Work Hard, So You Can Play Hard Later

Need another reason to save 16.62 percent of your yearly salary for retirement? Look no further than these awesome retirees.

Sun City Poms 

(Photo Credit: poweron/Flickr)

We've already talked at length about the importance of saving for retirement. Alyssa Coppelman of Slate interviewed Kendrick Brinson, author of the book "Sun City: Life After Life." Brinson's book examines Sun City, Arizona, the first planned retirement community. Its residents are dedicated to the idea that life doesn't end at retirement.

To prove it, the community boasts 120 clubs, daily events, classes, and activities, and even a squad of cheerleaders called the Sun City Poms. All of the members are aged 61 and over.

"We've all seen photo stories about aging before, and we know the stereotype of a grandparent sitting in a rocking chair as they age," Brinson says. "What I love about Sun City is that this place is spring break for the elderly. ...I wanted to flip the stereotype of the wheelchair-bound granny on its head because that's not how everyone has to age. Just because you're 75 doesn't mean you can't learn synchronized swimming and be really good at it."

Sun City was founded on January 1, 1960 on the site of a former ghost town, and was popular from the start. It's now home to over 30,000 residents, including the aforementioned cheerleaders and synchronized swimmers.

"What makes Sun City unique, other than the fact that it is an actual city of tens of thousands of retirees, is that almost everyone is active in one way or another," Brinson says.

In fact, Brinson told Slate that her hosts in Sun City wore her out with their busy schedules. Brinson is in her 20s -- at least 30 or 40 years away from earning a spot on the Sun City Poms.

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