To reach the Concord Council on Aging by phone, call 978-318-3020.

Upcoming programs

Acrylic Painting: 10 a.m.-noon Feb. 15. Linda Malone offers classes for beginner and intermediate artists. All materials will be provided by the instructor. Drop-in classes are $30 per class, or $138 for any six classes in this ongoing series. Call the COA to sign up.

‘Art Matters’ three-part series on American art: 2-3 p.m. Feb. 15, March 22 and April 26. Art Matters returns to the Concord COA with a three-part series on American art. In February, American Art Part I focuses on the period between 1776 and 1900. The United States was not founded by schooled artists, but by people seeking freedom and adventure. Early American artists had their roots planted in European traditions, but they explored their own frontiers. Art Matters displays oversized copies of paintings in a salon style to encourage comparison, discussion and reflection. The reproductions can also be held by individuals who may have some vision impairment. This series is presented free due to proceeds from the Harvey Wheeler Gift Shop. Call to reserve a seat.

Creative writing class: 10 a.m.-noon Feb. 16 and 23. Kristin Cooley is starting a second semester of creative writing classes. People can start fresh or build on what they leaned last year. Cooley will help participants enhance their creative writing by learning techniques that make writing more colorful. Participants can bring their laptops or tablets or hand-write their works. Appropriate assignments for both novice writers and those who have attended the class before will be offered. Each class is $10, paid directly to Cooley. Call the COA to sign up.

'Let’s Talk Teeth -- Senior Dental Care': 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Feb. 16. Attendees will meet Dr. Padma Jonnavithula of North Acton Dental and learn about how dental care needs change. She will address denture care, help for dry mouth and implant decisions, as well as other dental concerns for seniors. Call to sign up.

International Current Events: 1-3 p.m. Feb. 16 and 23. The International Current Events group, facilitated by Barbara Howell, will be basing the next several weeks of discussions on the eight-week “Great Discussions” course materials put out by the Foreign Policy Association. There is a workbook associated with this program that can be purchased ahead of class; call the COA for more details. This group has a broad spectrum of views and all viewpoints are welcome.

COA Cinema: 1 p.m. Fridays in the Lecture Hall. Free. If any movie draws a bigger audience than the COA can seat, it will automatically offer a second showing of the movie on the following Monday at 10 a.m. Movies are Feb. 16 — “Chocolat,” Feb. 23 — “Beauty and the Beast,” March 2 — “The Promise.”

DVD Lecture Series — Lost and Found: 2-3:30 p.m. Feb. 20 and 27, March 6, 13, 20 and 27 and April 3, 10 and 17. Over the centuries, art masterpieces have been lost and some have been found. In February, explore the missing “The Wounded Table” painting by Frida Kahlo. Then watch the “Rape of Europa,” the story of Nazi Germany’s plundering of Europe’s great works of art during World War II, followed by “The Monuments Men,” the story of the U.S. unit that was formed to find the artwork and return it to its owners. This DVD series is free and presented and facilitated by Janice and Douglas Muir. Call to sign up.

Book Discussion Group: 9:15 a.m. Feb. 20. Join the COA book discussion group, led by Phyllis DiMarzio, the third Tuesday of every month. For February, the book will be “Glass Houses” by Louise Penny. The group is open to everyone and new members are always welcome.

Caregivers’ Support Group: 10:30 a.m.-noon Feb. 20. The monthly Caregivers’ Support Group is for those caring for loved ones with Alzheimer’s or related dementias. The group is facilitated by COA Social Services Coordinator Sally Lopez. Call Lopez at 978-318-3012 with any questions.

Genealogy workshop and research methods: 9:30-11:30 a.m. Feb. 21. People can stop by and begin or continue to compile their family history or write stories for future generations to read. Call to sign up and bring a laptop, if possible.

Ask A Lawyer: 9 a.m.-noon Feb. 22. In this program, local attorneys volunteer their time to answer individual legal questions during a free 30-minute consultation. Residents are asked to only take advantage of this offer once a year so that many can benefit. Call the COA to make an appointment.

