Anna Leon comes for the socializing, which includes bingo, card games, and occasional themed events. She also enjoys arts and crafts as well as the exercise she does.
As for the food she receives at the Garden Oaks Adult Activity Center – for breakfast and lunch – it is fresh, homemade and nutritious.
Leon, a Northside resident and senior citizen, said she has been to the Garden Oaks facility almost every weekday for nearly 30 years. And when she makes the trip on METROLift, a free transit service for Houston-area residents with disabilities, she recommends adult daycare to everyone she meets.
She enjoys it so much that she said she wishes it was open on Saturdays and Sundays.
“It’s my home away from home,” Leon said.
The Garden Oaks Adult Activity Center, operating since 1994 at 905 W. 34and St., is looking for a new home and needs the help of a community he has served for nearly three decades. Owner and founder Victoria Davis said the property was recently purchased by a neighboring business and the new owner asked the state-licensed day activity and health services center to vacate the property by the end of April.
Davis said she recently found what might be a suitable new home for the center, a former sports bar in the Northside area, but needed help buying it. She created a GoFundMe account on Monday, at https://www.gofundme.com/f/zu3vbx-miracle-on-34th-streetto raise $65,000.
“The pandemic has really just blown the wind out of our sail, so we’re in the process of recovery,” Davis said. “I will do everything to continue this activity. It’s really good service. »
Davis and her husband, Bob, have lived in Candlelight Estates for more than 30 years and sent their children to school in St. Rose of Lima and St. Ambrose. Shortly after the Garden Oaks adult activity center opened, Victoria said it was referenced in The leader like the “Miracle of 34and Street.”
The activity center, which serves seniors as well as people with disabilities, welcomes visitors from across the Houston area, Victoria Davis said. It typically served around 60 customers a day before the COVID-19 pandemic, she said, with that number dropping to around 30 this year.
Those who benefit from the services provided at the Garden Oaks Adult Activity Center range in age from 21 to 94, Davis said. As well as providing social interactions, outings, Bible lessons and daily health care, 58-year-old Eastex resident Helena Brown said staff at the center helped her with dental care. and find an apartment.
“That’s great,” she said. “We’re just one big family.”
Leon also used the word “family” to describe her experience at the Garden Oaks Adult Activity Center, and Davis said that’s the type of atmosphere she strove to create. She credited staff nurse Martha Cook as well as her cooks, who prepare Davis’ home recipes such as meatloaf and a collection of casseroles.
The activity center has held themed parties over the years, such as costume parties for Halloween.
“We make it fun, engaging and caring, and we have exceptional employees,” Davis said. “We work so hard to take care of them.”
Brown and Leon both said they weren’t worried about the impending move from their favorite gathering spot, although Davis said there will be a time gap between the closure of 34and Location in the street and opening of a new establishment. She said her business license with the Texas Department of State Health Services will remain valid during this time.
And when the activity center reopens in a new location, Brown and Leon said they plan to be there.
“I’m going with them,” Brown said. “Wherever they go, I will go.”
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