For Fritts, volunteering is second nature
The 30th annual Save-A-Senior after-graduation party plans are almost complete, but the volunteer coordinator said they could still use donations.
Shelia Ann Unger-Fritts became passionate about volunteering in her junior college days at Westark College, now the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, by donating her time in the Make-A-Wish foundation’s gift wrap store. Since then she’s been affiliated with Toys for Tots, the United Way of Adair County, Relay for Life, Stilwell Youth Wrestling, Stilwell Youth Football, numerous little league teams, several benefit runs and walks, the Shriners, Cornerstone Fellowship, Beta Sigma Phi, Delta Kappa Chapter, and her Family, Career and Community Leaders of America students.
Tai chi class offers increased mobility
Calm music played in a sunlit room, as a class of first-time tai chi students gently reached their arms open to the side, then back to the front.
“Let’s welcome the morning and circle our arms,” the instructor said, demonstrating, “up and now back down.”
At any age, a lack of physical movement for an adult can soon lead to a diminished mobility.
A new class at the Tahlequah Senior Citizens Center, Tai Chi for Arthritis, is designed to give participants better balance, improve muscle tone and flexibility, increase circulation, reduce stress and even enhance their mood.
Workshop touts gravestone preservation
Volunteers learning to preserve tombstones and monuments rolled up their sleeves Wednesday as national masonry conservation specialist Jonathon Appell led them through a workshop at Tahlequah City Cemetery.
A member of the Preservation Trades Network from Connecticut, Appell is teaching locals in a two-day seminar how to clean masonry safely, repair fragmented stones, reset loose or crooked stones, and how to use infill material and tools for re-pointing and repairing.
Gravestone preservation and planning projects on which Appell has worked include the Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C.; the First Presbyterian Church Cemetery in Greensboro, N.C.; the Granary in Boston; and The Haven Crypt in Connecticut.
Brilliant mosaics a special art form for Sims
When Fran Sims entered a glass mosaic Cherokee star in the 2012 Cherokee National Holiday art show, it was a new medium for the event.
Since then, she’s been busy completing her master’s degree. Her final paper has been written and graduation is on the horizon, so she’s already back to one of her favorite pastimes: creating art.
Sims is a social worker with the Cherokee Nation, and she enjoys working with glass mostly as a medium, because she loves the look it produces.
Amendment fixed Electoral College problems
When the American experiment began in the late 18th Century, a number of monarchies and absolute rulers around the world awaited its collapse during a transition of power.
They have been disappointed for 238 years. The Civil War was certainly an existential threat, but otherwise, power transfers and procedural adjustments have been peaceful. An example of orderly adjustment is the 12th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Because it is an amendment of procedure, the text is much longer than most others
Stilwell seeing red with May 10 Strawberry Fest
Sweet, red strawberries are ripe and ready for the place of honor at the oldest continuous festival in Oklahoma.
The Stilwell Strawberry Festival is always the same weekend as Mother’s Day – this year, May 10 – and it’s a time of family celebrations and class reunions.
The morning starts with a 5K run, and the day’s festivities include a parade, car show, queen crowning, berry judging, live music, arts and crafts, horseshoe tournament, free strawberries and cake and much more. An all-school reunion is held at the high school and a rodeo is both Friday and Saturday nights.
And this year, helicopter rides have been added to the mix.
Hamilton sees compassion, potential at UUCT
Anyone attending the recent Tahlequah Community Playhouse show, “Nunsense” would have seen the spirited Mother Superior portrayed by Rev. Susan Hamilton.
Just recently, Hamilton has begun speaking at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Tahlequah, where’s she’s attended the past nine months.
A California transplant, she served as pastor at Parkside Community Church, and United Church of Christ in Sacramento, Calif., for 15 years.
Sovereign immunity addressed by 11th Amendment
After the ratification of the U.S. Constitution, it didn’t take long for the states to seek its first amendment, post-Bill of Rights, thanks to a Supreme Court decision that left them feeling vulnerable.
The 11th Amendment was approved by Congress on March 4, 1794, and ratified by the states on Feb. 7, 1795. It reads:
“The Judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, commenced or prosecuted against one of the United States by Citizens of another State, or by Citizens or Subjects of any Foreign State.”
Red Fern Festival offers family fun
Tahlequah’s Red Fern Festival offers attendees a stroll back in time to old-fashioned family fun.
It’s a way to show children how their great-grandparents and great-great-grandparents lived and played, and tell stories about, “the good ol’ days.” And it’s a way to enjoy what is best about life in Tahlequah, for many folks, including spending quality time as a family, enjoying sunshine, and chatting with old friends and perhaps meeting new ones.
The event, slated for the last weekend in April since 2007, has brought the best of the novel, “Where The Red Fern Grows,” by Wilson Rawls, to downtown, since the movie was filmed here.
Padilla enjoys reconnecting with childhood
As a child spending time at her grandparents’ house, with all her aunts, uncles, and cousins around her, Kerrie (Bosley) Padilla spent endless hours outside playing chase, catching fireflies, or writing and acting out plays.
In 1987, after her dad got out of the Navy, the family moved here from Georgia to be closer to that family: matriarch Dorothy Monzingo, and maternal grandparents Dorothy and Dwight Allen. Her parents, DeAnna and Steve Edwards – as well as a couple of siblings and some aunts, uncles and cousins – still live here.
Eventually, Padilla graduated from Northeastern State University, and then its College of Optometry.
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