A rip roaring time at Centra PACE

Published 7:49 am Tuesday, September 10, 2019

The fourth annual Centra PACE senior prom was held Aug. 22 – 23. With a Roaring 20s theme the room was decorated in shiny gold and black. Helium balloon bouquets along with ribbons and bows hung throughout the room creating a festive and welcoming backdrop for a senior prom. What made this prom unique is most of the attendees were truly seniors — ages 50 and over.

Elise Hemmer, recreation therapist for Centra PACE, said each year a prom planning committee, made up of PACE participants, come up with ideas and vote on a theme. This year they picked The Roaring 20s. Hemmer shared in an email, “The participants help make the decorations. We have volunteers to help make the corsages and boutonnieres and help with prepping the decorations, along with the staff. Everyone comes together to plan a fun and memorable event. It’s something that we look forward to every year! As a participant June Stone puts it best ‘Everyone has a good time, all day.’”

According to its website, “The Centra PACE mission is to enhance life for older adults with chronic needs by providing compassionate, quality care and services. PACE strives to achieve this mission by empowering participants to live in their homes and in the community for as long as it is medically and socially safe.”

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Centra PACE offers medical and social opportunities for elderly residents in the Heart of Virgina. The organization has locations in Farmville, Gretna and Lynchburg and serves Prince Edward, Cumberland, Buckingham, Charlotte, Lunenburg, Nottoway and Appomattox counties.

A comprehensive program Centra PACE is for adults 55 and older who meet the criteria for nursing facility placement, prefer to stay at home and have an assessment indicating that living at home with the support of the PACE program is a safe alternative.

Centra PACE Manager Dawn Hicks had this to say, “The PACE prom is a really special time. It’s become an annual event that the participants, staff and community look forward to. Without all of that support, it wouldn’t be the success it is. It truly is rewarding to see the participants celebrating with each other and remembering that life can still be just as fun as the Roaring 20s — if you try.”

To learn more about Centra PACE, call (434) 315-2890.