Marlborough – On May 27, 85 physically active senior citizens gathered for a luncheon at Wayside Racquet & Swim Club in celebration of the 22nd annual National Senior Health and Fitness Day.
Festivities included a luncheon catered by Joe Craig of Northborough, vocal entertainment by four members of a local choral group known as “Women of Note,” the keyboard accompaniment of Frank Dionne , the “Al Kursonis Memorial Tennis Tournament” and the presentation of the “Effie Ann Tompkins Community Service Award” and the “George Fortin Fit For Life Award”.
This year’s tennis tournament winners were two very active Wayside Tennis enthusiasts, Eric Siwko and Mo Yaffe.
The Effie Ann Tompkins Community Service Award was presented to Paula Kelley of Marlborough. Kelley is very active in the St. Matthias Parish and at the Marlborough Senior Center as a member of their “Friendly Visitor” program which enrolls volunteers to visit with seniors in local assisted living facilities and nursing homes.
“I was absolutely shocked,” Kelley, who is an avid participant in Wayside’s Water Fitness program, said. “I enjoy giving back to the community and never expected to be recognized for something I find so personally rewarding.”
This year’s recipient of the “Fit For Life Award,” is longtime Marlborough resident Joe Tunnera. The award is named for George Fortin, 98, who currently resides at Christopher Heights in Marlborough.
Tunnera, father of Marlborough Ward 4 City Council member Rob Tunnera, was a founding member of Seven Hills Tennis Club, later to become Wayside Racquet & Swim Club. He has been an active member at the facility since April of 1976.
“I love this place,” said Tunnera. “I don’t know what I’d do without it. I’m here every morning to start my day and when I’m not, I’m out with the guys I workout with for breakfast or dinner. It’s like its own little community within our community and I’m so thankful to be a part of it.”
All attendees were presented with a commemorative T- shirt at the end of the ceremonies.
“It’s by far my favorite thing we do,” said Darren McLaughlin, Wayside’s general manager. “ To give back to this generation who have given so much of themselves throughout their lives in some small way is so rewarding. They’re the forerunners to the next generation of aging, physically active baby boomers heading into their ‘golden years,’ and they deserve to be recognized for their commitment to living an active and healthy lifestyle.”