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Category Archives: Ascension

Wet Hot Ascension Party Returns Stateside to Asbury Park – Unicorn Booty (blog)

Posted: July 10, 2017 at 8:32 pm

Thousands of men from around the globe will flock to the sun drenched shores of New Jersey for the Ascension Party: a three-day, eleven-party, fourteen-DJ festival.

Ascension Party takes placeAugust 4 to 6in the beach town of Asbury Park, New Jersey.

Launched in 2006 on Fire Island Pines, Ascension continued annually there until 2014. For the last two summers it has taken place in Mykonos, Greece.

We are thrilled to bring Ascension back to the states this year, says Eric von Kuersteiner. We brought on a new partner for the weekend who brought a lot of fresh ideas including the idea to take the party to the beautiful beaches on the Jersey Shore.

RELATED |Our Summer 2017 Swimsuit Roundup

Major investments in the Asbury Park boardwalk area and city over the past few years havw completely transformed the downtown. The host hotel for Ascension, The Asbury, opened last summer after a 50 million dollar renovation. It was voted Best New Hotel in the U.S. by USA Today in 2016.

Ascension is going to bring thousands of visitors from all over the tri-state area as well as the world to Asbury, continues von Kuersteiner. It will be a wonderful opportunity to showcase the local businesses to thousands of new visitors.

Envisioned as a social hub, The Asbury boasts 110 boutique hotel rooms, rooftop lounges showcasing a panoramic view of the city and shore line, pool area and outdoor beer garden.

Ascension Party is a charity event, donating 100% of net proceeds to the LGBTQ community organization. Over one million dollars has been donated to over 40 different organizations to date. This year, the money will be The LGBTQ community of Asbury Park will be the major benefactor for Ascension 2017.

2017 is a new chapter for Ascension and we are pulling out all the stops, promises von Kuersteiner. Once again, we aim to give guests a fun-in-the-sun experience they will always remember.

The fun beginsFridaynight with the VIP cocktail party at7:00 pmhosted by the one and only DJ Lina, followed by the Ascension Underwear Party with world renowned DJ Eddie Martinez.

It continuesSaturdaywith the weekends main event, the Ascension Beach Party from1:00 pm to 8pmwith International DJ Dani Toro and DJ Hansel, proceeded by theSaturdayNight Celebration starring superstar DJ Paulo.

Then,on Sunday, its time to break out your swimsuit for the Ascension Pool Party with beats by Dan Slater, before heading to the grand finale Closing Party, taking placeSundayat10:30 pm.

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Andrew Moore’s ascension keeps his mom on the edge of her seat – The Register-Guard

Posted: July 9, 2017 at 12:26 pm

SEATTLE Although Chris Smith didnt get the decision in his first major league start, Ryon Healy made sure Oaklands 36-year-old right-hander contributed to an Athletics victory.

Healy bounced a ground-rule RBI double to right-center with two outs in the ninth inning Saturday night to give the As a 4-3 victory over the Seattle Mariners after Smith pitched six solid innings.

That was like a personal goal. Walking to the field today, you think about it and I said if I can get six innings, three runs in the big leagues, thats a quality start, said Smith, called up Saturday from Triple-A Nashville. Its a little different in the minor leagues, but to do it in the big leagues, that was like a good personal pat on the back.

Rajai Davis opened the ninth with a slow-rolling infield single to third off Edwin Diaz (2-4), who relieved to open the inning. Davis stole second as Matt Joyce struck out. Yonder Alonso was walked intentionally with two outs and Healy then ripped an 0-2 slider into the gap.

I was one pitch away and I missed that slider, Diaz said. I threw a fastball up and in, and he looked back. I was supposed to go with the fastball again, but I decided to throw the slider, but I missed in the middle and he hit it pretty good.

Sean Doolittle (1-0) pitched the eighth for the victory. Santiago Casilla finished for his 15th save, despite allowing a two-out double.

