How the 50+ crowd is staying more active than before

KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | One of the many ways to have fun on the North Fork in summer — dancing to live music in Greenport on Monday evenings.

KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | One of the many ways to have fun on the North Fork in summer — dancing to live music in Greenport on Monday evenings.

The over 50 crowd is a busy bunch. Here are a few excerpts — and great tips — on how seniors are keeping busy.

Jeanne Lane, Cutchogue

“I love nature and the outdoors, music, art, people and good movies. I bought a plastic, sit-on-top  kayak…In the warm weather I have spent countless days/hours on this kayak, sometimes going out early in the morning to view the birds and drift along.

“I tried fishing from the kayak. I love to swim and often go to local bays or Sound beaches, alone or with my friends.  I am thankful for the beauty of the area and its nice beaches.

“I joined the North Fork Italian-American Club…I joined the Adriatic Social Club on their invitation (am not from an Adriatic background but found this group warm, friendly, active, lovers of music and dance).

“My friend Anna Barisic, an octogenarian, and I have gone for the past three years on the Captain Bob fishing boat “Ladies Days.” Once a month Captain Bob hosts ladies day where ladies fish for half price and get a free breakfast. I would recommend this to anyone.

“Year round I thank God for the libraries. They have free movies and wonderful programs, lectures, music, how to programs.

“In the summer you will not find me home on a Monday night—-I’ll be at Mitchell Park in Greenport, dancing to the live music by the carousel. Greenport is my favorite town on the North Fork. Aldo makes the very best coffee, scones and to-die-for hot chocolate. Each year I go to the Greenport ice skating rink to skate.

“I am also so grateful for the wonderful programs which Southold Town recreation department offers. I am a regular attendee of their various programs—yoga/pilates, aerobics/power stretch, watercolor and acrylic painting classes, do it yourself trips to NYC.

“The area high schools put on wonderful plays/musicals, as does the North Fork Community Theater.”

Bruce Clark, Jamesport

“What started out as a summer activity, went to a hobby and then a passion. In the process it has changed and renewed my life. My diet has improved. I am working out regularly. I have been able to stop taking blood pressure medicine as well as cholesterol medicine and I feel like a new man. It is the sport of windsurfing.

“The North Fork is a windsurfing paradise. It affords easy access to many clean, large, generally sheltered, relatively shallow and not abundantly crowded bodies of water…Who could ask for anything more? Windsurfing is a sport that fits nicely for us 50+ crowd. It is fun but challenging. A weekend to learn but a lifetime to master. A great workout but not a high impact one as far as the  joints and the back are concerned. It can be done on your own schedule with mother nature’s cooperation.

“Both my wife and I summered out here with our respective families growing up. After we were married we bought a summer home in Jamesport about 20-odd years ago and 10 years ago we moved out here from Nassau County permanently. I had tried windsurfing having spent part of my childhood in Florida, but did not take it up again until moving to the North Fork…Along with my brother-in-law Michael, who is also 53, and the use of wet suits we have turned a purely summer activity into a 10 month out- of-the-year sport. And with the occasional, unseasonably warm January and February day, in the last few years we have been able to windsurf 12 months of the year.

“We learn something new about the sport and ourselves every time we go out sailing together. We look forward to participating in this sport into our 70s, God willing.”

Sue and Jim Hancock, Jamesport

“Like most newcomers to the North fork, we have made a real effort to engage in new friendships and take advantage of what the North Fork offers.

“May through October a group of 15, together with visiting interlopers, get together for a weeknight picnic at a local park. Everyone brings something for the picnic. We enjoy cocktails and dinner. Sometimes we barbecue. Watching the sunset, walking on the beach and sharing stories round out the evening. Occasionally we will go by boat to a restaurant, tie up and enjoy a lobster dinner. We return by moonlight, stopping for some ice cream to finish another fun night with pals.”

Peg Dickerson, Cutchogue

“Bob and I were both raised on the North Fork, he lived in Southold and I in Cutchogue. As children, we enjoyed our childhood adventures in the woods and on the beaches. Now, at 58, we are enjoying some of the neighboring towns. Especially in the winter, we enjoy taking day trips to Port Jefferson, Sag Harbor, Hampton Bays, etc. and trying out a new restaurant, walking through the town, browsing through antique stores, museums or seeing a movie or show.

“I always get to peruse a few jewelry or clothing stores and Bob gets to relax in one of our local townships. It’s refreshing to get out of town and enjoy new scenery and venues.”

lpeters@timesreview.com