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Beacon Lake launches senior pen pal program with Westminster Woods on Julington Creek

November 2nd, 2020 · Leave a Comment

Beacon Lake understands the importance of fostering the need for connection while prioritizing safety. That’s why the community teamed up with Westminster Woods on Julington Creek for a new pen pal initiative, making it possible for Beacon Lake residents to form new relationships with those living at the Jacksonville retirement community.

The last several months of social distancing protocols have been particularly challenging for senior citizens, many of whom depend on community activities for connection. With so many events and activities cancelled, seniors are looking for new ways to bond with others. This is especially true of those living in continuing care retirement communities, most of which have strict precautions in place including limited visiting hours.

The pen pal program provides seniors communication and connection so they know they are not alone. Representatives at both communities say the pen pal program is inspiring.

Beacon Lake Resident Manager Venus Durden and her son are taking part in the community pen pal initiative with Westminster Woods

“We’ve had a significant amount of Beacon Lake residents sign up for the senior citizen pen pal program,” said Beacon Lake Resident Manager Venus Durden. “I personally signed up for the program with my son to teach him to think of others and to step out of his realm of comfort. We believe this intergenerational communication initiative is beneficial to all participants by forming new friendships, which can have a positive impact on our happiness and wellbeing. It’s our little way of spreading joy.”

The Beacon Lake pen pal program matches residents with Westminster Woods seniors who might benefit from some extra communication. The outreach program strives to give back to the community’s previous generations during these unprecedented times.

Upon signing up for the program, participants receive a list of more than 60 Westminster Woods residents interested in receiving letters. The program also provides participants with suggestions and ideas regarding topics that may be appealing and interesting to seniors. From there, Beacon Lake residents can share their stories and interests with the Westminster Woods seniors. The pen pal initiative presents a promising way to build local relationships without putting anyone at risk.

“We have all heard that we need to practice social distancing in order to keep each other safe during this time, but we also prefer to practice physical distancing,” said Westminster Woods Director of Volunteers Pam Benfer. “While we must keep physically distant, we are excited to make social connections in new and creative ways with the residents of Beacon Lake and look forward to the time when we can welcome them on campus.”

While the pen pal initiative was started for Beacon Lake residents, the community welcomes everyone who would like to join the program. If you’d like to participate, please visit the Beacon Lake website.

Westminster Woods on Julington Creek is a faith-based, non-profit organization whose mission is to improve the lifestyles of its residents. It’s one of 22 Westminster communities in Florida, all of which share the goal of enhancing seniors’ happiness and wellness. In that sense, the retirement community boasts similar values as Beacon Lake.

The pen pal outreach program is one of several ways Beacon Lake residents have dedicated their time and energy to helping their community since the pandemic emerged. They’ve also recently committed to supporting health care professionals at local hospitals by printing 3D ear guards to increase their comfort and safety while wearing surgical masks. Beacon Lake believes in the power of community and helping those who need it the most.

Community engagement is one of many reasons homeowners love living at Beacon Lake. A gem amongst the master-planned communities, Beacon Lake provides residents the best of St. Johns County living – small enough to get to know your neighbors, yet large enough to be able to offer the magnificent amenities and lifestyle today’s families desire. The community is a wonderful place to live and raise a family, attracting residents of all ages with homes for every lifestyle.

The heart and pride of the Beacon Lake community is the 8,200-square-foot Lake House Amenity and Fitness Center. Anchored by a 43-acre paddle-friendly lake and nestled within 358 acres of nature preserve, Lake House is situated to maximize half-mile lake views and provides a stunning backdrop for sunrises and sunsets. Luxuriously appointed, yet warm and welcoming, Beacon Lake’s amenity center features today’s most desirable amenities – a junior Olympic swimming pool, fun pool and Splash Park, plus a crew house for kayak rentals and a demonstration kitchen.

Beacon Lake’s state-of-the-art fitness center offers virtual fitness classes, cardio and strength training equipment, free weights, spin bikes and a fitness studio. Love the outdoors? The community features a lakeside sand beach, pirate-themed playground and sports fields for outdoor activities, as well as miles of multipurpose paths for walking, running or biking. For the four-legged family members, a bark park offers furry residents and their owners a place to exercise, socialize and play. Looking to relax? Beacon Lake’s neighborhoods have pocket parks and stop-a-whiles for enjoying the community’s natural surroundings.

Beacon Lake is within the St. Johns County Public School District and currently zoned for A-rated schools including Ocean Palms Elementary School, Alice B. Landrum Middle School and Allen D. Nease High School for the 2020-2021 school year. The district has announced plans to open a new high school in the 2022-2023 school year. Beacon Lake offers residents a central location near shopping, dining, employment centers and area beaches. A new Publix, opening soon, also lives right outside the community.

At Beacon Lake, Dream Finders Homes, Mattamy Homes and Toll Brothers are building coastal-inspired single-family homes featuring welcoming front porches and open floor plans. Dream Finders also is building luxury townhomes at Beacon Lake. Seven beautifully decorated model homes are currently open daily for tours. Homes are priced starting from the $200s.

To learn more, visit this great community located on the south side of County Road 210 between U.S. Route 1 and Interstate 95. You’ll just need to look for the community’s iconic lighthouse monument entry. For more information, visit www.BeaconLake.com.

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