ICUB BULLETIN Winter 2019

ICUB BULLETIN

Winter 2019


Published by the

IOWA COUNCIL OF THE UNITED BLIND


Website: www.icublind.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com › Pages › Businesses › nonprofit organization


An Affiliate of the American Council of the Blind


Carrie Chapman, President

200 Parkview Dr.

Waukee, IA 50263

866-436-0141

Email: president@icublind.org


Don Wirth, Co-Editor

921 – 9th St., #208

Ames, IA 50010

515-451-3779

Email: don.wirth@gmail.com



Sandy Tigges, Co-Editor

2904 - 34th St.

Des Moines, IA 50310

515-277-1256

Email: tigges@dwx.com


The ICUB Bulletin is available in large print, via email, and on an NLS-compliant digital audio cartridge. To subscribe to the cartridge edition, please contact the Iowa Department for the Blind Library at 515-281-1323 or 800-362-2587, option 2. Please direct other questions about format and address changes to Co-Editor Don Wirth.


Table of Contents


President’s Message 3

A Christmas Memory 6

Hot Buttered Rum 10

Selecting ICUB as a Beneficiary 11

Meet the Board: Rose Stratton 11

Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School Update 14

Donating Your Vehicle to Benefit ICUB 15

A Golden Anniversary 15

In Memory of Those We Have Lost 18

News You Can Use 21

ACB Diabetes in Action Tupperware Fundraiser 22

Shopping to Benefit ICUB 24

Des Moines Chapter Update 25

Coming Together to Benefit Others 26

ICUB Calendar of Events 27

ICUB Officers and Board Members 34


President’s Message

Carrie Chapman

Dear ICUB members and friends!

Can you believe this year is almost over? We have less than five months before our 2020 state conference and convention, which is scheduled for April 3-5, 2020. We are looking forward to the new location at the Courtyard Marriott, 2405 SE Creek View Drive in Ankeny. Have you reserved your room yet? If not, you can do so by calling 515-422-5555. You have until March 28, 2020, to make reservations at the convention room rate of $99 per night +12% tax. Make sure to ask for the group rate for the Iowa Council of the United Blind to obtain it. The convention committee is hard at work, so watch for more details coming soon.

In September, the Commission for the Blind met to discuss, among other things, changing the library’s name, moving Orientation Center students out of the dormitory area and into apartments, and establishing a 4Plus program at the Department, which would involve moving 4PLUS students into the building. Following the recommendation of the Library Advisory Committee, the Commission voted to change the library’s name to The Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled. Although the Commission approved the Department’s budget which reflects the program changes for Orientation and the 4PLUS initiative for next year, many steps will need to be taken before proposed changes are put into place. We will keep you informed as more information becomes available. I encourage you to attend Commission meetings and the director’s monthly forum, both of which you can do by phone or in person. If you would like to get announcements regarding these meetings, please contact Janice Eggars at 515-281-1336, and ask to be added to the mailing list. You can find other ways to voice your opinion on Department issues in the last Bulletin.

At the beginning of October, I attended the banquet of the Dubuque Association of the Blind, which was celebrating its fiftieth anniversary. I was honored to have the opportunity to speak on behalf of ICUB and to be a part of such a celebratory occasion. It was a great event and well attended. Congratulations, Dubuque, on your golden anniversary!

In the last issue, I mentioned I had participated on a disability panel with Senators Tom Harkin and Kirsten Gillibrand. Afterwards I received an e-mail from a local Lions’ Club member who asked if I would be interested in speaking at one of their meetings. I was happy to do so, and joined them at the Iowa Cubs’ Clubhouse in downtown Des Moines. About 15-20 people were present, and I once again had the opportunity to talk about our organization. They were very interested in ICUB and impressed with all the things the Des Moines Chapter does. A big thanks to Lori Trujillo-Roush, Des Moines Chapter President, and everyone else who volunteers their time and effort to plan and work these events. Your hard work and dedication do not go unnoticed.

A few weeks ago, Rosemary Russell, Linda Gonzalez, and I had the opportunity to visit and speak at a senior center on the south side of Des Moines. We were able to connect and talk with several people who had an interest in learning how to deal with blindness and low vision. The three of us really enjoyed speaking to them and hope we will have another chance to do so.

Lastly, I have a quick update regarding ICUB’s efforts to get accessible absentee ballots in Iowa. I am happy to say we are making real progress and hope to have more information to share at the beginning of the year.

