Collegeville Community Newsroom

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You can be a part of the happenings at Columbia Cottage Collegeville by keeping up-to-date with what’s new in our community. Along with our monthly newsletter, we will post the most recent news online. We will keep 3-5 posts available at a time, so check back often!

You can also download the current issue of our monthly newsletter here.

Download the previous month’s newsletter here.

Resident of the Month – Don Jones

December 27, 2018

Don Jones is the 86-year-old gentleman, physicist, commodities trading expert, writer, father of four, and partner to Betty living in Suite 19 at Columbia Cottage in Collegeville, PA. Don was born outside of Cameron, Missouri in 1932. As a child, Don moved around quite a bit with his Dad, Clifton Jones, before settling back in with his Mom, Veda Jones, and his younger sister, Jody, in Denver, Colorado. It was in Denver that Don went to high school, became a member of the high school wrestling team, and the ski team. He also discovered his love of automobiles and motorcycles.

He attended University of Colorado, located in Boulder, Colorado, and graduated with a B.S. and a Masters in Physics. He spent several years in the U.S. Navy before returning to Boulder to complete his PhD in Physics from the same university. Don then started working for The National Bureau of Standards in Boulder, Colorado as a physicist and a researcher. While these writings did not make the NY Times Best Seller List, he completed 3 important pieces of research for the Bureau – “Strong Blast Waves in Spherical, Cylindrical, and Plane Shocks,” “Microwave Doppler Measurements of the Ionization Front in Cylindrical Shock Waves from Exploding Wires,” and “The Energy Parameter B for Strong Blast Waves.”

In the late 1960’s Don left Colorado to accept a position with General Electric’s space exploration program in the labs located in King of Prussia, PA. He moved his family of 4 kids, 2 horses, and a dog to Limerick, PA. It wasn’t long before his entrepreneurial spirit got the best of him and he started dabbling in commodities research. In the late 1970’s he started Commodity Information Services. He moved to Chicago, IL to be close to the Chicago Board of Trade and his money management/commodities trading business took off. During that time of his life, Don wrote two books: Hedging Foreign Exchange – Converting Risk to Profit, and Value Based Trading: Using Overlay Demand Curve to Pinpoint Trends and Predict Market Turns. Don later took his business back to his roots in Denver, Colorado. He spent the last 25 years in Denver running his business, skiing and playing racquetball before fully retiring in 2015.

Don has four kids that are very active in his life. Stephanie, Eric, Kit and Ashley. He has eleven grandchildren and one great, grandson. When asked what he likes most about living in Columbia Cottage, his reply was simple… “I enjoy my time every day with Betty and the exceptional care we both receive. The staff makes living here very enjoyable. We not only receive great professional care, Betty and I know that the staff truly cares about us, personally.”

Cottage Star – Maggie Herrity

December 27, 2018

Hello! I am Maggie Herrity the office administrative assistant of Columbia Cottage. I attended Drexel University where I received my Bachelor’s in Business Administration with concentrations in Marketing and Entrepreneurship as well as my Master’s in International Business. I have worn several hats throughout my professional career and enjoy that I utilize those skills through the various “projects” assigned to me. I love to travel, cook, bake, read, make crafts, and play with my two-year-old son. My husband also knows me as the one who likes to overwatch movies like “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy and “Elf.” I am grateful to the residents, staff, and families at Columbia Cottage for making me feel so welcomed and appreciated. Spending time with our residents is a such a joy and I feel privileged that one of my projects is to create their monthly calendar, hopefully creating joyful moments for them as well.

Staff Take a Moment to Celebrate the Holidays Together

December 13, 2018

Columbia Cottage staff members gathered on the afternoon of December 12th to celebrate the holidays together. Staff were presented with gifts from the President of Columbia Cottage, Jim Burnham. Together they enjoyed a lunch catered by Three Brothers, a local Mexican restaurant. The staff would like to thank all the residents and their families for providing the opportunity to care for the residents of the Cottage. They are, after all, are the reason our staff are here. They would also like to thank all those residents and their families who kindly donated to the Staff Appreciation Fund. We are so grateful for your kindness.

Resident Holiday Party a Hit!

December 8, 2018

On the evening of December 5th, Columbia Cottage hosted a festive and joyous holiday party for the residents and their families. A delicious dinner was served including prime rib, cheddar mashed potatoes, and green bean almandine. The array of desserts included cheesecake, white chocolate raspberry cake, chocolate mousse cups, and an assortment of freshly baked cookies. The entertainment provided by Erich Cawala and Cliff of the Uptown Band had our residents, staff, and families up dancing and singing. Thank you to Tom Kershaw, Columbia Cottage’s Maintenance Director, who was kind enough to dress as Santa. Also, a big thank you to Peter Devers, Food Service Director, Cheryl Mullins, Food Service Coordinator, and all the staff who put in the extra hours to make the night a success.

Upcoming Event – Thanksgiving

October 30, 2018

Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Please let management know your plans for you or your loved ones at the Cottage. We will be hosting Thanksgiving dinner at the Cottage on November 23rd at 12 noon. Families are welcome to join us, but we ask that you limit guests to four. There will be a charge for each guest of $12.95. Please RSVP by Friday, November 16th.

