Marie and John Doran made sure they were next to each other before the clock struck 12 on Dec. 31.
They joined in the countdown as fellow party goers, “three, two, one.” The room erupted in cheer as the clock hands pointed upright.
The Keller couple, who have been married for 57 years, kissed at noon at the Southlake Senior Center’s first Noon Year’s Eve party.
The Center had a party from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to give more than 30 center members a chance to honor the New Year’s traditions without having to stay up until midnight; something most party goers at the center said they would not be doing.
Keller resident Nina Coon, 86, said she would spend the night watching a movie.
Sohelia Phelps, Southlake Senior Services coordinator, brought the idea to the city, emceed the event, and made sure people were having a good time.
“Many of our seniors do not like to be out driving at night especially on a night like New Year’s Eve,” she said. “We wanted to provide an event that would give them an opportunity to come together and celebrate without worries.”
Phelps told the guests, “If it’s noon in Texas, it’s midnight somewhere,” and they enjoyed sandwiches and dishes brought by the attendees.
As sunlight poured into the room through the center’s many windows, it reflected off the festive shiny, metallic New Year’s hats party goers wore.
After a glass of “bubbly” sparkling cider, Keller resident Fran Williams was ready to have a good time.
“I’m alive, well and ready to boogie,” she said.
Mille Struck, 98, said she does not have a resolution for 2014.
“I always break them, so there’s no point in making them,” she said.
As the party winded down, Bob Strickland, 72, reflected on his goal from 2013. The North Richland Hills resident wanted to be better at thinking before he spoke, something he believes he accomplished.
For 2014, Strickland has a much simpler resolution.
“My goal is to try to make it through 2014.”