About 100 people filled a conference room at the East Las Vegas Community Center to celebrate the 20th annual 90-plus banquet, which honors those 90 years and older.
Attendees were clothed in cowboy boots and hats as local band Mama’s Wranglers played in the background. The event’s theme was the Wild West, according to Lettie Peters, principal community program specialist at the community center and coordinator of the event.
“We just like to honor people who’ve reached age 90 and let them know we still care about them no matter what their age,” Peters said at the banquet, held May 16. “We’ve been doing it for years. They love it because for a lot of them this is the one trip a year that they get out of where they’re living …”
The event featured a three-course meal at which attendees could bring one guest and socialize, something 75-year-old Olga Gaar of Paradise takes to heart.
“It’s nice to see that there are other older senior citizens who are still active and able to get out and about,” Gaar said. “We’ve been going to the 90-plus banquet for at least three years. But I found out a long time ago because I had to take a senior citizen who’s now passed. She was 103.”
Gaar is married to 93-year-old Bernice Gaar, who said he was drafted to serve in World War II as a teenager. The couple traveled up and down the West Coast, settling in Las Vegas. Olga Gaar said they’ve found a strong sense of community here.
“In Vegas, they have more activities for senior citizens than they have anyplace else we’ve ever been,” Olga said. “It’s a sense of community here, and you don’t have to drive that far to be able to participate in anything. Whatever your interests are, there’s a group out there that you can go with.”