Left to right: Jennifer Hutzell, director of community relations; Debbie Biehl, executive director; and Christianna Smith, admissions director at the Oct. 1 Walk to End Alzheimer’s

Fall 2017 has been a busy time for Alzheimer’s Association fundraising at Garden Terrace at Overland Park, Kansas.


The facility exclusively serves patients with Alzheimer’s and other dementias, so fundraising for Alzheimer’s research and support is a top priority for associates and residents’ family members. This year, for the first time, Garden Terrace at Overland Park took part in two different Alzheimer’s walks.


On Oct. 1, associates and families participated in the 29th Annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s in Overland Park. The team, Garden Party Crew, had more than 80 walkers and was a main sponsor of the event with a booth by the main stage. Associates handed out purple tote bags with the Garden Terrace logo on them, information about the facility and Life Care’s Alzheimer’s prayer books.


“This is the largest participation that we have ever had for the walk and the most money we have raised,” said Debbie Biehl, executive director at Garden Terrace. “The associates, their families and their animals, and the residents and their families always make this a special day for a great cause.”


On Oct. 20, Garden Terrace at Overland Park followed the public walk with its own Walk to End Alzheimer’s with the assistance of the Alzheimer’s Association.


“We did our own walk because our residents wanted to walk, and attending the official Walk to End Alzheimer’s is very overwhelming for them,” explained Jennifer Hutzell, director of community relations.


Residents and their family members raised money for the walk, which was held at Little Mill Creek North Park in Overland Park. Nine residents attended the walk, with associates and family members walking by their side and cheering them on from the side.


The facility even continued the Alzheimer’s Association’s tradition of using colored flowers to recognize individuals’ relationships to Alzheimer’s. Those who have the disease carried blue flowers, while caregivers carried yellow ones. Families and friends who had lost someone to Alzheimer’s were represented by a purple flower, and those simply supporting the cause received an orange flower.


“I would love to see the day when there is a cure for this disease and we can just come together to walk for a celebration that a cure has been found,” said Biehl.


As a whole, Garden Terrace has raised more than $11,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association this year, exceeding its initial goal of $8,000. Fundraising will continue through the end of the year, as the facility vies to raise more money than any other Life Care Centers of America building nationwide.

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