Special Programs

In addition to classes and workshops, OLLI offers community programs, special events, lectures and more.

Most events are scheduled here at the Reuter Center and are free and open to everyone • Call 828.251.6140 for additional details.


Advance Care Planning

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UNC Asheville will hold an advance care planning (ACP) workshop on Thursday, June 20, 2019, 7-9 p.m.  The workshop will feature a panel whose members are experienced in addressing end-of-life issues. The discussion will include communicating your treatment wishes to loved ones and to medical personnel, ethical and legal issues, and the uses of advance directives.  Ample time will be reserved for questions. Assistance will be provided for anyone wishing to complete a legally valid advance directive, including the notarization required in North Carolina, using the NC ACP "Short Form". 

Preparation for you to do before the workshop:  Talk to your possible "power of attorney for healthcare", the person who would make health care decisions if you are unable.  Click here for a video of a sample conversation, starring OLLI member Mary Campbell.  If you have internet access and a printer, click here to access a copy of the ACP Short form.  Please print the form, study it, and bring it to the workshop along with any questions you might have for the panel. 

If you have never been admitted to Mission Hospital, but want your advanced directives added to the Mission Medical Record, click here for an “Advance Directive Permission form” to fill out. Also, if you have existing advance directives, you may mail the “Permission Form” along with a copy of your existing Advance Directive to Mission for addition to the Mission medical record (or you can get help doing this at the next ACP workshop).

The workshop will take place in the Reuter Center on the UNCA campus, at the north end of the campus map (Click Here to see map). This workshop is free and open to everyone, adults of all ages.  For more information, call OLLI, 828.251.6140 or email  olli@unca.eduClick here to view an event flier.   

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Astronomy Club of Asheville

The Astronomy Club of Asheville meets the first Thursday of each month, from 7-9 pm, (except for January and July), with an interesting lineup of speakers and topics. OLLI members may attend the club meetings and stargazes, with club members on hand to advise and assist them in the basics of astronomy and the techniques of observing celestial phenomena. Meetings are scheduled for June 6, August 1, September 5, and October 3, 2019 (there will be no meeting in July). For more information on the Astronomy Club of Asheville, visit their website at www.astroasheville.org

The Autumn Players

The Autumn Players (affiliated with Asheville Community Theatre) is a troupe of seasoned actors dedicated to taking the theatre experience into the community. Their words jump from the page with conviction and emotion, and these actors make their stories come to life. Scheduled at 2:30 p.m., in the Reuter Center Manheimer Room, tickets are $8 at the door; mark your calendar for:

  • Sunday, September 1 at 2:30 PM - Arms And The Man by George Bernard Shaw. Directed by Jim Reid.
  • Sunday, September 29 at 2:30 PM - Einstein And The Polar Bear by Tom Griffin. Directed by Ellen Pappas.

Behind the Scenes at NC Stage

Go behind the scenes of professional theatre with NC Stage Artistic Director and co-founder Charlie Flynn-McIver.  Explore the themes of this season’s plays, talk with the actors, directors and designers about design concepts and the rehearsal process, and experience a scene or two performed live.  Join us for an insider’s view of how theatre happens!  Free and open to the public, this series is scheduled in the Manheimer Room as follows: April 26, 1:30 p.m.  For more information on NC Stage, click here to visit their website.

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The Carolinas’ Nature Photographers Association

The Carolinas’ Nature Photographers Association (CNPA) was founded in 1992 to promote nature photography in the Carolinas, to help conserve and preserve the diverse natural ecosystems in the Carolinas and to educate others interested in nature and wildlife photography. The association is divided into regions for more close-at-hand activities. The CNPA-Asheville Region’s goal is to develop a group that will more fully experience the beauty of Western  North Carolina through photography. Activities in the Asheville Region include monthly meetings, photo outings, seminars, workshops, exhibits, photo contests, and image critiques. The monthly meetings are held at the Reuter Center on the second Sunday of each month from 5:30-8pm, June 9, July 14, and August 11, 2019.  For more information please visit: www.cnpa-asheville.org

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Death Cafe'

