Articles


IN LOVING MEMORY OF JOHN ZEPALTAS

It was with heavy hearts that WASSI announced the loss of one of our board members.  John Zepaltas passed away December 3rd, 2015- on his birthday.  John was a husband, father, grandfather, family man, a proud Vietnam Veteran, an advocate, a volunteer, and a friend.  He joined WASSI in June of 2013 and during his tenure as head of communications for WASSI John was instrumental in keeping the local senior communities apprised of all the organization has to offer.  A passion of John's was to reach the "emerging" seniors to ensure that their future needs were heard and addressed just as much as current senior needs.  John and his wife Lynn were also generous corporate sponsors for WASSI- both giving of time and donations.  He enjoyed driving his truck to pull the WASSI Fourth of July and Wabash Day Parade Floats and participated in every fundraiser held in conjunction with the Green Lantern Senior Center Transportation Committee to raise money to ensure seniors in the community have transportation to the center for lunch and activities. 

John was an active member in many organizations in the community.  His dedication will be missed by the Wentzville Storm Water Committee, Wentzville Main Street Association who focuses on revitalizing the Village Center of Wentzville, & the Wentzville Historical Society.  John attended almost every City of Wentzville meeting from the Alderman's meetings to the Parks Department meetings.   John was the first to become a bronze member of the Crossroads Arts Council.  He hoped to inspire others to become members at that level to bring awareness to the arts in the area.  One of John's favorite volunteer opportunities was to play Santa at the Senior Christmas Dinner & Dance as well as at the city sponsored Breakfast with Santa.  He proudly started a Veterans Day tradition of placing a wreath at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial located in Wentzville.   

Veterans Honored by WASSI

The weatherman predicted high gusty winds and heavy rain for this Veterans Day but that wasn’t going to deter these Wentzville residents from placing a wreath at the Wentzville Vietnam Veterans Memorial. It turned out to be a little blustery and overcast but no rain at the time they arrived at the Memorial, which is considered as the first erected Vietnam Veterans Memorial in the United States.
The city had no specific plans for honoring our Vietnam Veterans at the Memorial. Vietnam Veteran and Wentzville resident John Zepaltas contacted WASSI President Leon Tow, Police and Fire Dept. Chaplain Phillip Reagan and Wentzville Mayor Nick Guccione to meet at the Memorial for a wreath placing at the Wentzville Vietnam Memorial so “our Vietnam Veterans would not be forgotten on this day”. A fresh wreath was placed at the memorial for all to remember those who gave of themselves in the Vietnam war.


2015 Fall Fun Day

Friday,  Oct. 23rd, 2015 was the Wentzville Area Senior Services Inc.,  5th Annual Senior Fall Fun Day.  It was a day of great fun and friendship at the Wentzville Community Club. Included in the day's festivities were Halloween Costume judging, FREE food, prizes, entertainment and an apple pie bake-off contest with apple pie and ice cream social plus bingo. WASSI President Leon Tow and Vice-President Jessica Brannan were microphone hosts, giving out door prizes throughout the event.

160 plus attendees came from 11 cities plus those from Wentzville. Travelers came from O’Fallon, Lake St. Louis, St. Peters, Foristell, Troy, Warrenton, St. Charles, Dardenne Prairie, Flint Hill, Marthasville and Winfield. Attendees were served light breakfast snacks with fresh fruit and lunch included Pete's Drive In renowned fried chicken and Harrell’s Catering mostaccioli.

Entertainment was provided by Johnny Cash and ELVIS songs covered and performed by Ken Roberts. Anita Rosamond was the songstress ‘par excellence’ with songs from her wide songbook and included a great impromptu duet with Ken Roberts as John and June Carter Cash.

