50 Things You Gotta do when You’re Over 50 – At Least Once!

1. Jump out of a plane.
Skydive Cross Keys offers a one-of-a-kind experience to see beautiful SJ from new heights.


2. Start a journal.
It’s never too late, and you may be creating a gift your grandchildren will treasure.


3. Join the Y– for free.
Many health insurance programs will pay for you to join either SilverSneakers® or Silver and Fit at the YMCA of Burlington and Camden counties.


4. Sneak into another movie when your main show is done.


5. See a movie – retro-style.
At Delsea’s Drive-In Movie Theater in Vineland you can see a flick without getting out of your car.


6. Spend a week in Congress and straighten them out!
– “Clothing Scott” Soffen, 59, Cherry Hill


7. Get screened.
For all new members of the Big 5-0 club – congrats, it’s time for a colonoscopy! To find out other health screenings you need, visit AARP’s website for a 50+ guide to health screenings.


8 . Ride a motorcycle.
I was terrified of motor-cycles but at age 50, I finally got on the back of one. At age 53, I got my license.
– Jo Marino, 54, Maple Shade


9. See the night sky up-close.
The South Jersey Astronomy Club hosts public skywatches at Belleplain State Forest throughout the year. Telescopes are provided to view planets and other objects passing through… UFOs maybe? Visit sjac.us.


10. Put away your childish things.
I used to think it was really important to drive fancy sports cars. Now, I’m driving a nice grownup car and saving $250 a month. That’s money I can spend on my grandkids. Way more important. – Maury Z. Levy, 65, SJ Magazine


11. Travel by…ferry!
Cross from New Jersey to Delaware on the Cape May-Lewes Ferry and see the light-houses and harbors that line the coast.


12. Experience “Thunder Over the Boardwalk,” at the Atlantic City Airshow.
See flybys, aerobatic maneuvers and heart-stopping feats that reach as high as 15,000 feet and as low as 50 feet over the ocean. You can see the free show anywhere on the Atlantic City beach and boardwalk on August 17 at 10:30 am.


13. See a rodeo.
Cowtown Rodeo in Pilesgrove will continue its season of weekend fun with professional cow-boys and cowgirls competing in the rodeo circuit. Gates open at 6 pm every Saturday night until September 29.


14. Chat with an artist at work.
At WheatonArts in Millville, you can sit with artists in their studios while they blow glass, carve wood or shape pottery. Ask questions or simply watch creativity in action.


15. Be a racecar driver for a day.
Get behind the wheel of a high-performance racecar and let her rip – after receiving training from professionals, of course. Visit njmpracingschool.com to learn about the driving experiences available at NJ Motorsports Park in Millville.


16. Travel the world.
Many years ago, I travelled around the world.
– Stephen Rainsford, 53, Merchantville


17. Turn your fingers blue, red or pink – depending on what berries you pick!
Visit state.nj.us/jerseyfresh/ and click on the “pick your own farms” link.


18. Visit Wildwood’s Naval Aviation Museum at the Cape May County airport.
You’ll see vintage aircrafts from all branches of the military inside a hangar that was once a dive-bomber squadron training facility. The museum also serves as a memorial to the 42 men who died while training for World War II at the site.


19. Tour a winery – in SJ.
Find trail maps for wineries in Cape May, Gloucester and Atlantic counties at newjerseywines.com.


20. Get in a state park for free.
If you are 62 or older, you can get a NJ State Park Pass and get free admission to state parks, recreational facilities and historic sites. It covers parking, too. Get an application by Googling “NJ State Parks Senior Pass.”


21. Make your stage debut.
Collingswood, Moorestown and Voorhees have local theater companies that welcome beginning stars for their musicals.


22. Go bird watching.
Palmyra Cove Nature Center has adult bird watching classes for beginners on August 18th and September 15th from 9 am to noon. Sign up at palmyracove.jharte.com.


23. Take a behind-the-scenes tour of the most decorated battleship in U.S. Navy History: Battleship NJ at the Camden Waterfront.


24. Visit a healing garden.
Cooper University Hospital houses a healing garden on its campus in Camden. While it’s designed to provide respite to patients’ families, anyone can go to find peace amidst the waterfalls, evergreens and sculptures.


25. Buy from a farmer’s market.
To find a nearby market visit state.nj.us/jerseyfresh.


26. Visit Walt Whitman’s house.
See artifacts like Whitman’s original letters, personal belongings and the death notice once nailed to the front door. Call 856-964-5383 for tour times.


