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Woodland Pond Stories, Events and Community Happenings by lew697
Live the life that you love in the cultural heart of the Mid-Hudson Valley. Woodland Pond beckons. Let the art, history and energy of the area inspire you and the varying levels of all-inclusive individualized care support you for a lifetime of confident living.
October 01, 2013 05:19 PM | 0 0 comments | 620 620 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

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Life Care Communities Ensure that Seniors Get Continuing Care at Lower Costs
by lew697
July 24, 2015 11:27 AM | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

There are more than 100 senior living community options in the state of New York, yet only 11 offer Life care for their residents. Life care is a type of long-term care insurance offered in New York to help seniors age in place with financial protection against long term private pay costs. Wanting to be a resource to the surrounding community, Michelle Gramoglia, executive director for Woodland Pond, has advice and information to share.

 

“Life care guarantees a predictable cost of long-term care for life in exchange for a fixed upfront fee and a lower monthly fee,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond at New Paltz. “In the communities where it is offered, it is an optional component of a residential contract.  Here at Woodland Pond, more than 90 percent of all residents opt for the protection of Life care.  By doing so, the residents have paid an average of $60,000 per person to ensure that as they age in place and require care in either assisted living (including memory care) or skilled nursing, their cost of care will remain low and will be completely predictable for life.”

 

Life care is essentially a long-term care insurance policy, and in New York, communities that offer this type of contract are regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYS DFS) as if they were any other type of fully licensed insurance company. According to a report conducted by the United States Government Accountability Office, a growing population of older Americans is seeking options to ensure that their assets and income in retirement will cover the cost of their housing and health care needs. Wishing to give residents the comfort of aging in place, with predictability in costs for retirement, the Life care concept gives families and residents peace of mind that they will be taken care of as their health care needs change over time.

 

According to the American Seniors Housing Association, CCRCs offer an alternative lifestyle option for older adults and are especially attractive to seniors making decisions for their long-term care future. They allow seniors to convert home equity or other assets into housing and to receive daily living services and health care in a way that keeps monthly expenditures more stable. Life care contracts include unlimited enriched housing/assisted living care (if offered by the community) and unlimited skilled nursing facility services, along with independent housing and residential services and amenities. The resident's monthly fee cannot change due to a change in the level of covered health care required by the resident (except for normal operating costs and inflation adjustment). This means that the resident pays the same monthly fee in the skilled nursing facility as he or she paid in independent living. Many CCRCs/FFSCCRCs offer contracts which refund a specific percentage of the entrance fee regardless of the length of residency. (For example, 90 percent or 50 percent refundable contracts are currently offered in several communities). The refund is paid to the resident or the resident's estate if the contract is terminated or upon the resident’s death.

 

“When compared to traditional long-term care policies, Life care at our community saves residents a substantial amount of money,” said Gramoglia. “On average, if a female enters a senior living community at the age of 70, she will live another 17 years. For men, that average is another 13.7 years. With a normal policy, if a couple were to enter together, they would pay $10,000 per person per year. With Life care, the couple is looking at paying $120,000 combined for both people. The upfront fee is 100 percent tax deductible for most New York State residents, and the Life care option makes 20 percent of monthly service (maintenance) fees additionally tax deductible each and every year of residency.” 

 

At Woodland Pond, for 2015, the average monthly cost of care for a Life care resident is less than $4,000 per month, while those not opting for the protection of Life care are paying between $4,860 and more than $14,500 per month. At a savings of between just under $1,000 per month and $10,000 a month, Life care pays for itself quickly. It also provides the peace of mind that the care is there, at a cost far below market rates, when a resident needs it.  It guards residents from additional costs due to unexpected changes in their health and ensures that they transition to the right level of care when they may need to.

 

“Another benefit is that if you are married to someone and you both move in and one person’s needs change drastically before their spouse’s, you’ll both get the level of care you need while living in the same community,” said Gramoglia. “For example, if the husband is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and needs memory care, he does not need to transfer to a different campus specializing only in memory care to have his needs met. We have couples needing varying levels of care that are currently living at Woodland Pond who can testify to the ease of living at a CCRC. We welcome members of the public who are interested in learning more about Life care to our Lunch and Learn for the opportunity to talk to experts who can address their questions.” 

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Seniors Lead Bipartisan Political Affairs Committee at Woodland Pond
by lew697
June 24, 2015 05:42 PM | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Dorothy Jessup, chairperson for Woodland Pond’s Political Affairs Committee, recently helped seniors correctly fill out applications to become permanent absentee voters.
Dorothy Jessup, chairperson for Woodland Pond’s Political Affairs Committee, recently helped seniors correctly fill out applications to become permanent absentee voters.
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Knowing that voting is a privilege and understanding the importance of providing a bipartisan view of political issues and candidates, Woodland Pond of New Paltz residents eagerly participate in a Political Affairs Committee to help educate fellow residents on local politics. Older adults have a tremendous influence on elections, and the residents recognize the importance of learning about the candidates and issues in advance. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, voters 65 and older had a 72 percent turnout during the last presidential election, the highest percentage of any age group. The committee invites speakers from both political parties to present a bipartisan view and also schedules transportation to the polls and political events. Most of the guest speakers are locals seeking office, have special knowledge about political issues, or are politicians explaining their programs.  The group is already looking toward the next election, and since there’s plenty of time to register to vote, they’re hoping to encourage others to educate themselves and participate as well.

 

“We just had the New Paltz Village elections this spring and are preparing for the New Paltz Town elections, which coincide with the national and state elections,” said Dorothy Jessup, Political Affairs Committee chairperson. “During the last congressional election, we had the pleasure of welcoming two local candidates to Woodland Pond to present their viewpoints. When you do something you learn more about it. Even though many of us are Democrats, we vote across party lines. Before joining the political affairs committee, I attended only Democratic caucuses, but now I attend Republican ones as well, so I can present a bipartisan view of local politics.”

