Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

November 8, 2012

New experiences

Mineral Wells Index

— By Vivian Conrad

I guess you could call me a new experiences junkie. I love going places I’ve never been and trying things I’ve never tried. That’s one of the reasons I resolved on my 50th birthday that every year I would do at least one new thing that I had never done before.

This year it was the Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque, N.M.  

Taking a motorcycle road trip was on my list of firsts three years ago. We didn’t go far, just about 25 miles up into the mountains outside of Manila. I rode my 110 Honda Wave that took me to school most every day for 12 years. Nothing big or fancy, but I loved my little bike. I felt bereaved when U.S. import laws prevented me from bringing it with me when we moved back to the States year-before-last.

American motorcycles are a lot bigger than the small Filipino bikes that weave around cars in gridlocked traffic. I chalked up another new experience when we got to see some local motorcycles up close and personal last Saturday at the Senior Center’s first annual Motorcycle Rally.

Steve from Smitty’s Cycles planned the 99-mile ride and donated prizes for the poker run. We are so grateful for his help, and for the twenty riders who took part in our fundraiser. The Boozefighters bike club chipped in a cash donation, and the rider who won the split-the-pot raffle turned around and gave the money back to us. The local Ducks Unlimited chapter and our center board of directors Vice President David Buschow contributed several door prizes, as did Apache Choppers in Millsap, El Paseo and Fuzzy’s restaurants and Mr. Jim’s Pizza. We appreciate every person who contributed to and participated in this fundraiser.

Many people turned out to support our event. Deborah and Floyd Richards of Chubby’s BBQ & Grill, Ida Nickerson from Shotgun’s BBQ Restaurant and my buddy, Chet Burge, from Weatherford, donated food for our outdoor meal, and the dessert cobblers came from Richard and Nancy Stuart of Chicken Express. My son, Jeremy, and Weatherford College students Trey Adkins and Derek Cogdill worked all morning, first moving our center chairs and tables outside and then bringing them back in again when everything was finished.

Center participants Pam Tatum, Bobbie Coleman and Sandy Vinson joined our staff in helping set up and serve lunch and then stayed to clean up afterwards. And of course our own Max Wheeler and his band were even more brilliant than usual as they performed under glaring sunshine for our entertainment. Many, many thanks to everyone who attended and helped with our rally. This will rank as one of my all-time favorite “firsts.”

Coming up this week is our monthly dance at 6:30 p.m. Friday and a car wash and bake sale from 8 a.m. to noon this Saturday, Nov. 10. The owner of The Wash House car wash, in front of  Walmart on FM Road 1821 North, has offered to donate that morning’s proceeds to the senior center and to let us set up a bake sale on his lot. We are grateful for his generosity, and we hope that our community will turn out for that fundraising activity.  

Our senior center staff and participants give thanks for a community that supports us and keeps our programs running. We hope to continue offering new experiences along with the longtime favorites for many years to come.