Parkville, Maryland--Continuing our 25th anniversary monthly series, we're celebrating a phrase many have used to describe Oak Crest: it's like "college life without the exams!" In fact, there are currently more than 200 clubs, groups and service organizations, all resident led and created. Dave Flumbaum is one who has taken advantage of these opportunities. A retired educator, he moved to the Erickson Living retirement community with his wife, Alice, in 2010 from Joppa. While serving on the Residents' Advisory Council (RAC) in 2018-19, he was the liaison to the Resident Life Department, providing him a unique perspective on how beneficial these activities are to those who live here.
Dave recently shared his thoughts on "college life" at Oak Crest with Jeff Getek, regional communications manager.
Q: What activities do you enjoy at Oak Crest?
A: So many! We formed a Bible Study Group in 2010 that is still going strong and recently created a Grief Share program, a true collaborative effort with the assistance of Pastoral Ministries. I've been captain of a bocce team in the outdoor league, and Alice and I have enjoyed traveling to fun locales via the Oak Crest Special Trips program.
Q: How do the groups and clubs foster connections between residents?
A: This is a community of doers…really action-oriented people. The groups, clubs and service organizations bring together people of common interest, and friendships often form that extend beyond the scope of the activity. A strength of Oak Crest is that we really look out for each other, in part because of this socialization. But we also respect different points of view, like in Bible Study discussion, and support each other's interests.
Q: Can you speak to the creativity and diversity of ideas among residents?
A: We are blessed to have people from all walks of life and with a range of experiences that influence the activity topics. You can see it when reading the event calendars, scrolling the MyErickson app and viewing the bulletin boards. And you can experience it when you attend an arts & crafts show, an Oak Crest Chorus performance or a Diversity & Inclusion event. Most residents are very futuristic in their thinking…always wanting to know what's next for us or our grandchildren or our country. It's an optimistic approach to life.
Q: The Resident Life Department facilitates so many of these resident-led activities. What can you tell us about the employees who serve in this department?
A: I have literally interacted with every element of Resident Life for projects and/or personal services: Pastoral Ministries, Oak Crest TV, Fitness Center, Philanthropy, Resident Services & Community Resources. I've found that all current and former employees of this department are true professionals, with genuine hearts for people and a willingness to serve with excellence.