guest locations, for 2022-23. The courtroom drama Twelve Angry Men last month scored LCLT’s biggest opening-night crowd for a season opener in 37 years. It was staged at the Cash & Carry events center.

Next up is the beloved musical You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown Oct. 19-23 at the Tritico Theatre. It’s a joint partnership with McNeese Theatre. Director Paul Pharris is a shared talent as both a McNeese instructor and an LCLT board member. Also coming this season is Meshuggah-Nuns, part of the enormously popular series of Nunsense musical comedies. In this version, the Little Sisters of Hoboken sail on a “Faith of All Nations" for ecumenical laughter. The show will open in January. The Little Theatre will also announce a surprise musical revue later this season.

In between all this, the theatre will again partner with KBYS for another It’s a Wonderful Life live radio show in mid-December. All roles for all upcoming shows will be cast via open auditions.

In short: LCLT is back, and all over town. For more information, visit the LCLT Facebook page or

Places & Faces | Arts & Culture
John Bridges, and other cast members prepare to perform Twelve Angry Men at Cash & Carry to mark the Lake Charles Little Theatre’s return to staging live plays. Hurricane Laura wrecked the Lake Charles Little Theatre’s roof, auditorium, costume areas and “rocking porch” that was a salute to its original meetings in1926-27. The theatre completed a successful insurance battle and has resumed staging plays — at borrowed spaces, for now. Cast members rehearse Twelve Angry Men, the Lake Charles Little Theatre’s return to staging live plays. From left are McNeese faculty member Paul Pharris, 50-year LCLT actor/director James Johnson, longtime radio personality Gary Shannon, first-time LCLT actor Dr. Juan Bossano, and former Ringling Brothers performer Phil de Albuquerque. 49
Gators on the Geaux: The Comeback! It’s been 20 years since the original public art display, but the beloved Lake Charles Symphony Gators will soon be on the Geaux again, showcasing the culture and creativity of Southwest Louisiana. Learn more about sponsorship opportunities for Gators on the Geaux: (337) 433-1611

Lake Area Ballet Theatre

Keeping the Art of Dance Alive in SWLA

It’s been a challenging three years for Colleen Benoit, owner of Lake Charles Dance Academy (LCDA) and the artistic director of the non-profit organization Lake Area Ballet Theatre (LABT).

LCDA and LABT temporarily closed in March of 2020 when the pandemic hit, which also meant canceling the annual LABT Spring Gala and LCDA year-end recital. Fast-forward to August 2020; students returned to dance classes with masks and the CDC’s protocols. “Despite a different dance environment, they worked hard and still found joy in dance,” said Benoit. Then Hurricane Laura and Hurricane Delta took aim at our community.

Fortunately, the Academy was not severely damaged and reopened. “The dancers were elated that we were going to open, allowing them to return to ‘normalcy’ with dance after the hurricanes,” Benoit said. Sadly, many of her students were displaced, some permanently. The greatest impact of these two storms to the dance community was the destruction of the Rosa Hart Theatre. Their annual performance of The Nutcracker did not take place that year due to COVID-19 restrictions and the loss of the Rosa Hart Theatre. But Benoit was determined to keep her dancers active and in the public eye by finding other opportunities for them to perform. “LABT dancers performed downtown in front of Historic City Hall in the Art 6-feet Apart series. Spring Gala 2021 took place in the Exhibition Hall of the Lake Charles Civic Center, free to the public. LABT company members also performed downtown at the Spring Art Walk. And finally, our LCDA students performed in their 2021 recital in the Civic Center Coliseum.”

With pandemic restrictions still in place in 2021, LABT moved forward in their production of The Nutcracker minus the school performances. Benoit secured McNeese State University’s Tritico Theatre for three public performances of the beloved show, though with that venue’s smaller seating capacity (550 seats compared to Rosa Hart’s 2000 seats), all the shows sold out.

Now in 2022, Benoit continues to fight for performance space. She has spoken to Civic Center management on a completion timeline about Rosa Hart Theatre; possibly May 2023 is being said. Again this year, The Nutcracker performances will be at McNeese State University’s Tritico Theatre for three public and two school shows. LABT currently has no space to perform the Spring Gala 2023. “At this point, there isn’t a theater available to use. We are so grateful to McNeese State University and their staff for allowing our LABT to use their facility this fall.” Benoit says.

Benoit has advocated for additional theater space with the recent increase in performancetype productions in SWLA, while many theaters are still under repair. “We need a theater that seats at least 1000 with the same performance space as the Rosa Hart. Rosa Hart will be a welcome relief once open, but another theater, seating at least 1000, would help bring the arts back to full swing and allow the performing arts to have the opportunity to continue growing in the Lake Area.

The silver lining through the struggles? Benoit says her dancers have learned perseverance through these challenges. “They have witnessed from my tireless efforts to get them on stage that ‘when there is a will, there is a way.’ They also saw that as long as you bring your joy of performing to an audience, it doesn’t matter where you dance.”

Benoit urges everyone in the community to support ALL SWLA’s arts groups by attending shows and performances while we patiently wait for continued recovery for our region.

For more information on LCDA and LABT, visit their websites www.lakecharlesdanceacademy@ and www.lakeareaballettheatre. com or call 337-477-1510.  You can also find them on Facebook or Instagram.

50 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Places & Faces | Arts & Culture 51

Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center

Historic City Hall has made major strides in its recovery from the events of the past two and a half years, beginning with the COVID-19 pandemic and through the storms of 2020.

“Considerable thought has gone into rebuilding the structure to ensure that it better serves the citizens of Southwest Louisiana,” says Matt Young, Director of Cultural Affairs for the City of Lake Charles. “Considered to be the crown jewel in our downtown district, History City Hall is being reconfigured to utilize the building’s front entrance, so that visitors enter and exit through the front doors on the Ryan Street plaza. That way, we’ll also be able to better program the front plaza with outdoor concerts, performances, and mid-week lunch events.”

Young says they’ve added solar control tint to the windows, so that blackout fabric is no longer necessary to protect works of art. “This alone has helped brighten the building on the inside and made the Center more attractive on the outside. We removed obsolete teller windows that were once necessary, and large retail windows were added to the first floor gallery. These components, along with the educational value offered through the many nationallytouring and local exhibits, has greatly enhanced the quality of life in the City. Red clay tiles and copper finials will soon be returned to the roof, and the bell tower repairs should wrap up near the end of this year. We’re planning to host grand reopening receptions at both Historic City Hall and Central School just after the first of the year.

