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Bellingham Council on Aging Announces August News & Events

Jul 30, 2014 12:02PM ● By Pamela Johnson
Sign In, Please! Come in and see our new state-of-the-art touch-screen and swipe system. It’s the new way to sign in for programs. It’s easy and fun to use. Ask the greeter or receptionist for a registration form and a keycard and we’ll get you started. Having an accurate count of who is here is important for safety and emergency purposes.

Also, when we are planning new programs or applying for additional funding, it is very important for us to have an accurate count of who is here at the center and what activity you are involved in. So, please be sure to sign in each and every time you come to visit. For a little extra fun: seniors and volunteers who pick-up their keycards by September 25 will be entered to win $100! Developed by, the system is currently installed in over 700 senior centers.

Eye Health with Nurse Sarah—Please join me on Wednesday, Aug. 20, 10:30–11:30 am, during Eye Health Month. Topics include why it is important to have an annual eye exam, what diseases can affect your eyes, and how to prevent eye problems. Come see Nurse Sarah and learn more. Signing up in advance is encouraged, but not mandatory; rides are available.

Get the Most from Your Digital Camera—On Thursdays in August, at 1:15 pm, Nancy Bland will again offer her digital camera class. Nancy has many years  of experience as a photographer and volunteers to share what she has learned without charging a fee. Please call the center to sign up in advance.

Bellingham in the 1700s—Join Marcia Crooks from Bellingham’s Historical Commission at the senior center on Monday, Aug. 11, at 11 am, for the second in a terrific ongoing series about the history of Bellingham and what makes our town different and distinctive. Please call to sign up for this free program; rides are available.
Monthly Birthday Party—Join us on Thursday, Aug. 28, 12 pm. A BBQ pork buffet for $7/pp provided by Bossy’s Catering is planned. The party includes birthday cake and ice cream, and everyone with an August birthday will receive a gift. Reservations must be accompanied by payment; no refund if you cancel after Aug 26. All residents 90+ are invited free with a reservation during their birthday month.

Walking Club—All you need is a pair of sneakers. Walk at the town common, on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8 am. It’s free, and everyone gets a free pedometer. Call Lisa at 508-966-0398 for more information.

Bellingham BOS/Town Administrator Sponsored Annual BBQ—Monday, Aug. 25, beginning at 5:30 pm, at the senior center, 40 Blackstone Street. Bellingham residents 60+ years of age are invited to attend. Everyone is asked to sign up this month, and pick up your free ticket at the front desk beginning Aug. 1. Transportation will be available for those who need a ride; just make your ride request when you sign up for the party.

Legal Consultations—Attorney Daniel T. Doyle is available on Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2–4 pm, to meet with you and answer your questions in a free consultation. Please call 508-966-0398 to schedule your appointment.

Current Events—Have you tried the discussion group on current events? The group is currently small, but enthusiastic. We start the hour discussing issues of local interest.  We share an issue and then discuss the pros and cons of it. There is no arguing, just a sharing so that all of us can determine whether or not to modify our positions.  We also discuss what we can do about resolving the issue and who we can contact with our thoughts.  Remember, when you voice your opinion, or write it down and send it, it represents not only you but 10 other people. Your voice is very powerful.  As seniors we have the experience and history to impact our government’s policies, IF we make our opinions known. Share your opinions on current topics—not just political—at our group’s monthly meeting. This month it will be on Aug. 14, 10:30 a.m.

Annual Blueberry Festival—On Tuesday, Aug. 19 at 12:30 pm, the Council on Aging invites everyone to again celebrate summer by attending our annual blueberry festival. Attendees are asked to sign up and pay in advance. Blueberry pie ala mode and cold drinks will be offered; at 1 pm, Paul Bonneau will provide musical entertainment. This event is sponsored by the Bellingham COA. Dress is casual; cost is $4/pp. This is an intergenerational event—bring the grandkids! Children under 5 years old are free.

Captain Jack’s Lobster Bake & Mohegan Sun Casino Day Trip—Thursday, Sept. 18. A great excursion. Depart from the Center at 7:45 am and spend the morning at Mohegan Sun. You’ll receive a bonus package that includes a $15 food voucher/coupon and $10 free bet coupons. About 2:30 p.m. you’ll travel to RI’s Narragansett Bay and a restaurant in Wakefield where you can choose either a lobster or prime rib meal with all the extras. Return to the center around 6 pm, after traveling in luxury on a Silver Fox Motor Coach. The cost is $69/pp. All ages welcome. Contact Rita Tetrault at 508-966-0398.

Outreach by Sheila

If you were approved for fuel assistance during the last year, you should be receiving your green recert form as early as July. It might help you to review all of the documentation that you need to submit so that you can get your approval done early. I have not heard whether there will be an increase in the amounts given out this year. If I do, I’ll pass it on.  If you have not applied before, you may call to put your name on the new-applicant list starting in mid-September. We will call you to arrange an appointment when the new applications are delivered.

