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Robert Kopstein

Robert Kopstein: The Saul and Claribel Simikin Centre Stroll

by Robert Kopstein, June 25, 2012


The morning of June 10, 2012 marked the second annual walk-a-thon of the Simkin Centre, dubbed by its organizers, The Saul and Claribel Simkin Stroll. On that morning friends and supporters, several young children, staff volunteers and other volunteers, together with residents, some with canes, some with walkers and some in wheelchairs, congregated in the atrium; an estimated 165 to 200 enthusiastic participants in all. The stroll over a route about 1 ½ Kms in length on streets near the Home was to commence at 11:00 o’clock. There was an air of excitement and anticipation. If a seniors home can ever be described as hopping with activity and vitality, the Simkin Centre, on that morning, fit that description. The estimate of the net proceeds is about $11,000, which is to be directed to the enhancement of evening and weekend programs.

In the early morning, the sky had been heavily overcast. Ominous clouds threatened to force the event inside the Home. Miraculously, however, at about 10:30 A.M., the clouds abated. A clear blue sky resulted and a brilliant sun shone down upon the Home. That development brightened the physical scene, as well, indeed, as the spirits of the organizers.

Shortly before the 11:00 o’clock official commencement, those anxious to get moving were out the door en route. Many participants were decked out in donated "Simkin Stroll" t-shirts and caps. The walk the course took between 20 and 30 minutes Everyone had returned by noon. And, of course, all participants were ravenously hungry. They made their way to the Kives Garden where a bar-b-q was in progress. Participants received their food and moved indoors to the all purpose room, adjacent to the Kives Garden where luncheon tables and chairs were set up. More delectable treats were available in that room. Musicians, a duo, calling themselves the Fire and Ice sang, played and entertained for the better part of two hours, as residents talked, ate and kibitzed. An exciting added attraction for the young children present was offered by artist, Debbi Selch. Donating her time and using her talent, and her fingers she did face and arm painting on several children, to the delight of everyone.

Cindy Greenlay, Director of Therapeutic Recreation for the Centre was introduced as the master planner for the event. She with the help of 2 young children, a brother and sister, who drew door-prize tickets out of a bowl, announced several winners.







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