MIDDLEPORT — Family and friends gathered last Sunday to honor Overbrook Rehabilitation Center women for their contributions to family and community with an early Mother’s Day Tea.
Overbrook staff hosted the Tea on the eve of the 110th anniversary of the first Mother’s Day celebration held on May 10, 1908, at St. Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia.
After word spread of honoring mothers on a special day, many states began holding their own Mother’s Day celebrations. The holiday was made official in 1914 when the U.S. Congress passed a law designating the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. President Woodrow Wilson followed with a proclamation declaring the first national Mother’s Day.
Overbrook Activities Director Penny DeLong and the Overbrook Craft Club, whose members include residents Nora Rice, Eloise Watkins, Jeanne Anne Bradbury, Lillie Hart, Nita Conde, Barbara Mullins, Lucretia Smith, Carolyn Van Meter and Annette Boyd, facilitated planning for the event.
DeLong said that she believes in including residents in the planning of the Center’s activities.
“This is their home,” she said. “And we want them to be as involved in the planning of events as they can be.”
The dinning hall was decorated with crafts made by the club during their weekly craft time, as were the hallways leading to the resident’s rooms.
The tea began with DeLong reading a poem selected by Lillie Hart entitled, “My Mother’s Heart.”
“When I heard Penny read aloud the poem while we were planning the tea, I told her it reminded me of my mother, so we decided to choose that one to read during our program.” said Hart.
Next on the program was a performance by members of the Riverside Cloggers.
Guests were encouraged to sing along as Jeanne Anne Bradbury’s daughter Mary Bradbury sang a song entitled M-O-T-H-E-R: A Word that Means the World to Me.
Nita Conde’s son Brian gave a blessing before guests were invited to a buffet filled with sandwiches, fruit and vegetables, and a variety of pastries.
Lorna Hart is a freelance writer for The Daily Sentinel.