Council on Aging

Welcome! Bienvenidos!

Prior to 2013, seniors in Holyoke gathered in the basement of the War Memorial Building, the old site of the Council on Aging. Our new Senior Center is bright, colorful, welcoming and has quickly filled with seniors, their families, and caregivers, taking part in a multitude of activities. Visit our center if you need a lunch spot or an exercise haven, to take advantage of our social services or transportation, or simply as an excuse to get out of the house for the day. We pride ourselves on being open and friendly, diverse and accommodating.

Print out a Registration Form in English or Spanish, or pick one up at the Front Desk. If it’s your first time visiting us, feel free to ask at the Front Desk if there is someone available to give a tour, or take a look around yourself.


Please Be Sure to Check In
The more folks that use their COA swipe cards to check in each day, the better data we receive to provide further relevant programming. It helps us to know how many folks are attending which programs, and in general how many patrons there are to the senior center on any given day. Please be sure to sign in to any activities you may be taking part in, or simply as a “Drop-In” if you’re just here to hang out.


Open Enrollment
Health insurance open enrollment runs from October 15 to December 7. For assistance in filling out applications, please call to schedule appointments with our social worker, Magdaly Martinez. Be sure to call in a timely manner as appointments fill up quickly.


'Tis the Season for Winter Weather Notifications
Updates on ABC40, Fox6, WWLP-22 and WHYN
We’ve had questions about how one might know that we are closed due to weather conditions. While the Senior Center is definitely closed each time Holyoke’s City Hall closes, it is not necessarily closed every time the schools close. It’s a good indication, but to be certain you should watch local TV and radio stations for updates. When we close, all meals, rides and programs are cancelled for the day, but we will do our best to reschedule.

Eileen Maginnis - Assistant Director

(413) 322-5625

Carla Neiswanger - Volunteer Coordinator

(413) 322 5625

Magdaly Martinez - Senior Social Worker

(413) 322 5625

Annmarie Allen - Social Worker

(413) 322 5625

Kathleen Blanchard - Health Promotion Coordinator

(413) 322 5625

Margaret Lemire - LPN

(413) 322 5625

Ann Marie Jackowski - Cook

(413) 322 5625

Ann Kosior - Kitchen Helper
Cindy Demers - Kitchen Helper
Rob Deza - Dispatcher

(413) 322 5625

Maureen Charest - Driver
Jennifer Rivera - Driver

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The Council on Aging designs, promotes and implements services for Holyoke’s elderly, persons sixty years and older.  The Council members are appointed for one-year terms by the Mayor. All terms expire August 28, 2018.




Susan Aiken

Cynthia Archer

Kyong Cruz

Brian Fitzgerald

Priscilla Garcia

Cappie Glica

Barbara Grady

Dian McCollum

Nicole Perrier

Julita Rojas

Margaret Sikop

The Council on Aging offers daily programs and activities that are designed to meet the social, nutritional, and health needs of Holyoke’s senior citizens.


Lunch is offered daily, Monday through Friday, and is served between 11:30am and 12pm. You must schedule lunch at least a day in advance. The price for lunch eaten here is $2.25, taken to-go is $3.00.

El almuerzo está disponible de Lunes a Viernes, y será servido entre las 11:30 – 12:00. Para reservar almuerzo llame por lo menos un día con anticipación. El precio para un almuerzo aqui es $2.25, y para llevar es $3.00.

October Lunch Menu/Menu de Almuerzo de Octubre


Currently we have two full-time vehicles on the road between 8:15am and 3:30pm Monday through Friday. Take a look at the Transportation Guidelines to see if you qualify before calling to schedule an appointment.


Social Services
Contact us to schedule an appointment with one of our social workers for help with anything ranging from fuel assistance and SNAP applications to housing and hoarding.
We take part in the Food Bank of Western Mass’ Brown Bag program in which those who qualify receive a free bag of food once a month. Our distribution day is the 4th Tuesday of every month from 2:15 – 3:15pm. Stop by for an application or download an application here.


Health screenings
isit the Senior Center on Wednesdays from 11:30 – 1pm to have your blood pressure taken.
Every Wednesday we offer chair massage at $15 for 15 minutes with Tony Shannon. Be sure to schedule in advance.
Every third Friday of the month we have appointments available to see a foot care nurse.


Medical Equipment Lending
We have a rotating supply of items that are available for borrow and that we accept as donation. It is best to call ahead to check availability. Items we accept/lend: canes, wheelchairs, transport chairs, walkers, bed rails, shower chairs, transfer benches, unopened packages of adult diapers and others. We do NOT accept/lend commodes (unless they are brand new, never used), crutches, hospital beds, urinals, etc.


Tax assistance
During the months of February, March and early April, we offer appointments to have your taxes done with AARP volunteers. Be sure to call as soon as possible as appointments go quickly.

Upcoming Events & Announcements

Daily Grind Left Behind
Retirement Nears for Senior Center Nurses
The time has come to bid farewell to two of our most beloved staff members. On October 19, 2018, Kathy Blanchard and Peggy Lemire will officially retire. So many of our programs would not be what they are without our wonderful nurses. Chair volleyball, morning exercise classes, drumming sessions, Soul Collage, paraffin hand waxes, health fairs and blood pressure clinics, both on site and off, have benefited innumerable members of our senior community. Peggy is retiring after 37 years at the Council on Aging, and is looking forward to more time with family and to travel. Kathy, who has put in 12 years of her own at the Senior Center, will be found cuddling with her dogs, including a new addition, a shih-tzu named Rebel. The staff at the senior center wants to extend their sincerest gratitude for so many years of service between them, working to ensure the health of our older population. It has been a pleasure to work at your sides for so many years.

Farewell Drumming
Thursday, October 11, 2018
in the Wellness Room at 12:30pm
Join Nurses Kathy & Peggy for their last drumming session at the Holyoke Senior Center! For years, they have offered the program, sometimes multiple times a year. Drumming helps us connect to ourselves and others and can ground us in the present moment. It is also just downright fun. We couldn’t think of a better send off! Be sure to sign up at the front desk.

Cuidando Con Respeto
Todos los miércoles, 4pm – 6pm
Desde el 17 de Octubre hasta el 7 de Noviembre
Cuidando Con Respeto es un entrenamiento de cuatro semanas gratis para los familiares y amistades que cuidan a personas que viven con Alzheimer y otras demencias. Cuidar a personas que viven con Alzheimer y otras demencias relacionadas, es un trabajo especializado. Para poder tener éxito en este trabajo, los cuidadores necesitan habilidades especiales, conocimiento y una actitud positiva que les ayude a cuidar tanto a su familiar como a sí mismos. Para obtener más información o para registrarse por favor llame antes del 10 de octubre al (413)538-9020 ext. 461 con Minerva Smiley.


QiGong Workshop (Second Session)
Thursday, October 11 from 9:30 – 11am
Whether you are new to QiGong or an experienced exerciser, you will enjoy this workshop on the ins and outs of QiGong movements. Instructor Carol Clark spends the first hour discussing and demonstrating topics such as meditation, motion, and the energetics of movement. The workshop ends with a relaxing QiGong session.


Rainbow Supper Club
First Wednesday of every month from 5pm – 7pm
Dinner served at 5:30pm
All LGBT seniors age 60 years and older are invited, along with their younger partners, friends and allies for dinner at the Holyoke Senior Center. Suggested is a confidential, voluntary donation of $2.25 for those individuals age 60 years or older, with a $6.00 fee for guests under the age of 60 years. We hope to see you there! Reservations are required.To make a reservation, please call WestMass ElderCare’s Nutrition Department at 413-538-9020, or email

Other Notes

Next Brown Bag Distributions
Brown Bag is distributed on the 4th Tuesday of every month between 2:15 and 3:15pm.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018
Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Tuesday, December – TBA

Movies: Tuesdays, 12:15 p.m.

