September 2021 update from the Director


The Central’s Annual Seafair Patio Party and our official Grand Re-Opening following a year of uncertainty and change owing to COVID-19 was a success! We were grateful to see 120 persons come out to celebrate with us and to donate while having fun.

There were no Hydro Races this year. Neither were the Blue Angels flying overhead making noise while an audience delighted in their maneuvers like years past. Nonetheless, it was a good time. People gathered and ate great food by those specializing in a variety of dishes. Walter Washington provided smoked brisket with collard greens and smoked turkey, Rev. Doakes Louisiana BBQ delighted us with smoked chicken and his special vinegar BBQ based sauce. Ezell’s prepared macaroni and cheese with hot yeast rolls that were delicious. Chef Anthony of The Central tore up the potato salad, handled the plating of food to pass on to the volunteer servers and Seneeka Colly’s Red Velvet cake was moist and oh so good. People didn’t know which dessert to select Red Velvet Cake or Star Sweetz’s Peach Cobbler.

We appreciated the many contributions helping to underwrite the cost of the event. This enabled us to net $4,300.00 at our Grand Re-Opening. The contributions came at a good time. We officially became the owners of the building and property on December 15, 2020. Slowly we are hoping to make upgrades to the building and property prior to launching a community engaged planning process for major renovations to the building and property.

Within the next two – three years our aim is to remodel the parking lot, retrofit the building, install a new HVAC system, and acquire a generator.

Throughout 2020 and 2021, Central Area Senior Center was able to adapt our programming and activities to better serve seniors during a challenging year. We shifted our Community Dining lunch program to a take-out and delivery program serving between 40-120 meals daily depending on the menu selection that is offered.

By October 1, 2021, we are preparing to reintroduce congregate meals during the lunch hour and phase out meal delivery to those who can come into the building and enjoy congregate dining.

Presently we are creating a new website with some new features that will showcase our work and highlight old and new programs and activities. We are excited to be partnering with the Elite Collective for the new design. The website should be completed by the beginning of October.

We look forward to introducing Live Music once again on the 3rd Fridays of each month at our Green Dolphin Lounge, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. We have already booked some great entertainment. I anticipate that reservations will fill up quickly. Featured entertainment already booked

               CT Thompson, September 17th

               Mercedes Nicole doing a Tribute to Shirley Horn, November 19th, and

               Eugenie Jones and her Trio performs at the Holiday Gala on December 11th.

We are proud to bring these delightful performers to The Central. Make your reservation by calling us at 206-726-4926.

CASC looks forward to our continuation of providing valuable services and programming to seniors and the community now and in the future while offering a safe place to make connections in 2021 and beyond.

Thank-you to everyone partnering with us in this effort. If you are able, please drop in to visit with us next time you are in the area. We would love to share the Green Dolphin Lounge experience with you and/or lunch in Cafe Central.

At The Central, there is always plenty of good food, great entertainment and many programs and activities to choose from. Hope to see you soon!


Dian Ferguson

Executive Director

Central Continues to Offer Services

Owing to the Coronavirus, COVID-19, and the requirement for spatial separation, it became necessary to readapt our programs and activities to seniors and the community. We are providing to-go lunches for pick -up, between 40 – 60 daily. We are delivering 60 – 70 lunches and meals on Wednesday and Friday. 

We also provide 80 basic grocery essentials delivered on Wednesday and Friday’s.  We deliver hot meals and to-go lunches as well as the purchase of supplemental foods for the grocery essential bags that we deliver. We have been picking up prescription drugs for seniors as needed and daily have been offering health and wellness calls.  Other activities include helping seniors complete forms for entitlement benefits such as food assistance and unemployment support.  

We are maintaining office hours, 8:30 am – 5 pm, Monday – Friday for this purpose. Staff and several volunteers are on-site daily helping to prepare and bag groceries, acting as drivers to deliver hot meals, and cold to go boxed lunches. Those picking up lunches can come through the front door and get them. We are practicing spatial distance. All staff members have their own offices. The dining hall is ample spacing for the preparation of bagging the to go hot meals, boxed lunches, and groceries to be delivered. 

Staff and volunteers have all been provided masks and nitrile gloves for usage. Seniors can feel free to call CASC for assistance.
On Friday, April 24th Swedish Hospital set up tents and did testing for us at FAME Church, 1522 14th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98122, from 10 am – 4 pm, for the Coronavirus. It was drive through testing by appointment only. 85 seniors were tested. There was NO CHARGE FOR TESTING! TESTING WAS FREE. However, through an IT error some people received a bill from Swedish for $201.00. These bills have all been retracted. A computer glitch generated them. Call us if you have any questions. 206-726-4926. Swedish apologizes for this confusion.

COVID-19 Update

Greetings hope everyone is healthy and well as we self isolate to adhere to and practice what is necessary for the era of the Coronavirus.  I am attaching the link to today’s story on seniors in The Seattle Times.  I will be sending out updates as to our programs and activities and the changes we will be adhering to tomorrow and moving forward.  Let me know if you have any questions. 

The City has postponed the Council hearings on the property transfer for the next two weeks owing to the Coronavirus response.  This provides us with some additional time to address some financial questions and concerns they had with us and Sound Generations and will enable us to submit a Financial Statement better reflective of our interests and current status. 


Sound Generations and the Central Area Senior Center Announce Reorganization of their Partnership Arrangement

Sound Generations (SG) and the Central Area Senior Center (The Central) announced this week a reorganization of their partnership. On January 1, 2020, The Central will assume all administrative responsibilities to become an independent organization. SG will continue providing senior services like Community Dining and Enhanced Fitness at The Central. The full reorganization will be completed by the end of March 2020. 

Both organizations view this as a timely and necessary step for The Central. The organizations have formed a Transition Team to oversee implementing these changes. 

Staff, members, and the public will experience no disruptions of services or programs. 

“The long-term purpose and vision of the Central remain what it was when we were founded by community activists in the late 1960s,” said Barbara Peete, The Central’s Board President. “We’re here to celebrate and serve all seniors, and especially those of African American and African immigrant backgrounds that live in King County.” 

Darryl Price, SG’s Board President said, “It’s exciting to be working with The Central’s dedicated, engaged staff, Board, and the broader community to recognize and support this community treasure—The Central.” 

In 1975, Mayor Wes Uhlman used state funds, donations, and money raised in the community to purchase the property at 500 30th Avenue South as The Central’s permanent home. It is anticipated that in 2020 the City of Seattle will transfer the deed—and the responsibilities—for the site to the organization. This transfer aligns with the City of Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative goal of returning control of community institutions to the communities being served. 

“We’re ready to take The Central into the next decade,” Dian Ferguson, The Central’s Executive Director said. “This transition to greater independence could not have come at a better time.”

CASC 2019 Goal: Acquisition of the Building and the Property

CASA leases the current property from the City of Seattle at a discounted rate via a Mutual and Offsetting Benefit (MOB) Lease.  The terms of the MOB dictate that in exchange of the reduced rent, CASC would provide services and activities for seniors.

For the last three and a half years, starting in early 2015, CASC responded to a series of information requested by former Mayor Edward Murray and the City of Seattle Department of Finance and Administration in pursuit of the ownership of the facility we have occupied for the last fifty-one years, a publically owned building of the City of Seattle located at 500 30th Avenue South, Seattle, WA 98144 in the heart of the Central District.

CASC was told this information was requested to help determine the date and time of the transfer of the current facility to a “newly” incorporated 501 c 3 CASC board in 2019 on behalf of its membership and for the purpose of service to the Central District.

A significant amount of professional and volunteer time and financial resources totaling more than $180,000 went into the preparation of the materials requested by the City of Seattle.  Prior to the start of the materials requested, CASC had to first raise the funds needed to generate the information the City of Seattle requested.

We are appreciative of a large grant from the Department of Neighborhood, the many individual donors who donated, special events revenue, 4 Culture support, and City of Seattle Department of Human Services funding recent funds from the 2018 King County Veterans, Seniors and Human Services Levy dollars.

On November 19th, 2018, The City Council -through the hard work of Council members Lisa Herbold and
Mike O’Brien and their staff – voted 9 – 0 for the City to transfer or sale the properties.  They put a deadline of
June 30th, 2019.

Feel free to click on the forms below to view factual information about where we are at in the acquisition of the building and property.

1026 update CASC.docx

QA updater 011519