Lot & Land Clearing * Bobcat Service * Tree/Debris Removal * Dirt Work * Stump Grinding * Logging * Crane Services * Firewood Free Estimates * Locally Owned & Operated Residential and Commercial LA Licensed Arborist #1468 Check out our Featured Deals available in the Tangi App. RPR Tree Service is offering 2 Amazing Deals. Check it out on the App today! Download today!
RPR Tree Service
Come explore your guided adventure with a walk through the Swamp People Trail, as you first learn about the production facilities of our 47,000 turtles of all kinds.Continue your adventure as you see over 300 alligators in their natural habitat relaxing, sunbathing, or even nesting. What’s most exciting about Kliebert’s is our 57 year old gators that were hatched in 1957 by Harvey Kliebert. Along this tour you will view our feeding crew as they walk right up to the gators and hand feed these old beasts. Ranging from 9 to 18 feet, you best believe you will have your fill of the swamp! Among many of our other animals, you will be impressed by our Nile Croc (Gumbo), our 15 foot Python (Marie Laveau), and our LEGENDARY CRUSH ( 15 foot, 1200 pound gator). We here at Kliebert’s have nearly nine decades of experience under our belt , so come out and …..GIT YA’ GATOR ON!!!
41083 West Yellow Water Rd Hammond, LA 70403
Kliebert’s Turtle & Alligator Tours
For over a decade, A&A Stoneworks has been fabricating and installing high quality granite, marble, and quartz countertops for kitchen and bathrooms in Tickfaw. We have options that fit around any sink design, along with custom stone design services. Whether you’re building, renovating, or creating an addition, we can work with you.
49055 HIGHWAY 51 N TICKFAW, LA 70466
A & A Stoneworks
Hank’s Tint and Bedliners has been open since 1994; we are locally owned and operated. Customers come first at Hank’s, we work with you to come up with the best customization for your ride. Our staff is ready to help you enhance your vehicle with the highest quality craftsmanship in our business. Customer satisfaction is our number one goal at Hank’s Tint and Bedliners. Our staff treats your ride as if it was our own; we guarantee you will be satisfied with our services! Call us at 985-386-4348 or stop by our shop to see what projects we’ve got going on!
42235 S. Range Rd Ponchatoula, LA 70454
Hank’s Car Care
A Well-Oiled Machine: Conventional vs. Synthetic When it comes to food and personal care products, it’s pretty much always best to go with the less processed options that are closest to their natural form. But motor oil is a different story. Conventional oil is derived directly from crude oil, while the synthetic variety is the result of more advanced refining processes. Which is better? According to Consumer Reports, many automakers require vehicle owners to use synthetic motor oil because it’s designed to be more effective at resisting breakdowns, withstanding high temperatures, and flowing in cold temperatures — all of which results in fewer oil changes and can extend the life of your engine. The downside, however, is that synthetic motor oil can cost two to four times as much as regular oil. It’s helpful, but is it necessary? The bottom line: unless your owner’s manual specifies synthetic, it comes down to personal preference. Still unsure? Here are some local oil change services that could be of assistance: SpeeDee Oil Change & Auto Service (Hammond) 1301 N. Morrison Boulevard (985) 662-3338; www.speedeeoil.com Take 5 Oil Change (Hammond) 112 S. Morrison Boulevard (985) 269-0866; www.take5oilchange.com Breezy Quick Lube (Amite City) 204 W. […]
Quality of Life for Aging Veterans According to a 2013 census, there are over 9.3 million military veterans age 65 or older living in the United States. We owe them a huge debt of gratitude for serving in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and the Persian Gulf. But, beyond gratitude, and in addition to medical benefits from the Veterans Administration, these American heroes also deserve a lesser known benefit, called Aid and Attendance, or A&A. This service covers the cost of caregivers in the home, or in an assisted living or nursing home environment., which can have a significant impact on families who struggle to pay for care. Locally based VetAttend not only provides quality home care services to war-time veterans and their surviving spouses, they also assist with the daunting process of completing the A&A application, providing documentation, submitting completed documents to the VA, and continuing case management to monitor the application until complete. If you know someone who could benefit from these services, or if you’d like to contribute to this worthy organization, call (985) 778-2775 or visit vetattend.com.
Get Your Mind Into the Gutter
Hurricane season can be brutal in Southeast Louisiana. Even if we dodge the major bullets, chances are, by the end of the season, we’ve withstood at least a few storms, with all the leaves and debris accumulation that goes along with them. And your gutters have paid the price. For proper gutter maintenance, you need to: Clean them out, of course Make sure your downspouts are working properly. Check for holes and cracks in the caulking, as well as corrosion, sagging, bending and missing fasteners. Verify that your gutters are firmly attached to your home. Cut or trim overhanging tree branches. As you might imagine, this requires a lot of time, effort, ladder-climbing, and sharp tools. If you have neither the time, inclination, nor coordination to handle all of this for yourself — or if your gutters are beyond help — check out these local services that offer cleaning, repair, and installation. AFFORDABLE ROOFING, SIDING & GUTTERS (Installation/Repair) Hammond/Ponchatoula (985) 626-7663; nolaroofing.com KING’S CUSTOM GUTTERS (Installation) Ponchatoula, (985) 981-0487; kingscustomgutters.com NORTHSHORE GUTTERS LLC (Cleaning/Installation) Loranger, Independence, (985) 507-6585 (Loranger); (985) 878-4824 (Independence); www.northshoregutters.com QUALITY GUTTER & PATIO LLC (Installation) Ponchatoula, (985) 981-2137 RAIN-KER SPECIALTIES (Installation/Repair) Ponchatoula, (985) 386-5268; rain-kerspecialties.com
Mums Not the Only Word: Fall Flowers & Foliage
