Jenifer Apazidis, Owner of The Red Raven Restaurant in Acton, MA is the creator of the Purple Table. Jenifer knows all too well, the experience of having a loved one battle Alzheimer’s disease. Her Mom, Linda passed away at the young age of 62 with Alzheimer’s disease. In tribute to her Mom, she created Lovely Linda’s Lunches. Jen’s Dad frequently referred to her Mom as “Lovely Linda.” After learning about Create A Better Day Cafe™ and my efforts to create other memory cafes, she reached out and offered a donation of food from The Red Raven for my other cafes. We met in person and decided that we shared the passion for helping those individuals and caregivers who are dealing with Alzheimer’s. Jenifer renewed her Lovely Linda’s Lunches on March 4th and now will be held the first Saturday of each month at The Red Raven from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm.
Jenifer mentioned her idea of the Purple Table reservation. She created this as an option for caregivers to communicate to the restaurant that there is a person with special needs in the party coming to dine. A caregiver can make this Purple Table reservation online or by calling. This provides the restaurant the opportunity to choose the appropriate table and server.
The benefits to a person with Alzheimer’s utilizing the Purple Table includes:
- A table located in a quieter part of the restaurant providing less distraction
- A table with more lighting providing better ability to see the menu, food, etc.
- A menu that may have less choice and more pictures increasing their ability to choose with less confusion
- A server who has been educated on special communication skills which allow the individual to feel comfortable, less anxious, and included
The Purple Table is designed to accommodate any special needs, not just Alzheimer’s. Jenifer’s creation has spread like wildfire. Social media has reached across the country in very little time. The Purple Table has been noticed by the Alzheimer’s Association, The Executive Office of Elder Affairs, and The Massachusetts Restaurant Association. This is truly an amazing contribution to the efforts of Dementia Friendly America and Dementia Friendly Massachusetts. Keep spreading the word. Every restaurant should institute the Purple Table.