Alzheimer’s Tennessee Blog

Coach Fulmer Shares Plans to Grow Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK

kaywatson : February 11, 2015 6:17 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

Legendary UT Coach Phillip Fulmer Announces Plans for
25th Anniversary Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK to Grow at New Location


Former UT Football Coach Phillip Fulmer announced plans for the 25th Anniversary Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK on Saturday 18 to grow at its new location, the UT Gardens. He then joined UT Gardens Educator Derrick Stowell and Assistant Director James Newburn along with Alzheimer’s Tennessee Executive Director Janice Wade-Whitehead to plant a Redbud that is expected to have lavender blooms around the day of the Walk, now just two months away.

Former UT Football Coach Phillip Fulmer announced plans for the 25th Anniversary Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK on Saturday 18 to grow at its new location, the UT Gardens. He then joined UT Gardens Educator Derrick Stowell and Assistant Director James Newburn along with Alzheimer’s Tennessee Executive Director Janice Wade-Whitehead to plant a Redbud that is expected to have lavender blooms around the day of the Walk, now just two months away.

(Knoxville – Feb. 2015) Legendary UT Coach Phillip Fulmer announced that the 25th Anniversary Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK will have room to “grow” with its new home at the UT Gardens on Saturday, April 18, 2015.

“We hope the beautiful UT Gardens will inspire everyone who has been touched by Alzheimer’s to join us Saturday, April 18 and show their support for individuals and families – like mine – who count on support from Alzheimer’s Tennessee,” said Fulmer, who has served as an Honorary Chairperson along with his family for nearly a decade.

“My family looks at the WALK as a way to honor my mother who is living with Alzheimer’s, and I invite all sons, daughters, grandchildren, friends, colleagues, and neighbors who value their memories to team up and walk with us. Turn the walk into your family reunion and unite for this important cause,” Fulmer added.

Fulmer joined Alzheimer’s Tennessee Executive Director Janice Wade-Whitehead and key Alzheimer’s Tennessee volunteers at the UT Gardens to plant a redbud that is expected to bloom around the day of the walk that is now just two months away.

“With every step we take and every dollar we raise at our silver anniversary walk this spring, we will sew ‘seeds of hope’ for families living with this disease today and for those who worry about the future impact of Alzheimer’s and related dementias,” said Wade-Whitehead who has led the organization since 1991. “For 25 years, walkers, donors and volunteers have made it possible for Alzheimer’s Tennessee to share strategies for caring and coping, to promote brain health, and to invest in advocacy and research seeking better treatments, and we know the need is only growing.”

Someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease every 67 seconds. It’s estimated more than 120,000 Tennesseans are living with Alzheimer’s along with all of their families and caregivers.

The UT Gardens, along Neyland Drive next to the UT College of Veterinary Medicine, will provide more than 1,200 expected participants convenient access to nearby parking lots. Walkers will find live music, free food, and fun for children and pets before the actual walk. Walkers will be able to choose from a shorter symbolic route through the UT Gardens or a longer route on the greenway.

Alzheimer’s Tennessee and the UT Gardens are also partnering to include additional educational opportunities and ways to honor loved ones at the April WALK.

“Research shows that gardens have many therapeutic benefits for individuals who have Alzheimer’s,” said Derrick Stowell, UT Gardens Educator. “We have been providing therapeutic garden programs for individuals with Alzheimer’s. It is even more exciting that we are now able to offer our gardens to help raise awareness and support for Alzheimer’s Tennessee and those who are fighting this disease.”

Sign up today to walk, donate or volunteer by visiting . There is no registration fee, but walkers who raise or donate $50 by April 7 will qualify for a souvenir t-shirt at the WALK on April 18.

Anyone interested in learning more is invited to the 25th Anniversary Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK Kickoff Luncheon on Thursday, Feb. 26. To reserve a seat, please contact Alzheimer’s Tennessee Director of Development Kay Watson at 865.544.6288 x225 or .

