July 2024 Directors Letter

It’s hard to believe that we are halfway through 2024 and I’m excited to share with you what we’ve accomplished so far, and what we are looking forward to in the next 6 months.

We currently have more members than we have ever had, 465! And that includes household memberships with more than one person, so our total number of members is closer to 600. So far, we’ve had 10,383 instances of participation, and based on upcoming events, that puts us on track to beat last year at 20,841, which was the highest ever.
You can tell by our programming calendar that we are hosting more programs and classes than ever before as well. If there is something you want to try or learn about, there’s a good chance that we offer it or will soon. I hope you will invite your friends and family to check out the great programs and services that we offer, word of mouth is the best way for the community to learn about us!

Our finances are stable at this point in the year, with our current reports forecasting a deficit of ($6,000). We hope to turn that into a surplus through higher event revenue at the Annual Gala & Auction and Steak Dinner & Pie Auction. You can donate today using the envelope provided in this newsletter, or on our website, www.snovalleysenior.org!

As we look forward to the second half of the year, I know that many people are anxiously awaiting the apartment applications opening and the construction being completed. We anticipate the pre-applications being available soon, we will post the information at the center, as well as on our website, and social media as soon as possible.

The construction of the apartments is set to be complete at the end of September, and we will be hosting a ribbon-cutting and open house in the Fall. If you have questions about the project, please email kiraa@soundgenerations.org or call 425-333-4152 and ask for Kira Avery.

Our Gala & Auction will be on Saturday, October 19 at the Club at Snoqualmie Ridge, and the theme is Adventure Awaits! Our committee has already procured some great auction items, including a Holland America Cruise for 2, Private Tour & Tasting at OOLA Distillery, and Axe Throwing for 6! Tickets are $75 each, with a table of 10 being $700.

If you would like to help with procurement, volunteer the day of, be a table captain, or sponsor the event, please email kiraa@soundgenerations.org. This is our largest fundraiser of the year, and everyone has skills they can contribute!
Our next Board Meeting will be on Monday, July 1 at 5:30pm at the senior center and these meetings are open to the public. If you would like to see what those meetings are like, have questions or comments for the Board, or are interested in joining next year, I hope you will attend.

If you have questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to contact me at kiraa@soundgenerations.org or call 425-333-4152 ext. 1.

Kira Avery Executive Director

June 2024 Directors Letter

We had a wonderful Plant Sale on the first weekend of May, and raised almost $18,000 (after expenses) for Sno-Valley Senior Center. Our Plant Sale committee is a wonderful group; they meet and plan months in advance to put on a great event for our organization. Darcy Dinwiddie, Plant Sale chair, leads this successful event. Tami Agnew did a great job of ordering us a wide variety of plants, making us the largest, most comprehensive plant sale on the Eastside. Lois Goodman and Pat Beagle secured donated plants (including the wonderful tomatoes), coordinated delivery or pick-up and even took care of them at their own houses until the sale!

John Lambert and Dan Acker oversaw the logistics of set-up and take-down, and got all the canopies and tables we needed. Karen Morod coordinated over 50 volunteers throughout the entire week of the sale and Denise Crutchfield oversaw the First Picks Party, getting donated items and coupons to include in everyone’s gift bags. Thank you to everyone on our committee, as well as those who volunteered, and attended!

You’ll see in the newsletter that we are having a Membership Drive this month! What does this mean for you?
If you become a member or renew (you can do this early) your membership in June, you’ll get two months free! Consider buying a membership for a friend or for someone who can’t afford one. Membership is $60 for one person or $75 for the household, for the year. There is also a discount on Lifetime Membership, $450 for one person, $750 for a couple, and you never have to pay dues again!

Renew or purchase a membership in June and you’ll also get entered into a drawing for fun prizes!
Why become a member or renew your membership?

  • It’s a powerful way to show your support and commitment that the programs we offer should continue and you value what we do.
  • Enjoy a free lunch at our monthly birthday lunch in the month of your birthday.
  • Get voting privileges on the board slate and bylaws changes.
  • Our monthly newsletter is mailed to you.
  • 10% off hall rentals for events like birthdays, weddings, parties.
  • 50% off your purchase at Re-in-Carnation Thrift Store on the first Wednesday of the month!

You don’t have to be a member to participate in any of our classes or activities, though members have privileges! If you would like to become a member, but can’t afford the fee, we have scholarships available, just let me know.

The Sno-Valley Senior Center Board of Directors voted in May to fill two vacancies, in accordance with our by-laws. We are happy to an-nounce Ed Billington and Ed Hahn as our new members! Both will be on the Board Ballot sent out to the members in December.

Ed Billington has a long history of Public Service, including being a police officer in Redmond for 26 years, a member of the North Bend City Council and Planning Commission, and President of the Swiftwater Community Organization twice. Ed sees his participation on the SVSC board as continuing a legacy of giving back. He has lived in Carnation for almost 30 years and feels volunteering for the board is a way to give back to his neighbors and friends.

