Community and Professional Education

Winter/Spring 2018 Offerings: Center for Creative Retirement

Medicare 101
Medicare can be very confusing. There are many options and factors to consider. It is important to understand how Medicare works and what you need to know to make the most informed decisions possible. Medicare Parts A and B will be explained, including what is and is not covered. This session will also cover what a person's fiscal responsibility is and the ways to mitigate the potential copays of Medicare. Learn how Medigap plans work and what Medicare Part D (prescription drug insurance) is. In addition, learn about federal and state assistance programs for those who are income qualified.
2 Sessions, DCC B06 (Viking Day Care Center (DCC): Parking Information)
Thurs., 4/26 and 5/3, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

2 Sessions, DCC B06 (Viking Day Care Center (DCC): Parking Information)
Mon., 4/30 and 5/7, 10 - 11:30 a.m.
Janet Kiffney, Instructor

Frogs, Toads and Salamanders, Oh My!
Many amphibian populations are declining around the world. Take a look at why these creatures play a vital role in local habitats, how they are being used in today's medicine and how we can protect their vanishing breeding grounds. In addition, information will be given on how you can easily become a citizen scientist and help contribute meaningful data to help scientists understand the scope, scale and cause of these declines. Students must withdraw by 3/15 for a full refund.
1 Session, WIL 113
Thurs., 3/22, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Lisa Hoyt, Instructor

Architecture Worth Saving in Rensselaer County: 50 Years Later
In 1965, Bernd Foerster, a professor of architecture at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, published a book to document urban and rural architecture built before 1929. Foerster felt these buildings were threatened by the urban renewal movement in Troy and the expansion of the interstate highway system. His photographs covered a wide range of urban and rural houses, churches and businesses. Instructor Kathryn Sheehan has re-photographed all the sites from Foerster's original publication to see if the buildings are still there and if so, what condition they are in. She is also authoring a new publication that will have a chapter including buildings that were not in the first publication. To accomplish this she is working closely with the county's 14 town historians and other local architects and historians. Kathryn has also expanded the time frame of the new publication to include buildings constructed before 1965.
1 Session, WIL 113
Wed., 4/18, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Kathryn Sheehan, Instructor

And Here's Richard With 'To Life!' - Parts III and IV
Part III includes musical theatre selections celebrating life, featuring the music of Jule Styne, Frank Loesser, Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman and Rodgers and Hammerstein, with Lena Horne, Nathan Lane, Robert Morse, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Bea Arthur, Angela Lansbury and Bernadette Peters. The show includes scenes from "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," "Guys and Dolls," "Where's Charley?" "Mame," and "The Sound of Music." Part IV's theme is celebrating the moment and following your dreams. Liza Minnelli, Bernadette Peters, Carol Channing, Martha Raye, Judy Garland and Barbra Streisand sing the songs of Kander and Ebb, Jerry Herman, Stephen Schwartz, Irving Berlin and Richard Rodgers.
1 Session, WIL 113
Wed., 3/14, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Richard Feldman, Instructor

Who Killed Hazel Drew?
In July of 1908, the lifeless body of 20-year-old Hazel Drew was found in Teal Pond. After a 17-day investigation, Rensselaer County's Jarvis O'Brien dropped the case. Hazel's murderer was never found. Join Sand Lake Town Historian Bob Moore and historical reenactor Mark Marshall as they review the case and consider new information that has come to light. The connection between the Hazel Drew murder and 1990s cult classic Twin Peaks will also be discussed. If you have time, read "Who Killed Hazel Drew?" by Ron Hughes and come prepared for a lively discussion.
1 Session, WIL 113
Fri., 3/23, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Bob Moore and Mark Marshall, Instructors

Liberty vs. Authority: The Supreme Court and the Bill of Rights
Appointments to the United States Supreme Court and court decisions have been featured extensively in news reports in recent years. The court, however, is the least understood branch of the federal government. What is its jurisdiction? How does it operate? This class will examine those questions and trace how cases get to the court. Some of its most controversial decisions have involved interpretation of the Bill of Rights. We will review the historical origins of the first ten Amendments to the Constitution and focus on the history of First Amendment cases to see how the Court has dealt with the controversy between liberty and authority. Ken Kiser is a former instructor from Highland Community College in Freeport, Ill.
1 Session, WIL 113
Tues., 3/13, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Ken Kiser, Instructor

America's Constitution
This is a historical review of the United States Constitution that will cover how and why it was created, the principles and political realities motivating it, and the concerns and objectives of the players who wrote it. We will highlight how the founders viewed the crucial issue of power and its necessity and dangers, along with how the document has evolved over 228 years.
4 Sessions, DCC B05 (Viking Day Care Center (DCC): Parking Information)
Mon., 4/9 - 4/30, 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Henry Bankhead, Instructor

Introduction to Folk Music Using Fiddle, Banjo, Guitar and Song
Come whet your musical appetite while hearing the history and sounds of various foot-tapping traditional and folk styles. Listen to music from Scotland, Ireland, Canada, New England and Appalachia. George Wilson will also "visit" the music of some personalities from the past like Uncle Dave Macon and Huddie Ledbetter. Combine this with a discussion of how these sounds developed and George's off-the-cuff commentary and you have one rousing presentation. George Wilson, our local, talented multi-instrumentalist and singer is an accomplished fiddler, folk music educator and performer. Join us for a fun-filled morning!
1 Session, WIL 113
Tues., 4/24, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
George Wilson, Instructor

