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RAYNE - Guest speakers representing Acadia General Hospital were welcomed during the November meeting of the Rayne Chamber of Commerce.
With the absence of Chamber president Jeremy Lavergne, vice president Suzette Leonards presided over the meeting and welcomed the three guest speakers, Joe Mitchell, CEO of Acadia General; Heather Harris, Business Development Specialist; and Glenn Daly AGH Associate Administrator.
Mitchell presented information of the upcoming merger of Acadia General and Ochsner’s.
“While we are in a strong position today, this merger will lead to greater financial stability for LSH long-term, especially for UHC that will enable us to continue serving the most vulnerable of the community,” Mitchell stated.
Mitchell also stated, “By combining our resources and Ochsner’s investment of $365 million over the next 10 years will mean expanded local healthcare and a significant impact on our local economy.”
He stressed that much would remain the same, including local decision making, protecting and investing in locals and the same physicians patients know and trust.
“With the merger,” Mitchell continued, “we will acquire 48 new physician residents, adding an additional 50 services we already provide.
“I really think this is a win-win for everyone included, especially our patients.”
Heather Harris, Business Development Special with AGH, explained a corporate health care program to be provided by LGH and AGH providing a program to keep employees healthy and the many services the program provides.
Glenn Daly, AGH Associate Administrator, also offered a question and answer session for Chamber members in attendance.
During the business portion of the meeting, Nikki Link gave a report of the 2020 Frog Festival, stating that everything is in motion with nominations to begin for grand marshal and poster contest.
In addition, she noted the musical line-up is almost complete and reminded Board members to continue with sponsorships by taking their sponsorship packets.
Bihm also noted that food vendors for the Frog Festival are also showing interests, a positive outlook for the 2020 festival.
Chairman Marietta Sikat gave a report of the upcoming Rayne Holiday Market set for Saturday, Nov. 30, at The Depot. She noted that to date, 15 vendors were already booked, with just as many already contacting her and the Chamber for their inclusion.
“I really think it will be a great day,” state Sikat, “not only for us at The Depot, but also for the “Shop Small Saturday” to include local businesses. We will have some fun events for the entire family, plus plenty of shopping on The Depot grounds and at the numerous Rayne businesses who are participating.”
A report of the recently completed OST Day Celebration was given by Chairman Eddie Palmer.
“First of all, I would like to thank everyone for their assistance, especially the committee members,” stated Palmer. “The weather was perfect for the 40 vendors we had in attendance.”
He continued, “I feel the high point of the day was the blessing of the OST Highway by Deacon Besse. That was great. Can’t wait until next year.”
Adult Scout Leaders Dineen and David Constantin reported on the new and improved Chamber frog pond, an ongoing project of the local Boy Scouts.
“We presently have nine active and healthy frogs in the clean, upgraded frog pond,” Dineen Constantin announced to applause by the Board.
An update was given on the upcoming Chamber Mardi Gras Ball slated Saturday, Jan. 18, at the Civic Center. “Totally the 80s” is the theme that will honor the new king, queen and royal court. Tickets are available for purchase from any court member or at the Chamber office.
Chairman Brain Mouton gave a brief report of the Rayne Mardi Gras Parade and After Party planned Saturday, Feb. 22, the weekend prior to Mardi Gras (Feb. 25).
Under old business, Mouton updated the Board of the new Chamber of Commerce sign being made by the Rayne High ag department. He reported the delay was caused by a broken machine that was needed to complete the new sign. He stated the sign should be ready for the holidays.
Cynthia Oliver gave an update of the annual First Responders Breakfast and that plans were on schedule with a number of sponsors assisting the Chamber for the project held to honor first responders of the Rayne area.
Announcements and reminders included:
• The Bank, now open with grand opening and ribbon cutting slated Friday, Nov. 22;
• Frog Festival committee meeting scheduled Nov. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at Chamber office;
• Holiday Market meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 13, at noon at Chamber office to complete final plans.
The meeting was adjourned and a lunch provided by Acadia General Hospital was enjoyed.

