As a frequent entertainer at adult homes and care facilities, John Leon Lewis never turns down a residents request.
But Friday, at Westminster Towers in Rock Hill, Lewis, who is also a minister at Harrison United Methodist Church in Pineville, N.C., was taken aback.
A request to dance the electric slide? Make sure you have 911 ready on speed dial, he quipped.
The residents of Westminster were not surprised Hugh Barnett made the request. They describe him as the most active resident of the complex. He bowls averaging about 130 pins a game. He dances. He calls their bingo games. He looks dapper in a bow tie.
And, in about a month, Barnett will turn 100.
Barnett is one of six Westminster residents who turn 100 this year, so Westminster celebrated with a 600th birthday party with one lighted candle per piece of cake and 99 virtual candles.
Residents filled the lobby for what staff promoted as crazy fun.
Joining Barnett as honored guests were Nancy Bonham, Ruth Worrell Eichelberger, LArtigue Fishburne, Mary James and Annie McGarity.
James, who recently had a minor heart attack, missed the party Friday, as she is in Piedmont Medical Center.
While Westminster has older residents 101-year-old May Williams took a spin on the dance floor Friday this is the first time staff can remember so many residents celebrating their 100th birthday at the same time.
Staff members were quick to point out that all those turning 100 are active and well known at Westminster. Three live in the independent living section and three live in assisted living.
In the end, there was no need to call 911, as Barnett and Williams easily danced to the laughter and applause of their Westminster neighbors. If anything, it was the staff that needed the attention after dancing with their stars.
Don Worthington 803-329-4066