When it comes to updating your yard and garden with plants and flowers to reflect the palette and personality of the season, there are plenty of fall options that don’t limit you to chrysanthemums. While there’s certainly nothing wrong with this ubiquitous old standby and its myriad of hues, it’s worth it to browse through other selections that can add a little variety to your autumnal ambience. Here are a few South Louisiana fall-friendly plants and flowers to consider: Bromeliads Crotons Yellow Creeping Jenny Red Ruellia Cigar Plant Golden Rain Tree Candelabra plant Golden Bells or Esperanza ShiShi Gashira Camellia Belinda’s Dream Salvia leucantha Cassia splendida Whether you’re a seasoned pro or you were born without the green thumb chromosome, these local garden shops can help you realize your vision — or help you create one! SMITH’S NURSERY & LANDSCAPING (Ponchatoula) 19355 LA-22, (985) 386-8862 BRACY’S NURSERY (Amite) 64624 Dummyline Rd, (985) 748-8999 GREEN THUMB NURSERY (Ponchatoula) 12188 LA-22, (225) 294-5089 FIREFLY NURSERY (Independence) 16782 LA-40, (985) 606-5003
Much Ado About the Flu
While we’re slowly easing out of hurricane season, flu season is sneaking in. There’s no way to inoculate yourself against unpredictable weather, but you can certainly do you best to protect against that dreaded annual viral infection! Do you have questions? We have answers, courtesy of the CDC… When should I get vaccinated? Flu vaccinations are usually available beginning in August, and experts suggest getting the shot by the end of October, when the earliest outbreaks can start occurring. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop, so plan accordingly. What are the benefits of flu vaccination? It can… keep you from getting sick with flu. reduce the risk of flu-associated hospitalization, including among children and older adults. Serves as an important preventive tool for people with chronic health conditions. protect women during and after pregnancy, and protect a baby by passing on mom’s antibodies. may make your illness milder if you do get sick. protect people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and young children, older people, and people with certain chronic health conditions. Where can I get a flu vaccine in Tangipahoa Parish? Floyd’s […]
Trick or Treat & Healthy Teeth
It’s almost Halloween, and you know what that means… candy! It’s everywhere you look this time of year, and if you are a trick-or-treat enabler, it’ll be in your house soon, if it isn’t already. Don’t fret. While sweets aren’t exactly good for you, some are better than others. You just have to choose wisely! Where your teeth are concerned, not all candies are created equally. Chocolate lovers, rejoice — it’s one of your best options for dental health. It rinses off your teeth more easily than most, and dark chocolate has less sugar than milk chocolate. What you want to be aware of are the sticky, sour, and hard candies. Sticky or hard varieties are troublesome because they stay in your mouth and/or directly on your teeth longer, raising the risk of cavities. Sour candy is very acidic, which means it can weaken and damage the hard outer shell of your teeth. After you get your Halloween candy fix, you may want to follow up with a good cleaning! Here are some local dentists who can do just that: Louisiana Dental Center (Hammond) (985) 345-5888; www.ladentalcenter.com Dr. Christina B. Givens, DDS (Amite) (985) 747-8600; www.givensdental.com Verges Dental […]
Middendorf’s Oktoberfest: Party Like It’s 1810
If you read up on the origins of Oktoberfest, you’re likely to find two different stories. One credits the Munich celebration of the October 12, 1810 marriage of Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig to the Saxon-Hildburghausen Princess Therese. The other simply says… in the old days, October was when it was finally cool enough to brew lagers. Hooray! Let’s celebrate. While there are plenty of places to toast the beer part of this annual ritual, there are few places that will create the complete German experience, as Middendorf’s Restaurant will. In addition to serving authentic German meals for both lunch and dinner every Wednesday and Thursday from October 4 – November 9 (alongside the regular menu), their servers will be wearing traditional German attire. Menu highlights include tongue-twisting delicacies like schlachtplatte, sauerbraten, rotkraut, spätzle, and schwarzwälderkirschtorte (that’s Black Forest cake!). Visitors can also stroll through and take fun photos in Middendorf’s festive bier garden/German village, which includes custom German buildings and a maypole. And what’s a party without music? As a special treat for Oktoberfest, Heinz Pfeifer (the brother of Middendorf’s owner/chef Horst Pfeifer) will travel from Germany to entertain guests with traditional music on his accordion. Pick up a punch […]
Northshore Fall for Fun & Fun for All
While it’s true, many autumn activities and attractions are generally geared towards kids, why should they have all the fun? We’re lucky enough to have several local farms that go all out with fall festivities for all ages, from hayrides to corn mazes to to farm animal races and shows. Mrs. Heather’s Pumpkin Patch (Hammond) Now – November 8 While many of the activities are geared for kids, there’s plenty of appeal for adults, too. In addition to free admission for grown-ups, there’s a hay maze, nature trail, and lots more! Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm; Saturday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm. For details, call (225) 567-3493 or visit www.thfarms.com. Steele’s Fall Festival (Angie) October 7-29 Highlights include a tractor-drawn hayride, rock wall, duck and pig races, human foosball, hamster race track, Tarzan ropes, a corn maze, and more. Food and drinks will be for sale at the concession stand, and there are picnic tables all over the farm, as well as under the country pavilion, located behind their gift shop. Saturdays 10am-6pm and Sundays from 1-6pm. For details, visit www.steeleschristmastreefarm.com or call (985) 848-5133. Cajun Country Corn Maze (Pine Grove) October 7 – November 27 They offer different […]
No More Warring Over Flooring
It’s an eternal debate in the home improvement arena — carpet versus flooring. Which is better? Which adds value? Which detracts? Well, as it turns out, there are plenty of pros and cons for each. Hardwood, tile, and laminate options are often credited with being more hypo-allergenic, while many people prefer carpet for noise reduction and reduced risk of slips and falls. Aesthetically speaking, there’s no right or wrong choice. It’s truly a matter of taste. If you’re ready for new flooring for your home or business, check out Anthony Riggins Flooring in Amite. They offer a wide selection to appeal to any design aesthetic, including laminate, hardwood, ceramic, and carpet. They also offer a variety of backsplash materials. To discuss selection and price, call them at (985) 247-2401, or stop in for a visit at 104 SW Central Avenue in Amite.
