Monday, October 11, 2010

ECAREA
Eau Claire Area Retired Educators

ECAREA Unit Meeting
First Baptist Church
October 4, 2010
10:00 a.m.




The meeting began with Chris welcoming everyone. Visitors and first time attendees were introduced. 42 people were in attendance, including five guests..

Business Meeting

A. Minutes: The minutes from the August Unit meeting were approved and will be recorded as submitted by Sally. Copies of the minutes were available for those who do not have access to a computer.

B. Treasurer: Owen reported that we have a balance of $2222.39 in the checking account and $1656.24 in the savings account at this time.

C. Committee Reports:

Social: Loreen reminded everyone of the times and locations of the November and December meetings. She also shared that the serving committees have been set up for the year and that she will contact people to remind them prior to the meetings.

Membership: Kathy was not present, but asked Chris to say that as of October 1st there were 98 local members, and 76 members joining the State. She encouraged all members to join WREA and thanked everyone for cooperating with the new registration system as it went very smoothly.

Legislative: Joan encouraged everyone to take time to visit the WREA website and read all of the valuable information that is available there. She informed the members that as of 2008 Wisconsin is one of only four states that have a fully funded State Retirement fund. Joan reminded everyone that in the Fall WREA newsletter there was a survey that they wanted all members to fill out. At this point it would have to be done on-line as it was due Oct. 5th. She encouraged everyone to go on-line and take ten minutes to complete it. Joan also talked a bit about Jane Elmer, the Executive Director of the WREA. She shared that Jane acts as our paid lobbyist, but that she gives no PAC money to candidates, nor endorses any candidate. She simply supports all Bills that support education. Joan had copies available of a resolution from the May 2010 WREA Annual Convention stating opposition to Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) threats. Members had requested that these be available for them.

Past President: Cathy was absent.

Health and Education: Marlaine invited all members to get involved and volunteer in our schools. She passed around a website page that contained information on where volunteers are needed school by school. The website is: www.ecasd.k12.wi.us/community/coa-get-involved.cfm. You can register by name and indicate where/when you would be available to help. Marlaine also had a flyer about the Stepping On program that helps the elderly to prevent them from falling. This is a free 2 hour exercise class that goes for seven weeks.

President: Chris thanked the ladies from First Baptist for the delicious brunch. She encouraged everyone to come to the November meeting at Grace Lutheran where the speaker will be talking about the Chippewa Valley Free Clinic.

Newsletter: Jeanette asked anyone who did not receive a newsletter in the mail to let her know after the meeting.

Website: Cheryl encouraged everyone to Google ECAREA where they will find our newsletter, minutes from our meetings, a list of officers and a calendar of our meetings along with a map to their locations.

Bottle caps/labels: Carol reminded everyone to remember to bring in the soup labels, milk caps, box tops etc. to every meeting.

D. Old Business

There was nothing for old business.

E. New Business

1. Chris said that there were four people signed up to attend the District meeting in Rice Lake on October 25th. She invited anyone who was interested in going to let her know.

F. Raffle

Cathy conducted the drawing and reminded members that half of the money goes to the WREA Foundation to provide for scholarships and grants.


The business meeting was adjourned for the program.

G. Program

Carol introduced Jean Jirovac, a Marriage and Family Counselor from the Caillier Clinic, who had a humorous presentation on relationships and communication.

Respectfully submitted by Sally Gordon, Secretary.

Monday, September 20, 2010

JOIN EAU CLAIRE AREA RETIRED EDUCATORS

Eau Claire Area Retired Educators will hold their Fall Brunch on Monday, October 4 at 10AM at the First Baptist Church at 416 Niagara Street in Eau Claire. The speaker will be Jean Jirovac whose background is in family counseling. Her presentation will be humorous and uplifting. The cost of the meal is $9.00. Reservations must be made by Thursday, September 30 at 4PM. Make reservations by emailing ecarea.web@gmail.com.
If you are an educator who retired from the Eau Claire Area School District or another school district in the state of Wisconsin, but now reside in Eau Claire, we have a special deal for you. Contact us: ecarea.web@gmail.com.

Friday, September 17, 2010

ECAREA
NEWSLETTER
August 2010
Eau Claire Area Retired Educators’ Association www.ecarea.org
A unit of WREA Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Association www.wrea.net
“Your Voice, Your Choice”

GREETINGS FROM OUR PRESIDENT
Dear ECAREA Friends,
A welcome to a new year of our Eau Claire Area Retired Educators Association. We ended last year on a strong upbeat note, and I am confident that we will continue in the same vein for the beginning of this one. Your board has worked hard to obtain interesting and varied programs and speakers. We hope that you take advantage of continued learning and conversation with friends by attending as many as you can, starting with our August 30th meeting at the Chippewa Valley Museum.
As always we are looking for new faces on the board. We thank Cherry Larson for her many years of collecting labels, bottle caps and cartridges for the schools. Carol Friday will now take over this responsibility. There are other ways to get involved, so please don’t be shy about stepping forward. I am so glad I did as I have thoroughly enjoyed the friendships that I’ve made!
On the state level WREA provides us with support, expertise and vigilance as they monitor what is happening with our pension fund. As we heard at the WREA State Convention, we are now considered rich because of our well-managed pension fund. Our state organization has reached a milestone in membership numbers—14,000! Let’s do our part in recruiting new members locally. Our state president Berland Meyer encourages us to remind other retired educators that WREA is not all about US, but about making things better for EVERYONE. It works best when friends invite friends, so keep that in mind for this year’s programs, and invite someone to share a meeting with you.
Chris Kondrasuk, President of ECAREA

ECAREA MEETINGS 2010-2011
August 30—1:30 p.m. Museum Presentation Chippewa Valley Museum
October 4—10:00 a.m. Jean Jirovac First Baptist Church -Brunch
November 1—1:30 p.m. Brent Hafle CV Free Clinic Grace Lutheran Church Hall
December 6--Noon Luncheon Nick Seegers, violin Florian Gardens
No meeting in January
February 7—1:30 p.m. Mary Pica-Anderson Grace Lutheran Church Hall
March 7—1:30 p.m. Ken Anderson on Mayberry Grace Lutheran Church Hall
April 4—1:30 p.m. Betty Cowley on Mary Todd Lincoln Lake Street Methodist-Brunch
May 2—1:30 p.m. Richard Kozbial on Poland Grace Lutheran Church Hall
June 6 –Noon TBA with Chippewa Falls Unit

Meetings are cancelled when the Eau Claire area Schools are closed due to weather.
Brunches and luncheons will still be as scheduled. Reservations are necessary by the Thurs. before it.

