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UPDATED 10.12.17

Aging Well in the Gorge September 27th 2016

Most of us want to stay in our own homes as we age, but we also want to stay safe. And staying safe includes making sure your smoke detectors are installed and working.

I was reminded of the importance of smoke detectors several weeks ago when my wife and daughter drove by the house fire on Fourth Street. When they stopped, they saw flames shooting out the side of the house; could hear someone inside tapping on one of the upstairs windows; and saw several Johnnies-on-the-spot scrambling to get the person out. It was a truly frightening experience knowing it was real - and not a movie.

Now you can guess what I did the next day. I checked all the smoke detectors in my house: replacing the ones older than ten years, which were most of them; and making sure the others were working.

But I found that I am not the young whipper-snapper I once was - or even as strong as I was just ten years ago. And although I was able to get all the smoke detectors installed, it wasn’t easy. I imagined what it would be like if I wasn’t able to climb a ladder or didn’t have the strength to use a screwdriver.  

That is where the Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue (MCFR) can help out. If you are unable to install your smoke detectors and do not have a friend who can help, you can call MCFR and make an appointment for someone to come and install them for you.

MCFR wants to save and protect lives. They have been trained to respond to emergencies, but their worst nightmare is retrieving a lifeless body from a structure fire. They know smoke detectors can save lives - but only if they are installed and working.

You can learn more about fire prevention, how to escape a fire and other MCFR services such as FireMed memberships at the Center’s Tuesday Lecture on October 4th at 11:00 when a representative from the Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue will be the speaker. Come and learn how to be prepared, so you can avoid the worse.

Tickets are on sale for the Baby Back Rib Dinner on October 7th. You can purchase them at the Center, at Klindt’s Booksellers or this Saturday they’ll be selling tickets at the Farmers’ Market from 9:00 – 1:00. The cost is still only $15. And thanks to the dinner’s sponsor, The Springs at Mill Creek, every dollar raised will go to support The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels and the Center.  

Andre, KC and Joe will be playing at the Center on Tuesday, October 4th. Doors open at 6:00, music starts at 7:00, and donations are appreciated.

And there’s more music. The popular northwest vocalist Nehemiah Brown is returning to the Center on Friday, October 14th. With his silky smooth voice, he will sing standards from the 50’s and 60’s including pop, country and some gospel tossed in. Thanks to The Dalles Health and Rehabilitation Center, the ticket prices are only $3.00 per person which you can purchase at the door. Doors open at 6:00, and the music starts at 7:00  

The name of the roller skating rink on the west side of town was the By Golly. (This week’s winners of a quilt raffle ticket each are Donna Smith and Zelta Wasson.)

It has been a while since I’ve asked a question about pop music during the “peace and love” 1960’s. So for this week’s “Remember When” question, who was the British singer, songwriter and guitarist who emerged from the British folk scene during the 60’s; was often described as a British Dylan clone and had several top ten hits in the US? Email your answer to www.mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or drop your answer off at the Center with a drawing of a mellow yellow sunshine superman.   

Well, it’s been another week, where if it is out of sight, it is out of mind – which is the reason for all the sticky notes around my house. Until we meet again, an ounce of prevention is worth as much as a good insurance policy.


“We want autonomy for ourselves and safety for those we love. That remains the main problem and paradox for the frail. Many of the things that we want for those we care about are things that we would adamantly oppose for ourselves because they would infringe upon our sense of self.”  Atul Gawande


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