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Senior Living: Sunshine Club meets every month at First United Methodist

Carol and Harold Ward of Thomson invited about 150 guests to share their memories on Thursday.

The Wards presented the program at the Sunshine Club, which meets the third Thursday of each month at First United Methodist Church of Thomson's Family Life Center.

Vickie Howard opened the 11 a.m. program with the familiar "This is the Day the Lord Has Made."

The club has been meeting since 1976, attracting up to 150 guests from 25 local churches.

The group made a special point to thank the kitchen crew. Charlotte Derry manages the staff, which also serves the Thursday meals at the From His Hands community soup kitchen.

Janie Reese helps in the kitchen, and says she has been doing so for at least 44 years. A dozen other workers also help prepare the meals. The Wards told how they finally reached their 50th state, Hawaii, on the year of their 50th anniversary. "That was my bucket list, was to visit all 50 states," Harold Ward said.

Carol Ward said they had gathered several hours' worth of slides to show to the lunch crowd and condensed them to about two hours. After a chuckle, she said she had sorted the list even further. "When I travel, I don't like itineraries," said Harold Ward. He said some of the most pleasant memories are of attractions they simply discovered. "If I had planned it, it probably never would have worked," he said of their travels.

They mentioned several attractions they enjoyed. A 19-story cross along Interstate 40 in Groom, Texas, is said to be the biggest cross in the Northern Hemisphere. The Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii has an active lava flow field. Cody, Wyo., in May surprised them with "more snow than I've ever seen in my life," Harold said.

Carol quoted the Bible - "the Earth belongs to the Lord" - in her description of the couple's travels. "We were exploring the world that God had given us and all the beauty all around us," she said. For details about the Sunshine Club, visit http: // 712775.

Web posted on Thursday, March 24, 2011

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