Member Stories

Life is about doing the things you’ve always wanted.

Many of our members have had fun and rewarding experiences at Lehigh Valley Active Life. We want to share them with you, and hope they’ll touch and inspire you in the same ways they did us.

Peter Templin

Technology volunteer

“Helping seniors with their technology is a wonderful experience for me.”

“And it’s very rewarding for them, too, “says Peter Templin, who runs our weekly Technology Lab.”Every Wednesday, from 1:00 to 4:00 pm, people come to Peter along with their laptops, tablets and smartphones. He’s amazed how many seniors are already comfortable with technology, and he gladly helps them with any problems they may have, like how to post a photo on Facebook from an Android tablet. Everyone gets individual attention, which makes a difference.

“Recently a woman expressed interest in contacting her family in the Ukraine. I was able to help her install Skype on her tablet, which now allows her to renew family connections.” It doesn’t get much better than that.

Gabriel Manjarrez

Lunch volunteer

“I’ve been coming here for 18 years.”

At age 83, Gabriel is a remarkably energetic and generous man. For the past 18 years, he’s been a lunchtime volunteer in our Elm Street Luncheonette, serving hot meals and keeping everyone well fed and smiling. “I like helping people, and enjoy the whole atmosphere. There are lots of programs here, too. I honestly feel that the lunch program at Lehigh Valley Active Life, where they serve nutritious meals, gives me good health to keep on going.”Gabriel mentions the many activities include dances twice a week, on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday nights. “I’ve gone a few times, but I’m not a very good dancer.” No one seems to mind.

What else is on his plate? “I want to sign up for computer classes. I have a computer at home and want to learn how to do some new things.”

Dolly Fleishman

Art teacher

“With art, you can actually leave a lasting legacy to your children.”

“Artists are very nice people,” says Dolly Fleishman, who’s been teaching art here since 2011. It’s just one of the reasons she enjoys spending Tuesdays teaching two daily classes.

Originally an art student herself, Dolly loves how everyone in her art classes encourages and learns from each other, whether they’re amateurs or professional artists. “I’ve been involved in art for 50 years. It’s very rewarding. And it keeps your mind active.”

Dolly encourages anyone who’s interested to try it now. “Many people don’t know they have the talent until they retire.” Dolly, whose specialty is painting beautiful roses, is also into portraiture, especially of her grandchildren. “I tell people that with art, you can actually leave a lasting legacy to your children. And all mediums are welcome.”

Lois Heffner

Member of “Good Vibrations” chorus

“I love to sing, and I love our chorus!”

According to alto Lois, if you don’t have music in your life, you’re missing something big. “We have so much fun with all kinds of songs—Hoagy Carmichael, patriotic music, Broadway medleys—and our audiences love us!”Not only does Lois sing for the chorus, she also schedules rehearsals and performances. So, thanks to the chorus, Lois gets to keep music central in her life.

Lois finds joy in more than just music at Lehigh Valley Active Life. “I’ve taken water color classes and exercise classes. I’ve done Meals on Wheels, gone to wonderful dances, volunteered for the Blind Association…there’s so much you can do.”

Louise Lockett

Aerobics, Zumba and Cross-training/Conditioning Instructor

“You just keep going until you can’t go anymore!”

“The word ‘old’ shouldn’t even be in the dictionary!”This is what Louise Lockett learns daily from the seniors in the exercise classes she’s taught at Lehigh Valley Active Life for 25 years. Louise is continually impressed by the energy, smiles and positive outlook her students bring to class—even when some suffer pain or illness. One of her students, a 92-year-old woman, volunteers at the local hospital. When Louise asked her what she does there, her nonagenarian pupil said, “I help the old people!”

“My students are my inspiration,” says Louise. “Life doesn’t have to be over just because you’re in your 70s or 80s or 90s. I’m not afraid to get old anymore!

Frank Kubler

ACBL bridge director and player

“Our whole social life is connected to bridge.”

Frank Kubler is no ordinary bridge player. He’s an American Contract Bridge League member with the esteemed Life Master ranking.

“I started playing bridge here 10 years ago, and today I assist the director of the games.” Through bridge, Frank became aware of the many other activities offered. “My wife and I have gone on various day trips sponsored by Lehigh Valley Active Life, including trips to New York, and we’ve also taken a cruise with a group. We’ve made many friends by playing bridge. It seems our whole social life is connected to bridge.”

Frank finds it interesting to see how bridge classes have changed as technology has changed. Players are learning how to use their laptops, and the classes have adapted in-step with the technology.

Many of the regular duplicate bridge players came to Lehigh Valley Active Life as beginners. Yet others have enjoyed the game most of their lives. “Tomorrow I’m playing with a partner who’s 101. Sharp, too.”