October 2 – Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)
October 9 – Frida (2002)

October 16 – Argo (2012)
October 23 – Girl Crazy (1943)
October 30 – Amistad (1997)
November 6 – American Hustle (2013)


Next Upcoming Holiday Closing

Columbus Day – Monday, October 8, 2018
Veteran’s Day – Monday, November 12, 2018
Thanksgiving – Thursday & Friday, November 22 & 23, 2018


Dispose of Unwanted Medications
We often get asked where folks can drop off extra, unused medications. For future reference, know that you can bring any prescription, non-prescription, vitamins, veterinary meds, etc. to the Medreturn Boxes at Police Departments in Agawam, Chicopee, East Longmeadow, Hampden, Longmeadow, Ludlow, Monson, Palmer, Southwick, West Springfield, Westfield and Wilbraham, or at the Hampden County House of Correction in Ludlow and Chicopee.
Winter Weather Notifications
Updates on ABC40, Fox6, WWLP-22 and WHYN
We’ve had questions about how one might know that we are closed due to weather conditions. While the Senior Center is definitely closed each time Holyoke’s City Hall closes, it is not necessarily closed every time the schools close. It’s a good indication, but to be certain you should watch local TV and radio stations for updates. When we close, all meals, rides and programs are cancelled for the day, but we will do our best to reschedule.

We offer everything from art classes to Zumba.  Ongoing activities are listed below, but check out our Activity List for descriptions.  View the full newsletter for special events, holiday closings, class cancellations, and announcements by clicking one of the following links:

October 2018 Newsletter

September 2018 Newsletter

August 2018 Newsletter



Some of our classes require Activity Tickets which can be purchased at the Front Desk as a book of 10 tickets for $27.50. Any activity that uses tickets is marked with a star (*) and your first class attended is free.


FUN & FIT: Monday and Friday classes are currently on hiatus. Wednesday classes will continue with a substitute. Sidra plans to return October 22.
SENIOR SING: Moves to Fridays at 12:30, starting September 7. New participants wanted, no experience necessary!



8:30 & 10:00  –  Healthy Joints Exercise
9:30 – Fun & Fit: Circuit *
11:45 – 3:00  –  Band Rehearsals
1:00  –  Chair Volleyball
1:30  –  Fun with Writing

Rep. Aaron Vega Office HoursSecond Monday of the month unless otherwise noted, 11:30am



8:30 & 9:45  –  Osteo Exercise
9:30  –  Painting
12:15  –  At the Movies
  –  Ballroom Dancing
12:30  –  Rummikub
–  Zumba *
  –  Instructional Mah Jongg
2:00  –  Chair Yoga *
3:00  –  Mat Yoga *

Ask the Nurse Second Tuesday of the month, unless otherwise noted, 12:15p

Memory CafeThird Tuesday of the month, 10:00am (on hiatus, please call if interested)
We are working in conjunction with other area Senior Centers to provide Memory Cafes often throughout the month. Other scheduled Memory Cafes are held at the South Hadley COA on the 2nd Tuesday of each month, and at the Chicopee COA on the 4th Tuesday of each month.

Whist Second Tuesday of the month, in place of Mah Jongg, 1:00pm

Brown Bag Fourth Tuesday of the month, 2:15pm



8:30 & 10:00  –  Healthy Joints Exercise
9:00  –  Needles & Hooks Club
10:00  –  Chair Massage – Call to make an appointment
11:30-1:00  –  Blood Pressure Clinic
12:00  –  Painting
12:30    Pitch
1:00  –  Golden Senior Club
4:00  –  Course in Miracles
5:30  –  Fun and Fit *

Rainbow Supper Club First Wednesday of the month, 5:00pm

Men’s Group First and Third Wednesday of the month, 9:30am

Crescent Button ClubSecond Wednesday of the month, 9:30am



8:30 & 9:45  –  Osteo Exercise
9:30  –  Painting
10:00  –  QiGong *
11:00  –  Tai Chi *
12:00  –  Model Train Group
12:30  –  Pitch
12:30  –  Learn to Knit *
12:30  –  Writing Your Life Story
1:00  –  Reunion Social
1:00  –  Line Dancing *

Foot Care Third and fourth Fridays of the month, call to make an appointment



9-11:30  –  Ceramics Club
9:00  –  Fun and Fit *
10:00  –  Chair Yoga *
12:30 – Senior Sing!
12:30  –  Scrabble Club
1:00  –  Bingo (no cards sold after 1:00pm)



Our calendar highlights events that don’t take place every week, or that might be special this month. Please be sure to check out our ongoing classes as well. 