Troy's Tiffany Treasures
Troy is said to have more Tiffany stained glass per square mile than any other city in the nation. One of the top restoration experts refers to Troy as "The Mother Lode of Tiffany Glass." While it can be argued that is a slight exaggeration, we are still blessed with astonishing amounts, including some of the most famous windows that Louis Comfort Tiffany ever created. This illustrated lecture will give you a peek at some of the stained glass grandeur that the 19th century industrial fortunes made possible.
I Session, WIL 113
Fri., 4/27, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Michael Barrett, Instructor

A Morning with Louisa May Alcott
Come and spend a morning with Louisa May Alcott, author of "Little Women." Step back in time with historical reenactor Denise Wright while she brings the author to life through pictures, words and stories. She will tell you stories of her family, life and writing career.
1 Session, WIL 113
Wed., 4/4, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Denise Wright, Instructor

A Look at Crailo and Schuyler Mansion State Historic Sites
Heidi Hill, site manager of Crailo and Schuyler Mansion State Historic Sites, will give two presentations. The first will focus on Crailo, the historic estate of the Van Rensselaer family, now a museum dedicated to the Colonial Dutch in the Hudson River Valley. It will focus on the 17th century Dutch colony that has been owned by the state since 1924. Catharine Van Rensselaer Schuyler was born and grew up at Crailo and in 1755 married Philip J. Schuyler, who became the Major General of the Northern Department during the Revolutionary War. Together they built the home that is known today as Schuyler Mansion (1761-1765). This important showcase of a house was only part of their holdings. This second lecture will focus on the lavish 18th century lifestyle at the mansion and the illustrious guest that were attracted by the family's hospitality, power and influence.
1 Session, WIL 113
Fri., 3/16, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Heidi Hill, Instructor

Around the World with a View of Spring
Join us as we kick off our spring semester with the flowers and colors of spring. Our slide-show will travel to the gardens of London and the Cotswolds, Mosaiculture in Montreal, the Skadit Valley and Chihuly in Washington, and end with Jean Chenette's local shade garden.
1 Session, WIL 113
Mon., 3/12, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator


Irish Genealogy 101
There's never been a better time to discover your Irish roots! With more and more genealogy resources becoming available online, including the collection of Catholic parish records from the National Library in Dublin digitized in July 2015, finding your elusive Irish ancestor is within reach for many. Join professional and genealogist-in-residence for the Irish American Heritage Museum, Lisa Dougherty, for an overview on utilizing resources in both the USA and Ireland to make your ancestral journey back to the Emerald Isle a memorable and successful one!
1 Session, WIL 113
Tues., 3/20, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Lisa Dougherty, Instructor

Understanding Your Ancestry DNA Test
Whether you have done an ancestry DNA test or are just thinking about it, you are probably wondering just what it all means. This workshop, with professional genealogist Lisa Dougherty, will provide an overview of DNA basics, what you can expect from an ancestry DNA test, why ethnicity estimates are not the most important part of the test and how DNA can help you discover more about yourself and your family history.
1 Session, WIL 113
Tues., 4/10, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Lisa Dougherty, Instructor

Learning the "Ins and Outs" of Your Digital Camera
This two-session offering will concentrate on learning how to effectively use your new (or not-so-new) digital camera. You will learn about exposure, white balance, macro-mode, portrait settings, landscapes, bracketing – all complex techniques that can be easily explained and mastered. Gather your favorite photos, organize your questions and bring along your camera and owner's manual to these classes designed to inform in a relaxed, comfortable format. Remember to have the camera's battery fully charged and have an empty memory card.
2 Sessions, WIL 113
Tues., 5/1 and 5/8, 1- 4 p.m.
Kevin Sarsfield, Instructor

Mahican, Mohican, Mohegan?
Nobody's quite sure how to spell their name in English, but this Native American tribe was once a force to be reckoned with in the Hudson Valley. Their nation stretched from Dutchess County northward to Lake Champlain. The Mohawks, famed as the fiercest of warriors, feared them. Who were these First Americans? Where did they go? And why? Steve Trimm, amateur historian and tour guide at Grant Cottage State Historic Site, will answer these questions.
1 Session, WIL 113
Mon., 4/23, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Steve Trimm, Instructor

Familiar Songs and their Unfamiliar Stories: Discover the Roots of American Song
Let's learn how some of the best-known American songs came to be written and uncover their roots. This program features songs from the "Great American Songbook" – "Oh, How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning," "I Got Rhythm," "Get Happy," "Brother Can You Spare a Dime," "It Ain't Necessarily So," "God Bless America," "Over the Rainbow," "The Midnight Special," "This Land is Your Land," and "Goodnight Irene." We'll also hear stories about the songwriters who wrote them, including Harold Arlen, Irving Berlin, George and Ira Gershwin, Jay Gorney, Woody Guthrie, Yip Harburg, and Huddie "Lead Belly" Ledbetter. Sing along, if you like, with Sandy Schuman and his 6- and 12-string guitars.
1 Session, WIL 113
Tues., 4/17, 9:30- 11:30 a.m.
Sandy Schuman, Instructor

"Frankly, My Dear"
The REEL Story behind "Gone With the Wind""Gone with the Wind" has been called "the most magnificent motion picture of all time." And millions of fans agree. But what most fans don't know is that endless trouble and months of behind-the-scenes turmoil almost doomed "Gone with the Wind" to failure. Explore the intriguing history of this iconic 1939 film, including the writing and publishing of Margaret Mitchell's novel, the Hollywood frenzy of transforming the book into film, the Atlanta premiere, the Academy Awards and more. This is one course that no "Gone with the Wind" fan should miss.
1 Session, DCC B05 (Viking Day Care Center (DCC): Parking Information)
Sat., 4/28, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Pauline Bartel, Instructor

