Jim Yarbrough Grows a Tradition of Success at Southeastern Louisiana University By Steve Blount

At Southeastern Louisiana University, Head Men’s Basketball Coach Jim Yarbrough has led the Lions in six winning seasons. With 96 wins to date, his record is third in school history and his winning percentage of .527 is the best the school has seen. Under his leadership, the team has developed into one of Louisiana’s top Division I programs.

Since beginning as an eighth grade basketball coach 24 seasons ago, Yarbrough has taken great strides in his coaching career. He spent six highly successful years coaching at the College of Charleston, and then accepted his first head coaching job in 2000 at Valdosta State University. Yarbrough was subsequently appointed Southeastern’s head coach in June 2005.

Originally from Tampa, Florida, Yarbrough graduated from Florida State University and is married with two children.

About the Author:
A sports enthusiast and graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University, Steve Blount of Lake Charles, Louisiana, serves as the current president of the Moss Bluff Recreational Basketball League. Additionally, he coaches youth teams and runs Buddy Ball Sports, LLC. Steve Blount is the owner of Professional Retirement Consultants, LLC in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

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Visiting the Charpentier Historic District in Lake Charles, Louisiana, by Steve Blount

The French were the first European settlers of Lake Charles in the 1760s. In the 1800s, a lumber boom in the area attracted a migration of settlers who were heavily influenced from the Victorian style of architecture popular at that time. Because there were no true architects in the area until the early 20th century, each house constructed in earlier decades reflects the unique characteristics of carpenter architects who freely designed as they built.

These artisans creatively combined different elements and style details from pattern books. The Architectural Historian for Louisiana, Jonathan Fricker, dubbed this as “Lake Charles Style Architecture.” About 40 blocks in downtown Lake Charles contain buildings with this architectural style, and the area is now designated as the Charpentier Historic District. Charpentier is French for “carpenter.” Since 1990, this district has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Visitors find the Charpentier Historic District to be a lively area, with tourists eagerly studying the stunning architecture and frequenting the local restaurants and unique shops. Also located in this area are the Central School Arts and Humanities Center, with the Mardi Gras Museum, art galleries, and a theatre for the performing arts. Walking and driving tours of the Charpentier Historic District may be of interest to visitors. Although homes in this district are privately owned, some homes offer private tours. For more information about Charpentier Historic District tours, visit the website of the Lake Charles Convention and Visitors Bureau: http://www.visitlakecharles.org/

About the author: A resident of Lake Charles, Louisiana, Steve Blount owns PRC™ Professional Retirement Consultants, LLC, which offers insurance planning and financial advisory services. Active in the Lake Charles community, Mr. Blount volunteers with the Lions Club, Ducks Unlimited, the Moss Bluff Recreation Basketball League, and other civic groups.

Steve Blount on Louisiana 200 Years Ago

2012 marks the 200 year anniversary since Louisiana qualified for American statehood. As the state celebrates this momentous occasion with a variety of festivals and parades, a look back at Louisiana’s 1812 beginnings provides an enormous insight into the state’s unique history and culture.
The territory was purchased in 1803 and subdivided in 1804. From 1812 it was governed by William C. C. Claiborne. The area was defined by a number of cities, all of which today are of major importance to the development of Louisiana. Most notably, New Orleans was the largest city in the South, and remains an important export destination for the Mississippi Valley. Lake Charles was not established until much later in Louisiana’s history, with a founding date of 1861. It flourished with a strong petrochemical industry in the 1900s.

posted at louisianabicentennial2012.com All Rights Reserved

Louisiana Bicentennial 2012

Along with colonial settlers, a number of Native American nations inhabited the Louisiana region in 1812 and beyond. With rapid economic development through the agriculture, finance and trade industries, Louisiana quickly established itself as a financial and trade hub, and benefited from the production of both cotton and sugar.

