Each May, the U.S. Administration for Community Living (ACL) leads our nation’s celebration of Older Americans Month (OAM). ACL designed the 2017 OAM theme, “Age Out Loud,” to give aging a new voice—one that reflects what today’s older adults have to say.
As the ACL says, older Americans are working longer, trying new things and engaging in their communities more than ever before. They’re taking charge, striving for wellness, focusing on independence and advocating for themselves and others. Indeed, everything about aging has changed, and OAM 2017 gives everyone the chance to recognize and celebrate what getting older looks like today and eliminate outdated perceptions.
Getting older doesn’t mean what it used to. For many aging Americans, it is a time of life where they can realize their goals and dreams.
A good example is Barbara Hillary, who became the first African-American woman to set foot on the North Pole at age 75. In 2011, at age 79, she stepped onto the South Pole. Former president George H.W. Bush celebrated his 90th birthday by skydiving. Actress Betty White, now 95 years old, became the oldest person to host Saturday Night Live in 2010, coincidentally during May—the same month recognized as Older Americans Month.
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Local events for OAM:
• In Sarasota County, there will be an Older Americans Month Proclamation at 9 a.m., Wednesday, May 24, at the Sarasota County Commission Board Chambers, Administration Building, 1660 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota.
• Celebrate Age-Friendly Sarasota’s two-year anniversary and learn about the plan for action moving forward. Age-Friendly Sarasota is a countywide effort to promote active, engaged, and healthy living for people of all ages. Join the Celebration on Wednesday, June 7, from 4:30-6 p.m. at USF Sarasota-Manatee, (Selby Auditorium, located at 8350 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota). Click here to RSVP or check out the Age-Friendly Sarasota website for more information about the initiative, which is part of the World Health Organization’s Global Network of Age-friendly Cities and Communities.