First annual senior prom at Shore Hill a success

July 15, 2015 Jaime DeJesus
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Forever young!

On Tuesday, June 30 hundreds of seniors 60 years old and up from Shore Hill and Sunset Park Neighborhood Centers relived their golden years as they danced the day away during the centers’ first annual Senior Prom. The dance, held at Shore Hill, featured a variety of old-school tunes from the 1950s and 1960s

The room was decorated in black and silver décor while attendees got a chance to relive their younger years. Attendees dressed their best and were able to recreate their senior prom photo with a homemade frame that read “Shore Hill Senior Prom 2015.” A buffet was served along with a music-themed cake.

Director for NYU Lutheran Family Health Centers Services for Older Adults, which runs the senior centers, Amy Loewenberg called their first prom a big success. “We were so pleased to offer this wonderful event for our seniors,” she said, “and it was great to combine both our Sunset Park and Shore Hill Neighborhood Center participants.”

The event even replicated a prom tradition, with attendees voting for the prom king and queen: Bensonhurst residents Alfonso and Sylvia Valentin, who have been married for 36 years and are members of the Sunset Park Neighborhood Center. Councilmember Vincent Gentile attended the festivities and congratulated them on their award.

“This event was spectacular,” said Alfonso. “The highlight for us was getting crowned; it took us by surprise but it was a pleasant surprise and we were both happy to take part and have fun.”

Several prizes were also awarded, such as a raffle for free tickets to join State Senator Marty Golden on his annual senior boat ride. In addition, 80-year-old Kathleen Ryan and 78-year-old Valentina Papouk were given certificates for their volunteer services by Comptroller Scott Stringer.

“I enjoyed myself immensely,” said Ryan. “I’ve been to other proms and this was the best one. I didn’t realize that I was getting awarded, too, but I am very honored.”

Natalie Barrington, director of Shore Hill Neighborhood Center, is already discussing next year’s event. “Next year will be bigger and better,” she promised.

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