I want to thank everyone who responded to my request for help as I begin the new Clare newsletter. Fortunately, I soon found Microsoft's Newsletter Wizard, which seems to be fairly easy to use, as a softwaare base for the project.
I want to comment on Steve Gurney's comment. Here it is, in case you haven't read it:
"You do a fantastic "newsletter" with this blog! I would recommend that you follow a similar model for The Clare. If you feel like you really need something in "print," simply print and copy a 1 page summary of the elements that can be distributed in everyone's mailbox much less expensively that will drive them to the site. If residents don't have a computer, they can gain access on the computer in the common area which I hope The Clare has. This is the model that our nations newspapers are following to reinvent themselves, don't revert back to 'old media'."
Thanks, Steve, but The Clare has had a residents' web site for quite a while, and it is largely ignored. Mine (a different one) is the only blog there, and the number of computer users seems small, despite training sessions. Yes, there are computers for public use here. I realize that seniors are becoming increasingly computer literate, and I'm certainly in favor of that, but so far, the Clare group has been resistent. Perhaps I can use a print newsletter to encourage more computer use.
When I stop to think about it, I realize that computers are still foreign objects to many of the older residents of The Clare (the oldest resident is 101, by the way). Many retired before computers gained popularity, and of course none of us grew up with computers. As a person who embraces computers, but still likes to read a printed daily newspaper, I am willing to rely on "old media" for a while. It seems the only way to reach an audience right now. I see Steve's point, but I'm a realist.
The first issue of The Clarion (that's the name for now) should come out in mid-May. I'm hoping that the first issue will inspire more people to join me; so far, the staff is small. I'll report on the results soon.