Judges for the Halloween costume contest were Wentzville Mayor Nick Guccione, Alderwoman Linda Wright, and Parks and Recreation‘s Annie Sjostrom. The seniors had a great time coming fully dressed for the judging as witches, ‘black eyed peas’ and a variety of their favorite characters.
Judges for the apple pie bake off were Wentzville resident Adolph Westrich, Mike Woods-President  of Downtown Business Association, Jamie Gittemeier- of the Western St. Charles County Chamber of Commerce, and Linda Wright-Wentzville Alderwoman. Nineteen apple pies were entered in the contest and after much viewing and tasting, the winners were finally chosen.  Winners were : 1st place - Pat Marshall, 2nd place - Mary Butner and 3rd place - Barbara Soelle.  Thanks go to all the great bakers who brought their choice pies.  The  pies were consumed joyfully with ice cream served by the WASSI Board of Directors and event volunteers as part of the apple pie/ice cream social .

Thanks go out to the Wentzville Parks and Recreation volunteers Mat DeWinter, Annie Sjostrom and Beth Carr who provided event help and bingo games for the attendees, as well as Harrell Catering for assisting with food and preparation.

A well deserved thanks go to the WASSI Board of Directors of President Leon Tow, Vice President Jessica Brannan, Secretary Mary Tow, Treasurer Terri Harrell, Registration lead Carol Rabbitt, Pie coordinator/ photographer Judy Hinkle, and Communications / PR John Zepaltas who made this senior fun event happen again.


40th Anniversary Wentzville Community Historical Society


As September approaches and the dates for the celebration of the Historical Society in Wentzville, I want to invite each of you to attend.  Please pass on this invitation to your friends, family, and any others whom you feel would enjoy the event.  We think you will find it a very enjoyable experience, as well as being unique.  So many of the items that will be on view are being loaned to us by private citizens, therefore you haven't seen them in the museum.
  
This would be a wonderful opportunity to invite your grandchildren to get a first hand view of a way of life they've only heard about.  Each evening will present a different glimpse into the past of our city and community through the live presentations of The Living History Company.  One evening we will have a visit from a Victorian era widow who will tell us of coming from Germany at the age of four, of her marriages, her children, and what was expected of her as a widow.  

On another evening, we will hear from the suffragettes whom you may have seen in the July 4th parade.  This is the 100th anniversary of the suffragette movement and should prove very interesting to hear.  On the third evening we will have a number of demonstrators showing us how the things we take for granted were made at the turn of the century.  Again, please share this information, we would love to see a large turnout on all three evenings.  


Join us in celebrating the 40th anniversary of
The Wentzville Community Historical Society    
“A Walk Through History”    
 
September 16th, 17th, and 18th
Each evening from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Opening ceremonies on September 16th at 6:00 pm 
  Each evening The Living History Company  will provide visitors from the past.
 
Wentzville Community Club
500 West Main, Wentzville, MO 63385


WASSI Featured in 'NonProfit Profile' in Crossroads Magazine


View the August 2015 issue of Crossroads Magazine.

WASSI was started in 2006 as a committee set up by the mayor of Wentzville.  With the help of many familiar names, such as Viola Boland, David Agne, Barbara Sheets, Deborah Bowman, Mary Jo Dessieux, Lloyd Hackbarth, Ann Hanke, Frank Klaas, Paul Lambi, Ray Ungemach, Bill Vehige, Bill Zollmann, Mid East, Mimi Bray, Eileen Cushman and Mary Schaefer and many more as this committee began the work to make Wentzville a great place for Seniors.  The committee worked with Lindenwood College students to prepare a working strategic plan to establish a nonprofit organization and to determine where it wanted to be in the future.
 
On July 1, 2007 the group filed incorporation papers with the state of Missouri.  The three incorporators signing the document were William Zollmann, III, Lloyd J. Hackbarth, and William Vehige and they became the first Board of Directors. Mr. Zollmann III is still involved as attorney for WASSI. The new board quickly began recruiting members in 2007 and membership rose to 50 MEMBERS IN 2008 AND 2 CORPORATE SPONSORS, ROTARY CLUB AND WENTZVILLE COMMUNITY CLUB who were very supportive of the new organization.  WASSI is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation.
 
