By OPAL FLINN

Special to The Hays Daily News

ELLIS -- It was 20 years ago the Ellis AARP Chapter thought the older residents in the Ellis area reaching a special milestone in their lives should be honored for their positive contributions.

The chapter decided to have an annual celebration inviting those who were 80, 90 and 100 years old to be honored guests. The 20th annual milestone ages birthday dinner, sponsored by Ellis AARP, was Sept. 24 at the Ellis United Methodist Church.

The honorees born in 1931 and 1921 and their special guests were seated at decorated tables and served a meal prepared by EUMC women.

The welcome was given by Shirley Gerhardt, AARP chapter president; the response was given by Margaret Ridgeway, a 90-year-old honoree. The opening and closing prayers were given by intern Erik Grayvold of St. John Lutheran Church.

As the master of ceremonies, John Rupp introduced each honoree. The three men and three women honored shared stories of their families, where they grew up, who they married, how they made a living and many interesting happy memories.

Plans already are being made for the 2012 event. Those born in 1932, 1922 or 1912 will be honored.