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Seniors ‘feel like a kid again’ at TARCOG celebration

HUNTSVILLE – Weather concerns forced the 37th annual TARCOG Senior Fun Fest indoors, but that didn’t stop Northeast Alabama seniors from enjoying musical and dance performances, games, refreshments, lunch and door prizes to celebrate Older Americans Month last week.

For the first time in the event’s history, it wasn’t held at Sharon Johnston Park in New Market. TARCOG Executive Director Michelle Jordan said it was a tough decision because everyone loves the park.

But the forecasted rain and storms last Tuesday forced a last-minute change to the Alabama A&M Agribition Center, where all of the activities could be safely held indoors.

(TARCOG/Contributed

Aside from a few sprinkles throughout the morning, participants from DeKalb, Jackson, Limestone, Madison and Marshall counties got to have their annual celebration before forecasted rain and storms later in the afternoon.

Nearly 800 seniors participated. The honorary co-chairs of the event were Nancy Robertson, TARCOG’s former executive director, and Rene Breland, the agency’s former director of aging programs.

This was the first regional Fun Fest since 2019 – the pandemic brought the event to a halt and it resumed this year – and since both retired from the agency.

The event was co-sponsored by the Madison County Commission, with Commission Chair Mac McCutcheon and Commissioners Tom Brandon, Violet Edwards and Steve Haraway attending. 

Jordan said there were about 40 vendors and exhibitors which added to the fun environment with giveaways, activities, and snacks. There was a cooking lesson, photo sessions, and opportunities for health screenings among the many offerings of the day.

“It was truly a fun day for our seniors,” Jordan said. “We saw a lot of smiling faces and that’s the whole goal of this Fun Fest.

“We want them to have a day that’s all about them, and a chance to feel like a kid again.”

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