Ides of March celebration takes residents back to ancient Rome

Residents and staff mark March 15 by acting out a day in the life of Romans

Pleasant Meadow Manor became an arm of the Roman Empire on March 15 when the Norwood, Ont. long-term care home’s residents and staff members celebrated the Ides of March.

The Ides of March was the day in ancient Rome marking the deadline for settling debts, but it became more famous as the day Roman dictator Julius Caesar was assassinated in 44 BC.

In honour of this day, Pleasant Meadow Manor life enrichment co-ordinator Kim Williams and her team organized an Ides of March party, which saw everyone dress up in togas and enjoy foods popular in the Mediterranean region, including mozzarella and feta cheeses, olives, cherry tomatoes, Italian flatbread crackers and grapes.

The snacks were washed down with non-alcoholic wine and grape juice.

The life enrichment staff shared famous quotes by Julius Caesar. The residents donned togas and became Julius Caesar or Roman goddesses to have their pictures taken in front of the Roman columns team members created for a backdrop.

“I was looking to do something different with the residents and came up with the idea of celebrating March 15th and the Ides of March,” Kim tells The OMNIway.

“The residents really enjoyed themselves and got quite a chuckle with the staff costumes and when they dressed up. One gentleman was quite impressed with his picture, exclaiming, ‘now that’s a handsome picture of me.’ ”

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PHOTO CAPTION: Pictured above, Pleasant Meadow Manor resident Frank Bischof plays Julius Caesar as “life enrichment goddesses” Emily Gerow (left) and Sheila Fleury feed him grapes during a celebration of the Ides of March.