LEWISTON – The Golden Nuggetts, a local senior citizens group, play and sing in nursing homes, for organizations and churches, performing old-time favorites, country gospel, western, Irish, French, Christian and seasonal songs. The group has been playing in Lewiston, Auburn, Sabattus, Greene, South Paris, New Gloucester, Yarmouth, Mechanic Falls, Winthrop, Lisbon and Bath.

Rose McCloskey plays guitar and sings. She retired in 1990 from the Lewiston School Department, where she taught the fifth-grade level for 17 years. She does volunteer work for the Serve New England Program and also at d’Youville Pavilion and Central Maine Medical Center. In her spare time she loves to travel.

Ralph Lashua is a self-taught musician beginning with a guitar as a teen. He plays banjo, ukulele and the mandolin and performed with the band, Four Coachmen. He retired from Service Merchandise in 1998 after 27 years.

Irene Coady is also a self-taught musician, playing the accordion at the age of 11 by “sneaking” her brother’s accordion when he wasn’t around. She also plays piano and organ, having played at St. Philip’s Church in Auburn for funeral masses from 1978 to 1999. At age 18 while living in Massachusetts, she formed a group, Carme Belle Orchestra. She married in 1955 and moved to Maine, becoming a member of the Happy Wanderers. She later she formed Memories, playing and singing songs from the 1950s and 1960s.

Hazel Binette plays mandolin, but enjoys picking out tunes on several instruments. She brought the group together in 1990 as the Hackett Racket Makers, now the Golden Nuggetts. She selects and transposes the music into comfortable keys for the group and schedules times and places to play.

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

The group will play on Thursday, Dec. 7, Chapman House, Auburn; Tuesday, Dec. 12, Sacred Heart seniors dinner, Auburn; Thursday, Dec. 14, Clover Manor, Auburn; and Tuesday, Dec. 19, the Meadows in Greene.


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