Leon County, Tallahassee piloting dementia care initiative

Tallahassee and Leon County are now Florida’s beta sites for a new initiative aimed at providing better care for dementia patients.

The area on Thursday was named the state’s first Dementia Caring Community, the pilot effort of the Florida Department of Elder Affairs’ Dementia Care and Cure Initiative. The effort was launched by DOEA Secretary Sam Verghese in 2015 to address the growing number of dementia cases in the state. It aims to make Florida more dementia friendly by promoting improved care for patients and pushing for a cure.

“This is where we can see amazing things happening with great innovations and great solutions to help people live a better life, a more productive life,” said Verghese, standing in front of dozens of people at the Tallahassee Senior Center on North Monroe Street. “Let’s make a difference today. Let’s do something about this.”

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Our opinion: Our senior year: City on right path to serve aging population

Tallahassee is positioning itself as a senior-friendly community, getting in front of state and national trends that will likely bring more Boomers and seniors to the capital city.

Florida has long been a retirement destination, but the Baby Boomers will be a game-changer for the state and the country.

Choose Tallahassee, a nonprofit supported by private and public funding, aims to promote the city as an ideal destination for Boomers and retirees looking for amenities such as health care, sporting and cultural events, volunteer opportunities and opportunities for lifelong education – things you find in a two-university town.

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Snow ban coming to Tallahassee

It’s a timely reminder of why we live in Florida. Or maybe it’s a backhanded invitation for those tired of scraping windshields and shoveling driveways.

No, let’s be honest. It’s actually a friendly dig at residents of the Northeast who remain buried by this weekend’s blizzard.

The city of Tallahassee and Leon County, in partnership with Choose Tallahassee, plan to approve this week a joint  “Zero Snow” resolution.

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The rise of assisted living facilities

A combination of renovation and new construction proposals could more than double the number of beds available in assisted living facilities in Tallahassee.

Ten new projects, eight in the city and two in the county, are under various stages of construction or review. Three weeks ago, the city received a proposal for the massive Red Hills Village, a three-story, 176,000-square-foot, 188-bed retirement community near Ox Bottom and Thomasville roads.

On the northwest side, crews are gutting the shuttered Wingate Hotel for redevelopment as the new Tapestry Senior Living of Tallahassee. It will have 105 beds, including 44 beds in the memory care and rehabilitation portion of the $11 million facility.

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Choose Tallahassee Announces 2016 “Why I’d Love to Retire in Tallahassee, Florida” Contest: Winners Receive One Year’s Free Retirement in Tallahassee

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release:
Jan. 26, 2016

Contact: Dave Bruns
Email: dbruns@aarp.org
(850) 577-5161

Choose Tallahassee Announces 2016 “Why I’d Love to Retire in Tallahassee, Florida” Contest: Winners Receive One Year’s Free Retirement in Tallahassee

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – One lucky family in the United States will win one year’s rent-free retirement in Tallahassee, thanks to a community-based organization that is inviting tens of thousands of Boomers across the nation to relocate in Tallahassee “for the best of their lives.”

The contest opening coincides with a “Zero Snow” policy to be enacted this week as a joint proclamation by the Tallahassee City Commission and Leon County Commission.

Leaders of Choose Tallahassee, a volunteer-led, non-profit organization, announced Tuesday that their second national “Home Free” contest would open Feb. 1. Anyone 55 or older who’s contemplating retirement is eligible to enter the contest, which offers a year’s rent-free retirement in Tallahassee as the biggest single benefit in a prize package worth more than $41,000. In addition, the winner and four runners-up will be invited to Tallahassee for a free weekend visit. Entries will be accepted through midnight April 30 at www.ChooseTallahassee.com.

Hundreds of 55-plus families from around the nation entered the organization’s first “Home Free” contest in 2013. After an extensive selection process led by community volunteers, a team of local judges selected Bill and Cathy Campbell, then living in New Boston, N.H., as the winners. The Campbells have relocated to Tallahassee and have become deeply involved in the community, including serving as chairs of the 2016 Choose Tallahassee contest task force.

“We’ve had a wonderful experience during our “Home Free” year, and we’re looking forward to welcoming the next contest winners to Tallahassee,” said Cathy Campbell, who with her husband Bill and longtime Tallahassee television anchorman Frank Ranicky, serves as contest chair. “I encourage anyone thinking about relocating soon to enter this contest. Winning will change your life.”

“This contest says ‘Welcome to Tallahassee’ in a way nothing else can,” said Choose Tallahassee chair Dave Bruns. “No other community in America offers a contest like this, as far as we know. And we made it easy to enter, because we’re eager to share the community we love with as many people as possible.”