WALK: 25th Anniversary Knoxville WALK – Saturday, April 18 at UT Gardens

Next to the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine

2518 Jacob Dr. Knoxville, TN 37996

KICKOFF: Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015 | Noon Luncheon

Buddy’s BBQ Bearden Banquet Hall, 5806 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37919

(Across from the purple Alzheimer’s Tennessee Resource Center)

Please Reserve Your Seat. Contact Kay Watson at or call 865.544.6288.

About Alzheimer’s Tennessee:

Alzheimer’s Tennessee is a locally-incorporated non-profit group founded by area families and professionals in 1983. The 501c3 organization’s mission is to serve those facing Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, to promote brain health through education, and to champion global prevention and treatment efforts.
There’s only one Knoxville Alzheimer’s WALK, from which ALL proceeds benefit Tennesseeans.

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FREE Evening “Alzheimer’s 101” Session in Blount County

Meghan Peevely : October 17, 2014 4:00 pm : Alzheimer's Blog


What: Bring your questions about memory loss to a FREE evening information session offered by Alzheimer’s Tennessee in Blount County. The “Alzheimer’s 101” class presented by Alzheimer’s Tennessee on Thursday, November 6 from 6-7:30 p.m. will help participants better understand some of the warning signs, challenges, and risk factors linked to the most common causes of dementia.   Today, someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s every 67 seconds. Dr. Teresa Catron of Blount Senior Care Partners will share an Overview of Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias.

WhenThursday, November 6 from 6-7:30 p.m. (Doors open at 5:30 p.m.)

Where: First Baptist Church of Maryville 202 West Lamar Alexander Pkwy, Maryville, TN 37801

Why: Learning about Alzheimer’s and related dementias is key to facing the disease and helping others navigate their journeys with memory loss. “If you are concerned about yourself or a loved one, this would be a good evening to begin to understand some of the basics of Alzheimer’s and the related dementias – or hear more about the disease that can seem so overwhelming,” Alzheimer’s Tennessee Director of Programs Linda Johnson explained. “Our goal at Alzheimer’s Tennessee is also to connect the community with resources through care consultations to help them understand that they are not alone.”

How: Please register for the FREE class online at or call Alzheimer’s Tennessee at 865.544.6288 or toll-free at 888.326.9888.  Alzheimer’s Tennessee educational opportunities are funded in part by the annual Foothills Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK at Maryville College. Walk, donate or volunteer. Anyone who donates $50 to the WALK by Monday, Nov. 3 will be entered in a drawing to win Dollywood day passes or Titanic Museum passes. Visit

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Art Show and Silent Art Auction for Alzheimerʼs Tennessee

kaywatson : October 16, 2014 1:53 pm : Alzheimer's Blog


Join us …the Whittington Creek Clubhouse in West Knoxville will be
overflowing with art on October 17-19, during the 5th annual Whittington Creek Art Show
and Sale.

What: The 2014 Whittington Creek Art Show
Where: 1800 Whittington Creek Blvd., Knoxville, Tn. 37922
When: Friday, October 17 – Sunday, October 19

Friday, October 17: (1pm-8pm/ Opening Reception: 5pm-8pm for Art Show and Silent Art Auction for Alzheimerʼs Tennessee
Saturday, October 18: (10am-5pm)
Sunday, October 19: (11am-4pm)

Kids art activities: 1-4pm Saturday and 11-4 Sunday
Cost: Show and Reception are free and open to the public!
More Information:


In honor of the showʼs fifth year, a silent auction booth will be set up to
contribute to the fight against Alzheimerʼs disease. The artists in the show and other
regional artists will be exhibiting a special piece of art in the Alzheimerʼs Tn. booth with
50% of their profits donated to Alzheimerʼs Tn. Alzheimerʼs Tennessee, Inc. is a local
non-profit organization that provides family support, offers community and professional
education, advocates for the needs and rights of those with Alzheimerʼs disease and
related dementias, as well as research for its prevention, cure, and treatment.

