Everything in Between – Activities for Active Adults

by Kathie Boyd

When my husband and I made the decision to move into a 55+ adult community in New Jersey, it was based on several reasons.

First and foremost, we were looking forward to “hanging out” with people our own age—to be more specific—adults whose children had left the “nest.”   Our existing neighborhood had changed over the years, as all neighborhoods do.  We were tired of hearing our young neighbors’ kids partying at all hours and the jarring repetition of a bouncing basketball in the wee hours of the morning.

Secondly, my husband and I had different views on what we considered fun.  I was looking forward to social events, clubs, and trips.  And, him—well, not so much!  These were our retirement years and as much as we loved each other after 40+ years of marriage, our interests were very varied.  Without outside stimulus, being with each other 24/7 might prove a bit tiresome over time.

Thirdly, we wanted a home that was one level.  My own mother had been in a wheelchair for most of her adult life so we were well aware of the housing problems associated with handicap accessibility–at any age but especially as we age.

After our move, we were fortunate to find fellow residents with whom we had much in common.  In the ensuing 15 years of living in an adult community, we met more people than we thought possible and found wonderful loving and lasting friendships.

I have had the pleasure of traveling with my lady friends and other couples on long and short term excursions planned by the community.  Even my love-to-stay-home husband enjoyed our community trip to Aruba made that much more enjoyable by leaving the hassle of transportation and hotel planning to the recreation director.

There is a myriad of activities for singles and couples such as bocce, cards, and board games.  The fitness facilities in some communities rival the most expensive gyms and many have added amenities such as indoor pools and tennis courts.  If you had to pay for all these extras on the outside, the price would most likely surpass the Homeowner Association Fees associated with senior communities.

Renaissance Manchester Pickleball

All that being said, probably the most desirable feature of living in a 55+ community is the choice to do as little as you want, as much as you want or anything in between.  And if you don’t see what you like, start it yourself.  Most likely, there is someone with similar interests, just waiting for you to do just that!

In addition to all the requirements I sought and found in a 55+ community, there is one thing I did not list or even expect to find:  a community spirit that recognizes each person as a unique individual and, at the same time, aware of the fact that we are all in this together.

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