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Community Center!

Welcome!

Vision Loss Resources offers monthly recreational, educational, and social activities to our clients with vision impairment or blindness. From a private tour of a museum, to dinner club at a favorite restaurant; from card games and book clubs to dance lessons, knitting, quilting, and pottery, we are interested in just about everything!

Would you like to join the fun? Read on! If you’re new to our services, please schedule an appointment with one of our specialists by calling (612) 871-2222 or (651) 224-7662.

Community Center Calendar, March and April 2017

March: Calendar Grid of Activities or Listing of Activities

April: Calendar Grid of Activities or Listing of Activities

Register, Questions, and Cancellations: Call or Email 612-843-3439   rsvp@vlrw.org

To listen to an audio version of the calendar, call the Activity Line at 612-253-5155.

RSVPing for events in April will begin 7:00 AM on Monday, March 27th.

Please RSVP for all activities every month. We ask that you RSVP at least 3 working days prior to event to ensure that we have enough registered participants, supplies, and volunteers.

VLR Severe Weather Hotline: 612-284-8107

*Abbreviations: MPLS=Minneapolis, SP=St Paul

3/1 (W): 3Fs: Fabric, Fiber, and Friends

1:00-3:30. In MPLS. No charge.

Do you enjoy knitting, crocheting, quilting, or creative

hobbies? Then come in and bring your own project to work on as you enjoy the company of others. This group also meets on the 8th, 15th, 22nd, and 29th.

3/2 (TH): 500 Cards

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Enjoy some coffee and cards. Also meets on the 23rd.

3/3 (F): Outing: Cathedral of Saint Paul

12:45-2:15. Cost: $5.00, which will be given to the Cathedral as a free will donation.

Join us for a tour of the Cathedral of Saint Paul. Each year, this historical landmark welcomes over 200,000 guests and visitors, and it is recognized as one of the most prominent buildings in the city and as a center of spiritual worship. This will be a guided tour with a Cathedral docent, so we will be seated and also be walking around to learn about the history of this beautiful structure. Please make sure to plan your pick-up ride for 2:15pm-2:30pm. Space limited.

Address: 239 Selby Ave, Saint Paul, MN 55102

3/6 (M): Games Extravaganza

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Come for lively fun with board and trivia games. There’s plenty of time for games, laughter, conversation, and a light snack.

3/7 (T): Tech: iPhone 101 – Making Calls and Using Siri

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $10.00

Need to learn some iPhone basics, such as making phone calls and using Siri? This is the beginner’s class for you. The first hour is instruction, and the last hour is reserved for questions. Have your Apple password on hand!

3/7 (T): DeafBlind Beading

4:00-7:00. In SP. Cost is $5 for the month, plus your kit.

This is an arts and crafts group for DeafBlind consumers. Support staff (SSPs) are provided. Also meets on the 14th, 21st, and 28th.

3/8 (W): Reader’s Choice Book Club

1:00-2:30. In MPLS. No charge.

The Navajo code talkers of World War II are the subject of our two books for this month. Navajo Code Talkers by Nathan Auseng (DB036463) and Windtalkers by Max Collins (DB057132).

3/8 (W): Bingo

5:00-7:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Everyone loves Bingo! Bring your friends and family for a night that is sure to be fun.

3/9 (TH): Alumni Group

12:30-2:00. In MPLS. No charge.

Recent VLR Rehabilitation Program Alumni – bring a dish to pass and join us for a potluck lunch! Listen to other VLR rehab alumni and share around topics of blindness, advocacy, education, employment, and living the life you want!

3/9 (TH): Vision Speaks Communication & Speaking Group

2:00-3:30. In MPLS. No charge.

Improve your speaking and communication skills in a fun, supportive group setting! We will be seeking out opportunities in the community to speak about VLR and educate individuals about vision loss. If you attended last month’s meeting, please remember to come prepared with your completed assignment from the month before. New people are always welcome, and no previous speaking experience is necessary.

