HomePorts Benefit Dinner April 29

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Luisa’s Cucina Italiana is the host of the annual fund-raising dinner to benefit HomePorts, Inc. The event is being held on Monday, April 29, with seatings at 5:15 and 7:30 pm. Luisa’s is located at 849 Washington Ave, Chestertown.

Proceeds benefit HomePorts, greater Kent County’s non-profit aging-in-place membership organization. HomePorts assists those over 55 in providing access to a wide range of services in order to remain content, safe, and confident living in their own homes. HomePorts resources include a cadre of vetted volunteers to help members and referrals to reliable service providers in the fields of transportation; interior and exterior home maintenance; grocery & household services; personal assistance & trouble shooting; and pet care.  Additionally, HomePorts offers social and educational opportunities in cooperation with Shore Regional Health System. It also offers a subsidy for those with limited incomes.

A three-course meal will be offered with a choice of chicken, salmon, or eggplant parmagiana, coffee or tea. Tickets are $50. Call HomePorts, 443-380-0940 to reserve your spot. Space is limited.

Senior Nation: Ask Irma on Leaving Independent Living Too Soon

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Senior Nation is committed to offering resources to help us deal with the challenges and opportunities of aging. To that end, we are launching a new monthly video blog called “Ask Irma” hosted by Irma Toce, C.E.O. of the Londonderry on the Tred Avon in Easton, where we will be exploring on all topics related to aging.

This month: Prematurely leaving independent living and the challenges of falling.

This video is approximately one minute in length. For information about Londonderry on the Tred Avon please go here

Acts Retirement-Life Communities and Integrace Complete Affiliation

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Acts Retirement-Life Communities, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit senior living organizations, has completed its affiliation with Integrace and its family of communities located throughout Maryland. The affiliation brings together two nationally recognized names in the senior living industry under shared governance and leadership.

Integrace is a not-for-profit system of retirement communities consisting of Bayleigh Chase in Easton; Buckingham’s Choice in Adamstown; and Fairhaven in Sykesville; along with Copper Ridge, a memory support residence, in Sykesville. Collectively, these communities are home to approximately 1,080 residents and provide a continuum of services including independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing, short-term rehabilitation and specialized programming for Alzheimer’s Disease, dementia and other types of neurocognitive disorders.

Photo: On April 1, residents, colleagues, and executives from Integrace and Acts Retirement-Life Communities gathered for a reception at Bayleigh Chase in Easton to celebrate the completion of the affiliation between the two senior living organizations. Pictured from L-R: Marianne Ell, Salena Cephas, Nicholas Shockley, Marty Chance, Joel Yacks, Andrea Lev, Danielle Adams, Bobbi Sweitzer, Sherri Brown, Kay Blessing, Brittni Conn, April Hauf, Nan Lambeth, Amy Fountain, Louise Montgomery, Susan Covey

“We are excited to be bringing Integrace into the Acts family, and building upon the success of these communities,” said Acts President and CEO Gerald T. Grant. “Our organizations share a similar mission and culture with consistent values and commitments to residents and employees. It’s exciting to contemplate the future of  our  organizations and what we can achieve as we work together to enrich the lives of our residents.”

With the affiliation, Acts is expanding its reach in Maryland, where it operates another senior living community, Heron Point of Chestertown. Acts is one of the strongest companies of its kind among not-for-profit senior living providers with combined assets in excess of $2 billion and its obligated group maintains an A- rating from Fitch Ratings. With the affiliation finalized, Acts will manage a network of 26 senior living campuses in nine states totaling 9,504 units, maintaining its status as the third largest multi-site senior living organization according to the LeadingAge Ziegler 200 listing of the nation’s largest not-for-profit aging services providers. The Acts communities are in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Florida.

About Acts
Headquartered in suburban Philadelphia, Acts Retirement-Life Communities is the nation’s largest not-for-profit owner, operator and developer of senior living continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), with a network of 26 campuses in nine states serving approximately 10,000 residents and employing more than 8,000 people. All of the Acts communities and its affiliates are accredited by CARF International for meeting the industry’s highest operational and financial standards. For more information, please visit: ActsRetirement.org.

Senior Nation: Ellen Walbridge Turns 100

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: Pictured is the Walbridge family. In the photo seated left to right: Ellen with daughter Lois Schall. Standing left to right son Gene Walbridge, daughter Carol Goss, her husband Jeffrey Goss, daughter Barbara McCann, and her husband Larry McCann

Ellen Walbridge of Easton turned 100 at The Dixon House on February 26, 2019. On her birthday she stated, “I never dreamed I would be 100! It is a blessing to celebrate it.” Ellen had several celebrations: a celebration at her church, the Church of the Brethren, the Dixon House Celebration, and dinner with family. She added, “Dixon House has kept me active. I walk around the block every morning with my son which gets things going for me.”