Create a paperclay hummingbird window charm with Betsi Mandrioli: 1-3:30 p.m. Feb. 22. Betsi Mandrioli will show participants how to craft a hummingbird out of paperclay, a light clay made from volcanic ash. After baking it, they will paint it with acrylic paints. All supplies are included in the $25 fee, which is payable in cash or by check directly to Mandrioli. Participants should wear a smock or old shirt to protect their clothing from any paint that escapes their brush, and bring reading glasses. People should expect to get your hands slightly wet and slippery while shaping the clay. The class is limited to 10. Call the COA to reserve.

The Big Kahuna’s luau party and a full lunch: 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m. Feb. 23. Due to a donation from Bullock’s Nursing Services, attendees can take part in a Hawaiian-inspired catered luncheon provided by Buffet Way, followed by Big Smile Entertainment’s interactive luau show. Hear songs from the Beach Boys, Jimmy Buffett, Don Ho and all the Hawaiian favorites and learn the hula. Free to Concord seniors. Call to save a seat.

Evolution of American Popular Music: 1-3 p.m. Feb. 26 and March 5. Taught by Ron Bernard. From 1945 to 1956, popular music in the United States experienced a radical change. In general, the music of 1945 was characterized by sophisticated arrangements incorporating a variety of instruments with a crooning vocalist, all following a written score. The guitar, if used at all, served only to add a subtle element to the rhythm section. By 1956, the musical style we know as rock ‘n’ roll had emerged. The major topics to be discussed in this class include Billboard magazine and a brief history and its influence on the listening public, a history of the blues, the rise of the independent record labels, celebrity disc jockeys and emergence of the electric guitar. Listen to samples of period music, comparing songs from the Billboard popular music, rhythm-and-blues and country-and-western charts. Free, call the COA to reserve.

Lunch Bunch to Trail’s End, Concord Center: 11:45 a.m. Feb. 27. Join the COA’s Lunch Bunch for lunch at Trail’s End on Lowell Street, Concord. Now offering table service, this restaurant is a favorite of seniors. It offers entrees, salads, sandwiches and house-baked goods. Meet at the restaurant around 11:40 a.m. for the 11:45 a.m. reservation. Those who need transportation should call the COA office and request drop-off and pickup by the van for a fee of $1 each way. Call the COA office to reserve.

Nashoba Brook School lunchtime performance: 11:30 a.m. Feb. 28. The fifth-graders and kindergartners from Nashoba Brook School will give a short pre-lunch performance. Plan to arrive a bit early that Wednesday for this program, as the children will begin their performance at approximately 11:30 a.m.

Antiques appraisal by Peter Yvanovich: 1-3:30 p.m. March 1. People can bring china, paintings, figurines and even small furniture to find out what they’re worth. Yvanovich will appraise as many items as time allows. Each guest may bring one item to be appraised; do not bring jewelry, coins, stamps or firearms. Those who don’t bring items can take home tips on what makes something valuable, what’s hot in today’s market and how to sell, donate or bequeath antiques. Light refreshments will be served. Due to funds generated from the Harvey Wheeler gift shop, there is no charge for this event. Reservations are required.

Nutritious Cooking for One: 1 p.m. March 6. Join Linda Sans, registered dietician, as she shows participants how to shop and cook for one while minimizing waste and achieving a healthy diet. A snack will result. There is no charge for this class, but call to reserve a spot.

'Understanding Modernism -- Beethoven and the Avant-Garde': 1-2:30 p.m. Mondays, March 12 through May 21, no class April 16. Concord Conservatory of Music faculty member, concert pianist and composer Keith Kirchoff offers his 17th series of classes at the Concord COA. During this upcoming session, Kirchoff will explore the concept of “modernism” and how that term has changed and evolved over the centuries. Of particular focus will be the music of Beethoven and how his radical ideas impacted and influenced generations of composers after him. With music spanning from 1500 to the present, the class will draw on an exploration of visual and cinematic art, as well as a variety of musical genres, to help illustrate modernist concepts. Everyone is welcome, and no musical background is required. Checks for $135, payable to the Concord Conservatory of Music, are due at the first class. People who plan to attend should call the COA even if they register at the conservatory as well.

Boston Symphony Orchestra open rehearsal with Andris Nelsons and Yo-Yo Ma: March 29. Leaving CareOne at Concord at 8:30 a.m., returning by 4 p.m. Join the COA for a BSO open rehearsal at Symphony Hall. Maestro Andris Nelsons opens this concert with Mozart’s brief Symphony No. 23. Nelsons then leads the American premiere of a new work from German composer Jörg Widmann. To conclude the program, cellist Yo-Yo Ma and BSO principal violist Steven Ansell are spotlighted in Richard Strauss’s “Don Quixote.” Following the performance, attendees will walk to Pizzeria Uno for pizza, salad and soft drinks. The cost of the entire trip, including transportation, symphony, lunch and gratuities, is $65. Payment is due at the time of reservation. Make checks for $65 payable to the Town of Concord. Those attending must be able to exit Symphony Hall, cross the street at the crosswalk and walk about 100 yards to the restaurant. Reservations will be taken through Feb. 28.

Low-Vision Support Group: 1 p.m. March 28. The COA thanks Nancy Francini for her time as the Low-Vision Support Group’s facilitator. She has decided to hand over the role to Jini McCoubrey for 2018.

Charlie Card event at the Concord COA: 1-3 p.m. April 3. People ages 65 or older qualify for an MBTA reduced fare Charlie Card ID which can reduce fare up to 50 percent on the commuter rail, trains and buses. The Concord Council on Aging will hold an MBTA senior citizen Charlie Card pass event. Call to register.

Harvey Wheeler Treasure Chest Gift Shop: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays. During February, the gift shop will feature Valentines gifts and Asian inspired specialty items to honor the Chinese New Year. The February silent auction item is a set of eight silver-plated napkin rings from Shreve, Crump & Low valued at $90. Bids start at $50 and the drawing will take place Feb. 28. All proceeds go to support COA programs.

COA wellness clinics

Be sure to bring insurance cards. People with HMO insurance should be aware that they will need to bring a referral from their primary care physician in order for insurance to cover the visit. If Medicare does not cover the visit, the fee is $30.

Blood pressure screening: 10 a.m.-noon Feb. 21 and 28. No appointment necessary.

Diabetic clinic: 10 a.m.-noon Feb. 21. No appointment necessary.

Podiatry clinic: 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. April 4 with Dr. Russell Hamilton. Bring insurance cards. Those with HMO insurance will need to bring a referral from a PCP in order for insurance to cover the visit. If Medicare does not cover the visit, the new fee is $35. Call the office to sign up for the podiatry clinics.


Concord Free Public Library “Direct To You” Delivery: The Concord Public Library maintains a special delivery service for Concord residents with permanent or temporary limitations preventing them from getting to the library on their own. The library will deliver books, audiobooks, CDs and DVDs according to individual request. A librarian or library volunteer is paired up to provide an individual contact and deliver materials on an agreed-upon day and time. For  information or to sign up for this service, contact the library directly at 978-318-3301.

Beware of this “tax time” scam: The COA has been hearing reports of seniors who believe they are being called by the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS never calls demanding payment and it does not leave messages telling people they will be arrested. This is a scam. The IRS does not send emails demanding payment; do not go to any websites that appear in emails of that nature. If in doubt, call the Concord Police Department at 978-318-3400 to discuss concerns.

Tax preparation assistance: Volunteers certified under the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide Program will be at the Council on Aging starting mid-February through the beginning of April to help prepare federal and Massachusetts personal income tax returns or to answer tax questions. There is no charge for this assistance, but an appointment is necessary. Check the February newsletter for the specific dates and times that the tax volunteers will be at the center, as well as for specific sign-up information.

Circuit breaker tax credit: It’s tax time again, so that means it’s also time to file a claim for the circuit breaker tax credit. Adults ages 65 and older are eligible to receive this tax credit when their property taxes and half their water/sewer bills total more than 10 percent of their income. People who rent may get a tax credit if their rent is more than 25 percent of their income. All it takes is completing a one-page form. People should speak to their tax-preparer or call the COA for information.

Fuel Assistance: The South Middlesex Opportunity Council will continue to process new applications for their Fuel Assistance Program through the winter months. This program provides financial assistance to low-income households. The COA is an intake site, and will help people complete their application. Call the Council on Aging to express interest and request an application packet.

