Phone:(703) 503-3384


Print a condensed .pdf copy of this newsletter, two web pages per sheet of paper.

Board of Directors Meeting, Tallwood, February 17

March 3, 2017

Editor of the Week: Leslie Vandivere

Table of Contents

Alerts & Notices

  • Although priority registration closed on February 24, if you missed it, you can still register (you can do it on the member portal ( at any time moving forward, but you will be placed in classes on a “space available” basis.
  • The spring Grab ‘n’ Gab Coffee Klatch offers a chance to meet new and returning OLLI members; the event will be in the Annex at Tallwood campus on March 8, 9:30-11:00. Register for Event 1101.
  • The next issue of OLLI E-News will be published March 17; submission deadline is 6:00, Tuesday, March 14

Back to Top of Page

 OLLI Board Meeting Summary

By Irene Osterman, Board MemberThe Board met last Friday, February 17, at Tallwood. Nominating Committee chair Terri Feldmayer announced that the members of the committee are: Russell Stone, Nancy Scheeler, David Talaber, Angie Talaber, John Nash, and Susan Townes. The committee welcomes suggestions for possible Board candidates. Any committee member can be contacted.Ray Beery announced that he will be recognizing the work of volunteers through a President’s List. All those named will receive a certificate of achievement. Wendy Campbell, Manny Pablo, Lavona Poe, and Rita Way were presented with their certificates at the meeting for their work as office volunteers.

Jennifer Disano discussed an open house that will be held on March 16 at the Reston Community Center at 1:00 to increase awareness of OLLI in Reston. The annual teacher appreciation-scholarship event is being changed to a Friday morning breakfast so more teachers can attend. The A/C unit in TA‑1 will be replaced with a much quieter unit. Board member Russell Stone noted that some program planning groups, such as Art & Music, Religious Studies, and Special Events, could use greater participation by OLLI members.

Four resolutions were passed:

  1. The monthly budget summary and the Friends of OLLI (FOLLI) budget report will be made available to members on the member portal as appendices to the Board minutes.
  2. The Board Handbook election procedures were amended to specify that when a Board member resigns, the replacement shall not be based on a Board candidate’s electoral finish.
  3. The board handbook was amended to include guidelines for the preparation of Board minutes.
  4. $750 from FOLLI funds (provided by the Potomac Area Technology and Computer Society) was allocated for providing equipment to allow computers and mobile devices to wirelessly connect with our videoconferencing and video display equipment. This will benefit our teachers.

Back to Top of Page

Computer Club
By Paul Howard, OPCUG Program Chair

The Computer Club (OLLI Personal Computer User Group, or OPCUG) will meet with its partner, the Potomac Area Technology and Computer Society (PATACS), on Saturday, March 18, at Tallwood. Join us at 12:30 for soft drinks and socializing in the social room. Program activities begin at 1:00 with Andy’s presentation, followed by our “‘Learn in 30” session on the Computer Stick.

Geophysics and Geohazards: Examples of Cutting-Edge Science Providing Insight Into Societally Relevant Earth Systems, Presented by Andy Frassetto, PhD
Great earthquakes around the “Ring of Fire,” a looming threat from the Yellowstone supervolcano, effects of climate change (e.g., extreme droughts and floods, disintegrating ice sheets, and earthquakes resulting from oil and gas production) are earth science stories in the mass media that color public perception and understanding.This talk will highlight recent advances in geophysics that help to separate geoscientific fact from sensationalist speculation, and it will provide background and context for modern observations with associated societal risks. It will also discuss the role of the federal government in driving fundamental research into the Earth system.

Andy left the academic research community in 2011 to become a utility player (middle management on a wide variety of projects) at the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, a nongovernmental organization funded by the National Science Foundation to create educational and public outreach products for academic researchers and the general public.

