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Senior Center to Open at St. Peter's Church
BY NANCY HARRIS

Turtle Bay will soon have the distinction - and the very good fortune - of being home to the first new Senior Citizens' Center to open in New York in almost a quarter of a century. The Lenox Hill Senior Center, to be located at St. Peter's Lutheran Church, Citicorp Center, is the latest in a tradition that stretches back 106 years, to the opening of the Lenox Hill Settlement House, one of the first such operations in the city. Today its descendant, Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, is the largest social service agency on the East Side.

It's easy to tell when there is an idea whose time has come! And this was one of them. In all, five different people/groups came together at about the same time with the hope of creating a new seniors' center on the East Side. Former City Council member Andrew Eristoff had for many years been concerned that there were no such services in the neighborhoods from the 30's to the 60's. He approached the Lenox Hill Neighborhood House (which will be managing the new facility), and asked them to work with him. They had been providing various older adult service programs within the Community Board 6 area for roughly the last 20 years, and were thus familiar with the Turtle Bay area and the needs of its older citizens. When money became available several years ago, this area seemed to them also as a logical place to establish a new seniors' center. The United Neighbors of East Midtown became the third partner, and they will be handling the casework for the facility. And of course there is St. Peter's Church itself, which is providing the facility where the Center will be located. The final piece of the puzzle is the Turtle Bay Association, which has received many requests over the years for this type of service in our neighborhood.

The Center will be open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. and is designed to meet the needs of individuals 60 years of age or older, living in the East Midtown community. There will be a wide variety of services and activities, including hot lunches, transportation, escort service for adults who are frail, counseling, information and referral, and nutrition education. There will be no membership fees, but a contribution of $1 per meal is suggested.
Classes will likely include current events, arts and crafts, languages, support groups, music, opera and dance appreciation, exercise, bridge, creative writing, films, and bingo. However, as the Center becomes more established and a regular clientele develops, functions can be modified to fit the needs and interests of those who attend.

The Center will be a wonderful and much needed addition to our neighborhood and will provide important services - as well as a lot of entertainment - to a growing segment of our population. Additional information will be sent out by TBA and the Senior Center as the May opening date approaches. Want to know more about the Center before then? Call the Turtle Bay Association office at 751-5465 or email us at tbaoffice@mindspring.com.

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The Turtle Bay Association is a nonprofit (501c3) community organization.

224 East 47th Street, New York City 10017
(212) 751-5465
Fax (212) 751-4941

 

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