South Coast Prime Times Sep./Oct. 2012

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Cool stuff Meet NBSO’s music man eBook readers Head to the Islands

Dealing with divorce after 50 Get your motor running Plus things to do, book picks, and more!


We are

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Southcoast Physicians Group Family Practice 1030 President Avenue Fall River 508-730-3100 – Carlos Correia, MD – Felicia Freilich, MD – Jessica Inwood, MD Southcoast Physicians Group Family Practice Internal Medicine/Pediatrics 1565 North Main Street Fall River 508-675-0369 – Miguel Brillantes, MD – Jason Diogo, MD – Diane Patrick, MD – Kenneth Piva, DO – Angela Simpson, MD – Shobhita Sundar, MD – Karl Zuzarte, MD Southcoast Physicians Group Family Practice Internal Medicine/Pediatrics 109 Fairhaven Road Mattapoisett 508-758-3781 – David Chesney, MD – Joseph Costa, DO – Michael Kelly, MD – Drew Nahigyan, MD New Bedford Medical Associates Family Practice 4543 Acushnet Avenue New Bedford 508-998-0003 – Anne Marie Treadup, MD

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sep/oct 2012

contents 18

36 14

32 28 F e atures

6

Extra! Extra! Local news & views By Elizabeth Morse Read

32 Technology:

eBooks by Dan Logan

30 Book Picks:

Beach Books By Magoo Gelehrter

Prime se ason

P rime living

14 Island time

22 Divorce after 50

16 Go camping

24 Post-divorce planning 36 NBSO’s music man By Peter Winters

By Stacie Charbonneau Hess

By Joyce Rowley

By Elizabeth Morse Read

34

Get your motor running By Paul Letendre

18 Raising grandchildren 26 Sell the nest By Jay Pateakos

21 Parks, preservation,

and patricide

O n the cover David MacKenzie is the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra’s “music man.” To learn more about him, read page 36. For more cool things, check out the rest of the issue and our website.

2

G ood times

S ou th C oast P r ime T imes

S ep tember / O c tober 2012

By Sherri Mahoney-Battles

28 When Alzheimer strikes By Jane Sullivan

By David Prentiss

40 AARP: should I join?

By Paul E. Kandarian


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From The Publisher September/October 2012 n Vol. 8 n No. 4 Published by

Coastal Communications Corp. Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

Summer blazed away in a furnace-blast of

Ljiljana Vasiljevic

hazy, hot and humid days, so now it’s time to

Editors

think cool. This issue provides some ideas that

Michael J. Vieira, Ph.D. Joe Murphy

are just right as we ease into fall.

Contributors

Sherri Mahoney-Battles, Stacie Charbonneau Hess, Paul Kandarian, Paul Letendre, Dan Logan, Jay Pateakos, David Prentiss, Elizabeth Morse Read, Joyce Rowley, Jane Sullivan and Peter Winters

Now is a great time to head to the islands, and we have some excellent ones that are just a short ferry ride away. Stacie Charbonneau Hess maps your course to an island adventure—and they’re always less crowded in the fall! You can also pitch a tent at Horseneck or other local campgrounds. Again, it’s a

South Coast Prime Times is published bi-monthly. Copyright ©2012 Coastal Communications Corp.

good time to get your pick of the beach. Fall is also a good metaphor for the time in life when change can

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, by any means, without written permission from the Publisher. All information contained herein is believed to be reliable. Coastal Communications Corp. does not assume any financial responsibility for typographical errors in advertisements, but will reprint that portion of an advertisement in which the typographical error occurs.

happen suddenly. Elizabeth Morse Read and Peter Winters take on the difficult topic of dealing with divorce, while Jane Sullivan shares some tips on handling Alzheimer’s. But it’s also a great time to hit the open road. Paul Letendre provides his perspective on motorcycles and more. David Prentiss offers a look at the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra’s “music man” and our

Next issue

advertisers and website, www.coastalmags.com, offer lots to do this

October 15, 2012

season.

Circulation 25,000

Enjoy,

Subscriptions $14.95 per year

M ailing address South Coast Prime Times P.O. Box 3493 Fall River, MA 02722

Ljiljana Vasiljevic Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

Phone (508) 677-3000

Website http://www.coastalmags.com

E-mail editor@coastalmags.com

Our advertisers make this publication possible —please support them 4

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E xtra! E xtra!

Sightings on (or near) the South Coast

In brief… Eliz abeth Morse Read

Pack a picnic and explore the South Coast with your family and friends. Gas prices are steady, home sales and mortgage refinancings are up and things are generally looking better for the South Coast.

The black bear that swam the canal was captured in Provincetown and relocated to central Massachusetts didn’t stay put for long. It was recaptured a few weeks later climbing a backyard tree in Brookline. This time it was transported to the wilds of far western Massachusetts. The great white sharks are back in the waters off Cape Cod, especially where

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there are colonies of seals, the sharks’ favorite lunch. Best advice for humans is simple—don’t go swimming anywhere near seals. Local poultry farmers and pet owners are alarmed by the increasing population of the giant weasels known as “fishers” or “fisher cats.” And strange lights were reported in the night skies near Plymouth over Memorial Day weekend. Similar reports came in from around the world within a two week period.

Infrastructure

A butterfly release to benefit Southcoast VNA’s Hospice Program

updates

You’re invited to honor and remember loved ones and friends. “Hope Takes Flight” activities will include music, thoughtful readings, reflection, light refreshments, activities for families and children and a butterfly release.

Saturday, September 15, 2012 1 to 4 p.m. Rain or shine

State lawmakers are looking to grant $500,000 to SRTA (Southeast Regional Transit Authority) to upgrade bus service and increase ridership.

Fairhaven Senior Center 229 Huttleston Avenue Fairhaven, MA

Those six huge liquid propane gas (LPG) tanks on the Taunton River in Fall River will soon be gone—emptied, burned off and sold. The new downtown “pocket park” at Wing’s Court in New Bedford is finished. The completely landscaped space includes a stage, chess tables and a quiet place to eat lunch.

To purchase your butterfly, contact Southcoast VNA today! 508-973-3472 SCVNACommunityAffairs@southcoast.org

We know what makes you tick.

The infamous “Octopus” intersection at Route 6 and Purchase Street in downtown New Bedford is under review for much-needed redesign.

You’d expect Southcoast’s open heart surgery and angioplasty teams to be experts in heart care. They’re also experts in “up-close-and-personal-really-get-toknow-you” care. Learn about their outstanding quality at www.southcoast.org/heart.

After waiting for more than two years, Freetown residents finally have a new Narrows Road Bridge.

Heart Surgery at Southcoast. Big city heart care. Without the hassle.

Continued on next page

SOUTHCOAST HOSPITALS

CHARLTON

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ST. LUKE’S

TOBEY

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Continued from previous page

All politics is local

The century-old Mattapoisett water tower on North Street will be torn down and scrapped.

When the Agricultural Reform Act of 2012 passed in the U.S. Senate recently, Sen. John Kerry made sure that that it would also benefit the struggling fishing industry. The bill will now include commercial fishermen in the existing USDA Emergency Disaster loan program. It was co-sponsored by Sen. Scott Brown and will go before the U.S. House of Representatives.

A ferry service from Fall River’s State Pier to Block Island is in the planning stages.

And the winners are New Bedford has received a federal COPS Hiring Program grant, which will allow the city to hire fifteen new police officers.

Dartmouth residents are hoping for a $500K grant from the state, sponsored by Rep. Christopher Markey, to repair and upgrade the Padanaram Bridge.

Yachting Magazine has named New Bedford one of the top 50 ports in the country. The second annual “Fishing for a Cause” fishing tournament in June netted over $100,000 to benefit the Schwartz Center for Children in Dartmouth.

A $14.5 million federal grant will prevent two Fall River fire stations from closing and will save almost 80 firefighter jobs. Sen. John Kerry and Reps. Jim McGovern and Wm. Keating were instrumental in securing the grant.

Curiouser and curiouser

Ye Olde Breakfast Shoppe, operated by the Rochester Senior Center, received a $10K “What’s Working” grant from the Aging Network’s Volunteer Collaborative. Fairhaven received a $870K and Wareham received a $900K Community Development Block Grant from the federal government to upgrade housing and infrastructure, improve public service programs, as well as to create job opportunities. Fall River has been recognized as a “Tree City USA” for the seventh consecutive year for its achievements in urban forestry.

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The casino situation is still very confusing. The towns of Lakeville and Freetown voted a resounding NO to the proposal presented by the Wampanoag of Gay Head (Aquinnah) while the residents of Taunton voted YES to the Mashpee Wampanoag. Meanwhile, KG Urban, who invested heavily in plans to build a casino on New Bedford’s waterfront, is back in the picture. And South Coast officials are pressing Gov. Patrick to link

S ep tember / O c tober 2012

funding for South Coast Rail with the final agreement on the Taunton casino. Stay tuned. The developer of Fairhaven Wind is considering options to address residents’ complaints, such as cutting operating hours and paying for insulation and air conditioning. Meanwhile, the town’s Board of Health has asked that the state’s Dept. of Environmental Protection conduct sound tests on the turbines.

When the kiddies come to visit

Share a free outdoor family movie night on the first Saturday of every month at Silverbrook Farm in Acushnet. For details, call 774-2021027 or go to www.thesilverbrookfarm.com. Enjoy an evening of free family fun and entertainment at New Bedford’s AHA! Night on the second Thursday of every month. The theme for September 13 is “New Bedford Cultures,” for October 11 is “Naughty & Notorious.” Go to www.ahanewbedford.org or call 508-996-8253 x 205 for a full schedule of events — and don’t forget that there’s plenty to do, enjoy and eat at AHA! After Nine. There’s always something happening in August in Wareham’s Onset Village. The Illumination Night and Lantern Tour is Aug. 25; free family movies at the Bandshell are on Thursdays, free concerts at the Bandshell every Wednesday. For complete details, go to www.onsetvillage.org. Spend an afternoon at the WWI Memorial Park & Zoo in North Attleboro’s free petting zoo, playgrounds, and picnic areas. Call 508-285-6457.


The Lloyd Center for the Environment in Dartmouth is a great natural resource for everyone on the South Coast. Call 508-558-2918 or visit www.lloydcenter.org for details. The Taunton Public Library offers free or discounted tickets/passes to many area attractions such as Buttonwood Park Zoo, the Children’s Museum and Science Museum in Boston. Find out what’s going on at the Ocean Explorium in New Bedford. For hours and activities, go to www.oceanexplorium.org or call 508-994-5400. Keep up with what’s going on at New Bedford’s Buttonwood Park at www. bpzoo.org or 508-991-6178, or at the Whaling Museum at www.whalingmuseum.org or 508-997-0046. Check out what’s happening at the Easton Children’s Museum. Go to www.childrensmuseumineaston.org or call 508-230-3789.

and bring a blanket. For more info, call 508-636-3423.

Good news, bad news

UMass Dartmouth has raised tuition and fees 4.9% for the 2012-2013 academic year. The UMass Law School is freezing its tuition and fees for the next three years. With the okay from the state’s Department of Conservation and Recreation, Freetown will be conducting “controlled burns” within the Fall River-Freetown State Forest to clear away dead trees and to prevent hazardous fire conditions. Supervalu, the parent company of Shaw’s and Star Markets, is considering selling off the struggling grocery store chains.

The new “Imagination Playground” at the Providence Children’s Museum is a big hit. Call 401-273-KIDS or go to www.ChildrenMuseum.org for details. Visit a tropical forest and spend some time with exotic animals at the Capron Park Zoo in Attleboro. Call 508-222-3047 or go to www.capronparkzoo.com.

A little night music Enjoy “Music at Sunset” BYOB picnic events on the Great Lawn at Blithewold in Bristol RI. Visit www. blithewold.org or call 401-253-2707 for more info. Enjoy the Friday night Summer Sunset Concerts at the Westport Rivers Vineyard and Winery. Pack a picnic

Mosquitoes infected with EEE (eastern equine encephalitis) began appearing early this year on the South Coast. Fares for the door-to-door para-transit for the disabled and elderly doubled recently from $2 to $4.

Good eats Check out the Sakonnet Growers Market at Tiverton Four Corners every Saturday 9-1. Continued on next page S ou th C oast P r ime T imes

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Continued from previous page Don’t miss Market Day at Prospect Park in Wareham’s Onset Village every Wednesday 12:30-4:30. For complete details, go to www.onsetvillage.org. Indulge in a food and wine extravaganza at the Newport Winefest August 17-19. For more info, go to www.newportwinefest.com or call 888-481-8555.

he’d been awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 2001. Jim Mathes of New Bedford has been named director of development for YMCA Southcoast. He was president of the Greater New Bedford Chamber of Commerce for 23 years and was founder of the SMILES Mentoring Program.

Composer/musician Kurt Biederwolf of Easton has been nominated for a Daytime Entertainment Emmy Award for his musical accompaniment to ABC’s One Life to Live. He was previously nominated for his compositions used by CBS’ As the World Turns.

of note

Fall River native Thomas J. Hudner, 87, is not only a Medal of Honor winner, but also one of the rare military veterans to have a naval destroyer named after him. The announcement was made at a ceremony at Battleship Cove on Armed Services Day, with (ret.) naval aviator Hudner in attendance. The state-of-the–art Tomahawk class guided missile destroyer Thomas J. Hudner will be built in Bath, ME. When Dartmouth native William Standish Knowles passed away recently at age 95, few people realized that 10

S ou th C oast P r ime T imes

The New Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce has named Wareham’s Factory Five Racing as the 2012 Small Business of the Year. Factory Five designs and manufactures assembly kits for sports cars. The Taunton Area Chamber of Commerce is offering a discounted health insurance plan to member businesses with 50 or fewer full-time employees. This new Chamber Health Coop will offer the Fallon Community Health Plan and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, as well as a no-cost health and wellness program.

Enjoy the bounty of fresh local foods – farmers markets, roadside stands and pick-your-own farms are open— find out what’s available near you by visiting www.semaponline.org or www.localharvest.org.

South Coasters

Tobey Hospital, Charlton Memorial Hospital and the South Coast Business Center in Fairhaven.

Seven New Bedford High School students received recognition from the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury and the U.S. Dept. of Education for their performance on a financial literacy exam taken by more than 80,000 students across the country. Four of the NBHS students received perfect scores.

Biz buzz Max’s Restaurant on Rt. 6 in Dartmouth will be on The Phantom Gourmet television show in the coming months. Southcoast Health System will be offering rotating farmers’ markets in August to promote healthier living. Sites will include St. Luke’s Hospital,

S ep tember / O c tober 2012

New Bedford has signed a “sister port agreement” with the Mexican city of Tuxpan that will make the Whaling City the fresh produce hub of New England and eastern Canada. The new trade agreement will bring weekly shipments of fruits and vegetables by sea, which is far less expensive than by truck. St. Anne’s Hospital will be shutting down its cardiac rehabilitation program. Diagnostic cardiac testing and cardiac care will still be offered. Goodfellows Brewing Company will open on Frugal Endeavors Farm in Lakeville in August. To learn more, go to www.goodfellowsbrewing.com. Solar panel manufacturer Konarka Technologies in New Bedford has closed its doors and filed for bankruptcy. Konarka produced revolutionary thin-film plastic panels, but Chinese competitors undersold them.


After an eight-year absence, Naughty Dawgs has returned to downtown New Bedford near City Hall. A new shuttle service called NBLine is aimed at introducing tourists to the Whaling City’s attractions beyond downtown. One route covers the downtown/historic area; one heads for Fort Taber and the beaches; another runs from downtown to Buttonwood Park. A $1 day pass covers all three routes. Rocky’s Ace Hardware will be building a new store and garden center at the Stop and Shop plaza on Route 6 in Fairhaven.

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Find out what’s happening at the Zeiterion. There’s Al Green Aug. 26 and Rock of Ages: The Hit Musical on Sept. 6. Call 508-994-2900 or go to www.zeiterion.org. The Narrows Center for the Arts has a full schedule of fun things to do. For complete details, visit www.ncfta.org or call 508-324-1926. Learn more about the day trips sponsored by the New Bedford Senior Travel Program. There’s the day trip to Foxwoods Aug. 29, the Thimble Island Cruise Aug. 29, the Rhode Island Wine & Garden Tour Sept. 5, Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5 at the North Shore Music Theatre Sept. 26, the Fall Foliage Mystery Tour October 10—and more! And sign up now for the Oct. 28-30 trip to Atlantic City. Call 508-991-6171 for more info.

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Continued from previous page

BRING THE GRANDKIDS TO EDAVILLE

King Lear will be performed at Trinity Rep in Providence Sept. 13 through October 21. Call 401-351-4242 or go to www.trinityrep.com. Discounts for seniors, students, educators and heroes (military, police, and firefighters). And get discount tickets there for performances of the RI Philharmonic, too! For a schedule, call 401-248-7000 or visit www.ri-philharmonic.org. Get in the act at the Providence Performing Arts Center! For more information, call 402-421-2787 or go to www.festivalballet.com or www.ppacri.org.

Capture the Magic of the Wonder Years! Curious George September 22-23

Berenstain Bears September 29 & 30

Day Out with Thomas October 5-8, 13 & 14

Hear Ye! Hear Ye!

Tiverton, RI has switched over to single-stream recycling. Since introducing a pay-as-you-throw program last year, the town has reduced solid waste by 50%. Starting this month, curbside recycling pick-up in Dartmouth will be handled by automated trucks. Residents will receive new recycling carts at no charge. Bristol Community College’s Adult Education program in Taunton, currently housed at the Boys and Girls Club, has formally asked the city’s school district to move the programs to the Cohannet School property.

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A new online bill-payment service called Invoice Cloud will allow Dartmouth residents to pay bills and track their accounts from home. The town of Marion is looking to consolidate its now-separate Fire and Emergency Medical Services departments. Learn how to build a professionalquality stone wall! Attend a one-day workshop in Rehoboth August 18. For details, call 401-274-9330 or go to www.learnconnect.com. Fairhaven hosted the Moving Vietnam Wall in July as part of its bicentennial celebrations.

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The annual Marion Town Party will return on August 25. For details, call 508-265-5852, 508-776-1625 or 774-217-8355.

A proposal to build a new cell phone tower in Mattapoisett is stirring up debate.

Elizabeth Morse Read is an award-winning writer, editor and artist who grew up on the South Coast. After twenty years of working in New York City and traveling the world, she came back home with her children and lives in Fairhaven.


Pet trusts

Planning today for loving care tomorrow by michelle d. beneski

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here are proven health benefits to owning a pet. The National Center for Infectious Diseases reports that “pets can decrease your blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and feelings of loneliness.” http://www.cdc.gov/ healthypets/health_benefits.htm But what will happen to your pet if you must move to someplace that does not allow pets? How can you provide for the continued care of a pet who has given you so much? Many assisted and nursing homes do not allow their residents to own pets. Mildred has three pets. Mildred’s greatest fear is her pets could be euthanized if she dies or becomes incapacitated. The sad fact is that unless she makes appropriate arrangements, her fear could become real. According to one estimate, one-half million pets are euthanized in shelters each year because their human care givers have predeceased. Mildred can provide for the care of her pets through a Trust. Mildred can pick a person to enforce the terms of the trust, to make sure the person who is taking care of her pets meets his obligations. The trust ends when the pet(s) dies. At that point, any remaining trust property can be distributed as Mildred indicated in the trust. By “planning today for loving care tomorrow,” Mildred can meet her pets’ future needs while giving herself peace of mind. If you are interested in creating a pet trust for you pet, call our office at 508-994-5200. This information is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. For specific questions you should consult a qualified attorney. This article was written by Attorney Michelle D. Beneski of Surprenant & Beneski, P.C. The law firm is with offices in New Bedford, Hyannis and Boston that specializes in estate, tax, Medicaid and disability planning.

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oday, with nursing homes costing an average of $9,000 a month, you must plan ahead. As Elder Law Attorneys, we can show you how to protect your assets from nursing homes, probate fees and estate taxes. Even with a relative in a nursing home now, assets can still be protected. Call us today to set up a consultation.

Michelle D. Beneski, Esq.

Daniel M. Surprenant, Esq.

Robert L. Surprenant, Esq. of Counsel

The family team of Attorney Robert L. Surprenant, Attorney Michelle D. Beneski and Attorney Daniel M. Surprenant are resolute in their goal of providing the highest quality of services to their clients. This also includes presenting free educational talks in the community on topics of Medicaid, Estate Planning, Veterans Benefits and Elder Care. All you need to do is call us at our toll free number 1-800-929-0491 and request which guide you need us to send you.

We are members of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the Bristol County Estate Planning Council. Attorney Beneski is a Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA) and she also has her Masters in Taxation (LLM).

Michelle D. Beneski is an Attorney at Surprenant & Beneski, P.C. For specific questions call her at 508-994-5200 or send e-mail to mdb@nbelderlaw.com S ou th C oast P r ime T imes

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prime season

The Aquinnah Cliffs, formerly the G ayhead Cliffs, are located at the far west side of M artha’s Vineyard.

Island time

Discover the island paradise in your own back yard! Imagine this. Summer has come. School is out. And the workweek is over. It’s Friday night and you have the whole weekend ahead of you. What can you do that screams summer? Stacie Charbonneau Ride a ferry to your favorite island destination. hess If you’ve never experienced it, let me paint a picture of what it feels like to hop on the ferry for a weekend of fun and frolic. the island next door I automatically think of the New England Fast Ferry that leaves like clockwork every day out of New Bedford. It’s the easiest ferry experience I know, and the closest to home. No Cape Cod traffic, and heck, no car needed at all! (Besides, this ferry is passenger only. You can park just ½ mile away and walk to the terminal, or let the shuttle take you to the dock). The wonderful thing is: you don’t need a car to have fun in Martha’s Vineyard. And life is automatically simpler when there is no traffic and no parking. In exactly one hour, you leave behind the hubbub of the city, your work and all that goes with it, and you land in what feels like

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another realm. As soon as I get off the ferry in Oak Bluffs (the most fun and walker-friendly town), I walk up the ramp with the ocean on both sides, and my surroundings seem to say, “You’ve arrived!”

It’s island time New Bedford and the mainland seem a distant memory, as the smell of fried seafood begins to permeate. Crowds of people with wheeled luggage scurry to find relatives who’ve come to pick them up. The gingerbread cottages beckon me to walk through the park for a closer look. Once you’re settled in and you’ve gained your island bearings, take a walk along Circuit Avenue (right across the street from

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where you’re disbursed from the ferry) and see the famous Flying Horses Carousel, where kids scramble to grab the brass ring. Walk up a few more blocks and you have your pick of bars, restaurants, and shops to buy anything from flip flops to the ubiquitous Black Dog sweatshirt. If it’s evening, you may just hear some amazing live music emanating from one or more of the bars (The Ritz Café is notoriously loud but wonderful for live music). What you do in Martha’s Vineyard is up to you! Be as tame or wild as you like. After all, you are on Island time now, and the only itinerary you have is the one you create! The cool thing about spending a weekend in Martha’s Vineyard as opposed to just one day, is that you really can see many island sites. For example, though there are beaches within walking distance of the ferry terminal, you can easily catch a bus to glamorous South Beach in Edgartown, where the waves are surf-quality and the bikinis Hollywood style.

