Council on Aging Update

News and Notes, Wednesday November 24, 2021

For all our friends out there who are turning 65 soon, Elder Services is hosting two Medicare Virtual Seminars, the first on  December 1, 2021 at 12:00pm and the second is on December 14, 2021 at 5:30pm.

The seminar will provide the necessary information for those turning 65 to prepare for Medicare and select the appropriate coverage for their individual situation.

Each of these presentations will include topics such as the basics of Medicare, original Medicare, Medigap supplements, prescription drug coverage , deadlines-yes there are. Failure to register for Medicare 3 months before up to 3 months after your 65th birthday there are penalties…and more.

Interested? Visit, “Events and Important Information” link to sign up for one of these virtual Zoom presentations. No computer? Call them at 413-499-0524 for assistance and instruction.

You all know about the annual “Lessons and Carols” event right? Well there are changes to the format this year, surprise surprise…so here they are;

There is only ONE performance this year and the start time is later- at 7:00pm on Sat, Dec 4th. There will be Covid restrictions in place so everyone attending must wear a mask and show proof of vaccination ( unless you have a purple or yellow Williams ID) so bring your vax cards!. 

Capacity in the traditional venue, Thompson Memorial Chapel,  will be limited to 50% (300 people) to allow for social distance spacing. 

In case of excess capacity, there will be a YouTube live-feed streamed on screens in both Griffin Hall (Next to Thompson) with room for 60 people and in Brooks Recital Hall (at Chapin Hall) for 100 people.  Ushers will be on hand to direct people to inside Thompson or to Griffin or Brooks in case of overfill.. 

Now, if there is a serious spread of Covid infections and the College makes a last-minute decision regarding changes to the event,we’ll let you know.  

At least a couple times each year, folks who have medications which require injection have asked us what to do with spent needles, or sharps as they’re called.Well guess what? We have a new site for you to dispose of used needles. Bring them is a safe container, a sharps container they’re called, to Berkshire Harm Reduction at 6 West Main Street in North Adams. Their phone number is 413-398-5603.

Berkshire Harm Reduction is a division of Berkshire Health Systems.They have other services available, syringe education, overdose education, Narcan training and distribution are examples. We’ll try to get them in for a breakfast event sometime!

Next Friday, December 3rd, we’ll be hosting a presentation by the RSVP (Retired Senior Volunteer Program) -these are the folks who provide free rides to medical appointments- so pop in if you’re able. The presentation is free and starts at 9:00 but the French Toast at 8:30 will require a reservation. Call the Council on Aging at 413-458-8250 to reserve or for information.

BCAC’s Heating Fuel Assistance Program  program began November 1st and ends April 30th. Applications are now being accepted. All heating types may be eligible for assistance: oil, propane, kerosene, coal, cord wood, wood pellets, natural gas, electric and even some households who have heat included in their rent. The income guidelines for household sizes from one to seven individuals.. Homeowners and tenants are both eligible to receive fuel assistance as well. If  a household is determined to be eligible for fuel assistance, the household may also be eligible for the Home Weatherization and Furnace Repair and Replacement Programs. For more information, individuals can call BCAC at 413-445-4503  413-663-3014 Monday – Friday between 9am to 3pm; or the status line at 1-866-216-6200. The website is: Dean from BCAC is available here on Tuesday November 30th for interested individuals. Stop by!

Finally, the COA will be closed tomorrow, Thanksgiving and the day after, Friday November 26th.

December begins next week. Who would have thought that? Got your shopping done?

By the way, if you have friends who would like a paper copy of our notes give them our number, or let us know and we’ll contact them. Better yet, tell them to stop by, we’d love to see them!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!


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