Newcomers Club

Did I hear you ask, "What is the Newcomers Club all about?" Well.... It is strictly a social club that asks its prospective members who have lived in Conway for less than three years to come and join us. They meet wonderful people by being introduced to a variety of social and activity groups that meet once, twice or whatever, a month; such as Bunko, Canasta, Dominoes, Handiwork, Gourmet nights, Pinochle, Wine and Dine, Gardening, "meet to eat" groups and Pokeno. And they even have a game night which avails the membership to learn some of these games or perhaps learn new ones. Once a month they meet for lunch at a designated place and are treated to informative and fun programs.

For instance, this last week we went to China Town restaurant for lunch and were thoroughly entertained by a delightful, fun-loving, informative young lady by the name of Kami Marsh. She is the Faulkner County Co-operative Extension Service Agent and she spoke on how to properly prune your trees and about proper planting, etc. She is now in the process of teaching a class of Master Gardeners and she claims that gardeners are social butterflies of earth’s beauty, which supplies the community with information and aids in the performance of beautification for the community and above all enjoys this fellowship with food and a little bit of chatter.

If you need help in this area, call her and she will help you in selecting the right plants, soil, and locations. She also does design drafting for your yards and will help you in selecting all these items.

Remember next month we will be having our wonderful Style Show at the Conway Country Club, which will be on March 13 in the mid-morning.

If you care to join, call Maryann Schigur at 505-8373 and she will be glad to help you. We’d love for you to join with us and enjoy all the fun.

Beta Sigma Phi Laureate Alpha Omega

After a week’s postponement due to inclement weather, Laureate Alpha Omega chapter hosted the annual Beta Sigma Phi council sponsored Valentine dinner to crown the 2014 Valentine Queens. The event was held at the Wesley Methodist Church Fellowship Hall.

Chapter president, Vernelle Crews, led the Opening Ritual and welcomed members from Xi Master, Laureate Alpha Delta and Laureate Nu chapters. Following the BSP Grace, members enjoyed a dinner of lasagna, spaghetti, green beans, salad and garlic bread catered by Pasta Grill with cheesecake for dessert.

The buffet table was decorated with a red and white checked cloth with a cupid and red tulips as a centerpiece. Tables were decorated with red and white hearts, white Valentine bears, red net and votive candles.

Florene Phipps introduced Melissa Snell, our special guest from Little Rock, with Teddy, a Standard Poodle, and JoJo, a Coton de Tulear. They entertained the group with their special dance routines.

In lieu of door prizes everyone brought bags of pet food and other items to be donated to the Friends of the Conway Animal Shelter.

The chapter Valentine Queens were announced and crowned by previous queens. Valentine Queens for 2014 are: Nina Smith, Xi Master; Linda Alverson, Laureate Alpha Omega; Carolyn Jones, Laureate Nu and this year Laureate Alpha Delta chapter chose to designate a Valentine King, Bob Imboden, in recognition of his contributions to their chapter.

The evening ended with members repeating the Closing Ritual and joining hands for the Mizpah.

Conway Civic League

Conway Civic League met Wednesday, Feb. 19, at the Conway Country club at noon. The meeting was called to order by president Sharon Lessenberry. The blessing was given by Pat Ott and the program was about Painting Our Town. Several members brought special pieces of art from their homes that had a special meaning to each one. All were very interesting.

Roll was called by Cathy Ketcheside with 30 members present. Minutes of January meeting were read and approved.

Committee reports were given and hostesses were recognized and thanked. Hostesses for the February meeting were, Sandra Hudson, Ruth Frenkel, Barbara Isom, Kathy Linn, Pat Ott and Dorothy Robins.

There was no new business nor old business. "Happy Birthday" was sang to those celebrating February birthdays, Ruth Frenkel and Betty Courtway.

The menu consisted of pork loin, steamed vegetables, rice, salad, rolls, cherry cobbler, tea and coffee.

The hostesses for the March meeting will be Laurie Smith, Julie Adkisson, Susan Standridge, Becky Vint and Cheryl Weldon. The Program will be Grand Camp: A recipe for Success, by Susie Walker.

Motion was made to adjourn by Nancy Williams and seconded by Lulu Thompson.

Parkinson’s Disease Support Group

The Parkinson’s Disease Support Group met Wednesday, Feb. 12, at the McGee Center. Two new people were in attendance.

The group observed Valentine’s Day with a game and refreshments. Winners of the "Valentine Day Trivia" game were Norbert Schedler, first place, and Barb McKittrick and Tommy Mebane, tied for second place. They received Valentine chocolates and fresh, cracked pecans as prizes.

Following the game, those present enjoyed refreshments. The serving table was covered with a red cloth and decorated with Valentine decorations. Valentine heart-shaped cookies, chocolate candy, party mix, and Ritz crackers with cheese were served.

While members enjoyed refreshments, Bronnie Rose, group facilitator, discussed recent information about PD and distributed several handouts.

Mrs. Rose distributed a report about the December PD meeting. The group did not meet in January due to the weather.

Mrs. Rose discussed a recent newsletter from the American Parkinson’s Disease Foundation. One article discussed "Telehealth and the Future of Parkinson’s Disease." Telehealth uses a computer or tablet and technologies with a video camera and microphone. The doctor may be many miles away. There are 3,500 sites around the United States that offer telehealth in some capacity.

"The Gift that Keeps on Giving" explains the benefits of donating one’s brain to science upon their passing. The article encouraged PD patients to plan for this donation as many things cannot be learned about PD until scientists can study the brain. The importance of voice therapy was presented in another interesting article.

Handouts distributed and discussed included:

1. "Five Health Tests you may be missing." The five tests listed were: C-reactive protein; The Verical Auto Profile panel; Homocysteine; HbA1c; and Vitamin D.

2. "Let’s Get Physical" about the importance of moving to keep the mind and body healthy.

3. "Showing Up as Michael J. Fox." This handout explained that the loss of smell is a powerful diagnostic aid; encouraged PD patients to participate in research; his return to TV, and his theme, "Just Do It."

4. "Help at Home" included guidelines to help people hire the right caregiver.

5. "25 Easy Ways to Feel Great," which included 25 little changes a person can do to improve their symptoms and boost their spirits. Some of the interesting ones were: "Watch a ‘Seinfeld’ rerun" about the importance of laughter; "Plan a getaway," about the importance of having something to look forward to; "See the light" about the importance of sunlight; "Frame a favorite picture" to lift your spirits and help keep stress and pain at bay; "Eat some walnuts"; "Decorate with houseplants"; "Read a good book"; "Switch off electronics before bedtime" to help you get a good night’s sleep; "Phone a friend"; and "Give someone you love a hug."

A DVD "Parkinson’s Disease: A Guide for Patients and Families," was given to each one. Michael J. Fox, along with two movement disorder specialists, is featured in this informative, up-to-date DVD.

The next meeting of the group will be at 1:30 p.m. March 12 at Southridge Village. A guest speaker is scheduled for this meeting. All interested persons are encouraged to attend.

Any questions, call 329-6282 or 501-246-1972.