2019 Tax Planning – Qualified Charitable Donation By Brenda Bloch-Young,OLLIEconomics Potpourri Co‑coordinatorWith the changes in the tax laws last year that raised the standard deduction to $12,200 (single taxpayers and married filing separately), $18,350 (head of household), and $24,400 (joint returns and surviving spouses,) retirees may now find it to be more beneficial to reduce taxable income with a portion of your retirement plan’s Required Minimum Distribution (RMD). Consider a qualified charitable distribution; this is a contribution from an IRA or 401(k) (tax-advantaged retirement) account directly to a charity. By making the contribution with a portion of your RMD, you reduce taxable income while still meeting the required distribution. There may be several good reasons to reduce taxable income (e.g., tax brackets and monthly Medicare premiums are based on taxable income).
The alternative strategy is bunching deductions in alternate years. Where an individual’s total itemized deductions will come close to, but not exceed, the standard deduction for 2019 and/or 2020, one strategy to consider is bunching certain itemized deductions such as charitable contributions into alternate tax years.
It may be helpful to consult with your tax advisor prior to the end of the year to determine which strategy may be most beneficial for you. Note that many financial institutions require requests for a qualified charitable distribution be made prior to the end of November, as the volume of requests received at year end is often overwhelming. Also, they may ask you to limit the number of contributions you make, or require that the amount of the contribution be above a certain dollar amount.
OLLI Holiday Party By Elaine Leonard, Hospitality Committee ChairCome and enjoy OLLI’s biggest social event of the season. The OLLI annual holiday party will be on Wednesday, December 4, from 11:30 to 2:30 at the Country Club of Fairfax, located at 5110 Ox Road in Fairfax. The OLLI recorder consort will be on hand to perform as you enjoy hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Entrées include chicken marsala, pasta primavera, or chipotle chicken salad. The chicken marsala and pasta primavera meals include rolls and salad; all meals include beverage and dessert. You can indicate your choice of entrée and pay the $38 when you register on the OLLI portal (click here). After lunch you will be entertained by the Tallwood Trio. A drawing for door prizes will follow. Also, Friends of OLLI (FOLLI) will hold a 50/50 raffle (winner gets 50% of the raffle-ticket sales, with the remaining 50% going to FOLLI). OLLI members are welcome to bring a guest. Registration ends on Thursday, November 21.
By Nancy Scheeler and Luci Martel, Reston Book Club Coordinators
The Reston Book Club will meet on Thursday, November 7, 2019, 2:15, at the United Christian Parish in Reston. The book selection is Normal People by Sally Rooney, which was longlisted for the 2018 Man Booker prize. It is the story of two unlikely young people who slip in and out of friendship and romance (and reverse roles) as they make the transition from their final year in high school in a quaint Irish village to Dublin’s Trinity College, and of how difficult it is for people to change how they are.
History Club to Meet November 6 By Elizabeth Lambert, History Club CoordinatorThe November meeting of the History Club will take place on Wednesday, November 6, at 2:15 in TA‑1. Our presenter will be Ed Janusz, who has given us a very interesting title to an illuminating talk, “The Bear that Helped Defeat Hitler.” The scene is a place you may have visited: The Benedictine Monastery at Monte Cassino in Italy, where a pivotal battle of WWII took place in 1943/44. Ed will detail the important role played by the Polish 2nd Corps in that battle, as well as the fascinating history of the Corps, a history involving both the Soviets and the British.
Don’t miss this November History Club offering; it promises to be surprising in many ways.
Remember, all OLLI members are invited to our meetings; come and bring a friend.
Oh, Shenandoah By Carolyn Kramer, Event CoordinatorOLLI Special Event 999, Painted Shenadoah Valley, is coming up Wednesday, November 13, at 2:15. Attendees will be treated to a presentation by plein air artist Andrei Kushnir, whose passion is painting scenic and cultural landscapes in the Shenandoah Valley. His works have been exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the United States. To learn more about Mr. Kushnir’s work, you may view information on the following links:
The Running of the Bulls By Carolyn Kazemi, OLLI MemberThe “Running of the Bulls,” a famous race tradition in Pamplona, Spain, was the topic of discussion in a recent Spanish Conversation class. The race, attended by people from all over the world, is part of a seven-day festival honoring San Fermin, the patron saint of Pamplona. The bulls (“los toros”) run along designated streets each day of the festival where participants, mostly men, begin the run and are “chased” by the bulls. The run ends at the Pamplona Arena, where the bulls meet their fate at the hands of skilled matadors in a fight to the death.