 

Ellen Walbridge with Director Linda Elben as she blows out the candles of her cake at her 100th Birthday Celebration at Dixon House

Ellen was born in West Virginia but had ties to the Eastern Shore. At age 15, she came to work at Fike Orchard in Skipton at the suggestion of her brother who knew the Fikes through church. While living here, she met Alvin Walbridge at a church social and the rest is history. Over the years, she supported her husband who started Walbridge Bros. with two of his brothers. Family is very important to her. She and her husband had five children, one boy, and four girls. She now has 10 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Walbridge moved to The Dixon House in 2017 after living independently. When asked about the reason for longevity, she states that her brother lived until age 96 and she never drank or smoked. She was active in 4-H, loved to garden (she tends the flowers at The Dixon House), and enjoyed knitting, crocheting, and sewing. She also loves to bake, helping with the baking activities at The Dixon House, and lemon meringue pie is her specialty.

 

At her celebration at The Dixon House, Ellen received salutations from Governor Hogan and from the Eastern Shore Delegates. Pastor Joe Glass played her favorite hymns on the accordion. Mayor Robert Willey gave her a free parking card for the town of Easton. Sheriff Joe Gamble gave her a “Get Out of Jail Free” card, which gave her a laugh. She stated, “I will try and be good!”

The mission of The Dixon House is to provide high quality and affordable residential care to seniors in an enriching home-like environment. For further information, contact Linda Elben, Executive Director at 410-822-6661 or visit dixonhouse.org.

The Connection Between Seniors and Pets

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On Thursday, March 7, at 11:00am, Jane Welsh, Executive Director, and JP Hooker, Outreach Coordinator, of the Animal Care Shelter of Kent County (formerly known as the Humane Society) will present information on the benefits of pets to older adults. The event will be held upstairs in the Chestertown Town Hall and is sponsored by HomePorts. All those interested are invited to attend.

Several studies have documented the relationship between pet ownership and cardiovascular disease, “with many reporting beneficial effects, including increased physical activity, favorable lipid profiles, lower systemic blood pressure, improved autonomic tone, diminished sympathetic responses to stress, and improved survival after an acute coronary syndrome,” according to the American Heart Association.

The talk will also touch on the option of having senior pets, pets that are not as rambunctious and can adapt to a senior’s lifestyle and needs, according to Karen Wright, HomePorts Executive Director.

HomePorts is a membership organization helping older adults continue living safely and independently in their own homes. Set up by and for local residents, HomePorts is incorporated as a Maryland nonprofit.

Those eligible for membership include anyone over 55 living in the greater Kent County area. HomePorts is modeled after similar organizations operating successfully in other regions of the country.  Founding members spent two years studying other such “villages”, which are springing up rapidly in many communities and are cited by experts as the wave of the future.

HomePorts resources include a cadre of vetted volunteers and referrals to reliable service providers in the fields of transportation; interior and exterior home and yard maintenance; grocery & household services; and personal assistance & trouble shooting.  Additionally, HomePorts encourages participation in social, educational, and cultural activities.

HomePorts partners with Upper Shore Aging and the Shore Regional Health System. It offers financial assistance to those with limited incomes.

Information is available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., by calling 443-480-0940 or go to www.homeports.org. The e-mail address is info@homeports.org.

Acts Retirement and Integrace Sign Agreement

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Acts Retirement-Life Communities, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit senior living organizations, has entered into an agreement to affiliate with Integrace and assume management and operation of its four senior living communities located throughout Maryland. The affiliation is expected to close on May 1, 2019, at which time Integrace and its current entities will become affiliated with Acts.

Founded in 1974, Integrace is a not-for-profit system of retirement communities consisting of Bayleigh Chase in Easton; Buckingham’s Choice in Adamstown; Fairhaven in Sykesville; and Copper Ridge in Sykesville, along with an industry renowned research institute, The Integrace Institute. Collectively, the four communities are home to approximately 1,080 residents and provide a continuum of services including independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing, short-term rehabilitation and specialized programming for Alzheimer’s Disease, dementia and other types of neurocognitive disorders.

Bayleigh Chase

“Our affiliation with Integrace is an exciting opportunity for Acts as our organizations share a common mission, values and desire to enrich the lives of seniors,” said Gerald T. Grant, Acts President and CEO. “We are excited to welcome Integrace into the Acts family, further strengthening both organizations and helping to secure a positive future for all the residents and staff under our care.”

