Harlem’s elderly residents received the royal treatment this week in celebration of Harlem Week.
Gathering at the Adam Clayton Powell State Office Building, over 500 New Yorkers attended Harlem Week’s New York City Senior Citizens Day.
The attendees, mostly people over the age of 40, were bombarded with strategies to prevent illness and health complications as their blossoming lives continue to unfold.
Local businesses like Applebee’s provided healthy eating information and wholesome, nutritious samples. Outside in the plaza was a farmers market providing the opportunity to shop for healthy, organic produce.
The NYPD instructed senior citizens on how to be safe in the city as an elderly member of society, and the New York Road Runners were on hand to inform the crowd how to remain active with low impact exercises easily executed from the comfort of one’s bed.
“The event gives information to attendees that they may not get otherwise,” explained Winston Majette, executive director of Harlem Week. “It’s also a good reason for our elderly to get out and enjoy an indoor and outdoor event.”
On top of information and free treats, Senior Citizens Day also provided free glucose and blood tests compliments of Harlem Hospital. According to a study by Baruch College, 23 percent of New Yorkers were over the age of 55 as of 2009. With what seems to be the imminent demise of Social Security and retirement plans in the United States, the elderly must take on more of the responsibility for staying healthy and capable.
Although the day was specifically for seniors, there was a lot offered that anyone could take away from the event.
“Each day, we all get a day older. Younger people can take this information back to their families and spur intergenerational conversations on health,” Majette said.