Retirement is the perfect time to dive into hobbies, try new things and enjoy your time, your way. And there is no better place in the country to explore new opportunities than Greater Peoria!
Since retiring from Caterpillar Inc. in 2011, John and Sharon Amdall have devoted their time to the community as generous philanthropists and champions of the arts. They were intentional in choosing to stay in Greater Peoria for their retirement years, John explains. “From our perspective, the easy transportation, low cost of living, high quality of life, exceptional medical care and the vibrant arts makes the Peoria region the perfect retirement community.”
As John and Sharon have discovered, Greater Peoria is the perfect place to live well and do it all. Let’s dig a little deeper and explore just a handful of reasons you should spend your golden years in the heart of Illinois…
LIVING LARGE, FOR LESS
At 26% less than the national average, Greater Peoria’s low cost of living makes for a smooth transition from the daily grind of working to life as a retiree. Our region is home to a diverse range of affordable housing options, from downtown lofts to rural living, with a median home cost of $135K. And because the State of Illinois does not tax retirement income — including pension payments, 401(k) and IRA distributions, and Social Security payments — that money remains in your pocket to spend how you wish.
Got travel on your mind? The Peoria International Airport offers 13 direct connections, including 6 in Florida alone. Park for free and make it to your gate in less than 10 minutes (!) for quick getaways when adventure calls. Our central location also means we’re not only close to major cities like Chicago and St. Louis, we’re within a day’s drive of half the country! And if you’re more of a homebody, our mix of rural, suburban and urban environments brings that feeling of exploring a new area right to your doorstep.
GET THE BEST CARE
Greater Peoria is the medical hub of downstate Illinois, so everything you need can be found right here at home. Whether you’re seeking specialized care or just a yearly check-up, our healthcare community is dedicated to your health and wellness, with the latest advanced treatments and state-of-the-art technologies. In Greater Peoria, you’ll have access to two major health systems, OSF HealthCare and Carle Health, to keep you feeling your best.
ENJOY ARTS AND CULTURE
If you’re looking for things to do, you’ve come to the right place! From multiple community theaters to the state’s largest Giant Screen Theater, live music venues, art galleries and so much more, Greater Peoria’s arts and culture scene is thriving. Enjoy the nation’s 14th oldest symphony orchestra. Check out local and national artwork at the Peoria Art Guild. Catch a Broadway show at the Peoria Civic Center, or spend the day at the Peoria Riverfront Museum (with free entry every month on Senior Day). You’re sure to pack your schedule in Greater Peoria, where there’s something for everyone, every day of the week!
Enjoy the great outdoors by hiking, biking or strolling our many trails, parks and prairie lands. Join a gym, whether you’re into CrossFit or water aerobics, take senior classes at the Peoria RiverPlex, or hit the greens at one of our many golf courses. If you’re more of a fan than a player, you’re in luck. From college basketball to professional baseball, hockey and more, Greater Peoria has it all. Did we mention we have the largest park district in Illinois?
Continue your education and find a sense of community through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Bradley University. It’s an incredible organization for those of retirement age who are looking to stay active, continue learning and engage in travel, classes, study groups and events. OLLI has over 1,000 members — and they welcome you with open arms!
What cause is near and dear to your heart? By volunteering your time and talents, you can be part of what makes Greater Peoria such a great place to live. Get involved at a range of community organizations and nonprofits, including the Red Cross, Boys and Girls Clubs, Easterseals and so many others. Visit the Heart of Illinois United Way’s volunteer portal to find a host of opportunities to make a difference around the region.
You want to make the most of your retirement, and Greater Peoria provides many ways to do just that. John and Sharon Amdall have made an enduring impact on their community, and they couldn’t be happier. “We feel that our decision to stay in the Greater Peoria area has been an excellent decision,” John says. “We cannot imagine being able to have both the impact and fun in another region of the country.”
So what are you waiting for? By exploring everything we have to offer, you’ll quickly discover just how you, too, can live greater here.