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SpringRidge Observes Earth Day
04-22-2019

Earth Day is observed annually on April 22 and is designed to bring awareness and education about environmental issues. To mark the occasion, SpringRidge at Charbonneau residents will pool their creative talents and participate in Earth-friendly activities with a community-wide project.

Under the guidance of Zest Director Cindy Foster, the group will create bird feeders and houses for mason bees.

“We reached out to Wilsonville Parks & Recreation to learn how we could contribute to the neighborhood at large,” said Cindy. “They encouraged projects that attract birds and bees which are keys to the pollination cycle.”

According to the Honeybee Conservancy, of the 4,000 bee species native to North America, the mason bees are amazing pollinators. The organization states that, “We can increase mason bee populations by raising them in our backyards and gardens, which is a great way to supplement the stressed honeybee, sustain our future food supply, and provide nesting sites for other native bees, too”.

SpringRidge resident Ed Dey, 87, is looking forward to the project. In fact, he’s been asked to cut the bamboo which will be used to create the specialty mason bee houses.

“I’m always happy to help out,” he said. “Cindy has lots of interesting ideas for residents to get involved.”

Ed will use the retirement community’s onsite woodworking shop to create the bamboo tubes which the bees will use as a nest. An avid woodworker, he volunteers to run the shop alongside fellow resident, Clair Simmons.

Val Schmitt, 85, is also eager to participate in the Earth Day activity. A few years ago, she attended the Garden Luncheon and Butterfly Release held at SpringRidge Court, which offers assisted living services.

“People are still talking about that event,” she said. “It was such an enriching activity and the butterflies still return throughout the summer. Anything that can be done to get someone outdoors or to pay attention to nature is a positive thing.”

The opportunity to welcome new birds and insects to the Charbonneau neighborhood is also meaningful for Val. Her favorite exercise is walking alongside the river that runs below the community and soaking in all Mother Nature has to offer.

“Seeing how each creature is provided for in nature reinforces my faith. Even the angleworms have a source of food though they themselves may become food for a Robin,” she said. “There is such beauty and variety in nature—from flowers to different shades of greens and reds depending on the season.”

It was this serene setting that initially attracted her to SpringRidge.

 “The moment I exit I-5 and turn onto SW French Prairie Road, I feel a sense of peace," she explains. “It feels like my blood pressure drops 10 degrees.  I'm originally from the Midwest - close to the Plains where it is very flat, dry and hot.  It really is relaxing and refreshing being surrounded by all the trees and golf course."

Much like Val, Ed relishes opportunities to be outdoors. Thanks to the maintenance-free lifestyle offered at SpringRidge he spends much of his time fly fishing - in-between teaching himself how to play the keyboard.

Val finds that in today's high-paced, hi-tech world, we often forget to slow down and appreciate the benefits that the great outdoors and Mother Nature provide. 

“Fresh air, sunshine, open spaces with birds, butterflies and bees flying around give us a sense of freedom we just can’t achieve in a closed space,” she said. “I find that those who walk or work outdoors and engage with nature seem to have a more positive attitude towards life and a greater appreciation for creation.”

In addition to the Earth Day project, SpringRidge facilitates Earth-friendly activities year-round such as recycling and the use of ‘green’ products in the housekeeping department. Additionally, the Enliven™ memory care community located within SpringRidge has raised garden beds for easier access and to allow residents to continue to pursue their gardening passions. Each year, residents and staff plant and harvest organic fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, beans and zucchini.

Nestled on an impeccable, 10-acre parcel of natural beauty and serenity, SpringRidge at Charbonneau is located in one of Oregon's most desirable master-planned residential communities. Operated by Senior Resource Group (SRG), SpringRidge takes an integrated approach to support the vitality, longevity and health of residents by offering a hospitality-centered lifestyle with first-rate amenities and services.  The SpringRidge at Charbonneau campus offers a comprehensive menu of lifestyle options including CARF-accredited assisted living and memory care services.

For more information or to schedule a personal tour, please call 503-446-6250 or visit SpringRidgeatCharbonneau.com.

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