It was a long day, not because of the early morning phone calls from Atlanta clients nor the need to pick up supplies for the Bonfire, but just the worry as to whether it would rain or not for tonights event. I must have been a good boy this year because at 4:18 PM the rain stopped dead. When I got to Brooks Park, Tom Ray was already setting up sound equipment for the Christmas carols and Cajun music. Tom's a good singer and belted out a few New Orleans style
spirit lifters then followed with some Cajun rip-roaring dance tunes. I welcomed the 120 or so people to the First annual Papa Noel Bonfire and introduced Ervin Daily who presented our own Karla Autrey, born in Baton Rouge, LA. As the fire leapt higher, Karla read the Papa Noel Christmas story where Papa doesn't have a Rudolph, but must depend on Alphonse the white alligator to navigate him down the bayou in his pirogue. Everyone had a good time and drank their share of hot chocolate. While this is my last official act as Chamber President this year, I'm looking forward to steering Papa Noel down past Chickasaw again next year on his trip to Louisiana.