Friendship Centers of Emmet County welcomes Denneen Smith

IMG 2804Dear Friends,

I am honored, humbled and excited
to serve as the new Executive Director for Friendship Centers of Emmet County (FCEC). My name is Denneen Smith and I have worked in our community for over 21 years providing services to youth, families, individuals and seniors. Much of my career has been dedicated to partnering with community organizations, government entities and private businesses for the greater good of individuals within Emmet County. I have a Master’s degree in Human Services and a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. I reside in Alanson with my husband of 24 years, Frank, and our two sets of girl/boy twins; Makenna, Connor, Delaney and Ryder. We live on our family’s centennial farm where we have cattle, chickens, dogs and a gold fish!

Thanks to individuals, families and the community, Friendship Centers of Emmet County has demonstrated continuous growth since its humble beginnings as a drop in center in the 1960’s and I am excited about the opportunities that lay ahead! I look forward to working with those who attend the Centers (whom I will refer to as “Friends”), the FCEC staff and the Board of Directors to enhance programs that are effective and provide foresight to future endeavors. I am thankful to Sue Engel, former Executive Director, for eighteen years of dedication and commitment to FCEC and am thrilled that she will continue on staff as a part-time nurse. 

In the days ahead, I will be visiting each center and would be grateful to hear from “Friends” who are willing to share stories and experiences related to Friendship Centers of Emmet County. This information is important to me as I learn and grow in this position and begin to chart a course for the future. I will be connecting with my colleagues in the community to remind them of the FCEC mission: “…to ensure that all senior citizens have the opportunities, information, and services necessary to live healthy, safe, and active lives in dignity,” and to work toward further collaboration for the benefit of seniors.

I am excited to serve in this capacity and begin this journey together! With your assistance, we will continue on the road of stability and development, leaving a lasting legacy to Emmet County. 

Kind regards,
Denneen Smith, Executive Director
Friendship Centers of Emmet County 


Do you still have Project Fresh vouchers? They must be redeemed by Tuesday, October 31. Call the Transportation Department at (231) 348-3425 for a ride to a local farmers market.

Come and enjoy the fun at the Petoskey Friendship Center on Mondays and Wednesdays at 10:00 a.m. All levels of play are welcome and instructions is available for beginners. Shuffleboard is a great way to stay active and get some fresh air, while enjoying the view of the beautiful Little Traverse Bay.

Medicare Open Enrollment
Open Enrollment is October 15 through December 7. This is your chance to review and make changes to your Medicare plans. FCEC is working with Michigan Medicare/Medicaid Assistance Program counselors to provide seniors with help to make the best decisions for them about their Medicare benefits. Call (231) 347-3211 or toll-free (888) 347-0369 to schedule an appointment with a MMAP counselor.

Flu Shot Clinics
Get a flu shot. The life you save may not be just your own. Flu shot clinics have been scheduled for Monday, October 16 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Pellston Friendship Center and Tuesday, October 24 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Petoskey Friendship Center. Appointments must be made through the Health Department by calling (231) 432-4121. Have your insurance information available when you make your appointment. The clinics are available to everyone age 18 and older.

Square Dance
Grab your partner and do-si-do. Join your friends and have a good time at the Square Dance on Wednesday, October 18. No experience necessary. Bill and Joanne Towner will show you how it's done. The party will take place at the Petoskey Friendship Center from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Donations are welcome.

Estate Planning Presentation
Learn the warning signs of estate planning and annuity scams on Thursday, October 19 at 12:30 p.m. by attending the State Bar of Michigan's free seminar, "A Living Trust Education Initiative: Who Should You Trust? Avoiding Estate Planning Mistakes." Gain empowerment in making estate planning decisions and avoid becoming an unsuspecting victim. Receive a specially designed folder containing essential estate planning information.

Ping Pong
Get your heart pumping with some ping pong at the Petoskey Friendship Center. Ping Pong tables will be set up for play on Thursday, October 5 at 1:00 p.m.; Wednesday, October 11 at 10:00 a.m.; Thursday, October 19 at 1:00 p.m.; Wednesday, October 25 at 10:00 a.m.; and Tuesday, October 31 at 10:00 a.m.

