A MONTH OF SUNDAYS AT THE ANDREWS HOMESTEAD The Meriden Historical Society will be holding an Open House at the Andrews Homestead, 424 W. Main St (next to Ben Franklin School) Meriden, Ct., every Sunday in October. We will have an exhibit showing early communications in Meriden. There will be displays of telegraph keys, Western Union artifacts, collections of telephones and typewriters, Connecticut Telephone Co. items and ephemera of all types. We also have an early switchboard and other interesting information on how the news got around back then. There’s a lot to see now that the Andrews Homestead has become a museum for Meriden's past. The hours are 11am to 3pm and admission is free. Come and reacquaint yourselves with Meriden's history. __________________________________________________________________________ MAYOR’S CORNER - Wallingford Dear Friends: The troubles that now afflict the U.S. economy remind me of a story contained in What Were They Thinking? by Bruce Felton. The Mississippi State Legislature enacted a law which named Pyrite the state mineral. Pyrite is fool’s gold. Actually, pyrite was one of the first ores mined in the early days of settling America. In Jamestown, Virginia, founded in 1607, Captain John Smith wrote in his journal how one of the settlers found a bank of yellow tinged dirt. After that, all organization disintegrated as attention was devoted to digging, washing, refining and loading gold. Ship Captain Newport carried the “gold” cargo to London, supposedly worth millions, only to find it was worthless. Meanwhile, the colony suffered nightly from failure to perform tasks necessary for food and shelter. Perhaps we haven’t progressed as far as we think. Thought for the day, William W. Dickinson, Jr. - Mayor 9/29/08 ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Mayor’s 6th Annual Clean Up Scheduled for Saturday October 18, 2008 Saturday, October 18, 2008 is Mayor Mike Rohde’s Community Clean-Up Day across Meriden. Now in its 6th year, the Saturday clean-up event is back, and bigger than ever! What better way to show you care about our city than to get together with friends, co-workers and neighbors to pick up litter in a public space in your community. Meriden residents, businesses, and organizations are invited to participate. A clean-up “pep rally” will be held at 10:00am at City Hall, 142 East Main Street. At the pep rally, volunteers will be able pick up t-shirts, clean-up supplies (bags and disposable gloves), and safety information. After the clean-up, volunteers are invited to Hubbard Park to attend a celebration lunch which will start at 12:30pm. No bulky waste will be picked up this day. Clean-up efforts will focus on the area of Meriden’s many neighborhoods and main roadways, but volunteers are welcome to pick up litter in any area of the city. Mayor Rohde adds, “I hope that all citizens show their support of the city by volunteering on Saturday. We want to continue the cleanup effort that has been ongoing for the past 5 years and with everyone’s help we will be able to do just that.” Interested volunteers are encouraged to call Jackie Fordiani at the Mayor’s Office at 639-6595 to pre-register their clean-up location. __________________________________________________________________________________________ Mayor’s Corner - Meriden September 25, 2008 Lots of positive and exciting things are happening in Meriden. Since my swearing in inauguration in July two months ago, I have had the opportunity to make over 30 mayoral appearances. A great and satisfying part of being Meriden’s mayor is to see first hand the many celebrations, grand openings, gatherings, fairs, and tributes taking place throughout Meriden. We’re making steady progress on many fronts. The Friends of the Library on West Main St. had the grand opening of the new Friends Book store in a nicely remodeled space. Two of our chronic eyesore buildings are finally being demolished on Colony St. after many years of neglect. The beautiful new Falcon Field Complex opened with a flurry of celebrations and sporting events – our newest city jewel. A new organization, “Friends of Falcon Field”, is being formed to raise funds and provide oversight for this new facility. MidState Medical Center held their ground breaking ceremony for the much needed, expanded emergency room facilities and also celebrated their tenth year anniversary. On the social front, the Meriden Wallingford United Way launched their fall fundraising campaign “Live United” with a successful kick off campaign. Meriden Children’s First initiative held the unveiling of the early childhood blueprint to chart the course for bright futures for our children. A new ten year effort to prevent and eliminate homelessness in Meriden and Wallingford was launched with the support of local, state and national leaders. The annual bike safety rodeo sponsored by the Meriden Kiwanis Club and assisted by the Rotary Club and Meriden Police Department provided