In 2009 membership dropped to 21 members with 3 corporate sponsors. To attract more seniors WASSI communicated through articles in Newstime, Newsletters, new website, and held the Senior Health Fair and Senior Fun Days.  Interest picked up in 2010 with 57 members and 4 corporate sponsors.  2011 slipped back to 20 members and only 1 corporate sponsor and 2012 slipped to 8 members and 0 corporate sponsors. 

In February 2013 WASSI recruited some new Board members and things began to happen.  In 2013 WASSI started newsletters, Sr. Health Fair and Fun Days, news articles in Newstime and participated in more Senior activities in the Wentzville area.  Our membership rose to 67 members and 4 corporate sponsors for 2013.  2015 is looking even better with 75 members and 19 Corporate sponsors. 
 
2014 began with a decision to look toward  something that has been lacking in the area- a Cultural Arts /Senior Center focusing on supporting our seniors and 'emerging' seniors. Interviews were done and questionnaires  filled out to determine what do seniors really want and what can be done to fill this void. WASSI formed a building committee and began consulting with ROSEMANN and Associates. A three phase approach was developed and a floor plan w/ exterior design was developed. We are now into the ongoing phases of site selection, funding raising and the other parts of the project.
 
One of our highlights, so far this year, is winning the 1st place Trophy for the WASSI float in Wentzville's 4th of July Parade. We had six organizations who joined together for the theme of "United We Stand and Proudly We Serve".  We had 176 years of combined service with Wentzville Community Club @ 82 yrs., Wentzville Senior Center Transportation @ 44 yrs., Wentzville Community Historical Society @ 40 yrs., WASSI @ 8 yrs., Wentzville Main Street Association @ 1 yr., and Crossroads Arts Council @ 1yr. We make a great team!.
 
Year 2015 will be another year of expanding the range of sponsored activities and events for our seniors . The agenda for this year included a first ever Wentzville ART Show at the  Wentzville Community Club. The event was so successful and drew so much attention from the Wentzville area and St. Charles County that it spawned the 'Crossroads Art Council' to look at other events and shows for the ART's interested folks.  This year, we have already had the Senior Fair & Expo that had a free lunch that feed over 200 people and provided a day of free information, fun, games, and prizes for all who attended. There has been fun events for seniors that include Ladder Ball/Hillbilly Golf at Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge, Bean Bag Toss Contest at Green Gables Senior Living, Billiards Tournament at Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge. Upcoming events include Shuffle  Board Tournament  at Green Lantern Wentzville Senior Center, Golf Putting contest at Green Gables Senior Living, Bunco party at Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge, Baseball outing at the RIVER CITY RASCALS Stadium, and the Senior Fall Fun Day w/apple pie bake off & ice cream social.


There are  WASSI Fundraisers at the Soda Stand  at the Wentzville Flea Market. We operate the Wentzville Flea Market BBQ stand several times a year to support Wentzville Senior Center Transportation Committee.

WASSI works with Wentzville Parks & Recreation Department on the Senior Committee and help serve at their Holiday Spirit Dinner Dance in December. WASSI provided Santa Claus for the Dance and he joined the kids for breakfast and lunch with Santa.
           
" Come join in volunteering with us to make our city a great place for seniors."


WASSI does Fundraiser for Senior Center Transportation Committee


WASSI Board of Directors Secretary Mary Tow
and Polly Samuels

On Sunday Aug. 2 , 2015  - Wentzville Area Senior Services, Inc. sponsored the Fundraiser for the Wentzville Senior Center Transportation Committee at the Wentzville Community Club Flea Market.  It was warm day but everyone came with appetites to be filled and thirsts to be quenched. WASSI sponsored the Soda Stand in the flea market area as well as the BBQ blockhouse that provided and sold grilled hot dogs, hamburgers, brats along with assorted chips, soft drinks and water. The event was a huge success and a virtual sellout of food and beverages. The Soda Stand and BBQ blockhouse were manned by WASSI Board of Directors, members, and Senior Center volunteers. The Senior Center Transportation Committee provides transportation for non-driving seniors to get to and from the Senior Center and to be part of their activities.


