The new Reidsville Center for Active Retirement Enterprises (R-CARE) located on North Washington Street is the wave of the future for Active Retirement Centers serving seniors in North Carolina. Construction of the new center began in April 2015. But the vision has been alive for many years.
When you step into the center, you might think you have arrived at a beautiful mountain lodge. Natural woodwork surrounds you and windows make the facility feel open and full of light. Approximately 18,000 square feet of the center is devoted to older adult activities. The building includes a multi-purpose gym, fitness room, dance studio, craft room, computer lab, library social lounge and a large dining room. Outdoor courts for shuffleboard, bocce ball and horseshoes, along with extensive sidewalks and patio areas, can also be found at the center. And this building is state of the art. The majority of activities are free here as well for seniors 55 and older.
One of the many unique things about this new venture is it is the only public/non-profit partnership Active Retirement Center in the state with Adult Day Care services housed under one roof. The City of Reidsville, in conjunction with Aging, Disability and Transit Services (ADTS) of Rockingham County, joined together on this project to assist in fundraising and to offer an Adult Day Care. Seven thousand square feet of the new center is devoted to the Adult Day Care, providing the local community with licensed adult day/care and day health services. ADTS, which is leasing the space from the city, has just completed the state licensing process and is excited to get this open to the community.
RCARE has been a vision of many for several years. Thanks to the foresight and a progressive city council, the vision has become a reality. This endeavor has also been supported by the community. The Reidsville Area Foundation stepped up initially to provide a matching grant of $150,000 if fundraising goals were met. With the assistance of an ad hoc Senior Center Committee, the goal was met and exceeded at $337,000.
According to Tom Wiggins, Assistant City Manager of Community Services, “We can’t express enough appreciation for all our donors and especially to the Reidsville Area Foundation and to Home Trust for their gracious $50,000 donation.” There are many others as well, including Wells Fargo with $20,000, BB&T at $20,000 and Peter McKinnon of Tech Authority at $14,000. Of course there are still several opportunities for the community to be involved. The naming rights for the building and various rooms in the facility were made available. For those wanting to participate with a smaller donation, bricks could be purchased for the walkway up to the main entrance. Wiggins also pointed out, “This state-of-the art facility is a showcase for Reidsville that will bring national and statewide interest and visitors to coincide with our designation as a Certified Retirement Community.”
“This is something our entire community can be proud of,” said Mayor Jay Donecker. “By the year 2023, there will be 4 million retired boomers in the U.S with many looking to live an active lifestyle in communities like Reidsville. We want to be ready for them. Our seniors are important to us and we have many that have waited a long time for this vison to become a reality. Our slogan is Live Simply. Think Big, and this is just one example of our ‘thinking big’ and at the same time planning for the future. I could not be happier to have been a part of this phenomenal project.” The new facility was dedicated April 21, 2017 with a keynote speech by U.S. Sen. Richard Burr.