Lastest News

We have been BUSY working on Legal and Financial goals and take a great deal of time and attention to detail. We’ve held two meetings with Founders – Nov 4 and Dec 2 – to bring them up to date and solicit input, feedback and increased involvement.

Startup Stock Photos

Founders organized a potluck and meeting January 27 that was a great time to get to know each other better and stay updated. We’ll continue to hold monthly meetings with Founders as we move closer to making our dreams a reality.

Since TTMDRS is incorporated as an Educational Non-Profit, we have legal limits on our activities. In order to move forward, we set up a new corporation–an LCC–that has the freedom to implement the Business Plan created earlier this year in collaboration with ActionPact.

That was a lengthy and complicated process and we are delighted that it’s been completed, resulting in Touchstone of the Piedmont, LCC. (aka TOP.) It is being steered by a new group of leaders, referred to as Members. Some have been on the TTMADRS board; some are new. The current leadership of TOP is: Mareah Steketee, Alan Julich, Pat Peterson, Margaret Sharp, Chris Martin and Albert Hardy.

From this point, the work of TOP will be the primary focus of energy and attention. We are legally required to keep the functions of TOP completely separate from the functions of TTMADRS—which raises some interesting and complex questions about finances and activities. TTMADRS will probably continue to sponsor our Educational Workshops. If you, or someone you know, would like to attend a half day Educational Workshop in Durham, NC, please let us know. These workshops are offered as an educational event for all; they are also the first step to becoming a Founder.

In our Nov and Dec meetings with Founders we’ve discussed all these issues, explored ideas for Governance going forward, and emphasized the need for more Founders to take on some of the work.

Let us know if you have questions or comments or suggestions.

We hope to have more news updates for you soon. Stay in touch.

A Summary of Our Integrated Business Plan

Dear friends,

We’d like to bring you up to date on the progress TTMADRS has made toward the development of an arts community for older adults: traditional dancers, musicians, visual and performing artists, and friends.

On June 26, 2018, Martin Dickmann of Action Pact presented the Integrated Business Plan (IBP) they developed for us as a result of six day-long meetings with our Founders.  A great deal of work has gone into the creation of this plan; much more work will be needed to craft a design and to begin construction.


Following is a summary of the IBP.

Our overall goal is to create an arts village that supports older adults, which we will build in two or three phases. It will eventually comprise 150 homes and 40 spaces for those who require a spectrum of health care.

Common amenities will eventually include the following:

  • Community Center/Wellness Center
  • Dining Venues
  • Dance Hall/Auditorium
  • Household Model of skilled nursing care
  • Gardens/Greenspace
  • Studios, practice and teaching spaces
  • Outpatient clinic

Not all of these can be included in the first phase due to costs.

Phase 1 will include the following:

  • 50 independent cottages, ranging in size from 750 to 1,500 square feet;
  • 6 Adult Care Home units, providing levels of assisted living as needed;
  • A Music and Dance Center.

We estimate that Phase 1 will cost $18.3 million.  Additional phases will be undertaken as resources permit.

The plan assumes that we create a new for-profit corporation (we’re calling it LandCo for now) to raise equity (investments from us), which will be used to carry out pre-construction activities: land acquisition, entitlement, legal, architectural, and engineering fees.

Loans will then be secured for construction (including site work).

LandCo will retain ownership of the Music and Dance Center, the Adult Care Home, and all common land. Homes will be sold on a fee simple basis to residents.

We will not have a licensed skilled care facility at this time, so Medicare or Medicaid will not reimburse for care. Individual Long-Term Care insurance policies might, however.

We initially intended to build a Continuing Care Retirement Community. The more we learned, the more complications we discovered. Getting a license is expensive, bureaucratically complex, and not guaranteed. We’d need to have a lot of money raised and held in escrow. There are, however, some creative ways to provide similar care without the CCRC designation (by purchasing existing licensed “beds,” for example).

Next steps in this journey include the following:

  • Form a development committee.
  • Create an initial investor offering for pre-development funding.
  • Solicit/secure initial investor commitments.
  • Create a developer RFP (Request for Proposal).
  • Carry out developer RFP process and developer selection.
  • Prepare a development plan that is site specific, simultaneous with site selection.

How long before we can move in? It depends on how quickly we can proceed and how long it takes us to raise the money we need to start. Estimates range from three to five years. The more flexible we are in our land choices, the sooner we can find land.

What we now have is a workable business plan, that allows for flexibility as we develop our community.




We’ve been busy!

We held a special meeting with our Founders May 15, 2018 as a follow up to the 3 IPA planning meetings. It was an opportunity for everyone to raise questions arising from those meetings and to give us feedback on how they want us to proceed.

We began the meeting with a report from our Treasurer, Doug Shier. Founders and Friends have been so generous, we actually have a small sum left over after paying for a market study, legal and accounting fees, and the many hours of work by our consultant, Action Pact. We have decided to set some in reserve and we anticipate greater costs on the horizon. It’s almost time for more fundraising. Stay tuned for that!

We are currently incorporated as a 501(3)c educational non-profit. In order to buy land, accept investments, and begin to build, we will re-incorporate as a separate entity. For now, we are calling that “New Co” until we decide on a better name.

