Lake Charles, LA Real Estate News

Most of my friends here on Active Rain know (from  my MEME's) that although I live and sell real estate in the beautiful city of San Antonio, TX; I am a Louisiana "Cajun" girl.  I was born and raised in the beautiful Bayou State in Lake Charles, Louisiana.  Like I say, "you can take the girl out of the bayou but you can't take the bayou out of the girl".  We drove the 5-1/2 to 6 hour trip this past weekend to attend my husband's family Annual Christmas Gathering.  With 6 siblings, wives/husbands, children & grandchildren - it's quite a Gathering.  I had been "cruising" the internet for the last month or so, catching up with what's new in Lake Charles and surrounding area.  This website is a great site about Southwest Louisiana - if you're going to or through the area, check it out and p...
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By Derenda Grubb, GRI, ABR, CRS
(CENTURY 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s)
November 11th, all across Southwest Louisiana, school children and others joined to celebrate Veteran's Day. On this Veterans Day in Lake Charles,  I witnessed tomorrow's citizens and walked away with a smile. All too often we hear depressing stories of "Today's Youth" that make us think we want to pull the covers over our heads.  Not today.  I witnessed one of the two musical celebrations of Veterans Day; "This is America 2008" Presented by the Soaring Eagles Chorus of Bishop Noland Episcopal Day School and led by Elayne Gabbert, Director. The talent and accomplishments of these students are unbelievable. Then you realize they are only fourth and fifth grade students (age of the Chorus I enjoyed).  I had to continually remind myself of the student's true age.  The other impressive part...
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By Derenda Grubb, GRI, ABR, CRS
(CENTURY 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s)
Déjà vu  (pronunciation;French)"already seen";  is the experience of feeling sure that one has witnessed or experienced a new situation previously (an individual feels as though an event has already happened or has happened in the near past).  This is the definition provided by Dictionary.com.  This is exactly my emotions as I take a moment to write this post today.   I am calling my clients in Lake Charles and Southwest Louisiana with vacant properties to remind them to prepare for what could be a rough few days and trying to prepare to vacate the area if needed.  We are told that most residents will be more cautious and not wait as long to leave this time.  This is wonderful news. Two years ago, when we returned after Rita, I created a page on my website that has become a little dusty...
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By Derenda Grubb, GRI, ABR, CRS
(CENTURY 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s)
Governor Bobby Jindal had to love his trip to Lake Charles on Tuesday! He was here to help officially announce that a $100 million manufacturing plant will soon be built in Lake Charles. The facility, to be located on Port property off Big Lake Road not far from Trunkline LNG, will be the first nuclear-module manufacturing facility in the United States! A few bullet points: The project is a joint venture between Westinghouse and The Shaw Group, a fortune 500 construction firm based in Baton Rouge, LA The plant will create 1400 jobs in Lake Charles The combined Shaw and Westinghouse venture will generate 2,900 new jobs throughout the state The purpose of the plant is to to assemble building modules No radioactive material will be involved locally After assembly, the buildings will be shi...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Want to satisfy your hunger for more photos and information about those marvelous kids that made us so proud in Williamsport? Simply go to the page on KPLCTV.com dedicated to the South Lake Charles Little League.  They offer videos, slide shows, and stories. As we've come to expect, KPLC did a great job compiling this incredible experience. The latest and very important story is that the Lake Area has a chance to express our support and appreciation to the team at a special reception for them at their home field at Brentwood Prejean lPark on Tuesday at 6:00. Getting to Prejean Park is easy. From Prien Lake, head south on Louisiana Avenue to Illinois. Turn left (east) on Illinois. The baseball park is just beyound Brentwood Street on the left.  
