A unique organization of vibrant and enthusiastic men.
Tuesday Morning Meetings
A chance to relax before the meeting begins
President Jones Prepares Technology Prior to Meeting
The Old Guard
The Old Guard is a group of retired and semi-retired men dedicated to education, fellowship and community service. Weekly meetings feature guest speakers from government, education and business. Opportunities for fellowship include informal gathering before the meetings, excursions and athletic events, bowling, golf and luncheons. Committee chairmen work with civic groups to organize opportunities for member contributions, both financial and donation of time, some periodic, some ongoing. Old Guard members work with Meals on Wheels, Habitat for Humanity, Foodshare, Salvation Army, and the West Hartford YMCA. Old Guard members provided leadership in the revitalization and ongoing administration of the West Hartford Seniors Job Bank.
Russell H. Jones, President
We now enter the last months of the current program year. As thoughts turn toward spring activities, we will continue to enjoy meeting-day camaraderie and our many opportunities to provide good voluntary service to this community we love. We have another active month planned.
At our March 7 meeting, the nominating committee will announce the officer candidates for the 2023-2024 program year – a much-anticipated moment. Special gratitude is due Tom Goodrum for taking on leadership of the nominating task two years in a row. Tom and his committee have recruited an especially solid group of candidates, and so - on behalf of us all - let me say thanks to Tom and the entire committee.
Ed Turbert has once again lined up a roster of interesting speakers, while Bernie Weiss and Jim Doran have lined up a great roster of story-tellers.
Paul Dean and Ray Bliss have another excellent field trip in the works, along with numerous intriguing possibilities; and volunteer opportunities are scheduled with Habitat, Connecticut Foodshare, Meals-on-Wheels, and the UCONN health center help desk. Every member is welcome to participate in these activities. Contact information is included for ease of inquiry or to sign up.
If you attend Old Guard meetings primarily by Zoom, I hope you have noticed that our experimentation has led to a better experience. Even so, the microphone still overloads and cuts out in the event of sharp or loud sounds: the bell announcing the start of the meeting, clapping, and most singing typically overloads the system. In this newsletter, you will see news of work being done by Don Kauke, our Director of Communications, to introduce substantial improvements with professional-quality gear.
REMINDER: The Old Guard follows the West Hartford schools for winter closings. If the West Hartford schools are closed or delayed due to stormy weather, The Old Guard meeting will be cancelled.
Here’s the news from our Committees:
FROM THE VP AND SPEAKER CHAIR – Ed Turbert email@example.com
GUEST SPEAKERS FOR MARCH
07 March: Wendy DeAngelo, Hospital for Special Care - Who out there remembers her last visit from Wheeler Clinic six or eight years back? The 'Special Care' part of the hospital's name belies there are a range of patient care needs that HFSC attends to that many other care centers do not. Wendy will talk about "New" developments in addressing the 'special needs' community. She will explain the present state of care, how things are "Now". And share with us the
directions forward at the hospital, the what's "Next" for the institution and the patients.
14 March: Nate Grube will bring us up to date on the extraordinary events that the Travelers Championship golf event faces. He will have some news about the response the key sponsor has made as part of the PGA tour. The big name
players are signing up already, and Nate is a great one for offering an inside peek of the goings on in Cromwell.
21 March: Barbara Kennelly is from a storied political family and her own political career is a part of that story. She made a number of firsts as a woman in Connecticut electoral politics, and repeated again as she navigated committees
and corridors in the US House of Representatives. After her tenure in Congress she was a champion for safeguarding the Social Security system.
28 March: Tracy Wilson is a known friend to The Old Guard, having presented lively and informative history about the African American servicemen interred in West Hartford Cemeteries. As a former educator and a voice past present and
future for equity, she turns toward the history of West Hartford redlining steering and other practices.
So, DeAngelo, Grube, Kennelly and Wilson - that is a winning foursome right there. You will get a jolt of energy and information better than Red Bull!
FROM THE STORYTELLER’S COMMITTEE – Bernie Weiss and Jim Doran firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
The March Storytellers are:
3/06 - Michael Cervas
3/14 - Peter Tiernan
3/21 - Steve Schneeberger
3/28 - Del Shilkret
FROM THE SPECIAL EVENTS COMMITTEE – Paul Dean and Ray Bliss
Here’s what lies ahead for our enjoyment:
1. OG at the New Britain Museum of American Art (NBMAA), 56 Lexington Street, New Britain, CT 06052. Date: Wednesday, March 15th. Arrive at Museum, 10:00 am. Parking at adjoining lot available. Private Docent Tour, 10:15 am to 11:15 am. Private Lunch at the Museum, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. Ansel Adams and the legacy of the American Landscape…the most revered photographer of the 20th century. Featured in this exhibition is the Portfolio III Yosemite Valley silver gelatin prints dating from 1927 – 1960. These works capture nature in its grand and minute details, serving to awaken Americans to the beauty of our nation’s natural regions and the importance of preserving this heritage for current and future generations. Also featured: Masterworks from Sanford Low’s illustrations collection. Mr. Low served as the first director of the NBMAA from 1938 to 1964. This unique collection includes works by groundbreaking artists such as Norman Rockwell, Maxfield Parrish, Steven Dohanos and many others. These artists captured and represented American values through stories and advertisements of the times. Themes addressed included pastimes and the joys of occasions with family, friends, love and partners. Cost per person: $48.00 (including lunch); $24.00 (without lunch). Check for payment due on/before March 15th. Make check payable to The Old Guard, Inc. and deliver to Paul Dean or Ray Bliss. Lunch menu consists of garden salad and rolls, seared chicken with red bliss potatoes and spring vegetable medley. Coffee, tea and water beverages served. Please note: RSVP Date is Wednesday, March 8th. Email your intentions to Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org on or before March 8th. Include your list of attendees and if you are in need of transportation. For questions or trip assistance, please contact Ray Bliss at (860) 690-2756 (mobile phone, feel free to leave a message).
2. Baseball. Lots of possibilities! For AAA action, it’s the Worcester Redsox v. the Columbus Clippers at Polar Park in Worcester, MA on Sunday, April 16 h at 1:05 pm. The Clippers are the AAA affiliate of the Cleveland Guardians in the International League. Costs include tickets and transportation by bus. A good food and beverage selection is available at Polar Park. Closer to home is our local AA team, the Hartford Yard Goats, affiliated with the Colorado Rockies. A selection of afternoon games is available during the month of April. In addition, the UCONN baseball team plays Yale at Dunkin’ Park on Tuesday, April 25th in an evening game with a start time of 6:05 pm.
3. The Majestic Theatre, West Springfield, MA. Scheduling did not work out for a trip up I-91N to attend “The Buddy Holly Story”. We are keeping this venue in mind for a Fall, 2023 or Spring, 2024 musical theatre afternoon or evening performance.
FROM THE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS – Don Kauke
A former President of the Old Guard changed the name of this role to Communications instead of the original Publicity title. Who knew the job would expand (Parkinson had something to say about that)?
I endeavor to have articles about the Old Guard included in local periodicals. There are not many left and much media today is electronic, so we-ha.com on the Internet offers an occasional opportunity to promote our group. We were included there on Friday, Feb. 17 celebrating our birthday. https://we-ha.com/old-guard-celebrates-58th-anniversary/
A few years ago, it was decided that the Old Guard could benefit from a web page. A contract was established with WIX, a web design company. The original intent was to use the site to promote The Old Guard to educate prospective members. It has expanded to allow scheduling for activities, to keep existing members up to date and provide email distribution. The chairs of some of our volunteer committees have learned how to use it for scheduling. It now includes videos of recent meetings and updated member roster. If you have not had a chance recently to see your Old Guard at work and play, check out: www.ctoldguard.org.
Zoom has enabled our weekly presentations to be fed to computers in member homes or vacation sites. A rudimentary way to accomplish that is to use the camera in a laptop computer placed near the person presenting. Not optimal, but it has led to the belief that a real camera would be much better, not just for the remote audience but for members present in the room (all industry conference presentations today are projected on large screens for the benefit of attendees). Your Board of Directors has decided to pursue this possibility. I have interviewed two audio-visual firms to examine the possibility of installing enhanced audio-visual equipment and await their proposals. This equipment would be a permanent installation and useful to the Westminster community as well as the Old Guard. During the COVID era, we were able to have presenters remotely and this update should enhance that possibility in the future.
Unfortunately, words are not adequate to describe The Old Guard sufficiently, but we try. Keep those pictures of activities coming. Don
FROM THE FOODSHARE COMMITTEE – Jeff Lee email@example.com
At our February morning at Foodshare we help package a whopping 12,430 lbs of bread to be distributed to the food insecure in our area. Our March date is coming up soon on Friday the 3rd between 8:30 & 11:30. We have a couple openings….Please consider joining us!
