Bringing together different generations was the goal; a spirited night of laughter and new friends was the outcome. At the end of May, the Edmonds Senior Center hosted a kick-off trivia night — the first of what it hopes to be many intergenerational events.
By 7 p.m., the Red Twig Bakery and Cafe was filling up. Not quite sure what to expect, participants talked in line with the friends they arrived with, waiting for their free pastry and coffee drink, compliments of Red Twig owners Gregg and LaFon Jantz. In the end, the cozy coffee spot was abuzz with members from the senior center and students from Edmonds-Woodway High School.
Everyone appeared a bit nervous as they were introduced to their assigned teammates for the first time – representing a 50– to 60-year age gap. Any anxiety quickly dissipated as the teams came up with their team names – among them, Too Cool for School and Sailing on the H2O. Running the show like pros were Edmonds-Woodway High School juniors Rosemary Chang and Margaux Twedt, and Edmonds Senior Center volunteer Elaine Sonntag Johnson.
The first trivia question, “What three countries share a border with North Korea?” broke the ice and set everything in motion. Members of the six teams all leaned in to confer with their teams without divulging the answers to their nearby competitors. The carefully selected questions ranged from “In what year did Kanye and Kim get married?” — generating blank stares from the older participants — to “Who composed Rhapsody in Blue in 1924?”
Eleven-year-old Dannika Burke proudly knew that the beaver was the largest rodent in the U.S.
Reading the answers triggered a symphony of cheers, laughter, groans and high-fives. A young couple who had just come in for coffee asked, “Who is this group? We want to be part of the next one!”
After the prizes had been awarded, people lingered to talk with their new-found friends. Senior Center Board member and retired school teacher Alma Ohtomo could be heard excitedly talking with a student whom she learned was also born and raised in Hawaii.
The Edmonds Senior Center is working in partnership with the City of Edmonds to replace the existing beachfront facility with the Edmonds Waterfront Center, a modern facility for people of all ages. The Senior Center has raised $10 million toward a $16 million campaign goal. Intergenerational programs will be expanded in the new center.
To learn more about how you can get involved, contact Campaign Director Daniel Johnson at 206-293-4823.