DES MOINES — The Iowa Department on Aging is looking for residents of the state who are 100 or more years old. Spokesperson Angela Van Pelt says they plan to honor the centenarians in events around the state.
“We have six events planned and they are mostly coordinated this year by the area agencies on aging. Some of them will be in conjunction with other events that the agency is partaking in. For example, the one at Prairie Meadows on September 9th is also conjunction with a caregiver conference,” Van Pelt says. She says the department has been hold various events for years to honor those who have lived for a century or more in the state.
“They’re generally quite short — maybe an hour or so — so people can kind of get in and get out and back home or to the facility where they need to go,” Van Pelt says. “And generally we’ll read bios of the individuals that they have submitted to us. And they’ll get a letter signed by the governor and by Linda Miller, who is the director of our Department on Aging.”
Van Pelt says they had 680 centenarians registered in 2018 and have 756 centenarians registered for events so far this year. But they are not sure how many might be out there who haven’t registered. “We generally try to do a campaign through facilities and our area agencies on aging early in the spring to kind of contact people that they know of since they work with them directly. Van
Pelt says if you know someone who is centenarian who may’ve not signed up for an event, you should contact the Department on Aging to let them know. She says it is important to recognize these Iowans. “They’re just nice little events that just kind of honor what centenarians have brought to our life,” she says. “It’s interesting to hear some of their stories. We ask questions such as ‘what do you attribute your long life to?’. It’s interesting to get their feedback on that.”
You can contact the Iowa Department on Aging at (800)532-3213 to register someone to be on the centenarian registration list.
These are the Centenarian Recognition events planned for this year.
September 9, 2019 4:00 p.m. Prairie Meadows Event & Convention Center, Altoona.
September 26, 2019 12:00 p.m. Calvary United Methodist Church, Arnolds Park
October 4, 2019 12:00 p.m. Wilder Building Nazareth Lutheran Church, Cedar Falls
November 2, 2019 11:30 a.m. Bridge View Center, Ottumwa
November 6, 2019 11:30 a.m. Historic Wallace Center Gathering Barn, Orient
November 13, 2019 12:00 p.m. Northeast Iowa Community College, Calmar