New senior apartment complex has question-and-answer session

MARSHALL – The senior living apartments being built on the site of the former Marshall Junior High School are nearing completion, Betsy Jo Kack said. But before Heritage Pointe Senior Living gets ready for moving in or a grand opening, staff members wanted to answer questions from the Marshall area community and potential residents.

“We thought it would be a good idea to go over what Heritage Pointe is and what it is not,” said Kack, the executive director of Heritage Pointe. She and other staff members of the Heritage Pointe Senior Living, and the attached Heritage Lane memory care center, were present for an informational meeting in Marshall on Wednesday afternoon. About 45 people attended the meeting.

Kack said Heritage Pointe is not full yet, although the center is getting “great interest” from people in the area.

Two connected residential facilities are being built at the former junior high site, between 4th and 5th streets.

“We’re excited about it being downtown,” Kack said, because it means the apartments will be within walking distance of several churches, the Marshall Post Office and downtown businesses.

Registered Nurse Leah Donner, who will be the director of health services at Heritage Pointe, said the facility will provide assisted living and senior living with services packages for residents, in a total of 38 apartments.

“It’s not a strictly independent-living building. Everyone is going to have a certain level of care,” Donner said. That care includes the availability of meals three times a day, monthly health checkups and a 24-hour staff.

Kack said Heritage Pointe will also include features like a dining area, an activity room, a chapel and a hair salon, she said.

The Heritage Lane memory care facility will have 20 private suites for residents with memory loss and will be linked to the Heritage Pointe building. The memory care facility is all on one story, but it has a great room with a high ceiling and a sunroom, Kack said.

“It’s nice and airy, with natural sunlight coming in,” she said. In addition, the memory care center is built in a circular design, to minimize the distance between care providers and residents’ suites.

Kack also took time to introduce herself and some of the staff leaders who will be working at Heritage Pointe. Present at the meeting were Donner, Marketing Director Jaen Weilage, Food Services Director Amy Bjorem and Community Wellness Director Becca Badgett.

“The staff is growing day by day,” Kack said.

Donner said staff members will include mostly health aides but also an LPN and two RNs. Donner said applicants for Heritage Pointe staff aren’t required to be certified nursing aides, but so far the majority of applicants already have certification. She said there will also be an initial training and testing period for all the new staff members.

Staff members said it will be especially exciting to bring another option for memory care to the area.

“At this point, there are not a whole lot of options close by,” Kack said, and existing facilities tend to be full.

“I feel it’s a huge asset to Marshall,” Badgett said.

Kack said Heritage Pointe hopes to start moving residents into their new apartments around Aug. 1.

“We will be moving people in slowly,” she said, to avoid having a hectic “move-in day.”

A grand opening and open house for the community is planned in September.