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First ever senior day comes to town

Date: 4/6/2009

EAST LONGMEADOW Three local facilities who are dedicated to seniors have collaborated to create the first ever Senior Day.

Redstone Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, East Village Place Assisted Living & Memory Care Community and East Longmeadow Senior Center will host the all-day affair on June 19. The planning committee is putting a call out to all businesses located in East Longmeadow and Longmeadow to participate in the event.

The committee, comprised of Jessica Szczepanek, director of marketing at East Village; Kelly Kuhn, marketing liaison at Redstone; and Sandy Grabierz, program and volunteer coordinator at the Senior Center, is asking businesses to offer at least a 15 percent discount to seniors who shop or render serves at their business the day of the event or provide the planning committee with a coupon for discounts or services to be given out to the seniors on June 19.

Kuhn said the day is a great opportunity to "get seniors out in the community, highlight the services offered by Redstone, East Village Place and the Senior Center, while stimulating the local economy." Kuhn also agreed the store discounts will help out seniors living on a limited income.

The daylong event will kick-off with a breakfast hosted by East Village Place at 9 a.m. where seniors will be welcomed and given their Senior Day packet which will list all discounts available, as well as any special events happening that day. For instance, the East Longmeadow Fire Department will open their doors for tours from 10 to 11 a.m.

After the kick-off breakfast participants, with their own mode of transportation, will go off into the community to take advantage of the discounts. The event will close with a celebration barbecue between 2 and 4 p.m. at Redstone with live entertainment by Jimmy Mazz.

Businesses that have already gotten on board include Shaker Bowl, Longmeadow Flowers and Shoenique.

Senior Day falls in line with the Senior Center's "No Senior Left Inside" theme.

"I think a lot of seniors don't visit some places either because they don't know they're there or they just never had the opportunity to go into our businesses, so this way it gives them incentive to go outside," Grabierz said. "What we want to to try to do is to get seniors to get out of their homes."

The deadline for businesses to register by calling either Kuhn at 525-3336 or Jessica at 525-8150 is May 1. Senior registration will begin May 18. Those seniors interested can call East Village Place at 525-8150.

"I hope [Senior Day] is super successful and it's something we could do annually," Szczepanek said.

Senior Day will take place rain or shine.