Learn in 30: Computing on the Couch With Your TV and Intel ® Compute Stick, Presented by Mike Pafford
Wish your TV and sound system were a big-screen computer integrated with the internet for information, videos, IMAX-sized emails, Pandora, Spotify, and more? If you’re into exercising Windows 10 while rendering the remote useless for anyone else, here’s the set-up for you: a dongle-sized computer that plugs into your TV’s HDMI port. Mike Pafford will explain how he does all those things and more utilizing his HDMI-capable TV and sound system, USB Hub, wireless keyboard and mouse, lap table, and the Intel® Compute Stick.

Mike retired from the Navy in 1993, then retired again in June 2016 from theengineering staff at the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) Applied Physics Laboratory. He continues to teach software systems at JHU in the MS in systems engineering.

See full details on this meeting by clicking here. For information on the Computer Club, see the OPCUG website. OPCUG dues of $5 for 2017 will be collected at this meeting.

Can’t make the meeting in person? Dues-paid club members may attend via Zoom’s cloud meeting service, beginning at 12:45. Send a message to if you plan to attend in this way. Join from PC, Mac, iOS or Android: (Zoom Meeting ID: 871 717 624).

Back to Top of Page

Tom Crooker Investment Forum

By Al Smuzynski, Investment Forum Moderator

For many years, Ed Swoboda, a long-time Investment Forum member (since 1994), has purchased a sheet cake for the Investment Forum to celebrate 1,000-point milestones in the DOW Jones Industrial Average. Pictured here are the moderator of the forum, Al Smuzynski, and the cake man, Ed with the cake, of course, at the meeting of February 5. For pictures of more cakes at the DOW Cake Page, click here.

Medicine Bottle Collection Report
By Ginge Sivigny, Services Committee Volunteer

During the 2017 winter session, OLLI members collected 310 empty pill bottles to send to Matthew 25: Ministries (M25M), located in Cincinnati, Ohio. They will be included in shipments of medical supplies or recycled in a program that fulfills the dual needs of improving medical care in developing countries and caring for our environment. M25M is a highly-regarded international humanitarian and disaster-relief organization whose motto is “Caring for a Needy World with the Things We Throw Away.” If there is interest, we hope to do another drive in the future, so save your empty pill bottles! Thanks!

OLLI Members Take Cuban Cruise

By Rita Rowand, Mason Cultural Tours Program Manager  


Forty-six passengers, including adventurers from OLLI, set off on a cruise from Montego Bay, Jamaica, to circumnavigate the island of Cuba. Participating in a Mason cultural tour, the group spent one week discovering several cities along the coast of Cuba.

The group joined about 500 other passengers aboard the S.S. Crystal, part of a small, Cyprus-based cruise line called Celestyal. George Mason University provided two tour leaders, Ms. Sarah Moran and Ms. Rita Rowand. OLLI members Kathe and Roger Conrad enjoyed the sailing, and Karen and Marvin Singer joined in the fun, too. All seasoned travelers, this was their first visit to Cuba. “We were pleased to make the trip before Cuba changes significantly with the influx of tourists. The trip was culturally stimulating, gave us some opportunities to practice our Spanish, and was a great value,” commented Karen Singer.

The cruise first stopped in Santiago de Cuba, where Fidel Castro was recently buried. The next scheduled port was Havana, but high winds and competing ships for few berths in the harbor precluded a Havana docking. Instead the ship berthed in Cienfuegos, an original French port. Joined by Mason staff, faculty members, and alumni, the intrepid OLLI passengers enjoyed shipboard dining and shows based on Cuban culture. Hans Filip, another OLLI member, sailed solo, making friends along the way with ship passengers and crew.

“We embarked with visions of exploring Havana, but were surprised we enjoyed our time most in other towns, such as in the UNESCO Heritage sites of Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos. The Cuban people were so warm and open,” said Roger Conrad.

Tours organized by Mason Cultural Tours can be found at this link, or you may contact Rita Rowand at, 703-993-5146.

