When we learned a few years ago that the Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex had plans to expand their adult senior programming and move it right next door, we were excited about the possibilities for residents of Luther Village on the Park and the larger community. Recently, we had the chance to connect with our friend and community partner, Jaye Kuntz, Supervisor, Leisure Programs at The City of Waterloo.

Jaye has been working with seniors for 13 years and loves every moment. She enjoys the comradery she experiences, laughing with them, listening to family stories, and hearing how her programs keep them happy and active. She shared some “inside” information that we wanted to pass along to you, our residents, team members and neighbors.

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Why did the City of Waterloo decide to expand and how will having adult programming next door benefit Older Adults living in Waterloo? 

The buildings that housed the Adult Recreation Centre and RCAFA Wing 404, (Royal Canadian Air Force Association of Canada) were old and needed updating and the City of Waterloo’s Older Adult Strategy recommended moving all older adult activities under one new, centralized space. When the Waterloo Memorial Rec Centre was planning its expansion, it only made sense to include the Older Adult Pavilion. 

 

What are your hopes for community partnerships?

Anything IS possible in terms of a partnership with residents of Luther Village on the Park. We could co-run events & programs maybe offer a morning social group or share an art program. We want to offer some fun and innovative, intergenerational programming and since there’s mutual interest in partnering together, this could be a great opportunity for Luther Village and the Rec Centre. Maybe we could collaborate and offer a knitting group that donates items to the community, like our current group does. 

 

What is a fun thing you can share about the new Rec Complex/ Seniors Centre that the public may not be aware of?

There is no basement in this new facility, and we will have a nice glassed-in courtyard! 

 

When is it expected to open?

Our hope is to open sometime in the fall – perhaps September or December 2021 - if constructions stays on track. Our programs should be ready to go as of December, unless of course COVID throws a wrench in that plan.

 

Can you highlight some of the programs and activities that will take place there?

Many of the same programs we offered in the Activity Guides, as well as new ones of course! Card programs, Intergenerational programs, Ukulele Club, Walking Groups, Tai Chi, Zumba, Lecture Series, Coffee Chats & Trivia, Yoga, Aquatic & Fitness programs. We are excited about all the additional space we will have for all these wonderful offerings.

 
What aspects of the project are you most excited about?

The newness of the building, the increased flow of traffic and the excitement when folks see our new facility. I am also looking forward to the opportunity to offer 'non-traditional’ programs the community may want us to offer. 

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According to the City of Waterloo website, the expansion plans are extensive, “they will be creating a renovated Hauser Haus to allow for additional fitness programming in two exercise studios and a secondary indoor walking concourse.” They are building a brand new two-storey building, called the ‘Community Pavilion’ located on the west-side of the property as the new home for the city’s older adult recreation program adult centre. The new building will connect to the existing Waterloo Memorial Recreation Centre’s original building and it will also include an elevated pedestrian bridge for easy access.

Luther Village is looking forward to collaborating with Jaye and her team this fall. “We are very lucky to be working in an area where being healthy, happy and active is paramount as well as being socially connected to the community” said Jaye, and we could not agree more!

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rec centre expansion project rendered photos