The golfers, all polished and sporty, like to chide the croquet players.
“We’ll play croquet,” they say, “when we aren’t physically able to play golf.”
Chan Chandler has heard it for years. On behalf of his fellow croquet players at Arbor Acres, Chandler has a retort ready.
“We tell them, ‘We’ll take up golf when we’re mentally unable to play croquet,'” Chandler said with a chuckle. “We love to goose them.”
Croquet is serious business at Arbor Acres, a retirement community between Reynolda Road and University Parkway.
It’s fun, too, of course, which is why so many folks pack their walker and oxygen tanks and head to the neighborhood’s pristine court for mental, social and, yes, physical stimulation.
About 60 residents, including some in their 90s, regularly play each week, making it, along with pool, one of the community’s most popular past times.
Chandler, 78, said the sport taps into the competitive spirit that stays with people, regardless of their age.
“We still have that competitive urge,” Chandler said. “It’s honestly addictive. People hear ‘croquet’ and roll their eyes. And in a manner of weeks, they’re addicted to it. That pattern repeats itself over and over.”