Looking Ahead

Focus group: "Aging in Place"

... Looking Ahead for June, 2008

from Jack Beckley, director, Melrose Council on Aging

Looking Ahead
Melrose Council on Aging     
June 2008
Eileen M. Olsen, Chairperson
Jim Driscoll, Vice-Chairperson
Kay McCarte, Secretary
Rosemary Behrle
George Nelson Torrey
Rick Mockler
Ted Bond

Aging-in-Place” in Melrose Focus Group

This month, a focus group will be held to explore the creation of a virtual retirement community in Melrose similar to Boston’s Beacon Hill Village and Cambridge at Home. These communities, which are sprouting up around the country, charge an annual fee to help members remain in their homes by operating as concierge-type services that coordinate and provide no cost, reduced cost, and market rate services tailored to members’ specific needs. Types of services include transportation, medical escorts, shopping, home making, minor home repairs and social activities.

The focus group will be held at the Stearns and Hill Bistro on June 20, at 2:00 p.m. After the brief overview of Aging-in-Place communities, attendees will be asked for their ideas about tailoring a program to best meet their needs.

Please contact Deborah Pelletier, MVES, at 781-324-7705 to reserve a seat or get more information about the project.

MBA Elder Law Program Presents Free Presentation
at the Milano Senior Center

On Wed., June 11 at 1:00 p.m., Melrose elder law attorney, Anna Bastian, will speak on the topics of Medicaid as related to estate planning and reverse mortgages. A question and answer period will follow the presentation. Handouts will be provided.

Please register by calling the Center at 781-662-6886.
Brain Education for Successful Aging

The Dahn Yoga Center will offer a free workshop at the Milano Senior Center on Tues., June 10 from 1:30-3:30 p.m.  Brain Education for Seniors is a modular program to help participants realize that the power of the brain is not dependent on age, but in the choices made each minute. A greater sense of harmony between body and brain is established through physical exercise, including meridian stretching, breathing, and meditation.

Please register by calling 781-662-6886 and wear comfortable clothing.

Seven Over Seventy Awards Presentation

The Melrose Free Press and Home Instead Senior Care cordially in the public to an award ceremony recognizing seven special Melrose residents age 70 and over at the Milano Senior Center on Thursday, June 26 at 1 p.m.

Sponsored by the Law Offices of Spano & Dawicki, the Melrose Free Press & Home Instead Senior Care.

The Council on Aging is pleased to host the presentation and congratulates the winners.

Community Health Education Series

Golden Living Center-The Elmhurst invites you to a three-part health education series. It will be held at the Milano Senior Center on consecutive Mondays at 9:00 a.m. starting on June 16, 2008. After each session, a question and answer period will follow.
Topics include:

  • Nutrition A dietician will talk about the importance of good nutrition. Refreshments for this session will be healthy!

  • Nursing A registered nurse will discuss nursing services and the importance of medication compliance.

  • Rehabilitation Services A physical therapist will describe techniques and benefits of therapy and fall prevention.

Light refreshments will be served.
Ride in COA Van

The Council provides transportation within Melrose for residents age 60 plus. The van runs Mon.- Thurs. from 8:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. and on Fridays from 8:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

To reserve a ride, call the COA office (781-665-4304) mornings and 781-662-2030 afternoons. $1 per ride suggested donation.

U.S. Post Office

For your convenience, representatives of the U.S. Postal Service are at the Milano Senior Center on Tues., June 17, from 11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. You can buy stamps, including one-cent stamps, mail small packages and even apply for a passport.

SHINE Program

SHINE counselor Lillian Martin is at the Milano Senior Center every Wednesday from 11 AM – 2:00 p.m. to answer your health insurance-related questions.  SHINE (Serving Health Information Needs of Elders) is an Executive Office of Elder Affairs program providing support and on-going training. No appointments are necessary, just stop in.

Computer Help

Our computer helpers are taking the summer off so plan to get in while they are available. Marion Ewell helps on Thursday mornings 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. through June 12th. Maureen Cotter’s remaining help session is on June 13th. Both will resume providing one-to-one computer instruction in September.  

Senior Dining Program

Delicious noontime meals are served each weekday in the Milano Center. The lunch program is run in cooperation with Mystic Valley Elder Services. Entrees are listed in Looking Ahead’s calendar and the complete weekly menus are in the Melrose Free Press.

To reserve a meal call 781-662-6886 from 10:00-11:45 a.m. at least a day before you plan to attend. A $1.50 meal donation is requested. Rides are available by calling 781-665-4304 ($1 suggested donation).

Bridge Club

Meets Wednesday mornings. New members are always welcome. Recent winners were:
Alicia Roman 1st, Bill Ciampa 2nd, Millie Wadland 3rd.     
Bill Ciampa 1st, John Lawry 2nd, Jean Pulsifer 3rd.
Gloria Frazier 1st, Alan Faller 2nd, Paul Frazier 3rd.
Bill Ciampa 1st, Lou Froio 2nd, Bob Morrison 3rd.