Bugging Out: Take Control of Those Mosquitoes
We’re always bragging about our a fabulous South Louisiana weather, aren’t we? Along with great cuisine and colorful culture, our extended summers and mild winters are certainly great perks, but there’s one drawback: mosquitoes! Jokingly referred to as our state bird, mosquitoes are certainly annoying, but they can also transmit illnesses, like the dreaded Zika virus. To protect yourself and your family, you can drain standing water around your yard, and be sure to wear insect repellant or long sleeves/pants, especially at dusk and dawn, when they’re most active. If your mosquito problem requires professional help, however, call on Mosquito Authority. Their service is so effective, they guarantee you won’t be bothered by mosquitoes between treatments. If you are, they’re willing to reassess, retreat, or even refund, if necessary. Another sign that they stand by their work? They require no commitments or contracts, and you can cancel at any time. If you’re bothered by mosquitoes, ticks, flies, or other pests, call (225) 372-8085 for more information, or to schedule service. You can also visit their website at mosquito-authority.com.
Life & Limb: Tree Safety & Maintenance
Out of respect for both the environment and personal finances, most people these days are not frivolous about cutting down trees. What are some good reasons for having a tree trimmed or removed from your property? Troublesome Location Branches and roots can extend to a point that they damage or threaten to damage your roof, siding, foundation, plumbing, or even nearby power lines. Dead or Damaged Branches Unstable or dangling tree limbs can pose a threat to both your property and loved ones. Defects & Disease Structural issues and disease can compromise a tree’s integrity, also threatening both property and safety. Whether you have a tree that needs trimming or removal, or you need help assessing the situation, call on the licensed arborists at RPR Tree Service & Clearing. Locally owned and operated, their tree services include removal, trimming, and stump grinding. They also offer these additional services for both residential and commercial customers: Lot & Land Clearing Bobcat Service Debris Removal Dirt Work Logging Crane Services Firewood For more information or to schedule your FREE estimate, call (985) 247-8413. You can also visit their website or Facebook page.
Credit Unions: Time to Make the Switch?
Raise your hand if you’re among the 74% of Americans with only “some or very little confidence” in banks. Keep ‘em up if you still keep your money in an aforementioned bank. Despite the fact that credit unions don’t take risks with your money, charge lower fees, get slightly higher interest rates on deposit accounts, and often provide better customer service, fewer than one-third of Americans use them. Crazy, right? If you’re ready to make the switch, or at least learn more about what your local credit union can offer you, here are a few to check out: Tangipahoa Parish Teachers’ Credit Union (Amite) (985)748-5132; www.tptcu.org Louisiana Federal Credit Union (Hammond) (985) 652-4990; www.louisianafcu.org First Heritage Credit (Ponchatoula) (985) 429-0270; www.1stheritagecredit.com
Cool & Cultured: Ponchatoula’s Art & Wine Stroll
Fabulous event alert… the Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce is hosting its third annual Art & Wine Stroll in lovely downtown Ponchatoula on September 16! From 5-8pm, over 20 local businesses will remain open after hours, and many will offer wine samples. There will also be live music, and local art will be displayed and/or sold inside businesses and out on the sidewalks. Those of age who wish to sip while they amble can purchase an armband and wine glass for $20 from the Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce the night of the event at the Alligator Cage, Ponchatoula Therapy, or at A Touch of Country. It’s a free event, however, for those not partaking in wine samples. For more information, call the Chamber at (985) 386-2536, or visit the website at www.ponchatoulachamber.com.
Folks with Spokes: Where to Buy a Bike in Tangi
As you may know, the Tour De Tangipahoa is taking place on September 16. Are you planning to take on the challenging route through the Northshore countryside? If you need a bicycle, or your current bike could use a little tuning up, here’s a local shop that can help you out: Graycat Cycleworx 300 SW Railroad Ave, Hammond (985) 662-3604; www.graycatcycleworx.com They offer a wide range of services, including bicycle tune-ups and repair, wheel service and repair, new bicycle sales, and a multitude of accessories for any type of cyclist. We always recommend supporting local businesses, but If you simply must go the generic superstore route, here are your local options: Walmart Supercenter 2799 W Thomas St, Hammond (985) 345-8876; www.walmart.com Target 2030 Hammond Square Dr, Hammond (985) 277-3203; www.target.com
September 1 A Boy Called Po A single father struggles to care for his autistic, but gifted son after his wife dies. New Orleans native Bryan Batt is among the cast members. Jackals In this horror flick, worried parents who hire a deprogrammer to free their teenage son from a murderous cult soon find themselves trapped in a cabin and under siege. Unlocked On the run after her case becomes compromised, a CIA agent (Noomi Rapace) turns to an ex-soldier (Orlando Bloom) to help prevent a lethal biological attack on London. Michael Douglas also stars. September 8 Home Again In this comedy, Reese Witherspoon stars as a recently separated mother of two whose new life in Los Angeles is complicated by her decision to house three young, charismatic guys. It Based on the Stephen King book, neighborhood kids join together to go up against Pennywise, an evil clown with a long history of murder and violence. September 15 All I See Is You A blind woman’s relationship with her husband changes when she regains her sight and they discover disturbing details about themselves. American Assassin A black ops recruit Mitch Rapp (Dylan O’Brien) who […]
A New Spin on the Old Workout
