7/23/2014 7:16:00 AM Secret to longevity & happiness in Golden Years Seniors retire, then work harder than ever at jobs and at play Keep moving!
Courtesy Photo/Ethan Hartz
A 61-year-old Prescott Valley man proves that frolicking in the pool on a hot summer day is for kids of all ages. This busy senior hikes, bikes, walks the dogs, cooks, gardens and plays tennis, to name a few of his myriad activities, but he asked not to be named.
Trib Photo/Briana Lonas
CASA’s Betty Robinson and Mary Wise discuss the senior menu. Both women choose to continue working and stay active in their community.
Active seniors live by the same mantra: keep moving and keep a positive attitude.
On-the-go seniors fill the Central Arizona Seniors Association every day. The positive energy starts from the top of the organization with Executive Director Betty Robinson, who worked for a large mortuary business in Phoenix and transferred to Prescott Valley.
Robinson immediately got involved with CASA and found herself serving on the board.
"The more I did, the more I saw needed to be done," she said.
In fact, she worked so hard, the board hired her for the director position and she's been serving the senior population ever since.
To say Robinson enjoys her work is an understatement; she is 65 years old and still enjoys working full-time because the job is so much fun.
"If you are looking for a job, volunteer. That's what happened to me," Robinson said.
CASA Administrative Director Mary Wise agreed as she sat with Robinson last week to go over the senior menu grocery list.
The two women work so well together, it would be hard-pressed not to find one without the other.
"I'm a people person," Wise said.
Robinson chimed in, "And this is definitely the place to be if you like people!"
Wise got involved with CASA in 2006 after being asked by Robinson to work as the public relations director.
"I was sitting at home one day and Betty called me. I worked only during the summer at the Fairgrounds at that time," Wise recounted.
"I said, 'Let me think about it,' and I called her the next day to take the job. It's changed my life and I love it!"
CASA took over the Meals on Wheels program in 2009 and that's when Wise moved into the administrative director position.
"We created our own jobs just because we were volunteers. There's no excuse for not being able to find a job," Robinson said.
The women's advice in staying young and happy is simple: Get out of the house.
"If you sit at home, you get depressed," Robinson said.
"And things hurt worse!" Wise added.
The center started a gentle exercise program that includes a Tai Chi component.
"When it first started, there were maybe four or five people. Now it's grown to at least 20," Robinson said, adding that there are four seniors at the 90-year mark and above taking the class.
"Do what you can do. A little bit of movement is a whole lot better than none," Robinson said.
For more information about CASA and its many programs, call (928) 772-3337.