LPO concert a gratifying end to a busy weekend

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What a busy time it has been lately.

I spent a furious Sunday running around to the Garyville Wheelbarrow Race and Festival, then headed to San Francisco Plantation in the afternoon for that wonderful new event they have started, as the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra is playing there once a year as an important fundraiser.

Once again, big props to Kim Fontenot and all her helpers at the plantation who not only pulled off the third straight performance without a hitch, but continued to upgrade the event to make it yet another wonderful Louisiana tradition that is sure to grow.

This year they added the car show, and they have also had the gumbo cookoff added in recently to give everyone just a little more reason to attend.

Big thanks to Marathon and Entergy of Louisiana as the top “Roses” sponsors who gave $5,000 each.

“Magnolia” sponsors who gave $2,500 each were St. John Parish Economic Development, and the River Region Arts and Humanities Council.

“Camellia” sponsors who gave $1,000 each were River Parishes Tourist Commission, Wink Companies LLC, Port of South Louisiana, First National Bank U*S*A*, Performance Contractors, Landcraft Homes, United Way, Diageo Wine (Frank Puglia), Valero of St. Charles, St. John School Board and St. John Enterprises, LLC.

John Fuselier was one of the gumbo cookoff winners, taking the “People’s Choice” award, but as Kim handed him his plaque just before the show began, she let on a little something else about John.

Apparently John had been a Marathon employee for many years before recently retiring, yet he continues to serve on the Board of Directors for the plantation, and has been a great volunteer and friend to San Francisco for many years.

Just an observation here, but I could tell by the way Kim spoke about John that he is a good hearted soul who would probably give you the shirt off his back if needed.

So even though I don’t know you that well John, from where I sit, I got the feeling you are the kind of helper we all should try to follow. Good job.

Went from a busy weekend to a busy day of my own, as my wife hosted a triple-birthday party night at my own house on Monday.

My daughter Chrissy and her husband Jerry came in with “Little Jerry,” who is rapidly approaching 1 year old.

And then we have my middle daughter Jenny staying with us as her Army husband relocates to Virginia and Fort Eustis, where they will begin their next four years.

That, of course, means we have my 2-year-old granddaughter Abby living with us along with Jenny, not to mention the fact that Jenny is fast approaching her due date for grandchild number three for us.

So it was an active, but fun night, at the house Monday as we celebrated birthdays for myself (Nov. 3), my wife (Nov. 13), and my daughter Chrissy (Nov. 12), all on the same night.

My wife, who is quite the amazing baker, put in many kitchen hours to make me a Sour Cream Chocolate Cake, and Chrissy got an incredibly fancy Lemon Cake. They were honestly two of the most incredible pieces of work I’ve seen her do, at least to pull it all off at one time.

And if you know my wife when it comes to baking, there is no short cuts on anything. There she was on Sunday night squeezing real lemons for the cake….so you get the idea.

My chocolate cake was probably the richest, sweetest tasting chocolate cake I’ve ever had in my life and fortunately for the employees here at L’Observateur, I “had” to bring some of it to work on Tuesday morning.

So if you are looking for a second opinion, ask some of them what they thought of it.

Birthdays are kind of a funny thing, aren’t they? People celebrate them in so many different ways, even to the point of some people I know who don’t really do anything to commemorate the special day. I honestly know some people who don’t give any presents, and don’t do anything special for the day.

Not us!

We go all out for all these days and make them as much fun as possible, and thanks to my lovely wife and her constant extra effort for her 1) kids, 2) grandkids and 3) husband. It was a great night.

And no, I wasn’t putting those things in order of importance, since of course I would be first on the list, right honey?

Kevin Chiri is Publisher of L’Observateur and can be reached at (985) 652-9545 or at kchiri@bellsouth.net