AARP will kick off its second member event of the year, the Life@50+ National Event and Expo in Atlanta, on Thursday, Oct. 3, with a roster of stars and speakers that includes such boldface names as Gloria Estefan and Whoopi Goldberg.
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Organizers expect thousands of members to descend on the Georgia World Congress Center for what always feels like a big party — but with lots of information on how to live a better life and take advantage of the many services AARP offers.
This is the first year that AARP has offered two member events in one year (the other was in Las Vegas in May), and the schedule is jam-packed. There will be educational opportunities, tech and social media training, and inspiring speakers, along with appearances by celebrities and many AARP special ambassadors and personalities, including Jane Pauley,travel expert Samantha Brown and financial guru Jean Chatzky.
Tennis legend Martina Navratilova will be on hand to lead a group fitness session Saturday morning, for anyone who's not too worn out from Thursday's and Friday's lineups.
Thursday will open with a community day of service in and around the Big Peach, and end with a gospel concert featuring Regina Belle. The volunteer effort will be led by Dan Marino, AARP Men's Life ambassador and Hall of Fame Miami Dolphin quarterback, and Dr. Pepper Schwartz, AARP relationship expert, with projects ranging from landscaping to mentoring to home and school refurbishing.
Friday is when the conference really revs up, with Goldberg chatting onstage with media mogul Tyler Perry, producer Emilio Estefan leading sessions focused on the new AARP Life Reimagined initiative, and other speakers offering advice or leading discussions on subjects including finances, faith, caregiving and brain health.
The AARP Movies for Grownups Film Festival begins, too, with the prerelease screening of Middleton, starring Andy Garcia (who will be at the event) and Vera Farmiga. It's about a man and a woman who fall for each other on a college admissions tour; it won't show up in theaters nationally until January.
The information sessions and movie festival continue Saturday (with screenings of films on Johnny Cash and Muhammad Ali), and Gloria Estefan will perform in the evening, wrapping up the event with a bang — or at least with a "conga." For information on registration, speakers and more, go to the AARP events page, www.aarp.org/about-aarp/events/national_event.
Christina Ianzito writes about travel, food and other lifestyle topics for AARP Media.
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