Please feel free to reach out to me anytime with any questions, concerns, or ideas you might have. I can be reached at 1-866-436-0141 or by email at: president@icublind.org .

Stay warm and have a wonderful holiday!

Carrie Chapman, President


A Christmas Memory

Sandy Tigges

I have many warm memories from the eighteen years I directed the Department’s Orientation Center. Heated discussions in the Business of Blindness class, filling in for instructors in Braille and Home Ec Classes, and picking apples at a nearby orchard come to mind. Under sleepshades, students and staff shared experiences as we climbed to the top of the Elk Horn windmill, found our way through corn mazes, and camped and hiked trails at Sugar Creek Camp in Wisconsin. Of course, I especially enjoyed the many treats the students proudly brought to my office, which they had made in Home Ec or brought back from a cane travel route. Most of all, though, I recall with pleasure the many traditions Orientation staff and students shared during the holiday season.

The Center’s Christmas preparations began the week after Thanksgiving with our annual visit to Murphy’s Tree Farm to cut down the Christmas tree. Snug in our coats, hats, gloves, and sleepshades, we climbed off the Center bus and onto the hay rack, which Mr. Murphy pulled with his tractor to the section with the tallest trees. We would need a twelve to fourteen footer to do justice to that high ceiling in the Rec Room. Cynthia “CIP” Qloud enthusiastically called students from one tree to another, showing them how to use their hands to determine the fullness of a tree and their canes to check its height. Other staff worked with those who were hesitant walking on uneven ground, demonstrating how to use their canes to find holes, bumps, and mounds of snow.

Once consensus was reached on which tree was best, students took turns crawling under it, wielding a limb saw to cut it down. Excitement grew as each cut was made, and everyone cheered as they heard the final creak and the tree fell. Students then paid for the tree from their treasury, Mr. Murphy wrapped it in wire, and we put it on the truck for its journey to its new home.

After enjoying a warming soup lunch prepared by Home Ec students and with sleepshades again in place, we all headed to the Rec Room for an afternoon of holiday decorating. Some students never had the opportunity to decorate a tree, while others didn’t think they could do it after losing their vision. I recall one woman whose husband had told her there was no point in getting their tree down from the attic since she wouldn’t be able to decorate it anymore. (She later proved him wrong.) With Christmas music playing, students explored the Christmas decorations they had brought up on a cart from Industrial Arts. Everyone worked together. Some climbed a ladder to wrap the tree in lights, others hung ornaments on the tree, and still others placed decorations on the fireplace mantle, in windows, and on tables. Some traveled to Walgreen’s to buy more lights and ornaments, after they learned they could tell by touch if a string of lights was burned out. In the days to follow, I smiled every morning as I came into the building and inhaled the fragrance wafting from that wonderful tree.

The next project was to plan the Christmas party. In Home Ec Class, students would decide with instructor Mary Clarke what kind of food they wanted to serve. One year it might be appetizers, another year soup and dessert, and still another a full turkey dinner. Whatever the choice, the food was always served buffet style, giving students the experience of going through a line and serving themselves. In Cane Travel class, students might shop for a gift to put under the tree for the gift exchange. In Communications, they would wrap their presents and Braille name tags. Some younger students had never learned how to wrap a gift, while older ones didn’t think they could do it without vision. And then it was time to select the games. I recall playing dreidel with Hershey’s kisses as the prize, a scavenger hunt with clues written in Braille, blindfold musical chairs, Name That Tune with Larry Sidwell tooting out the notes on his tuba, and creative gift exchanges so intense you never knew what you were going to end up with. One year, I got a large box so heavily wrapped in duct tape that it took me fifteen minutes and Dave Hauge’s Leatherman to get to the Starbuck’s gift card inside. Students and staff often invited their family members to join in the fun, which made the party even more festive.

The tree came down the day the Center’s Christmas break began. There was a hint of sadness in the air as students packed up ornaments and decorations for the next year’s group of students to use. The tree was either given to a homeless center or carried out to the alley where it always seemed to disappear overnight. A vacuum cleaner picked up the loose pine needles, and the furniture was put back in place. The Rec Room became bland and empty without the sparkle of holiday decorations and the smell of fresh pine.

In the last Business of Blindness class before the break, I would play a recording of Truman Capote’s A Christmas Memory, his recollections of Christmases as a young boy growing up in Mississippi. The themes are the importance of traditions and the family and friends who remain a part of our lives even though we may never see them again. The story was fitting, since several students would often complete their training at this time, ready to begin their new lives with the new year. Although these graduates may not ever be in contact with the staff or their fellow students again, they—and I—would never lose the memory of Christmas in the Orientation Center with those we love.

