The Phoenix 50+ Club celebrated its 20th anniversary with a member’s party.
Held on July 28, the event was scheduled as a garden party, but the threat of inclement weather forced it inside. 150 members signed up to enjoy the afternoon.
The party started at noon with a complimentary rum punch reception and a welcome by the South Downs Leisure general manager Duncan Anderson. This was followed by the grand raffle provided by prizes donated by local retailers Tesco Durrington and Angmering Wyevale Garden Centre.
A Caribbean atmosphere was created by Jim Bernadine’s Worthing Steel Band and complimented by Nadia, of ‘Shore Things, who provided a West Indian lunch. Following the meal various Phoenix groups put on displays of Latin and contemporary line dancing. The newly formed tap dancers were not shy to tread the boards. This was followed by the hoola hoop competition The proceedings were halted by a surprise visit from Worthing Town Crier Bob Smitherman, along with Deputy Mayor Paul Baker in full regalia. Jeanie was presented with a citation thanking her for all the achievements at the club.
Jeanie was showered with thanks, gifts and accolades by the members and Leisure Centre management.
Tim Loughton, on behalf of himself and Sir Peter Bottomley, presented Jeanie with cards and a House of Commons gift bag which Jeanie says she plans to show off on as many occasions as possible.
Jeanie said: “I applaud the initiative of one of our long term members, Margaret Brewster, for adding to our celebration by secretly arranging the appearance of the town dignitaries – I must say I was as surprised as the club members. All the contributors made the event successful by endorsing the ethos of the Phoenix Club which promotes sport, activities and friendship”.
The Thespians Review provided further entertainment.
The administration assistant for the Phoenix 50+ Club, Liz Symonds, Sian Warren, the Leisure Centre’s designated liaison, and facilities manager Mike Mcginley, worked with Nicci Parish and her catering staff to ensure the event’s success.
The sport, leisure and social group meet every Friday except in August at Worthing Leisure Centre. Jeanie Dickenson, the club coordinator, says she has enjoyed developing the club since 1997, when it commenced with less than 20 applicants. Today, there are around 450 members registered.
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