By DAN FOX
Roses are red, violets are blue, and if you’re a senior, LCCOA has a party for you.
On Feb. 14, LCCOA will throw its annual Happy Hearts Hootenanny at its Troy facilities on 1380 Boone Street.
“They’ve done a Valentine’s Day party at least since we’ve been at that location,” said Lindsey Kelly, marketing and fundraising coordinator for LCCOA.
The party has always had games and activities, but this year LCCOA is bringing out a local DJ so participants can dance if they want to as well. Games will have prizes up-for-grabs, and refreshments and deserts will be passed around as well.
The most popular part of the hootenanny is always crowning the king and queen, Kelly said, who are chosen by votes collected leading up to the shindig.
LCCOA throws a fair amount of parties like the upcoming one throughout the year. Kelly said they will make multiple trips with the LCCOA van to bring seniors to the parties, and will go to extra lengths to make sure anyone from the area that wants to come can make it.
“Our main focus as everybody knows is meals and food and security, but also it’s in our mission to help people live their best lives, and one of the best ways to do that is staying socially connected,” Kelly said. “More, now than ever, we’re finally figuring out that your social health and how you actually feel [about] your mental health is just as important as the food that you’re taking into your body.
“So we want people not only to be getting nutrition that they need for their bodies, but also for their mind and soul.”
In her second year with LCCOA, Kelly said at a Thanksgiving party, she’d asked if anyone would like to speak about what they were thankful about.
“And we went around the room and we got to one woman who said the year before, at Christmas, she was actually really depressed and was contemplating killing herself, she was going to commit suicide because she was so lonely,” Kelly said. “And she got our newsletter with a meal, saying ‘Please come to the party’…and she said she contacted the center and we came and picked her up and brought her to the Christmas party, and she’s been coming to all our parties and activities ever since.”
The Happy Hearts Hootenanny starts at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 14 at LCCOA. Kelly said anyone is welcome to participate or just sit and enjoy the atmosphere.
“If people want to come to the dance on Valentine’s Day and they want to dance, that’s great, come dance,” Kelly said. “If they come and they just want to watch other people dance or tap their feet and stay in their seat, that’s fine too.”