3/13 (M): Walking Group

9:00-11:30. No charge.

Come join your friends as we walk for an hour, break for coffee and conversation, then walk for another hour at your own pace, paired with your own volunteer. It’s a fun, easy way to get up and moving! Space limited. Address: Door 13, Southdale Mall, Edina

3/13 (M): Hearts

12:00-2:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Come in and enjoy some coffee and cards.

3/14 (T): Movie Matinee

1:00-3:15. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Join us for a fun movie matinee, with popcorn. We will be playing the audio-described movie “Julie & Julia,” starring Academy Award winner Meryl Streep and based on two true stories. Julia Child’s story of her start in the cooking profession is intertwined with blogger Julie Powell’s 2002 challenge to cook all the recipes in Child’s first book. “Julie & Julia” intertwines the lives of two women who, though separated by time and space, are both at loose ends until they discover that with the right combination of passion, fearlessness and butter, anything is possible.

3/15 (W): Continuing Education

11:15-12:30. In MPLS. No charge.

Dacia VanAlstine from the Department of Employment and Economic Development will join us to discuss the Connect 700 Program and the Supported Worker Program. These two programs were revamped, due to an executive order by Governor Dayton, to help increase state employment of individuals with disabilities. Dacia will explain both of these programs and how they may help individuals with vision loss secure jobs, job coaching and other supports.

3/16 (TH): Calendar Assembly

9:00-11:00. In MPLS. No charge. Treats served.

Join the many helping hands that work together to assemble the Community Center Calendar mailing.

3/16 (TH): Craft: St. Patrick’s Day Pot of Gold

1:00-3:00. In SP. Cost: $5.00

Join us for a fun and festive craft to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. We will be painting pots, decorating them for St. Patty’s Day and filling them with some “gold” treats. Give them as a gift or keep them for yourself to celebrate this lucky holiday. St. Patty’s Day snacks will also be provided. Join us for a fun and crafty afternoon. No crafting experience necessary. Space is limited.

3/20 (M): Cribbage

12:00-2:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Come in and enjoy some coffee and cards.

3/21 (T): Lunch Bunch

11:30-1:30.

Please join us for a festive lunch, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, at O’Gara’s Bar & Grill in St. Paul. If the O’Gara name isn’t Irish enough, certainly the décor is with items from Ireland throughout the establishment. O’Gara’s is known for serving excellent food and drink at a fair price, and it is the oldest family owned operation of its kind in Saint Paul still at the original location. Enjoy soups, salads, sandwiches and traditional Irish fare such as Shepard’s Pie. Entrees and sandwiches start at $10. Due to the size of our group, gratuity will automatically be added to each bill. Please plan your pick-up ride for 1:30pm – 1:45pm.

Address: 164 N Snelling Avenue, Saint Paul 55104

3/23 (TH): Highlight Event: Wine Tasting at VLR

2:00-3:30. In MPLS. Cost: $5.00

Our friends at Zipps Liquor will join us at our Minneapolis location to provide a fun wine tasting. We will sample a variety of wines and learn all about them and the wine making process. Some tasty snacks will also be available while we sip our wine. If you like any of the wines we taste, they will have order forms available for you to purchase bottles, and they will then deliver them back to VLR for you to pick-up, on a later date.

3/23 (TH): Fitness is Fun!

5:30-6:30. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Get your body moving in our fitness center and stay on track with your fitness goals. Work on the various equipment and get guided instruction and ideas on how to improve your health through exercise. All levels of experience are welcome!

3/24 (F): Pottery

10:00-12:00. In SP. Cost: $5.00

Join us as we work on hand-built clay projects. Come make plates, cups, or create whatever comes to the imagination. No experience necessary.

3/28 (T): Tech: iPhone 101 – Accessibility Features

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $10.00

This is a beginner’s iPhone class for learning about the basic accessibility features on your device. The first hour is instruction, and the last hour is reserved for questions. Have your Apple password on hand!

