The Bristal at Massapequa Blog

Reopening Ceremony in Massapequa

Massapequa had a special Grand Reopening Ceremony to celebrate the recently completed building renovations, as well as the community’s 11th anniversary. Attendees included the Massapequa Chamber of Commerce and many of the Town of Oyster Bay officials.  Councilman Tom Hand, and the Town of Oyster Bay Town Clerk, James Altadonna, presented us with a beautiful citation to put on display in our building.  Residents attended proudly in celebration of their new and improved home!


Massapequa’s Mini Walk to Benefit Sunrise Day Camp

Residents and staff from The Bristal at Massapequa held a Mini Walk this weekend to raise funds and show support for Sunrise Day Camp. The camp, located on Long Island, is available at no charge for children with cancer – as well as their siblings. We decorated the courtyard on this lovely day with butterflies and walked, ate s’mores and laughed, and then laughed again at our afternoon comedy show. We’re proud to say that we raised over $100 today, which will be donated directly to Sunrise Day Camp!

Massapequa’s April Fools Pranks

We had so much fun in Massapequa on April Fools’ Day pulling pranks on each other! This year, residents made packets of ‘doughnut seeds’ to give out as a goof. We cut the patterns out, glued them, and filled them with Cheerios! We also had the kitchen cut up carrots for us, which we wrapped in parchment paper to make them look like salt water taffy. Then, after lunch, we offered some free taffy to our unsuspecting friends! Everyone got a kick out of this year’s April Fools’ Day pranks. We’re already planning for next year!

Testimonial from Mary Price

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Dear Marissa,

I can’t thank you and your staff enough for the valentines program. I say this even if Gary and I were not one of the couples renewing our vows. If was such a memorable affair. Unlike the original, 40 years ago, this time was stress free and more enjoyable, you’ll understand when your date comes around.

You and your staff left nothing to want – the flowers, rings, music, and of course the garters.

I’m sure everyone, even the spectators, had a great time.

Thanks for always organizing such thoughtful events.

Mary Price

Dancing with The Bristal Stars in Massapequa

We had an unforgettable “Dancing with The Bristal Stars” event here in Massapqeua. We partnered with Arthur Murray Dance Studio of Bay Shore. In preparation for the event, staff member Vans and intern Lindsey both went to the studio to get private dance lessons. Then on the day of the big event, three professional dancers came to The Bristal and performed five different dance style demos for us. Afterwards, we introduced the resident judge panel: Hipster Helen, Judge Joe and Swanky Shirley! Then, the competition began. Vans from recreation danced with professional Milan, and art therapy intern Lindsey danced with Joel. The judges had a tough time deciding on scores because they were all so wonderful! Ultimately, Vans scored a 28.5 and Lindsey a 27, so Vans went home with the mirror ball trophy. After the competition, we all enjoyed a group dance lesson. We learned the basics of the Foxtrot and the Merengue. There were delicious treats to snack on, including an impressive dancing with the stars cake! Everyone had an amazing evening.

Vow Renewal in Massapequa

Here in Massapequa, we had the sweetest Valentine’s Day, made extra special by our Vow Renewal ceremony! There were seven couples who participated, and Deacon Michael acted as our officiant, blessing the rings and the renewal of vows certificates. There were so many more people who helped make the day so wonderful: Our therapy dog Rosie the pug was our ring bearer, the couples signed their certificates with rose pens that the Crafters Club made, and the veils and bouquets were also made by the Crafter’s Club. All of the couples sealed their renewals with a kiss, and we all threw rose petals. The couples had their second first dance, we had a champagne toast and then a cake cutting cereomony. We danced the afternoon away and it was memory that we all will cherish.

Massapequa Residents at ‘Dogability’

Once a month, residents from The Bristal at Massapequa takes a trip to ‘Dogability’ in Plainview. Dogability is a program designed to allow anyone to come in and enjoy the company of dogs. Volunteers supply the trained therapy dogs, as well as their time, and residents just love attending. There are all kinds of dogs, some small, some large, some that relax with us and some that do tricks for us! Every resident who attends gets to spend time with the perfect “pet.” Here are some photos from our recent visits – and we can’t wait to go back again soon!

‘Through Our Eyes’ Art Exhibit

This year, we created a special art exhibit called “Through Our Eyes.” Residents from all of The Bristal communities created artwork using various mediums. Then, our art went on display at the Long Island Museum for a month as a special exhibit! There were photos and bios of the artists, and so many people got to enjoy our unique artwork. Thank you to everyone who participated, the Long Island Museum for their hospitality, and to everyone who came to support us.

Massapequa Fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Association

We decided that a fun way to raise funds and awareness for Alzheimer’s research this year would be to put a twist on the classic car wash. We decided to hold a walker wash instead! Karen from the Alzheimer’s Association joined us for the fun event. We cleaned each resident’s walker and then decorated them with flashy ribbons, leis, bows and Alzheimer’s Association flowers. Residents had a great time being apart of the fundraising efforts.

Paint Party in Massapequa

Here in Massapequa, we had a Paint Party hosted by our Director of Recreation, Marissa. We gathered everyone together for an afternoon of instructional painting, and we all had so much fun! Our sunflowers came alive as Marissa walked us through each step. We’re already looking forward to our next Paint Party!

Massapequa’s Grandparents Day Carnival

Everyone had a great time at our Grandparents Day Carnival this year here in Massapequa. We invited all of our families to come spend the day playing games like bean bag toss, pick a duck, knock down cans, baggo, and basketball. We had a photo booth, temporary tattoos, a DJ, and face painting too! Everyone loved our carnival treats: churros, cotton candy, and popcorn. We’re glad that so many families were able to join us to celebrate Grandparents Day.

