Langerud retiring, but not going away

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 14, 2002

She may have been celebrating her retirement, but Joyce Langerud didn’t say goodbye to anybody Sunday.

&uot;We’ll still be around,&uot; said the director of the Albert Lea Senior Citizen Center for the last 12 years. An open house was held at the center to celebrate her retirement.

Langerud had worked at McDonald’s for 18 years, 17 of them as the manager on East Main, before taking the job as director of the senior center. It was a job she never regretted taking.

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&uot;Senior citizens are great people,&uot; she said. &uot;They like to be active.&uot;

Some of the activities Langerud has helped to organize at the senior center are crafts, parties, bingo and card games, as well as a walking club. There is also an aerobics class for those who wish to take part. Members also get a monthly newsletter.

And of course, there are bus trips. Langerud has organized an average of 26 motorcoach trips per year, and has done more than 300 in her years as director. She’s gone along on all of them.

&uot;Those bus trips are a real plus because a lot of those seniors citizens can’t get to these places any other way,&uot; she said. &uot;We tried to do things that were appealing to a lot of people.&uot;

The highlight of Langerud’s time at the senior center was helping to plan and ultimately getting to use the new center at Skyline Mall, she said. The new site opened in 1998.

&uot;It’s a wonderful facility,&uot; she said.

And the membership shows it. When the center was located in the old Carnegie library building downtown, there were 700 members. Moving to the new center helped bring the membership up to 1,300 members.

Langerud said she also enjoyed her work with the annual outstanding senior man and senior woman program at the Freeborn County Fair, as well as the sixth-grade essay contest during Older Americans Month in May.

She and her husband, Ray, who still works three days a week at St. Clair’s for Men in Owatonna, are looking forward to being able to do things on the spur of the moment.

&uot;We can take in more of our grandchildren’s things at school,&uot; she said.

The couple has three grown children, Brian, Sheila and Gary, as well as seven grandchildren.

They are also planning a winter vacation, and next year, Ray will serve as exalted ruler of the Albert Lea Elks Lodge.

Langerud spent the last week helping her replacement, Paula Juveland, become familiar with the job.

While she looks forward to retirement, Langerud knows she’ll miss the many friends she’s made over the years.

&uot;I’ll miss the people,&uot; she said. &uot;But we’ll be around.&uot;

And maybe she’ll take a few of those bus trips &045; just for fun.