Friday, October 24, 2014

Columnist Sharon Randall to speak in Elkhart

A regular Elkhart Truth columnist will be speaking to a group in Elkhart in October.

Posted on Sept. 19, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on Sept. 19, 2013 at 10:31 a.m.

ELKHART — A regular columnist in The Elkhart Truth will be speaking on “the art of living” at an event this October.

Sharon Randall has been reflecting in her newspaper column on her life’s happenings, mostly in California and Nevada, since 1991. Her column was picked up for national syndication in 1994, gaining distribution to some 400 newspapers.

Randall will speak at The Four Arts Club event Monday, Oct. 7, at Christiana Creek Country Club on “The Art of Living and Laughing: Things I’ve Learned from Those I’ve Loved.”

“I certainly don’t consider myself an expert on life,” Randall said in an interview. “I don’t have credentials, but I have had some wonderful teachers.”

Those have included her brother who was born blind and continues to live on his own independently; her mother who dropped out of high school, married at age 15 and had four children; and her first husband, whom she credited as “one of the healthiest people she knew,” but who battled cancer for four years before his death.

Randall credited her mother and brother for “taking what life has given (them) and making the most of it.” When talking about her first husband, she noted how, though we all know we will die, that knowledge took on more meaning after her husband’s diagnosis. “All of the little things fall away and you’re left with the things that really matter,” she said.

Randall stated that she probably won’t say anything at The Four Arts event that people haven’t heard before, but that people may take in what they hear in a different way, maybe realize something they didn’t before.

That’s a pattern she’s experienced many times through her column.

“I always marvel when people I’ve never met write me to tell me how things affected them,” she said.

Randall’s columns often include stories about her kids, her grandchildren, other family and friends, and is described on her website as being about “everyday people and ordinary things.”

When you’re honest about your life and the things you’ve learned, “people accept you” and respond by telling you their own stories, she said.

“That’s the best compliment a storyteller can have,” she explained.

Kate Madsen, associate program director for The Four Arts Club, said that limited seats are available, but that people should go to “contact” on to let organizers know of their interest in attending. Madsen said they will likely not be able to provide seats for everyone.

The Four Arts Club meets the first Monday of most months to celebrate the arts: music, visual/performing arts, literature and the art of living.

Editor's note: The initial version of this story indicated that the event is a luncheon, but it only serves dessert, coffee and tea. We apologize for the error.

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