By Shawn Chitnis
GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo. (CBS4) – City leaders, community volunteers, and seniors celebrated the opening of a new senior outdoor park with specialized equipment to help regular visitors get in a good workout.
“If seniors don’t keep active, if you’re sitting all the time, watching TV or whatever, you just deteriorate as fast as plants without water,” said Richard Keller, 90, at the park opening.
Keller just competed at the Rocky Mountain Senior Games in Colorado Springs a couple weeks ago. He says this new resource will only help him and others stay active in their later years. The park is located at 2349 East Orchard Road next to the Curtis Center for the Arts.
“Being outside is just so invigorating,” said Carmen Johnson, 80, another park visitor at the celebration. “I mean, I would be outside all of the time if I didn’t have to be inside doing things.”
Seniors were able to test out the new equipment with the help of trainers and volunteers. A team appointed by the city identified which exercises would be best for their age group. There is a rowing machine, leg press, and cardio equipment in the park.
“As you get older you realize you can’t do all the things you used to do,” Johnson added.
The park project was funded by the Arapahoe County Open Space Sales and Use Tax.
Keller is a navy veteran but at the park he was decorated with a different set of medals thanks to a lifetime of swimming. He doesn’t plan on slowing down either, he wants to enter the Track and Field competitions later this year for the Senior Games and win even more medals. Setting an example, he hopes, for others to be fit and realize it is never too late to make exercise a regular part of your life.
“I feel l’ve been supremely fortunate to have my health all these years,” he said. “You’ve got to move and be active and that’s what I’ve been doing all my life.”