digital camera
The Digital Photography seminar
Photo by Jeff Hendy
Walkabout at UCDavis Arboretum
Photo by Clarence Smith

Off-Campus Seminars

These seminars take place on different days of the week and in many locations, some of them members' homes. They meet weekly, biweekly or some other schedule (see below). Most run for the entire semester, from Feb. 6 through May 1. However, there are NINE seminars that are one-day-only events! See details below. Some seminars run year-round.

You must sign up with the leader for these semesters. There are two ways to register: You can call or email the leader right now or you can contact the leader at the Rendezvous on Jan. 30.

You can sign up for as many of these semesters as fit your desires and schedules. Some of these have waiting lists and are not adding new members. If you are interested in one of these closed seminars, consider being a leader or co-leader for a new section! In order to start a new group you will need to identify a meeting place, days and times for the sessions and work on recruiting potential participants.

The locations vary. Contact the coordinator now or at the Rendezvous for more information about a seminar.

Each seminar has a Style immediately following its name, defined as follows:

One-Day Seminars


Off-Campus Symposia: The following nine off-campus Symposia are one-day events at the place and time indicated. Each of these sessions is limited to 30 participants and registration is required! You may register for one or more of the sessions by email to Ed Sherman (see Directory).

Popular Music Of The 1940-50s (L)
Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Oakmont of Carmichael, 4717 Engle Rd., Carmichael (near the corner of Engle and Mission Avenue)

Mike Harkins

Straight from the playlist of America's radio and TV favorite, Your Hit Parade, listen to the original recordings of the most popular music between 1940 and 1959.

The Hero (L)
Monday, Feb. 23, 1 to 3 p.m., Eskaton Monroe Lodge, 3225 Freeport Blvd.

Kathleen Beasley

"A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder; fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won; the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man." Thus Joseph Campbell described the common basis for myths and stories throughout the ages. This session will cover the steps of the Hero's Journey as described by Campbell and look at how those steps are reflected in popular story-telling today, with examples ranging from Harry Potter, Star Wars, The Hunger Game and books by Stephen King. (This session will not focus on Carl Jung and psychological implications of Campbell's work.)

Women In Ancient Greece (L)
Wednesday, March 4, 2:30 to 3:45 p.m., River's Edge Residential Community, 601 Feature Dr. (Off Howe, north of Fair Oaks Boulevard)

Ed Sherman

An examination of the role and status of women during the Golden Age of Athens. Fully illustrated by the era's surviving art and literature

This seminar is cancelled! Impressionist Painting (L)
Thursday, March 19, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Oakmont of Carmichael, 4717 Engle Rd., Carmichael (near the corner of Engle and Mission Avenue)

Debbie Russell, Sherry Rhodes

In this 90-minute seminar, we will explore the birth of the Impressionist movement in Western Europe. Presenters will discuss the inception of the movement and its diversion from Realism, the Salon system in Paris and its role, and the flanneur as a feature of late 19th century French painting.

The Romance Of Ruins (L)
Monday, March 30, 1 to 3 p.m., Eskaton Monroe Lodge, 3225 Freeport Blvd.

Ed Sherman

A survey of those ruins that still inspire students of Western Civilization: poets, artists, philosophers, historians, etc. Fully illustrated with art and archaeological artifacts.

The Great Plains: The Real America (L)
Wednesday, April 1, 2:30 to 3:45 p.m., River's Edge Residential Community, 601 Feature Dr. (Off Howe, north of Fair Oaks Boulevard)

Doris Keller

The great plains were partly explored by Lewis and Clark; 200 years later, many fly over casually and look down at the interesting patterns on the land. But there is much more about the region than the land patterns. This symposium will delve into how people populated the plains, formed towns, discovered the resources, lived their lives and created "The Real America. "

Heloise and Abelard, A Medieval Romance (L)
Thursday, April 16, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Oakmont of Carmichael, 4717 Engle Rd., Carmichael (near the corner of Engle & Mission Ave)

Peggy Krong

As Abelard said to Heloise, "Don’t forget to drop a line to me please." Taking inspiration from Cole Porter, this seminar will explore the tale of Abelard and Heloise, a story filled with erotic passion, intellectual discourse, spiritual quest and disturbing brutality. One of the most memorable tales of the Middle Ages, their legendary affair is known to us through collections of letters that reveal not only heart-wrenching love, but discourse on virginity, sex, punishment, ethics and morals, especially in regards to church and society.

