Categories
Georgia

Griffin GA – Sun City Peachtree

Griffin GA

I visited Griffin GA for a couple of days recently and got a feel for what it might be like living there.  It seems to be the all American small town, formerly a textile mill town, it is only 40 to 50 miles south of Atlanta but quite a bit more in lifestyle differences.

Griffin has quite a few good amenities that would make it desirable for retirement.  It has a lovely downtown with Hill street running down the middle. The City Hall and the Court Courthouse are right there also.  Tim’s or Louise’s are southern food restaurants with affordable prices and good food. They are quite packed on Sundays after church lets out. All the chain restaurants are there too.
Griffin also always had a good high school football team. The people are real people who are sincere, hard working and humble. A lot of people do commute to the Atlanta area since there are not a lot of high paying jobs in Griffin.  But there are sufficient stores and services, a large regional Griffin Spalding hospital, an experiment station of the University of Georgia, Elk Club, Moose Club and other clubs you would normally find in a small towns.

Prices seems to be very reasonable on services like auto repairs, yard work, handyman services, etc. The housing is very affordable. I called about a 3 bedroom brick ranch with fenced yard in a nice subdivision. It was a HUD foreclosure listing for only $55,000.  Anther person was renting a similar 3 bedroom, 2 bath brick ranch with fenced yard for only $650 month.

Getting around is easy. The traffic is light. To get across town takes 5 to 10 minutes.

So what is the catch?  Well I think Griffin is a very local place.  Many talk about Atlanta as another state even though it is very close.  Many people live their whole lives in Griffin, some move to Atlanta and become professionals to move far away, but many stay put and work blue collar jobs.  There is nothing wrong with that. There are a lot of people retiring in Griffin, but there have not been many moving to Griffin to retire. Until now.
On the outskirts of Griffin toward I-75 that leads to Atlanta, Del Webb has built an active adult community, Sun City Peachtree it is called.  It will have 3400 homes on 1,726 acres, a large golf coarse and a huge activities center that is already built.  Last year I attend the Grand Opening and there were some very excited people there, a few from Griffin, and many from all over.  As Bob Dylan sang, the times they are a changing.

More 55+ Georgia retirement communities   Griffin Spalding Chamber of Commerce

Originally posted 2010-01-16 00:21:09.

Categories
Virginia

Charlottesville Virginia – Check It Out!

Rotunda – The University of Virginia

When one makes a trip to spend a few days in an area you have never visited and discovers it’s an attractive area, sometimes it turns in to a “Let’s move here” idea. I could see how that could happen in Charlottesville Virgina after spending 3 days there this week.

We just wanted a getaway and picked Charlottesville off the map. Having never been there, we did a little research and found it’s a good place to visit and to live.

Charlottesville Trip Report

Day one we flew to Richmond Va and took our rental car for an easy drive over to Charlottesville via I-64. Takes a little over an hour with stop an a visitors center on the way.

Seeing one of the big attractions is visit to Thomas Jefferson home (Monticello) we exited I-64 and followed the signs. We first came upon historic Michie Tavern cir 1784 which offered a buffet lunch which we were about ready for and then a tour of the tavern by ladies in period dress. We went ahead and got the Presidential tour package which includes Monticello, Michie Tavern, James Monroe home and James Madison’s home at Montpelier. After eating we took the Michie Tavern tour with a nice lady as guide. This got us in the right frame of mind for the next stop.

So about 2pm we arrvied at Monticello which is right up the road from Michie Tavern. This is a popular place and lots of people were coming in from the parking lots. We stopped by the ticket office and immediately got on the bus for the next tour of the home. The bus takes you up to the top of the hill to Monticello. Their is a guided tour of several rooms of the home and it has a lot of the items owned by Mr. Jefferson and other period pieces to look just like it did when he lived there. Thomas Jefferson worked on Monticello for 30 years and made it his unique home. Afterwards we joined a tour of the grounds and made a day of it. I think Monticello was the highlight of our trip.

Day two we take the short drive down to the University of Virginia to find the Rotunda designed by Thomas Jefferson. We park at The Corner, a popular place for students, and just follow them up the hill, over looking grounds framed by historic buildings. Every hour there is a tour by a student guide starting at the Rotunda. We visited several rooms inside the Rotunda and hear about it’s amazing history, then go out in to the academic village for more of the tour. After wards we stop by a student hangout at The Corner for a coke.

Next it’s a short drive to the downtown mall, which is an area several blocks long with the main street closed to auto traffic. Side walk cafes all around and we try on out for a delicious lunch. For the afternoon, we drive out to tour the farm of James Monroe which was part of the Presidential homes ticket.

Day three we drive out to Montpelier James Madison’s huge home and farm. It is a about 15 miles north of Charlottesville, right off the path to the Blue Ridge Parkway, which we would be visiting that afternoon. We pass many farms on the way. This property has been restored by the National Trust, and they have done an excellent first class job. There is a large visitors center where we watch a short movie about James Monroe, the father of the US Constitution. Next we tour the large home and walk the grounds.

It getting around noon so we head East to the Shenandoah Park. Ticket is $15 but since I am 62, I am offered the Senior Pass for $10 and it is good the rest of your life. What a deal! We get on the Blue Ridge Parkway and about 9 miles along stop at the Big Meadows Lodge for a nice lunch in their dining room. We enjoyed he views and head back to Charlottesville where we dine that evening at the Boat House, the best new restaurant of the year.

It was an amazing trip and to see so many things in such a short period of time! Charlottesville is a college town with history and everything you would want, without the traffic of a large city. If you have never visited Charlottesville you need to. You just might want to move there.

Originally posted 2010-09-26 13:12:27.

Categories
Small Town Living

Observations About Moving To A Small Town

I moved to a retirement community out on the far edge of the metro area, away from the suburbs where my wife and I had lived for 36 years.  I knew life would be different and here are some of my observations about things I noticed are different. I am happy to report that we are loving it!

  1. Less traffic. It’s so funny because we used chuckle when people complained about our traffic, thinking they just were not used to city living.  Now we say the same thing and have enjoyed getting away from the awful traffic!
  2. People are friendly.  Out in public the people you encounter at the park, in restaurants, and the workers nearly everywhere, overall are just more relaxed and friendly and considerate. People seem to show their personality more.
  3. There are plenty of places to eat out and buy stuff.  Restaurants are less crowded so you don’t get the mad lunch hour rush as much. With a major mall only 15 minutes away, that is close enough.  A Publix and a Kroger a mile away. Haven’t found anything that I missed so far except maybe a Whole Foods or Fresh Market. Oh, my Amazon Prime works just great with two day deliveries.
  4. More scenic countryside.  I love driving out our back community gate, passing barns and farm houses and a lamas farm!
  5. More places to walk. Our subdivision has plenty of nice wide sidewalks.  Out on the main street there are wide sidewalks. The high school track is open after hours for anyone to walk! (not so in the suburbs where they lock the gate) Several parks and even a rec center with an indoor track.
  6. Your vote counts.  The just had an election for school board president and someone won by 8 votes!
  7. Community fairs and events.  People really turn out and support the community events.  Be it a 5k run, arts and crafts fair, or Christmas parade, people come together for these events.
  8. Medical services close by.  My dentist is 5 minutes away.  I visited the orthopedic doctor yesterday at the medical building next door and got there in 5 minutes or less.

I haven’t noticed anything that I miss from my old community of 21 years, except some friends that I don’t see as often. There was a risk in moving out to a more rural area but that has now been officially resolved!

I like living in a small town!

Originally posted 2020-08-20 11:21:00.

Categories
Active Adult

Active Adult Community History


Take a look at this interesting graphic about the history of Active Adult Communities. Many Active Adult Communities are located in small towns. The hot states for active adult living are: Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, South Carolina,  and Arizona.

AV-homes-infographic_FINALforweb

Originally posted 2020-09-01 20:07:49.

Categories
Boomers

Lunch Retirement Style

Boomer Lunch retirement style

I have always been a fast eater and could finish a lunch at work in time to do errands and be back at my desk on time.  But it was no pleasure and was fast, crowded and many times expensive.

