DELMAR — The day to celebrate the grand opening of The Spinney at Van Dyke’s new clubhouse fell on a blustery January day.
The customary ribbon cutting ceremony, usually held for photo opportunities standing in front of new businesses and storefronts, was moved inside the spacious, 4,000 square-foot community center. The move turned out to be for the best. As 50 or so local dignitaries and guests stood inside its spacious living room in front of the fireplace, the photographer captured why everyone was so excited about the new clubhouse.
The clubhouse is the “epicenter” of The Spinney community,” said Samantha Raynor, director of leasing and marketing at The Spinney Group. The group has a similar one across the river in Schodack, where residents can come in and host book clubs and card games, she said.
Raynor said their event coordinator, Constance Holden, has already taken advantage of the clubhouse for new ideas. With January being the month to focus on health and wellness, The Spinney partnered with Revive Wellness in Delmar to teach residents how to use exercise equipment, and coach them on what exercises to do based on their individual abilities. The also class on how to cook for a healthier diet.
“She’s been doing a great job in producing a robust offering for our residents to take part in,” said Raynor. “Which has, obviously, enhanced our clubhouse space. It’s new because we didn’t have the space to do it before. But, we’re looking to continue to do events such as that. [Holden] comes up with amazing ideas while working with the residents. They are very thankful for her, and all the effort she is putting into creating these events that really work for them. Everything she’s put out, they’ve loved so far.”
The Spinney at Van Dyke is a neighborhood of its own, designed for the 55-and-better community that has retired into their next phase of lifestyle, or working professionals working towards that goal.
What makes The Spinney so unique is its one-story living approach. All of its buildings are built this way so residents do not need to climb stairs in their homes again, allowing them to age in place. Another reason for this building technique is for the convenience of privacy. No one will ever live above or below them, unlike apartment buildings that are built floor on floor. To add onto the attractiveness of this concept, most unit types have attached, direct-access garages and private front porches and back patios, further mimicking the feel of a single-family home.
The neighborhood is also designed like a typical residential development. Each home given a distinct character, and in some cases, tree rows lining the side of the road. The aesthetic that often times mirror the neighborhoods residents leave behind, tends to coax back the sense of community they once had in the past. Raynor shared the story of how one resident developed a friendship with a neighbor. That compassionate neighbor drove her to daily medical treatments for a month. Something, Raynor said, you don’t often see in neighborhoods anymore.
While Spinney cottages’ amenities may make residents feel as if they’re living in a single-family home, they will no longer feel the woes associated with homeownership. Think about regaining all the time spent on mowing the lawn, shoveling snow and fixing the plumbing, so you can focus on family, friends and hobbies — hobbies which can be further fostered by the group’s community events calendar.
With the clubhouse now opened, residents still have more to look forward to in the near future. The Spinney at Van Dyke expects to open an outdoor lap pool and accompanying wade pool this spring. The group also anticipates a community garden, complete with raised beds, that will allow residing gardeners to plant and grow their favorite plants that can later be planted by the group’s grounds keepers.
“So, if we have a resident with a green thumb who still wants to have their own home grown tomatoes, they can still do that.”