“Tallahassee offers affordable living, high-quality and accessible health care, great lifelong learning opportunities, great cultural and recreational opportunities in a mid-size community, and a warm, four-season, no-snow climate,” Bruns said. “Boomers are welcome here. Snow is not!”

The Grand Prize Winners will receive $2,000 a month toward their Tallahassee living costs for one year, as well as additional donated prizes worth thousands more:
– Free season tickets for the Artist Series of Tallahassee.
– Free season tickets for the Florida State University’s Opening Nights series.
– Season tickets to the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra.
– Free tickets to one Florida State University home football game and season tickets to the 2016 Florida A&M football games.
– A year’s free membership to Premier Health & Fitness.
– Free classes at the Tallahassee Senior Center in the Tallahassee Lifelong Learning (TALL) program, the L3X learning program, and two tickets to Deck the Halls and two Silver Stars performances.
– Two VIP tickets to the City of Tallahassee “Celebrate America” Fourth of July event and the City of Tallahassee Winter Festival.
– One-year free membership to the Challenger Learning Center.
– Two free memberships to the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and two classes.
– Two free season tickets to Theatre TCC at Tallahassee Community College during the 2016-2017 season and season tickets to the FSU School of Theatre.
– Ten percent off entry fees for Westminster Oaks continuing-care retirement community, a value of up to $10,000.
– Two free annual memberships to the Florida Historic Capitol Museum, a year’s membership for two to the John G. Riley Museum, a family membership to Mission San Luis, a year’s membership for two to the Tallahassee Museum, a membership to the Hilaman Golf Course and a gift certificate to the Tallahassee Ballet.
– A year’s free subscription to the Tallahassee Democrat daily newspaper and a year’s basic internet and cable subscription to Comcast.
– One patron’s sponsorship to Red Hills Horse Trials.

Organizers planned the contest to be easy to enter:
– To enter, go to www.choosetallahassee.com and click on the “Home Free Contest” button.
– Fill out the entry form. Make sure you fill out the section of the entry form asking you to explain why you’re excited to “Choose Tallahassee.” Judges will review entries and choose 25 semi-finalists.
– Semi-finalists will be asked to submit a video between May 9 and midnight May 16. Judges will review the videos to choose five finalists.

Judges will interview the five finalists in late May to select the grand prize winner. The winner will be announced June 10. The winner has one year to move to Tallahassee to enjoy the year of free retirement. For more information about the 2016 “Why I’d Love to Retire in Tallahassee, Florida” contest, the Grand Prize award package and relocating to Tallahassee, visit www.ChooseTallahassee.com.

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2016 Choose Tallahassee Red Carpet Reception

The Red Carpet Team is inviting Tallahassee newcomers, recent retirees and interested persons who have friends or parents they encourage to “Choose Tallahassee” to a reception at the Tallahassee Senior Center (1400 N. Monroe Street) on Feb. 23, 2016 from 5:30-7 p.m. Join us and introduce yourself to local organizations and businesses.  Light refreshments and beverages will be served. This is an informal gathering with lots of time to mix and mingle! Introductions will be made around 6 p.m.

Please feel free to share the invitation with your friends to help get the word out.

If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to Tina Niggel, Red Carpet Team Chair, at tina.niggel@talgov.com or 850-891-4003.

Florida rated best place to live

Florida is back on top as the most desirable state to live in.

The Harris Poll, released Wednesday, last placed the Sunshine State first in 2001.

For the U.S. adults polled, it’s all about the beach and living on the water. California placed second and Hawaii third, followed by Colorado and New York.

Texas dropped out of the top five this year, coming in at No. 6.

More than a quarter of those who do decide to move to Florida will be retired baby boomers — those born between the mid-1940s and mid-1960s. By 2030, about 26 percent of Floridians will be age 65 or older, up from 17 percent in 2010, according to a study by the University of Florida’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research.

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2015 Choose Tallahassee Red Carpet Reception

The Red Carpet Team is inviting Tallahassee newcomers, recent retirees and interested persons who have friends or parents they encourage to “Choose Tallahassee” to a reception at the Tallahassee Senior Center on Nov. 17 from 5:30-7 p.m. Join us and introduce yourself to local organizations and businesses.  Light refreshments and beverages will be served. This is an informal gathering with lots of time to mix and mingle! Introductions will be made around 6 p.m.

Please feel free to share the invitation with your friends to help get the word out.

If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to Sheila Salyer, Red Carpet Team Chair, at sheila.salyer@talgov.com or 850-891-4001.