By Tamas Mondovics

Close to 200 visitors and community representatives, which included the Riverview and Brandon chambers of commerce, joined Hawthorne Village of Brandon Retirement Community’s staff last month to celebrate the completion of the facility’s state-of-the-art rehabilitation department expansion.  During the open house event, guests were treated to some music and entertainment, door prizes, chair massages and drinks, including signature martinis.Hawthorne Village of Brandon is located at 851 W. Lumsden Rd., in Brandon, west of Kings Ave. across from Dunkin Donuts restaurant, and provides inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation, as well as independent, assisted living and custodial care services.   According to Executive Director Vernon Zeger, through Hawthorne’s unique Bounce-Back program, many patients have rehabilitated, recovered and returned back to their lives in the community.   “Hawthorne provides full rehabilitative services, including physical, occupational, speech and massage therapy, provided by therapists with over 215 years of combined experience,” Zeger said. The expansion, which began last fall, cost the facility close to $800,000, expanding the original rehab to a total of 2,600 sq. feet, with two separate therapy rooms and now  the new nautilus-like HUR exercise equipment, which sports a computer program that tracks resident’s improvements.State Representative Rachael Burgin also attended the event and was impressed with the results and the attention Hawthorne is giving to its residents.“What a great place for residents to get therapy,” Burgin said as she thanked Hawthorne for being a good representation of the Brandon community.Other projects for Hawthorne include room renovations, upgrading fixtures, lighting and resident care areas. The facility’s parent company, Florida Living Options, is in the process of  building an independent living facility in Ocala and a new 120-bed rehabilitation center in Sarasota, scheduled for completion later this year and early 2012, respectively.Pleased with all the recent accomplishments, Zeger said that as a not-for-profit organization, Hawthorne is able to invest back into its buildings.  “For those patients that come for rehab or for those residents that stay with us a little bit longer, these advances help us to stay current with the latest trends in therapy technology,” he said. “I believe our residents and patients enjoy the extensive therapy and nursing services that go along with growth and quality improvement.”To schedule a tour or for more information, please call 661-8998 or visit

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