IBERIABANK's downtown headquarters in Lafayette was the location for last night's annual Project Front Yard Awards ceremony.

There were four winners that were announced last night, and they are as follows:

  • Best in Cleanliness was presented to NeunerPate for their beautification project of the Veterans Affairs Clinic and War Memorial on July 1. The timing of the project was an excellent way to celebrate our nation’s independence while also honoring veterans who have fought for our freedom.
  • Pastor Ken Lazard of Destiny of Faith Church was honored for Best in Beautification for his work in revitalizing the neighborhood known as the Truman area. Pastor Ken rallied more than 100 volunteers over two weekends to spruce up a local cemetery, clean up trash and cut tall grass on otherwise blighted properties.
  • ReCover Acadiana, a subset of The705, was awarded Best in Education for their partnership with Project Front Yard on the storm drain cleanliness awareness campaign, “Where the River Meets the Road.” The campaign includes dozens of decals placed near storm drains throughout the community, educating children and adults alike on the connection of storm drains to the local watershed.
  • The final award of the evening was presented to local teacher Sandra Thompson for Best Overall Project Front Yard Effort. This award is given to a community partner who goes above and beyond. Thompson, a kindergarten teacher at Episcopal School of Acadiana encouraged one of her six year old students, Amelie Gomez, to write a letter to Project Front Yard when she expressed a desire to get involved with community cleanliness. Along with the school’s administrative leadership and Project Front Yard, Amelie took the lead in creating a 20 minute documentary on how trash ends up in our local waterways and affects the local ecosystem. The video will be used as an educational tool for her peers and a 5 minute version of the video is now on display at theLafayetteScienceMuseumfor all our community to watch. Thompson is working to develop a curriculum to go along with the video for local educators’ use in the classroom in teaching children about the watershed and life cycles of litter in our rivers.

Lafayette City Parish President Joey Durel said at last night's ceremony,

“I am happy to celebrate and honor those who are already doing the right thing and leading by example in cleaning and beautifying the community. That’s what tonight is all about. I have said from the beginning that this effort has to be a multi-faceted, long term approach to changing the cultural and physical landscape of our region.”

Project Front Yard is working to improve howLafayettelooks.  It has been a team effort between local residents, businesses, government and the media to concentrate on making our area cleaner.

Jerry Vascocu, Executive Vice President and Acadiana President of IBERIABANK, said the following last night:

“It seems like yesterday when we were in this very spot recognizing folks in our community who have made significant contributions towards making Lafayette a more beautiful place to live, work and play.We are excited to have been at the start of a new tradition that celebrates those in our community who are doing the right thing to create a beautiful Lafayette.”

There are some new projects been started by Project Front Yard including the following:

  • A cartoon mascot named “Yardley” who is featured in an activity book which teaches children about environmental stewardship.
  • A new storm drain cleanliness awareness campaign which includes dozens of decals placed near storm drains throughout the community, educating children and adults alike on the connection of storm drains to the local watershed.
  • A  Project Front Yard exhibit unveiled on September 18 at theLafayetteScienceMuseum. The yearlong exhibit highlights Project Front Yard’s efforts to clean up local waterways and includes several components.


For more information, visit www.projectfrontyard.com.