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The Newton Senior Center is a crossroads for the many interesting and lively people in a generation that spans ages 55 years to over 100 years! Each of these individuals has a story (or stories) to tell. The following videos are but a few of these fascinating tales they have to tell. These videos can be seen on NEW_TV, Newton’s cable station, and are the product of creative videography by Jesse Kreitzer who took a little idea from Joanne Fisher, Program Coordinator at the center, and made it grow.

Don Bucklin

Don Bucklin is a retired Professor of  Entomology who has engaged in a variety of hobbies in his retirement. Always with his wife Hope as his partner, he has explored the world. At the Newton Senior Center, Don and Hope can be found in writing groups, discussion groups and attending cultural events. In this video Don speaks about a fascinating project where he takes over 1,000 photos his father took in China about 80 years ago and organizes and archives them. In doing so, he studies them for clues about their stories. This video gives you a small taste of life in China at the beginning of the last century. If you wish to see more, go to

Charlotte Dooling

Charlotte Dooling is a retired history teacher who has found a retirement career at the Newton Senior Center. She is a transplant from Birmingham, Alabama, who came here as a young wife and has continues to make an impact with her love of history and current events. Charlotte leads many groups at the center, and has gained a following among those who are trying to make sense of a rapidly changing world. This is accomplished through history programs, current events and Book Club discussions.
This video tells Charlotte’s story of her beginnings in the South and about some of her experiences as a “witness to history”. For more information about Charlotte’s groups click on newsletters

Gwendolyn Thornblade

Gwendolyn Thornblade is a retired dentist with a passion for music. She is an accomplished musician and the founder of the Suzuki School of Music in Newton. She now devotes her energies to private teaching and to groups such as the Newton Senior Center Chamber Music Ensemble, that meets at the center on Wednesday mornings. The group is comprised of amateur, semi-professional and professional musicians. They perform throughout the year at local venues. This video is a portrait of Gwendolyn and her music.

Alice Costello

Alice Costello is an active and cheerful lady, often found in a variety of programs at the Newton Senior Center. She attends fitness classes as well as the many intellectually challenging programs offered. Upon meeting Alice you will find her laughing and never taking herself to seriously although, as you will see in this video, she was most serious about the wonderful work she did in her professional life.

Jim Early

Jim Early is a constant surprise. He quietly goes about his volunteer work at the center making sure the coffee is perked and waiting and any kitchen “go-fering” gets done. Jim is often seen with his Pool buddies chasing the 8-ball but the surprises come when the music begins and he dances with a grace and lightness one might not have guessed at. More surprising is that he not only can fix anything but that he designs and creates such wonderful wooden figures, as seen in this video.

Mary Jackson

Mary Jackson can be described in one word, “survivor”. Mary survived a difficult childhood in rural poverty in Louisiana. She survived a difficult marriage and later survived Hurricane Katrina. She is a woman of enormous love and wisdom that spill over in this video as she speaks of the family of children she “raised” as part of her employment. She redefines the word family in her life well lived.