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Thursday, March 24, 2022, was a very special day because we were finally able to host our first in-person SPARK! session for people with dementia and their caregivers. Presented in collaboration with the Playhouse at White Lake and facilitated by Nancy Armitage, we first received funding to run this free program from the Muskegon County Senior Millage late in 2019. The SPARK! White Lake program is unique for the area and the only one offered in the state of Michigan, so we were excited to be able to bring this creative opportunity to the White Lake area. Unfortunately, the COVID pandemic hit in March of 2020 and we were forced to initiate this program via Zoom, which we did with mild success. After switching from Zoom to creative take-home kits late in 2021 and scheduling in-person sessions that only ended up being postponed due to a new surge in COVID cases, Thursday, March 24 was truly a longtime coming!

For this first, in-person session, held in the spacious lobby of the Playhouse, Nancy invited yoga instructor Cindy Beth Davis-Dykema to share her knowledge and talents with participants. During the 90-minute session, attendees enjoyed spirited conversation, learned relaxing chair yoga movements, and enjoyed a hands-on mandala-inspired art activity. One participant, Angela Cole, who attended alongside her neighbor and friend, Mary Benjamin, had this to say, “We have found a prominent location for Mary and her lucky guests to view [her mandala artwork] in her home. Mary can’t wait to see Nancy and the group next month!”

If you know someone living with dementia who would benefit from this program, please consider joining us for the next SPARK! session at the Playhouse where participants will explore the art scene in Paris. The session will take place on Thursday, April 28 at 1:00pm. To register, visit or call the ACWL-Nuveen at (231) 893-2524.


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