Fall Exhibits at Historic City Hall include:

Love Your Selfie

This series of pop-up “selfie” studios was created by local artists. The studios are brought to life in the third-floor gallery and are interactive, immersive, and “Instagrammable.” The curated studios encourage guests to be immersed in the space and of course, “pose for a selfie.” Visitors can expect pops of color, texture, and lights across the studios. Open through 10/29/22

Nature’s Blueprint

In an age of complex environmental challenges, why not look to the ingenuity of nature for solutions? This exhibition brings together art and design with environmental science using both scientific and artistic objects, as well as interactive learning stations. 11/11/22 to 01/07/23

Gallery by the Lake presents Hit Me with Your Best Shot. Celebrating South Louisiana’s beloved bird-watching hot spot, they host this national competition and exhibition of photographs of birds found in the United States. Nov. 11, 2022 – Jan. 7, 2023. You can also find them at Meet Me at the Market events and Chuck Fest. The Gallery hosts a variety of art workshops throughout the year that are open to the public. For more information, see their website,

The Black Heritage Gallery features Nathaniel A. Landry who partners with his father, Nathaniel “Pops” Landry, in bringing a fusion of pop art and wood sculptor to the gallery. This father-son team has presented various art shows throughout the state. Nathaniel A. is an illustrator, painter, and hip hop emcee. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Southern University in Fine Arts and a master’s degree in Sequential Art from The Savannah College of Art and Design. Currently, Nathaniel A. is exploring the realms of Afro-futuristic Abstract Expressionism. Pops Landry is an illustrator and wood sculptor who studied under icon Frank Hayden. He will bring his latest sculptured pieces. The exhibit will be on display from Oct 7 – Nov 19, 2022.

Historic City Hall Arts and Cultural Center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at 1001 Ryan Street, Lake Charles. Admission to all exhibitions is free to the public. Follow them on Facebook or sign up for their newsletter to stay connected. For more information, call 337-491-9147.

Skateboard Art by Nathaniel A. Landry Part of the Love your Selfie exhibit, Historic City Hall
52 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Places & Faces | Arts & Culture 53 Contact us at Visit to register for classes and see all our programs Exhibitions at Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center, 1001 Ryan Street • “Special Things Around Us” Sept 9th – Nov 12th “Hit Me with your Best Shot” national bird photo exhibition Sept 30th – Nov 26th • “In Depth” Nov 25th – Jan 28th Art Experiences! Saturday Art Workshops Create Fall and Halloween Collages Oct 8th 9:30am – 12:30 pm • Create Holiday Cards with Paper Quilling Nov 12th 9:30am – 12:30 pm Become a member • Display your work at the Historic City Hall • Receive discounts on Saturday art classes Network and create with other Gallery members “Who Are You” by Susan Kjellsen. Hit Me With your Best Shot exhibit

Imperial Calcasieu Museum

Gallery Exhibit

Local Group Ceramicist Show (Van Putten, Williams, Cessac) – 10/28/2212/23/22. A great collaborative show with three local ceramicists.

History Exhibit

Haunted History Exhibit – 10/1/22 - 11/5/22. Exhibit includes artifacts collected from around the Imperial Calcasieu area as well as tons of historical information about them. Many pieces with mysterious origins and stories. Think odd and spooky!

Christmas Tree & Model Train Exhibit – 11/18/22 - 12/30/22. The O Gauge Model Railroad Organization is putting together a big model train exhibition, roughly 30x12 ft in size with running trains. This will be a great history lesson and immersive experience for adults and kids alike.


Train Demonstration with Thad Carter – Friday, 12/1/22. This event coincides with the O Gauge Model Railroad Org’s Exhibit. Mr. Carter resides in Marshall, Tx, but during his time in the Lake Area, he wrote a book on Lake Charles railroad history with input from the Imperial Calcasieu Museum. Local Boy Scout Troops will assist with the setup of the exhibit and will also be sitting in on this talk to earn a Railroad Merit Badge. They’ll

serve winter treats, and Mr. Carter’s book, The Railroads of Lake Charles, will be available for purchase and signing that evening.

Upscale Attic Sale – 10/10/2210/16/22. This is a great volunteer opportunity! They’re currently looking for donors with items to sell for this event along with items they’re deaccessing. With so many items they’re sifting through for a nearly week-long event, it’ll be all hands that they can get on deck! Think “Garage Scale Gets an Upgrade.” If you’re interested in volunteering your time, efforts, or donating items, please send them an email to

Spirits Under the Oak – Thursday, 10/27/22. Local historian Adley Cormier will be visiting and sitting in a stately chair, telling ghost stories as we sip on spirits through the evening. *Tickets purchased in advance*

Yoga Under the Oak is a great community they have built with the help of their instructor, Maegan Gonzales. She leads a yoga session focusing primarily on meditative breathing, which is healing and restorative for the soul, especially under the gorgeous branches of the Historic Sallier Oak. Yoga Under the Oak sessions continue October 8 and 22. Setup begins at 8:30 a.m. and practice is from 9:00-10:00(ish) a.m.


Gelli Printing - Sara Smith of Papersmith – 10/13/22. Join in as we use fun prints and colors to layer a beautifully textured piece. Attendees will be using patterns and paint to build their creations. Cost is $60 for nonmembers, $52.50 for members.

Pamphlet Making - Rosemary Jesionowski of McNeese – 11/3/22. Learn how to bind sheets into a journal using stitching techniques. Use your pamphlet for note-taking, sketching, or gifting! Cost is $60 for non-members, $52.50 for members.

Handmade Journals - Rosemary Jesionowski – 11/17/22. Learn how to create a journal using bookbinding techniques Use your journal for recipes, reminders, or gifting - the possibilities are endless! Cost is $100 for nonmembers, $86 for members.

Become a Member

There are so many perks that come with being a member including free museum admission, previews to exhibit openings, getting the first look at some of our events such as our attic sale, along with discounts on workshops and gift shop purchases to name a few!

For more information or to join or renew your membership or if are unsure of your status, call 337-439-3797 during museum hours, or email with any questions.

Open Wed. – Sat. 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

IMPERIAL CALCASIEU MUSEUM, located at 204 W Sallier St, Lake Charles, has served our five-parish region with a focus on art and local history for 54 years. They have a wide variety of events this Fall!
54 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Places & Faces | Arts & Culture

Dr. Francis G. Bulber Youth Orchestra

Lake Charles offers musicians of many types and skill levels opportunities to perform, providing audiences with a range of musical experiences. The Dr. Francis G. Bulber Youth Orchestra (FGBYO) caters to young musicians, ages 8-18, while also creating performance and instruction opportunities for McNeese music majors.