Modern American Art 1900-60 (L)
Monday, April 20, 1 to 3 p.m., Eskaton Monroe Lodge, 3225 Freeport Blvd.

Ed Sherman

A survey of modern American painting from 1910 to 1960, including a comparison of American art styles with those of the European avant-garde.

California Agriculture: It's All About You (L)
Wednesday, May 6, 2:30 to 3:45 p.m., River's Edge Residential Community, 601 Feature Dr. (Off Howe, north of Fair Oaks Boulevard)

Lee Ruth

A brief overview of California agriculture and how it impacts everyone, every day. We will look at how the changing food delivery system, new science and technology and the changing climate are impacting the production practices of this state's farmers and ranchers and ultimately your habits as a consumer.

All-Semester Seminars

American Mah Jongg (A)
Tuesdays, 1 to 3:30 p.m., Members' Homes

Diane Rich, Carol Rogala

Because of space limitations, we must limit the group to experienced mah jongg players, whose skill level is intermediate to experienced. It is a relaxed and friendly group dedicated to improving their mah jongg skills. We do not play for money. Our group is currently full; therefore, we are not able to add new members.

Monday Book Group (D)
1st Monday, 1 to 2:30 p.m., Avalon Hearing Center, 1260 Fulton Ave., Suite B

Carol Hayes, Dottie Higbee

Books of all genres are read and discussed at the relaxed monthly meeting of this group. Members take turns selecting a book for the group to read. That member opens the meeting's discussion with a short bio of the author, his/her review of the book, and perhaps a synopsis of outside reviews and/or background information. Then each member gives his/her brief review. Lively discussions are frequent. The group meets year-round and is limited to 20. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Tuesday Book Group (D)
3rd Tuesday, 9:30 to 11 a.m., Avalon Hearing Center Community Room, 1260 Fulton Ave., Suite B

Marian Kile, Suzanne Armer

Members rotate hosting each month. The host selects any type of book, but they must be available in the Sacramento Public Library system so they are available to our members. We try to have two months' notice on the upcoming books. The members engage in intelligent yet comfortable discussions about the writing, the topic and the author. We usually meet in the community room unless the book host wants us to meet in their home or a park. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Great Books At Hart (D)
4th Monday, 10 a.m. to Noon, Hart Senior Center, 27th and J sts.

Brigid O'Malley, Charlotte Donovan, Karen Roseland

Once a month our group meets to discuss a selection we have read from a Great Books anthology. We will be using the shared inquiry method developed by Great Books Foundation. For spring semester we will read from the Second Series, Vol. II and Volume III: Aristotle, Dostoevsky, the Bible, Hobbes, Melville, Smith, Shakespeare, Kierkegaard, etc. Newcomers to the "nature of knowledge" are welcome. Curiosity and willingness to read and discuss are all you need. Participants are expected to read selections from the books that they purchase. The books, which cost about $33, are used in both Fall 2014 and Spring 2015. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Partners In Crime Book Club (D)
1st Thursdays, 1:30 to 3 p.m., Members' Home

Marian Lininger, Carla Hoffman

We read and discuss popular, and not-so-popular, mysteries and authors. One new author each month is chosen by the group. We meet year-round. Seminar is full, not taking new members at this time, but you may contact leader for more information.

Duplicate Bridge (A)
2nd and 4th Thursdays, 1 p.m., Location TBA

Robert Houghton, Barbara Kletzman

This seminar is a bi-weekly game of duplicate bridge. We have three tables of bridge and currently have 14 regular members signed up, as well as 12 alternates. The skill level is intermediate, and the game is for fun and learning. The roster is full at this time, and we have a list of alternates. If you would like to add your name to the list or if you would like more information, please contact Bob Houghton by phone or email. We often need to call some of the alternates, so chances of playing are not too remote.

Bridge: Land Park/Greenhaven/Pocket Area (A)
1st and 3rd Tuesdays, 1 p.m., Members' Homes

Phyllis Mills, Ellen Nathan

We have two tables of party bridge playing in private homes of members of the group. We are friendly and social, willing to assist members as needed to enhance their knowledge of the game. Currently, we have eight regulars who are signed up to play in this group. Please contact Phyllis Mills by telephone or email if you would like more information or to be added to the substitute list.