Alonso and Marcus Semien had solo homers for the Athletics off rookie Andrew Moore, who allowed three runs in six innings in his third start.

Smith, called up from Triple-A Nashville, made his first major league start after 63 relief appearances. He left after six innings tied 3-3. The right-hander allowed six hits, struck out four and walked one. Smiths career record remains 1-0 with a victory in relief in 2008 with Boston.

I was hoping to get him into the sixth today and he gave us six and allowed us to go to the three guys that we go to to tie or win games, Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. He did every bit of his job and probably a little bit more. It was fun to see.

Semien, activated off the disabled list Thursday after missing 74 games, snapped a 2-2 tie in the fifth with his first homer, a one-out solo shot.

Jarrod Dyson knotted it 3-3 when he opened the bottom half with his fifth home run.

Oakland took a 1-0 lead in the second on singles by Healy, Bruce Maxwell and Jaycob Brugman and made it to 2-0 in the third on Alonsos 20th homer.

Seattle tied it in the bottom half on doubles by Dyson and Jean Segura and Ben Gamels RBI single.

Mariners right fielder Mitch Haniger saved at least one run in the fourth with a running grab of Davis drive deep into the corner to end the inning with two aboard.

It might be one and done, so I was really enjoying it, Smith said. But, at the same time, I was really trying to lock it in. I can go from zero to 100 in the blink of an eye, so I had to slow myself down. Really take it in, but really know that, hey, Ive got a job to do.

On Sunday, Oakland rookie RHP Daniel Gossett (1-3, 6.23 ERA) closes out the four-game series at Safeco Field. He has walked just three in 26 innings in his five starts since being called up, but has allowed seven homers.

Seattle will counter with Felix Hernandez (3-3, 5.04 ERA), who makes his fourth start since coming off the DL on June 23. The longtime ace, who entered the season with a career 3.16 ERA, is 1-1 with has a 5.50 ERA since return after missing almost two months with right shoulder inflammation.

Seattle infielder Shawn OMalley (recovering appendix surgery) made his first two rehab appearances in the Arizona rookie league, both times in the leadoff spot as DH. He went 2 for 2 on Friday with a triple, and three walks. OMalley had one hit in three at-bats Saturday with an RBI.

Oakland catcher Josh Phegley was reinstated from the paternity list after missing three games. Catcher Ryan Lavarnway, who was called up from Nashville on Wednesday, was designated for assignment.

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Motorcyclist dies after hitting dog on Ascension Parish highway, State Police say – The Advocate

Posted: at 12:26 pm

A 66-year-old man died when his motorcycle hit a dog on Gold Place Road in Ascension Parish, Louisiana State Police said.

The crash occurred shortly after 9 p.m. Saturday. According to a State Police investigation, Gary D. Fortney, of St. Amant, was driving a 2014 Harley-Davidson Road King eastbound on Gold Place Road (La. 934) east of La. 431 when a dog entered the roadway from a ditch. Fortney struck the dog, lost control of the motorcycle and was ejected, State Police said in a news release.

Fortney, who was wearing a helmet, suffered fatal injuries in the crash and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The dog was also killed in the crash, and its owner was located.

Impairment is not suspected to be a factor in the crash, but toxicology results are pending, State Police said.

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Green Bay Packers: Joe Callahan continues ascension at QB – Chippewa Herald

Posted: July 8, 2017 at 9:23 pm

GREEN BAY As underdog training-camp narratives go, Joe Callahans improbable run for a spot on the Green Bay Packers 53-man roster last summer has to rank among the more compelling since the teams renaissance began 25 years ago.

While there have been plenty of other out-of-nowhere stories cornerback Tramon Williams 2007 ascension is up there, too and other longshots who earned their keep with unexpectedly impressive preseason performances, Callahan was supposed to be little more than a camp arm last year.

Coach Mike McCarthy had decided to limit two-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers preseason snaps, and hed earmarked the extra exhibition playing time for young backup Brett Hundley not some 6-foot-nothin, Division III unknown.

