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Bouquets & Brickbats 

They get what they deserve

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The National Association of Buffalo Soldiers & Troopers Motorcycle Clubs

arrived in force at City Park Aug. 19 with 500 motorcycle-riding volunteers. The association is named after the moniker given to the African-American 10th Cavalry Regiment of the U.S. Army by Native American tribes the soldiers fought during the late 1800s. Despite heavy showers, the group managed to clear the shoreline along Bayou St. John, paint portions of the amusement park and provide some landscaping.

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Linton Smith Jr. and Ben Allen,

two local 17-year-old musicians, have been awarded full scholarships to attend the renowned Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mass. Both young men were students in Tipitina's Music Internship Program, an afterschool project sponsored by Berklee. This spring, Smith, a trumpet player, graduated from Ben Franklin High School and New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts. Allen, a saxophonist, graduated from Lusher Charter School. Both spent the summer in Boston studying at Berklee's five-week summer performance program.

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Rhodes Family of Businesses,

one of the oldest family-owned businesses in New Orleans, celebrated its 125th anniversary Aug. 22 with the grand reopening of their Washington Avenue location, which was heavily damaged during Hurricane Katrina. In 1884, Thibodaux native Duplain Rhodes moved to New Orleans and started Rhodes Undertaking, one of the first funeral homes to provide burial services for African Americans in the city. The completion of the Washington Avenue location, which is housed in the old Tivoli Theater, marks the third site the family has rebuilt since the storm.

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Pat Gray,

a Houston-based radio personality, guest-hosted Glenn Beck's radio-rant program Aug. 19 and took aim at Katrina victims "left behind" in the city. "Left behind?" he ranted in a mocking tone. "They stayed there on purpose! ... They did that of their own free will — many of them so they could loot! They wanted to stay behind so they could reap the benefits!" Gray also seemed to blame New Orleans for the condition of the levees, saying, "They've done nothing to shore them up." The levees are the responsibility of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, but facts don't matter to Beck or his surrogates.


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