Lake and Sumter Style Magazine
4:21 pm EDT
Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Reinvent yourself

In The Villages, you can make it happen.

Story: Joe Angione

Become a singer or an actor performing onstage. Win awards as an artist…a quilter…an accomplished bridge player. Lead a group that aids the poor or disadvantaged. The Villages makes it easy to be almost anything your heart desires.

Many of us have the urge to become something new…to exhibit some new talent…to be part of something we never dreamed possible. The Villages is all about making that happen. I know. My wife and I are now much more than we used to be.

We moved here 20 years ago, and from the start we became involved in things we never did before. I love to sing. After many nights singing karaoke, I found lots of singers good enough to be onstage performing before large audiences. We formed a musical revue called “Sentimental Journey” that performed twice a year for nine years at the Savannah Center in front of thousands, with the proceeds going to benefit charitable organizations. I also became an opinion page columnist for the local newspaper and a speaker at various Villages events.

At the same time, my wife developed into an accomplished bridge player, a quilter, and quilting teacher who’s won dozens of awards at local and state competitions.

You can be as active here or as sedentary as you like. But The Villages will entice you to get moving toward an exciting new you. For openers, The Villages has 2,690 clubs or resident lifestyle groups open for membership. They run the gamut of virtually everything you might ever want to do: book clubs, bridge clubs, discussion groups, ladies clubs, neighborhood associations; clubs for gardeners, chess players, computer buffs, budding theatrical performers, gym rats, and stock market investors.

And if that isn’t enough to entice you to do something new, you can create your own club. Just call The Villages Recreation Department (352.674.1800) and request an application to provide details about your proposed club, list organizers, and obtain a time and location for meetings. Based on availability of a meeting space, your chances of getting a club approved are excellent.

Join an existing club and you’ll have an opportunity someday to run it. Form your own club and you’re automatically the person in charge. If leadership is your goal, The Villages lets you “run the show” right from the start.

Travel for free! Ocean cruises are a big draw for Villagers. You can cruise at no cost by organizing small groups of 16 passengers (eight cabins), and cruise lines will reward you with one cabin entirely free or ask you to cover only the small cost of port fees and taxes.

Don’t wait. Start reinventing yourself today!