Coaldale Hospital Plans Olympic Games For Area's Nursing-home Residents
August 18, 1988|by ROBERT FLEXER, The Morning Call
The 1988 Long-Term Care Olympics will be held Sept. 14 at Coaldale Hospital, with more than 150 geriatric residents from 18 nursing homes competing, according to Frank Parano, hospital administrator.

The games, scheduled to begin at 10 a.m., will be held on the rear parking lot under two 20-foot by 40-foot yellow and white striped tents, Parano said in a news release.

Scheduled games include a walking marathon, Idaho wheelchair race, bingo marathon, ball cup relay and bucket brigade relay.

A group of Tamaqua High School students will serve as starters and judges. Medals will be awarded in each event to the first-, second- and third-place winners. The winning nursing home in the bingo marathon will receive a trophy.

William Bower, a 94-year-old resident of the geriatrics center at Coaldale, will carry the Olympic torch in a parade before the start of the games.

Youngsters from the Carbon County Head Start program will carry balloons in the colors of the nursing homes, and they will present the balloons to the participating athletes.

Marilyn Funk, activities director for the geriatrics center at Coaldale, is serving as chairman of the event and is asking for a band to lead the opening ceremonies at the parade. Any group interested can call her at (717) 645-8203.

"This is going to be a very meaningful day in the lives of these nursing home residents. Every gesture of giving and kindness will be a happy memory for them and to each volunteer," Funk said.

During the lunch break, the Panther Valley Golden Agers, under the direction of Joseph Rita, will present a concert. The group will be accompanied by Helen Monahan on the piano.

William Eisele, food service director at the hospital, is accepting bulk food donations and paper serving items for the more than 300 people expected to take part in the program.

Funk also said that volunteers are needed at 7:30 a.m. on Sept. 14 to set up tables and chairs, to remove them, and to serve lunch and assist in whatever manner needed.