1


LEGISLATIVE NEWS
By Joan Cook
From time to time, misconceptions about the Wisconsin Retirement System are aired. A recent Eau Claire Leader-Telegram Letter to the Editor, submitted by John Andersen of Lake Hallie, is worth reviewing:
“In Wisconsin, the only people who may retire at 55 with full benefits are police, firefighters and those in other protective service occupations. To receive “full benefits, they must have 30 years of service; that rule is called the rule of 85 (30 years plus your age equals 85). Others, including teachers, are eligible to retire at 55 but with reduced benefits. Normal retirement age in nonprotective occupations, such as teaching, is 65-the same as anyone else. By the way, such benefits do not include health insurance.”
The writer continues, “Also inappropriate is believing the Wisconsin Retirement System is the taxpayers’ money. It is money deducted from wages of employees in the system. A similar analogy is that once I pay for a gallon of milk, I don’t own the “profit” of the grocery store. If there was any question of that, just ask former Governor Tommy Thompson, who was ordered to pay back millions to the retirement system by the Wisconsin Supreme Court when he took it to balance the state budget in 1987.”
WREA is dedicated to protecting our pension fund. Watch for legislative alerts on the WREA website www.wrea.net so you can contact your legislators


TREASURER’S REPORT
By Owen Moyer
Checking Account Balance as of July 31, 2010 $1,097.97
Saving Account Balance as of July 31, 2010 $1,656.22
The Budget for 2010-2011 was set at the July Board meeting and will be reviewed at the August Meeting.

HEALTH AND EDUCATION
By Marlaine White
Health: We start a new year of meetings for ECAREA. So, here’s to your health! Our health depends on so many factors. The genetic part we can’t change. We can do something about what we eat, how much we exercise, how much we sleep, and what we do to keep our brains alert.
I don’t mind exercise and walking or a slow jog. Some people can’t do that. President Kennedy used his rocking chair for exercise. Do whatever you can. Remember, it’s for your health!
There are gadgets to help you if you’re disabled—for dressing, reaching something on a shelf, etc. To get a free catalog, call Arthritis Foundation of Wisconsin at 1-800-242-9945.
Education: Locally, the issues of the former superintendent of schools and his lawsuit are done. The court did not agree with him. Budgetary woes will be increasing. If you have never volunteered in a school, now is the time to start. To give your brain a boost, use your knowledge on another grade level. Try it. The grade school class sizes are smaller than when I taught ( I had classes of 33 students).
Many students don’t have grandparents near by. If you have “one-on-one” contact with a student, you are exposing the student to another generation.

WREA FOUNDATION FUNDS By Chris Kondrasuk
What is it? The WREA Foundation was established in 1996 by the Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Association to provide outreach programs to the community, to support continuing education and life-long learning, and to enhance and foster volunteerism. Projects of the WREA Foundation will include:
-- Scholarships for students and teachers --Professional development
--Leadership training for volunteers --Projects to improve communities
--Retirement planning --Information dissemination
Locally we use the WREA Foundation whenever a member dies as we make a donation in that person’s name to the Foundation. It seems very appropriate for a retired educator to have a memorial in a fund that supports education and life-long learning.
WREA Foundation provides a variety of grants. This year’s grant program, called the 2010 Challenge award, is for five $2000 awards to public middle schools, grades 6-8 for existing programs implemented in 2008-2009 or 2009-2010 school years. The application window is April 16-Sept. 30, 2010. Information is available at the WREA website www.wrea.net . We will hear about the winners at our Fall District workshop. It would be great if a local middle school was a winner.

SOCIAL COMMITTEE REPORTS By Loreen Yager and Carol Friday
We have two brunches (Oct. 4th & April 4th), a holiday luncheon (Dec. 6th), and a picnic/luncheon (June 6th) for the ECAREA 20010-2011 year to be held at various locations. The Chippewa Area group is invited to the picnic/luncheon in June. All other meetings will be held at Grace Lutheran Church. Check the meeting schedule form for dates, times, places and programs.
**Reservations for the October 4th brunch at First Baptist 416 Niagara should be called or emailed by Thursday, September 30th. Cost is $9.00.

** Reservations for the December 6th holiday luncheon at Florian Gardens, 2340 Lorch Ave. should be called or emailed by: Wednesday, Dec. 1st . Cost is $20.00.

Contact LoreenYager at 715-836-7801 or email Lyager7801@charter.net to make a reservation.

Remember! If you reserve for a luncheon or brunch, you pay for it whether you attend or not unless you have cancelled your reservation by the dates requested.
Luncheons and brunches will still be scheduled even if the Eau Claire Schools are closed because of inclement weather. Regular 1:30 p.m. meetings will be cancelled if the schools close because of weather.

COLLECTION 2009 By Cherry Larson
WOW!!! Thank you for your contributions. Collections 2009-2010, of Bottle Caps, Milk Moola Strips, Campbell Soup Labels and General Mills Box Tops was remarkable. All collections went to Longfellow School. The total collected:
Collected in 2009 2008
Bottle Caps 1,462 1,680 218 less
Milk Moola Strips 146 141 5 more
Campbell Labels 263 183 80 more
General Mills Products 260 208 52 more

Sooooo, we fell short in Bottle Cap collections but we still had a good year. Please keep colleting. I will keep you posted. ALSO KEEP COLLECTING YOUR SPENT COMPUTER INK CARTRIDGES. I will be turning those in summer 2010 as they do not send out checks to organizations for just a few at a time. This will be for 2009-2010 but will start accumulating them for 2010-2011.

