About Our Community
Ontario, OR Assisted Living
Brookdale Ontario, formerly Emeritus at Meadowbrook, is an Ontario, OR assisted living community. Located in the heart of Eastern Oregon’s farming community – just a short distance from Boise, Idaho – Ontario is a small community of 11,000, the majority of whom are involved in farming in one capacity or another.
Ontario lies along the beautiful Snake River, the largest and longest tributary of the Columbia River, just at the border of Idaho. In fact, our city is called “Where Oregon Begins.” Downtown Ontario is typical of small western towns, with all of the amenities necessary to support the local community, including a hospital – Holy Rosary Medical Center – located just a few blocks from Meadowbrook. Heinz Frozen Food Company was founded in Ontario in 1951 and remains one of the largest employers in the area today.
Like many western communities, Ontario has a Wal-Mart, which we frequently visit. Residents also love to go to our local “hangout,” the Plaza, for lunch. Some, in fact, have been going to the Plaza for many years and are able to reconnect with old friends from the area. In the summer, we take residents on sightseeing outings – to various local lakes for fishing and picnics, and to the Malheur River Recreation Area, which is known for its spectacular scenery, geology, wildlife habitat and history.
A Wonderful Selection
Our single-story community has 53 apartments, including spacious 400-square-foot studios and 600-square foot one bedrooms. All one bedroom units offer a kitchenette – and all apartments include a private bathroom, all utilities including cable (except telephone), large windows – some overlooking onto a courtyard, others have views out onto neighboring farms of row crops. Pets, including small dogs, cats and even birds, are a big part of our community. We also offer short-stay options, allowing a senior to move in on a short-term basis to give a caregiver a break or simply to take our community for a “test drive.”
Senior Residential and Assisted Living
Our community features several spacious common areas, including a large dining room, a library that doubles as our activities center and a large beauty salon open to the public. Most of our social events are held in our expansive lobby area. We also have our own chapel for church services, bible studies and movie nights! Our common areas recently received a “refresh,” with new furnishings in the lobby and dining room, and new carpeting and paint throughout. In addition, Brookdale Ontario is designed with two wings, with a common area in the center and a courtyard off each wing. Our landscaped courtyards offer a wonderful outdoors area for relaxation and special events. Each also offers several small raised beds for those of our residents who love to garden. The rose garden, which one of our residents takes care of, is located in our south courtyard. A windowed hallway looks out onto the rose garden on one side, and the courtyard from the other, creating a warm, naturally lit sun room – the perfect spot for watching birds coming and going to our bird feeders.
Strong, Caring Professional Relationships
Depending upon a resident’s medical needs and their doctor’s orders, we can bring in outside services, including home health (should a resident’s requirements go beyond our scope of abilities) and physical, occupational and speech therapy to support a resident’s rehabilitation needs. In addition, we occasionally bring in a podiatrist who conducts nail and foot clinics. Our medical staff also closely interfaces with many physicians in the area and can facilitate doctor visits should the resident wish. There’s a lot of back and forth, so that if we see a change in a resident – for example, depression or a change in eating habits – we can immediately alert their doctor and take care of the problem as quickly as possibly. Reacting quickly to changes in conditions is something that our staff prides itself on and offers a great comfort to our families.
Our Medication Assistant and Resident Care Aids provide the majority of assisted living services. In addition, we have two full-time licensed nurses – one RN and one LPN – on staff, which sets us apart from other assisted living communities in the area. We also have a full-time activities director, who is from the immediate area. She knows many of our families and knows just about everything that’s going on in Ontario, so she can easily pull together activities, events and special outings to meet the residents’ interests and preferences. Like our residents, many of our staff members are from the local area and even knew some of the residents before they moved here. Many are working on nursing degrees at our local community college, and all are caring people who truly consider themselves advocates working on behalf of our residents.
Our Community Lifestyle
A Wonderful Active Lifestyle
Many of our residents are from the immediate area, including members from the Foundation Families – people who moved into Ontario two generations ago and established many of the ranches and farms in the area. As a result, our residents share an incredible bond and connection with one another; they have an instant appreciation for their farming and ranching backgrounds and as such, are extremely welcoming and friendly. In fact, many knew each other before moving here, having attended elementary school together and having gone to communities dances and to the same churches as one another. In addition, many of our residents are fairly independent and want an active lifestyle. That’s exactly what they find at Meadowbrook, where there’s always something going on, whether it’s a family party, Valentine’s Day celebration, people engaged in conversation or a barbeque out in our rose garden. Brookdale Ontario has also recently undergone an extensive refurbishing, with new furnishings, carpet and paint.
Our activities place a big emphasis on family parties, from Christmas dinner to summer barbeques. Brookdale Ontario has the space to accommodate large groups – and indeed, often our family events attract up to 150 people, including children and even grandchildren. On a day-to-day basis, games are a major source of activity, including bingo and poker. We also have Happy Hour three times a week, during which we walk around with a hospitality cart. Crafts, manicures and our exercise program, held three times each week, are also extremely popular. Chapel services and bible studies are held in our own in-house Chapel, which doubles as our movie theater. And there are always residents joining together to enjoy a quick game of cards, while others may prefer to quietly together to work on a puzzle. One of our two courtyards features a spectacular rose garden, which is tended to by a resident – and enjoyed by all!
Partnering with the Local Neighborhood Community
Brookdale Ontario is strongly linked with the Veterans Advocacy Group, an independent outside group that periodically comes into our community to support our veterans. For example, on the Fourth of July, they hold recognition programs, during which they will present our veteran residents with special awards and honors. They also help our veterans take full advantage of the benefits to which they are entitled.
Our menu features variety, variety and more variety! Residents love that they are given a choice of two entrees per meal, which include traditions from the local area, like black eyed peas – and lots of meat and potatoes, since that’s what most of our residents are accustomed to having grown up on farms. All of our food is created by world-class dietitians who work for Brookdale. And take it from our Community Relations Director, who has been employed by several other non-Brookdale assisted living communities: “The food at Brookdale Ontario is the best of any community I’ve ever worked.” We also serve three snacks and beverages each day; in fact, we take our “snack and hydration” carts around to our residents’ rooms, offering them sandwiches, yogurt, cheese and crackers or freshly baked cookies for them to enjoy in their own apartments. This helps with keeping residents hydrated, which can be a big problem, as the thirst drive diminishes with age. Our Dining Services Director can also accommodate some special diets, and we have dining assistants available should a resident need help with their meals.