Climbers reach for new heights

By: Barbara Ruben

On Leslie Hulse’s 61st birthday, a couple of years ago, her niece took her rock climbing. As she scrabbled over the neon-colored toe and finger holds toward the top of the wall, Hulse had one thought: “‘Oh my gosh, I’m having so much fun!”Today, the Capitol Hill resident regularly scales the walls at Earth Treks indoor climbing gym in Crystal City, Va.“I... READ MORE

Praising volunteers of all ages

By: Robert Friedman

Janice and George Vanisko were “sort of embarrassed” to be heralded a few months ago by the County Council and the Volunteer Center of Howard County with the Dynamic Duo Award, one of several awards honoring county volunteers. After all, they say, shouldn’t we all spend hours each week helping those in need? Janice, a 76-year-old retired nurse, and her husband George, 82, a retired ... READ MORE

Country music is his passion

By: Carol Sorgen

Mark Brine found his professional calling early on. Today, the 68-year-old writer and singer continues his long career in country music, saying simply (as country singers are apt to), “It’s my life.”Though Brine may not be a household name among casual listeners, country music aficionados know his longstanding reputation in the industry.For example, Pete Smith of Country ... READ MORE

Startups focus on better aging

By: Rebekah Alcalde

Can you imagine a pair of glasses that can brighten and enlarge whatever you happen to be reading or looking at, responding to your voice commands? Or can you imagine a phone app that summons a trained driver in a wheelchair-accessible van to take you to a doctor’s appointment? Or can you visualize the difference it would make to an Alzheimer’s patient if his caregivers had instant... READ MORE

Russian Revolution memoirs

By: Robert Friedman

While Russian President Vladimir Putin is reportedly playing down the 100th anniversary of the Russian Revolution, Ellicott City resident Vladimir Marinich is marking the occasion with the publication of his grandparents’ memoirs of that historic event. Marinich, who is 80 and a retired Howard Community College history professor, has spent the last 10 years translating the... READ MORE

Doing good helps body and soul

By: Carol Sorgen

Ever experienced a “helper’s high?”The term was coined by psychologist Allan Luks, who discovered that the act of helping others releases endorphins (feel-good chemicals in our brain) the same way that vigorous exercise or meditation does.Also, as with exercise and medication, Luks concluded that this biochemical reaction from volunteering results in stress relief, which... READ MORE