Issue No. 68
The MSCN Newsletter

Welcome to Your January 2016 Newsletter!
Winter Scene in New England by George Henry Durrie (1859)

Happy New Year! I have news of some fast approaching events for the calendars of Southern Mainers! Midcoast SC will be launching their excellent Winter Wisdom lecture series with a tribute to Robbie Burns on January 6. Lewiston-Auburn SC is seeing in the new year with a Food for Thought lecture that looks at Maine's giant trees on January 8. 

Meanwhile, UMA SC has 2 January events lined up. The first is a Forum on the Future discussion on January 10 that addresses the topic of "Young and Old, Learning and Working Together." And, their second offering (January 24) is the latest in their Concert at Jewett Hall series featuring Downeast, Celtic, and Quebecois folk music.

In addition, January's newsletter also shares several reports of successful classes offered by Senior Colleges around the state. The Gold LEAF Institute gave their members a very timely class on climate change that coincided with the Paris climate talks. OLLI at USM went on an expedition to the Harvard Art Museums while UMA "worked it out" with the Beatles!

Please read, and share with friends, the excellent AARP Maine guide designed to protect you against credit fraud. This guide refers to a new law that protects Mainers.

Last but not least Lewiston-Auburn report on Wreaths Across America and SAGE at UMPI share two news items. Finally, for those within reach of Falmouth on January 6, you are invited to learn to dance like Jane Austen!

RobbieBurnsMidcoast Senior College Presents:

Winter Wisdom 2016 at Curtis Memorial Library
12:15 - 1:45 pm 
January  6th. 

Castlebay - The Music and Poetry of Robert Burns  

The poet Robert Burns (1759-1796) working in both the Scots language and in English, collected and wrote new lyrics for hundreds of traditional Scottish folk tunes. Among these are My Love is Like a Red Red Rose, Comin' Through the Rye and Auld Lang Syne. Burns short but colorful life has become the subject of both legend and scholarly documentaries. The duo Julia Lane & Fred Gosbee of Castlebay will present a lecture/performance of these romantic love songs interspersed with lively dance tunes as well as poems and anecdotes about Scotland's National Poet. Castlebay has been weaving together the musical heritage of New England and the Celtic lands since 1987. Members Julia Lane and Fred Gosbee have loved and researched traditional music for most of their lives and blend history, legend and experience into their personable performance style. Their concerts feature poignant ballads interspersed with joyous dance tunes played on Celtic harp, guitar, fiddle and tin whistle.

ForumOnFutureUniversity Of Maine At Augusta Senior College Presents:
"Young and Old, Learning and Working Together" 

2:00 -  4:00 PM, Sunday January 10,

Youth and Age by Jenő Gyrfs (1887)

A public forum on older people serving as volunteers  will be held at University of Maine at Augusta on Sunday afternoon, January 10.   UMA Senior College will present a panel highlighting some significant volunteer activities which reach across generations to provide not only much needed on-going support  to its recipients, but  also enrich the lives of the volunteers themselves.  

Speakers include  Ruth Saint Amand, director of MaineGeneral's RSVP and founder of the "Born to Read" and other programs who will discuss that organization's "Thresholds"  five-step decision-making model to assist Kennebec County Correctional inmates;   Anne Chamberlain, a director of  Spectrum Generations centers and creator of  "Miles of Friends," will describe work as Enrichment Coordinator with second-graders, and will tell about the special requirements of helpers in this setting. Terry McPhetres, a 12-year volunteer and current board member with Big Brothers/Big Sisters will describe the process of older people mentoring young people and his joy at seeing his client through to graduation from high school.  The panelists will discuss impediments and problems which arise when younger and older people work and learn together and how these issues are resolved.

This forum is first of a series on how society may address the under-utilization of the elderly and expand their interaction with younger generations.

"What are old people good for?"  is a question raised by anthropologists and social organizers.   Evolutionary scientists have asked, "Why, almost uniquely among mammalian species, are humans able to survive so long after the end of the child-bearing age?"   The obvious answer to these questions is that older people, as keepers of history and wisdom and providers of child care and education, have traditionally served the family and community and thus they have contributed to  the survival of the human species.

