By Lisa Carolin
The United Methodist Retirement Communities Nov. 28 groundbreaking event held at the Towsley Village Memory Care Center, included the news that the UMRC Foundation has raised 70 percent of the money needed for two big projects: The new McMullen Wellness Aquatic Center and the Kresge Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center.
The UMRC Foundation’s goal is to raise $26 million for the Chelsea Retirement Community’s $44-million project.
Wendy Brightman, UMRC Foundation president, addressed the crowd of more than a hundred people gathered for the ceremony and dinner.
“This is a momentous occasion,” said Brightman. “Tonight, we have to celebrate. We have raised nearly $20 million, and we have an anonymous donor who has given an additional $1.5 million on this Giving Tuesday in a matching gift.”
Speakers at the ceremony included John Thorhauer, UMRC president and CEO, Lisa Herrick, campaign co-chair, Howdy Holmes, campaign committee member, Cynthia Kresge, campaign committee member, and Marilyn Campbell, Kresge Healthcare and Rehabilitation resident, who told the audience that after having 14 roommates in Kresge, she was most excited about getting her own room.
The expansion of the Kresge Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center will include all private rooms with bathrooms and showers, and life enrichment gathering areas. Kresge will adopt the Green House Model, which will create an atmosphere that is homelike rather than institutional.
Tom and Debby McMullen, who pledged $2.5 million to what will be their namesake, the Tom and Debby McMullen Wellness and Aquatic Center, were also at the ceremony.
“The more I got to know about the Chelsea Retirement Community, the more I was impressed,” said Tom McMullen. “I’ve built three wellness centers, and I’ve seen what they can do. They draw people like crazy.”
The wellness center will include an all-accessible swimming pool, warm water therapeutic pool, walking track, and fitness area with specially designed cardio and weight training equipment.