The Flowers of Spring: Their Design, Color and Texture
Spoil yourself by spending a morning with a versatile floral artist, who can design a classical look but make it follow the latest trend. Take advantage of Michele Peter's 30 years of experience and let her show you how you can put creativity and energy into your own designs and events. If you have been with us before you know Michele brings a passion for what she does. Many return because they know she always brings fresh ideas and demonstrates what is "hot" in the flower world. Come join us as we 'ooh' and 'ahh' and... you may be one of the lucky students who carries one of her creations home! Course fee includes a $14 materials fee per person.
1 Session, WIL 113
Wed., 4/25, 9:30 a.m. - noon
Michele Peters, Instructor

More than Friendship: The Evolving Relationship of People and Their Pets
For years, dogs and cats have been the most popular pets in America. From America's beginnings in the 17th century, dogs and cats could be found in many households. In addition to providing companionship, they served important roles in helping their owners.

Cats protected food and supplies from rodents, while dogs were used for hunting and guarding properties. However, early Americans also kept other animals in their homes that would be considered very unusual or even illegal today. In addition to the very popular pet squirrel, wild birds ranging from cardinals to mourning doves were kept in cages and exercised by tying strings to their legs when let out. American birds were joined by the exotic parrots from South America and islands that trade goods were imported from.

The history of animals as pets will cover the unusual species found in homes, how they were housed and cared for, and the bonds they had with their owners, which were no different than the ones they share today.
1 Session, WIL 113
Thurs., 4/26, 10 a.m. - noon
Marilyn Sassi, Instructor

Proctor: A Man, His Theater, Our Heritage
Frederick Freeman Proctor was near the end of his life when he chose Schenectady to build the greatest of his 52 theaters across the country. He spared no expense, and when the doors were opened on Dec. 27, 1926, every seat was filled to watch the featured silent film "Stranded in Paris" and five separate vaudeville acts. Using slides copied from original photographs, the entire history of the theater and the man it is named for will be illustrated and reveal an amazing life and career full of surprises along the way. Slides will also document and compare how the theater has changed over its 90 years of life, from glittering success in the 1920s and 30s to such hard times that by the 1970s, there was a real threat that it would be torn down. Learn about how the theater was saved, rehabilitated, and expanded, and its recent major restoration. Proctors has overcome every obstacle and now continues to grow its entertainment schedule, with plans to expand even further.
1 Session, WIL 113
Thurs., 4/19, 10 a.m. - noon
Marilyn Sassi, Instructor

Notorious! Shady Ladies of 19th Century America
Some people would rather be infamous than famous - and 19th century American women were no different! Scandal and gossip can be so delicious, and these ladies tasted their fair share of both. Phyllis Chapman, as Victoria Woodhull, who was infamous herself, will appear in costume to delight not only with her own escapades, but also those of naughty ladies such as Calamity Jane, Belle Starr, Lizzie Borden, Lydia Pinkham, Carrie A. Nation and others. They were women who found innovative (and sometimes inappropriate!) means of making their way in the world.

Tasty tidbits include the answers to questions such as "Who was the inspiration for the all-American Gibson Girl? Did the Fox sisters really communicate with the dead, or were they clever tricksters? Why was Calamity Jane a calamity?" If you like gun-swinging, axe-whacking, free-loving women, this is a must-see for you!
1 Session, WIL 113
Wed., 4/11, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Phyllis Chapman, Instructor

Those Necessary Unmentionables: A History of Ladies' Underwear with a New and Updated Section on Victorian Gowns
This slide lecture covers what was considered the ideal woman's figure as it evolved over a time frame of 1680 - 1900. What was considered the perfect body in 1680 was just the opposite by the end of the 19th century. While fashion certainly played a key role, it was the undergarments that shaped and supported everything. This class will examine ladies' undergarments in detail while explaining how they were the foundation for how garments exaggerated different areas of anatomy from century to century. Breasts, hips and waists were all treated in a variety of ways and depended upon underwear to achieve the right look. Today, a natural look is desired with comfort playing a role in design. It is certainly nothing like the literal torture women went through to appear fashion- forward for their time.
1 Session, WIL 113
Thurs., 4/12, 10 a.m. - noon
Marilyn Sassi, Instructor

The Tragedy of Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton led the Federalist Party for over a decade, and served as Secretary of the Treasury, inventing fiscal policy that laid the foundation for a prosperous modern commercial nation. Yet shame over his humble origins dogged him and made him hypersensitive to criticism. Jack Casey, an author, attorney and former political leader, who just completed his historical novel, "Hamilton's Last Clash," will explore this uniquely American tragedy. While showing why Hamilton is the most influential of the founding fathers upon our way of life, Jack will share his views on the darker side of American adversarial politics, and will also acquaint attendees with Revolutionary-era songs he will play and sing.
1 Session, WIL 113
Mon., 4/16, 1-3 p.m.
Jack Casey, Instructor

Clara Barton: Civil War Nurse and Founder of the American Red Cross
Clara Barton is best known as the celebrated Civil War nurse and founder of the American Red Cross. Less is known about her accomplishments as an educator, or that she was one of the first women to hold a salaried US government position in the Patent Office in Washington, DC. When the Civil War began, she was one of the first to recognize the essential and far-ranging support systems that would be required for soldiers in camp and on the battlefield. After years of advocacy, she persuaded the United States government to sign the Geneva Treaty and form the American Red Cross, which continues to support those in times of disaster and need. Her presentation includes excerpts from her field diaries, period photographs and on-site photos of areas where she lived and worked, along with reproductions of medical artifacts used in the care of the wounded.
1 Session, WIL 113
Wed., 3/21, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Phyllis Chapman, Instructor

