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May 1, 2008

Nursing Home News -- May 2008


We would like to thank everyone who made the 5th Annual “Bingo-A-Thon” event on April 19th such a big success.  About 75 volunteers attended this year.  All over town, nursing home residents are wearing their “winner” medals, cowboy hats, and showing off the many prizes they won.  We feel like, once again, the event achieved its goal of giving the nursing home residents one afternoon to feel really special, and to know they are not forgotten.


Steve and Allison would like to send out our biggest thank you to all the coordinators, who worked so hard setting up at each nursing home and making sure everything went smoothly (and some of them bought prizes, decorations, and made side dishes for the wrap-up party too).  They are:


Gainesville Health Care Center:  Patricia Allshouse, Dan and Ayola Singh-Kreitz

North Florida Rehab:  Donna Mitchell, Donna Moore, Joe Schentrup

Parklands Nursing and Rehab:  Agnes Bierbaum, Linda Gardner, Leanne Mohler

Park Meadows:  Vi Asmuth, Heather Geidel

University Place:  Sandy Johnson, Jean Lansford, Maria Paz

Wrap-up Party: Dianne Walsh (assisted by Gretchen Grigsby)


We’d also like to thank all of the board members, who each contributed a great deal of their time and energy to making this event possible.


One final big thank you to David’s Real Pit BBQ (on the southwest corner of NW 39th Ave and NW 51st St) for giving us a big discount on the main dishes for the wrap-up party.  This is the second time they have done this and we are very grateful, so if you’re looking for a good place to go out to lunch/dinner, check them out!



As many of you know, the board and several other dedicated volunteers have spent a lot of time this spring working on strategic planning for Friends Across the Ages.  It seems like the time is ripe for some significant adjustments in the way we do things (though the mission and spirit of the organization will remain the same).  We have not yet completed this process, but we are getting close!  J  We will be sure to keep everyone posted.


In the meantime, we wanted to let you know that Steve and Allison will be taking a bit of a sabbatical this summer, as a way to catch our breath and have a fresh view of things before implementing a new structure in the fall.  Primarily this will mean that we will not be accepting new volunteers until August.  If you or someone you know are interested in getting started in volunteering at one of the nursing homes this summer, we still encourage you to do so and we are still available for any questions or support, but the volunteering will just not be under the umbrella of Friends Across the Ages.  There will probably still be at least a few group events this summer, and we encourage anyone who is interested to please attend those!  And obviously volunteers who are already established are encouraged to keep doing what you’re doing.  J  We will still be available to support you as well if you have any questions or concerns.


Thank you for your understanding.  We are in our tenth year of doing this, and just want to make sure that we have the right structure in place so that Friends Across the Ages can continue for at least another 10 years and beyond!  Also, special thanks to those of you who have put so much time and energy into the strategic planning process.  We honestly don’t know what we’d do without you!





Friday, May 9th, 2:30PM – “Reaction Reading” -- Lead by board member Vi Asmuth (also known as M. Violet Asmuth, Ph.D.), this event will be held at Park Meadows.  Residents will be invited to participate in a program that consists of choral reading of poetry.  The group reacts with active participation, knowledge, opinions, feelings, and imagination.  Vi did a study monitoring the results of this small group program in three nursing homes in the Fort Myers/Cape Coral area. One facility liked the program so much that she continued leading groups there for five years.  If you find this concept interesting, you are welcome to come out to participate.  This is a monthly event. 


Monday, May 12th, 2:30 – 4PM -- Casino Time! – A monthly event at Parklands Nursing and Rehab.  At 2:30 there will be a bingo game.  Once we are finished with Bingo, we really up the stakes and move on to Blackjack!  The residents will be playing for “Bingo Bucks” and prizes.


Thursday, May 22nd, 3-4PM -- Birthday celebration -- Help us wish a happy birthday to all residents of Parklands Nursing and Rehab with birthdays in May. 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.  Do you play an instrument or have some other talent (clowns, mimes, juggling, spin a basketball on your nose, etc)?  We are always looking for new entertainment for the party – let us know! ***Please Note: This event has been moved up from its normal “Last Thursday of the Month” due to the Fashion Show (see below).***


Thursday, May 29th , 2:30PM – Fashion Show! – Join us at Parklands Nursing and Rehab for a Fashion Show.  Not sure exactly how it’s going to work, but from what the activities staff there says, it will probably be a lot of fun!  J




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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