On June 19th, the Aging & Disability Resource Center of Barron, Rusk, & Washburn Counties (ADRC) presents  “Steering into the Skid,” a special program that helps family members, caregivers, local businesses, and the broader community talk about dementia and the most well known form of memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease.  All community members are welcome to attend this free program starting at 11:30 a.m. at Mosaic Telecom, 401 S 1st St, Cameron.  Limited seating available.  Reserve your space by calling 715-537-6225.

“Our ultimate goal,” said facilitator and actor Danette McCarthy, “is to assist community members and leaders to consider new ways to think about memory loss and to become aware of local resources that support families who are dealing with a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.”

This program takes a unique approach to building awareness, sharing information, and inviting open community conversations.  Audience members come together for a luncheon and then watch a play together, followed by a facilitated conversation. 

The play, “Steering into the Skid”, was published in The MemoryCare Plays, a book of three one-act plays compiled and edited by Dr. Margaret A. Noel.  “These three extraordinary plays capture the pain and the joy, the confusion and the clarity, and the challenges and rewards of living with Alzheimer’s disease and caring for someone you love who has the illness,” said Peter V. Rabins, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 

The structure of “Steering into the Skid” is very clever.  Audience members meet Tim and Amanda, played by Twin Cities’ professional actors Jim Pounds and Danette McCarthy.  In 12 short scenes, one per month – starting on New Year’s Eve – and all taking place in Tim & Amanda’s SUV, the audience comes to know this loving couple and bear witness to the early progression of dementia.  As the months pass, the audience sees the subtle changes and adjustments the couple is forced to deal with due to memory loss.

“Steering into the Skid” was part of The Remember Project, which toured the lower St. Croix Valley in the fall of 2015.  To date, over 40 performances and conversations have taken place to address the isolation and fear associated with dementia.  This very unique experience uses theater and conversation to learn and make decisions about the future. 

Hosted by the ADRC, the program is also sponsored by Anthem, Blue Cross Blue Shield.   Free will donations will gladly be accepted to support the DAYBREAK and Happy Day respite programs.  To learn more or to register for the luncheon, play and conversation, please call 715-537-6225 or email: trisha.witham@co.barron.wi.us or visit our website, www.adrcconnections.org.  Registration deadline is June 12th.  Limited seating available.



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