 

April 2017

4/3 (M): Games Extravaganza

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Come for lively fun with board and trivia games. There’s plenty of time for games, laughter, conversation, and a light snack.

4/4 (T): Beginning Tech 101: Basic iPhone/iPad Text

Messaging

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $10.00

A perfect class for iPhone/iPad beginners! This class, we will focus on becoming more comfortable using your device to do text messaging with VoiceOver and gestures. The first 1.5 hour is instruction, and the last half hour is reserved for questions. Have your Apple password on hand!

4/4 (T): DeafBlind Beading

4:00-7:00. In SP. Cost is $5 for the month, plus your kit.

This is an arts and crafts group for DeafBlind consumers. Support staff (SSPs) are provided. Also meets on the 11th18th, and 25th.

4/5 (W): 3Fs: Fabric, Fiber, and Friends

1:00-3:30. In MPLS. No charge.

Do you enjoy knitting, crocheting, quilting, or creative hobbies? Then come in and bring your own project to work on as you enjoy the company of others. This group also meets on the 12th, 19th, and 26th.

4/5 (W): Balance Class

2:00-3:00. In SP. Cost: $3.00

This low-intensity, one-hour class is designed to improve your physical balance. Come and join us to increase your energy, fuel your personal health, and strengthen your balance. Work at your own pace. You will have a good time. Whether you are a beginner or not, the class is open to all levels. Also meets on the 19th.

4/5 (W): Supper Club

5:00-7:00.

Please join us for dinner at Obb’s Bar & Grill in St. Paul. Obb’s is known for their all-American, old time neighborhood atmosphere, and they’ve been on the east side of St. Paul since 1932. A proud family owned restaurant for over 50 years, their kitchen is ‘world’ renowned for their full dinner menu featuring prime rib, mouthwatering sirloin steaks and broasted chicken. Entrees start at $10.95. Due to the size of our group, gratuity will automatically be added to each bill.

Address: 1347 Burns Ave., St. Paul, 55106

4/6 (TH): 500 Cards

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Enjoy some coffee and cards. Also meets on the 27th.

4/6 (TH): Outing: Twins Game

11:30-4:00. Cost: $5.00

Join us for a fun day at Target Field where the Twins will take on the Kansas City Royals. First pitch is at 12:10pm. ADA/minimal steps and shaded seats have been requested. Listening devices will be available at guest services booths in the ballpark on a first-come, first-served basis. We’ll meet at Gate 14. Limited tickets available. Please plan your pick-up ride for 4pm-4:15pm.

Address: Gate 14 – 326 North 7th Street, Minneapolis, 55403

4/10 (M): Walking Group

9:00-11:30. No charge.

Come join your friends as we walk for an hour, break for coffee and conversation, then walk for another hour at your own pace, paired with your own volunteer. It’s a fun, easy way to get up and moving! Space limited.

Address: Door 13, Southdale Mall, Edina

4/10 (M): Hearts

12:00-2:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Come in and enjoy some coffee and cards.

4/11 (T): Advanced Mobile Tech: Video Apps

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $10.00

Mobile video communication has become popular. This class will cover the basic requirements for getting started with free video calling services on your iPhone/iPad that you can enjoy with friends and family members. The primary emphasis will be on the most popular apps such as Skype, Facetime, and Viber that are used on mobile devices. The first 1.5 hour is instruction, and the last half hour is reserved for questions. Have your Apple password on hand!

4/11 (T): Movie Matinee

1:00-3:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Join us for a fun movie matinee, with popcorn. We will be playing the audio-described movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2”. This movie is the long-awaited follow-up to the highest-grossing romantic comedy of all time. The entire returning cast of favorites is back. The film reveals a Portokalos family secret that will bring the beloved characters back together for an even bigger and Greeker wedding.

