Smiling senior taking a stretching class
Marianne Woodside enjoys a stretching class at the Asbury Place Maryville Wellness Center.

“In my family, moving to a continuing care retirement community is what you do,” says Asbury Place Maryville resident Marianne Woodside. “It’s the way you prepare for the future.”

Marianne’s mother, father and grandmother spent their retirement years living at CCRCs, so she was aware of the benefits that retirement communities provide, including an engaging, friendly community for her father until he passed away at the age of 104.

But Marianne’s pragmatism about CCRCs wasn’t shared initially by husband Phil, who would joke that he wasn’t retiring until, “Wayne retired.” Wayne was the couple’s handyman who kept their single-family home in Knoxville up to par.

But Phil soon acquiesced after Marianne and daughter Donna Lee’s search discovered Asbury Place, a senior living community in Maryville, Tenn. with the Smoky Mountains as its scenic backdrop. Not only was the community beautiful, but it also offered memory care, a service at the top of the couple’s wish list.

Finding Community

In November of 2018, Phil, and Marianne, both retired college professors, moved into their cottage home. “We love our house, we love our neighbors, we love the sense of community that exists here,” says Marianne.

Marianne’s involvement in the community includes joining the Asbury Place Book Club, serving as a resident ambassador, organizing neighborhood dinners, and taking part in the many opportunities to stay fit. She takes daily walks with Clyde, the couple’s Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, spends two mornings a week taking a flexibility class on Zoom and working out with her Tai Chi “family.”

Pursing a Passion

With an extensive list of professional accomplishments that include advanced degrees in counseling, authoring books and hundreds of professional papers, it’s her love of travel and photography that fuels her passion. While she’s enjoyed taking photos most of her life, she decided to get serious about it 10 years ago. “I’m not very artsy with my hands, but I’m good with my eyes.”

Marianne has traveled the world, for both business and personal reasons, and has documented her journeys with stunning images of animals, birds, people, places and more. She’s won numerous awards, exhibited at local shows, and compiled some of her work online at

Living at Asbury Place has given Marianne the chance to discover intriguing subjects closer to home. And, because of husband Phil’s willingness to stop the car at a moment’s notice for her to shoot a photo, she’s been able expand her skills.

It has also expanded the couple’s social fabric with the new friends and a community of support. “There is such a variety of people here and they’re all worth knowing,” says Marianne. “It’s nice to slow down and have a quiet conversation and interact with people who can enrich your life and your soul.”

“This is a wonderful place to live at this time of our life,” adds Marianne. “And a good place for Clyde to be too!”



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