James Madison University

Session C Course Descriptions

April 21 – May 23

S14C1 Mennonites in the Valley

Day/Time:  Monday, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 21, 28, May 5, 12, 19
Location: Park View Mennonite Church, 1600 Park Ave., Harrisonburg

Description: A Christian group with agrarian and religious origins in 16th-century Europe, Mennonites were among the earliest settlers in the Shenandoah Valley.  Today their local descendants consist of a number of separate and distinct Mennonite groups, ranging from the most conservative to progressive Mennonites.  This course will focus on up-close-and-personal interaction with area Mennonites and will include trips to visit Mennonite institutions, churches, schools, businesses, and homes. 

Additional fees:  Approximately $17, payable to the instructor for a lunch prepared and served in an Old Order Mennonite home.  This is an optional event.

Instructor:  Phil Kniss grew up in a Mennonite family in Florida and has spent 29 years in the Mennonite community in Harrisonburg.  He has pastored two local Mennonite congregations and for the last 17 years has been senior pastor at Park View Mennonite Church.

S14C2 Harp Tasting:  Learning to Play a Folk Harp 

(Limited to 10 participants, selected by lottery)
Day/Time: Monday, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 21, 28, May 5  (Note different schedule)
Location: Sunnyside Retirement Community, Highlands Building, Activity Room
Participants for this class will be chosen by lottery.  Do not enclose payment with registration form.  Payment will be requested at the time of notification.

Description: Instruction for beginning harp players.  Knowledge of music is helpful but not necessary.  Participants will learn how to play a few songs and will have an opportunity to play a lap harp, floor model, and large pedal harp.  Playing in an ensemble, even as a beginner has proven to be an exciting experience!
Note to participants: Please bring a music stand or TV table and easel-type picture frame for music.

Instructor:  Virginia Redhead Bethune has played the harp since she tuned 60 and has taught over 200 students in beginning workshops locally at Massanetta Church Music conference, in numerous churches in the Mid-Atlantic area, and at Montreat, North Carolina Music Conference.

S14C3 Let's Wing It!

Day/Time:  Mondays, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  April 21, 28, May 5, 12, 19
Location: Blue Ridge Hall, room 333, 601 University Blvd., Harrisonburg

Description: Do you like butterflies?  Would you like to learn more about these beautiful “flying flowers?”  This course will cover such topics as species identification and means of protection from predators.  You will discover the secrets of their anatomy, and the ways they help pollinate plants. The instructor will provide tips about attracting butterflies to your yard so you can enjoy seeing their complete lifecycle.  We will learn about Magical Monarchs and their yearly migration to Mexico.  Finally, the class will take a field trip to a local destination to see butterflies in the wild.

Suggested reading:  The Family Butterfly Book, Rich Mikula or The Life Cycles of Butterflies, Wayne Richards and Judy Burris – available from the instructor.

Instructor:  Linda Marchman holds a Master Gardener certification, and has been raising and selling butterflies for 12 years.  She serves as a consultant for people seeking to attract butterflies to their yards and operates her business, Social Butterflies, from her home.  Linda is a past director of the Association for Butterflies and has appeared on several home and garden shows, as well as the PBS program “Virginia Home Grown.”

S14C4 Golf Made Easier!

Day/Time:  Tuesdays, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 22, 29, May 6, 13, 20
Location: Sandy Bottom Golf Course, Bridgewater

Description: Golf can be a challenging, often frustrating game, but a good teacher can simplify the mechanics of each stroke to make our swings more efficient and effective.  By honing the various strokes – putts, chips, pitches, full swings – to their essentials, we enhance the possibilities for solid ball striking and consistency, pleasure, and satisfaction.  We will begin with the shortest and simplest stoke, the putt, and move progressively to the chip, pitch, and full swing.  You will need a putter, a short iron (wedge, 9 or 8 iron) of any type or vintage and a few golf balls.  We will begin our adventure into the amazing game of golf at Bridgewater’s par-3 Sandy Bottom golf course and practice green.

Instructor:  Bob Bersson is a JMU Professor Emeritus of Art and Art History and an educator in diverse areas for LLI.  He has been a student of Lakeview Golf Course teaching professional John Rogers over the past eight years.  LLI member Christina Updike, co-instructor, is Visual Resources Curator Emeritus, JMU School of Art and Art History, and lifelong golfer who plays in local golf leagues and tournaments.

S14C5 Mary Magdalene Revisited

Day/Time:  Tuesdays, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 22, 29, May 6, 13, 20
Location: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 725 S. High St., Harrisonburg

Description: This course will explore the myths, metaphors, and mysteries of Mary Magdalene through sacred writings, art, literature, and history.

Suggested reading:  The Meaning of Mary Magdalene, Cynthia Bourgeault.

