Chef Sandy: The Secret Ingredient Behind One Community’s Tasty Events
Stop by Holiday Retirement’s Hartland Hills in Lexington, Kentucky, and you’re liable to find the community’s executive chef, Sandy Hilton, whipping up something delicious. Making tasty food is what she does, but the heart and passion she pours into making each event extra special and every meal worth remembering are what’s made her a resident favorite.
Take, for example, National Chocolate Ice Cream Day. The unofficial holiday happened to coincide with Chef’s Corner, a community tradition for which Chef Sandy serves up something special while chatting with residents about menu suggestions and food in general. One month, Chef Sandy recruited residents to help her prepare donuts during the meeting. Chef’s Corner wasn’t always interactive, but it’s become a popular event with residents, who love Chef Sandy’s food and company.
National Chocolate Ice Cream Day was no exception. Chef Sandy curated a selection of six different types of chocolate ice cream, including creamy chocolate, Snickers, Reese’s, Oreo, mint chocolate and sugar-free. And because there’s nothing quite like a cool, tasty treat on a beautiful summer day, Chef Sandy took the fun outside and served up cones for residents on the community’s sprawling back porch. The nostalgic tradition at the center of the event prompted a group chat about favorite childhood meals.
The simple, sweet delights earned rave reviews from residents, as Chef Sandy’s special touches so often do. Penny Joublanc, Wanda Newman, Betty Weaver and Alice Perry were among the residents, and photos of them smiling with ice cream in hand tell the story of a happy afternoon with friends.
“I scream! You scream! We all scream for ice cream! And we did on National Chocolate Ice Cream Day,” Penny said. “With Sandy’s help, we licked cones filled with chocolate delight.”
Amanda Stevenson, resident experience coordinator at Hartland Hills, noted that she always recruits Chef Sandy to help her bring that extra something special to events, in part because she sees the amazing passion Sandy displays at work every day.
“Chef Sandy is important to our community because of the positive energy she pours into her food and everything she does,” Amanda said. “Home is where the heart is, and Chef Sandy’s heart is definitely with Hartland Hills.”
Our goal is always to make life a little bit sweeter for our residents — and we’re not just talking about ice cream socials! If you’re considering senior living, we encourage you to get in touch or pay us a visit to learn why you belong at Holiday.