Be prepared for winter: People are advised to keep an emergency supply kit that is properly stocked with enough supplies to survive for at least three to five days. Suggested contents include a flashlight, a portable radio or weather radio with extra batteries, charged cellphone, first-aid kit, essential prescription medicines, nonperishable food, manual can opener, water (one gallon per person per day), extra blankets and sleeping bags. Develop an emergency communication plan in case family members are separated from one another during a winter storm. Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the family contact, and make sure everyone knows the name, address and telephone number of this contact person.

Lockboxes: A lockbox is a small, metal locked box that can be attached to a home, near their front or side door. The house key is kept locked inside and is accessible only to the Concord Fire Department during an emergency. Should the fire department need to enter a home and find the door locked, they are able to access the lockbox and use the key inside to open the door, preventing possible damage to the home. Lockboxes are offered free and installed by a COA volunteer. Donations accepted. For information or to schedule a time to have a lockbox attached to a home, call the COA at 978-318-3020.


Art Space: Through Feb. 23, Margaret Mary Alvarez de Toledo, M.A. Bramhall, John Langan, Acey Welch and Barbara Wheeler will be displaying a collection of their own work, an array of color in a number of mediums. In late February, the work of Barbara Newell Jones will be featured. Jones’ work is inspired by nature, born of her love for the outdoors. She paints both landscapes and the sea.

Card games: Whether it’s bridge, poker, hand-and-foot or cribbage, games are available almost every day of the week. Check out the calendar to find out when the next game will be. All groups are open and new players are welcome.

Chess Club: 2 p.m. Mondays. Whether a beginner or a seasoned professional, this group welcomes all players. Players should bring their own boards.

Hand Crafts: 1 p.m. Tuesdays. Come and refresh hand craft skills. Used to knit but have forgotten how to get started? Crocheted in college and then never again? This group is an informal opportunity to get together and work on individual projects in the company of friends.

Harvey Wheeler Treasure Chest Gift Shop: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays. All proceeds directly benefit the Council on Aging.

Lunch: Lunch is served at noon at the Harvey Wheeler Community Center in the auditorium. There is a $2 fee for lunch. Call the COA at 978-318-3020 to make a reservation. People who have a reservation but are unable to attend should call to let the center know they cannot make it. People who fail to make a reservation will be asked to wait in the lounge to determine if there is enough room. Participants should bring small bills to lunch. Feb. 21 — February Birthday Celebration, Feb. 28 — Nashoba Brooks performance.

Mixed Game Group: 9:45 a.m. second and fourth Friday of the month. A group for people who love word games, puzzles and board games. The group will be limited to eight people — four men and four women. Call the COA to join the list.

Music Makers: 1 p.m. Mondays. Participants sing the golden oldies with friends old and new. This is an informal chorus that likes to get together to make music. New members are welcome.

Open gym walk: 2:30-3:30 p.m. Mondays and Fridays through March 16, in the Hunt Gym. Concord Recreation will have gym time for walkers on Mondays and Fridays in the Hunt Gym. This is a free program, but sign in at the front desk at Hunt and proper footwear are required.

Quilting: 9:30 a.m. Tuesdays. This group of quilting enthusiasts meets every Tuesday to share ideas and work on their individual projects. No quilting experience necessary. Call the COA to sign up.

Technical tutoring: Having trouble with email? Not quite sure how to work a smartphone? People who have computer, cellphone, iPad or Kindle questions that need answering can call the COA and set up a one-on-one tutoring session with one of the CCHS student volunteers.

Van shopping trips

The COA provides shopping opportunities each month, but participants should call for a reservation in advance. Sign up at any time. To save room, each shopper is limited to five shopping bags. The van driver will help carry bags for people who are unable to do so. Limit seven people on each shopping trip. There is a suggested donation of $2 on all shopping trips.

Mondays: Second and fourth Monday, Roche Brothers Plaza or Kmart, pickups start at 1 p.m.

Tuesdays: First Tuesday, Stop & Shop/Powder Mill Plaza, Acton. Picups start at 12:30 p.m.

Thursdays: First and third Thursday, Market Basket in Littleton, pickups start at noon; fourth Thursday, Trader Joe’s Plaza, pickups start at 1 p.m.

Fridays: Crosby’s Marketplace Plaza and CVS, pickups start at noon.