Articles from the September 1, 2017 edition


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  • Appreciation luncheon honors RSVP volunteers

    RSVP|Sep 1, 2017

    In a community with strong volunteers, the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) hosted by the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association, Inc. (APIA) can attest to the unified, strong and community-minded senior volunteer pool that drives this effort. The RSVP program at APIA is rounding its third year in the Anchorage and Matanuska-Susitna Borough. Within the first three years this program has started from scratch to build a program that offers opportunities for seniors age 55 years and...

  • Senior Voice wins national media awards

    Senior Voice Staff|Sep 1, 2017

    Older Persons Action Group, Inc., earned honors for its monthly, statewide publication Senior Voice in the 26th annual National Mature Media Awards Program. The program, presented by the Mature Market Resource Center, a national clearinghouse for the senior market, recognizes the nation’s finest marketing, communications, educational materials and programs designed and produced for older adults. Senior Voice received three awards for feature stories: Long-time Senior Voice contributor Dianne Barske won a bronze award for her stories, ...

  • Don't count on personal savings for retirement

    Lawrence David Weiss PhD, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    Are you feeling all smug and comfy about the level of your personal savings for retirement? OK, that was a rhetorical question. A report recently released by the National Institute on Retirement Security (NIRS) found that 75 percent of adult Americans are concerned about their ability to achieve a secure retirement. In addition, 86 percent believe that the nation faces a retirement crisis. “It’s no wonder Americans believe the nation faces a retirement crisis – the evidence is irrefutable that the hope of retirement is out of reach for millions...

  • Congress is proposing major changes for Medicare and Social Security

    Alan M. Schlein, Senior Wire|Sep 1, 2017

    If you thought the bitter partisan fight over the “repeal and replace” of President Obama’s health care law was ugly, ratchet up the intensity – the next fight over Trump’s budget, including sweeping changes to Medicare, is about to start, just as Congress faces a fiscal crisis. These Medicare changes would raise the eligibility age and convert the program to a voucher program affecting all 55.5 million seniors currently using the program and millions more about to become Medicare eligible. President Donald Trump wants Congress’s next move t...

  • Bill passage brings new protections for Alaskans' digital assets

    Shelley Hughes, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    I have treasured photos from prior generations and am guessing you may too. I will be sure my picture albums land in the hands of my children, but what happens to the photos I store online? Did you inherit stacks of record albums or maybe cassette tapes from a loved one? Today most Alaskans access their favorite music purchases through their modern and fancy-fangled devices such as smart phones, tablets and computers. How will they pass on these electronic “stacks” of tunes to their loved ones? What happens to your pictures, music and all the...

  • Ships, bridges and barriers: My family in California

    Tomi Nagai-Rothe, Diverse Elders Coalition|Sep 1, 2017

    Editor's note: This article is part of a monthly series from the Diverse Elders Coalition, focusing on different segments of the senior population. My grandfather passed through the Golden Gate - where the Golden Gate Bridge would later be constructed - in October 1903. He arrived in the time between the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and the Immigration Act of 1924. By 1924, the U.S. government had completely blocked the immigration of people it deemed undesirable, including Asians, Arabs,...

  • There are many reasons to get an annual flu shot

    Alaska Dept. of Health and Social Services|Sep 1, 2017

    Each year, hundreds of thousands of people in the U.S. are hospitalized from flu. People age 65 years and older are at increased risk for serious flu-related complications and account for 60 percent of seasonal flu-related hospitalizations. A CDC study published last summer found that flu vaccination reduced the risk of flu-related hospitalization among people 65 to 74 years old by 61 percent. Vaccinated people age 75 and older were similarly protected, with a 57 percent reduction of flu-related hospitalization. Hospitalization and recovery...

  • Fall health fairs are coming to a location near you

    Alaska Health Fair, Inc.|Sep 1, 2017

    Alaska Health Fair’s Fall 2017 health fair season is now in full swing, so check out September event dates by reviewing the Senior Voice monthly edition or the Alaska Health Fair website. Try to make it to one of the fall events in your local community; you’ll find a variety of resources to help meet your family’s health needs and some great community gatherings. We are in need of volunteers who can help us with our mission, vision and core purpose to serve all Alaskans. Non-medical, medical and individuals who can draw blood. We would also...