But when an ankle injury limited Hundley to just seven preseason passes, Callahan shined so much so that McCarthy was telling everyone by camps end how Callahan had earned a spot on the team as the No. 3 quarterback. (How the hell does he not make the team? McCarthy asked rhetorically and forcefully after Callahan made it). And more than a few longtime observers couldnt help but see some Brett Favre-ian improv in the kids game.

A year later, Callahan is preparing for his second NFL training camp the Packers first practice is in three weeks, on July 27 with an eye on being more than just a heartwarming story going forward.

I still have to prove myself, Callahan said during organized team activity practices last month. I need to show how much Ive improved.

Callahan did just that during the spring quarterback school and OTA practices, and itll be interesting to see how good the Packers feel about Callahan if Hundley puts together an impressive enough preseason to attract trade suitors. It seems unlikely theyd turn the No. 2 job over to him if they moved Hundley when Hundley started drawing interest during the April NFL Draft, the Packers reportedly were planning to bring in a veteran to replace him but after what Callahan did last year, who can bet against him?

To know where he came from, trying just to get somebody to look at him, to see him go from there to where he finished and what he did, for me, knowing Joe personally, it was awesome, Hundley said. Knowing it was my playing time, its frustrating to a point. But its also intriguing to me when you can see somebody grow from where he started to where he finished. That was awesome.

As much as the Packers liked Callahan, they actually bid him adieu last Oct. 13 when injuries forced them to shuffle the roster. The team waived him with the intention of signing him to the practice squad when he went unclaimed, and McCarthy, who didnt want Callahan cut to begin with, was livid when the New Orleans Saints claimed his pet project.

Callahan spent just over a week with the Saints before being released, but then the Cleveland Browns claimed him and kept him on their 53-man roster for more than a month before cutting him on Nov. 29.

The Packers finally got him back on the practice squad on Dec. 2, then promoted him onto the 53-man roster again on Dec. 17, keeping him there through the end of the year.

As well as Callahan played last summer he completed 54 of 88 passes (61.4 percent) for 499 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions (88.2 rating) he was playing mostly on the instinct and play-making knack he showed in college at Wesley College in Dover, Del. As a three-year starter for the Wolverines, Callahan went 33-7 and threw for 12,852 yards and 130 touchdowns, including 5,068 yards and 55 touchdowns in 2015, when he won the Gagliardi Trophy, the Division III equivalent of the Heisman Trophy.

Scrambling and making something out of nothing was a key part of Callahans college production, and the Packers coaches like that aspect of his game. But the next step is for him to make more plays while doing so within the framework of the offense.

Thats a big part of it. Second year, you can go through any read in the offense and hell spit the read right out to you. So hes picking it up, quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt said. He just has to continue to do what hes doing.

Hes growing. His footwork has gotten a lot better, his understanding of the offense has gotten better in his second year. Just continue to do that and then show it in the preseason when he gets to play.

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Politics in play? Road construction project in Ascension Parish vetoed by Gov. John Bel Edwards – The Advocate

Posted: at 4:26 am

Ascension Parish has miles and miles of state and federal highways, but they are both a blessing and a curse.

Because for every Airline Highway and I-10, there are dozens of narrow, two-lane state highways. It's hard to get funding to make repairs or widen the roads, yet they continue to sprout with new homes in this fast-growing parish.

At the same time, some Ascension residents are unwilling to use local tax revenue to upgrade what they see as the states responsibility.

State Sen. Eddie Lambert, R-Prairieville, has pushed the past several years for funds to improve two-lane La. 42, a major commuter corridor through Prairieville, and La. 930. The latter is a narrow, winding off-shoot from La. 42 that serves bus traffic from Prairieville Middle School, but only barely.

Earlier this year, the state Bond Commission approved more than $21 million in construction funding from an earlier budget cycle to widen nearly four miles of La. 42 to four and five lanes.

The apparent low-bidder has been recommended for award, a DOTD spokesman said. After the award, work could start on the $27.5 million construction job in three to four months.