 

Every two years the committee has town board candidates come out to speak, as well as candidates for the biannual town and county elections. The Political Affairs Committee also schedules speakers who can present both sides of a controversial political topic, such as the recent Town/Village consolidation proposal. In addition to scheduling speaking engagements and debates at Woodland Pond, the committee also arranges transportation to take residents to local sites such as colleges, where the candidates will deliver additional speeches or conduct debates.

 

“Some people take the privilege of voting for granted and do not exercise their right to vote,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond at New Paltz. “It is amazing to see firsthand how many passionate voters and advocates we have at Woodland Pond and what positive changes they have helped implement. Our residents and team members are encouraged by the political affairs group to educate themselves on what’s happening in the political sphere and to make informed decisions when voting. I am really proud of this committee’s work.”

 

Recently, the political affairs committee made a strong effort to get residents out to vote on a school bond proposal that was put before the community to help repair parts of the school and restore several neglected school buildings. They had to revote on the proposal three times, and it finally passed in March. This spring, the committee also encouraged residents to participate in the Village election, the regular school board election and the operating budget vote. In late August or September, the committee will participate in local caucuses and witness firsthand how one nominee for office, whom 5,000 or so people may be voting for, will be selected by maybe 100 individuals through the open primary.

 

“I’ve been involved in politics since 1954, participating in grassroots efforts, local campaigning, voting and I even played a part in the Democratic Reform Movement in New York City,” said Jessup. “During my retirement I became more involved in politics when fellow citizens and I decided to work toward getting a new superintendent on the school board, someone who represented the forward-looking progressive community of New Paltz. We worked diligently to make that goal a reality. I then worked with fellow citizens to bring Woodland Pond to fruition, and now I chair the Political Affairs Committee. It was this involvement later in my life that showed me how much more of a difference one can make by acting at the local government level, as opposed to participating in the larger state or national scene. We have been able to accomplish so much just by getting both parties to compromise, which we did by simple talking to people and getting them to listen.”

 

Jessup feels strongly that it is important for Woodland Pond residents to vote in local elections so local political officials will know that seniors are constituents who pay attention to what they do. The residents have seen how their voices have made a difference, and they will continue with grassroots efforts leading up to the next election and others in the future. The residents look forward to getting out the vote and influencing change in the coming months.

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Seniors Showcase Extraordinary Gardens at Woodland Pond's Summer Garden Show
by lew697
June 24, 2015 11:13 AM | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Woodland Pond residents admire The Resident Community Garden, which is maintained by fellow residents at the senior living community.
Woodland Pond residents admire The Resident Community Garden, which is maintained by fellow residents at the senior living community.
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Keeping gloves on her hands is hard for Cynthia Lee, a Woodland Pond resident, who has been gardening for 67 years and loves to feel the moist earth between her fingers and in her hands. She grew up on a farm and began planting and tending her family’s garden at the age of eight. Now she continues her passion for beautifying the environment at her cottage in the New Paltz continuing care retirement community. Finding the setting both serene and beautiful, many residents at Woodland Pond at New Paltz are quite fond of gardening. To celebrate this passion, the community will host its 4th Annual Garden Tour on Friday, June 26th for residents and invited guests to enjoy. The event will showcase their extraordinary gardens that are bountiful with exotic flowers and fresh fruits and vegetables. Residents living in ground-floor apartments and in cottages will be presenting their gardens during a group tour and self-guided tours. In addition to private gardens, the garden show will also showcase The Resident Community’s Garden and The Memory Care Garden which groups of residents tend together. While this event is not open to the general public, the media is invited to attend and capture this very interesting tour as it takes place.

 

“I lose track of time very easily and can get lost in my garden for hours at a time,” said Lee. “It is very peaceful, and every problem seems to just go away when I am in the garden. I have to be careful that I don’t overdo it, as I can get very determined and caught up in the happiness that gardening brings me. I started gardening on our family farm in Binghamton, New York when I was eight years old. Life was peaceful and refreshing on the farm. My four sisters and I learned to garden, sew, cook, take care of chickens, cows and pheasants, bale hay and lift stones off our land. We exhibited many of these talents at the county fair. My mother would always scold me for putting off studying for my June Regents, but I just loved being in that garden. I learned how to nurture flowers and plants from my grandmother and my mother. During the summer months I would spend a whole week with my grandma, and she would show me how she tended to her vegetables and flowers. I am fortunate to have grown up on a farm and been exposed to all the joys of nature.”

 

In addition to being in her own garden, Lee visits the gardens of her Hudson Valley neighbors. Just last week she traveled to Hyde Park to a famous garden designed by Beatrix Farrand, located next to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Wallace Visitor’s Center. At the end of this month, Lee will visit her neighbors’ gardens at Woodland Pond when the community hosts their annual garden show. This year’s theme is “Summer in Bloom ~ The Joys of June.” This event is put on by The Garden Committee, and it is held for fellow residents, their friends and families. The event will begin at 10:00 a.m. and last until 12:00 p.m. A group tour will commence at 10:00 a.m. under the awning in the Dining Courtyard. Attendees are also welcome to do self-guided tours. A “self-guided tour” with campus map will be available for those who wish to do the tour on their own. A shorter route is planned to accommodate those who prefer an abbreviated tour that is “mobility-friendly.”

 

“During the 40 years I lived in Highland, I grew potatoes, tomatoes, asparagus, carrots, eggplants, fennel, basil, oregano and other vegetables and herbs, in addition to my flowers. In my gardens at my cottage at Woodland Pond, I have planted a plethora of both unique and classic plants and flowers,” said Lee. “I created a new garden recently, as I keep buying new plants and don’t have anywhere to put them. Some of my plants are very old and full of history or have traveled with me from other places. Last year a dear friend of mine passed away, and she had requested that I dig up her mums and nurture them in my own garden. That meant the world to me. In the spring, I have daffodils bloom that are 100 years old. They were from my first home, in Highland, which was built in 1860, and moved with me to Woodland Pond. I also grow peonies, which I purchased from the Heritage Garden at Locust Grove in Poughkeepsie, the former home of Samuel B Morse, painter and inventor. My husband and I used to travel to Europe and I got much of my inspiration from English and French gardens.”

