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Gulf Coast Village marks Active Aging Week with activities

By Staff | Sep 24, 2009

Gulf Coast Village held a 1950s Hot Rod Tailgate celebration Wednesday for its residents and senior citizens in Cape Coral in honor of Active Aging Week.
Wellness director Melissa Wallace said Active Aging Week, which is hosted by the International Council on Active Aging, is a national celebration for senior citizens held during the third week of September.
The special week promotes a healthy, active lifestyle in a safe, friendly and fun atmosphere, while supporting professionals who develop wellness and fitness facilities and services for adults over the age of 50.
Wallace said the purpose of hosting the celebration was to “get senior citizens active and stay active.” She said the event is “a way to celebrate and give back to the senior citizens.”
Wallace said Gulf Coast Village will host something fun and festive every day this week to honor its residents.
Although the center has held 1950s parties before, it has never organized anything to this extent, she explained. The celebration consisted of approximately 30 hot rods from the 1950s, which were presented by the Hot Chili Rods organization.
Live music was performed by the Magic Moments to encourage senior citizens to get up and dance and sing along with ’50s favorites. Elvis Presley and Marilyn Monroe impersonators were in attendance to encourage everyone to get on the dance floor and enjoy the atmosphere.
Hot dogs, chili dogs and hamburgers were served for lunch, along with a soda shop stand for a little nostalgia of the ’50s. A diner was decorated inside Gulf Coast Village providing a 1950s atmosphere for attendees to enjoy while eating.
Director of sales Kathy Schwarzhoff said the special events the center will host every day are geared toward celebrating aging well. She said the intention of the events is to reach out to the community by doing things that are good for senior citizens.
One resident of Gulf Coast Village said Wednesday’s event was very nice.
“It gives people an opportunity to see some of the old cars,” the man, who asked not to be identified, said while pointing to a hot rod similar to one he owned during the 1950s.
Bob Augustyn and his daughter, Sue Clifford, also enjoyed the event, which they stated was their first. Augustyn recently moved from Arkansas and is now a resident of Gulf Coast Village.
Clifford said Gulf Coast Village “did a great job” with hosting the event for the residents and community.