EXPANDED Tacoma Senior Living Tour

Cheering seniors on a bus

Many of you may have either heard of the Tacoma Senior Living Tour or actually taken one of the tours.  Since 2014 we have offered this tour to Seniors who are either thinking about moving into a retirement community or just want to know more about senior living communities.  It’s quite common that most seniors just don’t know where to start looking or even what questions to ask?  Between 2014 and 2023, the five Tacoma senior living communities that hosted the Tacoma Senior Living Tour have been eliseo, Franke Tobey Jones, Merrill Gardens, Cogir at the Narrows and the Weatherly Inn.  In total, we have toured over 1,500 seniors just like you who had questions about senior living. 

There is such a demand for this Tour, which we hold twice a year, that the vans fill up immediately.  Because of this, we have decided to expand the tour and include three more communities.  You can choose to take one tour or take them both.

  • Wednesday, September 27th
    • The communities on this tour will be Cogir at the Narrows, GenCare – Point Ruston, Merrill Gardens – Tacoma, Merrill Gardens – Stadium and the Weatherly Inn.  These communities have independent living, assisted living and memory care.  If you would like to attend this tour, you must RSVP with Linda Lee at Merrill Gardens – Tacoma.  253-460-5851 or
  • Thursday, September 28th
    • The communities on this tour will be not-for-profit CCRCs (Continuing Care Retirement Communities) and include Franke Tobey Jones, eliseo and Herons Key. These communities offer independent living, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing (the full continuum of care).  If you would like to attend this tour, you must RSVP with Carole Velez at Franke Tobey Jones at

“Many seniors attending the Tacoma Senior Living Tour have never stepped inside a retirement community before,” says Christine Hall, Senior Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Franke Tobey Jones.  “When most people think about retirement communities, they conjure up all kinds of terrible images and smells from visiting their mom and grandma in a nursing home decades ago.  Retirement living is not like that anymore.  Our communities are beautiful, vibrant, active and offer wonderful chef prepared meals, classes, trips, tours and the opportunity to meet new friends and have fun!”

Each tour is very informative, and attendees walk away having learned a lot about living in a retirement community.  You will receive an overview at each community, walk through common areas and see actual apartments.  You will also have the opportunity to taste the food at each community, compare prices and ask as many questions as you want in a friendly, relaxed environment.

“Seeing a community first hand can make all the difference when picking the perfect fit,” says Linda Lee, Community Relations Director at Merrill Gardens – Tacoma.  “The attendees walk away at the end of the day with a totally different perspective than what they started with at the beginning of the day.  To note, there is a lot of walking on the tour so wear comfortable clothing and shoes.”

Your questions might include:

  • What is the monthly rent and what does it cover?
  • Is your community pet friendly? Does it cost more to have a pet?
  • Can I move in now or is there a waiting list?
  • What is a “buy-in” and is there one?
  • What is the difference between assisted living and memory care? Or memory care and skilled nursing?
  • What is the highest level of care that you offer?
  • Do you offer therapy? If so, what kinds?
  • What happens if my spouse needs memory care and I don’t? Can we still live in your community?
  • What happens to my apartment if I need to go to skilled nursing or rehab for a period of time?

The vans fill up very fast and seats are limited, so you must RSVP to reserve a seat on one of the community vans.  Or you can drive yourself but you still must RSVP so the organizers have a good head count for food, brochures and so on.  Compare the possibilities at each community.  To be on one of the vans you must RSVP by Friday, September 22nd by calling or emailing the numbers above.

The Tour program is as follows:


  • Start at your assigned community.
  • Hear a short presentation about Senior Living Communities and about the day’s activities.
  • Tour that community.

11am to 3pm

  • Get aboard the community van or drive in your own car and go to the next community.
  • Each van will stop at all the communities on that tour that day or drive yourself and visit the communities you choose.
  • Hear a community overview, receive pricing, tour a couple of apartments, sample the food at each community.
  • Tour ends. We’ll get you back to your starting community!

“At the end of each of the previous Tacoma Senior Living Tours the participants have been so grateful for the knowledge they received,” says Ms. Hall.  “It’s really gratifying knowing that we are providing seniors with information and options that will help them make an informed decision about moving to a senior living community.”

Senior Living Communities have been very busy this year with a lot of pent-up demand.  Even if you are a few years out from moving to a senior living community, it’s a good time to tour and get your name on a waiting list so when you are ready your favorite community will have an apartment available for you.

For more information or to RSVP please contact us by Friday, September 22nd to reserve your place on the Tour and/or van, or to drive behind one of the vans.  Typically the tours fill up within a few days.  Transportation services are limited so RSVP today! 

Wednesday, September 27th -If you would like to attend this tour you must RSVP with Linda Lee at Merrill Gardens – Tacoma.  253-460-5851 or

Thursday, September 28th – If you would like to attend this tour you must RSVP with Carole Velez at Franke Tobey Jones at

There is A LOT of walking on these tours, so please wear comfortable shoes!

Hope to see you there!

Categories: Upcoming Events