 

Lee’s walkway is lined with marigolds, and her cottage is surrounded with perennials, some in a raised garden off the patio. She also has hanging plants which invite the humming birds to a feast.  Hollyhocks are the most difficult plant she has ever grown, due to the length of time it takes to get the plant established.  She will also be showcasing a Japanese maple bush, lavender, a perennial hibiscus, hostas, foxglove, low-growing shrubs, Knock-Out roses and Autumn mum plants that she devotes extra time to by pinching the buds twice a week until July 4th to ensure that they open with extra blooms and more compact plants. She enjoys adding new plants to her gardens, ones that she have never tended to before, as it challenges her and keeps things interesting. She thinks it is important to try something new every year.

 

“Over time, I have developed a talent for arranging flowers, both inside of my garden as well as in floral arrangements,” said Lee. “In the past 20 years, I have spent more time on structuring the layout of my garden to give it depth and texture, as it makes it more pleasing to the eye. Some colors look better together, as well as low plants next to high plants there are more intervals in the sections. This has made me more appreciative of the way other people arrange their gardens and the visuals they take into consideration. I am excited for the garden tour, as I cannot wait to see other residents’ gardens and see their reaction to my own. I like to share my joy. My favorite time of year is spring, because I love seeing everything come to life again. Seeing these beautiful flowers instills hope and life inside of me, as I feel connected to the earth when I am in my garden.”

 

“One of the most delightful things about gardens is the anticipation they provide,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond. “The Garden Committee and Woodland Pond would like to express sincere appreciation to the nearly 60 participating gardeners for the time that they have invested in planting and nurturing their gardens to make our community so beautiful. It is evident that they all had gardens that they left behind when they moved to Woodland Pond, and we are happy that they are able to continue gardening here for everyone to enjoy. It is certainly a visual feast for the eyes, and we all find pleasure in seeing the varied and colorful gardens.”

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Kneedlers Group Makes Handmade Items for Those in Need of Extra Love and Care
by lew697
May 07, 2015 11:49 AM | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Bernice Hummel, a resident at Woodland Pond, enjoys putting her hands to work by making items that will bring happiness and peace to others.
Bernice Hummel, a resident at Woodland Pond, enjoys putting her hands to work by making items that will bring happiness and peace to others.
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A group of retired women wanted to put themselves to work doing something they love while simultaneously creating something that would benefit others. Thus the Kneedlers group at Woodland Pond at New Paltz was created by Dorothy Wahl in 2010. Wahl has three grandsons who were serving in the military at the time, and she always had a great compassion for veterans. She decided to start a knitting group which would meet regularly to knit items for veterans. Since the startup of the Kneedlers, the group has expanded its outreach and now provides hats to women who have lost their hair from chemotherapy and choose not to wear wigs. The group meets on the first and third Friday of each month at 3:00 p.m. In addition to the meetings, many of the members work on items during their personal time. Jean MacAvery, a fellow resident at Woodland Pond, is one of the most dedicated participants, and she’s been involved since day one.

 

“At first we started out making afghans for veterans at Castle Point Campus of the VA Hudson Valley Health Care System,” said MacAvery. “So far, we have donated more than 60 blankets for veterans. We all knit brightly colored eight inch squares, then a group member crochets a border on each square and another member attaches all the squares together to create the final touches on the blanket. It’s definitely a multifaceted effort, which is wonderful because we have ladies who knit, or crochet, or sew or do a combination of all those things. From there, I came up with the idea of making afghans and lap robes for people undergoing chemo treatments. I had an extended family member who was undergoing chemotherapy at the Infusion Center whom I had made a few things for, and I thought others in her situation could benefit from the items our group makes. Since then we have created all sorts of homemade items for a variety of organizations that serve people.”

 

The group has also donated more than 30 afghans and lap robes to fellow residents at Woodland Pond who are in skilled nursing or healthcare. Last Christmas, the group made more than 20 hats for school children served by Family of New Paltz. Family of New Paltz included the hats in special backpacks that were stuffed with clothing and school essentials. The residents have also eagerly contributed more than 20 afghans to the women’s shelter in New Paltz and more than 15 afghans to patients in the Health Alliance Hospitals in Kingston.  They plan to continue donating items to all these groups and are preparing to make baby clothes and accessories for female veterans who have newborn babies.

 

“All of the items we make are bright and cheerful,” said MacAvery. “We want to lift up the spirits of those we serve by using vibrant colors that bring warmth and love into their hearts. It is gratifying to use our talents and give back. It’s so easy because we are simply doing something we are passionate about for people who need extra love. Volunteerism is a lost art, and we are filled with joy knowing we are doing something for the good of others. I have always looked for ways to volunteer, and it is even more rewarding when it is something you are enthusiastic about doing.”

 

MacAvery makes sure the group has all the materials they need to make the items planned for each meeting. She keeps tabs on supplies, brings patterns and helps coordinate the donations. Fellow residents and the surrounding community donate money for supplies and materials to maintain the group’s efforts. They participate in Woodland Pond’s annual Kaleidoscope of the Arts Show, selling scarves and hats to raise additional money for supplies. In addition to her work with the Kneedlers, MacAvery also serves on the Interfaith Committee and the Welcome Committee at Woodland Pond. Previously, she spent two years serving on the Residents’ Council. She enjoys staying engaged and finds that doing so helps her meet new people.

