Residents say it best.
“The professional staff is all about YOU, and the atmosphere is wonderful and so relaxing.”Lillian Wagner
Lillian Wagner and Stephen Wagner fell in love and married when they were in their 20s. They enjoyed a rich life, raising three beautiful children and traveling to 46 destinations on five continents before moving to The Oaks in 2010 from a nearby town. The next year, Stephen was diagnosed with brain tumors and received excellent care at the health center before passing away in late 2011.
Lillian has continued to make a wonderful life for herself here, saying, “Are you stressed out, emotionally drained, exhausted or upset? Well, consider The Oaks at Denville, where life is worry-free with not a care in the world. Residents are always warm and welcoming. The professional staff is all about YOU, and the atmosphere is wonderful and so relaxing. Take it from me—The Oaks is the place you’ve been dreaming about for your later years in life. Think you can’t afford to live here? Think again; it can happen. Just do what I did; take that first step, and call the community. The rest will all fall into place. This is heaven on earth!”
As COVID-19 took hold in March 2020, Lillian saw the administration and staff spring into action: “The Oaks has taken exceptionally good care of its residents, and that starts at the top with Executive Director Ann Ricci Kenah.” Remarking on the overall approach to the pandemic, Lillian said, “They do so much for our benefit. The housekeeping staff keep this place clean and virus-free. The nurses and aides dedicate themselves to keeping us healthy. My children don’t have to worry about my safety—they receive daily notifications, and they know I’m OK.”
The community was also supportive of residents’ emotional state. “We’re fortunate to have Chaplain Kim Baumgartner to guide us through. She provides inspirational quotes every day for every religion, giving us something to think about beyond being lonely or depressed. Regardless of their position, everyone on the staff helped tremendously. They devoted themselves to us.”
The Resident Life and LivWell teams adapted well. “From the earliest days of the lockdown, they effortlessly kept our spirits up in numerous ways,” said Lillian. Residents enjoyed games, bingo, virtual baking and exercise classes, and special treats like ice cream and mini Zen gardens. “They think of all kinds of ways to keep our lives interesting,” she said. “We wear our masks, but we go outside for walks and enjoy outdoor concerts.” Dining is another area where The Oaks shines. “Chef Joe Pane is exceptional, and we’re lucky to have him. He and his team provide delicious, nourishing meals to us every day. I don’t know how they do it.”
When asked if she had any advice for people considering a move to a full-service senior living community, Lillian replied, “You don’t know what tomorrow brings, and if you delay until you think it’s the perfect time, it may be too late. I just love it here. All you have to do is pick up the phone, and they’re right here to help. You can’t ask for better than that.”
“They anticipate what’s ahead and what needs to be done. They take excellent care of us.”Simone O’Keefe
Simone O’Keefe is a longtime resident of The Oaks at Denville, having moved to the community with her husband, Robert, in 2004. The couple “hit the ground running,” getting involved in activities that interested them; among other things, Simone volunteered in the library and Robert joined the finance committee. When Robert passed away in 2009, Simone said, “I always had support from the community.”
In 2016, when the community became an affiliate of Springpoint, Simone was wrapping up her four-year term as president of the Resident Council. She noticed a sense of completeness right away: “As a group, we were impressed by Springpoint’s care, concern, and program offerings. The transition went well, and we retained our marvelous staff.” Fast-forward four years to March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in increased safety measures and restrictions throughout the community. Once again, Springpoint’s care and concern impressed Simone: “Their response was immediate and complete from the start. Our safety has been and remains their main concern. They anticipate what’s ahead and what needs to be done. They take excellent care of us.”
Simone saw everyone from the executive staff on down pitch in to help the community thrive. “I’m sure a lot of staff members came to work feeling a bit apprehensive, but you wouldn’t know it. They were fantastically courteous and helpful.” She also appreciated the in-house TV channel providing community news and health updates, prayer groups and Bible study with Chaplain Kim Baumgartner, exercise classes, and various forms of entertainment.
Simone is full of praise for Chef Joe Pane. “When the pandemic started and we couldn’t eat in the dining room, Chef Joe developed a new system right away,” she said. “He set up weekly menus for residents to fill out, and he and his team made the food, packaged it, and delivered it to us, every day. It’s incredible; the guy is a miracle worker.” Displaying her characteristically positive attitude, she said, “I’ve not had this much time to myself to get things done. I sleep more, and I enjoy the quiet time without having to be somewhere or do something. I’m having a blast.”
“I feel I’ve continued with my recreation career here at The Oaks because I can be as active as I wish.”Richard Schlenger
Richard was a recreation supervisor before retiring and moving to The Oaks at Denville. “I feel I’ve continued with my recreation career here at The Oaks because I can be as active as I wish. There are so many things to do here like exercising and keeping fit. I’m always busy. Plus, if I find that I want to try something new like the Senior Olympics, the professional staff at The Oaks is happy to assist. They are caring, friendly and helpful.” He added, “While I loved my old house, The Oaks is the best place for me to be. My family is happy for me, and I’m happy to see them smile when I talk about The Oaks. It’s the perfect place to call home!”
“You’re surrounded by wonderful people, both those who live here and those who work here.”Libby and Tom Vona
Libby and Tom say that The Oaks at Denville met all their expectations and more. “From our meetings with sales counselors as we were making the decision to move, to the present day, we were treated with respect, kindness, courtesy, and the feeling of warmth you get from being with family or friends. Our apartment is beautiful; the food in the newly refurbished dining room is outstanding (you can also have it delivered to your apartment); and there are activities, social events, and classes to fulfill a multitude of tastes. You can be as busy as you like if that is your desire, or you can just relax. There are activities for everyone, and if something doesn’t exist, you can start it yourself.”
After not singing in over 50 years, Tom is in the chorus of The Oaks at Denville and is having a great time. Libby enjoys all the exercise classes and is putting her Spanish to good use in the Spanish Club. These are only some of the many activities available, and myriad trips and outings as well.
“You’re surrounded by wonderful people, both those who live here and those who work here. There’s a real sense of community that permeates The Oaks. After moving in, we have many new friends, and our life is certainly a happy one!”
The Oaks at Denville is the ultimate in gracious living!Joan Manning
Joan says, “You don’t really age at The Oaks, you marinate—savoring a carefree lifestyle while enjoying new friendships and the many amenities offered. The Oaks at Denville is the ultimate in gracious living!”