Entering your golden years is exciting and can bring many new possibilities for you. Finding engaging interests to do your extra time are among the issues people face during this time of their lives. While you may have more time for family and some part-time work, another good way to pass the time is to occupy yourself with a fun hobby. Having hobbies is key to keeping mentally stimulated and physically healthy. They will keep you productive and happy, for years to come!
Florida weather allows you to engage with nature year-round. If you’ve always enjoyed spending time outdoors, finding a passion for hiking, fishing or nature walking could be perfect for you. Being outside not only improves your mood and keeps you active, but it can open a whole world of opportunities to discover new wildlife and plant species.
The Gainesville area has many state parks nearby, including Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park and Newnans Lake State Forest. These parks have plenty of walking trails, picnic areas and spots to take some unique photography. You could even spend more time and go camping. Florida residents who are 65 years of age or older or who hold a Social Security disability award certificate or a 100% disability award certificate from the federal government are permitted to receive a 50% discount on current base campsite fees. (Reservation fee and utility fee are excluded.)
Who says that you can’t play sports in your golden years? There are plenty of activities that may spark interest, keep you physically fit, and help you find your passion no matter your age. Pickleball has become particularly popular nowadays, with leagues popping up all over. Check out Northside Park to attend a public court and play with a few friends, completely free! We also have an athletic and recreation complex located right on campus at Celebration Pointe to make it even more convenient to stay active. The 130,000-square-foot center has 13 basketball courts, 18 volleyball courts, 21 pickleball courts, a dedicated cheer space, and a world-class indoor track, the only one of its kind in Florida.
If you prefer watching sports over playing them, the Alachua County Sports & Event Center at Celebration Pointe showcases track meets, basketball tournaments, cheer competitions, and much more. With several dedicated meeting spaces, it’s also the perfect location to host your next event.
Keeping a journal and writing in general are among the many effective ways to stay mentally stimulated. Writing offers many emotional benefits, as it serves as a vehicle to document your life stories and pass them on. If you’re looking for a way to get started but need some support, it may be worthwhile to look into writing circles and continuing education classes for writing in Gainesville. The University of Central Florida offers a non-matriculated writing program, as does the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). For a less formal type of environment, consider the Writer’s Alliance of Gainesville as an option.
Many seniors enjoy gardening, and for good reason! This hobby is great for all skill levels and ages. It can be as easy as growing a few vegetables on your apartment patio or devoting time and effort to a large greenhouse for ornamental plants. An idea to consider is to grow vegetables and herbs for a healthy and well-balanced diet. Seeing the fruits of your labor will be extremely rewarding too!
It can be said that there is no better time to travel than in retirement. Some of the places you once dreamed of visiting can now be part of you finding a passion for travel. Exploring different destinations, traveling to new countries, and experiencing new cultures is a passion everyone can participate in, but one that is much easier once you have free time and an open schedule to your advantage.
It's always a good idea to choose hobbies that meet your unique lifestyle needs. Hobbies will allow you to connect with your community while making new friends and developing new skills. So go out there and have a good time doing what you love!