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Why retire in Roswell?

By Phyllis Eileen Banks

Last updated on Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Cahoon Park Photo courtesy Roswell Parks Department
Cahoon Park
Why retire in Roswell?

Let me count the reasons.

Lots of sunshine all through the year with little humidity.

Light snowfalls once or twice during the winter, except when Mother Nature throws us a curve as in December of 1997, probably referred to in the future as the Winter of 97.

Affordable housing from starter houses to top-of-the-line. Many people have retired here from California. After selling their homes there and buying here they have money left on which to live.

Property taxes are reasonable. One realtor reports a phone call from New York in which the caller asked about property taxes on a certain price house. When the realtor gave him the figure he asked, "A month?" He was amazed that it was for a year.

People are friendly! They do not hesitate to speak or to help when its needed.

Yes, we have a Symphony Orchestra, in its 39th year. Businesses in town purchase tickets that are then provided without cost to Seniors. All they have to do is send a request and a stamped, self-addressed envelope and voila, a free concert.

We have the Roswell Community Little Theater. New Mexico Military Institute and Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell provide other cultural activities. The renowned Roswell Museum and Art Center plus the Robert H. Goddard Planetarium offer wonderful exhibits and programs. The Patricia Lubben Bassett Educational Wing has classrooms for ceramics and other art forms for adults and children. There is an Art Gallery of 21 local artists, potters and sculptors.

These are all very appealing but there is more. The Roswell Adult Center provides activities and a central meeting place. Do you like to play dominoes? Check out the schedule. Theres a group ready. The hospitality room has jigsaw puzzles waiting for you to add a piece as you walk in. Coffee and cookies and even a pie day tempt you. Bridge games, dance instruction as well as periodic dances, art, woodworking, ceramic, lapidary, exercise classes plus a lifelong scholars program. Learning never stops. In one month's time there are 50 different activities in which to participate. As a retiree you cant say theres nothing to do.

For those who like to be of service there are all sorts of opportunities. A docent at the Historical Society for Southeastern New Mexico, at the Roswell Museum and Art Center or greet the visitors at the International UFO Museum and Research Center? It's there waiting for you to sign up.

And a zoo! The only free one in New Mexico. On weekends an antique merry-go-round and a miniature train plus a youth fishing lake will help you entertain your grandchildren.

The Roswell Public Library is outstanding. The latest books appear as soon as they are in print. Reference librarians are ever-helpful. How do you make hummingbird food? They will find the information for you. More for your grandchildren to do in the children's section. There are craft classes, story times and all kinds of intriguing events.

A five mile bike/walking trail from the zoo through the parks, or the Roswell Mall provide indoor and outdoor opportunities for keeping fit. Golf? Three uncrowded courses where you don't have to wait to tee up. Plenty of tennis courts if thats your sport. Bird-watching? There's Bitter Lake Wildlife Refuge a few miles northeast of town. Camping? There's Bottomless Lakes sixteen miles east.

The downtown historic district has wide streets, large trees and some old homes and grounds occupying a city block. A self-guided walking tour is provided by the Historical Society.

At the crossroads of U. S. Highways 70/380 and 285, Roswell is a regional center, providing shopping facilities for surrounding towns. Its hospital facilities contains an oncology center and there are many health care providers.

There are enough of the ways to cause Merrill Ditzler to retire to Roswell twice. He and his wife came here from Colorado, then returned to Illinois to be near family. After his wife's death, he again returned to Roswell to be with friends and to rent a unit in a retirement complex.

Another advantage to Roswell is that retirees can rent rather than buy into a retirement complex. There are now two from which to choose, Villa del Rey and Peachtree Village. Mayor Bill B. Owen calls attention to our generous land and air space and a place large enough to fill your needs, yet small enough to know your neighbors . . . He invites you to share in our energy . . . as we continue to grow as the community with an indomitable spirit . . .



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