Friday, November 21, 2008

Chris Broussard wins Blue Cross Blue Shield’s Angel Award

Cultural Crossroads’ founder and long time advocate for children and the arts was honored in Baton Rouge recently as one of eight statewide recipients of the Angel Award.

Chris has championed children’s involvement in the arts and regional culture for more than two decades, filing a gap in Webster Parish school curricula with art, music and dance instruction.

Chris founded and managed The Children’s Center, Minden’s first afterschool enrichment program twenty two years ago. With her own money and no financial support from any state or federal agency, she grew the business and provided one of the few if not the only privately owned institution that fostered the arts in Minden. She sold her business in 2007 so she could give her time and talent full time to Cultural Crossroads.

Chris serves as Chairman of the Board of Cultural Crossroads, a non profit 50l©3 arts agency she helped to establish. She is the founder and the driving force behind the annual Spring Arts Festival which will celebrate its 15th year in 2009.

A $20,000 grant was awarded Cultural Crossroads in Chris’ honor. These funds will be used to upgrade and enhance the Moess Center for the Arts & City Farm, better known as simply ‘The Farm.’ The Farm is a four acre homestead located on the corner of Talton and East Union that was donated to Cultural Crossroads in 2000 by Chris’ long time friend and fellow co-founder of Cultural Crossroads, Zenobia West.

The Board of Directors of Cultural Crossroads is proud of Chris and all the work she so selfishly gives to the children and the arts in Minden.

To learn more about the Angel Award, visit Blue Cross Blue Shield on the web at

New Officers and Board Members Announced for Cultural Crossroads

Cultural Crossroads will hold their annual meeting Tuesday, 6:30pm December 16th at Christopher’s in Minden to announce their newly elected board of directors. Members of Cultural Crossroads, corporate partners and special honored guests are invited.

Taking the position of President this coming year is Julie Vogel, the new owner and director of The Children’s Center. She will lead an executive committee of officers that will include Vice Presidents, Gloria Clark and Amy Bryant. Elaine Eaton, a former recipient of Cultural Crossroads’ coveted “Cultured Pearl Award and Scholarhship” will serve as Secretary. Chris Broussard will serve again as Chairman of the Board.

The Board of Directors for the coming year are: Cora Lou Robinson, Janice Mourad, Pat Palmer, Dennis Palmer, Charlotte Martin, Lori Plunkett, Br. Mike Marsters, Br. Ben Martin, Jackie Lewis, Cynthia Sandidge, Kimberly Ellington, Emili Modisette, Ejay Colvin and Kerry Easley. Board Members at Large are: Nan Jones, Betty Purdy, Janell Thornton, Angelique Feaster and Jean Stevens.

The Ellington Art Exhibit is a huge success

Kerry Ellington and his daughter Kim opened their art show at Easley’s Fine Art & Photography in Minden the first of November to a packed house. “It is one of the most successful showings we’ve had since I opened over a year ago,” states Kerry Easley.

Several local art enthusiasts will be taking home their Ellington originals following the showing that is expected to end on December 31st. “Sales of their work have been exceptional,” Easley adds.

“Requests to show their work in other galleries have overwhelmed both Kerry and Kim,” states Chris Broussard, Chairman of the Board of Cultural Crossroads, co sponsors of the art showing.

Future shows at Easley’s Fine Art & Photograph located on Main Street in historic downtown Minden include a showing of Kerry Easley’s photography in 2009and a special art showing is being planned in April for original works by local artist, Chris Broussard.

To learn more about Easley’s Fine Art visit his website at

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Father and Daughter Art Exhibit Opens This Week

Kerry Ellington and his daughter, Kim Ellington, will exhibit their first collection of fine art together at Easley’s Fine Art and Photography in Minden. The local artists will present their collection of work ‘Keeping it in the Family” which will include a large collection of original paintings and sculptures. Kerry Ellington an accomplished and much sought after sculptor will present one of the largest selection of his sculpted faces to his hometown during the months of November and December. While ‘keeping it in the family’ he is joined by a new and emerging artist, his daughter, Kimberly.

Kerry paired up with professional sculpture Larry Milford and the two presented their works at an exclusive art show with the Bossier Arts Council a couple of years ago. Since that time, Kerry has aggressively pursued his passion for the arts and left his full time job in Shreveport to take up his art full time. “Cultural Crossroads played a big part in my art development,” state Kerry. “ I signed up for a clay workshop they sponsored a few years back and Larry Milford was the instructor,” he adds. “From that time on, Larry has been generous with his time and knowledge and I will be forever grateful for that.” When asked to comment about Kerry Ellington’s work, Larry Milford offered his praise saying that ‘down the road, you’ll regret not acquiring an Ellington original.’ “Kerry Ellington’s style from realism to distortion includes an array of sculpted faces of everyday people,” Milford adds. “They have a tendency to look like someone you know. I think his work is really going to move. I could not be prouder of him.”