A fun way to start your holiday shopping, this yearʼs show promises to please with a variety
of affordable, handmade, unique art including; paintings, drawings, pottery, glass, photographs,
birdhouses, furniture, wearable art, jewelry, gourd art, floral art, wood, metal art, sculpture, garden
art, hand hooked rugs, baskets and more! Talented regional and local artists will be on hand with
their work and several will be demonstrating their crafts in their booths. Over 30 artists hailing from
around the region including Kodak, Oak Ridge, New Tazewell, Kingston, Clinton, Loudon, Seymour
and Knoxville will be set up both inside and outside the clubhouse.

Seasonal refreshments and live music will put you in the holiday shopping mood!
Everyone is invited to come meet the artists and shop for that special gift of handmade art. The
show opens on Friday afternoon, October 17 at 1pm and the wine and cheese reception with “Silent
Auction for Alzheimerʼs” will start Friday evening October 17 from 5pm-8:00pm.

The show and reception are free and open to the public! Both the show and silent auction continue throughout the
weekend. Saturday, October 18 show hours are from 10am-5pm and Sunday, October 19 from
11am-4pm. Free kidʼs activities on Saturday and Sunday from 1-4 pm include pottery, tile painting
and face painting. The show and reception are free and open to the public!

See for more information and like us on Facebook!
Microsoft Word - WC Postcard 2014.docx

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Celebrate the Christmas Spirit

kaywatson : October 2, 2014 1:36 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

alzheimers christmas flyer top

Share the gift of togetherness and goodwill by purchasing tickets to a special holiday show at the Smoky Mountain Opry benefitting Alzheimer’s Tennessee on Tuesday, Dec. 2 at 8 p.m.

A benefit night at the Smoky Mountain Opry in Pigeon Forge is the perfect way to celebrate the holiday season. Invite your Sunday school classes, families, neighbors, and co-workers to be entertained by more than fifty of the area’s most talented singers, dancers and musicians plus aerialists, acrobats, and majestic live animals.

As an extra special treat, our friend and entertainer, James Rogers, will make a guest appearance, performing “Find the Way”, the song he wrote about Alzheimer’s in honor of his father. Special commemorative luminary candles will be available for purchase with all proceeds going to Alzheimer’s Tennessee.

The Smoky Mountain Opry is graciously donating $10 of each ticket sold to Alzheimer’s Tennessee for this special one-night performance.

Don’t miss the opportunity to see this fabulous holiday show and support a cause close to all of our hearts.

Purchase your tickets today
or call 800.908.9018
Must mention or include ALZTN ticket code when ordering.

Your friends at Alzheimer’s Tennessee look forward to seeing you
Tuesday, December 2 at 8 p.m. at the
Smoky Mountain Opry in Pigeon Forge, 2046 Parkway,
next door to the Hard Rock Café, Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show & Titanic Museum.

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Support the Collins – Klobuchar resolution!

kaywatson : April 2, 2014 2:13 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

Alzheimer’s, which rivals cancer as the second most deadly disease in the US, is costing us dearly – both economically and emotionally.

Yet Alzheimer’s research receives relatively little funding – a mere $550 million compared to $5.7 billion for cancer research. Increasing funding for Alzheimer’s research is the way to find an effective treatment or cure for Alzheimer’s.

Senators have drafted a powerful letter urging their colleagues who are writing the FY15 budget to support more research for Alzheimer’s disease and increase support for caregivers, but the deadline for your Senators to add their names is this Thursday, April 3rd.

Urge your Senators to co-sponsor the Collins-Klobuchar resolution and double funding for Alzheimer’s research at the NIH in the FY15 budget.

The Collins-Klobuchar resolution urges Congress to double research funding at the NIH in FY15 as part one of a five-year plan to commit $2 billion in annual Alzheimer’s research funding by 2019.