Hot Buttered Rum

Sandy Tigges

This yummy recipe came from my brother, Austin Healey. He lives in Wisconsin, a state even colder and snowier than Iowa. And, yes, that is really his name!

1 cup butter, softened

½ cup brown sugar

½ cup sifted powdered sugar

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 pint vanilla ice cream, softened

Rum of your choice

Cinnamon sticks

Combine butter, sugars, and spices. Fold in softened ice cream. Freeze in a sealed container. For each cup, combine 2 tablespoons of the mixture with ½ cup hot water and 3 tablespoons of rum. Stir with a cinnamon stick.





Selecting ICUB as a Beneficiary

If you or a friend would like to remember the Iowa Council of the United Blind in your will, you may do so by using the following language: “I grant, devise, or bequeath unto the Iowa Council of the United Blind, a non-profit charitable organization, the sum of ______ dollars, ____ percent of my net estate, or the following stocks and bonds (please list them) to be used for its worthy purposes on behalf of blind persons.” If your wishes are more complex, you can have your attorney call 515-279-4284, or write to the Iowa Council of the United Blind, 4013 - 30TH Street, Des Moines, IA 50310.


Meet the Board: Rose Stratton

Don Wirth

Editor’s Note: This is the next in a series of articles to introduce or re-introduce our readers to members of the Board of Directors of ICUB.


Rose Stratton lives in Maquoketa. She is an Iowa girl who was born in Richmond as one of 10 children. Her family later moved to Cedar Rapids. She attended the School for the Blind in Vinton from 1942 to 1954.

When I asked Rose if she had worked outside of the home, she said no. Her husband Bob worked at Clinton Motors and then had a bike shop. “I was just at home,” she said. As we talked more, I found out that “just at home” came after she married Bob in 1968. Before that, she worked for more than 8 years for various businesses, including Collins Radio in Cedar Rapids. Also that staying at home included running a child care service with as many as six children at a time. Oh, she also managed the books for Bob’s bike shop – making the invoices, collecting payments, making the deposits, and keeping the records. It wasn’t quite the cooking, cleaning, and household care I usually think of when I think of someone who doesn’t work outside the home.

Rose was born with congenital cataracts. She had surgeries at the age of 3 but never fully regained her sight. She had trouble as a student at the Catholic school she started in as a child. They advised that she be sent to the School for the Blind in Vinton, which she attended for the next 12 years. She made many friends and still maintains an active interest in the happenings at the school.

At the school, she became very good at reading and writing Braille. She helped and tutored many others in Braille. Recently she received a gift of a large magnifier from one of her classmates whom she had tutored. The friend said, “I wanted to give you something to show my appreciation for your help in learning Braille.”

Rose has never let her blindness define her or slow her down. While running her child care center, she would take daily walks with her children. She had a stroller in which she could seat 2 children. Two others would walk beside her, holding onto the stroller’s handle. Two others would walk in front, helping guide the other walkers. Rose has kept in touch with many of the children. One of them, for whom she had cared for 11 years, has recently moved back to Maquoketa and now, all grown up, assists Rose with some of her errands.

Bob and Rose had a lot on Leisure Lake for many years. At first they had a camper, but a wind storm severely damaged it. With the help of friends, neighbors, and family, they built a cottage on the lot, including a board sidewalk from the cottage to the dock with a rope railing alongside to help guide them to the lake. They spent many weekends enjoying the cottage and the lake in their paddle and fishing boats. Rose had enough sight to find their way back to their cottage on the little bay.

As with all people who like to fish, Rose has some fishing adventures to share. Once she and Bob caught 42 bullheads and gave a neighbor half for cleaning them. Rose was responsible for collecting the night crawlers they used as bait. She heard a neighbor ask his wife why Rose used a flashlight to hunt the worms when she didn’t need light to find them in the first place.

Rose joined what was known as the Iowa Council of the Blind in 1970. She has been a member since then, including when the organization became the Iowa Council of the United Blind. In joining, she was interested in comradery, fellowship, and learning about what was happening in the blind community. She has served on the Board in many capacities over the years. At one time, she was the editor of “The Trumpet’s Voice,” a newsletter that preceded the Bulletin. She would collect and edit the articles that were submitted in print and Braille and then mail out the finished newsletter to members. Rose continues her passion for advocacy about issues related to the blind community. Working on ICUB’s Board allows her to pursue her goals of comradery, good friends, and promoting issues affecting the blind—goals that had gotten her involved in our organization nearly fifty years ago.


Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School Update

According to an article in the September 17 issue of the Vinton Eagle, The Iowa board of Regents approved the platting of a house development on the grounds of the former Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School. The subdivision will be called the Mary Ingles Subdivision. The Eagle article further reported that dirt was being moved to a corner of the school property where an emergency services building to house fire, police and possibly ambulance services would be constructed.

Donating Your Vehicle to Benefit ICUB

Do you need to dispose of a used vehicle? ICUB's Used Vehicle Donation Program offers a perfect solution. Your vehicle will be picked up from your home and sold at auction. A portion of the proceeds go directly to ICUB. You can claim a tax deduction equal to the dollar value of the vehicle. Call 800-899-4925 for more information.


A Golden Anniversary

Linda Gonzalez

On Saturday, October 5th, at the Tri-State Independent Blind Society Building, a delicious banquet was held to celebrate the Dubuque Association of the Blind's 50th year as an organization and to honor its first President, Donald Gagne. Although the weather outside was frightful with dark rain clouds looming overhead and the occasional heavy downpour, inside it was so delightful!

As guests entered the building, they were greeted by Linda Gonzalez and her mom, Serena Manders, who collected tickets and made sure names were entered in the drawing for door prizes. Shirts, thermos cups, coffee mugs, tote bags, ball caps, gift cards, and decks of playing cards were among some of the items that would be given away as door prizes throughout the event. While Lou Oswald provided upbeat music for them to enjoy, guests browsed through the auction items, filled their glasses with punch from the punch bowl, and chatted at tables, waiting for the banquet to begin.

To commemorate the organization’s fiftieth anniversary, gold sparkled everywhere. The head table was draped with a black tablecloth with gold “fifties” printed all over it. The table skirt glittered with gold. A four-sided golden 50 centerpiece with gold stars emerging from its center sat in the middle of the table. The punch and door prize tables were covered with the same tablecloth as the head table. On the punch table were two large crystal-like punch bowls filled with fruit punch. Gold bowls of nuts and candy corn, provided by Billy Helbing, sat on the table so guests could enjoy a snack along with their punch.

At noon, Violet Haverland, President of the Dubuque Association of the Blind, took the mic to welcome the guests and to introduce Billy Helbing, who gave the invocation and sang the Lord's Prayer. The feasting then began. The fifty-four guests dined on chicken, ham, mashed potatoes, corn, coleslaw, dinner rolls, and vanilla ice cream—all catered by Kalmes' Restaurant. No one went home hungry.

After the meal, the first of three speakers addressed us. Ron Herring, Board Member of the Tri-State Blind and Don's long-time friend, gave a touching tribute to him. He high-lighted a few of Don's accomplishments, including starting the Dubuque Association of the Blind and the Tri-State Independent Blind Society to help blind Iowans in the Dubuque and surrounding area. Carrie Chapman, State President of the Iowa Council of the United Blind, then spoke about ICUB. Finally, Denise Jesse, a Wisconsin board member, talked about the Council of the Blind in that state.

Violet once again took the mic to give out the awards. The main award was given to Don Gagne, the founder and first president of the Dubuque Association and still a member to this very day. Presented with a personalized talking watch, he accepted the award and said a few gracious words. A $100 gift certificate from L.May Eatery was presented to Lou Oswald for all the help and support he has given the Dubuque Association through the years.

After thanking all the guests for coming, Violet turned the mic over to Lou who served as auctioneer. The crowd laughed as he coaxed and cajoled them to bid on such items as a cooler package, grill package, free one-night stay at the Hilton Garden Inn combined with a $25 free slot play at the Q Casino, pressure cooker, pizza oven, and food left over from the banquet. As our celebration was closing at about 3:00 p.m., guests were happy to discover that during the festivities the rain had also come to an end.




In Memory of Those We Have Lost

Editor’s Note: This fall, we lost two kind and wonderful people. Robert “Bob” Seliger, husband of LaDonna Seliger, was a long-time member of ACB and ICUB. Jeanne Geissinger, widow of Richard “Dick” Geissinger, fully supported her husband as he went through Orientation Center training in the sixties and was a good friend of many blind Iowans over the years. We offer our condolences to their families and friends.


Robert “Bob” Seliger

Robert “Bob” Seliger, 87, passed away October 30, 2019, at Fountain West Health Center in West Des Moines. Services will be held at a later date.

