Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 11-05-2018

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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CUMBERLAND LINCOLN EDITION | VALLEY BREEZE | NOVEMBER 8-14, 2018 LINCOLN / CUMBERLAND 13 'Paws to Read' add therapy dogs CUMBERLAND – The Children's Room of the Cumberland Public Library has brought back a popular program, Paws to Read, on the second Thursday of the month with a new added feature. From 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. readers, age 12 and under, will have an opportunity to read to a therapy dog for 15 minutes. Sign-up at the Children's Desk the night of the program, first come, first served. Then at 6:30 p.m. children will have a chance to visit with one of the therapy dogs. Petting, hugs and belly rubs are encouraged. This added 15-minute portion is a new addition to Paws to Read and gives the chance to accommodate children who want to visit with a dog but are not yet reading. This popular program will run through May of 2019. Participants should bring a book with them so they are ready to read to the therapy dog when it is their turn. All volunteer teams provided by Windwalker Pet Therapy. For additional information, please contact the Children's Room at 401-333-2552, ext. 3. or visit www. . LINCOLN – The iconic film quote, "if you build it, they will come" has proven true in the case of the Lincoln Senior Center, which has seen exponential growth since the 2010 construction of the new center. Lois Durkin, who has served as director of senior services since 2003, said the center's membership numbers were seriously dwindling before the construction of the new location at 150 Jenckes Hill Road. The center's former location allowed for only a few programs, according to Durkin. "We were down to a couple of hundred members at the old place. It wasn't user-friendly at all," Durkin said. The former senior center was two stories, but wasn't ADA- accessible, so members had to travel outside in a loop to switch floors, she said. When a new, 11,000-square-foot center was built next to Lincoln Middle School, Durkin wondered whether staff could fill the massive new space. She didn't have to worry long. When the center first opened, she quickly realized they'd need to add additional parking spaces to keep up with demand. Today, the senior center is a bus- tling hub for those age 55 and older, with multiple activity rooms, an exercise room and a large reception area with a Lincoln limestone fire- place. Durkin said member- ship has risen to roughly 4,000 members this year. The cost of membership is $10 for 12 months for Lincoln resi- dents and $15 annually for non-residents. Rhode Island seniors can belong to multiple senior centers simultaneously. "Some people come in just for the trips," Durkin said about the center's day trips to places like Foxwoods Resort Casino, Boston, and the upcoming planned trip to Newport Playhouse. "Some come for the exer- cise programs. Others come for art. We also have regulars who come in for their daily meal," Durkin said. Lunch at the center costs $3, and is open to non-members. Lincoln residents may use the center's bus for free transportation to and from. While many members are from Rhode Island, Durkin said some people visit from Connecticut "on a regular basis." In addition, a gentleman from Tiverton makes the trip nearly every day. "It's a nice testament for us, that people are willing to travel that far," Durkin said. The center's weekly activity line- ups include fitness and dancing classes, arts and crafts instruction, various games, computer and iPad lessons and health workshops. Only a few of the center's offerings cost an additional couple of dollars, Durkin said, with almost all of the classes and activities offered for free. "I'm not going to nickel-and-dime a senior. I don't want to leave any- one out. Some of the seniors are on a limited income," Durkin said, add- ing that she doesn't feel it's right to limit them further by charging them to participate in activities. Among new offerings at the center is the Memory Café, open to mem- bers and non-members on the last Wednesday of every month. The café is like a support group, Durkin said, where caregivers and indi- viduals living with memory loss can come together to socialize, gather information and participate in thera- peutic activities. The Lincoln Senior Center offers a variety of other resources, includ- ing a computer lab and small library. It hosts blood pressure and blood sugar screenings, safe driving courses and other health/safety workshops. The center partners with the William M. Davies Jr. Career & Technical High School to offer an opportunity for cosmetology students to practice hair and nail techniques. In addition, a number of support groups, open to all members of the community, meet regularly at the center, including INSIGHT, Alcoholics Anonymous, Overeaters Anonymous and an Alzheimer's support group. The Friends of the Lincoln Senior Center invites members of the com- munity to visit the center at 150 Jenckes Hill Road on Nov. 17 for its second annual craft fair, held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Membership up at the Lincoln Senior Center By NICOLE DOTZENROD Valley Breeze Staff Writer LOIS DURKIN got a news tip? Call 334-9555, ext. 130 or e-mail it to S STANLEY TREE Since 1986 • Professional High Quality Service At Reasonable Rates • Licensed Arborists • Serving RI & Nearby Mass. • Our Team Of Professionals Is Fully Equipped To Handle Your Job In A Safe Efficient Manner N. 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