By Patrick Lacombe
The Belton Journal
The annual Senior Expo was held Tuesday, and it was standing room only as people from Belton and surrounding areas packed the exhibition hall at the Bell County Expo Center.
The theme for this years expo was “The Roaring Twenties,” and exhibitors wore era-appropriate attire. This year’s Expo had so many booths that the lobby area was used for the spillover. Seniors were able to get everything from flu and pneumonia shots and blood pressure checks courtesy of Scott and White hospital to advice on living wills and other legal matters.
“Everybody from six months old and up should get a yearly flu shot,” Steven Lozano, R.Ph. with Scott and White Healthcare, explained said. “So far we have given about 75 to 80 flu shots and about 20 pneumonia shots, and we still have about an hour to go.”
Upstairs, seniors listened to Dr. Catherine McNeal talk about Cardiovascular Disease and ways to prevent it. Dr. McNeal, Director of Cardio Rehab at Scott and White hospital, also answered questions from the audience about exercise, diabetes, smoking, and proper eating habits.
“I really enjoyed the doctor’s lecture,” Ruth Borgan of Temple said. “It helped me identify some things that me and my husband are doing wrong. I think everyone got some benefit out of this.”
In the Exhibition Hall, Raymond Stiers visited the Body Of Christ Community Clinic booth and picked up literature listing the eligibility requirements to attend the clinic.
“I never knew such a place existed,” Stiers said. “This is actually for my mom, who is disabled and on Social Security, so I hope she can meet the criteria to get help with her diabetes.”
Jerolyn Mcintyre, a volunteer at the clinic’s booth said, “We need more volunteers to help at the clinic. We have a huge case load and we need everything from receptionists to dentists and doctors to help out.”
Bill Furrer, owner of Miracle Method, Temple/Waco/Killeen was manning his booth demonstrating how they refinish baths and kitchens. On display he had a full size bathtub that was converted to an easy access tub by removing a portion of the side so that there was no stepping over to get into the bath.
“We can take any bathtub and convert it to an easy access, no matter if it’s a cast iron, fiberglass or steel tub,” Furrer said. “We make safety modifications by adding safety handles and non slip surfaces.”
Heather Bailey with the Texas State talking book program was busy explaining the program to patrons.
“We serve people of all ages and disabilities,” Bailey said. “We have books in Braille for the visually impaired, books on tape for people with low vision and we even have an Apple app so you can download books onto your phone. We are located in the State library in Austin, but we are also a part of the Library Of Congress.”
Lennie Kostokski of Belton was excited for the program.
“My wife can hardly see anymore so she listens to books on tape,” he said. “It’s a godsend because she has always been an avid reader.”
There were also plenty of door prizes given away, and there was a contest for vendors having the best booth.
The judges awarded Integrity Rehab and Home Health with the best booth award. In return for their hard work in helping make this year’s expo a success, they will receive a free booth space at next year’s event.
“It is an honor to be picked for the best booth at the show,” Dr. Oliver Miller, business consultant for the clinics said. “We were really surprised when they told us, and we thought they were kidding because we didn’t know they were having the contest.”
Integriy Rehab has clinics in Killeen, Copperas Cove and Harker Heights.
“We will be opening a new clinic in Salado in January,” Miller said. “We have come up with a cure for incontinence using physical therapy. We have a test that measures muscle strength and it tells us which muscles need therapy.”
All in all, the Senior Expo was a success. We look forward to seeing each one of you again next year.