Snowshoeing during a Wolf Moon

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Written by Wake Robin resident, Ann

Did you ever think it would be fun to celebrate the full January Wolf Moon and full February Snow moon with an after dinner scenic snowshoe walk? Living at Wake Robin folks can do that as long as the weather cooperates.   full moon in the woods

Members of Wake Robin love sharing their passions. Bill’s passion was winter fun. Bill was part of the 10th Mountain Division in WWII and saw action against the Germans at Riva Ridge in Italy. After the war he wrote a book on snowshoeing and x-c skiing. It was basically his idea to gather Wake Robin friends for this after dinner snowshoe walk. Now others carry on his leadership.   Wake Robin has the ideal location for this one-hour adventure. Those interested gather in the Community Center. A short walk through the woods on the one of Wake Robin’s trails, with the moon making tree shadows on the snow, brings one out to our South Meadow Hill. From there one looks down on Lake Champlain and lights along the shore.

Another trail on the return brings one to a field with a view of Camel’s Hump.   On one occasion we were out ahead of the moon on a very clear night. My how the stars do shine brightly! After picking out many constellations, we turned around and found a huge moon rising from behind the top of the hill and some tall evergreens. Such a sight!

Bill started a tradition on these walks of our howling at January’s Wolf moon – even though it is a myth that wolves howl at the moon. Why do we do it?  Simply because it is fun. On occasion we have howled if the group gets separated to locate each other, which wolves will do also. Howling is quite satisfying. So is being outside on a beautiful winter evening.

snowshoe - from A Hiltz resized

 

Wake Robin Receives Green Award

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The International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) has awarded Wake Robin their 2016 ICAA Innovators Green Award.

icaa-awardICAA’s goals are to change society’s perceptions of aging and improve the quality of life for older adults. The organizations that were considered for this award were judged based on their excellence in making a positive difference in the lives of older adults in a sustainable, environmentally friendly way.

Some green initiatives at Wake Robin:

  • Instead of using bleach in the laundry and Aquatic Center – Wake Robin uses Ozone. It saves 316,090 gallons of hot water and over $24,000 in one year alone.
  • Wake Robin releases 100,000 lady bugs in the spring instead of spraying pesticides to control the aphids and scale bugs.
  • Wake Robin sources food from local farms. 100% of the milk purchased is rBGH free. 100% of the ground beef used is local, hormone and antibiotic free. 100% of our bread is locally sourced. 90% of the cheese, yogurt, pudding and other dairy foods are local Vermont products. 27% of the fruits and vegetables served are sourced from local farms
  • 90% of food waste from Wake Robin’s kitchens is composted. Residents throughout the community compost – in fact, composting at Wake Robin was initiated by residents.
  • Wake Robin uses solar power from a solar farm in Monkton, VT. This reduces on-site energy costs by 24%.
  • Employee ride sharing is encouraged. Carpool employees can add their names for a gift card raffle that is drawn every month.

Environmental Services Director, Leslie Parker remarked; “The success of our green initiative – and the practices we have in place to preserve and sustain a healthy community – would not be possible without the commitment of the entire Wake Robin community – from the Board and Staff to the dedicated Residents.”

Wake Robin is proud to have been recognized for its initiative and will continue to keep this a part of the fabric of our culture.

Wake Robin Residents Visit the Adirondacks

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It’s one thing to travel, but Wake Robin residents like to take their adventures one step further and really experience all a place has to offer. That’s exactly what 40 residents, and future residents, did October 6-7 when they traveled to the Adirondacks as part of the Inquire program.

The kaleidoscope of autumn colors travelers witnessed as the bus wrapped itself along the most scenic routes, set the tone perfectly. Travelers were able to witness untouched natural areas, breath the air, hear the sounds, visit museums, and stay overnight in an authentic Adirondack Great Camp.

canoeing on the lakeDay one included a visit to the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake. There, participants were able to see historically significant treasures from boats and horse-drawn coaches and sleighs to an original Adirondack steamer with its rustic seating for summer transport. Dozens of authentic exhibits demonstrated the stark contrast of those who struggled to live in the wilderness verses the comfort of life those who used the Adirondacks as their seasonal playground experienced.

2 men in red chairs looking over sagamore and one man standing near lakeGreat Camp Sagamore offered residents a chance to step back in time, enjoy nature, and relax in a rustic and comfortable setting. The century old cabins, named after Vanderbilt children; George, Gloria, and Alfred, as well as the large chalet style lodge “Wigwam” held gorgeous stone fireplaces and woodwork inside making for a cozy overnight after a private tour of the camp, tasty dinner, and lively concert featuring local folk musicians and story tellers. The following day started out beautifully as some canoed, hiked or just relaxed in lakeside Adirondack chairs after a hearty breakfast and an optional morning meditation. It was quite a feeling to be taking in the same sights and comforts as celebrities like Cary Grant, Jean Tierney and Howard Hughes all of whom frequented the property to escape the Hollywood rat race. Imagine sitting in the room where Hoagie Carmichel wrote Stardust. We did.

group of 6 walking on trailThe personalized trip didn’t end at Sagamore though. The Wild Center, an Adirondack natural history museum, was the focus of day two. The group enjoyed dozens of exhibits on display to the public, but especially enjoyed the behind-the-scenes tour arranged just for Wake Robiners. Led by staff wildlife biologists, groups from Wake Robin were taken behind locked doors to experience day-to-day operations including animal care. Although intimidating, the resident porcupine was quiet and unthreatening – as were a bevy of native snakes, owls, hawks, and the museum’s grand dame – Skitters – a 14-year old otter.

over-tree walkwayComing home through Saranac Lake and Lake Placid was a perfect way to see peak color and the high peaks did not disappoint – deep reds, bright oranges, yellow, and just enough green to let us know what a treat we were seeing. The ferry ride across Lake Champlain was smooth as silk and the Green Mountains, although largely still green, were a welcomed sight for this bleary eyed group of adventurers. Back in time for dinner at Wake Robin and a good night’s sleep. Where to next?