Ed Hahn is a retired librarian, he recently helped to organize the senior center library and created an online searchable catalog, which you can find at the link: https://snovalleyseniorcenterlibrary.org/. Ed has been participating in SVSC activities since his move to the area three years ago and wants to help support and enhance the quality of life for the seniors here, recognizing their invaluable contributions to the community.

Our Board of Directors meets every other month on the first Monday at 5:30pm on Zoom and at the senior center. Tthe meetings are open to the public. The next meeting will be on Monday, July 1!

I’m excited to announce the date and location of our Annual Dinner & Auction! The theme is “Adventure Awaits” and the event is Saturday, October 19 at The Club at Snoqualmie. We’re working on sponsorships, item donations, and volunteers! If any of those interest you, you can email me at kiraa@soundgenerations.org!

The Sno-Valley Affordable Senior Apartment Project is set to be complete at the end of September! Pre-applications will be available soon, and once we have them we will put notices up at the center, on our website, and social media. If you have questions about the project, apartments, or the application process, please reach out to me.

If you have comments, questions, or concerns, please feel free to reach out to me at kiraa@soundgenerations.org or 425-333-4152.

Kira Avery, Executive Director

May 2024 Director’s Letter

The Annual Plant Sale has a new location! The Affordable Senior Housing Project is now in its previous location. The sale will be held behind the senior center and in the parking spaces behind Carnation City Hall. We are looking forward to seeing everyone at the First Picks Party (May 2nd) and the Plant Sale on May 3rd and 4th. We still have baskets available for pre-sales, both sun & shade. All the information can be found at https://snovalleysenior.org/spring-into-gardening/.

Connectedness plays a vital role in supporting independence and aging in place by combatting isolation, loneliness, and many other issues. Meaningful relationships and social connections have a profound impact on our health and well-being. The month of May is Older Americans Month and the theme this year is Powered by Connection!

One of the programs at the Sno-Valley Senior Center that best captures “Powered by Connection” is our lunch program! Our funding contract, which helps pay for the food, kitchen repairs, utilities, etc. was cut significantly this year, and we do not want to turn anyone away. That is why I am inviting you to GiveBIG between April 23rd and May 8th!

Help us celebrate the power of connection and support the Snoqualmie Valley community by giving big starting on April 23rd and culminating in 48 hours of giving on May 7th and 8th! Our goal is to raise $20,000 to support our meal program. We want to send a special thank you to donors, Michael and Gina (Cambio) Fisette Charitable Trust and Kimberly Smith with Weichert Realtors Pillar Northwest; they will match donations, dollar-for-dollar, up to $8,500!

You can give at the link www.wagives.org/organization/snovalleyseniorcenter, mail a donation in the envelope provided in this newsletter, or make a donation at the Front Desk, just note “GiveBig” so that it will be matched!

In celebration of Older Americans Month and Physical Fitness & Sports Month, ALL fitness classes will be FREE the week of May 20-24! Why not invite a friend or try something new? The full schedule is on the programming calendar in the newsletter.

As construction of the Affordable Senior Housing Project continues, I will include updates each month in the Director’s Letter. We are expecting the application process will open in late May/ early June, with the apartments opening in early fall. As a reminder, we have hired a Property Management company for this project; they are responsible for the application/ screening process. The senior center has no say on who is accepted, and we are not keeping a notification list. The best way to stay up to date regarding the application process is this monthly newsletter, our website, and our Facebook page.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please reach out to me at kiraa@soundgenerations.org or 425-333-4152.

Kira Avery, Executive Director

April 2024 Director’s Letter

I want to say, thank you to everyone who reached out, signed the card, and sent kind words after my mother-in-law passed away on March 16, after a long battle with cancer. She was a remarkable woman, married to her husband for over 40 years, raising two wonderful sons, and never failing to make us laugh. We are all going to miss her terribly.

April is Volunteer Appreciation Month, celebrating the impact that volunteers have on our lives and encouraging active volunteerism in generations to come. The work that Sno-Valley Senior Center does, and the impact we have on the community, would not be possible without our volunteers!

With only 9 staff (including two Hyde Shuttle Drivers and one Chef) at Sno-Valley, the 185 volunteers that help in all areas of the center are the reason why we are successful in our mission to cultivate a welcoming, inclusive gathering place that supports, inspires, and uplifts our Snoqualmie Valley community to lead healthy, enriched lives through participation in diverse programs.

In 2023 alone, 185 volunteers contributed 13,353 hours of their time to making the Sno-Valley Senior Center the best it can be. To celebrate our volunteers, we are hosting a Volunteer Appreciation Event on Wednesday, April 24 from 4:00-6:00pm. Drinks, Baked Potato Bar, and Dessert will be provided. To RSVP, you can add your name to the list at the Front Desk or send an email to kiraa@soundgenerations.org.

