Health and Wellness day offers one-stop shopping for health and wellness, fun and leisure options
By Jonathan E. Coleman
The big races at Lowe’s Motor Speedway are still a few months away, but on March 12, senior citizens from across the region will be racing to good health.
The ninth annual Senior Health and Wellness Day returns to Cabarrus Arena & Events Center to offer aging adults a one-stop extravaganza for wellness information and services in Cabarrus County.
“We always have a theme,” said Dana Oar, wellness coordinator at the Cabarrus County Senior Center. “It makes it more fun. This year’s theme is ‘Race to Good Health’ so you’ll see a lot of flags and race-themed items. We like to make it as fun as we can.”
Again this year, seniors can take advantage of health screenings, learn more about services offered through the Cabarrus County Senior Center and other agencies, or just come out for a day of fun and entertainment.
“Our main goal is to bring as many health and wellness resources in one location so seniors can shop around and know what’s out there,” Oar said. “We want it to be fun, too, so we provide fun entertainment and games. A lot of times you go to those things and only get one or two things out of it. If you can make it fun, hopefully you’ll get more out of it.”
In years past, the annual event has drawn nearly 1,000 seniors from Cabarrus and surrounding counties. Last year, nearly 90 vendors took part.
The free event offers seniors a chance to get cholesterol, blood pressure, hearing and vision screenings. This year, participants can add memory screenings, a mamography or learn about fall prevention.
But, Oar said, being healthy doesn’t have to be boring. There will be plenty of crafters and vendors on hand to show seniors how staying active with crafts and other activities can not only be fun, but can help keep them physically and mentally healthy.
Malli Plowman of Harrisburg will serve as emcee for the event, which she’s been involved in for a number of years.
“The first time I went to Health & Wellness Day, I volunteered to greet people at the door,” the 66-year-old said. “The next year… we performed as part of the entertainment. We just kept adding more and more to keep people entertained.”
In her role as emcee, Plowman said her job is to keep participants energized and excited.
“As people get older, they tend to dwell on that,” she said. “This is a day to celebrate wellness and celebrate life.”
That celebration, she said, will include skits — like the can’t miss ‘Incredible Balancing Diet’ — games and contests, a barber shop quartet and a magician, among others. The opening ceremonies for the Cabarrus County Senior Games will also be incorporated into the day.
“I think people come out and see what all is offered and enjoy the entertainment then go home and tell their friends,” Plowman said. “I think it reminds them of the things that are available to them. A lot of times we sit down and watch TV because we have arthritis. Getting out to things like this reminds us to eat right and exercise. Just getting reminded of these things can keep you on the right track.”
• Contact Jonathan E. Coleman at [email protected] or 704-789-9105.