Verda Lichtenhahn, of Craig, works on a progressive cartoon during "Toon Time," an Aging Well program offered during Wellness Wednesdays at the American Legion Post 62 facility. "Our cartoons are turning out to be pretty silly," Lichtenhahn said.

Photo by Michelle Balleck

Verda Lichtenhahn, of Craig, works on a progressive cartoon during "Toon Time," an Aging Well program offered during Wellness Wednesdays at the American Legion Post 62 facility. "Our cartoons are turning out to be pretty silly," Lichtenhahn said.

'Toon-ing up

Four-week cartoon class among Aging Well's Wellness Wednesday course offerings

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Nina Lawton, left, and Bobbie Harper, of Craig, laugh while reviewing cartoons during the Aging Well "Toon Time" class Wednesday.

They each create a character - give her a name, an outfit and a persona.

Then they draw a box around her and send her on her way, for someone else to shape and mold.

It's all part of David Morris' cartoon class, which he dubs "Toon Time," through Aging Well's Wellness Wednesday.

On Wednesday, week two of the four-week course, participants created a character and then passed their strip to the right for the next person to continue the story.

"That's really the fun of this - you won't really know until the end of this what happens to your character," Morris said.

The class, which is free for students 62 and older but available to anyone, is one of many the Aging Well program sponsors. Wellness Wednesdays also include swimming, lunches, speakers and senior wellness clinics at the American Legion Post 62 facility.

Bobbie Harper, of Craig, said the cartooning class offers her a creative outlet.

"I want to express myself in my art in other sorts of ways," Harper said. "This lets you go out of the lines, lets you make it whatever you think is funny."

Morris, who has taught similar courses at Craig Middle School and Colorado North-western Community College, said cartooning is accessible for all ages, which is why so many people are drawn to it.

"People tell me, 'I can't draw.' But anybody can," Morris said. "Anyone can put a story together. That's what cartoons do - they tell stories, sometimes in an abstract way."

Morris, who often submits cartoons for publication in the Craig Daily Press, said cartoons are meant to be fun, even those with a political twist.

"It's a way in our society to poke a little fun at ourselves, which I think is always a good thing," Morris said.

To get more information on Wellness Wednesday classes and activities, call Cathy Vanatta, senior outreach coordinator, at 871-7676.

"I'm trying to encourage people in the younger age group to participate, too," Vanatta said.

Those who may need transportation to Aging Well events should call Vanatta as well.

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