We asked Founders how they want decisions to be made as we move into this new phase. What role do they want the current (and future) board to play? How much input should Founders and Investors have into decision-making and should that input be based on the amount invested?

We are still collating those responses. At first review, it seems that many people would like the board to have decision-making authority about most issues, with some exceptions, and that input from Founders/Investors should be somewhat proportional to financial investment. There were also suggestions that the process for selecting and retaining Board Members be more transparent.

We are taking all of this input seriously and incorporating it into our planning.


Music is Good Medicine

Alive Inside is a documentary about the amazing power of music to reach people who seem lost in their own world. It’s moving and inspiring.  Here’s a short clip that shows how music is, indeed, good medicine.



Do you or a loved one have Medicare?

Medicare provides a range of benefits for outpatient and inpatient care. But, an effort to prevent premature discharges from hospital stays has resulted in unintended consequences that can cost the patient thousands of dollars. We include information about this glitch in our Educational Workshops. NPR offers some even more detail. Some have found it effective to repeatedly insist on being admitted. A good reason to have a friend or relative as an advocate when going to the ER.


We Continue To Move Forward!

The third round of the IPA planning meetings, March 27 and 28, was packed with more information, lots of choices and decisions, and a preview of what comes next. Action Pact will return the afternoon and evening of June 26 to present the Business Plan to all our Founders. We are planning to add a presentation for all others who are interested in what we are doing. We’ll post and send details soon.

Financial reality was one of the primary themes of this round. We explored the relative risks of different forms of financing this project. We dug into cost of building, maintaining, staffing. We enjoyed seeing and giving feedback on a possible design for a space that includes a dance/performance hall, eating and cooking area with smaller rooms for classes and other activities.

Straw polls showed us that the Founders attending those two days are currently willing to donate and/or invest enough to get us started building.

Are you wondering where we will build?

People often ask us: “Do you have land yet? Where will it be?” The size and type of land will depend on so many factors that it is premature to choose a location. We don’t yet know how much land is needed or how much we can afford. For example, the more people who commit to signing up, the more land we can afford and the lower our individual costs will be.

We aren’t waiting for the completion of the business plan by Action Pact to move forward on these crucial steps:
The board continues to consider optional names for our community. (Thanks for all your suggestions!)
Form a second corporation, suitable for accepting investments and developing the project.
Spread the word about what we are doing to attract more people. This may require hiring a marketing professional.
Find and hire an attorney to 1) draw up legal documents for those who want to invest in the land to get the project started and 2) to provide the non-binding letters of intent for those who plan to be the first to live there.
Raise more funds to pay for legal and marketing professionals. We have almost exhausted the funds donated for the business planning with Action Pact. We raised enough money to cover a number of expenses in addition to the IPA with Action Pact thanks to your generosity. Future expenses will be considerable for the legal and development aspect of the project.

We’ll keep you posted as we work to move us all forward toward our shared goals.

Bree Kalb
on behalf of the Board of TTMADRS

Progress Update

Startup Stock Photos

Our consultants from Action Pact joined a large group of Founders for our second round of planning meetings on February 27th and 28th. They gathered a lot of information from us, using small learning circles, polls, and large group discussion. It’s challenging to winnow out what people wish for versus what they absolutely need. It’s also interesting to ponder what one wants versus what one is willing and able to pay for. We never thought it would be easy or simple; now we are seeing in detail how complicated and multi-faceted this exciting process is.

The Board is reviewing all the data collected and putting it in some order to mesh with the analyses our consultants are doing back in their offices. We’ve begun a spreadsheet of all the parcels we know about. When we are clearer about how much land we need and can afford, we’ll engage an expert site locator.

One thing we know we need is more people! Our costs are lower when spread out over a large group, so we will soon be doing more marketing and outreach. Part of that includes changing our name to reflect our openness to anyone who would like to live with lovers of music, dance, and the arts, whether or not they actively engage in those activities. We are close to coming up with a nominee.

Soon we’ll begin another round of fundraising to replenish our bank account for the next steps of planning and implementing.

We’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, please spread the word about us to friends and family, both in person and via Facebook and other social media. Feel free to share links to our website and Facebook page. If you would like business cards and/or brochures, let us know by leaving a message here. Let’s keep the buzz going!

Triangle Traditional Music and Dance Retirement Society

Concert and Dance with Rip the Calico was a great success!

Many thinks to these fine musicians and to Stephen Stiebel for making his house available. We raised over $600 thanks to their generosity and that of all who attended.


Rip the Calico will play a concert from 7 – 8, followed by an hour of waltzing.

Sunday, March 4, 7:00 – 9:00 PM at Stephen Stiebel’s house, 3222 Henderson Field Rd., Mebane, NC 27302. Stephen’s beautiful home was designed especially for concerts and dances.

Rip the Calico has been playing to high acclaim for contra dances in Chapel Hill, Richmond, VA and Washington, D.C.  In addition, they are featured performers in the Pine Cone’s Music of the Carolina’s series. They specialize in high energy Irish traditional dance music, along with Cape Breton, French Canadian, Galician, Scottish, and original tunes.

$20 suggested donation. If you have any questions contact DeeDee Laurilliard at or (919) 360-3681.

This is a benefit for Triangle Traditional Music and Dance Retirement Society

More information about the band at: