As baby boomers enter their retirement years, their diverse interests are driving a boom in non-traditional retirement communities — including artist colonies.
One group of Senior Artists Colonies has been designed in partnership with the nonprofit EngAge organization, which provides arts, health and financial programs for seniors.
The colonies are known for an abundance of activities, including filmmaking classes, computer instruction, Zumba sessions and plays produced by an on-site theater company.
EngAge promotes creative and healthy aging through a whole-person approach, providing a wide range of activities in senior communities. The organization provides a multi-disciplinary arts program for older adults, which is delivered on-site at retirement communities by professional artists and arts teachers. The organization says that there is a proven link between creativity and healthy aging. In addition, EngAge provides lectures, book clubs, an annual Senior Olympics and other activities.
John Huskey, president of Meta Housing, which built the communities, says that colonies are planned in several locations around the country.
People have moved from all over the country to live in the colonies. A senior may submit an application describing his or her connection to the arts (which may be as an artist, as someone who wishes to become an artist or as a patron of the arts).
For seniors with a creative streak who want a more active and engaging retirement lifestyle, an artist colony can offer a vibrant alternative to traditional retirement communities.
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