Celebrating New Things at Kirby Pines

The thirty-ninth anniversary of Kirby Pines is just a month away. Whether you have been a resident for thirty-nine months or just thirty-nine days, you are enjoying first hand the numerous improvements and upgrades the community has made over the past years. These improvements and our consistency as a leader in the senior living industry, has resulted in Kirby Pines being voted the Best Retirement Community by the readers of The Memphis Commercial Appeal for fifteen consecutive years. 

Here are just a few reasons why we have earned this citywide recognition year after year: The Performing Arts Center over the years has hosted artists from our own Resident Groups, the New Orleans Jazz Ensemble, Memphis Opera and the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. The Dog Park is now opened, allowing our four legged Kirby family a place to run free and enjoy the shade provided by the majestic pine trees that border the park; cornhole boards are now permanently in place and tournaments have become one more enjoyable sport that many play on campus; dozens of koi fish have been introduced into the lake and several residents enjoy feeding them along the banks or from the bridge; the walking path in Kirby’s natural preserve was recently redone for those who enjoy daily walks with nature; the Art Wall has become so popular that we had to expand the gallery area; and we are steadily moving forward with the renovations of hallways in each building. Of course, the grand lobby continues to be busy place for residents to gather near the fireplace, around the concert Steinway piano, in the bright and cheering sunroom, or at cozy niches by the grand staircase. 

Regardless of how long you have been a resident, or have been contemplating a move to Kirby Pines, our thirty-ninth anniversary is possible because of the trust you and so many in the Memphis community have in us. On behalf of all employees, thank you for your cooperative spirits throughout the years, and may I suggest you make some time to relax in August, as our thirty-ninth celebrations are just a month away.


Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

Celebrating The Summer at Kirby Pines

July is traditionally the month when we begin to think about summer, however, the summer high temperatures began in June this year. July is also when we begin to plan celebrating America’s independence with family and good friends. This July will be no exception for residents at Kirby Pines Life Care Community.

As part of national Hot Dog Month, the Bistro is bringing back to its menu a Hot Dog of the week. What better way to celebrate the opening month of summer than with a meal that is so closely tied to family outings, and the gatherings of friends. In addition, it is an excellent way to entertain grandchildren and great grandchildren visiting for the day.

If the start of summer weather has you feeling like staying indoors, then why not take a moment to check out a book from the library, or find the perfect movie playing in the movie theater. You can also enjoy playing cards or bingo, or just sitting back and relaxing to various musical entertainment available to you this month in the PAC. Living at a life-care retirement community such Kirby Pines, offers so much more than simply living in comfort. Living here provides you with more time to spend doing the things you enjoy, including volunteering.

Volunteering brings benefits to both the community at large and the residents who volunteer. It makes important contributions, economically as well as socially. It also contributes to making a more cohesive community by building trust and reciprocity among the residents. Call Allison or Rachel in Resident Programs to find the perfect place for you to volunteer. 

As we gather to celebrate Independence Day, take a moment to think about all we have come through together these past few years; and join with me in thanking our employees and workers for their tireless hours of service to you and Kirby Pines.


Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

Celebrating Our Fathers at Kirby Pines

Father’s Day is the perfect occasion to express feelings of gratitude and thankfulness to every dad, both living and deceased. Though the day is celebrated with enthusiasm in present times, it wasn’t always that way. Father’s Day celebrations had a very modest beginning. In fact, the idea is said to have come from Sonora Dodd who while listening to a sermon on “Mother’s Day” in church, wondered why there wasn’t a special day to celebrate dad. So to pay tribute to her father, Sonora held the first Father’s Day celebration on the 19th of June 1910, on the birthday of her father.

In 1913 a bill was officially introduced and the idea approved by President Woodrow Wilson three years later in 1916. In 1924 a National Father’s Day Committee was formed, however, it took Congress thirty years to give recognition to Father’s Day; and another 16 years passed before President Richard Nixon established the third Sunday of June, as a permanent observance day.

Therefore, in recognition of all fathers throughout the world please enjoy the word of Nicolas Gordon: 

Fathers are forever. Even death, 
Although a distancing, does not divide 
The child from a parent, nor does time, 
However long, nor space, however wide, 
Enduring beyond silence, beyond breath, 
Resonant where hours cease to chime, 
Some yearning inconsolable abide.


Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

Celebrating Our Mother’s at Kirby Pines

It’s that time of the year when we stop and honor those who many say has been the most influential person in their life, their mothers. These women not only raised us to be who we are today, but along the way they taught us many things about being good citizens in the community in which we live. There were times when our mothers taught us by example, and other times when they told us about others who were doing something extra to make their community a better place to live. We are who we are today because of what our mothers instilled in us as children, nurtured in us as young adults, and for which they praised us as we grew. 

This May in our large display cabinet opposite the Blossom Shop, we pay tribute to our mothers who taught us how to be who we are today. And while the cabinet is certainly not large enough to have a photo or momentum of everyone’s mother, it certainly can give us a glimpse of dozens of women who help shaped the future by raising children with empathy, work ethics, and the spirit of community. 

So on May 7, when Kirby Pines holds its annual Mother’s Day Cookout on our beautiful park-like grounds, remember that we, too, are doing our part to better the community. The cookout is, after all, not just about food and fun, but about honoring the people in our lives who raised us to be good citizens, and to give something back to the community in which we live. 

Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

Congratulations to Our Employee of the Month

Donald Grear

Transportation Driver

Describe your family: Wife Sheri, kids Ben & Betsy, grandchildren Sophie, Huxley, Harrison & Miles.  

Describe yourself in five words: Loving, funny, inquisitive, passionate, dependable.

What do you do for fun: Follow my grandchildren, listen to music, watch documentaries, workout. 

Do you have any hobbies or interests: Researching my genealogy and writing.

What is your favorite food: Tacos.  Favorite song: Rhapsody In Blue by George Gershwin. 

What is your favorite thing about your job: Talking to the residents. I never knew my grandparents, so they are the next best thing. 

What is something you are proud of:  Helping raise exceptional children who are loving, helpful and good friends to their friends. 

What would you like people to know about you:  During my 35 years producing television programs and custom videos, I have traveled to every state except North Dakota and Alaska.

Donald has been taking on the added duties and responsibilities of Transportation Supervisor since the position has been vacant. He is very friendly and always has a good attitude. Don has been making the schedules, assisting with the delivery of packages to residents and taking care of the transportation needs for residents and employees. We are proud to have him. 

– Michael Escamilla, Executive Director

Spring Is Finally Here at Kirby Pines

Spring is finally here! At least it will be here officially on March 20, 2022. It will be a true joy to have warmer weather, a nice breeze on a bright sunny day, and to see the budding of trees on our beautiful Kirby Pines campus. In fact, the beauty of our campus will make the additional six weeks of winter Punxsutawney Phil predicted seem worth it. The sight of daffodils, irises, and azaleas in bloom will be a treat for all of us to enjoy. In fact, one of the first nice warm days of spring will be the perfect time to take a stroll outside along the many walkways as new blades of green grass come up.

Speaking of green and purple, the first day of March is Fat Tuesday, so get ready for a fun filled day. Followed by another fun filled day on the 17th as we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with good Irish food in the dining room, and the “wearing of the green” by residents and staff.

Maybe one of us will even be lucky enough to find the elusive “pot of gold”, that one of the little people has hidden at the end of the rainbow after one of the spring rainfalls.

Spring is also a good time to clear out your closets of stuff no longer used or needed, and to give those items to a local charity. Kirby has been collecting unwanted eye glasses for several years now, and these always go to use as they are repurposed and given to individuals in need. If you have any eye glasses you want to donate, there is a donation box for them in the mail room.

When doing your spring-cleaning, don’t forget to check your storage bins for those items packed away and forgotten. After all, Easter will be here the third week in April and you will need that extra space in your closet for your entry into our annual Easter Hat Contest.

Spring is definitely here! So get your green clothes out of the closet and get ready for a joyful month of springtime festivities at Kirby Pines.

Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

Happy Christmas to all at Kirby Pines

“Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a Mouse…”

The sentence above is familiar to us as the opening of one of America’s most beloved Christmas stories, “A Visit from St. Nicholas” attributed to Clement C. Moore. It is the tale of what happened to one family on Christmas Eve that has been embraced by individuals around the world. In fact, for many, the story is told and retold throughout the Christmas season. The story paints a vivid picture of peace and happiness within a household that is pleasantly disrupted by a visit from jolly old St. Nicholas. So well written is this poem, that we can visualize the snow outside, the gifts under the tree, and most importantly the ending blessing. 

Much like the household in this Christmas story, Kirby Pines is filled with warmth and love for one another. Employees, much like Santa’s elves, go about their duties quietly so that you can enjoy their gifts of housekeeping, transportation, nursing, yard work, building maintenance and food. Residents snuggle into their beds with the comfort of knowing their safety and well-being are first in the minds and hearts of our employees. 

