A number of the shops we featured in our cover story last week ("Spice of Life") on ethnic food markets in Acadiana aren't listed in the phone book, and many readers called and e-mailed us requesting the markets' addresses and phone numbers. By popular request, here's the info on all four markets in our story:
Italian Food Market
4807 Johnston St., in the strip mall behind Baskin-Robbins
S & P Oriental Market
Som Vang Sonemangkhala
4807 Johnston St., same small strip mall as Italian Food Market
3011 Cameron St. (near Bertrand)
1215 Jefferson St.
THE TICKING GROWS LOUDER
Presidents of the eight institutions of the University of Louisiana System signed a compact in 2004 to raise graduation rates to a level where they met or exceeded nationwide standards. It's supposed to be accomplished by 2012, but Randy Moffett, president of Southeastern Louisiana University and coordinator of the initiative, says there is still a long way to go.
Graduation rates for the system presently hover around 36 percent, and first-time freshmen retention is about 75 percent ' figures that are well below national averages. "We have worked hard to instill a lot of good things on our campuses such as selective admissions, new degree programs and up-to-date classroom buildings and residential facilities," he says. "But we can't fail to acknowledge that this is a critical issue about which we need to be proactive. We have a lot of work ahead of us ' no one silver bullet exists to provide a cure." Student preparation in critical content areas, such as English and mathematics, heads the official "to-do" list, as does improving the mix of traditional and non-traditional students and quality of advising. ' Jeremy Alford
LAFAYETTE IN THE NEW YORK TIMES
Lafayette earned a glowing write-up in the The New York Times travel section last Friday. Using the Times' "36 Hours" format, writer Alicia Ault spent a weekend roaming the area and had only good things to report. Places and businesses that got props include The Acadiana Cultural Center of Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, Prejean's, Blue Moon Saloon, CafÃ© Des Amis, Lake Martin, KRVS 88.7 FM and the Rendez-Vous Des Cajuns broadcast from the Liberty Theater in Eunice, Catahoula's, Nitetown, Grant Street Dancehall, 307 Downtown, Randol's, McGee's Landing, Whiskey River Landing and Bois Des ChÃªnes Bed & Breakfast. ' Scott Jordan
THE COMMEMORATION WHIRLWIND
Not to be outdone by those catchy slogans broadcast news outlets come up with for their coverage of war and disasters, a variety of politicians attempted to label the Katrina anniversary last week with varied zeal. The governor titled her laundry list of activities as "A Week of Recovery, Progress and Promise." U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu took the anniversary tour junket to new levels, leading the "Hope and Recovery Tour." She made regular entries into a travel diary on the news site BayouBuzz.Com along with high-profile guests like ABC talking head George Stephanopoulos. She also took questions about the recovery over Yahoo! through the "Generation Next: Talk to Power" program. At press time, there were more than 800 messages posted for Landrieu. ' JA
WILDLIFE CHIEF MOVES ON
Dwight Landreneau officially vacated the top job at the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries last week to become the associate vice chancellor of the Louisiana State University AgCenter. Landreneau, who makes his home in Washington, La., served as secretary during a historic time for the department. Not only did he turn an entire agency ' from boats to biologists ' into a full-scale search-and-rescue operation in the wake of Katrina, but he saw his main constituency and internal resources devastated by the storms.
Last Friday, Blanco promoted Wildlife and Fisheries undersecretary Janice Lansing, the department's accounting and budget manager, to interim secretary. The governor says she expects to name a permanent replacement to Landreneau in October. ' JA
A source close to the team tells The IND QB Broadway will play in tonight's bowl game against Tulane.
Grads and gridiron fans gear up for game day and paint the town red
Jindal describes the privatization as a cost-cutting move to save the state more than $100 million this year, while improving services and medical training.
A Baton Rouge judge is reconsidering his decision to throw out Gov. Bobby Jindal's revamp of teacher tenure and salary laws.
Ambassador François Delattre will also receive an honorary doctorate of francophone studies at the commencement at the Cajundome.
During the past seven games, the Saints have forced two turnovers — a league low during that span. Now they're trying to figure out what has changed since their first seven games, when they forced 15 turnovers.
Choice cuts from Acadiana’s news media for Friday, Dec. 20, 2013:
For many fans, it was their third consecutive year participating in French Quarter parade.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, December 20, 2013:
Lafayette Parish School Board member Greg Awbrey deserves an attaboy for his unexpected vote during Wednesday’s meeting approving a mediation session between the board and Superintendent Pat Cooper.
The cable television network's suspension of Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson from the hit reality show has drawn criticism from the governor of Robertson's home state.
The State Bond Commission gave preliminary approval to the borrowing plan Thursday without objection.
The Pediatric Clinic is housed in the same location previously closed by state budget cuts in June 2012.
Three-term Louisiana senator facing tough re-election battle is next in line for Energy Committee chairmanship.
In a letter distributed during Wednesday night's meeting, Lafayette Parish School Board member Shelton Cobb, in his final meeting as board president, called on his fellow board members to start focusing on the children and stop battling Superintendent Pat Cooper.
Joshua Dore of Breaux Bridge was sentenced Tuesday to 1.5 years in prison for counterfeiting, according to a press release issued by U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley’s office on Wednesday.
School super Pat Cooper alleges Lafayette Parish School Board member Mark Allen Babineaux, an attorney, publicly disclosed the details of a closed-door executive session.
Sun Belt commissioner presents title and practice gets under way in preparation for Saturday
Kerry Bertrand’s charge was upgraded Tuesday by an Acadia Parish grand jury from manslaughter to second-degree murder for his alleged role in the drowning death of his stepdaughter, Skylar Credeur.
Sean Payton announced Wednesday that veteran Shayne Graham was New Orleans' new kicker, and that rookie Terron Armstead would get his first start at left tackle.
Should new parents be required by law to attend special classes before being permitted to raise their child? It’s an idea state Rep. Regina Barrow, D-Baton Rouge, is seriously considering.
The agenda for Wednesday’s meeting of the Lafayette Parish School Board tells it all: The board has lost sight of its elected purpose.
A public Mass will be held Thursday in New Orleans for artist George Rodrigue, who died Saturday of cancer at age 69.
Eight former employees of The Times-Picayune have sued the newspaper and parent Advance Publications Inc., alleging their layoffs violated a longstanding "job security pledge" and age discrimination laws.
Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration hasn't done an independent performance review of its $363 million privatization contract for mental health and addictive disorder treatment services.