Baton Rouge Offers Affordable, Youthful Living to Retirees

By Lisa Battles on November 13, 2013 at 5:34 pm EST
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A noticeable blend of the old and new in a warm Southern climate may initially draw older adults to Baton Rouge when they are looking for a great place to retire. Yet a closer look reveals a low cost of living, a favorable tax structure and access to affordable health care – all allowing more financial freedom to enjoy all the city offers. That means more money for scrumptious Sunday brunches, bigger tailgating affairs for LSU football games, nights out to see plays and symphony productions, and outings with golf buddies. These are some of the reasons Baton Rouge made Livability.com's Best Places to Retire list for 2013, as well as Forbes' Top 25 Best Places to Retire for 2013.

The presence of several universities – Louisiana State University, the largest, brings a youthful energy that will keep retirees on their toes. However, viewing the architecture on a stroll around the LSU campus shows a comforting respect and appreciation for preserving history – a sentiment also felt viewing the city's old and new capitol structures. LSU also offers lifelong learning opportunities through its Continuing Education programs. Beyond the college town amenities, Baton Rouge holds many well-supported community events, including Live After Five, keeping schedules packed throughout the year. 

Baton Rouge also has many options for quality health care, with 32 hospitals in the metro area and three ranked as U.S. News and World Report as Best Performing. These include: Baton Rouge General Medical Center, Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center and Woman's Hospital.

The city ranked well for health care in our study used to compile the Livability Top 100 Best Places to Live, as well, not just for the number of medical facilities but for the average spending by residents on medical services, indicating both affordability and a healthier population. Part of that may be due to programs such as those developed for adults and seniors offered by BREC, the Recreation and Park Commission for East Baton Rouge Parish. BREC oversees an Adult Leisure Department, which includes 17 centers with activities to engage the bodies and minds of the retirement age population, including social events, crafts, sewing and painting, as well as physical activities such as volleyball, pickle ball and more. For those who prefer less structured activities to stay fit, this nationally recognized parks department maintains 184 total facilities suited to all ages and fitness levels.

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