The purposes of this Association are to:

  • The purposes of this Association are to:
  • A. Promote and protect the interests, rights, and welfare of the retired educators of the Stevens Point area in conjunction with the Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Association (WREA).
  • B. Monitor and work to improve the benefits for retired educators and other members of the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS).
  • C. Encourage Association members to maintain membership in the Wisconsin Retired Educators’ Association (WREA).
  • D. Develop working relationships with local service organizations whose main emphasis is on aging groups and with organizations sharing goals similar to those of the Association.
  • E. Inform Association members about and advocate for educational and other relevant societal issues.
  • F. Inform members of activities in the area provided for senior citizens.
  • G. Encourage Association members to be active participants in community affairs on an individual basis.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Upton Sinclair was Right

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Events at Boston School Forest

Polar Pond Plunge, December 14, 2019--This is the only fundraiser.  Registration is open now.  They need both plungers and spectators/cheerers!

Winter Open House, January 18, 2020--CC skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, crafts, and campfire.

Earth Day Celebration, April 19, 2020--Activity stations, performances, snacks, and crafts.

Forest Family Fun Run/Walk, June 19, 2020--Free 1.75 mile run/walk sponsored by the Town of Plover.

We had a great time this summer at our July meeting held at the Boston School Forest.  For many of us, it was the first time to learn about this fantastic resource.  These events would be a great time to take the grandkids, grand nephews and nieces, or assorted other kids to a great place for some fun.

SPARTA's 50th Anniversary Bash

The 5oth Anniversary Party at Sentry was a total, wonderful success. This letter from the Steffens said it well:

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Be There

50th Anniversary Celebration

November 11, 2019
Sentry World
Festivities begin at 11:30 a.m.
$15.00 per person
Dinner Pre-Payments are due
October 1, 2019
Please send a check to:
     Sherrilee Wallerman
     5419 Woodland St.
     Stevens Point, WI 54482
Make checks payable to SPARTA.  Please state chicken or beef on check.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Fall into the Woods!


Event to showcase new works added in 2019, live music and aerial artists
For more information, contact:
Elizabeth Wellso, 715-343-1437,
STEVENS POINT, Wis.  (September 6, 2019)  -- The public is invited to attend the ‘Fall into the Woods’ celebration planned for September 21, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Stevens Point Sculpture Park, 900 North Second Street in Stevens Point.
The Fall into the Park celebration will begin at 5:00 p.m. and is free to attend. Attendees will have a chance to meet artists, listen to live music and watch aerial artists, take a guided tour, enjoy interactive art as well as donated food and beverages from local businesses, and a iron pour (weather permitting). The event will occur rain or shine.
New work by artists debuting in the park this year are; Ann Klefstad of Duluth, Minnesota – ‘Small Herd’, and Beth Nybeck of Kansas City, Missouri – ‘Breathe’.
Representatives from the Stevens Point Sculpture Park as well as numerous artists will be available for interviews during the event. Several artists, with work on display in the park, will be available for a meet and greet.   
The Stevens Point Sculpture Park is all volunteer run and is only possible with the help of private donors and grants through the Community Foundation of Central Wisconsin and the Stevens Point Tourism Commission. For more details and contact information, connect with the park through the Stevens Point Sculpture Park Facebook page.  
The Stevens Point Sculpture Park is a twenty-acre site featuring woodlands, wetlands, ponds and prairie. The mission of the Stevens Point Sculpture Park is to provide a welcoming and accessible outdoor venue for environmental arts exhibitions, activities, and educational programs. In addition to the rotating sculpture exhibits, the Stevens Point Sculpture Park will host a variety of art programs and events, including an artist in residency program. The park is open to the public. For more information visit

From the Desk of the President

Dear Fellow SPARTA Members,

If you weren’t able to make the meeting Monday, you missed a good time and we missed you! If you were there, don’t you agree? As usual, Jan Langton had prepared a great Power Point to guide us through the meeting (and entertain along the way!) As soon as Heather and her crew from Parkridge Family had our orders, we launched into business with Dave Blado introducing his former student Brandi Makuski who has spent her career working in the newspaper business in Stevens Point. She explained what’s been happening with newspapers in Point and all over the country: the evolution, much lack of local ownership and MANY fewer reporters, etc. Hopefully we can have her back to present a more complete program. She is currently the editor of an on-line weekly about all things local called Metro Wire. I have been subscribing for a few months and am very pleased with her coverage. You may want to check it out!

Jan explained that “The Books” passed the informal audit conducted by our Audit Committee and she presented next year’s budget, pointing out changes and explaining them. We are so fortunate to have a good source of income and competent people to manage it!

