Vandiver-Sterrett Senior Center opens for community

Senior Center Director Edna Weldon, center, cuts the ribbon to the Vandiver-Sterrett Senior Center Jan. 25. (Reporter photo/Christine Boatwright)

By CHRISTINE BOATWRIGHT / Staff Writer

VANDIVER – The Vandiver-Sterrett Senior Center opened Jan. 25 to a crowd of more than 100 attendees.

Seniors and community members brought slow cookers of soups and plates of cornbread to celebrate.

The senior center is located by the Vandiver Park and the Vandiver Volunteer Fire Department off Shelby County 43.

As many as 100 seniors met regularly at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church twice a month before the center opened. Edna Weldon, director of the Vandiver-Sterrett senior events, said she hopes to have exercise classes and craft classes at the new center in the future.

The senior center was funded by locals, who raised more than $15,000, the county, a grant from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs and a Community Health Foundation grant. State Reps. Jim McClendon, R-Springville, and Dickie Drake, R-Leeds, and state Sen. Slade Blackwell, R-Birmingham, provided support for the project and attended the grand opening celebration. Former Rep. Greg Canfield also contributed state funds before leaving office, according to County Manager Alex Dudchock.

“Shelby County has blessed us so much. We couldn’t be blessed more,” Weldon said.

Sterrett resident Shirley Howard said the area was in “desperate need” for a meeting space in the community.

McClendon called Jan. 25 a “pretty exciting day.”

“I want to commend the community effort and county effort to put this beautiful place together,” he said.

The almost $400,000 project was constructed by Vincent-based Douglas Built, LLC.

“Here we have an example of an initiative that brings people together,” Dudchock said.

For more information about the Vandiver-Sterrett Senior Center, call the center at 672-8411 or Weldon at 672-8040.