WHY JOIN WREA AND ECAREA?
When we retire, we receive many offers to join their retirement organizations. It is difficult to decide which one is a good fit for you. Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Association WREA is just for retirees and works for their benefits of them. Several of the board members expressed why they joined WREA and the local unit, ECAREA (Eau Claire Area Retired Educators’ Association). Here are their replies:

Jim Davis: When I retired to the Eau Claire area, I had been retired one year and was already a member of WREA and the Trempealeau County Retired Educators group. I soon sought out the ECAREA because I wanted to be with retired educators, even though I probably didn’t know any of them. I like the company of educators and being new, it was one place I knew I’d quickly find friends. And, very importantly, I wanted to continue my support of the state organization, whose primary goal is to protect our pension (which I like very much), and also looking out for legislation which affects Wisconsin schools. I could let others carry this burden, but since I depend greatly on my pension, I felt it was important to do my share in supporting the work of WREA, which shows great leadership. I have served as treasurer and newsletter editor for ECAREA for many years and it was interesting and fun to be with the Board and helping with decisions. It was always a happy time when we met. Our programs at the regular meetings are interesting. I’d like to see more retired educators attending and even getting involved.


Cathy Hoffman: I taught in Fall Creek for 7 years and ended with 23 yrs. in Eau Claire at Roosevelt Elem. and finally at DeLong Middle School. I joined because I have always been active in ECAE and strongly believe that teachers need to have a strong voice in education and in their futures. WREA and ECAREA are responsible, efficient organizations that we can depend on to safeguard our pensions and to keep us in touch with education in the state. I am having a very busy retirement, but I would never consider not belonging to this group.

Bill Benson: ECAREA became known to me upon retirement from UWEC in 1998. Being good friends with Roger Barstad, he invited me to a few meetings, introduced me to other members, and shared his passion for keeping the organization at local, regional and state levels as strong as it could be. He instilled the importance of the leaders in Madison working for those of us on a local basis—safeguarding benefits earned over many years of teaching. What also appealed to me were the diversity and quality of programs planned and offered at each meeting.
Years ago, I decided to become a life member of the State organization. It was a wise decision. After attending a state meeting with Roger, it became clear that it was a very strong organization—one that reached out to other groups in the community. Most of the members chose to participate in many other organizations in the community where their enduring knowledge and talents could be shared. It also became evident there was “clout” when needed in the past, with very capable leaders who voiced their concerns and were heard

Loreen Yager: Two organizations, our local EAREA and the state WREA, whose objective is to keep an eye on our pension (seeing that it stays strong) seemed like two groups worthy of joining after teaching 28 years at the Lincoln Elementary School here in Eau Claire. It has been that and more. I’ve met many other local retired educators and others from throughout the state that I would normally not have met. I’ve also learned a lot from various programs we include as part of our meetings. I’ve attended several regional and state meetings where I’ve learned amongst other things more about our pension (SWIB and ETF). ECAREA and WREA are great organizations. Come and join us.

Owen Moyer: My working years were spent as an administrator in a southern Wisconsin school district (Delavan-Darien). So I didn’t know many local educators when Jan and I retired to Eau Claire. But I joined ECAREA anyway because I met past president Jeanette Scheuermann on a bus tour and she constantly talked about all the good things the group did and nagged me until I signed up, a decision I haven’t regretted since! Every month when my pension check is direct deposited or I attend another of our great meetings and visit with many new friends, I mentally thank Jeanette for getting me into an organization that fights for our school kids as well as our pensions!

Sally Gordon:I am proud to say that I taught 32 years in the Eau Claire School District. My career was shared equally between Roosevelt elementary and DeLong Middle School. I retired in 2007 and have been busy enjoying all sorts of hobbies and travel experiences. One thing that I am enjoying very much is my involvement with the ECAREA Board. My friend Cathy Hoffman, who was President at the time, invited me to come to some of the meetings with her. Well, that’s all it took. I learned so much about the community, other people’s interests and it kept me in touch with fellow educators. I would encourage all of you to join us and stay connected with old and new friends of education.

Carol Friday: I am a former first grade teacher, and have been retired from Lincoln School for seven years. I joined WREA to keep abreast about my pension funds and ECAREA as a social outlet. Since then, I have met many wonderful retired teachers from the Eau Claire area, but also from around the state. I not only enjoy new friends but also have listened to excellent programs, which has certainly made me aware of all that is happening in Eau Claire and the surrounding area.


Joan Cook: I taught in the English in the Janesville School District. When I retired, I joined the WREA and was Vice President of the state organization. When I moved to Eau Claire in 1995, naturally I joined ECAREA, hoping to assist the local unit. I was awarded with meeting many new friends.

Jeanette Scheuermann: I taught 3 yrs. in Madison and 31 yrs. in Mondovi Public Schools. I joined WREA and ECAREA because of the encouragement of previous retirees from Mondovi. They were involved in these organizations when Governor Tommy Thompson took money from our pension fund (1980’s) to help balance the state budget. It was the WREA and local members who pooled their own money to help WREA pay for attorneys to get the money back, including interest and loss of payments, to the fund. Jane Elmer, WREA’s director for us, does an excellent job in Madison, keeping an “eye” on the fund. I also have met so many wonderful retired educators and attended meetings with interesting and educational programs. Join both groups to help protect our pension and come to a meeting or two if the programs interests you.
VOLUNTEERING IS GOOD FOR THE BODY, MIND AND SPIRIT
Every year WREA reports the volunteer hours their members do. The hour totals are from January 1st to December 31st. The categories are Education, Health, and other. Think about where you have been volunteering—school, church, hospital, nursing homes, neighborhood, city, etc. Estimate your volunteer hours including time giving people rides to and from appointments/places. Turn in your 2010 totals to Chris Kondrasuk by December 15th. 464 Summit Ave. Eau Claire 54701 or chris@chrisray.org . It’s not that hard to volunteer. The hard part is knowing when to stop adding volunteer hours! Try it. You’ll like it! You help others and yourself—it’s good for the body, mind and spirit!