Bridge: North/East Area Party Bridge (A)
1st, 3rd, and 5th Thursdays, 1:00 p.m., Member's Home

Nita Domich

We play Standard American Bridge at the intermediate level with two tables playing and scoring Chicago style. Please call if you would like to be on the substitute list, as we call our substitutes frequently.

Camping And More (A)
Meeting Places, Dates, and Times Vary

Susan Rubinstein, John Szabo

Gather with new friends and travel to interesting and scenic locations on a day trip or overnight at a campground or hotel. Camping trips are to the mountains, seashore and desert. Join as an experienced or beginning camper. Visit gardens and parks, museums, wineries, ethnic restaurants, dance activities, community walks, festivals, and boating on day trips. Eat healthy food prepared by your fellow travelers at picnics, potlucks, or around the campfire. This seminar is suitable for all activity levels. Members assist in planning activities and preparing potluck meals. This is done in small groups with the help of the leaders. Call Susan or John for more details or to enroll.

Le Cercle Français (Conversational French) (P)
Wednesdays, 1 to 3 p.m., Campus Commons Clubhouse

Helen Hanna

This seminar is for French speakers at an intermediate or higher level, requiring a working acquaintance with the language through high school or college classes, or from living in a French-speaking country. Members participate through presentations, readings, and conversations to share common interests. Class size limited.

Le Cercle Français II (Conversational French II) (P)
2nd and 4th Tuesdays, 1 to 3 p.m., Campus Commons Clubhouse

Irene Sadler

This seminar is for French speakers at an intermediate or higher level, requiring a working acquaintance with the language through high school or college classes, or from living in a French-speaking country. Members participate through presentations, readings, and conversations to share common interests. Class size limited.

El Círculo Español (Conversational Spanish) (P)
Thursdays, 10 a.m. to Noon, Campus Commons Clubhouse

JoAnn Peter, Robert Parker

This seminar is for Spanish speakers at an intermediate level or above. The emphasis is on conversation. We sometimes read literature selections, watch a video, or review grammar, as desired by the group. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Creative Writers Anonymous (P)
Wednesdays, 9:30 to 11 a.m., Members' Homes

Judy Broussard, Pat Teeters

Members share their creative writings in a warm and friendly environment. These writings include fiction, memoirs, biographical sketches, poetry and fantasy. Copies are distributed at the meetings so attendees can follow along as the author reads aloud. The group then gives their feedback in an encouraging atmosphere, with an emphasis on clear communication, sharing of ideas, and helping each other. Group meets year-round. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information. Group size: 10 maximum.

Dining Together (A)
2nd Wednesday, 5:30 p.m., Locations TBA (Feb. 6 class meets in Alpine 218)

Noel Hinde, Frances Stroud

Join our dinner group and try different cuisines in the Sacramento area. We will have fun meeting new friends as we dine together the 2nd Wednesday at 5:30 pm. Members take turns selecting and hosting the restaurants. A planning meeting will be held on Friday, Feb 6, at 12 noon in Alpine Hall, Room 218, for new and returning members.

This Class has been Cancelled! Empowering Women Through Finance
Wednesdays 1 to 2:45, Avalon Hearing Center, 1260 Fulton Ave.

Kim West, Anne Rhodes

"If your crystal ball was working, and you knew: You would live a long time or a short time, or that an investment would turn out golden, then we would all have the perfect financial portfolio!" Unfortunately there is no perfect place to put your money, because we don't know what will happen in the future. This class will empower women to identify and take advantage of the financial tools available today, without losing control, principal or sleep! (Renaissance does not endorse advice given in class; that is an individual decision.) Maximum class attendance is 25. Class dates are: February: 4, 11, 18, 25, March: 4, 11, 18, 25, April: 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, and May: 6.

Exploring Ceramic Art (A Hands-On Experience) (A)
Thursdays 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., ACAI Studios and Gallery, 7425 Winding Way, Fair Oaks

Dave Wilkerson, Curtis Purnell

Our region has a rich heritage in ceramic works. Come explore the world of ceramics through hands-on experiences, studio and gallery visits, discussions and presentations. This seminar is for beginning through advanced students. Learn about creating ceramic objects from the ground up. Choose your own project and create an interesting gift or keepsake. Supplies and materials are available for a nominal cost: $40 for first-time members; $100 for returning members. Class size limited to 15; preference will be given to people who have not taken this seminar previously. If you want to know start date(s) or more information call Curtis or Dave or check their website.

