The New Jersey Council of the Blind
The New Jersey Council of the Blind's mission is to strive for the betterment of the blind and visually impaired community. The purpose of this publication is to provide a forum for the free exchange of ideas, opinions and information relative to matters of concern to blind people.
The New Jersey Council of the Blind (NJCB) is a 501 (c) 3 corporation and all gifts are tax deductible. Tax deductible donations should be sent to the Treasurer of NJCB.
Four quarterly newsletters are sent to members free of charge in either large print, audio cassette or E-mail. Non-members may request the NJCB Chronicle by E-mail and for an annual donation of $5.00 may receive copies in large print or cassette. If anyone would like their newsletter by E-mail, please let me know and I will put you on the group list.
In order to make the Chronicle better, we need and appreciate information from our chapters, from individuals and from agencies and other outside groups and organizations which serve the blind and visually impaired. Articles to be included in the NJCB Chronicle, requests for copies of the newsletter or membership information should be sent to NJCB, 520 Ewingville Road, Ewing, NJ 08638. They may also be e-mailed to Ottilie@verizon.net. All information must be received by June 1st to be included in the next issue of the Chronicle.
The NJCB officers are: President Lauren Casey, (609) 912-0657, 153 Franklin Corner Road, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648; First Vice President John Vernon (609) 392-3674; Second Vice President Frank Schack (973) 595-0116; Secretary Ottilie Lucas (609) 882-2446 and Treasurer Bob Lucas (609) 882-2446, 520 Ewingville Road, Ewing, NJ 08638.
The officers at large are: Bill Dougherty (732) 283-1688, Jim Dougherty (732) 549-5826 and Liz Walzer (732) 280-8387.
Tom Jackson passed away peacefully on Wednesday, March 14, 2007. Tom was both a man of faith and a very active person in the blindness community. He was the leader in the support group in Manahawkin called the Hawkin Hawk Eyes. He also held offices in the New Jersey Blind Citizen's Association as well as in The New Jersey Council of the Blind. He chaired the Transportation Committee and worked on both the Convention Committee and Scholarship Committee with NJCB. He was very active in his local Lions' Club as well as the Habitat for Humanity. Tom was a strong advocate in his local community to ensure that Blind issues were addressed. He started a garden program at Camp Happiness in Leonardo. He also had been active with "blind pedestrian" issues in New Jersey as well as nationally. He had attended the Legislative Seminar with ACB in Washington, DC and kept in touch with local, state and federal government officials. Tom made a great impact and will be sorely missed.
Tom's Wife, Barbara, asked that any memorial gifts be given to NJBCA, 18 Burlington Ave., Leonardo, NJ 07737.
Louis Yochim went to be with the Lord at 8:30 PM on March 26, 2007. He was an active person within the blind community most of his life. Blind since childhood, Louis learned the skills necessary to be a productive citizen. He was a vendor with the Business Enterprise Program with CBVI, a guide dog user, and held several offices, including president, in the Mercer County Association of the Blind. He was a beloved husband and father and a good friend to all who knew him.
Louis fought a fight with paralysis that began in 1999. He maintained a cheerful attitude throughout the entire time of his illness and served in whatever capacity he was able. His wife, Susan, supported and cared for him throughout his long illness. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.
We will miss Louis but are comforted that he is no longer suffering.
Hello all from the Monmouth County Association for the Blind. We hope your year has started off well. We are excited about hosting the quarterly meeting of NJCB on Saturday April 28, 2007 in our newly renovated clubhouse. Our clubhouse is located at the corner of Belmar Blvd. and Allenwood Road. Our street address is 3401 Belmar Blvd., Belmar, NJ 07719. Lunch will be served at noon and the general business meeting will be at 1 PM. The day's activities will be over about 4 PM. Due to the recent renovations we are reaching out to our neighboring chapters for any contributions towards the cost of the meeting. All chapters please respond with the number of individuals attending from your group. Our new phone number at the clubhouse is (732) 280-2326. Please leave a message concerning your responses. The Monmouth County Association for the Blind will have our own 50-50 drawing along with candy and toast tong sales. The last meeting we hosted cost us approximately $8.00 per person.
Directions: From the Garden State Parkway:
Get off at exit 98 onto Rt. 138 east.
After first traffic light take jug handle marked Glendola.
Cross Rt. 138 onto Allenwood Rd.
Clubhouse is on the left corner of Allenwood Rd. and Belmar Blvd. Parking is across the street.
From Rt. 195 East:
Route 195 east becomes Rt. 138 east. Follow above directions.
From Rt. 18 South:
Get off at exit to Rt. 195 heading to Trenton
Allenwood Road is at second traffic light.
Clubhouse is on the corner.
From Rt. 35 South:
Turn right onto Belmar Blvd.
Clubhouse is 2 miles on left.
As I'm writing this New Jersey is in the midst of a brutally cold weather front.
I'm looking forward to our next quarterly meeting which will take place in the springtime. The Monmouth County Association for the Blind will host the NJCB quarterly meeting on Saturday, April 28th, at their clubhouse in Belmar from 12 noon until 4 P.M. One of our own members, Bill Dougherty, will be giving us a presentation on the latest digital technology from the National Library Service. Thank you, Bill for keeping us up to date on the latest from NLS. Thank you in advance to Monmouth County for hosting the meeting. Details and directions for this upcoming meeting are in a separate article in this issue. Executive members please stayed tuned for info regarding the next executive board meeting which will be a conference call meeting. I'm planning this for a date and time earlier in April.
Hope everyone stays warm!
Lauren Casey, NJCB President
Start saving your money and put October 26th & 27th on your calendar for our 2007 NJCB Convention. The Convention Committee is busy planning this year's program. Friday evening will offer an interactive self defense class. Saturday's speakers will cover topics such as coordinated transportation, the latest from CBVI and LBH, and much more. Your checks and registration forms should be sent to the Treasurer, Bob Lucas. These forms will be in the July issue of the NJCB Chronicle.
Please gather up some door prizes or prizes to be raffled off. Frank and Joyce Schack will be in charge of the door prizes this year. We thank the Chapters in advance for their faithful contribution of cash gifts for door prizes.
We were able to keep the cost at $25.00 for a continental breakfast and sit down luncheon. The registration will also stay the same at $15.00. You can't get more for your money.
The registration form and more details will be in the July issue of the NJCB Chronicle.
Now is the time to mark it on your calendar.
ACB Affiliate Presidents' Meeting
Bob and Ottilie Lucas
The 2007 ACB Affiliate Presidents' Meeting was held at the Keybridge-Rosslyn Holiday Inn in Arlington, Virginia on February 24th and 25th. President Lauren Casey asked Bob and Ottilie Lucas to represent her and the Council at this meeting. Much of the program will be reported in future issues of ACB's Braille Forum. The theme of the weekend conference was communications and leadership development. Informational highlights of the conference were:
The speakers were both informative and inspirational and provided a foretaste of what can be expected at this year's national convention in Minneapolis.
APPRECIATION TO OUR FAITHFUL VOLUNTEERS
We have had several faithful supporters throughout our 64 years of existence. It is impossible to individually acknowledge all of them but each and every one of us can remember those who have made NJCB what it is today. Our blind members have served faithfully and we know that they worked hard to represent the needs of the blind. We of NJCB want to thank those who are currently volunteering at our conventions, picnics, dinners and other events.
The Heilman family has volunteered at our conventions NJCB quarterly meetings and MCAB picnics for many years. Christine had requested cash gifts for her 16th birthday and donated these funds to Garden State Guide Dog Users. They have also had their close friends, the French's, join them to volunteer at these events. The Mance family has also served at the conventions, NJCB quarterly meetings and Mercer County dinners and picnics for many years. The Taylor family had a garage sale and donated the proceeds to NJCB in addition to volunteering at conventions, quarterly meetings and Mercer County events. The youth group from Central Baptist Church has also served for many years at MCAB picnics and conventions. Many individual friends and family members are faithful volunteers at our numerous events. We thank those who helped in the past and those who are continuing to support us with helping hands, and generous gifts.
If you would like to send in a short article acknowledging a specific volunteer, please do so.
Monmouth County Association for the Blind Anniversary Party
The Monmouth County Association for the Blind will be celebrating their 56th anniversary at a party on Monday April 23rd at the Barkley in Belmar. Doors open at 5:00 PM. Tables are still available. The dinner includes music, dancing, giveaways, raffles and a great time. The cost is $35.00 a person. For more information and to make your reservations please contact the Monmouth County Association for the Blind at (732) 280-2326 before April 16th.
THE ELKS INVITE YOU
The Trenton Elks again invite any blind person in New Jersey and a guest to a dinner on Sunday, May 20th to their hall on Decou Ave. in West Trenton. They are gracious hosts and serve a delicious dinner. We will eat, dance, sing and have a wonderful time. Don't miss it. It is one of the highlights of the year!