IN MEMORY OF
We want to express our sympathy to the family and friends of Betty Held, who was a faithful member of WREA and ECAREA, who passed away this spring.
UPCOMING MEETINGS’ PROGRAMS
August 30th, our first meeting for the 2010-2011 year will be at the Chippewa Valley Museum. Registration for membership will be there for those who didn’t mail theirs in. A new display with interaction for children has opened up the end of June. It is fun for “older” children too. The new object theater is ready to view. We will have one of the Museum staff give us an update on the activities.
October 4th will be a Brunch at 10:00 a.m. at First Baptist Church, 416 Niagara St. Our program will be family therapist, Jean Jirovac. Be ready to enjoy food and program. Reservations are necessary.
November 1st will be at 1:30 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church Hall with Brent Hafle speaking about the Chippewa Valley Free Clinic.
December 6th we will have our Christmas Luncheon at the beautiful Florian Gardens. Our charity project is either inside games for elementary classroom or a monetary donation toward them. Nick Seegers will serenade us on his violin.
ECAREA BOARD MEMBERS
President…Chris Kondrasuk 835-1683 Social….Loreen Yager 836-7801
Vice President…vacant Carol Friday 835-0817
Treasurer….Owen Moyer 831-0609
Past President..Cathy Hoffmann 834-6634
Secretary…Sally Gordon 834-6140 Newsletter…Jeanette Scheuermann 831-9222
Membership..Kathy Morley 833-7065
Collection for Educ..Carol Friday 835-0817
Health/Education..Marlaine White 832-3173
Website…Cheryl Poss 286-9413
Email Coordinator..Chris Kondrasuk
Phone Tree..Jeanette Scheuermann 831-9222

Thursday, September 16, 2010

ECAREA Eau Claire Area Retired Educators

ECAREA Unit Meeting
Chippewa Valley Museum
August 30, 2010
1:30 p.m.




The meeting began with Chris welcoming everyone and leading us in the Pledge of Allegiance. Visitors and first time attendees were invited to introduce themselves. There were no first time attendees present. There were 38 members at today’s meeting.

Business Meeting

A. Minutes: The minutes from the May Unit meeting were approved and will be recorded as submitted by Sally.

B. Treasurer: Owen had printouts of his report available for everyone to pick up as they registered. He reported that the checking account has a balance of $1189.47 and the savings account has a balance of $1656.23.

C. Committee Reports:

Social: Loreen passed around a clip board and asked those who were interested to sign up for the October brunch that will be held at First Baptist Church on October 4, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. She said that September 30th would be the last day to sign up or cancel a reservation for the brunch. Loreen encouraged everyone to sign up to serve a snack at one of the unit meetings. There is a $30.00 reimbursement available if you keep receipts and turn them in to Owen.

Membership: Kathy thanked everyone for their cooperation with the new registration procedures this year. She recognized the importance of being a member of ECAREA and encouraged everyone to also join the WREA. Some members shared that they had joined the lifetime membership to WREA and why they had chosen to do so. Kathy estimated that there were about 70 members who had joined ECAREA as of today. Local membership cards will be available at the next meeting for you to pick up. WREA cards will be sent to you in the mail if you are sending a check in the mail, or if you have joined on-line you can go to the website and print your card after allowing a few days for things to be processed.

Legislative: Joan read aloud a resolution which was passed at the 2010 annual WREA Convention that was an answer to opposition to Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) threats. Members requested that copies of this be available at our next meeting. Joan agreed to do this.

Past President: Cathy urged members to get involved by volunteering to serve on the Board. She shared a bit about the responsibilities and time commitment, and assured them that it would be an enjoyable/rewarding experience.

Health and Education: Marlaine shared six brochures that came out last month from an agency on aging. She also passed around posters that contained information on the disposal of unwanted or unused medications. She invited members to take them and post them wherever people would see them, such as in their church or places where they volunteer.

President: At the start of the meeting Chris stated that one of our goals is to increase the membership of ECAREA and encouraged everyone to invite friends and newly retired educators to our upcoming unit meetings. She handed out cards that list the meetings and meeting places/times for the 2010-2011 year. Chris read a note that accompanied a $100.00 memorial check sent by Linda Bauer in honor of her mother Alice Held, who had been a member of ECAREA.

Newsletter: Jeanette shared that 325 newsletters had been sent out at a cost of $282.00. Thank you Jeanette for all of your work in compiling the newsletter and recruiting the help needed to get it distributed to all members and potential members.

D. Old Business

There was no old business.

E. New Business

1. Carol Friday has volunteered to take over the collection of Milk Moola strips, Campbell Soul labels etc. She had a handout reminding members to save these items and bring them to upcoming unit meetings. At the end of last year 1330 items had been collected and presented to Lakeshore Elementary.

2. Chris informed the members that there will be a Regional meeting in Rice Lake on Monday, October 25th, and that if anyone is interested in attending to let her know.

3. Jim Davis shared that Badger Hearing in Chippewa Falls is a place to get information/help in relation to the brochure we received in the mail about hearing loss.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunday, April 4, 2010

ECAREA Eau Claire Area Retired Educators



ECAREA Unit Meeting

Grace Lutheran Church

March 1, 2010

1:30 p.m.



The meeting began with Chris welcoming everyone and leading us in the Pledge of Allegiance. There were no visitors or first time attendees today. 28 people were in attendance.


Business Meeting


A. Secretary: The minutes from the February meeting were approved and will be recorded as submitted by Sally. Copies of the minutes were available for those who do not have access to a computer.


B. Treasurer: Welcome back Owen from your winter travels. Due to his late return he did not have time to prepare a complete budget report. He simply shared that we have a balance of $1191.77 in the checking account.


C. Committee Reports:


Social: Loreen thanked the servers for today. A sign up sheet was sent around for people to register for the brunch at the April meeting. Registration must be in by April 1 in order to attend. Loreen announced that the May meeting will be at Globe University and the June meeting will be sponsored by the Chippewa Falls Area Educators at the Bohemian Hall in Cadott.


Membership: Kathy was absent.


Legislative: Joan had no legislative alerts for us today, but shared some positive comments written by the United Press stating that Wisconsin is one of only four states that have a fully funded retirement for their teachers. She also shared some important history of how the funds at one time were in jeopardy, and upon being restored were in danger of having 20% (millions of dollars) go to the lawyers who were hired by WREA, WEAC, and an engineers group to fight that battle. Things ended up in a class action suit and it was the WREA alone who fought to prevent that from happening. Due to their hard work the payment was reduced to 4%. Her point in sharing this was to let us know how hard WREA fought and continues to fight to protect our retirement funds.


Past President: Cathy shared her enjoyable experience of volunteering at Sam Davey School for the free book distribution that was sponsored by Clear Vision Eau Claire.


Health and Education: Marlaine talked about the importance of keeping our bodies hydrated during the winter months. She stressed how physical exercise such as cross country skiing and shoveling can deplete our bodies of the necessary water it needs.


President: Chris informed us that she had received a note from Linda Stelter addressing the need in the schools for volunteer help. With cutbacks in the budget resulting in many of the aide positions being reduced/eliminated they are looking for help. Chris passed a schedule around for people to sign up for a time when they could be of assistance.