 

“The Kneedlers are doing outstanding work for residents in the community and people in the surrounding area,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director at Woodland Pond. “According to Senior Corps, over 26 million senior citizens in this country have already discovered the sense of purpose and accomplishment that comes from volunteering. I’m delighted that seniors at Woodland Pond also find purpose in giving back and have created groups such as the Kneedlers that meet regularly to serve others. We also have residents who participate in annual volunteer events. I am inspired and think highly of their efforts.”

 

If you would like to make a monetary donation to the Kneedlers, donate acrylic yarn for their, or have questions about other types of donations, please contact Jean MacAvery at 845-256-5586.

 

ABOUT WOODLAND POND

 

Woodland Pond at New Paltz is located in New Paltz, New York, and is a not-for-profit, upscale, continuing care retirement community (CCRC), tailored exclusively for those 62 and over. Nestled beneath the shoulder of the breathtaking Shawangunk Ridge, the community opened in 2009 and is the only CCRC in the Mid-Hudson Valley area.  Woodland Pond offers an 83-acre campus that includes a professionally-staffed Health Center and a Community Center with an art studio, fitness center, heated indoor swimming pool, salon, market basket, billiard room, library, woodworking shop, game room, computer lab and more.

 

As a true CCRC, Woodland Pond at New Paltz offers independent living with a choice of a private residence (24 cottages and 177 apartments), services, and amenities. Many of the apartment styles and all of the cottages are now either fully reserved and/or occupied.  Under Woodland Pond’s Life Care program, residents are provided privileged admission to the assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing center. Life Care functions similar to a long-term care policy wrapped in a healthy and fulfilling resort lifestyle – so that residents can enjoy this chapter of their lives in an inspiring and supportive environment free from worrying about future escalating long-term care expenses.

 

Woodland Pond caters to a diverse group of accomplished individuals with a variety of interests and a zest for life. The community is operated by HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, an integrated health care system committed to providing quality and compassionate medical care for patients, their families and the Hudson Valley community. For more details, please visit: http://wpatnp.org.

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High School Baseball Team Visits With Woodland Pond Residents to Kick Start Season
by lew697
March 27, 2015 06:02 PM | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Zealous baseball fans at Woodland Pond at New Paltz are excited to welcome the New Paltz High School baseball team out to their community for a social meet and greet. The baseball team will visit the senior living community on Monday, April 6 at 5:30 p.m. In spirit of the opening of baseball season, the Huguenots baseball team plans to be in full uniform during their visit with the residents and will be passing out programs to all who attend.

 

“We are expanding the celebration so that it is an all-day affair,” said Sarah Hull, director of resident services at Woodland Pond. “For some residents, baseball is not only America’s favorite pastime, but their favorite pastime as well. We thought it would be really special to commence the season with a meet and greet with a local team. Some of the residents played during their youth and are eager to share stories with the players, and maybe even play some catch. Intergenerational events like this are always so inspiring. We see the residents sharing advice and swapping tales, and we also see the respect that these younger generations show to older adults and the appreciation they feel when engaging with them.”

 

Woodland Pond will be decorated in festive baseball décor including baseball memorabilia shared from the residents’ private collections and personal glory days, as well as baseball party decorations. The residents and team members will be encouraged to sport the jerseys of their favorite teams that day and televisions throughout the community will showcase different games going on around the country. Refreshments will be available for the team and residents, and will include some peanuts and cracker jacks.

 

“The players will be sharing their season game schedule including a list of their names and positions,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond. “We are looking at the schedule to determine which games the residents can attend. We would love to provide transportation for the residents so they can support the team.  Events like this are important as it gives teenagers and seniors the opportunity to get together, share experiences and learn from each other. We are honored that the Huguenots players are taking the time to make this event happen for the residents. The anticipation for this event is building and the residents feel April 6th cannot come soon enough.”

About the Huguenots

 

Taylor Digilio, Seb Pannuto and Stevie Branche lead the team as senior captains of the Huguenots. Diglio has been on the team since his sophomore year. He is regarded as one of the hardest working players, both on the field and in the classroom. On the field he is a smooth fielder with an aggressive swing, and in the classroom he has earned a 96 cumulative GPA throughout his high school career. Digilio hopes to attend UCONN, St. Lawrence or Suny Binghamton and earn a degree pertaining to mathematics. Pannuto has played on the team for two years and is highly regarded for his flexibility on the field and his agility in diving for balls, stealing bases and aggressive at the plate. Branche has been on the team since his sophomore year and has the most experience when it comes to pitching in pressure situations. He has won and closed more big games than any other player. Branche plans to attend RIT, Scranton or Clarkson and pursue a degree in engineering technology.

 

Players of the New Paltz High School Huguenots varsity baseball team include: #8 Chris Baker, senior; #11 Steve Branche, senior; #3 Taylor Digilio, senior; #20 Mason Hooper, senior; #14   Seb Panutto, senior; #5 Joey Saladino, senior; #34 Tyler Black, junior; #43 Matt Barbieri, junior; #27 Tyler Benenati, junior; #22 Antonio Fazio, junior; #12 Mike Paino, junior; #9 Joe DiMarco, sophomore; #24 Nic Messina, sophomore;   #16 Adam Stolfe, sophomore; #13 Chris Massaro, sophomore. 

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Seniors Take a Stand to End Violence Against Women by Participating in Worldwide Awareness Event on Valentine’s Day
by lew697
February 12, 2015 10:54 AM | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Residents and team members of Woodland Pond at New Paltz participate in One Billion Rising, a worldwide, mass action event in which people dance to raise awareness for violence against women. (This photo was taken at last year’s dance)
Residents and team members of Woodland Pond at New Paltz participate in One Billion Rising, a worldwide, mass action event in which people dance to raise awareness for violence against women. (This photo was taken at last year’s dance)
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On Valentine’s Day, residents and team members of Woodland Pond at New Paltz will take part in “One Billion Rising,” a worldwide, mass action event intended to mobilize people to end violence against women. Men, women and children of all ages will dance and play drums to raise awareness about an injustice that impacts more than one billion women and young girls around the world. Since one in three women is a victim of physical or sexual abuse in her lifetime, that means that with a world population of seven billion, one billion women are affected. The Woodland Pond community is extending an invitation to the public to come watch or join them dance on Saturday, February 14th at 1:30 p.m. in the main lobby. Warm-up will begin at 11:15 a.m. Leading up to the big event, the senior living community will host dance classes on the first two Tuesdays in February from noon to 12:30 p.m. These classes are open to the public as well.

