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Louisiana considers pirogue as state boat

Louisiana state Rep. Bubba Chaney is sponsoring a bill that would make the pirogue the state's designated boat.

Chaney's inspiration was a wooden pirogue named Colors that was crafted by Rayville resident Cliff Dodge and his grandson, Robert Brown of Monroe. The two will visit the legislature today, where the state House of Representatives is expected to vote on the bill that would create the designation.

Dodge and Monroe also will be recognized through a resolution for their construction of Colors and the 14-day trip they took from Monroe to Baton Rouge in 2009, Chaney said.

Chaney said he expects a spirited debate on the House floor because there are always people with different opinions. Even if the bill passes the House, it will have to go through a Senate committee and the full Senate and be signed by the governor before the designation becomes official.

Dodge said Colors not only serves as a piece of art, but also as a piece of history. It has been signed by about 7,000 children throughout Louisiana.

“The fact that she has traveled all the major lakes and rivers in the state certainly adds to her historic value. And she is also considered a work of art — handcrafted — the fact she has been presented to as many people as she has, it's like she is a living document," Dodge told the News Star newspaper.

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