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News & Events

Chaplain Quentin Jones

Chaplains lead a multi-tasking life. They minister to other’s spiritual and emotional needs in a unique way, because they have to be able to distinguish between their own spiritual needs and beliefs, and those of the people they serve.    

ChapJones 2The Rev. Quentin B. Jones, Lakeview Village’s Chaplain and Director of Chaplaincy Services, believes his responsibility is to assist those he serves – including residents, their families, and Lakeview staff and their families – to grow and learn within their religious beliefs and practices.

     When Chaplain Jones conducts the ecumenical 9:45 a.m. Sunday service at the Lakeview Village Chapel, there are 135-140 people in attendance who represent 35-40 different denominations.    

“I don’t attempt to proselytize or promote one denomination or another,” he explains. “My job is to facilitate understanding. For example, at Easter, I try to make the most of the highest holiday on the Christian calendar as an affirmative ecumenical celebration. While the service is Christian, it can enhance everyone’s understanding of those things we all hold in common.”

     This year, on April 5, Easter falls on the first Sunday of the month, which also happens to be the Sunday each month when the Sacraments are celebrated in the Lakeview Village Chapel. “That makes Easter Sunday even more important to us this year,” he says.

    Chaplain Jones’s background and experience in education, pastoring and chaplaincy provide a solid grounding for his work here. Four times a week he conducts Bible study groups. He is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist and with advanced training from the International Critical Incident Management.

     A native of Michigan, he received his bachelor’s degree in philosophy at the University of Arizona-Tucson. His master of divinity degree came from the Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Austin, TX; and his internship was in Clinical Pastoral Education at Memorial Medical Center, Corpus Christi, TX. He was ordained in 1975 at the Central Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Corpus Christi; and he was endorsed as a Chaplain in 1989.

     He has served in churches in Corpus Christi; Shreveport, LA; El Dorado, AR; and locally as the senior pastor of the Merriam Christian Church for 12 years. He also was the Chaplain of the Merriam Fire and Police departments.

     He has been Lakeview’s Chaplain for 14 years and is a former member of its Board of Directors (1995-2001). He continues as a member of Lakeview’s Palliative and Community Care teams. He is a member of the Johnson County Critical Incident Management Team, and he serves as parliamentarian of the Community of Hope International Board of Directors.

     Chaplain Jones is the familiar face of faith at Lakeview Village, and he relishes every minute, whether it’s light-hearted or heavy with emotion.

     “I try follow in the footsteps of those visionary religious leaders who founded Lakeview in 1964 with the mission of enhancing the lives of its residents both physically and spiritually. I can’t imagine a better place to be, or a better way to serve.”

Ridgeview Village: Much more than a place called “home”
Ridgeview Village

Ridgeview Village

Lakeview Village and Ridgeview Village have been “sister communities” since Lakeview Village helped found this Olathe-based community for seniors with lower incomes in 1997. Today, Ridgeview Village is much more than “home” to older adults: it is colorful rain barrels and gardens and Bible study classes and volunteers and meetings and neighbors and . . . well, just about everything that goes into a happy, active and healthy lifestyle in Johnson County.

     Michelle Wilson, Executive Director of Ridgeview Village, emphasizes “healthy” when she describes the environment there.

     “Aging well is what we’re all about, regardless of a community member’s level of income,” she explains.” Ridgeview is the result of recognition that many older adults cannot afford to live in traditional retirement communities.”  

     It all started when a former county director of Human Services and Aging Division approached the Lakeview Village Board and inquired about their sponsoring a housing project to support seniors with limited incomes. Under a government program that financed the construction costs, Ridgeview was opened in late 1997. The program established a 40-year contract for senior housing, and today Ridgeview Village sits on land leased from Johnson County for $20 a year.

   The first phase, Ridgeview I, included 42 one-bedroom apartments within a main one-story building and two six-plexes. When the need for more housing became evident, Lakeview Village sponsored a campus expansion in April 2003, a 65-unit, two-story building adjacent to phase I. According to Michelle, there’s a 6-12 month wait to get into an apartment.

Residents enjoying a game of cards.

Residents enjoying a game of cards.

