Fine Arts, Finer Living

Residents enjoy live stage performances via the community’s new theatre arts program.

Betty Cox isn’t hesitant to admit change can be a good thing.
“I’ve seen and experienced a lot of change in my lifetime,” says the 89-year-old. “It’s not something I’m afraid of or that I meet with hesitation. I just go with the flow.”
In recent years, Betty lived with her daughter and son-in-law. But, the couple travel often, and Betty found herself home alone for long stretches of time.

Photo by Nerissa Johnson.

Betty spends much of her time with the Hibiscus Players at The Henegar.

“My daughter started to worry about me being there by myself in case anything were to happen,” Betty recalls. “I came down with walking pneumonia, and I had to be hospitalized. Once I recovered, we decided it would be best if I lived in a community where I would always have someone there if I need them. That’s when we started looking for a senior community, and we found Hibiscus Court. So, more change, but a good one.”
Betty moved into Hibiscus Court in May 2017.
Full of energy and vigor, Betty says age is just a number. She wanted to get involved in an activity that would occupy her time and put her energy to good use.
“I don’t slow down. I mean, why would I?” she exclaims. “I just want to do what I can, while I can.”
Betty soon discovered Hibiscus Players, a fine arts program exclusively offered to residents of Hibiscus Court.
“I’ve always loved theatre and stage performance,” Betty admits. “I don’t have a history of performing myself, but I’ve always had a love for the stage. This was perfect for me.”

Just a Player

Hibiscus Players is a fine arts club that allows residents of Hibiscus Court the opportunity to study the arts and attend plays and musical productions.
“We have developed a fantastic opportunity through the tireless work and support of the Henegar Center,” assures Alex Larson, marketing relations director at Hibiscus Court. “We have partnered with their senior fine arts education outreach project to provide the opportunity for our residents to attend performances there.
“We’ve taken our group to see The Lion King and Singin’ in the Rain. We have also had actors and singers come to Hibiscus Court to do short performances and provide continuing education. In addition, the group recently went to the Melbourne Civic Theatre and saw a dress rehearsal for A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, which was amazing.”
Alex says Betty is an asset to the Hibiscus Players program and works tirelessly to secure performances and top-notch experiences for all members of the group.
“Betty is extremely dynamic, energetic and enthusiastic and has been a driving force with Hibiscus Players in terms of coming up with new ideas and amazing activities for our group to be a part of. She is like my right arm!”

Keeping Busy

As we age, factors such as nutrition, mental and physical activity and social interaction begin to become as important as medical care. The team at Hibiscus Court places great importance on these areas.
“In addition to what I do with the Hibiscus Players, our activities director and her staff work hard to create a long list of activities to keep our residents active and engaged,” Alex assures. “They do amazing work to provide physical, social and cognitive activities to stimulate the minds and occupy the days of our residents. The staff works endless hours planning activities for residents to keep them mentally and physically active.”
Studies have consistently shown that there is a direct correlation between a fulfilling life and longevity in seniors. Those who have established social networks and who are active, both mentally and physically, are shown to live longer and have more good years.
“Developing relationships never stops, especially as we age,” Alex says. “As humans, we continue to have a need to belong to something. Our goal at Hibiscus Court is to always have something exciting and interesting for our seniors to look forward to.
“It is truly a wonderful thing to witness bonds develop within Hibiscus Players and watch friendships foster and grow. I look forward to what lies ahead!”

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