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By Amelia Tarallo
Hometown Weekly Staff
Every year, millions of people face the ongoing problem of whether or not to stay up until midnight to celebrate the new year. This year, Medfield’s Council on Aging had a solution for some older folks: celebrating New Year before midnight. On December 31, the COA welcomed seniors for an ice cream party to ring in the new year.
“It’s 11 minutes until New Year,” observed COA Director Roberta Lynch as people arrived at the party. Guests grabbed chairs, sitting beside their friends to discuss what had happened during the holidays and how their families were. As guests chatted, Lynch was careful to keep an eye on her watch as the minutes ticked by. When there was only a minute left, she invited visitors to count down for the new year (or in this case, noon).
As the seniors welcomed in 2020, they were invited to come grab a bowl of ice cream. They had the choice between Friendly’s vanilla, chocolate, or butter pecan. They then could pile on as many toppings as they liked, including nuts, chocolate, pineapple, blueberries, melted marshmallow, hot fudge, whipped cream, cherries, and sprinkles. “Have to have a cherry on top,” said one delighted guest as she added a candy red maraschino cherry to the top of her ice cream. On their way back to their seats, seniors grabbed a chocolate from a box to add to their ice cream before continuing on their way.
Once back at heir seat, seniors resumed their chit-chat, this time making jokes about each other’s choices for ice cream. “See, when you get old, you get to eat ice cream for lunch!” said one senior with a smile on her face.
“You’ve got more hot fudge than ice cream,” joked one senior to another.
“Yeah, well yours is more soup than ice cream,” his friend replied, laughing at the joke.
As they finished their treats, guests volunteered to grab refreshments for their tablemates. “Waters all around, and it’s on me!” joked one of the volunteers while others grabbed tea and coffee.
“This is the perfect way to bring in the new year. Ice cream for lunch, my friends, and I don’t have to worry about staying up all night,” mused one guest to his friend. “I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
For these seniors, 2020 came about 12 hours early - and they thoroughly appreciated the head start.