Making the holidays special during a pandemic

Positively KELOLAND

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Christmas will be different this year for people, but many are making adjustments to keep the Christmas spirit alive.

Fred and Phyllis Sprenger are two of many who are taking in the holiday season at Dow Rummel Village during an unusual year.

“Well, we try to do what we call the best thing we can,” Dow Rummel Village resident Fred Sprenger said.

While the senior living community already has Christmas traditions, CEO Darla Van Rosendale says staff members are going the extra mile to make this holiday season even more special.

There are more decorations this year, something Van Rosendale says is good for residents and staff.

“We’re also doing the traditional things as best we can in different ways, so where we would normally have one big Christmas party we’ve done various smaller Christmas parties using virtual concerts instead of live entertainment, doing several Christmas Eve services in the chapel versus one,” Dow Rummel Village CEO Darla Van Rosendale said.

This is the first time in years Dow Rummel residents Clark and Helen Anderton won’t be in Texas over Christmas.

“We’re going to have a Christmas day dinner from the staff and the organization, which is nice,” Dow Rummel Village resident Clark Anderton said.

“It’s important to make sure that Christmas is still celebrated and that we try to do as much as we could to make it feel like Christmas, knowing that we’re not going to be with our families, any of us, like we normally would,” Van Rosendale said.

And just like many others, Sprenger is hoping ‘normal’ isn’t too far off.

“We’re looking forward to the day when the pandemic is passed and we can become much more closely involved,” Sprenger said.

Dow Rummel is currently allowing scheduled visits at its visit booth for residents and their loved ones.

Families are also doing window visits and connecting virtually.

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