This institution is an equal opportunity provider
Close this search box.

Living & Aging Well Event A Success

BANDON – The inaugural Living & Aging Well event, co-sponsored by the Southern Coos Health Foundation and Southern Coos Hospital & Health Center, was held on Saturday, May 4, and was well-attended and well-received.

More than 80 people attended the event, plus 15 volunteers who helped set up on Friday and assisted with the event on Saturday. In addition, 10 community organizations participated, offering information and opportunities for attendees to get involved.

Attendees at the inaugural Living & Aging Well event, which was open to everyone in the community.

Held at the Bandon Community Center, Living & Aging Well was an all-day seminar facilitated by SCHHC Events Coordinator Alix McGinley, who spoke on the Blue Zone concepts. Blue Zone communities are areas in the world where people live the longest, healthiest lives. These include Japan, Italy, Greece, Costa Rica, and Loma Linda, Calif. — where people live measurably healthier, longer, and happier lives. These communities have been studied to identify their commonalities regarding what helps build this type of life.

These lifestyle principles are called the “Power of 9.” Among those principles are to move naturally, have a sense of purpose, downshift, stop eating when 80-percent full, eat less meat and more fruits and vegetables, belong to a social network or a community, make time for your family, surround yourself with positive supportive people, and drink up to one glass of wine a day.

McGinley discussed these concepts and kept the event moving and interesting, with group discussions, journaling, and presentations by community organizations.

SCHHC Events Coordinator Alix McGinley discusses the Blue Zone concepts with the group.

To start the morning, SCHHC CEO Ray Hino gave a welcome and presented a PowerPoint about the Southern Coos Health Foundation. Coos Bay Mayor Joe Benetti also spoke and invited Bandon residents to walk with the mayors, something he and North Bend Mayor Jessica Engelke are encouraging. The mayors would like to do more to promote the Blue Zone theories throughout Coos County and have served on committees to that end.

From left, SCHHC CEO Raymond Hino, Coos Bay Mayor Joe Benetti, and attendee Laura Graham.

SCHHC Dietary Manager Rita Hamilton prepared healthy but tasty food, serving fresh fruit, yogurt, and granola for breakfast, and a green salad, turkey wraps, and hot and sour soup for lunch. She also provided fruit and nut packets for an afternoon snack.

SCHHC Dietary Manager Rita Hamilton provided tasty, healthy food for the event.

The community organizations encouraged people to get involved and during lunch had more information and sign-ups in the back of the room. Their presence helped promote the Blue Zone concepts of getting involved with your community and finding a sense of purpose.

Community groups offered information on how to get involved. 

Roger Straus, who initially had the idea for the Living & Aging Well event, purchases a raffle ticket from volunteer Sharon Haga. 

The event was funded by donations from members of 100 Strong Bandon and attendees were able to attend free of charge. The Southern Coos Health Foundation received $3,950 from about 60 donors, and a 50-percent matching grant has been approved by the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation in the amount of $1,950.

From, left: Julie Miller, co-founder of 100 Strong Bandon; Joseph Bain, President of the Southern Coos Health Foundation; Southern Coos Hospital & Health Center CEO Raymond Hino; Southern Coos Health Foundation Executive Director and SCHHC CIO Scott McEachern; SCHF Events Coordinator Alix McGinley; and 100 Strong co-founder MaryAnn Soukup. Miller and Soukup presented the check to support the hospital’s Living & Aging Well event.

Survey results and comments from attendees were overwhelmingly positive and ideas are already percolating for next year’s Living & Aging Well event.

For more information, visit:



Skip to content