However, in the modern age with the focus on the nuclear family - only child and parents in the home - with grandparents living alone or shuffled off to retirement communities, traditional cross generational interaction is diminished.  Reaching across the divide, and finding purpose for older people, are volunteer programs developed to enable older and younger people to collaborate and interact and profit from that exchange.

The forum, entitled "Young and Old, Learning and Working Together," is scheduled for 2:00 -4:00 PM, Sunday January 10, In Jewett Hall Auditorium,  University of  Maine at Augusta.   Snow Date is Jan. 17.  The forum is free and open to the public; refreshments are provided.

Submitted by Beverly Ludden, University of Maine in Augusta Senior College

ClimateChangeGold LEAF members study Climate Change

In a study group format, a large class of Gold LEAF members read and discussed Naomi Klein's This Changes Everything and used the book as a jumping-off point for further study and research about climate change.  This topic was more than timely given the COP21 United Nations talks in Paris and also observation of a very balmy and no-snow-in-sight Christmas week here in New England.

While very sobering in its urgency, the book (and recently released film of the same title) leads to the conclusion that action on many fronts is critically needed.  The study group responded to this call for action with a great deal of research and sharing of information.  Presenters and Gold LEAF members Judy and Doug Rawlings shared their experience of recently adding solar panels to their home, and others in the class spoke passionately about the need for conservation.  Research done by some in the class included positive steps that are being taken by large corporations and individuals in the area of divestment from fossil fuels and reinvestment in the sustainable energy sector.  

Many participants took on "homework" assignments to get more info which was then shared in subsequent sessions.  From Iowa wind-farms to co-housing efforts and on and on, there was a great deal to learn.  A financial report from Citigroup (on the balance of profit margins shifting away from fossil energy) was noted, and some members took part in a vigil and march on the weekend of the start of the talks in Paris.  
Mars Hill Wind Farm (Maine)
There were definitely signs of change (a good thing given Klein's title) and weighing in from Alabama was the Gold LEAF President, Mary, who sent this recent calculation: Maine wind farms will reduce carbon emissions by 2.5 million tons in 2020, equal to removing pollution from 400,000 cars. That same year, the state's wind power output is expected to reach 1,700 MW of capacity, enough to power 276,000 homes for a year.

The final session, held just before the holidays, viewed a talk by Harvard's Dr. Charles Langmuir entitled "Humankind at the Helm".  It is a comprehensive presentation on the history of life on this planet and can be found at  It reinforced for all the seriousness of CO2 emissions and the need to drastically reduce them. The large class intends to continue in its efforts.

Submitted by Eileen Kreuze, Gold LEAF Institute

USM Lewiston-Auburn Senior College Presents:

"An Armchair Tour of Maine's Local Giants." 
by Duane Prugh

Duane Prugh, avid outdoorsman and naturalist, will be the presenter at the USM Lewiston-Auburn Senior College "Food for Thought" 11:30 luncheon on Friday, January 8.  The public is cordially invited.  Prugh will narrate "An Armchair Tour of Maine's Local Giants." That would be Maine's Giant Trees.

There are dozens of giant trees to learn about in our State --places an individual cannot normally get to or see.  Anyone can visit our State Library, but some of these trees are on private property or deep in the woods.  Prugh is an instructor at the University of Maine at Augusta Senior College. 

His presentation will describe the Senior College course he conducted in the fall of 2014.  For 10 weeks, Duane led a group of seniors around the State, viewing and measuring 90 of these giant trees.

The course was conducted in collaboration with the Maine Forestry Department "Project Canopy led by Jan Santerre. Several of Maine's champion trees haven't been measured since the 1990's.  The purpose of the course was to help the project bring those measurements up to date. 

A graduate of the University of New Hampshire with a degree in Electrical Engineering, Prugh is now a semi-retired computer consultant.  He loves the outdoors and for many years has been interested in the unusual facets of Maine. He loves to share his observations with others. For the past 14 years he has been teaching at several of Maine's Senior Colleges, taking local seniors on field trips to explore dozens of these sites.

There is so much to see in our own state, and his goal has been to get our senior citizen students out of their homes for day trips to explore places in Maine that most people don't know exist. For instance Maine has 68 lighthouses, 12 covered bridges, and over 200 named waterfalls to be explored.  Prugh has taught a senior college course on that as well, taking everyone out in the field or on the sea.

