— Want to switch up your dinner routine? Each month, AARP and Hy-Vee host a hands-on cooking class just for you!  Are you looking to learn new cooking techniques and enjoy your creations? The monthly What’s Cookin’ with AARP classes at Hy-Vee are in full swing! These hands-on sessions are designed with you in mind. Bring your own experience in the kitchen to the table while you discover new recipes and healthy alternatives for your favorite traditional dishes. The classes are …

— By Ryan Gruenenfelder   For too long Illinois has been without a comprehensive, balanced budget that helps make life better for residents of all ages. Since 2002, the Governor and the General Assembly have failed to pass a truly balanced budget. And for almost two years, the State has operated without anything beyond a ‘stop-gap’ budget.  This budgetary inaction has led to a current fiscal year 2017 budget deficit of somewhere between $5.4 billion to $7.8 billion, depending on whose …

— AARP, local elected officials will kick off Social Security event  SPRINGFIELD, Va. – As Social Security readies to become 81 years old, AARP volunteers and local legislators will gather at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, July 6 to celebrate the opening of the Virginia ‘Take a Stand’ campaign headquarters. The campaign is an effort to make the program, which provides vital income to more than 1.4 million Virginians, stronger for future generations. AARP Virginia State Director Jim Dau, Delegate Dave Albo (R-42nd) …

— By Mac McLean Moments of tragedy can motivate people to work toward goals that seem out of reach. Rob Zako’s call to action came in February 2015, when a pickup truck driver killed three young children and severely injured their mother while they were crossing a highway outside downtown Springfield. “Lots of people cross the street at that intersection every day,” said Zako, executive director of Better Eugene-Springfield Transit—commonly known as BEST—a nonprofit dedicated to improving Lane County’s transit services. …

—   This just in from Springfield…. Members of the Illinois House have an opportunity to stand with 1.7 million AARP Illinois members and thousands of retirees across the state to oppose the taxation of retirement income.  House Resolution 890 filed yesterday by State Representative David McSweeney (R-Barrington Hills) earned the support of AARP Illinois for its advocacy on behalf of Illinois’ retirees and its unwavering resolve to not permit the taxation of retirement income.   “Retirees of Illinois did not …

—   Have we got an exciting announcement today! For too long, jobless Illinoisans suffered with denied or reduced unemployment benefits simply because they had reached the age of 62 or older, and were receiving the Social Security benefits to which they were entitled. Illinois was the last state in the nation still enforcing an outdated law that punished older workers. To correct that, the General Assembly today took swift action, passing House Bill 1285 by a vote of 110-0.   …

— Meet up with fellow AARP members and guests for a free tour to explore all of the historical nuggets that the Clark County Heritage Center in Springfield has to offer. Invite your friends to come along for this free tour lead by local history buffs and meet other AARP members for a guided tour of the historic site, during which you will hear stories that stretch as far back as 1870. Stay after the tour for a snack with AARP …

— By Ralph Richberg A bronze statue of civic leader and businesswoman Anne Case Drummond sitting on a bench overlooks the lake that bears her name in the Springfield Botanical Gardens at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park. What is she holding in her lap? That’s one of 26 questions in the Passport to Healthy Living, a collaborative project of AARP Missouri, the city of Springfield, the Springfield-Greene County Park Board, the Springfield-Greene County Library District and the Community Partnership of the Ozarks. …

— It usually starts small – perhaps running a few errands or preparing some meals. Maybe you don’t even see yourself as a caregiver yet. Sometime the changes can be sudden and dramatic. But as your loved ones age, they may need more help. And, perhaps you will too. A little planning ahead can make a big difference in your life. Join AARP Oregon and community partners for upcoming educational forums to help maximize future independence and quality of life.   …

— AARP’s membership is aged 50-plus, but we work on issues that matter to all Illinoisans.  Join us in the fight to lower utility rates, listen to our members as we work to strengthen Social Security and Medicare, fight fraud, support caregivers, work with faith based and diverse communities, and have a little fun!   AARP Illinois is looking for two undergraduate communications interns – one who will be based in our downtown Chicago office and another who will be based …