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Valentine’s Day comes to Sparta Senior Neighbors

Valentine’s Day comes to Sparta Senior Neighbors
Top (L to R): Skip Hiler shows off his coloring pages and Virginia Turpin shows off her homemade Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls. Bottom (L to R): Turpin won the Valentine cupcake bouquet and all seniors received a hot cocoa valentine. Photos courtesy of Jane Ringler.

On the brisk morning of Thursday, February 11, there were lots of smiles at the Sparta Senior Neighbors Center. 

There were 175 freezer meals distributed along with essentials and baked goods, and every senior was offered coffee and chocolate-covered strawberries in celebration of LOVE (a.k.a. Valentine’s Day). 

As the sun came out, the mood was very warm. Chris Sloan serenaded the seniors with songs fitting for the friendships and good memories of days in the past when the senior center was open for gatherings and parties. Fifty seniors came out to celebrate. Skip Hiler brought his coloring album to show his friends what has been keeping him occupied during this time away from the center. He completes 2 coloring pages a day. Virginia Turpin, a doll maker, showed off her craft that has been keeping her busy. Turpin’s  dolls keep the center’s coordinator, Jane Ringler, busy as well, finding respective buyers for the handmade Raggedy Ann & Andy dolls that are sold for only the cost of materials.

Ringler made a cupcake bouquet and many seniors entered the drawing for the chance to take it home. Turpin was thrilled to win it and shared the cupcakes with her friends. 

Every senior member from the communities of Sparta, Kent City, Rockford, Cedar Springs, Comstock Park, Sand Lake, and beyond received a handmade hot cocoa valentine. Thanks to Senior Neighbors volunteers and staff, valentine treats were also delivered to everyone who could not make it into the Center. Even though the Senior Neighbors Centers have been temporarily closed almost a full year due to COVID-19, Senior Neighbors is finding ways to bring a bit of joy to the retired people in Kent County.  The members are looking forward to the day the Center reopens and they can gather with their friends. 

Anyone age 60 or older is invited to contact the Sparta Senior Neighbors coordinator, Jane Ringler, to learn about all the benefits of joining Senior Neighbors.  Jane may be reached by calling (616) 887-1273 or email jringler@seniorneighbors.org.  

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