Outdoor instruments chime at Evenings Porch Assisted Living

By Melanie Brubaker Mazur

Buddy Wiler plays some tunes as Ali Sabeti, left, and Erin Youngblood, administrator of Evenings Porch, listen on Monday. The assisted living facility has installed five outdoor music pieces on its grounds.

Buddy Wiler plays some tunes as Ali Sabeti, left, and Erin Youngblood, administrator of Evenings Porch, listen on Monday. The assisted living facility has installed five outdoor music pieces on its grounds.

Five outdoor music pieces are the newest activity for residents of Evenings Porch Assisted Living.

Joan Horton, foreground, and Gene Snyder play an instrument on Monday. 

Joan Horton, foreground, and Gene Snyder play an instrument on Monday.

Amanda Riegel, left, a staff member at Evenings Porch, chats with Grace Emenegger, seated, as Joan Horton joins the conversation during a break from playing music during a session at Evenings Porch.

Amanda Riegel, left, a staff member at Evenings Porch, chats with Grace Emenegger, seated, as Joan Horton joins the conversation during a break from playing music during a session at Evenings Porch.

Jim Daniledes taps out some notes Monday at Evenings Porch Assisted Living in Bayfield. 

Jim Daniledes taps out some notes Monday at Evenings Porch Assisted Living in Bayfield.

On Monday, residents came out on a sunny morning for an impromptu music gathering.  Some created some surprisingly soothing music, while a few others shared some poignant moments, as well.

Buddy Wiler complained that he couldn’t remember some of the songs he used to sing with his wife.  Growing a bit frustrated, he then tapped out the tune to “Shave and a Haircut, Six Bits!” and beamed proudly.

Darvin Kinney likes the new instruments, while Grace Emenegger said one of them was “harder for her,” mostly because she couldn’t hear some of the notes.

The five pieces are from Freenotes Harmony Park, a Durango-based company that makes instruments for parks, school and other outdoor settings. Musical experience isn’t needed to play them.  The models at Evenings Porch are Swirl, Yantzee, Merry, Griffin and Piper.

Along with a garden, walking paths and other outdoor amenities, the instruments provide extra stimulus and a good muscular activity for residents who want to spend some time outside, said Erin Youngblood, the facility administrator. She’s planning to invite local musical groups, such as the Be FRANK Foundation, to come perform for residents.

Anyone interested in touring the facility is welcome to call 884-0101.

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