Senior Living October 28 2008

Okay, raise your hands if you are registered to vote. I suspect every hand is raised because I know the readers of this column are really smart and nationally 79% of those over 55 are registered to vote compared to only 60% of ages 25 – 44. Next touch your toes if you are planning on voting by the time you read this column next Tuesday, Election Day. Okay, okay, something simpler. Pat yourself on the back if you are planning on voting. Again those over 55 do significantly better than rest of the age groups with 72% voting in the 2004 Presidential election compared to only 47% for ages 18 to 24 and 53% for ages 25 - 44. And lastly, jump up and down if you can't wait for this election to be over. We are fortunate to live in a country where we have a tradition of expressing our views though the ballot box (or in Oregon’s case through the post office), but at times it sure seems like it takes forever. (I think I was wearing bell bottoms when this presidential campaign started.)

In past elections senior issues such as Social Security, Medicare and the cost of prescription drugs were major talking points in the political debate, but this year the economy has trumped all other issues even for seniors. What will my retirement account look like? Will government continue to support seniors with in home care and hospice? There are difficult decisions ahead, but there is still so much to be grateful for.

Such as the Meals-on-Wheels program. The Dalles is very fortunate to have one of the best run and successful Meals-on-Wheels program in the state. But it is not easy. They have to struggle with the double whammy of higher food costs and folks having less money to spend even for the necessities such as food. Meals-on-Wheels serves all older adults by providing a good healthy meal and a time to connect with others. They are a critical partner in fulfilling the Senior Center’s mission of “promoting healthy aging by sharing and caring”.

And the food is good! Denise Patton and the cooks provide a high quality meals (with plenty of good, wholesome, nutritious, and tasty vegetables), all for a suggested donation of only $3.50 if you are in that esteemed age group of 60 and over. For rest of you younger folks you will have to pay a suggested donation of $5.50 until you reach that higher level of maturity.

Meals-on-Wheels also adds a festive spirit to the Center. I’m just not into decorations and dressing up so I am thankful Meals-on-Wheels regularly does something special such as this week with two special Halloween events. This Thursday evening, October 30th is their Bingo Halloween Costume Party which starts at 6:00 PM with free food and drinks. The best costume will win $100 and second place $50. And for the less expressive personalities, you do not have to wear a costume. Also at Friday lunch, Halloween costumes are encouraged and there will also be prizes for best costumes.

For the Next Chapter Lecture Series, we try to provide a variety of presentations covering such areas as health information, local history and local government. This coming Tuesday, Northern Wasco County Parks and Recreation’s director Scott Green will discuss the importance of Parks and Recreation in our community and how their programs and facilities support older adults.

The Center’s most popular program is Tuesday Night Music because it offers good music and a place to dance for all ages. When the Jazz Generations are playing, which they are tonight, you can always find great dancers on the floor showing us how to stay young by dancing the night away. Next week the Olde Tymers with Mike Tenney and Dave Warren will be playing good old country music. Music always starts at 7:00 and admission is free but donations are greatly appreciated.

The Center’s goal is to expand the creative opportunities available at the Center. Studies show engaging in creative activities that encourage personal expression whether it is music or dance or drawing improves overall health including fewer falls and doctor visits and significantly reduced risk of depression and loneliness. The creative process of personal expression can be a lifelong activity that provides a sense of satisfaction and enjoyment and a healthier life.

In The Dalles there are many opportunities for "creative engagement". At the Center we offer Tap and Clogging for folks who want to put their constantly tapping toes to good use, the Serenaders for folks who want to stretch their vocal chords by reaching the high notes and the Quilters for folks who want to create beautiful quilts one stitch at a time.

You can also audition for the Cascade Singers or the Theater Company of The Dalles, or just show up and perform with the Dallesport Jammers on Sundays. The Dalles Art Center is another opportunity to express yourself and they will be offering several adult classes this fall including: Acrylics on Saturday, November 15 from 10-12 and Painting Better Landscapes on Saturday, November 22 from 9:30 am - 3:30 pm. For more information you can call them at 296-4759 or stop by. The Art Center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 - 5.

