by Bob Poliquin
Not everyone living in active adult communities is married. Many residents are, in fact, happily single, single again, or widowed but still socially and physically active.
The Sun City Social Singles is not only alliterative but fun as well. With over 250 members, the Social Singles is among of the largest and best organized clubs in Sun City and certainly among the most active, emphasizing equally the “Social” and “Single” aspects of senior life.
The Club sponsors a variety of activities. For example, they host regular dances with either a DJ or live music, the music being a combination of rock and roll and line dances.
In addition, many Club members meet for cocktails, normally once a month, which gives the man opportunity to gather in a more intimate setting. These gatherings are intentionally kept small, 10 to 15 members, in four or five homes. They are simple affairs, with guests usually bringing wine or an appetizer.
The Club also coordinates monthly “Dining Ins”where members meet in groups of six in a member’s home. The host provides the main dish and coordinates what the guests are to bring. In addition to dining ins, the Club also schedules regular “Dining Outs” at are a restaurants.
They also get together for a casual “Happy Hour” twice a month at a local spot. The usual happy hour haunts are Tavern at the Lakes (in the Carolina Lakes Golf Club) and Brew’s Tavern (half mile north from the Sun City front gate on Hwy 521).
Roger “Muck” Muckenfuss, a board member for Social Singles, says that most members join for the social connections and activities. No one he knows is looking for a “Happily-ever-after” relationship. Although there are couples who are exclusively dating, Roger says, it’s not like Match.com because there are often many legal, financial, and logistical obstacles in the way of senior marriages.
Most people move to Charlotte’s active adult communities like Sun City Carolina Lakes, TreeTops, and Carolina Orchards because they are indeed active. There is a virtual buffet of clubs and interest groups, and most residents are involved in more than one organized group. Many individual interests intersect across the groups, one woman said, but, she added, there comes a time when singles just want to be together–without being the odd (wo)man out at couples events.
Another woman club member offered, “I’m not looking for a man, but I get tired of being around women all the time. Sometimes it’s just good to hear men’s voices.”
Age-restricted, active adult communities, by design and by charter, meet the needs and interests of a wide spectrum of the 55+ demographic. Although singles are active across the community spectrum, being single often means being the “odd number” at social events or being left out of social activities entirely. Sun City’s Social Singles meets the needs of single seniors for connectedness with a variety of organized events and activities.