Growing Stronger, Growing Better

Since 2006, Penn State Extension’s Growing Stronger program has helped older adults to remain independent. Growing Stronger stems from Tufts University’s Dr. Miriam Nelson’s Strong Women’s program, which was designed to prevent osteoporosis in mid-life women. This disease occurs in older adults and breaks down bone density over time.  As we age, bone density is not all we lose. We also lose muscle mass. In fact, according to the Journal of Applied Physiology, as we grow older, fat grows as well; therefore, lessening muscle that we store in our bodies.  The Growing Stronger exercises reduce bone and muscle loss and improves fitness, mobility, balance, and flexibility, so seniors can remain healthy and independent.

Penn State Extension’s Growing Stronger is inclusive for males and females over 40 and provides not only osteoporosis prevention health, but also various nutrition lessons in maintaining and sustaining independent living. The program meets twice a week for twelve weeks and involves participants lifting manageable weights, stretching key muscle groups, and warming up and cooling down.

Penn State Extension and The University of Scranton are offering Growing Stronger programs at two locations in Lackawanna County on: Monday and Wednesday mornings from 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. at the West Side Active Adult Community, 1004 Jackson Street, Scranton, beginning September 7; and Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. at the Abington Senior Center, 1151 Winola Road, Clarks Summit, beginning September 8.

The cost of the program is $105 if you register before August 24 and $115 after this date. Registration deadline is September 2.

For more information or to register, please contact Samantha Q. DeSantis at the Penn State Extension at 570-963-6842, ext. 1381.

Food Safety Certification – ServSafe®

The ServSafe course, conducted by Penn State Extension, is being held at the Penn State Worthington Campus in Dawson 123 on Monday, August 1, from 9 am – 4 pm and Monday, August 8, from 9 am – noon.

The course covers information related to preventing cross contamination, safe handling of food, temperature control, cleaning and sanitization, proper storage, and pest control in addition to other relevant topics.

The exam for the course will immediately follow the August 8 class at 1 p.m.

After attending the class sessions and passing the multiple choice exam, participants will receive a ServSafe certificate which meets the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s requirement for food safety certification.

The cost of the class is $185, and the registration deadline is Wednesday, July 27.  Interested individuals can also register online at (choose ServSafe under “Courses and Workshops”).

Contact Nicole McGeehan at 570-421-6430 or with any questions.