By Eric Heinz
Julie Dickey and Sandy Stevens, designers at The Passionate HeArts [sic] group, have taken their creative motif to the residents of Cotton’s Point Senior Apartments.
The two women create large artwork using mosaic-style patterns to develop colorful productions.
Jen Fallon, the activities director at Cotton’s Point, reached out to The Passionate HeArts as a way to diversify the activities at the apartments.
Nora Huang of Cotton’s Point Senior Apartments observes the mural she and other residents of the senior-living center put together for the EngAGE Senior Olympics
Stella Chaidez and Rosa Welle were part of a team that put together a gold-medal-winning mural for the EngAGE Senior Olympics in September.
“We taught them how to cut and nip and glue glass onto mesh to make flowers,” Dickey said. “We provided the patterns and the materials, and they picked the colors. They assembled them on the murals installed in the building, and we grouted it and finished it up. They had a whole bunch of fun, but not nearly as much fun as Sandy and I had.”
The murals were submitted to the Senior Olympics, hosted by EngAGE, Inc., competing against 38 other senior-living facilities in September. They won the gold medal for the art category.
For Christmas, the seniors have been making light-up boxes with glass blocking in the designs of Christmas trees. The boxes were less labor-intensive than the two murals, which are about five feet wide and two feet tall. They are now hanging on a wall of the senior apartments.
“We’re just trying to get the community involved in the place and remind everyone that these seniors have value,” Dickey said.
Ashley Echelberger, 16, is a junior at San Clemente High School and part of the Visits of Love club, which visits senior living centers around the area. Students participate in making projects with the residents.
“Last time we played bingo, and that was really fun,” Echelberger said. “We love to give back to the community and see all the smiling faces.”
There are about 30 students who participate in the club.