Friends of OLLI Receives Generous Donation
By Lesley Bubenhofer, Development Committee ChairFriends of OLLI (FOLLI) received a wonderful gift from Potomac Area Technology and Computer Society (PATACS) on Saturday, February 18. PATACS members presented a very welcome donation of $250.00. Board member Terri Feldmayer and Development Committee chair Lesley Bubenhofer accepted this much appreciated gift on behalf of Friends of OLLI.Both PATACS and OLLI have benefited from this dynamic and admirable partnership since February 2007. Thirty-eight current Patacs members are also OLLI members and several others were formerly OLLI members. PATACS folks have conducted classes, presentations, and troubleshooting clinics at OLLI. PATACS has also helped OLLI with a wide variety of technical challenges to include email consultation, computer configuration and repair, and researching and implementing videoconferencing and router installation. Additionally, PATACS has donated generously on five previous occasions to Friends of OLLI. OLLI provides classroom space at Tallwood for PATACS meetings, held jointly with the OLLI computer club.

The OLLI/PATACS partnership is an exemplary partnership, certainly demonstrating what can be and what is achieved when two organizations work together.

Back to Top of Page

Tallwood Book Club 

By Ceda McGrew, Book Club CoordinatorThe Tallwood Book Club will meet on Wednesday,  March 8, at 10:00 in TA-2. The book for discussion is The Burgess Boys, by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Elizabeth Strout (Olive Kitteridge 2009). It is the story of three siblings raised in a small Maine town. As adults, the sister remains but the brothers move to New York City. They return home when their nephew gets himself into a “whole world of trouble” and their sister needs their help.This is a change from the title listed in the spring catalog. All OLLI members are welcome.

The selection for April 12 is My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante.

Poet’s Corner

Courtesy of the Poetry Workshop

Winter of My Content

Wind whooshes through the chimney cracks,
Chimes tinkle on the porch out back,
Windows show soft snow fluttering,
Soup on the stove is simmering,
While I snuggle on the sofa
With a good book and hot cocoa.

Sherry Lis  

                             Back to Top of Page

Arts & Music at George Mason

Performances, Mar 4 through Mar 20By Shelly Gersten, OLLI E-News Staff WriterFor tickets for either Center for the Arts (CFA) or Hylton, 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 page or the Hylton ticket purchase page.

At the Fairfax Campus Venues
Fairfax Symphony Orchestra: Mozart Masterpieces
Simon Dinnerstein, piano
Sat, Mar 4, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion at 7. Join David Ginder of WETA 90.9-FM with conductor Christopher Zimmerman and special guests.
Concert Hall
Admission: $65, $53, $39.Keyboard Conversations® with Jeffrey Siegel: The Immortal Melodies of Schubert
Sun, Mar 5, 7:00
Concert Hall
Admission: $42, $36, $25.Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra featuring New York Voices
Sat, Mar 11, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: Jim Carroll and a member of New York Voices
Concert Hall
Admission: $50, $43, $30.

Danú: St. Patrick’s Day Celebration
Fri, Mar 17, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: Benny McCarthy, an original member of Danú.
Concert Hall
Admission: $50, $43, $30.

Russian National Ballet Theatre: Chopiniana and Carmen
Sat, Mar 18, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: Alexander Daev company ballet master.
Concert Hall
Admission: $56, $48, $34.

Russian National Ballet Theatre: The Sleeping Beauty
Sun, Mar 19, 4:00
Pre-performance discussion: Alexander Daev company ballet master.
Concert Hall
Admission: $56, $48, $34.

Back to Top of Page

Mason Student & Faculty Performances

(see for additional student recitals)

At the Hylton Center (Manassas Campus)

Gallery Exhibit: The 6th Annual Prince William County Public Schools Student Exhibition 
Jan 31 – Mar 4
The Gallery is open to the public Tue-Sat, 10:00 – 6:00, Thu, 10:00 – 8:00 and two hours before performances.
Admission: Free.

Manassas Symphony Orchestra: Musical Morsels
Sat, Mar 4, 7:30
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $16.

Keyboard Conversations® with Jeffrey Siegel: Music for the Young and the Young at Heart
Sun, Mar 5, 2:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $15; children, $5.

