Celebrating 20 Years!

Celebrating 20 Years!


The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Bradley University (OLLI) is a group of more than 1,000 individuals, age 50 and over, who learn together through three distinct programs: OLLI Classes, OLLI Learning Trips, and OLLI Study Groups.

Here, members can discuss what they learned, what they enjoyed, and offer suggestions to enhance future program offerings.

Take a look at the photos we're taking, and the discussions we're having as OLLI members.

Whether we're in class, in town, or out of town ... we're on the go, having fun, and constantly learning.


We look forward to reading your comments!

While you're online, be sure to visit our website www.bradley.edu/continue/olli to register for our programs.

Don't forget -- OLLI has its own YouTube Channel, where you can see video clips of Learning Trips, Classes, and Study Groups!

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Peoria Journal Star- Aug 20, 2014

OLLI members had the opportunity to take a learning trip to the Peoria Journal Star. Our tour guides were Rae Anne Hamp and Bernie Drake, our own OLLI President.

The trip featured a tour of the building, a mainstay visible from War Memorial Drive that dates back to the 1950's with an addition completed in 2004 to house new high tech printing and packaging equipment.

Phil Jordan, Marketing Manager, met with the group and discussed how our local newspaper is in good financial shape and what a huge impact its readership actually has on the community.

Members took a peek into the newsroom and offices and even swung by the "cavern" left behind when the old press was dismantled once the new press was put into service.

Our guides led us through the print shop, explaining the printing process while showing us the computer control room, ink and paper storage and of course the 4-story press!

Following the tour, Mike Bailey and Steve Tarter shared their perspective on the news business and the future of print journalism.

OLLI would like to thank the Peoria Journal Star and their amazing staff!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Aurora Architecture - Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014

Our final regional bus trip of the season was an outstanding way to finish out our summer schedule. For our first stop of the day we visited the Farnsworth House. One OLLI architecture buff commented she had wanted to visit this house since the first time she learned of it many years ago.

Ludwig mies van der Rohe’s masterpiece is a world famous example of modernist domestic architecture, which represents the builder's minimalist expression of structure and space. We arrived at the house after our half mile stroll along the river. I'll have to admit my first impression of the one-room plain structure totally enclosed by glass, made me wonder how we would spend more than a few minutes viewing it. In fact, there was way more to see than first met the eye.The guides were wonderful, giving us the history of the house and the relationship between the owner and the architect. Once we were actually inside the house, although it was small, it was spacious and peaceful, especially watching the river flow by through the floor to ceiling glass.

We had a delicious lunch at Two Brothers Roundhouse, and learned about the history of our lunch spot, which happened to be over 150 years old, the oldest Roundhouse in North America.

After lunch, we headed to the Paramount Theatre for a behind-the-scenes tour of this recently renovated theater which hosts a variety of shows, including a Broadway series.

The theater has an interesting background, designed by Rapp & Rapp, nationally known architects of movie theatres, who combined the original plan of a Venetian theme with the fashionable Art Deco influence of the 1920s and early 1930s, it is truly a breathtaking palace.

We went backstage, and then upstairs into the dressing rooms and even had a chance to stand on stage and take in the view of the majestic theater. While on stage, OLLI member Gary Clark took the opportunity to serenade his fellow members with a quick song-- what a treat!

Our final tour of the day was the Tanner House, an Italianate-style home to prominent merchant William Tanner. The house was amazing to browse through, featuring high ceilings, oak grained woodwork, ornate plaster decoration, and unique furnishings.

Our Aurora Architecture trip gave us chance to soak up the last of summer and take in the beauty of three distinct styles of architecture.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Cottage District Garden Walk - August 7, 2014

For so many of us who have lived in Peoria for the greater part of our lives, it was such a surprise to come across the beautiful Cottage District, a part of the Bradley-Moss Neighborhoods.

These homes are not only displays of incredible architecture, but also house beautiful gardens worthy of their own attention.

On today's Cottage District Garden Walk, OLLI members were lead by long-time area-resident, florist, and gardener Dan Callahan on this two-mile loop around the Bradley-Moss area.

Starting at the corner of Duryea and Moss, we slowly circled our way around the Cottage District, taking the time to appreciate and explore the intricate gardens. Dan Callahan and his team added commentary on the architectural highlights and social background of the tour. One of the highlights was a beautiful home nestled-away in the bluffs off Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. It is incredible to see the restoration and renovation that has taken place in what was once an 1800s servant's living quarters. This modern and classic home is surrounded by gardens containing indigenous plants.

The garden walk continued all-along Moss Avenue until we wrapped back around towards Main St. Having worked-up an appetite, our meal at the Fieldhouse felt extra-rewarding.

We are thankful for our friends in the Cottage District for opening up their gardens and homes, and allowing us to explore Peoria's many hidden treasures.

OLLI at Bradley

Pat Sullivan's Downtown - August 6, 2014

Well, it has been over a week since our last trip, but our first trip of the week was definitely an excellent way to begin wrapping up our summer adventures!

During this learning trip, OLLI members ventured downtown to Peoria's up-and-coming Warehouse District.

Pat Sullivan is a man who turned a vision into a reality. We were lucky enough to receive a comprehensive, behind-the-scenes tour of several of Pat's projects--collectively known as "Le Vieux Carre," or old square in French.

After a wonderful meal at Kelleher's, Pat gave an overview of the vision he once had for Peoria's Warehouse District, and how that vision manifested itself. It's truly incredible to think that one man could drive such large-scale renovation and restoration.

As we walked through the connecting buildings and abandoned warehouses, we too, began to see Pat's vision. In a short amount of time, the Water Street renovations have inspired a cultural renaissance in downtown Peoria.

Pubs, restaurants, breweries, offices, businesses, and apartments all contribute to 'Le Vieux Carre.'

For many, the highlight of the trip was the tour of the Water St. apartments--these luxurious lofts, with their high ceilings, exposed pipes, and cozy brick walls make you feel like you're living in NYC. They present the perfect marriage between modern and historic.

The visit concluded with a look at some of the projects that are currently under way--but, it's safe to say that Pat Sullivan will not stop until his vision is complete, and we can't wait!

OLLI at Bradley

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