New Springfield Seniors’ Residence gets in the Christmas spirit with horse and buggy rides
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) – The Turners Rock seniors’ residence on East Sunshine in Springfield just opened in March with amenities such as a pub, game rooms and practice areas.
But they still have to face the challenges of the pandemic. All of their 82 residents have been vaccinated and all of their employees are required to do so.
“COVID has been a challenge for everyone in the retirement home industry,” said Brad Eldridge, general manager of Turners Rock. “But we were very lucky. When they designed our building, which was done before the pandemic, they really did a great job arranging several public and common areas so that our residents could always get out of their apartments and spread out. We want them to be outside. We don’t want them to feel isolated.
And there was certainly no sign of isolation on Friday, as many residents gathered outside the entrance to the facility for a Christmas rally. There was music, dancing, Santa Claus and a pretty unique way to get people into the holiday spirit as Mountain Creek Ranch in Aurora, Missouri showed up to do some fun. horse and buggy rides.
“We wanted to bring smiles, old memories and just a wonderful Christmas feeling,” said Beverly Robertson of Phoenix Home Care and Hospice, who helped organize the event.
“It reminds me of the final scene of ‘White Christmas’ and all we need now is snow,” remarked a woman, stroking one of the two horses that provided the rides.
There was no snow but this throwback to the good old days caused some residents to prefer a horseback ride to a car ride.
“You can’t really end up in a wreck with a horse,” said Marie McElvaine, a resident of Turners Rock. “But you can fall to the ground!”
Another resident, Jerry Smithwick, was dressed in a cowboy hat as he watched the proceedings.
“I once had a mule named Prissy,” he said with a smile. “I rode everywhere with this little mule. She was very smart. And we were both stubborn.
Resident Shirley Cook enjoyed her ride on Friday much more than a previous horseback experience.
“I never owned a horse, but my neighbor had one,” she said. “She convinced me to ride him and the horse left as fast as he could. I did not know what to do.”
Many residents were on their very first horse and buggy ride.
“I lived in the city and we only had stray dogs and cats,” said a female biker as she got out of the buggy.
You could say that she never tried to ride a stray dog.
But that day everyone got into the Christmas spirit as a band driving down the road sang a song that perfectly described the event.
“Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way!” Oh, what a pleasure to ride in a sleigh open to a horse! “
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