Area Agency on Aging plans soft reopening of local senior centers starting May 3


JOPLIN, Mo. — The Area Agency on Aging Region Ten (AAAX) announces their plan to have a soft opening for all seven senior centers (Barton County, Carthage, Webb City, Carl Junction, Joplin, Neosho, and McDonald county) starting on May 3.

“After being closed for more than a year, we have started to see a continued decline in COVID-19 cases,” AAAX CEO Jennifer Shotwell said. “In addition, more and more residents are being vaccinated as vaccination clinics pop up across our four counties. I feel confident that we can safely open the centers with minimal restrictions.”

Nutrition Program Director, Brittany Caine, is taking the lead on outlining the reopening plan for all seven centers.

Each center will have activities on specific days of the week. Monday and Friday have been designated for clients to play pool. Tuesday and Thursday have been designated for bingo and lunch service. Wednesday has been designated for cards/games and exercise classes.


“We will ask that clients call ahead to sign up for all activities, except for pool,” said Shotwell. “Currently, we will not have pool players schedule ahead. However, we will not have any pool tournaments at this time, but this may change in the future.”

All clients entering the senior center will be asked to wear a mask and maintain physical distancing in order to reduce the transmission of COVID-19. Volunteers will be asked to oversee the activities and to help maintain cleanliness by washing any tables or chairs that are used for activities. Volunteers will also resume delivering to Meals on Wheels recipients at all centers.

“As time goes on and cases continue to decline, we may bring back other activities and have them on more days per week. Bear with us as we get used to this new ‘normal,'” said Shotwell.

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