On Wednesday afternoon several dozen vehicles carrying members of the Fauquier Senior Center filed through the Warrenton Community Center parking lot.
An array of Rappahannock-Rapidan Community Services Board staff and volunteers – and a miniature horse - were there to greet them, part of a drive-through parade meant to add a spark of joy to the lives of local seniors during the pandemic.
During the parade, which lasted about 30 minutes, staff and volunteers lined up in the parking lot greeted the vehicles’ occupants with smiles and signs and passed out meals and gifts.
RRCSB had received donations before the event to pay for the meals, which were prepared by Ellie’s Place in Warrenton. Water, bread, beach balls, toilet paper, personalized rocks and goodie bags with candy were among the items distributed. The bread was donated by Great Harvest Bread Company in Warrenton; the beach balls were donated by Greystone, a financial services firm based in Warrenton.
The senior center is a program of the RRCSB and supports 54 residents aged 60 and over with meals and opportunities for socializing and education. Administrator Rachel Pierce said the center has been closed since March 16. “It was wonderful to see the seniors' smiling faces today,” she said after the event.
“We know our members miss coming to the center. We provide a hot healthy lunch, education, packed calendar of events/activities and of course lots of socialization, but with the pandemic we are unable to be together. I wanted our members to feel that we are still here working for them every day. This is when I thought, ‘Let’s do something really different and have a drive-thru parade,’” Pierce said.