Alzheimer’s Fundraiser Car Wash in Massapequa

The Bristal at Massapequa has been hard at work raising funds to donate to organizations dedicated to finding the cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Recently, we had a car wash in our side parking lot. The Bristal team took turns washing cars, and together, they raised $688 in just one day! We’re looking forward to coming up with more creative ways to raise funds for this important cause.

Testimonial From Patricia A. Howe

Debra Figueroa
Executive Director
400 County Line Road
Massapequa , New York , 11758

Dear Debra;

On May 1, 2015 after highly researching many assisted living homes, we brought my 89 year old mother, Anne Vitrano, to live at the Bristal in Massapequa. We chose this Bristal because of its “family” atmosphere, friendliness, the many social activities and its established structure. I was nervous for Mom at first but quickly felt a sense of “calm” as she was lovingly taken under the wings of angels. Mom has just turned 90 and has never been happier and content. The trust we feel from the Bristal in Massapequa is priceless.

Recently Mom fell and broke her hip and had surgery. She is now in a rehab and expected to return to the Bristal soon. She will be going to the Reflections community . I was a bit reluctant at first but now feel the same confidence with this move for her. She will be in good hands from a staff that has amazing skills and knowledge. I am writing to commend the Bristal at Massapequa’s incredible staff. They are Family.

Your Director of Resident Relations, Dina McDougald and Director of Resident Services, Angela White have been a godsend to me and my family. Their caring expertise and professionalism have helped us through a tough time. They have both spent much time with us in helping us make the right decisions for Mom and we value their knowledge and positive attitudes.

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The Recreation department at the Bristal in Massapequa is simply Amazing! Your talented, hard working staff has made “Life Good” for each and every resident. My Mom is a social butterfly and participates in just about everything. Marissa Krause, your lovely Director, runs the show with poise, patience and always with a smile. She is kind-hearted and listens; a quality very much appreciated. Marissa’s insight with each resident is noticed and admired. Sue Maksim is one of Mom’s guardian angels. She calls the families every month to let us know about each and every trip and activity and knows what everyone likes. She works double duty as a recreation assistant and drives the bus. Sue is always positive, never complains and always tries to include everyone with her gentle ways. Her calm nature is a valued asset.

I must comment on 3 individuals who go that extra step … ,Brittany Calgano: a True Gem. Brittany happily works in Reflections as a recreation assistant and maintains stability, along with a fun atmosphere. She is kind and adds a security to all the residents who love her dearly. Her experience is beyond her age and she genuinely cares. Since Mom has been in the rehab Brittany has visited her 3 times to cheer her up! Mom has dementia but knew Brittany right away and laughed with her having a good time. Brittany truly makes a difference in the lives of the residents. Dorothy Ferencik: also works as a recreation assistant and receptionist. You can always count on Dorothy. Her faith in people is so enlightening. Dorothy has empathy and compassion. She is friendly to everyone and always willing to lend a hand. Dorothy has all good things to say about life and is just a fun loving person loved by all. She also was kind enough to visit Mom twice at the rehab and Mom just loved it! Lynne Barbato: a receptionist and part time recreation assistant has taken her time to visit my Mom at the rehab! Lynne has a genuine concern for Mom and all the Bristal residents. She is a hard worker and continuously supports both the residents and families! There is always a smile on her face, and Nancy Corrao, a receptionist who is as sweet as they come and one of the most patient people I know. Nancy is a pure breath of fresh air, filled with warmth and much love to all. Nancy always asks how Mom is doing and is extremely sensitive to your feelings. What a pleasure!

Your Wellness Department at Massapequa is just Phenomenal! The devotion and respect the staff gives to all is a beautiful thing. Everyone there works as a team and communicate well together. You could not find better care anywhere as your Wellness staff go beyond the call of duty. All the caring and warmness given is a blessing. Each and every person there brightens our lives.

I must commend Chillitta Jackson who is a treasure. Chillitta has spent numerous precious moments consoling me when Mom first came to the Bristal. She is always re­assuring and helps make you feel comfortable to call her with any question or situation. Along with all the Wellness staff, Chillitta is always attentive to the needs of the residents! She will always go that extra mile to ensure us our loved one is well taken care of. Chillitta is a friend to all!

Last but not least I must compliment your housekeeping and maintenance department. Ozzie Izquierdo is always happy to be of any assistance. And Joe and Victor are multi­talented men who go out of their way to assist you. These men never say no and will take care of you with a smile. Recently they moved Mom to Reflections from the assisted living side and Spent most of the day making her move perfect and everything easier for us. They never complain. Every one of these men are extremely appreciated.

Now we look forward to add Heather Samuelson, the Director of Reflections, to our family. Heather spent a whole morning comforting & educating us so Mom’s new home would be a good experience. It’s so nice to feel confident this is the right choice and the Bristal in Massapequa is Anne Vitrano’s home away from home.

I’ll never forget meeting you in King Kullen a few years ago Debra. What a lovely conversation we had about my mother and the Bristal. You really helped make a difference in our lives and I’ll always remember you’re encouragement and support.

We thank god each day for the Bristal in Massapequa and all your hard working loving people that make you a family we are proud to be part of.

Yours truly,
Patricia A. Howe

Staff Appreciation 2016 in Massapequa

This year, we had a wonderful Staff Appreciation Week filled with fun activities, games and theme days! There was jersey day, dress like a superhero day, hippie day, and rainbow day. The staff had an outdoor BBQ, tai chi class, played tug-of-war and volleyball, had potato sack races, and played hungry hungry hippos. As you can see, we had a great week celebrating the amazing staff in Massapequa!