But, $7.56 million tarted to do the La. 930 project was one of 36 line-item vetoes from the governor.

The project, which would improve safety by widening existing lanes, adding shoulders and realigning a curve, was at the very top of Gov. John Bel Edwards recent veto message.

When asked Friday if the line-item veto was payback for Republican resistance to Edwards budget plans or simply finding a way to save money, Lambert responded, Probably a little bit of both.

Lambert supported Edwards budget, and he said the Governors Office thanked him for the vote. He noted that while La. 930 was chopped, another, smaller intersection project in his district survived the veto.

The failure of efforts to boost state aid for roads and bridges means key projects statewide

But his Ascension colleague, State Rep. Tony Bacala, R-Prairieville, opposed the final budget bill and was among the toughest budget hawks in the House. La. 930 is in both mens districts. Bacala could not be reached for comment Friday on the veto.

Rodney Mallet, DOTD spokesman, said La. 930, which still needs utilities moved before construction can start, is on hold as the state addresses a growing list of statewide needs with diminishing funds.

Mallett said La. 42 was considered a higher priority for construction funding than La. 930. He also pointed out the state has recently awarded a $72 million contract to widen I-10 from Highland Road to La. 73 in Prairieville.

Lambert said DOTD is pushing to have the parish take responsibility for La. 930 through a state exchange program. It would lead to one-time state upgrades before the highway is handed over to the parish. Lambert said he would keep pursuing state funding anyway.

Ima just keep bugging them, he said.

Follow David J. Mitchell on Twitter, @NewsieDave.

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Ascension Parish officials notified big federal check on its way for flood debris removal costs – The Advocate

Posted: at 4:26 am

Ascension Parish is about to receive a big batch of federal reimbursement dollars for money it shelled out for debris removal from the August flood.

U.S. Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., informed Parish President Kenny Matassa Thursday that the parish was about to receive $5.9 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Ken Dawson, parish chief administrative officer, told the Parish Council Thursday night about Matassas telephone conversation with Kennedy earlier in the day regarding the coming reimbursement dollars.

Were all very happy about that, that at least were getting some moneys back for all the moneys that were expended to assist the residents of Ascension," Dawson said. "It doesnt mean that is everything, but that at least has been released and we can put it back into the general fund."

In all, $9.02 million has been spent on debris removal for which the parish is seeking 90 percent reimbursement from FEMA, according to a tally by the parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness.

We should be getting more, Dawson later told a council member who asked if more funds were expected from FEMA.

Council Chairman Bill Dawson said the first batch of FEMA dollars amount to a 92 percent reimbursement on $6.4 million in debris removal costs.

Parish officials are currently making final debris removal pass that they expect will not be eligible for reimbursement. The cost to the parish of the final pickup is expected to be about $165,000.

Follow David J. Mitchell on Twitter, @NewsieDave.

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Once the Cathedral of Kensington, now a heroin shooting gallery – Philly.com

Posted: at 4:26 am

The gas company supervisor showed up at Mother of Mercy, a storefront church on Allegheny Avenue, in late June. Hed just been inside the long-shuttered Ascension of Our Lord, a hulking cathedral of a building at F and Westmoreland. After what hed seen, he needed to speak with a priest.

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Hed been working in the neighborhood, the PGW man said, and slipped through a broken stained-glass window to take some photos for his wife, who had grown up in the parish. Thats when he saw the mess of needles carpeting the floor and pews and the figures moving in the darkness.

There were so many people in there it looked like they were waiting for Mass to start, the man reported.

It made sense to Father William Murphy. For months, he and Father Joseph Devlin and Sister Ann Raymond had been feeding the young people who got high on the lawn of McPherson Square library. But then the police drove the crowds away. The addicted people had to have gone somewhere, he thought.

So Father Murphy and Sister Raymond walked the few blocks to the church that long was the jewel of the neighborhood, until it wasnt. They stepped through a window, glass crunching underneath their feet.

