Who are Jerry’s Girls? And who is Jerry? Well, Jerry is Jerry Owen, the guru, you might say, to those in his senior exercise class, a program of Riverside Township.

Owen started the program to encourage aging community members to stay active, help them move better and feel better. It was such an inspiration that class member Nancy Dvorak put together a Jerry’s Girls calendar depicting them and some of their views on their lives. after answering 13 questions. 

Dvorak dedicated the calendar to Harriet Kweton, who is 101 years old and a Riverside treasure. She (her husband Elmer died in 2004) lived in town for 72 years, and while she no longer lives in Riverside, her legacy continues.

She was the granddaughter of A.F. Ames – the first superintendent of Riverside schools and the namesake of Ames School. She was also a preservationist, serving as chairwoman of the Riverside Historical Commission. 

Dvorak assembled the calendar with the help of many of those she interviewed, who inspired its title: “Seniors to Admire and Inspire.” Dvorak thanked Laurie Brodhay and Vera Wilt of Riverside Township for making the calendar a reality and proceeds from sales will benefit Aging Care Connections.

The calendars are available at the Riverside Public Library, 1 Burling Road, and I recommend you purchase at least two, one for yourself and one as a gift. So to all who contributed — even telling their ages proudly — and Ed Hannon, assistant to Jerry Owen, thank you for keeping in mind what matters. Kudos and Whoppers for Nancy!

As you start your holiday in Brookfield, be sure to check out the Eight Corners area. For the Birds, which has great gift items and a wonderful selection of children’s books. Stop in at Laura Atwood Studio for different gift ideas, just down the street from Betty’s Flowers, where there’s always something good to give. 

Mary’s Morning Mix-Up has gift cards as do many of the dining establishments in the area.  You have to eat, too.

Riverside, if you haven’t given a friend a Higgins Glass star it’s not too late. And go over to Aunt Diana’s for an old-fashioned gift of candy. You also can’t go wrong with a gift card from one of the village’s downtown restaurants — Chew Chew, La Barra, La Estancia, The Sandtrap –you can’t go wrong.

Shopping local is the best and it shows how much we appreciate our local businesses.  Well, I have to get back to my naughty-and-nice list. Which one would you be on?