This is a pitch – but hear me out (especially if you're retired)

10 months ago

Did you ever wonder where Marcel Lebrun got the idea for his 12 Communities project with the tiny homes? Or have you ever watched the news about the latest natural disaster and wondered how prepared the City of Fredericton is to deal with the effects of climate change?  

Or wondered about the way politics is going in the United States with Donald Trump and where it might end? 

What would prompt a well-respected senior bureaucrat in the New Brunswick government to give up a Deputy Minister position to write children’s books? Would you like a chance to ask her? And what’s being discovered at UNB in their research into solutions about the growing and serious health problem of senior’s isolation?  

Or are you curious about how our experience with Covid compares to how New Brunswickers were affected by the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918? 

Have you ever wondered about the history of the 2nd World War internment camp in Ripples?  Or would you like to learn more about the effort by former New Brunswick MLA and career soldier Brian Macdonald and his group, to rescue civilians who are now in danger because they helped Canadian forces in Afghanistan during that war, and to help civilians escape Ukraine in the midst of the current one?  

With all indicators pointing at an increasing demand, do you wonder how the Fredericton Community Kitchen is planning to meet this growing challenge? And speaking of challenges, where is the New Brunswick economy heading anyway? And would you like to know the latest research on the growth of far right hate groups throughout Atlantic Canada?

If you have an interest in any of these issues, or you simply have a curious mind, we should talk. Or more on point, you should hear people with first-hand experience and expertise in these areas talk. And not only talk, but give you the opportunity to question them.  

OK, after what might be one of the longest introductions for a pitch ever, here’s where I am going.  

All of the above, and many more, are topics that have been covered by the guest speakers we have brought in to make presentations to our PROBUS group.  

What’s PROBUS you ask, and why do you spell it in all capital letters? I’m glad you asked. PROBUS is a club of retired or semi-retired people from many different walks of life. But one thing we have in common is a curious mind; a desire to know more about the world we live in. We meet the first Tuesday of every month, at 10:00 at the Forest Hill United Church on Kimball Drive, and each month have a guest speaker. The only thing the speakers have in common is that they have something interesting to share (see above for examples).  

We do have a couple of rules – no partisan politics, so don’t expect to hear from any politicians, and no soliciting, so don’t expect to be hit up to sell your house or buy insurance either.  

Those of us who go, look forward to our monthly morning get-togethers, and we’d like to welcome new members. We’re a friendly bunch, so if you are retired, or even semi-retired, come once or twice and give our meetings a try. And then if you decide to join, we’d welcome you to do that. But it’s going to cost ya. An annual membership is $25 dollars, and no dickering over the price. Well, OK maybe there is. I don’t know. I’m not in charge of the money. But I digress, the saliant point is that I bet you’ll come to look forward to our meetings, both for the company and the presentations.

And why did I type PROBUS all in capital letters? I have no idea. It’s just the way it’s done. I blame PROBUS Canada . I expect way back, someone mistakenly hit the cap lock on their keyboard and, as they say, the rest is history. But that’s another story. Never mind about that. But if you’re eligible, do give PROBUS a try. You’ll be glad you did.  

FYI – Our guest speaker next Tuesday (Feb. 7th) is David Charters, formerly with the Conflict Studies Centre and now with its successor, the Gregg Centre at UNB. His expertise is in modern warfare and his focus will be on the war in Ukraine. And next month, Stephane Robichaud of the New Brunswick Health Council. And on it goes. See what I mean – people with special insight on topics that matter.  

Thanks for reading. Shares are always appreciated, and if you know a retired or semi-retired person who might be interested, please forward this to them. Or bring them. They’ll thank you later.

Cover Photo Credit: Tourism Fredericton

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