 

“When we heard about One Billion Rising we knew that this was a campaign our residents would support with passion,” said Sarah Hull, resident services director at Woodland Pond. “We participated for the first time last year and are looking forward to taking part in this year’s event. Many of our residents, both male and female, are retired lawyers, doctors and scientists who grew up during a revolutionary period in our country, a time in which being an activist was admirable and quite the norm. Violence against women is a worldwide issue, and by participating in this awareness campaign, we can help create a radical shift in consciousness with braver, bolder and more creative actions that can bring about positive change. We are eager to make a difference this Valentine’s Day.”

 

One Billion Rising says that dancing is defiant, joyous, contagious and liberating, which is why they are asking people to dance and drum to help raise awareness of the innumerable crimes against women. This campaign was launched on Valentine’s Day of 2012, and the first call to action was held the following year as people came together to express their outrage and anger at the injustices women suffer. As part of the One Billion Rising movement, last year people from more than 200 participating countries came together to “Rise, Release and Dance” outside courthouses, police stations, government offices, school administration buildings, workplaces, sites of environmental injustice, military courts, embassies, places of worship, homes and public gathering places where women deserve to feel safe but too often do not. People who choose to participate in One Billion Rising are demanding an end to the violence and crimes against women.

 

“We can bring awareness to injustice through peaceful actions,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director at Woodland Pond. “It is inspiring to see our residents and team members coming together for such a great purpose. Dancing is a free-spirited activity that connects us to other people, music and our surroundings in a unique way. Seeing seniors in their 70s, 80s and 90s come together for a truly purposeful cause that is affecting all generations is empowering.”

 

ABOUT WOODLAND POND

 

Woodland Pond at New Paltz is located in New Paltz, New York, and is a not-for-profit, upscale, continuing care retirement community (CCRC), tailored exclusively for those 62 and over. Nestled beneath the shoulder of the breathtaking Shawangunk Ridge, the community opened in 2009 and is the only CCRC in the Mid-Hudson Valley area.  Woodland Pond offers an 83-acre campus that includes a professionally-staffed Health Center and a Community Center with an art studio, fitness center, heated indoor swimming pool, salon, market basket, billiard room, library, woodworking shop, game room, computer lab and more.

 

As a true CCRC, Woodland Pond at New Paltz offers independent living with a choice of a private residence (24 cottages and 177 apartments), services, and amenities. Many of the apartment styles and all of the cottages are now either fully reserved and/or occupied.  Under Woodland Pond’s Life Care program, residents are provided privileged admission to the assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing center. Life Care functions similar to a long-term care policy wrapped in a healthy and fulfilling resort lifestyle – so that residents can enjoy this chapter of their lives in an inspiring and supportive environment free from worrying about future escalating long-term care expenses.

 

Woodland Pond caters to a diverse group of accomplished individuals with a variety of interests and a zest for life. The community is operated by HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, an integrated health care system committed to providing quality and compassionate medical care for patients, their families and the Hudson Valley community. For more details, please visit: http://wpatnp.org.

 

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Woodland Pond Gives Back to United Way, Family of New Paltz and The Children's Home of Kingston
by lew697
December 19, 2014 03:28 PM | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
A team of 27 residents and employees from Woodland Pond participated in United Way’s Day of Caring and was assigned to the Children’s Home in Kingston to do a variety of clerical, cleaning, and maintenance projects for the organization.
A team of 27 residents and employees from Woodland Pond participated in United Way’s Day of Caring and was assigned to the Children’s Home in Kingston to do a variety of clerical, cleaning, and maintenance projects for the organization.
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Vivian Stoner, a resident of Woodland Pond, and Christi Battistoni, finance director for Woodland Pond, team up to paint the front steps.
Vivian Stoner, a resident of Woodland Pond, and Christi Battistoni, finance director for Woodland Pond, team up to paint the front steps.
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Ike Rubin, a resident of Woodland Pond, and Mike Ennis, a Woodland Pond bus driver, stain a picnic table.
Ike Rubin, a resident of Woodland Pond, and Mike Ennis, a Woodland Pond bus driver, stain a picnic table.
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Altruistic residents and staff members of Woodland Pond at New Paltz are constantly looking for ways support organizations with the goal of making a difference in the lives of people who need help. The senior living community has been serving United Way of Ulster County and Family of New Paltz for quite some time and recently developed a special relationship with the Children’s Home of Kingston. Residents and staff members spend time throughout the year volunteering for projects or helping out all these organizations. Volunteer opportunities like these strengthen friendships among residents and staff and provide fulfillment for seniors who desire to live with a purpose.

 

“Our residents and staff members have so much fun working together to make a difference in the lives of others,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond at New Paltz. “Earlier this fall, we volunteered for United Way’s Day of Caring and were assigned to help the Children’s Home of Kingston. We enjoyed our day there so much that we decided to set up a Giving Tree in the foyer at Woodland Pond with suggestions for Christmas presents to give to the boys at the Children’s Home. We also adopted a family though the Family of New Paltz annual Adopt-a-Family for the Holidays Program and have suggestions on the tree for those children as well. This year’s family has four children under the age of 11. It is inspiring to see our community passionately commit to such amazing causes.”

 

In addition to volunteer work, a group of Woodland Pond staff members allocate a portion of their paychecks year-round to United Way to help fuel their mission of helping people in need. That assistance can include help finding a job, learning more about parenting, paying the rent, overcoming substance abuse, looking for a way to leave an abusive relationship, finding childcare or seeking aid for succeeding in school. Staff members are also involved in purchasing gifts for the children Woodland Pond wishes to provide Christmas gifts to this year.

 

“We had quite a few donations this year,” said Sarah Hull, life enrichment coordinator at Woodland Pond. “It’s both magical and heartwarming to see the presents and donations start piling up under the grand Christmas tree. We hear the residents and staff members eagerly discussing what they plan to get the children and talking about the best places to shop. This is our first year to gather gifts for the boys at the Children’s Home of Kingston. Since helping with the Family of New Paltz program has been so dear to our hearts, we thought it would be wonderful to reach out and help even more children this holiday season.”

 

The newfound relationship with the Children’s Home of Kingston developed earlier this fall when a team of 27 residents and employees from Woodland Pond at New Paltz participated in United Way’s Day of Caring. The group was assigned to the home and completed a variety of clerical, cleaning and maintenance projects for the organization. The volunteer group did many tasks such as stocking food pantries, sorting books and toys for holiday baskets, gardening, painting, small repair projects and more. In addition to their time spent volunteering, Woodland Pond made a Silver Sponsor donation of $1,000 to assist with United Way’s cause.

 

“Gwen McCann, executive director for the Children’s Home, sent us a note of heartfelt appreciation for our team’s great work,” said Gramoglia. “It is such a wonderful feeling knowing we are helping people who are in need. We feel like our services, volunteer work and monetary donations are truly making a powerful difference in the surrounding community. We look forward to committing to more projects like these in the coming year and are eager to help The Children’s Home more, in addition to the organizations that we have been assisting for years.”

 

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Woodland Pond Residents Host Art Show to Showcase Talents and Inspire
by lew697
October 21, 2014 11:42 AM | 0 0 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Woodland Pond resident Ann Hanover shows off her crocheting projects, which will be available for purchase, along with many other handmade artistry from more than 20 residents, this Saturday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The proceeds from the annual art show benefit the Woodland Pond Foundation, which funds projects that improves the quality of life at the community.
Woodland Pond resident Ann Hanover shows off her crocheting projects, which will be available for purchase, along with many other handmade artistry from more than 20 residents, this Saturday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The proceeds from the annual art show benefit the Woodland Pond Foundation, which funds projects that improves the quality of life at the community.
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Harnessing creativity and expressing emotion through art can be one of the most therapeutic tools humans have. When you can use that skill to positively impact others in a way that resonates with them, that makes it even more worthwhile. The residents of Woodland Pond recently celebrated creativity and expression through their annual Kaleidoscope of the Arts show on Oct. 18. This event was open to the public, and original crafts, books, photographs, needlework, woodwork, ceramics, paintings and more created by more than 20 residents were on display and for sale. This event also featured a bake sale and gift basket raffle, which benefited the Woodland Pond Foundation, which serves residents at the Woodland Pond community. The Foundation works to raise funds to purchase items for projects that contribute to the quality of life at Woodland Pond, like a kiln or dance floor. Additionally, each vendor at the art show made a donation to participate in the event.

 

Interestingly enough, not all of the participating residents have been lifelong artists or crafters. Woodland Pond offers many opportunities for its residents to get involved and learn new skills from one another or offer educational activities for residents to hone their skills at the community.

 

“I’ve crocheted since I was a child with my mother and sisters, but didn’t pick up quilting until I retired and became intrigued by the unique patterns in quilts,” said resident Ann Hanover. “I was excited to showcase my crocheted afghans, scarves and hats in the art show. I really enjoy making them as handmade gifts for others to give.”

 

Hanover was one of the very first residents at Woodland Pond when it initially welcomed its first residents five years ago and has seen the community blossom over the years. She made the move from Washington back to her home state of New York and enjoys the many activities and opportunities she has to learn new skills, travel and build relationships with her fellow residents. Her apartment at Woodland Pond was even featured in “Better Homes and Gardens,” in a piece on downsizing after retirement.

 

While the residents enjoy preparing their works of art every year, the staff appreciates seeing the residents use their unique talents to inspire and help others. Some even look forward to this time to purchase one-of-a-kind gifts for family and friends.

 

“Both our staff and residents look forward to this show every year and enjoy hearing about the projects each person is working on” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond. “The Kaleidoscope of the Arts event has such passion and heart behind it, and we’re fortunate to have residents willing to use their artistry to give back to this community.”

 

Woodland Pond delights in catering to the unique talents each of its residents have or are interested in learning. They continually offer activities like music performances, yoga, gardening, wood working and other programs. Later this month, the community will host a 5 year anniversary party with entertainment provided by Frankie Keene.

 

ABOUT WOODLAND POND

 

Woodland Pond at New Paltz is located in New Paltz, New York, and is a not-for-profit, upscale, continuing care retirement community (CCRC), tailored exclusively for those 62 and over. Nestled beneath the shoulder of the breathtaking Shawangunk Ridge, the community opened in 2009 and is the only CCRC in the Mid-Hudson Valley area.  Woodland Pond offers an 83-acre campus that includes a professionally-staffed Health Center and a Community Center with an art studio, fitness center, heated indoor swimming pool, salon, market basket, billiard room, library, woodworking shop, game room, computer lab and more.

 

As a true CCRC, Woodland Pond at New Paltz offers independent living with a choice of a private residence (24 cottages and 177 apartments), services, and amenities. Many of the apartment styles and all of the cottages are now either fully reserved and/or occupied.  Under Woodland Pond’s Life Care program, residents are provided privileged admission to the assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing center. Life Care functions similar to a long-term care policy wrapped in a healthy and fulfilling resort lifestyle – so that residents can enjoy this chapter of their lives in an inspiring and supportive environment free from worrying about future escalating long-term care expenses.