“Ridgeview Village has become a popular location for senior living, thanks to the marvelous support we get from Lakeview Village. Although Ridgeview is governed by its own board of directors and each building is owned by a separate 501c3 corporation, we could not do without the involvement of Lakeview’s Board of Directors, its President and CEO Jamie Frazier, and staff in many departments, such as Community Services and Facilities. We are blessed with a back-up system when needed, whether its grief counseling, blood pressure clinics, or transportation for resident shopping trips. We also appreciate Nelson Rumore, Executive Director of the Lakeview Village Foundation, for helping to raise funds for our resident activities.”

     Michelle manages the community with the help of Connie Stiles, Service Coordinator; Gayle Whitehurse, Occupancy Specialist; and the Building Services team, Jon Kittleson and Randy Burns. A cohesive team, they each pitch in when needed to take good care of the 109residents on the campus.

     “This year we’ll be continuing the upgrade of Ridgeview I, including tearing off old wallpaper, re-painting, and landscaping improvements. We are always making upgrades and improvements to make life better and healthier for our residents.”

     Volunteers also play a key role at Ridgeview Village.    

The garden at Ridgeview Village.

The garden at Ridgeview Village.

Ridgeview’s board chairperson, Ray Makalous, initiated a Giving Grove at Ridgeview where apple trees were planted and will be harvested by members of the community. In addition, Eagle Scouts have helped improve the garden area with various projects such as refinishing the garden benches, adding a memorial rose garden, and helping with irrigation. Other supporters, such as the Shawnee Mission Northwest Art Honor Society, painted a colorful rain barrel for use by the Ridgeview Village gardeners.

     “We keep a busy pace here,” says Michelle. “That’s what well- being is all about.”

The Joys of a Very Long Life (If you can afford it!)
Emerson Hartzler

Emerson Hartzler

A few years ago my friendly cardiologist told me he had good news and bad news for me. The good news: I was gaining only about 1 pound per year. The bad news: If I lived as long as my father, I would need a double-wide casket. Now generally we think of a long life as a good thing, but in matters of weight control and finances, it is a double-edged sword indeed. 

For those of us who are depending upon our investments to help support our lifestyle over a very long retirement period, the question of whether we will outlive our financial assets is an important issue. So the fact that residents of Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC’s) live five years or so longer than the general population makes the issue all the more critical for us, the lucky ones. Incidentally, my next-door neighbor just celebrated her 103rd birthday and doesn’t appear to have slowed down much in the two years we have been neighbors! Amazing! 

So what can we do to minimize the chances we will not outlive our investments? The only practical solution I know is to invest in equities (stocks). Now I know what you’re thinking: Stocks are risky, volatile and unpredictable, all reasons we are told we should, at our advanced age, invest in bonds, not stocks. But a study of history shows a very different picture. In fact, a two-to-three-decade, two-person retirement must essentially be a battle to preserve purchasing power. Inflation is our primary enemy. 

For example, if you require $100,000 (I’m just making the math easy) each year to maintain your lifestyle, and assuming historic rates of inflation (about 3% per year) are repeated, 20 years from now that $100,000 lifestyle will cost about $180,000. Ouch! But the good news is that for the past 80 years the dividends on the S & P 500 stock index (and its predecessor until 1957, the S & P 90), have been compounding at 5.5 percent. And that doesn’t count any appreciation in the value of the shares of those same stocks. Want to beat inflation? Look no further. 

Now for the bad news. Stocks are volatile. For example, the diversified stock portfolio you own on January 1, at some point in time during an averageyear, will have decreased in value by 14%! Even in a good year when the market is up on December 31st, the intra-year decline may be 14%, and in some “bad” years the decline has been much more than 14%. (I think I can recount every one of those years in my 50 years of investing experience!) 

The lesson here is: For the money you need in the next five years, you have no business investing in stocks (I’m not totally against bonds – short-term bonds really do make good short-term investments). But since the longest time it has taken for the stock market to “recover” in my lifetime is a bit over 4 years, the money you don’t need for 5 years or more should be in stocks, where you have a fighting chance of beating inflation and preserving your wealth for the next generation, or other worthy causes you wish to support with your legacy. And for many CCRC residents that “long-term” investment money may be the majority of their wealth. 

So my advice is: See your doctor about that 1-pound-per-year weight gain, hit the gym, move away from the dinner table before you are stuffed, and put that long- term investment money into a widely diversified portfolio of stocks. No, your prosperity is not guaranteed, but you will have controlled what you have some power to control. Then you may as well rest easy. In my experience, worrying about what you can’t control has never been a profitable enterprise.

