Eating well is just the start to a healthy heart! Don't overlook the benefits of moderate-intensity aerobic activity such as brisk walking (the CDC recommends 30 minutes a day, five days a week for adults age 65+). Stop by 50+ Centers to join the Winter Wellness Challenge and find fitness options to stay active all winter long.
2024 Resource Guide is here!
OAI presents the 2024 Howard County Resource Guide for Older Adults, Persons with Disabilities and Caregivers. This comprehensive publication includes articles geared toward older adults, plus checklists; caregiving tips; 55+ housing information; 50+ Centers; consumer resources; elder law; and local, state and federal government resources. The free guide includes up-to-date information about local services, products and companies serving Howard County residents. View it online, or pick up a paper copy at a 50+ Center near you. Call Maryland Access Point at 410-313-1234 (voice/relay) to request a copy by mail. 
Get the new HoCo Active app!
The HoCo Active app removes the dependency on membership cards and can be used to check in at your local 50+ Center and register for programs. The app can be used on both Apple® and Android® devices, and serves as a digital membership for your mobile phone, pad or tablet. Download it today or register for a new account on ActiveNet.
Come in out of the cold and experience what OAI's 50+ Centers have to offer! The February issue of the 50+ Connection and winter 50+ Center newsletters are full of ideas to stay warm, active and connected all winter long. Subscribe now or click below:

Here are some February programs to try, highlighted by our center directors:
Black History Month with the Howard County Library System
North Laurel 50+ Center / February 6, 10 a.m. / Call 410-313-0380 to register
Our local library will join us to highlight library resources which focus on books celebrating Black History Month.

Kick Out Cancer  
Bain 50+ Center / February 7, 8:45 a.m. / Register
OAI is partnering with the Claudia Mayer/Tina Broccolino Cancer Resource Center to offer a cardio kickboxing class led by Michelle Rosenfeld, OAI Fitness Coordinator. Join virtually or in-person; a $5 donation is requested to participate. Proceeds will support the Cancer Resource Center.

Lunar New Year Celebration
Glenwood 50+ Center / February 7, 11 a.m. / Register
Celebrate the Year of the Dragon with a cooking demo and a traditional luncheon. Center member Lorraine Clemmer shares how to make Chinese dumplings! Cost is $15. 

Black History Month: The Sound of Freedom
Bain 50+ Center / February 9, 1 p.m. / Call 410-313-7213 to register
Celebrate Black History Month and experience how drums and bass supply a rhythmic pulse for music which reflects the history of enslaved African Americans. Free.

Tech Café
East Columbia 50+ Center / February 20, 3 p.m. / Call 410-313-7680 to register
Bring your gadgets! Members of the Columbia Youth and Teen Program will help turn your technology frustrations into mastery. Free; refreshments served.

Loving Ourselves, Loving Others
Ellicott City 50+ Center / February 21, 1 p.m. / Register
Karen Hull, OAI's Mental Health coordinator, discusses ways to be caring and compassionate when connecting with others and forming relationships. Free.

African Drumming Circle
Elkridge 50+ Center / February 23, 1p.m. / Register
Franklyn Bonnie Johnson-Williams will share the history of drumming circles, with storytelling and a drumming demonstration. To reserve your spot, call 410-313-5192.
Living Well with Diabetes
Six Wednesdays, February 21 to March 27, 1 to 3:30 p.m. / Register
Park View at Columbia Apartments / 7070 Cradlerock Way, Columbia 21045

Living Well is a free community-based workshop offered in a small group setting to help adults learn how to manage their chronic health conditions. Living Well with Diabetes is designed for people living with type 2 diabetes and/or their caregivers. Weekly topics include glucose monitoring, skin care, exercise, nutrition/healthy eating, and maintaining a balanced blood sugar. Email Heather Sites or call 410-313-3507 for more information.
Powerful Tools for Caregivers is a six-week series of 90-minute virtual classes which offers caregivers the opportunity to reduce personal stress; change negative self-talk; communicate more effectively; manage emotions; and make tough caregiving decisions. Presented by OAI's Caregiver Support Program via Webex, the program can improve your relaxation and exercise habits, and boost your physical and mental wellbeing. The next session runs February 13 to March 19. For more information, email Kathy Wehr or call 410-313-5955 (voice/relay).
Find caregiving tips and resources on Trualta

With Trualta, OAI’s new online education and community platform for caregivers, you can access a vast library of information tailored for families like yours. Say farewell to aimless Google searches and embrace short, relevant lessons with advice you can use right away. It's free; no app is required. Trualta tailors content based on your needs, including on-demand videos with practical advice; toolkits for hands-on learning; 500+ articles from caregiving experts; and much more. Try it today!
Heart Rate Monitoring Apps
February 16, 10 a.m. Bain 50+ Center Register
Find out if heart rate monitoring apps are for you! Discuss the features of several popular, free heart rate monitor apps; review why you might want to track your heart rate; and get recommendations for physical activity and heart rate zones. Walk-ins welcome; email Malarie Burgess, call 410-313-7213 or register on ActiveNet. Free.

Smartphone Series
February 6, 13, 20, 27, 10:30 a.m. North Laurel 50+ Center Register
Join us on Tuesdays in February for a 4-week series on all things smartphones:
  • Week 1: Smartphone basics
  • Week 2: Get to know your smartphone
  • Week 3: Smartphone photography
  • Week 4: Exploring and downloading mobile apps
Bring your phone to class! Walk-ins welcome; for more information, email Malarie Burgess or call 410-313-0380 to register.
HoCoCommunity Chat podcast highlights Black History month and how to avoid romance scams
Listen and learn! The February episode of HoCo Community Chat focuses on two timely issues: romance scams and Black History Month. Learn how to spot red flags that the new friend you met online is actually a romance scammer trying to steal your heart and money. And discover how Howard County is preserving its black history at the Harriet Tubman Cultural Center in Columbia. Stay tuned on Buzzsprout or wherever you listen to your favorite podcasts @hococommunitychat.
For more information about Office on Aging & Independence programs, visit our website or follow us on social media @HoCoCommunity. If you need assistance, contact Maryland Access Point of Howard County at 410-313-1234 (voice/relay) or visit