Wake Robin Celebrates Food Day!

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buffetOn October 24th, Wake Robin celebrated Food Day. Food Day is a nationwide initiative that focuses on local, affordable and sustainable food. Some of the festivities included visits from local farms; Shelburne Farms came and spoke about cheese making, as well as the importance of their educational programs. Bella Farms discussed organic farming and their Wake Robin CSA. Staff also contributed dishes in a food competition in which 50% of the ingredients had to be locally sourced.

This year, there were with more than 7,500 Food Day events happening around the country. In New England 57 hospitals committed to serving meat free of antibiotics. Sustainable and organic farming practices contribute to reduced water and air pollution, richer organic material in soil and healthier farm animals and communities.

Thank you to all the local vendors who participated and made this event such a success!

Walk to End Alzheimer’s 2014

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flowers

Wake Robin participated in the 2014 Walk to End Alzheimer’s on Sunday, September 21st at the Shelburne Museum. It was a beautiful sunny day and over 1000 walkers came to support this cause. $178,000 was raised for the Shelburne Walk and with donations still trickling in we hope to make the $180,000 fundraising goal for the year!

Walkers were given flowers to represent their connection to the disease.

Blue represents someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia

Purple is for someone who has lost a loved one to the disease.

Yellow represents someone who is currently supporting or caring for someone with Alzheimer’s.

Orange is for everyone who supports the cause and vision of a world without Alzheimer’s

At the beginning of the walk, volunteers collected the flowers and “planted” the promise garden for walkers to discover upon their return.

More than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease and every 67 seconds someone in the United States develops Alzheimer’s.

Premier Therapy Makes a Splash!

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aquatics demoPremier Therapy hosted an Aquatics Demo at the Wake Robin pool to promote the benefits of Aquatic Therapy. Alyson addressed the group describing how the buoyancy of water decreases pressure on joints and spine. Water also supports and assists movement – which Alyson and Courtney expertly displayed; giving examples of exercises that residents may see during the weekly Aquatics classes offered at Wake Robin. Aqua walking/running can produce cardiovascular results with less impact on the joints! Thank you to Premier Therapy for illuminating us on the benefits of Aquatic Therapy and Exercise!

Wake Robin at the Vermont Fresh Network Forum

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Kathy & Tim

(picture taken by Brent Harrewyn at Hoverfly Photography)

 

On August 3rd, The Vermont Fresh Network Annual Forum was the place to be for a food lover. Chefs and farmers lined the inside of the Coach Barn at Shelburne Farms offering up delicacies for over 500 people in attendance.  Wake Robin was there with one of our farm partners, Bella Farms, serving up a delicious gazpacho made with fresh produce harvested from their fields in Monkton, Vermont. This Annual Forum is a chance for chefs and farmers to celebrate all the bounty that Vermont has to offer.

Bella Farms is a huge contributor to Wake Robin – not only do they supply produce to the Wake Robin kitchens, but they also set up a CSA on Fridays as a part of our CORE program – Wake Robin’s Employee Initiative.

Welcome, Premier Therapy!

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5 women sitting on a rock wallWake Robin is pleased to welcome Premier Therapy Services to the community! The new therapy staff bring an exciting new set of skills and expertise to the campus. They are already offering services such as Physical, Occupational and Speech therapy along with expanded exercise groups and new programs focusing on maintaining health and well-being. Great things are already happening in the community!

Welcome, Patrick McKee!

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Patrick shaking handsYesterday, Wake Robin hosted an open house to give the community an opportunity to meet our new President & CEO, Patrick McKee. Patrick shared some impressions from his first few weeks during a recent Cup of Conversation:  “All of my initial interactions have taken place within a starting point of mutual respect both with residents and staff. The history here of active involvement within a dynamic community is evident and continuing.  There is work being done that makes the community a national leader.  The commitment to healthy and local food is just one example.  The professionalism and commitment of the staff is immediately evident.  The great level of caring shown in health services is clear as is the high level of skill.  It is difficult to single out a department because this seems to be the standard throughout Wake Robin.”

Welcome, Patrick McKee!

Walk to End Alzheimer’s

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team photoGo Team Wake Robin!

This year a team of staff and residents collaborated to raise money and awareness for the Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s. As a group they raised over $4,000 bringing the total raised this year’s walk to $140,000! That is double the amount raised last year. And donations are being accepted until October 31st. Wake Robin is a corporate sponsor for the walk, and hopes that the efforts of all groups will not only raise badly needed money for research, but also raise awareness that this debilitating disease affects 1 in 3 seniors.*Please visit the Alzheimer’s Association website for more information, including the 10 signs to look for if you suspect you or someone you know might have the disease. http://www.alz.org/ . Wake Robin hopes to be part of the solution to this costly and widespread problem.

*Facts from The Alzheimer’s Association website.

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