Lakeview Village Historical Exhibit


The Lakeview Village Historical Exhibit Committee

The Lakeview Village Historical Exhibit Committee

The Lakeview Village Historical Exhibit on the Lower Level of the Eastside Terrace is a must-see for Lakeview residents and visitors alike. Nowhere else can you find such a comprehensive compilation reflecting the history of this state-of-the-art retirement village in Lenexa, KS. The exhibit is a product of Lakeview residents’ tireless efforts and is part of the community’s year-long 50th Anniversary Celebration in 2014.  

Lakeview Village Historical Exhibit

Lakeview Village Historical Exhibit

The display was conceived and developed by Alan Boley and Tom Porter. Margaret Davisson and her assistants Sharon Vojtko and Don Simmons searched through literally thousands of historical materials to find the photos, illustrations, documents and stories that comprise the exhibit. Tom photographed buildings, pictures and documents and converted them to display-quality items in the exhibit. Alan prepared the textual materials, and they both mounted and hung the more than 250-plus pieces in the exhibit.

If you want to know more about Lakeview, then and now, this Historical Exhibit is your first destination!

The Future of Lakeview Village

The Future of Lakeview Village

In Spring, the Hamilton farmstead is a must-see at Lakeview!

  Most people are familiar with a garden on a farm. No surprise there.

     But at Lakeview Village, residents Bob and Sue Hamilton have turned that idea on its head and instead created a farm . . . in their garden.

     It’s a miniature farm, of course, complete with growing trees, shrubs, a farmhouse and barn, barnyard tools, a windmill, and all the other items you’d expect on a full-sized farm – including picket fences, terra cotta garden pots, a birdbath, clotheslines with fresh washing (a gentle touch from Sue, widely known for her painting and artwork), a horse and cows, an outhouse, and even a mountain lion prowling the perimeter!

     The fanciful farm has a tiny VW “bug” parked in front, and you can almost hear the rooster crowing from the fencepost.

Bob and Sue Hamilton's miniature farm is displayed in the community gardens at Lakeview village.

The miniature farm is displayed in the community gardens at Lakeview village.

     The farm reflects,as closely as possible, the Nodaway County farm that Bob grew up on during his childhood in Northwest Missouri.

     But unlike big farms, this one spends the winter indoors. Bob brings the house, the barn, the outbuildings and all the implements, vehicles and animals inside in the fall to help protect the integrity of the paint and structure from harsh winter weather. After all, he built them all by hand from scrap wood!

     But each spring, the farm’s back again – bigger and more detailed than ever, drawing admiring glances from other residents, and reflecting the looks of wonder in the eyes of the children who march over from the Child Development Center. What’s more, the farm and its different parts seem to grow in number each year. Friends, anonymously or not, drop by throughout the growing season with tiny “additions” to the layout: a little figurine passed along with love, a new tiny animal mysteriously appearing seemingly overnight.  

     Next year will be the fourth “outing” for the Hamilton farmstead, and Bob and Sue look forward to another year of gardening in their two raised beds at Lakeview and maintaining the farm.

     “All of the ‘trees’ and ‘shrubs’ are real,” Bob explains. “The tree next to the farm house is actually a volunteer ash. Each year we look for new plants at the local Family Tree nursery – plants that can mimic the plant and tree growth you’d find on a regular farm. The woods behind the house are actually live parsley plants, and we’ve used pepper plants and other types of small plants and grasses to imitate trees and shrubs. The pasture, for example, is all ryegrass.” Bob even keeps the grass trimmed – with scissors. And at Halloween, the trees are festooned with ghosts for the season.

Sue and Bob Hamilton

Sue and Bob Hamilton

     Bob and Sue both are avid gardeners, but for different reasons. Bob, a former fighter pilot in the Pacific Theater in WWII, is an enthusiastic grower of vegetables, including everything he needs to whip up his favorite recipe for salsa.

     Sue, in her garden, grows a vegetable or two (a colorful miniature pumpkin squash arrangement from her garden decorates their Northpointe home), but her focus is most keen on plants that attract Monarch butterflies, something she’s studied extensively, and still does.

