Senior Fun Festival reminds community about importance of good health

By: Kara Szymanski | Shelby - Utica News | Published June 4, 2018

 An art instructor shows seniors how to paint a scene on a canvas during the Senior Fun Festival in 2017 at the Gibraltar Trade Center in Mount Clemens.

An art instructor shows seniors how to paint a scene on a canvas during the Senior Fun Festival in 2017 at the Gibraltar Trade Center in Mount Clemens.

Photo provided by Roneeka Pleasant-Brown

UTICA — The Macomb Community Action Office of Senior Services will host its 29th annual Senior Fun Festival from 9 a.m. to noon June 12. The free festival will be held at Jimmy John’s Field in Utica and is open to the public.

It is the first time that the festival will be hosted at the field and that tickets will be given away to the ballgame. In previous years, the festival was held at the Gibraltar Trade Center in Mount Clemens. The Macomb Community Action Office of Senior Services chose the venue to have the expo stand out.

The festival will feature a variety of resources focused on seniors and caregivers, including free health screenings and wellness information from the Macomb County Health Department, raffles, prizes, Rosco the Clown, a photo booth, face painting and more. Food will be available for purchase.

“The expo is packed with activities. There will be over 80 local businesses and organizations on-site to give information about their services. It is truly a one-stop-shop type of event. It has definitely grown in both the areas of attendees and business participation. It will be Senior Day at the park,” said Roneeka Pleasant-Brown, the public information manager for Macomb County’s Department of Health and Community Services.

In addition to almost 100 vendors offering information and services from senior housing to insurance, there will be bingo, Zumba by the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan, a cooking demonstration by the Michigan State University Extension, a dancing demonstration by a dance studio, a drug takeback and live entertainment.

New to this year’s event is a baseball game scheduled for 1 p.m. The first 500 attendees will receive a ticket to the baseball game.  

“This year’s Senior Fun Festival will offer a new spin to the event with it being held at Jimmy John’s Field,” said Nicole Urban, program manager for the Macomb Community Action Office of Senior Services. “Our team is so excited to add to the legacy of this event — striving to make it bigger and better every year.”

The game will showcase the Eastside Diamond Hoppers versus the Utica Unicorns — the two Macomb County teams in the United Shore Professional Baseball League.

Urban said they wanted to support the Macomb County teams, so they chose to hold the event on the day of the game.

“There will be information for caregivers and family members of the senior community available also,” said Pleasant-Brown.

Macomb Community Action is a community action agency dedicated to helping children, families and seniors in Macomb County by providing assistance with essential services in accordance with its mission: “Persistent action to diminish poverty.”

Macomb Community Action is part of the Macomb County Department of Health and Community Services.

The festival sees up to 1,000 attendees each year. Pleasant-Brown said it is the largest of its kind in Macomb County.

“There are so many resources for older adults, and often folks get into situations and don’t know where to turn, and you can use this expo to be not alone and see what agencies and businesses are there for you, and it will be a good day and you can be with your peers, and we encourage caregivers to come out and learn more support and learn about services that are available to you,” said Urban.

There is no required age to attend. Parking is free. Free water will be provided.

For more information, call the Macomb County Office of Senior Services at (586) 469-5228 or visit www.macombgov.org.