Instructor:  LLI member Mary Lou McMillin is a Certified Christian Educator in the PC(USA) and served as Resource Coordinator for Shenandoah Presbytery for 31 years.

S14C6 Simply Sustainable: Creating an Edible and Ecological Landscape for the Spring Season

Day/Time:  Tuesdays, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  April 22, 29, May 6, 13, 20
Location: National College, Room 201, 1515 Country Club Rd., Harrisonburg

Description: This course focuses on creating a spring landscape or garden with edible and wildlife attraction.  Divided into a lecture in the first half of the class and a field trip (weather permitting) in the second, the lectures touch on the basics of landscape and garden design, planting techniques, pest control, the ecosystems of the Central Shenandoah Valley, history of landscape design, plant selection (particularly edible and native plants) and basic maintenance.  Some of the field trips include the JMU Arboretum, Liberty Street Community Garden and New Community Project in Harrisonburg, Duck Run Cemetery near Penn Laird and Radical Roots Farm near Keezletown.

Instructor:  Nate Miller, a native of Rockingham County, has been working with edible and native plants and environmental methods in gardening and landscaping since childhood.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in art, with a concentration in environmental science, and a master’s degree in landscape architecture.  Nate currently runs a landscape design consulting business and is working on a book on ecological landscaping for the Southeastern United States.

S14C7 “Not a Quadrille in a Ballroom”: Literary Responses to World War I

Day/Time:  Wednesdays, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 23, 30, May 7, 14, 21
Location: Detwiler Auditorium, Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community, 1501 Virginia Ave, Harrisonburg

Description: Walt Whitman said of the recently concluded American Civil War that it was “not a quadrille in a ballroom.”  His understated observation applies just as aptly to World War I, which erupted exactly 100 years ago.  That conflict, sometimes called “The Great War,” was “great” in the sense of its carnage, with dead and maimed combatants not surpassed until World War II.  This course will examine the responses of the era’s writers to the war’s consequences, both on and off the battle field.  Among the writers covered are Erich Maria Remarque, Ernest Hemingway, Wilfred Owen, and Siegfried Sassoon.  Stanley Kubrick’s classic 1957 film Paths of Glory will also be shown.

InstructorSince retiring from the JMU English department, LLI member Robin McNallie has taught approximately 20 courses with LLI.

S14C8 Acquiring and Living with Art 

(Limited to 20 participants)
Day/Time:  Wednesdays, 1:00 – 3:30 p.m. 
(Note different time schedule)
Dates:  April 23, 30, May 7, 14 
Location: Instructors’ homes. Addresses provided to participants

Description: This class will focus on selecting art for the home and garden.  You will see examples of many types of art and the fun and reward of collecting and displaying art.  Classes will be held at three houses, each displaying different approaches and each challenging instructors and students alike to take a new look at art already in their collections. Tips will be given on topics such as how to frame, how to place pictures, dealing with sculptures, and the meaning of a print.  Classes will be held in the homes of Earlynn J. Miller in Harrisonburg, Nathaniel and Mary Jane Kirkland in Edinburg, and Donald H. Albright in Mount Jackson.  In her home, Miller will discuss adapting a 1970’s home through the use of art, and artist Lynn Lough will share her experiences with installation art and how to bring ordinary objects together as art statements.  The Kirkland’s will describe their experience in designing and building a new home, focusing on natural surroundings and their art collection.  Albright will explain how he decorated an 1880 farm house.  

Instructor:  Earlynn J. Miller is Professor Emerita of the School of Theatre and Dance at JMU.  Donald H. Albright served thirty years in the U. S. Foreign Service as a Cultural Affairs Officer.  Both Miller and Albright are members of the Advisory Council of the College of Visual and Performing Arts at JMU.

S14C9 Shenandoah National Park – The Clash of Cultures

Class Full
Day/Time:  Wednesdays, April 23, 1:00 – 3:30 p.m., April 30, May 7, 14; 12:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Dates:  April 23, 30, May 7, 14  (Note different time schedules)
Location: Elkton Community Center, 20593 Blue and Gold Dr., Elkton

Description: Join us as we explore the conflicts and consequences caused by the clash of opposing cultures in the creation of Shenandoah National Park.  We will visit the actual sites of the lost people and lifestyles of the various cultures that created and made the park as it is today.  Our search will take us from the ruins of Pocosin to the elegant teas and social parties of the rich and famous.  We will cover the culture of mountain life; occupations, churches, schools, food, social activities, medical remedies, folklore, and myth.  We will also consider some future concerns of Shenandoah National Park.  Our study will combine classroom discussions with field trips (via carpooling) to historic sites.  All classes and trips will begin at the Elkton Recreation Center. Participants must be able to hike two miles round trip without assistance.
Additional fees:  Presidential Tea - approximately $20 per person to be paid to Sandra Conrad prior to class.  Participants will be notified of fee amount two weeks before the start of class.
Instructors:  LLI members Jim Lawson and Sandra Conrad are co-leaders.

S14C10 Tai Chi / Yoga Fusion

Day/Time:  Wednesdays, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  April 23, 30, May 7, 14, 21
Location: RMH Wellness Center, 2500 Wellness Dr.

Description: Tai Chi and Yoga are both based on ancient forms of martial arts.  While different in practice, they share the same outcome of diversity of movement, and harmony between mind and body.  This class wil be primarily a movement class focusing on breath, posture, balance, strength, and coordination.  Tai Chi/Yoga fusion is for all levels and backgrounds and is being offered in all sessions.  Although this class will build upon the Session A and B classes, they are not a prerequisite for this session.

Instructor:  Gwynn Harrison earned a M.S. Degree in Physical Education from West Virginia University and has been a college swimming coach.  For the past nine years Gwynn has been a group fitness instructor at the RMH Wellness Center.

S14C11 Awaken to Your Dreams

Day/Time:  Thursdays, 9:00 – 11:00a.m.
Dates:  April 24, May 1, 8, 15, 22
Location: Blue Ridge Hall, room 333, 601 University Blvd., Harrisonburg

Description: People have explored the meaning of their dreams for thousands of years.  Though dream images are a symbolic language of hidden meanings, dreams are meaningful when understood.  Through conversation, art, self-dialogue, and dream drama, this course will offer greater self-awareness, more understanding of the language of dreams, increased communication between your conscious and unconscious worlds, and a look at life from a new perspective.  Practical hints on remembering dreams and working with them will be included.

Suggested reading:  Understanding Dreams, Mary Ann Mattoon, Spring Publications 

Instructor:  Pamela Beverage, Ed.D., LPC has completed several years of post-doctoral studies in Jungian psychology.  Currently, she is an analytic candidate at the Centre for Research and Study in Depth Psychology According to C. G. Jung and Marie Louise VonFranz in Switzerland.  She has facilitated group discussions for more than 35 years.

S14C12 What to do with Oil Pastels 

(Limited to 15 participants)
Day/Time:  Thursdays, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  April 24, May 1, 8, 15, 22
Location: Village Hall, Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community, 1501 Virginia Ave, Harrisonburg

Description: Oil pastels are an art medium that affords the opportunity to paint without brushes or water.  You can use an oil pastel stick as you would a drawing pencil or crayon but achieve an oil paint look and feel.  You will learn various ways to blend these oil paint sticks and to create drawings ranging from abstract to realistic.

Supply list:  Oil pastels in at least 12 colors (do not get Artist Loft brand at Michael’s), oil pastel paper or pad, drawing pencil, white eraser, spray fixative for oil pastels.

Instructor:  Maribeth D. Nolde is a certified art educator who worked in public schools for over 26 years.  She has taught with JMU-LLI for more than four years.  She is an artist who has shown locally and in many other areas.  She is a member of the CoArt art collective in Staunton.

S14C13 Seeking Spring Flora

Day/Time:  Thursdays, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  April 24, May 1, 8, 15, 22
Location: National College, Room 201, 1515 Country Club Rd., Harrisonburg

Description: In this class we will take three, 3 ½ hour field trips.  The focus will be on the identification of spring wildflowers, ferns, shrubs, and trees native to the Shenandoah Valley.  These trips will be to Bald Rock in Verona, to Reddish Knob in Briery Branch, and to Big Meadows and other sites in Shenandoah National Park.  We will identify plants based on leaf numbers, flower petal colors, seed types, bark texture, and branch structure of trees that have not yet leafed out.  The instructor will bring the newly published Flora of Virginia to aid in identification.  Class members are urged to bring cameras, wildflower guides, and journals in which to record the memorable moments and plants from each trip.

Instructor:  Nate Miller, a native of Rockingham County, has been working with edible and native plants and environmental methods in gardening and landscaping since childhood.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in art, with a concentration in environmental science, and a master’s degree in landscape architecture.  Nate currently runs a landscape design consulting business and is working on a book on ecological landscaping for the Southeastern United States.

S14NHB   New Horizons Concert Band

Day/Time:  Thursdays, 3:30-5:30 p.m.
Dates:  January 16 – May 1, excluding March 13
Location:  TBD, JMU Campus
Cost:  $130 for the entire 15 weeks or pro-rated per semester

DescriptionNew Horizons Music programs provide entry points to music-making for adults, including those with no musical experience at all and those who have been inactive for a long time.  Small group instruction and practice allow members to develop or redevelop their skills and to play band arrangements.  The cost of instruments varies and rent-to-own programs are available at stores around town.  The New Horizons concept of making music provides a non-intimidating environment for you to begin or to resume playing an instrument.  It offers you the chance to play the instrument you have always dreamed about and to progress at your own rate.  You can even practice with the band for a couple of weeks free before you commit!