WASSI Takes 1st Place in Wentzville 4th of July Parade


We had a great time at the 2015 Wentzville 4th of July Parade. It even got better when our float won 1st place!

CONGRATULATIONS  to our six organizations who joined  together for “United We Stand and Proudly We Serve”. We had 176 combined years of service to the Wentzville Community:
Wentzville Community Club,  WCC - 82 years
Wentzville Senior Center Transportation Inc., WSCTI -  44 years
Wentzville Community  Historical Society, WCHS - 40 years
Wentzville Area Senior Services Inc., WASSI - 8 years
Wentzville Main Street Association, WMSA - 1 year
Crossroads Arts Council, CAC -  1 year

Thanks to everyone who helped with the float and participated in the parade. We make a great team.

    

    


Free Ladderball Tournament Results


senior ladderball 2015
Jessica Brannan/WASSI Vice-President with
Alan Houston (1st place), Judy Doering  (2nd place)
and Georgia Howes-Reed ( 3rd place)
WASSI held another free fun summer activity on May 13, 2015 at Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge.  Residents from both Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge and Green Gables Senior Living competed in a Ladder Ball Tournament (aka: Hillbilly Golf).  Many played for the first time and loved the new game they learned!  Both spectators and competitors enjoyed refreshments and fellowship as they competed for the traveling trophy and gift card prizes.  Alan Houston from Green Gables took 1st place, Judy Doering from Green Gables took 2nd, and Georgia Howes-Reed from Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge took 3rd. 


Art Show Winners on Display at Progress Park


Our “Spanning the Generations” Art Show in April 2015 attracted 48 local artists, ranging in age from 17 through 92. The winning art is available for viewing in the renovated lobby at Progress Park on Meyer Road through the month of May.

View full article and winning art here: www.70westsentinal.com


WASSI 2015 Senior Fair and Expo


On Friday, April 24, WASSI hosted their Annual Senior Fair & EXPO.  The Wentzville Community Club provided a large, inviting space for 40 vendor booths, and space for plenty of tables to serve lunch.  Doors were open from 9:30 am to 3:00 pm.  Light refreshments were served in the morning, and visitors enjoyed the information booths on various health, financial and professional services and some FUN shopping vendors.  Vendors donated Door prizes which were handed out at different times throughout the day.  A delicious free lunch of Pete’s fried chicken, mostachioli, green beans, fresh salad, bread and butter, fruit salad and cookies was served from 12:00 to 12:45pm.  200+ meals where served. 

Tony Davis, winner of St. Louis Cardinals Game tickets,
with BAUE representative
Leon Tow/WASSI President and Jessica Brannan/WASSI Vice-President handing out door prizes.

Several guest speakers presented 15 minute informational seminars during the lunch time.  Wentzville Police Dept. on SCAMS, MEAAA on benefits of being a senior, Christopher & Banks on Spring Fashions, BAUE on Community Outreach.

Wentzville Parks Department  provided BINGO with prizes for us from 1:30pm to 3:00pm. 
Attendees at the Sr. Fair were able to complete a survey to let us know how we can improve this event and what they would like to see in the future. This event is organized to provide valuable information, contacts, and enjoyable activities for senior citizens in Wentzville and surrounding areas.

Guests came from Wentzville, Lake St. Louis, Lake Sherwood, Innsbrook, Foristell, Flint Hill, O’Fallon, Troy, Dardenne Prairie, St. Charles, St. Louis, and Warrenton. 

