Smiles were everywhere – in the eyes of the mask-wearers and on their faces when they felt comfortable enough to remove the masks.

(From left) Judy Garnett, Irene Garnett, Gloria Callaci and Constance Lytle enjoyed the in-person camaraderie at the 65th anniversary luncheon. Credit: Mary Gavin

The luncheon celebrating the 65th anniversary of the Foster Senior Club brought more than half its 100 members to Fleetwood Jourdain community Center on Aug. 17.

They all walked in – some alone, some with canes, some with walkers and some leaning on a younger member for support.

The club was formed in 1957, and members have been meeting weekly since then. The pandemic halted the in-person meetings for more than two years, so Wednesday’s get-together was especially delightful for those who for months had seen each other only via Zoom.

“It’s so nice to be together again in-person” was heard and said over and over.

Membership in the club is open to anyone 55 years or older, and the club’s roster contains octogenarians and nonagenarians. Katherine Bridges, who will be 99 in October, sat next to 103-year-old Alice Turner.

  • Foster Senior Club’s 65th anniversary luncheon

The club recognized Omega Clark as senior of the year. Retired after a 43-year teaching career, Clark enjoys reading, sewing, singing in the Second Baptist Church choir and being a member of the Foster Senior Club and Prime Time Players, the partnership for senior actors with Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre and North Shore Village Network.

During the program, Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin read a proclamation from the County Board recognizing the club and its contributions to the community. Former Evanston Police Chief Demitrous Cook, former Mayor Stephen Hagerty and Suffredin received plaques for their service to the community. 

The hearty luncheon with cake for dessert, along with the restored personal contact, allowed the meeting to stretch past 2 p.m. 

Mary Gavin is the founder of the Evanston RoundTable. After 23 years as its publisher and manager, she helped transition the RoundTable to nonprofit status in 2021. She continues to write, edit, mentor...