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Sacramento Boomer

Get Busy: 7 Hobbies to Keep You Happy

Reaching retirement is quite an accomplishment. You’ve spent decades working hard to provide for your family, and you’ve planned ahead for the financial changes that come with leaving the workforce. But without the structure of waking up and going to the office every day, boomers often feel bored at home with all the free time they now have day after day and week after week. That’s where hobbies come in! Discovering new activities and interests you can do alone, with friends, and/or with your spouse are great ways to challenge your mind and keep your body active through this next chapter of life.

1) DIY

Retirement means working around the house, right? With all this free time, you can finally fix the temperamental window that gets stuck when you’re trying to open it, get rid of the squeaking hinges on the front door, and repair the kitchen drawer that always gets jammed. As you make your way through the house to-do list, you can consult local experts to help as you tinker around. From small quick-fix projects to tackling larger home renovations, such as a new kitchen backsplash, you’ll feel quite accomplished when you work with your hands to both repair and build new things.
American Slim Pen Class at Woodcraft

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AR Workshop Sacramento

1221 19th Street, Suite 200


AR Workshop Roseville

1426 East Roseville Parkway, Suite 170


Workshops include plank + framed wood signs, canvas wall hangings + pillows, ped beds, clocks, blanket ladders, trays, centerpiece boxes, chunky knit blankets and more!


9523 Folsom Boulevard, Sacramento, 916-362-9664,

Classes include Intermediate Woodworking: Build An End Table, Adirondack Side Table/Foot Stool, and Inlay Techniques 

The Home Depot 

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Workshops include Bathroom Refresh, Installing Tile Backsplash, and Interior Painting & Drywall Repair

2) Knitting

Knitting doesn’t have to be a seasonal hobby that’s solely for winter. Boomers can grab their yarn and needles to make beautiful knitted creations, such as hats, scarves, mittens, slippers, blankets, and more—year-round. Classes and meet-up groups are offered throughout town, many of which note whether they are open for beginners or those with more experience. Yarn is available in a variety of colors and sizes, so you can get as creative as you want with your projects. If you’re looking for knit patterns, a quick Google search will point you in the right direction for free projects. As you develop your knitting skills, you can also craft personalized gifts for your loved ones and grandchildren for their birthdays and/or for the holidays.

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Rumpelstiltskin Yarn 

1021 R Street, Sacramento,


Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento, 


8739 Elk Grove Boulevard, Elk Grove, 916-714-7719,

JOANN Fabrics and Crafts

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Lofty Lou’s Yarn Shop

263 Main Street, Placerville,

3) Cooking

Whether you have a reduced work schedule or are fully retired, you might realize you have more time and energy to cook intricate meals for you and your family. Myriad cooking classes are available throughout town and in a variety of cuisines. Plan a date night with your spouse, and sign up for a cooking class where you might learn how to make a more adventurous meal. For a reasonable cost, these classes will provide all the ingredients as well as an instructor to help you craft stunning and delicious dishes, which you’ll get to enjoy at the end. You might also learn some new kitchen tips, chopping tricks, and techniques that you can take home with you. Some classes might even help you learn more about where your food is coming from on a local level. If you feel even more inspired after the class, you can keep the momentum up by looking online for creative new recipes you want to try. Before you know it, you’ll be having more fun in the kitchen than ever before!
Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op

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Good Eats with Paulette 

522 North 12th Street, Sacramento, 916-498-9804,

Classes include Classic Italian-American Creations, Date Night, and Weeknight Cooking

Murer House

1125 Joe Murer Court, Folsom,

Classes include Cheese-making Class, Hand-Made Gnocchi di Patate, and Minestrone Soup

Napoli Culinary Academy 

1401 Fulton Avenue, Suite B, Sacramento, 916-971-0600,

Classes include A Taste of Mexico, A Taste of Italy, A Taste of Thailand, and A Taste of Germany 

Sacramento Natural Foods Coop 

2820 R Street, Sacramento,

Classes include Date Night: Italian Calzones, Spring Wine Tasting, French Croissants, and more.

4) Traveling

Now that you’re retired, it’s much easier to plan vacations! No more worrying about taking time off from work, no more stress about coming back to a daunting inbox post-vacation, and no more counting and tracking how many vacation days you’ve used and how many you have left. Every day of retired life is a vacation day, which means you can plan as many trips as you’d like throughout the year. From weekend getaways to Tahoe, Napa, or San Francisco; and weeklong road trips throughout California (or up to Oregon or Washington); to Caribbean cruises with the whole family and extended excursions to Europe, every escape you plan has the opportunity to be the trip of a lifetime. And locally, the resources for planning your next trip are unlimited. Outdoor stores like REI and Dick’s Sporting Goods are stocked with all your camping gear necessities, while Camping World is the place to go if you’re looking to hop into an RV and explore the country. Local travel agents are also available to help you book cruises as well as group travel, where you can visit destinations all across the globe. 

