COLLINS - Don and Allison Girod, trained volunteers for Free Tax Help sponsored by AARP and the IRS, will be at Cattaraugus Free Library from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesdays starting this week. The Girods, who offered this service at the L.K. Painter Community Center for a number of years, are no longer able to be at the center but will work with area residents at the Cattaraugus site.
The Girods will also be at the Salamanca Public Library in Salamanca on Thursdays from 10:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. from Feb. 7 to April 11. Appointments are required for both places and must be made by calling the Girods at 257-3285.
Tax Counseling for the Elderly provides free tax assistance to older individuals but no one is turned away because of age. The Girods are trained to handle most routine situations, but those with rental income, business income with depreciation or foreign investment are advised to see a tax professional. The $200 state credit for volunteer fire company members is available, even if the member would not otherwise file a tax return.
Those planning to take advantage of free counseling should bring all statements of income such as Social Security statements, 1099 forms from banks, brokers and pension funds, any W-2 forms and last year's tax returns and a record of property taxes paid in 2012. Anyone who sold stock needs to bring all details especially when stock was bought and amount paid for it. Photo ID is also required.
For the first time the Girods will be using an online tax system, Taxwise Online, and e-filing will be available. Seniors are reminded that they must call the Girods at 257-3285 for appointments, information, questions, or to make special arrangements for those seniors who are homebound.
Vacancies are available for the 50-Plus Senior Seneca Niagara Casino trip on Thursday, Feb. 21. Cost is $13 for residents of towns of Collins, Persia and Perrysburg; $14 for all others. The incentive is $25 Seneca Slot Dollars. There must be 40 participants registered in order to book the trip, and reservations and money must be in by Feb. 12. Call 532-2507 for reservations.
Reservations are also being taken for the March 5 AARP driving course at L. K. Painter Community Center, Main St., Collins. For more information and to register call 532-2507. Payments for trips or the driving course are to be sent to Collins Town Hall, P.O. Box 420, attention Joan, Collins NY 14034.
In the event of inclement weather check TV Channels 2 and 5 for L. K. Painter Community Center 50-Plus Senior Program closures. Closure of Gowanda Central School is no longer the guide to senior program closing.
BROCTON - The Brocton-Portland Seniors met Monday at the Legion in Brocton at noon with President Margaret Jagoda presiding over 31 members. Butch McDonald led the Pledge of Allegiance; Chaplain Alberta Blakely gave the prayer and held moment of silence. The Valentine Committee consisted of Patricia Zanghi, Rita Stonefoot, Julie Schrantz and Rosie Giambra in place of Joan Bertrando who was in an Erie hospital. Tables were decorated in traditional Valentine's Day colors and treats to go with the pot luck luncheon. The heart-shaped cookies quickly disappeared.
Jagoda conducted the meeting with the secretary's report read and approved by motion of Butch McDonald and Carm Johnson. Treasurer Rita Stonefoot's report was read and approved by Beulah Williams and Pat Zanghi. New member Ruth Dorogi was introduced and welcomed by all.
Under old business, the Christmas party got a round of applause as good company, good food and a good time was had by everyone. Thank you cards were sent to Santa, McDonald's and St. Stephen's.
Under new business discussion was held to have an elected historian as the club's 55th anniversary is coming in April. Discussion was held and resulted in Zanghi's nomination by Kate Cranston, seconded by Bob Jagoda and approved by the membership. Bob will assist and others were asked to help as there is much to go through the 54 years of material.
It was announced by Carm Johnson that on Feb. 6 a soup, sandwich, dessert luncheon will be held at St. Dominic Church in Westfield at noon. Cards will be sent by Kate Cranston to Bill Norris who is recovering from an auto accident in Absolut Care of Westfield, and to David VanRensselaer for loss of his mother.
No anniversaries were celebrated but lots of birthdays were in January including Rick and Kate Cranston, Bea Lee, Rosie Giambra, Zanghi and Ruth Neal. Bob Patterson held the raffle which Rita Stonefoot, Butch McDonald and Neal won. Door prizes were won by Marian Delcamp and Mary Presto.
The poem "Wrinkles" was read by Jagoda, author unknown.
For the next meeting, Betty Kierczyk, Ruth Neal, Beulah Williams and Rose Giambra will be the committee for the St. Patrick's Day celebration, to be at noon on Feb. 25 at the Legion. Members are to bring own table service, salads, desserts to go with sandwiches and soups.
New members are always welcome.
