MNRC celebrates 50 years for quality care

MNRC will celebrate its 50th anniversary on Sunday, Aug. 12 with an open house event. The public is invited to attend. there will be something for people of all ages, as well as guided tours of the facility. (Photo by Hannah Gray)
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     Monticello Nursing and Rehabilitation Center is hitting a milestone in the Monticello community.

     On Sunday, Aug. 12, MNRC invites the public to their 50th anniversary celebration. The event will take place from 2-4:30 p.m. There will something for everyone, people of all ages to enjoy during the afternoon. Guided tours will also take place throughout the facility, including MNRC’s new rehab-to-home unit. Historic displays will be set up as well.

     So much has changed in the 50 years since the Monticello Nursing and Rehabilitation Campus was built. Additions have been added on, updates have occurred over the years, an assisted living facility (Pennington Square) was added in 2001, and a rehab-to-home wing was added in 2017.

     Looking back, the MNRC has an interesting history…

     The official groundbreaking ceremony for the Senior Home, Inc. was captured in the Monticello Express in the May 25, 1967 issue. At the time, it was to be constructed in the Vanourny Addition in Monticello. Ray Embree spaded the first shovel of earth at the building site. Those witnessing the ceremony included Loras McNamara of McNamara Plumbing and Heating, Al Iben of Iben Construction, Dr. E.H. DeShaw, Dr. Otto Senft, Rev. Joseph Kirk who was then pastor of Sacred Heart Church, and Rev. John B. Wild who was then pastor of the First Presbyterian Church.

     Also at this time, a board of directors ran the Senior Home. Serving on the board during the construction and opening were Administrator Mike Goettsch, Elton Copley, Max McCrabb, Dr. E.H. DeShaw, Mrs. Eloise Helgens, Dr. Otto Senft, Alva Freese, E.H. Huibregtse, Frank Shimanek, Henry Adams and Leigh Clark.

     Senior Home, Inc. was ready to open the following year in early August. The Express put together a special issue dedicated toward the new project. The official open house, with the public invited, was held on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 10 and 11, 1968. Staff and board members gave tours of the facility during the two-day period, for all to see.

     Highlights included the retirement wing, nursing wing, extended care wing, occupational and physical therapy rooms and the fully equipped barbershop and beauty salon.

     A special dedication was held at 2 p.m. on Aug. 10. Many local contractors and companies had a hand in making this $500,000 facility a reality for the Monticello community. “No less than 17 construction firms or suppliers provided the muscle and materials that have gone into Monticello’s new Senior Home.”

     When the then Senior Home, Inc. opened its doors, it included spacious, private and semi-private rooms; professional nurses on duty at all times; professional staff; fully equipped kitchen; a beautiful dining room and lounge area and more.

     In the beginning, the Home could house 84 residents and provide around-the-clock medical care. Since then, the MNRC has added on. In 1971, 16 beds were added, to become a 100-bed facility. At the same time, an elevator was installed and the laundry room was moved to the basement.

     On Dec. 1, 1976, the Home was sold to John R. Grubb of Des Moines. Grubb contracted with James Shipley, of Anamosa, with Healthcare of Iowa, Inc. to manage the Home.

     Today, MNRC includes Pennington Square Assisted Living and Millennium Outpatient Therapy Clinic. They employ 130 people from around the area.

     MNRC has been partnering with Millennium Therapy, providing physical, occupational and speech therapy on site, including outpatient therapy.

     The rehab-to-home facility was added in 2017. Located in the renovated 600-wing, the rehab unit includes 11 large private suites meant for short-term care.

     In June 2018, MNRC was awarded the National Quality Award Program Bronze – Commitment to Quality Award by the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL).

     MNRC specializes in a wide variety of medical services such as IV antibiotic therapy, wound care, restorative nursing and rehabilitation services. The campus includes 24-hour nursing care, skilled nursing, long-term care, respite care, laundry services, hair care services, family-style meals, recreational programming, whirlpool baths and more.

     Leann Herman, marketing and admissions with MNRC, said having a facility like MNRC shows just how much the community values the quality of life for senior citizens.

     “Our population is aging,” she said. “MNRC offers a quality-care environment where residents can be near their friends, families and loved ones.”

     The 50th anniversary celebration will include fun for the whole family: the River Fever string band, a carnival, food and refreshments and BINGO.

     For more information on the celebration or to inquire about the facility, call Administrator Laurissa Martin at 319-465-5415.



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