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Bethany begins $3 million expansion

This artist's rendering shows the dining area at Ecumen Bethany Community. Contributed.1 / 3
Crews worked on the west side of Ecumen Bethany Community on Monday. Echo Press photo.2 / 3
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Big things are happening at Bethany.

Ecumen, a nonprofit senior housing and services company, is expanding senior living and service offerings in Alexandria.

Ecumen Bethany Community recently started a $3 million renovation and expansion project that will improve short-term rehabilitation services and introduce memory care.

The project will also expand the short-term rehab dining area and centralize administrative offices on the campus.

"We already have an outstanding short-term rehab program, and soon we'll have an enhanced space in which to continue providing the very best services to the Alexandria community,'' said Carol Kvidt, Ecumen Bethany Community's executive director. "Our short-term rehab resident satisfaction rate is 97 percent; the new space will make it even better."

Kvidt added that there's a growing need in the community for senior living options, including an increasing demand for "quality memory care in a home-like environment."

When completed, the remodeled short-term rehab unit will be located on one floor with easy access to the therapy gym.

The expansion will increase the dining space in the unit and add 11 memory care suites.

A new courtyard will be added to Bethany's outdoor space.

The project, financed through long-term, tax-exempt bonds, is expected to wrap up this summer.

Here's the timeline, according to Kvidt: the new short-term rehab will open in mid-March, the rest of the project, including the new dining space, new front entrance, courtyard and new memory care will all open in early July.

Ecumen Bethany Community offers independent and assisted living, skilled nursing care, short-term rehabilitation services, a senior fitness center, and community outreach services for Alexandria area residents, including adult day services, respite care, and the VoiceCare home medical alert system.

For more information about the expansion or about Ecumen Bethany Community, contact Kvidt at (320) 763-1133 or


Ecumen (, based in Shoreview, is empowering individuals to live richer and fuller lives. Ecumen says it envisions a world in which aging is viewed and understood in radically different ways. Its mission is to create home for older adults wherever they choose to live. Ecumen operates senior housing and services across Minnesota (including Bethany Community in Alexandria), and in North Dakota, Wisconsin and Idaho, and provides senior housing development services nationally. Ecumen has been named seven straight years by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal as one of Minnesota's "Best Places to Work" and one of Minnesota's Top Workplaces by the Minneapolis Star Tribune and Minnesota Monthly Magazine.

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Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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