Jamie Shouse, the new coordinator of the El Dorado Springs Senior Center, says she wants center guests to feel welcomed above all.

Shouse, who began her new role on Nov. 22, said she wants folks to drop by the center, 607 S. Forest, any time to discuss their needs, concerns, and any activities they’d like to see at the senior center.

Jamie Shouse

The center is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays, and lunch is served from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Adults 60 and older may dine for a contribution toward the cost of the meal. Caregivers or relatives who accompany older adults may have lunch for the full cost of the meal, $7.48. Curbside meals can be arranged by calling Shouse at 417-876-5574.

In January, new menu items will include white chicken chili, French dip sandwich with minestrone soup, lasagna Florentine rollups and Western omelet strata. For a full menu, visit https://goaging.org/services/local-centers/.

Since she began, Shouse has been seeking to learn what El Dorado Springs older adults would like to have in the center.

“I want to answer questions and talk about their thoughts and ideas about how to go forward,” Shouse said. “I want the center to be a warm, welcoming place where people can come and enjoy a meal, and someone can come here and feel welcomed, feel at home, and feel a sense of community.”

She plans to restart bingo, with prizes for the winners, as soon as supplies arrive. Shouse also plans to add arts and crafts before Christmas. By January, Shouse hopes to be able to show Care Connection Connect! Online fitness and educational courses on the large TV at the center so that older adults can benefit from those activities in a social environment.

The center has volunteer opportunities for front-desk receptionists and home-delivered meal route drivers.

Due to COVID, the center requests that community members refrain from attending the center unless accompanying an older adult. Older adults interested in home-delivered meals may call 417-876-5574. They also may call to find out more about the center activities and volunteer opportunities and make suggestions.

The new coordinator has a Bachelor of Arts in music and a Bachelor of Science in general studies from Missouri Southern State University, and she loves arts and crafts.

Shouse, who grew up south of Joplin, recently moved to El Dorado Springs with her husband, Lee, a native of the city, whom she met while the two were attending MSSU. They married in 2012 and lived in the Kansas City area before moving to El Dorado Springs in October to live with Lee’s grandmother to help her.

Shouse’s work experience includes case management in community health and retail.

When she’s not at work, Shouse enjoys painting, both with oil and digitally; working on crafts; and spending time with her dog, Holly, and her two cats, Ausha and Autumn.

The El Dorado Springs Senior Center is one of 21 locations served by Care Connection for Aging Services, a nonprofit area agency on aging, in 13 West Central Missouri counties, including Cedar. The mission is to provide opportunities to create positive aging experiences. For more information, call 1-800-748-7826.