The First US Air Force
After a brief summary of the history of ballooning in Europe and the US, the class will focus on the earliest American military uses of hot air and gas balloons, especially during the Civil War. Of course, there are local connections, including an 1833 balloon excursion in Albany, and a Troy man who was instrumental in creating what can be called the first US Air Force.
1 Session, WIL 113
Thurs., 4/5, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Jim Cochran, Instructor

The Elegant Art of Burlesque: A Personal Memoir
Spend a morning going back in time to when burlesque was the elegant art of the tease. There were comics, singers, big bands and, of course, the dancers. Your tour guide is April March, the First Lady of Burlesque, who at 82 still performs to sold out crowds across the country. April started performing at the age of 16 and after a lifetime of dedication to burlesque is one of its legendary performers. Her story is simply amazing.

She has a million stories that she and her collaborator, Susan Baird, will share with you at this session. Staying true to her dreams, she will draw you into a life that was glamorous, fun and dangerous; she will also be available to answer your questions and discuss her book, "Reflections of My Life: April March, the First Lady of Burlesque." This will be a session you will remember and talk about for some time.
1 Session, WIL 113
Fri., 4/6, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
April March & Susan Baird, Instructors

The Erie Canal - America's First Great Public Work
Jack Casey will discuss his historical novel A Land Beyond the River which portrays New York State's rise to national preeminence (1810-1825) as "The Empire State." Hudson Valley heiress Eleanora Van Rensselaer falls in love with a "real man" from the west, ship captain Daniel Hedges, a smuggler on Lake Erie. Soon the War of 1812 erupts and ends their affair. Only after each suffers great loss can they reconnect and join forces to assist DeWitt Clinton in realizing his vision, a 363-mile canal across New York State. Yet even as they collaborate, canal opponent Martin Van Buren employs a dark secret to blackmail Eleanora, and she must choose between her vast wealth and the man she loves. A Land Beyond the River was published by in paperback by Bantam Books (1988), and in hardcover by Jack's imprint, Diamond Rock Publishing, Inc. (2005). He will enhance his discussion with a few canal songs.
1 Session, WIL 113
Mon., 4/16, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Jack Casey, Instructor

Science Fun for Everyone
You are never too old to learn something new. Whether you are looking for a way to stimulate your cognitive ability, be the coolest grandparent, or both, come and participate in some fun science activities. Float your foil boat, use paper chromatography to discover the colors in candy, race a balloon rocket, and make a bottle lava lamp. These activities are fun, but also a bit messy, so dress appropriately.
1 Session, WIL 113
Fri., 4/13, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Fran Pilato, Instructor

One Pot Meals
Spend more time cooking and less time cleaning! This one day class will feature recipes that can be made in one pot. Some dishes may include Brussel sprouts, sweet potatoes and shrimp or fish with parmesan tomatoes and zucchini. Let Mirissa Casey, the Chic Chef, show you delicious food does not need to be a lot of work! Course fee includes $6 materials fee.
1 Session, DCC 135 (Viking Day Care Center (DCC): Parking Information)
Mon., 3/19, 10 a.m. - 1p.m.
Mirissa Casey, The Chic Chef, Instructor


Please note: several of these trips and tours include a materials fee for admission and/or meals. This fee is non-refundable five business days prior to the start of the course. Directions and additional information about off-campus tours and trips are posted online.

Self Care Through Yoga and Meditation
The American Meditation Institute's easy-gentle yoga and breathing class is taught the same way it was thousands of years ago: as preliminary practices to prepare both the body and mind for daily meditation. Without difficulty or pain, you'll learn the simple, therapeutic pleasures of focusing and stilling the mind, expanding your breathing capacity, relieving stiffness and stress, detoxifying the lymph system, stretching muscles and invigorating internal organs. Most students feel less stress and inflexibility after the very first class. You'll move with more ease, gain physical confidence and enhance the flexibility and health of your body. When your body is stiff or in pain, the mind is often distracted and cannot help you experience the positive effects of meditation. Course fee includes $30 materials fee.
3 Sessions, classes will be taught at the American Meditation Institute
Thurs., 3/22 - 4/5, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator
Melanie Gloeckner, Instructor

A Tour of the New York State Capitol Focusing on WWI
As the nation commemorates the centennial of American participation in World War I, we'll examine how New York State and its citizens played a critical role in the United States' efforts during the war, and discusses its significance to understanding history today. Find out about Harlem Hell Fighters and the 369th Infantry Regiment in WWI, which will be one of our topics as we follow Stuart W. Lehman, education coordinator for the New York State Capitol. Our tour program will also include a look at New York and New Yorkers in the WWI exhibit in the New York State Capitol and a behind the scenes gallery tour of the new exhibit at the Vietnam Memorial Gallery. Be prepared to show a photo ID.
1 Session, meet at the Visitors Center on the Empire State Plaza
Wed., 3/28, 2- 4 p.m.
Marie D'Entrone, Coordinator

Knickerbocker Family Mansion - Ghosts, Tour and Lunch
The Knickerbocker Historical Society will be our hosts as they tell us about the history of the Knickerbocker Mansion, which dates from about 1770. They will arrange for historical 'ghosts' to give moving first-hand accounts of their lives and experiences, and they will explain the renovations – the not-for-profit Society rescued the mansion from certain demolition and has continued to restore it. Our visit concludes with a chance to tour the mansion and to a colonial lunch cooked with authentic recipes, a delicious side to the history of the mansion! Course fee includes $25 materials fee.
1 Session, Knickerbocker Family Mansion
Wed., 5/16, 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator
Marie D'Entrone, Instructor

