Poppers, streamers, bubbles and balloons created a Mardi Gras atmosphere at the Phoenix over 50s club’s American Lunch Party.
Originally planned for the garden, the uncertain weather drove the revellers indoors and 120 Phoenix members squeezed together for the big party.
Undaunted, they joined in the fun with carnival costumes, masks and brightly decorated parasols in true Mardi Gras style.
When the Jeanie Dickenson, club coordinator, was asked to describe the entertainment, she enthused about the atmosphere created by Derek Little and his Featherstone 4 Jazz Band.
She said: “Our club groups integrated amazingly well. Christine Tallan opened the show with her Line Dancers and in the interval the Phoenix Singers took to the floor, led by Sue Fairhurst and sang a New Orleans medley with enthusiasm”.
The Phoenix Thespians were applauded for their hilarious abbreviated version of ‘Gone with the Wind’.
Pauline Wormald, the Thespians leader, produced a whacky version of Scarlet O’Hara and was aided and abetted by Colin Mitchell’s Rhett and John Maplesden’s Ashley.
The band let their hair down and joined in the dancing when the decorated parasols were paraded on the stage, which was followed by the fancy dress contestants. The winners were voted for, and Sue Lanceley and Tina Popkin took the prizes.
Peter Betts, the club’s departing sports manager, was presented with gifts and a giant card from members: Jeanie thanked him for his support and interest in the Phoenix Club’s development from its inception 19 years previously, and the members applauded.
An American lunch was the original focus for the party, with each group of each members contributing to a feast for their table, which was complimented by the themed desserts created by catering manager Nicci Parish and her team. The Jazz Band bought the Carnival antics to a close with a sing-along of ‘Dixieland’.
Jeanie reminded everyone that during the break she can be contacted on 01903 694657 for enrolments to the Painting and Drawing classes which will commence in September. She reminded members there will be a complimentary invite to a Wine and Cheese Pre-Art Course introduction, with an opportunity to meet the tutor Christine Forbes and view some of her work.
The members left the Leisure Centre happy and anticipating a return to the Phoenix Club on September 2, after the August break.
The next big event will be a Caribbean BBQ & dancing, scheduled for September 17.
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