By Mike Steely
Throughout Knoxville and Knox County are numerous organizations and services for senior citizens. Generally “seniors” are considered to be those residents 55 years and older.
Both the city and county provide information for seniors.
Property Tax Relief
Did you know if you are 65 years old or older you can get some property tax relief from both the county and the city? The county takes part in two programs: The Tax Freeze and the Tax Relief program. The City only takes part in the Tax Relief Program.
The Tax Freeze program through the Trustee’s Office is based on the property owner’s income from the previous year which cannot exceed $37,980. That gross income would include social security, Medicare, employment, and any other income. If you qualify, your county property taxes would not increase beyond their present level, even if the county raises taxes.
The Tax Relief Program, offered by the County Trustee’s Office and the City’s Department of Revenue, sets the annual income from all sources (for all property owners like yourself and your spouse) at $28,270. If you qualify you can get $ 145 of your taxes paid by the state. Like the Tax Freeze you’d need proof of income, Medicare, etc.
You can check it out at firstname.lastname@example.org (215-8554) and email@example.com (251-2084).
Our Senior Centers
The senior centers in Knox County are administrated by Knox County Senior Services and the director is Robert “Buzz” Buswell. The Senior Services Manager is April Tomlin. You can find the office online or call them at 215-4044.
All of the county’s senior centers will be closed Friday, October 3rd, for Mayor Tim Burchett’s 6th Annual Senior Appreciation Picnic. The picnic is at John Tarleton park, 3201 Division Street and is part of a county-wide tribute to seniors. It’s a free event. Registration closed last Friday.
The Karns Senior Center
Construction is underway for the new Karns Senior Center which will feature lots of free parking, an 8,000 square foot building for various programs and activities, a computer lab, an assembly room, a space for crafts and an exercise room. Ground was broken for the center at the Knox County Sportspark on Oak Ridge Highway in July. The $1.6 million facility will be the 6th Knox County Senior Center.
The Karns center should be open sometime this next spring.
The John T. O’Conner Center
As a multi-purpose comprehensive center serving seniors, the John T. O’Conner Senior Citizens Center offers recreation, education, and support groups. Located at 611 Winona Street just off Magnolia Avenue, the center has card games, billiards, senior fitness, a book club, writer’s workshop and bingo games. Friday nights offer dancing. The YMCA is next door and O’Conner members can attend water exercise classes at the pool there.
Everyday services at O’Conner include blood pressure checks and horseshoes. During any day of the week you will also find aerobics, dance and basket weaving.
October events include Happy Hikers going to three different locations including Fort Loudoun State Park, a bus trip to Harrah’s Casino on October 7, a Halloween Dance on October 11, and the O’Conner Band on Wednesday, October 1.
You can find the O’Conner Senior Center on line or call them at 523-1135.
The Frank R. Strang Center
The Strang Senior Center offers fitness, dance, computer and arts and crafts, plus bus tours, trips and other recreational and educational activities. The center has many special events coming in October including the Golden Tone Women’s Fall Concert there October 8th at Noon and Flu Shots available for $ 25 on October 24th from 9 until 11 a.m.
Located at 904 Lovell Heights, the Strang Senior Center can be called at 607-6693
The South Knoxville Center
The South Knoxville Senior Center is the only center in Knox County with an indoor swimming pool and offers water aerobics and arthritis exercise programs. The center also offers art and craft classes, needle crafts, sewing, and weekly ballroom dancing and guitar classes.
The center also has card games, a library, puzzles, games and a computer room.
You can find the center online or by calling 573-5843.
October events include a visit from the Knox County Trustee’s office to talk about Senior Tax Relief on October 6 at 10 a.m. and a Medicare presentation Monday, October 20 at 10 a.m.
The South Knoxville Senior Center is located at 6729 Martel Lane, just off the Governor John Sevier Highway.
The Larry Cox Center
The Larry Cox Senior Center was renovated in 2012 and got an addition to the building. Improvements included a new formal entrance and the gym was converted to a community room. The kitchen was fully renovated and the former entrance became a back patio.
The center is located at 3109 Ocoee Trail, next to Edgewood Park and its phone number is 546-1700. The center offers a tennis court, a playground, and activities for seniors.
On Tuesdays and Thursday in October the center features pottery classes, community walks, and senior exercise.
The Corryton Center
Located in the heart of the Corryton community, at 9331 Davis Drive, the Corryton Senior Center has been expanded to add 4,800 square feet with an indoor walking track, an exercise room with treadmills, and a multi-purpose gym. The center also features a billiard room, computer room, arts and crafts and a meeting room.
Ladies’ High Tea will be held October 24 at 11 a.m. and the Golden Tones will perform October 23 at 11 a.m. Flu Shots will be available October 14.
You can find the center online or by calling 932-2939.
The Carter Center
Located in the Carter Library, the Carter Senior Center is next to Carter Park on Asheville Highway and includes a fully equipped exercise room, computer room, meeting rooms, cards and dancing, recreation space and a kitchen.
Among the October events are yoga, a Smoky Mountain history class, bingo, trips including one to Cades Cove, a Spanish Class and Friday movies.
You can find the Carter Center online or call 932-2939.
The Halls Center
At nearly 1,000 square feet the Halls Senior Center has a billiard room with two tables, an arts and crafts room, a card and conference room, and a computer lab. It also has a large multi-purposes room with kitchen an can hold almost 300 people. Plus, there are three covered porches.
The Halls location offers computer access, weekly bingo, line dancing, monthly potluck luncheons, exercise classes, quilting, art glass and numerous other events and companionship.
Among the October activities is a Pot Luck Dinner Tuesday, October 14th at noon. The Heartland host and producer, Bill Landry, will appear at the Super Senior Luncheon on Tuesday, October 28. Boxed lunches are $6 or you can bring you own food.
The Center is located 4405 Crippen Road and the phone number is 922-0416. Crippen Road is located across from the Black Oak Shopping Center off Maynardville Pike.