Duplicate Bridge

Last month’s winners were William Ciampa & Lou Froio N-S , and Jean Pulsifer & Neska Berthel E-W.

Movies -- Movies -- Movies

"National Treasure: Book of Secrets" Benjamin Franklin Gates (Nicolas Cage) and Dr. Abigail Chase (Diane Kruger) -- who found riches and romance at the end of their first hunt for national treasure -- reteam with their wisecracking partner in crime, Riley Poole (Justin Bartha), for another romp through U.S. history. Now, armed with a stack of long-lost pages from John Wilkes Booth's diary, Ben is obsessed with finding the truth behind President Abraham Lincoln's assassination.

See you at the movies on Tues., June 24 at 1:30 p.m.


AARP Chapter 1124 June 13 –– 11:30 a.m. at The Hillview, North Reading. Spring Luncheon. For reservations call Rosemary Behrle, 781-665-3258.

Melrose Veterans’ Club meets Fridays at 9:00 a.m., GAR Room, Memorial Hall. All are welcome!


Minibus to Square One Mall Call 781-665-4304 to reserve seats on the bus.
June 2 - Leaves Cefalo Memorial Complex at 10:00 a.m. - returns at 1:00 p.m.

June 9 - Leaves Julian Steele & McCarthy Houses at 10:00 a.m. - returns at 1:00 p.m.

June 16 - Leaves City Hall at 10:00 a.m. - returns at 1:00 p.m.

200 CLUB

June 19: A Musical Salute to America, Wright’s Chicken Farm, RI Includes round trip motorcoach; Sit-down all you can eat chicken dinner (salad, fries, pasta, dessert, coffee); DeRossi Orchestra Band with floor show; American flags. Pick up times: 9:45 a.m. Pleasant Street parking lots; 10:00 a.m. Levi Gould; 10:15 a.m. Cochrane House. Return 4:00 p.m. $55.

July 6-7: Tanglewood Overnight, Scenic Mohawk Trail Includes round trip motorcoach; one night at the Williams Inn, two complete meals at the Inn, reserved seat "Inside the Shed” for the Boston Symphony Orchestra afternoon concert, visit to Williams College Art Museum, extensive sightseeing throughout. $275 (twin), $265 (triple), $315 (single).

July 16-18 Rangeley, Maine’s Western Mountains and Lakes Includes round trip motorcoach, two nights at Rangeley Inn, five complete meals, welcome reception (punch, hors d’oeuvres), sunrise canoe trip (optional), Coos Canyon gold panning”, visit to mineral shop, moose watch, entertainment both evenings at the Inn!. Lots of sightseeing. $460 (twin), $445 (triple), $495 (single).

July 21: Boston Duck Tour, Boston, MA Includes lunch at Vinney T’s restaurant, family style (salad, bread, Penne San Sereno, chicken, Tiramisu, and beverage). Pick up times: 9:15 a.m. Pleasant Street parking lots; 9:30 a.m. Levi Gould; 9:45 a.m. Cochrane House. Return approximately 5:00 p.m. $65

Aug. 3-4: Pops By the Sea, Cape Cod Includes one night at the Tidewater Motor Lodge, West Yarmouth; Two complete meals (one lobster dinner); seats for the Boston Pops; boat cruise Hyannis harbor; The Cape Cod Scenic Train. $310 (Twin), $295 (Triple), $375 (Single).

Aug. 18: Maine Lobsterbake, Scarborough, Maine Includes: Salad, Chowder, Steamed Clams, Lobster or Chicken, Potato, Cole Slaw, Rolls, Strawberry Shortcake, Coffee/Tea; Afternoon shopping at Kittery Outlets. Pick ups: 8:45 Pleasant St., 9:00 a.m. Levi Gould; 9:15 a.m. Cochrane House. $59

For information, contact Rosemary Behrle (781) 665-3258. Checks payable to: The 200 Club.

The Melrose Friends of the Aging gratefully acknowledge generous contributions from Helen Lambert and George and Grace Tura and Vivian White.

Donations were also received from Kathleen Gill in memory of her husband Charles Gilll and Josh and Arlene Fienberg in memory of William Borenstein.

Economic Stimulus Payments

Most taxpayers filed their tax returns as usual to receive economic stimulus payments of $300 to $600 for individuals and $600-$1200 for joint filers. However, some low–income workers and retirees who normally do not file returns must file a 1040A form by October 15, 2008 to receive stimulus payments. They must show qualifying income of at least $3,000. Qualifying income includes Social Security, and certain veterans’ and Railroad Retirement benefits.

Forms are at the Milano Senior Center. For more information, call the COA office at 781-665-4304.

Air Conditioning Work

Northeast Metropolitan Regional Vocational School students are spending some time tuning-up the Milano Senior Center’s air conditioning system. Shown here are Shawn Karmes bottom right, Dan Sinagra bottom center, Mike Visocchi bottom left, Alex Dean center, Neil Masiello far left, Dave DerVartanian top right and instructor Ron Stanley top left.     

