KINGWOOD, W.Va. (WBOY) – “Stonerise Kingwood” held a small parade on Miller Road for its residents on Sept. 22 at 4 p.m. to make its way down to the nursing facility.

The staff held a parade for its residents last year, during the COVID-19 pandemic, to give residents something fun to do. Most of the cars in the parade were filled with family members of the residents. The idea for the “Buckwheat Festival Kick-Off Parade” came about when the staff realized that a lot of the patients have a relationship with the Buckwheat Festival, but are not able to participate in it anymore. So they wanted to do something nice by bringing a piece of the festival to the nursing home.

Buckwheat cakes are also a huge part of the buckwheat festival, so the staff will be making sausage and buckwheat cakes to serve to the residents for lunch on Friday. They have some black stones and are planning to grill the cakes for the residents.

“A lot of the people here in this facility grew up in Preston County,” said the he facility’s CEO and administrator, Terri Rodeheaver,” and the Buckwheat Festival, for 80 years, has been a part of this community, and, you know, a lot of the folks here now are not able to physically partake in the traditional Buckwheat Festival activities. And so, we thought it would be really important and meaningful to them if they got to do some of those things here,” she said.

Jenni Gibson, admissions director, mentioned that Stonerise Kingwood tries to bring whatever is going on in the area to the nursing home so that residents can still feel included, despite some of them not being able to go to certain things.

There were a variety of community services that participated in the parade on Thursday. The services include:

  • WKMM radio station
  • Preston High School band
  • Kids and their dressed-up dogs
  • Preston County Livestock Association and some animals
  • Santa Clause
  • McDonalds, which handed out balloons and pumpkin pies

Director of Nursing Kelly Manko set up parts of the parade for the residents with help from some of the other staff members. “It makes my heart really happy,” said Manko. “Anything like this, where we can try to bring their past life to them now, makes them happy. It makes a lot of memories for them and we hear them talk about it for weeks and months to come, and you just know it is a memory that truly sticks with them.”

The Buckwheat Festival will start on Sept. 28 and will run until Oct. 2. Stonerise Kingwood will even have a float with some residents in the parade during the festival week. For more information or scheduling details, click here.