When working in a large aged care home a few years ago, a group of belly dancers asked if they could come and dance and entertain our senior residents. So, with some imagination and a few great ideas, we decided to create a large tent in our big activity room. This way, when our residents arrived for the concert, they felt like they were stepping into an Arabian fairy tale. Below I share some great steps you can follow to host this theme in your own aged care center.
Imagine the delight of your residents as they step into a world of enchantment, all set within the cozy walls of your aged care facility. At Memory Lane Therapy, we believe in creating unique and memorable activities for seniors, and one such unforgettable event was our Arabian-themed belly dancing entertainment day. Let’s dive into how we orchestrated this captivating escapade that left our residents mesmerized.
Setting the Stage for Arabian Nights
In our big activity room, we had a wonderful idea: we made a Moroccan tent with pretty curtains, colorful cushions, and lanterns that gave a soft light. With some creative thinking and help from the aged care staff, we changed our space to look like scenes from the stories of Scheherazade. We put nice white tablecloths on tables and put colorful rugs on chairs. We also added twinkling lights and candles that gave off a warm glow. We got help from staff, families, and friends to bring in different things that made our Arabian setup feel real.
The Grand Performance
When the people came into the tent, they were really excited. We made the lights a bit softer to make it feel cozy and had enchanting Arabian music playing. When our belly dancing group started, the whole room got lively. The dances they did had stories, like making a colorful picture with their moves. People clapped and shouted for every spin, and everyone loved watching the cool Arabian dance. It was like magic happening right in front of our eyes.
Our residents’ engagement was a priority, and we encouraged seniors who wished to join the dancers which brought smiles and laughter to everyone. With colorful scarves as props, some residents embraced the opportunity to sway and dance, showcasing their enthusiasm and spirit. The entertainers graciously interacted with our residents, sharing laughter, making each connection special.
A Curtain Call with a Touch of Charm
As the final notes of music faded, we concluded the performance with an encore of applause. But the connection lingered as the dancers circulated, sharing moments and posing for photos. To end the day, we had yummy snacks and drinks. It was a nice way to relax and keep talking about the amazing Arabian adventure we had
Make Creative Cardboard Cutouts
On the days prior to your event, you could hold some crafts groups where residents can create Arabian domed architecture and camel shapes using cardboard and a splash of imagination. Gather your residents and embark on a crafty journey, cutting out basic patterns that mimic the ornate beauty of Arabian architecture. These captivating cardboard structures can adorn your event space, transforming it into a mesmerizing Arabian oasis. And don’t forget the charming cardboard camels – these delightful additions will surely spark conversations and smiles as they stand tall, adding a dash of Arabian allure to the celebration. Let the residents’ artistic talents shine through as they fashion these unique decorations, enhancing the overall atmosphere and creating an immersive experience that transports everyone to the vibrant heart of Arabia.
Some easy steps to create an Arabian Theme Day in Aged Care
1. Set Up the Venue :
- Create a large tent atmosphere with draping sheets, lanterns, cushions, and rugs.
- Arrange tables with white tablecloths and decorate with colorful accents.
- Hang fairy lights and place battery-operated candles around the room for ambiance.
2. Invite the Belly Dancers :
- Coordinate with a group of belly dancers to perform at your facility.
- Confirm the date and time for the performance.
3. Prepare Residents :
- Inform residents about the upcoming Arabian-themed entertainment.
- Explain the concept and encourage their participation.
4. Set the Scene :
- Dim the lights slightly to create a cozy atmosphere.
- Arrange seating for residents to comfortably enjoy the show.
- Prepare Arabian music. Here is a fantastic playlist we found for you :
5. Encourage Interaction :
- Invite residents to clap and show appreciation after each dance.
- Offer colorful scarves or props for interested residents to join in the dancing.
6. Photo Opportunities :
- Allow residents to take photos with the belly dancers in their costumes.
- Capture moments of joy and interaction.
7. Post-Show Refreshments :
- Serve refreshments like tea, light snacks, or Arabian-themed treats.
- Provide a comfortable space for residents to socialize and share their experiences.
8. Express Gratitude :
- Thank the belly dancers for their performance and interaction.
- Express appreciation to staff, family, and friends who contributed to the event.
9.Collect Feedback :
- Gather feedback from residents to understand their experience.
- Use their insights to improve future themed activities.
Remember, the goal is to create a memorable and enjoyable experience for the residents, incorporating the Arabian theme and belly dancing entertainment.
Creating experiences like our Arabian-themed belly dancing day is a testament to our commitment to infuse joy, culture, and connection into the lives of our seniors. These moments become cherished memories, a reminder of the power of imagination and the joy of shared experiences. If you’re seeking an extraordinary way to captivate your residents’ hearts, consider curating your own Arabian experience–a delightful journey that transcends the ordinary and brings the extraordinary to life.