Date: Sunday May 20, 2007
Time: 1:00 to 4:00 PM
Place: Trenton Elks Lodge, 42 Decou Ave. in West Trenton (the cross street is Parkway Ave.) (609) 771-0105.
Make your reservations by phoning Bob Rindt at (609) 912-0657 by May 17th.
From the North:
Take Rt. 31 South; turn right onto Rt. 95 South one mile south of the Pennington Circle. Get off at exit 2 turning right toward West Trenton, Turn left at the second traffic light (West Upper Ferry Road). Turn right onto Decou Ave. where road bends right. If you go under the railroad overpass, you've gone too far. The Elks Lodge is on the left where Decou Avenue bends to the right.
Take Rt. 1 South and take Rt. 95 South after Mercer Mall on right and Quaker Bridge Mall on left.
Get off at exit 2 and follow above directions.
From the East:
Take Rt. 195 West to Rt. 295 North, which becomes Rt. 95 South. Get off at exit 2 and follow the above directions.
From the South:
Take Rt. 206, Rt. 130, Rt. 295 or Turnpike north to Bordentown. Pick up Rt. 295 North, which becomes Rt. 95 South. Get off at exit 2 and follow the above directions. Have a safe trip and we hope to see you there.
2007 Summer Reading Club at the NJ Library for the Blind and Handicapped
Children of all ages who like mysteries or the unexpected are invited to join the NJ Library for the Blind and Handicapped's 2007 Summer Reading Program! This year's theme is "Get a Clue @ Your Library" for the younger readers & "YNK -You Never Know @ Your Library" for the older readers.
The reading program begins Friday, June 29, 2007 and continues until August 10, 2007 for 6 weeks. Registration packets will be sent to any student registered with the NJLBH by the end of May to give the children and teens time to sign up and select books to read in advance. Children of all ages are invited to join! Parents are encouraged to read to their children if they aren't old enough to read themselves. Siblings or friends can also be "reading buddies" and read to the children. Participants will receive a list of books related to the theme for various grade levels and incentive gifts throughout the summer to encourage them to keep reading. All readers must call Ms. Sharon Rawlins, Head of Youth Services, throughout the summer to tell her about what books they've read. Anyone who reads at least 1 book and talks to Ms. Rawlins about it, gets a chance to win a raffle prize to be pulled at the big, final event that will be held on Saturday, August 18, 2007 from 11 AM until 2 PM at the NJ Library for the Blind and Handicapped, 2300 Stuyvesant Ave., Trenton, NJ. Readers are required to read 6 books during the reading program. Any reader who reads 6 books and who also creates a piece of artwork such as a poster, bookmark, mobile, etc. based on one of the books they've read from their reading category will get a chance to win a prize for their work. A panel of judges will select the winners. These winners will then get the chance to participate in a raffle drawing for a wonderful grand prize. Last year, the grand prize winner won tickets for a family of four to Six Flags Great Adventure. The prize will be awarded at the big, final event and award ceremony to be held on Saturday, August 18, 2007. There will also be lots of fun programs that day and food for all the readers and their families. More information about what programs will be offered at the final event and award ceremony will be announced in the next issue of Rapsheet, the NJ Library for the Blind and Handicapped's newsletter for children and teens as well as on the website at www.njlbh.org under Youth Services. Registration forms and information packets will be sent out to any child registered with NJLBH at the end of May. They can also check out the library's website at www.njlbh.org under Youth Services for more information closer to the date.
Mercer County Association of the Blind Picnic
The Mercer County Association of the Blind's picnic will be at the Lucas' on Saturday, July 14th, 2007 from 12 PM to about 5 PM. There is always lots of homemade food, "Music by Ira" and lots of laughs. Let Bob or Ottilie know if you are planning to come. Call: (609) 882-2446 or e-mail Ottilie@verizon.net before July 7.
Directions will be in the July issue of the Chronicle.
New Jersey to Georgia and Florida and Back
November 25 through December 7
Linda Salzman gave an account of her experiences traveling with her sister from New Jersey to Georgia and then throughout Florida and back. She was pleased by the accommodations such as the use of wheelchairs in airports and in Disney World. Disney had cassette tape and Braille information as well as relief areas for guide dogs. Linda was able to go on rides in Epcot and the Magic Kingdom. They made every accommodation possible and Linda had a fun time. Linda did not find Universal Studios as accessible. She did not feel that they met her needs as a blind person.