     “Bob grows everything from tomatoes and onions to peppers and cucumbers and asparagus,” says. “In my plot I grow plants that are known attractors to butterflies, especially Monarchs. Milkweed is probably the most commonly known plant that draws the Monarchs, but I like to grow blue salvia, lobelia, and many others.”

     Not only does Sue use the plants to support the butterfly population, she also harvests seeds to pass along to others with a similar passion.

     Together, the Hamiltons represent a formidable force of creativity, nature conservancy, building skill and dedication to gardening. In fact, Bob and Sue are some of the best examples of life at Lakeview Village: energetic, involved, and active examples of the Lakeview spirit.

     And although we’re heading into the winter months, be sure to mark your calendar to get out next spring and take a stroll through the community gardens on our campus. If you happen upon a virtual miniature farm fairyland, you have experienced welcome to Bob and Sue Hamilton’s whimsical gift to all, rendered in loving detail. It’s an irresistible invitation to stop a while and enjoy the scenery.

A New Orleans Surprise at Lakeview Village
Jon Williams, Director of Dining Services, addressed the crowd, while Sam Austin, Executive Chef, prepares the food.

Jon Williams, Director of Dining Services, spoke to the crowd while Sam Austin, Executive Chef, prepared the food.

     Recently, a group of prospective residents visiting Lakeview Village discovered a spot-on creation of New Orleans-style cuisine, courtesy of two of the community’s finest chefs.

     The “New Orleans Feast” luncheon was a presentation of Lakeview’s Sales and Marketing Department headed by Colette Panchot; Jon Williams, Director of Dining Services; and Sam Austin, Executive Chef.  

         Jon and Sam presented a New Orleans-style lunch for about 25 guests. The meal was based on various iconic New Orleans eateries’ recipes – from The Gumbo Shop’s Chicken Andouille File’ Gumbo to Cafe Du Monde’s Beignets.

     As Sam skillfully prepared the food, Jon spoke of the food service philosophy at Lakeview Village, emphasizing the variety of dishes served at the four restaurants in Heritage Place, Southridge and Northpointe – as well as at The Bistro Cafe in Eastside Terrace. Jon also described Dining Services’ efforts to provide healthy tasty meals with fresh ingredients sourced from local growers. The special event menu also included, after the aforementioned gumbo:

      – Pascal Manale’s BBQ Shrimp

     – Galatoire’s Trout Meuniere

     – Chef Sam’s Sweet Potato Souffle’

     – Mixed Squash and Pepper Saute’

     – The beignets and a steaming cup coffee completed the lunch.

      Several of the attendees, who have either lived in New Orleans, or visited there often, were heard commenting not only on the authenticity of the meal, but the skill and friendliness of the chef and servers.

     Lakeview Village Marketing sponsors about 35 special events a year for prospective residents.   The events are alternatively educational and entertaining, and always feature great food from our Dining Services team. This past year, the events included a world-renowned pianist; a program called “Get Your Ducks in a Row” to get key information organized for one’s heirs; a popular series of wine tastings; and many more events designed to give folks a taste and feel for the Lakeview community. 

     Jon and Sam both came to Lakeview Village with impressive credentials. Jon’s food service career began in New Orleans, working for Commanders Palace, DeNovo’s, and the Holiday Inn Superdome. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Foodservice Management, and he’s earned the Cordon Bleu Award for Excellence in Culinary Arts.

     Sam began his food service career in Arkansas and since has worked and managed in the food service industry at major hotels, country clubs and retirement communities throughout the nation. An avid forager, he enjoys the hunt for wild mushrooms, berries, and greens.

Investing for the Next Generation

The “conventional wisdom” of investing in your retirement years is to become more “conservative” as your age increases.  Formulas, such as limiting your percentage of investments in equities (stocks) to a number calculated by subtracting your age from 100, have been commonly used.  But as any Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) will tell you, each individual or family is unique, and these “rules of thumb” are often what you DON’T want to follow!  Personally, at age 72, about 95% of my modest wealth is invested in stocks.  Insane, you may say, but hear me out.

Many seniors make the mistake of assuming they will need all of their assets to support their lifestyle for the remainder of their lives.  For many this may be true, but if you are a typical Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) resident, there may be a significant portion of your wealth available to pass to the next generation.  In this case I would argue the “conservative” investment philosophy is tantamount to robbing that future generation of significant wealth.