 

Woodland Pond caters to a diverse group of accomplished individuals with a variety of interests and a zest for life. The community is operated by HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, an integrated health care system committed to providing quality and compassionate medical care for patients, their families and the Hudson Valley community. For more details, please visit: http://wpatnp.org.

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Woodland Pond Residents and Team Members Celebrate Community’s Five Year Anniversary
by lew697
October 21, 2014 11:39 AM | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
John Fracasse, a resident of Woodland Pond at New Paltz, is looking forward to celebrating the community’s five year anniversary.
John Fracasse, a resident of Woodland Pond at New Paltz, is looking forward to celebrating the community’s five year anniversary.
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Woodland Pond at New Paltz, the only continuing care retirement community in the Hudson Valley, is celebrating its five year anniversary from October 18 through October 24 with a myriad of fun events, including an art show, dance, a recital, cocktail hour and a festive party. During the past five years, Woodland Pond has worked toward providing optimal retirement lifestyles for residents, as well as making a positive impact on the surrounding community. Residents and staff have been involved in volunteering for projects and opportunities that make their community a better place. Residents, like John Fracasse, volunteer regularly and are eager for the celebrations to commence.

 

“I was one of the very first residents who moved into Woodland Pond five years ago,” said Fracasse. “It has been one of the best experiences of my retirement. The staff and my fellow residents are friendly and make this retirement community an enviable place to live. Since moving in, I have been involved with the community in many ways. I spent three years serving on the activities committee and am now serving on the interfaith committee. There are many opportunities for social activity, volunteer work and fitness. Recently, I have volunteered to help with the events for the anniversary celebration. I am most looking forward to the dance. Dancing is one of my favorite recreational activities. I also enjoy volunteering to help with programs that positively impact families and people who live in New Paltz. One of my particular favorites is donating to the Family of New Paltz organization.”

 

Over the past five years, residents and staff have volunteered to assist with different projects and activities that benefit the New Paltz community. Residents and staff devoted time to operate the call center for the AARP tax program, which assists seniors and low income families by providing free tax services. A group of diligent residents took the time to gather a collection of personal memoirs from veterans to create a novel, Wartimes Remembered, for historical preservation. All year long, residents and staff collect food which they donate to Family of New Paltz and also participate in the organization’s Adopt-a-Family for the Holidays program by purchasing gifts for families in need. Many of the residents are philanthropic and volunteer on their own as well. One couple donates time to assist with building homes for Habitat for Humanity. Another resident takes her dog to visit seniors in skilled nursing for pet therapy. Other make lap quilts for children and seniors in need, and some residents teach classes offered through the Lifetime Learning Institute.

 

“It is truly an inspiring and unique place to live and work,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond at New Paltz. “It has been an amazing five years, and we look forward to the continuance of making a positive impact on the lives of the residents we serve, as well as the surrounding community. The week-long anniversary celebration is our way to thank our residents and staff for making Woodland Pond the successful, altruistic and positive community that it has grown to become.”

 

Woodland Pond will commence the anniversary celebration with the annual Kaleidoscope of the Arts Show and Sale event on Saturday, Oct. 18. On Monday, Oct. 20 at 8 p.m., a special anniversary dance organized by the community’s own “DJ Viv” Stoner will be held in the Performing Arts Center. On Tuesday, Oct. 21 at 7:30 p.m., Soprano Tami Petty, 2014 Debut Artist Award Winner of the Joy in Singing organization of New York City, will perform a recital at Woodland Pond in the Performing Arts Center.  On Wednesday, Oct. 22 from 5-7 p.m., residents may enjoy an anniversary cocktail hour, featuring a variety of hors d'oeuvres and beverages in the dining room/pub. The community’s initial residents and staff members will be recognized at this event. Later that evening, at 7:00 pm a memorial lantern release ceremony in the courtyard as the residents and staff fondly remember those residents who have passed away. On Friday, Oct. 24 at 2:30 p.m. there will be a 5th Anniversary Party in the Health Center’s great room with entertainer Frankie Keene. At 7:30 that evening in the performing arts center, residents may enjoy a special slide show with highlights of the first five years. These events are for the enjoyment of residents and staff, or by invitation.

 

“We have planned a variety of events to suit everyone’s interests,” said Sarah Hull, life enrichment coordinator for Woodland Pond. “It has been a fabulous five years full of memories. It will be nice to conclude the week’s celebration with a slide show of highlights from the past five years. We are so pleased to provide a place where residents have opportunities to live the life they want, with opportunities for friendship, wellness, fellowship and new experiences.”

 

ABOUT WOODLAND POND

 

Woodland Pond at New Paltz is located in New Paltz, New York, and is a not-for-profit, upscale, continuing care retirement community (CCRC), tailored exclusively for those 62 and over. Nestled beneath the shoulder of the breathtaking Shawangunk Ridge, the community opened in 2009 and is the only CCRC in the Mid-Hudson Valley area.  Woodland Pond offers an 83-acre campus that includes a professionally-staffed Health Center and a Community Center with an art studio, fitness center, heated indoor swimming pool, salon, market basket, billiard room, library, woodworking shop, game room, computer lab and more.

 

As a true CCRC, Woodland Pond at New Paltz offers independent living with a choice of a private residence (24 cottages and 177 apartments), services, and amenities. Many of the apartment styles and all of the cottages are now either fully reserved and/or occupied.  Under Woodland Pond’s Life Care program, residents are provided privileged admission to the assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing center. Life Care functions similar to a long-term care policy wrapped in a healthy and fulfilling resort lifestyle – so that residents can enjoy this chapter of their lives in an inspiring and supportive environment free from worrying about future escalating long-term care expenses.

 

Woodland Pond caters to a diverse group of accomplished individuals with a variety of interests and a zest for life. The community is operated by HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, an integrated health care system committed to providing quality and compassionate medical care for patients, their families and the Hudson Valley community. For more details, please visit: http://wpatnp.org.

