Compeer Chatter
April/May 2016
Being in nature boosts your    mental health!

   Spring is a great  season to explore outdoors. Longer, sunny days and mild temperatures make this the perfect time to be in nature.

   Spending time in nature has wonderful, positive effects on our mental health. Sitting outdoors in a garden or on a park bench away from the noises of the city can provide a needed boost to our self-est eem , researchers in England discovered.

   In California, researchers found that walks in nature  -like a paved path in a local park - can help change the negative patterns in our brain. For some of us, our brains have the tendency to "ruminate," brooding over and over again on the same negative thoughts; such broken-record thinking can contribute to poor self-esteem and depression. A walk in the park not only provides great exercise, but also  improves our mental health.
   Getting out into nature is one of the quickest ways we can give our mental health a much needed boost and improve our mood. Put on your sneakers, pack a picnic, and get a dose of Mother Nature!

Go hiking with one of our Compeer volunteers! Richard Gardner leads a hiking group focused on doing wellness activities that promote mental health recovery. You should be able to comfortably walk a mile. Richard's hiking group is located in Berks County and many of his hikes are on the Appalachian Trail. Contact Richard for more information at:    

Activities to do Together!
**Look at the stars!  The Planetarium at Cedar Crest High School offers the program " Astronaut " on Thursday, April 21 at 7pm. Cost is $4 and registration is required by calling Rich at 272-2033 ext. 541

**ValleyFest at Lebanon Valley College is an annual Spring Craft Event with music, food, crafts, and games.  Saturday, April 23rd 10-4pm.

** Palmyra hosts Truck Trek: Food Truck & Arts Fest on Saturday, May 14 from 11-7pm along Cherry Street.

**Fun, food, and entertainment! It's Jonestown's Annual Block Party in the Square on Saturday, May 28 from 5-9pm.
Pick a park!
Coleman's Park (1400 W. Maple St. Lebanon)
 1.6 miles of trails and walk ways, as well as minigolf in the summer.
Lion's Lake Park (Lebanon; take Rt. 72 N, turn right onto Water or Jay Streets).
Benches and a 3/4 mile paved walking loop make this a lovely spot.
South Hills Park (1100 S. Lincoln Ave. Lebanon)
A paved walk ing loop goes through this par- tially wooded park. Picnic Pavilions and      restrooms. 
Quittie Creek Park (536 Bachman Rd. Annville)
Serene nature trails wind their way through this hidden gem. (From Lebanon, take Rt. 422, turn left on Bachman, after Salsa's Restaurant)
The Park at Gov'r Dick   (3283 Pinch Rd. Mt. Gretna)
Hiking at its best! Over 10 miles of trails.
Middle Creek Wildlife Area (100 Museum Rd., Stevens PA 17578)
Over 6000 acres dedicated to wildlife, with many hiking trails
throughout the park.
Lebanon Valley Rail Trails
Flat paved or crushed stone trail. Lebanon trail heads at: 8th Street and Expo Center; Cornwall trail head at Cornwall Rd and Rt. 419
Memorial Lake (Fort Indiantown Gap)
Boat rentals during the summer make this a lovely shaded park. Picnic tables and paths.

Bambi B.  4/3
Cathy F. 4/6
Ann M. 4/19
Prudence G. 4/29
Debra H. 4/29

Kutina C. 5/10
Eleanor B. 5/16
Linda M. 5/17
David R. 5/21
Bret P. 5/25

Compeer Monthly Socials
           Fun and Free Events!
Twice a month, Compeer hosts gatherings for our volunteers and clients, second Wednesday evenings and on the third Thursday afternoon.

  Wed. April 13th 6-8pm-BINGO!
Enjoy an evening out and win some fun prizes!
Location: Area Agency on Aging, 710 Maple St.
Thur. April 21-cancelled (Office closed as staff are away at a conference)

Wed. May 11th 6-8pm -Picnic in the Park
Bring your sandwich  and join us for an evening outdoors! We will provide chips, cookies, and games.
Location: South Hills Park, Picnic Pavilion near Lincoln Ave.
Thur. May 19th 1-2:30pm -Healthy Habits Lunch
The Humane Society of Lebanon County will be our guests. A staff member will be bringing several small animals to pet and will discuss opportunities to volunteer with the Humane Society.
Location: Area Agency on Aging, 710 Maple St.
For all these events, RSVP to Brooke at 272-8317.
Give Back: Day of Caring
Each year, Compeer volunteers at the United Way Day of Caring. This year, Compeer will be spending our time at the Lebanon Community Theater (organizing costume closets, cleaning up outside).
              When: April 23rd
              Time: 7:30 Breakfast at Lebanon High School
9:00 Volunteer Project
Registered volunteers will receive a free T-shirt and be entered into the United Way's raffle!
The United Way is also doing a "Basic Needs Drive;" please consider bringing a donation of
Toothbrushes           Conditioner               Dish detergent
Toothpaste               Cotton Balls               Shampoo
Baby Powder            Coffee                        Paper plates/towels
This opportunity is limited to 12 people, so registration is required. Call Brooke at 272-8317.