The organization was started in 1993 by Dr. George Middleton, Founder and Director of the Governor’s Program for Gifted Children and named after the late Dr. Francis G. Bulber. It offers various levels of ensemble instrumental instruction, including beginner through advanced strings, a symphony orchestra with winds, brass and percussion, and guitar ensembles.

One student, who started at the youth orchestra as a beginner and now plays in its most advanced ensembles, says, “I grew up in the orchestra. All of my experiences have been very good, and I love being able to go out in the community and bring joy to people and getting to do it with all of my friends. And I made many of these friends in the orchestra.”

The organization currently has thirty-six students enrolled and has been rebuilding its numbers after a temporary closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic and hurricanes. In conjunction with the McNeese State University String Project, the youth orchestra was honored earlier this year with the Outstanding National String Project Consortium Award by the American String Teachers Association.

“The impact of the FGBYO on our lives cannot be quantified,” writes Emma Guillory, Executive Director of the organization. She mentions the nearly 30 years of music-making; performances in Historic City Hall for Arts Fest; a tribute concert to the Stones/Beatles in Rosa Hart Theatre involving FGBYO members; nursing home performances; current and former students performing with the Lake Charles Symphony; alumni who became school music directors, church cantors

and priests in SWLA (and one at the Vatican); and the countless music educators enriching the lives of children all over the United States. “Youth music education is an important part of our lives,” Guillory adds.

Music, community, and education are at the heart of this organization. An effort is made to keep the program affordable and accessible to interested students who meet twice a week on McNeese’s campus after school hours. In addition to the regular fall and spring semesters, the organization offers a summer music camp. More information can be found on their website or Facebook page.

Danley Romero began playing cello with FGBYO in 2006 and was a member until 2015. He studied music and English at Loyola University New Orleans and attended the University of New Hampshire to study fiction writing and poetry. Danley teaches school, instructs cello privately and with FGBYO, performs cello in the community, and writes. 55

Update on Central School

Arts & Humanities Center

Located at 809 Kirby St. in Lake Charles, Central School Arts & Humanities Center was designed and built by noted New Orleans architects Favrot & Livaudais in 1912. It originally functioned as an elementary school and was repurposed as an arts and humanities center in 1995. Its classrooms have been home to the Lake Charles Symphony, the Children’s Theatre Company, the Arts and Humanities Council, the Literacy Council and dozens of other cultural organizations and individual artists over the years. This beloved facility suffered considerable damage from Hurricanes Laura and Delta in 2020 and is still under repairs.

But being temporarily displaced has not stopped these organizations from continuing to provide arts and entertainment to Southwest Louisiana. Each has found alternative performance spaces and the means to bring their programs and events the community

Meanwhile, the City of Lake Charles is working to ensure the repairs will render the facility more useful than what was there before. “We’re working with tenants to improve lighting and sound in the Benjamin Mount Theatre, as well as make these public spaces accessible and able to accommodate outdoor events and pop-up festivals,” says Matt Young, Director of Cultural Affairs for the City of Lake Charles. “We’ve also been very careful to preserve the unique and historic charm of the classrooms by saving original chalkboards, original woodwork, and light fixtures. Central School was the first publicly funded arts center in Louisiana, and the City has gone to great lengths to ensure its continued success.”

Arts & Humanities Council of SWLA

Central School has been home to the Arts and Humanities Council of Southwest Louisiana since its inception in 1979. Their mission is to support arts and culture initiatives, events, and organizations in the five-parish area that bring a unique cultural experience to local citizens, and to help bolster tourism and economic growth through the arts and humanities. Since 2005, they have allocated nearly $2 million to SWLA communities through four annual grant programs. The Arts Council hosts numerous arts-related events throughout the year.


Chuck Fest

is a celebration of all things Louisiana and an event that the Arts Council is taking full ownership of for the first time. This 12-hour outdoor music festival will take place in downtown Lake Charles from 12:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. on October 22, 2022. The event will feature performances by 27 musical acts that all have an association with the area including Flamethrowers, LeTraniump, Jarvis Jacob and the Gents, and The Charlie Wayne Band. Food vendors at the event are all homegrown restaurants, and local artists will be on hand to offer their handmade pieces for sale. Event is free and open to the public.

The annual Living History Cemetery Tour

will follow on Sunday, November 6, 2022, at which time ticket buy ers can take guided walking tours through several local cemeteries and hear the stories of some of the prominent figures buried there as local actors tell their stories in period dress. Tickets can be pur chased at

The Holiday Art Walk

will finish out the year of events for the Arts and Humanities Council on November 26 to coincide with Small Business Saturday. This event is similar to their Spring Art Walk, both in scope and footprint, and will run from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Event is free and open to the public.

56 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Places & Faces | Arts & Culture 57 WWW.BANNERS.ORG • 337-475-5123 • BANNERS@MCNEESE.EDU LIVE MUSIC PERFORMING ARTS FILM YEAR-ROUND OUTREACH THEATRE 2022 &A RTS C ULTURE Guide Your Home for World-Class Arts & Entertainment

Cowboy Salute to the SEALS

The Kappa Sigma fraternity at McNeese State University has partnered with the nonprofit Navy SEAL Legacy Foundation to raise money and awareness for fallen and wounded United States Navy SEALS and their families, and the entire Navy SEAL Community. Event Coordinator Breland Cook, a McNeese senior and Kappa Sigma member, says the fraternity hopes to raise $35,000 to support the cause. “We kicked off the fundraising campaign in August and the event will culminate on November 19 during McNeese State’s home game against Lamar University. A Navy SEAL jump team will skydive into Cowboy Stadium for the check presentation. We wanted to do this event to support some of our nation’s finest servants, who put their lives on the line every day to protect our freedom and the American way of life”

For more information or to donate, contact Breland at (337)-936-3186.

Event website:

58 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Places & Faces

Cameron Parish Port, Harbor & Terminal District Names New Director

Kim Montie has been named the director of the Cameron Parish Port, Harbor & Terminal District.

Montie has been a resident of Cameron Parish for 30 years. She is originally from Nacogdoches, Texas, and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in animal science from Stephen F. Austin State University. For the last 20 years, Montie has served as a career and technical educator at Grand Lake High School.

