Friday, March 26, 2021

Zoom Link for "Our Trapping Heritage"

Rotary Club of Bethel and Western Mountains Senior College invite you to a Zoom presentation of Our Trapping Heritage on Tuesday, March 30 at 7:00 pm.  The speaker is world famous Maine trapper Neil Olson. To attend go to the following link:

Friday, March 5, 2021

Down Home Maine: Our Trapping Heritage

Western Mountains Senior College, in conjunction with the Rotary Club of Bethel, is pleased to present a fascinating Down Home Maine program entitled “Our Trapping Heritage.” The speaker will be Neil Olson, a world famous Maine trapper. This will be a Zoom presentation on Tuesday, March 30 at 7:00 PM. Information containing the Zoom connection will be sent out via a blog post later in the month.

Neil Olsen, photo Sun Journal

Monday, June 1, 2020

Remembering Jim McLean

James J. McLean MD, Western Mountains Senior College member and teacher, beloved husband of fellow member RoseMary McLean, and father of WMSC presenter Attorney Martha McLean, died at his home on May 23.

Jim began his medical career when he established a private practice in internal medicine in Yorktown Heights, N.Y. He later became both an educator and administrator in full-time hospital-based roles in New York, Pennsylvania, and Saudi Arabia. He served as Director of Internal Medicine, Chief of the Residency programs, and Director of the Hemodialysis programs. Dr. McLean was Board certified in Internal Medicine, a Diplomat, and a Fellow of the American College of the American Board of Internal Medicine.

Many of us at WMSC fondly remember Jim’s Medical Grand Rounds lectures and his performances with the Senior College Players.

Scott Hynek speaks of Medical Grand Rounds. “Jim always gave you the sense that he was paying full attention to you, though you knew that his considerable intellect permitted his timesharing your concerns with others. His Senior College presentations of mock Grand Rounds gave the clear sense that the real ones were an exercise of great benefit both to the patient and to those attending. I always came away from these presentations wishing I were more conversant in medical matters. Best $5 that I ever spent.”

Rosabelle Tifft says “My memories of Jim McLean center around his humorous antics in several Senior College Plays where we both served as radio theater narrators. One favorite concerned the Senior College Players 10th Anniversary Play written and directed by Ross Timberlake. The entire cast participated in the “WMSC Radio Theater” - destined to change to a live TV show. Jim and I would become the TV anchors and had comical quips about being on ‘live TV.’ Jim had great fun ad-libbing in that play. His humor was evident in other plays over the years. The cast always looked forward to seeing him ‘in action.’ He will be missed by all of us who knew and loved him.”

And fellow actor Jack Kuchta says, “I knew Jim as a Senior Player. When we moved to Maine in 2013, Ross Timberlake conned me into joining Senior Players and cast me in the lead of one of the plays. Jim had a small part as the doctor who declared the victim dead. His character then was to sit on stage while the detective solved the case and arrested the murderer and the cast gasped at his brilliance. During rehearsal, Jim played that role. But the night of the show, he couldn’t resist a little ‘ad-libbing.’ Sitting during the finale, he opened his medical bag and got the little reflex hammer and tested his own reflexes with wild result. (I think he kicked Lorrie.) The audience laughed. That encouraged him to do more. It seems everyone in the cast except me knew that Jim would do something like this. Jim loved to do the unexpected just for a laugh. Whether it was a stunt or an added line, Jim always knew how to make the audience laugh. We will all miss those laughs.”

Indeed we will all miss those laughs. Donations in Jim McLean’s honor can be made to the Bethel Food Pantry and mailed to Bethel Area District Exchange P.O. Box 232 Bethel, ME 04217.

Jim McLean with his doctor's bag (and Rosabelle Tifft, Mark Antell and Lorrie Hoeh)

Friday, May 1, 2020

Remembering Peter Gartner

Most of our members are aware of Peter Gartner's passing at the end of March. In January Peter announced to us that he was retiring from Senior College.  We invited our members to contribute to a memory booklet which we presented to him on Valentine's Day.  A copy of this booklet was placed on the WMSC table in the Adult Ed Office for us to view. But most of us did not get to see it before the coronavirus closed the school and cancelled our spring term, and we want to share it with everyone. You can view the electronic version of the booklet here


Monday, November 18, 2019

Show Time! Senior College Players to Perform This Weekend

It’s “Show Time” for the Senior College Players with performances taking place on Friday and Saturday, November 22 and 23, at 7:00 pm at the Gould Academy McLaughlin Auditorium. Be prepared for an evening of comedy and fun. This year’s main course is “The Pie Ladies” by Sherry Piros with cast members Marianne Goff-Dumont, Lorrie Hoeh, Gretchen Motts, Bridget Remington and Rosabelle Tifft.

 "The Pie Ladies" Front row: Lorrie Hoeh, Gretchen Motts, Rosabelle Tifft; Back row: Bridget Remington, Mariann Goff-Dumont

 A double treat from playwright Jim Gordon gives us some interesting twists in “A Christmas Fantasy,” with Tim LeConey, Marianne Goff-Dumont and Melinda Remington; and “Untitled Number Two,” featuring Lorrie Hoeh and Rosabelle Tifft, which reminds us that art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

Rosabelle Tifft, Lorrie Hoeh in "Untitled Number Two"

Topping off the evening we’ll have a skit from the “Carole Burnette Show” with Jack Kuchta and Bridget Remington who bring “Passion on 10th Avenue” despite intrusions from Gretchen Motts and Melinda Remington.
Jack Kuchta, Bridget Remington in "Passion on 10th Ave."

