To say there will be something for everyone during Seniors Week this June 5 to 11 in Cochrane would be an understatement.
Despite the focus being on Cochrane’s more experienced population, even little children will have activities planned just for them, such as painting ceremonial rocks at the dedication of the Seniors on the Bow (SOTB) Gazebo and Labyrinth Grand Opening on Saturday, June 3.
Technically not being held during the designated week, the event, which will include local Indigenous representatives, will kick the week off at 11:30 am on Saturday, and is the culmination of years of work and planning. The gazebo is located immediately west of the SLS Centre, adjacent to the pathway along the Bow River.
Officially opening the gazebo will be an especially significant moment, according to SOTB chair Pearl Walisser.
“That's very significant to us because we've spent the last couple of years doing this project,” she said.
A table will be set up so children can paint rocks to add to the ceremonial display.
But rather than characterize the ribbon-cutting as the most significant activity of Seniors Week, Walisser said the entire week of free activities is the most important aspect.
“A lot of people think seniors are 70 and 80, but we're really 50 plus, and we're trying to encourage that age range to participate in the week,” she said.
She said the SOTB office at the SLS Centre will be open for drop-in visitors to come by, say hello and see what the group is all about.
All the drop-in activities listed on the Seniors Week schedule will be free. Their doors open at 9 am, and Walisser said there’s always coffee and cookies up for grabs.
A full three-page schedule of events was printed in The Eagle’s May 25 edition, including physical activities sponsored by SOTB like yoga, Zumba, carpet bowling, chair fitness, zoomer, and line dancing.
To view the schedule, go to cochraneeagle.ca, click on the May 25 eEdition, and go to pages 7 to 9.
Other physical activities sponsored by Alberta 55 Plus will include Bocce, lawn bowling and floor shuffleboard. The Alberta 55 Plus group will also provide an information seminar on their organization on June 5 at 3:30 pm at the SLS Centre, just prior to the Bocce and lawn bowling demonstrations.
Alberta 55 Plus is an organization with more than 100 Cochrane-based members, that promotes the physical, emotional, psychological, intellectual and social benefits for persons 55 plus years of age who pursue an active lifestyle.
They initiate and sponsor activities which support these benefits.
Spokesperson Doug Campbell, speaking with The Eagle from a track and field meet in Calgary, said people looking to join the group need not be intimidated by the competitive aspect.
He said 75 per cent of what the group does is for fun – only about 25 per cent of members pursue the formal, competitive competitions.
“None of us are real pros,” he said. “The main purpose is to get people off the couch.”
COLT bus service will be free for passengers ages 60 and older for the week. To book, visit ridecolt.ca and use coupon code “SENIOR.”