In the half-light, they could make out thin forms. Some shot heroin in the pews, some laid half-naked on mattresses. Others stumbled past in their stupor, not noticing the priest and nun in their presence.

Father Murphy did all he could think to do. He began to bless them.

*

For nearly a century Ascension, with its towering columns and bell tower and interior that brought to mind the churches of Europe, was proudly nicknamed by parishioners the Cathedral of Kensington. It was deconsecrated in 2012 and sold two years later.

Now, the cathedral is a shooting gallery, a makeshift haven for young people who come to the neighborhood from all over for pure and powerful heroin the latest place where they have taken up residence as the city attempts to address other Kensington heroin encampments like McPherson Square and the Gurney Street train tracks.

It is more proof, if anyone still needs it, that simply closing sites where people shoot heroin and pushing them from train tracks to park to church would be shamefully inadequate.

The building has the feel of an abandoned field hospital. Blankets and cardboard mattresses line the floors, the chapels, and the sacristy where priests used to robe. Needles litter the altars and stick from the holy water font like crosses in a graveyard. Bloodied rags fill pews. Human excrement and condoms mar the confessionals.

Three needles sit in what was a holy water basin inside the former Ascension of Our Lord Church. DAVID MAIALETTI / Staff Photographer | Click to view more images

Day and night addicted people come and go by the dozens through once-boarded windows. Some get high and collapse onto mattresses. Some come looking for prostitutes. Others have made it a home. Even in the depths of addiction, they are drawn to the familiar, the normal. First, a library lawn, now a church.

I know its probably not the right thing to do, said Josh Green, who is 28 and originally from Kensington. For three months he has been sleeping on blankets in the filth of a lower church office. But I honestly feel a little more comfortable because I know I am in Gods house.

Josh leaned against a pew Thursday afternoon, using a piece of wood from the rubble as a cane. His feet have grown raw. He said he was sick for the want of a hit.

Soon, he joined some friends and climbed a spiral metal staircase to a makeshift apartment filled with soiled mattresses, chairs, and school desks. All were covered with used syringes.

Paradise Island, cracked a guy named Matt.

Hovering around the drugs were Matt and Anthony, both 25 and from the Northeast. And Steven Sharp, who is 23 and used to be from Chester County. They talked of relapses and rehabs, of abusive parents, loving parents, lost union jobs and abandoned college courses, of hunger and thrown-away opportunities and they shot heroin.

Left to right: Matt, 25, Anthony, 25, Josh Green, 28, and Steven Sharp, 23, get high in a room inside the former Ascension of Our Lord Church. DAVID MAIALETTI / Staff Photographer|Click to view more images

They talked of the church as a safe place a place they show respect. As proof, Steven said, they rarely shoot up in the main church.

We wouldnt disrespect it, he said, squeezing his fist tight and injecting his forearm, before falling back onto a mattress.

Across the hall, in what looked to be a former devotional chapel, someone had spray-painted a plea: Forgive me, father, for my sins.

Some tell themselves this place is only a way station.Like Valerie, who is 26, originally from Chester County, and addicted to heroin. She sleeps in the church with her Lab, Izzy.

Valerie tries to clean up a place to sleep. DAVID MAIALETTI / Staff Photographer|Click to view more images

Its sad what it has become a place to come when you use drugs and you dont have any options, she said, sitting on a dusty pew.

Her goal is to save up for a tent, so she can move to the wilderness. Rough it and get clean. But for now, she has settled on a large closet in the sacristy.

I think I can put a bed in it and maybe sleep on it, she said as she swept trash with a broken broom. To make room for her sleeping space she moved away a tall wooden crucifix. As she worked, her friend Charlie, who is from California, nodded off on the ledge before a broken window. A neighbor yelled that she would be calling the cops.

New Philadelphia Investments bought the church and other parish buildings in 2014 for $800,000. When I called owner Kevin Fei, he said he did not know of anyone living there but he hadnt been there in months, he said. A caretaker has been managing it.