The Cameron Parish Port is a direct link to the oil and gas exploration and service industry, including the rapidly expanding LNG energy sector. This port allows for product transport for industrial companies of all sizes, to anywhere in the world. It is also home to several seafood harvesting operations.

For more information about the Cameron Parish Port, visit

Imperial Health Welcomes Dr. Kyle Mauk to Medical Staff

Kyle Mauk, DPM, ABPM, FACFAS, podiatric surgical specialist, has joined the medical staff of Imperial Health. Originally from Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, Dr. Mauk earned a Bachelor of Science in biology from Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. He earned a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine degree from Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Dr. Mauk completed a Podiatric Medicine & Surgery Residency with Reconstructive Rearfoot and Ankle Certification at the University of Florida College of Medicine – UF Health in Jacksonville, Florida.

Movers and Shakers in Southwest Louisiana...

Who’s News? You tell us! Send press releases to

Dr. Mauk is practicing with Dr. Christine Palma at the main Imperial Health medical office building in Lake Charles, 501 Dr. Michael DeBakey Dr., 2nd Floor. He will have privileges at CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital, CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital and West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital. Call (337) 3128120 to schedule an appointment.

Rock Hardy Celebrates 50 Years in Outdoor Advertising AdSource Outdoors, the fastest growing billboard provider in Southwest Louisiana, congratulates Henry “Rock” Hardy for 50 years in outdoor and digital advertising.

Rock began his career following attendance at University of Louisiana in Lafayette working primarily in the Lafayette and Houma areas. While working in Acadiana Parish, he owned and operated Hardy Outdoor of Acadiana as well as Hardy Outdoor of Lake Charles which included 8-sheet junior billboards. Rock joined AdSource Outdoor in 2007, as Account Executive, bringing extensive knowledge in poster, bulletin, and digital billboard advertising. AdSource Outdoor continues to grow with over 250 billboards in the Lake Charles and Baton Rouge areas.

CSE Announces Ryan Hess as New Chief Lending Officer

Ryan Hess has been chosen as the new Chief Lending Officer at CSE Federal Credit Union. Hess comes to CSE with over 13 years’ experience in consumer, residential real estate and commercial lending.  He graduated in 2021 from LSU School of Banking, currently attends Texas A&M for his Executive MBA and is involved in the Southwest Louisiana area with volunteer efforts with nonprofit organizations.

CSE is the largest credit union headquartered in SWLA with assets over $488 million. Membership is open to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Jeff Davis and Vernon Parishes.

If you would like more information about CSE, please contact Morgan Martel, Marketing Communications Specialist, at 337-562-3161.

Revitalized Health Hosts Official Grand Opening

Revitalized Health, owned and operated by certified nurse practitioner Dawn Hinton, APRN, AGPCNPBC, hosted a grand opening and ribbon cutting celebration at their office in Walnut Grove, located at 1510 William Street, Lake Charles.

Originally from Gueydan, Hinton has 14 years of healthcare experience. She holds an MSN of Nursing and is a Certified Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner. Over the past twelve years, she has cared for patients part-time while working full-time as an onsite occupational health nurse practitioner for LyondellBasell.

Hinton welcomes a wide variety of patients, both women and men, ages 15 and older. She specializes in menopause and peri-menopause, thyroid disorder, insomnia, obesity, weight loss, polycystic ovarian syndrome, low testosterone, sexual disfunction, peptides, and preventative care. Revitalized Health accepts all major insurance

For more information or to make an appointment, call 337-214-0097, or visit

Kim Montie Dawn Hinton Henry “Rock” Hardy Kyle Mauk Ryan Hess 59

first person

Delton “DC” Carter, Lake Charles Fire Chief

In honor of Fire Safety Month, we’re featuring Delton “DC” Carter, who was appointed the Fire Chief of the Lake Charles Fire Department in January of this year.

Chief Carter, a Lake Charles native and U.S. Army veteran, has served the Lake Charles Fire Department (LCFD) for over 20 years. He joined the Department in 1999 as a firefighter and served in that role until June 2003, when he became a Fire Service Instructor in the department’s Training Division. In March 2021, he became

the Department’s Chief Training Officer and held this position until his appointment as Department Chief. In addition to numerous fire service-related accreditations and completed course work through Louisiana State University and the National Fire Academy, Chief Carter also holds an associate degree in Fire Science, Bachelor of Science degree in Fire Administration, as well as a Master of Business Administration, all from Columbia Southern University, and graduating with

academic honors. He’s a member of Omicron Sigma Sigma, a professional honor society for Homeland Security disciplines, and Omega Nu Lambda, a national academic honor society. Mr. Carter says he lives with his beautiful, loving wife, Margentina, and they have been married for 23 blessed years. Thrive magazine recently caught up with Chief Carter and learned about his life in Lake Charles, his inaugural year in his new role, and his plans for LCFD moving forward.

60 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Places & Faces

Tell us about your life growing up in Lake Charles.

I was born and raised on the Northside in the Goosport area. I attended Riverside Elementary, now known as Combre-Fondel, and Ray D. Molo Middle School. As a kid, I played with friends, rode bicycles, and was always playing some form of sport – football, basketball, baseball, swimming, or just foot racing – because I was fast! I remember my childhood as a fun time. I began high school at Marion High School before the merge with Washington High School occurred, and I graduated from THE Lake Charles – Boston High School! I made the choice to join the United States Army after a recruiter visited my high school.

Describe your time in the military.

I originally joined the Army to follow in one of my uncles’ footsteps. I joined as a 19 Delta Cavalry Scout and traveled around the world twice. I’ve been blessed enough to see the world in a way that only a few could talk about. Looking back, I can say that it was the best decision of my life and my time in the service molded me into the man I am today. If given the opportunity to make this decision again I would definitely do it all again.

After nearly a year in your position as Lake Charles Fire Chief, how would you define your role?

My role as the Fire Chief is primarily administrative in nature, but for our Department to be successful I must first be a strong leader. The history of the fire service is a long-standing and proud one. As Chief, I am the person the men and women of the LCFD look to for direction and as an example of how we should conduct ourselves.

What are your primary responsibilities?

I oversee the day-to-day operations of the Department. This includes setting and managing all policy and procedures and working to ensure that all goals and objectives are met for the LCFD. I also take action to correct or improve issues within the Department, including implementing changes necessary to ensure the City maintains its PIAL rating.

Describe an average day on the job.