Feeling inspired by the Tour de Tangipahoa, coming up on September 16? If you want to train for this, or other cycling events, or if you simply prefer indoor cardio, how about a spin class? When you take part in these rigorous, but low-impact instructor-led stationary bike classes, you: Burn Calories Build Muscle Tone Increase Cardio Endurance Relieve Stress Reduce Risks of Injury Ready to feel the burn? The following Hammond facilities offer spin classes: Pulse Cross Training Studio www.pulsecrosstraining.com; (985) 549-1500 North Cypress Fitness Center www.northcypress.com; (985) 542-3121 Spoga Fitness Center www.spogafc.com; (985) 345-2453
Autumn’s Beautiful Bounty
Despite our seemingly endless steamy weather, summer will soon make way for fall. The kids are back in school, the days are getting shorter, and everyone’s front yards and homes will soon be festooned with all those ubiquitous pumpkins, squash, and gourds. Beyond looking festive, does this autumnal produce have any redeeming qualities? Yes, and here are some excellent reasons to upgrade them from the front porch decor to dinner table delight: Pumpkins Pumpkin seeds pack about 1.7 grams of dietary fiber per ounce Mashed pumpkin has only 50 calories per cup and 3 grams of fiber Better vision Lower blood pressure Better sleep Heart healthy Gourds Rich in soluble and insoluble dietary fibre Promotes weight loss Low in fat and cholesterol content Great thirst quencher Squash Huge source of vitamin A Significant amounts of vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin B6, niacin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, and folate Contains magnesium, potassium, manganese, copper, phosphorous,calcium, and iron Not sure how to cook your fall produce? Check out this fabulous, festive recipe, courtesy of Food Network: Butternut Squash Soup Recipe Ingredients One 2- to 3-pound butternut squash, peeled and seeded 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 medium onion, chopped 6 cups chicken stock […]
Healthy, Fast & Easy: Have it all with Core Meals
Once upon a time, a busy person’s only options for a quick dinner were unhealthy fast food and tasteless frozen food. Neither is especially appealing, and both get old really quickly. In recent years, national and even international meal delivery services have sprung up, offering quick, healthy alternatives. This is all well and good, but not everyone likes the idea of having some nameless, faceless company ship food to them from great distances. That’s where Hammond’s own Core Meals comes in. North Cypress Fitness partners Olaf Ross, Richard Henry and Dion Grossnickle came up with the idea for Core Meals two years ago as a way to offer healthy, affordable meals to their members. The program, which started out making around 100 meals a week, soon caught on like wildfire, and has grown into a pickup and delivery service of about 2,500 meals a week for customers in Hammond, St. Tammany Parish and even New Orleans. Each meal container is labeled with calories, fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, and they range from just under 300 calories per meal to some that are just under 500. Customers must place their orders before 9 a.m. on Friday to receive their meals for the […]
Swim for Your Life
Living in South Louisiana means having summer weather way past what the calendar dictates, and almost always being near water. As such, now is as good a time as any to make sure you’re up to snuff on water safety. Namely: swimming. Can you: (1) tread water or float for a minute? (2) jump into deep water and come up for air? (3) spin around in the water and find a way out? (4) get out of a pool without a ladder? (5) swim one pool length without stopping? According to the Red Cross, more than half of all Americans cannot perform these potentially life-saving tasks. But it’s never too late for swimming lessons. The following local swim schools are happy to teach adults. The Seahorse Swim School (Hammond) 1606 South Magnolia Street (504) 256-6554; www.slst-seahorses.com Riptide Swim Club (Hammond) 45246 Country Club Road (985) 345-2387; www.riptideswimclub.org
Hot Time in the Old Town
It’s that time of year again! While New Orleans and Covington have their fancy White Linen Nights, Hammond takes a refreshingly more laid-back approach with Hot August Night. You’re certainly welcome to wear the fancy linen, but any festive, hot-weather attire will do! Celebrating its 22nd year, Hot August Night, presented by the Downtown Development District, is scheduled for Friday, August 25 with tons of fabulous fun. At press time, they were still hammering out the details, but last year’s event featured live music on five different stages, a Kid Zone, High School Hype-Up pep rally, plenty of cooling stations, an improved Wine Walk, car show, Art Alley, Lionpawlooza, and SLU athletic autographs. Wristbands for participating in the wine sampling typically cost $20 and go on sale in the DDD office at #2 W. Thomas Street in downtown Hammond the night of the event at 5:30pm, which is when the open container alcohol ordinance is temporarily lifted. Organizers expect around 10,000 visitors from all over the region, so parking will be especially limited. It’s a good idea to get there early. Carpooling is highly recommended. For more information on Hot August Nights, or any of the Downtown Development District’s other […]
Get Struck by Louisiana Lightning
In case you haven’t noticed, micro-breweries are popping up everywhere lately. This is great for beer drinkers, but what if you’re more inclined to drink the hard stuff? There are a couple of distilleries in New Orleans, of course, but did you know there’s one right here in Tangipahoa Parish? While this region is primarily known for its rum production, Amite’s Louisiana Lightning Whiskey has the distinction of being the only whiskey distilled and bottled in Louisiana. This award-winning “white whiskey” is the unaged version of the darker stuff we’re used to, also comes in a wild strawberry flavored variety. No permanent tour schedule is set up, but with advanced notice, they give private tours. To set up a tour, or to learn more about Louisiana Lightning and where to buy it, visit www.louisianalightning.com.
Real Estate Reduction: Time to Downsize?
