The first Maine Seniors Day will take place this year on Saturday, Sept. 14.
A new Maine law designates the second Saturday of every September a special day sinviting Maine people, businesses and organizations to show their appreciation for Maine’s seniors. The new law, sponsored by Rep. Richard Campbell of Orrington, was signed on May 24 by Gov. Paul LePage.
David Nealley, publisher of Maine Seniors Magazine, spearheaded the effort to officially recognize Maine’s older residents with a designated day each year. Nealley worked with many other collaborators including John Nale, volunteer president of the Maine Association of the Area Agencies on Aging, and Dr. Len Kaye, director of the Center on Aging at the University of Maine, to make the case for the law.
“Maine Seniors Day serves as much more than just a symbol,” said Nealley. “Having an official day in honor of our seniors gives every one of us the opportunity to recognize their achievements and raise awareness about the issues they face.”
With a membership of more than 230,000 in the state, AARP Maine also supported the act.
“Many seniors in Maine encounter unique challenges in a state that is large geographically and has a far-flung population,” said Lori Parham, AARP Maine state director. “Older residents often struggle to keep up with everyday living expenses such as the cost of buying food, heating their homes and other necessities. We believe that Maine Seniors Day will provide an opportunity to highlight some of these challenges as we seek long-term solutions.”
For more information about Maine Seniors Day, go to www.maineseniorsday.com
Speaking of AARP, for those who want – or need – an update on driving, AARP Driver Safety class for drivers age 50 and older will be held at the AARP State Office, 1685 Congress St., Portland on Friday, July 12 from 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. You must register by July 6 for this program.
The registration fee is $12 for AARP members, $14 for others. To register, phone John Hammon, AARP volunteer instructor, at 655-4943. Class size is limited.
AARP Driver Safety is a classroom refresher course for experienced and mature drivers. Drivers learn about defensive driving, new traffic laws and rules of the road. Older drivers also learn how to adjust to age-related changes in vision, hearing and reaction time. Insurance companies in Maine give discounts to drivers age 55 and older who complete the AARP Driver Safety course at least once every three years.
Additional classes at this location in Portland will be presented on Aug. 9, Sept. 13 and Oct 11. More information, including dates and locations of other classes, can be found online at DriverSafetyME.weebly.com.
Kay Soldier welcomes reader ideas for column topics of interest to seniors. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to 114 Tandberg Trail, Windham, ME 04062.