Red Hat Society Club Ideas

I have started a "red hat society" group at my mother's nursing home. Can anyone help me with ideas for entertainment to bring in for the monthly meetings or any type of things to do at the meetings? The ladies are 85-95 years old.


Patty from Bemidji, MN


Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

Hi Patty, What a wonderful, creative idea! How about getting straw hats and "decorating" them with purple and red items? Michaels should have the straw hats. There are "red hat" bandanas you can purchase at Wal-Mart that can be tied around the straw hats for cute decoration. The idea of the poem was to do things you wouldn't have done when you were young. This opens the door to memory making, movies the ladies loved with BIG tubs of popcorn or chocolates. Your visiting is the very best medicine! Thank you for being so special. (01/27/2006)

By Tedebear

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

Perhaps your first meeting might be to make the Red Hats. Crafts are always good. In another meeting you may want to make jewelry or boas. Try to think about what another Red Hat Society might do. Mine has gone on a picnic, had a train ride, gone to the movies. and had a lunch at a fancy hotel. Game night is always good (bingo?) or sing along. You don't need someone to play for the sing along, just play old music. Check your local library for music and movies. You might be surprised. (01/27/2006)


By Carol

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

I would suggest an elegant tea time. I have heard of the Red Hat Society, but since I do not drive I would have no way of participating. My #1 suggestion is always go to your fave search engine, never a lack of info there. JAN (01/27/2006)

By itsmejan

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

This age group presents its own challenges -- limited vision, hearing, and mobility, not to mention arthritis. But on the plus side, these ladies will appreciate almost anything you do.

I've worked with a Red Hat Society in a nursing home, and here are a few things that worked for us:

  1. Aromatherapy. Get some scraps of cotton fabric, cut in 9 inch circles, and place an herb or spice in the circle and tie up with pretty ribbon. Number them, and make a master sheet of which number is which spice. Pass them around and have each person guess which it is. You can use dill, basil, oregano, cinnamon, ginger --whatever!

  2. Recite a favorite poem. Of course, you'll want to have some ladies "planted" who can start the ball rolling. It's surprising how much the ladies will remember.

  3. Read a story from Good Old Days or Reminisce Magazine, and talk about the memories it evokes.

  4. Old boyfriends! This one was a winner with our group. Start the ball rolling by telling a story about your dating years, then let them take it away. Maybe talk about getting flowers for the first time, and bring a silk rose or small corsage for each lady.

  5. Kitchen band. Give the ladies spoons, washboard, kazoos, anything that makes noise. Bring in a keyboard and set it for a nice rhythm, then play along.
The ideas you've gotten so far are also good. One thing we learned though - many residents have trouble swallowing, etc. So the activities department of the nursing home will probably want to provide any refreshments.

Keep it VERY simple, do the activity slowly, and avoid competition. This is very different from how you might do things in a younger group.

Bless you for your kindness to these ladies, and good luck with the group.


By Patti

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

No matter how old my gran got she just loved fashion. How about putting on a fashion parade with a difference, have some girls model fashions from the 30s, 40s or 50s and play appropriate music. That should bring back some memories. Charity stores are great resources for clothing or someone might lend clothes if you explain what it's for, especially if you're advertising their store. (01/28/2006)

By jojo

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

A local community theater group, school choir, or church choir would probably be willing to perform for the ladies for free -- and possibly have a singalong session at the end! (01/28/2006)

By Becki in Indiana

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

I worked at a garden centre/nursery. The Red Hat Society came to visit us at Christmas when we had our special displays (the best in town! and the ladies loved it!). Our garden centre always provided free mulled apple cider for the clientele during the holiday season, but for this special trip other beverages and danity Christmas cookies were also served. Check with management if they will do that. An early spring outing would be great to a place like this as the plants are already growing & many blooming. It really lifts your spirits!

I don't know if your ladies are up to outings. If not, see what you can do to arrange forced bulb displays and info nights this spring. Check with your local garden centre. (Bulbs come complete with fragrance!) or a caroling event at Christmas (many church groups will come in to carol, or try girl guides or boy scouts). Have fun! (01/28/2006)

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

I congratulate you on a wonderful idea! My grandmother is 85, and still keeps up on fashion and beauty regiments. Check ahead of time for allergies, but think of a beauty makeover, or just a spa day with manicures, pedicures, facials and such. See if a Mary Kay representative will sponsor (without pressuring sales, of course) Having teas or elegant lunches are great, and you don't have to spend much (you can create it there at the home if needed.) They are not called "ladies" for nothing!

A lot of them also take trips to see the price is right, very popular. (01/29/2006)

By camo_angels

Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

  1. Maybe you could arrange for a small, local "Red Hat"group to come to the nursing home one day, all wearing their finery, and having a kind of style show.

  2. Red Hat groups usually go out to lunch, so maybe you could arrange for a quest group to have tea or even be able to buy and have lunch at the nursing home.

  3. I think you should put some of the responsibility for meeting ideas on the member themselves. Having a different one in charge each month for an idea, and then of course you can help carry it out, if help is needed.

  4. How about getting members of other ladies families to help.

  5. Maybe taking picture of each one and putting an enlarged copy on ther door.

  6. Try to get the activity director of the nursing home involved, so if you are not there, the meeting will go on. (01/29/2006)

    By WIsgal

    Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

    How about crafts, knitting or crocheting and then they can make fashion show/parade of what they made. Or themed parties such as disco night /day. This works great! My mother has done this kind of party with seniors and they loved it. Good luck (01/29/2006)

    By patg

    Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

    Hi, my girlfriend and I just turned 50 and had a Rederation Birthday Party. We had an insirational speaker come and tell stories. She was really great. Good luck. (01/29/2006)

    By Lady Gail

    Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

    My group the Red Hot Tamales ( from Springfield IL )started a Kitchen Band!! We go to nursing homes! They love it!
    They really like the 40's songs also! (03/11/2006)

    By Queen MumChar

    Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

    We too adopted an assisted living home. Our first visit we took 41 red hats that we decorated and tried to auction them off with play money. Our 2nd visit was a tea and one visit was helping them pick out red hat names, Our best visit was my chapter gals playing the kazoos and we taught them the red hat words to three blind mice. It was so much fun. (10/20/2007)

    By Queen Honey Bee Tampa FL

    Red Hat Society Meeting Ideas

    Hi, I am brand new to this website and noted your great idea about going to Nursing homes. I am the author of a book called Hot Kitchen and Home Collectibles of the 30s, 40s, 50s.( My book is loved by mom's generation and yours too. If you adored going down the aisles of the old dimestore you will have a ball looking through my book. Perhaps you could have a discussion group using my book to stimulate pleasant memories. For those of you in Connecticut or neighboring states, Id even come to a group. When you get done with this book, look for my sequel coming out this Fall on Hot Cottage Collectibles for Vintage Style Homes. Ill be real honest with you, Im so excited about your idea about visiting nursing homes that I just had to share my idea. Many libraries have my book. I would be so gratified to hear back from any of you who actually bring this book into a nursing home, this makes me feel so good. Please keep me posted. And I am glad to have found this site. Dianne (03/20/2008)

    By ZweigCD

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