The Active Lifestyle Centre (ALC) will host its annual seniors fair in mid-September, hoping to connect with a new audience and rebuild its membership base.
Linda Lucas, executive director of the ALC, said the fair, slated for Sept. 16, will take place in the afternoon and run early into the evening.
“We want to outreach to seniors, semi-retired people and people who still work and are looking for resources for their parents,” she said of the event, which will run from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
There will be introductory presentations on a host of courses and programs that take place at the ALC, including a driving course, estate planning, cardiac care and a tablet course, Lucas said.
Furthermore, members of the Chatham-Kent and area Indigenous community will be offering culture and reconciliation education.
“They’ll set up an authentic teepee outside,” Lucas said. “They will have displays, artefacts and crafts, as well as reconciliation T-shirts and hoodies for sale.”
Also known as Orange Shirt Day, Reconciliation Day takes place Sept. 30.
Vendor tables and information stations will dominate the landscape in the ALC that day, Lucas said, with more than 50 tables expected.
“We’re going to be showcasing senior services, but we’ll showcase individual programs offered by the centre,” Lucas said. “We’ve never set up a table for bridge or social clubs or our trips. People can find out about everything we offer.”
The COVID-19 pandemic hit the ALC particularly hard. It has run at bare bones or not at all over the past two years. Lucas said that all changes this fall and a membership drive is underway.
“Basically we’re reintroducing people to what we have to offer. And we’re showcasing other programs and resources available to seniors; items, and resources to help with their lifestyle,” Lucas said.
There will also be all kinds of door prizes and a free meal. The dinner takes place between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. while quantities last.
There is no charge for admission. Anyone wanting more information can call 519-352-5633 or visit the ALC website at https://activelifestylecentre.org/
The fair is funded by the Province of Ontario and the Older Adults Centres’ Association of Ontario. Family Service Kent will provide transportation, along iwth The United Way’s Van with a Plan, and with the assistance of local car dealerships, Lucas said.