Tuning out the stresses of the outside world, St. Luke’s Home in Dickinson drowned any sorrows in an array of lively Polka music for their residents on May 27 and 28.
Residents were able to take in the golden sun, the cloudless skies and listen to popular folk music while enjoying a chocolate ice cream bar all courtesy of their activities director, Joyce Decker. For Cliff Walter, one of the musicians that performed for the residence, bringing joy to the residence was everything.
“It’s nice to see the residents coming back out again from being inside in quarantine for so long,” Walter said. “It makes me happy to know they’re enjoying themselves.”
For Decker, the idea to bring polka music to the residents was an easy one, as long as it could be done in a safe way and allowed for the residents to feel safe and comfortable.
“Cliff has been a long time musician who comes to St. Luke’s and we decided that as long as we can socially distance the residents with the nice weather, we’d have him come for music,” Decker said. “We take advantage of the resident’s favorite music and add in the nice outdoors.”
On May, 27, the residents were all smiling, and some clapped their hands to the rhythm of the polka music that bounced off the patio walls. For Walter, being able to play music and bring enjoyment to the residents brings nothing but satisfaction.
“I play music every day, maybe for about one, two, three, four hours a day,” Walter said. “That’s my past time so I enjoy it very much … I just always hope people enjoy themselves and the music, and they always do.”
For Decker and the residents, being able to add more outdoor activities and beginning to add more events that were common prior to the coronavirus quarantine brings more than joy to the staff members and residents at St. Luke’s Home.
“The residents really look forward to it,” Decker said. “With the colder weather they weren’t able to go out as much due to COVID precautions, so it gives them a chance to be out enjoying the fresh air and the music they love and they’re just smiling happy and many of the residents were looking forward to having musicians such as Cliff coming to play.
“It gives you satisfaction that at the end of the day seeing the difference you can make in a person’s life,” Decker added. “We’re just really happy to do it and to see them happy is the most important thing to us and our staff.”
Decker mentioned the facility had Frank Coppinger perform for the residence on Thursday and will have a group that travels the country to play for nursing homes, coming to perform next week.