Im sorry, Fei said. I will take action.

Josh Green, left, talks with Father Joseph Devlin, center, and Sister Ann Raymond. DAVID MAIALETTI / Staff Photographer|Click to view more images

The caretaker, George Groves, a neighborhood developer involved in a handful of community revitalization organizations, says he has been working for free to do all he can for the building and that every time he nails boards up, people just tear them down.

He said hes been in touch with Fei to address the problem right away. Like today, Groves said.

That will be a tall order. As ruined as the building is, its probably best they tear it down. If not, in a church building where for nearly a century people celebrated, and mourned, and prayed, someone will likely die.

Next time its boarded, city and outreach workers need to be there. Meet the young people at the door. Get them help before they find another kind of sanctuary, probably a worse-off one.

Thursday, the church was busy.

In the trash-strewn garden, Frank Ratke, who is 79 and can still recall the booming cadence of the old pastors voice, walked his dog and watched stragglers slip through the window.

In the choir loft sat Michael Zenquis. The 37-year-old said he grew up singing in the choir of the very church he now comes to get high in and sometimes sleeps in. He said he feels ashamed. He recalled how Ascension once shone.

Who knew if he was ever in the choir, or if this was even his church. But then he stood and began to sing, the gospel tune Oh Happy Day! His voice filled the old church.

*

After this column posted on Philly.com on Friday, Lauren Hitt,spokeswoman for Mayor Kenney, wrote:L&I will inspect the property today to begin the process of shutting it down. L&I will be accompanied by Homeless Outreach and DBH Outreach to provide services to those in the church.

'God have mercy on people who judge': Tributes to loved ones lost to heroin addiction Jul 7 - 2:58 PM

Tony Luke Jr.'s message to families of opioid-addicted people: Don't be ashamed Jul 6 - 8:55 PM

Published: July 7, 2017 3:01 AM EDT | Updated: July 7, 2017 6:38 PM EDT The Philadelphia Inquirer

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Callahan continues ascension at QB | | chippewa.com – Chippewa Herald

Posted: at 4:26 am

GREEN BAY As underdog training-camp narratives go, Joe Callahans improbable run for a spot on the Green Bay Packers 53-man roster last summer has to rank among the more compelling since the teams renaissance began 25 years ago.

While there have been plenty of other out-of-nowhere stories cornerback Tramon Williams 2007 ascension is up there, too and other longshots who earned their keep with unexpectedly impressive preseason performances, Callahan was supposed to be little more than a camp arm last year.

Coach Mike McCarthy had decided to limit two-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers preseason snaps, and hed earmarked the extra exhibition playing time for young backup Brett Hundley not some 6-foot-nothin, Division III unknown.

But when an ankle injury limited Hundley to just seven preseason passes, Callahan shined so much so that McCarthy was telling everyone by camps end how Callahan had earned a spot on the team as the No. 3 quarterback. (How the hell does he not make the team? McCarthy asked rhetorically and forcefully after Callahan made it). And more than a few longtime observers couldnt help but see some Brett Favre-ian improv in the kids game.

A year later, Callahan is preparing for his second NFL training camp the Packers first practice is in three weeks, on July 27 with an eye on being more than just a heartwarming story going forward.

I still have to prove myself, Callahan said during organized team activity practices last month. I need to show how much Ive improved.

Callahan did just that during the spring quarterback school and OTA practices, and itll be interesting to see how good the Packers feel about Callahan if Hundley puts together an impressive enough preseason to attract trade suitors. It seems unlikely theyd turn the No. 2 job over to him if they moved Hundley when Hundley started drawing interest during the April NFL Draft, the Packers reportedly were planning to bring in a veteran to replace him but after what Callahan did last year, who can bet against him?

To know where he came from, trying just to get somebody to look at him, to see him go from there to where he finished and what he did, for me, knowing Joe personally, it was awesome, Hundley said. Knowing it was my playing time, its frustrating to a point. But its also intriguing to me when you can see somebody grow from where he started to where he finished. That was awesome.