free bike helmets and bike safety lessons for Meriden children. This event was held at the Hub. Over a thousand children got free book bags and school supplies at the school kickoff at John Barry School, an event sponsored by the Meriden Rotary Club, NAACP, and Beat the Street Community Center. Looking ahead to fall activities and events, the city will be hosting the Main and Vine Wine Tasting event at the Downtown Court Complex adjacent to the green on October 2 as part of the Nites in the City event. On October 3rd, the City Brewfest will take place on the courthouse green. This is always a fun event so make plans to attend. I will be judging the local restaurant cook off on Friday Night. On October 8, the Meriden Kids Safe Walk will take place at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School at 8 AM followed by a press conference to stress school safety. Check your local newspaper for more fall activities and events in Meriden! All the best. Mike Rohde Mayor of Meriden ___________________________________________________________________________________________ MAX E. MURAVNICK MERIDEN SENIOR CITIZENS’ CENTER The Max E. Muravnick Meriden Senior Citizens’ Center is open to all Meriden residents age 55 and over. Membership is free of charge and new members may sign-up any weekday between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. by presenting a driver’s license or other proof of age. New members receive an information package about senior services and a coupon entitling them to one complimentary lunch in our Senior Community Café. Sign-up today and find out about all that is offered for Meriden seniors at the Max E. Muravnick Senior Center! The next program sponsored by the Meriden Triad to help protect Meriden seniors from fraud, scams and other crimes will be “Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft” with Tina Gabriel, Director of Crimes Investigations for Corporate Security at People’s United Bank in Bridgeport. According to Ms. Gabriel, 8.4 million Americans became the victims of identity fraud in 2006. The most common frauds were credit card fraud (25%), phone or utilities fraud (16%), bank fraud (16%) and employment fraud (14%). The average victim loses $5,900 and spends 600 hours recovering from the crime, often over a period of years. Learn how to avoid being a victim of fraud and identity theft by attending this program on Wednesday, October 8 at 10:30 AM in the first floor meeting room at the Senior Center. The program is sponsored by the Meriden Triad. Sergeant Darrin McKay is Chairman of this local partnership between the Meriden Police Department and the Senior Center to help prevent crimes against the elderly. Refreshments will be served. On Friday, October 17 at 1:00 PM the Senior Center will host an Energy Assistance Forum, an educational program about how people can get help with their winter energy bills. Speakers will include Mayor Michael S. Rohde, Congressman Chris Murphy, State Senator Thomas P. Gaffey, Pam Hall from CL&P, and Larry Elliott from New Opportunities for Greater Meriden. Learn about federal initiatives, state programs, energy assistance application guidelines and energy conservation. The program is open to the public and people of all ages are welcome to attend. There are several openings for a Beginners Computer Class taught by Richard Hackbarth starting at the Senior Center on Wednesday, October 15. The classes will be held on Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:00 AM to 12:00 noon and the cost of the 12 hour class is $30. To register please call the Senior Center at 237-0066. The Meriden Health Department has scheduled a Flu Shot Clinic at the Max Muravnick Senior Center on Wednesday, October 22 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 noon. The flu shots at the Senior Center will be given by appointment only again this year. Appointments must be made by calling the Meriden Health Department at 630-4234 to schedule a time for your flu shot on Wednesday, October 22. According to Meriden Health Director Beth Vumbaco, flu shots are strongly recommended for all people aged 60 and older, all residents of nursing homes or chronic care facilities and all adults with chronic disorders of the pulmonary or cardiovascular systems, including asthma. The flu shots at the Senior Center are for Meriden residents over 60 or those with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, severe anemia, severe asthma, heart disease or lung disease. Please note that the flu shot does not contain live virus and cannot give you the flu and a new, sterile needle is used for each person. To make an appointment for your flu shot at the Senior Center call the Meriden Health Department at 630-4234. Remember to bring your Medicare card too! On Saturday, October 25 the Senior Center will provide a Mini-Bus to the 2nd Annual Senior Fair at the Wallingford Senior Center. Sponsored by the Record-Journal, the Senior Fair features workshops, seminars, screenings and refreshments as well as displays from many companies providing services to seniors. For further information or to sign-up call the Mini-Bus Office at 237-3338. Sign-ups are now being accepted for the next session of the AARP Driver Safety Program at the Senior Center on Wednesday, November 5 and Friday, November 7 from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. Class participants will learn defensive driving techniques, new traffic laws and much more in this 8-hour course. Successful completion of the classroom course also entitles you to a discount on your automobile insurance premiums. The course fee is $10 and reservations can be made in the front office or by calling the Senior Center at 237-0066. On Friday, November 21 at 10:00 AM the Meriden Triad has arranged for a Senior Center Mini-Bus to travel to the Department of Motor Vehicles in Wethersfield for people who are interested in obtaining a Non-Drivers License Photo ID. The cost of the ID card is $15 and you must bring a certified birth certificate or valid passport plus one additional form of identification like a Social Security card. Triad members Sgt. Darrin McKay and Sgt. Glen Milslagle will accompany the mini-bus and provide assistance at the DMV. For further information or to sign-up contact the Mini-Bus Office at 237-3338. John F. Hogarth Senior Center Director September 25, 2008 _____________________________________________________________________________________ Wallingford Senior Center OCTOBER 2008 Edition Our monthly newsletter can be read in its entirety the first of each month on our website at www.wlfdseniorctr.com DIGITAL TV TRANSITION: WILL YOU BE READY? Wednesday, October 8, 10:30 AM Are you uncertain about the new federal law concerning the February 17, 2009 switch to digital television broadcasting and how it will affect you? A speaker from the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) will give a presentation on why the switch is being made, what we can expect, and how we can prepare for the transition. The FCC representative will be happy to answer your questions and address any issues you may have. Please sign up at the front desk if you plan to attend. SENIOR FAIR Friday, October 24, 5:00—8:00p.m. AND Saturday, October 25, 9:00—2:00 p.m. The Wallingford Senior Center will host the Second Annual Record-Journal Senior Fair on October 24 and 25. The Fair will fill our Great Room with a wide variety of vendors who will offer you information, promotional items, and refreshments. In addition to the dozens of booths, there will be workshops, seminars, screenings, music and more! This Senior Fair, which is free and open to the public, will offer something for everyone. Don’t miss it! MULTI-CULTURAL FAIRS As the final project toward attaining her Gold Award, Girl Scouting’s highest honor, local student Rachael Hyland has planned a four-part series of cultural fairs to be held at the Senior Center just for you! The fairs will involve students from the high school language clubs and will showcase the cultures of France, Italy, Spain and Germany. You will be able to experience the food, music, language and more of each of the four countries. Our first virtual trip to “the continent” begins October 23. FRENCH FAIR on Thursday, October 23, 3:00—5:00 PM Parlez-vous Francais? (Do you speak French?) No? It doesn’t matter! Come discover many facets of the French culture on October 23. French food, music, art, and language experiences await you at this informative and fun fair. Interact with members of the high school French clubs and learn something new! The event is free, but be sure to sign up if you plan to attend. COMPUTER CLASS REGISTRATION October 1 & 9, 2008 Learn something new (challenge your brain!) and sign up for a computer class offered by the Computer Learning Center of Wallingford located right here at the Senior Center! Registration sessions are scheduled for Wednesday, October 1, 9:30 to 11:30 AM, and on Thursday, October 9, 1:00 to 3:00 PM. See schedule of offered classes in the September newsletter. VIVA ITALIA! DINNER Thursday, October 9, 5:00 p.m. Celebrate Columbus Day with a sit-down Italian-style dinner along with musical entertainment and featured singers. The price is $25.00 per person and non-members are invited. Tables of eight may be reserved in advance with full payment ($200) and written list of names at the time of ticket purchase. Tickets on sale now at the Senior Center. This special evening is sponsored by the Wallingford Committee on Aging, Inc. Seating available at 4:30 p.m. (Note: all other evening program cancelled) ART APPRECIATION LECTURES Mondays, 12:00 – 1:00 PM Spend your lunch hour enriching your cultural side by learning about many of the masterpieces contained in NYC’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. The class includes a 30-minute video lecture by Professor Richard Brettell and then a discussion/enrichment