When Diane Osberg moved into United’s Fish Creek West a month ago, she wanted to wake up on the morning of her birthday and look out over the expanse of green grass and trees that opens up onto Fish Creek Park. She lived in another older adult community, but fell in love with her new suite on the fourth floor of Fish Creek West with north and east-facing windows. “On the advice of my children to enjoy the summer on her new deck, I decided there was no point in waiting. What sold me? The programming sold me, the building sold me, the flexible meal schedule sold me,” said Diane. “And when I moved here, my friends wanted to see what I was so excited about.”
Diane invited her friends, many of whom already live in older adult communities, to her suite and let them know why she decided to move. “So instead of showing them the suite and the amenities one or two at a time, I decided to hold a large house warming, or open house. Forty of my closest friends came out, and United was very gracious to help out with catering and facilitating tours to show them around. It was an amazing afternoon!”
“We helped out with the food, beverages and wine as a way to contribute to Diane’s house warming,” said Daphne Reid, an active living advisor at Fish Creek. “We also decided to give everyone who attended a small gift package on her behalf that included a gift certificate for dinner any time they want to come back.”
Diane already has a friend who is talking with Daphne about moving in, and others have expressed interest.
Diane and her husband Robert had lived on an acreage and lived into their “forever” retirement home in Black Diamond, and she served on the Black Diamond town council. When Rob passed away suddenly, Diane moved to an older adult community. But after a couple of years, she wanted more. “I’m a social person, and I wanted a variety of programs. When I toured here during an open house in the spring, I was blown away.”
As a former head of continuing education at SAIT, Diane is an advocate of lifelong learning. She recognized that what United had in place fit her idea of what active aging is all about. “I love this place. It’s full of programs and activities with a lot of opportunities to learn. There are partnerships with Mount Royal University and St. Mary’s University, Honens, the Calgary Philharmonic…and the art studio is unbelievable!”
Diane is a big fan of the arts. She has done some painting, and may indulge that passion again this fall, but she really likes quilting, and has produced a large number of works, some of which hang in her quilting room.
“It’s like being in a grand hotel,” said Diane. “I’m so impressed with everything. The meal schedule – the kitchen is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. with an open menu. You can have anything you want, any time you want. I’ve only been here a month and I’ve already booked the private dining room in December for my book club.”
Photos by Sherana Productions and Diane Osberg. Video by Sherana Productions.
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To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.