NYS Senator Cordell Cleare (30 SD – Harlem, East Harlem, West Harlem and the Upper Westside) hosted the First Annual National Senior Citizens Appreciation Day event to aid the return of senior citizens back to the main commercial artery of Harlem and the cultural life of Upper Manhattan.
Co-hosting the event with the Senator, was U.S. Representative Adriano Espaillat (13 CD – Upper Manhattan & the Bronx), NYS Assembly Members – Edward Gibbs (68 AD – East Harlem), Inez Dickens (70 AD - Harlem), Alfred Taylor (71 AD – Harlem – Washington Heights) as well as Manhattan Borough Mark Levine and Manhattan District Attorney Al Bragg.
Since the start of COVID, in early 2020, senior citizens have been significantly missing from West 125 Street and the cultural life of Harlem. This daylong event included full meals from some of the most popular restaurants in Harlem, including Melba’s, Sylvia’s, Manna’s, Amy Ruth’s, Sea to Soul Harlem, The Cove, Jacob’s, Seasoned Vegan, Jerk House, Charles Pan Fried Chicken, and Dinosaur BBQ. Popular local musical guests and the largest community bingo competition, along with a Senior Idol competition, where prizes were distributed to the winning seniors. Strong support has been received from NYS & NYC Department for the Aging and community senior citizen centers.
The First National Annual Senior Citizens Day in Harlem is the very epitome of neighborhood collaboration as the entire community unites to celebrate the trailblazers, pioneers and beloved elders who raised us, mentored us and sacrificed so much for us.
NYS Senator Cordell Cleare stated: “This event is in honor of pioneer senior citizens whose shoulders we stand on, who have paved the way for us, to bridge the gap between seniors, who has so much more to give and youth in the community.”
Congressman Adriano Espaillat stated: “The First Annual Senior Citizens Day in Harlem honors our incredible forebears who not only raised us, but, through sweat and tears made Harlem a home for us all. We are proud of our elders and today is all about giving back to those who built this community from the ground up.”
Barbara Askins, President, 125 Street Business Improvement District stated: “The senior citizens of our community have been the lifeblood of Harlem business survival and all of Harlem’s institutions need them. It is wise to praise our senior consumers.”
The sponsor of this event was MetroPlusHealth. Co-sponsored by Community Voices Heard.