Third Herald, RichnerLive Senior Health Expo is a hit in Merrick


Roughly 350 seniors stretched their arms skyward and laced their fingers together at the third Senior Health & Beyond Expo, hosted by Herald Community Newspapers and RichnerLive on Aug. 8 at the Merrick Jewish Centre. “If you move your body every day and do Pilates more, you’ll feel better and have a more functional life,” said Allen Rosenbluth, the owner of Club Pilates Oceanside, who conducted the demonstration.

The event featured over 40 exhibitors that offered a range of services in healthcare, insurance, fitness, and financial and estate planning. Stuart Richner, the president and publisher of Richner Communications, addressed the crowd and said he hoped attendees could use the expo as an opportunity “to better equip you with the knowledge to care for yourself and your loved ones.”

County Executive Laura Curran also spoke and urged guests to take advantage of the services offered to seniors at the expo and by the county.

Rosenbluth was among a panel of eight experts who talked about topics ranging from fitness to elder law. Some of the speakers included Gina Chmielewski, the Medicaid coordinator at the Grandell Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Long Beach; Xenia Vega, the utility consumer assistance specialist of the New York Department of Public Services; Dr. Esther Fogel, the owner and director of Comprehensive Audiology in Lynbrook; and Kathy Delcastillo, of Cassena Care and Long Beach Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Chmielewski spoke to the audience about Medicaid and how to apply for it, outlining the steps like she does for her patients at Grandell Rehabilitation and Nursing Center.

Hearing loss is the third most common chronic physical condition in the United States, Fogel noted, referring to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control. She discussed the importance of including hearing tests in routine health check-ups. “Hearing loss could affect your overall cognitive function and increase your risk of dementia,” she said. “Addressing your hearing health improves your overall quality of life.”

Other discussion topics included how to set up a trust and protect assets, and the benefits of tai chi on physical and mental health.

Following the panel was a show featuring Howard Newman, a “jokesercise” comedian, and Mark Brier, the resident comedian at the East Meadow Public Library.

Attendees received a goody bag and a Senior Savings Coupon Booklet with local deals — and one guest was the recipient of a $500 grand prize gift card, courtesy of Citiwide Mobile Testing.

Event sponsors were the Merrick Jewish Centre, Cassena Care, AgeWell New York, Grandell Rehabilitation and Nursing Center and Russo Law Group. Long Beach Assisted Living sponsored the gift bags.

The next RichnerLive Senior Health & Beyond Expo is on Oct. 11 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Glen Cove YMCA and Nov. 1 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Friedberg JCC in Oceanside.