Ukrainian Eggs, Pysanky Eggs
This is a fun new craft to try! Well, it may be new to you but is a long tradition to many others. Create one neat hole in the egg. No more blowing! Then you will learn how to use a traditional wax tool called a kistka to "draw" with wax on your egg. Using layers of wax and brightly-colored dyes, you will create intricate designs on your egg. The final step is so exciting! You melt off the wax and reveal the many beautiful colors hiding below. This may sound difficult but it is not. Even children who scratch squiggly lines on their eggs end up with bright and beautiful results. Course fee includes a $15 materials fee.
1 Session, The Albany Art Room
Thurs., 3/15, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Karen Schupack, Instructor & Owner of Albany Art Room

Walking Tour of Troy's Historic Washington Park and Surrounding Homes, and Tea
Enjoy taking a step back in time to see and experience the genteel living of the nouveau rich of Troy's Washington Park. You will be able to see firsthand, the loving care taken to rehabilitate and update many of these one-of-a-kind homes of the emerging upper middle class of the 19th century and visit their own private park. A tea reception will be held in our last home visit on the tour.

There will be lots of walking on mostly uneven surfaces: sidewalks, grass, roads, and some home interiors with multiple flights of stairs, climbing up and down. Wear comfortable walking shoes as you will be on your feet for all of the tour. Meet in Washington Park across from the front of 195 Second Street. Parking is along the bordering streets of Washington Park - Washington Place, Second Street, Third Street and Washington Street. Course fee includes $15 materials fee.
1 Session, meet in Washington Park across from the front of 195 Second Street
Mon., 4/30, 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Lea Darling, Coordinator

The Restoration of Pat's Dutch Barn in the Rensselaer Technology Park
Pat's Barn is truly a unique and special place; you will feel the authentic charm and elegance of this historic Dutch barn, which was restored in 2009, the instant you walk through the front door. Patricia Roberts took the initiative to preserve this rich piece of history, so the barn was appropriately named after her. Pat's Barn is now used for RPI programs, retreats, conferences and special events. Michael Wacholder, project coordinator, will share insights in to the behind-the-scene details that went into this project.
1 Session, meet at Pat's Barn
Thurs., 4/26, 1 - 3 p.m.
Presenters: Michael Wacholder, Keith Van Amburgh
Jean Chenette, Coordinator

Visit Historic Grant's Cottage
Guide Steven Trimm will provide a tour of the historic cottage and share little-known stories about U.S. Grant. Grant Cottage is full of marvelous, unexpected and sometimes improbable but true tales. Steve will share all of them with you. Following his program, we will depart for a tour of the cottage and we'll have the chance to marvel at the views of the Berkshires, Catskills and Green Mountains from Promenade Point. We may even have a secret family member of Grant's with us to share more stories of the illustrious President U.S. Grant. This may be up to a 2.5-hour program and requires standing during the cottage segment of the tour. Please wear comfortable shoes and dress warmly. We will meet at the Grant Cottage Visitor's Center to begin our tour. Course fee includes $10 materials fee.
1 Session, meeting at the Grant Cottage Visitor's Center
Mon., 5/7, 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Lea Darling, Coordinator

The Saugerties Lighthouse
Join us at the Saugerties Lighthouse, an 1869 landmark on the Hudson River that now stands proudly as a living museum and a renowned bed and breakfast. Step back in time over a hundred years to experience the charm and rustic simplicity of life in the middle of the river. Furnished as it may have looked in the early 20th century, the light-house contains a small museum, gift shop, parlor, kitchen, keepers' quarters, and two guest bedrooms. The operational light tower offers a panoramic view of the Hudson River Valley and Catskill Mountains.

Because of its location on the river, tours must be scheduled with tide schedules in mind. The lighthouse can be reached via a half-mile nature trail of dirt and rock paths with wooden bridges and boardwalks and sandy trails. It is at the end of Lighthouse Drive in the village of Saugerties. Suitable, comfortable shoes are recommended. Course fee includes an $8 materials fee.
1 Session, meet at the lighthouse, Saugerties, NY
Thur., 5/17, noon - 1:30 p.m.
Paula Johannessen, Coordinator

Tour and Lunch at The Skene Manor
Enjoy a visit to The Skene Manor, Whitehall's castle on the mountain. It is one of the few remaining castles in northeast New York. The castle was constructed of stone blocks cut right out of the mountain that frames the manor. This magnificent structure shows turn-of-the-century craftsmanship rarely duplicated today. Our morning will begin with a tour of The Skene Manor where we will experience the grandeur that exemplified turn-of-the-century wealth. We will then enjoy a lunch of homemade soup, sandwiches, beverages and dessert, which will be served in the tea room. You will be contacted prior to the trip for your sandwich order. All who visit rave about the lunch and the dedication of the volunteer staff who run the manor. Now, experience it for yourself! Course fee includes a $20 materials fee.
1 Session, The Skene Manor
Tues., 4/24, 11:15 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator

Spring Sensations - Exploring Nearby Nature Preserves
As the snow melts and the ground thaws, nature springs to life and puts on a glorious display. The spring palette includes a bounty of wildflowers like trillium, dog toothed violets, and lady slippers. An upward glance reveals the flowering shadblow and cherry. The first class at the college is really important and will include preparation, along with a presentation illustrating what we might see. In the following weeks, we will explore four of our favorite local preserves, taking time to observe, learn about and enjoy the plants, wildlife and natural beauty around us.
5 Sessions
Fri., 4/20, 10 a.m. - noon, WIL 113
Fri., 4/27 - 5/18, 10 a.m. - noon at Selected Preserves
Betty and John Nickles, Instructors

Trail Walk and Tour of BASF's Urban Nature Center
Did you know that the City of Rensselaer has a reclaimed nature center? The BASF Environmental Education Classroom and Wildlife Habitat was established in 2011. Our visit will be guided by Wayne St. Clair, who has worked for BASF since 1979, first as superintendent of project engineering, then as coordinator of remediation, and now as site manager. We will take a tour and learn about the workings of the LEED Platinum Green Building, walk the nature trail and participate in hands-on activities. If you have binoculars, please bring them. A snack will be provided.
1 Session, at BASF Environmental Education Classroom
Wed., 5/9, 10 a.m. - noon
Jim Cochran and Fran Pilato, Coordinators


The Provincial Landscape
Join this artist's retreat with award-winning landscape artist Karen Woodin. Using her collection of photographs of spectacular local vistas, Karen will select a scene rich in color with a perfectly balanced composition and teach beginner to intermediate painters how to capture a landscape in paint. This full-day class will pamper you - fresh coffee, juices and baked goods from the Schuyler Bakery served in the morning session, a gourmet catered lunch paired with wines at noon, and an afternoon session with soothing music while you paint. All materials are included: water-soluble oil paints, brushes and a 16-by-20-inch canvas. This is not your average painting class – it's a retreat! Class size will be limited to allow for one-on-one instruction in a peaceful, beautiful space with lots of natural light. Course fee includes $95 materials fee.
1 Session, The Living Room Art Gallery, Historic St. Agnes Cemetery
Sat., 2/17, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., lunch served at noon
Kelly Grimaldi, Coordinator
Karen Woodin, Instructor

Lilies on a Pond
Claude Monet is famous for his waterlilies. His work is rich in texture and color, with thickly-applied paint that lends depth to one of the prettiest of the water-plant varieties. You can make your own waterlilies dance on canvas using a variety of brush strokes and a palette knife. Whether you wish to learn a new technique or hone your skills, this class is perfect for beginner and intermediate painters. The class will begin with fresh coffee, juices and baked goods from the famous Schuyler Bakery as the instructor goes over the layout for the composition. We will learn how to do the underpainting in fast-drying acrylic and finish in water-soluble oils. All materials are included: paints, brushes, palette knife and canvas. Course fee includes $45 materials fee.
1 Session, The Living Room Art Gallery, Historic St. Agnes Cemetery
Fri., 3/9, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Kelly Grimaldi, Coordinator
Noreen Powell, Instructor

Cluster of Tiger Lilies on the Woods' Edge
Tiger lilies grow like weeds in the Northeast, yet they are hardy in nature and vibrant in color. These lovely flowers dress up roadsides with hues of orange, yellow and crimson. This class, perfect for beginner and intermediate painters, will begin with fresh coffee, juices and baked goods from the famous Schuyler Bakery as the instructor goes over the layout for the composition. You will learn how to do the underpainting in fast-drying acrylic and finish in water-soluble oils. All materials are included: paints, brushes and canvas. Consider taking both this lesson and the "Waterlilies" class on March 9 for two days of relaxing instruction. Course fee includes $45 materials fee.
1 Session, The Living Room Art Gallery, Historic St. Agnes Cemetery
Sat., 3/10, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.,
Kelly Grimaldi, Coordinator
Noreen Powell, Instructor

Spring Musings - The Landscape Comes Alive
Join this artist's retreat with award-winning landscape artist Karen Woodin. Borrowing from her collection of photographs, Karen will select a landscape scene rich in color with a perfectly balanced composition and teach beginner to intermediate painters how to mix colors, lay out compositions, and the many other technical aspects of painting on canvas. This full-day class will pamper you - fresh coffee, juices and baked goods from the Schuyler Bakery in the morning session, a gourmet catered lunch paired with wines at noon, and an afternoon session with soothing music while you paint. All materials are included: water-soluble oil paints, brushes and a 16-by-20-inch canvas. This is not your average painting class – it's a retreat! Class size will be limited to allow for one-on-one instruction in a peaceful, beautiful space with a lots of natural light. Course fee includes $95 materials fee.
1 Session, The Living Room Art Gallery, Historic St. Agnes Cemetery
Sat., 3/24, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., lunch served at noon
Kelly Grimaldi, Coordinator
Karen Woodin, Instructor

Sketch Club: Keeping a Nature Journal
Wherever you are, you can use a simple sketchbook to record the natural world around you. It might include sketches or drawings, written descriptions or notes, photographs, poems, objects such as leaves or flowers, or scientific data such as lists or wildlife tallies. Join Carol Coogan as she lends instruction, support, advice and inspiration to your own nature journal practice. Bring a favorite drawing/writing implement and a sketchbook if you have one, or a sketch- book will be available for purchase: a slim paperback "starter" book for $5, or a 5.5" x 8" hardcovers for $10. Classes are geared to the interests and level of each participant. Course fee includes $50 materials fee.
5 Sessions, The Living Room Art Gallery, Historic St. Agnes Cemetery
Thurs. 4/5 - 5/3, 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Kelly Grimaldi, Coordinator
Carol Coogan, Instructor

