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Mar 1, 2007

Nursing Home News -- March 2007


On Monday night, we went to the city commission meeting to watch Mayor Pegeen Hanrahan read a proclamation in honor of Jean Lansford’s volunteer work at the nursing home.  Many of you know Jean as our coordinator at University Place nursing home.  She has been visiting there for about 2 ½ years, and now helps mentor new one-to-one volunteers over there (in addition to organizing group events and starting a garden at another nursing home).   The Mayor gave Jean a certificate and a plaque naming her the "Albert Ray Massey Citizen Volunteer of the Year" in front of the whole city commission.  Jean got to speak for a couple minutes about the history of Friends Across the Ages.  Ruth Hazen was in attendance as a representative of the Nursing Home Volunteer Auxiliary, our founding organization.  It was a great honor to be there! 

This occasion was very special for us, because it is a recognition not just for Jean, but for all of us who do volunteer work at the nursing home.  It is a recognition that what we do is important, and that recreation is important in the nursing home.  It is a recognition that the people living in the nursing home are still citizens of Gainesville, and they still matter.  So, as Jean put it, “this award is for everyone in Friends Across the Ages.”

To make the occasion a little more special, the Massey family was also in attendance.  Ray Massey, for whom the award is named, passed away earlier this year.  He was the superintendent of the Recreation dept. for the city for over 20 years.


Can you believe it is almost here already?  It’s true, the Fourth annual Bingo-A-Thon event will be held on Saturday, April 21st.  For you UF students, that is one week before Finals Week officially starts.  As usual, the event will run from about 2:00-3:30 at five nursing homes around Gainesville (most one-to-one volunteers will go to the nursing home they usually visit).  Then, the “Wrap-Up” party will be held from 4-6PM that same day, over at Barr Systems where our office is located. 


We will be contacting everyone about the event in hopes you can join us.  Please mark your calendars now!  We need around 100 volunteers for the event to be a success so we hope everybody will come out. 


One important note:  The event will NOT be a fundraiser this year.  That means you don’t have to get a pledge form and collect pledges.  All you have to do is come out to enjoy the fun and brighten the day of nursing home residents everywhere!  There will be plenty of prizes for the nursing home residents, and all volunteers will receive a brand new 2007 Friends Across the Ages t-shirt for FREE!



Sunday, March 4th, 2:30PMDrumming Circle at Palm GardenThis is the final week of the drumming circle event that was featured in last month’s newsletter.  It’s not to late for you to make it to one!

Sunday, March 4th, 3:30 – 5PM – Jewelry Making – Volunteers Patricia Allshouse and Kathleen Endorf bought some arts n’ crafts supplies last week, and along with volunteer Sarah Bailin, they helped the residents of Gainesville Health Care Center make name tags for their doors.  This Sunday they are continuing with the arts n crafts theme by making jewelry (beaded bracelets) with the residents.  If you’d like to participate, meet us in the front lobby at 3:30PM. 

Monday, March 12th, 2:30PM – 4PM – “Casino Party” – This has become a regular event at Parklands Nursing and Rehab.  At 2:30 there will be a bingo game.  Once we’re finished with Bingo, we move on to the horse racing game, and blackjack or other card games.  The residents will be playing for “Bingo Bucks” and prizes. 

Thursday, March 22nd, 9:30AM – 2PM – BUS TRIP TO THE BOWLING ALLEY – A group of residents from Parklands Nursing and Rehab will be going to the Bowling Alley for a day of fun and competition.  Alley Katz bowling alley has a special metal ramp we use to help people in wheelchairs bowl.  About 10-15 residents plan to go, so we will need lots of helpers for this event.  Volunteers will be needed to meet us either at the nursing home or at the bowling alley.  Volunteers will help residents bowl, help with getting lunch for the residents, and so many other things that usually come up!  In order that we know how many volunteers we’ll have, please RSVP by replying to this email if you can help.  We’ll reply back with more details.  Lunch will be provided for all volunteers.  Volunteers are welcome (but not required) to bowl too!  Anyone who defeats Steve will be declared the Friends Across the Ages bowling champion (beware – Steve lettered in bowling in high school – sad but true). 

Thursday, March 29th, 3-4PM -- Birthday celebration -- Help us wish a happy birthday to all residents of Parklands Nursing and Rehab with birthdays in March. Meet us in the dining room where we'll have singing and cake. Volunteers are needed to help gather the residents together, serve the cake, sing, clean up, etc. 


Saturday, April 21st, 2-6PMBINGO-A-THON!!!  Mark your calendars now (come on, we know you have a calendar somewhere… dust it off).  See the article above for more details.  This event will be held at 5 different nursing homes, all at the same time.  Volunteers will only go to one nursing home. 




Please consider making a donation to Friends Across the Ages to help us continue to serve our elders in nursing homes.  Our organization is a charity and donations are tax-deductible. Your donation can pay for a bus trip, Bingo supplies, and volunteer recruitment. Donations can be made with a credit card on our web site (, or by check made out to Friends Across the Ages and sent to:

Friends Across the Ages
P.O. Box 14698
Gainesville, FL 32604


Remember, be sure to check above to find out the nursing home at which an event will be held.  Directions to all the nursing homes can be found at:

All events are open to everyone (children are welcome at most events, please inquire). If you've never been to a nursing home before, feel free to reply to this email and let the coordinators (Steve and Allison Blay) know what events you'll be attending, so they will be looking for you. You can also call them at 381-1117. 


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