‘The heartbeat of our community’

Welcome Back cookouts for local senior centers kick off for the summer

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CCSO and COA serve the seniors at Cullman Senior Center (Christy Perry for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The first of several cookouts planned for Cullman County’s senior centers took place Friday morning at the Cullman Senior Center by Sportsman Lake Park. The Cullman County Sheriff Office has teamed up with the Cullman County Commission on Aging (COA) to welcome back the seniors after the centers were ordered closed in March of 2020.  

Sheriff Matt Gentry, Judge Chad Floyd, Commission Chairman Jeff Clemons and Representative Corey Harbison are just a few officials and officers who came out to visit with the large crowd assembled Friday morning.  

Gentry said, “The Commission on Aging asked us and said, ‘Hey look, we want to do a welcome back for all the seniors.’” The CCSO and COA have cookouts scheduled in the coming weeks for the full-time senior centers.  

The CCSO provided grilled hamburgers and hotdogs with chips and drinks. The members of the senior center provided the “fixins’” which lined the room. Gentry, CCSO officers and COA staff helped serve up the wonderful meal while visiting with what Gentry calls “the heartbeat of our community.”  

Gentry continued, “We come and sit down and eat with the community and find out what’s going on. We find out who’s the thieves, the drug dealers and who’s causing problems and committing crimes. They know everything!”  

Representative Corey Harbison was excited to finally see the seniors back at the center. “A lot of them have been up for a year and ready to see each other and get back to a normal life. I just wanted to come up and say hello and see if there is anything going on that I can help them with. They have been shut in and I haven’t been able to see or talk to these folks.” 

The “Welcome Back” cookouts with the CCSO will continue throughout June and July. The schedule as of Friday, June 4 are as follows, will serving times at 11 a.m.: 

Hanceville Senior Center- Wednesday, June 9 

West Point Senior Center- Thursday, June 24 

Crane Hill Senior Center- Thursday, July 8 

Fairview Senior Center- Friday, July 16 

Colony Senior Center – Friday, July 30 

CCSO and COA serve the seniors at Cullman Senior Center (Christy Perry for The Cullman Tribune) 

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Christy Perry

christy@cullmantribune.com