Explore campus history and Ethiopia with Armchair Traveler

Wed, Apr 15 2020, 3:15pm

Highland Park Community Center in St. Paul

Dear UMRA Members,
Unfortunately, I am going to have to cancel our Tuesday, April 14, Armchair Traveler Program. President Gabel sent a message March 16 canceling all larger events and said, “Smaller events should not be held unless social distancing can be implemented (6 feet between people).” Our meeting room at the Highland Park Community Center would not allow us to maintain that social distancing. Also, all U of M employees have been told to work from home until further notice. 

Thank you to those of you who signed up for the program. I hope to be able to reschedule Ryan Mattke and Ron Anderson for September. More to come. Stay safe and healthy.

All best,

The next UMRA Armchair Traveler program will be from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m. on Tuesday, April 14, in the Community Room of the Highland Park Community Center and Library at 1978 Ford Parkway in St. Paul. Space is limited to 45, so please email Lynn Anderson at [email protected] if you plan to attend.  

Our first “tour guide,” Map and Geospatial Librarian Ryan Mattke from the University of Minnesota’s John R. Borchert Map Library, will take us on a rare tour of the U through his presentation, “A Trip through the Past: Documenting Campus History.” Ryan will describe the Libraries' Campus History web application, which displays 160 years of building footprints along with historical maps and aerial photographs. His presentation will include interesting buildings that no longer exist, historical aerial imagery of campus, and how the interactive digital map was created.

UMRA member Ron Anderson, a professor emeritus of sociology, will be our second presenter, sharing “Ethiopia, 1945–2000: Photos and Stories from Ethiopia.” Ron grew up in Ethiopia until age 13; his father was a missionary and doctor for Emperor Haile Selassie. In 2000, Ron returned to Ethiopia with his wife. He has lots of photos and stories to share about this very unusual country.

The Community Room will be available from 3 to 5 p.m. so there will be a bit of time for socializing before and after the program. 

—Lynn C. Anderson, chair, Armchair Traveler Committee

Upcoming Events

Event Date: April 15, 2024, at 9:30am

Join us for a 4 to 5 mile hike at one of the most popular parks in the West Metro, Richardson Nature Center in Bloomington.  It is located at the north end of Hyland Lake Park Reserve at 8737 East Bush Lake Road in Bloomington.  This trail is mostly dirt and grass with some paved areas.  Enjoy the park's wildlife and celebrate Tax Day with your UMRA hiking friends!

Event Date: April 15, 2024, at 10am

UMN Technology Commercialization facilitates the transfer of UMN innovation beyond the research lab by helping our diverse researchers in development of new products and services that benefit the public good, foster economic growth, and generate revenue to support the University's mission.

Event Date: April 16, 2024, at 11am

How did children’s mental health become a public health crisis? How can you tell the difference between developmentally appropriate misbehavior and behavior that needs professional intervention? For answers to these and other questions, we invited Sarah Jerstad, clinical director of psychological services at Children's Minnesota, to be our guest speaker for UMRA’s April 16 workshop. 

Event Date: April 19, 2024, at 2pm

Joni Mitchell will lead the discussion of The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne when the UMRA book club meets via Zoom at 2 p.m. on Friday, April 19.

Event Date: April 23, 2024, at 11am

Generative artificial intelligence (AI) has attracted substantial debate recently because it can be used in many contexts, including educational settings to do things such as answer exam questions and write papers. But what is generative AI? And how can we know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing? Law School Professor Daniel Schwarcz will enlighten us during UMRA’s Luncheon Forum on April 23.

Event Date: April 24, 2024, at 10am

UMRA’s spring Armchair Traveler Program from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 24, will take us to South Korea with Marilyn DeLong and to Germany with Lynn C. Anderson. Please mark your calendars and save the date. 

Event Date: April 26, 2024, at 2pm

Silk Parachute, an anthology of essays and the 40th of 44 published books by author John McPhee, will be the topic of discussion when UMRA’s Fourth Friday Book Club meets via Zoom from 2 to 3:30 p.m. CDT on April 26.

Event Date: May 6, 2024, at 9:30am

We are so fortunate to have former Arboretum Director and UMRA member, Peter Moe lead this approx 3.7 mile hike at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum!  We will meet on the welcoming terrace and travel through the Arboretum's Display Gardens, Sensory Garden, Woodland Wildflower Garden,  Shade Tree Exhibit, Tall Grass Prairie, Rhododendron Garden, 1920 Red Barn and the Bee and Pollinator Discovery Center, Sphagnum Bog and Green Heron Pond, Display Gardens and many other gardens and plant collections. 

Event Date: May 6, 2024, at 12:45pm

This session will continue the discussion begun in the May 8, 2023 session.  See that article for details.

Event Date: June 14, 2024, at 7:10pm

UMRA will be celebrating U of M Days with the Alumni Association.  The Minnesota Twins will be playing the Oakland Athletics on Friday evening, June 14, 7:10 PM.  

Event Date: June 17, 2024, at 11am

Picnic under the covered, open-air Como pavilion, gaze at the water, spy some birds, catch up with friends and former colleagues, and meet new members. We’ll have lunch with plenty of time for visiting and then compete in teams as we are challenged by our Quiz master(s)!

Event Date: June 24, 2024, at 8am

Healthy aging, mindfulness, fighting ageism, and more will be the focus of the third annual Age-Friendly University Day to be held on the U of M Twin Cities campus.