Instructor Ligia Glass wore the attire associated with this race: white pants and shirt, red beret, bandana, and sash (photo by Carolyn Kazemi). A short film of the race was presented. Lively conversation after the film confirmed that the class enjoyed learning about this famous Pamplona tradition.
By Dr. Michael Chang, Associate Professor, Mason Department of History and Art HistoryGeorge Mason University, together with the National Committee on US-China Relations (NCUSCR), will convene the 13th Annual CHINA Town Hall: Local Connections, National Reflectionsfrom 5:45-8:00 Monday, November 18, 2019, in The Hub, Ballroom at Mason. This year’s CHINA Town Hall is intended to serve as an open forum in which local participants might candidly share and discuss their thoughts, concerns, and feelings regarding US relations with China. If you have questions or simply want to discuss and explore key issues in US-China relations, this will be a wonderful opportunity to engage with experts in the field.For more details, please see this link or contact Dr. Chang at email@example.com.
This event is free and open to the public, so please spread the word among friends, family, and others who might be interested.
Darkness coming early
Foxes’ coats thickening up
Flowers bid farewell for now
Ah but here come my camellias
Shades of pink now dare the frost
Leaves will fall and slowly form many piles
Children play outside catching the last rays of warmth
So we close summer and open the opportunities of autumn
For tickets for either Center for the Arts Concert Hall (CFA) or Hylton Center, call 1-888-945-2468, buy tickets online through the event calendar (see links below), or visit the venue’s box office. For more information, see the CFA ticket pageor the Hylton Centerticket purchase page.
At the Fairfax Campus Venues
Sat, Nov 9, 8:00
A pre-performance discussion begins 45 minutes prior to the performance on Monson Grand Tier.
Admission: $48, $41, $29.
Zurich Chamber Orchestra: The Four Seasons
Sun, Nov 10, 2:00
Concert Hall A pre-performance discussion begins 45 minutes prior to the performance on Monson Grand Tier.
Admission: $48, $41, $29.
Gallery Exhibit: Exploring Identity with Women Veterans
Oct 29 to Dec 7
Buchanan Partners Art Gallery
The Buchanan Partners Art Gallery is open to the public Tue-Sat, 10:00-6:00.
Gallery Reception: Nov 7 from 6:00-8:00.
Gallery receptions are free and open to the public. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fri, Nov 8, 8:00
Admission: $89, $79, $65, $55.
The U.S. Army Band Pershing’s Own: We Honor Them All
Sat, Nov 9, 7:00
The following list covering the next two weeks is extracted for your convenience from the master online calendar maintained by the office, with direct web links added when available. The list is accurate as of mid-week but for the most up-to-date information, please view the latest forecast of coming events on our website (News/OLLI Calendar). Note: All OLLI members are welcome at, and encouraged to attend, meetings of the Board of Directors, committees and resource groups, kick-off coffees, etc. (bolded below).
Sat Nov 2
Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Mon Nov 4
Reston Program Planning Group Meeting–UCP Room 117
Hospitality Committee Meeting–Annex
Wed Nov 6
Mah Jongg Club–Annex
Thu Nov 7
Reston Book Club–UCP Room 117
Fri Nov 8
Crafts and Conversation Group–Annex
Classic Literature Club–TA-2
Homer, etc.–Annex OLLI Veterans Day Celebration–TA-1
Sat Nov 9
Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Wed Nov 13
Tallwood Book Club–Annex
Fri Nov 15
Craft and Conversation Group–Annex Board of Directors Meeting–TA-1
Classic Literature Club–TA-2
Dr. Who Club–TA-3
Sat Nov 16
Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Personal Computer User Group–TA-1
OLLI E-News was created by Rod Zumbro, who served as its editor from 2005 to 2013.
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