Recent Events at Midtown

Bethany and I have been taking a lot of pictures and we thought we’d share some!  The past few weeks having been going great at Midtown.  We are constantly receiving positive feedback from the residents.  Many often say, “You guys are lifting spirits.  You are bringing people out of their rooms.  I am more social now.  You guys are really doing a great thing here.”  It has taken over a month to get to the point where we can actually see interactions among residents changing.  New people continue coming to events and people don’t seem as shy or afraid to head down to the community room for events.  We see friendships slowly forming, which is one of the main goals of this project.  We initially provided events that drew people in, and now we can sit back and watch the community build on its own as relationships grow.

Here are some photos from our first bbq/potluck dinner last week.  While we were cooking in the kitchen (since we didn’t have an outdoor grill yet) we accidentally set off the smoke alarms throughout the entire building.  The fire department came to shut off the alarms, and we were slightly embarrassed at our lack of cooking skills.  However, many residents came downstairs to see if there was a real fire and ended up staying for the barbeque!

These are some pictures from both of our bowling outings to Bryant Lake bowl.  The residents really enjoyed themselves, especially the ones who hadn’t bowled in years.  The bowling events have been successful because they have given residents a chance to get out of Midtown and spend time together out in the community.  Plus, everyone enjoys getting a strike in bowling!

Here are a few pictures from bingo, game night, pet day, and flower art.

We only have a few weeks left with everyone at Midtown, but we realize that our work is nowhere near done.  We are constantly focusing on how to maintain sustainability and our goal this week is to start on the guidebooks.  We want residents to have a resource that will help them continue the events and activities we have set up when they want to.  Upcoming events…yoga, lasagna dinner, canoe trip, fishing, piano lessons, 4th of July bbq, salsa dance class, another bowling trip, and a finale talent show.  We are so excited and enthusiastic to continue forming connections with the residents.  We are continually surprised by the turnout at events and feel like proud parents as we watch people form connections and have real conversations with one another.  We also realize that the residents at Midtown are becoming our friends.  We are sad to think about going abroad for a semester and not seeing everyone at Midtown.  However, we are already thinking about the possibilities for spring semester.  (Now I’m getting a little ahead of myself!)

More pictures to come soon!  Also, for those of you in the Twin Cities–feel free to attend any of the events at Midtown.  Check the Daily Piper for details on upcoming events!

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