What has over 800 legs, a ferocious appetite for candy, and the magical power to turn even the biggest frown upside down? That would be the annual "Westview Candy Crawl" hosted by the Dayville skilled nursing facility. Westview Health Care Center holds this event every year to invite the children, families, and friends of patients and staff to trick-or-treat door to door along the resident rooms, and this year was another resounding success. Some of the meandering monsters zig-zag back and forth across the hall, others streamline down one side of the corridors and return on the alternate passage, but no matter the path which these adorable (or scary, or heroic, or hilarious) families take through the building, they blaze a path into yesteryear for the sweet individuals who live or rehabilitate at Westview. An undeniable recreation of an old neighborhood moment is transformed by the beautiful bewitching brought by the Halloween visitors.
There is a grand effort on the part of the entire staff at Westview to make this event so lively. Praise is also due to the extremely patient parents who provide this All Hallow's Eve opportunity - in addition to all the other rituals of this autumn festival - for their children to connect with the sweet people who are currently living at Westview. The largest heap of thanks should be deposited in the bag for Westview's Therapeutic Recreation Department and its Director, Louise Taylor and her associates Genevieve Dubois and Vicki Ericson. Their efforts to personally affect the enjoyment and deputize a pack of volunteers with the broader tasks associated with the event are profound.
Westview's interior was completely blanketed of Halloween décor, with many of the elements featuring movement or motion-activated animations. Thousands of pieces of candy were evenly distributed among the 103 resident rooms and additional departmental stations. Live music was performed by the "Still Pickin' Trio" who shared a catologue of Halloween and related songs for an exclusive resident party in the hour before the guests and ghouls arrived. One of this particular moment's highlights is when the staff deem it is the right moment to spring their in-costume dancing parade through the center of the listening audience. A toe tapping, hand clapping jig sprung them into action as they smiled and high-fived their way through joyous fanfare.
Ultimately, the candy ran out. The smiles were endless. The depletion of sweets had nothing to do with the lack of resources and everything to do with the massive attendance for 2019's Candy Crawl. A donation drive occurs by and between Westview's entire staff; offering bags and bags of treats to Westview's Therapeutic Recreation Department to prepare for the big event in exchange for dress-down stickers. When looking at this epic collection of characters, it is hard to tell who spends more time, effort and passion on their costumes: the visiting children, their thematically-coordinated parents, or the staff who live to display some wildly imaginative get-ups. There is a harmony among many who work at Westview who state that this particular day, October the 31st, the most fun, most rewarding day on the calendar- even compared to some of the yuletide celebrations.
As mentioned, over 400 guests walked through Westview's doors and into Westview resident's hearts on a blustery and misty evening. Indeed, the harsh conditions outside may have directly contributed to the booming trick-or-treater population at this indoor extravaganza. Regardless of however rainy it was outside, there were hundreds of little rays of sunshine scattered all throughout the building.
To see a full picture album of this event, please visit our Facebook page.
Westview Health Care Center is a 103-bed inpatient skilled nursing facility, which includes a distinct and self-contained 28-bed sub acute short term rehabilitation unit and outpatient physical, occupational and speech therapies including: Sports Medicine, Adolescent/Pediatric, Adult, and Aquatic Outpatient Centers, all dedicated to providing outstanding quality health care services. The Dayville, Connecticut facility is consistently ranked among the top nursing facilities in the nation, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services as well as U.S. News and World Report, for the past 11 consecutive years.
If you or your loved one would like more information or to take a tour of the facility, we invite you to a closer look at Westview Health Care Center.
Please contact our Resident Services office at 860-774-8574