They claim as people get older, they just keep getting better and better.
Well, that may be a sweeping generalization, although it certainly is true in many cases.
However, one thing is for sure: As the Sartell Senior Connection gets older, it does indeed get better and better, and there’s no doubt about it. During its first meetings years ago, the Newsleader covered those proceedings. There were at the time about two dozen or so seniors who formed a board and began to organize activities. Within months, those seniors worked “miracles” with virtually no funding whatsoever. They hosted interesting and informative guest-speaker sessions, they took trips, they played board games and cards, they met for morning coffee gab fests, they hosted musicians and more. Since those early days, the Sartell Senior Connection has added even more activities: a Trivia Night, arts-and-craft sessions, wonderful guest speakers every Thursday morning at Country Manor, more day trips, an excellent monthly newsletter, even more guest speakers regularly at the Senior Connection center in the school district office building, poker playing and an extensive lending library at the center. One of the Sartell Senior Connection’s annual treats is their sponsorship of the “Laughter and Lemonade” show at St. Francis Xavier Church’s Meeting Place. The entire community can enjoy the shows, free. Each show elicited raves from those who attended.
Anybody foolish enough to think the members of the Sartell Senior Connection are a bunch of old fuddy-duddies should attend even just one of their meetings or activities. No fuddy-duddies there. The members, in fact, are very intelligent, insightful, talented, thoughtful, kind, connective and – perhaps most of all – lots and lots of fun.
What makes the Sartell Senior Connection so vibrant, so successful, is the dedication and hard work of its members who constantly use their extraordinary energies and talents. What also makes it possible is the never-ending assistance from the Sartell-St. Stephen Community Education program, which was instrumental in helping form the senior-citizen group. Three other big boosts came from the Sartell City Council members throughout the years, Sartell City staff and the Sartell-St. Stephen School District.
For years, Sartell residents, in surveys, have expressed an interest in construction of a senior center, perhaps within a larger community center. The seniors have a temporary center, for now, but someday, hopefully, they will have an even better one. And they truly deserve one. The Sartell Senior Connection has proven its worth to the community again and again, as it gets older and better and better.
Author: Dennis Dalman
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.