VALE — Vale Senior Citizens held their Thanksgiving dinner Wednesday and among the things they are thankful for is owning their building free and clear five years after its construction.
The center has been a long time coming as the senior citizens had been working to get a new center for more than 10 years and had previously been located in the former Church of Christ.
But after the building was completed five years ago, the building did not belong to the seniors, as it remained with the City of Vale as the recipient of the $1.2 million block grant which funded the project.
In addition to the ownership issues, there were restrictions on who could use the center, senior citizens only, which limited the types and number of activities that could be held there during those five years.
“Children couldn’t come in,” said Barbara Ray, president of the Senior Citizens. “It had to be seniors.”
Now the center is open to more groups and younger people. There are 75 to 100 members of the senior group, she said, adding one of the things the seniors have is an on-going yard sale of donated items, in addition to dances that bring in people from as far away as Boise.
“We can have more activities because the public is invited to come in,” said Joanne Roner, one of the members of Vale Senior Citizens.