NEESES – About 20 seniors aged 65 or older attended a fiesta-themed celebration just for them at the Seniors Recreation and Leisure Center in Neeses on Monday, Aug. 8.

Town Clerk Sonja Gleaton said they usually have approximately 24 attendees and have 30 members of the group. Neeses Councilwoman Paula Hutchins, owner of Rusty and Paula’s Restaurant in Bamberg, was responsible for planning and cooking the Mexican food served for the celebration. She prepared a make your own taco bar, chicken fajitas, salsa and chips, punch and dessert.

The Rev. Obed Ortiz, of Sunny Vista Church of God in North, was not only the guest speaker but also a guest performer.

Ortiz, originally from Puerto Rico, sang several songs in Spanish and one partially in English while playing his acoustic guitar. The exploration of Hispanic culture fitted the fiesta theme of the day.

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Before Ortiz’s performance, he said, “My father often wore a shirt like this one.” He also said that Hispanic horse riders sometimes wore hats like the one he wore.

Ortiz sang an Hispanic love song which he said is performed at weddings. The song also includes verses from the Song of Solomon. He also performed “How Great Thou Art,” in Spanish and in English.

Bingo was played before and after lunch, with puzzles, checkers and other games played. Prizes were given for the bingo games.

The group is all booked up for the next senior citizen celebration. All participants must be 65 and older and must be residents of Neeses.

The next celebration, for those who have signed up for it, is Mardi Gras-themed event will take place Monday, Aug. 22, at the Seniors Recreation and Leisure Center with a sign-in at 11 a.m., a program starting at 11:30 a.m. and lunch being served at noon.

For more information (or to see if there is a cancellation in the group, which is, again booked for now), call 803 247-5811.

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