Vernon honors Hometown Hero

| 16 Jul 2018 | 02:50

Mayor Harry Shortway issued a proclamation recognizing the work of “Hometown Hero,” Jane Damstra, the director of the Vernon Township Senior Center on July 9.
“Vernon Township hereby recognizes the valuable service provided under her leadership serving thousands of meals annually and organizing numerous holiday events and summer picnic for our senior community,” Shortway read from the proclamation.
Damstra received the “Hometown Hero” award from New Jersey 5th Congressional district congressman Josh Gottheimer (D). Damstra was one of 24 recipients of the award, presented by Gottheimer at a ceremony held on July 2, at the Hackensack UMC Fitness and Wellness center, located in Maywood.
Damstra was one of nine individuals from Sussex County presented with the award. Nominations for the award are made by local Mayors, community leaders, police chiefs, and other members of the community.
The Vernon Senior Center is located in the lower level of the municipal building, on Church Street.
According to the township website, the Senior Center is open to anyone over the age of 60, and provides, “a friendly, comfortable gathering place and plenty of opportunities to get involved and stay active.”
The Vernon Senior Center offers activities and classes like, Zumba, Shuffleboard, ceramics, line dancing, and daily crocheting/knitting sessions. Computers with internet access are also available for use.
Besides daily activities, Damstra and her staff also host several holiday celebrations, including Halloween and Christmas parties, and a summer picnic.
Meals are also served. According to Shortway, the Senior Center served 1,938 more meals in 2017, than it did the previous year.
“We consider these celebrations and activities vital to the program as they enable increased socialization, exercise and various other opportunities to help keep seniors that attend the program active,” Shortway wrote on his facebook page.
Hours for the Senior Center are Monday thru Friday, 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.
For more information, contact the Vernon Department of Recreation and Community Development at 973-764-4055, ext. 2261