Several members of the community brought Christmas caroling to the Spring Valley Care Center residents recently. From left are Barb Shafer, Flossy Schultz, Nancy Voigt, Wendy Grabau and Dale Shafer. Not shown were Connie Krueger and Bretta Grabau.  BRETTA GRABAU/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE
Several members of the community brought Christmas caroling to the Spring Valley Care Center residents recently. From left are Barb Shafer, Flossy Schultz, Nancy Voigt, Wendy Grabau and Dale Shafer. Not shown were Connie Krueger and Bretta Grabau. BRETTA GRABAU/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE
As Christmas is not far away, several members of the community brought Christmas joy to the residents of the Spring Valley Care Center on Thursday, Dec. 5. The residents participated in the Christmas carol sing-a-long since many could not attend concerts elsewhere.

Though the performers were volunteers, they did not have a set program. Instead, they sang many well-known songs and encouraged interaction with the audience by asking for special requests. Not only were songs shared, but one entertainer read the Christmas story from the book of Matthew in the Bible.

The singers gathered around the large Christmas tree decorating the room and performed with a piano, a guitar and a homemade bass. Several in the group had entertained the residents many times before.

The residents especially found the bass to be a peculiar and ingenious design and finally asked how it was made.

Simple items were used in its construction. There was a wash basin transformed into the base of the instrument. A hoe handle and steel cable formed the musical section with the cable strung through a hole in the basin. In order to mellow the sound of the notes played, the cable was threaded through a soft washer.

The entertainers enthusiastically encouraged the residents to sing the songs with them. Many did so and enjoyed it immensely. Several of the sacred Christmas songs, such as "Away in a Manger," "Silent Night" and "Joy to the World" received a round of applause from an appreciative crowd.

Several employees stopped to join in singing with the crowd. Two members of the audience were pulled out to sing "O Holy Night" and "What Child is This."

The residents thoroughly enjoyed the singing, especially since one of the employees sang "O Holy Night."

After the program concluded, the performers mingled and talked with the audience. Several residents thanked the singers for their performance and willingness to entertain those at the care center.