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Holyoke Parks & Rec to host annual Senior Fest

Date: 8/12/2009

By Cory Garwacki

Staff Intern

HOLYOKE -- The city's Parks and Recreation Department has announced the details for the 11th Annual Senior Fest Picnic, which is scheduled to take place on Aug. 27 at a new location, the boathouse at Jones Ferry River Access Center.

"We are always excited to host the Senior Fest Picnic, and we've continued to make this event happen annually as a tribute to Holyoke's senior population," said Holyoke Parks and Recreation Director Theresa Shepard.

When the very first Senior Fest Picnic was organized in 1998 it was hosted outdoors on the grounds of Pulaski Park, followed by a change of location in 2002 to the nearby Mater Dolorosa Social Center on Maple Street before finally settling on this year's new spot at the recently refurbished boathouse.

Located just off of Main Street on Jones Ferry Road, the property that houses the Jones Ferry River Access Center is also the home of the newly erected boathouse.

For eight of the past 10 years this picnic has been conducted, the city has maintained a strict policy with regard to ticket availability.

"We have a 500 ticket-limit that we allot specifically for Holyoke seniors who wish to attend," Shepard told Reminder Publications.

One of the many highlights of this event is the entertainment for the afternoon, the Senior Band of Massachusetts, as well as the crowd-pleasing local entertainer Jimmy Mazz.

Shepard commented, "We are going to be cooking up burgers and hotdogs, which will be provided by the Holyoke Parks and Rec Department, as well as baked beans, pasta salad, and desserts."

"Beverages such as coffee, iced tea and lemonade will also be available for the attendees," Shepard continued.

Parking is very limited in and around the Jones Ferry River Access Center, and attendees are encouraged to take advantage of alternative parking in the lot of Dean Vocational High School. From that point, bus transportation will be provided to the center.

Shepard also pointed out, "Bus transportation will also be available at pick-up locations at Holyoke Towers, Elmwood Towers, and Pulaski Heights." For more information about the event, including transportation arrangements, call 322-5620."

This event is scheduled to take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will be conducted rain or shine.

Tickets to 'Senior Fest Picnic' are $3 in advance, or $5 on the day of the event.