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Out and About – Week of November 4th

Welcome to November and the holiday season. There are already Christmas decorations out, but they’ve been out for a week or so, so this isn’t any real news. We still have Thanksgiving to look forward to, and I have plenty to be thankful for this year.

This past weekend you should have set your clocks back one hour. If you have a computer, it set itself back automatically. You should also have replaced the batteries in your smoke detectors. If you failed to do so, you might want to do it now. It’s a little late if the fire trucks arrive and you’re still in bed.

There’s an exhibit at the Carnegie Center for the Arts/W.R. Monroe Museum that you should check out. The River Country Quilters and The West Michigan Woodturners are exhibiting their works from now through Thursday, December 19. If you’re interested in quilting or woodturning, this exhibit is well worth your time to visit. The Carnegie Center is located at 107 North Main Street, in historic downtown Three Rivers. Their hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10 AM to 5 PM, and they are open from 10 AM to 2 PM on Saturdays. The admission is FREE, and the experience is priceless.

The Christmas holidays wouldn’t be the same without the “Lights of Love”. This annual fundraiser, sponsored by TR Health Auxiliary, makes it possible for the hospital to purchase much needed medical equipment. Started years ago by Ron and Diane Reece, it has become a very popular event from which everyone benefits. Diane Reece has turned over the chairing of this event to Karen and Gary Armstrong. Together, they will work to insure that this fundraiser is successful again this year. By purchasing a light for the Christmas tree, you will be contributing to this success. The tree lighting ceremony will be Saturday, December 14, at 6:30 PM at TR Health, 701 South Health Parkway, in Three Rivers. For more information, please phone 269-278-1145, or visit their website at www.threerivershealth.org.

With the upcoming holidays, comes holiday shopping. Here are a few hints that you might seriously consider when getting Out and About to shop:

Buy from stores you know. Buying from reputable retailers improves the odds that you’ll be able to return or exchange a purchase if needed.

Learn about refund and return policies. Stores aren’t required by law to accept returned merchandise, so ask about their policies before you buy.

Consider paying by credit card. If you order a gift that never arrives, you may be able to dispute the charge.

Shop locally first.

I’ll have a couple more hints next week. Please feel free to share these with your friends.

This past Friday evening, my wife and I attended a different kind of event held at the Richland/Gull Lake Country Club near Richland. The Richland-Gull Lake Area Lions Club sponsored a “Dinner in the Dark”. To fully appreciate what someone without sight experiences, we had the opportunity to eat a very nice meal blindfolded and without lights. After everyone was seated, we were given the opportunity to familiarize ourselves with the table settings and the salads that had been placed in front of us. We then donned our blindfolds, and they turned off the lights. Eating the salad was difficult enough, and passing and adding the salad dressings, made it a real challenge. You had to depend on the people sitting next to you, to make sure you didn’t spill anything on you, or on them. After the salad course, we had the option of finishing the meal with or without the blindfold. There was also a silent auction, which was very popular with the large group of supporters. The speaker for the program was Lion Linda McClane of Niles. Her words were meaningful and memorable. If you ever have the opportunity to dine blindfolded, please do so. You’ll appreciate your sense of sight and have a higher respect for those without it.

See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman