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Lifelong Learning Lecture series gets underway

By Meg Wempe
Special to The PREVIEW

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” — Henry Ford

Come and stay young with us. Starting tonight at the library is another six-week Lifelong Learning Lecture series that is free and open to everyone. The topics vary, and you’re welcome to come to as many as you’d like. This spring’s series starts tonight, Thursday, April 17, and runs until Thursday, May 22. Each Thursday, beginning at 6 p.m., the Ruby Sisson Library will host a talk. We hope you’ll attend one — or all — of them.

This series starts (April 17) with a talk from Ros Wu and Phyllis Wheaton titled “Wilderness History and Law in the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act.” Come and learn how the Act came to be and some of the key cornerstones of it.

Next week (April 24), we will hear from Ivan Geroy, a Pagosa Springs hydrologist. We will learn about water and wilderness, and the impacts of wilderness on water and air in the Four Corners region.

That talk will be followed by Dr. Jean Strahlendorf (May 1), whose talk is entitled “Neuronal Plasticity: It’s Importance in Memory and Brain Repair.” Neural plasticity is a process in which nerve cells (neurons) change their structure, function and organization in response to novel situations or stimuli. It’s involved in learning, memory and recovery following brain injury. This talk will include a discussion of some of the newer approaches and treatments being investigated, or currently employed, to circumvent and address memory issues and dementia (such as Alzheimer’s disease) as we age.

The following week (May 8), we’ll hear from Kircher, local author and doctor. Join us for a 30-minute film about near-death experiences followed by a question-and-answer period.

The series continues (May 15) with a talk from Julie Loar. Her talk is called “Egypt: Ancient Deities and Timeless Wisdom.” The monuments and history of Egypt have endless fascination for people around the world. The Egyptian civilization flourished for more than four thousand years and permeates most cultures. Why are we so fascinated with pyramids and pharaohs? What has drawn millions of people to visit the country that borders the great Nile River? Hear personal experiences of the lure of this ancient land drawn from her many journeys to Egypt.

The last lecture of this spring’s series (May 22) will come from Judith Reynolds from Fort Lewis College. She’s spoken in past Lifelong Learning Lecture series. This time, she’ll be speaking on Georgia O’Keeffe. Join us for a one-hour presentation on the developmental stages of the artist’s long life and medical history.

More information is available at the library. We look forward to having you come in and stay young with us through continued learning. If you have any questions, you can call the Ruby Sisson Library at 264-2209 and ask for Meg.

This story was posted on April 17, 2014.