Bob was born March 22, 1932, in LeMars, Iowa to Karl and Marjorie Seliger. He received his degree in Industrial Arts from Westmar College in LeMars. Bob worked for many years designing sets for the Younkers in Sioux City. Most recently he was the custodian at Westminister Presbyterian Church. He was a member of the American Council of the Blind and the Iowa Council of the United Blind. Bob married his wife Ladonna in Hawaii on November 22, 1989. He loved to travel. Bob and LaDonna returned to Hawaii 57 times throughout the course of their marriage.

Bob is survived by his loving wife, LaDonna; son, John Patterson (Rose Johnston); grandchildren, Riley and Willow Patterson; a nephew; two nieces; and a host of extended family and dear friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, William Seliger.

Memorial contributions may be directed to the Iowa Radio Reading Information Services for the Blind and Print Handicapped (IRIS) in loving memory of Bob.


Jeanne Alice Geissinger

Jeanne Alice Geissinger, 98, passed away peacefully on November 1, 2019 at Iowa Lutheran Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa.

Jeanne was born July 17, 1921 to Anna and Peter Hansen. She grew up in Manly, Iowa with six brothers and sisters, Dorothy, Esther (who died at birth), Loretta, Margaret, Eugene and Kenneth. She graduated from Manly High School and eventually met and married Richard Keith Geissinger on April 1, 1944.

Jeanne was an amazing secretary. She was accomplished in shorthand and was an excellent speller. She could type 80 words a minute on a manual typewriter! She retired from Brown Winnick Law Firm three times—at ages 83, 85, and 86—due to the company calling her back for her great expertise.

She will be remembered for her sense of humor, strong faith in the God she loved, her sharp wit, and, because of her sound mind until she passed away, keeping track of all her investments and accounts.

Jeanne and Richard lived in Des Moines, IA and were a blessed couple until Richard’s death in 2007. From that union they had three children, Dennis Keith and his wife, Barb, Linda Jeanne and her husband Jerry Richard Peel, and Scott Richard and his wife Janet Ann.

Jeanne had six grandchildren: Jodi, Boomer, Matt, Brett, Heather, and Adam; and 11 great-grandchildren: Samantha, Victoria, Zoe, Katie, Cooper, Gracie, Owen, Georgia, Hazel, Kailyn, and Monroe.

Jeanne was preceded in death by her husband, Richard, her son, Dennis in 1992, and all her siblings.

Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 7, 2019, at Hamilton’s near Highland Memory Gardens, 121 NW 60th Avenue in Des Moines. Visitation will be held Wednesday evening from 5-7 p.m., also at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to the American Cancer Society or the Alzheimer’s Association in loving memory of Jeanne. Online condolences may be expressed at www.HamiltonsFuneralHome.com .

Now Jeanne gets to enjoy Richard, Dennis and her family and friends in heaven. What a way to end her wonderful journey!



News You Can Use

Norma Boge

Get ready for the holidays and the new year with print/Braille cards and calendars from National Braille Press (NBP). This year’s unique print/Braille holiday cards have a fun and fierce message for family and friends! The front has the words “Sleigh the Season” in black print and Braille, and below a cute baby dragon wearing a Santa hat and brandishing a toy wooden sword, flying down a snowy hill in a toboggan. The inside message reads: "May your adventures in the New Year bring joy and prosperity,” in green print and Braille. Ten holiday cards with envelopes are $20.00. The 2020 Peanuts "Happiness Is..." print/Braille Calendar is available for $14.99. To order, send payment to: NBP, 88 St. Stephen Street, Boston, MA 02115-4302, or call 800-548-7323, or order online at http://www.nbp.org/ic/nbp/publications/index.html .

The Hadley Institute for the Blind offers a wide variety of discussion groups you can join via phone. Connect with other blind and low vision folks to discuss the tips and tricks of cooking, crafting, gardening, technology, and much more. Each subject has its own dedicated group that meets regularly. For more information and the schedule, call 1-800-323-4238 or visit https://hadley.edu/discussions/#skip .

Guide Dogs for the Blind (GDB) is pleased to offer a free Orientation & Mobility (O&M) Immersion Program for people interested in developing the O&M skills that are most relevant to guide dog mobility. For more information about the program, or if you're an O&M professional and would like to refer a client, please contact Marc Gillard, O&M Services Manager at mgillard@guidedogs.com or 800.295.4050, ext. 4061.