Connectedness plays a vital role in supporting independence and aging in place by combatting isolation, loneliness, and other issues. Meaningful relationships and social connections have a profound impact on our health and well-being. That is why the theme of Older Americans Month in May is Powered by Connection!

One of the programs at the Sno-Valley Senior Center that best captures “Powered by Connection” is our lunch program, Community Dining! Our funding contract was cut significantly this year, and we don’t want to turn anyone away. That is why we are focusing on our meal program GiveBIG this year.

Help us celebrate the power of connection and support the Snoqualmie Valley community by giving big(ger) starting on April 23 and culminating in 48 hours of giving on May 7-8! Our goal this year is to raise $20,000 and thanks to the support of matching donors like Michael and Gina (Cambio) Fisette Charitable Trust and Kimberly Smith with Weichert Realtors Pillar Northwest we are well on our way to our goal! Give at the link www.wagives.org/organization/snovalleyseniorcenter.

It has been so exciting to see the Affordable Senior Housing Project come together! The current timeline is that the applications will open in late Spring, with the apartments opening in late summer or early fall. As a reminder, we have hired a Property Management company for this project, which is responsible for the application/ screening process. The senior center has no say in who is accepted into the apartments and we are not keeping a notification list. The best way to stay up-to-date about when the applications are open is this monthly newsletter, our website, and our Facebook page.

I hope to see you at the Spring Dinner and Auction on Saturday, April 6! We did want to let you know that there has been a change to this event, and there will only be one seating, at 6:30pm, instead of 2 seatings. Tickets are just $20 for a delicious dinner of lemon herb chicken or prawns with pesto tortellini, and the chance to bid on wonderful desserts baked by our very own members! You can purchase tickets at the front desk or online at www.snovalleysenior.org.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please don’t hesitate to reach out at 425-333-4152 or email kiraa@soundgenerations.org.

Kira Avery, Executive Director

March 2024 Directors Letter

In February we said goodbye to Eve Chasengnou as the Sno-Valley Senior Center Community Dining Chef. We are looking forward to her continued participation in the Mahjong group, and thank her for bringing new ideas to the menu and center! We are excited to welcome Cyndie Dantzscher to the team as the new Chef!

A little bit from Cyndie: “I’ve always loved working with food and making people feel appreciated, I believe that eating should be more than just filling your belly! I always endeavor to make my food not only taste good, but also look appealing. The old adage “Eat with your eyes first” resonates with me.

I’ve been cooking since I was 10 years old and have loved it from the very beginning. I believe that you never max out on new techniques or new flavors so I will try and adapt new recipes to be the best they can be! I’ve been in Washington for 11 years now and came from Minnesota, where I lived for 23 years. I raised my three children there and worked for Wells Fargo as a Licensed Private Banker during the day and a chef on the weekends, teaching cooking classes and basics to students via private classes at a local retail kitchen store. I’m very excited to join Sound Generations as my new chapter in my book of life!”

In this newsletter you will find our 2023 Gratitude Report, which includes a review of the year and, where we ended financially; thank you to all of our sponsors, grant partners, and donors! Some of the most impactful difference makers at the Sno-Valley Senior Center continue to be our GEMs- those who Give Every Month. We have 47 households that donate every month, providing us with consistent funding that we can rely on to support, inspire, and uplift our community to lead healthy, enriched lives.

Why should you become a monthly donor? Our GEMs compound their impact with a consistent cash flow, which makes us a better, more efficient organization that can be more innovative and able to meet the needs of more people than ever.
We have 47 GEMs today, and our goal is to have 55 by the end of March. You can help us reach that goal! When asked why they give, one of our monthly donors said, “because I believe in the support and services the center provides to the senior community.”

What can your monthly gift accomplish?

  • $200 per month can provide 8 round-trip rides for seniors going to medical appointments, driven by a volunteer
  • $100 per month can provide 20 hot, made-in-house meals per month.
  • $75 per month covers the cost of 1 month of fitness classes
  • $50 per month covers the cost of hosting 2 free programs per month (Movie & Popcorn, Armchair Travel).
  • $30 per month provides homebound seniors with 5 meals of nutritious food delivered to their door, each month.
  • $20 per month covers the cost for a senior to attend 2 classes per month (Yoga, Drums Alive, Tai Chi).

Any amount makes a difference, and one-time gifts are also a wonderful way to support Sno-Valley Senior Center! When you start making a monthly pledge, we will send you a small gift, to show our gratitude for your support. In the meantime, enjoy all the accomplishments presented in our 2023 Gratitude Report. Our success is your success!

If you have comments, questions, or concerns, please feel free to reach out to me at kiraa@soundgenerations.org or 425-333-4152.

Kira Avery, Executive Director