“Go big or go home.” “Bigger is better.” “Big fish in a small pond.” In America, we like things big. In many cases, that’s a good thing, but when it comes to your home, what if it’s time to head in the other direction? What if it’s time to downsize? The concept isn’t foreign. Empty-nesters do it all the time, and there’s even an HGTV show called “Tiny Houses, Big Living” that follows the trend of itty-bitty homes that measure less that 500 square feet. While that’s a little too extreme for most of us, here are some reasons to consider reducing the size of your living space: Save money — maybe even eliminate mortgage payments! Less maintenance and cleaning Cozier feeling, less empty space Less environmental impact Lowers any compulsion to collect “stuff” Wider market if you decide to move If you decide it’s time to find a smaller home — or if you’re growing family needs a larger one — here are some local realtors that can help you find just the right place. Latter & Blum Classic Homes & Properties (Hammond, Ponchatoula, Amite) www.latterblumclassic.com; (985) 542-7601 Martin Realty (Tickfaw) www.tangiproperties.com; (985) 277-9359 Team 1 […]
5 Tips for an Amicable Divorce
Deciding to end your marriage is never easy or pleasant, but that doesn’t mean it has to be ugly. It’s especially important to avoid unnecessary acrimony if there are children involved. According to Peaceful Mediation, a multi-state (not in Louisiana) divorce mediation service, there are five important steps for orchestrating an amicable divorce. Step 1: Make the decision to divorce without blame. Step 2: Focus on the big picture. Step 3: Negotiate the terms of your divorce in good faith. Step 4: (If applicable) Place the needs of your children first and be good co-parents once your divorce is finalized. Step 5: Work through the terms of your settlement agreement in an environment of mutual respect and dignity. Attorneys can help navigate the process and ensure that there are no legal loose ends. We’ve pulled together a list of some local divorce lawyers for your consideration. Charles Genco (Amite) charlesgenco.com; (985) 748-8164 Brett Keller Duncan (Hammond) www.brettkduncanlaw.com; (985) 345-0660 Douglas D. Brown, Attorney at Law (Hammond) www.dougbrownlaw.com; (985) 310-6900 Drake & Beckler LLC, Attorneys at Law (Ponchatoula) drakebeckler.com; (985) 386-7600
Farm Fresh Gators
Humans and alligators in Louisiana have a fascinating relationship. Despite having the largest gator population in the U.S., and an insane ratio of two humans to every gator, there have been very few attacks and either one or zero (depending on who you believe) fatal attacks in recorded history. Amazing, right? Especially considering that Florida, which has only 1.3 million gators, 20 million people, and far more real estate on which to spread out, has had over 300 attacks and 23 fatalities. Is it luck? Voodoo? Mutual respect because we’re only allowed to hunt them in late August and September, and pretty much leave them alone the rest of the year? Whatever it is, if you want to get up close and personal, and not risk ruining our stellar safety record, going to a gator farm is the way to go. We just happen to have one in Tangipahoa Parish. Kliebert’s Turtle & Alligator Farm & Tours of Hammond is a family-owned business, established in 1957 that provides a guided adventure with a walk through the Swamp People Trail. They boast 47,000 turtles, plus over 300 alligators in their natural habitat, ranging in size from 9 to 18 feet. Visitors […]
If you love the idea of hitting the open road, but you’re turned off by the gas mileage or intimidated by the thought of maneuvering full-sized campers and RVs through traffic and into campsites, you might be interested in the newest trend — lightweight trailers that can be towed behind cars and smaller SUVs. One example is the 16-foot-long 2017 Airstream Basecamp trailer, which weighs just over a ton and looks like a space capsule. The inTech RV is smaller and lighter, which makes is cheaper and easier to store, but can still carry a kayak or bike on the roof. Whether you’re interested in these trendy campers, the full-sized varieties, or luxurious recreational vehicles, here are a few local dealers who can help you out. Kent Mitchell RV Sales 41430 E Interstate 55 Service Rd, Hammond www.kmrv.org; (985) 375-9900 Dixie RV Superstores 10241 Destination Drive, Hammond www.dixierv.com; (225) 567-4424 Berryland Campers 42775 Pleasant Ridge Road Ext, Ponchatoula www.berrylandcampers.com; (985) 370-7001
Craft Cocktail Recipe: Romera and Julieta
(courtesy of Saveur Magazine) For the Hibiscus Tea and Rosemary Syrup: 1 sprig rosemary 1 cup granulated sugar 1 oz. dried hibiscus flowers (found at upscale markets, like Whole Foods) For the Cocktail: 3 oz. hibiscus tea 2 oz. tequila 1 oz. rosemary syrup 1⁄2 oz. fresh lime juice 1 sprig rosemary, for garnish Instructions: To make the rosemary syrup, combine sugar, rosemary, and 1 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until sugar has dissolved, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool, then strain. To make the tea, bring hibiscus and 1 cup water to a boil over high heat in a small saucepan; cook 3 minutes, then let cool before straining. To make the cocktail, combine tea, tequila, syrup, lime juice, and 1⁄2 cup water in a cocktail shaker filled with ice; shake vigorously, then strain into a highball glass filled with ice. Garnish with a rosemary sprig. For tips on growing your own cocktail herb garden, click here.
Cool Under Pressure: Don’t Neglect Your A/C!
There are places in the U.S. where air conditioning is not necessarily a priority. Most of those places have relatively short summers, and many experience what you might call a “dry heat.” That is not the case in South Louisiana, where summer often comes early, stays late, and the humidity can mildew a couch in an un-air-conditioned house in no time flat. That’s why it’s important to maintain your cooling system to avoid catastrophic problems in the dead of summer. It’s recommended that you have a contractor do annual pre-season check-ups before they enter their busy season. According to Energy Star, a typical maintenance check-up should include: Check thermostat settings to ensure the cooling and heating system keeps you comfortable when you are home and saves energy while you are away. Tighten all electrical connections and measure voltage and current on motors. Lubricate all moving parts. Check and inspect the condensate drain in your central air conditioner, furnace and/or heat pump (when in cooling mode). Check controls of the system to ensure proper and safe operation.. But, if f the unthinkable happens, and your a/c goes out during our brutal summer, here are some local repair companies to call with […]
Superb Herbs: Growing a Cocktail Herb Garden
With the rise of the “craft cocktail,” people are getting more and more experimental with their ingredients, often infusing herbs into the liquor or muddling them right in the glass. If you’re not exactly an enthusiastic gardener, this may be just the right incentive you need to give it a whirl. You can use almost anything for an herb container, just make sure it has good drainage. Note: the smaller the container, the less soil there is, so you have a smaller margin of error when it comes to watering! It’s simple enough to start off small with container gardening, and here are some suggested herbs to get you started. Mint Lavender Thyme Lemon Verbena Rosemary Sweet Basil Stevia For a list of local nurseries and gardening stores to help you with all the supplies and advice you’ll need, see our “Brawny Blossoms” post. For a fabulously herbaceous craft cocktail recipe, click here.