4/12 (W): Reader’s Choice Book Club

1:00-2:30. In MPLS. No charge.

For this month, we will take a cursory look at the field of Freemasonry and some of its symbolism and rituals. We will be reading Angels and Demons by Dan Brown. (DB051799).

4/12 (W): Bingo

5:00-7:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Everyone loves Bingo! Bring your friends and family for a night that is sure to be fun.

4/13 (TH): Alumni Group

12:30-2:00. In MPLS. No charge.

Recent VLR Rehabilitation Program Alumni – bring a dish to pass and join us for a potluck lunch! Listen to other VLR rehab alumni and share around topics of blindness, advocacy, education, employment, and living the life you want! We’ll continue the tradition begun last month of time for “Plus and Minus”–the good things and challenges in the past month. No need to speak, but good to listen.

4/13 (TH): Vision Speaks Communication & Speaking Group

2:00-3:30. In MPLS. No charge.

Improve your speaking and communication skills in a fun, supportive group setting! We will be seeking out opportunities in the community to speak about VLR and educate individuals about vision loss. If you attended last month’s meeting, please remember to come prepared with your completed assignment from the month before. New people are always welcome, and no previous speaking experience is necessary.

4/17 (M): Cribbage

12:00-2:00. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Come in and enjoy some coffee and cards. 

4/18 (T): Beginning Tech 101: Settings and Apple App Basics

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $10.00

Another perfect class for iPhone beginners! We will review the Settings and Apple Apps in your device and optimize them while using VoiceOver. The first 1.5 hour is instruction, and the last half hour is reserved for questions. Have your Apple password on hand!

4/18 (T): Outing: Landmark Center

12:45-2:15. Cost: $5.00

We will be exploring the beautiful Landmark Center in downtown St. Paul. Join us for this interesting tour that will focus on the building’s history, architecture, restoration, preservation, and famous and infamous personages. We will tour the beautifully restored courtrooms and Cortile and check out the gift shop at the end of the tour. Please plan your pick-up ride for 2:15pm-2:30pm.

Address: 75 West 5th Street, St. Paul, 55102

4/19 (W): Continuing Education

11:15-12:30. In MPLS. No charge.

Dr. Chris Palmer will join us to explain how he helps people enhance their remaining vision. He is a Low Vision Optometrist and a Fellow of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists. Dr. Palmer helps to get people DOING by enhancing their remaining vision. He specializes in magnification, specifically hands-free devices. He works with patients to customize devices to the individual’s needs and to their individual glasses prescription versus being a one-size-fits-all.

4/20 (TH): Calendar Assembly

9:00-11:00. In MPLS. No charge. Treats served.

Join the many helping hands that work together to assemble the Community Center Calendar mailing.

4/20 (TH): Craft: Pipe Cleaner Tulips & Daffodils

1:00-3:00. In SP. Cost: $5.00

Join us for a fun afternoon of creating unique spring flower arrangements using colored pipe cleaners. These sweet flowers in small pots will brighten any room and are great springtime gifts for friends and family. Snacks will be served. Come for a fun, creative afternoon. No experience is necessary. Space is limited.

4/25 (T): Advanced Tech: Understanding Facebook

10:00-12:00. In MPLS. Cost: $10.00

This class will include Understanding Facebook, Privacy Settings, Exploring the Facebook Homepage, and Profile Page. This class is for people who want to set up a Facebook account or review beginning Facebook. To set up a Facebook account you will need to have an email account and know the password. If you already have a Facebook account, please bring your password with you. The first 1.5 hour is instruction, and the last half hour is reserved for questions.

4/25 (T): OrCam Presentation

1:00-2:00. In MPLS. No charge.

A representative is coming to demonstrate the OrCam device and all it can do. The OrCam is a portable device with a smart camera mounted on the frames of your eyeglasses to assist people who are visually impaired.  OrCam recognizes text, products, and faces, and speaks to you through a mini earpiece. For a lower price, try the read-mode only device. OrCam now has a rent-to-own program that will help with affordability. You will have a chance to try the device yourself!

4/27 (TH): Fitness is Fun!

5:30-6:30. In MPLS. Cost: $1.00

Get your body moving in our fitness center and stay on track with your fitness goals. Work on the various equipment and get guided instruction and ideas on how to improve your health through exercise. All levels of experience are welcome!

4/28 (F): Pottery

10:00-12:00. In SP. Cost: $5.00

Join us as we work on hand-built clay projects. Come make plates, cups, or create whatever comes to the imagination. No experience necessary.

COMING ATTRACTIONS AT VLR:

Save the Date! 104th Woman’s Club VIP Luncheon –

Ladies, you’re invited to the Woman’s Club of Minneapolis for the annual luncheon on Thursday, May 4th. Official invites will be sent at the end of March. Stay tuned!

Independent Living Skills Course at VLR-

Need some help learning how to manage your vision loss? Come learn a wide variety of low vision skills and adaptive techniques taught by experienced and encouraging instructors. Meet new people who, just like you, are looking to remain independent and meet others with vision loss.

This course covers the Emotional Impact of Vision Loss, Orientation and Mobility, Technology and Communication, Organization & Labeling, Writing, Ways to Enhance Remaining Vision, Food Prep Techniques, and Money Management. Lunch is provided.

March Dates: March 2nd, 9th, 16th, and 23rd from 10am to 3pm at our St. Paul location

April Dates: April 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th from 10am to 3pm at our St. Paul location.

To register: Call Kristin at 612-843-3415. Ask about transportation options!

Fitness Center at VLR

Did you know there is a fitness center at VLR Minneapolis? Treadmills, elliptical machines, a weight machine, hand-held weights and more are available for you to use during VLR business hours (8:00-4:30 M-F). Cost is $1.00 per visit, paid to the front desk. Important: Before you begin using the Fitness Center, you must sign a liability waiver and have a brief tour of the equipment with a mobility instructor. To set up an appointment, please call the front desk at 612-843-3400.

Concerned about Vision Loss? We Can Help!

Many people experiencing vision loss show some of the following signs: discontinuing activities once enjoyed (like reading the paper, knitting, or going out with friends), trouble reading small print, such as on a medication bottle, difficulty distinguishing colors (mismatched clothes or socks), increased sensitivity to light or glare, and tentative walking (bumping into objects and people, missing steps or falling). Vision Loss Resources is here to help.

Call us at 1-877-567-4944 to learn more about affordable services, including: an Initial Visit with comprehensive, professional evaluation and resources, recommendations on lighting and adaptive equipment, continued instruction on adaptive techniques for living independently, and digital literacy classes for older adults. We do not require a doctor’s referral, health insurance, or a specific diagnosis. We serve anyone in the 9-county metro area whose vision loss impacts their ability to perform the activities they need or want to do.

EVENTS IN THE COMMUNITY:

The Blind Fellowship Outreach

Join a new Twin-Cities based ministry serving people with visual impairments. Be served a delicious meal, hear a Bible study message, meet new friends, and enjoy music or a featured program activity–all free of charge. You will be paired with Volunteers of all denominations who will assist and get to know you. Resource materials and a special gift will also be provided. Please RSVP about 2 weeks prior to an event by calling 612-729-5463.

Address: Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church, 3430 E 51st Street, Minneapolis

Dates: 2nd Saturdays –March 11, etc. from 12:00-2:00

Transportation: South Minneapolis directly on Metro Transit Bus Route #7, at the 51st Street East stop. Volunteers will meet you at the bus stop to escort you to the church. Contact us for alternative transportation if bus/Metro are unavailable to you.