Kimberly Ellington has her own story. As a Children’s Center alumni, she offers up thanks to Chris Broussard for some of her early exposure to the arts. “Mrs. Chris taught me the basics of shading and my high school art teacher, Mrs. Sandra Brown, gave direction and art instruction that helped to define my style,” states Kimberly. “I’m not surprised that Kimberly has pursued a career in the arts. She showed real talent as a child. I am so proud of her,” comments Chris Broussard.

Cultural Crossroads has teamed up with Easley Fine Arts to present the duo to the community on Thursday, Nov. 7th as the new exhibit opens to the public. A reception honoring the artists will be held on Thursday, Nov. 6th from 5:30pm to 9:30pm and the public is cordially invited. Live music will be provided by local musician and singer, Cynthia Sandidge. “I am so excited about this exhibit, “ adds Kerry Easley, owner of Easley Fine Arts. “Exposing Minden and the surrounding communities to the local talent that exists in our parish gives me great pride. We hope that we are opening the doors to more opportunities to celebrate the works of our new and existing artists. This is going to be a great show and I am personally inviting the public to our opening reception this Thursday,” concludes Easley.

Easley Fine Arts is located on Main Street in downtown Minden. Gallery hours are 9am to 5pm Monday through Friday. More information about the artists and their works can be found on Cultural Crossroads blog at

You can contact the Easley Fine Art Gallery at 318-377-1500.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Farm Enjoyed Monstrous Success!

Over 500 costumed characters made their way to the Farm Friday and Saturday nights for the final weekend of "Moon Over Minden." Sponsored by Cultural Crossroads, this Halloween celebration included one of the largest outdoor fright light displays in the parish. The four acre farm was transformed to include a haunted hayride, a haunted garden tour and a Monster Ball on Saturday night. Nearly a hundred volunteers from across the parish donated their time and talent to make this month long celebration a huge success. "We were very pleased with the turn out. I think this little spot on the corner of Talton Street and East Union not only lit up the night sky but little faces as well," stated Chris Broussard, chairperson. "It's all about the kids and I think we were successful once again in bringing something to this community that we could all come together to enjoy. We're growing culture here while cultivating the arts and our "Moon Over Minden" Halloween celebration included all those elements."

The more than $15,000 spent on the event was made possible by a state grant from Louisiana Division of the Arts, the Office of Culture, Recreation and Tourism and the Shreveport Arts Council. A capital grant and marketing grant were funded by the Webster Parish Tourism Commission. Construction and ground preparations were made possible by assistance from the Webster Parish Police Jury. Cultural Crossroads is the official arts agency of Webster Parish and supported by the police jury. "The police jury has provided us with much needed man power. We could not have done this without their help and assistance," said Mrs. Broussard. "Our next big event for the Farm will come in the Spring when we get ready for our 15th annual Spring Arts Festival set for April 23-25, 2009."

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Moon Over Minden 2008 Details Are Here!

Freaky Fridays with Free Halloween Workshops will be each Friday in October (3, 10, 17 & 24) from 10a.m.-6p.m. You can either participate or watch!

Haunted Gardens & Hayride is on Saturday, October 25th and Friday, October 31st from 8p.m.-11p.m. Admission is $5 and the hayride is $5. Admission must be paid before paying for the hayride.

Kid's Halloween Carnival is on Friday, October 31st from 5:30p.m.-7:30p.m. Admission is $5.

All of these great events will take place at "The Farm" located at 416 East Union (Hwy. 80 East) in Minden. This location is also the home of the annual Spring Arts Festival. For more information, you can call (318) 393-5991 or email

Friday, September 19, 2008

"Chair" Found for Upcoming Auction!

Elaine Eaton, a past Cultured Pearl recipient, and her mother will be chairing our upcoming October Auction to benefit the Farm!

We have a special auction scheduled to be held at the Farm on Saturday, Oct. 4th beginning at 10am. We will auction off the contents of LaVerne Butler's storage unit with furniture and personal items she's donated to us. LaVerne is a world-renowned singer who grew up in our area and has performed at our Art on Broadway event. ( We have some items in the old Farm house that would include some old books, memorabilia and such for sale. I know we all have garages and attics full of stuff we'd like to get rid of….here's your chance.

