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From left, Cadet/Tech. Sgt. Joe Rogers, Cadet/2nd Lt. Doug Coutlee, Cadet/Tech. Sgt. Tom Rogers and, Cadet/Tech. Sgt. Mandy Bushong of the Civil Air Patrol's Northland Composite Squadron salute veterans during a Veterans' Tribute at the Paul Bunyan Senior Activity Center. Submitted Photo

Prime Time: Senior center welcomes new board, honors veterans

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news Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

The Paul Bunyan Senior Activity Center would like to extend a sincere thank you to Ann Daley and Pat Kroeplin for writing and submitting our articles since 2007.

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They had their work cut out for them recently in doing the research for our 50th anniversary. Many pictures or old newspaper articles were not dated or labeled in our archives, so they needed to pick the brains of some of our seniors who lived it. Many of the stories that emerged were of some go-getters who made things happen. There were some hard workers, creative imaginations and determined people who made the Senior Center what it is today. Again, thank you, Ann and Pat, for your hard work, investigation and creativity to get the job done with excellence.

The Senior Center would like to welcome our new board members, Richard Robinson and Yvonne Wolfe, who agreed to three-year terms. Our new officers are Helen Russell as president, Tony Nicholson as vice president, and Dorothy Jorgensen as secretary. Accepting another year as treasurer is Donna Wilson. Angel Krigbaum will be past president for a one-year term. Also on the board is Yvonne Barry, starting the second year of her three-year term. We would like to wish them all the best of luck during their time on the board and we thank them for their service.

We would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Stella and Gabe Wakonabo, the Civil Air Patrol, the Third Street Senior Singers, all of our hardworking volunteers and all who attended our Veterans Tribute and made it a success.

People have asked me, "What is the Senior Center?" I tell them it's a place where active older adults come for fellowship, fun and learning. We are a close family who support and joke around with one another. We have a special camaraderie among everyone here. You know that you are cared about and that you can be yourself here. Most times you can walk in and find groups of people talking over coffee and a treat, and the laughter is booming. This is a place where active, independent adults come to socialize with each other in a comfortable atmosphere. They might connect with people they haven't seen for a long time or make new friendships. They come to learn a new hobby or enjoy one they have done for years. In essence, the Senior Center is a place where older adults go to enjoy socializing, enhance their lives and support their independence. Our anniversary buttons, I think, say it the best: "Age is the Rage."

We are looking to the next generation to tell us what you want and need in a Senior Center for now and in the future. We would like to hear your ideas and suggestions for activities, classes and general ideas that you would like to see available for you at the Senior Center. Please stop by or call us at 218-751-8836 and let us know what your ideas are.

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Diane Engel is executive director of the Paul Bunyan Senior Activity Center.

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