Established in 1994 as an education-based organization focused on retiree attraction as an economic development strategy, The American Association of Retirement Communities is a not-for-profit professional association. The AARC is one of the few non-profit, cooperative organizations in the industry that does research on and for retirement communities.

The AARC Seal of Approval program was established to recognize communities and master-planned developments that possess the resources and amenities to attract today’s relocating retiree, evaluating such areas as Quality of Life (healthcare, retiree-appropriate housing, Adult Education, Services, Recreational and Cultural Opportunities, Crime Rate and more) and formal commitment to retiree attraction and programs (governmental and other retiree-focused organizations). Seal of Approval recipients have submitted their community and its programs to scrutiny by the volunteer board of the AARC.

With the goal of providing an unbiased perspective on retirement communities for potential buyers, the AARC Seal of Approval has gained growing prominence in the retiree buying process. We encourage feedback on ways to make the AARC a greater resource in your decision process – send an email to

Meridian, MS

Type: City-Region

From outdoor concerts and parades to festivals and sports, Meridian residents like a good time. There are a variety of sports complexes that support softball, baseball, soccer, tennis, and walking, plus 4 golf courses. Bonita Lakes, the largest Urban Forest in the nation, features two lakes; Lake Okatibbee offers boating, fishing, swimming, and water skiing. Meridian is home to a number of historic and cultural attractions, including Meridian Little Theatre, the MSU Riley Center for Education & Performing Arts and the Meridian Museum of Art. The Dentzel Carousel is a National Historic Landmark and the world's only two-row, stationary Dentzel menagerie.


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