Seniors prepare for 30th anniversary of the Haywood County Senior Games

Register April 15 to 19
Apr 08, 2013
Photo by: Donated photos WINNERS ALL —  Above, Harry Janetzko competes in the discus event at the N.C. Senior Games State Finals in Raleigh.  He set a state finals record in the discus. Below, Sandra Michener (left) and Marcia Tate (right) show off their track medals from the N.C. Senior Games State Finals in Raleigh.

Seniors around the county are gearing up for the 30th anniversary of the Haywood County Senior Games.  Haywood County Senior Games is one of three original local games that make up the current 53 local games sanctioned by the North Carolina Senior Games. Participants get the opportunity to compete in a variety of athletic events like shuffleboard, tennis, pickleball, horseshoes, bowling and track and field events just to name a few.  And for those that may choose to steer clear of athletic events, there’s also the SilverArts, a component of Senior Games that highlights the artist in everyone.  Categories include Visual Arts (photography, painting, etc), Heritage Arts (pottery, woodcarving and basket weaving), and Literary Arts (poems and short stories). Many folks take advantage of both the athletics and the SilverArts.

This yearly activity draws more than 100 participants, age 55 or better, from Haywood County and surrounding areas to participate in two weeks of athletic and artistic events.  Senior Games participants don’t have to be super athletes or seasoned artists.  While first-, second- and third- place medals are awarded to competitors per 5-year age division, most participants primarily enjoy the fun, fellowship, and of course, food.

Another aspect of the Haywood County Senior Games is the value that participants receive. For $10, seniors can participate in as many events as they choose in either division. Only a couple of events have an additional fee such as golf ($36 for greens fee, cart fee and lunch at Lake Junaluska Golf Course) and bowling ($8.25 per competition at Star Lanes in Asheville). The fee includes a T-shirt, light breakfast at the Opening Ceremony on May 6, AARP Ice Cream Social on May 15 and dinner at the Closing Ceremony on May 21.

Haywood County Senior Games is supported by two main sponsors and many in-kind sponsors. For the past 10 years, 21st Century Oncology has been a driving force.  United Healthcare came on board last year which enabled organizers to more generously accommodate all participants.

Registration for the Haywood County Senior Games will be from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 15 to 19, at the Haywood County Recreation & Parks office, 1233 N. Main St., in the Annex II Building, in Waynesville. All events will take place throughout the county from May 6 to 21.  Eligibility requirements include an age of 55 or better Dec. 31, 2013 and must live in N.C. for three consecutive months.  Haywood County Senior Games is coordinated by the Haywood County Recreation & Parks Department and sponsored statewide by the North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services.  NC Senior Games is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing year-round health promotion and education for adults 55 years of age and better. To register, contact the Haywood County Recreation & Parks office at 452-6789 or visit www.haywoodnc.net for an online registration form.

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