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Les Cockrell: Post names district oratorical contest winner

Peyton Luke, a home-schooled senior from Valley View, took top honors in the American Legion’s District 13 oratorical competition on the Constitution.

The district contest was held Jan. 13 at American Legion Post 71 in Denton.

Elizabeth Raabe, a home-schooled senior from Shady Shores, took second place. Other contestants were: David Fredrickson of Coram Deo Academy in Flower Mound; Snowy Trowbridge of Lewisville High School; Oliver Vowell of Richland Collegiate High School; and Wayne Watson of Ryan High School.

Luke will next compete at the Division I oratorical competition scheduled for 2 p.m. Feb. 3 at Denton’s Courthouse on the Square.

Division I consists of six districts in northeast Texas. The state is divided into four divisions, and the four division winners will compete at the state oratorical competition Feb. 18 in Brenham. State winners will compete at the national competition April 19-21 in Indianapolis. The ultimate winners will be awarded college scholarships valued at more than $20,000.

Students can get applications and information about the oratorical competition from their high school principals or speech teachers. For more information, call Lynn Vowell at 940-727-8067.


Constable to be guest speaker for tea party meeting

Precinct 3 Constable Jerry Raburn will be the guest speaker for today’s meeting of the Denton County Republican Tea Party.

The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m., with a call to order at 7 p.m. at Lake Dallas City Hall, 212 Main St.

Raburn is scheduled to speak on the “Threat to Our Constitutional Right to Bear Arms.”


County NAACP chapter to install officers at ceremony

The Denton County chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will install newly elected officers today in a ceremony at Denton’s Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center.

The event will start at 6:30 with a meet-and-greet session. The installation program will begin at 7 p.m.

A tribute to past President Catherine C. Bell will be featured, and refreshments will be served. The community is invited to attend.


Spaghetti dinner to benefit Immaculate Conception

Knights of Columbus Council 4771 will sponsor an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner to benefit Immaculate Conception Catholic School from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday in the school’s gym, 2301 N. Bonnie Brae St.

The dinner will include spaghetti, salad, rolls and dessert. Tea, water and lemonade will be provided.

The school will sponsor an open house during the dinner with the school’s Cherub Choir, stringed orchestra and choir performing throughout the evening.

Cost is $8 for ninth-graders and older, $5 for those in kindergarten through eighth grade, and free for younger children. Maximum family price will be $35.

Tickets may be purchased at the door. For more information, call the school at 940-381-1155 or e-mail .


Library to hold Mini A-Kon VI on Saturday

Anime lovers will gather at Denton’s North Branch Library from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday for Mini A-Kon VI.

The event will feature an “Ani Idol” concert, a Cosplay Contest, FUNimation voice actors, a FUNimation panel, local comic and anime artists, a “Comic Showdown,” anime screenings, open gaming and tournaments, computer gaming, role playing, board games and prizes.

There also will be a vendor/artist room and on-site food trucks.

The library will open for Mini A-Kon participants only and be closed to the general public Saturday.

For more information, visit  and click on the Mini A-Kon VI icon.


Guided hike scheduled at Ray Roberts park

A guided hike will be offered at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Isle du Bois Unit of Ray Roberts Lake State Park.

The hike will follow the park’s Lost Pines Nature Trail, and participants should meet at the Lost Pines Amphitheater.

The hike is free with regular park admission, which is $7 for those 12 and older. For more information, call 940-686-2148.


Low-cost dog and cat vaccinations to be offered

Low-cost vaccinations for dogs and cats will be offered from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Lake Dallas Animal Shelter.

Rabies vaccinations for dogs or cats will cost $5, and additional recommended vaccinations of DHPP and bordetella for dogs, and FeLV and FVRCP for cats will be available for $10 apiece. Deworming, heartworm testing and discount preventative medication also will be available.

Microchipping for dogs and cats will be available. The procedure costs $30 to inject a rice-size chip with the owner’s information under the pet’s skin.

The animal shelter is at 687 N. Lakeview Drive. Cats need to be in a carrier and dogs in a carrier or on a leash. No appointment is necessary, and only cash or credit card with proper ID will be accepted for services.

For more information, call940-497-2228.


Corinth cookbook author to visit bookstore

Corinth author Nuhad HeLal will visit the Barnes & Noble bookstore in Highland Village from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday to sign copies of her new cookbook, Let’s Dine Lebanese.

The store is in the Shops at Highland Village, 4100 Deer Creek, Suite 100.

As a young girl in Lebanon, HeLal spent hours watching her mother cook. Capturing her mother’s authentic recipes, she has recreated many favorites in the new cookbook.

For more information, visit .


Chick-fil-A to conduct father-daughter event

More than 60 Dallas-Fort Worth Chick-fil-A restaurants will conduct a “Date Night” for fathers and daughters from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Feb. 2, according to a news release.

Fathers and daughters are invited to spend time together and share a meal. Seatings are available every hour, and reservations are required.

Customers can visit to check availability and make a reservation through Feb. 1. Participants will receive an activity sheet with questions and topics to start conversations.

LES COCKRELL is interested in your input for Out & About. Help share information about Denton County events and people by calling him at 940-566-6887. His e-mail address is .