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April 2014
A Quarterly Publication
 stl village news

Community.  Connection.  Caring.

Letter from Our Interim Director

Welcome to the inaugural newsletter for STL Village. We are very excited to share this with you and to let you know how close we are to our Village being a reality, up and running June 1, 2014. We want this newsletter to be informational and inclusive, so when you read it, you feel a part of something important, in other words, a village.

Interim Director, Arthur Culbert, Ph.D.
STL Village Interim Director,
Arthur Culbert, Ph.D.
Some of the things you can expect from your newsletter include:
  • Stories about some of the members and volunteers who have found the Village a good fit
  • Perspectives on life in the village to make you chuckle
  • Tips for addressing different hurdles to continuing to live independently as we age
  • Members' reactions to some of our many adventures and activities available to them
  • Different features we'll try out to see if they speak to you We'll be asking for your vote as to whether to keep them or ditch them so the newsletter gradually becomes something you look forward to getting and using.
I look forward to either meeting you or seeing you again as we move forward, starting with the Opening Celebration June 1,2014 or later in June over ice cream at Ted Drewes!

Best Wishes, Arthur Culbert, Ph.D.

STL Village Grand Launch
Please join us as we celebrate and introduce our new organization to St. Louis. Entertainment, refreshments, speakers, and resources for seniors.
Sat. April 12, 2014 - 10am to 12pm
Missouri History Museum
Lindell Blvd. & DeBaliviere Ave. in Forest Park
St. Louis, MO
View Flier
FREE and open to the public.
Dates to Remember

Screening of the Award-Winning Documentary: "Age of Champions"
Follow the journey of five senior athletes who discover the power of the human spirit. Panel discussion to follow film.
Thur. May 15, 2014
Schlafly Branch Library
225 North Euclid, St. Louis, MO
View Flier

STL Village Official Opening
We celebrate the official opening of STL Village. Complimentary food and beverages. Plus enjoy the signature STL Village cocktail created by Scape in celebration of the opening.
Sun. June 1, 2014
4:00pm to 7:00pm
Scape American Bistro
48 Maryland Plaza
St. Louis, MO
For STL Village members only.

Newsletter Photos by
Cheryl Tadin Photography

Page 2     STL Village News       April 2014
Saving Memories Forever for
STL Village Members

Saving Memories Forever, a St. Louis-based organization that helps people record and share their life stories, has offered to provide all STL Village members with a free Premium Subscription. Saving Memories Forever is an online service that combines an easy-to-use smartphone app with a private website,
Saving Memories Forever logo

The company was recently announced as the Grand Prize Winner of the Developer's Challenge at the RootsTech 2014 Conference. RootsTech is the tech show in the genealogical industry and is sponsored by the industry giants, including FamilySearch,, and MyHeritage.

Saving Memories Forever is owned by Harvey and Jane Baker, who came up with the idea after taking years to develop their own family tree. During that process, they discovered that while they had lots of information, they didn't have any real understanding of who their relatives were. They realized that stories often best reflect a person's life and they are totally sold on the idea of audio stories .

Harvey and Jane Baker
Harvey and Jane Baker
STL Village members who sign up for this free service will have access to all the bells and whistles of the Saving Memories Forever system. Members can either use the service independently or with volunteer support. Although it's easy to use, training is also available.

Harvey and Jane live in the STL Village area footprint and eagerly anticipate joining STL Village!

Opportunities to Get Involved

Become a Member
Discover the benefits of STL Village membership.
Call 314-802-0275.
Or visit

Find out how volunteers can use their talents and time to make a difference in our neighborhoods.
Call 314-802-0275.
Or visit

Explore how your individual or corporate donation can insure the success of STL village.
Call 314-802-0275.
Or visit

STL Village News       April 2014     Page 3

Spotlight on Village Member and Volunteer
Sondra Bertz

On August 1, 2012 Sondra moved into her daughter's house in Gaslight Square while Lisa finished her last two years in the Air Force at Eglin AFB in Florida. Even without other family in St. Louis, Sondra quickly fell in love with the CWE and decided she wanted to stay here. Through the CWE Association, she met Arthur Culbert, who told her about the Village concept and asked if she would like to join the Village Exploratory Committee. Little did she know how personal the Village would become only two months later.

Sondra Bertz and Daughter Lisa
Daughter Lisa with her mother, Sondra Bertz
Sondra tells us her story:
I was walking my dog in Forest Park and heading home when I stumbled on the curb, fell, and broke my right wrist. A security officer from Washington University took me home, kenneled my dog, and drove me to the Emergency Room. Hours later, when I was ready to be released, I was asked how I was getting home. I said I would have to walk. That's when it hit me-I'm alone! With no family or friends in the area, I need a Village!

Now I'm a STL Village member with my own home, but I don't think of the Village as only a tool to support me staying here as I age. What I really look forward to is making new friends who share my enjoyment of living here, friends who will go out for a meal, take in an afternoon movie, visit the Art Museum, or just go for a walk on a fall afternoon. This is the Village I want to help develop!