If Congress does not dramatically increase funding for Alzheimer’s disease, we could see Alzheimer’s deaths rise to one million a year.

Please urge your Senators to join Senators Collins and Klobuchar in calling for a doubling of research funding for Alzheimer’s at the NIH in the FY15 budget and a ramp up to $2 billion per year by 2019.

Thank you for helping to stop this devastating disease.

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Alzheimer’s Tennessee Day on the Hill – Join us March 25!

kaywatson : March 12, 2014 10:51 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

It’s time to come together for the cause! 

A new report confirms what many of us may have long suspected: More people are impacted by Alzheimer’s disease than statistics currently show. 

The official journal of the American Academy of Neurology and a leading peer-reviewed publication, Neurology, published a groundbreaking study from researchers at the Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago that attributes more than 500,000 deaths in 2010 to Alzheimer’s disease – an amount more than six times the number reported by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).  

The study’s findings place Alzheimer’s deaths nearly on par with cancer deaths. 

We hope this will serve as a call-to-action for Advocates to ride the bus to Nashville later this month for Alzheimer’s Tennessee Day on the Hill on March 25.

Alzheimer’s Tennessee
Day on the Hill
Tuesday, March 25 – Join us!

Join fellow Alzheimer’s Tennessee Advocates and take your VOICE to Nashville with us on Legislative Day! Join us and share your story to advocate for others who can no longer speak for themselves.

Advocacy is a major component of Alzheimer’s Tennessee’s mission. Advocates are people with Alzheimer’s and related disorders — along with their caregivers, friends and families — whose voices together are a powerful tool for change and hope of a future without Alzheimer’s.

 To learn more and/or reserve your spot, please CLICK HERE. 

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Celebrate Record Research Funding!

kaywatson : February 3, 2014 4:11 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

Alzheimer’s Tennessee Applauds Bi-Partisan Congressional Action to Increase Funding for Alzheimer’s Research and Initiatives

Alzheimer's Symposium

(Jan. 2014) Alzheimer’s Tennessee applauds this month’s unprecedented $122 million increase in funding for Alzheimer’s disease research as well as key education, outreach and caregiver support initiatives. 

Leaders of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees should be commended for including the increase within the FY 2014 omnibus appropriations package that President Obama signed into law.

Alzheimer’s Tennessee advocates met with Senate Appropriations Committee member Senator Lamar Alexander and his Washington D.C. staff, as well as his area Field Representative, to explain the dire need for additional Alzheimer’s disease research funding to address the extraordinary global health crisis that more than 120,000 Tennesseans are living with today.

Alzheimer’s Tennessee has partnered with organizations including USAgainstAlzheimer’s and WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s Network to be a leading voice in the call for the funding levels necessary to achieve the national goal of preventing and treating Alzheimer’s by 2025.

 “Nearly every minute, someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. We are paying dearly for Alzheimer’s already today, an estimated $200 billion in the U.S. alone, $140 million of which is shouldered primarily by taxpayers via Medicare and Medicaid,” Janice Wade-Whitehead, Alzheimer’s Tennessee Executive Director explained. ‘We have turned the global tide in the battle against AIDS. Now we need to do it again. We will bankrupt our healthcare systems if we don’t,’ he said.”

Currently, the NIH invests about $500 million a year in Alzheimer’s research and $5.4 billion in cancer and $4 billion in heart disease research. Alzheimer’s Tennessee continues its dialogue with Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker along with their staff, all of whom have proven to be champions in the fight against Alzheimer’s.

“Alzheimer’s is the challenge of our lifetime and to fail to act now will result in a financial calamity, and worse, rob us of those who we cherish most. We continue to call upon our leaders to commit to a level of investment in research for Alzheimer’s at a scale commensurate to the Alzheimer’s threat,” Wade-Whitehead added.

Ultimately, Alzheimer’s Tennessee and its partners are calling to double the current National Institutes of Health (NIH) commitment to Alzheimer’s research in order to achieve $2 billion in annual research funding within 5 years.  That accounts for just 1 percent of the estimated cost of care for Americans with Alzheimer’s.