Newsletter: Jeanette was absent.


Website: Cheryl was absent.


D. Old Business


1. There is a retirement planning session scheduled for March 9 from 4-5:30 p.m. at Memorial High School. At present there are about 30 people registered from Eau Claire and surrounding districts. Chris asked if a few members could volunteer to help greet, hand out information, etc.


2. The State WREA meeting will be help in Stevens Point on May 4-5. Chris stated that we are hoping to send several delegates, so if anyone is interested in attending they should let Chris or one of the Board Members know.


E. New Business


1. In May the Excellence in Education Banquet will be held to spotlight excellent students and a teacher of their choice. If anyone is interested in representing the ECAREA at that banquet please notify Chris or another Board Member.


2. If anyone is aware of a member going into a nursing home please share their address with us so that they don’t miss out on any of our mailings.


F. Raffle


Kathy conducted the drawing for the raffle with half of the money being placed in the Foundation Box.


The meeting was adjourned for the program.


G. Program


Joe Knight, the outdoor writer for the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram read excerpts from his book entitled Frozen Assets: Reflections on Winters in Northern Wisconsin. He also shared a few comments about global warming and the expansion of the Hickory Hills cross country ski trails in Chippewa Falls. He encouraged everyone to get out and enjoy the beauty of our Wisconsin winters. He said that, “Living in the Chippewa Valley and not getting out to enjoy it is like living in a library and not being able to read.”

Monday, February 15, 2010

ECAREA Eau Claire Area Retired Educators

ECAREA Unit Meeting
Grace Lutheran Church
February 2, 2010
1:30 p.m.

The meeting began with Chris Kondrasuk welcoming everyone and leading us in the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by the introduction of visitors and first-time attendees. There were 33 people in attendance.

Business meeting

A. The minutes from the November meeting were approved and will be recorded as submitted by Sally Gordon.

B. There was no Treasurer’s report as Owen Moyer was not in attendance. Chris shared our current balance.

C. Committee Reports:

Social: Loreen Yager thanked the servers for today and reminded everyone of the upcoming meetings for the year. She announced that the June meeting will be hosted by Chippewa Falls and will take place at the Bohemian Hall on Hwy. 27 north of Cadott. She will provide us with more specific directions as the time draws closer.

Membership: Kathy announced that the membership is now at 127 for this year. She asked that if anyone has a change of address or knows of members who go into nursing homes that they inform the State of that change. You can call, or there is a link on our website to the State website. www.wrea.com

Legislative: It is so good to have Joan Cook back in this position. She gave us an update on her daughter who teaches at Longfellow and has been receiving treatment for leukemia since last year. A stem cell transplant was done from her brother and now in January there was no evidence of cancer. We are happy for the outcome and wish her well. Good example of the benefits of stem cell research.

Joan was happy to report that the Conrad Craig Amendment was voted down. She also reported that the NWEA has not taken a stand on National Health Care. She encouraged everyone to go to the NWEA website and read all of the information that is available to us there.

She spoke of a program called Pennies for Kids whereby the Wisconsin Alliance for Excellent Schools has petitioned to raise the State Sales Tax by .01. If all of the money collected were to go to public schools it would result in $830,000,000; most of it going to education in Wisconsin. Visit: www.madisonamps.org This is a very informative site.

Joan shared that in a letter from Dave Mills, the Executive Director of the Investment Board that we are encouraged to keep an eye on our retirement funds. The Core Fund has dropped 1% and the Variable Fund has gained ground and is approximately 1/2 way back to recovering where it was. If anyone wants a Blue Book you can contact Jeff Smith at (608) 266-0660 or
(888) 534-0093or email him at Rep.Smith@legis.wisvconsin.gov and ask for one.

Health and Education: Marlaine White had programs for the Senior Americans Day that will be held at the University on Saturday, March 30. She encouraged members to attend the health options that will be available that day.

Newsletter: Jeanette Scheuermann mailed out 121 newsletters to members at a cost of $124.46. She also shared some advice she learned from an email of how to get away from unsolicited callers. She said to simply say "hold on" to the caller, set the phone down and wait until the beeping sounds comes from your phone. Another piece of advice she offered was that if you feel as though you are being followed to call 777 on your cell phone and the police will answer and be able to tell you if there are police in your area.

President: Chris Kondrasuk asked that if anyone has ideas for a programs/presenters for next year, let her know as we will begin planning very soon. She also passed around a sign-up sheet for volunteers to help with book distribution in the 1st and 2nd grades at several of the elementary schools in Eau Claire on Feb. 19-March 4. This is in conjunction with Clear Water Eau Claire, a program that Terry Sheridan spoke to us about back in November. Plan to spend 1- 1 1/2 hours and be sure to count it towards your volunteer hours. Look for more information forthcoming on opportunities to sign up for this.

D. Old Business

1. Chris informed us that a nice letter of appreciation was written in the Mondovi newspaper thanking us for the games we donated at Christmas time.

2. Chris shared that a grand total of 6774 hours of volunteer services were provided by our group last year, which results in a value of $137,000.00 to the community.

E. New Business

1. A retirement planning session has been scheduled for March 9 from 4-5:30 at Memorial. Roger Byers from WREA will share information with anyone considering retirement in the near future.

2. The State WREA meeting will be held in Stevens Point on May 4-5. Chris asked for volunteers interested in attending to let her know as we are planning to send a delegation from our Unit.


3. The Foundation Box was available for anyone wanting to contribute money. Kathy drew the winner of the raffle and deposited half of the money in the box.

The meeting was adjourned for the program.