session. Lecture topics will include: the ancient art of Greece and Rome; European paintings covering the Renaissance to the 19th century; and American art from 1650 to post WWII. Members of the class will select future lectures covering many other topics including: sculpture; costumes and textiles; musical instruments; art of the Near East, Africa, and Ancient Egypt; and more! The first 8-week series of lectures begins Monday, October 20 and ends December 8. Additional 8-week series will be scheduled in early 2009. Next spring, we plan to visit the Metropolitan Museum to see the art firsthand! The fee to cover the cost of supplies is $5.00. Sign up today for a rich, educational experience. VINTAGE VOICES Our center’s chorus, the Vintage Voices, is looking for additional voices to join the group. Rehearsals are Mondays at 10:00 AM. Under the direction of Nan Thompson, the group will be expanding its musical repertoire this fall to include Blowing in the Wind, Age of Aquarius, and other tunes. The Vintage Voices perform at local convalescent homes and at senior center special events. If you enjoy singing, you are welcome to join this friendly group! MEN’S FITNESS CLASS Strengthen your bones, tone your muscles, and increase your energy and endurance in this low-impact exercise class for men only. The class, which is led by fitness instructor Karen Zeoli, meets Mondays and Wednesdays, 2:30—3:15 PM, and the fee is only $1.25 per class! Do something positive for yourself and sign up today! SOCIAL SERVICES ECONOMIC STIMULUS PACKAGE The deadline for applications for this program for rebates of $300.00 (single) or $600.00 (filing jointly) is: OCTOBER 15, 2008 If you have not yet filed, you can download Form 1040A at www.irs.gov,or pickup a form at the Senior Center. CONNECTICUT ENERGY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (CEAP) WHAT? Money to heat your residence if you heat with oil, kerosene, electric, or gas. WHO? People whose income and assets fall within the guidelines. HOW? FOR OIL HEAT ONLY: Call 265-7753 starting Monday, September 15, 2008 for an appointment. (Gas and electric can call beginning in December.) WHEN? November 1, 2008 is the first day fuel deliveries will be paid by the CT Energy Assistance Program. NOTE: Anyone interested in volunteering to assist in completion of applications for energy assistance, please call 265-7753. Training will be provided. Don’t miss this important financial opportunity to save! BENEFITS QUICKLINK Tuesday, October 21, 10:00 a.m.—12:00 noon Only a few individuals age 60 and older have called for Benefits QuickLINK, a private, free, and confidential program which quickly screens your eligibility for these available state and federal programs: • Medicare: Savings, Prescription Drug Coverage, and Rx Extra Help • State Prescription Drug Assistance Programs • Medicaid for Aged, Blind and Disabled • Food Stamps Program • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) • State Property Tax Relief/Rebates • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) • Telephone Assistance (Link-up and Lifeline) Supporting documents not required, but please bring the following information with you to your appointment: 1. Monthly income (social security, pension, dividends and interest) 2. Monthly expenses (heating, fuel, gas, electricity, water, telephone, rent or mortgage payments and medical expenses not covered by health insurance) 3. Asset information (savings, estimated value of home and car, life insurance benefits) 4. A list of all current prescriptions. Call now (265-7753) to make an appointment for Benefits QuickLINK. Pre-registration required. SUPPORT GROUP MEETINGS DIABETES SUPPORT Wednesday, October 8, 1:00 PM LOW VISION SUPPORT Friday, October 17, 10:15 AM PARKINSON’S DISEASE SUPPORT: Friday, October 24, 10:15 AM Neighbors Helping Neighbors INTERFAITH VOLUNTEER CAREGIVER TRAINING Tuesday, October 28, 1:00 p.m.—4:00 p.m. You are invited! Share time with a neighbor for a friendly visit, phone call, or help with grocery shopping. Reach out and touch someone’s life. Call 265-7753 to sign up for training. A social hour will follow training from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. INCLEMENT WEATHER NOTICE In the event of inclement weather, we urge you to watch WVIT-Channel 30, WTNH-Channel 8, or WFSB-TV Channel 3 for information on the cancellation of activities at the Wallingford Senior Center. If the Center should remain open in questionable weather and you are unsure as to whether you should venture out, we urge you to consider your own safety and well being and remain at home. We will make every effort to reschedule to a later date any event or activity that may have to be postponed. THINKING ABOUT . . . a donation or bequest? The Wallingford Senior Center (Wallingford Committee on Aging, Inc.) is recognized by the IRS as a non-profit 501(c)(3) and all donations are both greatly appreciated and fully tax deductible.