Seniors: Living the Good Life in Cottage Country
Whether cottage country has always been home, or you have chosen to trade the big city for a more relaxed, unhurried way of life, there is one thing you have in common with the rest of our growing senior population – a desire for retirement to be healthy, wholesome and fulfilling. You may be wondering how best to stay active and engaged.
Municipal swimming pools have swim and aquacise programs geared to seniors. Year-round and seasonal walking groups are available in many areas, and golf courses abound. Search out lawn bowling clubs and bowling alleys. There are countless opportunities – you only need look for them.
Seniors Clubs run by and for seniors in search of activity and socializing can be found in many communities. Jean Smith, president of the Senior Citizens’ Club of Fenelon Falls, took time out of her busy schedule to speak to us about what the club has to offer.
“We have SAGES (Safe And Gentle Exercise for Seniors) twice a week – it’s so important that we do what we can to stay limber, in order to help with balance, heart health and overall well-being,” she told us, adding “we also have line dancing and shuffleboard.”
“We offer much more to keep our seniors engaged. Socializing is a very important aspect to overall seniors’ health, and we have cards and bingo on a regular basis. These are a great reason for folks to get out of the house and meet people,” she explained.
The club provides monthly lunches through Community Care and hosts fundraising events such as garage sales, bake sales and concerts.
They also give back to the community, including providing financial support for the Langton Public School Breakfast program, and hosting Breakfast With Santa for over 200 children at this annual kick-off to Santa Day.
Many of the club’s members also volunteer their time to programs like Meals on Wheels, driving for Community Care or the Cancer Society, and helping at other local clubs and groups. Jean is a valued volunteer at the Fenelon Falls Legion and at her church.
Jean identifies the major challenges for rural seniors: limited shopping opportunities, affordable housing and transportation. The club has always been front and center when it comes to advocating for improvements in these areas. “It’s all about providing the best quality of life for the seniors in our community.”
The club’s membership of 105+ is supported by about 20 volunteers, all seniors themselves, and if volunteering is your thing, you would be welcomed with open arms. Jean says she got involved in the club in 2002. “I started playing cards there and began helping out. I just love people, and I can’t sit home and do nothing,” Jean told us. And this busy lady shows no signs of slowing down yet – after all, she is only 89 years old.
The Senior Citizens’ Club of Fenelon Falls is located at 58 Murray Street, Fenelon Falls.
Follow them on Facebook, call 705-887-7007.