To say that Larry and Vicki Noffsinger have loved living at Wind Crest, the Erickson Senior Living community in Highlands Ranch, Colo., for the last four years might be a bit of an understatement. When the couple first came to visit Wind Crest, after enjoying a tour of the community and sharing meals with community members, they told the sales office they wanted to be doing what those folks were doing—giving the tours. Vicki was told that those folks were resident ambassadors, and that when they moved in, they would be welcome to join.
“We took training to become ambassadors before we ever moved in!” says Vicki.
The Noffsingers have always been active. Larry belongs to the community’s men’s golf program and plays every Wednesday at the course next door to Wind Crest’s picturesque campus at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. During the winter months, he is a co-commissioner of a fantasy football league on campus. Vicki serves as the precinct person for their political party and participates in Readers’ Theatre, a resident-run drama group. She also wears many hats at the community’s in-house television station, appearing regularly on its “Java” program, a daily talk show, doing everything from daily announcements one week a month to special segments on winners of the Resident Recognition Awards.
“I have met some of the most amazing people,” says Vicki. Larry quips, “When somebody finds out that Vicki’s on TV, I tell them that she’s the weather girl!” Vicki also acts as a “talent scout” for the station, and she even had business cards made up for her so she can give them out when she asks people about their interesting hobbies or stories.
“And it’s just so much fun!” she says. In addition to attending exercise classes together five days a week on campus, Larry and Vicki also attend church off campus, get together with friends, and participate in Bible study.
“People moving to Wind Crest will make new friends here. But folks also can keep all their friends and activities they have outside the community. People are involved in churches and other organizations, and residents do off-campus volunteer work, play golf, spend time traveling, and see their kids and family,” says Sales Director Krista Wagner.
Where everybody knows your name
When Pete and Shelley Ritchie helped Shelley’s mom move into Wind Crest in 2009, Pete fell in love with the place—so much so that even though he was semi-retired at the time, he applied for a job.
“I thought that I’d love to work at a place like that,” Pete says. “I was looking for something to do for my swan song.”
Pete began working as Wind Crest’s community resources manager in January 2010. “I was the ‘cruise director.’ I did the scheduling for all the activities and set-up for functions. I became known as the go-to guy,” he says.
Wind Crest became such a part of the family that when Pete’s father passed, his mom also moved in in 2011. Pete worked at Wind Crest until June 2013, when he experienced a medical emergency. During his recovery, he received nearly 400 get well cards from residents, as he had become such a treasured part of the community. While he recovered, Pete returned to speak to the Sunday evening worship group. Community members were glad to see him, and the feeling was mutual. He was asked if he wanted to join Readers’ Theatre, which he helped to start—it’s a theatre group in which residents don’t need to memorize their lines unless they want to—and he jumped at the chance.
“It turned out that my connection to Wind Crest was the best therapy I could get anywhere,” says Pete. So it’s not surprising that when he and Shelley decided to move, Wind Crest became their home.
Loving life, on and off campus
They moved in March 2021 and are loving it. While Shelley still works as a preschool teacher, Pete can get physical therapy at the on-site medical center, participate in a wide range of fun and engaging activities, and talk with all the people he already knew as well as those he has just met. They also travel off campus to visit all their favorite local shopping and dining spots. Although Pete notes that the food at Wind Crest is amazing.
“I love the food,” admits Pete with a laugh. “I probably need to cut down.”
During the huge snowfall that occurred after they moved in, Pete says, “Shelley and I said, ‘Boy, are we glad we’re here. We don’t have to shovel snow anymore!” He also says they’re relieved not to have to worry about pipes freezing and bursting or appliances getting old and breaking down.
“The setting could not be better. The community is gorgeous. Everybody here is wonderful. It’s fantastic,” says Pete.
Want to learn more about the freedom of living at Wind Crest? Request more information today.