On this week’s edition of Louisiana Eats! hear about a new program developed by Louisiana Sea Grant that allows consumers the opportunity to buy fresh catches directly from our state’s fishermen.
The 23-minute documentary “Edens on the Edge” – a Louisiana Sea Grant (LSG) production – chronicles the importance of wildlife refuges located in the state’s coastal zone.
“Edens on the Edge functions as a true Louisiana conservationist and stewardship effort. It portrays the sheer phenomenal beauty of Louisiana’s coastal refuges, wildlife and landscape, while also serving as a reminder that many of these habitats are threatened due to forces such as coastal erosion, land subsidence and sea level rise,” said Earl Robicheaux, the film’s production supervisor and creator of the video’s soundscape.
With hurricane season only a few weeks away, now is the time homeowners should start making necessary preparations to protect their homes and loved ones. Through the new Louisiana Homeowners Handbook to Prepare for Natural Hazards, residents of Louisiana have a useful resource at their fingertips as they begin readying their families for natural disasters.
The handbook is available in PDF format at www.lsu.edu/sglegal/pubs/handbook.htm as a free download. Free hard copies will be available at various locations throughout coastal parishes, or the book can be ordered for $5 – to cover postage and handling – by emailing Jessica Schexnayder at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Louisiana Sea Grant’s Marine Education Program is hosting cast net making classes beginning Thursday, May 9, and continuing every Thursday for 12 weeks from 6:00 p.m. to sunset.
The classes will be held at LSG’s Oyster Hatchery Operations Center located at 135 Port Drive, Grand Isle, and are open to everyone. Registration is $50 and includes all materials needed to make a net. Registration is free for students in grades K-12. John Supan, director of Louisiana Sea Grant’s oyster hatchery, will conduct the classes. Evening commentary will be provided by Grand Isle native Ambrose Besson.
To register or for more information, contact Supan at 985-264-3239 or email email@example.com.
When the likes of Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy tee it up on the first hole at Augusta National Golf Club for the 2013 Masters Golf Tournament, David Toms won’t be the only one representing Louisiana among golf’s most notable players. John Shackelford, a Louisiana State University Food Science graduate student, will work as a lead chef manning the kitchen that serves some of the tournament’s corporate sponsors. To read more, click here.
Chandra Wright has joined the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism and the Auburn University Marine Extension and Research Center as a nature tourism specialist.
She will provide technical training to improve business management practices and increase profits. She also will conduct training and certification programs, presentations, workshops and face-to-face consultations with people interested in developing or expanding nature tourism operations in such areas as sustainable charter fishing and dolphin and nature tours.
While her office is located in Gulf Shores, Ala., she will be working with nature-tourism businesses on the Alabama and Mississippi coasts.
“We are so happy to have Chandra in this position,” said Colette Boehm, special projects director for Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism. “She’s been involved in many of the nature-based activities along the coast for years, so her experience, along with her professional knowledge base, is an excellent combination. She’ll be a great asset to the nature tourism industry.”
Wright holds a Juris Doctor from The University of Alabama School of Law and a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Alabama. Before working as a nature tourism specialist, she practiced civil law.
“As a direct result of witnessing the Deepwater Horizon oil spill’s negative effects on the coastal environment, I felt called to channel my time and skills into better stewardship of our natural resources,” she said.
Boehm said Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism’s partnership with Sea Grant offers the opportunity to support nature tourism efforts along the coast and help entrepreneurs meet both their business goals and the tourism market demand. “Of course, those businesses depend on our natural resources, so the focus on offering responsible, sustainable business practices is the basis for the entire program,” she said.
Wright, an avid scuba diver and nature photographer, can be reached at 251-974-4634 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium and Auburn University Marine Extension and Research Center welcome Kristen O’Keefe in her new role as a coastal community development specialist.
Working with the Alabama Working Waterfront Coalition, O’Keefe will help facilitate coalition meetings as the group works to support recreational and commercial water access and businesses that rely on water access for survival.
O’Keefe also is coordinating the first Alabama Working Waterfront Exhibit, which will take place May 4-5 in Bayou La Batre in conjunction with the Blessing of the Fleet. The exhibit will be a community event that celebrates the culture and importance of Alabama’s waterfront communities.
“We are looking forward to highlighting Alabama waterfront history and culture at this event, which we hope continues annually,” said LaDon Swann, director of the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium and the Auburn University Marine Programs. “Kristen already has 13 organizations and businesses committed to taking part in the working waterfront exhibit.”
O’Keefe also will work to help facilitate cooperation between waterfront users and elected officials, on such topics as water access and user conflicts. She will support of the Alabama Waterfronts Access Study Committee’s recommendations, spreading public awareness of the importance of a working waterfront and enhancing the coordination efforts of the Alabama Working Waterfront Coalition.
“I believe having a balanced, healthy working waterfront is necessary to ensure a sustainable future for the coastal counties of Alabama, as well as the entire state,” O’Keefe said.
O’Keefe has a bachelor’s degree in political science from the Florida State University. She also is a part-time contract employee with the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program, where she works as a project coordinator on the review and revision effort of the Alabama Gulf Ecological Management Sites program and facilitator of the Coastal Marine Spatial Planning steering committee.
O’Keefe can be reached at 251-438-5690 or email@example.com.
For centuries, human commerce has played a role in distributing plant and animal species around the globe. But not every species can claim the title of circumnavigator. Ari Daniel Shapiro journeys to the Gulf Coast of the U.S. to meet a tiny Magellan, the star of an unlikely story that has come full circle. Click here to listen.