Edgartown The village has more of the same as Oak Bluffs—bars, restaurants, and shops, but they are typically more refined-feeling. Think of Edgartown as Jackie O. and Oak Bluffs as Rosie O’Donnell. Or something like that.


Martha’s Vineyard is bigger than you think, and if you do have access to a car or decide to take a tour bus, you can see some of the more remote sites, such as the clay cliffs at Gay Head Town Beach. The gorgeous beach is definitely worth the 20 plus mile drive from Oak Bluffs.

Chappaquiddick Another cool day trip is the Chappaquiddick ferry that leaves from Edgartown and takes you to yet another, smaller island, a great place for hiking, swimming, fishing, or walking the nature trails. The Trustees of Reservations (the same group that manages Copicut Woods in Fall River) actually manages several properties

Bill’s Chocolate Emporium on Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs. If it’s not the best, it’s certainly the biggest. One scoop looks like three! The best breakfast is arguably Linda Jean’s—and this is confirmed by the queue outside on Sunday morning. Mocha Motts is a hip, family-owned coffee joint that’s open every day except Christmas—a real local and tourist staple.

How to get there If you take the fast ferry, you should probably call ahead to get a reservation, especially if it’s Friday night. While you are at it, plan your return trip as well. You will need a credit card to make this reservation. I should warn you now that you will

Here’s the scoop New England Fast Ferry Company (passenger only service from New Bedford to Martha’s Vineyard)is at 49 State Pier, New Bedford; reservations (866) 683-3779. Adult round trip: $70; child (3-12) round trip: $40; bicycle round trip: $12 Friday afternoon trips leave at 3:45, 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. See website for other days and times If you find yourself on a ferry that arrives in Vineyard Haven, walk around and enjoy! But be warned, this is a dry town so you won’t find yourself a glass of wine or beer anywhere. Take a quick bus, hop in a taxi, ride your bike or rent a moped and head to Oak Bluffs (only 3 miles away) or Edgartown (about 8 miles) for some more fun and frolic. Enjoy!

Must visits… Ben & Bill’s Chocolate Emporium (and ice cream!) 20A Circuit Ave, Oak Bluffs Linda Jean’s Restaurant 25 Circuit Ave, Oak Bluffs

Edgartown Light

The Ritz Café 4 Circuit Ave, Oak Bluffs on “Chappy,” as the native islanders call it: the Wasque Reservation, Cape Pogue Wildlife Refuge and an exotic Japanesestyle garden called Mytoi. What else to do in Martha’s Vineyard? Bring your own bike on the ferry for a few extra bucks, or rent one when you get on island. You can tour the famous “Campground” neighborhood in Oak Bluffs, where you will find more quaint gingerbread cottages, all arranged in a circle around the Tabernacle. Historically, there was spiritual significance to this set up, but these days, the Tabernacle hosts musicians and performances of many varieties all year round. Hillary Clinton has even given a speech or two from this perch. The best ice cream just might be Ben &

pay for the convenience of the fast ferry experience. While leaving from Cape Cod may add hours and a few stops (parking, shuttle, traffic, etc.) to your trip, the cost is markedly less on the Woods Hole or Falmouth ferries than from New Bedford. However, if you factor in gas and parking by the day, you may find that you would rather pay a little bit more for a seamless trip that will leave you truly relaxed, and satisfied. Stacie Charbonneau Hess serves in her community as a volunteer, most recently as Vice Chair of the AHA! Project, a monthly arts & culture event that invites the public to take part, for free, in the artistic community of downtown New Bedford.

Mocha Motts 10 Circuit Ave, Oak Bluffs

For island buses www.vineyardtransit.com Trustees of Reservations property info. www.thetrustees.org (click on “list of reservations” and search for: Mytoi, Cape Pogue, or Wasque)

Beach info A listing of all Martha’s Vineyard beaches: www.mvol.com/beaches/

Island R adio station WMVY, 92.7 FM

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prime season

Horseneck Beach near the dunes

Get campy ! By Joyce Rowley

Want to wake up to an ocean view and an empty beach? Fall asleep to the crash of the waves hitting the sand, smell the salt air, hear the fog horns signaling to ships as the fog rolls in? No, you don’t have to become a beach bum—and you don’t have to have as much money as Rockefeller, either. For just $15 a night, you can camp at Horseneck Beach State Reservation on Route 88 at Westport Point. Not forever, unfortunately. You are limited to a 14-day stay. But they have 100 sites for tents or camping vehicles. One of the nice parts about the State Parks is that they don’t allow alcohol, so you won’t worry about being near an outof-control party. Also, there are quiet hours between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. Not to say you can’t have fun The coast is flatland so you can explore by bicycle. Take the paved trail connecting to the causeway to explore Gooseberry Island, known for its bird habitat. Osprey, willets, scoters, and ever present but always graceful cormorants are but a few of the inhabitants on and offshore. Bike around the Point along miles of oceanfront roads—ideal for sightseeing at an easygoing pace. Slocum’s River Reserve, owned by the Trustees of Reservations, on Horseneck Road is just a short biking distance away with trails for the nature lover.

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Of course, there’s also swimming, beachcombing, and shell collecting. Bring a kayak or canoe and explore the back coves. Or you can simply sit on the beach and count the waves.

A-camping we will go Wait, we’re talking about camping? Yes, and it’s not what you might remember. Tents are now a water-resistant lightweight polyester fabric. The days of canvas tents that took five people to put up, and then got even heavier when it rained are over. If you camped back in the old days, it was impossible to keep the kids from touching the tent walls when it was raining—a surefire way to start a leak! A nice 8’ x 6’ tent 5’4” tall is fairly inexpensive these days—under $100. And one person can put it up with surprisingly little aggravation. Supposedly they sleep four, but that’s only if no one brings anything with them. More likely the tent will sleep two comfortably. Propane cook stoves are about the same as they used to be. Propane is easier to carry than kerosene. Ditto lanterns. And you can get a good LED lantern for under $20 so you don’t have to deal with the little

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delicate white bags on a hissing gas lantern. If all this is greek to you, you don’t know what you missed camping in the 1960s. But that’s OK. Once you wake to the smell of coffee on a cool summer morning, with nothing but the sound of the waves and the cry of gulls to greet you, you’ll never go back to staying in a hotel. A hot shower? Oh yes, of course. Horseneck and all of the Massachusetts State Parks have shower houses with hot showers. And hot running water at the sinks, too. Flush toilets even. Or bring your own water closet (see photo).

In the Pines Prefer freshwater swimming and pine trees? Myles Standish State Forest located on Cranberry Road in Carver, MA is your best bet. At $12 a night, there are four camping ponds: Barrett Woods, Fearing Pond, Charge Pond and Curlew Pond. Don’t have a tent? Barrett Woods has three yurts—permanent canvas and wooden tents based on those used by Turkic nomads. Yurts sleep four and are tall enough to stand up in, but slightly pricier at $30 per night. Set in the heart of a 26-square-mile forest,


you get the feel of deep woods while staying just fifteen minutes from civilization. In fact, Myles Standish State Forest is the third largest Pine Barrens in the world. The State Forest protects an estimated 6 billion gallons of water in the sand aquifer that serves Plymouth as a water supply, according to the Park Interpreters working the Interpretive Center. There are daily activities at the Center that all ages can enjoy. All events are free and open to the public, including non-campers. This August there are Swamp Tromps on Mondays that let you scoop up swamp water and discover the critters living there. Friday’s are “cast away” fishing clinics—no license needed. And then there are educational programs such as the Cannonballs & Cranberries on the history of cranberry bogs. Come along for Saturday night hikes or daytime “off the beaten path” hiking series on Thursdays. Park Interpreter Rick Curtis also leads the Junior Ranger program from the Center. Geared to eight- to twelve-year olds, the program offers basic information on how to hike and camp safely, and exploring nature. The Junior Ranger program is offered Wednesdays from 10 to 11:15 a.m. It is also free and open to the general public of that age group. Did I mention the wildlife? Red squirrels are plentiful, and plenty bold at Myles Standish. Don’t be surprised if they try to climb into your tent, especially if you’re keeping food in it. They also have the run of the picnic table. Other woodland creatures are around, but tend to be a little more reticent. Still, take care not to disturb them and they’ll return the favor.

How to get campy Camping seasons is from early May to mid-October. Non-Massachusetts residents pay $17 for beach and $14 for inland campsites. Campers must be over 18 years old to make a reservation. Camping reservations are recommended at all State Parks. Reservations, cancellations, and changes can be made by contacting ReserveAmerica at 877-422-6762 or online at www.reserveamerica.com. Both State Parks get booked months in advance, but there are usually a couple days in the middle of the week available. Check the online reservations frequently and sign up when you see an opening. For Horseneck Beach, even-numbered sites 54 through 82 and site number 83 are on the beach; odd numbered sites 55 through 81 are across the street and very close to the water also. Whichever your taste—freshwater or saltwater, pines or sea breezes, these two State parks represent the best of the South Coast natural resources. And their just a click away! So, go ahead and get campy! And don’t forget the marshmallows! For more info on Myles Standish State Forest, visit: mass.gov/dcr/parks/southeast/mssf.htm or call: 508 866-2526 For more info on Horseneck Beach State Reservation, visit: mass.gov/dcr/parks/southeast/ hbch.htm or call: 508-636-8816. Joyce Rowley is a contributing writer to The South Coast Insider/Prime Times magazines on health, education and the environment. She has a bachelor of science degree in geology and a masters in community planning.

Special Events September FAMILY HARVEST CRAFT PARTY Fall River | 9/15 5K/10K ROAD RACE Dartmouth | 9/22 FALL FAMILY FESTIVAL Dartmouth | 9/22 FLICK N’ FLOAT Fall River | 9/28 YARD SALE Wareham | 9/29

October LOBSTER RACES New Bedford | 10/7 HAUNTED BARN & HAYRIDE Dartmouth | 10/190& 10/20 CHARITY GOLF TOURNAMENT The Kittansett Club | 10/15 Visit ymcasouthcoast.org for details WINE TASTING Wareham | 10/19 FAMILY HALLOWEEN PARTY Mattapoisett | 10/26 HAUNTED FOREST Wareham | 10/26 YARD SALE Wareham | 10/27

Contact the branch for information and event times. For a listing of more events visit ymcasouthcoast.org.

DARTMOUTH FALL RIVER GLEASON FAMILY MATTAPOISETT NEW BEDFORD

M yles Standish state forest in plymouth

508.993.3361 508.675.7841 508.295.9622 508.758.4203 508.997.0734

YMCA SOUTHCOAST ymcasouthcoast.org S ou th C oast P r ime T imes

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prime living

R aising

Grandchildren When you think of grandparents, you imagine fun-loving fifty or sixty or seventy somethings taking pride in spoiling Jay Pateakos their grandchildren before shoveling them back to their parents and getting on with their regular lives, going to dinner or home to read a book or take a nap. After all, they’ve raised their children, right? They deserve to enjoy life. But there’s another group of grandparents who get no such leisure in their lives. Sure, they are well into their twilight years, who finished raising their kids long ago, and should be enjoying their retirement. We don’t hear much

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about them, yet they are all around us. raising grandchildren Some found themselves in this situation because their sons or daughters became addicted to drugs and alcohol; or gave up on the young children, or fell ill, or died. There are many reasons, all accompanied by regrets and sadness.

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The numbers are staggering: nearly three million grandparents are taking care of their grandchildren across the country, and a total of six million grandchildren are living in their grandparents’ homes. In Massachusetts alone, more than 30,000 grandparents are raising their grandchildren, according to the 2010 census. Many of them feel there is no choice; that foster care—trusting their grandchildren to strangers—would never be an option.

Love and fear Lorraine DaPonte, 79, of Fall River, has been through it all with her grandchildren. When her daughter Cheryl became addicted to methadone and alcohol in the late 1980s, DaPonte took over care of her two grandsons, Jason, 8, and Nicholas, 3.