“Death Café” is an engaging gathering a storytelling experience holding as conversation. A conversation that too often alienates one in our death phobic culture. A new movement, a shift, is at play in recovering the ritual of being with death through personal storytelling of fears, loss, and death; a deepening ritual emerges and we build a culture of dying wisely. Join us at our next Death Cafe, the new holy ground or common ground and the wonders of being with dying, presented on Fridays,  April 19, and May 17, 2019, 5-6:30 p.m. facilitated by Thirdmessenger’s Karen Sanders, Greg Lathrop, and Sa’id Osio. You can learn more about Death Café by visiting: deathcafe.com/thirdmessenger.com and facebook.com/deathcafeasheville

Elisha Mitchell Audubon Society

The mission of the Elisha Mitchell chapter of the National Audubon Society is to protect birds and their habitats and to promote an awareness and appreciation of nature. EMAS schedules educational programs on the third Tuesdays of the month, June 18, and will resume again on September 17, 2019, 7 p.m., at the Reuter Center. Programs are free and open to the public.  Find out more at their website, www.emasnc.org, and plan to join them for the walks and talks. 

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Fab Fridays Lunch & Learn Lectures

On  Fridays, 11:30 a.m. - 1:15 p.m. during the term, this series of lunch and learn lectures continues to delight and inform. Held in the Manheimer Room, Fab Fridays are free and open to everyone. Purchase lunch in our Reuter Café or bring your own brown bag. End your week and start your weekend with Fab Fridays. Don’t miss these great programs.

  • May 17: Climate and Society – Lessons from Tourism--Marjorie McGuirk
    Marjorie McGuirk became a climatologist before climate was hot!  Her life long career in climatology began and ended with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) climate center in Asheville. There she learned the value of climate data for all sectors of society, such as energy, shipping, public health, water, buildings, and tourism. In the middle, her career took her to several climates, including Geneva, Switzerland. It was there in the 1990s that she realized climate change was real, was happening now, and was affecting important sectors of society.  With a focus on the impact of climate change on tourism, she will share her experiences in how climate change affects aspects of our daily lives. Yes, that’s right!  Drawing on her climate career and post-retirement touring, not to mention late lifelong learning Master of Liberal Arts diploma, she will show how climate change influences the places we love to visit, and alters the patterns of the tourism choices we make.   McGuirk is the Expert Consultant for the World Meteorological Organization’s Global Framework for Climate Services and a lead U.S. Government Reviewer for the Fifth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
  • Fall 2019 programming will resume on Friday, September 20th. 

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Midday Music with Pan Harmonia

Now in its 20th season, Asheville’s Pan Harmonia enjoys taking its music out of the concert hall and into unlikely spaces all around our community. Learn about the music and meet the musicians in informal conversation. Feel free to bring friends and your lunch. To learn more, visit: www.panharmonia.org

 • Friday, November 1, 2019, 2 p.m.  • Midday Music, Open rehearsal and interactive audience discussion: In celebration of its upcoming 20th season, Pan Harmonia has commissioned composer Dosia McKay to write a 13-15 minute three-movement work for voice, flute, bassoon, and guitar. This piece, composed and performed by women artists, sets to music words by women writers from North Carolina on themes of timely significance, specifically focusing on inclusivity and exclusivity regarding cultural, economic, and gender issues. This innovative work for the chamber music repertoire and for the citizens of North Carolina has been funded by an NCAC Program Support grant and private donors.

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Fall Member Social

COMING SOON! Be on the lookout for information about our Fall Member Social! We've got big plans!

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New to Medicare Class

Are you new to Medicare? Are you confused by the many choices? Unbiased and accurate information is available from trained volunteers from the North Carolina Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program. In partnership with OLLI, a free class will be held on Friday, September 13, 2-4 p.m. in the Reuter Center. The class will provide important information to assist you in understanding how Medicare works and what you need to do to obtain benefits and save money.  Spaces are limited so reserve your space by registering online at www.coabc.org.   In addition, beginning at 12 p.m., representatives from the Social Security Administration will be available to answer questions about Social Security benefits and Medicare enrollment. They will also provide detailed instructions for accessing the Agency’s online services at www.socialsecurity.gov.