Maine's Senior College courses usually consist of six to eight 2-hour classes in the class-room, but Duane's courses usually start at 7 AM, end at 5 PM, and last for 10 to 20 weeks.  Forty to eighty students travel in car caravans around the State using radios to communicate, ensuring that no one gets lost.

In addition to the exploration, there is the social aspect. Students in these classes travel a total at least 1200 miles in Maine.  While traveling to these remote places, the students meet others from their own senior college and those from other locations.

Senior College, now in its 18th year, presents the monthly 11:30 luncheon program open to the public, in the Function Room 170 at USM LAC. The cost, which includes lunch, is $7 with advance reservation or $8 at the door. Reservations must be made by noon on Wednesday, January 6, by calling 753-6510. Any late callers will be considered "at the door."

Food for Thought luncheon details:
Friday, January 8th at 11:30. 
The public is cordially invited to attend.

The cost, which includes lunch, is $7 with advance reservation or $8 at the door. 

Reservations must be made by noon on Wednesday, January 6 by calling the Senior College Information Line at 753-6510.Any late callers will be considered "at the door."

Submitted by - Rachel Morin, USM Lewiston-Auburn Senior College 
JewetConcertUniversity Of Maine at Augusta Senior College "Concerts at Jewett" Series Present:

The Gawler Family with Jessie and Greg Boardman will perform at UMA Jewett Auditorium

Sunday, January 24, 2016, 2PM
The Gawler Family

These well-known musical families will join forces to present a fun-filled concert of Downeast, Celtic, and Quebecois folk music filled with fabulous guitar and banjo picking, fiddling, singing, and their great love of music.  Ellen and John Gawler and their daughters have delighted audiences here in Maine for many years.  They will be joined by Jessie and Greg Boardman, founder of Maine Fiddle Camp, for a musical treat.  This family folk festival will warm up your winter and lighten your hearts.  

Jessie and Greg Boardman

The "Concerts at Jewett" Series are sponsored by University of Maine at Augusta College of Arts and Sciences and UMA Senior College. 

"The Gawler Family with Jessie and Greg Boardman" 
Sunday, January 24, 2016, 2PM at Jewett Hall Auditorium. 
(No snow date)

Tickets are $10, students $5, 12 & under free. Tickets are available at Pat's Pizza in Augusta, Dave's Appliance in Winthrop and at the door. Advance ticket purchase is recommended. Call 621-3551, or email UMA Senior College for more information or for mail order tickets. Concerts at Jewett Website

The next concert is Sunday, February 7, 2016, 2PM/1PM pre-concert talk - George Lopez, Classical pianist (Snow date: February 28th)

Media contact: Irene Forster 445-5227 

Submitted by Beverly Ludden, University of Maine in Augusta Senior College

Mrs Daniel Denison Rogers Abigail Bromfield
by John Singleton Copley

On Tuesday morning, November 10, forty
-five OLLI members boarded a comfortable bus and headed to Cambridge for a day at the new Harvard Art Museums facility, which houses three formerly separate art museums: the Fogg, Busch-Reisinger, and Arthur M. Sackler Museums.
Entrance to Harvard Art Museums

OLLI's own art historians, Tan and Joy Larrabee, and OLLI's seasoned volunteer coordinator for excursions, Gael McKibben, accompanied us and shared what they had learned on an earlier trip to reconnoiter the new facility. Their efforts and extensive preparation made our visit productive and pleasant.

Gael gave each of us a booklet produced by the Harvard Graduate School of Design called "Anatomy of the Harvard Art Museums, " which covered the details of the new building and consolidation of the three museums. Gael then explained what to expect when we arrived and the logistics of our visit.

