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Time to make changes in operation of senior center

To the editor:

On October 16 I attended the Alexandria City Council meeting to ask about the Alexandria Senior Center: who hires the director and elects the board members. I found out the board members are appointed by the director and the city has no say in the operation of the center. I think it’s a conflict of interest to have the board members appointed by the director.

There were a few senior meetings I wanted to attend to ask questions and give ideas, but was informed these were closed meetings. There have been times when meetings were canceled and the director would call board members and reschedule for them only. It seems they do not want any ideas on how to use the space, instead of it sitting empty and costing money for electricity, etc.

I know of only five groups that use the center during the week, including a bridge club once a week and a group of men who use the pool tables. I was informed they used to have bingo, dancing, bake sales, meals once a month and other types of events.

This is a place for seniors to go, meet and get to know others in their age group. To me, if this is to be a place for seniors to meet and enjoy activities, it should be run by one of them and the board members should be voted into place by members.

Many seniors I have talked to agree there has to be a big change to the operation of the senior center. I hope the people who own the center will start to listen to what the people are saying and start to make changes on the operation and use of the center and get someone in there who listens to ideas to how they can improve.

Dennis Olson Alexandria, MN