F. Program

Alice and John Ridge shared a presentation about the 3,700 mile Yellowstone Trail, one of the first transcontinental auto routes in the country. They have been working for the past 13 years researching and promoting the restoration of the trail which came right through Eau Claire, Chippewa Falls and Menomonie, and was in operation from 1912-1930.
ECAREA
NEWSLETTER
JANUARY 2010
Eau Claire Area Retired Educators’ Association/ECAREA www.ecarea.org
A unit of WREA Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Association www.wrea.net

“Your Voice, Your Choice” Since 1951
___________________________________________________________

Greetings From Our President
Dear ECAREA Friends,
Welcome to 2010 and the second half of our organization’s year. I hope you were able to be at one of our fall programs. They were excellent and ended with a wonderful performance by the Regis High School choir at our Holiday Luncheon.
We have meetings on the first Monday from February through May. Then in June we will join the Chippewa Falls group at their meeting. Put us on your calendar!
I am pleased to announce that Joan Cook has volunteered to rejoin the Board in the Legislative Chair position. We have missed her experience and input! You will see an article from her elsewhere in the newsletter.
I can also report that our volunteer hours for the past year were 6,774.5. This translates into a donation of $137,183.62 to the community. Remember to keep track of your volunteer hours all year long. WREA now counts them during the calendar year (Jan.-Dec.). Categories are Health, Education and Community. You don’t have to put them in a category, but some members like doing it that way. Then next December I’ll be asking for 2010’s total from our group. We may be retired, but many of us are still out there doing lots of good things for our neighbors.
There will be an opportunity to earn some Education volunteer hours when we sign up in February for the Clear Vision Eau Claire free book program that Terry Sheridan talked to us about this fall. We will be looking for volunteers to be in the schools to give out books and read with students. More information will be forthcoming.
Chris Kondrasuk, President


ECAREA 2010 Programs
February 1---1:30 p.m. John & Alice Ridge “Yellowstone Trail” Grace Lutheran Church Hall
March 1---1:30 p.m. Joe Knight EC Leader outdoors writer Grace Lutheran Church Hall
April 5---10:00a.m.Brunch Jim Alf “Caryville Ferry” Lake Street Methodist Church
May 3---1:30 p.m. Globe University “Introduction and Tour” At the Globe University Site
June 7--Noon Lunch Meeting with Chippewa Falls Unit at the Bohemian Hall, north of Chippewa
Meetings are open, so bring your spouse, friend, neighbor, and especially a retired educator!!!

***REMEMBER: If the Eau Claire Area Schools are closed due to weather, we will not have our scheduled meeting unless it is a luncheon or brunch. We will still have to pay for the meals so we will meet for them. Reservations necessary for brunches and lunches by the Thursday prior to the meeting.

****Did you ever notice that our units letters ECAREA make “EC(Eau Claire) AREA?
The Unit includes retired educators living in Eau Claire and surrounding area. Invite a friend to come and join with us at a meeting or a membership. You don’t need to attend the meetings to belong. Check out the extra benefits on page 5.


Yellowstone Trail Program for February 1st Meeting
On February 1st at 1:30p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church, Alice and John Ridge will tell us about the Yellowstone trail. It was the first transcontinental auto highway “from Plymouth Rock to Puget Sound” in 1912-1930 and it went right through Eau Claire. Join Alice and John Ridge to enjoy the days of the Ford Model T when there were only named roads, muddy and with no numbers. We will get a little history lesson about this national treasure with lots of pictures and fun on the way. Expect to receive a free Guide to driving the Yellowstone Trail in Wisconsin. By Alice Ridge

Joe Knight, Leader-Telegram Outdoor Writer Speaks at March 1st meeting
On March 1, 1:30p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church Hall, Joe Knight, writer for the Leader-Telegram in Eau Claire will discuss his book, Frozen Assets: Reflections on Winter in Northern Wisconsin, and read excerpts from his book. Joe will also tell us about his work as a writer for the paper. Join us in March and learn about the “frozen assets” we have in this area and better understand his work at the Leader-Telegram.

Did you ever ride the Car Ferry Across the Chippewa River at Caryville? April 5th Meeting
At our April 5, 10 a.m. Brunch, at Lake Street Methodist Church, Jim Alf, whose family lived on the Chippewa River and operated the Caryville Ferry from 1949 to 1964 will share his experiences with us. Jim has written a book, When the Ferries Still Ran, which gives the history of the four ferries on the Chippewa River between Eau Claire and Durand. Growing up and living in the “Ferry House”, will be some of the stories in his book that he will tell us. He will also bring a model of the Caryville Ferry that he has made.

Learn About Globe University at the May 3rd Meeting
On May 3rd, 1:30 p.m., we will meet at the Globe University, 4955 Bullis Farm Road, Eau Claire. They will give a brief explanation of the school, answer questions, and give us a tour. They will serve coffee as we visit with the staff.

Legislative News By Joan Cook, Legislative Chair
All WREA members should have received the WREA News on or about December 21st. Of particular interest is the letter on page 4 and 5 from Dave Mills, retired Executive Director of the State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB).
The letter raises the possibility of the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) being taken over by a “rescue plan” sometime in the future. He warns that members must be vigilant in opposing any legislation that threatens the plan, explaining that thwarting legislation is much better than pursuing court action to argue the unconstitutionality of a duly enacted law.
WREA is fortunate to have Mr. Mills as a member who has much needed expertise in retirement plans.

Membership Report By Kathy Morley, Chairperson
ECAREA membership is 124 strong, with eleven being local only members and two emeritus members. This is good but we could be better. Our membership is missing many of our newly retired teachers. I recently mailed out seventeen “We Missed You” postcards to our 2008 retired teachers. Our 2009 retired group has a one-year free local membership and we wish we could see more of them at our meetings. If you know of any of our recently retired teachers please bring them along to a meeting or give them a call to join us.
A list of our 2009-2010 memberships was available at our December luncheon. If you were not able to attend the luncheon it will be setting out at our next meeting in February. Hope your winter months find you healthy and happy.


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Social Committee Reports By Loreen Yager and Carol Friday, Chairpersons
February 1st and March 1st are two regular meetings (1:30 p.m.) scheduled at Grace Lutheran. Carol and I would like to thank our servers ahead of time: Mary Genz (Chairperson), Fae James and Marlaine White for February and Ruth Bremmer (Chairperson), Richard Kozbial and Bill Benson for March.
** Reservations for the April 5th brunch (10:00a.m.) at Lake St. Methodist should be called or emailed by Thursday, April 1st, by 7 p.m. Cost - $10.00
**The May 3rd regular meeting (1:30p.m.) will be held at Globe University. The staff at Globe University will serve us coffee.
**Reservations for the June 7th picnic luncheon (12 Noon) need to be emailed or called by Monday, May 31st. It will be held by the Chippewa Area Retired Educator’s Unit is at the Bohemain Hall north of Cadott on Hwy. 27. The cost will be $10.00.
Contact Loreen Yager at 836-7801 or lyager7801@charter.net for reservations or cancellation.
**If you signed up for a brunch or luncheon, but unable to attend, you need to pay for it unless you cancel by the reservation date.

