One of our Monday Lunch Cook Teams at the Charlotte Senior Center: (L to R) Ellen Evans, Susan Ohanian, Linda Finkelstein, Michelle Tiller and Linda Reynolds. Photo by Peggy Sharpe.

“The table is a meeting place, a gathering ground, the source of sustenance and nourishment, festivity, safety, and satisfaction. A person cooking is a person giving: Even the simplest food is a gift.”
– Laurie Colwin

Mondays and Wednesdays are my favorite days of the week at the Senior Center. The mornings start out with the aroma of things cooking and the purposeful bustle in the kitchen. Soon, there is the sound of the cooks laughing and having a good time while they prepare the meal.

These volunteer cook teams decide on the menus, buy the food, and then come in to put it all together that morning. It is amazing to see five or more men and women performing a veritable ballet in a relatively small space ─ chopping, tossing salad, dicing, mashing, braising, boiling, and baking whatever will be served for that day’s lunch.

It is hard to imagine that cooking for 40-60 people can be so much fun, but perhaps it comes from the joy of giving. The work is shared, great food is served, and everyone leaves happy. What could be better?

If you’d like to find out more about volunteering for a cook team (or anything else), please get in touch with Peggy Sharpe, Volunteer Coordinator, at (802) 425-6345.

Courses
Tomorrow, 7/26, is another Kayaking for Women trip on the Lamoille river. On 8/9, the destination is Waterbury Reservoir. If you are interested, contact Susan Hyde directly for details right away. Remaining trips are on 8/23, 9/13 & 9/27. There is no fee for these trips, but you must bring your own kayak.

The monthly Writers Group is waiting for you to bring your writing to share in a supportive atmosphere. The plan is to meet 8/8 and every second Friday, from 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Please register to indicate your interest while this group is getting ready to fly. No fee.

For structured guidance, you could sign up for Write Now! with Laurie McMillan, which will be meeting on Monday mornings, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., on 8/5, 8/12, 8/19 & 8/26. Exercises will be varied with time for in-class writing, sharing and discussion. Registration required. Fee: $68 for the 4-week series.

In August, have some fun with Collage Experiences taught by with Linda Finkelstein on Tuesdays mornings, 9:15 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. on 8/13, 8/20 & 8/27. Engage with a variety of materials to create a unique composition. Each week, a theme will provide a framework to kick off this fun process. Registration required. Fee: $45 for the series.

Health notes
The free Foot Clinic on Wed., 7/31, staffed by Martha McAuliffe RN, Julia Jacques LPN, and Samantha Wendell, is full with a waiting list, but feel free to add your name in case of cancellations. The Blood Pressure Clinic at 11:30 a.m. is also free on that day, and welcomes walk-ins.

On Thurs., 8/8, the Blood Drive is offered in conjunction with The American Red Cross. It is staffed by friendly volunteers, and the Senior Center is a comfortable place to give – with great snacks. The hours are 2-7pm and walk-ins are welcome.

Wednesday – Free Events at 1:00 p.m.
7/31: Fun with Donkeys – Invite a young friend – or come on your own, and meet two mini-donkeys named Chester and Ernie pettable, huggable buddies for the afternoon. Hear about the history of donkeys and carting and take a ride in their custom cart. Seniors are encouraged to sign up and bring your young friend to lunch before this event. (Please see the menu above.)

8/7: Stop the Bleed, UVM Medical Center – Learn what you can do in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives.

8/14: Downsizing – Even if a move isn’t imminent, simplifying your surroundings while keeping what you need or cherish most will allow you to live more comfortably in your home.

8/21: My Affairs in Order – If something should happen to you, would anyone know how to step in and manage your affairs? Organizing is essential, and you will learn how to record crucial information.

8/28: Rokeby Museum Tour, Ferrisburgh – “The Museum brings the Underground Railroad vividly to life.” Meet to carpool. Please register in advance; cost is $9.

August trip
8/9, Friday: Middlebury College Art & Lunch with Linda Jackson
Please meet at the Center by 9:30 a.m. to carpool; return at approximately 3:30 p.m.. This day trip to Middlebury College’s Museum of Art will view the show “Fifty Years of Collecting Art for Middlebury.” After the museum, have lunch at the Middlebury Inn which will be your only expense. Pre-registration required; minimum of 10.

8/17, Saturday: Lemon Fair Sculpture Park with Frank
and Elaine Ittleman Please meet at the Center by 9:30 a.m. to carpool. With Frank as our guide, the 1.5-mile loop passes about a dozen large-scale outdoor artworks at their private residence in Shoreham. Head home around noon, or stop in nearby Middlebury for a leisurely lunch. Registration necessary. No fee. Maximum is 20.

Art news
The July Art Exhibit, showcasing the varied work of three artists: Emma Farrington, Jill Thompson and Nancy Wood, will come down on 7/31. The August Art Exhibit will be delayed a few days for the painting of the Great Room. The opening date for the new exhibit will be announced.

The best times to see Art Exhibits
Tuesdays after 12:30 p.m., Wednesdays 9:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Thursdays after 12:30 p.m. (except 8/8), Fridays after 12:30 p.m. Take a quick peek at noon on Mondays and Wednesdays. Please call the Center during the week to check on Sunday availability.

Do visit our website for more details and menus. If you have questions or would like to register, please call (802) 425-6345, Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. We are at 212 Ferry Road, Charlotte, right across from the post office. The Senior Center’s mission is to serve those 50 and up. Residents from other communities are also welcome.

See you soon!

Charlotte Senior Center
(802) 425-6345
CharlotteSeniorCenterVT.org

Lunch Menus
Monday Munch
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. No reservations required.

July 29
Parmesan Chicken Breast, Greens, Fruit Salad

August 5
Spaghetti and Meatballs, Marinated Vegetable Salad w/ Herb Dressing, Blueberry Squares (courtesy of Philo Ridge)

Wednesday Lunch
All diners eat at noon. Reservations required.

July 31
Hot Dogs, Three-Bean Salad, Ice Cream Sandwiches

August 7
Pesto Torellini w/Artichokes & Chicken, Chocolate Cake w/ Whipped Cream & Strawberries

Thursday Gents Breakfast
7:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Reservations required.

July 25 and August 8
Menu: TBA. Topic: TBA

Keep up to date on Menus at our website, and on Front Porch Forum, as they sometimes change.