As much as the Packers liked Callahan, they actually bid him adieu last Oct. 13 when injuries forced them to shuffle the roster. The team waived him with the intention of signing him to the practice squad when he went unclaimed, and McCarthy, who didnt want Callahan cut to begin with, was livid when the New Orleans Saints claimed his pet project.

Callahan spent just over a week with the Saints before being released, but then the Cleveland Browns claimed him and kept him on their 53-man roster for more than a month before cutting him on Nov. 29.

The Packers finally got him back on the practice squad on Dec. 2, then promoted him onto the 53-man roster again on Dec. 17, keeping him there through the end of the year.

As well as Callahan played last summer he completed 54 of 88 passes (61.4 percent) for 499 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions (88.2 rating) he was playing mostly on the instinct and play-making knack he showed in college at Wesley College in Dover, Del. As a three-year starter for the Wolverines, Callahan went 33-7 and threw for 12,852 yards and 130 touchdowns, including 5,068 yards and 55 touchdowns in 2015, when he won the Gagliardi Trophy, the Division III equivalent of the Heisman Trophy.

Scrambling and making something out of nothing was a key part of Callahans college production, and the Packers coaches like that aspect of his game. But the next step is for him to make more plays while doing so within the framework of the offense.

Thats a big part of it. Second year, you can go through any read in the offense and hell spit the read right out to you. So hes picking it up, quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt said. He just has to continue to do what hes doing.

Hes growing. His footwork has gotten a lot better, his understanding of the offense has gotten better in his second year. Just continue to do that and then show it in the preseason when he gets to play.

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Sixth DWI conviction for Hammond man in Ascension results in nearly two decades of prison time – The Advocate

Posted: July 7, 2017 at 2:25 am

GONZALES A Hammond man whom Ascension Parish prosecutors called a "DWI veteran" was sentenced to 18 years in prison after his conviction for a sixth driving while intoxicated arrest that happened while he was on parole for his fifth DWI, according to court documents.

Dylan E. Hart, 55, 44090 Millie Road,was involved in a minor two-vehicle crash with no injuries July 31, 2015,near the intersection of La. 70 and La. 3120 in Ascension Parish.

A breath-test found Hart had a blood-alcohol content of 0.16 percent, prosecutors with the 23rd Judicial District said in a statement.A blood-alcohol content of 0.08 percent is considered presumptive evidence of drunken driving in Louisiana.

A state district judge sentenced Hart to a 12-year prison sentence that came as part of a plea deal with Assistant District Attorney Phil Maples, prosecutors said.

But Hart's new prison sentence will be added to the remaining, unserved six years that he was sentenced to in 2011 for a fifth DWI conviction in Tangipahoa Parish, according to court documents.

Hart was given an eight-year prison sentence but six years were suspended, according to the court. He served the two-year sentence in an in-home incarceration and was ordered to participate in driver improvement and substance abuse programs.

In handing down the latest sentence for Hart last week, state Judge Thomas Kliebert Jr. of the 23rd Judicial District Court ordered that the six-year sentence from the 2011 conviction was to be served consecutively with the 12-year sentence.

Kliebert issued written reasons.

The judge noted Hart's history of crimes involving substance abuse and that he had been on parole at the time of his arrest in July 2015.

"The Court also notes that the defendant has been afforded the opportunity of rehabilitation and substance abuse assistance while on active probation on at least three occasions, failed to fully utilize the resources available to him, and continued to involve himself with substance abuse and operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated in total disregard of our laws," Kliebert wrote.

In addition to the prison time and other conditions, Kliebert also fined Hart $5,000.

Hart agreed to the plea deal March 13 after the judge planned to allow prosecutors to introduce at trial his five previous DWI convictions in Tangipahoa Parish going back to 2003, according to court documents.

Follow David J. Mitchell on Twitter, @NewsieDave.

