Sellout celebration for Haines seniors

Haines Senior Citizen Center celebrated its 30th year of activities with a luncheon on March 15, and the tickets sold out in a few days. Board members decorated the center, sold tickets, served the catered meal and arranged music and readings. Donations of food from businesses and homemade apple pies by friends kept the costs down, and Mardell Gunn, board member, said they expected to clear $1,000. Another fundraiser will be held in May.

When Haines Seniors moved into the then-city-owned building on Valentine’s Day in 1982, they promised to raise at least $1,500 a year to help pay for utilities. Although the new building had a fully equipped kitchen and dining area, committees were formed to get needed furnishings, develop educational and recreational programs and lay out landscaping. All of that called for more money, which was raised by rentals, memorials, sale of handmade articles, collecting aluminum cans and donations.

Haines has maintained about 15 to 18 percent of its population as senior citizens and, based on the last census, if the trend holds that proportion may rise to 33 percent seniors by 2025. More activities for more seniors will need more money. Gunn asked for volunteers to continue to take on jobs like landscaping and to arrange programs, craft and recreational activities. A new brochure presented at the luncheon describes all senior services, asks for support of events and invites more seniors and guests to eat at noon lunch. Care-A-Van transportation and delivery of home meals are available. Exercises, cards and cribbage go on before lunch.

“Serving Haines Seniors for 30 years…Preparing for 30 More,” is the theme of the campaign that took off at the luncheon. Haines Senior Citizen Center is under the auspices of Southeast Senior Services.

Contact Haines Senior Services at (907) 766-3199, by e-mail at or by mail, Box 835, Haines AK 99827.

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