New director takes over at Bath Senior Center

Hot Springs, Va. –

The Bath County Senior Center has a new director. Joyce Ryder started work on November 5th and she’s been going full speed ahead ever since. The senior center has about 33 members with 19 active members who attend at least one day a week, every week.

“These folks, there’s no way you can describe any of them as being elderly,” says Ryder. “I don’t care what their age is, age is just a number. Because they are just so full of life and so full of joy, that it’s just a blessing every day.”

Before taking this new job, Ryder was retired and had been working part time for about a year at the Bath County Extension Office. The Senior Center’s previous director, Jeanne Apgar, retired and moved out of the area.

“There’s not really anyone in the capacity that I have that I can go to and say Oh how do you do this,’ says Ryder. “So I’ve got to rely a lot on history and on the files that are there and what do we need to do. So I think the biggest challenge probably is the business portion of it. The reporting and the what do we do in case of this, that type thing. And I’m still in a learning curve with those things.”

Ryder says there are lots of ongoing activities at the senior center. They are always on the go, with exercises at the center along with weekly trips to the wellness center for fitness activities and monthly shopping trips to Covington.

“I think one of the things that we probably battle with is, all of us who are 60 or above, we don’t see ourselves in that capacity, because mentally we sort of categorize those with those old people,” says Ryder. “And they are anything but that. I can tell you that I’ve got probably grandchildren that can’t move as fast as these folks do. So they love to do anything that is mind challenging. They love to work puzzles, they love trivia, they love music. There is just so many things. They love crafting. I haven’t been there in the summertime, but I know that they like to go outside. They love picnics. They love those kinds of things. So I look forward to being able to do more and more of those kinds of things.”

The Bath Senior Center is open Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9 to 1. A hot lunch is served each day.

“If there’s anybody out there, if you’re 60, you’ve got to be 60, that’s a requirement,” says Ryder. “But if you’d like to come one day a week or three days a week and have lots of fun then just give us a call at the center. And we would love to hear from you. If you have programs that you would like to present to us or take part in, we would love for you to just get in touch with us.”

For more information call the Bath Senior Center at 540-839-5604.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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