GOOD genes and clean living are two of the things that have helped keep local woman Helen Chacos alive for a century.
The Queanbeyan woman celebrated her 100th birthday on Saturday, October 20 surrounded by 85 friends and relatives, some of whom had travelled interstate.
Ms Chacos marked the milestone occasion with a lunch time party at the Queanbeyan Bowls Club. She received cards of congratulations from The Queen, the Governor General Quentin Bryce and flowers from Queanbeyan Mayor Tim Overall.
Ms Chacos immigrated from Macedonia to Queanbeyan in 1957 where she and her husband Libe brought up their family, and she still resides locally.
When asked to share some of her secrets to a long life she said "I must just be one of those lucky people".
Ms Chacos' granddaughter, Katrina Lauro, said the centenarian has a love of gardening and food and still dabbled in her backyard patch until three-years-ago.
"Aside from clearly good genes, it's about clean living, she would enjoy a few glasses of wine occassionally," Mrs Lauro said.
Ms Chacos organic garden flourished with vegetables including potatoes, leeks, onions, beans, tomatoes, zucchini, eggplants, lettuce and cabbage.
The great-great grandmother was known for her delicious pickled and preserved vegetables she would give jars away to family members.
Ms Chacos raised three sons and one daughter and has 14 grandchildren, 37 great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren.