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November 21, 2018

3/12/2014 9:44:00 PM
Circle Manor offers community fitness program

It was early afternoon and the residents of Circle Drive Manor Assisted Living in West Concord were gathered in the Great Room, going through a series of exercises with instructor Ericka Joechs.
The 10 residents have been getting together for an hour three days a week since September, said Bryan Christianson. He and his wife, Melissa, are the owners of Circle Drive Manor.
The Christiansons contracted with Live 2 B Healthy Senior Fitness to conduct the classes. In addition to residents, classes are open to area seniors. The program costs $30 a month for non-residents, though it is free for those in the Silver Sneakers program.
Exercises are led by either Joechs or Nancy Nieman.
"It helps to keep them occupied, especially in the winter, and helps with overall strength and to maintain their quality of life and independence," she said.
The program is individualized, Bryan Christianson said, as some residents use walkers, some wheelchairs and some are mobile. Whatever their mobility, he added, residents are ready to get outside after the long winter.
The residents approve.
"I like it. It helps with your movement," said Delores Rassmusson. "The kids said I get in and out of the car better."
The group recently had a fitness awards ceremony with resident Burt Tjebben receiving the Strength Award.
"It's just fine," he said.
"It's good. You like to do what you can. You have a choice to stay active," added Lucille Walker.
Circle Drive Manor has been in West Concord since 1989, when Melissa's parents opened it as a board and care. There were no assisted living options in those days, she said. When her parents retired in 1999, she and Bryan took over.
For the first two-and-a-half years Bryan and Melissa were the only staff members. They have since added on-call staff members and contract through an agency for a nurse to visit residents.
The structure of Circle Drive has changed over the years, the Christiansons said, and now includes 10 studio apartments. Each apartment has a half-bath and a kitchenette, although meals are provided to all residents.
Most of the meals, Bryan said, are homemade and breakfast is always resident's choice. He said he does much of the cooking.
The facility also includes a walk-in whirlpool and seated shower, outdoor patios, vegetable gardens and a walking path.
In addition to human residents, Circle Drive is home to a dog named Millie and a tortoise named Rudy.

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