During the drive to Cambridge, Joy filled us in on the history of the three original museums, beginning in 1874, when Harvard's first art historian was appointed and culminating with the present day's consolidation, including tidbits about each museum's acquisition strategy, collections, and importance in the Harvard and Cambridge communities. Of particular relevance to our group were theories she shared from articles on recommended strategies for looking at and appreciating works of art. Silent observation and allowing ourselves to be intuitively drawn to individual works where we could choose to linger was encouraged, enabling us to enjoy the exhibits at our own pace, in our own individual styles, with confidence. The layout of the museum with small, well-lit rooms housing exhibits leant a quiet intimacy to the experience. After Joy's presentation we received a three-page handout produced by Tan providing a map of each of the three main exhibit floors, color-coded to show where the various collections would be found, with full-color samples from each collection. He went over each of the three pages in detail, explaining how to use the guide and sharing highlights of his and Joy's own favorites from each of the collections.
Courtyard of the Fogg Museum

We were so well prepared by the time we got to the museum that we were able to walk through and enjoy the art without having to wonder where various exhibits were or waste time wandering around trying to find those we especially wanted to see.
Scholar's Rock -  (Chinese) Qing dynasty, 1644-1911

The museum is an architectural marvel with a pyramid-shaped, adjustable glass ceiling that allows natural light to be used to advantage in the restoration lab and throughout the galleries. The collections are so attractively displayed and accessible that several of us found that artworks from periods and locations we were not previously interested in held new attraction.
Sculpture in the Form of a Nine-Hole Scholar's Rock (2001) by Zhan Wang, Chinese (Beijing born 1962) 

Thanks to careful planning and attention to detail by Gael, Joy and Tan, we experienced a carefree day filled with learning experiences through art appreciation and returned to Portland enriched in ways that will continue to evolve. Walking through the centuries accompanied by some of the finest art representative of each period was a privilege, one that I won't soon forget. Note: The two articles Joy cited in her presentation are: "How to view art: Be dead serious about it, but don't expect too much, " by Philip Kennicott in The Washington Post, October 4, 2014; and "How to View Art: However You Want To, " by Jill Olenizcak at The Engaging Educator ( October 6, 2014.
BeatlesAll About The Beatles

The Beatles wave to fans after arriving at Kennedy Airport (7 February 1964)

"When I'm sixty-four" "I Want to Hold Your Hand " "In Strawberry Fields Forever" are just some of the songs Mike Bell's Senior College class in Augusta listened to last semester. Mike, a well-known teacher and historian, taught a course on the Beatles to a full room of enthusiastic Seniors. The text was Phillip Norman's "Shout", the definitive biography of the Fab Four. Besides listening to Beatles music, the class experience was enhanced by viewing several films including "A Hard Days Night" "Good Ol Freda" and "The Rutles", along with a video of their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan show (see below). An in-person class performance by Val Bennett and Tess Zardus (The Plaid Dragonflies) singing Beatles songs was a special treat.

The period covered was from the early days playing pick-up gigs in Liverpool, through several life-shaping experiences appearing in cellars in Hamburg, the burst into national and worldwide fame, and the gradual fraying of group bonds after the death of their manager, Bryan Epstein. Mike's excellent presentation and enthusiastic presence made the class a memorable experience for everyone. Interest in the subject is such that it will be offered again in the spring semester, and enrollment for that class is already close to half full.


USM's Lewiston Auburn Senior College participate in National Wreaths Across America Day 

The LASC Outdoor Adventures Club
Front, Claire Bilodeau, Terry Bazinet, Susan Matthews, Patricia Hall, Mary Jane Beardsley, Cindy Boyd; Back, Joanne Sabourin, Adriann Tucker, Sue Tymoczko, Patricia Vampatella, Les and Charlotte Bosworth.

The Outdoor Adventure Club at USM's Lewiston Auburn Senior College, led by co-chairs Patricia Vampatella and Cindy Boyd, participated in National Wreaths Across America Day on December 12.    Members were among hundreds of volunteers laying wreaths on Veterans' graves at the Togus National Cemetery. 

The wreaths are provided by the Worcester Wreath Company of Harrington in Washington County. It is now in its 24th year of providing wreaths for Veteran servicemen and servicewomen's headstones at Arlington National Cemetery and more recently, with National Cemeteries across our nation.
Retiring the  Colors

Following the graveside distribution of the wreaths, the group gathered for the noontime Ceremony honoring the fallen Veterans held simultaneously across the country and synchronized with the Ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

Representatives from all branches of the U.S. Services laid commemorative wreaths at the base of the flagpole.  Rev. James  Luoma, Chief Chaplain of the Pentecostal Ministry led the group in prayer.   A Three Gun Salute was fired followed by a bugle playing "Taps" concluded the ceremony. A Retirement of the Colors followed.

