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Keynote speaker Werner Spitz M.D.

August 09, 2012
Senior citizens are invited to have some fun and participate in seminars at the seventh annual Senior Fun Day, Wednesday, Aug. 15, at the Grosse Pointe War Memorial. The day's topics focus on keeping the brain fit.

"Three years ago, the sponsors determined that our 'role' was providing a forum to help seniors keep the mind and body healthy," said Julie Corbett, who sits on the event's planning committee. "Since its inception, the educational event was planned to provide safety guidance for seniors. In the first years presentations focused on Internet safety, elder law, Social Security information, home safety and yearly shredding of personal documents as a way to prevent identity theft."

The 2012 event offers the following topics on brain fitness: an update and advances in memory disorders, nutrition and the mind and brain aerobics with Beaumont Health System staff members, Dr. Paula Kim; Peggy Kurza, community education coordinator; and clinical dietitian Shellie Dimovski.

These individuals make up a panel to advise seniors on the latest information, exercise and nutrition for keeping minds healthy, said Suzy Berschback, in Beaumont Hospital, Grosse Pointe's community affairs and advocacy department.

Keynote speaker is Werner Spitz M.D., former Wayne and Macomb counties chief medical examiner.

Spitz has practiced forensic pathology for more than 50 years and is a consultant in forensic pathology and toxicology. He is a professor of pathology at Wayne State University School of Medicine and an adjunct professor of toxicology at the University of Windsor, Canada. Spitz has served on committees investigating the assassination of Pres. John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr., as well as testifying in cases involving Jenny Jones and O.J. Simpson.

Choosing speakers, like Spitz, is critical to the committee.

"Another key element is the selection of speakers which serve as role models for seniors," Corbett said. "A 'Face to Face with Facebook' workshop will be led by Dr. Barbara Ciaramitaro accompanied by her parents, who have learned to use Facebook safely. Spitz, another outstanding role model for seniors, will speak about keeping fit actively by continuing to work at one's job or a community project."

Ciaramitaro is an assistant professor at Ferris State University.

Registration is required for the Ciaramitaro presentation.

Seniors will learn how to keep their brains fit during a day set aside for learning and fun.
Senior Fun Day began with 100 attendees and every year the event has grown in popularity, addressing topics based on survey feedback from attendees, Corbett said.

"While all comment on how much fun the event was with zumba, yoga, free lunch with live entertainment and ice cream at the end of the day," Corbett said, "the surveys also indicated seniors are very interested in how the mind and body ages and ways to sustain mental and physical mobility."

Seventh annual Senior Fund Day 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 15 Grosse Pointe War Memorial 9:30 to 10:15 a.m. - registration 9:45 to 10:15 a.m. - workshop Friends + Family = Facebook Dr. Barbara Ciaramitaro 9:30 to 11 a.m. - Document shredding 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. - Brain fitness 101 panel discussion by Beaumont Hospital health experts update and relay advances in memory disorders, nutrition and brain aerobics noon - lunch and entertainment by The Shades 1 to 2 p.m. - keynote speaker Werner Spitz M.D. To register, call (313) 882-9600
Thus over the years senior fun days partnerships have evolved to include Wayne County Community College District, Services for Older Citizens, Beaumont Health System, Shore Pointe Village Assisted Living Facility, Shore Pointe Nursing Center, Ferris State University, General Shredding and the Grosse Pointe War Memorial.

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