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Pathways to Learning at Home

Thank you for checking in to explore our Winter 2021 Pathways to Learning at Home page.
Since the inception of Medford Leas in 1971, lifelong learning and community engagement have been integral components of the culture of Medford Leas.  We are very proud of the quality of programming that Pathways to Learning has brought to residents and members of the local community since the Fall of 2012.
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Since the onset of the worldwide pandemic, Medford Leas residents and staff have stepped up to the plate to work collaboratively to develop an assortment of programming for you to enjoy from the comfort of your homes.  The programming will run January through May. 
As you will see, the programs include presentations from a number of Medford Leas residents, staff, and community partners.  We appreciate their participation.
Again, on behalf of the Medford Leas community, we appreciate your interest and support of our programming. Over the years we have developed strong relationships with members of the community and we value these interactions.  We see this current season as a way to remain in touch with you.   
We all look forward to the time we can be together in person again.  In the meantime, please know we are thinking of you and hope you find something of interest this season.
Please let us know if you have feedback or questions about any of the programs–or perhaps you have a topic to suggest for an upcoming program?   We appreciate your sharing your thoughts.  Thank you
Pathways Program pathways@medfordleas.net
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Virtual Geology Tour of Main Street – Mt. Holly, NJ

Join in to experience a virtual guided geology tour of the historic buildings found along Main Street in Mount Holly, New Jersey.  Presented by Pierre Lacombe, a retired USGS geologist. Pierre will discuss the local rock used to construct the Historic Prison Museum and other early buildings in Mount Holly, as well as the bricks and other local building materials. Learn why there is a Mount in Mount Holly and many other interesting geologic facts pertaining to this area.
Thanks to our friends at the Burlington County Parks System for collaborating with us to share this program.  For additional programs, visit: https://www.co.burlington.nj.us/1885/Virtual-Programs
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Danielle Boyd and the Music of Frank Sinatra

Francis Albert Sinatra has been heralded as one of the most popular and influential musical artists of the 20th century. Undoubtedly, he is one of the best-selling music artists of all times, having sold more than 150 million records worldwide.
American music critics have called Sinatra “the greatest singer of the 20th century”, and he continues to be seen as an iconic figure.
Thanks to the talents of Danielle Boyd, Medford Leas Music Therapist, this program will offer you a selection of Sinatra’s best known hits.
We know that many of these songs will bring back memories of good times and we hope you enjoy this program.



December Special Video Program

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A Special “Happy New Year” Program to Our Medford Leas Residents & Pathways Participants

This program features Dr. James D’Amico, Medical Director, Medford Leas Health and Wellness, as he shares his knowledge and expertise about champagne, helping us to welcome in the New Year.
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The Benefits of Walking

This program features Dr. Jeff Ranalli, a member of our Medford Leas Health and Wellness Team—as he is out and about on our Medford Campus on our Woodlands Trails.
Dr. Jeff will share information for all of us to enjoy, with the goal of encouraging viewers to begin a walking program of their own.
We all know the importance of exercise, but in this program, you will learn the specific benefits of walking and how you can begin your own program.
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A Visit with Ulysses S. Grant

Join in this visit which takes us back in time and enjoy a personal visit with Ulysses S. Grant, as he shares an up close view into his life.  General Grant was asked once in an interview what he felt his major weaknesses were.  It can be understood that the questioner was hoping for a military answer, but instead he was surprised to hear a dry, but honest reply from the commanding general of Lincoln’s armies.  When asked, “General, what would you say are your weaknesses?”, without any thought, Grant simply replied, “My horses and my children.”
In this program, you’ll learn why he feels this way.  You’ll hear about the many war horses of the civil war, and even some before that, as Grant’s career as a stellar horseman stretched back into his childhood, even before his tenth birthday.  He is always happy to talk horseflesh, as well as the antics and habits of his four children before the war, and even at times during the war as well.
You may find this a fascinating view of a man many erroneously project as simply a man of war, but come to find a man filled with compassion and love for his family and his horses as well.
Kenneth J. Serfass, Gunnery Sgt USMC, retired, portrays Ulysses S. Grant in this program.  Ken was a civil war reenactor but now is a first-person impressionist with nearly fifty years of study of his childhood hero, US Grant.
Ken’s work has generated a great following of supporters and others who share his love of American history and the attributes of positive role models throughout our national past.  His passion for the subject is evident in his presentation, and it is hard not to be affected by his enthusiasm for his subject and believe that you’ve met US Grant in living history.


