Rittenhouse Village at Valparaiso hosted a special Easter Treat Take N’ Go drive-thru event Thursday afternoon for community members, as well as industry professionals, interested in joining the assisted living community. Complete with hot tea to warm up from the snow flurries, delectable scones made by Chef Rick, and a smiling staff ready to welcome guests, the event highlighted what makes Rittenhouse Village at Valparaiso a special place to call home.
The drive-thru event is one of many events the assisted living community hosts every month for the outside community and its residents.
“Events like these are important when reaching out into the community in order to get more referrals or people interested in Rittenhouse Village from our professional referral sources," said Susan Burelli, Senior Lifestyle Counselor at Rittenhouse. “We want people who are interested to come in, see what Rittenhouse Village is all about, and really get a feel for the kind of assisted living community we are.”
Burelli and other staff members were ready to welcome professionals from other communities and potential leads interested in learning what Rittenhouse Village at Valparaiso has to offer. An assortment of tea was available for guests, a welcomed treat to escape from the cold, as well as information about the community’s living options, unique features, and health programs available, like the SHINE Memory Care Program.
The event highlighted the community’s optimism after a difficult year due to COVID-19. After having to lockdown last year, preventing residents from seeing family and friends to stop the spread of COVID-19, events like the Easter Treat Take N’ Go represent the hope Burelli, the staff, and residents have as some normalcy begins to return.
“Now that we are starting to open up again, the feeling we have is hopeful,” Burelli said. “We are ready to welcome people back to our community. We may have been closed for a while, but we are excited to return to a bit of normalcy and start this new chapter off right.”
What better way to ring in the community’s next chapter than with homemade scones crafted by Culinary Director Moreland. A recipe Moreland developed when he was a chef and restaurant owner in Seattle, the scones are a favorite amongst staff and residents.
“We make these scones fresh about every other day, and we always have them for events like this to give people a taste of what we do,” Moreland said. “We make all our desserts from scratch—we’re an almost exclusively from-scratch kitchen.”
Made with fresh fruit and ingredients, guests were given both blueberry and Florida strawberry scones. Each bite was filled with juicy and sweet berries, while the pastry itself was perfectly crumbly and delicious. Complete with a cup of coffee or a cup of tea, the scones highlighted Moreland’s love for what he does, something he is able to share with staff and residents whom he considers to be family.
“My menu is based on what residents enjoy and what they need,” Moreland said. “I had been a personal chef in Indianapolis for a while before coming back up to Northwest Indiana. I started in healthcare because I was cooking for a purpose; here, I’m cooking for my family every day.”
“We cook memories for them,” he continued. “That’s exactly what food is about; remembering the dishes residents grew up with, the ones their mothers and grandmothers made, or the special meals they had on Sunday nights. That’s what I try to do with what I make every day.”
For more information about Rittenhouse Village at Valparaiso, visit their website at https://www.rittenhousevillages.com/rittenhouse-village-at-valparaiso/.