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Some would say that is was not a banner weekend for the team from South Lake Charles. Obviously, it would have been great to be watching our guys right now in the final game of the 2008 World Series. At the end of the day, the South Lake Charles Little League team spent all or part of their summer vacation doing something over 6200 teams could only consider in their dreams. And, along the way, they captured our hearts. They started by becoming the Louisiana Little League Champions. This was a significant as Louisiana has a host of talent, including our ultimate challenger from neighboring Lafayette. Then, they brought pride and recognition to Lake Charles and Louisiana by winning the Southwest Regional Championship. It was a privilege to be there in person to watch South Lake Charles pl...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Not satisfied  with being the first team from Lake Charles Louisiana to advance out of Little League World Series (LLWS) pool play, the South Lake Charles (SLC) Little League team took a shot at the semi-finals last night and won 6-1 against the team representing the Southeast region, Tampa, Florida. I was unable to watch the game live due to a previous commitment to help out at a local auction.  To make matters worse, auctioneer Ben Mount had given me strict instructions to keep any knowledge of the score to myself. As the manager/coach of the 2001 Louisiana Champions that went to the LLWS, Ben has been following the games closely. At his request, earlier in the day, I had made contact with shortstop/pitcher Kennon Fontentot's mom, Shelley, to arrange for a signed baseball and poster f...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Are they having fun, or what! These are photos provided by Kennon Fontenot's mom. Here, Dugout, the mascot for the Little League World Series is leading the kids from both teams in a dance. Before every game, the South Lake Charles team says a prayer. Below, Kennon Fontenot at work as Shortsop. He has just caught the ball and converting it to a double play against Hagerstown.
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Kennon Fontenot's mom, Shelley Fontenot, provided me these "misc" photos today from Williamsport and Lamade Stadium. I've always thought of Shelly Fontenot as kind and considerate, but the photos I am having to endure that illustrate all the fun they are having borders on cruel and unusual punishment! Because of her son, Kennon, I'm hooked on Little League and would much rather be in Williamsport. Reminder, South Lake Charles plays Tampa, Florida in the US Semi Finals tonight. The picture below really strikes me!  While I'm entertaining Trooper, the Ryder's lovebird and their two cats,  taking litter box duty, taping the games, and clipping the newspaper articles about Kennon, these two are having the time of their life. I've already called this foul play. Is there an umpire that will l...
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By Derenda Grubb, GRI, ABR, CRS
(CENTURY 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s)
Friday, July 11, 2008, our world lost a true icon in the world of medicine and more important a true Humanitarian. Lake Charles Native Son Michael DeBakey passed from our world. I wish I could take credit for the coining of the phrase “King of Hearts”, but I must report that I read this in the very first of many multiple full page tributes printed in the Lake Charles American Press. These pages allowed those whose lives he had touched to express their gratitude and love. I could fill many blog post if I were to attempt to convey all the reports of generosity, humor, kindness, genius, and sheer exceptional energy of this man. One story that stood out in my memory was retold by a gentleman on behalf of his Father who had since passed. Dr. DeBakey had completed surgery on his Father and th...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
  I "interviewed" Shelley and Nick Fontenot via e-mail this week to offer a parent's perspective on Little League and the World Series. Like the engineer she is, Shelley's answers are in blue and Nick's are in orange. What are your official titles at work? Assistant Engineer with the City of Lake Charles ACTT (Anti-Crime Tactics & Training) Team Sergeant with the Calcasieu Parish Sherriff's Office (CPSO) and instructor at the training academy What were the most exciting moments leading up the Williamsport? Winning the championship game in Waco! Winning the state championship in Shreveport. Everyone could feel the pressure between city rivals(Lafayette and Lake Charles). When did it sink in that y’all were heading to the big game? The second the ball got by the catcher in Waco. It makes ...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Tonight, the South Lake Charles Little League represents the Southwest Region in the World Series. The game will be televised on ESPN. It starts at 7:00 Central, 8:00 Eastern time. Thess are photos of the Fontenot and Ryder families after previous victories (Louisiana State Championship and Regional Championship). Go South Lake Charles Little League! We may not be in Willilamsport, but are with you in spirit.
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By Emily Richard
(Progressive Mortgage & Associates)
To those how have known me for the last couple of years you would know that I am such a graceful (yeah right) person while walking - I have sprained my ankle three times! After being seen by a number of orthopedic doctors who couldn't find anything wrong with me other than being less than graceful and having hyper-mobility. For those who don't have it or have never heard of it, I am basically more limber than most people. Only way it has ever helped me was to be more flexible in Yoga! Anyway - I was referred to Tulane Medical Center and to a wonderful physician by the name of Dr. Rodriquez. After speaking to me for a few mintues and watching my oh so graceful gait down the hall, he diagnosed me and has prescribed surgery! Not for the faint of heart, he is going to basically remove my he...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
The South Lake Charles Little League  is now enjoying Williamsport, PA and will compete in their first game of the Little League World Series at 8:00 Eastern, 7:00 Central time, this Saturday, August 16th.  Like other pool games, it will be televised on ESPN. With many of the regional tournaments played this past weekend, the brackets are now complete and available at littleleague.org for the World Series games. Lake Charles is in pool A, representing the Southwest Region, having won the regional title in Waco. Their first opponent, representing the Northwest Region, will be Mills Creek Little League. Go South Lake Charles!