As the leader of a public safety agency, you never know what the day will bring. This is why I begin each day with a prayer of thankfulness for the many blessings I have been granted. After I arrive at work, my first meeting of the day is with members of the

Department to determine if any personnel matters need to be addressed. The rest of the day consists of working with various boards, agencies, City leadership, Fire Department leadership and any other organizations that rely on the professional services provided by LCFD. Open lines of regular communication with a variety of stakeholders are paramount to our successful service to the citizens we serve.

In July, firefighters rightfully protested for higher wages and better staffing. How did the City respond to their concerns?  Even prior to the July protests, meetings were held between City Administration and members of the LCFD. Additional meetings have taken place since and I believe there is good communication right now. Some issues have been resolved. As with any discussion of this nature, I believe some level of comfort or middle ground can be found.

What are your goals for the Department?

We aim to strengthen our Department by boosting employee morale and restoring the familial atmosphere at our stations. We want to enhance and build on that sense of comradery that has been a hallmark of firefighting. From this, we will be able to be a stronger support system for not only our local community today, but for our future generations as well. Our calling is to serve the citizens of Lake Charles in a professional manner and to protect their health, safety, and welfare to the best of our ability.

Describe “Fire Department life.”

Like most public safety callings, Fire Department life is a completely different life from anything else. We work 24-hour shifts, so Fire Department families are used to holidays and important events looking differently, whether that means they are “firehouse holidays,” or they are celebrated later to accommodate the schedule, or celebrated with the family members possibly joining in “virtually.” Our crews become our family. We eat together, sleep together, work together, play together, and everything in between.

How do you spend your free time?

Since becoming the Chief, there is not that much free time, however, since going back to school in recent years and getting my degrees, I like reading things that I can apply towards making myself a better leader. Any other leisure time I have is spent with my wife, family members, and friends.

List the top three things you would like the citizens of Southwest Louisiana to know about fire safety.

1. Fire can be very dangerous and should be respected at all times.

2. Be sure to change your smoke detector batteries twice a year (when you set your clocks in the fall and spring), and make sure they are placed in the most effective position.

3. In the event there is a fire in your home, make sure your family has a plan to get out, stay out, and call 911.

Lake Charles Fire Department

from 1876 to today

The LCFD was established in 1876 as a volunteer outfit. In 1890, RJ “Dick” Gunn became the first paid Fire Chief. Fourteen years later, the unit became a paid Fire Department. The LCFD currently employees 151 personnel: one chief, three assistant chiefs, nine district chiefs, 45 captains, 42 drivers, 29 firefighters, four communication officers, one communication chief, three prevention officers, one prevention chief, two mechanics, one chief mechanic, two training officers and eight support staff. There are currently eight stations within the City limits and two stations that LCFD man for the Parish to cover outlying areas of Ward 3. LCFD receives between 10 and 15 calls per day for the entire department. They might consist of anything from helping a child to a full complement structure fire. LCFD is currently hiring for a class to start early 2023. Beyond extinguishing fires, firefighters are trained to respond to many other calls for service, including public life and safety education, high angle/confined space rescues, and hazardous materials response. 61

everyone to have their best time on Halloween:

Desensitize your kids before Halloween night. For younger children who are easily scared or appear nervous about Halloween, desensitize them ahead of time. When you eliminate the unknown and any surprises, children always do better. Show them pictures of people dressed up. Take them to a Halloween store in the daylight and show them decorations, masks, and costumes. Explain to them what happens on Halloween. Show them movies where people are trick-or-treating.

Keep it age appropriate. Halloween can be a little overwhelming and scary for some kids. Remember that what doesn’t bother your 13-year-old may terrify your four-year-old. It’s best to keep things age appropriate and a great

in and watch TV. Gage your children’s level of interest and go with what makes them happy.

Know when to intervene. Sometimes children don’t want to look scared in front of their friends for fear of being made fun of. Some kids will hold it in and push themselves to experience more than they can handle. This can lead to nightmares, increased stress, and anxiety. If you notice your child is struggling or appears scared, know when to call it a night.

Have fun but be safe. Halloween is all about having fun, but never forget basic safety. Don’t ever enter someone’s home no matter how nice they seem. Always trick-or-treat in groups. If you have younger children, parents should always chaperone. Never eat any candy that is opened or appears tampered

choices, and never mock people with physical or mental health conditions, disabilities, or other impairments.

62 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022

all & Halloween Happenings

The following is a sampling of the numerous Halloween and Fall events you’ll find this year in Southwest Louisiana. At the time of publication, many organizations did not yet have details finalized. Check your local municipalities for fall festivals, pumpkin patches, trick-or-treating times and more.

The Lost Hollows

Considered to be the largest and most terrifying outdoor haunt in Lake Charles. Every Fri. & Sat. evening, Sept. 30 – Oct. 29 with a special “lights out” event on Halloween. Shuttle line open 6:00 p.m., trail opens at

Children under 13 years must be accompanied by an adult.

The Haunted Adventure Lake Area Adventures

For details, call LAA at 337-310-1681

Game2Life Haunted House

Oct. 26-31, 7:00 – 11:00 p.m. $18 presale, $20 at gate Axe throwing, bar and grill patio games continues that week

For more information see their website

Boo-Tastic Bash, Prien Lake Mall

In conjunction with the City of Lake Charles

Oct. 31, 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Free and open to the public It’s a mall-wide trick-or-treating experience!

Our Lady Queen of Heaven Fall Carnival

Oct 30, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Pony rides, face painting, silly string, games, Jambalaya and BBQ burgers

Howl-o-Ween Dog Costume Contest at Rikenjaks,

Oct. 31. Partnering with Tito's for special Halloween-themed cocktails and drink specials. See Rikenjaks' Facebook page for more details.

CM Farms, Dry Creek, La.

Various weekend events, Oct. 1 – Nov. 28

Saturdays in Oct., 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Saturdays in November, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Sundays 12:00 – 5:00 p.m.

Admission: Ages 3+ $18.75 plus tax Pumpkins, 50+ attractions, 12-acre corn maze, farm animals and more.

See website for details:

Shangri La Gardens Scarecrow Festival

Orange, Texas, Oct. 11-Nov. 5

FREE TIMED TICKETS available at www.

Enjoy dozens of unique scarecrow contest exhibits, fall flowering displays, thousands of pumpkins, and autumn decorations displayed throughout Shangri La Gardens. The Autumn Fair takes place November 5.

