Retirement is a time of reflection. You probably scoffed when you received your first AARP magazine and admit it; the idea of checking out your local senior center was not high on your list of things to do. “Not for me”, you probably said, “I am not ready to be old yet”. After a few years you may be ready to entertain those thoughts again, but why wait? If you are looking for inexpensive classes, interesting activities, information, and a good social network, the time is now.
Visit your local senior center. Many senior centers now call themselves activity centers because they are more than just places to hang out for lunch, play cards or enter Bingo tournaments. A senior center is like a club, except that this club has a mission. A senior center is a place devoted to fun and leisure. A senior center is where seniors can learn how to help themselves through education. A senior center is a place to find health and fitness programs. A senior center is a place where seniors go to help each other through group activities and it is a place that serves as a conduit for senior care. Seniors centers have changed to reflect the drive for independent living, and are focusing on people age 55 and over. That doesn’t sound so frightening does it?
Do you want to learn something new, meet people, engage in a fitness program or are you looking for a volunteer opportunity? A senior center can be your gateway to all sorts of programs and services available for older adult. If you don’t feel “old” enough to be thought of as a “senior” you can still get involved by volunteering. Teach a class, help out at the reception desk, offer your managerial expertise, wow them with your cooking skills, or you could serve as a board member. Your center will be as good as you want it to be.
I am sure you can find something that will pique your interest whether it is social and recreational activities, educational and art classes, seminars on health and wellness, fitness programs, civic engagement opportunities, employment assistance or transportation services. Dance classes, book clubs, social hour, meal service, creative writing, bridge groups, yoga or better balance instruction, gardening, cooking…you name it and you can find it at a senior center near you Nearly every community has a senior center. I can count at least four within driving distance of my house, and that is pretty typical. Some are large and some are small but one of them is sure to offer something that you might enjoy. The people are friendly, accepting and supportive. What more could you want from a social “club”?