Health and Education Report By Marlaine White, Chairperson
Health: Now the swine flu shots is available for all. Did you get both shots?
Health care reform in Congress: Check the news. Check www.aarp.org.nrta about this. We all know people who have the “Doughnut Hole.” They have run out of benefits and need to pay all, because of chronic health problems. That shouldn’t be.
Education; We need to let our state of Wisconsin senators and representatives in Madison know that education in our state needs more funding, NOW! One cent more on the state sales tax, earmarked for education, is probably the least painful method. (Our property taxes keep going up each year.) School systems are sharing specialists or they may be forced to combine systems because of finances.

Caps, Coupons, Cartridges, Labels, and Strips for Education By Cherry Larson
Please remember to save your Milk Bottle Caps, Campbell Labels (need the bar on the labels) Milk Moola Strips, and General Mills coupons for Education. Also, we can turn in used computer cartridges for cash for a school. These are collected, counted and turned in by May meeting.

$$$$$$ Treasurer’s Report $$$$$$ By Owen Moyer, Treasurer
This report includes all transactions up to December 31, 2009
Checking Account Balances---Beginning December 7, 2009 $2123.31
Ending on December 31, 2009 $2092.34
Savings Account Balances ---Beginning on December 7, 2009 $1656.14
Ending on December 31, 2009 $1656.15

In Memory of
We want to remember the members who have passed away since our last newsletter.
Alberta Carlson Janis Stamm
Our local unit has sent a $10.00 donation to the Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Assn. Foundation in their memory.

ECAREA BOARD MEMBERS 2009-2010
President….Chris Kondrasuk 835-1683 Social….Loreen Yager 836-7801
Vice President… Carol Friday 835-0817
Treasurer…Owen Moyer 831-0609 Past President…Cathy Hoffmann 834-6634
Secretary…Sally Gordon 834-6140 Newsletter…Jeanette Scheuermann 831-9222
Membership…Kathy Morley 833-7065 Collections for Educ…Cherry Larson 962-3456
Health/Education…Marlaine White 832-3173 Website Coordinator…Cheryl Poss 286-9413
Legislative…Joan Cook 832-7558 Phone Tree…Jeanette Scheuermann 831-9222
Email Coordinator…Chris Kondrasuk 835-1683 -3-

Do you know of someone who has retired from education and could be a member of our unit ECAREA or the Wisconsin Retired Educators Association (State unit)?
We are enjoying our retirement benefits and Wisconsin has one of the largest retirement funds in the Nation. However, in our troubled economy, many groups—political and other—are very interested in attaining some of those funds. Unless we stand united and support our WREA staff, who are the “watchdogs” of the fund, we may see a change. It happened about 30 years ago and it was the members of this group that pooled their own money for lawyers to get it back—and the State had to pay it back, with interest and a fine. In the meantime, the fund dollars were lowered and payments out were less at that time. PLEASE read pages 4-5 in our WREA State News as Joan Cook referred to in her legislative report. AND, get others who don’t belong to join the group!!! Bring them to a meeting! We have four meetings left and the programs are explained in this newsletter. Hopefully, one or all are of interest to you and friends. WREA State Dues $40.00 @ year and ECAREA Dues $15.00 @ year.
Check the last page “Membership in WREA has Benefits”.

WREA Lifetime Membership By Marlaine White
I became a life member a few years ago when I got a tax refund. The cost was $500. Now the cost is $550. Arrange for this before the cost gets hiked up again. If you set aside $66.11 each month from January through September, you will be one penny from the $550. amount! This would be before the October dues are due. Then you won’t have to worry what the next year’s dues will be. Lifetime memberships can be paid as a lump sum, quarterly, or monthly for a year. You’ll be glad that you got WREA lifetime membership and WREA will be glad, too! Our local is $15.00 a year.

Check our website www.ecarea.org
Created and cared for by Cheryl Poss. Comments welcomed by her on the website.

WREA District Meeting By Cathy Hoffmann
In mid-October several Board members attended the WREA District Meeting held in Rice Lake. This meeting once again proved to be very worthwhile. I am reporting on the information that I found particularly interesting. It is taken from a presentation by Sari King, from the Constituent Relations Office at the Dept. of Employee Trust Funds (ETF). She may be the person you speak with if you call EFT and she encourages you to call if you have questions or concerns about our annuities.
Core Floor-you are probably aware that your annuity payment can never drop below your Core Floor. You can find out what that is by looking at your Annuity Payment Statement-under Regular core.
Keep your information up-to-date-You need to keep your beneficiaries accurate. There are cases of divorces, deaths, etc., that have drastically changed as to whom an annuitant would want to inherit their fund and there is no legal way to correct it. Also, keep your address current. The US postal system is going to stop forwarding mail and you want to receive you payments. It is highly recommended that you use automatic deposit of you checks. That is the safest and most dependable method.
If you are considering changing from Variable to the Core fund-there is a video you can access via computer at the EFT website. It is about 12 minutes long and provides a lot of information. You can also call the EFT Office to speak to someone about your concerns and questions on whether changing is a good idea.
Contact sources: 1-877-533-5020, Self Service Line—877-383-1888 (to request forms/brochures, or to change address or tax withholding) www.eft.wi.gov the EFT website.
To Contact SWIB (State of Wisconsin Investment board) 1-800-424-7942 www.swib.state.wi.us
I have attended three Dist. Meetings and found them all very interesting. The WREA state convention will be the first week in May. Most of your expenses are covered by the unit so your major investment is your time. You will learn few things, get a greater appreciation for WREA and have some fun. Consider attending the next State meeting, which will be in Stevens Point, May 4-5.
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Games to School—Christmas Luncheon Charity
Money and games were donated at the Christmas Luncheon for Elementary schools. A total of $180.00 and nine games were collected and Carol Friday and Loreen Yager shopped for games and gave twenty-four games to Davy Elementary. The Mondovi Retirees gave games to the Mondovi Elementary Public School. Mondovi’s December B.U.G. (Being Unusually Good in their classrooms) winners got to choose one of the games for their classroom. The children and games were pictured in the Mondovi Herald News. Rachel Baumann coordinated the Mondovi donation.

Legislative Alerts
The WREA and ECAREA will have any legislative alerts, which give information about activity and bills in the legislature that we can contact our representatives about. Websites are on the front of the newsletter by the heading.

