Aging Well April 6th

The temperatures are warming, the days are longer – it is time to get out and explore. And what a rich bounty of opportunities we have in the Gorge area. Just look at the number of first class museums: Maryhill, Fort Dalles Museum, St. Peter’s Landmark, the Original Wasco County Courthouse, the Discovery Center and Wasco County Museum, Hood River County Historical Museum and the Sherman County Historical Museum where you can “take a walk on the rural side”.

While the Center promotes healthy aging by offering activities and programs, it can play a more important role by helping active adults connect with these and many other incredible resources in the area. As an example, the Center has just completed a list of the Trips and Tours that are available this spring and summer in the Gorge and beyond. It includes trips provided by Sherman County Transportation, the Hood River Community Education (including their popular monthly mystery trips) and the Center. The list is available at the Center and will soon be posted on the Internet at The Center will continue to publicize ways you can explore, connect and contribute within and beyond the Center’s walls.

As part of its membership month, the Center will host an Open House from 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM on Tuesday the 13th (before the dancing starts) with cake and ice cream for both those who want to learn more about the activities at the Center and for those who need to be supplied with cake and ice cream to bring you to your senses and join. Come on in. You are all invited!

A local magnet for musical talent is the Cherry Park Grange. They offer Saturday night dances ($5 per person, children under 12 free), Thursday night Gospel music, Jams at Viewpoint Trailer Court on alternating Friday nights and host the Jammers on the second Sundays. A core group of the musicians who play at the grange have formed the Cherry Park Band and occasionally play a Tuesday night gig at the Center. Next Tuesday (13th) will be one of those nights when can dance to till the lights go off. And tonight – all I need to say is “Truman” and you know what I mean: good music and good times. Music starts at 7:00 followed by dancing and shaking. There is no charge but donations are welcome.

The May primary election (ballots will be mailed on April 30th and need to be returned by May 18th) is usually a time of great democratic apathy. But with two contested primary races for county commissioner, and one contested race for Circuit Court Judge, and lawn signs sprouting on every corner and support letters filling the editorial page, you can tell this year is different. But the most far reaching question on the ballot is the proposed home rule charter for Wasco County. You can read the proposed charter on Wasco County’s web site:, but you may also want to attend the Center’s 11:00 lecture next Tuesday featuring Keith Mobley Chairman of the Wasco County Home Rule Charter Committee. The volunteers on the committee – including vice-chair Lewis Flint who set the wheels in motion – spent many, many hours working to develop the proposed home rule charter. They deserve a big thanks. Now it will be up to the voting public to decide whether to adopt the proposed changes.

Whether you feel like Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. – “I like to pay taxes. With them I buy civilization” or lean more towards Mark Twain’s perspective “What is the difference between a taxidermist and a tax collector? The taxidermist takes only your skin”, this is the last weekend to take advantage of the AARP tax aide program at the Center. The hours are from 3:00 – 6:00 on Friday and from 9:00 – 1:00 on Saturday. The service is open to all procrastinators and there is no charge.

Marilyn Scarsfield was the winner of last week’s “Remember When” question. And even though I didn’t receive many examples of memorable high school songs (is it because those days are just a faint glimmer – too far down and around too many corners and up and over too many hills?) I was reminded of Rosemary Clooney during the early 50’s and the 1961 novelty hit “Does Your Chewing Gum Lose It’s Flavor On the Bedpost Over Night)”.

As a young boy growing up in the 50’s, I was a regular fan of the Saturday morning TV shows. This week’s question is “What TV (or radio) show was your favorite when you were a child?” And speaking just to the guys, was anyone else in love with Annette Funicello of the Mousketeers?

Well it’s another week when you know isn’t truly spring, if you still can see snow on the Klickitats. So until we meet again, keep your head down and your belly full.

“We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it.” Edward R. Murrow

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