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Come On In, The Water’s Fine At Village Shalom’s Spa & Wellness Center


Sam Goldenberg will attest that there’s always something new to discover – even about old, familiar places, and certainly about oneself.

Sam has quickly established himself as a “regular” at Village Shalom’s Spa & Wellness Center in recent months, and in particular at the retirement community’s warm-water exercise pool, which he utilizes several times a week.

Sam Goldenberg gets some pool-noodle pointers from Spa & Wellness Center aquatics instructor Madeline Silver.

Funny thing is, the Overland Park resident had been to Village Shalom many times over the years, but never knew about its Spa & Wellness Center – or that he could make use of everything it has to offer, even though he doesn’t live at Village Shalom.

“I had been to Village Shalom to visit my mother-in-law before she died,” he recalled, “and for yahrzeit (memorial anniversary) services in the synagogue. But I honestly didn’t know [the Spa & Wellness Center] was there,” he said, until his sister, Mitzi Kaufman, mentioned it.

“She has a neighbor who’d been using it. My sister has been on my neck to get out and meet people,” Sam confided. He was widowed in 1989, and his two sons are grown, so Sam has lived alone for some time. He took his sister’s suggestion as an opportunity to try something new. Though he had been swimming at the Jewish Community Center, he said, “I’m not much of a lap swimmer,” which seems to be the favored activity of that pool’s patrons.

“I did a lot of waterskiing growing up, and I also played basketball,” Sam recalled. He also loves cars. “Corvettes. I had three of them. I also had three boats.” After a moment’s reflection, he added, “I should have been a race driver.” The ballcap atop his head, emblazoned with a Corvette logo, punctuates his statement.

But at age 77, he moves – reluctantly – a bit more slowly. Several physical conditions, including neuropathy in his feet and “a lot of neck problems” resulting from an auto accident many decades ago, prompted Sam to follow his doctor’s advice to pursue some sort of water therapy.

The climate-controlled pool at Village Shalom offered everything Sam was looking for: “The water’s good, the conditions are great, the people are great. I don’t take classes – I just like to do my own thing.” 

Classes are available, however, should Sam change his mind. And he’s not averse to a little instruction now and then to gain additional benefit from his time in the water. 

“I found out it’s the best thing for you,” he said of his regular visits to the pool. As a non-resident of Village Shalom, he also discovered that the cost of membership at the Spa & Wellness Center is “pretty minimal for what you get. I don’t know what I would have done without this. It gives me a chance to meet and talk to people – that’s part of the therapy for me. Life’s a lot more fun when you know people. I don’t know of any finer place you could come.” 

Sam seems to have surprised even himself in discovering the advantages of a health-and-fitness facility geared to senior adults that is within a 10-minute drive of his house. But then, he’s always up for a new opportunity. As he puts it, “It’s all attitude.” 

To learn more about classes and membership, contact the Village Shalom Spa & Wellness Center at 913-266-8409.