Columbia Cottage Honors Our Veterans

October 30, 2018

Columbia Cottage, with the assistance of Caring Hospice, will honor and recognize our resident veterans by hosting a Veteran’s Day celebration on Friday, November 9th at 11:00am. Our veterans include Navy veterans, Donald Jones, Wilson Moyer, and Eugene Hamilton, Army veterans, Tom Collins, Alan Richter, and John Neborak, and Air Force veteran, Paul DeJohn. Our celebration includes a luncheon. Each of our veterans are invited to have two guests at this luncheon. Please RSVP by November 5th.

Cottage Welcomes New Bible Study Leader

October 30, 2018

Hello, my name is Conrad Smith. I grew up in the Reading area but moved to Rochester, NY, to go to music school. There I studied the pipe organ and church music. I moved home to spend time with my aging father, and to attend nursing school. Since then, I have started working at the Columbia Cottage in Wyomissing, 3rd shift no less! I have loved every minute of it. Hearing your life stories and about your children is fascinating to me. I especially love WW2 stories. For the past five years after college, I served as a college missionary, training leaders, leading Bible studies and speaking to large groups. I love singing and look forward to hearing you join with me in a few favorite hymns.

Family of the Month – Catherine Alexander

October 30, 2018

Catherine Alexander was born on November 3, 1923, in Upper Marlboro, MD, to Joseph and Maddie Ireland. Joseph worked in tobacco and built two houses during his life. The first house is the one that Catherine was born in and the second house was for his and Maddie’s retirement, which he built when he was in his 70’s. Catherine was one of eight children – four boys and four girls, one of which was a nun for 67 years. One of her sisters is still living in Florida and they talk every day, mostly about the old times.

Catherine attended Merrywood High School and her first job was as a store clerk in a small department store. She met her husband, Robert Joseph Alexander, at the Camp Springs Air Force Base in Maryland. Robert was in the Air Force and Catherine’s sister-in-law worked at the base. Catherine attended a USO dance, met Robert, and the rest is history. On New Year’s Day, 1945, Robert called Catherine while she was at work and said, “Let’s get married.” Catherine said yes, and they were married three days later. They moved to Philadelphia, Robert’s home town, in July 1945. Robert worked for the Marine Corp at Broad and Washington while Catherine had her hands full with their nine children. They had seven girls and two boys. Catherine loves spending time with her family and is always happy to show off pictures of them.

The happy couple were married for 67 years until Robert’s unfortunate passing on February 1, 2012. Before he left, Robert wrote four letters to Catherine that were given to her after he was gone. He thanked her for all she had done for him and their children, how well she had taken care of their family, and how she completed his life.

We are now graced with her presence here at Columbia Cottage. Her smile and warmth are contagious, and her kind humor can brighten a room. She is very grateful to the Cottage staff and we look forward to the new memories we can make with her!

November Cottage Star – Natallia Birch

October 30, 2018

Hi! My name is Natallia Birch. I’m a homemaker here at the Cottage and have been since January of this year. I enjoy my job knowing I’m making a difference in someone’s life every day. The residents and staff here are great, and everyone is so amazing. I’ve learned so much while being here! It made me want to further my education and go back to school for nursing. I’m so excited to take this next step in my life.
When I’m not working I like to be active, cooking or spending time with my family. Family is so important to me, so it was ironic that I was cottage star this month because of Thanksgiving. I’m so excited for all the food & pie. Hope everyone has a great holiday!

Welcome to our new resident!

January 2, 2018

Columbia Cottage is happy to welcome our newest resident, Ruth Edes. Be sure to stop by her rooms and wish her a warm hello! You can also invite her to sit with you in the dining room, join you in a scheduled activity, or just have a friendly chat.

You remember what it was like to be new! Be sure to make Ruth feel welcome as she learns her way around the building.

Construction is Complete!

December 17, 2017

We are excited to announce the completion of construction in the Country Kitchen, the Coordinator’s Office, and the Beverage Station. If you have yet to see the updates, we invite you to come check them out.

This month we will welcome the addition of a Med room in the common corridor. Additional updates will continue in 2018, including new flooring and paint in the Dining room. We will also update the paint, lighting, and the flooring throughout the building. Thank you for your patience during this period of remodeling.

Upcoming Event – Christmas Party

December 1, 2017

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! To celebrate, we will be hosting our Annual Holiday Part on Thursday, December 7th from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Dinner will begin at 5 p.m.

Get ready to enjoy a delicious dinner of prime rib, garlic mashed potatoes, gravy, and green bean almandine. And what would Christmas be without cookies? In addition to a variety of freshly baked cookies we will serve cheesecake, chocolate cake with peppermint mousse, gingerbread pound cake, and chocolate raspberry mousse cups.

We have invited Santa and his top elf to join us that evening. So, be ready to have your photo taken with these merry characters in case they accept the invitation.

As always, your family is invited to join us for this celebration. There is a limit of 4 guests per resident. Please RSVP with no later than December 4th.

Upcoming Event – Thanksgiving Dinner

November 4, 2017

Thanksgiving is just around the corner! We will be hosting our annual Thanksgiving Dinner at the Cottage on November 23rd at 12 noon. Just like in previous years, Thanksgiving Dinner will be a delicious feast including turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, all the fixin’s, and of course, a vast array of desserts.

As always, your family is invited to join our feast on November 23rd. However, due to space limitations, we ask that you limit your guests to four people. Please let management know your plans for you or your loved ones’ attendance at this event. Please RSVP by Monday, November 20th.

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