And don’t forget The Dalles Art Center’s 51st Annual Art Auction "Vote for Art!" on November 8th. Tickets are on sale at Klindts and the Chamber of Commerce.

Well, that is it for another really fast week. How time whizzes by. Until the next time, appreciate the banquet we have before us.

Borrowed from the Meals-on-Wheels monthly newsletter: “Dear Lord, so far today, I am doing alright. I have not gossiped, lost my temper, been greedy, grumpy, nasty, selfish or self-indulgent. I have not whined, complained, cursed, or eaten any chocolate. I have not charged nothing on my credit card. But I will be getting out of bed in a minute, and I think then I will really need your help.”

Senior Living October 21 2008

Think back when you were young. There was energy and enthusiasm; the future was a banquet of choices and opportunities, so many things to do and so little time to do them. And "Yet, knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back." Robert Frost describes the dilemma we all face in life where one choice precludes so many others. And for various reasons: pursuing a career, raising a family, or just making ends meet, we gallop down one road not expecting to ever revisit those missed opportunities again.

But in her book "Secrets of Becoming a Late Bloomer" Connie Goldman discusses how rediscovering an interest or passion we had early in life, a road now overgrown and hidden from view, we can again experience the excitement and enthusiasm of our youth and be involved, creative and aware through the next chapter of our lives.

To help rediscover these forgotten interests, write down every activity in your life that has brought you great pleasure and satisfaction and what you particularly liked about them. You may also want to make a list of things you wanted to do but never had the time to do. Use these lists to help identify those pleasurable activities you may now want to pursue. Spend some time contemplating them; don’t rush. And during this exploration, be open to new possibilities. Give yourself permission to stretch and grow by trusting in yourself and your own curiosity. And don’t worry about looking foolish, inept or not acting your age. As we age there is less pressure to draw within the lines; we can create our own pictures. Then share them with a close supportive friend or loved one who knows you well and who you can trust to be honest. Get their advice and support. You may need their gentle encouragment to get you moving on a new road of self-discovery.

You may discover now is the time to write, to paint, to entertain, to educate or to heal. We all know many people who in their 50's, 60's or 70's have rediscovered a purpose whether it is local history, grief counseling, dance or ministry that has given them new energy, a new drive and an enthusiasm for life. Growth and change continues until we die. We can decide to live an active life but we can also decide how to live an active life full of passion and purpose. Our most satisfying discoveries may still be ahead of us.

Saturday night someone will be leaving the Senior Center with a smile on their face. The big prize for Saturday Night Bingo has grown to $425 and sixty numbers will be called for the winning blackout. Which means in layman’s terms, it is all but certain that someone will drive home with $425 in their pocket. Bring your lucky pennies; wear you lucky socks. It may just be your night! The Center appreciates all the folks who come out and play because the proceeds from Saturday Night Bingo helps support the Senior Center and its mission: “promoting healthy aging by sharing and caring”. And don’t forget Meals-on-Wheels Halloween Bingo night on Thursday October 30th. Doors open at 4:30 and Bingo starts at 6:00.

The Senior Center’s Young at Heart Serenaders practice the first two Wednesdays of each month from 10:30 – 11:30. The last two Wednesdays of the month they go out into the community and sing at retirement or care centers. They particularly enjoy singing in the Atrium at MCMC where the music floats up to the second and third floors that open up on the atrium. A sample of their fall music is “Autumn Leaves”, “The impossible Dream” and “This is the Army, Mr Jones”. Rehearsals are open to everyone. If you enjoy singing you will enjoy singing with the Young at Heart Serenaders.

At the Next Chapter Lecture Series on Tuesday October 28th at 11:00 am, you will learn "How to Assess and Prevent Accidents around your Home" presented by Visiting Health Services. One area that will be covered is fall prevention and how to identify ways to make your home fall proof.

