Bullskin senior center celebrates silver anniversary

| Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013, 8:46 p.m.

In the mid-1980s, a determined group of senior citizens from the area began to meet, planning and hoping to one day organize a facility to call their own.

Gathering on a monthly basis at Paradise United Methodist Church in Bullskin Township, the group raised funds and continued to make plans before purchasing a parcel of land that contained a burned-out structure — the site where they would build and dedicate their new building.

“This humble beginning was the start of the Bullskin Senior Citizens Center as you know it today,” center president Marie Wingard told the crowd of the building that was dedicated on April 17, 1988 with a special ceremony and ribbon-cutting. “We have come a long way.”

A special luncheon and brief program was held this week at the center to recognize the facility's 25 years of the continued success, boasting a membership of approximately 400.

“Our numbers are a little bit down, but people have been passing away,” Wingard said, adding that the center has been a success due to the hard work of the members. “Our volunteers work well together and they get a lot done.”

State Rep. Deberah Kula and state Sen. Richard Kasunic both awarded the center with citations of recognition and spoke to the large crowd about the importance of such centers, like Bullskin.

“This center shows the efforts and hard work of those who worked so hard to get to where it is today,” Kasunic said.

Kula, whose district will include Bullskin beginning next year, told the seniors that visits to centers such as theirs is a great way for them to gather information and to help those who may have questions or who may need assistance.

”These senior centers play a major part as we travel from center to center, talk, and ask questions,” Kula said. “We gather all kinds of information that we can then use.”

Township Supervisor Deb Wiltrout also spoke to the group, congratulating them on their efforts and their work.

“I've enjoyed working with you all here and what you folks do here is a true commitment,” Wiltrout said on behalf of all the supervisors. “Keep up the good work and make our township proud.”

A special steak dinner was served. Musical entertainment was provided by David Dahl.

“This center is always so welcoming and everyone here is always so wonderful to each other,” Fayette County Community Action Agency project manager Debra Bricker said. “You do a lot here. I hope that you maintain and move forward.”

The center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays.

Weekly bingo, which is open to the public, is held 1 p.m. every Wednesday.

Marilyn Forbes is a contributing writer.

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