Residents and staff of Gurwin Healthcare System in Commack caught “Barbie Fever” days before the release of the new Barbie movie on July 21 with a campus-wide “Barbie-fest” featuring all-pink days of relaxation, fun and resident makeovers at the System’s Gurwin Jewish Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, Gurwin Adult Day Care Program, Gurwin Jewish Fay J. Lindner Residences Assisted Living and Fountaingate Gardens independent living community, on Tuesday, July 18 and Wednesday, July 19.
“Many of our residents remember Barbie’s introduction in the late 1950s and the excitement of getting a brand new doll, or their children grew up with Barbie and they played with the dolls together,” said Nicole Hopper, Director of Therapeutic Recreation at Gurwin Jewish Nursing & Rehabilitation Center. “It really brings back wonderful memories to a simpler time when they could be children themselves.”
The Barbie celebration took place at “Barbie’s Dream Salon,” created by Gurwin staff, dripping in Barbie’s signature Pantone 219 C “Barbie pink” hues. It was there where Gurwin residents had the opportunity to get “Barbiefied,” with manicures, makeup and hot pink hair extensions, all while sipping on Barbie mocktails. Other Barbie-themed activities included paint-your-own Barbie canvas and a Barbie photo booth for social media posting. The celebration extended to Gurwin’s Adult Day Care Programs, where program participants created bedazzled berets for an afternoon “Barbie in Paris” fashion show.
In Gurwin’s senior living communities, staff at Gurwin’s Fay J. Lindner Residences created a Barbie salon and Malibu beach-themed celebration; residents played beach volleyball, posed for Barbie and Ken photos, and created Barbie crafts while enjoying an array of pink-colored delicacies. And, at Fountaingate Gardens independent living community, staff hosted a Barbie pink lemonade and prosecco social with a viewing of the Barbie documentary.
Gurwin staff got in on the BarbieMania, dressing in their best Barbie and Ken-inspired fashions, and posing for photos with residents!
“My daughter had a Barbie collection and it made me feel good when she took care of the dolls as if they were her children,” said Marie Olivia, a 92 year-old-resident of Gurwin Jewish Nursing & Rehabilitation Center. “She had a lot of dolls and we constantly had to wash each of their clothes, press them, then dress them. She was so particular about her dolls that when her friends would come over, they were not allowed to leave until the Barbie’s were put back in their box and safely away.”
“It was truly a remarkable campus-wide celebration for our residents, as well as our staff and visitors,” said Stuart B. Almer, President and CEO of Gurwin Healthcare System. “Our amazing team pulled out all the stops to bring the Barbie pop culture phenomenon event to life at Gurwin for our residents to experience and enjoy.”