By Rajeshwar Prasad, President, Shantiniketan
Shantiniketan in Tavares, Florida celebrated Valentine Day with some 75 residents and guests in the Club House decorated with balloons and streamers and hearts.
Indian snacks, various kinds of chocolates and mixers were served during the celebrations along with Wine, soda, juice. Three bollywood romantic songs were sung by: Manjula Patel, Asha Masters and Hansa Parikh.
Indu kumar read about Love and Valentines Day, Geeta Chandran asked 10 quiz questions related to valentines day. Kedar Verma projected a 5 minute clip on “Goddess of Valentine’s prayer: on the Club House TV. Participants played 2 musical games…one was passing the Valentine’s heart/cushion..Sneh Kheterpal was the winner; and the other was musical grouping with 2 winners..Tara Chokshi and Nina Raval. Geeta Chandran coordinated the entire program with immaculate choreography and professional touch. Rajeshwar Prasad thanked Geeta and the entire audience with a flavor of love and blessings.
ShantiNiketan (SN), a retirement community based in Tavares, Florida, about an hour Northwest drive from Orlando. This is an age-restricted community where at least one of the residents should be above 55 years of age. Guest of any age can visit and stay with the residents. Children below the age of 18 can stay only for a maximum of 30 days in a year. Phases one and two of SN are operational with 174 condos – 54 in phase one and 120 in phase 2. The two phases are within a mile on the same boulevard. The gated complex with full security was initiated around 2011 though the concept of developing such a community was floated by Iggy Ignatius, Founder & Chairman, ShantiNiketan Retirement Communities, in 2004. The complexes are closer to shopping area, hospital, YMCA, and about an hour drive to Disney World, and it is about 45 miles from the Orlando International airport.
This is the first retirement community where Indian Americans can spend their golden years among the peers; get rid of loneliness; have clear conscience not to burden their children; and live free of daily chores around the house and if desired to avoid cooking and maintaining kitchen décor. It does not mean that you have no role in SN! Besides the full-time staff, such as cook, landscaper, manager etc. the SN depends heavily on volunteers to keep the residents involved.