BY AMANDA MOSES
The holiday season is usually filled with cheer and good tidings, but it can be a lonesome time for those unable to be with their family and friends, especially for senior citizens. Community organizations like JASA Starrett Senior Center and Spring Creek Senior Partners (SCSP) made sure their members did not experience any holiday blues this season. On December 16th, both groups held festive parties with delicious food, music and party favors.
In the morning, JASA transformed the lower level of the Brooklyn Sports Club’s (BSC) multi-purpose room into a festive dance floor the likes Soul Train would be envious of. A few members even cast aside their walkers and canes as they danced to tunes performed by DJ and musician, Michael Minsky.
The seniors had their hands in the air without a single care in the world as they laughed and conversed with their friends. Longtime member, Daisy Washington looks forward to the festivities because the party bears a resemblance to a family gathering—a home away from home. “The music and dancing reminds me of when I was younger. It was wonderful seeing everyone enjoying themselves,” Washington said. She was also happy that Minsky sang her favorite Frank Sinatra song, “I Did It My Way.”
Compassion, love and support are a few characteristics that describe JASA Starrett Senior Center. These characteristics are what keep members like Sarah Stevens coming back. “The holiday party was absolutely fantastic! I loved how everyone gathered on the dance floor, it didn’t matter if you had a partner or not. It was just about letting go and having a good time.”
The festivities did not stop with JASA’s morning party. In the afternoon, seniors walked up to the BSC’s café room where they enjoyed a scrumptious luncheon hosted by SCSP. While the members dined on the various gustatory delights, an entertainer made balloon hats, animals and flowers for them. Many of the seniors laughed and took selfies with each other. Donning a colorful balloon hat, Migdalia Nieves said, “The party really captures the holiday spirit. Everyone at SCSP is so nice and friendly, and they really made today a fun day. I’m so happy to be here.”
Carmen Rodriguez was all smiles at the luncheon. With bright eyes and a huge grin, she showed all of her friends the balloon shaped flower that was made for her. “I feel like I’m around family,” said Rodriguez, who was in awe of the festive ambiance in the BSC’s café room. For some the holiday season has come and gone, and now many of us are just trying to get through the bitter cold of January, and soon February. In light of the bitter cold, we should acknowledge that sometimes all we need is a warm and caring atmosphere to get through the dark winter days. For the seniors in Spring Creek Towers, JASA and SCSP are the caring environments that welcome all with open arms not just during the holidays, but also all year round.
Photos: Amanda Moses