Seniors to the Rescue! Residents of El Dorado West Village Concepts visit Seattle’s waterfront to show support for local businesses

Seniors to the Rescue! Residents of El Dorado West Village Concepts visit Seattle’s waterfront to show support for local businesses

On January 23, assisted living residents of the Village Concepts of Burien and Issaquah, gathered at Ivar’s on Seattle’s waterfront to show their support for local businesses impacted by the viaduct closure. Many residents in attendance had grown up in and around the Seattle area, with many memories of the waterfront area and Ivar’s, and wanted to do their part to help.

One such resident, Phyllis Soldano, used to work at Ivar’s in the late 50’s and early 60’s, and remembers the area fondly. When asked about the viaduct and its impact on the waterfront she responded, “The waterfront is for the people. Not for cars and pollution.”

“People should be able to come down and enjoy it,” Solando said.

Another resident, Gloria McNeely, remembers when Ivar’s was built. She was a young woman then, working downtown. Now 99 years old, she says she remembers it being “the thing” when it first opened. She always makes a point to go to Ivar’s when she can and was delighted to join her community in support of all the local waterfront businesses.

Tracy Willis, Director of Corporate Development at Village Concepts, said they hope to do more of these trips with their other communities. “It’s important to show support when we can, we hope to do this frequently,” she said.

Village Concepts of Chehalis to Open Memory Care and Assisted Living Building

The newly-constructed common room in the Village Concepts of Chehalis’ memory care facility is seen Monday afternoon in Chehalis. Katie Hayes/

CAPACITY: County Needs More Options for Assisted Living, Director Says

Village Concepts of Chehalis – Woodland Village is about to complete its new $7.1 million building, which will house memory care and assisted living. 

Previously, Village Concepts of Chehalis only offered independent living. However, the memory care and assisted living space will be available for residents sometime in March of this year. Village Concepts of Chehalis Executive Director Mark Clendon said he has seen a huge need in the area for both memory care and assisted living.

“With the Baby Boomer generation coming through, it’s a huge need in the area,” Clendon said. “… The capacity here now isn’t what it should be in the county. It really is just needed.”

Village Concepts of Chehalis will host an open house from 4-6 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 24 for its new assisted living and memory care building.

“We are super excited to just offer this to the public,” said Tanya Laeger, Woodland Village community relations director. “We are having personal tours that day. We are going to be having hor ‘doerves, and beverages, and door prizes and just want to love this community well.”

Previously, Village Concepts of Chehalis had an independent living facility with 50 apartments, 41 cottages and six townhomes. Last year, however, Village Concepts of Chehalis began construction on the new two-story building. Clendon expects to hire about 15 more people to work in the new building.

“Village Concepts came in three years ago and really are a community-based company that just look out for seniors,” Clendon said. “They basically put it to me that they wanted to create a place where they would be happy to bring their parents and feel comfortable with — and that’s just kind of the feeling throughout the whole company. Everybody really cares a lot and wants to do what’s best for seniors.”

The first floor of the new building will house memory care. Memory care has 19 bedrooms, most of which are private studios. The second floor will house assisted living, which has 24 rooms. Out of the 24 rooms in assisted living, there are five one-bedroom apartments and the rest are studios.

“It’s just a beautifully-designed building with a staff that is just absolutely phenomenal,” Laeger said.

Laeger said she expects the memory care rooms to reach full capacity, before residents move in around March. She expects the assisted living facility to fill up shortly after it opens.

“It’s just such a limited resource, especially to have something that is brand new,” Laeger said. “Village Concepts is family owned for three generations, so they have done this for over 30 years. They are just known for their quality — their intentionality of just designing spaces for the needs of our senior population.”

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