Senior College members were honored to participate in Wreaths Across America and found the experience emotional and gratifying to be part of the nationwide event. It was their second time participating.  It is now on their annual calendar.

Submitted by - Rachel Morin, USM Lewiston-Auburn Senior College 
Class Catalogs Maine Senior College Network - Winter 2016 Courses

SAGE in Presque Isle share 2 news links

SAGE News Link 1
SAGE Book Binding Class (Photo by Pam Crawford)

How an arts program is bolstering social engagement for Mainers 55, older - Pam Crawford , who teaches Book Binding at SAGE, was interviewed for this Bangor Daily News article alongside Nancy Roe, SAGE's board president (and book binding student!)

SAGE News Link 1
Opera Star teaches "Intro to Opera" at SAGE
The Bangor Daily News recently featured the very talented Teresa Herold, 36, of Fort Fairfield, Maine. Teresa, a graduate of USM's School of Music went on to sing with the Metropolitan Opera. She has now returned to her roots in the County and members of SAGE at Presque Isle were delighted to have her teach an "Intro to Opera" class this Fall. The class will be taking a road trip to attend a performance in Orono in the Spring as a follow-up to their class.

Submitted by Pam Crawford, SAGE University of Maine Presque Isle

Put the Freeze on Identity Theft! 
A new Maine law makes it easy and free

Placing a freeze on your credit report with all three credit bureaus is the most effective way to prevent  identity theft.

What is the credit freeze? 
A credit freeze safeguards a person's credit report and it is the most effective way to protect consumers from identity theft. Without access to this sensitive information, an identity thief is unable to obtain credit in that person's name, thereby greatly minimizing the potential damage from the theft.

Once the freeze is in place, the consumer has control over who can receive their credit report. Thanks to a new law, Maine consumers can freeze and unfreeze their credit reports as needed through a unique Personal Identification Number (PIN) at no cost.

How to turn on the Credit Freeze: 
Contact each of the three major credit bureaus indicating your wish to have a freeze placed on your credit report. You can do this online or by mail with all three credit bureaus: Experian and Transunion, and Equifax. In addition, with Experian and Transunion, you can place a credit freeze on your credit report via their automated telephone line. Each credit bureau will send you your unique PIN number for any future credit freeze transactions.

Contact info for the three credit bureaus:
Equifax: 1-800-349-9960; Equifax Security Freeze, P.O. Box 105788, Atlanta, Georgia 30348

Experian: 1-888-397-3742; P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013

TransUnion: 1-888-909-8872; P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton, CA 92834-6790

Sample Credit Freeze Request Letter - (and what you will be asked to provide if you activate the freeze online):
  • Date
  • Credit Reporting Bureau and Address (See above for this information)
  • I would like to place a security freeze on my credit file. My name is:
  • My former name was (if applies):
  • My current address is:
  • My address has changed in the past 5 years. My former address was:
  • My social security number is:
  • My date of birth is:
  • Sign off "Yours Truly,
  • Sign your name
Request a Speaker
To request a speaker for your group or to join our team of volunteer Fraud Fighters at AARP Maine, contact Jane Margesson at 1-866-554-5380 or email.

This new law has been made possible by AARP Maine and Senator Rodney Whittemore who sponsored the legislation.

English Country Dancing
Would you like to dance like Jane Austen?
317 MAIN Community Music Center and Yarmouth Historical Society invite you to join their classes!

Classes start January 6 at 7:30 pm at Yarmouth History Center

Newsletter Submissions Deadline Date: 
The 26th of each month!

Please submit your articles and photographs to Anne Cardale at


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In This Issue
Don't forget to go to the Maine Senior College Network website to find out what is happening around the state!

Maine Senior College Network

Acadia Senior College

Augusta Senior College
Coastal Senior College

Downeast Senior College

Gold LEAF Institute

South Coast Senior College

Midcoast Senior College

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Penobscot Valley Senior College


Senior College at Belfast

St. John Valley Senior College

Sunrise Senior College 
Western Mountains Senior College

York County Senior College
MSCN Promotional Videos

Maine Senior Guide is a comprehensive web resource about all things senior that provides "one stop shopping" for Maine's seniors at the link below: 

Contact Information
Maine Senior College Network 
P.O. Box 9300 
Portland, Maine 04104-9300 
(207) 228-4128


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