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Belmont County Senior Centers Welcome ‘Breeze’

October 3, 2012
The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

There's a fresh "Breeze" sweeping across all Belmont County, with the debut in September of the Belmont County Breeze, a new publicaiton of Senior Services of Belmont County.

The 32-page, magazine-style newsletter highlights activities at all 10 senior centers across the county. The Breeze will be published monthly.

It not only features upcoming activities, hours and contact information for each senior center, but also boasts an array of color photos from recent senior center events and spotlights one outstanding member from a different center every month. The Senior of the Month is selected by the directors at the senior centers, and each center will get a chance to toast one of their most active and inspirational members at least once every year.

Lori Bittengle, Belmont County Department of Job and Family Services' program supervisor for the senior centers, said the newsletter gives members from any center a comprehensive rundown of activities at their center and all of the other centers in the county. The activities and monthly calendars are presented in a uniform manner, while each center's designated pages still display the kind of individual character that make them unique.

"The Breeze lets all of our seniors see the happenings in each of our 10 senior centers," said Bittengle. "We're very excited about it. It is a change, but it's a good change. We felt there was a lot of repetitive information in our old newsletters. This new newsletter is a collaborative effort among our staff and center directors that's put together in more of a cohesive and uniform format. We're always open for suggestions for the The Breeze, because it's still evolving. Seniors have given us a lot of input about our first edition already."

Each senior center director contributes information for their pages in the newsletter. Each center has a designated page for its monthly calendar of events, as well as a page dedicated to anything from lists of center officers to contact numbers, members' birthdays, listings for the center's staff and hours of operation, lists of members in need of prayers and other important bits of information.

"We met with the senior center associations to see what they wanted on their pages," said Bittengle, who noted that it took months of planning to get the debut edition off the ground. "Each center director is responsible for their page and another page in the newsletter - whether it's the joke page, puzzles, recipes page or other pages. The Breeze will still be personalized toward each of the local senior centers, too. We will have inserts to promote their fundraisers and activities."

Any senior age 60 or older is welcome to join in the many activities at the local senior centers, from various trips to events held at the centers. Local seniors are welcome to visit any of the 10 centers across the county. Transportation for those who need it is provided to and from the local center that is nearest to them, in addition to transportation for scheduled trips at each center.

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