Heron Point of Chestertown

With the affiliation, Acts will be expanding its presence in Maryland, where it operates another senior living community, Heron Point of Chestertown. Acts is one of the strongest companies of its kind among not-for-profit senior living providers with assets of $1.5 billion and maintains an A- rating from Fitch Ratings. Upon regulatory approval of the affiliation, Acts will manage a network of 27 faith-based senior living communities in nine states totaling 9,504 units, maintaining its status as the third largest multi-site senior living organization according to the LeadingAge Ziegler listing of the nation’s not-for-profit aging services providers. The Acts communities are located in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Florida.

“We are delighted to be joining forces with Acts, which is one of the industry’s premier senior living organization’s that throughout its history has demonstrated a strong commitment to residents and employees,” said Jackie Harris, Integrace President and CEO. “We believe that our faith-based organizations blend very well, and that our affiliation will contribute greatly to the continued excellent lifestyle and care for residents and growth experience for employees.”

Integrace Bayleigh Chase Named “Best Nursing Home” by U.S. News & World Report

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Integrace Bayleigh Chase has earned the designation of “Best Nursing Home” for 2018-2019 from U.S. News & World Report.

To compile the 2018-2019 rankings, U.S. News researchers evaluated nearly 13,000 nursing homes nationwide. Now in its ninth year, the overall ratings methodology was updated to emphasize staffing quality. U.S. News also added a Short-Stay Rehabilitation rating this year to provide a clearer view of the quality of care provided to short-stay patients in need of intensive rehabilitation or nursing services before they return home after a surgery, stroke, accident or illness.

To earn the Best Nursing Homes recognition, nursing homes must receive a high-performance rating in either the Short-Stay Rehabilitation or Overall ratings and must rank at least Average in the other.

The full list of the 2018-2019 Best Nursing Homes is available at U.S. News & World Report’s Nursing Home Finder (https://health.usnews.com/best-nursing-homes).

About Integrace Bayleigh Chase

Located on a 35-acre campus in historic Easton, Bayleigh Chase is a not-for-profit life plan community that affords residents a lifestyle of flexibility and choice to live life on their own terms. Bayleigh Chase offers independent living options in its villas, cottages and apartment homes, as well as a continuum of supportive living services, including assisted living, neurocognitive support, outpatient and short-term rehabilitation, skilled nursing and diagnostic and treatment support through the Samuel and Alexia Bratton Neurocognitive Clinic. For more information, please call 410-763-7167 or visit www.bayleighchase.org.

About Integrace

Integrace is a forward-thinking non-profit organization that strives to ignite in all people the passion for meaningful living. Integrace oversees a family of vibrant senior living communities in Maryland, including Bayleigh Chase in Easton, Buckingham’s Choice in Adamstown, and Fairhaven in Sykesville. Integrace is also an internationally-recognized leader in the art of neurocognitive support, with the Sykesville-based Copper Ridge community and Integrace Institute, as well as two neurocognitive clinics in Easton and Sykesville, serving as catalysts to a profound shift in how we perceive, and relate to, those living with Alzheimer’s, dementia and many other forms of cognitive change. Integrace communities provide a continuum of services to support both residents and the greater community, including assisted living, skilled nursing, short-term rehabilitation and more. Each of these innovative programs focuses on person-centered living, honoring the abilities, possibilities and authenticity of each individual. For more information, please visit Integrace.org.

Senior Nation: The Dixon House 99ers by Amy Blades Steward

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When you meet Ellen Walbridge and Helen Crow, residents of Dixon House in Easton, you won’t suspect that they are both 99 years old. Both women are vibrant and enjoy recalling their full and rich lives. This is the case for several residents at The Dixon House in Easton.

According to Linda Elben, Executive Director, “We are seeing more and more residents coming to us later in their lives, in their 90s, still very active and living quality lives. Most just need to simplify their living and have less responsibilities.”

She adds, “These two women are remarkable. They join a number of our residents who are centenarians or who approaching 100 years of age. It is a testament to them living active lives surrounded by family and friends.”

Ellen Walbridge, a resident of Dixon House, will turn 100 in February 2019.

Ellen Walbridge, born in West Virginia, had ties to the Eastern Shore. At age 15, she followed her brother, who came to work at Fike Orchard in Skipton. While living here, she met Alvin Walbridge at a church social and the rest is history. Over the years, she supported her husband who started Walbridge Builders. Family is very important to her. She and her husband had five children, one boy and four girls. She now has 10 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Walbridge moved to The Dixon House in 2017 after living independently. When asked about the reason for longevity, she states that her brother lived until age 96 and she never drank or smoked. She was active in 4-H, loved to garden (she tends the flowers at The Dixon House), and enjoyed knitting, crocheting, and sewing. She also loves to bake, helping with the baking activities at The Dixon House, and lemon meringue pie is her specialty. She comments, “I don’t feel real young, but I don’t feel 99.” She will turn 100 in February 2019.

