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MEMORIES OF PIER 21: Does Pier 21 hold special memories for you or maybe a loved one?

Pier 21 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, was the gateway to Canada for some one million immigrants between 1928 and 1971. Today the unassuming brick building is the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21.

This National Historic Site is a reminder of the how immigrants have shaped Canada's character. Cozy cubbies, scattered throughout the museum, allow visitors to watch and hear first-hand stories from people who came here from countries around the globe.

The museum also explores the history of the vessels that carried newcomers to Halifax, including a reconstructed ship's dining cart with sample menus.

"The most important part of the museum's collection is our oral history," says Kristine Kovacevic, the museum's interpretation and visitor experience manager. "Our real focus is on people's experiences and stories."

GERMAN RETIREES RECREATE CLASSIC MOVIE SCENES: Older adults from a German retirement residence won online fame when they recreated favourite movie scenes for a calendar.

The actors hail from the Contilia Retirement Centre in Essen, Germany. Ranging from 76 to 98, they donned their movie star garb, and dazzled residents, employees and family members, with their energy, style and aplomb.

Marianne Brunsbach, 86, put on her little black dress and pearls and posed as Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's. And 89-year-old Wilhelm Buiting channeled a spy named Bond.

A professional photographer from Gladbeck caught the action. The result: 12 winning motifs for the centre's vintage calendar.

Movie choices included:

  • Easy Rider
  • Titanic
  • Cabaret, and
  • Saturday Night Fever.

Copies of the calendar were printed and distributed to family, friends and staff. According to one Contilia board member, once pictures from the calendar started circulating online, the leading women and men won hearts around the world.

THE RISE OF THE SILVER SEPARATOR: Divorce rates for people over-50 are on the rise, while rates have plateaued or dropped among other age groups.

So why are over-50s topping the divorce charts?

1. "Silver" divorce is becoming more common, and more acceptable. According to Statistics Canada, the proportion of divorced or separated seniors who are 65 and older has tripled in the last three decades, up from four per cent in 1981 to 12 per cent by 2011.

2. More women are financially independent. Nonetheless, because women tend to live longer and still earn less than men, they face greater economic risk on their own, according to Susan Brown, a professor of sociology at Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

3. Many older adults are in second marriages; the divorce rate is about two and a half times larger for those who have remarried.

4. Life expectancy is also a factor. Individuals who are 50 or 60 today, could go 30 more years. Many want the chance to have a more satisfying and loving relationship. According to John-Paul Boyd from the Canadian Research Institute for Law and the Family, boomers are more likely than any previous generation to be married two or more times, to have been in long-term unmarried relationships and to divorce later in life.

THE SMITHSONIAN WANTS YOUR ROCK 'N' ROLL PHOTOS: If you've got some rock star photos on your computer hard drive, stored on your iPhone or hidden in your attic, the Smithsonian wants to hear from you.

"Send us your Jimi Hendrix pictures. Your Patti Smith shots. Your Radiohead photos. We want rock 'n' roll as seen through your eyes," read a recent press release from the famous American museum.

Smithsonian Books and Smithsonian Media want to create one of the greatest collections of rock 'n' roll photography ever. An accompanying book featuring the best images will be published in 2017.

For more details, and to submit your photos, go to

Finally, we at Aging Horizons Bulletin want to wish all our wonderful readers many blessings in 2016! – Ruth Dempsey