Kentwood’s Elmcroft Senior Living Center
Hosts First Annual Cookie Contest
by Joan Patzer
For several Kentwood first responders, the duty of judging a cookie contest held at Elmcroft Senior Living facility was a piece of cake. Well, sort of. It certainly was the sweetest part of their day!
The cookie collaboration was whipped up by Becky Dykstra, director of Elmcroft Dinning Services and Elicia Davis, director of Marketing as a way of engaging residents with community involvement. The goal was to claim a signature Elmcroft cookie that would be offered to groups touring the facility to get a taste of the place. While guests tour the facility, residents bake the cookies to present to the tour afterward. After all, nothing leaves a better impression (or taste in the mouth) like a warm, homemade cookie right out of the oven.
“The cookie making helps the residents relate to good memories of the past and helps in relating to others,” explains Charlene Mabe, Elmcroft Operations Specialist, who was thrilled when representatives from Kentwood’s police, fire, and paramedic services arrived as very willing participants in today’s contest.
The judges were: Brandon Armstrong of Kentwood Police, Scott Rubin, AMR paramedic supervisor, Mark Stinton, Life EMS paramedic supervisor, Lieutenant Mike Hipp of the Kentwood Fire Department, and Todd Bacon, a Kentwood firefighter. All attended in uniform representing their departments.
There were four delicious cookies in the competition: In fourth place was a “Ranger Cookie” consisting of Rice Krispies, oatmeal, coconut and Heath bars. “Mama’s Cookie” with just a little of this and a little of that took third place. Coming in second place was a sugary ginger snap dipped in white chocolate. But the cookie that took first place and is the signature cookie of the year, is “Clara’s Chocolate Chip and Almond Cookie.”
Clara, a resident, recited her original recipe by heart to an independent group of bakers on site. Her recipe, along with the other recipes were baked in Elmcroft’s commercial kitchen. Now Clara’s winning recipe will be printed in a future edition of Elmcroft Senior Living newsletter.
“All the cookies were very good,” says judge Scott Rubin and the others agreed it was a very tough decision.
Once the winner was chosen, all the extra cookies were shared with the residents and guests in attendance. The Kentwood firefighters that were on hand took the opportunity to conclude the event with tips on what to do in case of a fire in the facility. Good to know in any event!
“The residents live in the moment and this activity is just one of many activities throughout the year,” says Mabe explaining that activities like this are created to enrich all aspects of the resident’s experience including: physical, intellectual, emotional, social, spiritual, and leisure areas of life.