Majestic English Garden in Full Bloom
The English Garden has a certain charm. Perennials, flowering shrubs and delightful annuals, arranged in winding rows with rock walls and pathways, entice you to sit for a bit and enjoy both beauty and fragrance. In this class we will work with a wide color palette to capture the essence of an English Garden. The workshop will begin with fresh coffee, juices and delicious baked goods from the famous Schuyler Bakery as the instructor goes over the layout for the composition. You will learn how to do the underpainting in fast-drying acrylic before breaking at noon for a catered lunch with various wines and sparkling water offered as beverages. The afternoon session will be spent on adding water-soluble oils over the underpainting to lend depth, texture and vibrant color to your own version of an English Garden. All materials including paints, brushes and canvas are included. Course fee includes $95 materials fee.
1 Session, The Living Room Art Gallery, Historic St. Agnes Cemetery
Sat., 4/14, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., lunch served at noon
Kelly Grimaldi, Coordinator
Noreen Powell, Instructor

Come See the Wild Flowers along the Corkscrew Rail Trail
The first section of the Corkscrew Rail Trail opened in June 2015. It begins at Knapp Road in Stephentown and heads south under a shady tree canopy towards New Lebanon. The natural surface rail trail follows the route of the Rutland Railroad, which carried freight and passengers until 1952. This section of tracks was nicknamed "The Corkscrew" because of its tight turns between hills. The trail is an easy walking trail. A botanist will guide the walk, talk about the wildflowers found along the trail, and present a brief history of the old Rutland Railroad line.
1 Session, meeting at The Corkscrew Rail Trail
Sat., 5/19, 1 - 3 p.m.
Millie Smith, Coordinator

A Visit to the Burden Iron Works Museum with Michael Barrett
Located in the former office of one of the most important firms in the history of iron and steel, the Burden Iron Works Museum covers the industries that made Troy one of the birthplaces of the American Industrial Revolution. Among other things, the area gave the world the detachable collar and cuff, the hook-headed railroad spike, the armor for the USS Monitor, machine-made horseshoes at a rate of 51 million per year, the modern fire hydrant, heating and cooking stoves, and so much more. Course fee includes $10 materials fee.
1 Session, at Burden Iron Works Museum
Tues., 3/27, 10 a.m. - noon
Marie D'Entrone, Coordinator

Ten Broeck Mansion Tour with Tea
The elegant Ten Broeck Mansion was the home of two of Albany's most prominent families. It was originally built in 1798 as a Federal-style country home for merchant and Mayor Abraham Ten Broeck, who had served as a major general of the Albany militia during the Revolutionary War and distinguished himself at the Second Battle of Saratoga in 1777. Architectural details from this period include a delicate roof balustrade on the outside and a superb spiral staircase within. In 1848, the home became the residence of banker and philanthropist Thomas Worth Olcott and underwent modifications that included the addition of Greek Revival porticos to the doorways and marble mantels in the main first-floor rooms.

After parking at the rear of the mansion gardens, stroll the tulip-filled path to enter the mansion and have a tour followed by a lovely tea. Course fee includes a $15 materials fee.
1 Session, Ten Broeck Mansion
Tues., 5/22, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator


The News with Columnist Fred LeBrun of the Albany Times Union
What is the news and why do we care about it? Come to the Westfall Station Café and hear all about it! News is information on recent affairs. We learn about news from numerous sources, such as print, word-of-mouth, broadcasting, and electronic communication. Join columnist Fred LeBrun and discuss the news – past, present and future. At 75, Fred is "mostly" retired and remains a metro columnist for the Albany Times Union, a position he has held for 30 years. Born in Manhattan and raised in the Catskills, Fred has been with the Times Union writing and opining about the region for half a century. He lives in Rensselaer County. During the lecture you will enjoy a lunch of assorted sandwiches, Westfall Station salad, fruit salad and potato salad. Your meal will include soda, coffee, tea and dessert. Course fee includes $20 materials fee.
1 Session, meet at Westfall Station Café, Averill Park
Mon., 4/9, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator

An Irish Lunch and Irish Music, Too
The love songs of Ireland and America connect people. Join Irishman Don Kelly as he and his acoustic guitar cover dozens of melodies of devotion to people and our lands.

While you listen to his music, you will also hear the history of the songs and perhaps join in on a few Irish tunes. Westfield Station will have you feasting on a traditional Irish buffet, including Irish pub salad, corned beef and cabbage, carrots and traditional Irish bread. Dessert, coffee, tea and soda are also included. Join us and get a head start on St. Patrick's Day! Course fee includes $20 materials fee.
1 Session, meet at Westfall Station Café, Averill Park
Thurs., 3/15, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Jean Chenette, Coordinator

NYC Bus Trip
The bus will leave the Yankee Trails bus depot in Rensselaer at 6:30 a.m. and the Crossgates Commons parking lot (behind Wal-Mart) at 7 a.m. for New York City. The bus will drop you off and pick you up from the Bryant Park area in Manhattan, leaving New York City at 7 p.m. The outing is for the bus trip only. Arrangements for the day will be left open for you to do whatever you please. A small donation will be collected on the bus for driver gratuity. Course fee includes a $29 materials fee.
Thurs., 5/3, 6:30 a.m. Departure
Lea Darling, Coordinator

Sleepy Hollow Bus Trip
Sit back and relax as we take a bus to Sleepy Hollow, a little over two hours south of the Capital Region. We will leave the college at 7:45 a.m. and will first tour Kykuit (pronounced Ki-kut), the home of the Rockefellers. Kykuit has beautiful Italian-inspired gardens, which should be in bloom when we are there. You will have a one hour break for lunch on your own. After the house tour we will go to the Union Church. This lovely church has nine Chagall windows and one Matisse rose window. Approximate time back in the Capital Region is 5:15 p.m. Course fee includes $63 materials fee.
1 Session, Meet at HVCC
Thurs., 5/31, 7:45 a.m. Departure
Linda Jones, Coordinator