Lorraine said her daughter would come back into the children’s lives infrequently, if only to antagonize them and then disappear for long stretches; the drug and alcohol abuse was never too far from her daughter’s life. “It got to the point where the older one, Jason, was asking why his mother wasn’t around and why, but when she would come to see them, she would just tease them. He got tired of all the false promises,” said Lorraine. “He told me, grandma, if you don’t throw her out, I will. It was difficult to see them grow up like this.” In March 1987, Lorraine lost her husband in an accident. That July, her house was ravaged by fire to the tune of $100,000 one month after Nicholas, the younger of the two grandchildren, was born.


Two years later and after a successful battle with breast cancer, Lorraine would take over formal care of her two grandsons.

Varied caregivers While she felt she was all alone in raising her grandkids, she found out there were many like her, not just grandparents, but aunts and uncles, who were raising children who weren’t theirs. Lorraine helped form a group, “The Grandparents and Family Members of the 90s.” Lorraine and others from her group would be part of many seminars and speeches through the 90s, and appeared on Geraldo and other talk shows. They saw how widespread their situation actually was. The numbers were mindboggling. As was the difference between state and federal assistance to grandparents compared to the help given foster parents. Lorraine was getting $450 in assistance for both children while foster parents were getting the same amount for one child. “We were working with [former Fall River Mayor] Ed Lambert on a bill to give grandparents the same federal and state assistance as foster parents,” said Lorraine. “Back then, foster parents get double the funds. Geraldo couldn’t believe it. But after all these years, that bill is still pending.”

Mind-boggling

numbers After the Geraldo show, Lorraine received over 5,000 calls from all over the country, people with similar stories as hers, raising their grandchildren. “I never realized there were so many people doing the same thing as me,” said Lorraine.

“Many of the people asked me if I could help them form their own group. My goal was to get one in every state. But while I was interested in helping, I was also raising two boys. It was a lot of work.” Lorraine’s friend Lory Medeiros, 77, of New Bedford, knows full well the difficulties of raising grandchildren. Lory’s daughter had two young children, a boy and a girl, when she died of alcoholism decades ago. “When the authorities came to take the kids, there was a big fight, and I tried to tell the kids they were just going on a little vacation, but I was heartbroken.” Lory tried the foster parent system with her grandkids until her eight-year old granddaughter reported her foster mother was giving her beer to drink. Lory assumed custody of the two, never looking back. “Somebody had to care for them and it might as well have been me,” said Lory, who ended up as Vice President of Lorraine’s “Grandparents and Family Members of the 90s” committee. “We always had fun. Sure it was a lot of work, but it was work well worth it.”

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Love never ends Bringing up both grandchildren, now 38 and 35 and on their own, Lory said despite what happened to her daughter, she misses her still each and every day. “You say things to your kids sometimes when they make you angry... but of course it’s stupid things that just pass,” said Lory. “I miss her terribly and wish she was still around, but what are you going to do. Once they’re gone, they’re gone.” In addition to raising her own grandchildren, Lory has since raised dozens of foster

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Continued from previous page children, guiding many to great careers and lives. She gave up on foster parenting four years ago, at the tender age of 73.

People incorporated Jenny DiBlasi, Vice President of Community and Child & Family Services for People, Incorporated has been involved directly with grandparents parenting their grandchildren. DiBlasi says, “Many challenges face grandparents who become the primary caretaker for their grandchildren. They find themselves back in the parenting role, when they thought this was behind them. Parenting young children (and especially teens) require a great deal of energy and time. Due to their advancing age, this can be taxing on the grandparents.” “They are also dealing, at times, with difficult family dynamics, the struggle between what is best for the grandchildren and their adult children’s wants/wishes, as well as possible animosity from other family members. There are also parenting issues today which were not relevant when these grandparents were parenting, such as cell phones, social media, etc.” DiBlasi said it is never easy for a child to not have their biological parents raising them, but having a loving grandparent step into the role can be a positive thing for the children. Children are able to maintain their family identity, keeping invaluable connections to extended family members, and learning their family history.

Time for ourselves But where do grandparents get a break if there’s no one around them to help? “In order for grandparents to not become overwhelmed with their new responsibilities, they need to find time to take care

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of themselves. It’s not always easy. When possible, they enlist the help of family members.” said DiBlasi. “Enrolling the children into fun activities is both beneficial to the child and to the grandparent, the child develops social outlets and the grandparent has some time to themselves.”

Support groups DiBlasi said there are many more supports available to help grandparents. There is a statewide support network “GrandsPlace,” (aka Massachusetts Grandparent Support Center for Kinship

better outcomes,” said DiBlasi. “Lifelong family connections are important to the long-term development and well-being of children.”

Poignant memories The stories Lorraine and Lory heard for years about how children ended up with their grandparents in the first place, haunt both women still. Lory insists people have to learn to be more sympathetic to others, because you never know what people have gone through. Despite the devastating loss of her daughter, Lory’s grandparenting scenario ended on a high note with both her grandchildren moving on to

In order for

grandparents to not become overwhelmed with their new responsibilities, they need to find time to take care of themselves. It’s not always easy. Caregivers), which provides information on Grandparents as Parents support groups across the state. These groups are a peer support network; grandparents can speak with others who understand the unique challenges and joys of raising grandchildren. And there are support groups for foster care and kinship care which assist grandparents. “Grandparents raising their grandchildren are a preferable option to going into nonkinship foster care. When a child’s family can take them in and provide a stable home environment, children have

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successful lives. Lorraine has not been as lucky, though you will never, ever hear her complain. Lorraine’s daughter Cheryl would end up having a third son, Tyler, in 1994, and Lorraine would eventually assume his guardianship as well. In 1997 her oldest grandchild, Jason, was killed in an automobile accident. This was perhaps Lorraine’s darkest time; as she gave up on the meetings and the phone calls for quite some time, allowing others to step forward to manage the group. Like the strong woman she is, Lorraine would get back into the group and help out people

who needed her. At 79 now, she still does. Today, Lorraine still takes care of Nicholas, now 25, and Tyler, 18, who is bipolar. Her daughter, now 56 and partially blind and a year removed from a nearoverdose, also lives with her. “I have enjoyed the boys and I have helped to make their lives better. I just wish my daughter could,” Lorraine said. “This is the time when she should be enjoying them.” Her one regret is her daughter was never able to straighten her life out. Like anyone in her situation, she’s haunted by thoughts of what could have been. “I put my life on hold. I was a widow. I was 55 years old, and if not for this, maybe there would have been other things I could have done like oil paintings and crafts or go on a tour somewhere; do other things retired people do,” said Lorraine, fighting back tears. While living a life she never imagined back in her early 50s, Lorraine said she’s raised fine boys and she can ask for no greater gift. To help form a new Grandparents group, please call Lorraine at 508-617-4745 for assistance. Grandparents Raising Grandchildren (Support Group) 133 William Street, 1st Floor New Bedford, MA 02740 3rd Tuesday of every month, 6-8pm Contact: Brenda Grace at 508-996-0168 or Bgrace_1@yahoo.com Funded by Coastline Elderly Service/EOEA, Executive Office of Elder Affairs Jay Pateakos has been a freelance writer for more than 10 years including daily and weekly newspapers and monthly magazines. A native of New Bedford, he currently lives in Marion and has three children.


prime season

Lizzie still draws a crowd

A fter 120 years, people still wonder:

Highland Park plans unveiled L ast November a group gathered at the corner of President Avenue and Robeson Street in Fall River to unveil a rendering of what had been more than a few years in the making, the redevelopment and restoration of the Highland Park. Mayor William A. Flanagan recently renewed his promise to rehab the entire site, creating a recreation area for everyone to enjoy, and place to rest the idea that this area will be used for anything more than recreation. The Highland Park project will cost somewhere in the vicinity of $500,000 and will include both public and private funding. “Since first taking office, I have made it a top priority to embrace the various neighborhood associations, which encompass our great city and rely on them to keep my finger on the pulse of the community,” stated Flanagan. It is one of several community improvements being planned with the support of neighborhood groups. In the Father Kelly Neighborhood, they are making improvements to Cook Pond, in the St. Anne’s Neighborhood an aggressive fundraising effort is underway for a new inclusion playground at Kennedy Park, and in Niagara they have just completed a major park project.

Did Lizzie Borden take that axe and deliver the legendary whacks? We’ll never know the answer, and maybe that’s why every August 4, the anniversary of the famous 1892 murders, the house in which they were committed gets hundreds of visitors. Now the Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast, folks reserve rooms well in advance, participate in eBay auctions, or stop by for a tour. This year, the Pear Essential Players provided guests with an opportunity to interact with folks from the past during a re-enactment of the day’s events. Meanwhile, at the Fall River Historical Society, Echoes of Lizzie opened and featured neverbefore-seen post-mortem photos and other rare items. The graphic photos, vial of blood, trial exhibits and personal items had not been displayed because they of the Society’s sensitivity to both their subject and physical conditions. The exhibit will run through September 30 at the museum on 451 Rock Street. Admission is $8 for adults and $6 for children. For information call 508-6791071 ext. 1 or 2.

Preserving our communities

In massachusetts, the Community Partnership Act (CPA) allows cities and towns to raise funds to protect open space and to preserve neighborhood structures. Currently, 148 communities including Swansea, Dighton, Westport, and Dartmouth have adopted the CPA. Fall River could take advantage of the CPA to improve Fall River’s quality of life by improving its parks and playgrounds, protecting its open space, preserving its historic architecture and stabilizing its neighborhoods. The CPA could raise $1 million a year (which includes a match from the State CPA Trust Fund), allowing the city to leverage an additional $1 million to $10 million in other state and federal grants. Proponents say that the local share of the CPA funds would be raised by a 1.5% surcharge on real estate tax bills. The average homeowner would pay an additional $19 a year to support the improvements funded by the CPA. The City Council would approve all CPA expenditures. A fundraiser was held on August 4 at New Boston Bakery to begin the efforts to adopt the CPA in Fall River. For more information, visit www. communitypreservation.org

A ssistant Curator Dennis Binette

provides visitors with tour of the

Historical Society’s special exhibit. He and Curator Michael M artins not only give the tours, but also authored a book, Parallel L ives, about L izzie and her Fall R iver.

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prime living

Gray divorce Calling it quits after 50

We post- ww II baby boomers grew up watching Father Knows Best, Leave It to Beaver, Lassie, and The Ozzie and Harriet Show—all Eliz abeth wholesome, two-parMorse Read ent families where Dad worked to bring home the bacon and Mom stayed home to cook it and raise the kids. There were no unmarried mothers, interracial or gay couples, divorced single parents, nor dysfunctional families on our childhood TV screens. Our “great generation” parents worked very hard to give us a life and opportunities they’d been denied by fate – financial security, social and political stability, upward mobility. And then came the calamitous 1960s, which blew that idyllic Norman Rockwell world out of the water—assassinations, the Vietnam War, Vatican Council II, the Civil Rights movement, LSD and Woodstock, The Pill and the Women’s movement, the draft and the Anti-War movement, riots and marches and the SDS, communes and ashrams and “growing your own,” Star Trek and the moon landing. The defining parameters of the 1950s were gone, and we became the “Me Generation,” hell-bent on redefining the new normal according to the basic tenet, “if it feels good, do it.” And here we are now, heading into Social Security and Medicare years, and we’re still doing what “feels good,” convention be damned. We’re at the forefront of rising divorce rates at an age when our parents and grandparents were settling into their retirement years of modest goals, lots of golf and fishing, companionship with their spouses, and babysitting for the grandkids.

