September 12, 2021 —The book of Proverbs says, “Laughter is the best medicine.” For Kendal at Lexington residents, laughter, fun, and games livened up the week of the first Kendal Summer Games, held July 19-23.
Victoria Forman, health and fitness program manager, said the idea came about during lunch with other Kendal staff.
“It started as a silly idea, but after such a tough year we wanted to do something uplifting on campus for residents and staff that would bring everyone together. Covid was so isolating, this was a good reason to get out, laugh and have fun.”
Complete with Olympic Torch
Mirroring the Summer Olympics theme, the week included Olympic flags and a torch which graced each event.
On Monday, the games began with a campus walk, followed by a pool relay. Both had a modest turnout. Victoria said the energy grew from there as more residents came out to participate or be spectators at the rest of the week’s events, which included a ping-pong tournament, croquet, whiffle ball, chair volleyball, frisbee targets, and a corn hole competition. “Some were a little hesitant at first, but as they heard about their friends doing it, they came out too.”
Whether they were spectators or participants, Victoria said the response was overwhelmingly positive. “So many said please don’t wait four years to do it again.”
She says the games have prompted planning for a big event once a year, with other games throughout the quarters such as a whiffle ball tournament in the fall.
She also credits the residents of Kendal for not only their participation in the events, but also in the planning. “The cool thing about Kendal in general is the residents are so involved. I asked people to teach me how to put together a ping-pong tournament, and how the match ups should work, and they helped me.”