Welcome to the July 2006 Seniors Digest!
Summer is here in full swing, and we've already had our first bout of hot weather! Whether you like the warmer temperatures or not, don't forget to take precautions to stay safe in the sun. Mary Hewes of the Washington Health Foundation tells us how in "Summer Safety for Seniors."
Speaking of safety, fellow Advisory Council members John Barnett, Timmie Faghin, Thelma Pegues and I recently took part in the filming of a new educational video, Just in Case: Emergency Readiness for Older Adults and Caregivers. See "Links You Can Use" to catch our performance and learn a lot about preparing for earthquakes, tsunamis, power outages and any other disasters that might strike our area.
We'd also like to alert you to the upcoming Legislative Forum to be held on August 23 at Seattle Center. Featuring state and federal legislators and policy experts, the forum's theme is "Supporting Vulnerable Adults: How Will the Federal and State Budgets Reflect Our Concerns?" We invite you to visit the Advisory Council website to sign up for this event.
Caregivers and safety are also highlighted in several other articles in this issue:
10 Myths and Facts About Falls "We Are Family" Wordfind
- New Project to Benefit Persons with Alzheimer's and their Caregivers
- Family Caregiver Counseling
For More Information...
Check out SeniorsDigest.org, our national companion website. The Seniors Digest Resource Center is a great place to begin your search for information about issues of interest to seniors and their families.
We hope you will refer to our electronic pages often to obtain advice, to learn of new and exciting services, and to offer us your constructive feedback.
Read Seniors Digest and tell us what you think. We are here to help.
Don Moreland, Chair
Seattle-King County Advisory Council
on Aging and Disability Services
* More About Norrie Suder
Since 1953, Norrie Suder has been an active member of the Seafair Clowns. He has held many roles in the Seafair Clown world, but he is best known as the surrey driver, a job he still holds at 80 years of age. His tenure and enthusiasm for this volunteer role exemplify the spirit of service and dedication to the community that mark the Seafair Clown organization.
Back in the early years, Seafair was a week-long celebration. The clowns were kept busy with several parades, charity appearances at hospitals and nursing homes, and parties at night. Now the event spans over a month, kicking off this year on July 1 with the Milk Carton Derby races at Green Lake and culminating with the hydroplane races on Lake Washington, August 4-6.
The Seafair Clowns are in demand year round and are invited to local charity events and festivals throughout the Northwest, and around the world. Their motto is: "Keep 'em Smiling!" Norrie went 20 years without missing an event. He admits to slowing down a bit, but he is still having a great time clowning and has no plans to quit.
Norrie enjoys the visits to hospitals and other places where he can spread laughter and good cheer. He says, "Bringing smiles to people's faces makes you feel good!" So many interesting and wonderful things have happened to him over the years, that it is hard to pick any one event as his favorite. The memories of making people laugh are many.
When not in greasepaint, Norrie has been a real estate broker for over 20 years, and he still works three days a week for the Red Carpet School of Realty. After work, he spends several hours with his wife, who is living in an adult family home. She suffered a stroke a few years ago, and although she is paralyzed and in a wheelchair, Norrie still manages to take her out to their favorite spots on Hood Canal and Seaside, Oregon a few times each year.
Fellow Seafair Clown Scott Hogan, 43, has childhood memories of Norrie driving the surrey for the neighborhood kids back in the '60s. Scott says, "It seems that with clown costumes you never age, because the costume stays the same. It is more you than even a fingerprint. So, to me it seems like Norrie has never changed."
For over 50 over years, Seafair has been a sign of summer in the Northwest. While the Blue Angels and the hydros seem to have as many fans as detractors, everybody loves a clown. Especially a Seafair clown!