Inside Northside Magazine, Times Picayune and Slidell Magazine gave our organization some great publicity over the past couple of months in celebration of 50 years as a chapter of the National Association of Junior Auxiliaries (NAJA). Thank you to all for your generous contribution to JASlidell through these wonderful articles! To check out the articles go to the following links:
JA Slidell enjoys bringing smiles to the faces of those lives we touch through our community service endeavors and especially when it touches the lives of many at once! One recent fundraising project was to provide equipment for the playground in Heritage Park. Pictured here is JA Slidell President Deb Jones’ grandson enjoying the equipment with his friends. We are proud and blessed to have the opportunity to bring into the lives of our community. Please contact us if you are interested in joining our community service initiatives!
Junior Auxiliary of Slidell kicked off the holiday season on December 5th at the Pinewood Country Club with its monthly general meeting and Christmas dinner. Not only did the chapter have 36 active members present, there were 40 life and associate members and 6 provisional members at the event. Several unwrapped toys were donated for Boys & Girls Club. The provisional members sold raffle tickets for a Mardi Gras basket and Spa basket to raise funds for their upcoming project, Play It Forward. The chapter was honored by special guest, Charlott Jones, who is the national president of the National Association of Junior Auxiliaries. Ms. Jones traveled from Jonesboro, Arkansas, to see first-hand the impact this Chapter makes in the Slidell area. Her focus this year is “Paying It
Forward” and after the project reports were presented, it was evident that the Slidell chapter is doing just that through their many projects for children and families in the area.
Junior Auxiliary of Slidell (JAS) recently sponsored two spelling bees where 65 junior high students competed for an opportunity to advance to the Scripps Regional and National Spelling Bees. This was the fifth year for the Boyet Junior High 7th & 8th graders, and the fourth year for Clearwood 5th-8th graders.
State Senator Sharon Hewitt was the Mistress of Ceremonies for the two Bees. Senator Hewitt is a Life member of Junior Auxiliary of Slidell. Returning as pronouncer for the Bees was WWL-TV Sports Director, Doug Mouton.
Boyet Jr. High (Principal – John Priola) had 26 students participate on November 14th. The students completed 10 rounds and spelled 107 words. Michael Bartels came through as the champion by spelling the winning word, xylorimba, and then the championship word, tamara. An extra word must be spelled after the winning word to become the champion. The other seven finalists were Travis Elmore, Hannah Joseph, Trey McGill, Julia Spiess, Wilson Hou, Annabelle Goggin and Christina Jackson.
Clearwood Jr. High (Principal – Alan Bennett) had 39 students compete on November 15th. This group spelled through 25 rounds with 137 words completed. Olivia Holmes spelled the winning word, defensiveness, and the championship word, cyclops, to be declared the Clearwood Spelling Bee Champion. The other seven finalists were Sophia Weaver, Amelia Britt, Letrece McCoy, Amanda Krinsky, Brayden Bostick, Kaelyn Hardrick, and Keara Harbin.
The overall school winner at each school was awarded a trophy, and all eight finalists received medals. Students competing in the bee were selected based on their classroom pre-tests. To prepare for this event, the JAS Spelling Bee committee met with the participants at each school hosting a kickoff party where they watched the movie, “Akeelah and the Bee” while enjoying some pizza. This movie gives the students insight as to how to prepare for a bee and the commitment it takes to compete. From there, the committee met with each school twice to practice spelling words for the bee. Here the students were taught the rules of the bee, given study guides and had the opportunity to compete in a mock spelling bee to give them a feel for what the competition would be like. The students were very nervous the day of the spelling bee but did a fabulous job! They took all of what they learned and gave it their best. Both faculty sponsors, Jennifer Crain (Boyet) and Chris Brewin (Clearwood), felt that the Spelling Bees presented a positive experience for the students. Their spelling abilities sparked an interest in their vocabulary and etymology as well.
The event went very smoothly due to the combined efforts of JAS volunteers and school sponsors, Crain and Brewin, who helped get the bee organized. A special thank you goes to pronouncer, Doug Mouton from WWL-TV, emcee, Senator Sharon Hewitt and judges, Sandra Chavers and Debra Mire. Their dedication and enthusiasm for the Junior Auxiliary Spelling Bee program each year truly makes it enjoyable for all those who participate as well as the families and friends attending the bee.
What happens next:
The Boyet and Clearwood Spelling Bees were a preliminary local competition for Junior High Students, with the eight finalists from each school spelling their way to a spot in the Scripps Regional Spelling Bee to be hosted in March 2018 at Xavier University in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Regional Bee is co-sponsored by the Times Picayune Newspaper and the LINKS Service Organization.
Prior to the Regional Bee, Junior Auxiliary project members will hold a parent informational meeting and practice sessions with the finalists from each school to prepare for the regional competition.
The regional winner from Xavier and his/her parent will receive an all-expense paid trip to the Scripps National Spelling Bee being held in May in Washington, D.C. Last year was the 29th year of this regional competition, involving over 200 children from over 50 schools. Bee Week 2018 will take place the last week in May. The national competition will be televised on ESPN.
JA Slidell presents the 13th Annual Tour of Homes on December 10th, 1p-5p! Four homeowners in the Slidell area are graciously opening the doors of their beautifully decorated homes for your enjoyment. Contact any JA Slidell member to purchase your tickets in advance, as they sell out quick and very few are offered “at the door”! Proceeds from ticket and raffle sales fund service projects and initiatives in our community.
Thank you to Petals & Stems and Three Divas and a Sugar Daddy for selling Tour of Homes tickets! Stop by these local merchants for your tickets and your Christmas gifts!
Life & Associate “Lunch on the Bayou” was well attended at Bayou Haven Bed & Breakfast this month. Best of all $170 was collected for the NAJA Scholarship through a 50/50 raffle. Alison Cuevas won and donated most of her winnings back for the scholarship donation. Thank you, Alison and everyone who participated! Also thank you Lena Joyce and Sandra Chavers for organizing the 50/50 raffle.
The JA Slidell Annual Wine & Cheese Reception to welcome the new Provisional members was hosted by Ann Mannella and organized by Membership Committee Chairs Lisha Bonson and Cassie Baker. We are excited to have Ann Tassin, Tracy Ducre, Megan Brown, and Sheila Guthrie join us in our community service projects and initiatives!