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Luther Place seniors building in Outlook marks 25 years

Special event conjures memories, looks ahead to the future.

OUTLOOK - Some people call it home, others call it a welcoming community of people, and well wishes are being sent out by all to the Luther Place senior living residence in Outlook.

It was time for a celebration on Wednesday, September 14 as the building was marking a special anniversary of 25 years.

Gabe Lafond, CEO of LutherCare Communities was on hand for the celebration, which also welcomed Kelly Peevers, Director of Housing for LutherCare Communities and Maureen Weiterman, Mayor of Outlook.

Lafond noted that the mission statement of LutherCare was followed through in the two and a half decades that Luther Place has existed in the riverside community.

"LutherCare's vision is to provide safe and caring living for all," said Gabe. "We had the pleasure of seeing that vision come to fruition when Luther Place Outlook opened its doors in 1997, and we're proud to celebrate 25 years of service here for our seniors in the great community of Outlook."

Mayor Weiterman spoke to those gathered, shedding light on the importance of created communities such as those offered by Luther Place and how the efforts of its groundbreakers and inhabitants have helped shape overall communities such as Outlook into what it is today.

"I was excited to receive an invitation to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Luther Place in Outlook," she said. "I was really hoping that John Linsley could've joined us today as he was an integral part in seeing this project to fruition, but he's off visiting his grandchildren in Alberta. He did leave me a few memories that I'll share with you, and these are John's words. The highlight for me was that our Outlook seniors mobilized to demonstrate the need for Luther Place; people like Margaret Derdall, Ellen Burke, and Enid Haucks. Two busloads went to Saskatoon to view similar facilities there and were shown around by folks with an Outlook connection. Lots of surveys were completed over tea, coffee and visiting, and they were delivered to LutherCare. LutherCare took a brave step out to develop a facility in small town Saskatchewan, and it was a first for them. The steering committee guided the local process, and Ernie Harvey deserves a special mention here. Colin Grant steered the LutherCare participation. Luther Place keeps our seniors close to their families and friends, and keeps them socially together when they can't get outside. LutherCare is a leader in senior care, and Outlook would love to see LutherCare develop a facility for a higher level of care in Outlook. I echo John's appreciation for the recognition of the need for a facility like this, and the hard work and dedication of those members of our community who, along with LutherCare, saw this project to completion. Luther Place is a very valuable part of the town of Outlook. The Town would like to encourage LutherCare to evaluate the need for an assisted living project in Outlook, as it's something that we need badly and would be a valuable complement to Luther Place. On a personal note, I was born and raised in Outlook and have spent a good part of my life living here. Many of the people that have lived here are part of my childhood. I love that they can remain in the community where they have lived their whole lives surrounded by friends and neighbours, new and old, and can be supported by a community who owes a great deal to what they have contributed to the town of Outlook."

Melanie Harris, the housing manager of Luther Place, was spotlighted for her dedication and commitment to the people who call it home. In her remarks, Harris was almost taken aback by how long it's been since the building first opened its doors, wishing everyone well and looking forward to more memories to be made over the years still to come.

"First of all, congratulations to Luther Place on 25 years!" she said. "I've been here for 21 out of the 25, and it doesn't seem that long! Thank you to LutherCare for the support, and thank you to all residents, family and friends who support us and believe in what we're trying to provide, which is a great place to live for you all. Thank you all for the memories, and here's to many more to come!"

A resident of Luther Place, Carrie Gullickson shared some words of poetry that she wrote that her daughter encouraged her to read to everyone, speaking of family, friends and the memories that they all make together.

Adding to the celebration of the day, people enjoyed a BBQ burger lunch before the 25th anniversary cake was cut, making for one more of those memories that seem to grow in numbers at the community in Outlook that's known as Luther Place.

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