5 Tips for Will & Estate Planning
Raise your hand if you actually enjoy contemplating your own demise. No takers? Of course, not — nobody does! But estate planning is a necessary task to ensure that things are carried out the way you want, and that your grieving loved ones aren’t saddled with a huge legal hassle. According to Investors.com, these are the five steps you should take: Take an inventory of your assets and liabilities to determine your net worth and what comprises your entire estate. Determine who you want to be your beneficiaries. Then decide how you want the assets distributed. Decide who will manage the plan. Do you want the executor to be a family member, an attorney or a corporate trustee? Figure out what type of plan makes the most sense. While writing a will makes sense for most people, some people might want to consider a revocable trust instead. Find an attorney to draw up your will and estate plan documents. Here are some local estate planning attorneys for you to consider: Mr. David Aymond (Ponchatoula) 27455 Hwy. 22, Suite A (985) 845-3414 Lila Tritico Hogan (Hammond) 309 E Church St (985) 542-7730 Jeff Alan LeSaicherre (Hammond) 41601 Veterans Avenue, […]
Cool Options for Outdoor Fun
Are you or someone you love not content to lounge around on the couch all summer? Sure, you could join a gym or hit a sports recreational facility, but how about a change of pace? Whether you’re packing heat, or have a need for speed, here are some cool options for outdoor fun in Tangipahoa Parish. River Road Go-Kart Track (Hammond) This go-kart track allows participants to race in a ten-car heat in their 10.5-horsepower Dino karts — and they have party packages and memberships. For the younger kids, they’ve got 5-horsepower single and double-seat karts. In addition to weekday nights, River Road Go-Kart Track is open on Saturdays from 11am – 10pm, and Sundays from 11am-7pm. rrgokart.com; (985) 351-4576 Tower Trax ATV Park (Fluker) Tower Trax boasts 40 miles of trails spread out over 2,600+ acres of land. Highlights include oval and drag mud racing, five mud ponds, cabin rentals, camping and RV hookups, and a concession stand. The park opens at 9am on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, and on Fridays at 10am. www.towertraxatv.com; (985) 969-0114 Tangi Practical Shooters (Amite) Both new and experienced shooters are welcome in this gun club, and the range is open to the public on Saturdays […]
Laid-Back Lawn Games for Summer
The clanging of horseshoes, the whoosh of a badminton racket, the clunk of a croquet mallet against the wooden ball. Do these unmistakable sounds bring back nostalgic memories for you? They’re the simple, classic games that transformed boring backyards into fields of fun back in the day. But, why are we talking in past tense? You can still get this equipment and add an extra element of enjoyment to your next barbecue or party. For these, and all your sporting goods and equipment needs, check out these nearby retailers. Academy Sports + Outdoors (Hammond) Hammond Square Mall; (985) 429-7860 Walmart Supercenter (Hammond) 2799 W Thomas St; (985) 345-8876 Hibbett Sports (Amite) 706 W Oak St Suite 400; (985) 747-1190 Hibbett Sports (Hammond) Hammond Square Mall; (985) 340-1468 2751 W Thomas St; (985) 902-7623 S & S Sports Center (Hammond) 105 S Morrison Blvd; (985) 345-8323
Fish Nutrish: Louisiana Seafood Nutritional Values
One of the many reasons we’re lucky to live in South Louisiana is our access to fresh seafood. (If you’ve ever lived in a land-locked location, you know how awful it can taste after it’s been frozen and shipped over long distances.) Not only does it taste great, but it’s a low fat, high protein food source that also provides a lot of health benefits. For instance… Shrimp Four ounces of shrimp contains over 100% of the recommended daily amount of selenium, over 75% of vitamin B12, over 50% of phosphorous, and over 30% for choline, copper, and iodine. Oysters Oysters a good source of essential nutrients, including vitamins A, E, and C, zinc, iron, calcium, selenium, and vitamin B12. Fish Fish is filled with omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins such as D and B2. It’s also rich in calcium and phosphorus, and a great source of minerals, such as iron, zinc, iodine, magnesium, and potassium. Crawfish Mudbugs are high in B vitamins and minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc and phosphorous. If you’re looking for an excellent local source for seafood, look no further than K-Jenn’s Seafood & Po-Boys. Opening in Hammond in July, they’ll be offering fresh, […]
BE the Grill Master
You’ve got the grill, the tools, and the menu — now what? Here’s a list of grilling tips, courtesy of Food Network, to get you started on your way to becoming a true grillmaster — plus, a great rub recipe from Bobby Flay Start with a clean grill. Don’t move the food around. Don’t squeeze or flatten meats. Keep a spray bottle handy for flare-ups. Buy a meat thermometer. Avoid putting cold foods straight on the grill. Undercook foods, just slightly. (Expect food temp to rise about 5 degrees after leaving the grill) Rest all meat for five to 15 minutes after cooking. Don’t over-char to cook through meat with bones. Keep it simple when serving a crowd. (Managing numerous cook times for different proteins and veggies can get stressful) Bobby Flay’s Rib Rub Recipe In a small mixing bowl, combine one tablespoon of each of these ingredients: cumin paprika granulated garlic granulated onion chili powder brown sugar Add one teaspoon of the following: cayenne pepper black pepper white pepper Add 2 tablespoons of kosher salt, mix, then pack the rub onto your rack of ribs, and cook ‘em low and slow in the oven, grill, or smoker.
The Thrill of the Grill
Between the pool parties, outdoor entertaining, and the desire to ditch the hot, confining kitchen — summer is prime grilling season! And while seafood and vegetables are perfectly respectable options, nothing beats carnivorous cuisine. You could certainly head over to your nearby chain grocery store for a basic meat selection, but for those special occasions when you’re entertaining friends and family, here are some of Tangi’s specialty meat markets that are a cut above. Cutrer’s Meat Market & Slaughterhouse (Kentwood) Monday -Friday, 8am-5pm (closed for lunch 12-1); Saturday 8am-noon (985) 229-2478 White Tail Butcher Shop (Independence) Monday-Saturday 8am-6pm (985) 878-2022 Tangi Meats Wholesale and Retail Market (Hammond) Monday-Wednesday 9am-4pm; Thursday-Friday 9am-6pm (985) 386-3104 Galloway Meat Market (Robert) Monday-Saturday 9am-6pm; Sunday 9am-2pm (985) 520-5658
Brawny Blossoms: 8 Flowers That Can Take the Heat
Summertime means lots of outdoor entertaining. If you’re looking to pretty up your patio or beautify your backyard before your next barbecue or brunch soiree, there are two things you should keep in mind: Flowers add color and character to any outdoor space. Summer in Louisiana can be brutal for any living thing, let alone a delicate blossom! Ah, but not all blossoms are created equal. There are some rugged varieties of flowering plants that can stand up to our harsh temperatures and humidity. This list is courtesy of LSU AgCenter: Begonias Cockscomb, also known as Celosia Gomphrena Marigolds Periwinkles Wave petunias Zinnias Where can you find a great selection of plants, and advice on how to care for them? Luckily, we have plenty of great nurseries and garden centers in Tangipahoa Parish. Such as: Smith’s Nursery & Landscaping (Ponchatoula) 19355 LA-22; (985) 386-8862 Bracy’s Nursery (Amite) 64624 Dummyline Rd; (985) 748-8999 Green Thumb Nursery (Ponchatoula) 12188 LA-22; (225) 294-5089 Firefly Nursery (Independence) 16782 LA-40; (985) 606-5003
Recipe: Popsicles for Pets
Peanut Butter Pet-sicles (courtesy of the Humane Society) Refreshing popsicles for pets can be made out of all kinds of things they normally eat, like treats or even watered-down wet food. This recipes calls for peanut butter, preferably unsalted and unsweetened. Be sure it doesn’t contain any kind of xylitol, which is toxic to dogs. Ingredients 1 cup peanut butter half a ripe banana, mashed water, as needed Instructions In a small mixing bowl, combine peanut butter with a little water or half a mashed banana. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper, or use Kong-style rubber toys that have a cavity you can fill. Spoon the mixture onto the tray just like you would cookie dough, or stuff it into the toys. Freeze the tray or toys for several hours or overnight. Serve and, voila! Instant chilly dogs and cool cats!