Vendors came from Alton, IL as far north as Troy, MO and west to Columbia, MO.   
Vendors attending included WASSI, Twin Oaks Senior Living, Nurses & Co, AdvoCare, Lutheran SeniorLeon Tow/WASSI President and Jessica Brannan/WASSI Vice-President handing out door prizes. AC/Foster Grandparents Program, Premiere Home Health, Lincoln Co. Nursing & Rehab., Plexus and Massage, More Than Just Podiatry, Health Aid Supplies, Gentiva Hospice, MEAAA & Wentzville Sr. Ctr. Transportation Inc ,  Paparazzi Jewelry & Accessories, Scentsy, Home Instead Senior Care, Heartland Hearing, Wentzville Parks Department, Preferred Hospice, Pitman Funeral Home, Provision Living, Catholic Family Services, Parklane Care & Rehab.,  Bright Star St. Charles, Crown Vision Center,  Sugar Creek Assisted Living, Hughes Health Services, Christopher & Banks Chesterfield, Cambridge Adult Day Care, Primaris (CLAIM), Veterans Home Care, Perfect Hands in Home Health Care & Services, Carrington Place, SCC Ambulance District- Blood Pressure Checks.   Thank you to all the volunteers, businesses and organizations who partnered with us and made this event a huge success.


St. Patrick's Day Billiards Tournament


On 03/17/2015 WASSI and Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge partnered to host a St. Patrick's Day Billiards Tournament as part of WASSI's spring and summer activity series. The event was held at Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge in their second floor community room.  Al Fawcett from Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge took 1st place and Ralph Shine also from Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge took 2nd place.  Both were awarded gift cards as prizes.  Cheerleaders were in attendance from both Twin Oaks and Green Gables Senior Living.  

 
Al Fawcett 1st place with WASSI VP Jessica Brannan   Ralph Shine with WASSI VP Jessica Brannan

Wentzville Breakfast/Lunch with  Santa


WASSI Santa with girls at 'Breakfast with Santa" 

WASSI Santa Claus came to the Wentzville Parks & Recreation Dept. 'Breakfast/lunch with Santa' at the Progress Center on Saturday Dec.6th, 2014. Santa flew in on his sleigh to meet all the youngsters and parents who came to have breakfast and lunch with him. WASSI board members Leon and Mary Tow were there as Santa's helpers (photo below) while he went around to each table to talk to the kids and parents and get some family photos together. Santa then went to his chair by the Christmas tree to hear each child give him their wish list for gifts and get more personal photos of each youngster with him. It was a busy and fun time for Santa to visit with his friends in Wentzville.  He wished everyone who came out to see him a very "Merry Christmas".


Santa with WASSI helpers
Leon and Mary Tow

Wentzville Parks & Rec Senior
'Spirit of the Holidays'  Dinner Dance


On Friday evening, Dec. 5th,  WASSI Board of Directors and volunteers had the pleasure of being additional servers for the Wentzville Parks & Recreation Dept. Senior "Spirit of the Holidays" Dinner Dance at Progress Park Center. The volunteers gave some of the 'Parks ' staff  an evening off for this event. There were door prizes for attendees and DJ entertainment music ranging from Frank Sinatra to Tina Turner for the seniors' dancing pleasure. After dinner, WASSI Santa Claus showed up to talk with all the seniors, get their pictures taken with Santa and they gave him their wish list for Christmas gifts. It was great community dinner dance that surely left Santa with a long list of gifts to prepare and drop off  for all the seniors' Christmas trees.


Jessica Brannan/Vice President, Leon Tow/President,
John Zepaltas / Board Member--Communications & Public Relations

WASSI named Best Non-Profit
in West St. Charles County


November 2014 - Wentzville Area Senior Services Inc. was named Best Non-Profit organization in Western St. Charles County by the Western St. Charles County Chamber of Commerce. WASSI was recognized with other outstanding St. Charles County organizations at the Nov. 13 Chamber luncheon. WASSI 's goal is "To ensure seniors in the Wentzville area receive the best in services, programs and facilities".

