VESTAL, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Willow Point Nursing Home held a centennial and then some celebration for resident Julia Kuenzli today.

She turned 105 last Thursday.

Kuenzli was the fifth of eight children and she recalls riding from the farm she grew up on into town with her father on a horse drawn wagon.

Growing up, she learned to cook, bake and sew, talents she shared with her daughters.

She and her husband James were 4H Club leaders for 25 years and Kuenzli enjoyed playing piano, singing and dancing to polka music.

Her daughters Marlene Dickinson, Phyllis LaBarge and other extended family joined in today’s celebration.

LaBarge relays what her mother says is the reason for her longevity.

“When I was young, I walked from home, which was on Farm To Market Road into Johnson City to shop. It’s probably 5 miles, 6 miles. They didn’t have a car, so wherever she went, she had to walk. She says she thinks she lived so long because she walked al over.”

Kuenzli was the first cook for the Hinman College Dining Hall in the early days of SUNY Binghamton on the parkway.

And at age 95, she was still driving herself to the senior center.

Happy Birthday Julia!