Burnsville, Minn. – It may be the right time to revise the definition of "senior citizen". According to the 2000 U.S. Census, 35 million people are over the age of 65 with the first wave of baby boomers quickly approaching the age of 60. Experts say these seniors have a greater sense of community and ability to socialize actively. US Federal Credit Union has revamped its MEMBERS Prime Club to address those needs and hosted its first excursion. "We wanted to add value to their belonging to the club," said Special Accounts Coordinator Deb Dreis-Johnson. "So we decided on an activity that would be reasonably priced and exciting to all our Prime Club members from age 50 and up." The day consisted of a stop at Treasure Island Casino and a four-hour cruise down the Mississippi and St. Croix rivers. Forty-five members attended of which three won over $400.00 at the casino. Mailings were sent to those Prime Club members who reside in Minnesota and tickets were capped at $29.00 per person. Although it only took six weeks for Dreis-Johnson to pull together the program her advice for other credit unions thinking about providing day or overnight tours is to take more time. "We were lucky enough to use a tour company that many other credit unions and banks have used so we knew their reputation," said Dreis-Johnson. "But there are so many variables needed to take into consideration from getting the marketing piece together to leaving a two week window to hand over all the funds, it is really important to give yourself a lot of time." According to Dreis-Johnson, member response has been so positive there are tentative plans for another trip next year. Future activities being explored include a trip to Duluth; an overnight casino trip; a night at the theater; and a formal Prime Club "Social" with dinner and dancing. "US Federal is committed to offering products and services appropriate at every stage of a member's financial life cycle," said US FCU President/CEO Bill Raker. "More frequently now, we are finding some of these services, such as the cruise, go beyond traditional financial transactions. Our goal is to enhance the lives of our members – the credit union sponsored outings is one more way to do that." [email protected]

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