Now that I am retired, at home and flexible, I have discovered a simple pleasure that I frequently look forward to: going out for lunch.  No I am not talking about the retirement lunch when you are leaving a company.  I am talking about going out for lunch after you have retired.

There are several pleasures / benefits of lunch retirement lifestyle.

It is an opportunity to get out of the house and to socialize, even if it’s only with the waiter. Inviting friends to lunch is a pleasure that I look forward to.  Meeting friends who you used to work with is a great way to keep in touch. Meeting other retirees for lunch is especially nice since you can meet any time any where and take as long as you want to really have an extended social visit.

Lunch retirement style is leisurely not rushed nor crowed.  You can lunch at after 1 pm when others are finished up.

In small towns, lunch at a popular diner is a social occasions where you see friends and catch up on news. You can people watch and relax.

Lunch at a nice restaurant is often way cheaper than the dinner. In addition, many restaurants offer small plates or you can share an entree.

Lunch retirement style allows you to try different restaurants. You don’t have to be back at a set time so you can wonder a few miles away without worrying you will be late.  You can become a restaurant critic of sorts, advising your working friends of places they should try.

So reclaiming your lunch retirement style is a small but rewarding benefit I have noticed about the retirement lifestyle.

Robert Fowler

Retirement Media Inc.

Facebook – Retirement Media

Twitter – Retirement Media

Originally posted 2020-09-06 17:07:46.

Categories
Retirement Small Towns

Factors That Make Small Towns Desirable for Retirement

Factors That Make Small Towns Desirable for Retirement

In planning for retirement, many people seek out a new home in a new town, whether to downsize, move to a sunnier climate, or simply for a change of pace. While some baby boomers are looking for more excitement and a thriving night life, many people – both singles and couples – hunt for new homes in quieter, more cozy places than the suburban or urban environments in which they spent their working years.

Small cities – those with populations of 25,000 or fewer – offer some distinct benefits for senior citizens seeking a respite from the hustle and bustle of life, but don’t want to live out in the middle of nowhere. In the hunt for the perfect small-town retirement destination, you may want to consider a number of factors: criteria that can help you determine whether or not a small city in question is a good spot to retire.

So, what makes certain small towns more desirable for retirement than others? There are a wide range of answers to that question, but the same few seem to pop up again and again: Low crime rate; mild weather; ease of travel within city limits (walk-ability) and to other destinations (nearness to international airport); number of retiree amenities per capita; natural beauty and charm of the surroundings; and ability to make quality social connections. While some of these factors (low crime rate and mild climate) are easy to quantify, others are a bit more subjective.

Ease of travel: To some, this may mean the ability to walk easily to the majority of restaurants, venues and shops in the community, while to others it may mean excellent public transportation options in a small city. For those who are moving to be closer to their children and grandchildren, how easy is it to visit them is a factor as well. They want to be on the right side of the metro area to be close for visits.

Retiree Amenities: Some are looking for a  55+ community with all the included amenities and facilities, while others look to the town in general to see what healthcare facilities, senior centers, adult education opportunities, libraries, and arts and entertainment venues are available.  Is there a senior center nearby?

Social Connections: Many small towns or small cities share a common “theme,” or may have large concentrations of certain types of people. Perhaps citizens share a common ethnic heritage, like Leavenworth, WA’s Scandinavians, or shared interest like the Sedona, AZ population of artists. Towns that host annual festivals and other events also offer many opportunities to meet new people.
Are there many baby boomers or seniors your age?

Regional Medical – Is there regional medical resources nearby and 24 hour medical services close by?  See

Tip! Small towns with one of the large Active Adult Communities like those of Del Webb, K. Hovnanian Homes, Brookfield Homes, Lennar, Beazer Homes,  WCI Communities or Erickson Retirement communities – they usually have done the research for you and are in or near desirable small towns for retirement.  See my post Hospital Nearby Is Mandatory.

Retiring to a small town can be an appealing option on many fronts. After battling traffic and hassles of urban or suburban living for decades, the attractions of small town life can be a serene alternative, and offer opportunities to learn, grow, socialize, and live happy and healthy lives as seniors.

Originally posted 2020-09-07 08:10:21.