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!

Monday, February 27, 2012

"Come Blow Your Horn" -- February 23, 2012



On the last trip of Winter 2012, OLLI traveled to Conklin's Barn II Dinner Theatre in Goodfield, Illinois.

Our evening began with a presentation by Jim Ludwig, Professor Emeritus of Theatre at Bradley University, about Neil Simon's writing legacy. After dinner, we watched the performance of "Come Blow Your Horn," a romp about a man who moves in with his brother in New York City.

The performance, which featured well-known local actors Bob Lane, Jr. and Mary Simon, was followed by an exclusive question-and-answer session with the cast.

For more information about Conklin's, please visit www.barn2.com.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

ICC Cat Dealer Service Tech Training Facility -- February 22, 2012



For the first time ever, OLLI visited the Illinois Central College Caterpillar Dealer Service Technician Training Facility in East Peoria.

During our tour, Mark Matthews, program coordinator, explained how the program combines classroom and real-world experience to teach engine fundamentals, machine hydraulics, Caterpillar fuel systems, transmissions and torque converters, undercarriage/final drives, and more.

OLLI thanks Mark and his staff for welcoming our group to the facility.

For more information about the program, please visit www.icc.edu/ait

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

182nd Airlift Wing -- February 21, 2012



The 182nd Airlift Wing, Illinois Air National Guard, is a diverse group of citizen-airmen from our community serving the nation's call to duty. It also maintains and operates eight C-130 Hercules aircraft capable of transporting large amounts of personnel and equipment over long distances.

During our visit to the base, Colonel William Robertson ('83), the Wing Commander, led a tour to explore the Wing's mission to include the maintenance, flying operations, and air support to the Army, Security Forces, and much more. He also provided an update on the Wing's current worldwide missions.

OLLI thanks Col Robertson and his staff for welcoming our group to the base.

For more information about the 182nd, please visit www.182aw.ang.af.mil.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Bass Pro Shops -- February 17, 2012



On our first tour of the new Bass Pro Shops in East Peoria, OLLI members got an inside look at the store as staff guided us through the massive outdoor sports center.

We learned about the store's three dozen animal trophies, hand-painted murals of Banner Marsh and Starved Rock, and a waterfall that cascades into a 27,000-gallon fresh water aquarium featuring native Illinois River fish.

For more information about the store, please visit www.basspro.com

USDA NCAUR (Ag Lab) -- February 16, 2012



On what is fast becoming one of the most popular learning trips, OLLI members traveled to the National Center for Agriculture Utilization Resarch (NCAUR) near the Bradley University campus.

During this tour, we had the rare opportunity for a first-hand look at the lab, home to more than 100 Ph.D. research scientists who invent industrial and food products and develop technologies to improve environmental quality. We also had the chance to see the science at work and speak with professionals who conduct the groundbreaking research.

For more information about the NCAUR, please visit www.ars.usda.gov.

South Side Mission -- February 15, 2012



In mid-February, OLLI had an inside peek at the South Side Mission and learned all about the programs offered by the non-profit church group.

During the trip, we also learned more about the South Side Mission's Culinary Arts School, a program designed to help under- and unemployed men and women train for careers in the hospitality industry. We toured the school, met Chef Chris Franzoni and his students, and dined on lunch prepared by the students.

For more information about the South Side Mission, please visit www.southsidemission.org.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Peoria City Hall -- February 10, 2012



Peoria City Hall, constructed 113 years ago on the site of an outdoor produce market at the corner of Madison and Fulton, has been celebrated recently with a 52-page booklet about its priceless art and architecture.

The author of that booklet, Dr. Peter J. Couri, was our guide as we took a private tour of City Hall and learned all about the planning, politics, and Peorians involved in constructing the Flemish Renaissance-style building.

During our visit, we saw the building's priceless art, plus its Italian marble wainscoting, copper cupola bell tower, ornamented stepped gables, and the open atrium rotunda with a stained glass skylight.

OLLI thanks Dr. Couri and the City Hall staff for welcoming our group!

Homeway Homes -- February 8, 2012



OLLI members who'd ever wondered about the modular homes on display off Interstate 74 in Goodfield had a perfect opportunity to learn how they're designed and built when we toured the Homeway Homes Factory.

We traveled to Deer Creek to tour the factory and speak with employees about the company's modern design and construction processes. We saw the staff at work throughout each step of the building stages, including floor and wall build, roof set, plumbing and insulation, siding, and final inspection and wrap.

After the factory tour, we headed to Goodfield to tour two completed model homes. OLLI thanks the staff at Homeway Homes for welcoming our group and answering our questions about the building process.

For more information about Homeway Homes, please visit www.homewayhomes.com

Friday, February 3, 2012

Peoria County Coroner's Office -- February 2, 2012



On this repeat trip, we learned about the responsibilities of Peoria County Coroner Johnna Ingersoll, an elected official charged with investigating sudden, unusual, and traumatic deaths and assuring those bodies are examined, identified, and, if necessary, autopsied. Our visit also included an observation of a jury inquest, which is held weekly to determine the manner of some deaths occurring in Peoria County.

OLLI thanks Coroner Ingersoll for spending time with our group and leading a very insightful discussion about the duties of the office.

For more information about the Coroner’s Office, visit www.peoriacounty.org

University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria -- February 1, 2012



On the first of February, OLLI visited the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria (UICOMP).

As part of the nation’s largest public medical school, UICOMP offers a balance of classroom education and clinical experience. During our visit, we learned how the school aims to improve healthcare in our community via education, research, and patient care. The tour included a presentation by the school's dean, Dr. Sarah Rausch, and updates on UICOMP's latest cancer research.

For more information about UICOMP, please visit www.peoria.medicine.uic.edu

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