by Rachel Hunter
The Gouverneur Congregate Dining Center had its grand opening on Oct. 23 at the Gouverneur Community Center with more than 15 Gouverneur-area senior citizens enjoying an aromatic and delectable noontime meal.
The new site, 4673 Highway 58, Gouverneur, is now open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lunch is served daily at 12 p.m. (noon). Any senior citizen age 60 and over is welcome to join daily for a delicious meal and good company. The St. Lawrence County Office for the Aging had a waitlist in the Gouverneur area of over 21 clients for home delivered meals. This expansion allows the Office for the Aging to alleviate that wait list; as well as serve seniors in the Gouverneur area a noontime meal at the Gouverneur Community Center.
St. Lawrence County Office For The Aging Director Andrea Montgomery welcomed all those in attendance during the grand opening, notified the various seniors when their meal was ready, and helped seniors to clear their plates.
Food Service Workers Alaina Nelson and Elaine Ames prepared tantalizing meal of chicken fajitas, Brussels sprouts, and more. Each meal prepared at the nutrition site contains a third of the minimum dietary requirements as set by the CDA, and includes 8 oz. of milk or juice.
The suggested donation is $3.00 per meal; however no senior is turned away due to inability to pay. There is a guest fee of $5 for anyone under 60.
Director Montgomery also took time on the opening day to provide all those gathered with registration info, telling about the importance of filling out the forms so accurate numbers could be kept. The SLC Office For The Aging hopes 50 area seniors will register to receive meals at the new site. This will help them showcase a need for such a center in Gouverneur, and that data can be used in writing grant applications in the future.
All seniors are encouraged to register – even if they plan only to eat at the Gouverneur Congregate Dining Center as little as once every six months.
SLC Office For The Aging spent the first week in a transition period, getting things switched over from the Edwards site and also getting into the Star Lake site. Director Montgomery called opening day a “soft start” but that the meals would align with the menus published in the Mature Living senior newsletter each month. It is subject to change without prior notification. Each month features chef’s choice on Fridays.
The menu for the remaining dates in October are as follows: Oct. 27 (Chef’s Choice), Oct. 30 (Pulled BBQ Pork with Sweet Potato Mash, Cauliflower, Roll, Chocolate Brownie), Oct. 31 (Chix Salad On Bun, chips, fresh fruit slices, dessert). The same meal is to be served at the other congregate dining centers across the St. Lawrence County, including at Brasher, Canton, DeKalb, Morristown, Ogdensburg, Potsdam and Star Lake. All are invited to call 24 hours in advance to reserve a meal, 315-386-4730.
Many local dignitaries were present at the grand opening celebration including the following: Village of Gouverneur Mayor Ron McDougall, Deputy Town of Gouverneur Supervisor Eldon Conklin, Councilman Dave Spilman, Jr. and St. Lawrence County Legislator Larry Denesha (who serves on the SLC Office For The Aging Advisory Council).
by Rachel Hunter