By Shari Harris, Publisher
The Licking Bridge Builders celebrated their 50th anniversary on Saturday with a day of music, food and friends at the Licking Senior Center.
Established in 1973, the Licking Bridge Builders have served the seniors of Licking for five decades. A pamphlet from 1992 shares that, to begin with, their “main interest was nutritious, sociable meals.” In addition to those meals, they have offered additional programs over the years, and their public transportation service, Texas County Transportation, has persevered and continues to offer rides to medical appointments and more.
“Why the name Bridge Builders?” you may ask. Will Allen Dromgoole wrote a poem called “The Bridge Builder,” in which he speaks of an old man stopping to build a bridge over a stream which he had already crossed. He was asked why he had wasted his strength building it when he would never be passing that way again. He replied that the bridge was for a youth who would follow, to whom the stream may be a pitfall. Many of the youth of 1973 now benefit from that “bridge” which was built by the founders of the Licking Bridge Builders.
In 2017, with the support of their members and the community, the Bridge Builders broke away from government assistance when the State would have imported meals instead of allowing them to be prepared on site. Building their own structure, the current Senior Center on Green Street, the Bridge Builders remain committed to meeting the nutritional needs of seniors in the community.
Saturday’s anniversary celebration packed the center as people enjoyed pulled pork or chicken sandwiches with coleslaw, topped off with anniversary cake, while enjoying a variety of music. Jerry Satterfield kicked off the music, followed by the Three C’s (Cline, Cline and Cash). Herman Hall returned to the Center and had people dancing, both on their feet and in their seats, as they enjoyed The ‘50s at 70 show.
Here’s to another 50 years with the Licking Bridge Builders, building bridges with food, friendship and fun.