Annual Senior Citizen May Day Celebrated in Luverne
Published 5:54 pm Wednesday, June 14, 2023
On May 25, the Tom Harbin Ag Center came alive with laughter, games, and festivities as senior citizens from centers across Crenshaw County gathered to celebrate the second annual Senior Citizen May Day.
The event was held in conjunction with Older Americans Month with similar festivities held throughout the month of May across the state. Nearly 100 seniors were invited to attend, representing centers from Luverne, Brantley, Honoraville, Dozier, and Bradleyton-Helicon.
The day was filled with an array of games, bingo, cake walks, activities, prizes, exhibits, lunch, and entertainment, making it a delightful occasion for the large turnout of people present.
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Hosted by the Crenshaw County Extension in partnership with local senior centers, the event is an integral part of the month-long celebration of Older Americans Month, as declared by Alabama Governor Kay Ivey. In a proclamation signed on May 4, Gov. Ivey emphasized the significance of recognizing older adults and the invaluable contributions they make to their communities.
Debra Davis, the deputy commissioner with the Alabama Department of Senior Services (ADSS), echoed the sentiments expressed by Gov. Ivey during the Luverne event in which she attended. Davis stressed the importance of acknowledging the remarkable contributions that older Alabamians have made and continue to make through their work and knowledge. She commended the local senior centers for their exceptional efforts in recognizing and supporting older citizens.
“It’s a wonderful, month-long celebration,” Davis said. “These people here paved the way for all of us, for everything that we enjoy, and the centers here in Crenshaw County do a great job of recognizing that and helping people to continue to live in their homes as long as possible. The meals that the centers in Crenshaw County provide are vital to so many local citizems being able to remain independent, and that’s really what the Department of Senior Services is all about—helping people remain in their homes as long as they can.”
ADSS, a cabinet-level state agency, plays a crucial role in administering programs for senior citizens and individuals with disabilities. The department aims to support the well-being and independence of seniors in Alabama. For more information on the services provided by ADSS, individuals can visit www.AlabamaAgeline.gov.
The May Day event featured a range of games and activities designed to entertain and engage the attendees starting with scarf chair exercises as a warm-up followed by bingo. The scarf workout included a variety of strength and mobility exercises where participants waved, stretched, scrunched and threw scarves resulting in a workout for the whole body.
May Day offered more than just fun and games. Vendors provided attendees with valuable information on various services that can help senior citizens live independently longer. Among the vendors were Aveanna, Viva Health, Southern Care, South Central Alabama Development Commission, and Amedisys Home Health.
Amy Salter of Greenville, an Account Executive with Amedisys, a company dedicated to helping individuals recover from injuries, illnesses, surgeries, or manage chronic health conditions emphasized the importance of home care services and in ensuring the safety, health, and independence of senior citizens.
“Being at home is the safest, most comfortable and convenient place to be, for all of us,” Salter said. “Amedisys Home Health works to ensure that our senior citizens remain safe and healthy, and can be independent like we all want to be. There is support out there and we are here to help.”
Barbara White, a regular attendee of the Luverne Senior Center, expressed her excitement about the event and the opportunity to reunite with friends she had not seen since the previous year’s celebration.
Reflecting on the importance of companionship and staying active, she shared, “It can get lonely when you get older, but if you have friends and stay busy, your mental and overall health is better. I go to the senior center most every day, and I am so thankful for the awesome job Mrs. Anita does. I don’t know what we’d do without her.”
The event was made possible by the generosity of various community sponsors who donated door prizes, bingo prizes, cakes, cookies, monetary donations, and other goodies. Attendees also enjoyed a lunch which was catered by the Chicken Shack, adding to the festivities and sense of community.
The Crenshaw County Extension office encourages senior citizens to embrace a vibrant and fulfilling lifestyle by exploring new passions, embarking on adventures, engaging in their communities, and forming meaningful relationships, emphasizing that age should not define a human or limit their aspirations or joyful moments.
The annual Senior Citizen celebration in Crenshaw County served as a reminder of the wisdom, experience, and vibrant spirit that older Americans bring to our communities. The day served as a reminder that by recognizing and supporting those with the most life experience, we can create a society that values and cherishes the contributions of all its members, regardless of age.