Barstool Sportsbook Halloween Party/DJ

L’Auberge Casino Resort

Oct. 29, 9:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. Must be 21 and older

Lake Area Runners Spooky 10K Run

Oct. 22, 7:00 a.m.

Sam Houston Jones State Park

For tickets, go to LakeCharles/LARsSpooky10k

Race limited to 100 runners so sign up soon. Costumes are encouraged.

Hobo Hotel Halloween Raffle

Tickets $5 and sold through Oct. 24 (day of drawing) at their facility:

650 E. School St. Lake Charles, 70607 Proceeds benefit cats and kittens in need.

DeQuincy’s Annual Fall Festival & National Night Out

Oct. 31, 5-7 p.m., DeQuincy Walking Path. Everyone is invited to come out and enjoy this family-oriented Halloween event for food, fun, and fellowship. This event can be an alternative to neighborhood trick-or-treating. Regular trick-or-treating will be from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. in the city limits.

Pumpkin Fest, Grant Christmas Tree Farm

716 Whitaker Rd., Grant, La.

Oct 29-30

Sat. 9:00 a.m. -5:00, Sun. 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. Experience music, hayrides, crafts, face painting, corn maze . . . and of course, pumpkins! 63

Costumes for Kiddos


If you have spent any time around children, you already know their imaginations take them to magical places and transform life into a mix of grand excitements and catastrophes. What better time to embrace the scope of their minds than Halloween? Here you’ll find some trending costumes children will go batty to wear this year.


The movie Minions: The Rise of Gru is full of adorable little henchmen creatures sporting yellow skin, overalls, and giant glasses.

Turning Red’s Meilin Lee

Feeling like a person? Feeling like a panda? Either way, this costume will work.

PAW Patrol’s Chase, Marshall, & Skye

PAW Patrol is popular among young children and has inspired a number of great costumes.

Inflatable T-Rex

Inflatable costumes are definitely a fun option!


There are many iterations of Mario to choose from. With or without Yoshi? Fully-human Mario, or part raccoon? Peach, Luigi, Yoshi, and the rest of the gang are also fun options.

PJ Masks’s Owlette, Gekko, & Catboy

These animal-inspired costumes are fun and colorful options for young children this Halloween.


There are tons of little creatures for children to dress as from this imagined world. Some classics are Pikachu, Squirtel, Bulbasaur, Charizard, Psyduck, Eevee and Jigglypuff.


Classic Thor and the Jane Foster version are both good options this year, after the release of Thor: Love and Thunder

Dr. Strange & Scarlet Witch

Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness providing some fun, dramatic costume ideas this year. Traveling the Multiverse can be as easy as a walk around the neighborhood.

Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Home & Family | Halloween


Furry Friends

Some parents have children, and others have fur babies, but all parents should be able to enjoy dressing up and celebrating with their little angels this Halloween. This list of costumes is for all the pets who like to tag along on Halloween night.

Baby Yoda

With or without extra lightsaber-wielding arms!


Pets are super, so this one isn’t much of a stretch.

Harry Potter

Harry Potter’s appeal hasn’t faded, as the release of Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts illustrates.

Buzz Lightyear & Co.

With the 2022 release of Lightyear, Buzz is back in the limelight, but Woody, Jessie, Rex and Bo Peep are also great options.


A mane works well for cats and dogs!


Ghostbusters: Afterlife came out late last year, and it looks like the next movie in the franchise will be released late 2023.

UPS & USPS Delivery Costumes

These cute costumes are a great way to celebrate one of the most exciting parts of a dog’s day.

Food Strawberry cats, hotdog dogs, and the classic candy corn and pumpkin fall into this category.

The Little Mermaid’s Ariel

This costume is ridiculously cute and funny with the seashells and hair.

Elf, Wizard, or Hobbit from Lord of The Rings

This costume can be as simple as a cape. Add a staff and a pointy hat to get extra intricate.

Pet with Hairdo

There are wigs made for animals, and that’s really all your pet needs for this one.

Nightmare Before Christmas’s Zero Zero might be the hero of this list. What’s a better costume than a cute little ghost dog with a glowing nose? 65

Make Your Disney Vacation Magical

Dreaming of a magical vacation to Disney World? Planning early is the key to a memorable Disney trip. Follow these strategies for a fairytale adventure the whole family will love.

Stay at a Disney Hotel

Guests at Disney properties receive perks, like entering the park a half hour before the general public. While that might not seem like much, it’s a chance to get on the most popular rides, like Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure or 2022’s hottest new attraction Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, without the long lines. Those precious minutes without crowds can feel priceless.

Two classics- Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort and Disney’s Contemporary Resort, both received major renovations in 2022, with the Polynesian getting a “Moana” makeover. Star Wars fans might consider staying at the Galactic Starcruiser, aka Star Wars hotel, which opened in March. Not your typical hotel, it’s a two-night experience where you live out your Star Wars fantasies— roleplaying favorite characters, training with light sabers, and stepping aboard the bridge of a starship. Think of it as an intergalactic all-inclusive, where meals and activities are included. Star Wars fans will find this resort experience out of this world.

Unfortunately, the price tag for the two-night adventure is equally mind blowing. A family of four will pay $750 per person each night, for a total of $6,000. Fans with a budget grounded in reality can still have an immersive Star Wars experience by spending a day at Hollywood Studios, where there’s an entire Star Wars land that includes rides like Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance and Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, as well as Star Wars-themed dining, shops, and opportunities to mingle with Star Wars clad characters.

Master Disney’s Mobile App

When planning your Disney days, the My Disney Experience app is where the real magic happens. At first, you may feel like you need a computer science degree to make sense of it, but taking time to check out the app beforehand will make your Disney day go a lot smoother. The app allows you to make dining reservations, create a personalized itinerary, and check wait times at other rides.

The first step in planning your Disney vacation is deciding which parks you want to visit. Haven’t been to Disney in a while? You might be surprised to learn you can no longer enter Disney World with just an admission ticket. You’ll also need a confirmed reservation at the park you want to go to. If you only have a day or two and really want to get your fill of Disney, purchase a Park Hopper pass. One day admission for anyone over ten is $110, and a Park Hopper Pass is an additional $65, allowing you to enter another park after 2:00 p.m. You won’t need a park reservation for the second park. Reservations and ticket purchases can be made on the app.

Genie + and Lightning Lanes

If you’re like most of us, you’d prefer to minimize wait times for rides. Disney allows you to do that by purchasing something called Genie+ for $15 per person per day. You can only purchase Genie+ via the app on the day of your visit and make your first ride selection at 7:00 a.m. Guests then must wait two hours between reservations to make additional ride reservations.