Guest speakers welcomed during Chamber meeting

RAYNE - Guest speakers representing Acadia General Hospital were welcomed during the November meeting of the Rayne Chamber of Commerce.
With the absence of Chamber president Jeremy Lavergne, vice president Suzette Leonards presided over the meeting and welcomed the three guest speakers, Joe Mitchell, CEO of Acadia General; Heather Harris, Business Development Specialist; and Glenn Daly AGH Associate Administrator.
Mitchell presented information of the upcoming merger of Acadia General and Ochsner’s.
“While we are in a strong position today, this merger will lead to greater financial stability for LSH long-term, especially for UHC that will enable us to continue serving the most vulnerable of the community,” Mitchell stated.
Mitchell also stated, “By combining our resources and Ochsner’s investment of $365 million over the next 10 years will mean expanded local healthcare and a significant impact on our local economy.”
He stressed that much would remain the same, including local decision making, protecting and investing in locals and the same physicians patients know and trust.
“With the merger,” Mitchell continued, “we will acquire 48 new physician residents, adding an additional 50 services we already provide.
“I really think this is a win-win for everyone included, especially our patients.”
Heather Harris, Business Development Special with AGH, explained a corporate health care program to be provided by LGH and AGH providing a program to keep employees healthy and the many services the program provides.
Glenn Daly, AGH Associate Administrator, also offered a question and answer session for Chamber members in attendance.
During the business portion of the meeting, Nikki Link gave a report of the 2020 Frog Festival, stating that everything is in motion with nominations to begin for grand marshal and poster contest.
In addition, she noted the musical line-up is almost complete and reminded Board members to continue with sponsorships by taking their sponsorship packets.
Bihm also noted that food vendors for the Frog Festival are also showing interests, a positive outlook for the 2020 festival.
Chairman Marietta Sikat gave a report of the upcoming Rayne Holiday Market set for Saturday, Nov. 30, at The Depot. She noted that to date, 15 vendors were already booked, with just as many already contacting her and the Chamber for their inclusion.
“I really think it will be a great day,” state Sikat, “not only for us at The Depot, but also for the “Shop Small Saturday” to include local businesses. We will have some fun events for the entire family, plus plenty of shopping on The Depot grounds and at the numerous Rayne businesses who are participating.”
A report of the recently completed OST Day Celebration was given by Chairman Eddie Palmer.
“First of all, I would like to thank everyone for their assistance, especially the committee members,” stated Palmer. “The weather was perfect for the 40 vendors we had in attendance.”
He continued, “I feel the high point of the day was the blessing of the OST Highway by Deacon Besse. That was great. Can’t wait until next year.”
Adult Scout Leaders Dineen and David Constantin reported on the new and improved Chamber frog pond, an ongoing project of the local Boy Scouts.
“We presently have nine active and healthy frogs in the clean, upgraded frog pond,” Dineen Constantin announced to applause by the Board.
An update was given on the upcoming Chamber Mardi Gras Ball slated Saturday, Jan. 18, at the Civic Center. “Totally the 80s” is the theme that will honor the new king, queen and royal court. Tickets are available for purchase from any court member or at the Chamber office.
Chairman Brain Mouton gave a brief report of the Rayne Mardi Gras Parade and After Party planned Saturday, Feb. 22, the weekend prior to Mardi Gras (Feb. 25).
Under old business, Mouton updated the Board of the new Chamber of Commerce sign being made by the Rayne High ag department. He reported the delay was caused by a broken machine that was needed to complete the new sign. He stated the sign should be ready for the holidays.
Cynthia Oliver gave an update of the annual First Responders Breakfast and that plans were on schedule with a number of sponsors assisting the Chamber for the project held to honor first responders of the Rayne area.
Announcements and reminders included:
• The Bank, now open with grand opening and ribbon cutting slated Friday, Nov. 22;
• Frog Festival committee meeting scheduled Nov. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at Chamber office;
• Holiday Market meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 13, at noon at Chamber office to complete final plans.
The meeting was adjourned and a lunch provided by Acadia General Hospital was enjoyed.

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