Aging Well August 31st

Sometimes you run into a brick wall – not of your own choosing; not because of anything you did. It just happens. And you have the option to stop, turn back or as Michael Jordan said “Figure out how to climb it, go through it or work around it”.

Just over two years ago, with the help of many community partners, the Center began an ambitious campaign to expand the Senior Center – to complete the dream of the founders of the Center and to prepare the Center for the next quarter century.
The economy was good and the Center expected to raise the estimated $1.5 million dollars from foundations and local donations. But then life happens! And we ran into a wall called the “Great Recession”. Although we raised $40,000 local dollars from folks who believed in the dream, we didn’t receive the very large donations we had hoped. And the private foundations lost millions in their endowments and reduced what funds they could grant.

It was necessary to reevaluate the expansion plans.
Over the last year the board and the expansion committee have discussed this new reality and decided to “climb it, go through it or work around” this wall by scaling back the project and focusing on three main priorities – all in the original plan for the Center twenty five years ago: an elevator, additional office space and an exercise room.

But the Center board wants to know the community whether we are moving in the right direction and if so, how best to design the Center expansion. For that purpose there will be an information gathering meeting on Tuesday September 7th at 11:00 where you will have an opportunity to express your ideas about the Center’s expansion. To help focus the ideas there are three questions for you to think about: 1) how do you currently use the building, 2) what do you feel are the current challenges and successes of the building, and 3) what are your “wants and desires” on how to make the building work better for you in the future. Whether you use the Center every day or have never stepped inside the building, I hope you take this opportunity to share your ideas about how the Center should be designed to support older adults and the community for another twenty-five years. And if it’s easier to get to a computer than the Tuesday meeting, you can email your thoughts to

Besides offering the Sunup Walking Club at 8:00 on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, Parks and Recreation is also offering you an opportunity to see two operas, Pagliacci and Carmina Burana, on Sunday, September 26th at a great price of $33. The seats are limited to the first twelve folks to register. For more information call 541-296-9533.

The final touch to an excellent Music in the Park series sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce will be 6:00 PM this Wednesday night at the City Park. The “Stolen Sweets” (including The Dalles’ own Erin Sutherland on vocal harmonies) are the headliner and will be performing vintage music from the 1920s-1940s. The show has been described as “high energy” featuring “seamless harmonies, top-notch players and infectious dance songs from yesteryear”.

And every Tuesday night at the Center there is music for your dancing and listening pleasure. And performing tonight are the Dufur Boys from Dufur. The “pickin’ and grinnin’” starts at 7:00 and everyone is invited. It doesn’t cost an arm and a leg nor even a finger or toe. It’s all free but donations are appreciated.

It wasn’t Roy Rogers or Gene Autry but the singing cowboy Tex Ritter who recorded “Deck of Cards”. Of the four correct entries, Jim Ayers was the winner of a free Saturday breakfast at the Center on September 18th. And using my special supernatural powers, Jim Sargeant also receives a free breakfast for being the first to call in and knowing that T. Texas Tyler wrote and first recorded “Deck of Cards” in 1948.

This week’s “Remember When” question goes way back – in relative terms. The “Stolen Sweets” formed after rehearsing for a tribute show to this sister act that performed between 1925 and 1935 and were known for their close, intricate harmonies. They chalked up 20 hits during the 1930s including the number one record “The Object of My Affection” in 1935 and were later imitated by many vocal groups including the Andrew Sisters. What is the name of this sister act? E- mail, call 541-296-4788 or write it on the back of this week’s winning Powerball ticket.

Well it’s time to stop, take a deep breath and recall what my father always said – “tomorrow is another day”. Until we meet again, question the obvious, but never ask a barber if you need a haircut!

A wise man adapts himself to circumstances – as water shapes itself to the vessel that contains it. Chinese Proverb

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