Get your items together and bring the over to the Farm at 416 East Union in Minden, LA anytime between Oct. 1st-3rd. If you need to bring them over on a weekend, just let us know and one of us will meet you there. In the meantime, if you could email Chris Broussard ( and/or Elaine ( and let us know what you plan on donating, we'll have a better idea on how to set up for the day. We don't have an auctioneer yet but we will.

Just wanted you all to use this weekend if possible to go through your possible donated items. If you have any suggestions on how we can do this or help Elaine and her mom, please holler. The funds generated from this auction will help support our "Moon Over Minden" Halloween light project. I appreciate Elaine stepping up to help out. This is wonderful! She's young and energetic and full of great ideas!!!! We love it!!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Zenobia West, A Dear Friend of Cultural Crossroads Passes

The woman who gave her family home and land so that children in our parish could be exposed to the arts died Saturday. A memorial in her honor will be held in the West Wing Chapel of the First Baptist Church of Minden Saturday, September 20, at 10am.

Zenobia Camp West left an edible mark upon this community. Her love of music and the arts led her to donate her family’s property to Cultural Crossroads in 1999, a local non profit arts organization which she co-founded. Cultural Crossroads developed the four acres homestead and made it the site of their annual Spring Arts Festival where thousands of children have experienced the joys of art free of charge since it’s inception in 1993.

Zenobia was actively involved in the early days of Cultural Crossroads while serving as a charter board member and later as an honorary lifetime member. The children of our parish knew her as Mrs. West and they fondly referred to her gift as ‘the Farm.’

Her generosity and dedication to the cultural enrichment of Minden’s children was acknowledged in 2000 when she was named Minden’s “Woman of the Year.” Her vision and passion for the arts were awarded in 1999 when Cultural Crossroads presented her with their “Visionary Award.”

She was a strong and independent woman who touched many lives through her phone calls and letters. Her selfless nature and acts of kindness were felt by many in her community and she always did it quietly expecting nothing in return. Her presence on this earth left an example for us all and her sweet, generous and gentle nature will be greatly missed.

Zenobia Camp West died Saturday, September 13th at her home at the age of 88. Mrs. West was born on December 17th, 1919 in Minden, Louisiana. She graduated from Minden High School in 1936 and went on to attend LSU majoring in music and receiving a fine arts degree. She was an accomplished and versatile musician known to play up to thirteen different instruments. She also attended Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri and received a degree in nursing.

Zenobia West is preceeded in death by her husband Dr. Wilmer West whom she met and fell in love with while attending LSU. Her mother and father, Robert W. Camp and LaDora Moess Camp, her grandparents, Mary Fuller Moess and Frederick Moess, her aunts Maggie Moess and Treebie Moess.

She is survived by her sister Margery Maggiore, her only daughter Alicia Myers and her husband Carl Myers, her grandchildren Michelle Hall, Mary Phillips Dalm, Maggie Maier and her great grand children Dalton Hall, Allen Phillips, Maggie Maier, Devon Maier and Kelsey Maier. She is also survived by her nieces Walta, Carol Thomas, Suzanne Cooper, Betty Moess Galbreath and many nieces and nephews on her husband’s side.

Memorials may be made to Cultural Crossroads Farm Project, P.O. Box 1393, Minden, Louisiana 71058; Hospice; the senior ministry at the First Baptist Church in Minden or the music ministry at the church of your choice.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Monster Ball '08 Update

The 2008 Monster Ball is coming up soon. This main event is presented by the Krewe des Ambassadeurs and Cultural Crossroads. Saturday, November 1, 2008 is the date from 7 p.m. until the ghouls come out! Join us at the Moess Center for the Arts & City Farm located at 416 East Union St. in Minden, LA. Music will be provided by The Gnarly Brothers Band. Gourmet chili and all the fixins with ghoulish Hors d' Oeuvres will be on display to devour. Costumes are required. Also enjoy a silent auction and haunted garden tours. Tickets are $35 in advance. You can pick them up at these locations in Minden: Easley's Fine Art, The Children's Center, TG Garden & Gifts, and The Minden South-Webster Chamber of Commerce. You may also call (318) 377-6250 for ticket sales and information.

Moon Over Minden is Lurking Around the Corner!

The definites are getting worked out, but Moon Over Minden is coming up and you definitely don't want to miss it this year. Stay tuned for more details coming soon about this great annual event at "The Farm" in Minden!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Moess Center for the Arts

Cultural Crossroads has a long-range goal of building a beautiful arts center that will be called Moess center for the Arts. It will be able to house all of Minden's cultural events, classes, art galleries, and more. If you would like to participate or find out more about the center, visit