NOVI, MI (February 17, 2015) -- You'd be surprised to learn that Geri Angel says she used to be shy and quiet if you saw her -- video camera in hand -- interviewing residents and staff members at Fox Run retirement community in Novi, MI.
Geri hosts a show on Fox Run's in-house TV channel called Out and About, in which she creates segments that give in-depth glimpses into life at Fox Run.
Past shows have profiled Fox Run's resident-run clubs and committees, including the garden club and the flower committee that arranges fresh flowers for tables in the community's on-site restaurants.
Geri has also done shows on the inner-workings of Fox Run, like one segment that showed how the laundry facility operates at the community's continuing care neighborhood.
She and staff member Rick Coulter, who runs the TV studio, have also collaborated to produce shows that highlight local attractions like nearby restaurants, a golf course, and Tollgate Farms, an educational farmstead in Novi.
Because she often totes a video camera, Geri has become well known among her neighbors. "For a while, residents were so used to seeing me with the camera, when I would show up without it, people would be like, 'Hey, where is your camera today?'"
Geri shares her Out and About hosting duties with her neighbors Karen Luetje, Donna Edgerton, and Rose Berman. Geri says the four ladies meet once a month to discuss upcoming shows, and each one signs up to host the ones that interest her.
Coulter sometimes films the segments, and other times, one of the hosts or a resident volunteer from the TV studio will operate the camera. Coulter edits the footage and adds music and other finishing touches as necessary.
So far, Geri says, she has received a lot of positive feedback from her neighbors about the show.
"The whole idea is to get as many people involved on the show as possible to build a viewing audience. You tell people they are going to be on TV, and they tell their friends about it," Geri says.
"We also want to give these clubs and the volunteers who run them some positive reinforcement and build participation levels in those groups," she says. "We can show it on TV, and people get a better understanding of how things function at Fox Run."
On another successful segment of Out and About, Geri and her team interviewed a variety of staff members on air. They asked them questions about their jobs at Fox Run and why they enjoy working at the community.
She says those programs helped residents get to know the staff better. Not coincidentally, resident contributions to the staff appreciation fund were at a record high last year.
For the upcoming year, Geri and Coulter have some exciting segments planned for the show. Geri says she plans to film underground at Fox Run to show how the boiler rooms operate and are maintained.
She also plans to shadow one of the front desk staff members for a day to show what his or her job entails.
Coulter says he would like to rent a charter boat and go deep lake fishing with a group of residents and then air their adventure on the TV station. The possibilities are endless.