Enjoying retirement to the fullest
Life at Fox Run couldn’t get any better for this Northville coupleBy Meghan Streit
Living at a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) is a family tradition, of sorts, in Karen and Bob Luetje’s family.
Both Karen’s and Bob’s parents, as well as Karen’s grandmother, spent their retirements in a CCRC. So when Karen and Bob considered their retirement living options, a retirement community where they would be surrounded by hundreds of other active people and wouldn’t be burdened with cooking and home maintenance, seemed like the natural choice.
A natural next step
Several years ago, the Luetjes joined the priority list at Fox Run, an Erickson Living community in Novi, Mich. Being members of the priority list gave Karen and Bob access to special invitation-only events to learn more about life at Fox Run and granted them preference over everyone who joined after them, increasing the chances that their favorite apartment home model would be available when they eventually decided to make the move.
That time came for the Luetjes this past summer. They decided to sell their Northville house so they could start taking advantage of everything Fox Run has to offer.
“So many people said, ‘What are you waiting for?’” Karen says. “We decided if we are going to do it, we wanted to do it when we could take part in the all of the activities.”
The Luetjes moved to Fox Run in July, and they didn’t waste any time getting involved in all of the community’s clubs, committees, and social activities.
Karen says she loves living at Fox Run and had learned a lot about the community as a member of the priority list for several years, so she put her knowledge to good use by joining the welcoming committee that helps new residents become acquainted with the community.
Karen also enjoys Fox Run’s on-campus entertainment, like evening movies in the theater and musical performances in the clubhouses. She also is considering joining the choir, a group of resident singers of all experience levels who put on several concerts each year. And since the Luetjes are still close to their former home in Northville, they have remained active with their church. Karen is a part of a church social group that goes on monthly outings to museums, concerts, restaurants, and other local attractions.
In just a few short months, Bob has found a number of ways to stay physically fit and get to know his new neighbors. On Tuesday mornings, he plays golf with a group of men from Fox Run. He also joins in on regularly scheduled games of water volleyball in the community’s heated indoor pool.
To give his mind a “workout,” Bob attends lectures and presentations by local experts on a variety of topics, and he also makes frequent visits to Fox Run’s on-site library, which is stocked with hundreds of books from every genre.
‘It’s always jumping around here’
Bob and Karen both say the dinner hour is one of their favorite times of day at Fox Run.
“The food has been very good, and the menus are most unusual in their breadth and variety,” Bob says. “Some of my favorite meals have been beef, scallops, and duck breast, and everything I’ve had has been satisfying and cooked to order.”
Karen says nightly dinners in the full-service restaurants have also been an excellent opportunity to make new friends in a low-pressure environment.
“One of the big things I like is that you sit where you want,” Karen says. “It’s fun just to go downstairs and say, ‘There are two of us; seat us with whomever you want.’ It’s always jumping around here, especially in the evening.”
When the Luetjes are ready for quiet or relaxation, they retreat to their Fairmont-style apartment home. Their spacious floor plan has a large living room, and ample windows expose views of Fox Run’s lush stretches of trees and gardens.
“We’re on the sixth floor looking east, and we can see forever so we love that,” Karen says.
Before the Luetjes moved into their apartment, it was outfitted with a number of custom upgrades. The eat-in kitchen features stainless steel appliances and Corian countertops. The washer and dryer are both extra large, and the apartment features several upgraded light fixtures. Karen says her favorite element of her new home is the closets, which all boast California Closet-style shelving.
Like many of her neighbors, Karen says she can’t help but compare life at Fox Run to being on a cruise ship.
“You go down and eat dinner, and you have four places to choose from. Then there are all these activities, and you’re meeting all of these new people, and then you come up to your lovely suite at night,” Karen says.