Summer Safety for Our Furry Friends
As summer approaches, we’re constantly made aware of all the seasonal precautions we need to take to protect ourselves and our family. We slather on the sunscreen, spray for mosquitos, practice water safety, and keep hydrated. But there are also a special set of hot weather guidelines for our beloved pets. The Humane Society suggests the following: Never leave your pets in a parked car. On an 85-degree day, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes. After 30 minutes, it will reach 120 degrees. Watch the humidity. Animals pant to evaporate moisture from their lungs, which takes heat away from their body. If the humidity is too high, they are unable to cool themselves. Limit exercise on hot days. Adjust intensity and duration of exercise when it’s hot, and limit exercise to early morning or evening hours. Don’t rely on a fan. Pets respond differently to heat than humans do. (Dogs, for instance, sweat primarily through their feet.) And fans don’t cool off pets as effectively they do for people. Provide ample shade and water. Provide plenty of fresh, cold water, with ice when possible. Tree shade and tarps are […]
Fourth of July Fireworks Fun
Fill up the coolers, spread out the blankets, and cue up the John Philips Sousa music — it’s Fourth of July fireworks time! If you’re one of the many patriotic citizens who’s not interested in risking loss of digits, eyes, or any other body part that could be damaged by a sligh miscalculation in the handling of DIY fireworks, here are some local, professionally orchestrated shows to attend. Hidden Oaks 4th of July July 1-4 Hidden Oaks Campground is hosting this 3-day celebration, complete with a golf cart parade, golf card poker run, all-ages bingo, Ms. Liberty Legs beauty contest, live music from Aaron Foret band, of course fireworks, and more. Call for times (unavailable at press time). 985-345-9244. hiddenoaksfamilycampground.com Ponchatoula Fireworks July 3 Gates at the Ponchatoula Area Rec District on North Hoover Road will open at 5pm for this event. The concession stand will be open, ice cream trucks will be on-hand, and entertainment provided. The fireworks show will begin after sundown and end at 9:30pm. www.ponchatoulachamber.com Hammond’s Light Up the Sky on the 4th of July July 4 The City of Hammond provides a free fireworks celebration lasting 20 minutes with more than 3,960 […]
Refresh Your Exercise Regimen
Variety is not only the spice of life, it’s the key to keep from getting bored with your fitness routine, and reaching the dreaded fitness plateau. For a challenging and healthy exercise regimen, it’s important to diversify your workouts and include the five main elements of fitness: aerobic exercise, strength training, core exercises, balance training, and stretching. North Cypress Fitness Center recognizes this, which is why their state-of-the art facilities in Hammond and Ponchatoula offer cutting edge equipment and such a broad menu of group exercise classes and training programs to suit all ages and fitness levels. Group exercise classes range from a hardcore, mixed-martial-arts inspired workout (StrikeCore Fitness) to one that incorporates Tai Chi, Yoga & Pilates (Les Mills BODYFLOW) to several senior classes that take the specific needs of older adults into account — and everything in between. Options for training methods from around the world include CrossFit, TRX, Rope Fit, Synrgy small group training, Krav Maga, and tennis conditioning, among others. North Cypress Fitness Center also boasts over 200 pieces of premier cardio and strength training equipment, plus swimming, tennis, nutrition, and an on-site cafe. To browse through their enormous selection of classes and programs, and to […]
Summer Style: 5 Hot Trends
Are you a serious fashionista? Or maybe just a casual style-watcher? If you place any stock in what designers and industry magazines dictate, then you may want to update your wardrobe with some of the following items, which are being touted by InStyle Magazine at some of the hottest women’s fashion trends of the season. Printed Shorts. We’re talking bright and eye-catching, balanced with a relaxed and solid blouse. Peek-a-Boo Lace. Playful and feminine, you might’ve seen this flirty style on actress Eva Mendes. Leather Dresses. It seems like an odd choice for summer, but to balance it out, they suggest you keep your silhouette airy and colors light. Cropped Tops. If you’re bold and comfortable baring your midriff, this is a trend for you. Consider pairing it with an A-line skirt. Backless Dresses. Another daring choice, this “business in the front, party in the back” trend is sure to be an attention-getter. Whether you follow the trends, or set your own, there are some great boutiques all around Tangipahoa Parish to keep you looking good. Here are just a few: Imagine Boutique 109 W Thomas St, Hammond (985) 345-0548 Obsession Boutique 420 Palace Drive, Hammond (985) 345-8797 Poppy Ann’s Boutique 110 NE […]
Brush Up on First Aid & CPR for Summer
Summer’s rising temperatures and increase in outdoor sports and activities can present problems on their own, but combine them, and you’ve got a whole new set of circumstances that could lead to illness and injury. According to WebMD, there are the top 7 summer hazards: Lawnmower injuries Boating accidents Dehydration Sunburn Picnic food poisoning Fireworks accidents Insect bites and stings There’s no need to hide indoors all season. Instead, now is the time to dust off the first aid kids and brush up on first aid and CPR training. Here are some Tangipahoa Parish organizations that can help you do just that. American Red Cross (Hammond) 303 E Thomas St; (985) 542-3469 The Red Cross offers a ton of classes, ranging from adult and pediatric first aid/CPR/AED to babysitting safety to swimming/water safety. Some classes are even online. North Oaks Health System (Hammond) 15790 Paul Vega, MD, Drive; (985) 345-2700 North Oaks has classes that address lifesaving techniques for choking, rescue breathing, and CPR for adults, children, and infants. CPR Test Center (Online) This testing organization offers convenient online first aid, CPR and basic life support training for individuals from all walks of life, including healthcare providers.
