Last Friday afternoon, the dining hall buzzed with anticipation. Residents of the assisted and independent living were encouraged to share their gifts and skills, and the result was something wholesome and enjoyable, regardless of age or ability.
From traditional musical numbers and dance pieces to the more unique comedy acts, there was something for everyone to like and love while getting to know a bit more about our neighbors.
Starting off the festivities was a Macarena dance number spearheaded by our very own kitchen cooks and auxiliary staff. The stage was soon privileged to share space with accomplished pianists and violinists sharing familiar religious tunes. Studies have known that listening to music releases dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, “feel-good” hormones that encourage feelings of well-being and happy connections. Residents had the opportunity to help each other be happy sharing their musical skills with us.
While the classical piano concertos were lovely, the variety only grew from the eclectic assortment of acts worthy of any network televised production: Lowell had us all dazzled by his wooden marionette performing a jaunty jig, all while he wiggled his ears. Jokes were shared with a big grin from another resident; another proved he was the King of Name-That-Tune, nailing every spontaneous song played by a third party. A guest from the islands shared her Hawaiian hula, and the Activities Director amazed all with her yoga acrobatics and yoga.
Summerfield is home to many artists of varied mediums of pastel and acrylic to sculpture and pencil. Also on display were more craft works or hand-sewn quilts and cross-stitch; also on display were blue ribbon-winning paintings and self-published stories; sailboats made from string and the Nauvoo temple made from Legos were a pleasant surprise as a stunning visual attraction.
In comparable studies of the oldest living seniors in the world, factors such as positive mindsets, stress management and cognitive stimulation have been linked to longer lives. Creative projects, regardless of skill level, stimulate the mind and encourage the feel-good hormones when a task is completed. In sharing their talents, we were able to see how our resident seniors are improving their quality of life by doing what they love. What a great gift for us all to enjoy.
To learn more about how life at Summerfield can be the fun and wholesome community for your senior, call one of our senior living advocates at (801) 434-7581 or come take a tour and see for yourself.