  • Look for these Medicare open enrollment notices

    Nila Morgan, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    Welcome to autumn! This season is when Medicare Beneficiaries are going to receive valuable and pertinent information in the mail about their benefits and upcoming changes in preparation for the Part D Open Enrollment period. The Open Enrollment Period is an important opportunity that is provided to Medicare beneficiaries annually to evaluate their prescription drug coverage and to make changes if they desire. It occurs from October 15 to December 7 annually. Medicare and You Handbook. Each Medi...

  • Can you put the fun in fundraising? Hospice of Anchorage needs your help

    Hospice of Anchorage|Sep 1, 2017

    Hospice of Anchorage is in search of some dedicated volunteers. Most positions that we usually recruit for have been filled and we are very thankful for this wonderful community that we live in. Looking forward, we are creating a team of about five dedicated volunteers that are interested in fundraising and event planning. Current events that we would have volunteers work on would include; Heroes of Healthcare, Remembering the Light, and the Remembrance Tree. Heroes of Healthcare is our annual fundraiser/auction in April that requires phone...

  • When is the best time to plant a fruit tree?

    Major Mike Dryden AVN USAR Ret, Senior Voice Correspondent|Sep 1, 2017

    My column has been AWOL for the last couple of issues, and I apologize. I became one of the “walking wounded” in early June after a fall which broke my right arm. Despite having an extensive workplace safety enforcement background, I willfully and stupidly violated the three points of contact rule by not using the hand rails. My fall broke my right arm and rendered me incapable of independent living for several weeks. This article isn’t about my injury, which is healing, and I expect to be at...

  • Free training and support for family caregivers

    Senior Voice Staff|Sep 1, 2017

    The Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold the following peer support meetings in September. This month’s meetings will highlight tips for Alzheimer’s family caregivers, featuring a DVD presentation by Dr. Peter V. Robbins, in support of World Alzheimer’s Month. Sept. 5, Caregiver support meeting at Sterling Senior Center, 1 p.m. Sept. 12, Caregiver support meeting at Soldotna Senior Center, 1 p.m. Sept. 19, Caregiver support meeting at Kenai Senior Center,1 p.m. Sept. 20, Caregiver support meeting at Anchor Point Senio...

  • Smoking cessation, vocal therapy and a blood test that may help monitor cancer

    John Schieszer, Medical Minutes|Sep 1, 2017

    E-cigarettes may help some smokers quit Vaping may be helping some people kick the habit. In the United States, the smoking cessation rate increased for the first time in 15 years. Researchers conducted a population-level analysis of national surveys conducted from 2001 to 2015. The study suggests e-cigarettes helped users of the electronic devices to quit smoking traditional cigarettes. The annual rate of people who quit smoking has hovered around 4.5 percent for years but in the 2014-15...

  • The loss of a pet is always felt deeply

    Laura Atwood, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    Our lives with our animal companions are defined by rituals. Here are a few that have taken place in our home: Monkey barks every morning as soon as we wake up and continues until breakfast; Blue begins silently commanding us to bed at 9 p.m. every night – staring at us as he moves toward the bedroom; Elsie meows for the bathroom faucet to be turned on so she can sip water from the running stream. Some of these rituals still happen, others ended years ago with the passing of that animal, and o...

  • Volunteers offer household help and much more

    Mary Ann Borchert, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    After a year of experience, how are we doing? We're loving it! Aging at Home Fairbanks (AAH) is a membership organization for older adults. It connects members with each other and the resources they need to remain active and independent as they age. AAH launched in January 2016. Quite soon we had 40 members and 30 volunteers. A year and a half later, we have over 80 members and 50 volunteers. We partner with the North Star Council on Aging and the Fairbanks Senior Center, which is our fiscal...

  • Juneau takes another look at senior sales tax breaks

    Mackenzie Stewart, Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    Juneau seniors may pay less at the cash register as the Juneau Assembly seeks to expand the list of essential items included in the city’s senior citizen sales tax exemption. Assembly member and ordinance sponsor, Mary Becker, hopes that including necessities like toilet paper, paper towels and facial tissue, personal items like shampoo, soap, and toothpaste and prepared food items to the list of essentials already exempt from the tax will increase essential services for seniors. “We decided we need to expand exempted items to make it more pal...

  • Anchorage quilt show highlights local talent

    Marilyn Galbraith, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    The 2017 Great Alaska Quilt Show, sponsored by the Anchorage Log Cabin Quilters Guild, will be held at the ConocoPhillips Alaska Atrium at 700 G Street, September 16 and 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. More information is available at anchoragelogcabinquilters.blogspot.com. Well over 100 quilts will be displayed by members. A "Small Quilt" silent auction will be held during the show and winners will be announced after 2 p.m. on Sunday. Also on Sunday, at 3:30 p.m., there will be a drawing for a...

  • Commission on Aging to meet Sept. 14

    Alaska Commission on Aging|Sep 1, 2017

    The Alaska Commission on Aging (ACoA) will hold its quarterly meeting Sept. 14 in Juneau, and will be accessible via video and teleconference at sites listed below, or statewide via toll-free telephone. The meeting takes place 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., and public comment is scheduled from 11 to 11:15 a.m. For more information, contact the host agency in your area (from the list below) or call the commission office in Juneau at 465-3250. Videoconference sites Anchorage Senior and Disabilities Services, 550 West 8th Ave., Room 143. 269-3666 Fairbanks...

  • Disability and Aging Summit Oct. 13-14 in Anchorage

    Senior Voice Staff|Sep 1, 2017

    he Third Annual Disability and Aging Summit will be held in Anchorage at the Special Olympics Alaska headquarters, 3200 Mountain View Drive, Oct. 13 and 14. This year’s keynote speaker is Karrie A. Shogren, PhD, a professor at the University of Kansas and director of the Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities. Dr. Shogren will address self-determination, systems of support and supported decision-making. CEUs may be available at the conference for a fee. The event is presented by the Alaska Disability and Aging Coalition. For r...

  • Networking for Anchorage area providers

    Senior Voice Staff|Sep 1, 2017

    Interested in learning more about businesses and agencies providing senior services in the Anchorage area? Want to get the word out about your own service? The monthly Interagency Breakfast, sponsored by Older Persons Action Group, is an opportunity for all the above. Informal, early and free, with breakfast provided. The September meeting is Sept. 13, hosted by Chugiak-Eagle River Senior Center. Begins at 8 a.m. RSVP by calling Older Persons Action Group, Inc. for more information on these events or to be added to our e-mail reminder list,...

  • These silvers are pure gold

    Charice Chambers, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    Oohs, ahs and thank you's could be heard from every corner of the Mat-Su Senior Services dining room as Palmer senior citizens savored what has become an annual event: Silvers for Seniors. Now in its fifth consecutive year, seniors look forward to the meal of fresh caught silver salmon provided by Northern District Setnetters Association. For many seniors it is a meal that is simply too expensive to purchase, and no longer possible to catch. This dinner is not only about great food, but also...

  • Yukon Press shares news of 1898 Circle City

    Laurel Downing Bill, Senior Voice Correspondent|Sep 1, 2017

    Enterprising newsmen published the first issue of the Yukon Press in March 1898. The 14-page effort shared the news of the day from St. Michael to the upper Yukon. With the discovery of gold along Interior rivers and in the Klondike region, thousands of stampeders flooded into the wilderness of Alaska looking for their pot of gold. Circle City, located about 160 miles northeast of present-day Fairbanks, got its start in 1894 as the supply center for the Circle Mining District 50 miles to the...

  • Barbara Rush and her many leading men

    Nick Thomas, Tinseltown Talks|Sep 1, 2017

    The list of actors with whom Barbara Rush shared the big screen is impressive. "I did work with a lot of interesting and talented men," said Ms. Rush from Los Angeles. "And actresses, too, such as Jane Wyman. I found the nicest people were actually the biggest stars because they were all so gracious and helpful." Just considering 1958's "The Young Lions," she worked alongside Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift and Dean Martin. "It was a serious war film, but Dean still made me laugh – a lovely m...

  • What's mine is mine, what's yours is ours

    Kenneth Kirk, For Senior Voice|Sep 1, 2017

    Remember 1987? If you lived here in Alaska, you might remember that it was the absolute nadir of the recession. Oil prices had dropped, jobs had gone away, houses had been abandoned. Generally speaking, it was not a good time and place to start a career. But there I was, fresh out of law school and returning to my hometown. Growing up and going to college here in Anchorage, this had been an exciting boomtown. In the three years I was gone, it had become more like a ghost town. If you’re an a...

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