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Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

NOTE: They also offer guided trips around the world, via REI Adventures, including women’s trips and bike tours 

Dick’s Sporting Goods 

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Camping World 

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Travel Store Sacramento 

1750 Howe Avenue, Suite 320, Sacramento, 916-929-5555,

Sacramento Travel 

1755 Creekside Oaks Drive, Suite 110, Sacramento, 916-454-2858,

5) Painting

From “paint and sip” workshops to artistic technique painting lessons, local art classes will allow you to tap into your creative side, whether you think you have drawing skills or not. Sign up for these fun classes with friends or relatives, and you’ll leave with your own original artwork you can showcase in your own home. Instructors and professional artists will provide step-by-step directions to create the paintings, as well as tips on which brushes to pick up, which colors to mix, and how to paint on different surfaces, including canvas, wood, and more. If you’re a beginner and want to see if you enjoy painting, start by taking a class with guided instructions. If you feel you’ve discovered a new passion, then it will be a worthwhile investment to get art supplies to keep at home for whenever inspiration hits you.
The Painted Cork

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University Art 

2601 J Street, Sacramento, 916-443-5721,

Classes include Pet Protraits with Carrie Posey, Oil Pastels: Level 2 with Laura Schofield, and Big Sky: Sunset/Sunrise in Acrylic with Jaya King 

The Painted Cork 

1624 J Street, Sacramento, 916-442-2675; 726 Sutter Street, Folsom, 916-985-4535,

Classes include Tahoe Vista, Rustic Birches on Wood Panel Surface, Paint Your Pet, Day at the Beach, and Funky Starry Sacramento

The Art Bistro 

Rocklin, 916-472-0252, 

Classes include on-the-go mobile services for Wood Sign Making Workshops and Canvas Painting Classes

6) Exercise

Working out and staying active are important life habits to maintain, no matter your age. For boomers specifically, the health benefits of a regular workout are key to staying in the best shape as you age. Not only does exercise keep your mind sharp, but it’ll help keep your heart healthy, regulate blood pressure, improve your mental health and mood, maintain your muscle mass, keep your bones strong, and much more. Additionally, with so many options for working out, including solo activities as well as group exercise, you can find something you’ll enjoy doing. Whether you prefer going for a walk every day or want to train to run a marathon, finding activities you enjoy will make your workouts something you look forward to rather than dread. And certain exercises, such as swimming, yoga, or tai chi, are low impact, and therefore safer options for boomers who may notice more aches and pains in their normal day-to-day routine.
California Family Fitness

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Spare Time Clubs

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Classes offered include Water Fitness, Yoga, and Zumba  

California Family Fitness 

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Classes offered include Gentle Yoga and Pilates, Silver Sculpt and Stretch, Sit & Fit, Young at Heart, and Zumba Gold

Ethel MacLeod Hart Senior Center 

915 27th Street, Sacramento,

Classes offered include Tai Chi for Better Balance, Chair Yoga, Sand Strength and Balance

Sacramento Yoga Center 

2791 24th Street, Room 6, Sacramento, 916-996-5645,

Classes offered include Adaptive Yoga, Gentle Yoga, and Yoga for Mature Bodies

THE STUDIO Martial Arts & Fitness

8200 Sierra College Boulevard, Suite D, Roseville, 916-258-5425,

Classes offered include Martial Arts for Seniors, Full Body Fusion,
and Zumba 

Roseville Health & Wellness Center

1650 Lead Hill Boulevard, Roseville, 916-677-1200,

Classes offered include Senior Aqua Fit, Yoga Stretch, Tai Chi, and Forever Fit

7) Gardening

Gardening is good for the body and soul. Planting seeds and the regular upkeep are physical tasks that will keep your heart rate up. If you’re planting flowers and plants, you’ll get to enjoy your gorgeous blooms throughout the seasons. If you’re planting seeds to grow fruits and vegetables, you’ll get to eat and enjoy the fruits of your labor—literally. Gardening could also be a shared activity with your grandchildren. You can put the kiddos to work whenever they visit, asking them to help you water. These shared experiences can even help teach the kids discipline and to appreciate the hard work that goes into long-term projects like gardening.
Soil Born Farms

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The Home Depot

Multiple locations throughout Greater Sacramento,

Soil Born Farms 

2140 Chase Drive, Rancho Cordova, 916-363-9685, 

Classes include Spring Gardening Clinic, Beginning Home Gardener Course, and Growing Medicinal and Culinary Herbs

University of California, The California Garden Web

As you embark on exploring new interests and hobbies, you’ll learn it’s never too late to learn a new skill and take on a new challenge. It’s the open-mindedness to want to try new things that will help you continue to feel young, healthy, and happy.

By Kourtney Jason