Monday, October 25, 2021

Tis the Season for a Musical Christmas at Luncheon with Friends

Three years ago, the luncheons started with 35 people, which explained why Allyson Richards was elated with last month’s 220 luncheon guests. For December, 180+ guests enjoyed a luncheon feast courtesy of Meals of Hope complete with vibrant Christmas music from the Bell Choir of United Church of Marco with the duo of Wes English on the banjo and LuWayne Arnold on the piano.

Richards also thanked Pastor Kevin Koenig of the Marco Lutheran Church for his support to the Luncheon with Friends and honored him with a floral bouquet on his retirement plans. Pastor Kevin shared that there is a miracle happening right here in our community with these luncheons as it confirmed Marco’s great sense of community.

Father Duong Nguyen of San Marco Catholic Church asked God to bless all those that made this event possible and to bless the delicious meal provided by Meals of Hope.

Meals of Hope is a service organization active in feeding the needy children and their families in Collier County. The Sunrise Rotary Club, Noontime Rotary and Kiwanis Club all teamed up in November to pack 250,000 meals in a two-hour period.

Steve Reynolds of the Greater Marco Family YMCA provided information on the Health and Wellness Fair for January 2020 as follows:

January 23rd, 2020 at the YMCA South Collier Marco YMCA

Start Time: 11:00 with Luncheon provided by Stonewalls (Free) & Raffles

Guest Speakers

  • Planning for your Future by Jill Burzynski Elder Law
  • Protecting Yourself Against Scams by Angela Larson, Collier County Sheriff’s Office
  • Keeping Healthy and Finding Purpose in Life by Bridget Murray-Popescu, Naples Senior Center
  • Caregiver tips by Daniel Dyer

RSVP by January 21st, 2020 

Contact: Deborah Passero 239-394-3144

Steve Reynolds also informed the guests that the napkin rings on the table are gifts to take home. 

The Bell Choir of United Church of Marco provided a musical Christmas celebration with the ringing of bells and chimes. The second part was an old fashion sing-along of Christmas carols. Participants were urged to use the musical instruments on the table to channel their inner musical talents. The larger the bell the lower the sound and the smaller the bell the higher the note.

The Bell Choir set the mood for a festive rendition of five Christmas carols. Wes English, also best known as the founder of the Marco Island Strummers, brought his banjo and provided the other musical numbers accompanied by LuWayne Arnold on the piano.

And of course, the luncheon’s highlight was a visit from Santa Claus with his elves who made this day even more special with a wrapped Christmas gift for all participants. 

The Lunch with Friends over 60 is a collaboration between the Marco Island YMCA, Our Daily Bread Food Pantry and co-sponsored by the Marco Lutheran Church. Luncheon is free of charge to all area residents, “60 or better.” 

Please save the date: January 15, 2020. RSVP to Nancy at 706-566-8532 or email


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *