Kevin Kast: The Visionary Behind Avalon Park
Fulfilling His Passion to Help Seniors Live Their Best Life
“Ensuring the health and happiness of seniors has always been my passion,” says Kevin Kast, the founder and managing partner of the new Avalon Park independent living community in Cottleville, scheduled to open this summer. “I’ve spent a significant part of my career dedicated to developing and managing mental health programs and healthcare services for older adults.”
It is Kevin’s passion, vision and experience in creating successful geriatric programs and services that brought the concept of Avalon Park Independent Living to life.
Kevin is a well-known and respected local healthcare professional who has a long and distinguished history of making valuable contributions to St. Charles and St. Louis counties. He brings over 25 years of healthcare system experience to the Avalon Park project, having served as President/CEO/Market Leader for SSM in St. Charles and as president and system executive for other area health systems.
He envisioned, developed and secured financing for assisted living at The Meadowlands in O’Fallon, one of the region’s largest senior communities. He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives® and served on the Missouri Hospital Association Board of Trustees and the American Hospital Association. Kevin has also served on the faculties of Avila University and Lindenwood University and has been a guest lecturer at Webster University and Washington University in St. Louis.
“Avalon Park will provide seniors with everything they need to get the most out of life,” he says. “Each day will present opportunities for seniors to be active and improve their physical and cognitive health while offering new ways for them to grow social connections with other individuals, as well as the community at large.”
Avalon Park will provide a safe, secure independent living neighborhood to active adults age 62+ who are seeking an engaging, fun and maintenance-free lifestyle. With brand-new construction, spacious apartments, chef-prepared meals, a wide array of services and amenities, and access to an on-site health and home care organization. Kevin says Avalon Park is designed to offer seniors ease, convenience and confidence.
“But our vision is really bigger than that,” he says. “Our ultimate goal is to provide a real sense of wellness and fulfillment to ensure residents are empowered to enjoy all the richness this time of life has to offer.”
With a focus on well-being, Avalon Park is a neighborhood inspired by the desires of today’s active adult. Residents will enjoy stunning interior designs and bright, open apartments, expansive community spaces and outdoor living, innovative dining experiences, a host of services and amenities, and programming designed to foster wellness. And, it’s just a golf cart ride away to the charming shops, restaurants and churches of downtown Cottleville.
Residents will enjoy a host of amenities designed to foster wellness – mind, body and spirit. Multiple dining venues, walking trails, golf cart usage and beautiful outdoor spaces. The neighborhood will have its own private park situated on eight acres, with four acres of green space. Pets are welcome, too, and Avalon Park will even have an on-site dog park!
“This lifestyle is so beneficial to seniors,” adds Kevin. “Residents will be empowered to embrace new adventures and discover new passions. It’s a way of life that includes friendships and connection – without sacrificing privacy. Residents can live how they wish, do what they want, when they want. It’s a way of life that includes active living, health, wellness, nutrition, movement, and fun, with access to a professional hospitality staff to further ensure happiness.
We believe it’s critically important for seniors to be engaged and social. Research consistently links social isolation and loneliness to higher risks for a variety of physical and mental conditions including high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, a weakened immune system, anxiety, depression and cognitive decline. Conversely, people who engage with others in meaningful, productive activities tend to live longer, are happier and enjoy a greater sense of purpose.
Our residents’ health and well-being are at the center of every decision we make. While we hope COVID-19 is behind us by the time we open next summer, we have strategies in place to assure Avalon Park is safe and hygienic. Among them: a specialized system that provides state-of-the-art ventilation and filtration. We also created a Medical Advisory Board who will help us ensure the infection-control procedures and protocols we are implementing exceed industry standards.
Residents will be able to age in place, as we will have supportive resources on campus. Home health care providers will also be available either through an existing relationship or with our home health partner.”
Avalon Park only sounds expensive, but as Kevin explains, it will be an exceptional value for the most exceptional senior living experience…especially when you compare the cost of maintaining a large home. Plus, it’s a rental community which means residents don’t pay a large, upfront buy-in fee and are not locked into long-term contracts.
“Avalon Park is a community that is more like a neighborhood than a country club,” Kevin concludes. “It’s an affordable community for the average senior yet enables them to spend more time doing what’s important and enjoyable.”
Article by Judy Peters
Photography by Janet Watkins
Originally published in St. Charles County Lifestyle