Otterbein Marblehead: Life on the go

Apr 23, 2024 | Around Ottawa County | 0 comments

Otterbein Marblehead Activity Director Allison Young, left, talks with resident Gerri Gill. Young schedules full calendars of activities for Otterbein residents.


Whether the staff is taking independent living residents on boat rides or utilizing personalized resources to help cognition patients recall pleasant memories, Otterbein Marblehead is all about active living. Otterbein Activity Director Allison Young keeps a full calendar of activities scheduled for the campus’s independent, assisted living and long-term, skilled care residents.

“Our residents like to go, go, go,” Young said.

Independent living residents have several activities to choose from each week, including shopping trips, dining at area restaurants, concerts and plays. They’ve taken trips to casinos and will soon visit NASA.

“We’re lucky because Lakeside is right here. We take advantage of a lot of activities there in the summer,” Young said. “We’re at Hoover Auditorium nearly every Friday and Saturday night.”

From left, Otterbein Marblehead’s Healthcare Admissions Coordinator, Sammy Lewis; Independent Living Sales and Marketing Director, Ross Lauria; and Activity Director Allison Young are part of the Otterbein team that helps keep residents’ lives full and active.

The independent living residents have begun practicing for Otterbein Olympics, a late summer event that places Otterbein residents from across Ohio and Indiana in a variety of competitions. This year, Otterbein Olympics will be hosted at Otterbein St. Mary’s.

“They compete in Wii bowling, baking, art, pickleball, shuffleboard, bocci ball – just a lot of events,” Young said.

Otterbein communities across the region participate in Bold Adventures, a program that takes active living to a higher level. Residents of Otterbein Marblehead have enjoyed the adventure of a pontoon boat ride on Lake Erie, but other options include skydiving and ziplining.

From left, Gerri Gill, Ruth Waldock and Hattie Misicka spend time in Otterbein Marblehead’s activity room.

Young puts just as much effort into planning activities for Otterbein’s skilled nursing unit. Residents with dementia, Alzheimer’s disease or other cognitive impairments are provided with personalized care plans that help optimize brain function. Programs include Milestones, a brain-stimulating iPod program that can be personalized to the resident’s needs, history and interests.

Young and her staff assemble Chatter Bags, which are personalized kits with memory-enhancing objects that help stimulate conversation between residents and staff.

“She works with their families, friends and caregivers to learn about the residents’ interests and memories. The Chatter Bags have photo albums and things associated with their hobbies,” said Healthcare Admissions Coordinator, Sammy Lewis. “Staff can grab something out of the bag and have a meaningful conversation with a resident with dementia or Alzheimer’s.”

Assisted Living LPN Patty Bouska is one of many Otterbein Marblehead employees who are passionate about helping residents stay as healthy and active as possible.

Otterbein Marblehead, located near Lake Erie, offers independent living Patio Homes, assisted living apartments and units with varying care levels, Cornerstone Cottage for long-term care, and the Jane Baker House for short-term skilled nursing and rehab.

For more information on Otterbein Marblehead, call 419-798-8254 or visit

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May 2024

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