 

 


 

Darrel Lackey named Wentzville's Citizen of the Year


Congratulations to Darrel Lackey, one of our WASSI members who received Wentzville's 2014 Citizen of the Year award. Darrel, thank you for all you have done to make life better for others in our community. We are proud to have you on our team.
View article here: www.newstime-mo.com




WASSI Annual Senior Fall Fun Day

1st place winner Eileen Richardson not able to attend, Pictured is friend Jean Konig who brought in her pie. Jean Konig is at right of picture with WASSI Vice president Jessica  Brannan and Judy Hinkle- WASSI Board Member /event coordinator .

 

Joyce Bogenpohl with Judy Hinkle-WASSI Board Member /event coordinator    Linda Douglas with Judy Hinkle- WASSI Board Member /event coordinator


September 25, 2014 - Wentzville Area Senior Services Inc. held its annual Senior Fall Fun Day with an Apple Pie Bake-off and Ice Cream Social. It was great day for free snack food, fun, entertainment, free lunch, games,  prizes and apple pie bake-off with ice cream.

There were 100 + attendees coming from Wentzville, Foristell, O'Fallon, Lake St. Louis, and Maryland Heights.

State Representative Bryan Spencer stopped to meet with seniors and distribute "SENIOR CITIZENS HANDBOOK" from the Legal Services of Eastern Missouri which explains 'Laws and Programs Affecting Senior Citizen in Missouri'. If you would like get a copy please contact  your state representative.

Entertainment was provided by Gary Bennett, who sang us down "Memory Lane", musical entertainment by Evelyn Gwaltney & Kathy Arana and Timberland High School  A Capella Choir with Ms. Rhonda Fields. The Wentzville Parks & Recreation staff  kept us all entertained with 'pig races', bean bag toss and BINGO.
.
Apple pie judging staff comprised  of Darrel Lackey, Sonya Shryock, Jamie Gittemeier and Karlie Gittemeier. The judges were truly challenged to taste all the pies and come up with the winners. 1st place winner was Eileen Richardson and a tie for 2nd place with Linda Douglas and Joyce Bogenpohl. After the judging all attendees enjoyed the apple pies and ice cream served to them by the WASSI Board members and volunteers.

WASSI thanks the following sponsors who supported the event:  WASSI, Wentzville Parks Department., Wentzville Community Club, Twin Oaks at Heritage and Twin Oaks at Stone Ridge, Elder Law, Bank of Old Monroe and Wal-Mart. and all those who donated prizes.

Thanks to volunteers who helped make this event a great time for every one. Volunteers included Cheryl Kross,  Lynn Zepaltas, Sonya Shryock, Bryan Spencer, Letta Lumpkins,  Jamie Gittemeier, Karlie Gittemeier, the Harrell family and the WASSI Board.


WASSI Annual Senior Fall Fun Day


WASSI Board members John Zepaltas,Terri Harrell, Mary Tow, Carol Rabbitt,
Judy Hinkle, Jessica Brannan, and President Leon Tow



WASSI members Carol Rabbitt  and Lynn Zepaltas signing in guests at the registration table.

On Thursday, April 24, WASSI held the Senior Fair and Expo at the Wentzville Community Club. It was fun filled day for all with FREE information and shopping for seniors, snacks. lunch, trivia and bingo games and prizes donated by vendors, supporters and Friends of WASSI. There were more than 127 attendees coming from Dardenne Prairie, Defiance, Flint Hill, Foristell, Lake St. Louis, O'Fallon, St. Charles, St. Peters, Troy, Warrenton, Wentzville, and Winfield. There were 31 vendors providing free information about senior services, care, assistance, transportation and need and shopping representatives from local businesses.

 

 

UPCOMING EVENT CALENDAR

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To RSVP for events, please contact Jessica Brannan at 636-542-6000 or Mary Tow at 314-780-1170.

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