Organization holding annual ‘Salute to Seniors’

The senior citizen population will be the focus of celebration at the 18th annual Salute to Seniors on Tuesday, May 13. For six hours, they can enjoy snacks, be entertained, learn new information from various vendors, potentially win prizes, partake in a hot lunch and have their photos taken in a photo booth. The festivities start at 9 a.m. and continue to 3 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Riverside. Tickets for the event are $15.

This year’s theme is “A Salute to the Grand Ole Opry.” People are encouraged to dress in a Western theme as a prize is given to the best-dressed attendant.

Salute to Seniors is the big event put on by the Minot Senior Coalition. Coalition president Kayla Lawson said the event usually draws 250 to 300 people, some coming from area small towns including Velva, Rugby, Garrison or Lignite. It is held on the second Tuesday in May each year.

Lois Zahn of Trinity Homes, a Minot Senior Coalition member, said Salute to Seniors is held during the day because a lot of the seniors are available during that time and bus transportation is also available. Those in attendance receive a booklet at their seats that contains an agenda for the event, services offered to seniors, information about the Minot Senior Coalition and a schedule of upcoming events.

“People like the music, the food, meeting new friends and the entertainment,” said Lawson. “They love to walk around and collect stuff from the booths, too.”

“We focus on ideas to put together to entertain them and celebrate them,” said Brenda Boehler, another member of the Minot Senior Coalition. “We give a lot of information to them (at Salute to Seniors) because they may not be aware of services available to them.”

The group, which has about 20 members, has been in existence for 18 years. It meets the second Tuesday of each month at the Parker Senior Center over the noon hour. Each member pays an annual fee of $15 and anyone interested in working with senior citizens may join the coalition. Most of the members are involved with organizations serving seniors.

Lawson said the Minot Senior Coalition began as a group of people in the community who had an interest in working with senior citizens. Since its start 18 years ago, the coalition has branched out by offering senior education lectures, the Harvest Ball, and Coping and Caring workshops for caregivers, in addition to Salute to Seniors. The Minot Senior Coalition is a non-profit organization and always welcomes donations and sponsors.

People interested in attending Salute to Seniors on May 13 are asked to call 852-3398 for reservations, which are requested so that the organizers know how many booklets to make for people in attendance.