Performances are open to the public and admission is free. However, donations are accepted to honor Royalty fees. The program is sponsored by Western Mountains Senior College.

The Cast Front row: Lorrie Hoeh, Gretchen Motts, Rosabelle Tifft; Back row: Melinda Remington, Bridget Remington, Tim LeConey, Mariann Goff-Dumont, Jack Kuchta

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Senior College Players in Rehearsal for Performances

"The Pie Ladies and Other Desserts," an evening of comedy and fun, will be performed by the Senior College Players on Friday and Saturday, November 22 and 23, at 700 pm at the Gould Academy McLaughlin Auditorium.  Rehearsals are in high gear and some snapshots are seen below.  Mark  your calendars and join us.

 Lorrie Hoeh in "Fixing It"

"The Pie Ladies"    Foreground: Lorrie Hoeh, Rosabelle Tifft     
Back row: Mariann Goff-Dumont, Bridget Remington, Gretchen Motts

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Senior College Players Gearing Up for Performances

It’s that time again. Time for the Senior College Players annual production. This year’s main course is “The Pie Ladies” by Sherry Piros. When the ladies who bake the pies for the church supper go beyond the standard apple, blueberry and cherry pies, things can go almost anywhere. The cast includes Marianne Goff-Dumont, Lorrie Hoeh, Gretchen Motts, Bridget Remington and Rosabelle Tifft as the pie ladies. They’re visited by Tim LeConey as the local pastor, Melinda Remington as a new arrival in town, and Jack Kuchta as a reporter for the local newspaper. Let’s just say the ladies make a lot more than pie, or perhaps we could say they make some “pie in the sky” dreams.

A double treat from playwright Jim Gordon gives us some interesting twists. “Untitled Number Two” with Lorrie Hoeh and Rosabelle Tifft remind us that art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

Tim LeConey gets a Christmas surprise from Marianne Goff-Dumont and Melinda Remington in “A Christmas Fantasy.”

Topping off the evening, we take a look at a skit from the “Carol Burnette Show.” Jack Kuchta and Bridget Remington bring “Passion on 10th Avenue” despite intrusions by Gretchen Motts and Melinda Remington.

Ray Leghart is the facilitator for this year’s production. Plan to join us at Gould’s McLaughlin Auditorium on November 22 and 23, 7:00 pm. Senior College Players is a course offered by Western Mountains Senior College. Admission is free but donations are accepted to offset royalty fees.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

The Stress of Aging: Growing Old Is Not for Sissies!

by Mary Haberman 

On April 4th, at the West Parish Congregational Church, a panel of experts presented a program on STRESS as it affects the older population. The event was sponsored by the To Your Health committee of Western Mountain Senior College, The Bethel Health Center, and MSAD#44 Continuing Education. The panel included Brie Weisman, OTR/L; Jane Chandler, R.N., BSN; Karen Reilly, Sc.D.; Rev. Dr.Tim LeConey; and Wendy Youmans, LCSW. Ellen Cocker, M.Ed. served as moderator.

Karen Reilly and Tim LeConey
The speakers detailed the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual challenges that are a normal part of aging. We learned how important it is to our health to recognize and find ways to deal with stress. The loss of a loved one, moving away from the community, financial worries, loss of independence, fear of death.....these are common stressors. We cannot do all we once did. We may feel an estrangement from ourselves because we are no longer the same person. How to manage? How to find purpose? Joy?
Wendy Youmans

Among the footnotes provided by the panel: Be sure our Doctors know about all of our medications. Poor posture increases your risk of falling. Oldsters have more cavities than youngsters! Maine not only has a high percentage of elders, it has increased cases of depression.

Jane Chandler and Ellen Crockett

 The second half of the program was given over to the audience. Many had suggestions and some themes kept coming up. Love of music for one. Enjoyment of the outdoors, gardening, taking classes, having a pet were others.
Brie Weisman

Resources mentioned were AARP, the Age Friendly Community Initiative (200 rides were provided last year by the Neighbor-to-Neighbor Program), the University of Maine system, and the many overlapping organizations in the area.

Here’s the bottom line. Stay physically and mentally active. Search out whatever brings you joy. Lastly, make connections because that will give you a purpose for being and doing. And it can help RELIEVE STRESS!

Audience members Ruth and Jim Bebko
Moderator Ellen Crocker

Photos by Iris Roberts

Monday, March 11, 2019

Photos from the Mardi Gras Potluck

Thanks to Peter Musso, Bonnie Pooley and Kathleen DeVore for taking these photos at last week's Potluck supper.
Jan Stowell brought the masks and beads.
Bonnie Pooley registering for spring classes.
... and good food!
Good company ...
Jan Stowell, Marvin Ouwinga, Norman Milliard and Marilyn Sahlberg.
 Diane McMahon
Kathleen DeVore, Marilyn Sahlberg, Jan Stowell and Marvin Ouwinga
Lee and Steve Smith

Photos from "It's a Pasta Party!"

Enjoy these photos from Cathi Dicocco's To Your Health presentation on making pasta.  As you can see, she put us to work! Thank you for the photos, Peter Musso.

Cathi and crew

Rolling the pasta
Putting the dough through the pasta machine

Getting thinner...

Nicely stretched!

The recipe. (Cathi says she rarely measures anything!)