Apple Crunch Day
Friendship Centers of Emmet County will be taking part in the Michigan Apple Crunch on Wednesday, October 25. As a way to encourage healthy eating and support the Farm-to-Seniors Program, everyone attending lunch at the Petoskey and Huber Centers will receive an apple. Group pictures will be taken as everyone takes a bite into their apple.

FCEC Theater
Lion will be playing on Wednesday, October 25 at 12:45 p.m. The 2016 biographical film is about a five-year old boy who mistakenly gets lost on a train, taking him thousands of miles away from his home and family. Twenty-five years later, he sets out to find his lost family. Movie and popcorn is free to seniors age 60 and older and their spouses.

Caregiver Support Group
Being a caregiver can be very stressful with limited resources. On Thursday, October 26, Valerie Meyerson, Petoskey District Library director, will present at the Caregiver Support Group with resource suggestions and websites on caregiving. The Caregiver Support Group meets on the fourth Thursday of each month at 1:30 p.m.

FCEC Chorus
In addition to singing every Friday at the Petoskey Friendship Center, the FCEC Chorus visits other local senior facilities to share their music, including will be at the Pellston Friendship Center on Monday, October 30 prior to lunch.

Halloween Party
Join us on Tuesday, October 31 for our annual Halloween Party during lunch at the Petoskey and Pellston Friendship Centers. Costumes are encourage, and there will be plenty of spooky decorations, good food, entertaining games, and delicious treats. Visit the Pellston Friendship Center early to enjoy a special parade of Bear Cub Childcare's Preschool class from 11:15 to 11:40 a.m.

Local Food Alliance: Around the Table Conference
The Local Food Alliance's Around The Table conference takes place on Wednesday, November 8, 2017. Held at North Central Michigan College from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m., the conference is about area programs that help make good food affordable for low-income households including seniors. The theme this year is Good Food for All. To register to attend the conference call the Michigan State Extension office at (231) 348-1770.

Who is your food hero? Prior to the conference, the Local Food Alliance is looking for local food heroes who help in this endeavor. Please vote for a local food hero at 


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Upcoming Events

October 2017
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Support Us!

Friendship Centers

Petoskey Friendship Center
1322 Anderson Road
(231) 347-3211
(888) 347-0369

Brutus Huber Center
6436 E Brutus Road
(231) 529-8803

Pellston Friendship Center
6274 W Edgar
(231) 539-8201

Board of Directors Finance Mtgs

2017 Finance Committee Meetings
2:30 p.m.
(except December)

January 26
February 23
March 23
April 27
May 25*
June 22

July 27
August 24
September 28**
October 26
November 16
(no meeting)

Meetings held at the
Petoskey Friendship Center Library
*Meeting held at the Huber Senior Center, Brutus MI

**Meeting held at the Pellston Friendship Center, Pellston MI

Board of Directors Mtgs

2017 Meetings
3:00 p.m.
(unless noted)

January 26
February 23
March 23
April 27
May 22
May 25*
June 22
July 18
(4:00 p.m.)
July 27
August 22
(1:00 p.m.)
August 24
September 28**
October 26
November 16
December 14
(1:30 p.m.)

Meetings held at the
 Petoskey Friendship Center Library
*Meeting held at the Huber Senior Center, Brutus MI
**Meeting held at the Pellston Friendship Center, Pellston MI

Winter Weather Policy

If Petoskey Public Schools are closed due to weather, the Petoskey, Pellston, and Huber Centers will be closed and all services will be suspended at all locations. Meals on Wheels will not be delivered on these days.

If Pellston Public Schools are closed due to weather, the Pellston Center will be closed. If Petoskey Schools are open on this day, all other services will be operating as usual.

If either Pellston or Alanson Public Schools are closed due to weather, the Huber (Brutus) Center will be closed. If the Petoskey Schools are open on this day, all other services will be operating as usual.

Save Your Grocery Receipts

We appreciate grocery receipts from Oleson's Markets and D&W Fresh Markets. You may bring receipts into any one of our Centers or mail them to FCEC, 1322 Anderson Road, Petoskey, MI 49770. This is a great way to bring in additional dollars to support our programs.

Vial of Life

We feel that the Vial of Life is a most important program for protecting seniors. We are proud to offer Vial of Life decals and forms to the community.

We thank American Senior Safety Agency Medical Alert Systems for donating these decals to our organization.

Copyright Friendship Centers of Emmet County. Site by Common Angle.