St. Albans Lecture Series

Spring 2014

All lectures will be on Wednesdays at 11 a.m. and will be held at the St. Albans Historical Museum, third floor, corner of Church and Bishop Streets in St. Albans. The site is handicap accessible with parking behind the museum.

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis:First Lady in Courage – Part II
Presenter: Professor Nancy Nahra
FEBRUARY 05, 2014

Everyone alive in 1963 remembers what Mrs. John Fitzgerald Kennedy looked like during a time of national horror and mourning. Not long after that, the same woman who had evoked admiration became the butt of criticism, sometimes harsh and often judgmental. This talk explores her life long before the heavily documented White House years and after her period of mourning. The brilliant, reserved girl who became the stalwart widow as she matured often acted from a lifelong appreciation of history and a well-hidden sense of mischief.


John Paul Jones, Pickled in Rum
Presenter: Dr. Burt Hamrell
FEBRUARY 12, 2014

Annapolis midshipmen (‘middies’) created these irreverent lyrics sung to a popular tune, ‘Everybody Works but Father,’ in the early 1900’s:

Everybody works but John Paul Jones!
He lies around all day,
Body pickled in alcohol
On a permanent jag, they say.
Middies stand around him
Doing honor to his bones;
Everybody works in “Crabtown”
But John Paul Jones!

Irreverent in jest, but now much admired and honored in the United States, Jones died and was buried in Paris, France in 1792, with then little acknowledgment by America. His body now lies in the U. S. Naval Academy chapel at Annapolis. How he got there and how an autopsy was done over one hundred years after he died is a fascinating story to tell.


In historic St. Albans:St. Luke’s Episcopal Church
Presenter: Professor William Tortolano and Father David Veale (presented at St. Luke’s Parish)
FEBRUARY 19, 2014

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Saint Albans was founded in 1816, and the current building was constructed in 1861. It has a fascinating history. The two manual Jardine pipe organ dates from 1889. Father David Veale and Dr. William Tortalano will present information about the historic church as well as play music to display the organ’s unique sounds.


The First Vermonters
Presenter: Bobby Farlice-Rubio
FEBRUARY 26, 2014

The people of the Abenaki Nation and their ancestors have lived in Vermont from at least 12,000 years ago to the present. Of the 500 American Indian Nations in North America, the Abenaki were among the first to make contact and trade with newly arrived European peoples. Learn how the Abenaki people and their culture have survived by adapting to the many tumults, triumphs, and tragedies they’ve experienced during the last few centuries. This session will provide a glimpse into the lives of several famous Abenakis from different periods in history leading up to today’s struggle for acceptance and legal recognition.


How does he do that?
Presenter: Dr. Steve Taubman
MARCH 05, 2014

Dr. Steve will be combining his entertaining magic act with a bit of philosophy of how one can live life to the fullest by overcoming the invisible walls of fear, self doubt, stress and discouragement. You might even leave with a magic trick to show off to your grandchildren.


Bird Is a Verb
Presenter: Bridget Butler. the BirdDiva
MARCH 19, 2014

An estimated 5.8 million people in the United States bird watch! Become one of the ‘flock’ during this workshop discovering the pleasure of one of the most popular pastimes in the country. Learn tips & tricks for bird identification, find out about equipment & resources, discover birding by ear and explore various natural communities for different suites of birds. Presented by Bridget Butler, naturalist and bird diva.


Designing with Native Plants
Presenter: Charlotte Albers
MARCH 26, 2014

Creating lush, layered landscapes using native plants benefits biodiversity and can improve problematic site conditions. Learn about tried-and-true species and new cultivars that offer year-round interest with outstanding foliage, flowers and fruit, stems, branches and even bark. Local designer Charlotte Albers will inspire you to make your garden more eco-friendly and sustainable.


Woof! Dog Communication in the Human World
Presenter: Deborah Helfrich
APRIL 02, 2014

Is a yawn always just a yawn? Can a growl actually be a good thing? Is a tail wag always a friendly invitation? This presentation will attempt to demystify dog communication and to explore how dogs and humans relate to and work with each other.


The United States Supreme Court and the Culture Wars
Presenter: Professor Cheryl Hanna
APRIL 09, 2014

Professor Hanna will review the current United States Supreme Court term and some of the most controversial cases on the docket, including affirmative action, abortion, campaign finance, and prayer. She’ll review the current members of the court and look forward to the rest of the court during the Obama presidency.


How a State Begins: the Judicial Branch of Vermont State Government, Its Beginning, Its Sources of Law, and Its Decisions
Presenter: Paul Gillies
APRIL 16, 2014


The architectural gems of St. Albans, present and past
Presenter: Laz Scangas
APRIL 23, 2014

Laz Scangas, local architect, will take us on a pictorial tour of St. Albans to show and tell us about the architectural diversity within our community. As a prelude to our 150th commemoration of the St. Albans Raid this September, those buildings standing at that time and still standing today will be particularly noted.


LIFE IN A JAR: The Irena Sendler Project
Presenter: Dr. Jack Mayer, MD, MPH
APRIL 30, 2014

The true story of Irena Sendler, a Holocaust hero who rescued 2,500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto but whose heroism was forgotten. Sixty years later, three Kansas teenagers, each carrying her own burden, ‘rescue the rescuer’ and elevate Irena Sendler to an international hero, championing tolerance and respect for all people.

Membership Information

Payment of membership dues entitles subscribers to attend all sessions of the current semester. Lectures are also open to non-members for a fee of $5 per lecture. Semester membership fees are $40 per individual, or $70 per couple.

Send membership dues to:

  • Osher Lifelong Learning Institute – St. Albans
  • John A. Newton, Treasurer
  • 29 Country Club Estates
  • Swanton, VT 05488-3008

Make checks payable to The University of Vermont (UVM).

Become a member today!

Membership in your local OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) entitles you to attend programs at any of the other 7 OLLI sites throughout Vermont, as well as EEE-Burlington (Elder Education Enrichment). Your active OLLI membership also entitles you to the discounted member rate for the OLLI programs on the UVM campus. Simply present your membership card during the corresponding semester.

For a complete listing of all programs, see our listing in a pdf format.

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