27. Join a produce co-op.
Check out Suburban Organics (suburbanorganics.com) or South Jersey Produce Co-Op (vinelandproduce.com) to get started.


28. Explore the gilded age.
Every October (this year events will take place Oct. 5 to 9), Cape May celebrates its unique Victorian heritage with historic house tours, a chocolate and beer tasting, vintage dance workshops, a fashion show, mystery dinners, evening ghost tours, a trolley tour for antique lovers and lots, lots more!


29. Attend a home-coming for a local military hero.
I guarantee you will put a smile on many peoples’ faces, including yourself. – Jim Ewan, 57, Medford


30. Investigate history.
Explore the Old Barracks Museum in Trenton to discover colonial and American history up-close. Or, tour the farmhouse and wander the interpretative nature trails of the Barclay Farmstead in Cherry Hill.


31. Check out our trophies.
Bridgetown Hall of Fame All Sports Museum remembers SJ sports stars who gained national fame, from boxing’s Jack Gross to major league player “Goose Goslin” to Olympian John Borican. View photos, equipment and other noteworthy memorabilia.


32. Research long-term care insurance options as soon as you blow out your 50 birthday candles. – Nancy Carman, 58, Samaritan SeniorWise Care Management


33. Compete in the New Jersey Senior Olympics in basketball, swimming, track and field, and a slew of other sports (including pickleball – sounds fun, right?).


34. Shoot a gun for fun.
But do it safely. You can Google “shooting ranges in SJ” to find a target near you.


35. Find your creative niche.
Perkins Center for the Arts offers adult classes in painting, pottery or drawing.


36. Walk Main Street.
You never truly know a town until you take a walk down its main strip. You’ll find charming main streets in Burlington, Haddonfield, Collingswood, Moorestown, Mount Holly, Medford and Mullica Hill.


37. Grow a garden.
Or better yet become a Master Gardener: receive in-depth, hands-on horticulture training from the Rutgers-Camden program in exchange for volunteering your knowledge in the community. Learn more at njaes.rutgers.edu/mastergardeners/.


38. Take a class in a subject you actually enjoy.
The Saltzman Foundation Life Long Learning Institute at Katz Jewish Community Center offers a wide variety of courses including Opera, Oil and Its Influence on the World Economy and everything in-between.


39. Be a pilot for a day.
Get behind the controls and learn to fly with an introductory flight lesson at Crosswinds Flight Schools in Williamstown. For $119, you’ll receive a brief informational session and about 30 minutes of flight time.


40. Reel in a big one!
Shark and tuna fishing off the shores of SJ allow even a novice fisherman (or woman) to catch a thrill.


41. Take the New Jersey Lighthouse Challenge.
Race to the top of some 13 NJ lighthouses. This year’s event takes place on October 20 and 21, visit lighthousechallengenj.org to learn more.


42. Make a plan.
Getting older and not putting a plan in place is a recipe for disaster. Whether it’s addressing financial or legal issues, your living situation or how you want to be cared for….think ahead! – Bonnie Joffee, 51, Cherry Hill


43. Go whale watching.
Several companies offer boat tours to spot the awe-inspiring mammals off the shores of Cape May.


44. Sit on the sand of your favorite beach with the one who loves you and watch the sun set. – Carol Giandonato, 68, Runnemede


45. Jump in the Atlantic – in almost freezing temps!
Take the polar bear plunge and raise funds for a good cause (join the Atlantic City Polar Bear Club or take the dip for the Special Olympics).


46. Eat your way down the boards.
Pick a boardwalk, any boardwalk and work your way from one end to the other – eating as you go. Nothing is off-limits, so load up on fudge, caramel popcorn, pizza, garlic Knots and funnel cake.


47. Visit a meditation garden.
The Lourdes Wellness Center in Collingswood has a quiet garden with a pond and a fountain. Head to the back of the garden and look inside the mailbox for a journal where past guests have shared their thoughts.


48. Lift a ladle.
Volunteer at Cathedral Kitchen and serve meals to the poor and hungry of Camden. Email volunteer@cathedralkitchen.org to learn how you can help.


49. Dig for clams.
Grab your license from the New Jersey Shellfisheries Bureau (for only $10) and receive a map of the allowed areas open for clamming. Google “clam digging in SJ” for a how-to guide.


50. Put the pedal to the metal.
It’s all about speed at Atco Raceway – NJ’s first dragway. Rent the track and take your own car for a joyride. There are no speed limits and no SJ traffic, just you and the road.

August 2012
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