One of the very best things about spring is the wealth of herbs available for us to plant in our own gardens at home. And what a joy it is to be in the middle of cooking an Italian dinner and be able to go out to your own “crop” and pick oregano or basil, clip, rinse and chop for the recipe.

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In 1981, the Texas Legislature designated Mauriceville as the “Crawfish Capital of Texas,” and 37 years later, the Mauriceville Crawfish Festival has become the “go-to” festival for all things crawfish.

One of the oldest running festivals in the state, the 37th annual festival will begin Friday, April 21, and go through Sunday, April 23. Sitting on 15 acres, the festival also celebrates music, art and culture, highlighting the unique heritage of Mauriceville and the surrounding areas.

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As part of the philanthropic program Conn’s Cares, Conn’s HomePlus brought a group of “hometown heroes” to Fletcher Elementary School in Beaumont on April 4 to talk to approximately 350 students from grades 1 through 4 about what it means to be a good citizen and a hero.

The hometown heroes included police officers from the Beaumont Police Department, firefighters with Beaumont Fire-Rescue and U.S. Army sergeants stationed in Beaumont, all of whom told the children to always strive to do what is right and to do what they can to help others every day.

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Arron Cotton

Held in the custody of the Jefferson County Jail for a little over three years, accused armed robber and capital murderer Aaron Cotton has been all but relieved of the charges that have been pending against him since 2013.

Cotton was arrested in February 2014 and charged with capital murder in the August 2013 shooting death of Kendra Crump at the Knight’s Inn motel in Beaumont, as well as the aggravated robbery of her alleged backpage.com pimp, Jeremy Spears.

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Consider this a little in-between-seasons truffle before the summer movies hit theaters. Spring is always a mixed bag of movies that range from pretty good to awful and run the gamut of genres: horror, humor and animation. Some recent ones have been surprisingly good like “Life,” the sci-fi horror movie, and “Boss Baby,” the DreamWorks animated feature with Alec Baldwin.

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