Have questions? Please contact Carol Zemke at: 612-799-5782 or czemke@usa.net

4th Player needed for Nickel Poker

Meets every other Friday. Contact Tom Heinl for more information! 651-489-8609

Senior Center

Senior Center Without Walls – an award-winning program of Episcopal Senior Communities offering activities, education, friendly conversation, and an assortment of classes, support groups, and presentations to seniors.  Each week, seniors across the country can access over 70 groups by phone or online, all from the comfort of home for FREE. Visit www.seniorcenterwithoutwalls.org or call       1-877-797-7299 for more information.

Disabled and Proud Radio Show

A show that brings you insights, ideas, and discussions on disability topics. Many pertinent and practical topics are covered each week. Tune in every Thursday night at 6:30 on KFAI 90.3 FM in Minneapolis, or 106.7 FM in Saint Paul. If you don’t have time to catch us on Thursday night, hear us online at www.kfai.org/disabledandproud. You have the option of hearing the current show, or the previous show. You must have a Real Audio Player downloaded to your machine in order for this to work. In order to express your ideas or comments for future shows, call 612-341-3144, or email: disabledandproud@tcq.net. To receive emails about this show directly, email us. Contacts: Sam Jasmine (Producer) and Charlene Doll (Assistant Researcher)

Announcing the 14th Season Opening of Beep Baseball for the sight-impaired

We welcome those who would like some exercise, fun, companionship, and a little competition to join us this season. Play a fun, adapted version of baseball with a noise-making ball; being visually-impaired doesn’t mean you have to give up on sports! We have players from age 12 to 77. We will start outdoors at Cretin High School in Saint Paul when it gets warm and dry. Please call Coach Dennis Stern at 651-452-5324 or email him at dennisstern@hotmail.com.

COMMUNITY CENTER POLICIES:

RSVP and Cancellation Policy: You must RSVP for all activities. We ask that you RSVP at least 3 working days prior to event to ensure that we have enough registered participants, supplies, and volunteers. Registrants will be notified when classes are canceled due to low enrollment or weather conditions.

RSVP line: 612-843-3439 or rsvp@vlrw.org

VLR Hours: Please schedule your Metro pickups as close to the activity end time as possible. VLR’s hours are 8:00am-4:30pm Monday-Friday (except when there are evening classes and activities). Please schedule your pick-ups before the building closes. Thank you!

Severe Weather Days: Please call the VLR Weather Hotline at 612-284-8107 to see if VLR offices and activities are open for that day. The hotline will be updated by 6:00 AM if VLR is closing for severe weather. Participants who have RSVPd for a class will also be notified.

Refund Policy: All events that need to be pre-paid are marked on the calendar. To hold your spot for these events, we must receive your money. If you need to cancel when a ticket is purchased in advance, you will be charged for the ticket unless someone on the waiting list can take your place. If you need to cancel please call the RSVP line at 612-843-3439 or email rsvp@vlrw.org.

Scholarships: No one is denied participation due to inability to pay. Full and partial scholarships are available. Please leave your scholarship request on the RSVP line.

Visitor Sign-in: Please sign-in and sign-out at the front desk in MPLS.

Photo Policy: When you attend an event at VLR, your image may be recorded for use by VLR. This use may include printed media, social media, or online uses. If you have any questions about this Policy, please contact Iris at VLR: 612-843-3425.

VLR CONTACT INFORMATION:

Christina Tucker–Program Coordinator, Community Services, 612-843-3419, christina@vlrw.org

Jen Roehl– Community Center & Volunteer Specialist

612-843-3421, jen@vlrw.org

Minneapolis Office: 1936 Lyndale Ave S. 55403

Main Line: 612-871-2222

St. Paul Office: 216 S Wabasha St., 55107

Phone: 651-224-7662

Please note: For those being dropped off, parking, or needing an accessible ramp at the Saint Paul office, please use the back entrance (215 Starkey St).

Activity Line: 612-253-5155 to listen to an audio version of the calendar.

RSVP: 612-843-3439 or rsvp@vlrw.org

Website: www.visionlossresources.org