Are You Caring for a Loved One? Then you need a break. The Companion Caregiver Program can provide a trained companion to stay with your loved one so you can enjoy some respite. Rates are just $8—$12 per hour. Call the senior center, 508-966-0398 for more info. This program is supported through a grant from the Metrowest Health Care Foundation.

Farmer’s Market—Coupons will be distributed here on Tuesday, Aug. 12 at 10 am. Call Sheila or Lisa to check and see if you are eligible.

If you lose power for more than a day because of a storm or other disaster, would you like someone to check on you? If the answer is yes, call either Lisa or Sheila at the senior center, 508-966-0398. A list of seniors is being compiled so that arrangements can be made in case of an emergency.   
If you are in need of durable medical supplies, e.g., a walker, cane, or shower chair, call us. The center has received a donation of new, never-used equipment. We also accept donations of “like-new” equipment.

Have you heard about Benefits Check-up? This new version is designed for MA residents at least 60 years old. It takes about 30 minutes to enter your information, and you may be amazed at the results. The program is designed to identify local, state and federal programs for which you are eligible. If you’d like to discover what programs you are eligible for, call and make an appointment with either Lisa or Sheila. Done on line, the checkup is confidential, and there’s no cost.

New Items Needed for Craft Fair Gift Table— Our gift table has become a senior center tradition and has always been a huge success.  We are asking that if you have any new gifts (no clothes, shoes, used items, etc.) to donate for our table, we will be happy to accept them at any time. Thanks, in advance, for your help—we’re already looking forward to another successful Craft Fair, slated for Saturday, Nov. 1, 9am–3pm.

Programs for Night Owls

Strategies to Help Secure Your Future—You can find trendy news almost anywhere but it is difficult to use this information to make informed decisions and create a plan for your retirement. Attend the five sessions of “Retirement: Strategies to Help Secure Your Future” to be held at the Bellingham Senior Center on Tuesday evenings, 6–7:30 pm, on Sept. 16, 23, 30, and October 7, 14. Whether you plan to retire 20 years from now or have just recently retired, the information you learn in this class can deliver rewards throughout your lifetime. All attendees will receive a handy reference binder packed with reliable and trusted material.

This course contains something for everyone. It is designed to teach you how to build wealth and align your money with your values to accomplish goals in your life. You’ll learn about the many ways to save for retirement as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each. You’ll discover how to save money on taxes, manage investment risks, protect your assets from potential long-term health-care expenses, and implement the proper estate plan documents to meet your wishes. If your objective is to build a nest egg, protect your assets or preserve your lifestyle throughout retirement, this course helps you plan your future with confidence. The presenter is Gerald Loftin, J.D., CFP®, AIF®, of Proficient Wealth Counselors, LLC.

TUESDAY NIGHT AT THE MOVIES—free movie & popcorn, 6–8 p.m.
  • AUG. 5—Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit is a high-stakes action thrill ride where Jack must quickly evolve from soldier to analyst to full-fledged operative to stop a devastating terrorist plot against the United States. PG-13 (105 min.)
  • AUG. 12—The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a classic story of a daydreamer who escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a fantasy world filled with heroism, romance and adventure, starring Ben Stiller. PG (115 min.)
  • AUG. 26—Noah starring Russell Crowe as Noah in a timeless story of courage, sacrifice and hope. This is a visually stunning, action-packed adventure and unforgettable Biblical epic. PG-13 (138 min.)
B4 Band Concert. On Friday, Aug. 15, 7–9 pm. Come and be serenaded in concert by “B4.”  Note that this is a Friday night rather than our usual Thursday.  Also, this year we will charge only $1 since there will be refreshments only, no meal.  The group is preparing, as we speak, new songs to please the Bellingham seniors. Please sign up at the front desk.

Cooking for One will meet on Tue, Aug. 5, 5– 6:30 pm. This free class is limited to 10 people; sign up by calling 508-966-0398. The food and instructor are provided by Whole Foods Market. Dawn Berthelette teaches participants how to use seasonal vegetables and fruits in unique combinations.

Genealogy Workshops with Toni Picariello on Tuesday, Aug. 12 and 26, 6:30–8 pm. Start a new hobby—research your family history at your own pace. Come to one or all of these free classes.

Yoga with Susan Winters on Tuesdays in August, 5:30–7 pm.  Mats available for beginners. The cost is $5 per class. (Susan also teaches chair yoga and basic mat yoga on Tuesday mornings for $3 per one-hour class.)

Tai Chi with instructor Jean Donnelly on Tuesdays in August, 7:15–8:15 pm. Classes always have a warm-up and introduction to what Tai Chi is all about. Each form is also adaptable to people who are chair-bound. The cost per class is $5 for seniors and $10 for younger members. (Jean also teaches Tai Chi on Friday afternoons, 1 pm, for the same fee.)
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