Senior Nutrition programs referred to as “Senior Dining” and “Meals on Wheels” will celebrate 40 years of service in the state of Minnesota.

In honor of the 40th anniversary, the local Senior Dining site in Northfield invites the public to a “Meal of Celebration” at 11 a.m. Wednesday (Oct. 23), at 1651 Jefferson Pkwy.

In July of 1973 the Governor’s Citizen’s Action Council on Aging awarded its first Older American’s Act grants for the purpose of establishing “nutrition programs for the elderly.”

Semcac was one agency to receive a grant. Senior Dining meal sites and Meals on Meals services were established throughout Region X. By the year's end Semcac was serving 1,000 meals per week in 16 communities. Today they serve more than 1,300 meals per day in 52 locations, and across Minnesota 3.6 million meals per year are served at 600 meal sites.

Northfield Senior Center hosts the Semcac program. Meals are served at 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday in Room 105 of the Senior Center. The Northfield program has been in operation for 35 years, and all seniors 60 years and older are welcome to dine at a suggested donation of $3.50. Meals for anyone under 60 years are $6.

Senior Nutrition programs are more than just a nutritious meal. Dining sites offer opportunities for socialization, volunteering, education and become links to other community services that promote independent living.

Meal reservations will be required. To join the group or find out more about the program, please call Gail Noren, coordinator of Northfield Senior Center Dining at (507) 664-3735.