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
In a nail biting game against a very talented Texas team, South Lake Charles prevailed tonight (ok, last night if you're paying attention to the time on this blog) and heads to Williamsport for the Little League World Series. Hopefully, before heading back to Lake Charles, I'll have a chance to insert some of the many photos taken by happy (and crying) friends, parents, and grandparents. My cell phone photo of pitcher Gunner Leger's grandmothers serves as a reminder to ALWAYS carry a digital camera to better capture those well- deserved smiles. Gunner did great. To say that South Lake Charles dug in their heels in a never-say-die contest is an understatement!  Thankfully, they did not notice that the ESPN2 crew had left their coverage of the Lake Charles parents section in anticipation...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
I was already a  fan of Matt Redd, President of Redd Properties, LLC. Matt is the ultimate "idea guy."  More to the point, he can take a good idea, tweak it, and make it happen locally.  Such was the case a few weeks ago when Redd Properties hosted a bus tour of Lake Charles commercial properties.  I was one of twenty brokers/agents lucky enough to take part in what I think was another "first" for the Lake Charles area, courtesy of Matt Redd and crew. The whole bus tour was executed in a simple, straight-forward manner.  Those who responded to the first-come, first serve invitation submitted listings they would like to promote. An e-mail complete with the agenda of properties was e-mailed to participants in advance along with the names of the agent/broker.  It was a fun, spirited group ...
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By Derenda Grubb, GRI, ABR, CRS
(CENTURY 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s)
I've written before about Calcasieu Parish's new, beautiful Prien Lake Park. Recently, the Southwest Louisiana Association of REALTORS held what I hope will be our first annual picnic and Bar B Que at this wonderful facility. A busy bunch, we REALTORS! We work hard, and sometimes do not take time to play. We know the value of getting to know each other, but seldom are afforded the opportuntiy to do so. And, we all need to spend more time with our families! Armed with this knowledge, the entertainment committee of our local board put together a function that would satisfy each of these issues, including the competitive nature of our members who entered the "Cook Off" contest.  Pictured here is my company, CENTURY 21 Bessette's BBQ rig. As you can see, we took the competition in stride, w...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
It is a few hours short of a week ago that my favorite restaurant of all time went up in flames.  From my office, where I am writing this, I stare sadly at the remaining shell of DeAngelos and wonder what the other "regulars" are doing.  We have consoled each other via the phone or e-mail and been dealt with kindly by our friends who recognize our addiction to the quality of the food,  caliber of the staff, the location, the happy hours and more. All of us have experienced "DeAngelos Deprivation" and it isn't pretty.Why wouldn't DeAngelos be my favorite restaurant of all time?  First class food, a well stocked bar, great wait-staff, across the street from my office and within almost-as-easy walking distance from my home.  As several of my Margaret Place neighbors stood watching the LCFD...
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By Mary Kay Hopkins, e-PRO,GRI,CRS
(Mary Kay Hopkins, LLC e-PRO, GRI, CRS, CRB)
Margaret Place is generally considered the oldest recorded subdivision in Calcasieu Parish and will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2012.  In the mid-90's, under the leadership of then Mayor Willie Mount, and with the assistance of the Calcasieu Historical Society, a city Historic District was created. Margaret Place follows the same guidelines as its model, the Charpentier Historic District. These guideliness help to protect the integrity of these valuable historic areas, insuring the enjoyment of the richness and character of both districts for years to come. Calcasieu Preservationist A.C. Boudier conducts walking tours of both districts. The boundaries for Margaret Place Historical District  are Griffith Coulee, Shell Beach Drive, Pithon Coulee, and the North side of South Ryan. T...
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By Derenda Grubb, GRI, ABR, CRS
(CENTURY 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s)
The 12 day annual Contraband Days festival will be held in Lake Charles the first two weeks of May, 2008!  These photos of previous years are courtesy of the Southwest Louisiana Convention and Visitor's Bureau.  Click here to see more and larger photos of Contraband Days and other scenes of Lake Charles. This year marks the 51st anniversary of this festival that brings in 100,000 people by land and air. The name and theme of the festival are based on the legend that Jean Lafitte & his band of buccaneers hid  along the waterways in Lake Charles and that the Contraband Bayou (worth a boat ride to see the beautiful homes) was the famous pirates favorite local place to hide his silver and gold treasures. There are approximately 100 activities associated with the festival...The Tour Lafitte,...
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