Birding 101
If you're new to birding or want a refresher, we'll show you how to get started as a birder. We'll cover everything from necessary equipment to where to go birding and the essential things to look for when you do see a bird: shape, size, color, behavior and habitat. We'll then take a short walk to practice our new skills. Course fee includes $8 materials fee.
1 Session, at Dyken Pond
Tues., 5/1, 9:30 -11:30 a.m.
Lisa Hoyt, Instructor
Marie D'Entrone, Coordinator


Inspired by 250 years of innovative rural life in New Lebanon, New York, the citizens here are again pioneering a new idea: the nation's first living museum of contemporary rural American life. BEHOLD! shares with visitors the heritage, skills, techniques and know-how of generations past, building a bridge between a rich history and a sustainable future. You may have visited historic museums where costumed docents play characters from yesteryear and demonstrate skills of times long since past, but at BEHOLD!, you visit real people and learn how they live, work and play at their farms, barns, artisan studios, workshops, businesses and wooded trails.

Gemstones Demystified
Join bench jeweler and designer, Heather (Van Oort) Naventi as she busts myths about jewelry and gemstones, demonstrates how to distinguish fake from real, and shows you how to detect flaws in diamonds. This interactive session of jeweler's techniques will teach you how to make simple repairs to your own pieces. At her studio, Heather does wholesale repair work for other jewelry stores in addition to retail sales and repairs. She also designs and creates custom jewelry. Course fee includes $15 materials fee.
1 Session, The Jewelry Studio in New Lebanon
Fri., 4/20, 10:30 a.m. - noon
Cynthia Serbent, Coordinator

Designing For Divas With Sarah Conly and Michael Deegan
If you've ever been to an opera or a theatrical play or a musical, you've seen the end product, but how did the physical production come to be? With the aid of models, drawings, photos and renderings, we'll follow the evolution of a show. Get a look at how productions are created, from inception, through the development of the concept, to the creation of set models, to technical drawings and costume sketches, into the 'shops' where the set and costumes are built, and finally into the theater as a full-fledged production. Course fee includes $20 materials fee.
1 Session, Home in New Lebanon
Sat., 4/21, 10:30 a.m. - noon
Jean Chenette, Coordinator

Jazz Workshop: History and Theory with Monte Wasch
Hear musical illustrations at the piano of the many genres that influenced the birth of jazz. European classical marches and polkas; American folk songs and popular music; African American spirituals and work songs; and Mexican and South American music each played a part. Can your favorite tune become a jazz song? Learn how a familiar tune can be jazzed and hear examples of different jazz styles, e.g. Blues, Dixieland, Bebop and Free Jazz. In the process, learn what distinguishes jazz from other musical forms. Monte describes himself as a disciplined, organized person, but he says, "When I'm playing jazz, my mind is in an entirely different place and I love that place." Please note, there may be a cat at this location. Course fee includes $12 materials fee.
1 Session, Home in New Lebanon
Mon., 4/30, 10:30 a.m. - noon
Jean Chenette, Coordinator


Join us as we explore an unusual mix of destinations! Our spring visits include local jaunts to Albany and Schenectady County, visits to Sleepy Hollow, and more! Out and About begins with a brief orientation at the college prior to our first trip. The group will receive directions to all sites and may arrange for carpools.

Thursday, May 17
We will be spending a beautiful day in the village of Schoharie, exploring two very different places. First, the Old Stone Fort which has a great deal of history. We'll also visit other buildings on the grounds including an 18th century home and Dutch barn, an 1830s law office, and a 1890s one-room schoolhouse. In the afternoon, we will switch gears completely and travel down the road to the beautiful Landis Arboretum. We will hear a talk and have a chance to walk the grounds or sit on their beautiful scenic deck.

In the morning, we will meet at Hudson Valley Community College in Williams Hall, Room 113. At that time, people looking to make carpool arrangements will have a chance to do so and you will be provided with directions to our destinations, as well as suggestions on where you could eat lunch.

Thursday, May 31
Sit back and relax as we take a bus to Sleepy Hollow, a little over two hours south of the Capital Region. We will leave the college at 7:45 a.m. and will first tour Kykuit (pronounced Ki-kut), the home of the Rockefellers. Kykuit has beautiful Italian-inspired gardens, which should be in bloom when we are there. You will have a one hour break for lunch on your own. After the house tour we will go to the Union Church. This lovely church has nine Chagall windows and one Matisse rose window. Approximate time back to the Capital Region is 5:15 p.m.

Thursday, June 7
In the morning, we will visit the Watervliet Shaker site, near the Albany International Airport, and take part in an herb workshop, which promises to be very interesting and informative. In addition, we will have a tour of the site given by a woman who has written a book about children who grew up there.

After lunch, we will drive over to Schenectady to meet Marilyn Sassi who is known by many of those who have taken her very informative Creative Retirement classes. She will give us a walking tour of the Stockade. Marilyn will provide a great deal of new information about that area, and we are going to be particularly fortunate to end our walk with a tour of Marilyn's house, right there in the Stockade. She has many beautiful objects and furniture and the house itself is historic. Course fee includes $98 materials fee.

3 Sessions, Out and About Sites
Thurs., 5/17, 5/31 and 6/7
Linda Jones, Coordinator