History of the Senior Center
The Senior Center began in 1972 with nine original members, one being Rosa Clark (who lived to be 110 years old). Florence and Henry Shepherd, Ed Iverson, Jenny Veltkamp, Tina Feddes, and Elizabeth Veltkamp and others were among the first few who began by delivering hot meals to area seniors. The Center was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization at that time.
The first meetings were held at the Federated Church (now Shift Church on Broadway). In 1973 the town made 800 square feet of space available in the City Complex building on Broadway, which they used for several years. In the late 1970’s, membership reached 120 members and activities became overcrowded, clearly showing the need for more space. Even with the limited parking at this location, attendance was very good for the noon meals and various activities. The City offered a lease of ground in exchange for regaining use of their municipal space, and the seniors were given permission to build on the leased ground that is the present location of the Senior Center on the corner of Broadway and East Cameron.
In March of 1987 committees were formed to raise funds for a new building. This reached $39,000 and a 40-year lease was signed with the city. An additional $30,000 was contributed through labor and materials. This allowed the foundation, shell, and outer portions of the new center to be completed by late July 1987. Another $40,000 was needed to complete the facility, which came from City, County, businesses, organizations, families and individuals helped to finish the job. Selling food at sports concessions also brought in some revenue. Later a grant was received from Burlington Northern Foundation for paving the parking lot - and at about the same time the City paved the street in front of the building. Money was also raised through fundraising events such as pancake suppers, rummage and baked goods sales, spaghetti feeds and catering. At about the same time, the Gallatin County Nutrition program became involved through the Area IV Aging Services for help with the meals program, i.e. noon meals and meals-on-wheels. Funding for the Senior Center comes from various sources. Gallatin County, Title III, Gilhousen Foundation, United Way, donations, membership dues, and fundraisers put on by the seniors help meet operating costs.
In 2022 the City took the Senior Center under it's umbrella, and funding for services is now run through the city budget. Currently the Senior Center is open for noon meals Monday through Friday and for home delivered meals.
The Belgrade Senior Center is the result of on-going support of the Belgrade community throughout the years to make it the asset that it is today.