Marquette Senior Center teams up with Brookridge Heights to host themed social hour
By JACKIE JAHFETSON
Journal Staff Writer
MARQUETTE — Smooth saxophone notes played with the help of a trumpeter imbued feelings of yesteryears.
A Swedish treat of cardamom bread laid bonny on a silver platter, ready to be engulfed by many Scandinavian descendants.
From jazz to heritage desserts, a group of seniors gathered at the Roaring ’20s social hour to relive the stories and experiences of long ago.
The community event took place Friday afternoon at the Marquette Senior Center with special host, Brookridge Heights, there to cater the event with fresh berry pinwheels, chocolate-covered strawberries, mini apple pies and other assorted goodies.
As a way to expand services to the community, Brookridge Heights Director of Sales and Marketing Lindsay Hemmila said this was the perfect opportunity to team up with the center.
“A lot of people don’t start thinking about assisted living or memory support options until the day they need them,” Hemmila said. “So I feel the more we can get out in the community and talk about the services and how our community is truly an apartment building. You get as much or little assistance for what you need. All of our cares are very personalized; we do individualized plans for everyone. And we’re there to just assist. I think some people think we’re more of an institution-like setting, and we’re not.”
Events like this bring people together and that is one of the goals the two organizations strive for, Marquette Senior Services Manager Maureen McFadden said.
“I thought it was a wonderful idea because the goal is — with any service provider for older adults in our area is — to provide services to the best of our ability and to help those that need the help,” McFadden said. “If we can do that in a safe-home environment like Brookridge Heights provides for their residents or if we can do that through social programs that bring people together in food and fellowship, I think it’s just wonderful.”
The two organizations collaborated this past Thanksgiving where the Brookridge Music Scene came to the feast and played music, Hemmila said, adding it was a successful event.
“We were thinking about the time of year we were going to hold the event and I said, ‘Let’s start this decade off with a bang. Let’s revisit past memories while ushering ourselves into a new decade and why not celebrate the Roaring ’20s?'” McFadden said. “It’s January. It’s a new year. It’s fun.”
The best part about these events is seeing people laughing and sharing in that camaraderie because it adds to the quality of life, McFadden added.
“It’s really all about living, right? That’s the goal: live the life we have to live and live it well,” McFadden said. “I just love meeting our people. I learn something new every single day and I genuinely could not love my job more because of it.”
For attendee Marlene Johnson, these events are a way to get out of the house and enjoy a good cup of coffee and conversation.
“We love getting out and meeting new people. We come to many classes here,” Johnson said. “We keep ourselves going … you have to get out, you know. Sometimes you don’t want to go out on a day like today, especially (when you’re) our age. We’re both in our 80s but meeting people (is important).”
Jackie Jahfetson can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 248. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.