Senior Center News: Jan. 16

Have you turned down a chance to go out with family or friends because you were concerned about falling? Have you cut down on a favorite activity because you might fall? A Matter of Balance: Managing Concerns About Falls is a program for you.

Fear of falling can be as dangerous as falling itself. People who develop this fear often limit their activities, which can result in severe physical weakness, making the risk of falling even greater. Many older adults also experience increased isolation and depression when they limit their interactions with family and friends. A Matter of Balance can help people improve their quality of life and remain independent.

A Matter of Balance is designed to reduce the fear of falling and increase activity levels among older adults. The program was developed and formally evaluated by the Roybal center for Enhancement of Late-Life Function at Boston University using a grant from the National Institute on Aging. It acknowledges the risk of falling but emphasizes practical coping strategies. Trained facilitators, students from Fairfield University School of Nursing, conduct eight two-hour sessions for a group of 10 to 12 participants. The class learns how to view falls and fear of falling as controllable and set realistic goals for increasing activity.  Participants also discover ways to change the environment to reduce fall risk factors and learn simple exercises to improve strength and balance.

The senior center is offering A Matter of Balance: Managing Concerns About Falls on Thursdays, February 6, 13, 20, 27; March 6, 13, 20; and April 3 from 1 to 3 in the lounge.  The total program cost is $10. A workbook is provided and refreshments are served. Please call the senior center at 203-834-6240 to register.

Tax relief

Applications for the Wilton Tax Relief Program for Elderly or Disabled Homeowners and the State of Connecticut Elderly and Totally Disabled Tax Relief Program are available at the town hall assessor’s office. The filing period for both programs is Feb. 3 to May 15. For additional information, call the assessor’s office at 203-563-0122.

Bridge opportunities

A new class for beginners only is gathering at the senior center. Dan DeVlieg will teach this entertaining and mentally demanding game by having you actually play the game. You will have fun, you will work your brain, you will socially interact, and you will see corollary benefits in other aspects of your life. Thursdays beginning Jan. 23, 10 to noon, $85 for the eight-week series. Sign-up:  203-834-6240. Class size limited.

For those who have been introduced to the fundamentals of bridge, Dan will take you deeper into the complexities of bidding, bidding conventions, play, keeping score, defending, opening, and a myriad of other techniques with a class on Intermediate Bridge. Most class time will be spent at the card table where you can ask questions, analyze alternative playing and bidding strategies (both offensive and defensive), and have an all-round good time. Fridays beginning Jan. 24, 1:30 to 3:30, $75 for the eight-week series. Signup: 203-834-6240.

Dan will also supervise games of duplicate bridge, a form of contract bridge in which contestants play identical cards, with each deal being scored independently, permitting comparison of  individual scores. For all levels of play. Wednesdays, 10 to 12:30, $5 drop-in fee.

Computer classes 

The following computer classes for PC users are offered at the Comstock Computer Learning center in the senior center, 180 School Road. Call Andrea Ragusa at 203-762-8445 to register. Classes take place from 9:30 to 11:30.

Bill Brautigam will teach the Picasa Photo Workshop on Tuesday, Jan. 21. This free software lets you organize, edit, and upload your photos in quick, easy steps.  Fee: $20.

Catherine Myers will provide comprehensive information as to options for printing when preparing a memoir for print in book form. Organize Your Memoir Research will outline how to set up your copy in order to have continuity among the pages and how to develop graphics to enhance the book’s material.The class is Jan. 27 and 28; fee: $30.

Coming events

All activities take place at the senior center (203-834-6240) unless otherwise specified. For information on weather closings, call the senior center.

For the week of Jan 17:

Friday, Jan. 17, 10, Feldenkrais with Cathy Paine; 10, Jewelry Workshop with Viola Galetta; 12, Bridge with Eleanor Mihailidis; 1:30-3, Free Swim at the Wilton Y.

Monday, Jan. 20, senior center Closed for Martin Luther King Holiday.

Tuesday, Jan. 21, 9:30, Picasa with Bill Brautigam; 10:30, Currier and Ives with Joel Third; 11, Yoga with Denise O’Hearn; 12, Complimentary Lunch in the Café; 2, Mah Jongg; 2, Chair Yoga at Ogden House.

Wednesday, Jan. 22, 9:30, RSVP at Ogden House; 10, Duplicate Bridge; 10, Great Decisions; 11:30, Tai Chi with Julienne Camhi; 12, Chicago Bridge; 1:30, Mah Jongg.

Thursday, Jan. 23, 9, Enhance Fitness with Leslie Hinshaw; 10, Beginner Bridge; 10, Yoga with Denise O’Hearn; 11, Know Your Meds with Visiting Nurse and Hospice; 12, Lunch; 12, Encore Book Club; 12:45, Bingo.