Grape Belt Seniors
The Grape Belt Seniors enjoyed a pot-luck luncheon on Monday. Although the weather outside was miserable, the atmosphere in the center was warm and friendly, and all the homemade dishes were enjoyed by all. The spread included salads, soups, quiches, pilafs, vegetables and delectable desserts. A brief membership meeting followed the luncheon
On Wednesday, Feb. 6, Readers Theatre will be performing a one-act play that includes dark humor. In addition, some members will be sharing anecdotes from their recent holiday celebrations. Audience members are welcome and future participants are also welcome. They meet at 10:30 a.m. on the first Wednesday of every month.
Yoga class will meet again on Friday, Feb. 8 at 10:45 a.m. and will continue meeting every Friday in February. Participants should bring their own mats and bands.
The Grape Belt Seniors' newly-formed knitting and crocheting group has attracted a lot of interest. Those who like making sweaters, scarves, afghans, mittens or any number of other hand made items are encouraged to come join the others who love to knit and crochet. The group will meet again on Wednesday, Feb. 13 at 10:30 a.m. They meet on the second Wednesday of every month and are thinking about also meeting on the fourth Wednesday.
The next board meeting is on Wednesday Feb. 20. As always, members should feel free to make suggestions to any of the board members.
There has been so much recent interest in the Pennsylvania Rail Adventure scheduled for May 14 to 17 that David Wendt, the tour director, will be coming back to the Senior Center to make a Power Point presentation of the highlights of the trip. He will then be available to answer any questions from the audience. The community is invited to come to the center on Monday March 4 at 10:30 a.m. to meet with Wendt and find out if this is a vacation that they might want to take. On the first day the deluxe motor coach will drive to Laurel Highlands with a tour of Fallingwater, one of Frank Lloyd Wright's most famous houses. On each of the next three days there will be exciting adventures. For example, on day two there will be a scenic train ride to Lancaster, which includes traveling around the Horseshoe Curve, an engineering masterpiece completed in 1854. Find out more details by calling 672-5274 and coming to the Power Point presentation on March 4. Refreshments will be served.
There are also two Seneca casino trips planned in the spring. Make reservations now for the March 27 or April 24 trip. Each trip costs $25 and includes $20 in slots and $5 toward lunch. Call 672-5778 for reservations.
Lake Shore Senior Citizens
The Lake Shore Senior Citizens met at the Dunkirk Senior Center at 1:15 p.m. on Wednesday. President Stella Michalak led the members in the Pledge of Allegiance and singing of "God Bless America." A reading entitled "Happiness is Little Things" was given by Josie Wierczynski.
The minutes of the previous meeting were read by the temporary secretary, Wierczynski. They were corrected and accepted as read by Charlene Hallmark with a second by Dorothy Sarzyniak. The treasurer's report was read by Treasurer Betty Korzeniewski. It was accepted as read by Sophia Kubasik with a second by Jane Steffan.
Attendance prizes were won by Sandy Tapasto, Wierczynski and Steffan.
Helper of the day was Irene Christopher. Others assisted.
The kitchen committee for Feb. 6 is Pat Pacos and Sarzyniak.
A moment of silence was observed for Mary Musso and Eleanor Krochmal.
Silver Creek Seniors
SILVER CREEK - The Silver Creek Seniors met Tuesday with 25 people present on a mild, rainy winter day. President Ed Newman called the meeting to order, and all members recited the pledge to the flag and sang "God Bless America." A prayer was presented by Chaplain Irene Conny entitled "Pay Our Dues."
All members sang "Happy Birthday" to Joyce Snyder, Evelyn Martin, Joan Suski, Michael Henry and Guy Patton.
Several members paid their dues, which are now due.
The 50/50 drawings were won by several members present.
Marv and Fran Smith will be in charge of dessert for the next meeting, Feb. 5.
The meeting concluded and Marv Smith called Bingo.
Westfield Senior Citizens
WESTFIELD - The Westfield Senior Citizens met Jan. 10 at the YWCA for a potluck luncheon. Pat Cook provided the day's entertainment by singing Patsy Cline songs. A short business meeting followed the meal, with Shirley Kolpien presiding. For the day's devotions, a reading was given titled "Lessons That Grandpa Taught." The treasurer's report was read and accepted. Members were reminded that dues of $2 are now being collected.
The 50/50 drawing was won by Kolpien. The door prize was won by Mary Cogliano. Pat Everts gave the sunshine report with a list of January birthdays. Cards were sent to ailing members of the group.
The Feb. 14 meeting will be held at noon at the YWCA. Members are asked to bring a dish to pass. The kitchen committee will be Gladys Hess, Jean Stebell, Fran Anderson and Kolpien. The kitchen committee will bring the desserts. Program Bingo will be played, and members should bring an item for the prize table.
New members are welcome. Interested seniors can call Kolpien at 326-3576.