Pictured at the groundbreaking event (L-R) are: Sue Eick, Melissa Sargent, Larry Palm, Saul Glazer, Bill Robison, Rita Giovannoni, Joyce Behrend, Tom Shorter, Matt Golden, Matthew Lund and Eric Schmidt. Photo by Jody Dingle

By Sue Berg
Independent Living, Inc.

May 19 was an exciting day for Independent Living, Inc. On this slightly damp spring afternoon, more than 100 guests applauded a ceremonial groundbreaking event for Tennyson Senior Living Community, a senior-living complex now under construction on Madison’s Northside.

Hosted at Warner Park Community Recreation Center, the groundbreaking event formally recognized the launch of construction. Speakers lauded leadership efforts and community support. Following the program, dignitaries and guests flowed outside. The construction manager for Tennyson, CG Schmidt, had arranged two wheelbarrows full of rich soil. They handed participants white hard hats and gold-painted garden trowels for a symbolic turning of the earth.

Larry Palm, District 12 alder, addresses a crowd of more than 100 at the ceremonial groundbreaking event for Tennyson Senior Living Community, which is being built by Independent Living, Inc. Photo by Jody Dingle

Afterward, guests enjoyed a reception featuring hors d’oeuvres that earned rave reviews for Independent Living’s chef. “We overheard many say that if the refreshments were an indication of the food that will be served at Tennyson, they were ready to move in,” CEO Joyce Behrend said with a laugh.

Behrend was one of the speakers at the groundbreaking program, giving credit to many supporters. Key among them were Independent Living’s board of directors and former CEO Rita Giovannoni, who retired and chose to stay on as project development director to oversee Tennyson construction. Additional speakers were Giovannoni, District 12 Alder Larry Palm and Saul Glazer, president of the Independent Living board of directors.

Tennyson Senior Living Community will be built at 1936 Tennyson Lane. When complete, the campus will have independent and assisted living apartments, memory care and numerous services. Another feature will be a Health and Wellness Center with a unique warm-water therapy pool.

First under construction is the four-story, 60-unit assisted living and memory care residence, the Health and Wellness Center and main community spaces, totaling 90,000 square feet. Then, the five-story, 75-unit independent residence will be constructed. “It is possible that we may be able to start construction on the independent residence before the assisted living residence is complete,” Giovannoni said.

For inquiries about Tennyson residency, donations and employment, call Rita Giovannoni, Tennyson project director, at 274-7900 or send an email to Tennyson@independentlivinginc.org. Independent Living, Inc., is a charitable nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. Tax-deductible contributions for Tennyson Senior Living Community are welcomed. Information about Tennyson Senior Living Community is available online at www.independentlivinginc.org/tennyson-senior-living-community.html.