Hot air balloon pilot Richard Sabin of Longview glides toward his first target in his balloon, "Sea Breeze."
The U.S. National Hot Air Balloon Championship is on as scheduled Thursday in Longview after being grounded for the past two days due to poor weather conditions. The pilots are now trying to rapidly complete the tasks of the competition.
When Mother Nature interferes in a multi-day ballooning competition, the stakes get higher. The pilots must complete tasks each day of the competition in order to rack up a higher score. When there are fewer days to fly, there are fewer tasks to complete. This makes the remaining tasks all the more important.
Gary Jaynes directs veterans services for Volunteers of American North Louisiana based in Shreveport.
Volunteers of America North Louisiana will be able to help hundreds more homeless veterans in the area through a federal grant that will increase this fiscal year by more than $100,000. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs grant is through the Supportive Services for Veterans Families program. It can be used in a variety of ways to secure housing for veterans, according to Gary Jaynes, director of veterans services for Volunteers of America North Louisiana.
Louisiana Association for the Blind's CEO Shelly Taylor (left) and work readiness and job development specialist Amanda McCary aim to create more outreach programs for children with visual impairments.
The Louisiana Association for the Blind in Shreveport is putting on a camp for children with documented visual impairments. The week-long day camp is designed for school-aged children in the Caddo-Bossier area, and it’s the first of its kind in northwest Louisiana. Shelly Taylor, CEO of the Louisiana Association for the Blind, said this camp will strengthen youth services at her organization.
In Kilgore, Texas, demolition work is set to begin on C.B. Dansby High School that was built around 1930. The former all-black school was closed by desegregation in 1969. Today, it stands as a blighted, asbestos-filled property. Alumni leader De’Lores Arline attended the school before it closed. She recalls singing the school song for the last time, and how her classmates put on a brave front when transferring to Kilgore High School during the civil rights era.
A week of hot air balloon events will draw dozens of racers and enthusiasts to East Texas this week. The colorful balloons are being spotted over Longview today.
The events include the 36th Great Texas Balloon Race and, in its second year in Longview, the U.S. National Hot Air Balloon Championship. According to the Longview News Journal, 76 pilots are set to compete in both races this week and that will mean an infusion of tourism dollars for East Texas cities.