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May 1, 2019

Who says you can’t go home!  Home for me is Enterprise, Louisiana and this weekend I went home.  Home isn’t just a place it’s a feeling of comfort, peace, and where you can be yourself.  
Friday, festival eve, was busy and stressful but I spent it with friends working hard and laughing.  We set around a picnic table on the old tennis court and reminisced about all the fun we had growing up in a small town.  Bonfires, mud digging, ballgames, water balloon fights, and some memories I won’t put in print.
Enterprise High School’s building may be gone but the memories made there will last forever.  Saturday during all the hustle and bustle of working at the festival it was a treat to stop and hug a friend you haven’t seen in years.  Meeting their family and hearing the words “those were some of the best days of my life” reminded me how blessed I am.  
The Enterprise Family Festival is more than just a day to raise money for scholarships it’s a way to bring a sense of community back to a town that’s high school closed years ago.  The Enterprise sign on Highway 124 reads “Where everybody is somebody” and those words ring true.
The cafeteria is gone, and I missed the smell of fresh baked homemade rolls but this past weekend the space was filled with vendors selling food. 
The gym has been torn down, but you can still see the trophies displayed in the fire station.  There are no longer parish tournaments  but there was a spot under the pavilion where people gathered to cheer on the entertainment Saturday.  
The baseball field doesn’t have the pitchers mound outlined in lime anymore, but we had a dunking booth that children loved throwing a ball at and watching their victim splash in the water.  When they hit the bull eyes, and someone fell in the water it was like they had hit a home run.
The magnolia tree is still there and every time I look at it, I can see Mr. Elcie on the cub tractor picking me a bloom.  He always had a smile on his face and played the role of grandpa to all of the students.  If you got hurt on the playground, he was there to pick you up and wipe the tears away.
The school house is gone but the memories made in those halls will live forever.  It’s not about the wood, window panes, or carpet, it’s about the people that made it special.  There were rules when you were inside the building that may seem trivial today but wearing a hat inside was a big no-no.
The buildings were demolished but the memories will never be destroyed.  It’s sad to look at the grounds and the only thing left is the meat plant.  But the new pavilion and people on the walking trail Saturday helped take the sting away.
This past Saturday was almost like a Hallmark Movie in Enterprise, minus the snow and Christmas tree. But there was a feeling of warmth, love and a happy ending.  
It will be quiet on the old school grounds until April 25, 2020 when the chaos of the fifth annual Enterprise Family Festival aka Backwater Festival will bring life back to a small town in Louisiana.