East Freedom senior center to open

EAST FREEDOM – Blair Senior Services hopes to open its new Southern Blair Senior Center in early September.

The new facility, being built at the site of the former Chilcoat’s Restaurant on Old Route 220, will replace senior centers in Claysburg, Duncansville and Roaring Spring.

The new 6,000 square-foot center will enable Blair Senior Services to provide a larger and more functional space for activities.

“We currently are renting facilities, which have limited opportunities due to their size and shared use,” said Jessica Lippert, the agency’s community services program manager in a statement. “By combining the Claysburg, Duncansville and Spring Cove senior centers into the new Southern Blair Senior Center, we will be able to offer a much better selection of program choices and opportunities.”

The new center, which is being built for $660,000, will serve as a group dining, socialization, educational, recreational and health-related activities center for area seniors.

The new center will host lunch Monday through Friday for people age 60 and older, in addition to being used for dinner dances and entertainment. Additional space is dedicated for a computer room, arts and crafts and a lounge area with a television and reading materials. A fitness room for exercise classes will hold two treadmills and other equipment. A fully equipped kitchen will be used for serving meals and cooking classes.

“We are very excited about the new Southern Blair Senior Center and the expanded programs and activities we will be able to offer at this location,” Lippert said.

The new center will have more offerings for consumers, said Angel Dandrea, community services program adviser.

“In addition to continuing their traditional activities such a playing cards and games, seniors will have a larger selection of activities to choose from with dedicated spaces within a new facility,” Dandrea said in a statement. “I am especially excited about our outside raised bed gardening area where we will have hands-on gardening classes and use the produce grown for cooking classes.”