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A wise person once said, “Always find a reason to laugh. It may not add years to your life, but it will surely add life to your years.”


This expression was taken to heart during National Nursing Home Week 2016 at Life Care Center of Blount County in Louisville, Tennessee. Residents, families and associates spread smiles and laughter as they participated in a week-long celebration to commemorate “It’s a Small Town with a Big Heart,” this year’s theme.


            Associates and residents dressed up every day of the week to represent the different eras of small towns throughout American history. Hallways were filled with sequins and fringe for the Roaring Twenties, poodle skirts and leather jackets for the Fabulous Fifties, bellbottom jeans and tie-dye shirts for the Groovy Seventies and neon-inspired clothing, denim and leather for the Radical Eighties.


            The facility hosted several special events throughout the week as well, including a Great Gatsby-themed dinner with fringed streamers and a photo booth, an associate relay race followed by a pie-throwing contest and a drive-in movie party. In addition, Shangri-La Therapeutic Academy of Riding’s miniature ponies made a special visit.


            A Fun Fair ended the entertaining week, complete with the sounds of Appalachian/bluegrass music by Boogertown Gap, a dunking booth, prizes, popcorn and balloon animals.


            “I truly enjoyed visiting with the ponies,” shared resident Wanda Story. “I loved brushing their coats and feeling their warm breath on my hands.”


            “As a recreational therapist, I am thrilled to witness residents enjoying such sensory-stimulating activities,” said Blakely Jones, activity director. “It was a win-win for associates and residents alike! And relaxing for everyone.”


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