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The Forest, a gated community in Lake Mary*, Florida, is designed for residents 55 years and older. Although it is situated on the corner of two busy roadways, those who enter find a quiet and peaceful haven. The owners of the 313 manufactured homes on wooded lots which they also own, is almost a unique phenomenon nowadays in Florida. Its name is justified by the tremendous number and variety of trees, along with the blankets of leaves or wood chips covering the grounds. A beautiful clubhouse provides a variety of activities and entertainment, such as pancake breakfasts, potluck suppers, yearly ice cream socials, Bingo, card games, etc. Tennis and shuffleboard courts, two swimming pools, and a spa add to the enjoyment of the residents.

Walking and bicycling are favorite sports within the gates. For those more adventuresome, the Seminole Wekiva Trail crosses the Rinehart Road entrance, giving access to bikers, joggers, skaters, and walkers. This 14-mile paved trail comes complete with rest areas, exercise stations, and drinking fountains.

Just outside The Forest gates and within walking distance are shops, restaurants, a bus stop, and a major grocery store. Close by are churches, doctors’ offices, the post office, banks, and numerous restaurants, fast-food and “up-scale.” A few miles north is the Seminole Towne Center, a mall with major anchors, and a few miles east is the Sanford-Orlando International Airport.

Forest residents enjoy easy access to I-4 and The Greenway, a toll road skirting Orlando, that joins I-4 below Disney or helps to make a quick trip to the Orlando International Airport. Not only does I-4 West connect Lake Mary to Orlando and its many attractions but also I-4 East does the same for nearby ocean beaches. Cocoa, Daytona and New Smyrna are the most popular.

*Lake Mary, Florida, ranked 4th in the TOP 100 Best Places in America to Live by Money Magazine.