WATERVILLE — Lori Higgins attended Saturday’s World of Women’s Wellness event for the free health screenings. The chair massage, she said, was a bonus.

The 43-year-old hairdresser said after her first-ever chair massage that all the pain and tightness in her neck were gone.

Higgins was one of hundreds of women who flocked to Inland Hospital’s 15th annual health fair in Laurette Ayotte Auditorium at Thomas College.

About 60 exhibitors with information on topics including bicycling, oral health, sleep diagnostics, organ donation, Lyme disease, food addiction, fitness and sexual-assault victim support packed the gymnasium.

Higgins said she wanted to have her cholesterol checked because diabetes runs in her family. The Winslow resident said she also wanted to have her bone density and eyesight tested.

After enjoying the chair massage so much, Higgins said she also had signed up for a reflexology treatment — a massage of pressure points in her hands and feet.


“I took the day off to come here,” she said.

Kathy Butler, of Augusta, said she appreciated the opportunity to obtain some of the 13 free health screenings, particularly because her insurance doesn’t cover bone-density tests.

Butler, 55, said this is the third year she has attended the fair.

“I’d say since the first year I came, the word is getting out,” she said while waiting in line for a free screening.

Butler, Higgins, and Jodie Hill, 44, of Waterville, concurred that “all women deserve to come here.”

Sara Dyer, director of community relations at Inland Hospital, said the wellness fair is part of the hospital’s outreach efforts to benefit the community.


“We want women to be able to come and have access to this many free resources in one place and to have fun learning how to be well and healthy,” she said.

Fair organizers and volunteers assisted and welcomed attendees from the time they entered the packed parking lot.

That helpfulness and cooperation wasn’t lost on Judy Evers, 64, of Fairfield. She said everyone had been “friendly and informative” as she made her rounds to the various booths.

In addition to free screenings and spa treatments ranging from facials to nail art, several demonstrators also gave presentations.

Linda Hartkopf, health coordinator at Regional School Unit 20, got a group of attendees to join her in Hula Hopping 101 — What Goes Around, Comes Around.

Other interactive presentations included demonstrations on how to make fresh meals in minutes, discover the benefits of yoga and learn the therapeutic benefits of drumming.

Beth Staples — 861-9252

[email protected]


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