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Generations come together for some holiday decorating

FORT KENT, Maine — Crosswinds residents enjoyed an afternoon of Christmas merriment when they participated in a wreath activity on Monday at the residential care center in Fort Kent.

Elaine Desjardins, a former educator at Wallagrass Elementary School, provided the supplies for the project as well as instructions on how to make the wreaths.

Desjardins has offered the activity at St. Joseph Memory Care for several years and decided to bring the project to Crosswinds at the request of her daughter, JoAnne O’Leary, a school nurse for SAD 27.

O’Leary is the adviser for the Junior Hospital Volunteers club at Fort Kent Community High School, which explores careers in health care. 

Ten freshmen and sophomore student members of the club assisted in the wreath-making.

“This activity was a great way to start our Christmas season,” said Crosswinds assistant activities coordinator Patti Perreault Voisine. “Elaine provided everything — the bows, decorations, wire and her expertise. What a great lady.” ‘

“She ventured over with a truckload of branches and decorations,” Voisine added.

Desjardins said she and several of her grandchildren collected the wreath branches off the family homestead in Wallagrass.

As for wreath bows and other decorations, Desjardins said she hits up after-Christmas sales and saves the ornaments in anticipation of the wreath-making project.

Desjardins said she learned to design wreaths by learning from her mother, the late Ethel Pelletier of Allagash.

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