About the author: A highly respected financial advisor and estate planner, Steve Blount is a Lake Charles resident in Louisiana. With 25 years of experience in finance, Steve Blount is the owner of Professional Retirement Consultants, LLC, based in Lake Charles.

Hunting Activities Near Lake Charles, By Steve Blount

Lake Charles, Louisiana, offers a number of exciting hunting and fishing opportunities for outdoor sports enthusiasts. This is thanks in part to the town’s location in the state’s southwest corner between the Mississippi Flyway and the Central Flyway—two major migration paths for birds. Game bird hunters visit the lake to bag early teal, big ducks, and doves, among other species.

The area also offers a variety of lodging opportunities that specifically cater to the needs of hunters and fishermen. Many lodges provide guided tours and hunting expeditions in addition to hearty meals and accommodations that are near prime hunting locations.

Before embarking on any hunting excursion, Louisiana hunters should consult with the state’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which requires licensure and certain permits to hunt. In most cases, hunters must complete an education and safety course in order to qualify for the necessary documentation to hunt or fish.

About Steve Blount

Lake Charles, Louisiana, resident Steve Blount owns Professional Retirement Consultants, LLC, a financial planning firm. In his leisure time, Mr. Blount enjoys hunting and fishing in Texas and Louisiana.

The Moss Bluff Recreation Basketball League

The Moss Bluff Recreation Basketball League began as result of a discussion between Steve Blount and his friends about the absence of a recreational league to serve the children of Lake Charles, Louisiana. After this discussion, the group of friends endeavored to provide that service by creating a nonprofit organization guided by a board of directors as well as current President, Steve Blount. The organization began four years ago with over 60 children but grew quickly to support a thriving community throughout the Lake Charles area.

This league includes a division called Buddy Basketball. The organization tailored this division to children with physical and mental challenges, allowing them to participate in athletics while in a safe and supportive environment. Buddy Basketball started with less than 15 participants but currently hosts nearly three times that number.

To browse the schedule for Moss Bluff Recreation Basketball League games, please visit www.mossbluffbasketball.com.

Lion’s Club and Ducks Unlimited

As a member of the Lake Charles, Louisiana chapter of the Lion’s Club, financial services professional Steve Blount proudly volunteers his time to better his community. Lion’s Club International, the parent organization of local chapters, boasts more than 1.35 million members globally. It is the largest community service organization in the world, providing essential services in local communities. Activities include vision screenings, support for local youth via mentoring and scholarships, as well as humanitarian projects such as providing assistance after natural disasters.

Steve Blount’s other charitable efforts include volunteering for Ducks Unlimited projects in and around Lake Charles. A conservation organization, Ducks Unlimited seeks to improve waterfowl habitats through wetland restoration and management. Conservation projects occur throughout the United States and Canada, and activities include grassland and watershed restoration and forest replanting. Likewise, the organization works with private landowners and other partners to create better land management strategies to protect waterfowl now and into the future.

Choosing between a Simple 401(k) and a Simple IRA, by Steve Blount

It is common for small-business employers with fewer than 100 employees to establish a Simple IRA plan as a benefit to staff and the company. What is less common is opting instead for a Simple 401(k) plan, which has certain areas of greater flexibility for the employer.

For example, with a Simple IRA plan, employers are not allowed to maintain additional plans for personnel who do not qualify for the plan, whereas a second plan is admissible in the case of a Simple 401(k). However, employees of companies that adopt a Simple 401(k) plan must work for the company for at least one year and be at least 21 years of age, whereas this is not the case with Simple IRAs.

Another difference between the two plans is that loans can be made from Simple 401(k) plans for those employees who feel the need to access funds at some point prior to retirement age. Both plans offer 100% vesting of contributions, which adds a level of security to the employee, and employers can make matching contributions if they so choose.

About the Author: Steve Blount is an independent financial consultant with over 25 years experience in retirement planning and wealth management. His firm, Professional Retirement Consultants, LLC., is located in Lake Charles, Louisiana.