Friends Of The New Yorker Magazine (D)
Mondays, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., KOH Library, 2300 Sierra Blvd.

Ron Meyer, Ann Heatlie

This seminar is for those who enjoy reading The New Yorker magazine, a literate publication covering many interesting subjects. Opportunities are offered to freely discuss articles, share opinions, and gain insights. Participants read and review each week's issue for discussion. We meet every Monday year-round. Contact leader for start date(s) or more information.

Games For Entertainment (Games Group 2) (A)
Thursdays, 1 to 3 p.m., Member's Homes

Roberta Frieze, Judy Keaton

Card games, word games, dominos, team games and we’re open to learning new games. We are also willing to teach novices. This group has a good time; we spend a few minutes socializing at each meeting before settling down to play. Enjoy the opportunity to learn and socialize with people who have similar interests. Our members host and provide refreshments on a rotating basis dependent upon your own calendar. May use leader's home if your space does not allow. Group size: 12 maximum. Group meets year-round. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Games For Fun (A)
Thursdays, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., Rec Center at Ladi Senior Apartments, 2300 Auburn Blvd.

DeAnga Hills, Yolanda Moore, Jackie Irene

You're never too old to have a happy childhood, at least for an afternoon each week. This group plays cards, dominoes, board games, word games, etc.—the games we played before TV and computers. We play for two hours every Thursday. All are welcome. The group meets year-round. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Innovative Cohousing For The 50+ Generation (D)
Tuesdays, 2 to 3:45 p.m., Feb. 10 - April 28, Sierra 2 Senior Center, Room 12, (Entrance off 4th Avenue near 24th Street)

Anne Geraghty, Fran Spitale

We will explore how some housing options can be helpful in dealing with issues of aging, and can also help us thrive and flourish by creating a sense of community and connection with others. We will examine the various dimensions of cohousing, using participant discussion, guest speakers, field trips and the work of cohousing expert, Chuck Durrett, The Senior Cohousing Handbook. There will be a $60 fee for the seminar to cover this handbook and other materials. The fee for couples is $70 (handbook to be shared). Group size is limited to 25.

Memoirs (D)
1st and 3rd Monday, 1 p.m., Raley's Event Center, 4840 San Juan Ave. at Sunset, Fair Oaks

Alice Ainsworth

Have you been thinking about writing your memoirs? Now is the time. This is the year. Come join us. We are a supportive group, and have lots of fun. We write at home, and read our stories to the group at every meeting. We are motivated and inspired by hearing one another's stories. Come share your memories with us. Contact Alice for specific date(s) or more information.

Photography As Art (P)
Wednesdays 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Martin Luther King Library, 7340 24th St. Bypass

Mary-Elliott-Klemm, Roger Klemm

"It's all automatic. All I have to do is press the button. It's a camera that every amateur buys. [Pause, points to his head] It's all in there" Helmut Newton. This photo seminar is focused on creating Art. We will learn the discipline of seeing and photographing with intent, using conceptual ideas and perceptual techniques. Painting and photography master works as examples. Camera operation and compositional rules will only inform, but not guide our efforts. The seminar uses supportive and honest group critiques. Class meetings alternate with photographic work/field trips. Class size limited to 15 persons. NOTE: This seminar is for advanced photographers who are computer competent. Required reading: The Practice of Contemplative Photography, Karr/Wood; The Photographer's Vision, Freeman. First session is Feb. 4. Please contact leaders for further information.

Photography: Digital Camera Group (P)
Discussions: Every other Tuesday, 10 a.m. to Noon, Arden-Dimick Library, 891 Watt Ave. (Field trips: Tuesdays of alternating weeks)

Jeff Hendy, Mary Henwood, Laurene Fitzpatrick

If you know how to use your digital camera and would like to learn how to take better pictures, this seminar will help. The group meets every Tuesday, one week at the Arden-Dimick Library, and goes on a photographic field trip the following week. The class discusses camera techniques and editing to capture and enhance the photos you take. Each week a challenge is announced and members post their photos on the group website for discussion at the following week’s workshop, together with a review of the field trip pictures. Classroom dates are Feb. 3, Feb. 17, March 3, March 17 and March 31. Field trips on Feb. 10, Feb. 24, March 10, March 24. Knowledge of how to operate a digital camera is required. Contact leaders to sign up.