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MECHA Chocolates—Give in to that Craving and Enjoy

Chocolate is one of the most popular sweets of all time.  Some people crave it, others hoard it and Aztec kings were said to have been the first to eat it.  Join in this program to explore the basics of chocolate and learn of some of the benefits associated with this delectable treat.
Remember—moderation is key as you enjoy chocolate, but why not learn about this treat so you can appreciate it even that much more.
In this video, we visit Melissa Crandley, Owner/Chocolatier, of MECHA, to learn the ins and outs of chocolate.  Melissa has taken what was a passion for chocolate and developed it into a business with a store front in Haddonfield, NJ.  MECHA marries her background in culinary arts along with her interest in chocolate to bring together a variety of chocolates—some are sweet and salty, and others offer a savory note.  No matter which you sample, you are sure to enjoy the finest ingredients which are used to create natural and individually crafted chocolates.
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The Tocks Island Dam Story-  Death of a Small NJ Town & Way of Life

In 1955, major hurricanes caused massive damaging flooding of the Delaware River.
In response, the Army Corps of Engineers proposed to build a dam at Tocks Island, above the Delaware Water Gap, to control flooding, provide improved water supplies, and promote recreational opportunities. The Corps acquired 72,000 acres of property, making use of eminent domain, and some 15,000 residents were forced out of their homes. Bitter lawsuits and political battles ensued. The issue provided a major impetus for the early environmental movement.
The dam was not built, a number of small towns and historical ways of life were disrupted forever. This presentation focuses on the impact of the project on Pahaquarry, NJ, the town that would have been mostly inundated — a place rich in pre-colonial history and mysteries.  Ultimately, the town was forced to abandon its municipal existence.
The story is told through public documents, extensive newspaper reports, and the words of the last remaining residents of the town. It completes with an unexpected ending concerning the last Mayor of Pahaquarry and the current state of the land as an underfunded National Recreation Area.
James Alexander Jr.  is a resident of Medford Leas and lives on the Lumberton Campus.  An accomplished researcher and presenter on historical topics, Alexander has recently presented on the topic of trains in our local area.  He earned his BA from Middlebury College and his Masters of Governmental Administration from the Wharton School.   His successful career involved state and local government management, and brings a unique perspective to this program.



October 2020 Video Schedule

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Lumberton Campus Meadow Walk

Enjoy this walk to experience the Meadow on the Medford Leas at Lumberton Campus. Meadows provide habitat for butterflies, insects, birds, and small mammals and delightful vistas for all.
Without annual mowing, our meadows, would give way to pioneer trees — cedar, sweetgum, sassafras, winged sumac — and in time, become forested once again.  The Fall is an especially good time to enjoy the colors of the season.  You are invited to view this walk and be inspired by the seasonal beauty of the Barton Arboretum and Nature Preserve.
The Lumberton Campus is an extension of the Barton Arboretum and Nature Preserve.   In the summer of 2014, a project was begun to renovate the Lumberton Meadow, which had been taken over by invasive plants.  That summer, the existing vegetation was killed and removed. The entire meadow was then seeded and live plants and plugs were planted in selected areas. The plan included native grasses and wildflowers to provide a wonderful and diverse landscape for both residents and wildlife.
We are certain you will enjoy this walk with our Lumberton Campus resident Miriam Swartz.  Miriam works with a number of residents as they conduct socially distanced walks for others to enjoy as they learn more about the benefits of the Meadow.
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South Jersey Camera Club Exhibit

This virtual show highlights the work of members of the South Jersey Camera Club.  We invite you to enjoy this diverse display of images from this talented group of South Jersey photographers.  www.sjcameraclub.org


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Electoral College-  Everything You Always Wanted To Know

We decide our Presidential elections not by popular vote, but by the Electoral College. The Electoral College is a process, not a place.  The Electoral College consists of 538 electors. A majority of 270 electoral votes is required to elect the President. Your state’s entitled allotment of electors equals the number of members in its Congressional delegation: one for each member in the House of Representatives plus two for your Senators.
Who are these electors and what if they don’t vote for who they are supposed to? Can’t we just abandon this “archaic system” and move to a popular vote?   This timely talk will provide you with just about everything you want to know about our Electoral College System.
Dr. Kelly Jackson is a long-term faculty member at Camden County College and has chaired their faculty governance body for 20 years.  Jackson, a graduate of Franklin and Marshall College went on to earn her Master’s Degree in Community College Education from Rowan University and her Master’s Degree in Statistics from the University of Delaware.  In 2013, Dr. Jackson received her doctorate in Educational Leadership from Rowan University.

