Sunday, March 11, 2018

End-of-Winter Potluck This Wednesday

Anticipate Spring! Join your friends for the end-of-winter potluck on Wednesday, March 14 from 5:30 - 7:00 pm at the West Parish Congregational Church in Bethel. Bring any kind of dish you'd like; guests are welcome. If you haven't already registered for spring courses, registration forms will be available on Wednesday evening. Contact Marvin Ouwinga ( if you can help with setup at 4:30 or cleanup at 7:00.

Thanks from the Bethel House

Karen Mills sends out a big thank you to all those who responded to her request for donations of puzzles and craft materials to use at the Bethel House. The response has been overwhelming! They now have as much as they can use, as storage at the Bethel House is tight. Your donations are greatly appreciated by the residents - we certainly do have a great group of senior college members.  Thank you all, and Karen says she is sure you will hear from her again!

Monday, March 5, 2018

To Your Health Postpones "Cooking with Dave Nivus" to March 15

Since all weather reports predict a Northeastern storm coming in Wednesday afternoon and all day Thursday, To Your Health's March 8th program, "Cooking with Dave Nivus" has been rescheduled to March 15, 4:30-6:00 pm at the West Parish Congregational Church in Bethel.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

WMSC Spring Course Bulletin Is Out!

All Western Mountains Senior College members should have received their Spring Course Bulletin, either electronically by email, or, if requested, by US mail.  If you have not, contact Nurrie Caviness ( or Irene Kuchta ( ASAP.  To download the Spring Course Bulletin or Registration Form click on the links.  Tabs at the top of this blog will also lead you there, and printed copies are available in the Adult Ed office at Telstar.

It has come to our attention that while most of our members have email, some may not have access to a printer and cannot print out the registration form.  If that is the case, just write us a note telling us what courses you wish to take, enclose payment for fees, and mail to WMSC, PO Box 1305, Bethel ME 04217, deliver to the Adult Ed Office, or take to the March 14 potluck.

We will begin processing registrations at 11:00 am on Thursday, March 15.  For the best chance of getting into the courses you want, be sure we have your forms and fees by then.

March Events

Wednesday, March 14
Winter Potluck
Anticipate Spring! Drop off your registration form for spring courses! Bring any kind of dish you'd like. Guests welcome. Contact Marvin Ouwinga ( if you can help with setup at 4:30 or cleanup at 7:00.
Wednesday, March 14; 5:30-7:00 pm; West Parish Congregational Church, Bethel. (Snow date March 15)

Postponed to Thursday, March 15
To Your Health: Soups, Stews and Chowders
Dave Nivus of the Good Food Store will discuss using food economically, provide recipes for broths, cream soups and chowders, and other favorite recipes as well.
Thursday, March 15; 4:30-6:00 pm; West Parish Congregational Church, Bethel.

Thursday, March 15
Spring Registration Begins
For the best chance of getting the courses you want, be sure we have received your registration form and fees by 11:00 am.
Thursday, March 15; 11:00 am; Telstar Adult Ed Office

 The following events are not sponsored by Western Mountains Senior College, but may be of interest to our members.

Saturday, March 17

Daponte String Quartet Concert to Benefit Young String Players
The Daponte Quartet returns to Bethel as part of their Western Maine Initiative to encourage young string players and bring chamber music to the area. The concert will benefit the Mahoosuc Strings program, whose mission is to "provide instruments and help facilitate instruction to any child who is interested in playing." The concert program will include Franz Josef Haydn's String Quartet in C Major, Op 20, No 2 and Ludwig van Beethoven's String Quartet No. 7 in F Major Op. 59 No. 1. Tickets $12 in advance; $15 at the door; 21 and under are free. Made possible in part by a grant from the Betterment Fund
Saturday, March 17; 3:30 pm; West Parish Congregational Church, Bethel.

Saturday, March 17
The Art of the String Quartet: Meet the Daponte Quartet 
Why was a string quartet voted the “Best Music Group in Maine” by readers of DownEast Magazine? Find out how the quartet came together, how they function with no leader and no conductor, what drove the four of them to become professional musicians, why they forsook Philadelphia for rural Maine. Informal talk, with questions and answers about themselves and the music they have just played, after the 3:30 concert on March 17. Presentation begins at roughly 4:45; you need not have attended the concert to attend the presentation. Free and open to the public.
Saturday, March 17; 4:45 pm; West Parish Congregational Church, Bethel.

Sunday, March 18
A Country Breakfast
Proceeds to benefit community projects and scholarships. Sponsored by the Rotary Club of Bethel. Tickets: $10 in advance; $12 at the door.  FMI:
Sunday, March 18; 7:30–11:00 am; Ordway Hall, Gould Academy.

