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JILL MCKEOWN (RIGHT) AND MITZI SAKATA (LEFT) DISCUSS THEIR LEGACY WITH COKESBURY VILLAGE IN FRONT OF THE LIVING PLANT WALL.

Cokesbury Village: A Family Affair

A new generation of residents is finding the perfect fit for retirement: Cokesbury Village in Hockessin.

With its 60 acres of gardens, woodlands, rolling lawns and striking contemporary architecture, adult children who witnessed their parents’ happiness firsthand are now following in their footsteps and making their own move to this vital campus.

Speaking about the community’s recent multimillion-dollar facelift, Mitzi Sakata, a second-generation resident, says, “The renovations at Cokesbury Village are absolutely beautiful. I think the community’s update immediately makes it more appealing to the younger generation.”

For Sakata and her husband, the decision to move to Cokesbury Village was easy, spurred primarily because they’d seen the quality life care residents enjoy while her mother lived at Cokesbury.

“Everyone took excellent care of her. Over the years, I came to know the staff very well and I knew firsthand about the great care she was getting,” she says. “So we came for the health care. And then we found out it’s a really fun place to live!”

Sakata credits Cokesbury Village for adding years to her mom’s life, giving her a sense of purpose and fulfillment.

“My mother would always talk about the excellent concerts, lectures and entertainment, but I didn’t fully understand the extent of how wonderful the quality of entertainment was until we lived here ourselves.”

Cokesbury is Like Coming Home… Again

For Jill McKeown, another second-generation resident, moving to Cokesbury Village was like coming home again.

“My parents moved to Cokesbury Village in 1980, about a year after it was built,” shares McKeown. “When I would visit my mom, I would always park near the cottage where we now live. Coming back home brings back memories of her. Everyone loved her here.”

Jill and her husband, George, moved in eight years ago. She was 69 at the time. Moving was a decision the McKeowns did not take lightly.

“Before we came to Cokesbury Village, we researched multiple other retirement communities,” Jill says. “We visited, went to lunch presentations, and Cokesbury Village was by far the most welcoming and friendly community.”

Jill’s father passed away about a year after her parents moved in. Her mother later remarried a resident she met at Cokesbury Village.

“It was great love story,” she said. “My mom was involved in many activities—she was an artist.”

Jill’s mother lived at Cokesbury Village nearly 30 years until she passed away in 2009. “She called Cokesbury her home and now it’s absolutely my home too,” Jill says. “George and I are involved in so many things. I’m co-chair of the hospitality committee and secretary of the spiritual life committee.”

A Community with Beautiful, Modern Appeal

“There is not a retirement community that is even close to the uniqueness of our community. It’s fabulous,” says Tasha Verrico, the sales manager at Cokesbury Village. “We upgraded our main building; we call it the core of the community. Residents can come to eat, get their mail, read the paper or a book by the fireplace. In the lower atrium, you’ll find a library, amazing craft room, cyber lounge, new hair salon, woodshop and even a dance floor.”

Renovations also include upgrades to a full-service restaurant and brand new bistro and coffee shop.

“The space is large and very open. You’re able to stay engaged, yet socially distanced, with friends. It has a contemporary feel, and it’s so welcoming, with all the natural light,” Verrico adds. “A large ‘live’ wall of plants and stone adds warmth and class.”

Mitzi Sakata echoes that sentiment.

“When you walk through the front doors, it’s just gorgeous,” she says, smiling. “There is a two-story angled window that fills the place with light. Everywhere you go, including the apartments and cottages, it feels open with a lot of sunlight. It makes such a difference.”

“The whole building has been transformed in a sense. The lobby is quite high, several stories, with the ambiance of entering a grandly elegant hotel,” Jill McKeown adds. “You can mingle here before or after dinner, and then enjoy wonderful entertainment, from musical groups and choirs to lectures.”

A Village of People from Fascinating Walks of Life

Cokesbury Village is a village with a truly vibrant social spirit.

“Cokesbury Village is unique because half our residents live in cottages. We have 110 cottages. The other half live in the main building, about 124 apartments,” Verrico shares. “You have a very cool village—not separate communities—that offers a great balance. You have flexibility to choose the lifestyle that meets your needs.”

Sakata has no regrets in choosing a cottage.

“I’ve made a lot of good friends,” she says. “You can always find someone you haven’t met before, and they have such interesting lives! There’s always something to talk about and do… play bridge, garden, stitch and chat, exercise programs. We also have a pool, pickleball, bocce and book clubs, the list goes on and on.

“It’s a very social community,” Sakata continues. “By far the best part about living at Cokesbury Village is the people who work and live here. And during challenging times like the pandemic, you really appreciate each other more and realize you wouldn’t want to be any other place.”

Cokesbury Staff is Like Family

“We are totally independent but have amazing resources when we need it,” Jill McKeown says. “If I woke up with a raging sinus infection, I’d just call and ask to see the nurse practitioner. I can simply walk across the street and be in to see a doctor. Things like that are golden, especially now.

“The staff are really tuned into our needs,” she adds. “The employees are loyal to us and residents look forward to giving back. Every year we contribute to an employee fund over the holidays to show our appreciation.”

“I tell my friends, make the change before you think you need to,” Sakata chimes in. “You’ll wish you had done it sooner. I think the younger people are realizing it, saying ‘I don’t want a big house to take care of. I want to travel and see my grandchildren, and if I move into a place like Cokesbury, I can just shut the door, not worry and go.’”

To learn how you can become a part of this vibrant and engaged community, schedule a tour with our sales team at ActsRetirement.org or call 855-945-5087 to learn more.

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