Essex County Opens New Senior Citizen Congregate Meal Center in Watessing Park
County plans to provide seniors nutritious meals, programs and activities at Bloomfield location.
Officials and local seniors took to the senior center this week to unveil the new Café in Essex County Watsessing Park program.
The new senior citizen congregate meal center in the Senior Building in Essex County Watessing Park was opened officially on Thursday, Feb. 28 and is the third senior citizen congregate meal program the Essex County Division Senior Services has opened in a County park.
Bloomfield seniors in attendance included Lee DiDomenico, Terry Gernitis, Beverly Monahan and Claire Librizzi, all of whom live in the nearby Troy Towers and are members of the Watsessing Park Tuesday Club.
The said they were looking forward to the programs planned for the center.
"They do wonderful things for us," Gernitis said. "We're going to the nutrition group."
Local officials on hand to christen the program included Bloomfield Councilman-At-Large Michael J. Venezia, Mayor Raymond J. McCarthy, Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo and Freeholder Brendan W. Gill.
"Too many seniors are housebound and stranded," Venezia said. "Anything we can do to help them get out there is great."
DiVincenzo said that the county hopes to assist seniors both with nutrition and with socializing and touted the cafe as an innovative approach.
"We realized we had to go outside the box," DiVincenzo said.
The Senior Building is in Essex County Watsessing Park at the corner of Bloomfield Avenue and Conger Street. The congregate meal site will be open Mondays to Fridays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Seniors ages 60 years and older and their spouses are eligible. There is a suggested $3 donation to help defray the cost of the program.