Ashcroft-Cache Creek Seniors’ Centre president Muriel Scallon (left) secretary Donna Tetrault, and crafts director Kathy Morris invite folks of any age to come down to the crafts room at the centre to do some early Christmas shopping. Photo: Ken Alexander.

Ashcroft-Cache Creek Seniors’ Centre open for another season

The centre welcomes anyone aged 55 or older who would like to be a member.

Following a two-month summer closure, the Ashcroft-Cache Creek Seniors’ Centre has reopened, and is offering its full slate of activities for people who are 55 years and older.

On Mondays, folks gather to play Bridge from 12:30 to 4 p.m. Carpet bowling and cards are on the menu for Tuesdays and Fridays from 12:30 to 4 p.m.

On Saturdays, the centre holds a bingo afternoon from 1 to 4 p.m. Everyone is invited to join the fun, but they have to be at least 19 years old.

Centre president Muriel Scallon says the Seniors’ Centre started on October 22, 2003 and it’s still going strong at the old Lady Minto Hospital, next door to the Village of Ashcroft office.

It’s in a lovely setting overlooking the Thompson River. The centre has a pool table, a kitchen, two washrooms, and a crafts room, which has a large selection of books.

Scallon explains it was called the Old Age Pensioners’ Organization prior to the society changing its name to the Ashcroft-Cache Creek Seniors’ Centre.

“We were being charged to belong to the O.A.P.O. and we never saw them. We didn’t get anything for what they charged us every year. So we decided to go on our own.”

Currently, the Seniors’ Centre has 57 members, including folks from Walhachin, Loon Lake, and Clinton.

Centre secretary Donna Tetrault says the club has a meeting on the third Wednesday of the month and there is a potluck lunch at noon, with the meeting starting a 1 p.m.

Scallon says people can bring crafts to the craft room and folks can drop in and buy some homemade gifts. She adds there is a large selection of books in the library, and seniors can just come in and take some books home.

“We have so many they don’t have to bring them back,” Tetrault explains. “There’s seven or eight people who use it a lot and the rest don’t use it at all.”

The Seniors’ Centre has two bazaar fundraisers a year: one in the spring and the other in the fall. This year’s Fall Bazaar is slated for October 28. The doors open at 12:30 p.m. and the bazaar goes from 1 to 3 p.m.

They will have a cash raffle prize, with tickets available at Safety Mart on Friday mornings and at the Cache Creek Post Office. Other prizes include $200, $100, and $50 food hampers, and there will also be a door prize.

Folks can get an early start on their Christmas shopping. Lunch is available and includes sandwiches, baked goodies, and coffee and tea.

The spring bazaar is the Strawberry Tea, during which folks can get strawberry cupcakes and tea and participate in the bucket auction. There will be a luncheon available.

Scallon says the Seniors’ Centre also hosts an Over 80 luncheon for anyone 80 years or older. “We honour them. Just about everybody will show up,” she adds with a chuckle.

She notes they always have a Seniors’ Christmas Dinner at the Ashcroft Legion. “I haven’t asked yet for this year, but I’m sure they’ll do it again.”

Carpet bowling tournaments are always marked on the calendar, with one in Lillooet and one in Interlakes. The local Seniors’ Centre hosts a tourney at the Cache Creek Community Hall each spring.

Two members just came back from the 55+ BC Games in Vernon, where Kevin and Muriel Scallon won gold and bronze medals in horseshoes respectively.

For the past seven years, the Seniors’ Centre has presented a $500 scholarship to a graduating student at Desert Sands Community School, and they select an applicant who might not be able to carry on with their post-secondary education without scholarships.

Anyone who is 55 years or older can join the Seniors’ Centre for a $15 per year membership. For more information, folks can come down to the centre at 601 Bancroft Street in Ashcroft between 1 and 4 on Monday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday. They can also call Muriel at (250) 453-9628 or Donna at (250) 457-9963.

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