OWOSSO — An open house and ribbon-cutting at Oliver Woods Assisted Living and Memory Care gave the public a chance Tuesday to check out such improvements as a remodeled building interior, new lifestyle category and therapy gym.
Dozens attended the event, including Owosso Public Safety Director Kevin Lenkart and former Republican State Sen. Dave Robertson. Guests were served hors d’oeuvres, listened to music by local guitarist Pat Carmody and went on tours of the facility.
The Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce hosted the ribbon-cutting, with Oliver Woods resident Fred Kaufman performing the honor of snipping the purple ribbon.
“This, I believe, is a new adventure for Oliver Woods,” Kaufman, 100, said before the ceremony. “They’re setting up a unit for independent people, who will be able to forget their worries, live freely and enjoy fellowship with friends.”
Residents who sign up for the new “enhanced living” category will live in Building 1, which over the past several months has received new paint, flooring, furniture in common areas, living room configuration and artwork.
The building has reopened with 20 apartments, divided between assisted living and “enhanced living,” in which residents have full access to the community, three hot meals a day, laundry, housekeeping and home-health services.
“One of the biggest changes seniors go through — and we’ve really been able to recognize this during COVID-19 — is loneliness,” Oliver Woods Executive Director Dan Marchione said. “So, a comfortable environment where you can come and go as you want, but have access to a nurse — that’s what we’re trying to do.”
As for the renovations, because of the pandemic residents couldn’t use the building’s common areas for months — until now.
“Residents are finally able to experience the renovations, which is awesome,” Marchione said.
In addition, Oliver Woods has partnered with Kennett Square, Pennsylvania-based Genesis Rehab Services to build a therapy gym offering physical, occupational and speech therapy, as well as therapeutic massage.
The professional gym, featuring a NuStep Recumbent Cross Trainer, exercise table, weights and bands, and ultrasound and electrical stimulation machine for pain, came into use July 1.
For now, the clinic is just for Oliver Woods residents but the facility plans to open it up to doctor-referred community members in the future, said Julie Zenker, Genesis occupational and rehabilitation manager.
“We’re trying to get the community to retain and regain their independence,” Zenker said.
To find out more about Oliver Woods, visit leisure-living.com/community/oliver-woods-mi.