Boone County Population is Getting Older

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COLUMBIA - The number of people older than 65 in Boone County has increased by more than 23 percent since 2000.

The Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis said people stay in Missouri for multiple of different reasons.

"People tend to stay in Boone County because there are a lot of primary care physicians, and there is a high quality of life here in Columbia and Boone County," said OSEDA's Research Associate Kim Keller.

Senior citizens who live in Columbia agree. They said that not only is the quality of life in Columbia good, but there are many opportunities to make money without having to move to other cities. Shirley Kalkofen takes advantage of these opportunities, and teaches a dance class at the Columbia Senior Center. The senior center also has activities like playing board games, shooting pool, and other get-togethers to meet new people.

Within the last year senior housing and senior care companies have seen an increase in people getting care. OSEDA said the aging Baby Boomers are starting to get to the point where they are retiring and joining communities and senior assisted living.

"I think in that the year that I have been here our census has grown, we've seen a lot more private pay," said Jeff Robbins, the executive director for The Bluffs. "When I say private pay I mean more people that are going to stay long term."