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Community Spotlight: It’s Time To Create Glass Art at Westminster Place

Westminster Place residents creating Glass Art
Beautiful glass art created by a Westminster Place resident
Beautiful glass art created by a Westminster Place resident

Alice Piepgras will be the first to tell you she’s not the most artsy person in the world. But over the last five years, this retired nurse has grown in her love for creating dishes, jewelry, aquariums, ornaments and garden gnomes. It’s all been made possible without even leaving her Westminster Place retirement community home in Evanston, Illinois, as she and a dozen or so of her neighbors join in on the weekly on-site fused glassmaking class.

“We have such a beautiful arts and crafts studio, and I’ve enjoyed getting to know people doing the class with me,” she said.

Inside the Arts and Crafts Studio at Westminster Place

The courses are taught by Director of Community Programs Nancy Ichinose. Nancy is a skilled artist and enjoys sharing her passion for crafts with the residents at the senior living community.  The arts and crafts studio, located in the independent living community, is stocked with glass and all the tools needed to be successful glass artisans. Nearly every Wednesday, she’ll fire up the kiln and form shapes and designs, depending on the molds and the creations.

Many of the creations are sold at the community Holiday Bazaar in November. For residents like Alice, the classes are a wonderful way to connect with neighbors and spend time with one another. 

“I enjoy giving my artwork as gifts throughout the year,” she said. “It’s a wonderful program that connects the residents. There are people of all ages here, and I’ve gotten to know many of them because of this class.”

Successful Aging Programming

Studies show creative arts programs like glassmaking can lead to decreased rates of depression and feelings of isolation as well as offer a wonderful opportunity for seniors to learn something new. In addition, regular engagement in these programs can have a positive impact on seniors’ health.

As a Life Plan Community (also known as a continuing care retirement community), the activities and amenities residents enjoy are included in the maintenance-free living experience. Along with the arts and crafts studio, residents can be found enjoying the computer lab, year-round greenhouse, and woodworking shop – just to name a few.

“I enjoy taking the computer classes and staying fit by participating in yoga and balance classes, and I really enjoy water aerobics in our gorgeous pool,” noted Piepgras.

As Piepgras mentioned, the community makes wellness a priority and makes it easy for residents to do the same with an integrated wellness program focused on seven dimensions of wellness.

Most residents agree, the biggest benefit of living at Westminster Place compared to other communities in Evanston is the peace of mind it brings. There’s great comfort for them and their family members when they know they’ll have access to assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing if  needed in the future.

Make Westminster Place Your Home

Nestled in the heart of Evanston, Illinois, Westminster Place is just a 10-minute drive from Northwestern University and downtown Evanston, where there’s always something fun to do. Floor plans range from studios to spacious patio homes, so you’re sure to find a living option that fits your needs. Get in touch with the sales team today to schedule your visit to Westminster Place and even plan a visit with the glassmaking group.