A Brain Teaser
Using the first two words, give a third word that completes both words. Answers Below.
Example: Brain / Thunder can be Brainstorm and Thunderstorm.
1-Think / Army ________________________ 2-Head / Jump ___________________________
3- Thought / Hot air_____________________ 4-Intelligence / Talent_____________________
5-Mind / Speed ________________________ 6-Smart / Chocolate-chip ___________________
7-Mental / San Francisco ________________ 8-Memory/ River _________________________
9-Rational / Phone _____________________ 10-Brain / Micro __________________________


I CAN’T REMEMBER Author Unknown
Just a line to say I’m living, And there are times when it is dark,
That I’m not among the dead. With my night cap on my head,
Though I’m getting more forgetful, I don’t know if I’m retiring, or
And mixed up in my head. Just getting out of bed.
I got used to my arthritis, So, if it’s my turn to write you,
To my dentures I’m resigned. There’s no need for getting sore,
I can manage my bifocals, I may think that I have written,
But, God, I miss my mind. And don’t want to be a bore.

For sometimes I can’t remember, So remember that I love you,
When I stand at the foot of the stairs, And wish that you were ear.
If I must go up for something, But now it’s nearly mail time,
Or have I just come down from there. So I must say goodbye dear,
And before the ‘fridge so often, There I stand beside the mailbox,
My poor mind is filled with doubt, With my face so very red,
Have I just put food away, or Instead of mailing you my letter,
Have I come to take some out? I opened it instead.

JUST FOR YOURSELF
Laugh—It triggers the release of endorphins, those chemicals in the brain that induce feeling of euphoria. A good laugh can also suppress the production of cortisol, a hormone released when you’re under stress and one that can influence blood pressure, causing your body to retain salt. Laughter is legal, moral and nonfattening. It’s also contagious, and engaging in tit frequently will contribute to a nicer world. Take from Be Happy Be Healthy by United Health Foundation

(Answers: Tank, Start, Balloon, Agent, Reader, Giant, Cookie, Bank, Number, Wave.)

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Friday, January 1, 2010

ECAREA 2010 Progams

February 1---1:30 p.m. John & Alice Ridge “Yellowstone Trail” Grace Lutheran Church Hall

March 1---1:30 p.m. Joe Knight EC Leader outdoor writer Grace Lutheran Church Hall

April 10---10:00 a.m. Brunch Jim Alf “Caryville Ferry” Lake Street Methodist Church

May 3---1:30 p.m. Globe University “Introduction and Tour” At the Globe University Site

June 7 Noon Lunch Meeting with Chippewa Falls Unit at the Bohemian Hall, north of Chippewa
***REMEMBER: If the Eau Claire Area Schools are closed due to weather, we will not have our scheduled meeting unless it is a luncheon or brunch. We will still have to pay for the meals so we will meet for them. Reservations necessary for brunches and lunches.



Yellowstone Trail Program for February 1st Meeting

The Yellowstone trail was the first transcontinental auto highway “from Plymouth Rock to Puget Sound” 1912-1930 and it went right through Eau Claire. Join Alice and John Ridge to enjoy the days of the Ford Model T when there were only named roads, muddy and with no numbers. We will get a little history lesson about this national treasure with lots of pictures and fun on the way. Expect to receive a free Guide to driving the Yellowstone Trail in Wisconsin. By Alice Ridge

Joe Knight, Leader-Telegram Outdoor Writer Speaks at March 1st meeting

The book, Frozen Assets: Reflections on Winter in Northern Wisconsin, was written by Joe Knight. He is a writer for the Leader-Telegram in Eau Claire and will discuss about his job and read excerpts from his book. Join us in March and learn about the “frozen assets” we have in this area and better understand his work at the Leader-Telegram.



Caps, Coupons, Cartridges, Labels, and Strips for Education

Please remember to save you Milk Bottle Caps, Campbell Labels (need to )Milk Moola Strips, and General Mills coupons for Education. Also, we can turn in used computer cartridges for cash for a school. These are collected, counted and turned in by May meeting. By Cherry Larson.

Legislative News

All WREA members should have received the WREA News on or about December 21st. Of particular interest is the letter on page 4 and 5 from Dave Mills, retired Executive Director of the State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB).

The letter raises the possibility of the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) being taken over by a “rescue plan” sometime in the future. He warns that members must be vigilant in opposing any legislation that threatens the plan, explaining that thwarting legislation is much better than pursuing court action to argue the unconstitutionality of a duly enacted law.

WREA is fortunate to have M. Mills as a member who has much needed expertise in retirement plans. By Joan Cook, Legislative Chair





Membership Report

ECAREA membership is 124 strong, with eleven being local only members and two emeritus members. This is good but we could be better. Our membership is missing many of our newly retired teachers. I recently mailed out seventeen “We Missed You” postcards to our 2008 retired teachers. Our 2009 retired group has a one year free local membership and we wish we could see more of them at our meetings. If you know of any of our recently retired teachers please bring them along to a meeting or give them a call to join us.

A list of our 2009-2010 membership was available at our December luncheon. If you were not able to attend the luncheon it will be setting out at our next meeting in February. Hope your winter months find you healthy and happy.

By Kathy Morley, Chairperson
Social Committee Reports

February 1st and March 1st are two regular meetings (1:30 p.m.) scheduled at Grace Lutheran. Carol and I would like to thank our servers ahead of time: Mary Genz (Chairperson), Fae James and Marlaine White for February and Ruth Bremmer (Chairperson), Richard Kozbial and Bill Benson for March.

** Reservations for the April 5th brunch (10:00a.m.) at Lake St. Methodist should be called or emailed by Thursday, April 1st, by 7 p.m. Cost - $10.00

**The May 3rd regular meeting (1:30p.m.) will be held at Globe University. The staff at Globe University will serve us coffee.

**Reservations for the June 7th picnic luncheon (12 Noon) need to be emailed or called by Monday, May 31st. It will be held by the Chippewa Area Retired Educator’s Unit be at the Bohemain Hall north of Cadott on Hwy. 27. The cost will be $10.00.

Contact Loreen Yager at 836-7801 or lyager7801@charter.net for reservations or cancellation.

**If you signed up for a brunch or luncheon, but unable to attend, you need to pay for it unless you cancel by the reservation date.

By Loreen Yager and Carol Friday, Chairpersons