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SANTEE -- Magnolias of Santee assisted living community celebrated new ownership on Feb. 21 at a gathering of residents, staff members, community leaders and elected officials.

“I appreciate being here. I have been nothing but welcomed here,” said Scott Lockwood, the new manager of Magnolias. “I appreciate that from the mayor and everybody here. Thank you very much. There’s a lot to love about a little town.”

Santee’s friendliness was a major reason Lockwood said he chose to make the town his second home. Originally from New York, he said he has always felt more comfortable in relaxed, rural settings than in faster paced urban surroundings.

“I’m a small town guy,” he said. “My son lives in Charleston. I would not do well in Charleston. I once lived 35 miles from Manhattan. I would not do well in Manhattan. I’m used to being able to walk in, sit down with the mayor and talk.”

His affinity for quiet, peaceful country surroundings also attracted him to Magnolias of Santee when he considered investing in an assisted living facility, he said. Located just south of the scenic waters of Lake Marion, Magnolias offers residents a unique combination of spacious, comfortable surroundings and top quality care tailored to the individual needs of each occupant – all in an intimate, uncrowded setting.

“We have 31 rooms here,” Lockwood said. “We are licensed for 44 residents. We run slightly less than that because a lot of people have private rooms.”

Each room can be fully furnished for the resident’s convenience, or the resident can bring in his or her personal furnishings. Cable TV is included with each room, and all rooms have a private bath.

Magnolias offers residents a range of activities intended to encourage them to remain physically, mentally and spiritually active. Activities featured include educational programs, arts and crafts and daily exercise classes.

Magnolias has its own on-site beauty salon and offers a range of offsite excursions to nearby locations such as parks, historic sites and local restaurants. But residents don't have to go out for their meals.

“Our cook has been here for 17 years,” Lockwood said. “She just does southern cooking, which is what (residents) like and what they’re used to. It’s nice. “

Care available at Magnolias includes medication management, weight monitoring and in-house, on-call medical services. The medical team consists of a primary care physician, podiatris, psychiatrist and psychologist.

“We have a dedicated memory care unit,” Lockwood said. “The unit has only 10 rooms, which is nice because if someone has a wander risk, they can just stay there. It’s very intimate, very small, which is nice because they really get individual attention.”

Magnolias offers caregiver respite services as well as hospice care.

“Over the last four years as a hospice nurse, I’ve had the honor of coming into Magnolias Assisted Living, and can attest to the exceptional care that the residents get here,” said Chris Nettles, assistant clinical director of Edisto Home Care and Hospice and registered nurse.”

Contact the writer: gwh903@yahoo.com.

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