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Sue Bush
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Acting On Hope

12:00AM / Monday, October 02, 2006

Pittsfield - A Berkshire Event for the Alzheimer’s Association will take place on Oct. 14 with a catered reception in Pittsfield followed by a performance of the Barrington Stage Company’s production of life with the ultimate eccentric auntie – MAME.

"Acting on Hope" will be a lively occasion packed with activities reflecting the best of the Berkshires – culinary and theatrical. The evening will begin with a 6:00 p.m. pre-theater reception at the Ralph J. Froio Senior Center at 330 North Street. It will feature a champagne and wine tasting by Nejaime’s Wine Cellars of Lenox and sumptuous hors d’oeuvres created by From Ketchup to Caviar catering.

Special guests Gene Shalit and Mayor Jim and Ellen Ruberto will be in attendance.

Following the reception, guests will stroll across the street to be welcomed by Honorary Chairperson Julianne Boyd in the newly refurbished home of Barrington Stage Company. Priority seating is reserved for a semi-staged concert version of MAME, starring Sandy Duncan. Finishing the night on a high note is an exclusive post-theater party with the director and cast of MAME at Pittsfield’s hottest new bistro, Spice.

Tickets for the pre-theater reception and MAME are $95.00 each. The cast party is an additional $50.00. Contact Kathryn Hedgepeth or Annie Clattenburg at 413-787-1113 or kathryn.hedgepeth@alz.org for more information or to reserve your tickets.

Berkshire Healthcare is the Presenting Sponsor for Acting on Hope. Supporting sponsors are The Berkshire Eagle, the Gold/Gallagher family, the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation, Berkshire Bank Foundation, EPOCH Assisted Living at Melbourne Place, and Sweet Brook Transitional Care/Northern Berkshire Health Systems. Karen Gold and Jane Edge are chairing the Acting on Hope committee.

There are over 140,000 people in Massachusetts slipping away from their families due to Alzheimer’s disease, with more than 4,000 alone in Berkshire County. These numbers will grow dramatically in the coming years as the baby boom generation ages.

Alzheimer’s is a degenerative disease of the brain for which there is no known cure. One in 10 people over 65, and nearly half of those over age 85 have Alzheimer’s disease. People with the disease live from 3 to 20 years after the onset of symptoms, making programs such as those offered by the Alzheimer's Association all that more important.

With help from fundraisers like this, the Alzheimer’s Association provides support and services to these families. The Alzheimer's Association is the largest private investor in innovative research related to Alzheimer's and related disorders. For more information or to access services, visit www.alzmass.org.

Some of the programs provided by the Alzheimer’s Association include:

Helpline – Experienced Helpline counselors assist people by telephone and online with all aspects of Alzheimer’s disease—from getting a diagnosis to finding support and services in the community. Helpline is available 24/7.

Safe Return – The emergency Safe Return program operates 24 hours a day to assist in locating people with Alzheimer’s who have wandered and become lost.

Support Groups – Alzheimer’s support groups are sensitive and helpful resources.

Advocacy – The Alzheimer's Association advocates at the local, state and federal level to promote quality community and long term care.

Patient Programs – Educational seminars and support groups assist individuals in the early stages of memory loss to cope with and manage the disease.

– Experienced counselors work with families facing challenges in managing the disease.

Family Education – The latest information on research, the importance of diagnosis and treatment, legal issues, care planning and safety issues is offered at numerous locations across the state.

The Alzheimer's Association, the world leader in Alzheimer’s disease research and support, is a voluntary health organization dedicated to finding preventions, treatments and eventually a cure. The organization’s mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research, to provide and enhance care and support for all affected, and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health.

ACTING ON HOPE - Oct. 14 - An Evening of Theater & Fine Food
Check it out at www.alzmass.org

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