Instructor:  Will Dabback holds degrees in music education from West Chester University and the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music (M.M., 2000, Ph.D. 2007).  He served as an instructor and conductor of the New Horizons program at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY, which was the first such program in the country.  He currently teaches at JMU.

S14C14   The Life of Franz Liszt

Day/Time:  Thursdays and Fridays, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  May 8, 9, 15, 16, 22   (Note different schedule)
Location: To be Determined

Description: The life of the great composer Franz Liszt extended almost throughout the nineteenth century. He was both kissed by Beethoven and inspired the new music of the 20th century. His music and ideas shaped the great romantic movement of the 19th century. JMU is fortunate to host the 50th annual American Liszt Society Convention in early June. As JMU prepares for this great festival, and welcomes over forty world-renowned performers, this course will overview Liszt as man, musician, and musical missionary.

Suggested reading:  Franz Liszt: The Virtuoso Year, 1811-1847; Franz Liszt, The Weimar Years, 1848-1861Franz Liszt: The Final Years, 1861-1886, all by Alan Walker.   

Instructor:  Eric Ruple has been a professor of piano at JMU since 1987. He performs regularly in the area and around the country. He served for a year as Interim Director of the School of Music at JMU. His musical interests in addition to Liszt, are Beethoven and the music of the 20th century.

S14C15 A Brief History of Disbelief

Day/Time:  Fridays, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 25, May 2, 9, 16, 23
Location: National College, Room 206, 1515 Country Club Rd., Harrisonburg

Description: This discussion-based seminar will center on the 2004 BBC television series “A Brief History of Disbelief,” hosted by Jonathan Miller.  Employing this three-part series and other videos, we will explore the historical development of viewpoints that depart from traditional Abrahamic monotheism (belief in and worship of an almighty God).  These philosophies include materialism, pantheism, deism, atheism, and agnosticism. 

Instructor:  Bob Bersson is a JMU Professor Emeritus of Art and Art History and an LLI instructor in diverse subject areas, such as beginning golf and the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.  He is a founder and coordinator of the local Interfaith Initiative for Peace and Justice.

S14C16   Music and Rhythm: Tools for Wellness

(Limited to 20 participants)
Day/Time: Fridays, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  May 2 and 9   (Note different schedule)
Location: Bridgewater Retirement Community, Houff Community Center, Mack A room

Description: Experience the healing power of music throught PLAY.  No musical experience or special skills are needed for this two-session workshop.  Using small hand drums and percussion instruments, participants will learn to create joyful music together.  You will discover ways to improve coordination, imagination, and creative expression. You will also learn simple techniques to use outside class, including how to use breath, voice, and minimal movement along with music.  Rediscover what human beings have known for millennia: music is a powerful tool for wellness.

Instructor:  Mike Deaton, a musician with 19 years of experience, has played to crowds as large as 5,000 people and performed for Archbishop Desmond Tutu.  Mike has led workshops in pre-K through university-level classrooms, as well as at many conferences and festivals.  He has a large collection of percussion instruments from around the world and enjoys teaching people to use them for harmony, empowerment, and self-healing.

S14C17 Photography around the ‘Burg

Day/Time:  Fridays, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Dates:  April 25, May 2, 9, 16, 23
Location: National College, Room 201, 1515 Country Club Rd., Harrisonburg

Description: This is a course for beginning to intermediate photographers geared towards learning how a camera works and how to adjust the controls so you can get the results you want – not what the camera wants!  We will be taking several short field trips and then review the results the next week.

Instructor:  Frank Marshman has been a professional camera repairman for 40 years in Harrisonburg, and has held numerous positions in photography societies and organizations.

S14C18    Paint4FUN with Diane 

(Limited to 10 participants, selected by lottery) Day/Time:  Friday, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Dates:  June 6   
Location: Village Hall, Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community, 1501 Virginia Ave, Harrisonburg
Participants for this class will be chosen by lottery.  Do not enclose payment with registration form.  Payment will be requested at the time of notification.

Description: This class provides participants the opportunity to paint a Wilson Bickford design of a beautiful little girl in a green dress who is walking along the seashore.  In this one-day workshop, each class member will complete an 11”x14” canvas that will be ready to hang.  We will use oils that clean up with water and mix well with acrylics.  Please bring your own drinks and snacks or bag lunch.

Additional fees:  There will be a $5.00 fee, payable to the instructor, at the first class to cover the cost of all supplies. 

Instructor:  Diane Ricketson is a certified Dorothy Dent instructor and Wilson R. Bickford painting partner.  She has been a painter for over 20 years and started teaching beginner sessions in 2010.