A Photography Exhibit Project (P)
Thursdays, 1 to 3 p.m., Avalon Hearing Center, 1260 Fulton Ave., Suite B

Tom Monahan

This is the second of a two-semester photography project through which the class is expected to secure an exhibit space, select and prepare photos for exhibition, and mount, frame and hang a show of participants' photos. The class will be in a learn-by-doing format, with occasional presentations by class members and others. Class meets every other week. Contact leader for specific date(s) or more information.

Singing For Fun (A)
Tuesdays, 10 to 11:30 a.m, Rancho Cordova Methodist Church, 2101 Zinfandel Dr. (at Hirschfeld)

Vick Vickland, Sara Zeigler, Jean Dean

"He who sings scares away his woes"—Cervantes; "Alas for those that never sing but die with all their music in them"—Oliver Wendell Holmes; "Without music, life would be a mistake"—Nietzsche; "Sing, sing a song, sing out loud, sing out strong"—Kermit the Frog. Who are we to argue with those words? Come join us and release your inner entertainer. Reading music is not necessary, just the desire to have fun. Please email or call Sara, Vick, or Jean for start date and other details.

Travel Through Food I (P)
1st and 3rd Tuesdays, 10 a.m., Carmichael Library, 5605 Marconi Ave.

Cheryl Nelson, Carla Hoffman, Barbara Lininger, Marian Lininger, Dick Tarble

If you enjoy new and exotic foods from around the world, this seminar is for you. We discuss a country or region, focusing on its culture, history, and, of course its food. Then we eat a lunch featuring foods from that country. Lunch can be at a restaurant or can be a potluck. We usually meet at the Carmichael Library. Contact Cheryl or one of the other co-leaders for specific date(s), updated information or to enroll.

Travel Through Food II (P)
2nd and 4th Wednesday, 10 a.m., Carmichael Library, 5605 Marconi Ave, and other sites TBA

Diane Roach

If you enjoy new and exotic foods from around the world, this seminar is for you. We discuss a country or region, focusing on its culture, history, and of course, the food. Then we eat a lunch featuring foods from that country. Lunch can be at a restaurant or can be a potluck. Our February meeting dates are: Feb. 11 and 25. Contact Diane for more information or to enroll.

Walkabouts (A)
Wednesdays, 9:30 a.m., Various Locations

Norma Markley, Chris Dreier, Tilly Fairman

Join us for weekly scenic morning walks in various areas of Sacramento and a few in surrounding nearby towns. Walks begin at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesdays and culminate with an optional meeting for lunch at a designated location. Walkers may choose to walk at a leisurely two-mile round-trip pace or join the "hares" group, which walks at a bit faster pace of a distance of about four miles round trip. Walkers are expected to stay with their group during the walks. Call a coordinator for more information about any of the weekly walks. First walk is scheduled for Feb. 4 at Miner's Ravine in Roseville. Get outside and get moving! See the Schedule.

Writers' Circle (P)
Mondays (alternate) 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Locations TBA

Norma Streeter, Muzza Eaton

Interested in sharing your writing with an encouraging group of writers and listeners? We find this format motivates us to write and opens us to new ideas. Maybe it will do the same for you. We welcome memoirs, essays, poetry, and fiction. Group limited to 12. Contact leader for specific date(s).

Writers' Group I (D)
Thursdays, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., Avalon Hearing Aid Center, 1260 Fulton Ave., Suite B

Peggy Marsh, Ariel Amlin

For those who've wanted to do some writing, this group may provide the incentive to start. We offer a helpful, accepting environment for the beginner and the more experienced writer. Members share their personal anecdotes, memoirs, or other written material. If asked, we pool our knowledge of spelling, grammar, punctuation, and vocabulary to bring each piece to its best form. Enrollment is limited to 15 members. We meet year-round. Contact Peggy for locale and dates.

Writers' Workshop II (D)
Tuesdays, Noon to 2 p.m., Members' Homes

Roy Bishop, Lani Hahn

Our members come from a variety of backgrounds and write in a wide range of styles with their own choice of subjects: fiction, memoirs, poetry, travelogues, autobiography, biography, family history, emails to friends, letters to the editors, etc. Expert writing is not required. This is not a writing class. However, help with style, mechanics, and presentation will be offered if requested. Call a coordinator for locale. We meet year-round. Contact leader for specific date(s).