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Learn from the best: Caring and Coping caregiver workshops

Linda Johnson : January 31, 2014 4:09 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

Caring and Coping Logo


Wednesday, March 12 – Knoxville

(Click here to register)

Tuesday, April 29 – Cookeville

Caregivers, learn from the best! Featured speakers like Melanie Bunn at the upcoming Knox County workshop focus on “making your helping helpful.”


Melanie, a dynamic lecturer and skillful clinician in the areas of gerontological nursing and dementia, asks caregivers if they want to “Tangle or Tango”.

If caregivers want to “Tangle”, then they will do the following:

  • argue
  • take over too quickly/try to help too much
  • ignore what the person says or does
  • treat the person like a child
  • do it all by yourself
  • don’t take any time for yourself


If caregivers want to “Tango”, she teaches them to learn to do the following:

  • go with the flow
  • help at the level of the person’s loss
  • listen with your eyes, ears, heart and spirit
  • simplify, don’t baby-fy
  • build a caregiving team
  • take time away, physically, emotionally and spiritually
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30th Anniversary Celebration…Part One

kaywatson : January 30, 2014 5:51 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

We have shared successes and challenges and have lost some special loved ones along the way, but the dedication and leadership of our supporters, board members, volunteers and staff have made a difference in the lives of those living with Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s Tennessee invited our friends and supporters to warm up with a cup of coffee and 30 years of fond memories while taking a “walk down memory lane” in the hallways of our new purple building. Unfortunately, it snowed on our little party held on Wednesday, Jan. 29, so we look forward to another opportunity to honor more individuals who have played a very special role in our organization’s three decade history!


For more pictures from our open house, click here!

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Courage in the Face of Alzheimer’s and Dementia

kaywatson : January 27, 2014 4:10 pm : Alzheimer's Blog

The world as we know it can change in a day, especially with the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia.  As challenging as the disease can be, it is possible to face it with courage.

 Alzheimer’s is the most common cause of dementia. It starts in the brain, destroying memory and thinking skills and eventually, the ability to carry out the simplest tasks of daily living. 

 Facing Alzheimer’s with courage means having the courage to take the first steps. 

You may not coach the winningest basketball team, but you can get in the game by making an appointment for an assessment. Alzheimer’s Tennessee, Inc. recommends an assessment and early diagnosis to ensure proactive treatment options, which can prolong the quality of your life or of someone you love.

If you’re worried about yourself or someone you love and notice the following possible indicators of dementia, consider an assessment or contacting Alzheimer’s Tennessee, Inc. for FREE support, referrals and care-consultations:

  • Memory loss, especially for important events, names, placement of objects, and other new information.
  • Disorientation to time and place: forgetting where you are, how you got there and how to get home.
  • Struggle to complete familiar actions: brushing teeth, getting dressed, or placing a telephone call.
  • Trouble finding the appropriate words, completing sentences, and following directions and conversations.
  • Poor judgment: wearing several shirts on a warm day or giving money excessively to solicitors.
  • Changes in mood and personality: increased suspicion, mood swings, or social withdrawal.
  • Difficulty with complex mental assignments: tasks involving numbers or following directions.

Make sure your game plan to face Alzheimer’s includes up-to-date information.  Alzheimer’s Tennessee is offering Caring & Coping caregiver training in Knox County on Wednesday, March 12 and a free Alzheimer’s 101 class in Smith County on Thursday, February 13.

 And you can literally take steps to stop Alzheimer’s at the Knoxville Alzheimer’s Tennessee WALK on Saturday, April 12 by WALKing or donating to support education and promising research.

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East Tennessee Office:
5801 Kingston Pike
Knoxville, TN 37919
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1459 Interstate Dr. Ste 211
Cookeville, TN 38501 Alzheimer's of Tennessee - Cumberlands Office
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