For those who are 60 years of age or older, there are 35 congregate meal sites located throughout the 8 counties in Aging Resources of Central Iowa’s service area. Congregate meals are hot, nutritious meals served at senior centers and other community locations. Meal sites range from serving 10 meals per day to over 140 meals at the largest location. Transportation is usually available to meal sites if needed.
In addition to delicious meals and great conversation, many meal sites offer activities. Here are just a few of the exciting things going on at senior centers in central Iowa:
- Exercise: Tai Chi, yoga, Zumba Gold, Exercise for Arthritis, walking clubs, line dancing, pickleball
- Arts & Crafts: Pottery, knitting, crocheting, Sew-cial, scrapbooking, Golden Thread Society
- Music & Entertainment: Bands, guest speakers, games & cards, trivia, holiday celebrations
- Classes & Groups: History, computer/technology, drawing, caregiver support group, falls prevention classes, chronic disease self-management classes
- Health & Wellness Services: Foot care, blood pressure checks, nutrition education, health screenings
Please call the senior center nearest you to find out what services and activities they offer. The flexibility, value, and access to additional services and activities available at these locations make them unique. Some people visit the senior centers just to join activities, while others come just for a meal. Some come once a year, while others come every weekday. Congregate meal programs are for all people over the age of 60, regardless of health status, income, or ability to prepare meals.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can attend senior centers/meal sites?
Congregate meals are available to anyone 60 years or older (as well as their spouse regardless of age). Anyone under the age of 60 can attend but must pay the full cost of the meal, which varies by service provider.
How do I sign up for a meal?
Most meal sites require you to call at least 24 hours in advance to reserve a meal. Please contact the meal site you are interested in attending to find out more information.
How much does a meal cost?
Meals are served on a suggested contribution basis. Most meal sites suggest around $3.50/meal, but eligible individuals can pay whatever they are able.
Where can I find a menu?
Several different menus are used in our service area. To find out where to get a copy of the menu, please call the meal site you are interested in visiting. All meals meet 1/3 of the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) for older adults.
Where can I go for more information?
For more information, please call the Nutrition Services Director at 515-633-9518.
The Iowa Café is a new, innovative partnership between Iowa’s Area Agencies on Aging and licensed food service establishments like restaurants and cafés
To participate in The Iowa Café, individuals must be 60 years of age or older, or a spouse of an eligible individual regardless of age. Meals are provided on a voluntary contribution basis, and individuals will be given the opportunity to contribute towards the cost of the meal.
How to Participate
Register by filling out a Registration Form. Once the registration is processed you will receive a key card in the mail. When you visit a participating restaurant you can choose an item from the Iowa Cafe menu and use your key card to pay. For more information, call 515-633-9518.
104 A Street S.E. P.O. Box 147
Melcher Dallas, IA 50163
Hours: 6 am to 9 pm, 7 days per week
118 SE 9th Street
Pella, IA 50219
Monday through Friday, Lunch
The Depot Restaurant & Catering
411 West Street P.O. Box 53
New Virginia, IA 50210
Hours: 11 am to 6 pm, Wed. – Fri.
Big Al’s BBQ
715 Main Street
Adel, IA 50003
Monday to Thursday 11AM–8PM