A retiree began donating record players to senior living communities about a year and a half ago, hoping to help seniors enjoy the classic records from their generation once more. But, the records have done much more than that.
Learn more about the effect that music has had on these communities, and how to donate records to assisted living.
Bringing Old Time Music Back to Senior Living
Knutson, who is said to also lend a selection of music from his collection of over 5,000 albums to the communities, first began the donations to help residents enjoy their favorite “old time” music again. He soon found, however, that they were having much more of an impact than he thought they could.
“This was bringing back memories… We had people crying and singing along and dancing.”
The Red Wing communities have now begun setting up phonographs and vinyl records near the main entrances, where residents and visitors can gather, listen and share the experience together.
How to Donate Records to Assisted Living
A former activities director of the Red Wing Healthcare Community, Mary Wille, says of the record donations: “I knew the residents would love it, and I knew I would love it.” She believes that the records are also important to senior living residents, because “having a choice to do something on their own can boost self-esteem.”
Knutson says that every senior has a favorite artist to listen to — from Gene Autry, Johnny Mathis and Perry Como, to Tennessee Ernie Ford and Conway Twitty.
He plans to continue the search for more vinyl records to expand his mission to help other assisted living communities across the region. To help donate records, you can contact Knutson at a phone number provided by the Republican Eagle.