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Get Outside (and Inside) and Enjoy Lakeside Living

July 13, 2022

Florida living means fun in the sun to many people. For residents of Waterman Village it holds especially true. But even when the heat is on, there’s plenty going on inside as well as out. It’s simply a matter of choosing what suits you best. Either way, there are a myriad of things to do, even within walking distance of your home.

For those not wanting to leave the campus, a wonderful example of what’s available is the return of internationally renowned jazz and concert pianist, Fred Moyer, who appeared at Waterman Village on June 20th. According to Waterman Village Activities Director Sheri DiCarlo, “Fred is a great pianist. He’s been performing for more than 35 years, and he’s been coming to Waterman Village for more than 20. He’s incredible every time you see him play.”

But, according to Sheri, that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to summer fun at Waterman Village. “We have a day trip coming up to Lake Ridge Winery,” she says, “where we’re going to do a tour and tasting, followed by a lunch at Nicker’s Restaurant in Howey-In-the-Hills.”

“In August,” Sheri continues, “we’re also taking the ladies on a special Em’z On Fifth mimosa shopping excursion in downtown Mount Dora. Additionally, once a month we take residents shopping in other cities throughout central Florida, like Winter Park. We drop them off and they spend the day doing whatever they like. The ladies are always particularly excited about that.”

But the men aren’t left out of the fun either. “We’re doing another day trip in July for the guys. They’re going to a tractor museum, where they’ll see the history of the Farmall tractors. They’ll spend the morning there and then have lunch on the way home. Aside from our day trips we do a lunch and a dinner every month where we’ll go out as a huge group. It’s loads of fun with a lot of camaraderie.”

Beyond the obvious fun residents have at these events and on these excursions, there are health benefits to them, as well. Keeping residents’ minds and bodies active helps with mental health as well as physical strength. This, in turn, helps residents maintain the ability to not only live independently but to also stay active longer and enjoy their lives at Waterman Village with everything it has to offer. And there’s plenty more.

“As you become a resident of Waterman Village,” Sheri explains, “you automatically receive a complimentary membership at the Country Club of Mount Dora, entitling you to use of their pickle ball and tennis courts and reduced greens fees for golf. We also hold two golf tournaments every year — those are huge. We invite local merchants who supply fantastic prizes. Then we spend the day out on the golf course, after which we have a great lunch and hand out the raffle prizes.”

In fact, there’s so much to do, choosing which activities to participate in and events to attend can be a difficult choice for some residents. “We have a lot of off-campus trips,” says Sheri. “For example, we have a day trip scheduled to the Florida Aquarium in Tampa. That’s in August. we have a local community theater here (The Sonnentag Theatre at the Icehouse) that is really good. We have a few residents who’ve lived in Mount Dora for years and heavily support the theatrical arts, so those outings are always wonderful.”

And, of course, there are the musical outings. Although jazz and classical concerts used to be the most widely attended, with baby-boomers moving in, classic rock is becoming very popular among residents. “We’ve got the Hawthorne Series,” Sheri continues, “that takes place at a community in Leesburg. We take the residents there by bus. They have a group named Rocky and the Rollers coming up. They’re a wonderful doo-wop group. And prior to that performance, they’ve got Peace of Woodstock who, as you can imagine, plays classics from the Woodstock era. They’re all good!”

Whether it’s trips to the theatre or concert events like the Hawthorne Series, Sheri says, attendance by residents continues to grow. “We filled two buses for the entire series of IceHouse Theatre productions and are in the process of filling another two for the Hawthorne Series. That’s 56 people attending each, which is pretty exciting.”

But there’s a lot happening on campus, as well. In addition to the standards, like shuffleboard and card games, Waterman Village itself always seems to have something going on. “We recently held a senior health and fitness day,” says Sheri. “It was so hot that day, we had to move it inside, but we’re still doing a lot outside as well. We’ve also got a wide range of religions represented here, so there’s always something going on with that. For example, we have a gentleman who does talks on metaphysical topics.”

“Residents also love the fact that we’re right here in Mount Dora,” continues Sheri.  This area is a mecca for great art shows and festivals. There’s stuff going on all the time downtown throughout the summer. And, of course, we’re just 40 minutes away from the beach.”

And now that our campus has expanded with the opening of the new Lakeside at Waterman Village, some of the events formerly held at The Oaks have now moved there. “We’re starting to develop programming that can swap back and forth,” Sheri points out. “One example is the coffee social we hold every Tuesday. We’ll now hold it at Lakeside one week and at The Oaks the next.”

These are just a few of the countless reasons to get outside and enjoy Lakeside living. Whether on campus or off, there’s always something to keep residents happily occupied at Waterman Village. And Sheri reminds us of one more important factor: “I think this place nurtures all those aspects of your mental and spiritual health. People are interested in all those things which is why we have everything from the metaphysical talks to the goofy things we do. People need to be in love with life. And our residents do.”

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