Friday, May 25, 2018
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Sylvania Senior Center marks 12th anniversary

Facility hosting slew of special events this week


Liane Owed of Ottawa Hills, front, works out in the Jazzercise class. The class meets every day for an hour. The Sylvania Senior Center offers a wide variety of activities and opportunities for area seniors.

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A dozen years ago, the Sylvania Senior Center moved out of the since-demolished former Burnham High School and into a spacious facility built specifically for senior activities.

To celebrate its recent birthday, staff members at the center at 7140 Sylvania Ave. will host Anniversary Week, starting today. A slew of events is planned over five days, from special activities to a birthday omelet breakfast Friday.

“We are extremely fortunate this building was built specifically to be a senior center,” said Claire Proctor, executive director of Sylvania Community Services, a local nonprofit agency that oversees the senior center and Child Care Services.

She and Julie Graf, center director, said the 22,000-square-foot building that opened March 12, 2002, has allowed the center, which started in the 1970s, to offer programming that keep seniors moving.

PHOTO GALLERY: Sylvania Senior Center anniversary

Its motto, “Healthy Aging Never Gets Old!” is evident when walking throughout the building, which was built on one level with wide hallways and doors for easy movement.

From a woodworking shop to the great room where Jazzercise and other fitness activities take place, the center aims to keep seniors sharp, mentally and physically, its leaders said.

Ms. Graf said when the center first opened, its computer lab was used to teach personal-computing basics.

But over the years, the over-55 set has become computer savvy. Now, the lab’s classes teach uses for the latest digital gadgets and online applications.

Other rooms offer reflection and reading materials. The Nature Lounge Room, lined with a wall of books, has a westward-facing window — from floor to ceiling — looking out on goings-on outdoors. The facility also promotes outdoor activities. During the summer, patrons may tend plots in the community garden.

The center provides transportation to its facility as well as to shops, the post office, and other spots in the area. Transportation will be available for this week’s birthday events.

Those events include a special anniversary treat at noon today; half-hour “Know Your Center Through Facebook” presentations at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday and 11 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday, and made-to-order omelets from 9 to 10 a.m. Friday. The latter has a $3 fee. Guided tours will be offered each day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For a complete listing of the anniversary week festivities, visit or call 419-885-3913.

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