Senior Citizen’s Club Celebrates 50 Years

PARTY HEARTY – Members of the Franklin Township Senior Citizen’s Club line up for lunch during the club’s 50th anniversary celebration on May 2 at the Senior/Community Center.

Seniors thinking they were attending the regular weekly meeting of the Franklin Township Senior Citizen’s Club on May 2 got a surprise … a party.

May 1 marked the 50th anniversary of the club’s founding, and club president Vivian Cottrell and her board thought it would be a good idea to throw a surprise party at the Community/Senior Center in the Municipal Complex.

About 71 members showed up, including some older members who hadn’t been seen in a while, Cottrell said.

Mayor Phil Kramer stopped by to read a proclamation from the Township Council, and state Assemblyman Joe Danielsen (D-17) offered some congratulatory comments during the celebration.

With a DJ providing a backdrop of songs mostly from that fateful year – 1973 club members enjoyed a hot buffet lunch with dessert, socialized and danced.

Cottrell said the club met in different locations in its early days,before the township’s senior center was built.

The club meets at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays in the community center. Meetings are followed by Bingo games, as well as refreshments, Cottrell said.

“Sometimes we have surprise parties, like today,” she said.

Membership – $20 a year – brings with it some perks, she said. Members get first dibs on vacation and day trips, before the general public is invited, plus discounts on prepared lunches.

“This year’s vacation trip we’re going to Yellowstone National Park and Mt Rushmore,” she said.

There are regular day trips to Atlantic City, as well as to other spots in the tri-state area.

“It’s just a way for the seniors to socialize and to meet,” Cottrell said.

The senior citizen community, Danielsen said, “is a very important spoke in the diversity wheel in Franklin Township.”

“It’s very important that come together in a common space to socialize,” he said.

“These are people who have learned,” he said. “They have gone through it, they have endured and are successful and they get to share it with people like you and I.”

Here’s an interview with Cottrell and Danielsen:

Following are some scenes from the day:

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