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Fair caters to senior citizens

May 12, 1999

Senior FairBy MARLO BARNHART / Staff Writer

photo: RIC DUGAN / staff photographer




Like many of the estimated 2,000 senior citizens who attended the seventh annual Senior Fair at the Ramada Inn, Charles Gossard was determined to visit every vendor and see every sight.

"I'm really enjoying myself," Gossard said. "There is lots to see and do."

Jack Green said he came to this year's fair because he had positive memories from last year's event.

He stopped by the United Way display to tell Maureen Theriault, community relations director, what a good job he thinks United Way is doing.

"The bottom line tells all," Green said, as he availed himself of a complimentary nail file, pencil and United Way pin.

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Theriault was happy to share United Way information with the senior citizens, calling them an informed and active force in the community.

"People tell us they come to the fair for many reasons, including seeing people they don't get to see any other time," she said.

Mary Della Toffalo of Triad of Washington County said people were shoulder to shoulder most of the day. "We are running out of supplies," she said.

Triad, a partnership between senior citizens and law enforcement agencies, focuses on protection and education.

Julia Miller said she had three roles at the fair: Commission on Aging volunteer, Hagerstown Community College Learning In Retirement proponent and as a senior citizen.

"When I'm not working at the information desk, I'm enjoying myself," Miller said.

The Senior Fair started at 10 a.m. and ran to 3 p.m.

"When they opened the doors Wednesday morning, they were lined up," said Ray Hahne, one of the organizers of the event.

Judging by the number of complimentary bags given out, Hahne estimated the crowd at nearly 2,000.

Coordinated by the Washington County Commission on Aging, the event was held with the support of Williamsport Retirement Village and Outlook Pointe at Hagerstown.

There was live entertainment, information on pre-retirement and post-retirement interests, health screenings, free food and other goodies.

A new attraction this year was a series of flower arranging demonstrations by the Washington County Council of Garden Clubs.

A free lunch was served to all those 60 and older who got a voucher when they entered the fair.

More than 93 exhibitors were on hand with information of interest to all senior citizens.

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