MANCHESTER — With its manicured lawns, porches, gazebo and floral decor, Long View Nursing Home exudes Victorian charm.
Saturday, the Ralph Tarutisfamily of Hampstead, which has operated the facility for almost 30 years, celebrated the home's recent expansion.
About 200 people, including county officials and community residents, attended the open house.
Long View's capacity almost doubled in the expansion. It now is home to 95 people and has a capacity of 109.
"It was an arduous two-year task that we began in 1989, and not only involved a new addition, but renovating the existing facility," said Sandra Martin, co-administrator of the home and daughter of Martha and Ralph Tarutis.
"It was something we had to do because we had an extremely long waiting list and we knew we could not service those who were in need."
The home, at the corner of Route 27 and Main Street, employs nearly 80 people who provide residents with 24-hour health and personal care services.
The three-story, $3 million addition, completed a year ago, includes a ground floor with a beauty shop, activities room, laundry room, employee classroom, kitchen and private dining area.
The first and second floors of the addition each have 40 bedrooms, nurses' stations and administrative offices. Almost every room has a window with a view of the well-manicured grounds.
Outside, residents may stroll around the 2 1/2 acres and enjoy the fresh air and view from a gazebo.
In the front, an enclosed porch and large balconies on each floor provide room for easy chairs and rockers.
Long View Nursing Home is licensed by the state and is a member of the Health Facilities Association of Maryland.
"We didthis whole construction and renovation project in stages," said Martin. "Once the addition was completed, we had new carpeting, new wall coverings and air conditioning put in the existing section."
Patients temporarily were moved into the new section, she said.
"We just chose October to celebrate, because it was the first chance we had to do it," she said.
Mary Mosetti of Baltimore visited her 90-year-old father, Charles Carroll, during the open house.
Carroll, who worked 50 years at C & P Telephone Co. said, "This isn't home, but I guess it's better than some places."
Carroll, who suffers from congestive heart failure, has lived at Long View about 10 months.
"Weare very pleased with Long View, and he really is satisfied here," Mosetti said. "He was in another nursing home, and he didn't like it."
Table games such as checkers, dominoes, cards and chess are available, and exercise programs are offered weekly.
For intellectual stimulation, a current events class is taught by retired Manchester school teacher Charlotte Collett. Cooking, arts, crafts and painting classes and a variety of local musical entertainment also are offered.
Resident Alice Haynes, 74, said, "I think my favorite thing is playing bingo on Fridays. We really get a good crowd in here (the main dining room). Almost all of the tables are full."
Anna Roemer's interests are more artistic.
"I like to do water colors," the 89-year-old said. "Right now I am making crafts for the Christmas bazaar.
"I also like to take exercise class from the two ladies that come inand volunteer once a week," she said.
Built at the turn of the century, Long View was a home and office for two doctors before becoming one of the first nursing homes to be licensed in the state in 1946.
Ralph Tarutis, a registered nurse who worked as a nursing home and hospital adviser with the Maryland Licensing and Certification Division, and his wife. Martha, supervisor of nursing at Rosewood State Hospital in Owings Mills, Baltimore County, bought the facility on July 1, 1962.
"After we bought the home, Ralph stayed on with the state for another seven years," Martha said. "Until he retired in 1969 and came to work here as co-administrator, I did what needed to be done at the nursing home.
"I did a little bit of everything; cooking,cleaning, laundry," and administrative work, she said.
She also had two children at home.
"In 1962, at 16 years old, Gerry started working part-time painting and wallpapering and doing everything in maintenance. He even helped me in the office," Martha said. "He workedthere until 1970 when he graduated from the University of Maryland Law School.
Sandra, too, started helping at the nursing home.
"Since I was 11 years old, I have been doing some type of job here," said Martin, 40. "I can remember when I had a day off of school or it was summer vacation, I spent my time working at the nursing home."
Since her father's death in 1985, Martin has helped with administrative work.
"All through high school, I worked as a nurse's aide, before going to the University of Maryland Nursing School. Once I received my bachelor's degree in nursing in 1974, I returned to Long View to work in a variety of capacities."