Way Back When (August)

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“Way back when” is a new monthly feature in the Natchitoches Times that reflects on important, nostalgic or just interesting happenings in editions of the Natchitoches Times 40, 30, 20 and 10 years ago!

40 years ago (1978)

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• A sketch and plans for the Natchitoches Central High School construction is released (July 27)

•Kim Scroggins, then 14, is a recent winner of the Central District Cinderella Pageant in Alexandria (Aug. 4)

•Jessica Todd, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Pat S. Todd, is shown on front page attempting to feed the ducks on the shore of Chaplin’s Lake. The author pointed out that even back then, the ducks loved to bother picnickers.

30 years ago (1988)

•The Folk Festival kicks off Friday with a “Country Mardi Gras” parade down the streets of Natchitoches (July 17)

•Three principals named by the Natchitoches Parish School Board were Toni Bennett to North Natchitoches, Sam Perkins to Goldonna and Jimmye Holmes to Marthaville (July 17)

•The filming of “Steel Magnolias” begins with scenes of Daryl Hannah walking down Cypress Street near the Sutton Apartments (July 18)

•The “Steel Magnolias” production crew spends an entire week filming at the Taylor House on Jefferson Street, now called the Steel Magnolias House (July 24)

20 years ago (1998)

•Dana Dumon of Abbeville and Eric DeFratis of Natchitoches were the puppeteers that brought Audrey II to life at the NSU Summer Dinner Theatre “Little Shop of Horrors.” They were feature on the front page with the large puppet (July 24)

•Natchitoches Parish Library announces arrival of four public Internet sites through a program established by Microsoft Chairman and CEO Bill Gates for Louisiana public libraries. Parish librarian Bob Black states it is the largest gift in the history of public libraries (Aug. 6)

•LPB to broadcast halfhour documentary on Kate Chopin, a major short story writer who was married to Oscar Chopin of Natchitoches Parish (Aug. 14)

10 years ago (2008)

•Work begins on Turpin Stadium new scoreboard and sound system, just in time for their Aug. 30 season opener against Texas A&M Commerce (July 30)

•A group of friends surprise Natchitoches businessman Johnny Antoon on his 65th birthday by establishing the Johnny Antoon Endowed Scholarship through the NSU Foundation. Gifts and pledges to the scholarship totaled at $40,000, which was raised over nine months prior to his birthday party (July 31)

•The Natchitoches Council on Aging named Alice Barrios as its new director (Aug. 5)

•Three new buildings on Keyser Avenue are constructed: The Keyser Avenue Medical Center, the Bank of Montgomery and Raisin’ Canes (Aug. 9-10)