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Weekly Tips & Insights

3 Activities at the National Blues Museum in St. Louis That Promote Cognitive Health for Older Adult

Across various cultures, museums are often regarded as one of the most invaluable institutions of our world. By collecting and preserving relics of the past, they serve as a reminder of the cultural, religious and political history that impacts the present as we know it. Today, museums hold a special meaning to many for the way they provoke curiosity and feed a sense of wonder across generations. The city of St. Louis is lucky to be the home of the one of these great institutions, the National Blues Museum.

Here are some mentally stimulating and emotionally stirring events at the Blues Museum older adults and their loved ones can enjoy that can promote or improve cognitive health:

November 17 | 10am - 11:30am | Free

It’s widely known that museums have a positive effect on children’s neurological development; however, they can also improve cognitive stimulation in older adults. For those with any form of dementia or at risk for cognitive decline, these benefits can be even more impactful.

Consider gathering loved ones for Family Day at the National Blues Museum. Event activities like scavenger hunts, story time, crafts and live-music can offer something engaging and enjoyable for everyone. These types of hands on activities and crafts increase engagement and closeness with loved ones, which can be especially helpful to older adults by reducing anxiety, isolation and irritability they may experience as a result of declining cognitive health.

October 10, 2018 - February 28, 2019 | Free w/ museum admission

Photography is a powerful tool for evoking emotion and stirring up memories, as well as prompting viewers to learn about the stories behind their creation. Sharing interpretations of different works of art with others can promote brain activity and increase social bonds.

One of the museum’s current traveling exhibits features photographer Timothy Duffy’s work in, Our Living Past: A Platinum Portrait of Music Maker, which includes largely unaltered images that preserve the deep musical roots of the American South. Viewing these images and learning about the rich histories of the musicians and regions reflected in them can be a stimulating way to connect with others.

Every Sunday | 4pm - 7pm | $10


Every Friday | 7pm - 10pm| $15

It’s been widely accepted as fact that music has the power to bring people together, but studies have shown that it can have specific neurological and emotional effects on us all. Through evoking emotions, lifting moods, and triggering memories, music can give older adults with memory loss, dementia, or Alzheimer's, the ability to share emotions with their loved ones that they may have otherwise struggled to express.

Consider seeing live music featuring various talented performers at any of the Blues Museum’s weekly Howling Fridays or Soulful Sundays events. Either of these shows can offer a perfect opportunity for everyone to kick back and take in some inspiring talent.

Planning outings the whole family can enjoy can be difficult, especially if there are various health conditions to take into account. Participating in any one of these listed events can offer a fun, rewarding experience the whole family can not only enjoy, but also cognitively benefit from, including grandkids, caregivers and aging seniors with memory decline.

For more information, visit the National Blues Museum website.


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