But to avoid falls, you may also want to ask your doctor about your risk of falling and then modify your activities to reduce those risks. And since balance, flexibility and strength can also reduce the risk of falling and improve your chances of recovering if you do fall, it is good to participate in some kind of physical activity whether it is walking, water aerobics or a Tai Chi class. Falls are a major cause of injury and death among seniors, but falls are preventable and these are some steps you can take to help reduce your chances of falling.

"The Jazz Generations" are playing again on October 28th at the Senior Center’s Tuesday Night Music and Dance They have played all over the Northwest as well as in Las Vegas. Come down and enjoy an evening of dancing and fine music. And tonight don’t miss "Hardshell Harmony" a popular local bluegrass band playing for your listening pleasure. And Boyd Jacobsen already has the talent lined up for November with Mike Tenney and Dave Warren playing "music you remember from the days you'll never forget" on November 4th and the Notecrackers, Truman Boler and The Jazz Generations on the following consecutive Tuesdays.

Well that is it for another week. Until we meet again, "When the student is ready, the teacher appears."

Senior Living October 15 2008

Because there is so much to cover this week, I thought I would skip my wanderings about vegetables, many happy returns and the joys of grand parenting till another week. Stay tuned.

Thanks to Occupational Health Services of MCMC you will be able to get your Flu Shots on October 15th and 16th from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm in the Senior Center's basement. Make sure you have a copy of your Medicare or insurance card, since they will be billed. Otherwise the cost is $20. If you have any questions call Suzanne Cross at 296-7811 or the Senior Center at 296-4788.

This Thursday the 16th from 1:30 - 3:00 at the Center, Fern Wilcox will present "A Good Night's Sleep" the second in a her once-a-month series on Healthy Aging. Are there secrets to getting a good night's sleep? How much sleep do we need as we get older? Are naps a good thing? Fern will help us understand how to get the most from this nightly activity so critical to our health: sleep.

There was tremendous interest in seeing the “Singing Christmas Tree” in Portland, so I have reserved twenty tickets – 10 seats in the first balcony and 10 seats on the Orchestra Floor - for the 1:30 matinee performance on Sunday November 30th. The tickets including transportation will be $65 and you can pay for them at the Center. Enjoy a nice Thanksgiving with family and then start the Christmas season with a wonderful performance of the “Singing Christmas Tree”. For more information call the Center at 296-4788.

“Hospice: It's about Life!” is the topic for The Next Chapter Lecture Series. Pat Case of Hospice of the Gorge describes the value of this presentation. "People often think the worst when they hear the word 'hospice.' Let’s face it, no one really wants to think about it or talk about it… dying, that is. But according to Gretchen Hagen, Executive Director for Hospice of The Gorge, hospice is as much about living as it is about dying. While hospice specializes in providing end-of-life care, Hagen says the focus of hospice care is on helping people live life to the fullest extent possible for the rest of their lives. 'I was a hospice nurse for many years, and I’ve seen some amazing examples of how people’s lives changed for the better when they came onto hospice care. Our focus, you see, is on helping people find hope, even in the process of dying. Hospice helps people relax and we help them be free of pain … so they can actually enjoy life. And once that happens, their lives are immediately enriched. I’ve seen time and time again, how hospice has helped people have end-of-life journeys of discovery, love, and sometimes, yes, even joy.' Gretchen Hagen will be sharing her views about hospice care and the stories of patients she has known, in a presentation at the Mid Columbia Senior Center, on Tuesday, October 21 at 11:00. All are welcome to attend.

If you think you can't play golf or tennis because your body moves like the Tin Man before he got the grease, but you can still imagine yourself as Jack Nicklaus or Billie Jean King, you are the person we want to join us every Friday morning starting at 10:00 in the Center’s basement to learn to play the Wii sports games. I am asking, because last Friday I was the only person present and it is hard to explain how playing Wii Golf (which is fun) by yourself (which isn’t so much fun) is part of my many responsibilities as director. (Someone has to learn how to play the games in order to teach others, right?) During the cold and snowy months, the Wii games are great opportunity to keep moving although granted not as fast as the real game – which may be a good thing.