United States has decreased since 1990, it has doubled for Americans over 50 years old. In 1990, only 1 in 10 divorces involved people over 50; by 2009, that ratio had jumped to one in four, or 600,000 people, and that number is projected to rise to 800,000 by 2030. Not surprisingly, baby boomers (born between 1946 and 1964) led the pack in divorces with each successive decade, and more than half are now on their second or third marriage, with remarriages having a 60% failure rate vs. 40% for first marriages.

What a long, strange trip it’s been… But why is this happening, you might ask? Our parents and grandparents entered into marriages “until death do us part.” Marriages were tightly-bound social, religious and economic commitments designed to protect women and nurture children, strengthen extended family ties and reinforce cultural values and societal roles. But that went out the window in the 1960s.

Born to be wild… While the overall divorce rate in the

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Suddenly, women could get a good education on par with men, compete in the marketplace for high-paying jobs, delay child-rearing and sidestep marriage entirely. Men could drop out of the rat race and explore non-traditional roles like househusband, stay-at-home-parent or crafting/ cooking. Cohabiting became more popular than marriage and when a marriage ceased to be “fulfilling,” we wasted little time, said “I don’t,” and moved on to greener pastures and relationships. And even now, 66% of divorces are initiated by women, who are far-better educated, professionally successful and financially independent than were their mothers and grandmothers.

If you can’t be with the one you love… Fewer and fewer seniors are willing to spend their twilight years with a spouse they’ve stayed with just for the children’s sake. Divorce no longer carries the same


social and religious stigma as it did in previous decades, and as our lifespan increases, and our children are grown, the prospect of staying in a lonely, no-longer-gratifying relationship just doesn’t make sense to many people. Just look at Al and Tipper Gore, who split after 40 years! In 2007, 25% of all divorces were among couples married 20 years or more.

Love the one you’re with… And while rushing to find new romance is not the primary reason most boomers divorce, there’s no shortage of single seniors out there. Online dating sites for the 50+ age group have grown twice as fast as those for any other age group (OurTime. com, ChristianMingle.com, etc.). And it’s the divorced men who are most likely to remarry, especially if the dissolved marriage was their first marriage. Divorced senior women are more interested in companionship, exploring new careers/ opportunities and fulfilling old dreams of travel, creative pursuits and relying on themselves.

I can’t get no satisfaction… But there’s definitely a financial downside to getting a “gray divorce,” (especially for women, who still earn less than men and live longer than men, too) and it’s important to be aware of the pitfalls before you sign on the dotted line. For starters, after 50 there’s less time to recover financially, retire debt or split assets equitably. There are knotty issues like changing beneficiaries for life insurance policies, pensions, capital gains taxes, wills, health insurance coverage, alimony and Social Security benefits. When a younger couple with small children divorces, traditionally the mother gets the house to raise the kids in. This is not a wonderful thing if you’re 60 and get saddled

with a huge family home in this economy. Oftentimes, the mortgage is nearly paid off, and there’s a lot of equity built in, so selling the home and splitting the profits before the ink dries on the divorce papers is usually a better idea. Even a potentially tricky reverse mortgage might be an option.

Will you still need me… when i’m 64? And then there’s the inevitable issue of illness, disability and caregiving for you and your soon-to-be-former spouse after the divorce. Women are much better equipped with a support network of family and friends than men are, and are much more involved in providing care for others when need arises (including for elderly parents and ex-spouses). An AARP study found that two-thirds of caregivers were female, averaging 22 hours each week (vs. 17.4 hours for males) and costing anywhere from $5000 to $9,000 out-of-pocket expenses. Divorced men are much more likely to remarry to ensure care for themselves, and divorced women frequently pitch in with caring for an ex-husband if only to spare the adult children the burden. But in any case, the impact on government programs for the elderly will be staggering. Medicare costs are about $586 billion now in 2012, but are projected to reach $1.1 trillion in 2021. (Every seven seconds, a baby boomer turns 60 years old.) And when the oldest surviving boomers turn 85 in 2031, who knows what the costs will be? And then there’s also Medicaid, Disability and Social Security and local/state elderly services and government pensions…someone else will be picking up this tab. Remember that when Social Security started in 1935 and

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Continued from previous page established the retirement age at 65 years old, the life expectancy was only 61! Right now, the 76.4 million boomers constitute 30% of the US population, and by 2030, when 70 million people will be aged 65 and older, they will represent about 25% of the population. The average boomer today can expect to live to 83 years old…

prime living

Post-divorce

planning tips

Takin’ care of business… It’s critically important to consult with an estate/tax consultant before hiring a divorce attorney (and find one who specializes in collaborative divorce and mediation) because they can best explain the nitty-gritty of a gray divorce. For instance, asking for alimony is risky —if the ex-spouse dies, the payments stop. Maybe you should cash-in those old life insurance policies and split the profit? Better you should take out and pay for a new life insurance policy with yourself as the beneficiary. And don’t forget that the value of those 401(k)s and other retirement accounts on the monthly statement are pre-tax – they’ll only be valued at about 65% of that when cashed in. And what about joint debts like car loans and lines of credit? If you don’t remarry, you can claim your ex-spouse’s Social Security benefits when you turn 62, under certain conditions (for instance, you must have been married for at least ten years). Your wills, proxies and estate plans need to be rewritten, if only to protect your grown children—even though you and your spouse have split, you want the children to be the heirs, not some new latein-life wife or questionable “charitable” organization. These are all issues that a professional can advise you on—don’t go it alone, especially if you’re not familiar with your state’s tax/ inheritance laws.

Breaking up is hard to do… Don’t forget that, while your children may be adults with families of their own, your divorce is still traumatic for them. Keep them involved as much as possible in the planning, discourage their “taking sides,” and remember to consider their wishes and worries about family get-togethers, holiday traditions and testamentary issues. Watching Ozzie and Harriet split up is painful, especially if there are bewildered grandchildren involved.

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A divorce is a difficult and emotional process under the best of circumstances, so once the papers are finalized, most people are eager Peter Winters

to put it behind them and move on.

In an effort to heal, some common but very important actions may be overlooked, and failing to address them could result in costly mistakes later. You certainly don’t want your ex to get the proceeds from a life insurance policy, or find out from a bill collector that you owe funds on an old joint credit card account that was reactivated. Here are 10 important post-divorce steps:

Change your beneficiaries – update your beneficiary designations on your IRA, 401K/403b, and insurance policies (employer provided and those you pay for individually). A divorce decree will not necessarily divide all assets. Review your credit rating – A divorce can have a detrimental effect on your credit. Clean up your cards and start rebuilding your credit ASAP. Make sure your bank accounts, credit cards and lines of credit that should be in your name are in your name alone.

Safety Deposit box – if it was a joint box—close it, even it was emptied during the divorce process. Get a box in your own name.

Estate Plan – Update your estate

Keep the schools in the loop – make sure the schools and your children’s extracurricular advisors/coaches are aware of your custody arrangement and are in a position to support your family’s needs.

Taxes – consider utilizing a tax professional for the first year of two after your divorce, especially if you weren’t part of the tax preparation process during the marriage. Alimony, child support and deductions/exemptions require special care. You will also have to consider any tax consequences for division of retirement assets if you received a distribution from the plan(s).

Homeowner & Auto Insurance – contact your insurance specialist and complete a thorough review of your policies including—but not limited to—ownership, deductibles and coverage limitations. Deeds – confirm all deeds are recorded to reflect ownership changes agreed to under the divorce (primary residence, vacation properties, timeshares). Many times these items are neglected until there is a pending sale or refinance. Don’t wait, as it may be costly later.

planning documents. It’s more than just re-writing your will. Make sure you have a health care proxy and power of attorney naming someone you trust.

Cars/Boats – review all titles and registration to insure proper ownership is reflected.

Protect your income stream Explore Long Term Care and Disability Insurance through your employer or an insurance specialist in the event you become incapacitated.

Peter Winters, JD, MBA, LLM is an attorney with practice locations in Plymouth and Marion, MA. He specializes in litigation, domestic relations and tax matters and can be reached at attypeterwinters@gmail.com.

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prime living

When it ’s time

to sell the nest Sherri MahoneyBattles

When the children are grown, most homeowners begin to think about downsizing into something with a bit less maintenance. Unfortunately, tax laws are constantly changing, and most homeowners are in the dark when it comes to the tax impact of selling their home.

Did you know...

As of May 7, 1997, the tax rules for homeowners selling their home changed drastically in favor of the homeowner. Previous rules which required reinvestment of proceeds into another home and a once-in-a-lifetime exclusion for taxpayers over age 55 were completely removed. The new rules allow a married couple to exclude up to $500,000 in gain from the sale of their

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primary residence. A single person can exclude up to $250,000. For taxpayers heading into their retirement years, the sale of a primary residence represents the best possible tax break available. In order to qualify for the exclusion the taxpayer must have used the home as a primary residence for two years or more during the five-year period ending on the date of the sale. A surviving spouse may use the full $500,000 married exclusion if the sale is made not later than two years after the date of the death of their spouse and providing they were both eligible for the exclusion. The exclusion may not be used more frequently than once every two years. There is also a partial or reduced exclusion for taxpayers who do not meet the ownership and use requirements or who used the exclusion within the last two years. .


Out with the old Under previous laws, homeowners who used their home for business or to produce rental income were required to allocate the basis of the property and the amount of gain realized between the business portion and the residence portion. For example, if 20% of the use of the home was for business, they would pay tax on 20% of the gain from the sale. Again, this changed, and a homeowner is no longer required to pay tax on the gain based on the portion of the home used for business or rental. Gain is only recognized to the extent the taxpayer claimed depreciation on the portion of the home used for business or rental. So, a taxpayer deducts 20% of their home for business useof-home and claims $1,000 for depreciation for five years. The taxpayer will pay tax on $5,000 worth of income. Under previous laws the taxpayer would pay tax on 20% of the gain from the sale of the home. For accountants like myself, who work with lots of small business owners, this change in tax law greatly enhances the benefits of the home office.

A real break for small businesses Under these laws most homeowners will never pay tax on the gain from the sale of their home unless the gain from the sale of their home is huge. In fact, Form 2119, Sale of Your Home, the form previously used to report gains from home sales, has been eliminated. The $250,000 and $500,000 exclusion amounts represent the amount of gain resulting from the sale—not the amount of the sale—as thought by most homeowners. Gain is calculated by comparing the basis of the home to the amount of the sale price, less costs related to the sale. The basis of the home includes the original cost of the home plus any improvements. So, a home purchased for $200,000 and with $50,000 in improvements over the next ten years has an adjusted basis of $250,000. If the home is sold for $525,000 less $25,000 in closing costs for a net sale price of $500,000, the net gain is $250,000. This full gain could be excluded by a single person ($250,000) or a married couple ($500,000).

A nd good for homeowners Taxpayers who own multiple homes may chose to sell their primary residence and then move into their vacation or rental home. You can turn a rental or summer home into your primary home providing you meet the IRS rules for use and ownership by living in the home for two out of the five years before the sale. Using this scenario a savvy homeowner may be able to exclude the gain from the sale of multiple primary residences providing all of the rules are met. There is no doubt tax laws can be complicated, but a taxpayers who do a little research and planning can keep more money in their own pockets. Surely, selling a home can be a stressful situation, but some of life’s most taxing situations are merely opportunities for us to travel down a path as we journey through life.

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prime living

The A l zheimer’s crisis What to do when it strikes your family At long last, on both the national and state level, our elected officials are gradually acknowledging the looming crisis that Alzheimer’s Jane Disease represents, as it is expected Sullivan that 10 million Baby Boomers will develop Alzheimer’s Disease. Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. In January, 2011, President Barack Obama signed into law the National Alzheimer’s Project Act, which requires that creation of a national strategic plan to address the rapidly escalating Alzheimer’s disease crisis and the coordination of the Alzheimer’s Disease efforts across the federal government. Here in Massachusetts, in July of this year, Governor Deval Patrick signed legislation designed to improve the qual-

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ity of care for the more than 120,000 people in Massachusetts suffering with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementia illnesses. As an elder law and estate planning attorney, I work on a daily basis with individuals stricken by this devastating disease and with their families. Sadly, some families become paralyzed by fear as they struggle to provide care to their loved one, never seeking advice

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or assistance or taking advantage of the many resources that are available.

