Enjoying art and the special Olympics

Edonna Gamon and her daughter, Angela Greiner, of Tiffin, Iowa, celebrated their shared birthdays together last week. The mother-daughter duo treated coffee drinkers in the Town Center to delicious cupcakes and cookies Thursday morning.

Wayne and Jackie Whitham of San Tan Valley, Arizona recently visited in the home of Jackie’s parents, George and Meda Fulton. They enjoyed the UPH Art Show and visited with old friends while here before traveling to Des Moines, taking George and Meda with them, to watch their granddaughter play in a volleyball tournament.

Several members of the United Presbyterian Home Team were excited to display medals from the Special Olympic competition at Coe College in Cedar Rapids over the weekend. Stacy Hodgell earned a first place medal in the javelin toss and the 50 meter walk. Donald Brickert took first place in the fast walk and second place in the softball throw and Ronald Canney earned first place medals for the 50 meter dash and the javelin toss in his division. Others bringing home medals from the competition on Saturday were Jeff Sanders, and Freeman Sinker. Special Olympics is the world’s largest sports organization involving children and adults with disabilities. Congratulations to each participant and medal winner, you inspire all of us to push ourselves to be the best we can be.

Jolisa Weidner from the Washington Public Library visited the United Presbyterian Home Monday morning to kick off a week of activities honoring young children. This is an annual celebration to focus public attention on the needs of young children, their families and caregivers of young children. Jolisa shared the art of storytelling as she read interactive stories to kids and residents that included their participation. Music was on the agenda Tuesday morning as Eisabeth Peiffer from the Joy of Music had kids moving to the rhythm of the music using shaker eggs. Representatives from the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines visited on Wednesday morning bringing with them a menagerie of unique animals including a Fancy Rat, Corn Snake, Blue Tongued Skink and a Salmon Frog which looks like a lizard. Zoo members explained that animals take a lot of care and sometimes special food. Kids paraded the hallways Thursday morning modeling their pajamas and sharing their favorite stuffed animals with residents.

Kerr Hall residents gathered in the Moore Family Dining Room for lunch on Tuesday. Jim and Joy Bennett hosted the baked potato bar buffet. Everyone delighted in the cherry delight for dessert as they visited and shared the company of neighbors.

Classics Et Cetera for April 11, 2019, included the overture to “The Bronze Horse” by Daniel Auber; 3rd Movement of Trio for Piano, Clarinet & Cello by Ludwig van Beethoven; “The Palms” by Jean-Baptiste Faure; Third and Fourth Movements of Symphony No. 88 by Franz Joseph Haydn; “The Silver Fountain,” waltz by Karl L. King; 5th Movement of Octet in F Major by Franz Schubert; “Battle Royal,” march by Frederick Jewell.

Probably the most requested musical piece in churches on Palm Sunday is “The Palms” (“Les Rameaux”), composed in 1864 by Jean-Baptiste Faure (1830-1914). Faure is not to be confused with the now better-known Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924), although both were French musicians. Jean-Baptiste was famous in his day as a baritone opera singer and avid art collector, but less well known as a song composer, while Gabriel became a famous organist, pianist, composer and teacher. “The Palms” is one of the most beloved sacred songs of the last 150 years in Christian communities.