Tuesday Night Music on the 21st will feature “Hardshell Harmony” returning to play excellent bluegrass music. They are a popular band in town and you will really enjoy their bluegrass pickings. And tonight you can listen to Truman’s Country Gold sponsored by Heart of Gold Caregivers. Music starts at 7:00 and everyone is welcome. Admission is free but donations are gladly accepted.

It is that time of the month for our monthly Senior Center breakfast. This month's menu includes hotcakes, bacon and fruit with special seasonal toppings for the hotcakes. Breakfast is from 8:00 – 10:00 and is $5 for the general public and $4 for members. Enjoy a leisurely morning with good food and good friends. "Food always tastes better when someone else cooks it."

If you are interested in receiving information about the Center and healthy aging, please send me your e-mail address. Currently I have only 34 people on my group list for receiving the weekly Center newsletter and I would like to grow that list to 300. It would keep you in the know and save the Center plenty on postage. And I promise I will not sell your name to the nearest Viagra dealer or sub-prime mortgage lender (although I don't think we need to worry about them any more, just the consequences) or a national singles club (unless you want me to).

That is it for another week and what a week it was. Until the next time, while enduring these unsettling economic times, stay calm, enjoy the moment and think small. “The future ain’t what it use to be.” -Yogi Berra

Senior Living October 7

When I use to attend the Senior Advisory Council meetings as a county commissioner, I would always hear personal stories about how difficult it was to pay for prescription drugs that were medically necesary but unaffordable. Fortunately, in 2003 in a difficult and close vote, the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act was passed. And even though it was controversial, flawed and expensive, it was at least the first step in ensuring that everyone with Medicare, regardless of income, health status, or prescription drug usage, will have access to prescription drug coverage. This new coverage known as Medicare Part D began on January 1, 2006. But most importantly every year between November 15 and December 31 those who are eligible have the chance to enroll in the drug plan of their choice or change to a different drug plan.

Because of this opportunity to change plans, drug plan sponsors will start promoting their drug plans for the coming year during the months of October and November. If you currently have Medicare drug coverage, you will receive in the mail your plan’s “Annual Notice of Change.” This document can seem confusing and many seniors just ignore it. But it is extremely important! Be sure to read it carefully to see what changes will be made to your plan for the coming year and compare this coverage with other plans available in your area. (There are 55 stand alone plans to choose from.) If you decide to keep the same drug plan, you can continue your coverage without doing anything. But you may have many questions as you decide whether to keep or change your drug plan. Jean Hockman at the Area Agency on Aging (298-4101) is trained to answer those questions.

But she will need help to answer the many questions seniors will be asking. The state of Oregon recognizes this need, and will be providing a two day training on October 28th and 29th for anyone who would like to become a Medicare volunteer. This is an opportunity to fill a real need by providing unbiased and reliable information to seniors particularly about Medicare Part D during the enrollment period between November 15 and December 31. (The class is also a great way to learn more about the Medicare system.) You can register for the medicare volunteer training class by calling the Center at 296-4788.

The Senior Center is looking for business and individual sponsors to help financially support the Tuesday Night Music program, so the Center can continue to schedule quality musicians to entertain folks of all ages. An example of the quality is Truman Boler, the always popular one-man-band, who will be playing at the Center next Tuesday the 14th. The Center would like to thank our first sponsor, Heart of Gold Caregivers, for sponsoring Truman. Heart of Gold Caregivers provides caregivers in The Dalles as well as Hood River who are insured, bonded and trained so seniors can live in their homes longer. For more information you can contact them at 541-387-0207. Tonight the Notecrackers are playing which is a week earlier than usual. The music always starts at 7:00 and everybody is welcome. Admission is free and donations are truly appreciated.