A big thank you goes out to Henry Hooton, Melrose’s representative to the NEMRVS school committee, who arranged to have the students do some of their fieldwork at the Center.  

Free Adaptive Equipment

Are you having difficulty using your residential phone due to a disability? The Massachusetts Equipment Distribution Program may assist with this problem. People with hearing, vision, motion, speech or cognitive problems may qualify for special adaptive equipment free of charge. Most Massachusetts phone companies now subscribe to this valuable service. To learn more about eligibility requirements you may call MAEDP at 1-800-300-5658, e-mail at MassEDP.com, or you may call Doreen Lam L.S.W. at the Melrose Council on Aging for assistance at 781- 979-9137 or to pick up an application.

Boston Legal Services
Case priorities continue to include housing (especially eviction defense), MassHealth, Medicare, Social Security, SSI, Food Stamps, veterans' benefits, guardianship defense, and nursing home transfers and discharges. Legal advice is also given on many other issues, especially consumer collection and debtor relief.  Call attorney Dan Bartley at (617) 603-1582 if you have such legal problems. You may also call on the toll-free number at 1-800-323-3205. Home visits are available.

Boston Legal Services is considering filing a lawsuit to enforce the provision of the Equal Choice law which mandates pre-admission counseling for persons seeking nursing home coverage under MassHealth. If you know of someone who was not able to get such counseling, particularly if that person was unnecessarily "stuck" in a nursing home for a while as a result of the lack of counseling, please call attorney Bartley at the above number.

MVES is Here to Help

Sure, the warmer weather is here, but are you having trouble enjoying it? Are you struggling with routine tasks like cooking or shopping? Mystic Valley Elder Services (MVES) can help. We offer information and services that will help you remain living in your home. Don’t let the summer go by without seeing how we can help. Please call 781-324-7705 or visit www.mves.org.

Baking Contest Winners: At the May Tea, twelve bakers competed in a baking contest to see who makes the best homemade cookies. Winning first prize was Evelyn Mallon (not shown) for her lace cookies. Winning second prize with her Pizzelle cookies was Isabella Tracy (left), and third prize went to Margie Piscitelli for her lemon cookies.

Preventing Osteoporosis with Miriam Nelson, Ph.D.
Thursday, June 12, 2:45-4:00 PM

The Melrose Strong Bones Osteoporoisis and Fall Prevention Program presents a free showing of  The StrongWomen Program” that shows you how to increase your strength, balance, and energy to look and feel better. Dr. Miriam Nelson, a professor at Tufts University, developed this strength-training program specifically for older women.

Following the presentation, viewers are invited to stay and talk with members of the Strong Bones class that meets weekly on Thursdays from 2:50-4:00 p.m. You need not be a senior/woman to attend. For further information, contact Susan DeColaines, Strong Women Leader at 781-665-2106 or couminole@aol.com.

How to Get the Most Out of Medicare

You are invited to a free presentation by MassPro Outreach and Mediation Coordinator, Ellen Pothier. MassPro is the Medicare Quality Improvement Organization for Massachusetts. Ellen is a registered nurse whose mission is to help Medicare beneficiares learn about their rights so they can better navigate the complex healthcare system. Ellen will discus changes in the Medicare program, electronic health records, appealing decisions and more. The talk will be held at the Milano Center on Mon., June 16 at 10:00 a.m.

For more information, visit http://www.masspro.org/IFCF/CMP/index.php, or call the Masspro helpline at 1-800-252-5533.

Low-Vision Presentation

Come to hear about the services and adaptive equipment available for people with low vision. Presenting will be Andrea Schein, Public Education Consultant at the Mass. Commission for the Blind’s Bridge Elder Blind Program. It will be held at the Milano Center on Tues., June 24th at 10:00 a.m.  

Author to Speak on New Book

Jackie Wattenberg will speak about her new book, We’ve Got to Stop Our Wars – or Else!” on Tues., June 10, at 10:00 a.m. at the Milano Senior Center.

Ms. Wattenberg is the Arts Correspondent for the Melrose Free Press and a contributor to the internet publication, the Melrose Mirror. She has a long background in both writing and protesting our wars. Her new book, written under her professional name Jacqueline Taylor, contains sections from our Constitution, quotes against war by historic leaders, as well as by General and Republican President Dwight Eisenhower.

We’ve Got to Stop Our Wars – or Else!” is on sale in the Melrose Drug Center, can be ordered on line, and from book stores.
Art Demonstrations

The Melrose Arts and Cultural Association’s last Art Demonstration of the season is "Enamel” by Nancy Roll on June 4. The demonstration will be held at the Milano Senior Center. You are invited to come meet the artist and watch them work. Programs are free and are held at 7:00 p.m.     

For more information, go to www.melrosearts.com or call Deb Corbett at 781-665-5840.

Newsletter notices/announcements may be sent to the Council on Aging, 235 W. Foster St., Melrose, MA 02176. They must be received by the 5th day of the month preceding the month in which you wish your announcement to appear. Questions? Call us at 781-665-4304.

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