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Meet your neighbor: Carlyn Alatorre

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Grace Place Resident enjoys dancing, drawing and spending time with pet poodle

ESTACADA NEWS PHOTO: EMILY LINDSTRAND - Carlyn Alatorre and her 3-year-old dog, Reba, live at Grace Place Senior Living in Estacada.

Carlyn Alatorre is sharing her love of dance with her fellow community members at Grace Place Senior Living.

"I've been teaching (act-

ivities director) Cyndi (Simpson) how to line dance," Alatorre said. "She's been catching on."

Alatorre is also teaching line dancing to a group of middle school students on Thursday, April 13. She lives at Grace Place with her 3-year-old poodle, Reba, who has "18 different toys." The News recently spoke to Alatorre about dancing, animals and her family.

Estacada News: How long have you lived at Grace Place?

Carlyn Alatorre: A little over a year. I came from Molalla.

EN: Where did you work before retiring?

CA: The Estacada Telephone Company. I started out when they had the old cord board (or switchboard), and I was an operator. Then they switched to computers, which wasn't as much fun. I was eventually in charge of the directories. With the cord board, it was more personal. There was one lady who would always call just to talk to someone.

EN: What's your family like?

CA: I was married to my husband Ralph for 42 years before he died. We met at a country western dance. We have two sons. I met my boyfriend Ed at a dance at the VFW. He lives in Wilsonville.

EN: What are your hobbies?

CA: I like drawing with gel pens and dancing, and I used to show horses.

EN: What are your favorite styles of dancing?

CA: Swing and waltz. I've been dancing since I was 8 years old. I took tap dancing, and that was helpful for choreographing.

EN: What do you like most about dancing?

CA: I really like moving.

EN: What do you and Reba like to do?

CA: We go for walks on nice days. She's a smart dog. She knows the name of what each of her toys is. I've always had pets — dogs, cats and horses.

EN: What made you want to adopt a poodle?

CA: They're smart and they don't shed a lot.

EN: What's your favorite thing about Grace Place?

CA: The quality of care, and the cleanliness.

EN: How would you describe yourself to someone who hadn't met you?

CA: Outgoing. I like to find out about other people and what they're all about.