Nearly 1,000 Local Residents Learn about Local Resources at Sen. Lesser's Second Annual "Thrive After 55" Wellness Fair

SPRINGFIELD — Nearly 1,000 area residents turned out to Senator Eric P. Lesser’s second annual “Thrive After 55 Wellness Fair” on Friday, June 15 to learn about local resources available to help them plan for retirement. “I’m thrilled we were able to showcase the services available to people in Western Massachusetts again this year,” said Sen. Lesser. “There are a lot of questions people have at this time in their lives, from planning their healthcare to their housing to their future finances, and our goal was to help provide some of the answers to these challenging questions.”

This year’s fair was held at Springfield College and sponsored by Health New England, whose representatives were on hand to answer questions about applying for Medicare and other services. New England Dermatology and Trinity Health New England also served as sponsors. Prime Magazine, 22 News, The Republican and WMAS served as media sponsors of the fair.

In all, 50 organizations participated, each with a booth to share pamphlets and other materials about their services, from AARP to the City of Springfield’s Office of Elder Affairs to Baystate and Mercy medical centers.

In addition to information, there were also more than 30 raffle prizes and four interactive presentations.

A representative from the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office delivered a seminar on avoiding frequently-used scams, and local attorney Todd Ratner of Bacon Wilson gave a presentation on elder law.

Donna Champman, Associate Professor of Nutritional  Sciences at Springfield College, offered nutrition recommendations and suggestions for eating healthy. Shelia Magalhaes, owner of Heartsong Yoga Center in East Longmeadow, returned this year to lead the auditorium in a popular yoga session, explaining exercises that could be done while sitting for those with disabilities.

Sen. Lesser plans to hold the fair again next year.