For the next presentation of the Next Chapter Lecture Series, we are going to switch tracks and look at a fascinating piece of Wasco County history. Jerry Tanquist local railroad historian will present "The Deschutes River Railroad Race" a historical slide show of the race between two railroad companies competing to build the first rail line between the Columbia River and Bend, OR. Jerry’s last presentation on the Great Sourthern Railroad was well received and I expect this one will be just as informative and entertaining.

A quick reminder about the AARP Driver Safety Class on October 20 and 21. Dick Frost who coordinates the volunteers in the area and teaches the class in Hood River dropped by and reminded me that you can save up to 15% on your insurance rates by taking the class. (You will need to talk to your own insurance carrier to find out the exact savings.) To receive the discount you will need to take the class once every three years if you are between 55 and 69 and once every two years if you are 70 or over. But besides the financial advantage, you can learn more about the traffic laws that have changed over the last several years. Call the Center at 296-4788 to sign up for the class. It can save you some cash and possibly your life.

The Nu-2-U shop is celebrating Bette Dahlberg’s return from her trip to South Dakota by having a $1 a bag sale on Friday the 10th during their regular hours from 10:00 – 1:30. While the inflation is increasing and financial giants are staggering, you can still find a very good deal at the Nu-2-U shop. Stop by and say hi. Bette and Martha will be looking for you.

Well it has been busy around the Center. Which is good. Sunday night was the last stop for the Fellowship of Churches Progressive Dinner with Rob and Shirley Bagge providing the fine entertainment. It was a huge success and everyone is looking forward to next year. Monday morning representatives of the local ARC met at the Center to plan for their Halloween Party from 7:00 – 10:00 on the 24th. On Tuesday the “Yes, You Can Draw!” class starts for a six week run and we are working on the final details for a trip to Portland to see “The Singing Christmas Tree”. Which is all good. The Center feels alive and busy as we navigate into the autumn months. So until we meet again, keep warm, keep busy and keep your hands clean.

“Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them.” Bob Dylan

Senior Living September 30

As older adults we are constantly kidding and joking about those “senior moments”: where did I park the car? Where did I put the check book? Did I put my pants on before I left the house? But for me it is frustrating when I can't remember what I have written this past year. Have I mentioned this idea before? Have I already used that funny George Burns quote? (That is why this column should only be read by folks with a memory like TDWHS’s Mr. Jupe: the short, top-notch principal with the funny accent. He told me he really liked the Senior Center's new banner, but when pressed he couldn't remember what it said. He had to admit he was in his mid-50's on the path towards that day when, and I quote Mr. Jupe, "You get a feeling, you just don’t know what it is.")

But as we age, doesn’t it feel more difficult or impossible to recall new information or learn new skills? But I wonder if we have just forgotten how difficult it was to learn new ideas when we were younger. I am learning the solving techniques for Sudoku puzzles, and it is not easy. I have to keep going back to reread the instructions and examples. But if I think back to my younger days, it was hard to remember the rules for playing the popular board game Risk (and forget calculus). We may just have an elevated notion of how much easier it was to learn when we were younger. I feel we are capable of learning much more than we give ourselves credit. Learning something new has always been hard work so don’t stop. Give it a shot. It never was easy.

One form of memory loss we currently have little control over is Alzheimers. To raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer care, support and research, Flagstone Assisted Living invites you to participate in the 2008 Association Memory Walk® to be held this coming Saturday starting at 10:00 at Third and Lincoln (St. Peter’s Landmark Church). Local participants include the Oregon Veteran’s Home, Columbia Basin Care Facility, Mill Creek Point, Evergreen Health and Rehabilitation Center, Cherry Heights Retirement Communityand Mid-Columbia Senior Center. This is an opportunity to support the nation's largest Alzheimers event and help find a solution to this crippling and tragic disease that has affected so many in the Gorge.