Local resources On a local level, the Alzheimer’s Partnership of Southeastern Massachusetts is a coalition of concerned health and human service providers. Working closely with family caregivers and the Alzheimer’s Association, the Partnership strives to educate and improve the quality of care provided to individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease and related disorders in Southeastern Massachusetts. More information is available at 508-679-0535 or at jsullivan@janesullivanlaw.com. The Alzheimer’s Association has a Helpline, 1-800-2723900, that is manned twentyfour hours a day by trained clinicians who can offer one-to-one advice at a difficult moment for a caregiver, as well

as referrals to local resources, including educational programs and support groups. The Association’s website, www.alz. org is also an invaluable source of information. Bristol Elder Services (508675-2101) and Coastline Elderly Services (508-999-6400), are the local aging services access points that oversee community support services for the elderly such as the elder nutrition program known as “Meals on Wheels”. The ASAP’s do in-house assessments to determine what services an elder in need may qualify for, such as personal care, homemaker services, adult day care and transportation services.

Steps to take From a legal perspective, the first step for a family waging war on Alzheimer’s Disease should be to make sure their loved one has all the impor-


tant legal documents in place, impoverishment, especially including a Health Care Proxy for a married couple. I meet with many caregiving spouses for medical decision-making (the spouse not in the nursauthority; a HIPAA Authorizaing home) who are shocked tion, so that an authorized repto learn that they can retain resentative will have immediate up to $113,640 (money in the access to medical information bank, investments, retirement and a Living Will in which the accounts, etc.), and that does individual’s wishes with respect not include the value of the to medical care and treatment principal residence. are expressed. It remains possible for a It’s also important to have single individual to qualify for a Durable Power of AttorMassHealth assistance after ney for legal and financial funding a Pooled Trust Account decision-making authority. that can provide special benThese lifetime estate planning efits to improve the individual’s documents will enable a family quality of life. to avoid the time-consuming, From the proceeds of the sale expensive and intrusive process of her home, one client has of a Probate Guardianship or enjoyed having Conservatorship. delivered From a finanThere is no flowers to her room on cial perspective, need to fight a weekly basis, the costs of care, and having her the battle whether in a home nails and hair setting, assisted livagainst weekly, all ing, or in a skilled Alzheimer’s done paid for from nursing facility, can Disease her Pooled Trust be devastating. If alone. A rm Account. She has the individual has not purchased long yourself with recently passed away, and after term care insurance, information MassHealth is other financing and take reimbursed from options must be advantage of her account, there considered. be a small A reverse mortall available will sum left for her gage could provide resources. beneficiaries. the income stream There is no need necessary to remain to fight the battle against Alat home with the appropriate zheimer’s Disease alone. Arm support services and care. If the yourself with information and individual is a Veteran or the take advantage of all available surviving spouse of a Veteran, resources. This will improve the Aid and Attendance benefits quality of life of your loved one could be a crucial source of and the caregiver as well. financial support for unreimbursed medical expenses This article is solely advisory and that exceed income, including does not constitute legal advice. A services such as day care or asqualified estate planning attorney sisted living expenses. should be consulted before you Ultimately, if skilled nursing make any Estate or Medicaid home care becomes necesPlanning decision. sary, few can afford the typical $10,000 monthly cost of Jane e. Sullivan is an attorney private payment in the Greater who has been providing estate and Fall River-New Bedford area. Medicaid related legal services for Medicaid or “MassHealth” is more than 25 years. Her office is the payer of last resort. Qualifyat 624 Brayton Avenue, Fall River; 508-679-0535, or jsullivan@janeing for MassHealth does not sullivanlaw.com necessarily require financial

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Book Picks by Baker by M agoo Gelehrter

Courtesy of Baker Books – www.bakerbooks.net

New England summers are hard won and pass so quickly. With one last month to spend at the beach with a book in hand, you best make the most of it. Grab a best-seller and go, but don’t forget your sunscreen! If you have kids still putting off their summer reading, we have most of the schools’ required summer reading in stock as well.

STATE OF WONDER

Wolf Hall

by Ann Patchett Harper Collins $15.99 paperback

The Buddha In The Attic

by Hilary Mantel Picador $16 paperback

by Julie Otsuka Random House $13.95 paperback

In a narrative replete with poison arrows, devouring snakes, scientific miracles, and spiritual transformations, State of Wonder presents a world of stunning surprise and danger, rich in emotional resonance and moral complexity. As Dr. Marina Singh embarks upon an uncertain odyssey into the insect-infested Amazon jungle, she will be forced to surrender herself to a lush but forbidding world. Charged with finding her former mentor Dr. Annick Swenson, a who has disappeared while working on a valuable new drug, she will have to confront her own memories of tragedy and sacrifice as she journeys into the unforgiving heart of darkness. Stirring and luminous, State of Wonder is a world unto itself, where unlikely beauty stands beside unimaginable loss beneath the rain forest’s jeweled canopy.

Wolf Hall is the Winner of the 2009 Man Booker Prize and winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction. England in the 1520s is a heartbeat from disaster: if the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Henry VIII wants to annul his marriage of twenty years and marry Anne Boleyn. The pope and most of Europe opposes him. Into this impasse steps Thomas Cromwell: a wholly original man, a charmer and a bully, both idealist and opportunist, astute in reading people, and implacable in his ambition. But Henry is volatile: one day tender, one day murderous. Cromwell helps him break the opposition, but what will be the price of his triumph?

This is the winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award For Fiction, National Book Award and Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist and a New York Times Notable Book. A gorgeous novel by the celebrated author of When the Emperor Was Divine that tells the story of a group of young women brought from Japan to San Francisco as “picture brides” nearly a century ago. In eight unforgettable sections, The Buddha in the Attic traces the extraordinary lives of these women, from their arduous journeys by boat, to their arrival in San Francisco and their tremulous first nights as new wives; from their experiences raising children who would later reject their culture and language, to the deracinating arrival of war. Once again, Julie Otsuka has written a spellbinding novel about identity and loyalty, and what it means to be an American in uncertain times.

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The Worlds of Giordano Bruno: The Man G alileo Plagiarized By Alan Powers Paperback $30 Cortex Design

BORN TO RUN by Christopher McDougall Vintage Books $15.95 paperback An epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt? Isolated by Mexico’s deadly Copper Canyons, the blissful Tarahumara Indians have honed the ability to run hundreds of miles without rest or injury. In a riveting narrative, award-winning journalist and often-injured runner Christopher McDougall sets out to discover their secrets. In the process, he takes his readers from science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultra-runners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to a climactic race in the Copper Canyons that pits America’s best ultra-runners against the tribe. McDougall’s incredible story will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.

If you like to visit unusual, out of the way places in your reading, Alan Powers’ The Worlds of Giordano Bruno is a terrific excursion. Part biography, part intellectual history—with a touch of personal memoir and travel writing mixed in, this is a unique, literate, mavericky telling of the extraordinary 16th century life and thought of the first man to propose that the universe contains “an infinite number of habitable worlds”—a heresy Bruno was unable to bring himself to recant and for which he was ultimately burned at the stake. The book is well researched and well written. The numerous illustrations are pertinent, gorgeous and well produced. The short Addendum, on moon mapping, is a tour de force. Alan W. Powers lives in Westport, MA with his wife, the artist Susan Mohl Powers. He says he “has worked as a harmless drudge, a college teacher of composition and Shakespeare, in Minnesota and Massachusetts. He has appeared in two poetry films, Keats and his Nightingale and A Loaded Gun (about Emily Dickinson), and has been interviewed on Italian TV and radio, and American radio.” As a jazz trombonist he wrote jazz tunes based on British and American birdsong, the subject of his first popular book, BirdTalk: Conversations With Birds. Despite several articles on Shakespeare (and law), his lifework turns out to be translations and this biography of Giordano Bruno, who was sent to the Inquisition and to the stake by one bad student evaluation. A sceptic on education reform, he says, “Good teachers get fired; great teachers, killed—Socrates, Christ, Giordano Bruno.”

DESTINY OF THE REPUBLIC by Candice Millard Anchor Books $16 paperback The extraordinary New York Timesbestselling account of James Garfield’s rise from poverty to the American presidency, and the dramatic history of his assassination and legacy, from bestselling author of The River of Doubt, Candice Millard. For a man forced into the presidency, the legacy of James Garfield extended far beyond his lifetime, and Destiny of the Republic revisits his meteoric rise within the military and government with meticulous research and intimate focus. Garfield was a passionate advocate of freed slaves, a reformer at odds with Republican power brokers and machine politics, a devoted father, and a spellbinding speech-giver. Four months after taking office he was shot twice by an unhinged office-seeker, Charles Guiteau, and a nation already recently fractured by war shattered, leaving the wounded president at the center of a bitter, behind-the-scenes struggle for power. Examining the medical reform spurred by Garfield’s unsanitary medical treatment, and reflecting on the surprising political reform brought on by his former political enemy Senator Roscoe Conkling, Destiny of the Republic passionately brings President Garfield’s unknown but widely felt legacy into focus.

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Technology

eBook Readers In 2000 I was living on the Central Coast of California, teaching various technology classes, and writing technology columns for several newspapers. Companies would send me products to review, and one fancy device I received was the Softbook Reader. The Softbook Reader was designed for reading digital books called eBooks. Roughly the size of a closed laptop, it had had a faux leather cover that opened like a book cover and protected the monochrome screen. I could download books and read them, highlight text, write notes on the pages, and generally do book things with it. It was a little heavy and unwieldy for reading in bed, but it would hold about 5,000 pages of text without getting any bigger or heavier--and the company said a thousand books were already available. I’m an avid reader and thought this was a very cool tool, particularly for a first generation attempt. My students, however, were thoroughly unimpressed. Even the hardcore readers. The Softbook Reader faded away; the interest in eBook readers was pretty much a nonstarter at the time. But, a dozen years later, the eBook concept has taken hold. People have decided

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they love reading eBooks. The eBook environment has undergone lots of refinements. Most people are now familiar with using the Internet to buy and download books and software, and Internet sellers continue to make them easier to buy. Most eBooks are priced a bit lower than their print counterparts. The eReaders have shrunk considerably, and their screens are brighter, the text more readable even for readers with vision problems. There are a lot more books available—a lot more—and the eReaders can store a lot more of them. Five thousand pages? Current eReaders spit on 5,000 pages. Try 5,000 books. Incredibly convenient.

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So, which eBook reader to get? As usual with electronic devices, the choices overwhelm us. First, understand that there are differences between a dedicated eBook reader and a tablet computer (the best-known of which is the iPad). If you’re a hardcore reader who doesn’t need much in the way of additional online communication or entertainment options, a dedicated eReader makes sense. But if reading is only one of the activities that make up your day—you’re also browsing the Internet, taking notes, listening to music, watching videos, taking pictures, etc.—the tablet may suit you better. According to Wikipedia, dedicated eBook readers offer longer battery life and use ‘electronic ink” (e-Ink) to produce more easily readable text than the older tablet computers. These units also tend to be the most affordable. But tablets have all kinds of apps that can be run on them, making older eBook readers look like pricey one-trick ponies. And in fact there’s little to differentiate the current most popular eBook readers and tablet computers. The eBook vendors are adding all those apps capabilities. Meanwhile, the screens on tablets are delivering ever sharper text.