If that’s not confusing enough, some popular rides aren’t included in Genie+, but only offered through another line-skipping service called Individual Lightning Lanes where you essentially buy a $15 fast pass just for that ride. Check out the app to see exactly which rides are included in Genie+ and which ones require Individual Lightning Lane purchases.

Consider a Disney Cruise Disney enthusiasts might want to splurge and continue their Disney adventure aboard a Disney cruise from Port Canaveral, an hour east of Orlando. Besides the roaming costumed characters, top-tier kids clubs, and Broadwaycaliber productions seen on all Disney cruises, their newest ship, Wish, has a few spectacular additions.

Step inside the Star Wars Hyperspace Lounge and you’ll feel like you’re being transported to another galaxy. Diners can enter the Marvel universe at the Avengers: Quantum Encounter restaurant, while fans of “Frozen” will adore the Scandinavian-themed dinner theatre show that transports them to Anna and Elsa’s world of Arendelle.

With a little planning, your visit to “the happiest place on earth” can be simply magical!

66 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 Home & Family 67GAMBLING PROBLEM? CALL 800.522.4700. Must be 21 or older to enter Event Center, Barstool Sportsbook and casino. ©2022 PENN Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 15 • 8PM Join us for a night of American R&B and Funk! Tickets on sale at LIVE IN THE L’AUBERGE EVENT CENTER KOOL & THE GANG NFL • UFC • BOXING • MLB NCAA FOOTBALL • AND MORE! THE PLACE FOR THE HOTTEST SPORTS ACTION!
68 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022 69 SERVING UP FINGER-LICKING FOOD FOR THREE DECADES 119 West College Street, Lake Charles | (337) 474-3651 | Monday – Thursday: 11am–10pm | Friday & Saturday: 11am-11pm Closed Sunday | Happy Hour 4–7pm & SPORTS BAR DARRELL’S TO-GO NEW We are now available on Eats 2 Go, Gubers & Waitr!

Celebrate Seasonal Flavors!

Around these parts, the arrival of Fall is celebrated with a savory pot of gumbo or a fresh helping of jambalaya. A trip down the aisles of any grocery store will not only net shoppers all the ingredients needed for these local favorites, but also a surprisingly large selection of pumpkin spice-flavored goodies – coffees, creamers, baked goods, cereals, and more.

Local coffee shops and bakeries are upping the game with a myriad of seasonal flavor offerings. Whether you are out running errands or looking to grab something to enjoy on your couch under your favorite blanket, we’ve got you covered with this round-up of autumn-inspired treats.

In Southeast Texas, plan a stop at The Avenue Coffee & Café, a Port Neches favorite. Seasonal offerings include Maple Pecan Oatmeal cookies and Granny Smith Apple Cake donuts topped with a caramel glaze and chopped peanuts. Wash these sweet treats down with a Butter Beer Latte or a Spicy Witch (Spicy Pumpkin Chai). The café also serves seasonal energy drinks, boasting flavors like Candy Apple, Pumpkin Patch and Zombie Brain Blaster.

The Bekery, one of the area’s breakfast and brunch favorites, has captured fall flavors in a big way. Their Autumn Spice Latte, featuring chai tea, seasonal spices, and cinnamontopped foam pairs perfectly with a serving of Cinnamon Roll Bread Pudding, topped with glaze and homemade caramel sauce.

In the DeRidder area, pop in to Cat’s Coffee & Creamery. Try the Iced Caramel Apple Butter Latte or the Pumpkin Spice Frappe. Or sample a Pumpkin Spice Latte with Whipped Cream and Cinnamon. Maybe you’re a cold brew fan? Opt for the Pumpkin Spice Cold Brew with cold foam. Whatever you choose, be sure to save room for a Caramel Cake Pop!

October 2022 Wining & Dining

CC’s Coffee House is bringing in big flavor this fall with their Pumpkin Pie Mochasippi. Sip on that with a serving of Cinnamon Walnut or Pumpkin Spice Coffee Cake. While there, grab a bag of specialty coffee to brew at home. Seasonal flavors include French Toast, Pumpkin Pie, and Pumpkin Spice.

CiCi’s Pizza pans out to be more than just pizza. If you are looking for something to satisfy your sweet tooth after eating your fill of pizza, try CiCi’s all new Pumpkin Spice Cinnamon Rolls.

Coffee:30, a relative newcomer to the local dining scene, has quickly become known for big, unique flavors. This fall they’re whipping up a tasty Pumpkin Pie Frappe while frying up some Pumpkin Pie Beignets as a decadent side.

Great Harvest Bread Company has brought back Autumn Apple Pecan Muffins and Cakes. Wash them down with a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew or a White Chocolate Pumpkin Mocha (hot or cold).

When in Jennings, plan a visit to Java Joltz for a Cinnamon or Pumpkin Spice Tea. Sip on one of these savory teas while enjoying a fresh Pumpkin Spice Muffin.

LuLu’s Specialty Snocones and More celebrates the arrival of fall with seasonal flavors like pumpkin spice, caramel apple and more. Who says snocone season has to end with summer? For a spooktacular treat, ask for their Halloween special.

A rich menu of pumpkinpacked flavors can be found at PJ’s Coffee House. Choose from a Pumpkin Latte, Espresso Dolce, and your choice of steamed milk; sweetened with a full-bodied pumpkin sauce and dusted with cinnamon. Or try the Pumpkin Sweet Cold Foam Cold Brew. S’mores Velvet Ice and Bananas Foster flavors are also options.

Soar into fall with out-of-thisworld flavors at Stellar Beans Grab a fresh sandwich and sip on an Iced Dirty Pumpkin Spiced Chai Latte. The Espresso shot is what makes this one dirty. Order it hot, iced, or frozen and you can top it off with Stellar Sweet Cold Foam and a Cinnamon Dusting.

In Sulphur, visit The Village Coffeehouse and grab a Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cookie. Wash it down with their reinvented homemade version of fall’s favorite Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Savor the flavors of fall with a visit to one of these local businesses and follow their pages on Facebook for the latest updates on seasonal flavor offerings. 71 Locally owned and operated for over 30 years DOCUMENT SOLUTIONS FOR BUSINESS copiers • scanners • printers • fax • shredders 600 W McNeese Street, Lake Charles | (337) 474-9913

Solutions for life


from Solutions Counseling & EAP

Stop Limping Along!

Are there things in your life that you find frustrating? Do you ask yourself, “How does this keep happening to me?!”

Or, “Why do I keep ending up in these situations?” Well, my dear reader, it is likely you are in possession of a rock!

One day my son came home from school and was limping.

Me: “Did you hurt your foot?”

Him: “No, ma’am.”

Me: “Well, why are you limping.”

Him: “Oh, there is a rock in my shoe.”

Me: “Doesn’t that hurt?”

Him: “Yes, ma’am.”

Me: “Well, why haven’t you taken it out?”

Him: “I was having too much fun playing and I didn’t want to have to stop.”

I thought to myself, “Oh wow, he would rather limp than stop and fix the problem.” As you can imagine, we had some long discussions about that!

Part of my job as a therapist is to help people “take the rock out of their shoe” so to speak. I’m not sure where this saying originated, but I love it. There are some people who clearly have a rock in their shoe. And instead of stopping, untying and removing their shoe and taking the rock out, they choose to just limp.

“Limpers” tend to have a difficult time making decisions – because that would involve making changes. Limpers hate change. They will gripe about their current situation, and make sure everyone knows how miserable they are. However, this griping in no way indicates they are willing to change the situation.

“Limpers” are also “yes, but” people. I always know I have a Limper on my hands when any suggestion I make is met

with a reason it won’t work. And when I say, “but what you’re doing now isn’t working either – why not try something new so at least you are banging your head on a different wall,” they just sadly shake their head at me as if to say, “Poor Keri, you just don’t understand. This is an impossible situation, and it is my cross to bear. Just let me be miserable, please.”

Here is the great thing about rocks –they are removeable. There are some things in our lives we can’t control and have no choice about. The rocks are those things we can control and do something about. They are the little things that make our lives more difficult than they need to be.

I would like to suggest that for the next month, you examine your life for rocks – the things that seem to stand in your way of you being able to live your life as stress-free as possible. Here are some common rocks:

Disorganization – So much time is wasted when things are unorganized. When you have to spend time looking for items, you are not getting other things done. When your day is unorganized, frustration and lack of accomplishment are not far behind. It’s time to organize – your workspace, your home, your day. Everything should have a place, and you need to put things back in their place every time. Your day should have a schedule – of course, emergencies will crop up, but the schedule will at least keep you on track a little better. Organization is not some mysterious gift given to a few – it’s a skill. Learn it.

Procrastination – Take a look at what tasks seem to increase your stress

because you put them off. Are you frantically running out the door with the garbage cans on garbage day? Make a commitment to take the trash out the night before. Do you seem to be late (or almost late) for appointments? Figure out a way to get out the door sooner – get up earlier, decide what time you will leave (no matter what you are in the middle of), shift some of your morning tasks to the night before. Develop a timeline for projects with a breakdown of each step so you are not pulling allnighters.

Accepting – Remember the Serenity Prayer? We want to accept the things we can’t change, change the things we can, and have the wisdom to know the difference. Begin to question some of the things you are doing – is it necessary? Could there be a better way? Is there a tool that would make it easier? Try to look at things with “fresh eyes,” and stop doing them just because that’s the way you’ve always done them. Would you go back to a typewriter from a word processor? How about hand washing clothes instead of using a washing machine? Of course not – some wonderful people refused to accept their situation at the time and developed better ways of doing things. You need to do the same.

So, the next time you’re limping along in a relationship, or at a job, or with parenting your child, I hope you’ll begin to ask yourself what you could do differently to make the situation better. Then stop, take off your shoe, and remove that rock!

72 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022

Enhancing the overall appearance of your face should be a gentle, carefully proportioned process. Considerably more than improving the tone and texture of the skin, or adjusting the width of the nose, it’s an opportunity to reveal a fresher more balanced, more perfected appearance.

For that, you need not only a highly skilled surgeon, but also the keen eye of an experienced artist. Uncovering your beauty beneath demands a special touch.

the Move to

We’ve expended our reach in a new direction with the opening of our new office, making access to the region’s largest musculoskeletal group

convenient for people in the Moss Bluff area.

(337) 721-7236 to schedule an appointment.

Enhancing your face requires the skill of a surgeon and the eye of an artist.
board certified & fellowship trained facial plastic surgeon jeffrey j . joseph , md , facs The hands of a surgeon. The eye of an artist. W. Pinhook Road • Lafayette 337-237-0650 73 We’ve Made
Moss Bluff 1355 Sam Houston Jones Parkway, Suite 340 (in Parkway Village Shopping Center)

The doors of The Villages of Imperial Pointe are opening soon. But your chance to be one of the first is quickly coming to a close. Come to our LAST CHANCE PREVIEW on Thursday, November 3, to take advantage of low construction prices.

that makes every meal a four-star event

you’ll really want to attend


in the 75-acre Imperial Pointe healthy

campus with all the charms of Lake Charles

74 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022Senior living, redefined. Your future, reimagined.
• Resort-inspired lifestyle and amenities • Dining
• Social events
• Neighbors who are accomplished
fascinating • Holistic wellness philosophy • Nestled
1717 Imperial Blvd. | Lake Charles, LA 70605 (337) 607-1731 | Join us for The Last Chance PREVIEW Thursday, November 3 11:00 am at Lake Charles Country Club 3350 Country Club Drive Lake Charles, LA 70605 RSVP to 337-607-1731 or visit BEING FIRST has its benefits. ONE DAY FUTURE. that will transform your

CITGO Lake Charles achieved record breaking safety and environmental performance this year, while at the same time achieving the highest production rate in its 78-year history.


We recognize it is a privilege to operate in Southwest Louisiana, where our employees work hard to safely supply the nation with vital products

and support our localand support our local


Hope Breast

Walk Returns

The West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Foundation is pleased to facilitate the return of one of our community’s largest breast cancer awareness events. It’s the first time the walk has been held since 2019.

Why participate?


100% of the proceeds benefit Calcasieu and Cameron parish residents.


Avail Hospital Brighton Bridge Hospital The Broussard Group

Ochsner Health SWLA

Federal Credit Union

JD Bank

Casino Resort Merchants & Farmers Bank

State Credit Union



76 Thrive Magazine for Better Living • October 2022
Ethel Precht
Register online at:
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2022 LAKE CHARLES CIVIC CENTER AMPHITHEATER Registration: 7 a.m. | Ceremony: 8 a.m. Walk: 8:30 a.m. General Registration: $30 Student (College/Grade School): $20 There is no charge for Survivors to participate.
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