“Yes, You can draw!” is a new drawing class at the Senior Center for those who think they can’t, starting next Tuesday the 7th from 2:15 - 4:15 for six weeks. Nancy Russell who will be teaching the drawing class has taught beginning drawing classes at PCC before she moved to The Dalles. Here is a chance to explore the world of drawing in a supportive and low stress environment.

Why not make a habit of attending the weekly Next Chapter Lecture Series at the Senior Center every Tuesday at 11:00 AM? There is always something new to learn and last Tuesday Tracy Dugick a dietitian with MCMC offered several useful tips about eating for good health. Eat fruit instead of drinking juice: less calories and more filing; shred your cheese instead of slicing it: you get the taste without as much fat; don't eat one big meal: all your meals should be about the same size; don't eat till you feel full: save that feeling for Thanksgiving; try smart snacking: have available small healthy snacks to eat when your body tells you to; use smaller plates and bowls to fight the national trend of "portion distortion"; order the smaller servings off the "senior" menu: good for your health and your budget.

Next Tuesday, October 7th, at 11:00 AM you will have another opportunity to hear Dr. PK Swartz discuss “Advanced Directives and Organ Donations - What to do so you can make your own decisions". This is a repeat of his excellent and informative presentation from last winter that you won’t want to miss.

Next Tuesday the 7th the Notecrackers will be performing. We are very fortunate to have them play the Senior Center on a regular basis. And tonight we are glad to welcome back the Sugar Daddies to play their swingy jazz sound. Tuesday is your dance night at the Senior Center with a variety of musicical styles to enjoy. Everybody is welcome and admission is free but we really appreciate you donations. And if Tuesday doesn't work or once a week isn’t enough, don't forget music at the Cherry Park Grange and square dance lessons at the Civic Auditorium.

I am writing this column while twenty women are in Portland watching "Menopause: The Musical" in Portland. Not one man, including myself, had the guts to go. But then there are times when it is just best to let the women be by themselves. We are now determining if there is enough interest to reserve tickets for the "Singing Christmas Tree" in Portland. I am looking at either the 2:30 matinee on Sunday, November 30th or Saturday, December 6th. I believe we can keep the price for a ticket and transportation at or below $65. If you are interested in seeing this Portland tradition, call the senior center to add your name to the list.

Fellowship of Churches is sponsoring a progressive dinner on Sunday October 5th, $4 for adults and $2 for children plus one food item at each stop. It is a way to get to know members from other congregations while benefitting local hunger relief. The dinner will start with an appetizer at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 1805 Minnesota, at 5:00 PM, then soup and salad at Gateway, vegetable and main course at St. Peter’s with help from Zion Lutheran and concluding at the Senior Center with Dessert prepared by the Congregational Church and some fine gospel music provided by the Bagges.

Well, that’s a wrap. Until we meet again, keep hope alive for the greatest sin is cynism.

Overheard at the Senior Center, “When you don't have any aches and pains, you are probably in a casket with someone over you giving your eulogy.”

Senior Living September 23

I don't consider myself dumb (at least not often) but after attending an excellent workshop on Medicare I am going to have to get a lot smarter in the next four years. The workshop was presented by Oregon's Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance (SHIBA) to help explain the Medicare system. There are over 47 million people enrolled and because everyone's situation is different, Medicare can seem complicated and confusing.

There are three basic parts to Medicare. Part A covers inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing care, home health care and hospice care and there is no premium. Part B is optional with a monthly premium of 96.40 (the premium will not increase in 2009 and the deductible will remain at $135) and covers doctor's services and outpatient care, diagnostic tests, some therapies and durable medical equipment. Part D covers prescription drugs and you pay a premium depending on your insurance provider. You are eligible when you turn age 65 (you don’t have to be retired) and there is a seven month enrollment period starting three months before you turn 65.

