LEWISTON – The Golden Nuggetts, local seniors citizens group that performs for area nursing homes and senior citizens groups, has a busy schedule lined up through March. They play old-time favorites, country gospel, Western, Irish, French, Christian and seasonal songs.

The group has played at Marshwood and future dates include: Bolster Heights, Auburn, Jan. 19 at 1:30 p.m.; Clover Manor, Auburn, Jan. 26 at 10 a.m.; Odd Fellows, Auburn, Feb. 2 at 10 a.m.; Meadows, Greene, Feb. 9, at 10 a.m.; Sabattus Residential, Feb. 16 at 10 a.m.; Meadows, Feb. 19, celebrating 10 years, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Russell Park, March 2 at 10 a.m.; Lamp, Lisbon, March 9 at 10 a.m.; Schooner Estates, Auburn, March 16 at 10:45 a.m.; Montello Manor, March 29 at 10 a.m.

Rose McCloskey plays guitar and sings and harmonizes with Ralph Lashua. She joined the group in 1993 and has been the spokeswoman and emcee. She is a self-taught musician and, after retiring from the Lewiston School Department in 1990 teaching fifth-grade students, wanted to continue in music. She also does volunteer work at d’Youville.

Lashua, also a self-taught musician, began with guitar as a teen and plays banjo, ukelele and mandolin. He played in a band, “The Four Coachmen.” Lashua joined in jam sessions, playing at times with the Nuggetts, until he retired from Service Merchandise in 1998. Then he joined the group full time.

Irene Coady is a self-taught musician, playing accordion. She began at age 11 by “sneaking” her brother’s accordion when he wasn’t around. She has used her gift of music in nursing homes and played piano and organ at St. Philip’s Church in Auburn for more than 20 years, retiring in 1999. She was in musical groups, Carme Belle Orchestra, Memories and the Happy Wanderer Group.

Hazel Binette, who plays mandolin, has kept the group together since 1998, selecting the music they sing and play and scheduling time and places. She also picks out tunes on several other instruments.

To schedule a time or special event, call Binette at 783-3659.

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