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Senior Lifestyles

Fairlawn Seniors gaining momentum

8/7/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Ariel Hakim

Fairlawn Seniors visited the Learning Resource Center at Fort Island Park May 5, where after lunch they listened to a talk from Troy Dunn, naturalist for the City of Fairlawn.
Photo courtesy of Fairlawn Seniors
FAIRLAWN — Since organizing less than a year ago, the Fairlawn Seniors group has been continually building, holding regular activities monthly that are free to all.

The first meeting was held this past December, with more than a dozen people in attendance. More recent meetings have seen attendance double, according to Jim Swartz, who is a member of the planning committee.

“We do not limit members to Fairlawn residents only. It’s open to anybody that lives in the area,” said Swartz. Also, the group does not charge dues to belong, he said.

The group’s income comes from freewill offerings, said Swartz. Sometimes the group also will hold a 50/50 or other raffle, he added.

Generally, the group meets on the first Monday of each month at 11 a.m. at the Fairlawn-Kiwanis Community Center, located at 3486 S. Smith Road.

The City of Fairlawn provides the meeting place, helps with publicity and provides amenities at meetings such as coffee, tea and water, said Swartz.

“We really appreciate the city providing their support,” he added.

Sometimes attendees are asked to bring their own lunches or a side dish to share.

“The idea of the organization is to give seniors an opportunity to socialize with each other and get out and to have some activities — we’re a social organization,” said Swartz.

The group’s Sept. 8 meeting will include a chili cook-off and apple dessert contest. Participants are asked to make their favorite chili or apple dessert to be judged by their peers, with prizes awarded in each category, according to organizers.

Potential plans for future meetings call for a Hawaiian theme in October, a speaker from AAA in November, a covered dish luncheon and white elephant gift exchange in December, a movie and brown bag lunch in January and a soup and salad cook-off in February.

The planning committee, which meets once a month, also is working on coordinating a joint trip or activity of some sort with seniors groups in Copley and Bath.

A survey distributed to meeting attendees has provided important input and helped determine upcoming events, said Swartz.

“We’ll most likely do that again so we can adjust and keep it a viable organization and something that people look forward to coming to,” he said.

For more information, call Jim or Carol Swartz at 330-836-3359 or the City of Fairlawn’s Parks and Recreation Department at 330-668-9515.

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