Currently Sondra spends 20+ hours a week volunteering in the STL Village office. When she is not working for STL Village, Sondra enjoys walking her dog, reading, cooking, and traveling. This summer she will be traveling to Alaska and Vancouver with her brother from San Francisco as her travel companion.

Supporting Community Organizations
The following organizations have offered their support and endorsement of STL Village and its mission.

Sage Metro St. Louis
Aiding in the enhancement of the quality of life among LGBT older adults through service, advocacy, and community awareness.
Grand Oak Hill Community Corporation
4168 Juniata St.
St. Louis, MO 63116

Better Family Life
Community Outreach / Housing and Asset Development / Missouri Work Assistance (MWA) Region 9 / Youth, Family, & Clinical Services
5415 Page Blvd.
St Louis, MO 63112

Central Reform Congregation
CRC represents the coming together of a diverse and inclusive group of individuals and families who accept the responsibility of maintaining a congregational community of respect and friendship
5020 Waterman Blvd.
St Louis, MO 63108

Page 4     STL Village News       April 2014
The Village Movement

STL Village is part of a national movement that began with two women from the Beacon Hill suburb of Boston in 2002. These 2 women decided they had no interest in selling their homes and moving to a retirement community. They wanted to age in their own homes in their own community....where they had friends, connections and years of memories.

The concept is to enable adults (usually over the age of 50) to "age in community." The member based village offers a "one stop shopping" place for everything and anything they want or need. To date more than 125 Villages are operating nationwide. Villages are funded through membership dues, donations and grants. Some Villages offer discounted memberships to low-income residents.

Each Village is formed through a grassroots effort of local citizen volunteers and sometimes paid staff. As more Villages are formed, each one builds and improves on the experiences of previous ones. Villages vary their organizational structures and the services and programs they provide according to the needs of their members. As the saying goes..."When you've seen one Village, you've seen just one Village."

The Village to Village Network ( was created to help the movement advance. The organization offers resources to aid new and existing Village communities across the nation to establish, manage and improve their own Villages.
STL Village Service Area Boundaries
The service boundaries of STL Village

The St. Louis Village
In 2012, CWE resident Gloria Gordon enlisted the help of Arthur Culbert, Ph.D. to organize a group of dedicated citizens in the Central West End to explore the possibility of establishing a Village here in St. Louis. The group envisioned a welcoming, cross-generational and culturally diverse organization that includes the surrounding neighborhoods. Its members would be part of a community of support, fun, and fellowship that empowers its members to live where they want with the services they need. The membership area would include the neighborhoods within the borders of Page Boulevard, Vandeventer Boulevard, Clayton Avenue and Big Bend Boulevard.

They have accomplished their goal. On April 12, 2014, the STL Village will celebrate its launch with ceremonies at the Missouri History Museum in Forest Park.

For more information go to or call 314-802-0275. It's all about Community, Connection, Caring.

STL Village News       April 2014     Page 5
What People are Saying About the Village

"This appeals to people who want to be in charge of their lives more than they could before. "This way, you can age in your own way."
Gloria Gordon, St. Louis, MO

"I recommend the village movement to my estate planning clients and to other estate planning attorneys. I know I can rely on STL Village to provide amazing benefits to my clients who want to stay engaged in their community."
Jennifer Kovar, St. Louis, MO

"I think it's going to make an enormous difference in people's lives. A lot of little things can jar people from their homes."
Arthur Culbert, St. Louis, MO

Strategic Partners
We wish to acknowledge and thank our Strategic Partners for their generous support.

St. Andrew's Resources for Seniors
6633 Delmar Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63130
A faith-based, not-for-profit organization dedicated to serving seniors in the St. Louis, Missouri area helping Seniors and Caregivers in St. Louis with Senior Living Options and Communities as well as resources for care.

Kuhlmann Leavitt, Inc.
7400 Pershing Ave.
St Louis, MO 63130
A nationally known and certified woman-owned, multi disciplinary design firm located in St. Louis that creates fresh, intelligent, appropriate design solutions. Their services include identity, orientation and information design for the built environment as well as the highest quality print and new media design.

Sign Up and Get Involved

Anyone 50+ living within the boundaries of our service area may join for a yearly membership fee of $600 (or $50 per month) for an individual and $840 (or $70 per month) for a household. Low income subsidies are available.

If you would like to be on our list to receive an application or have additional questions, please contact our office at 314-802-0275 or by email at

STL Village Leadership
Arthur J. Culbert, Ph.D, Interim Director    
Madeline Franklin, Central Administrator
Board of Directors
Jennifer S. Kovar, Co-Chair
Sally Nikolajevich, Co-Chair
Arhtur J. Culber, Ph.D, Vice Chair
David S. Weber, Secretary and Treasurer
Gail A. Brown
Gloria C. Gordon, Ph.D.
Mary Alice Ryan
Ron H. Smith
Natalie Galucia, Ex Officio

STL Village News
A quarterly publication of STL Village
6633 Delmar Blvd. 2nd Floor, St. Louis, MO 63130
Copyright ©2014 All right reserved.
We invite comments and suggestions:

STL Village does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, national origin, age, veteran status, marital status, familial status, disability/handicap, or sexual orientation.