Senior Connections celebrates one-year anniversary

Published 4:48 pm Thursday, May 10, 2012

Senior Connections celebrated its one-year anniversary Thursday, May 10 with a luau-themed get-together at the Clanton Recreation Center filled with line dancing, door prizes and a fashion show.

Ruby Driver and Nell Littleton at Thursday's Senior Connections celebration.

Coordinated by Vanessa McKinney, Senior Connections currently has 130 members who participate in anything from tai chi and line dancing with the Perfect Peaches to special speakers and weekend get-a-ways. Their most recent trip was to Gulf Shores, and they are looking forward to a visit to Tannehill and the Blue Bell Ice Cream Factory soon.

Membership is a $15 a year donation, but McKinney said that much of their success is thanks to the city’s support.

Over the past year, Senior Connections has helped others as well; their last yard sale benefited Relay for Life. McKinney says their fundraisers are important—“so we can give back to the community because the community gives so much to us.”

What began 18 years ago as part of the Chilton Medical Center, Senior Connections was cut from the budget last year, but according to McKinney they “never missed a beat.”

McKinney said it has been a great year: “Everyone here has worked really hard; they’re all great people. We’ve haven’t had any real problems yet, and we’re so thankful. Everyone has really taken it on themselves—we are all responsible for it, and we all work together.”

Myra Patterson, Willie Pate and Beverly Ford have been involved for about 2 years now and each have their own favorite aspect of the program.

“I love the line dancing,” said Patterson, who participates as a “Perfect Peach.” “We also have special speakers who come and talk to us about our health. It is very interesting.”

Pate’s favorite part is socializing—“you can make new friends every day; there are always so many new people to meet and talk to.”

Ford said she loves the special events and getting to dress up, like Thursday, where most were wearing leis and hula skirts.

Senior Connections is anticipating another year of growth and success, according to McKinney.

“The program has grown so much in the past year, and I know we are all looking forward to what the upcoming year has in store. I thank God for this group; He’s a huge part of everything we do,” she said.