Finding eBooks The fast-growing eBook industry uses a pricing model somewhat like the disposable razor business. Vendors will sell you a reader at a discount if you agree to buy some eBooks from them. There might be also other requirements, fees and proprietary book formats that bind you to a particular vendor. As when buying a smartphone, you can go slightly crazy when trying to compare offerings from several vendors. Let’s look at a few of the most popular eBook readers. Dozens if not hundreds more eReaders are available, though many are simply rebranded commodity devices. Amazon currently offers six models of its Kindle eReader. The most popular is a tablet called the Kindle Fire ($199), reportedly the second most popular tablet after the iPad. The Fire is a semi-stripped down 7-inch tablet offered at a reasonable price. And the company has done a good job of developing a features that appeal to a large number of users. At the low end of the price range of Amazon’s eReader line is the Kindle, featuring a monochrome e-Ink 6-inch screen and Wi-Fi capability, for $79. Amazon, of course, makes it easy for its devices to link to its book and magazine, music and video services via the Internet. It claims to have more than 1.5 million books and magazines available. Competing directly with the Kindle line is Barnes & Noble’s Nook, which comes in four models ranging from $99 to $249. Barnes & Noble claims more than two and a half million books, magazines, comics are available for reading on a Nook. Apple’s iPad is very popular as an eReader. The latest iPad with its new retina display delivers very good text quality. You pay substantially more for an iPad ($400 or more), and with its almost 10-inch screen it’s a bulkier device, but its feature set is hard to beat.

What about the eBooks? Since books began being digitized and sold on the Internet, pricing and rights management have been the major bones of contention. Because digital reduces the cost of materials to near zero and you no longer need to print a book, how does it affect the cost of the book? Writers and publishers argue that what you’re mostly paying for is intellectual content, so getting rid of the paper and ink shouldn’t have much impact on the price

of the book. Many consumers believe they should benefit significantly from the considerable cost reduction brought about by eliminating the hard copy. Current books and bestsellers tend to be priced near their print counterparts. By the time you read this the Department of Justice may have gotten a ruling in a case pitting Amazon on one side and Apple and a host of book publishers on the other. The ruling may theoretically result in lower eBook prices for the consumer. As far as I can tell, it’s one goliath against another, and whichever wins, ultimately there may not be many price bargains on new books in the eBook world. (Vendors often make older books that are out of copyright available for free.)

While the publishing

industry is going through wrenching changes, readers who adapt to the eReader style of reading are benefiting from the great convenience of digitized books. Before you buy You can read evaluations of eBook readers and tablets endlessly, but it won’t be until you take them in hand that you’ll know which ones suit you. For starters, you want a device that feels comfortable in your hand. Some of the questions to ask yourself at the store: n How heavy is the device? Can you comfortably maintain your favorite reading position while holding it?

What about screen size—do you prefer a larger screen even if it’s more awkward to hold, or will you sacrifice some screen real estate for a comfortable grip?

n

How does the text look? Smooth or jagged? Can you see yourself becoming irritated with it after a few minutes of reading? Is the screen bright enough to read even in daylight? Does the screen reflect a lot of annoying background light?

n

Is it easy to operate? Does it have good battery life?

n

Where can you download books and magazines? Will Wi-Fi do the job, or do you need a more expensive 3G or 4G connection that will enable you to download books while you’re on the move?

n

You might want to visit a website called TopTenReviews. You can find its eBook reader reviews at ebook-reader-review. toptenreviews.com. The site also offers a configurator that asks you questions about your feature preferences, then suggests a model that might suit you. eBooks at your library More eBooks in various formats are becoming available through public library loan programs (in most cases the eBook simply stops working at the end of the loan period). Technology for controlling the dissemination of eBooks through libraries and preventing copying has caused these public library programs to advance in fits and starts. Check with your local library to see what options you have.

What’s coming? Typical of other electronics markets, new eBook readers and tablets are constantly being introduced. Possibly there will be an Apple iPad in the seven-inch screen range in the fall. This size is easier to hold in the hand and may broaden the iPad’s already huge market. The recently released Google Nexus 7 tablet is already garnering a lot of attention, because it’s priced the same as the Fire yet has more features. A new Kindle Fire may debut in the fall; Reuters reported that manufacturing costs have dropped significantly on the Fire, and that Amazon might lower the price of the new device from its current $199, in addition to adding some refinements. While the publishing industry is going through wrenching changes, readers who adapt to the eReader style of reading are benefiting from the great convenience of digitized books. I still enjoy owning and reading physical books, but it’s not an either-or choice. In some situations, an eReader packed with a library of titles can be the perfect package. Dan Logan is a freelance writer and photographer and is a partner in Tightrope Photography, a Rehoboth-based company specializing in family history.

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good times

Seeking

boomer cool We baby boomers

(b.1946-64) are getting old, but we are mortified to think that anyone would consider us old. Paul It’s not just a woman L etendre thing; men don’t want to be considered old. AARP is changing its recruitment strategies to get us to join. Sure, we prefer getting old to the alternative, but we sure as hell don’t want to look or seem old. Despite the fact that many of us were weaned on cigarettes and Twinkies, we boomers are expected to live 10 to 20 years longer than our grandparents.

and high school groups picked it up from the music scene. Cool has to do with attitude, appearance, aesthetic, and the communicating of these. It’s not cool to try to be cool. Motorcycles used to be a young man’s thing, but these days boomers (48-66 years old) are buying most of the motorcycles sold in the U.S. Although most buyers are men, more women than ever are riding. It’s not that easy however; it takes more than a motorcycle to be cool.

Cool can be fleeting. Alec Baldwin is cool, Steve Jobs was cool. Tom Cruise and Bill Gates… not cool. iPhone—cool; Blackberry-not cool. What was cool in the 60s will not be cool now just because it was cool in the sixties —I know it defies logic, but it does hold some sort of consistent counter-logic. Bell bottom jeans are not cool. If Alec Baldwin were to wear them, they might be considered cool precisely because they are so not cool.

Stay cool, man A website about aging hipsters referred to baby boomers as the “cool generation.” The site was mostly about trying to be cool. As we boomers grow older, we seem to embrace “cool” in an increasingly futile attempt to ward off senior status. I don’t know if we are any cooler than other generations, but we are a lot more conscious of being cool than any other. I was born in late 1949 during this influx of births that lasted until 1964. Guys of my generation have certainly been aware of cool; women have too, but probably not as much …they seem more waistline conscious.

What’s cool? The term “cool” came into existence in the late 30s and early 40s. It was a by-product of the jazz scene and has its origins in the cultural black patois of that era. It went mainstream in the late 50s when college

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Definately not cool


The un-cool “Not cool,” btw, is the only word phrase with the meaning “opposite of cool.” You could try using some other phrase, but you would be not cool. And btw is the cool way to write “by-the-way.”) I was probably seven or eight when I realized what cool was …and that I wasn’t it. I had seen Pat Boone in the movie Bernadine and realized that if white bucks and a T-Bird convertible were what it takes to be cool, I was going to be left out in the cold. I’d have to work at this.

T wo sides of cool In those days, there were two disparate models of cool: Pat Boone and Elvis. They represented the preppy cool and the greaser cool. Growing up in Fall River in the 60s, there was no middle ground—you had to choose one or the other. You couldn’t be an independent. It was like the Ford or Chevy thing; one side or the other, no room for Oldsmobile guys here. I think down deep I would have preferred to be a greaser because I liked the greaser girls, but all my friends were preps so I conformed. When we’d see groups of guys that would look like greasers, we’d fight. We almost always lost—greasers are much tougher looking than preps; we were expected to lose. When the Beatles came along in late ’63, new styles blurred group identities enough so that it was impossible to tell who was a greaser and who was a prep—all of us became neither. Pat Boone and Elvis were not cool anymore. We didn’t have to fight anymore.

During my futile, life-long attempt to be cool, I’ve had a lot of motorcycles, none of them Harleys. They now make a great bike, beautifully assembled of world class parts. But I’ve never wanted the obligatory tattoo, I don’t like to put bumper stickers on my car, and I really didn’t want to have to carry my wallet chained to my belt or wear chaps, so I stuck with mostly BMW’s, a couple of UJM (universal Japanese motorcycles), and a few Italian machines. Also, I often sport a full face helmet, which is positively not cool on a Harley. (I didn’t say this was logical.) I enjoy riding motorcycles and motor scooters, but I almost never feel cool, it just doesn’t happen. I have ridden a Harley on numerous occasions; it’s kind of like driving a Corvette, and yes, they do make you feel cool…the problem is, I know I’m not cool.

I enjoy riding motorcycles and motor scooters, but I almost never feel cool, it just doesn’t happen.

E asy rider In pre-Beatle days, motorcycles were cool only for greasers. Then Honda came out with the “You meet the nicest people on a Honda” ad and it became cool for preps to ride. The holdout greasers would ride the Harleys and English bikes and preps would ride the Japanese bikes. Almost no one would ride German and Italian bikes.

Uneasy rider If I buy a Harley so I can feel cool, that’s so not cool. I’d be like the zebra who got painted so he’d feel like a horse—except that he looked more like a jackass. It’s like the Corvette thing. Guys always feel cool driving a Vette, but as often as not, they look like jackasses. Triumph once made a fast and beautiful but highly unreliable motorcycle, the Bonneville

(Bonnie). When the UJMs hit the scene, Triumph went out of business. But Triumph has been revived and again builds a new Bonnie that looks like their old one, but is faster and now incredibly reliable. Maybe that’s the answer to being cool. Bob Dylan rode one of these, so did Steve McQueen, Paul Newman and Paul McCartney. Even I’d be cool on one of these…maybe. paul letendre has spent most of his life working for broadline food service distributors in the U.S. and Canada. He also writes an industry blog, “Restaurant Stuff,” at www.la10duh.com and is a regular contributor for The Insider.

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good times

Making music on the South Coast

NBSO’s music man

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avid MacKenzie, the music director and principal conductor of the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra, grew up in a musical household in Tennessee. Everyone played something—his father and sister played violin, his mother played piano and organ, and his other sister played piano as well. MacKenzie began piano lessons when he was 8 years old, but he admits he was really more interested in baseball. David “I was always kind Prentiss of scared of my piano teacher. She lived in the Addams Family house, and going there always freaked me out a bit. I drive by that house now when I go back and visit, and it is just a normal, little old house, but it seemed pretty daunting back then. So, I practiced, but not enough to really make a go of it.” As a child MacKenzie had a fascination with the trombone because it was “big, shiny…loud!” But in the sixth grade when the band was looking for musicians His mother insisted he take up the clarinet. “She said she didn’t want to have such a loud instrument in the house.” So he played clarinet for two years, “but not very well, I didn’t really click with it. And I learned later that as a child my Dad had wanted to play the trombone as well, and his mother made him play violin. There must be a genetic urge for the men in my family to play the trombone...”

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Luckily, on the first day of band in the eighth grade, the Band Director asked if anyone wanted to switch instruments because he needed trombones. MacKenzie recalls, “Bam! Up goes my hand, and I walk home with a trombone under my arm. “My mother relented and I started practicing, and practicing and practicing…my parents would have to tell me to shut up and go to bed. From there, it was really just one thing leading to another. Once I found something that really excited me, every next step was just following the interest factor. I was motivated, and when you’re motivated, you can learn anything you need to know.”

A career in music MacKenzie attended the University of Tennessee, Knoxville on a music scholarship, and had a great teacher—Don Hough —who taught him not only the technical aspects of the trombone, but more importantly nourished the artist inside. “He forced me to have opinions about the music I played. ‘Why?’ was just as important as ‘What?’ for him. He also taught me to have eclectic tastes; he was a very strong classical player, but also a great jazz trombonist as well.”