We then launched headlong into Supt. Craig Gerlach’s program to bring us up to date on all the repairs and improvements made possible by the referendum. We turned the order of our meeting around because the School Board had catered in lunch for the Washington staff on that day, and Mr. Gerlach wanted to get over there and personally thank them for their patience and extra efforts involved with the very close timeline on the extensive projects there. (I personally love to see our current staff members continue our great reputation and traditions, and even greater to see that the administration and Board appreciate them!)

Eileen Payne reported that several members have signed up for the bus trip to Fireside to the Buddy Holly Show on Wednesday, so those of us who can’t go, think of them and be jealous as they eat that great food and see such lively entertainment!

The Book Committee passed a sign up sheet and they are pleading for all the help they can get, especially with set-up and tear down of the upcoming sale Oct. 16-19. Several of our faithful workers have had injuries, sprains, and signs of wear and, as Janeen Kwarciani’s husband said, “It’s time to bring in the second team!” Let’s step up and grab any young, strong backs we can to help us with the heavy work too! Fran Vollrath distributed flyers for members to disperse in the community. Let’s make this sale another great one!!

The Grant Committee is happy that we allocated the most we ever have ($8,000 thanks to our book sales) for our community grants this year, and they are now soliciting and accepting applications. We will vote on their recommendations as we enter our big celebration in November.

Joyce Chekouras thanked us for emailing and calling our representatives when WREA puts out the word, and she urges us to continue doing so. She gave us background on several issues and then moved on to reiterate the need for us all to turn in the summary of our volunteer hours to her by email (, phone (715 446 1485), or mail (204699 Lake Drive, Rosholt 54473) She needs them by Sept. 20!

Mary Ann represented the Health Committee to remind us to get our flu shots! If our pharmacy has a waiting list, her advice is to get your name on it!

Lynne Kagelmann reminded us all of our priority for the new school year: Recruit! Recruit! Recruit! Perhaps some folks would be inspired to attend the anniversary celebration, and we have until the end of the month to sign up for that with Barb Clementi (715 572 6564), Sandy Schroeder (715 344 8435), or Sherrilee Wallerman (715 344 0031). Let’s reel ‘em in!

And Sandy and Barb promise us that they are planning a very fun time (Their lips are sealed about what all that entails, but we are invited to dress in clothes from the 60s if we can remember what we wore and if we can fit into any) Nov. 11 at Sentry for our
big anniversary, so buy a ticket for your spouse or best friend too!

Members representing us in LaCrosse at the annual convention are Jan Langton, Sherrillee Wallerman, Dave Blado, and me with Joyce Chekouras and Eileen Payne serving as alternates. Lynne Kagelmann will be there too representing our District III. We promise to take care of business and not be too wild, or at least I do!

We had some news that I consider really great: Park Ridge Family Restaurant is once again opening on Mondays, so our 2020 meetings are on the books there! (I love being able to order from the menu and not having to make reservations and the food is good too!)

I intended to have this be a brief note, so I’m stopping here! This is certainly not the Minutes, but my usual dashed-off note to my friends! I hope you are all well and that I’ll see you soon!


Thursday, August 29, 2019

It's September!

What: September General Meeting
Where: Park Ridge Family Restaurant (Old Blue Top)
When: September 9, 2019 at 11:00

1. PLEASE bring your completed volunteer sheet!!!

Joyce C. will love you forever!!

You can download a copy from the WREA website:

2. Also, fill out and bring your 2019-2020 Membership form with your dues.  You can download a form from the "News and Notes" section in the sidebar.

3. The newsletter is missing all the graphics; our website doesn't seem to want to copy them and won't allow copying of pdfs.  Anyone out there who can straighten me out?

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Make Your Reservations for the July Meeting


Stevens Point Area Retired Teachers’ Association
July Meeting Announcement
“Retirement’s a Picnic”
July 8, 2019 – 11:30 a.m.

Program – What’s going on in the forest today?

Boston School Forest
5084 Lincoln Ave.
Plover, WI 54467

Meal - $12.00
Grilled Chicken or Burger (Choose One), Potato Salad, Marinated Vegetables, Potato Chips,
Fresh Fruit Salad, Dessert Bar, Beverages (supplied by SPARTA)

Reservation Required by June 21st – Noon
Bring a Friend!

Call – Sherrilee at 715-344-0031or
Please state Chicken or Burger Choice
Make Checks Payable to: SPARTA - PAY AT THE DOOR

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Looking Ahead

The Book Sale is off and running.  It's not too early to mark these dates on your calendar:

Book take-in days:

Monday, June 24
Monday, July 22
Monday, August 26
Monday, September 23

 Please do not block the sidewalk or leave books in the hallway!

The Fall Book Sale will be Wednesday, October 16, 2019 through Saturday, October 19, 2019.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

The Book Sale is Coming

The SPARTA Spring Book Sale is right around the corner.  You can find us on the first floor of the Central Wisconsin Children's Museum Building, 1100 Main St., Stevens Point.

Times are:
Wednesday, May 1  -noon - 7pm
Thursday, May 2     - 9am - 7pm
Friday, May 3          - 9am - 7pm
Saturday, May 4      - 9am - 2pm

If you can work a shift, contact Nancy Mezyk. 

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Our Latest Good Deed is Done

Sandy Williams, at far right, executive director of the Central Wisconsin Children’s Museum, demonstrates the recently installed Automatic Door Operator donated by the Stevens Point Area Retired Teachers’ Association (SPARTA) from profits of a recent book sale. The north entrance off the city parking lot is now handicapped accessible to the Museum and businesses on the first floor. SPARTA book committee members pictured, from left, are Janeen Kwarciany, Janet Swiston, Nancy Kemmeter with Maya Kemmeter, Mary Marks, Nancy Mezyk, Charlene Laurent, and Santha Bickford, president of SPARTA. The next SPARTA book sale is Wednesday, May 1, to Saturday, May 4.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Notes from the President (The one that works hard and makes sense)

I wanted to get this little update out quickly so that you don’t think it’s an April Fool joke. First of all, doesn’t it feel great to be able to get outside again? Hurray! I hope you were not affected by the flood!
I also wanted to report on our WREA Seminar which we hosted for anyone with money in our state retirement fund. It was held on the evening of March 14 at the Lincoln Center and, even though it was the night of the big rain and we had many cancellations, we still had over 60 in attendance! They came from our Point Schools, Rosholt, Amherst, and Almond in addition to both city and county workers in many departments. Many thanks to those of you who helped with that! Judy Zimmerman and I took reservations, Lynne Kagelmann helped me with goodies, and Jan Langton helped sign folks in and get the evening launched. Remember that we do this in odd-numbered years, so we have a year off in 2020!
On that same afternoon, SPARTA was invited to a special program that our local Symphony held for all the third and fourth graders in the county. It is designed to introduce these young students to the orchestra through a curriculum developed by Carnegie Hall in New York. They have a portion where they can play their recorders along, and several teachers did actually bring recorders! Why, you may ask, were we invited? Because it is one of the projects we support with our Book Sale money. Jan Swiston, as head of the Grant Committee, was invited to attend with other folks who contributed in some way, and I tagged along with her! Wow! It was very impressive! Did you ever guess we’d get a chance to be connected to something from Carnegie Hall? All of us who helped with the Book Sales, take a bow!
On May 9 our District III Spring Meeting will be held in Wausau. So far Lauren Isberner, Jan Langton, and I are planning to attend along with Lynne Kagelmann, our own District President! Is anyone else interested incoming along? More details are in the latest edition of the Red Apple Express or call one of us!
This is not a joke-the Lincoln Center has several new exercise and strengthening programs for older adults (US!) and they need weights, which are expensive. If any of us have some sitting around at home, they would love to have them. I have a couple left from students and from my own good intentions, and maybe you do too! If so, give me a call and I’ll help you donate them.
Don’t forget the Book Sale May 1-4! If you’re helping with publicity, next week is the time for us to get the word out. And if you haven’t signed for your shift to work, call Nancy Mezyk! That’s all my ramblings until next time! Don’t forget to vote Tuesday!

--Santha Bickford

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Save the Date!

What:  SPARTA’s 50th Anniversary

Theme:  50 years of memories and shaping the future

When:   November 11, 2019
             Noon – meal
             1:00-2:30: entertainment & program

Where:  Sentry World, Stevens Point

Cost:     $15.00
             Non-refundable tickets will be sold at the
             May, July and Sept SPARTA meetings.

Friday, March 1, 2019

March 11, 2019 Meeting

Park Ridge Restaurant
3425 Church
Stevens Point, WI 54481

11:00 am. Socializing
11:15 am. Order Lunch Entrée
11:30 am. Business Meeting
12:30 pm. Program Speaker

Program Speaker for March is Susan Lemke, Transportation Superintendent for ADRC and Stevens Point Transit who have merged their services. She will talk about “I Get Around, ‘Round, Get Around” and explain how to do that in the Point area.

To download the newsletter, go to "SPARTA News and Notes" section in the sidebar.  The text translates to the blog, but the pictures do not.  Or, rather,  I haven't figured it out yet.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Family Crisis Center Needs

Subject: FCC Wish List - January 2019
Greetings from the Family Crisis Center,

Our warmest thanks for your generous donations and continued support. Attached is our January 2019 Wish List.  Items that are immediate needs are listed in bold.  There is currently a high need for disinfecting wipes, spray, latex free gloves, and bleach.  We would also appreciate if when possible you could provide to us receipts, or copies of receipts, for items that were recently purchased to be donated.  Please let me know if you have any questions.


Antonya Hogan
Office Manager
Family Crisis Center
CAP Services, Inc.