Nuestro horario está utilizado para mostrar los eventos especiales que no pasan cada semana o cada mes. También, hay clases semanales cada día.




Our lunches change every month and are cooked right on site. Lunch is $2.25 per person and you must be age 60 or older to sign up. We also offer meals to-go, which are $3.00 and are available for pick up after 12pm. We require folks to sign up at least a day ahead of time, for here or to-go.



El almuerzo cambia cada mes y estan cocinado aquí. El almuerzo cuesta $ 2.25 por persona, y tienes que cumplir 60 años para inscribir. También, hay almuerzos para llevar que cuestan $ 3.00. Puedes recogerlos después de la 12pm. Nuestros visitantes necesitan inscribirse para el almuerzo con anticipación de un día.



Golden Senior Trip 2018 WebVersion



 Did you know that the trips offered by the Golden Senior Club are open for anyone? Give the contact for any trip, either Carol or Joan, a call to sign up or for more information.


The Greater Holyoke YMCA is pleased to collaborate with the Holyoke Senior Center to oversee and manage our Fitness Center. The Fitness Room serves Holyoke residents 50 and older with state of the art cardiovascular and strength equipment. The Y brings its expertise and experience in providing safe, well maintained fitness facilities; along with supporting individuals to reach their health and wellness goals. The Fitness Room will be open Monday – Friday from 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM, with caring, supportive and trained YMCA staff (ask for Len!).  Current YMCA members 50 and older will have access to the Senior Center Fitness Room at no additional fee.  See below for other membership options:


Council on Aging YMCA Gym



Fitness Room Hours

Monday: 8 – 11:30am
Tuesday: 8 – 11:30am; 12 – 3:30pm
Wednesday: 8 – 11:30am
Thursday: 8 – 11:30am; 12 – 3:30pm
Friday: 8 – 11:30am

Senior Center Fitness: This membership provides access to the Fitness Center for those individuals who are not current members of the Greater Holyoke YMCA. The monthly fee is:
     $20/month – ages 60 and older
     $30/month – ages 50 to 59
Membership gives access to the Greater Holyoke YMCA for soaker swim, senior swim and aqua fitness classes at an additional fee.

Senior Center Fitness Plus: This membership provides access to both the Fitness Center and the Greater Holyoke YMCA. The monthly fees are:
    $38/month – ages 65 and older
    $48/month – ages 50 to 64
Membership includes senior and soaker swims. Aqua fitness classes have an additional fee.

Current Holyoke YMCA Members: All current Greater Holyoke YMCA members 60 and older have access to the Fitness Center at the Holyoke Senior Center.

To see our Code of Conduct and Standards of Independence, please see pages 2 and 3 of our Registration Form.

No Smoking Policy
There is no smoking on any city property. We kindly remind you that smokers should walk to the sidewalk on the edge of the property.


Fundraising Policy
The Friends of the COA are the sole approved fundraisers at the Holyoke Senior Center. Any other senior COA-related or City-related fundraising groups must seek prior permission from the COA Board of Directors.


Political Activity Policy
Candidates running for elected office

  • may attend regular lunchtimes, 11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., to walk among tables and introduce themselves individually to seniors in attendance
  • no stump speeches allowed
  • no brochures or other political paraphernalia may be left on tables, counters, etc.
  • no campaign contributions may be solicited

Ballot questions

  • groups representing pro and con positions may staff a table, between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., in the Senior Center lobby two times in the eight weeks leading up to election day for the purposes of sharing information
  • no contributions may be solicited

 Petitions and candidate nomination papers

  • not allowed at the Senior Center

 Political signs

  • groups and individuals holding political signage are required to stand a minimum of 150 feet from the entrance to the Senior Center; in practical terms, this means no closer than the sidewalks surrounding the perimeter of the property
  • no political signs may be posted on the property at any time

Department Head

Navae Fenwick Rodriguez

Executive Director

Office Address

291 Pine Street
Holyoke, MA 01040 Map

Contact Info

Main Office

(413) 322 5625

(413) 534 2210 (fax)

Office Hours

Monday - Friday
8:00 am - 4:00 pm (Wednesday until 6:30 pm)

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Posted on December 26, 2012 by