by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Some of the more hip members of the West Linn Adult Community Center took a field trip to see Darcelles show in Portland. The West Linn Adult Community Center has been offering bus trips around the area for several years now. We’ve gone to monasteries, beach towns, museums, movies, wineries and more. The trips are popular and well attended.

It’s difficult to say how many senior centers take a bus trip to Darcelle’s XV, the West Coast’s longest running drag queen show. Best guess? Not many. This did not stop about 20 WLACC participants from enjoying the racy performance that Walter Cole, aka Darcelle, puts on nightly at his Old Town nightclub.

Upon arrival, the seniors were escorted to the front four rows of seats where drag queens greeted us, took photos and provided drinks from the bar. Lynn Depretto dressed the part with a hat and boa any drag queen would envy.

The show began at 8 p.m. with Darcelle and three other colorfully dressed queens lip-syncing and dancing to well-known musical numbers. The seniors hooted and hollered in appreciation.

Darcelle then took the stage by herself and proceeded to welcome the audience, tell off-color jokes and identify special guests. A bride and two bridesmaids from West Linn were given the microphone, as were two gay friends of Darcelle whom she had apparently married two years ago. Celebrating her impending retirement, Lynn Depretto also had a turn at the microphone and repartee with Darcelle, much to the delight of the WLACC seniors.

Although off-color and marginally raunchy, the show itself offers a healthy message of inclusivity. Darcelle is a Portland icon who appears at many benefits and social functions and served as grand marshal for the 2011 Rose Festival Starlight Parade and received the city’s Spirit of Portland award.

This bus trip certainly demonstrates that the label “old fogies” does not apply to WLACC members.

Here are the upcoming week’s activities. Call the WLACC at 503-557-4704 for specific times and possible fees. Also, all meals listed below are subject to change, but only for the better. Computer assistance is currently being offered by appointment between 9 a.m. and noon, every Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

Friday, July 12

In the morning we have the core strength class and the strength and balance class, the Peripatetic Walkers, aerobics class and the oil painting group. The whist card group will meet between 10 a.m. and noon. At noon we will serve lemon pepper battered fish for lunch. From 12:30 until 3 p.m., the pinochle group will meet. At 1 p.m. the Texas Hold’Em poker group will deal.

Monday, July 15

In the morning we have tai chi, the Peripatetic Walkers, the wood carving group, aerobics class and hand and foot card game group. For lunch we will have chef’s salad. After lunch the bridge group will meet.

Tuesday, July 16

In the morning we offer our gentle yoga class. The Honoring Our Memories writing group meets from 10 a.m. to noon. Our ukulele group will strum together at 2 p.m. and Luella Hunt will teach pinochle to new players starting at 1 p.m.

Wednesday, July 17

In the morning, we offer the Peripatetic Walking group, chair aerobics class, core strength class, strength and balance class and the gardening club will meet. The line dancing class meets from 11 a.m. to noon. At noon we will serve soup and sandwiches. At 12:30 p.m., the board of the friends of the WLACC will meet. All members are welcome to attend. The pinochle group will shuffle and deal from 12:30 to 3 p.m. today.

Thursday, July 18

Our morning offerings at the center include core strength class, strength and balance class and our gentle yoga class. The knitting/crocheting group will convene at 10 a.m., and the bridge group meets at 10:30 a.m. The Exercise for All class will meet at 1 p.m.

WLACC Gift Shop

Come visit the best-kept shopping secret in town: the WLACC Gift Shop. We have added many new donation and consignment items, including beautiful bone china teacups and saucers, new scarves to complete any outfit and new summer purses. Imagine your embarrassment if you were caught using a winter purse this time of year! Additionally, we have new watches and jewelry and a whole tableful of sale items priced to move. The WLACC Gift Shop is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and accepts cash, checks and well-behaved children.

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