Retirees Association

Fall 2021 WSURA activities, by Mary Kenton

Retirees at Jimmies Ladder

Excerpt from the winter 2022 issue off The Extension

Retirees enjoyed two lovely outdoor fall events. Following a convivial patio lunch at Jimmie’s Ladder, about a dozen gathered at Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum on October 4 for a tour. Our guide, the Reverend Doctor Kent Berghuis, was excellent. His regular job is as lead pastor of First Baptist Church on Monument Avenue. He also has years of university teaching experience. We know all this because your Extension editor conducted a brief interview while we waited for everyone to gather. The weather was perfect, and Kent was full of fascinating information about the 100,000-plus Daytonians buried there beginning in 1841. Notables include the Wright brothers, Erma Bombeck, Charles F. Kettering, and our own Elizabeth Hardin.

More than 3,000 spectacular trees adorn the 200-plus acre site, including 25 varieties of stately Oak trees that are native to North America. Woodland has received ten “State Champion Tree” awards and is recognized internationally as an accredited arboretum in the Morton Register. A highlight of our tour was the incredible view of the city of Dayton from the highest hilltop in the park. It was almost as if you could reach out and touch the Kettering Tower.

Just a few weeks later, on November 9, we visited Carillon Historical Park, with Tom and Nancy Thickel serving as guides. The air was a bit cooler, but it was another sunny day. Carillon focuses on Dayton history with a strong emphasis on transportation and innovation. It seems as if there is always more to learn about the Wright brothers and the beginnings of flight. Carillon’s Wright brothers collection is probably second only to that at Dearborn, Michigan’s Greenfield Village. In addition to bicycles and planes, there were trolleys and trains and even a section of the Erie Canal. Two hours is not enough time to see everything at Carillon, and that will become even more difficult (but perhaps less tiring) once the current renovations, which will include a railway train for visitors, are completed. This trip also included a nice long lunch, with a few cocktails and beers and lots of laughter, at Jimmie’s Ladder on the covered patio.

All retirees are welcome to join us for these outings. For now, we are still planning mostly outdoor events. Once spring arrives, we plan a trip to the Beavercreek Wetlands. Watch your email for notice of times and places.