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Continued from previous page When it came time to apply for graduate school, MacKenzie looked at Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, and Yale. “I decided that I didn’t want to go somewhere like Manhattan or NEC where I would be one of 50 trombonists all trying to get a spot in the top ensembles. What I wanted most was experience, so I went to the Yale School of Music, which only accepted enough students to fill a symphony orchestra. “That time at Yale was the central formative experience in my musical life. It was like a door opened into a musical world I

music that MacKenzie doesn’t like. “I love Bluegrass, and some of the crossover stuff is pretty well done now. I can appreciate real Hip-Hop, but not commercial rap. If I listen to something other than Classical music for fun or relaxation it will be jazz or Afro-Cuban inspired music like salsa, or maybe tango or something. I grew up in the 60s, so I still love rock from the later 60s and 70s, as well. As far as I am concerned, Black Dog is still the greatest rock song ever written, and rock got really dull after Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy album.”

Diana McVey

we eat, but pretty close. It really keeps me refreshed. Doesn’t matter how tired I am, a few minutes in the garden, and I am rejuvenated.” His other passions are cooking and sports. “There is something deeply satisfying about making tasty, healthy food and sharing it with others. I cook like a jazz musician, rarely have a recipe, except maybe at the start, sort of like playing the “head” of a tune, on a jazz gig, then playing a couple of choruses. Improvisatory cooking...” And he’s still interested in baseball and other sports. “Sports are something else

onstrated that children who have early musical training will develop the areas of the brain related to language and reasoning—in other words, they develop better language skills and better thinking skills; and it has been shown that success in music learning leads to enhanced abilities in self expression and a better selfconcept. “Music learning also promotes a sense of pride in craftsmanship and improves young bodies’ hand-eye coordination, and keeps kids involved in school. Students involved in music have better academic achievement overall, do better on SAT

A lex ander Schimpf

K atherine Chi

never knew existed. It was an intensive exposure to orchestral playing and chamber music performance at a very high level. I began to study score analysis and conducting with Otto-Werner Mueller and he changed my thinking about music profoundly. He gave me the tools to dig deeper into the structure of music, to sense not only the macro levels of shaping, but also the micro levels, the understructure that makes things cohere. I owe him a great debt. He, and John Swallow, and Don Hough really helped shape me as a musician.”

Music of all kinds There are very few forms of

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“The thing that attracts me to any form of music is whether it is sincere music, whether it represents something authentic in human experience. That’s what attracts me to Miles Davis and Led Zeppelin. They are authentic and vital, not commercialized pap. All musics are just dialects of the same language. Jazz, or rock, or reggae is music just the same as classical music is. Same basic language, just different uses of the same tools and different aesthetic goals.”

More than music When not making music, MacKenzie loves to garden. He has about 3000 square feet of garden space with 29 raised beds. “I don’t quite raise everything

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that provides a bit of valuable downtime in my life. I love living in New England because I can keep up with the Patriots, the Celtics and the Bruins. (Let’s not talk about the Red Sox). Since I played hockey in high school, I always keep up with the Bruins (and, sadly, the Maple Leafs.) My Dad is Canadian and grew up in Toronto. When I was young we had an old shortwave radio that we could tune into, if everything was just right, the Maple Leafs games.”

Music for children MacKenzie believes deeply in music education for children. “Tons of recent research studies have conclusively dem-

tests and are less likely to be involved in substance abuse. “All those things are valuable and important, but for me the bottom line is simply this: Music makes us more human.” He adds, “Music is first and foremost an emotional language, and we are emotional beings. Every child requires an outlet for emotional expression and music may be a child’s only vehicle for authentic expression of his or her inner life. “We need music in our lives. Music gives voice to our deepest experiences, often in ways that words cannot accomplish. It connects us to our world and to each other. “That is why the NBSO has put so much emphasis and


so many resources into its educational outreach programs. We reach more than 30,000 schoolchildren every year through nine programs that reach pre-K to college-age students. The NBSO’s commitment to education outreach in the community is unique for an orchestra of its size.”

Upcoming nbso season MacKenzie is excited about the NBSO’s new season starting this September. “We are trying a number of new things this year. First, we are performing two concerts in which we focus entirely on the music of one composer. We start the season with the music of Mozart and end the season with the music of Beethoven. It will be exciting to really dig into this music and extract everything it has to offer. In many ways, it is like we can take these great works like the Eroica Symphony of Beethoven, or Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 (Jupiter), which we have tucked away in our hearts as some of our most favorite works, and bring them out and share them with our audience. “When you experience the incredible range of emotions the music of Mozart and Beethoven encompass, it is very much like running the gamut of human experience—from pathos to triumph. “Another new twist this year relates to one of the composers. We have tried in the last few years to champion the music of living American composers, composers such as John Adams, John Corigliano, Jennifer, Higdon, Michael Torke, and Michael Daugherty. This season we are doing another work by Pulitzer Prize winning composer John Corigliano, the Red Violin Concerto, which will be performed by an outstanding young violinist, Michael Ludwig.

“The twist will be that John Corigliano will be in attendance for the concert. We have teamed up with the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth to honor this great American composer. Mr. Corigliano will give a lecture at the University and UMD will present him with an honorary doctoral degree at intermission of the Saturday night concert.” “Finally, I am really excited by the soloists we have this year. Really world-class talent right here in our back yard. “Canadian pianist Katherine Chi is opening the season with Mozart’s powerful Piano Concerto No. 24 in C Minor and Diana McVey, who has this most gorgeous voice, will offer a concert aria Mozart wrote specifically for his first true love. (Spoiler Alert: He didn’t get the girl…but we do get the music!) “In October an exciting young cellist from the Boston area will join us, Jonah Ellsworth. We close the season with another pianist, German Alexander Schimpf, the most recent winner of the prestigious Cleveland International piano competition, playing my favorite piano concerto, Beethoven’s Concerto No. 4 in G Major. “We also have a wonderful lineup of outstanding vocal artists for our concert in November, the traditional Messiah concert in St. Anthony’s, and for Creation in February.” “It’s going to be a fantastic season!” For more information or tickets...what do folks do? David Prentiss, a resident of New Bedford, is the President and CEO of the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra. He is also active in the South Coast community as a volunteer, serving on the board of the Alma del Mar Charter School and as basketball coach at Our Sisters’ School.

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good times

Forever young There was a time I got excited about getting mail with a little telltale rectangle of plastic inside, a tiny sliver roughly three-by-two inches small, a potent piece of Paul K andarian purchasing potential: A credit card, representing immediate shopping power that gave me a glow until I realized you actually had to pay it back. But for the last eight years, I’ve gotten the same-sized piece of plastic that tells a different story, holds different potential. This one says “You’re going to die soon, but enjoy some discounts until then!” It is my invitation AARP card. I have been getting these damn things since I turned 50 almost nine years ago. They will not go away. I just tossed them when I started getting them, not caring very much about what the AARP had to offer because I was so young. And for the record, I am STILL so young, I do a zillion things at once, travel the world to write about it, do theater, photography, play hockey, cook, whatever it takes to keep going, keep moving, keep the rust from forming and the Grim Reaper from drawing a solid bead on me. And I thought how ridiculous, me, the AARP, come on, really? What’s next, will I turn into my father and start buying Sansa-Belt stretch pants from the back of magazines and pulling them up to my nipples? It says their records show I haven’t yet registered for the valuable benefits of membership—even though I am fully eligible. That’s depressing. To be fully eligible means turning 50. 50!!! I thought 50 was the new 40, a new math that flummoxes me. Really, so is 10 the new in utero? It has to stop somewhere. Anyway, part of the sales pitch in the letter says for my 16 bucks a year I get “AARP The Magazine,” with “trustworthy” information about work, money, health and family. Nothing about Sans-a-Belt pants. What the hell?

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It says I get discounts on groceries, dining, travel and shopping. So I guess I won’t turn into one of those annoying old people with little plastic change purses that open when you squeeze them (if they can muster the strength) that they rummage through with bony old fingers looking for exact change while you shift from foot to foot behind them waiting for them to finish or die, whatever comes first. It also says joining helps strengthen Social Security, protects Medicare, pension and retirement benefits and fights age discrimination for all. Way too political for me, thanks.

Do I join and admit the aging process or not join and spit in the face of it? Oh, and then this p.s., with their capital letters, not mine: “Return the form above to receive a FREE INSULATED TRAVEL BAG.” Insulated travel bag? What, to carry your spare insulin and/or kidney? Anyway, I’m torn. Do I join and admit the aging process or not join and spit in the face of it (not drool in the face of it, I’m not that old yet)? So I went online to look around the AARP site. Well, they do put out a pretty damn fine magazine. I’ve read it before, at my parents house (I swear it’s where my dad got his stretch pants), and the writing is good, professional, timely, helpful. Just looking at

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the latest issue..hmmm, Tommy Lee Jones and Meryl Streep on the cover, I love them both, Jones is an incredible actor and so’s Streep, in addition to being still gorgeous at 63. What else…holy crap, Tom Cruise is turning 50? Seriously? I didn’t know. And there’s whole-grain recipes, helpful, helpful. Oh look, Dr. Oz’s tips for dealing with pain without drugs, I’m all for that, we, I mean, too many old people pop pills like fat kids pop M&Ms, I’m all for less support of the deep-pocketed pharmaceutical companies. Oh, look, “Olympians, Where are They Now?” Mary Decker, that hot runner who got Budd-ended out of the ’84 Olympic gold, she’s 53? No way. Carl Lewis, Olympian of the Century, 51? You coulda knocked me over with a hurdle. Mark Spitz, my generation’s answer to Michael Phelps…is 62? OK, I’m leaping out of the pool right now. Checking out member benefits. Whoa, $50,000 in term life insurance, no physical, nice. Geek Squad tech support and guidance at a discount, always a plus for us techno-dopes. Wow, saving up to 49 percent on theater and soda at the movies, which just means less price gouging? And 20 percent off at Denny’s? Well, there had to be a downside, right? You should get money for not going into a Denny’s. Gotta admit, the AARP is looking better all the time. And look, you can apply online for an AARP credit card, and pay the $16 annual fee from that. Sign me up, I can almost feel those Sans-a-Belt pants hugging my nipples now… (The forever-young Paul Kandarian can be reached at pkandarian@aol.com) Paul Kandarian is a lifelong area resident and has been a professional writer since 1982, as columnist, contributor in national magazines, websites and other publications. He is a regular contributor to The South Coast Insider and South Coast Prime Times.


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A resident at the “Inn” enjoys oil painting in the courtyard gardens.

Nick Raffa, from Ma Raffa’s restaurant in Somerset presents a cooking demonstration.

Offering a Careful Balance of Elegance and Affordability....... Imagine, living in a beautiful New England country inn that overlooks scenic Mount Hope Bay. Discover a carefree senior lifestyle that provides a wonderful new feeling of comfort and security. Contrary to living alone in a large oversized house, especially when assistance is needed, the “Inn” at Clifton can be significantly less worrisome and less expensive. At the “Inn” we have no typical apartments—each one is different and prices do vary according to apartment size, location and specific amenities. When compared to other assisted living communities, the “Inn” offers so much more…all of our apartments feature our almost all-inclusive rates, which start at just $89 per day and consist of amenities that many other facilities charge extra for—including.......three meals daily…personal care services…housekeeping and laundry services…medication management…emergency monitoring systems…daily activities…registered nurses to monitor your health and well-being…24-hour CNA staffing…planned transportation…and much, much more....... You have many choices in retirement, make the “Inn” at Clifton one of them. We encourage you to call Diane, make an appointment and learn more about the advantages of the “Inn” at Clifton and our unique Clifton Healthcare Campus.......and compare.

CLIFTON HEALTHCARE CAMPUS CLIFTON ASSISTED LIVING COMMUNITY 444 Wilbur Avenue, Somerset, MA, 02725 508-324-0200 Clifton is a fourth generation local family organization that, since 1954, has been providing the highest quality of healthcare services to your community, which is also our community.

Proud to be celebrating over 50 years of dedication to excellence.