When Older Americans Month was established in 1963, only 17 million living Americans had reached their 65th birthdays. About one-third of older Americans lived in poverty and there were few programs to meet their needs. Interest in older Americans and their concerns was growing, however. In April 1963, President John F. Kennedy's meeting with the National Council of Senior Citizens served as a prelude to designating May as "Senior Citizens Month." Thanks to President Jimmy Carter's 1980 designation, what was once called Senior Citizens Month, is now called "Older Americans Month," and has become a tradition.

Historically, Older Americans Month has been a time to acknowledge the contributions of past and current older persons to our country, in particular those who defended our country. Every year since 1963, May has been a month to appreciate and celebrate the vitality and aspirations of older adults and their contributions to our communities. The theme for Older Americans Month 2013, "Unleash the Power of Age," has never been more fitting. Older Americans are productive, active and influential members of society, sharing essential talents, wisdom and life experience with our families, friends and neighbors.

This year, think about what you can do to "Unleash the Power of Age." Take the opportunity to volunteer your time to support those who are less fortunate, to teach others the skills you've honed over the years or to become involved in civic matters. These are just a few ways you can "Unleash the Power of Age." Stay positive, active and looking forward.

Humdinger Band's final concert

Join us at 3 p.m. Thursday for the final Humdinger Band concert. See the fashions they performed in over the years. Hear the music. Stay for the reception which follows the concert.

Humdinger Band was organized in January 1974 under the leadership of director Pat Porter, retired vocal and instrumental music teacher. At first, practices were held in members' homes until the senior center building was obtained in 1978. At that time, the Humdinger Band began practicing every Monday afternoon.

The Humdinger Band traveled all over southwest Kansas, performing at a variety of events. The band featured a variety of instruments including the organ, drums, banjo, harmonica, melodica, guitar, piano, mandolin, chord organ, violin, keyboard and tambourine.

Please join us for this day dedicated to music and laughter.

Rides to airport

Finney County Transit offers shuttle service to Garden City Regional Airport operating seven days a week for all flights. Cost is $5 per person each way. Passengers wanting to use this convenience should call the transit office, 272-3626, at least 24 hours in advance. Bus arrangements for weekend and early Monday departures should be made before 5 p.m. Friday.

Bus service

Beeline Bus Service, which is operating out of the Finney County Transit office, stops at the Boothill Casino as part of its Dodge City service. Beeline also operates national connecting service to Greyhound Bus Lines in Wichita and Pueblo, Colo. Tickets for both bus lines can be purchased at Finney County Transit, 1008 N. 11th St., or by calling 272-3626.

Thanks for help

Many thanks to the volunteers from Cornerstone Church, RSVP volunteers, Jamie Hitchcock and Duane Riley who delivered Meals on Wheels last week. Are you interested in helping with Meals on Wheels? Substitute drivers are always needed. If you would like to help, call Patti at 272-3620 or 260-6282.

Scheduled activities

Thursday, the TOPS Club will meet at 9 a.m., followed by art class at 10 a.m. Gentle exercises start at 11 a.m. The Ambassador Singers practice at 1 p.m. Skip-Bo begins at 1 p.m. The final concert of the Humdinger Band begins at 3 p.m. Zumba starts at 5:30 p.m. Yoga begins at 6:30 p.m.

Friday, the day begins with line dancing at 8:30 a.m. A nurse from St. Catherine Hospital will be here from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Bridge starts at 12:45 p.m. The monthly covered dish dinner for the Senior Citizens Association begins at 6 p.m. Join us for a program with Johnetta Hebrlee from the Finney County Historical Museum.

Saturday is the RSVP annual brunch at 10 a.m. The pool room is open from 1 to 4 p.m.

Monday begins with walking at 8:30 a.m. Double pinochle begins at 12:30 p.m. Zumba starts at 5:30 p.m. Duplicate bridge starts at 7 p.m.

Tuesday has gentle exercises at 11 a.m. Pitch starts at 12:30 p.m. Bridge begins at 1:15 p.m.

May 8 has line dancing at 8:30 a.m. Library outreach is at 11:30 a.m. Pinochle begins at 12:40 p.m. The regular Wednesday night dance featuring the Calhouns begins at 7:30 p.m. The recommended donation is $5.

Lunch menus

Lunch is served at noon.

Thursday: Bierock casserole, beets, Scandinavian vegetables, rosy applesauce.

Friday: Pepper steak, rice pilaf, carrots, strawberries and pears, wheat bread.

Monday: Meat loaf, au gratin potatoes, winter mixed vegetables, mixed fruit, wheat roll.

Tuesday: Roast turkey, sweet potatoes, green beans, wheat bread, fruit gelatin salad.

May 8: Barbecue beef on bun, potato salad, creamy coleslaw, peaches.

Celebrating 35 years at the Senior Center of Finney County. Check out our website at www.seniorcenterfc.com.