What are the ‘Dog Days of Summer’?
No doubt you’ve heard the phrase “Dog Days of Summer,” but what in the world does it mean? Apparently, the ancient Romans associated the hottest, most humid days of summer with the star Sirius, known as the Dog Star, which is the brightest star in the constellation Canis Major, Latin for “large dog.” Technically, this refers to July and August, but this is Louisiana. Every summer day is a hot, humid dog day in our book! As such, it seems like the perfect time to let our canine companions run a little wild with a trip to Zemurray Dog Park. Conveniently located in downtown Hammond, in the far southwest corner of Zemurray Park, this modest little doggie haven abides by the park’s hours, which are 8am-7pm daily. Water, trash barrels, and bag dispensers are provided, so dog owners are encouraged to pick up after their dogs. It also features a double-gate entry/exit to the large and small dog areas for the safety of both dogs and owners. For more information, visit www.hammond.org or call (985) 277-5900.
Playful Landscaping Ideas for Summer
It’s summertime, and we’re all anxious to get outside and play, right? If you’re limited on travel options, or a bit of a homebody, you’re in luck. Until recently, the only real options for creating a functional backyard space were basically limited to a pool, playground equipment, or an outdoor kitchen. Now, thanks to a new landscaping trend, there are all sorts of creative ideas for aesthetically pleasing, all-ages backyard play. Miniature Golf. A backyard putting green may be nothing new, but mini golf adds a fun twist to an old concept. The size and scope of the green depends on individual taste, space, and budget, but it retains one of the best benefits of a putting green — artificial grass creates a low maintenance zone that requires no pesky mowing or weeding. Giant Chessboards. Whether you repurpose an existing patio or create a board using pavers, what a fabulous, whimsical focal point this creates. Many online retailers offer giant chess pieces, with and without a roll-out mat, which adds a convenient element of portability. Corn Hole. People are not only creating specialized boards for this brilliantly simple bean-bag-throwing hobby, but their own backyard courts, as well. They can easily […]
Caring for Summer Skin
As you enjoy all of summer’s outdoor activities and, heaven forbid, sunbathing — don’t neglect your skin! Summer can be brutal on the epidermis, but you can take some simple steps to protect and soothe your delicate outer layer. Keep skin hydrated with moisturizers and revitalizing toner spritzes Exfoliate for smoother skin that more easily absorbs toners and moisturizers Drink plenty of water Apply — and reapply — sunscreen Wear big-brimmed hats for stylish sun protection Soothe over-exposed skin with soothing botanicals and cooling gels Repair and treat sun damage with skin-nourishing products Get suspicious moles checked by a dermatologist For a more personalized, one-on-one skincare consultation, and to get those suspicious spots evaluated, check out these three Tangi dermatology offices: Northshore Dermatology 1606 S Magnolia St, Hammond (985) 340-4198, northshorederm.com Benson Dermatology & Skin Cancer 180 N 5th St, Ponchatoula (985) 370-7546, www.bensonderm.com Dr. Rebecca Soine, Hammond Dermatology Center 15709 Professional Plaza, Hammond (985) 542-9333
Summer Cucumber-Berry Smoothie Recipe
Berries and cucumbers are in season here in Southeast Louisiana. Why not combine the two into a refreshing smoothie? Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups chilled berries 1 cup cold milk ½ cucumber, de-seeded and chopped into large chunks 1 to 2 tablespoons honey Squeeze of lemon Ice (optional) Directions: Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend. Add ice or additional milk or yogurt, depending on desired consistency.
Support Your Local Farmer’s Markets!
One of the greatest gifts nature gives us in the summertime is fresh produce. There’s no better time to eat healthy, and this time of year, there’s no excuse for not at least injecting some healthy food into your usual diet. Roadside stands and farmer’s markets are just teeming with beautiful options. Sure, the chain grocery stores benefit from the season, too, but now is the best time to support your local markets. And here’s why… It’s a great way to support to local farming families. The produce and goods are less likely to be full of pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, and genetic modification. It eliminates the need to irradiate, wax, or gas produce to keep it fresher longer in transit. It’s a lovely excuse to some fresh air, instead of being stuck in a grocery store. Here are some local farmer’s markets you might want to visit: Hammond Farmer’s Market Held every Saturday from 8am-noon in historic downtown Hammond, this year-round, open-air market features plants, locally grown produce, various prepared foods from local vendors, and unique arts & crafts. They also sometimes have special treats for kids, like craft projects or live animals for pictures and petting. 2 West Thomas Street […]
Hurricane Prep Checklist
Hurricane Season is officially here. Are you ready? Think like a boy scout: be prepared! Many items on the Red Cross’s checklist need your attention long before the actual watches or warnings are issued, so take some time to review it in advance. Before the storm: ❏ Be sure your homeowner’s insurance covers flooding associated with big storms! Talk to a local agent or visit the National Flood Insurance Program at www.FloodSmart.gov. ❏ Talk with members of your household and create an evacuation plan. ❏ Get a NOAA Weather Radio for critical information from the National Weather Service. ❏ Learn about your community’s hurricane response plan. Plan routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs, and make plans for your pets to be cared for. When the watches and warnings begin: ❏ Check your disaster supplies and replace or restock as needed. ❏ Bring in anything that can be picked up by the wind (bicycles, lawn furniture). ❏ Close windows, doors and hurricane shutters, or close and board up windows and doors with plywood. ❏ Turn the refrigerator and freezer to the coldest setting and keep them closed as much as possible so that food will last […]
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