If you like audio-described movies and TV shows, check out audiovault.net. This relatively new site allows you to quickly download and upload the audio portion of both old and new films and shows that have been audio described. Even all three seasons of The Handmaid’s Tale are available. The service is free, although donations are welcome.



ACB Diabetes in Action Tupperware Fundraiser

Dee Clayton and Becky Dunkerson

Are you looking for Christmas gifts for those hard to buy for friends and relatives? Are they close by or many miles away? The ACB Diabetes in Action (ACBDA) Tupperware Fundraiser is just the answer for you! Tupperware has put together a list of products from which you may order, and Tupperware will donate 40% of these sales to ACBDA.

The dates of the fundraiser are now through December 27, 2019. Orders can be shipped directly to you or to anyone or anywhere you wish. You pay at the time you place your order with Pay Pal, a debit/credit card, or check.

Anyone can take advantage of this offer, so please share it with your friends and family. If you have a Facebook account, you can view the list of items available, along with pictures, and even order on the ACBDA Tupperware Fundraiser group page at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/3079193155444001/?ref=group_browse

You can also invite your Facebook friends to the group. E-mailing the links to them is another option.

If you have any questions or need help in any way, feel free to contact Becky Dunkerson, the ACBDA Secretary. Be sure to put “ACBDA Fundraiser” in the subject line or the beginning of the message. You can reach Becky as follows: Text: (319)350-8098, or e-mail: beccalou1202@aol.com .

Tupperware has many more items available on their website that do not qualify for the fundraiser. If you are interested in browsing their other products, you can go to: https//dthompson.my.tupperware.com. Or questions can be directed to Donna Thompson, Independent Tupperware Consultant, at: Text: (515)419-8428; e-mail: djthompson@mchsi.com . And be sure to put “ACBDA Fundraiser” in the text or subject line.



Shopping to Benefit ICUB


Are you an online shopper? You can help ICUB secure some additional funds when you shop at smile.amazon.com . There, enter your email address and password. You will be prompted to shop for the charity Amazon is promoting that day or to select your own. In the dialog box for selecting your own, type our name, Iowa Council of the United Blind. We will then be the charity of choice each time you shop at https://smile.amazon.com/ . ICUB will receive 0.5% of the value of eligible purchases. Keep in mind, if you check out using the Amazon app on your smart phone, ICUB will not receive a donation. You can use the app to put items in your cart and then complete your purchase at smile.amazon.com. Happy shopping!








Des Moines Chapter Update

Lori Trujillo Roush

Since our last update, the Chapter has continued to stay busy. On August 30, we partnered with the Des Moines chapter of the NFBI to package meals for the 12th Annual Meals from the Heartland Hunger fight. We had an estimated 28 volunteers who packaged over 8,000 meals. This was a lot of fun, and we look forward to working with the NFBI Des Moines chapter in the future.

On September 5, Des Moines chapter members and friends attended the fundraiser, the IRIS Big Band Bash. We had 23 people in attendance. It was also another fun event, and our state President Carrie Chapman and her partner took home the evening’s best costume award!

Later in the month, we provided a dinner for seniors who were getting a week of training at the Department. Those in attendance were treated to pasta, salad, and dessert. This is typically a small event that gives our members and the seniors a chance to get to know one another and our organization. Thank you to the committee of Kevin, Jo, Donna, and Catherine for putting this together!

Our annual charity trivia bowl was held October 26th at Felix and Oscars. The theme was the 1970s. The hosts were Cody and Bettina Dolinsek as Chevy Chase and Gilda Radner. In addition to Chevy and Gilda, we were joined by Father Guido Sarducci, Cindy Brady and the Shady Bunch, those two wild and crazy guys (the Festrunk brothers), a band of hippies, and a number of people who had pulled out the seventies-style clothing they had been hiding away for the last four decades. During trivia rounds, Chevy and Gilda did the Weekend Update with guest appearances from Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, and godfather Vito Corleone. Elsie Monthei's team won for the second year in a row. We raised $290.00, which was donated to Children and Families of Iowa. A huge thank you to Cody and Bettina Dolinsek for all of their hard work and for making this such a fun and entertaining event!

Our meeting in November will be the last one for the year. We will be holding elections for two Board positions. We will get together again, though, on December 7, for our Christmas party. This year, it will be at Bianchi Hilltop Restaurant, 2820 Hubbell Ave., in Des Moines. The festivities start at 5:30 p.m. Those attending are responsible for their own food and drink purchases.

I wish everyone a warm, safe and happy holiday season!