Taking a class might be the way to get the spring season off to a great start. There are plenty of options to choose from. Take one new class or several.
A popular avenue for learning experiences is the Quest program at Walla Walla Community College. Right now the staff and instructors are gearing up for spring quarter. The new quarter's Quest Social will be from 3-5 p.m. April 1. Attendees can come to the social, enjoy refreshments, meet the instructors and learn about their classes.
Classes are also offered at the YWCA. These have ranged from gardening and baking to dancing. Call to check on classes being scheduled.
There are also plenty of exercise-oriented classes at the YMCA. According to Robin Sherrod, adult fitness program director, these classes are increasing in popularity. "We have more active older adults now than ever before. The doctors are telling people they need to get moving," Sherrod said. "We have a lot of fitness programs for active older adults and specialty classes like Body Recall." There are also medically supervised light cardio classes for those recovering from heart related illness. Sherrod said the swimming pools, both warm and cooler, offer possibilities for older adults. "People with arthritis often enjoy the warm water pool," she said. There's plenty of interest in the gentle and extra gentle Yoga Fit classes and popular Wii bowling. According to Sherrod, a fitness class can benefit a person in many ways, including a sense of well being and as a way to meet others.
Active older adults who love sports now have ways to get involved again. Also at the YMCA, Susan Anfinson, senior adult programing specialist, has combined social events and sports to create new opportunities. "It just expanded into Senior Sports," Anfinson said. "We are looking toward July for the Washington State Senior Games." Seniors can get involved in the sports held at the games: there's an assortment including racquetball, pickle ball, race walking, golf, tennis, running, cycling and others. If there's enough people interested they can form a team and go to the Washington State Senior Games. "This helps people stay active and fit, get involved with sports, meet people and really have some fun," she said.
The Center at the Park in conjunction with Walla Walla Community College holds a variety of classes including tai chi, aerobics, watercolors and story writing. Participants can learn new skills, stay fit and have social time, as well.
The City of Walla Walla offers classes that include everything from cooking, jewelry making, photography and paper art to pencil sketching. Classes are taught at Carnegie Center, 109 S. Palouse St. Angela Potts, recreation coordinator with the city said, "What I've been hearing from people is that these are things they've always wanted to try and never had the opportunity. Many of them are in their 50s and 60s and they are excited about doing something they've always wanted to do." While trying something new can be scary, venturing into the unknown with others might be easier. "I think being in a class situation is less intimidating," Potts said. There's also a variety of ages in the adult classes. "It goes from 16 on up. The oldest that I know of is 72."
Classes on a variety of subjects are available if you want to expand your range of talents.
Karlene Ponti can be reached by calling 509-526-8324 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At a glance
- Quest program information, 509-527-4561; registration, 509-527-4443.
- YWCA: 509-525-2570
- YMCA: 509-525-8863.
- City of Walla Walla parks And Recreation Department: www.ci.walla-walla.wa.us or 509-527-4527