Ashford's seniors faring well

By Lauri Voter - Staff Writer
Ashford - posted Thu., Nov. 10, 2011
Food, fun and friendship are the focus of Ashford Senior Center's Thanksgiving meal. Photos by Lauri Voter.
Food, fun and friendship are the focus of Ashford Senior Center's Thanksgiving meal. Photos by Lauri Voter.

On Nov. 9, food, fun and friendship were foremost on the day's agenda for Ashford's senior citizens. At 11 a.m., United Baptist Church sponsored a holiday brunch for seniors in its parish hall.

The church's outreach coordinator, Juli Shamback, said that the church holds senior brunches quarterly as part of its community outreach process.

Church volunteers Jennifer Goodwin and Cristin Busch helped prepare the meal, which was served by other volunteers to senior guests who were seated at festively-decorated tables. 

Pastor Patrick McCue said the senior brunches are important because “seniors in the community are often overlooked, and we want to do our best to honor and recognize them.” In turn, he said that the seniors really enjoy and appreciate the brunches, which are open to seniors in Ashford and surrounding communities.

United Baptist Church reaches out to its community in other ways, too. The church sponsors a food bank, which McCue said currently supports 40 to 50 families. Church volunteers are in the process of collecting and compiling Thanksgiving baskets for those who have signed up for them.

The church collects non-perishable food items on an on-going basis in a bin stationed outside the parish hall's door.

As the holidays approach, United Baptist will perform a Christmas Cantata on Dec. 10, at 4 p.m., at the East Brook Mall, and again on Dec. 11, at 10:15 a.m. and 4 p.m., at the church, which is located at 38 Pompey Hollow Road (Route 44) in Ashford. The snow date is Dec. 18. For more information, call 860-429-2923 or visit

On the same day, just down the road at the Ashford Senior Center, seniors began arriving to be seated and partake of the center's noontime Thanksgiving meal. Ashford Senior Center Director Judy Lucas said that local seniors enjoy parties and entertainment, and as a result they always look forward to the center's events.

Ashford Registrar of Voters Kevin McCarthy, who also happens to be one of the town's seniors, enjoys the food. “I think they're wonderful, because I don't have to cook,” said McCarthy of the dinners. He also appreciates the social aspect of the center, and feels that it has a very upbeat, happy energy.

The center's treasurer, Joe Peters, said the fare, which is prepared by the owner of Sneakers, is “outstanding food.” Holiday events and parties usually include entertainment, such as the magician who performed at the center on Nov. 9.

The Ashford Senior Center is located at 25 Tremko Lane and can be reached at 860-487-5122. Upcoming noontime, holiday events at the center include a Dec. 9 Christmas party, followed at the end of the month by the New Year's party.

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