Linda and her sister traveled to southern Florida to visit an aunt. She commented that the Turnpike was very expensive. They took Route 95 back north. Linda also spent some time at her sister's farm in Georgia before and after the car trip to Florida. The visit was very relaxing and enjoyable. She said that the limousines that took her to and from the airport in New Jersey were excellent and saw that her needs were met.
Linda enjoys traveling and is looking forward to a cruise on the Norwegian Spirit in May to the Eastern Caribbean. She will let us know about her experiences in a future issue.
Gmail for Everyone. Since Google introduced Gmail to the public back in 2004, it has been an invitation only service. Google has announced that now anybody can get a Gmail account, no invitation required. All you have to do is visit mail.google.com and create an account. You'll just need to fill in a couple pieces of information, agree to their terms and click on the "I accept. Create my account" button. If you use Outlook Express or another desktop email client, you can still get your Gmail messages.
Free Knitting Lessons. Eileen Scrivani is interested in teaching blind people in NJ how to knit. She would give lessons free of charge, but they would have to cover the cost of supplies (needles & yarn, etc.). Transportation can be an issue, but Access Link operates in her area. Contact her for directions, to set up day & time, & discuss materials that would be needed. Her E-mail Address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blind Dating Service. The Love Is Blind website is a dating service for the blind and visually impaired. Their web address is http://www.luvisblind.net.
Buy, Sell and Trade Assistive Technology. AT Bay is a new Florida-based website where people can buy, sell and trade assistive technology (AT for short). If you have used assistive technology devices stored for lending out or donating, list them on AT Bay. If you are interested in listing equipment for selling or trading go to http://atbay.faast.org/ AT Bay is a program of the Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology, Inc.
RFB&D GOES EXCLUSIVELY DIGITAL. Effective July 1, 2007, RFB&D will STOP issuing and distributing materials on cassette tape. Thereafter, all materials distributed by RFB&D in an aural format will use the Digital Talking Book (DTB) format, which requires a DTB reader. There are several hardware and software DTB readers, including free software readers, available, a list which can be found at
http://www.hicom.net/~oedipus/books/dtb.html. For more information about RFB&D's "Go Digital!" initiative deadline, consult the following 2 URLs, which are encased in brackets, in case your mail client causes either URL to wrap)
Donations wanted. Braille magazines, religious books, used books in Braille or large print, Braille paper, Braille and talking watches, talking calculators, slate and stylus, white canes and other Braille materials. Please send to:
National Society of the Blind
Central Braille Library Service
Post Box 42 G.P.O. 9000
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
Thursday, April 19, 2007: Mercer CAB April meeting at the Trinity United Methodist Church at 1985 Pennington Road from 7:30 to 9:30 PM. A guest speaker will discuss emergency preparedness. Call (609) 882-2446 for further details.
Saturday, April 28, 2007: NJCB quarterly meeting at the Monmouth County Association for the Blind's Club House. A guest speaker from the New Jersey Library for the Blind and Handicapped will discuss the new digital player. See meeting notice for details and directions.
Thursday, May 17, 2007: Mercer CAB Meeting from 7:30 to 9:30 PM.
Sunday, May20, 2007: Annual Elks Dinner at the Trenton Elks on Decou Avenue in West Trenton (See above article).
Saturday, June 2, 2007: Friends of the Library meeting at the Library for the Blind and Handicapped from 10 AM to 1 PM.
Saturday, June 2, 2007: GSGDU meeting at the Library from 1 to 3 PM. Call Jean Cannella at (609) 587-3212 for more details.
Thursday, June 21, 2007: Mercer CAB last meeting before summer recess.
Saturday, July 14, 2007: Mercer CAB picnic at the Lucas'. See above article.
Saturday, July 21, 2007: NJCB Quarterly Meeting at Camp Happiness in Leonardo. Watch for further details in July issue.
Saturday, October 13, 2007: The New Jersey Library's Fall Festival NJLBH, 2300 Stuyvesant Avenue, Trenton, NJ 08618. Details will be posted on their website closer to the time.
Friday and Saturday, October 26 & 27, 2007: The Annual NJCB Convention at the Palmer Inn in Princeton. Watch for details in future issues.
NOTE: Disclaimer. The views and opinions expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of the New Jersey Council of the Blind officers and/or members. The editor reserves the right to edit articles submitted for both space and content.