A summit on aging may sound like a drab event but that certainly wasn't the case last week at Innovations in Aging 2012, a conference and expo that took place at the Gaylord National Hotel and Conference Center at National Harbor.
The event kicked off last Thursday with two days of meetings and workshops for professionals in fields related to aging, a job fair and a walk to benefit kidney disease. On Saturday, May 5, hundreds of senior citizens flooded one of the Gaylord's exhibition halls where scores of exhibitors handed out literature, engaged visitors in conversation, demonstrated products and services and sold goods.
However, deep inside the hall the real action transpired.
With music blaring, seniors stretched and moved during an exercise class while others competed in card games, and another larger group watched a series of performers on stage. The activities took place simultaneously with participants in one area frequently looking at the action in neighboring areas.
Eva St. Cyr of Fort Washington and Rose Bean of Taneytown came together to the expo to find out about services.
"I am aging," said St. Cyr. "It piqued my interest."
The women said they came to see if there were items and services that could help them age "gracefully."
"We are a different generation. Our parents accepted it," said St. Cyr, adding that her generation intends to be involved in as many activities for as long as they possibly can.
St. Cyr and Bean said they planned to attend a Zumba exercise class and a line dancing session at the expo.