FROM THE FOODBANKS COMMITTEE – Lou Aiello firstname.lastname@example.org
For March we will be asking for donations of money for the West Hartford Foodbank, CTFoodshare, and Loaves & Fishes and/or House of Bread. Also donations of food for West Hartford Foodbank.
We have received 50 Food Items and money donations as follows: West Hartford $1,228, House of Bread $1,000, Loaves & Fishes $1,000 and CTFoodshare $2,065 (total CTFoodshare with food value of 5 times donations equals $10,325). Total individual donations $5,293 (total including food value $13,552.65) so far this season. Given so many of our neighbors’ food needs in Connecticut, and other essentials means, a contribution of $30.00 would feed one person for 30 days based on the CTFoodshare cost. We would appreciate donations for this winter season. Please give to put food onto the tables of families facing hunger.
For information on how to donate, please go to the Old Guard website. If you wish me to contact you, there is a sign-up sheet table at Old Guard meeting, or see me at our Old Guard meetings. Need help and to report your donations, please call me (860) 970-6502. Donations are tax deductible.
FROM THE HABITAT COMMITTEE – Ron Robinson email@example.com
Habitat - Next volunteer opportunity at the Bloomfield ReStore facility is 9:00 on 3/8. Please register under Civic Activity at ctoldguard.org and feel free to invite friends. Any questions, contact me. Thank you. (860) 965-3510
FROM THE MEALS-ON-WHEELS COMMITTEE – Dale Richter firstname.lastname@example.org
It was a mostly uneventful year for the Meals-on-Wheels volunteers:
Once again, we never missed a scheduled day all year, and like the United States Postal Service used to be, neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet and hail, and yes – even COVID – ever prevented us from completing our appointed rounds.
In addition, the delivery company (CW Solutions) introduced ID cards and lanyards for each volunteer. I took and e-mailed head shot pictures – they made the photo IDs and we wore them proudly. The ID cards benefit CWS and its clients, as well as us. OG members have picture IDs to identify us to clients as well as the police, who may not want us to park on the side of the road while delivering. We can (and did once) easily prove we are the good guys.
Your MOWers represented The Old Guard in the finest manner all year. I’m very proud of the job they have done. You should be too. Dale
FROM THE UCONN HELP DESK COMMITTEE – Bill O’Connor email@example.com
The Old Guard needs additional volunteers to continue our long history of service. Volunteers assist patients to find the correct clinic or procedure. Some patients are handicapped and require the need of a wheelchair. Volunteers are critical in moving patients to the correct service. Patients rely on the volunteers to guide them to the proper service.
Volunteers at the Muscular Skelton Institute have 4 hour shifts, Mondays,
Wednesdays and Thursdays 8-12 or 12-4. Fridays are a morning shift only.
The university supplies a picture id, free parking and a stipend for a luncheon,
break. If you are interested to know more contact Bill OConnor at the e-mail address next to my name, above). Our contact Administrator at the University is Lisa Detoma (ldetoma @unch.edu)
FROM THE BOWLING COMMITTEE - Tom Goodrum firstname.lastname@example.org
Come and join us for fellowship and fun. Bowling continues Thursday mornings at 9:30 am at the Callahan’s Bowl-O-Rama, 2143 Berlin Turnpike in Newington. No experience is necessary. The cost is $8.25 per person for the three games, including shoes and balls that are provided. Time to get out of the house and be with fellow Old Guard members. Hope to see you there.
FROM THE GOLF COMMITTEE – Chuck Hasbrouck email@example.com
The 2023 Old Guard Golf Tournament and Luncheon
Mark your calendars! The 2023 golf tournament and luncheon will be held on Tuesday, May 16 at Stanley Golf Course and The Back Nine Tavern. You will want to be a part of this great event that provides West Hartford YMCA camp scholarships for children in financial need.
FROM THE YMCA LIAISON - John Keleher firstname.lastname@example.org
The YMCA has started its annual campaign. Old Guard members that have pledged in the past should expect a phone call in the coming weeks. I hope those who have given will continue and those who have not will consider supporting the West Hartford Y. As a side note, I wish to report that Laura Prisco is presently on a leave of absence.
And so there you have it: OG news for March
With every best wish for good health and happy days - and an invitation to reach out to me at any time:
Russ Jones, President