Spirit Players Call Ingleside Home (Photo)
Diana Matheson and Robyn Gayle, star players on the Washington Spirit, DC’s new professional women’s soccer team, are the newest residents at Ingleside at King Farm, a continuing care retirement community in Rockville.
Teammates on Canada’s bronze medal-winning 2012 Olympic soccer team, the 20-something athletes will be sharing a two-bedroom suite at the retirement community for the Spirit’s season. The unique housing situation solves a common dilemma for professional women athletes who often struggle to find affordable housing on their modest salaries.
“This is a win-win for the athletes and for our community who will enjoy several intergenerational events we’re planning during their stay,” says Marilyn Leist, Ingleside at King Farm’s executive director. “The hospitality we extend to these young women is also an important part of fulfilling our social accountability as a not-for-profit organization.”
The housing opportunity arose when Steve Gurney, publisher and founder of Guide to Retirement Living SourceBook, was contacting local sports organizations to promote the BIG EVENT, a luncheon at Nationals Park featuring stories of intergenerational connections. When Spirit general manager Chris Hummer told Gurney that he was finding it difficult locating affordable housing for athletes joining his team, he connected Hummer with Ingleside at King Farm, which volunteered to host the players.
“Rallying behind a team can bring diverse people together and give them a common cause,” says Gurney, who hopes the players’ new living arrangement is part of a burgeoning movement that will unite generations and revolutionize the retirement living industry. “Now, sports stars are helping to unite generations—inspiring fans and benefiting from strong communities.”
The BIG EVENT for senior-serving professionals will be on April 18 at Nationals Park. The luncheon will feature a keynote presentation by Josh Faiola and Cindy Griffiths-Novak, the pioneering owner of The Belvedere of Westlake in Ohio that recently hosted a minor league baseball player. Matheson and Gayle will also be attending the event to discuss their new adventure in retirement living.
For more info about Ingleside visit its website: inglesidekingfarm.org.