OLLI Special Interest Groups

SIGs provide learning or recreational opportunities outside of the scheduled OLLI classes.

Hiking 2011

Hiking Club

Keep checking in -- more hikes will be added!

Join the Hiking Club SIG to get email reminders. There are three ways to join:

1) Log in to your account on OLLI's ProClass site.

Then click on "My Account" in the grey menu bar across the top. Scroll down to the SIGS box, click to make a check mark in the box beside Hiking Club, and then click the "save" button.
   **NOTE: It won't let you save if you've left blank any of the fields marked with an asterisk. If you scroll back up to the top, there will be a message in red if you've left any of those required fields blank.**

2) Send us an email at UAF-OLLI@alaska.edu telling us you want to be on the Hiking list. Be sure to include your first and last name.

3) Call the OLLI office at 474-6607.


Wednesday, June 11

Chena Lakes Recreation Nature Trial

with Mary Matthews

This is a 2.5 mile flat and easy loop taking about 1.5 hours. According to “Best Easy Hikes in Fairbanks,” this is “an unspoiled gem tucked away in a forested corner of the park.” A free natural trail guide is included.   Meet at Alaska Coffee Roasters on Geist Road at 11:30 a.m. for car pooling.   Drive 15 miles to Chena Lakes.   Bring a sack lunch, good walking shoes, mosquito repellent.   Return approximately 2:30 pm.   


Thursday, June 19

Alpine Savage Hike in Denali National Park

with Patricia Mata-Celis                 

This is a gem of a hike, for the serious hiker.  Plan on all day with a dinner stop at 49th State Brewery in Healy.

Meet at Patricia’s house at 8 am for the drive to Denali National Park. We will car pool to the Savage River parking lot in Denali National Park, about a 2 ½ hr. drive.  Here we will start a serious ascent to fabulous overlooks of the Alaska Range and Denali.  You must have strong knees for this part.   Then comes a descent to Mountain Vista Parking lot where a shuttle will return hikers to the Savage Parking Lot.  This hike is about 4 miles long and will take 3-4 hours. You will need food, water, hiking poles, good boots, essentials (rain, mosquitos, etc.) for the day. Those not choosing to stop for dinner may drive their own cars.


SIGs are led by OLLI members

You must be a current member of OLLI to participate in SIGS.

Contact the OLLI office at 474-6607 or UAF-OLLI@alaska.edu to join:

Hiking Club

Let's Travel

Games for Brains

Let's Play Pictionary

Rock Hounds

Lifelong Learning Book Club


Let's Travel

This group was formed to exchange ideas and tour information or just contact one another when we need a travel companion. This informal group primarily exchanges email to share travel discounts, travel tours and other travel information. Leader is Marcia Boyette.

Winter Tours Offered by UAF Summer Sessions 
Yes, "Summer Sessions" arranges "winter" trips.  Get more information on their website www.uaf.edu/summer/travel/


Games for Brains

Mondays 10:05 – 11:15 (following Strong Women Class)
Fairbanks Senior Center (North Star Counsel on Aging)
1424 Moore Street
If interested call Darlene Supplee at 452-1735
40 below zero is the cutoff point for closing the Center – call 844 for temperature


Let's Play Pictionary

This SIG is currently on hiatus - If interested.
Please call Barbara  Rondine at 456-2462.


Rock Hounds

Meet the second Friday of each month with a potluck at 6:30 pm in room #154 of the University Park building. We  plan to have a field trip once a month during the summer.  For more information contact Maria Polly at akmpolly@ hotmail.com.


Lifelong Learning Book Club

Meets seven times a year on third Tuesdays 1:30 - 3:00 pm, Noel Wien Library Conference Room

Discussion Leader: Georgine Olson

December 2013no discussion (winter break)

January 21, 2014 (one author, two books) –
Paris in Love: a memoir by Eloisa James

2007 was a bad year for best-selling romance author James. Cancer claimed her mother, and she learned that she, too, had the disease. Though her cancer was treatable, James and her husband felt they needed a respite. Taking a sabbatical from Fordham University, where she is known as Shakespearean scholar Mary Bly, James and her Rutgers professor husband spent the year in Paris with their two children. James, planning to work on various literary projects, instead found herself on Facebook and Twitter, musing about food, fashion, and family. These musings became the basis of this charming memoir of a healing year where, without the constant claims of academia and of publishing, the family rediscovered simpler pleasures of life. (memoir; 2012; 260 pgs)

Desperate Duchesses by Eloisa James

Set in the scandalous Georgian era, this is a gracefully written, lusciously sensual, delectably witty, and exquisitely romantic historical romance. If Shakespeare had written an 18th-century romantic comedy, it might look something like this - offering a larger-than-life portrait of Georgian England, complete with oversexed aristocrats, posturing courtesans and a feuding duke and duchess. (romance; 2007; 384 pgs)

February 18, 2014 - Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

In the 1920s, a couple in their early 50s takes advantage of cheap land to build a homestead in Alaska. But the work is backbreaking; the winters are brutally cold, and their isolation only reminds them of their childlessness. There's a glimmer of light, however, in the mysterious girl who lurks near their cabin. Though she's initially skittish, in time she becomes a fixture in the couple's lives –and it’s uncertain whether the girl is real or not. The writing style is spare and straightforward, and there’s enough detail about hunting and farming to avoid familiar pieties about the Last Frontier. The book's tone throughout has a lovely push and pull - Alaska's punishing landscape and rough-hewn residents pitted against the child’s charmed appearances – with an ending both surprising and true. (Alaskana, 2012, 336 pgs)

March 18, 2014 - Dancing at the Rascal Fair by Ivan Doig

In 1889, two young Scotsmen, Rob Barclay and Angus McCaskill arrive in Montana, where for 30 years they struggle to find personal happiness and wrest a living from this demanding land. Losing the woman he loves, Angus marries Rob's sister Adair; their difficulties create conflict, and then a bitter breach, between the two men. But if the thorny individualism of Rob and Angus results in lives that are never easy, they are beautifully described in Doig's strong, savory prose. America's frontier history comes vividly to life in this absorbing saga filled with memorable characters. (historical fiction; 1987; 405 pgs)

April 15, 2014- Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks

Brooks imagines the life of Caleb Cheeshahteaumauk, the first Native American to graduate from Harvard. The story is told by Bethia Mayfield, the daughter of a preacher who traveled to Martha’s Vineyard to “bring Christ to the Indians.” In 1660, when Bethia is 12, the family takes Caleb, a Wampanoag Indian, into their home to prepare him for boarding school. Bethia is a bright scholar herself, and though education for women is discouraged, she absorbs the lessons taught to Caleb and her brother Makepeace. When the boys are sent to Cambridge, Bethia accompanies them as a servant to a professor. She marries a Harvard scholar, journeys with him to Padua, and finally returns to her beloved island. In flashbacks, Brooks skillfully relates the woes of the Indian Wars, the smallpox epidemic, and Caleb’s untimely death shortly after his graduation.   (historical fiction, 2011, 306 pgs)

May 20, 2014 - booktalk & title selection for September 2014–April 2015