 

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When We Stop Learning, We Stop Living – At Least Meaningfully
by lew697
September 04, 2014 01:31 PM | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Dr. Paul Lurie, a resident of Woodland Pond at New Paltz, is looking forward to participating in a Lifetime Learning course, since he taught one last semester.
Dr. Paul Lurie, a resident of Woodland Pond at New Paltz, is looking forward to participating in a Lifetime Learning course, since he taught one last semester.
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There’s a saying that goes you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, well local retirees, beg to differ. While stereotypes suggest that seniors are not open to new ideas and that they are set in their ways, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) found that older adults actually are interested in learning. This is a group of people that want to keep up with what's going on in the world, who wish to expand their spiritual or personal growth, and relish in the simple joy of learning something new. Many of the residents at Woodland Pond at New Paltz, the only continuing care retirement community in the Hudson Valley, have prestigious backgrounds as doctors, lawyers, writers and various specialists. They recognize and embrace the value of lifelong learning. Wanting to offer educational opportunities to residents and provide the chance for qualified residents to teach classes to area seniors, Woodland Pond decided to partner with the State University of New York’s Lifetime Learning Institute. The classes are open to the public. Residents can participate in classes with fellow retirees in the area, or they can volunteer to teach classes.  

 

“Residents and others age 55 and over can pursue an existing interest, or begin exploring a new one,” said Michelle Gramoglia, executive director of Woodland Pond at New Paltz. “Courses are open to the public and are based in a SUNY New Paltz classroom in a downtown location, or, most conveniently held right at the community. The courses are taught by experienced, quality instructors who volunteer their time for the program. The courses range from 6 – 8 weeks in length.

 

Residents at Woodland Pond enjoy participating in classes and several have taught classes as well. During the 2014 spring semester, Dr. Paul R. Lurie led a class titled A Cardiologist Explains Things, to educate seniors on the structure and function of the different body parts and how they function. He knew people were curious about this subject, and wanted to help them understand how their bodies work. Dr. Lurie was a professor of Pediatric Cardiology at Indiana University, the University of Southern California and Albany Medical College.

 

“It felt rewarding to educate people about their bodies, as I enjoy explaining things simply to both patients and people of all ages,” said Dr. Lurie. “This fall, I will be enrolling in classes and experiencing the program from a different side. I am considering teaching another class during a future semester.”

 

“The whole principle of the Lifetime Learning Institute is to expand our minds,” said Dr. Lurie. “For some people, continued learning is necessary, like eating and sleeping, we have to do it, we feel compelled to do it, and it is a part of everyday living. Learning keeps people engaged and interested in life.”

 

Fellow Woodland Pond resident and Professor emeritus of LaGuardia Community College, Douglas McBride, led the Great Decisions class, which covered America’s largest discussion on world affairs. McBride highlighted eight of the most thought-provoking policy challenges facing Americans each year. Rob Greene, a practicing therapist and resident of Woodland Pond, also led a class, which was titled What Jung Has to Teach Us About Ourselves, and showed how Jungian psychology can help deepen self-understanding. The course covered dreams, personality types, the shadow, and the two soul images – Anima and Animus.

 

The Rush Memory and Aging Project showed that when senior adults are exposed to increased cognitive activity decline in cognitive function slowed and the risk of mild cognitive impairment decreased. Research shows that cognitively active seniors are 2.6 times less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and dementia than seniors with less cognitive activity. Not only can lifelong learning keep minds sharp and engaged, but it is also critical to emotional health.

 

The classes are available in the fall and spring. Participants must be a member of The Lifetime Learning Institute Program to register for classes. Annual membership is $115 per person. Each semester offers a variety of courses, such as Claytainers, Murder & Mayhem: Writing a Mystery Novel, Financial Planning for Retirees, Mexico, The US and Manifest Destiny and Yoga Level One.

 

After conducting a national survey among Americans age 50 and older, researchers from the AARP found that older learners prefer methods that are easy to access, require small investments of time and money to get started, and allow learning to begin immediately. Their results also show that older learners are most interested in subjects that would improve the quality of their lives, build upon a current skill, or enable them to take better care of their health.

 

“We are thrilled that our residents are taking and teaching these classes,” said Gramoglia. “Many studies have shown that staying engaged and learning new things increases quality of life, keeps the brain sharp and helps prevent the onset of dementia. We are thankful that programs like the Lifetime Learning Institute exist to provide our residents with educational opportunities.”

 

ABOUT WOODLAND POND

 

Woodland Pond at New Paltz is located in New Paltz, New York, and is a not-for-profit, upscale, continuing care retirement community (CCRC), tailored exclusively for those 62 and over. Nestled beneath the shoulder of the breathtaking Shawangunk Ridge, the community opened in 2009 and is the only CCRC in the Mid-Hudson Valley area.  Woodland Pond offers an 83-acre campus that includes a professionally-staffed Health Center and a Community Center with an art studio, fitness center, heated indoor swimming pool, salon, market basket, billiard room, library, woodworking shop, game room, computer lab and more.

 

As a true CCRC, Woodland Pond at New Paltz offers independent living with a choice of a private residence (24 cottages and 177 apartments), services, and amenities. Many of the apartment styles and all of the cottages are now either fully reserved and/or occupied.  Under Woodland Pond’s Life Care program, residents are provided privileged admission to the assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing center. Life Care functions similar to a long-term care policy wrapped in a healthy and fulfilling resort lifestyle – so that residents can enjoy this chapter of their lives in an inspiring and supportive environment free from worrying about future escalating long-term care expenses.

 

Woodland Pond caters to a diverse group of accomplished individuals with a variety of interests and a zest for life. The community is operated by HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, an integrated health care system committed to providing quality and compassionate medical care for patients, their families and the Hudson Valley community. For more details, please visit: http://wpatnp.org.

 

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