By Carolyn Kulik, Senior center director

“The cyclone had set the house down gently . . . in the midst of a country of marvelous beauty. There were lovely patches of green sward all about, with stately trees bearing rich and luscious fruits. Banks of gorgeous flowers were on every hand, and birds with rare and brilliant plumage sang and fluttered in the trees and bushes. A little way off was a small brook, rushing and sparkling along between green banks . . .”
~ L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Doesn’t the description of Oz remind you a little of Vermont? A few days ago, a friend was saying she was so happy because this was the first time she had been out of her house since March. Her excitement at re-entering the “outside world” again made me think of the scene at the beginning of the movie The Wizard of Oz. You know, the one where the munchkins are cautiously emerging from their hiding spots under the flowers and toadstools. That’d be us. And maybe in the not-too-distant future, we can celebrate and sing the “Ding Dong” song about the coronavirus, while holding hands and dancing in a really big circle.

Update on re-opening
Still no news from the State of Vermont at this time. Senior centers around this state—and New England—continue to wait to learn when they can re-open, what activities will be allowed, and what the maximum number of participants permitted inside will be. The state has declared that those in the over-65 age category warrant special consideration—so, do not be confused by what is allowed for the general population.

That word, “vulnerable,” keeps popping up a lot—but there is another adjective to consider: precious. Like exquisite crystal or porcelain, those in the older crowd need to be carefully protected. We are all treasures.

New Zoom course
Beginning on 6/22 at 9:30 a.m. will be online Chair Yoga with Carol Bokan. This is an ongoing course and can be joined at any week, with a minimum of five participants required for it to run. This class uses chairs for balance and for all seated postures, making yoga accessible to those who are challenged by balance, the ability to get on the floor, or any physical limitations.

After retiring from a career in counseling and educational administration, as well as many years as a yoga practitioner, Carol moved into yoga teaching. She became a Kirpalu certified yoga teacher in 2016, and a certified chair yoga teacher in 2017. She has since taught chair yoga in many senior residences in Vermont and Florida.

To register for this course, send us your name, address and phone number; be sure to indicate “chair yoga” in your subject line. Payment by donation is suggested at $5 per class, payable by check at the end of the month. For questions, please call to leave a message at (802) 425-6345.

Not to worry, Tiny Sikkes, the Center’s much-loved, regular chair yoga instructor, will be returning whenever in-person classes can resume at the Senior Center.

Wednesday Events
The first Wednesday event this season will take place only as a Zoom meeting. Please note that there will be no in-person gathering planned for the Great Room on 7/1.

The topic on 7/1 at 1 p.m. is COVID-19: What We Know—What We Have Yet to Learn—Where Are We Likely Headed with Jim Hyde. There will be a quick overview from a public health perspective of what is known about the prevalence of infection, current trends in incidence and the impact of the virus on mortality. Jim will also discuss the collateral impacts of the virus on the health of the general population and the effects on the healthcare delivery system, as well as the status of vaccine development, new drugs and treatments, and testing. Time will be reserved for Q&A. Jim is an emeritus professor of public health at the Tufts University School of Medicine and former director of preventative medicine at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

Although you may have heard and read a lot about this topic, the details keep changing. And this will probably be your first opportunity to ask your own questions. There are two ways you can do this: 1) In advance, email questions for Jim to address at the end of this talk.  2) During Jim’s presentation on Zoom, use the chat function on your screen to ask questions about what he has said—which he will also respond to at the end.

Since there will be no limit on attendance, you will not need to sign up in advance for this event. In order to join the Zoom meeting, you will be able to access a link on the Center’s website. If you wish to connect to the presentation by phone rather than via the internet, please leave a message with your name and phone number on the Charlotte Senior Center (CSC) line at (802) 425-6345 no later than Monday, 6/29.

Since future Wednesday events might conceivably be held with a limited audience, it is a good idea to drop a note to CSC, P.O. Box 207, Charlotte 05445, or leave a message on the Center’s voicemail, (802) 425-6345, with your name, phone number and the event and date you would like to attend.

On 7/8 the 1:00 p.m. offering is Music ~ Marty Morrisey, Robert Resnik and Patti Shannon performing folk, country and original tunes from Vermont, Ireland and around the United States on a variety of instruments. Don’t miss it!

Ongoing Zoom Classes
Please be sure to check out the other ongoing Zoom classes on the website. You are welcome to join at any time, with the exception of those courses that are already fully enrolled. The technology is pretty easy and the rewards are worth the minimal effort. If you feel you need help getting started, you can email us.

In the next issue we will take a look at which of the July courses in the Summer Schedule can move to the Zoom platform and which are likely to be canceled. Announcements regarding the re-opening of the Senior Center will be posted on our website, on Front Porch Forum, on the telephone message of the Center, and in this paper.

The Senior Center’s mission is to serve those 50 and up. Residents from other communities are always welcome. There are no membership fees. Feel free to leave a message on the Center number anytime: (802) 425-6345; voicemail will be checked daily.

Be careful. Stay well. But mostly, be kind.

“Some people without brains do an awful lot of talking, don’t you think?”
~ L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Charlotte Senior Center
(802) 425-6345