Wednesday, March 21
Mushing: Reflections on Leading from the Rear. A Day in the Life of a Dog-sledder 
Caroline Blair-Smith and her husband, Andy, feel at home riding on a sled behind a team of dogs. They provide dogsledding courses for Outward Bound, race in the Can-Am Crown in Fort Kent, and lead half-and full-day tours to the general public. Caroline will share the ways their dogs are part of their family, with relationships of trust, respect, teamwork and mutual learning. Come and learn about this fascinating lifestyle, meet one of their dogs and try out a sled! Part of the 2018 Speakers Series, sponsored by Norway Savings Bank. Free and open to the public, donations appreciated. FMI:
Wednesday, March 21; 7:00 pm; McLaughlin Auditorium, Gould Academy.

Wednesday, March 28
Community Supper

Come and join the people of the community for a delicious meal. No charge, all are welcome.
Wednesday, March 28; 4:30-6:00 pm; Bethel Alliance Church, 251 Walker’s Mills Road, Bethel.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

To Your Health to Present “Cooking with Dave Nivus” on March 8

By Rosabelle Tifft

Dave Nivus of the Good Food Store
Dave Nivus, co-owner of the Good Food Store and Catering Company, will present a program on “Soups, Stews and Chowder” on Thursday, March 8, from 4:30 to 6:00 pm at the West Parish Congregational Church in the basement Dining Room. Snow date is March 15. The program is held in observance of National Nutrition Month and is sponsored by To Your Health of Western Mountains Senior College.

Nivus will discuss how to use food economically to create more meals and will give basic recipes for broths, cream soups and chowders. He will share some of his favorite recipes with the audience.

Nivus attended the University of Maine in Business and Computers. He worked in the hospitality industry as a teenager and through college. While he enjoyed working with computers, he missed the people aspect of the hospitality industry and has been working in it ever since. He encourages people “not to be afraid to try new foods, adding his popular saying, ‘Food is Food; it all cooks.’”

Nivus and his wife, Heather, opened The Good Food Store 24 years ago, as a natural and specialty grocery store. The full-time catering business followed at later date. Nivus is also considered by many as the local “Wine Connoisseur,” and has offered many wine tasting events throughout the area.

In 1991 he and Heather started the annual pre-Thanksgiving “Turkey Tuesday.” Over the years, the event has grown and is highly anticipated and enjoyed by many area residents. With so many people in attendance and the event held in a season of giving, donations are accepted for the Bethel Food Pantry.

The program on March 8 is sponsored as a community service by To Your Health of WMSC with the collaboration of Bethel Family Health Center and MSAD#44/Continuing Education. It is free and open to the public. For more information call Rosabelle Tifft at 824-2053.

Down Home Maine Looking for Suggestions for Presenters

By Brendon Bass

Recently the Western Mountains Senior College Program Committee spent some time generating suggestions for future Down Home Maine presenters. But we would also like help from our membership. If you know someone locally or not far away (it could be you) who has knowledge or experience in an interesting field, who would make an enjoyable presentation on a volunteer basis, and whom you would like to add to our list, please contact Brendon Bass (824-8580) with your suggested presenter and his/her phone number or email address. Thanks in advance!

Monday, February 19, 2018

Changes to How You Will Receive Your Spring 2018 Course Bulletin

At the last board meeting, the Western Mountains Senior College Board voted to publish the Course Bulletin electronically, beginning with the Spring 2018 edition. Delivering the Course Bulletin by email will save on printing and postage costs, helping to keep our membership and class fees low, and will be more environmentally friendly.

All WMSC members were sent an email 10 days ago informing them of this upcoming change. If you are a member and did NOT receive an email perhaps it went into your spam (or junk) folder. Please check to see if it is there. If it isn’t there, let us know right away - perhaps we have an incorrect email address. Contact either WMSC Board Chair Irene Kuchta ( or Program Committee Chair Nurrie Caviness (

For those members who do not have email, we will print and send a copy by US mail. If you have email but strongly prefer to have yours mailed, please let us know that. The Course Bulletin will also be published here on the blog, and we will have a few print copies in the Adult Ed office as well.

Be on the lookout for your Spring 2018 Course Bulletin to arrive at the end of February.

Looking for Donations of Jigsaw Puzzles and Craft Materials

As many of you know, Western Mountains Senior College has been working with the residents of the Bethel House through our Outreach Program. We do mostly arts and crafts, but also spend time socializing and visiting with our neighbors. Several of our group enjoy doing jigsaw puzzles while they chat. If you have any 300 to 500 piece jigsaw puzzles to donate, they would be much appreciated. We also welcome donations of beads and other craft materials. You may leave these in the Adult Ed office at Telstar and Karen Mills will pick them up. Thanks so much!

Invitation to Join Dwight Mills’ Mushrooming Adventures

(Note: this is not a WMSC-sponsored offering, rather a “Birds-of-a-Feather” group that Dwight is putting together)

Dwight Mills has collected wild mushrooms for about 40 years but has never gotten serious about learning new species until this year. He has spent considerable time doing research and putting together a binder full of information on local mushrooming. By April he expects to start searching for and identifying some or all of the approximately 25 species worth eating. He would be delighted to take others with him on these adventures. If you would like to try your luck and join Dwight, you can reach him at or at 875-2893.