A few things to remember. When you get close to turning 65, you will receive information about enrolling in Medicare. It is important so make sure you read it. Never buy an insurance product without investigating it first. There are many unscrupulous salepeople who see you as an easy target. (I personally never buy anything over the phone or from a door-to-door salesperson.) If you are considering buying a private insurance plan, talk to your doctor to make sure they will accept it. If you have any questions, talk to someone you trust or call Jean Hockman at the Area Agency on Aging (298-4101). Jean has been trained about the ins and outs of Medicare and if she doesn't know the answers she knows where to find them. For your convenience, Jean will be at the Senior Center every other Tuesday from 12:30 to 1:30 to answer questions.

In collaboration with Visiting Health Services, the Senior Center is expanding its Loan Closet to offer basic medical equipment including ambulatory devices such as wheelchairs, walkers, and canes and bathroom equipment such as handrails for toilets and bathtubs and commodes. Medicare pays for many types of medical equipment, but will generally not pay for most equipment used in bathrooms. And although Medicare will pay for the first ambulatory devise, they will not pay for the second. With Joyce Browne and Debbie Kelly's help, we have weeded out the old and unsafe equipment and are looking for donations of good clean used bathroom equipment as well as any wheelchairs with the foot rests. With your help the Senior Center we will be able to lend medical equipment that Medicare won’t pay for or seniors can’t afford.

The Wasco County Historical Society has an exciting tour planned for Saturday, October 4th that combines the past with the present. You are invited to visit the Young Life Wildhorse Canyon Camp, a non-denominational Christian camp for adolescents located outside Antelope. It was formerly the Big Muddy Ranch; then became Rancho Rajneesh in the 1980's. As an additional treat, Dan Durow will be your trip narrator and share his harrowing experiences with the Rajneeshees when he was the young and handsome Wasco County Planning Director. The 30 passenger bus will depart from the upper parking lot of the Wasco County/The Dalles Library at 9:00 am and return approximately 5:00 pm. The cost is $15 per person and will include lunch in the ranch's cafeteria. To register call 541-478-3429 and send a check to WCHS in care of Jan Leininger at 1550 Morgensen Road, Mosier, Oregon 97040.

We still have five seats left to see the 2:00 pm matinee performance for “Menopause: The Musical” this coming Sunday the 28th. The bus will leave the Senior Center at 11:30 and will return by 6:30 with a short stop on the way back in Cascade Locks. Find a friend and enjoy this entertaining and inspiring musical. You will soon be singing some of the old tunes but with new lyrics including "Stayin Awake" and "My Husband Sleeps Tonight".

The last hike of the year is scheduled for Monday, Sept 29th leaving the Senior Center at 9:30. It is a moderate 4-mile round trip walk following the beautiful Cold Springs Creek to powerful Tamanawis Falls. If you can walk from the Senior Center to Sorosis Park, this is the outing for you. This hike was scheduled last month but was changed when the access to the falls was closed because of a fire in the area. Join Skip and Janet one more time to see this beautiful falls upclose and personal. The Senior Center wants to thank Skip and Janet for leading these hikes and you learn more about exploring the scenic vistas in our own backyard in Skip’s regular Sunday column in The Dalles Chronicle.

Truman Boler is coming back to the Senior Center Tuesday (30th) to play for your dancing and listening pleasure. We should have another good crowd. And tonight don’t miss “The Jazz Generations”. Admission is free and all ages are welcome!

If you have retirement investments or have been watching the stock market gyrations, you may be interested in Tuesday’s (the 30th) Next Chapter Lecture presentation "How to Invest during Bad Economic Times" presented by Heather Runyon and Tara Donivan of Edward Jones. These are not financial times for the weak hearted, but hopefully we won’t revisit the economic conditions of the mid-80’s when so many people were leaving The Dalles you couldn’t find a U-Haul to rent. But when it comes to the stock market, maybe we should take Will Rogers’ advice: "Don't gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don't go up, don't buy it.”

Well that is it again. Time marches on; a new season, a new chapter. Until the next time, to paraphrase Stephen Sondheim, “beauty is in that which changes”.


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