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Danielle Boyd and the Music of Henry Mancini

Henry Mancini, is considered to be one of the most versatile talents in contemporary music.  His name is synonymous with great motion pictures, television music, and fine recordings. During his lifetime among his many achievements he won 20 Grammy Awards, and 4 Academy awards.
Thanks to the talents of Danielle Boyd, Medford Leas Music Therapist, this program will offer you a selection of Mancini’s best known hits.
We know that many of these songs will bring back memories of good times.

September 2020 Video Schedule

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POLST Form:  Making Your Wishes Known

Making your wishes known is important for individuals of all ages.  These wishes are often deeply personal and based upon your particular values and beliefs.
You will gain valuable insight on this topic from Dr. James D’Amico, Medford Leas Medical Director.  In particular, Dr. D’Amico will focus on POLST—Practitioner Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment.
POLST is a healthcare planning tool that empowers individuals to work closely with their medical team to detail their wishes in terms of their personal goals and medical preferences when facing a serious illness.   Unlike other documents, such as an advance directive, a completed POLST form is an actual medical order that becomes a part of an individual’s medical record.  It is valid in all healthcare settings.
View this program to gain constructive knowledge on this important topic.   The goal of this session is to share information and to encourage participants to then engage in discussion with loved ones, family members, and healthcare professionals so that your wishes will be known and honored.

Dr. James D’Amico
Dr. D’Amico, DO, FACOI, Medford Leas Medical Director, is a graduate of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.  He offers Medford Leas residents a strong and comprehensive background in internal medicine, geriatrics, rehabilitation and long-term and hospice care.  Dr. D’Amico works collaboratively with our health and wellness professionals and is proud to be the leader of the Medford Leas Health and Wellness Team.



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The Morris Family:  New Jersey’s Founding Family

Morristown, Morris Plains, and Morris County are just the most obvious reminders of this influential and ubiquitous New Jersey family. From Governor Lewis Morris, our first Colonial head of the state in 1738, to his grandson, Gouverneur Morris, who wrote the Preamble to the United States Constitution, the family’s legacy in New Jersey and New York is rivaled by no others. The presentation and discussion will explore where the Morris family came from, their original settlement in Tinton Falls in Monmouth County, what they did, and interestingly, why they are so little remembered today. Rick Geffken, a popular speaker on historical topics, lives on land once owned by the Morris family and reveals little-known facts about the Morris Family and their New Jersey connections. Special thanks to our Medford Leas Residents Association Leas Forum Committee for organizing this talk.



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Benefits of Exercise for Older Adults

We all know that exercise benefits all of us—no matter what our age, but how does exercise specifically benefit older adults?
Regular exercise can boost your energy, protect your heart, manage pain, improve memory and help to manage weight.  As a result of regular exercise, you may find that your mobility and flexibility is heightened, your balance improved and your cognitive function enhanced.
Join in to view this discussion between Ken Roland, Medford Leas Fitness and Aquatics Manager and Roberta Foss, Medford Leas resident, as they explore this topic.



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Birds of Prey by Jen Bulava

Medford Leas is proud to offer this program developed and presented by Burlington County Park Naturalist Jen Bulava.
Learn about the hawks, eagles, falcons, vultures, and owls that reside right here in Burlington County.  You will also learn about raptor adaptations, behaviors, migration patterns and conservation efforts to bring endangered species back from the brink of extinction.
Jen is responsible for planning and conducting nature programs and all other aspects of environmental education for the public within the Burlington County Parks System.  She holds a BS in natural resource management with a specialization in conservation and ecology from Cook College, Rutgers University.
To learn more about the Burlington County Parks System visit:  www.co.burlington.nj.us


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