The Sumptuous Hills of Gulfport by Vincent Spina

by Katherine Hoerth

Nov. 27, poet Vincent Spina visited Lamar University to give a reading and meet with students. Spina is the author of a new poetry collection released this month from Lamar University Literary Press titled The Sumptuous Hills of Gulfport. This book paints a portrait both of the author’s home, a quirky Gulf Coast beach town in Florida, and Spina himself. It also includes references to Beaumont, a place Spina says he has a special connection to. I sat down to chat with him about his latest book, poetry, and the writing life.

Elaborate gingerbread project at L'Auberge

L’Auberge Casino Resort in Lake Charles celebrates the holiday season with an elaborate gingerbread house designed by its award winning pastry team. Pastry Chef Bill Foltz and his team of elves designed and constructed the sugary sculpture after months of planning and sevens days of preparation and assembly. It is now on display at the casino entrance in front of Ember Grille & Wine Bar.

Mellie Bevilacqua presents a check of $45,000 to Scott Doss of Nehemia's Vision

The Foundation for Southeast Texas announced the recipients of the grants from its Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund at a check presentation Friday, Dec. 8. Thirty local organizations received over $250,000 to support hurricane relief efforts in Hardin, Jefferson and Orange counties.

The grants ranged from $1,770 to $45,000. The foundation’s grants committee reviewed each application from 60 organizations and made recommendations to the board of directors for final approval, said Mellie Bevilacqua, executive director of the Foundation for Southeast Texas.

M.J. Eckart playing soccer

Lamar University senior M.J. Eckart was named the Southland Conference Women’s Soccer Student-Athlete of the Year, and the Cardinals placed four student-athletes on the conference’s all-academic team.

Ford Proctor

Two-time Monsignor Kelly Catholic High School all-state baseball player and current Rice University infielder Ford Proctor has been named one of the Top 100 college prospects by Baseball America for the upcoming 2018 Major League Baseball Draft.

The junior was one of only three Owls to start and/or play in all 64 games last season and led the team with 58 runs scored, which gave him a high Conference USA ranking. Proctor also led the Owls in walks with 39 and was second on the team with 19 doubles while finishing fourth in the lineup with a .311 batting average.