Gallery Exhibit: Betty Ganley: Petals and Reflections
Mar 7 – Apr 15
The Gallery is open to the public Tue-Sat, 10:00 – 6:00, Thu, 10:00 – 8:00 and two hours before performances.
Gallery reception: Thursday, Mar 9 from 6:00 to 8:00, featuring wines by Hiddencroft Vineyards.

Gallery receptions are free and open to the public, but an RSVP is required; RSVP to
Buchanan Partners Art Gallery
Admission: Free.

Mason’s School of Theater: The Fantasticks
Thu, Mar 9, 2017 – Sat, Mar 11, 8:00
Sat, Mar 11, 2:00
Gregory Family Theater
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $10.

Manassas Ballet Theatre: Carmina Burana and More!
Fri, Mar 10, and Sat, Mar 11, 7:30
Sun, Mar 12, 3:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: $55, $45, $35, $25, $15.

Russian National Ballet Theatre: Giselle
Fri, Mar 17, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: Member of the company Merchant Hall
Admission: $56, $48, $34.

Prince William Little Theatre: Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
Fri, Mar 17, 2017 and Sat, Mar 18, 8:00
Sun, Mar 19, 2:00
Fri, Mar 24, 2017 and Sat, Mar 25, 8:00
Sun, Mar 26, 2:00
Gregory Family Theater
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $17.

Manassas Chorale: Voices United: Honor and Majesty
Sat, Mar 18, 7:30
Merchant Hall
Admission: $20, $18.

Back to Top of Page

For further details on any of the above events, please see the CFA event calendar and the Hylton Center event calendar

Back to Top of Page

Meetings & Clubs

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 to check anytime for the latest information, please view the latest forecast of upcoming 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, kickoff coffees, etc. (bolded below).

Sat Mar 4 10:30am Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Mon Mar 6 10:00am What’s in the Daily News, cont’d–TA-1
Tue Mar 7  9:30am Annex Art–Annex
Wed Mar 8 10:00am
Bridge Club–TA-3
Tallwood Book Club–TA-2
Tom Crooker Investment Forum–TA-1
Thu Mar 9 10:00am Loudoun Program Planning Committee–RM209
Fri Mar 10  9:15am
Recorder Consort–TA-3
Craft and Conversation–Annex
Homer, etc–Annex
Sat Mar 11 10:30am Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Mon Mar 13 10:00am What’s in the Daily News, Cont’d–TA-1
Tue Mar 14  9:30am
Annex Art–Annex
Spanish Club–TA-2
Wed Mar 15 10:00am
Bridge Club–TA-3
Mah Jongg Club–TA-2
Tom Crooker Investment Forum–TA-1
Fri Mar 17  9:15am
Recorder Consort–TA-3
Craft and Conversation–Annex
Board of Directors meeting–TA-1
Homer, etc–Annex
Dr Who Club–TA-3

Back to Top of Page

About OLLI E-News

OLLI E-News was created by Rod Zumbro, who served as its editor from 2005 to 2013.

Editorial Staff
Chief Editor: Paul Van Hemel
Technical Editor: Irene Osterman
Associate Editor: Sheri Siesseger
Weekly Editorial Team: Jean Boltz, John Nash, Sheri Siesseger, Leslie Vandivere,
Paul Van Hemel 

Proofreaders: Rebecca Jann, Lorna Moran, Susan Van Hemel, Polly Johnsen
Backup Chief Editor: Alice Slayton Clark

Submissions. Members are encouraged to submit letters to the editor, letters to Ms. Ollie Ettakit (on etiquette matters), OLLI-related news items, articles, and photos. Submit material to:
Deadline – 6:00 Tuesday for that week’s issue (6:00 Monday for letters to the editor); early submissions are greatly appreciated. Please limit articles to about 250 words.
Note: You can view past issues of OLLI E-News on the DocStore. To search the content of issues, use Search Our Site or put your search term in Google followed by “” without the quotes.

Back to Top of Page