Aurora -- A local women's pinochle club is celebrating its 43rd anniversary this year.
After starting the group within the Welcome Wagon in 1971, Carolyn Steffans and 16 more participants decided to separate and become their own club.
"Welcome Wagon used to call on everybody new who came into a community," explained Steffans. "We played within that group and then we decided we didn't need to be within it anymore and went off on our own."
Seven original members are still involved in the pinochle club; the group has 12 regular players, with five or six substitutes to fill in when a player is sick or absent.
"We have several substitutes, we've lost a few members and some people lose interest, so we have changed somewhat over the years," said Steffans. "We have that core group that's been with it forever, but we welcome anybody who wants to come in and substitute if we need them."
In addition to playing pinochle, almost all the members are involved in the Red Hat Society, an international organization for women over 50 years old who wear purple outfits and red hats, Steffans added.
"They [the members] have degrees -- some are social, some do a lot of charity work," she added. "We are just social."
Although a few members have moved out of Aurora to nearby towns such as Ravenna and Auburn Township, Steffans said the group plans to continue as long as there is interest.
"We played the first Tuesday of each month, and we had so much fun that now we also meet the fourth Wednesday of each month," Steffans said. "I would imagine we'll play almost forever."
Phone: 330-541-9400, ext. 4162