CAP Services Family Crisis Center
January 2019 Wish List
Our warmest thanks for the many items we have recently received through your generous donations. 
Items that are immediate needs for our programs are listed in bold and highest in red.
Thank you for your continuing support!

·       Gas Cards – Local (Kwik Trip, BP, Schierl)
·       Gift Cards for Grocery Stores (Copps, Walmart, Aldi, Trigs, Piggly Wiggly, Pick ‘n’ Save)
·       Gift Cards for Local Pharmacies (Copps, Walmart, Walgreens, Shopko)
·       Children and Infant OTC Medications (Tylenol, Advil, cold medication, etc.)
·       Basic OTC Medications (cold medications, Imodium, tums)
·       Kleenex
·       Hand Sanitizer
·       60 Watt Light Bulbs
·       Black Permanent Markers
·       Batteries (AA, C, D, & 9volt)
·       Markers/Crayons/Colored Pencils
·       Craft Supplies (yarn, paint, glue, glitter, beads, etc.)
·       Paper Plates & Bowls
·       Hot Hands  - Hands and Feet Warmers
·       Socks (wool, boot, slipper…)

·       Mop
·       Boys underwear size 4T

·       Comforters (twin & full size)
·       Sheet Sets (twin & full size)
·       Alarm Clocks

·       Disinfecting Wipes
·       Lysol (disinfecting) Spray
·       Latex Free Disposable Gloves
·       Bleach
·       Dishwasher/Dish Soap
·       Laundry Detergent (regular and high efficiency)
·       Dryer Sheets
·       Paper Towel
·       Basic Cleaning Supplies such as window, toilet, & multipurpose cleaners (including child safe and natural cleaning products)

·       Plush Bath Towels
·       Toilet Paper
·       Liquid Hand Soap
·       Styling Products (hair spray, mousse, ponytail holders)
·       Hair Brushes
·       Spa Products (face masks, body wash, lotion, body spray)
·       Hand Towels, Wash Cloths
·       Full-sized Shampoo and Conditioner (for women, men, & children/ethnic specific)
·       Nail Polish Remover & Cotton Rounds

·       Large Plastic Food Storage Containers with Lids (all sizes)
·       Ziploc Style/Freezer Bags (all sizes)
·       Tall Kitchen Bags (13 gallon)
·       Plastic Wrap
·       Aluminum Foil
·       Cooking Utensils (sharp knives, wooden spoons, etc.)
·       Microwave
·       Small Appliances (electric skillet, blender, etc.)
·       Pots and Pans
·       Bakeware (Pyrex, cookie sheets, muffin pans, cake pan)
·       Drinking Glasses
·       Dish Towels/ Wash Rags
·       Boxes of Cold Cereal
·       Jugs of 100% Juice/Juice Boxes
·       Coffee
·       Granola Bars
·       Crackers
·       Pasta
·       Spaghetti-o’s & Ravioli
·       Ramon Noodles
·       Fruit Snacks
·       Jello/Pudding Cups
·       Kool-aid
·       Microwave Popcorn

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Book Collection Times

Book donations may be dropped off across from the Children's Museum in downtown Stevens Point on the 4th Monday of every month from 10am to 3pm.

Please Note: Tax Deductions 
  • The SPARTA Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization and contributions can be used as deductions for federal income tax purposes.
  • SPARTA itself is a 501(c)(4) organization and contributions are NOT tax deductable for federal income tax purposes. This includes book donations for the book sale.

Your Final Gift

I was forty when I sat down and compiled my "death book."  As you could predict from a person with a touch of OCD, it's a three ringed notebook with color-coded dividers and titles printed from an Avery template.  It contains all the information, phone numbers, and contacts my niece will need as the executor of my will, holder of POA, and holder of Health Care POA when the time comes.

I did this for two reasons. The first is selfish: I want things carried out the way I want things carried out.  The second is that it's a gift for my niece to make this task as possible to carry out.

There was a side benefit from doing this 25 years ago. When I became more and more responsible for my mother's affairs, I used my book as an example of how she should get her affairs in order as well.  Just months after we finished her book, she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's.

Most of you have done the work on this already.  If you haven't, the following guide is a good starting place:


See You on that Fourteenth!

January 14, 2019 
Park Ridge Restaurant 
3425 Church 
Stevens Point, WI 54481 

11:00 am. Socializing 
11:15 am. Order Lunch Entrée 
11:30 am. Business Meeting 

12:30 pm. Program Speaker 

Program Speaker for January is Donn Behnke. The title of his presentation is: Animal Keepers: The Story of a Great Team and an Unforgettable Year 

Action Items: 
1. Automatic Door Openers – Children’s Museum 
2. Scholarship Committee 

For the complete agenda, November minutes, and newsletter, click on the "News and Notes" section in the right hand column.