Seniors elect leader

SCHROON LAKE The new president of the Schroon Lake Senior Citizens Club is a familiar face. Lorraine Erikson took the oath of office Jan. 2, taking the helm for the fifth time. I guess no one else wants the job, she joked. Really, though, its an honor. The Schroon Lake Senior Citizens Club is one of the largest and most active groups in the community. It has 217 members. Its a social club as well as a support group, Erikson said of the club. I think thats the reason for our success. We do much more than just serve dinners. The club meets the first Wednesday of each month at 4 p.m. at its center on Main Street. It offers lunch Monday through Friday, has bingo each Thursday and bridge every Tuesday as well as shopping trips to Ticonderoga once a week and to Glens Falls once a month. There are also special events, which are detailed in a monthly newsletter mailed to each senior citizen in the community. We try to stay busy, Erikson noted. The new president has big plans for her group. Erikson would like to see an addition built on the senior center. We really need to expand the building, she said. The dining room will only accommodate 90 people and sometimes we get really close to 100. We need the space. The senior group already has plans to construct a garage for its new, handicap-accessible van. Erikson hopes those plans can be changed to include a new dining room. The current dining room could then become a social gathering place. We have $10,000 set aside for the garage, Erikson said, but we will need to raise more money. That will be my main goal. Erikson also noted the senior center has three floors, but the top two floors are under-utilized because its difficult for many seniors to use the stairs. It would be nice to install an elevator, but thats somewhere in the future, she said. Erikson is the 2007 Schroon Lake Citizen of the Year, selected by the Schroon Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. Erikson and her husband, Tom, purchased property in Schroon Lake in 1985 as a summer camp. They moved to Schroon full-time in 1995. She has been active in the Schroon Lake Senior Citizens Club, the Community Church, the Schroon Lake Fish & Game Club, the Schroon Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and the Schroon Lake Association since arriving. At the Community Church Erikson served of directors and was finance chair for several years. She served the chamber of Commerce as a member of its board of directors. She has served as chair of the Schroon Lake Associations annual arts and crafts fair since 2000. She was named Senior Citizen of the Year in 2000. In 2005 she received a lifetime certificate and gold pin from the Essex County Retired Senior Volunteer Program. In 2004 Erikson was given the Robert J. Uplinger Distinguished Service Award by the Schroon Lake Lions Club. Erikson was sworn in as club president by Schroon Supervisor Cathy Moses in a ceremony Jan. 2. Among those attending were Eriksons son, Craig Smith, from Melbourne Fla., his wife, Maureen, and their sons, Timothy and Corey. Other 2008 officers of the Schroon Lake Senior Citizens Club are Marilyn Butler, first vice president; Velma Gochie, second vice president; Lana Mars, secretary; and Jim Butler, treasurer. Directors are Ed Donley, Past President John Dillon, Nancy Dowling, Joline Dyson Bob Yoeckel and Immediate Past President Kate Huston.

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