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Green Bay Packers: Joe Callahan continues ascension at QB – La Crosse Tribune

Posted: at 2:25 am

GREEN BAY As underdog training-camp narratives go, Joe Callahans improbable run for a spot on the Green Bay Packers 53-man roster last summer has to rank among the more compelling since the teams renaissance began 25 years ago.

While there have been plenty of other out-of-nowhere stories cornerback Tramon Williams 2007 ascension is up there, too and other longshots who earned their keep with unexpectedly impressive preseason performances, Callahan was supposed to be little more than a camp arm last year.

Coach Mike McCarthy had decided to limit two-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers preseason snaps, and hed earmarked the extra exhibition playing time for young backup Brett Hundley not some 6-foot-nothin, Division III unknown.

But when an ankle injury limited Hundley to just seven preseason passes, Callahan shined so much so that McCarthy was telling everyone by camps end how Callahan had earned a spot on the team as the No. 3 quarterback. (How the hell does he not make the team? McCarthy asked rhetorically and forcefully after Callahan made it). And more than a few longtime observers couldnt help but see some Brett Favre-ian improv in the kids game.

A year later, Callahan is preparing for his second NFL training camp the Packers first practice is in three weeks, on July 27 with an eye on being more than just a heartwarming story going forward.

I still have to prove myself, Callahan said during organized team activity practices last month. I need to show how much Ive improved.

Callahan did just that during the spring quarterback school and OTA practices, and itll be interesting to see how good the Packers feel about Callahan if Hundley puts together an impressive enough preseason to attract trade suitors. It seems unlikely theyd turn the No. 2 job over to him if they moved Hundley when Hundley started drawing interest during the April NFL Draft, the Packers reportedly were planning to bring in a veteran to replace him but after what Callahan did last year, who can bet against him?

To know where he came from, trying just to get somebody to look at him, to see him go from there to where he finished and what he did, for me, knowing Joe personally, it was awesome, Hundley said. Knowing it was my playing time, its frustrating to a point. But its also intriguing to me when you can see somebody grow from where he started to where he finished. That was awesome.

As much as the Packers liked Callahan, they actually bid him adieu last Oct. 13 when injuries forced them to shuffle the roster. The team waived him with the intention of signing him to the practice squad when he went unclaimed, and McCarthy, who didnt want Callahan cut to begin with, was livid when the New Orleans Saints claimed his pet project.

Callahan spent just over a week with the Saints before being released, but then the Cleveland Browns claimed him and kept him on their 53-man roster for more than a month before cutting him on Nov. 29.

The Packers finally got him back on the practice squad on Dec. 2, then promoted him onto the 53-man roster again on Dec. 17, keeping him there through the end of the year.

As well as Callahan played last summer he completed 54 of 88 passes (61.4 percent) for 499 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions (88.2 rating) he was playing mostly on the instinct and play-making knack he showed in college at Wesley College in Dover, Del. As a three-year starter for the Wolverines, Callahan went 33-7 and threw for 12,852 yards and 130 touchdowns, including 5,068 yards and 55 touchdowns in 2015, when he won the Gagliardi Trophy, the Division III equivalent of the Heisman Trophy.

Scrambling and making something out of nothing was a key part of Callahans college production, and the Packers coaches like that aspect of his game. But the next step is for him to make more plays while doing so within the framework of the offense.

Thats a big part of it. Second year, you can go through any read in the offense and hell spit the read right out to you. So hes picking it up, quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt said. He just has to continue to do what hes doing.

Hes growing. His footwork has gotten a lot better, his understanding of the offense has gotten better in his second year. Just continue to do that and then show it in the preseason when he gets to play.

Jason Wilde covers the Packers for ESPN Wisconsin. Listen to him with former Packers and Badgers offensive lineman Mark Tauscher weekdays from 9-11 on Wilde & Tausch on ESPNWisconsin.com.

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Green Bay Packers: Joe Callahan continues ascension at QB - La Crosse Tribune

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