By Resident Reed Browning —
On Monday, June 19, Kendal residents gathered in informal seating circles in the Amelia Room to mark the 12th anniversary of the founding of our community. Fortified by music, tales, libations, and hors d'oeuvres, we had a grand experience. One thing is for sure: Kendal knows how to throw a party.
The celebration began with Will Solivan, the Director of Resident Services, greeting everyone, and his welcoming words were followed by a cheerful video from our Executive Director Doug Helman. As Doug explained, he regretted not being in attendance, but a long-planned Father's Day fishing trip to New York State with his son and dad was taking precedence. I'm pretty sure that not a single resident thought Doug's priorities misplaced, even though he was missing a good time.
We all then sang "Mound and Tower," Kendal at Granville's own anthem, with its timely assurance that while our pasts are to be treasured, our futures lie before us, still to be shaped by our own initiatives to create new treasures.
Following that reminder of Kendal's ambition to link past and future, we sat back to hear some of the pioneers – those who launched the project back in 2005 – regale us with heart-warming memories of how, amidst the mud and occasionally dysfunctional elevators of the opening days, the settlers and the wonderful staff began creating a caring community and founded the tradition of mutual support.
The highlight of the party came next, when various members of the theatrical troupe that will begin performing the still timely South Pacific in nearby Newark next week, strolled among us to share some songs from that wonderful Rodgers and Hammerstein score. Soloists caught the grand romance of the musical with renditions of "Wonderful Guy," "Some Enchanted Evening," and "Younger than Springtime"; and a men's chorus reminded us of its humor by belting out "There is Nothing Like a Dame."
After this informal concert, we all shared pieces of some celebratory cake and wound up the evening by chatting among ourselves about the happiness of the occasion. Walking back to my apartment afterwards, I found myself feeling deeply contented. Twelve years and going strong! — Kendal at Granville is a great place to live.