Helen Crow, a resident of Dixon House, will turn 100 in April 20.

Born in rural Ohio, Helen Crow was always physically active. Her father, a builder, was also a physically active person. Helen recalls doing handstands and headstands when she was young. Today, she doesn’t miss an exercise class at The Dixon House. She and her husband, Elmer, nicknamed “Amo” married after Amo served in the Army’s 17th Airborne Division as a paratrooper during World War II. The two had three children, and today she has three grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Amo had a career as a master craftsman, training many young men who entered the flooring trade, while Helen did office work for a law firm, then a refinery.

Both Helen and Amo participated in an activities group for art in Cincinnati, where Helen enjoyed oils and watercolors and Amo enjoyed stained glass, caning, and pottery. The two also enjoyed music, attending Cincinnati Symphony concerts for 40 years. The couple retired to Florida and then to Easton, where their son, Roger and daughter-in-law Heather live. The two then came to live at The Dixon House in 2014. Crow comments, “Easton is a nice town. We were amazed at the quality of friends we have made at Dixon House.” She adds, “I have had a good life.”

The mission of The Dixon House is to provide high quality and affordable residential care to seniors in an enriching home-like environment. For further information, contact Linda Elben, Executive Director at 410-822-6661 or visit dixonhouse.org.

Kent County Health and Wellness Expo Set for October 18

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HomePorts, Inc. and Kent County Public Schools, in partnership with the Kent County Health Department, the University of Maryland Shore Regional Health, and Anne Arundel Medical Center, will hold the annual Health and Wellness Expo on Thursday, October 18, 2018, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Kent County High School in Worton.

This year’s Expo, which is free and open to the public, is the largest ever held in this area. The event will highlight over 75 community resources offering the latest health, wellness and safety information. It is a one-stop opportunity for busy individuals and families of all ages. Features include:

– Free health screenings
– Free Morning Refreshments
– Flu Shots
– Twelve Talks by Local Medical Professionals
– Over 75 exhibitors, both non-profit organizations and local businesses
– Lunch available for purchase

Expert talks, by physicians from both Shore Regional Health and Anne Arundel Medical Center and other health care practitioners, will include:

– Mental Health In Later Life – Dr. Allan Anderson, Geriatric Psychiatrist
– Ten Signs of Alzheimer’s and Dementia – Cynthia Prud’homme, Education Coordinator, Alzheimer’s Association
– Sleep Problems – Dr. Fernando Cruz DeLeon, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health
– Hormone Replacement Therapy: Risks and Rewards –Dale Jafari, Nurse Practitioner, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health
– Exercise/Physical Fitness Programs in Kent County – Dr. Paul Simonetti, Physical Therapist, Chestertown Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
– Facts and Myths of Hospice Care – Heather Guerieri, RN, MSN, CHPN, Executive Director, Compass Regional Hospice
– How Can Grief Support Help – Rhonda Knotts, MCC, Supervisor of Grief Services, Compass Regional Hospice
– Urogynecology and Pelvic Health – Dr. Briana Walton, Obstetrician/Gynecologist, Anne Arundel Medical Center
– Cardiovascular Health – Dr. Juan Cordero, Cardiologist, Anne Arundel Medical Center
– Diabetes: Strategies for Lowering Your HA1C – Doris Tate, Diabetes Management Nurse Practitioner, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health
– Pain Management During the Opioid Epidemic – KURE pain management
– Stress Management – Patricia Deitz, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Chester River Behavioral Health

“This is an event people shouldn’t miss, according to Wayne Benjamin, M.D., event director.  “It is a once-a-year opportunity for free screenings and a huge variety of useful information- something for everybody. I especially want people to know about and take advantage of the classroom information sessions led by health care experts on 12 different topics. Everyone, I guarantee, will come away with new information and be better prepared to manage their own health and their family’s health.”

The school gym will be transformed into a large exhibit hall, with tables staffed by professionals offering a wide variety of information and guidance on local services. For information on exhibiting, contact Greer Davis, 410-708-2993 or ggbdavis@gmail.com. The deadline for exhibitor sign-up is September 15.

In addition, at 12.30 p.m. there will be a forum with candidates for Kent County Commissioner, who will address topics of community concern.

For more information, email karen@homeports.org or visit www.homeports.org.

HomePorts is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit membership organization providing adults in greater Kent County, Maryland, age 55 and above,  with a wide range of services they want and need to remain safe and confident living in their own homes. Founded in 2008, HomePorts is among a rapidly-growing number of member-driven “villages” developing around the country.  HomePorts is supported by annual membership fees from more than 80 households and contributions.

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