Adult day retreat opens in Fox River Grove with movie, casino and art rooms: ‘It’s way past just bingo’

Owner plans to open 10 more locations in and near McHenry County

Second Season Adult Day Retreat owner Patricia Livesay-Smith cuts the ribbon to celebrate to grand opening of center.

Inside the Second Season Adult Day Retreat in Fox River Grove are colorful activity rooms for puzzles and art activities, a miniature movie theater and a casino. The retreat is a place where adults can spend the day and socialize while in the care of certified staff.

“It’s way past just bingo and lunches,” owner Patricia Livesay-Smith said.

Livesay-Smith, 72, describes Second Season as an “elevated” senior center and avoids calling it a day care center.

“I think, being a senior myself, that it’s very negative and disrespectful to call it a day care for seniors,” she said.

The retreat, at 906 Route 22, can be found off Ski Hill Road just east of Jewel-Osco. Livesay-Smith jokingly said that it can be difficult to find because most mobile navigation apps direct users to the neighboring Ace Hardware store.

“Once you’re here, boy, what fun it is,” she said.

Second Season, which opened in May, can accommodate 25 to 30 people. Members ages 62 and older can sign up for two weeks at a time for “all-inclusive” benefits at $21.50 an hour, Livesay-Smith said.

Staff celebrated with an open house and ribbon-cutting Thursday.

Livesay-Smith has more than 40 years of experience in long-term senior care and has wanted to open the retreat for about five years. She also runs Ela Homecare at the same location, which opened in 2018. The licensed senior home care agency provides services such as live-in caregiving, medication reminders, dressing and bathing assistance, and transportation services.

Family and colleagues helped Livesay-Smith clear out the offices and decorate the retreat, which she personally decorated, as interior design is one of her passions.

The team started in January, and less than five months later it was open, co-owner Kim Partipilo said.

“We worked nonstop,” she said. “It was a lot of long nights and weekends.”

Partipilo has been working with Livesay-Smith at Ela Homecare about five years and describes her as having “one of the biggest hearts.” Partipilo said she is most excited for the social aspect of working at the retreat.

“Who gets to go to work and help someone just have a great day?” she said.

Second Season is decked out with an exercise room, a small nail salon, a cafe and a little library. The cafe brings in local food every day, such as Portillo’s, Culver’s, Kuwa Sushi and La Pizza Via. The books for the library, all large-print, were donated by retired McHenry County Judge John Bolger, Livesay-Smith said.

Livesay-Smith said she hopes the retreat helps people who normally would “fall through the cracks.” After working in senior care through the COVID-19 pandemic, she saw the negative effects of isolation and loneliness firsthand from her patients. Second Season is geared toward adult children and partners who need a couple of hours away from their loved ones while getting much-needed social interaction.

“The adult children have to work still, so they don’t know what to do with their parents,” she said.

Although the retreat just opened, Livesay-Smith is not slowing down. She aims to open at least 10 more locations nearby and within McHenry County in the next two years.

“I think the need is so great for this, to give seniors somewhere else to enjoy their time,” she said.

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