DENVILLE, NJ -- People gathered at Saint Francis Residential Community for the annual Grandparents Day celebration on Sun., Sept. 8. More than 50 friends and relatives came to visit their elderly loved ones and spend some family fun.
“Grandparent Days is a great event and fun experience that brings Saint Francis residents and the rest of the Denville Township community together,” said Debra Shay of Rockaway Township, who is the certified gerontological nurse and resident services director at Saint Francis.
In the meeting room, tables were set up for multiple stations designed for activities such as face-painting, board games, arts and crafts, balloon art and refreshments.
“There’s a great sense of community here at Saint Francis and a lot of laughter,” said Jason Ferrara, who traveled from Lincoln Park with family.
“Grandparents Day is a beautiful thing and a great way to have fun together with family.”
Ferrara's wife Tina and their sons, Max (7) and Alex (3), joined in the festivities. They came to see Ferrara’s grandmother Terry, known as G.G., to her great grandchildrens.
“It’s really fun here,” said Max.
“We get to hang out in GG’s apartment, eat lunch and bring toys with us.”
The biggest highlight of Grandparents Day came when Mt. Arlington resident John Ferris Meredith, known by kids as Ferris the Great, performed a magic show.
“This was a great crowd of kids, parents and senior citizens,” said Meredith, who has done magic show for 32 years.
“Everyone was fun, and it is a special thing to be able to do a show for the kids with their grandparents present.”
Saint Francis residents also delighted in the celebration, fun and laughter from kids and their families.
“Grandparents Day is fun and it’s wonderful to see the grandkids and great grandkids,” said Mary Andes, who has lived at Saint Francis for four years.
“Saint Francis is a very lovely place, and people go out of their way for you. I’m happy to be here.”
Mary Andes is the mother of Thomas Andes, mayor of Denville Township, and got to see all generations of her family at the celebration. Grandparents Day lasted until the end of the afternoon with all snacks and art supplies exhausted and all kids and families leaving with smiles as their grandparents bid farewell.
“Everyone had a wonderful time, and all our seniors were glad that we came up with this idea,” said Shay.
“And to have so many young kids around was a joy.”
Later, on September 24, Saint Francis will host a senior health, wellness and resource fair, 1-4 p.m.
For more information on Saint Francis Residential Community and its latest events and activities, visit https://saintfrancisres.com/.
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