Monday, April 29, 2013


Ms. Annabelle Willis

Salvation Army Citadel Corps loves senior citizens!

Shouts of glee, moans of defeat, fierce competition and the sheer joy of winning; what do these all have in common? I found them all at The Salvation Army Citadel Corps, our Midtown church, last week. The last Wednesday of every month, senior citizens gather at the Citadel to play Bingo and socialize. I don’t know about you, but when I think about senior citizens playing bingo, I think about people who are half asleep and who are more interested in drinking coffee than playing the game. Well… I was wrong.

These were 24 of the rowdiest senior citizens I have ever met!
These are just a few of the Bingo prizes.

I was able to share a table with Ms. Annie and Ms. Jean who both have been coming to the senior program almost every Wednesday for five years. Ms. Annie is a sweet, tiny lady who is very soft spoken and Ms. Jean is a spitfire who loves winning.This monthly bingo game is part of the Citadel’s senior program, led by Captains Jay and Jamie Spalding. I was able to chat with Captain Jamie about the program and she told me that program participants are game for anything. Sometimes programs are health related, such as blood pressure and diabetes screening clinics, and sometimes activities are just for fun, such as watching movies together. One of the purposes of the program is to serve as a way to help keep senior citizens engaged in their community and to have interaction with others.

According to Wikipedia, the term “citadel” means a fortress or a safe place. And that is how our Citadel serves the seniors, in addition to having fun, it’s a place they can go to and know they are cared for and are safe.

PS-Captain Jamie said the Citadel could always use more volunteers to help with the Seniors Program. If you have any special skills or knowledge you would like to share with this group, please call me at 918-587-7801 to volunteer.

If you know a senior citizen who would benefit from attending The Citadel Seniors, they meet every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Lunch is served for $1. The Citadel is located at 3901 East 28th St., just north of Eisenhower Elementary School.

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