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Nursing Home Residents Join Wheelchair Parade in Howland 

Some folks in Howland kicked off the Fourth of July weekend in style. At Cummings Healthcare Facility, they rolled into the weekend with a wheelchair parade. The clowns led the way, and the wheelchairs were off.”They were all excited about getting their wheelchairs decorated and the flags,” says activity director, Rita Smith.The staff at Cummings Healthcare Facility helped residents get dressed up and decorate their chairs…then, they took a spin around front. They say this is the biggest Fourth of July celebration they’ve had here, with more residents turning out than ever before.”Which is really the main goal, to get as many residents involved in it as possible. And that’s what we try to do with everything we do here,” says Addison Goslin.”They just love the excitement and the staff being involved,” Smith says.And that staff is dedicated– some even volunteered for a Fourth of July jello-eating contest. Later, they’d planned for musical entertainment, even a visit from some baby farm animals. They say it’s fun for folks to get caught up in the excitement.”And it brings back old memories of the Fourth, and what they used to do,” Smith says. “Also it’s good we can get the community involved. That’s a big part,” Goslin says.Because, they tell us, even though the average age here is a little older, their patriotism is as strong as ever.”These people have worked their whole lives and done stuff for this country their whole lives,” Goslin says, “and now they get a chance to relax and enjoy it.”