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
Corporations spending in state elections; Kenny G and Hong Kong; states resist gay marriage and more national and international news for Thursday, October 23, 2014.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
School board members Mark Babineaux, Hunter Beasley and Tehmi Chassion can vote to fire Cooper — because we all know that’s exactly what they’ll do.
District 2 school board candidate Simon Mahan is hoping to unseat first-term incumbent and former Carencro Mayor Tommy Angelle in the Nov. 4 election.
District Attorney Mike Harson is showing his desperation by falsely attributing quotes to his opponent and blocking journalists from his social media.
The governor is traveling the country laying the groundwork for a possible 2016 presidential campaign, but his approval ratings at home hover well below 50 percent.
State District Judge Bob Downing extended the order and delayed a planned Wednesday hearing about a permanent injunction while negotiations continue between Attorney General Buddy Caldwell and the waste disposal site operator.
New Louisiana higher education commissioner Joseph Rallo will be paid more than his predecessor.
Elijah McGuire and Alonzo Harris each had four rushing touchdowns, and Louisiana-Lafayette rolled to 419 yards on the ground in a 55-40 victory over Arkansas State on Tuesday night.
Bill and Hillary Clinton are the validators-in-chief for Democrats struggling through a bleak campaign season in states where President Barack Obama is deeply unpopular.
President Barack Obama is turning to black radio listeners to plead for midterm votes, a targeted approach to drum up Democratic support at a time when many candidates don't want him around in person.
"I am extremely disheartened by the political machines that are attempting to hijack my efforts along with others that advocate for children."
Landrieu, who is fighting to keep her seat for a fourth term, said that Ebola is serious and precautions should be taken, but she accused Republicans of using the virus outbreak in West Africa to "create fear" here at home.
Law enforcement agencies are participating in a "Louisiana Heroin Summit," designed to address the recent rise in heroin use and drug-related deaths around the state.
State education officials are preparing to release performance scores for public schools and public school districts.
Saints coach Sean Payton is starting a new week by emphasizing, repeatedly, the many good things he noticed during New Orleans' latest loss.
We will be offering our recommendations on the constitutional amendments tomorrow.
The justices did not comment in leaving in place lower court rulings that dismissed the lawsuits against BP and other companies involved in the worst U.S. offshore oil spill.
White registration is down by 7,700 voters while black registration has shot up by 7,100 voters.
Even though it had been rumored for months, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu finally pulled the trigger recently on a major campaign shakeup that moved control over to a few Big Easy insiders.
Louisiana's health department says it will seek law changes to stop billing sexual assault victims for exams and tests.
It wasn’t the historic slashes to higher ed funding or the ensuing tuition spikes that recently had LSU’s student body and faculty riled up in collective outrage.
Will $400 be enough for the re-election campaign of LPSB's Hunter Beasley to overcome two years of holding our school system hostage and hurting the education of our children all because of a personal dislike of the superintendent?
Saints tight end Jimmy Graham said Friday he expects his playing status in Detroit to be decided by coach Sean Payton on Sunday, shortly before the game.
Lawmakers have sidestepped a decision on whether they accept claims from Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration that the state closed last year's books with a nearly $179 million surplus.