As some people grow older, they might feel the need to “slow down” and enjoy their golden years. For one City of Falls Church resident, their golden years include being active in various physical activities in the community.
On March 10th, Marguerite Shaffer will turn 100 years old, something Schaefer herself said she can’t believe.
“I’m still doing as much as I do,” Shaffer said. “Then I think ‘Gee, at 100 maybe I should stop [doing] things,’ it just kind of egged me on to want to do more.”
At 99 years old, Shaffer is involved in a senior bowling league at Bowl America Falls Church, as well as women’s golf league at Jefferson District Golf Course in Falls Church. She said she initially took part in these activities after some pushing from her husband, due to her not being able to get involved earlier in that she was raising their six children at the time.
Recently, Shaffer suffered an injury to her right arm while bowling, but that hasn’t stopped her from continuing to bowl with her left arm. Although she stated she’s “not that good” at bowling, Shaffer’s favorite part of these leagues is the friendships she had made with her fellow teammates and going out to lunch with them.
“I just like people period,” Shaffer stated. “Me, lunch and friends is what I seem to like the most.”
Through her participation in her bowling and golf league, Shaffer has seemed to garner many life-long friendships along the way. One friend, Linda Brown, has known her for 30 years and was intrigued by Shaffer after initially meeting her through bowling.
“She was a kick,” Brown stated when describing her first impression of Shaffer. “She had a great sense of humor, very aware of everything that was on and a really fun person to know.”
Presently, Shaffer and Brown go golfing together on a regular basis, which Brown said is the “most fun” and one of her favorite moments with Shaffer. Not only does she inspire Brown, but Brown said she inspires “everybody she meets” based on her activeness and friendliness at almost 100 years old.
“She’s just a wonderful friend and a great person,” Brown said. “She knows everything that’s going on, she reads the paper from front to back and she’s really well-versed.”
Some accomplishments Shaffer said she has experienced was scoring a hole-in-one in her golf league, which Shaffer described as a “thrill” for her. Outside of her participating leagues, Shaffer has made “Fan of the Day” while attending a Washington Nationals baseball game, even making it on the big screen at the stadium.
Although she doesn’t think she will join any more activity leagues any time soon, Shaffer said her goal for turning 100 is to keep “doing things” and “seeing people,” including her children in Virginia and Florida. For her birthday, she said her children will be throwing her a party that includes friends and family, as well as Bowl America throwing her a party as well.
Her words of advice for her fellow league team members, as well as for other local senior citizens, is to “forget your problems and the things that bother you” and just relax and pay attention to “what you’re doing.”
“I find that when I leave [my house], I just try to clear my mind of anything that might be bothering me,” Shaffer said. “Then you just can’t help but have fun.”