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OLLI Authors

OLLI Authors is a book talk series designed to recognize the many very talented poetry and prose writers among OLLI members.  OLLI Authors features readings by two published authors. On Thursday, June 27, 2019, at 5:00 p.m.  OLLI Members will be the featured writers, reading from their works. This series is free and open to the public. Click here to view the OLLI Authors List that reflects books written by OLLI members while members of the OLLI community.

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 STEM Lectures

The theme for the upcoming STEM lectures is "STEM Activities on Campus."  These lectures will cover research both performed and in progress by UNC Asheville faculty and OLLI members.  In addition, it will cover faculty's research with students and outreach to the community.  Scheduled at 4:30 p.m. in the Reuter Center, this series is free and open to everyone.

  • STAY TUNED: Stem Lectures are on break, and will resume in the Fall, 2019. 

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Symphony Talk

Symphony Talks are an entertaining and educational way to hear about the music to be performed at the upcoming Asheville Symphony Orchestra (ASO) Masterworks Concerts.  The program begins with a presentation by Chip Kaufmann, who talks about the life and times of the featured composers.  ASO has just selected Darko Butorac as music director, and he will appear with the soloist for upcoming concerts to talk about how the orchestra prepares and to offer ways to listen to the performance. For more information about the Asheville Symphony Orchestra, or to find out how to purchase tickets for performances at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium, visit ashevillesymphony.org

  • Friday, May 10, 3 p.m. Darko Butorac with soloist, Simone Porter, violin (Márquez, Saint-Saëns, Stravinsky)

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WNC LGBTQ Oral History Project

On Saturday, June 8, 2019, the Reuter Center will host the WNC LGBTQ Oral History Project. The LGTBQ Oral History Archive project is a collaboration of the Blue Ridge Pride Center, YMCA of Western NC, and UNC Asheville. Together, they aim to document a richer, fuller, and more inclusive history of our region by recording the stories and memories of individuals who have spent much of their lives in the South.

Learn how to conduct oral histories within LGBTQ communities. You will learn both the art and the mechanics of conducting oral history interviews. The class will include a panel of members of the community who will share their perspectives on what to be sensitive to when interviewing someone from a stigmatized community. You will also learn about opportunities to participate in LGBTQ-A Oral History project. While we will focus on capturing LGBTQ oral histories, this training is free and open to all.

For more information and to sign up for the June 8th workshop, visit: https://www.blueridgepride.org/wnc-projects/oral-history/

WNC History Association Lecture

The mission of the Western North Carolina Historical Association (WNCHA) is the preservation and promotion of the history of Western North Carolina through the care, interpretation, and presentation of the Smith-McDowell House, the education of the public through lectures, exhibitions, publications, and related events and the facilitation of cooperation among regional historical organizations.  A $5 donation is requested at the door (WNCHA members are free).

 (Stay tuned for more information!)

World Affairs Council

Come to the Reuter Center for these fascinating lectures and discussions that aim to advance international awareness and foster Western North Carolina's global ties. All events are scheduled in the Manheimer Room, 7:30 p.m. - doors opening at 7 p.m.

May 7 - Andrew S. Terrell: “Wing and a Prayer - Brexit as of May (As of May 7th… the date… not the Prime Minister): An update.” Americans have watched with curiosity and fascination UK's referendum and the subsequent Parliamentary moves that have characterized Brexit. We get the latest and official word on 7 May at our WAC event. Andrew S. Terrell is the British Consul for Business & Government Affairs and Head of the UK Government Office (UKGO) in Raleigh. This is the office from which The UK Government Office maintains and develops business, cultural, political, and scientific relationships with the State of North Carolina and other communities throughout the southeast. Andrew is originally from Western North Carolina and has lived and studied throughout Asia and Europe.  He is a graduate of Warwick University and Richmond International University in the United Kingdom.

WAC members and UNCA students admitted without charge.  Single admission, $10.00. Co-sponsored by WAC-WNC, OLLI, & the UNCA Political Science Department. For more details about programs, consult the WAC website.

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