Active Living Centre the place to be if you’re 55+

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“The Active Living Centre is our 55+ centre,” says Simone Babineau, Manager of Recreation and Leisure Services for the Town of Huntsville.

On weekdays, the Town offers a wide range of programming there for the 55+ crowd—there truly is something for everyone.

“We have a variety of drop-in programs that are really affordable and low commitment,” says Babineau. “Drop in when you want to participate and pay the minimal fee listed—there’s no membership and you don’t have to commit to the whole season.” The drop-in fee is as low as $1 (and for some programs it’s free!)

It’s a great way to meet new people, whether you’re new to the Huntsville area, recently retired, or looking to connect and socialize over a shared interest. And it’s a great way to learn something new—you don’t have to be skilled to participate. Come out and watch, listen and learn!

There’s pickleball and table tennis, outdoor hikes and indoor walking, art and woodcarving, games and cards, a Diners’ Club, and even a jam session…and more! If you have a copy of the new Fall/Winter Leisure and Activity Guide, turn to page 12 to see all of the options available, or find them online here.

These are just a few of them:

Pickleball is a rapidly growing sport that promises a little competition and a lot of laughs. It’s kind of like a mix between tennis, table tennis and badminton, and is a fun way to get active.

If you love to create things on your own time, the Art Group might be for you. Bring whatever project you are working on and create alongside others. Never underestimate the creative stimulation that socialization provides! You might even discover a new passion. Coffee and tea are provided.

Woodcarving is one of the many drop-in activities available at the Active Living Centre

Woodcarving is one of the many drop-in activities available at the Active Living Centre (Photo: Town of Huntsville)

Eating alone is never fun—bring yourself or invite a senior family member or neighbour to the Diners’ Club! The weekly lunch, held every Wednesday from fall through spring, provides a delicious prepared meal and time to chat with others. (RSVP the day before is required.) Socialization is important at any age and it provides a tremendous boost to seniors’ overall health and wellness. Your loved ones might also enjoy a drop-in game of dominoes, chess, checkers, or cribbage. Be sure to check page 12 of the new Fall/Winter Leisure and Activity Guide for details.

The weekly Diners' Club in the Active Living Centre is a great place to meet new people, particularly for older seniors (Photo: Town of Huntsville)

The weekly Diners’ Club in the Active Living Centre is a great place to meet new people, particularly for older seniors (Photo: Town of Huntsville)

Whatever you decide to participate in, look for Jessica, the Active Living Centre’s new Recreation Coordinator, when you arrive. For those who remember The Love Boat, “She’s like Julie McCoy,” laughs Babineau. “She’s here to welcome everyone and help with what you need.”

There’s also often an expert convenor at each activity to welcome those attending for the first time and who can offer help and introductions to other people. “They are a wealth of information and are here consistently,” says Babineau, “so don’t be shy about coming on your own.”

The programs are also an opportunity for people to share their ideas, expertise and skills. “We are always looking for people who want to start a new club or have something to offer,” says Babineau. If you have an idea for an activity that others would enjoy, contact her at [email protected]

Not to be confused with Club 55, which is an independent group that operates on the main floor of Town Hall, the programs at the Active Living Centre are run by the Town of Huntsville.

“There are lots of options in Huntsville for people who are 55-plus to keep connected and engaged—we are pleased to be one of them,” says Babineau.

The Town is also excited to be hosting a 55+ Healthy and Active Living Expo on March 27, 2020. It will include nutrition and wellness, yoga, NIA, music, art and more. The Town is looking for partners to join them for the event. Contact Simone Babineau at [email protected] for more details.

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