Although the story of “A Visit from St. Nicholas” is a holiday tradition, let us not forget this holiday celebrates the birth of Christ. His life and teachings are the basis for the values incorporated into our mission statement.

To all of you I wish a blessed holiday season, and remind you “… I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight, Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night”

Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

We Are Memphis Most at Kirby Pines

The weather has finally cooled down and the foliage around us is starting to change to brilliant colors of yellow, gold and crimson, reminding us that just a six weeks ago we were celebrating Kirby’s 38th anniversary. Now, in just a few days, we will again be celebrating as we welcome the community to gather and see just why we have been selected for the 15th consecutive year as the Best Retirement Community in the Memphis market. So make your plans now to invite friends and join in the celebration on Thursday, November 4th from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.

Being selected as the “best” did not occur without the votes and hard work of many people. So in this season of Thanksgiving, it is only right to thank our residents, family members, friends and employees who took the time to vote during the Commercial Appeal’s annual Memphis Most contest. Along this vein, we need to stop and thank residents and family member and friends who have been volunteering in various areas of the community as Kirby and the nation slowly walks out of the current pandemic. Additionally, we must thank our workers for the many extra hours they have put in to make everyday life at Kirby Pines continue as smoothly as possible. 

This Thanksgiving, be mindful of the challenges we have all faced during these past months; of our personal family traditions in celebrating the holiday; and of the many individuals who are no longer with us to sit, laugh and dine along side with us on this truly American holiday. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

So Much To Do This Fall at Kirby Pines

After celebrating our anniversary in grand style last month, we are anxiously awaiting to hear if we were selected for our 15th consecutive year as the winner of the Memphis Most Award for the Best Retirement Community by readers of the Commercial Appeal. Until then, let’s get ready for the annual Fall Festival Hot Air Balloon rides here on our beautiful manicured sixty acres. This spectacular event is just one reason why Kirby Pines has been selected as the best retirement community year after year. 

We will start the month off with several photo shoots to capture each resident for an updated pictorial directory. Make your appointments early for your October 4th, 5th or 6th portrait sitting. Another fun event scheduled for October is the return of the Resident Rummage Sale. Tables are available for this fun event in the PAC by notifying Allison or Liz in the Life Enhancement office. 

Then shortly after the middle of the month, an announcement and tour of the newly renovated Laurel Lane building will be held. I think you will all be pleased with the new colors, finishes and appliances selected for this latest renovated edition to our campus.

If great food is more to your liking, be certain to sign up early for this month’s Night of Exquisite Cuisine. Always a popular feast, residents and guests fill the Iris and Tradition dining rooms to full capacity as they enjoy a spectacular meal prepared by Mark Simpson and his team of chefs.

October 28th is National Make a Difference Day, and we all have the ability to do something small that makes a difference in someone else’s life. You can volunteer here at Kirby Pines to assist someone in one of the four healthcare areas; or in the Blossom Shop; Library; by assisting the Marketing Team welcoming new residents; or simply by thanking the staff who help make Kirby Pines the Best Retirement Community in our tristate area!

Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines

Celebrating Our 38th Anniversary at Kirby Pines

This September, Kirby Pines Estates celebrates its thirty-eighth anniversary. And as with any anniversary, a lot of planning will go into making this anniversary one that will be enjoyable and memorable. Each year, a theme and color is selected and this year the color is Crimson and the theme is Courage. 

Crimson has long been associated with courage, divinity, power, strength and importance. In Elizabethan era England, crimson clothing signified an individual’s status and was only allowed to be worn by royalty, noble persons and members of the Council. The Biblical meaning of crimson is strongly associated with humility and atonement. Kirby Pines certainly is respected in its market place as a strong leader in senior living, and is recognized for the importance it places in providing a great place to live and a great place to work. 

Strong, vivid and powerful are words used to describe crimson which is one reason the color is associated with courage. This past year all of us have had to be courageous. As residents you had difficult decisions to make and as employees we have faced all that the year has put before us. The strength that Kirby brings with its thirty-eight years of tradition, has given all of us the courage to do what is necessary each and every day. 

This year is turning out to be one of our country’s most difficult years, and yet it has been with courage that the country has moved forward with a commitment for change, in resolution to find new ways to do the daily tasks necessary to survive and come out stronger once this pandemic is tamed. 

Thus, our thirty-eighth anniversary will celebrate the hard work that has brought Kirby Pines to where we are today, and where we will together, move forward to in the years ahead. 

Michael Escamilla,
Executive Director,
Kirby Pines