Last year at the South Orange Seniors’ Prom, there were conga lines and group dances, people dancing in walkers, and community connections across all generations. This year, from 1-3 p.m. on April 10, the South Orange Seniors will host The Cotton Ball Gala at Seton Hall University’s Chancellor’s Suite.
The South Orange Seniors were founded by Tonia Moore, Nan Samons and Peggy Cinberg (all senior citizens living in South Orange, ranging in age from 71 to 90). Peggy Cinberg tells The Village Green, that they saw a large, but segregated, senior citizen community and decided to create a multipurpose organization to develop connections and to create relationships across generations.
In just two years, after input from the senior community, the South Orange seniors have improved transportation, organized walking groups and fitness classes, partnered with SOPAC so seniors can receive free tickets to shows when the house is not full, offer computer instruction every couple of months to teach seniors basic skills, scored discount cards from local businesses for those over 65, and even attended the White House Conference on Aging.
Now they will celebrate their success with another community event — The Cotton Ball Gala, named for the traditional 2nd year anniversary gift of cotton.
“Our first social was so successful, for both SHU students and South Orange Seniors, we are able to expand this year to 125 guests,” Cinberg says. “There is food, music, dancing and singing! It is an opportunity for seniors to meet each other and to interact with younger people.
All residents age 65 and older are invited to attend The Cotton Ball Gala on April 10. Expect bounteous finger foods, music mostly from the 40s and 50s, dancing and inter-generational mingling. Dress is formal or casual, as you wish.
The free event is co-sponsored by South Orange Seniors and the Seton Hall University Division of Volunteer Efforts, or DOVE, whose members will attend. In lieu of an entry fee, all attendees are asked to bring at least one nonperishable food item to be donated to Our Lady of Sorrows Food Bank.
Free transportation to and from the ball will be provided on South Orange Parking Authority jitneys – designated stops to be announced.
To sign up, email here or call 973.275.3855.