Incidentally, being able to maximize the wealth passed to the next generation is another benefit of living in a CCRC like Lakeview Village.  With the major financial risk of long term care expenses mitigated through the LifeCare contract, future financial needs are much easier to forecast, and a CFP® is in a much better position to help you determine what portion, if any, of your wealth might be available for the next generation (or for a charitable cause for which you have a particular passion).

The logic for “conservative” investing in later years is a sound one, assuming the principal of your investments will be needed to support your lifestyle.  Stock market prices are volatile, and you don’t want to sell a lot of stock shares when the market is down.  But what if your lifestyle requires only the earnings (interests, dividends and price appreciation) of your investments?  Research studies have shown that so long as the amount you withdraw each year from your investments is modest (at most 4% to 6%), the principal, if wisely invested, should continue to grow over the long term. 

So while even a diversified group of stocks may be subject to significant, short term fluctuations in market value, if you are managing the rate of withdrawal (which may require you to sell stock shares from time to time) the short term changes in value are of little concern.  You are still keeing the vast majority of your shares, so that when the market “recovers” value, those shares will recover also. To put this into perspective, the longest period of time the stock market has taken to recover its former value is about 4.5 years, and many patient investors have demonstrated the ability to endure this short term “pain” in order to get the long term gain.        

Now consider the impact of the investment planning suggested above; that is, identifying an amount of wealth that might be available to the next generation, and investing that “wisely” rather than “conservatively”.  If you invest only in C D’s, Money Market funds, etc., you will be fortunate to even keep up with inflation!  This means you will be invading the principal each time you withdraw funds to support your lifestyle, and the danger of outliving your money becomes a real one!

But if your needs require only 4% to 6% of your investment balances to be withdrawn each year, investing in stocks has the potential (based upon history going back to 1926) of earning 5% to 7% above historic inflation (which has averaged about 3% over that same timeframe).   For example, if you have an investment of $500,000 which you plan to pass to the next generation, and that passage is delayed 15 years, even at an average 5% annual rate, that $500,000 grows to over a million, double the purchasing power of that money!  

Still want to keep all your money in C D’s?  You might want to call your CFP® for a better plan!       

Lakeview Manager’s Fun Events Encourage Community, Vanquish Boredom

Chinese New YearSince Shellie Sullivan came on board as community life manager about seven years ago, residents at Lakeview Village have come to expect a full schedule of fun, even fantastic events. Armed with a hospitality background, the former teacher and Lakeview volunteer puts her experience and energy to work orchestrating events that range from wine tasting to casino parties.

 “Anything that goes on here, Shellie helps with and you know it will be fun,” said resident Barbara Joiner. “You can’t be bored at Lakeview unless you want to!” read more

Why Lakeview LifeCare? Peace of Mind, Fun Times

It might be an understatement to say Lakeview Village resident Ken Smith has a full dance card. He’s part of a book club, volunteers for various organizations and is admittedly coming to the realization that he must pass on events more often because he has more social options than time to do them all. It’s a nice problem to have and quite different from his situation a little more than two years ago, when Smith was spending the lion’s share of his time alone, reading or performing tedious maintenance on an aging and oversized home. Still, all the rediscovered fun and fulfillment is not the primary reason Smith is happy with his decision to move into the Kansas community two years ago—at best, it is a distant second best to the peace of mind he gets from the community’s LifeCare contract. 

“What I feel best about is the lifelong healthcare,” Smith said. “I don’t have to worry about healthcare if I can’t be independent anymore at some point. My son and my family don’t have to worry about it. I’m so happy to be able to tell him he doesn’t have to worry about taking care of my health if I ever have a fall or become ill. I’m going to be OK.”

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Not Your Cookie Cutter Grandma
Eunice Litchfield

Eunice Litchfield

During her days as an elementary school teacher, Eunice Litchfield maintained control of her classroom. Now in her retirement years, Eunice continues to take charge of her life.

In 1998, Eunice made one of her best decisions. She packed her belongings and moved to Lakeview Village.

“I didn’t want my kids to worry about me and I didn’t want the troubles of maintaining a home,” says Eunice. “I’m glad I made the decision on my own.”

Eunice also made a decision to be a participant in everything available to her.

“I involve myself in as much as I can,” says Eunice. “I feel if you’re bored, it’s your own fault.” read more