Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! The residents at Alaris Health at Belgrove recently enjoyed an outing to the Turtle Back Zoo, West Orange. Despite the warm weather, the staff and residents kept cool in the shade while watching animals that included cougars, jaguars, red pandas, kangaroos, tortoises and prairie dogs. A large peacock displayed his colorful plumage right next to the group, a brilliant display for the residents.
“It was a very nice day. The lions were all walking around together. It was my first visit to a zoo,” said Manny Silva, who was reminded of the cats he had as pets as he watched the lions.
The staff made sure to position the residents as close to the glass windows as possible. Many animals, including the bears and wolves and one very friendly sea lion, walked or swam up to the glass and rubbed it, to the delight of the group.
For Clementine Gaskell, the outing reminded her of trips that she took to the zoo with her children when they were small. She reminisced about the changes to the zoo from years past. “We really enjoyed ourselves and I was so glad that I went,” she added.
The recreation staff at Alaris Health at Belgrove plans many outings and activities for residents to enjoy.
“For many of them, going to the zoo was a totally new experience. We have pet therapy on site, but this was a chance to experience animals that most people would not normally see. The most important part is getting the residents back into the community again,” says Justin Kulp, CTRS, Recreation Director.
For more information about these services, please contact Alaris Health at Belgrove at (973) 844-4800. To reach any of our Member Health Centers, please call (855) 7-ALARIS.