Poughkeepsie, NY … Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro announced the County’s Office for the Aging has re-opened six of its eight Senior Friendship Centers to full operation, after being closed for more than a year due to COVID-19.
The six centers are open to welcome seniors from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., offering a hot lunch each day and all the previously available programs, including arts and crafts, health and exercise programs, bingo and other games.
County Executive Marc Molinaro said, “Seniors throughout this country were severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic – suffering not only unimaginable loss of life, but also the isolation brought on by physical distancing. Dutchess County is proud to re-open the majority of our Senior Friendship Centers, providing our seniors the safe socialization they’ve missed for more than a year. I urge our county’s seniors to return to our Senior Friendship Centers and enjoy the high-quality programming for which our Office for the Aging is a statewide example.”
The following OFA Senior Friendship Centers are currently open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.:
Beacon (open Monday-Friday)
1 Forrestal Heights, Beacon
East Fishkill (open Monday-Friday)
East Fishkill Community Center
890 NY 82, Hopewell Junction
Millerton (open Monday-Thursday)
North East-Millerton Library Annex
28 Century Blvd., Millerton
Pawling (open Tuesday-Thursday)
Town Hall Annex
154 Charles Colman Boulevard, Pawling
Red Hook (open Monday-Friday)
Red Hook Community Center
59 Fisk St., Red Hook
Amenia (open Monday-Thursday)
First Presbyterian Church
229 South Amenia Road, Wassaic
The Senior Friendship Center at the OFA headquarters in Poughkeepsie has been used as a hub for the OFA’s Home-Delivered Meals program, which realized a dramatic increase in clients due to the pandemic, and is expected to re-open later this summer. The Tri-Town Senior Friendship Center, serving residents in the towns of LaGrange, Pleasant Valley and Poughkeepsie, will open at a new location later this summer.
OFA Director Todd Tancredi said, “As our Office for the Aging continues to adapt to serve the ever-evolving needs of our seniors, we continue to innovate and find the most efficient and effective way to deliver the services and programs on which Dutchess County residents have come to rely. We look forward to having each of our eight Senior Friendship Centers operating at full capacity to continue the OFA’s mission of enhancing the lives of our seniors while helping them live independently.”
Since the start of the pandemic, every Dutchess County department and division has modified its operations to best serve residents. The OFA, for example, converted its annual Senior Picnic Series, now in its 29th year, from its traditional, sit-down events to a drive-through model in 2020; the change resulted in more seniors being served last year than ever before. Further adapting its format for its 2021 Drive-Thru Senior Picnic Series, the OFA now offers the option for residents to drive up to each event, receive their free hot lunch, and remain at the venue, where space allows, to enjoy their meal and socialize.
More information about the 2021 Drive-Thru Senior Picnic Series, including the schedule of remaining events, is available online.
The Dutchess County OFA plans, coordinates and provides an array of community-based services to the elderly and persons who require assistance in the long-term care system, in an effort to promote independence, dignity and quality of life. OFA offers an array of programming that provides socialization, recreation and fitness opportunities for seniors to remain active and energized. More information about the OFA and its various programs and services is available on its webpage.