A Partnership between LFV & Little Falls Library (MCPL)
APRIL through JULY 2021
Speaker Events: 1:00 to 2:30 pm, unless otherwise indicated
Recommended log in time: 12:45 pm

Register by clicking on event registration link

MONDAY APRIL 5 Constitutional Patriotism, Partisanship and the Future of American Democracy” with Congressman Jamie Raskin. Congressman Jamie Raskin is the U.S. Representative for Maryland’s 8th Congressional District.

Although this event has passed, it is possible to view the recorded event video of Congressman Jamie Raskin's presentation here:  Raskin Event 4/5/21
TUESDAY APRIL 20 "What to Expect When You’re Expecting… CICADAS!!"  In the spring of 2021, the Washington, DC metro area will experience a rare and amazing natural phenomenon — the emergence of Brood X (Ten) periodical cicadas.  Over the course of a few warm evenings in May, millions and millions of strange-looking creatures will tunnel up from the soil beneath trees, crawl up a close vertical surface, and overnight undergo a dramatic change from a clumsy, shrimp-like creature to a dramatic black insect, sporting deep red eyes and delicate golden wings. For two or three weeks, these harmless and somewhat clumsy creatures are EVERYWHERE, flying, crawling, singing, scrambling, mating – and are truly unavoidable – to the delight and fascination of some, and the terror and revulsion of others. By the next month, the most visible part of the show is over, and the cicadas seem to have disappeared as quickly as they came. Meet Magicicada! For those of us lucky enough to live in an area that hosts a periodical cicada brood, we are privileged to experience this amazing natural phenomenon every 13 or 17 years. However, because they emerge so infrequently in any one location, and because so much of their life cycle takes place underground and out of sight, most people (even biologists!) don’t know much about these fascinating insects. Where did they come from, why are there so many of them, and where will they go? What do they eat? Why and how do they make such a racket? Do they bite or sting? Dr. Weiss will answer these and many other questions, so that you will be better able to appreciate remarkable phenomenon of synchronized periodical cicada emergence.
Martha Weiss is a professor of Biology at Georgetown University, where her research focuses on behavioral interactions among plants, pollinators, herbivores, and predators over ecological and evolutionary time scales. She and her students have investigated learning in butterflies, the ecology of defecation behaviors in insects, the persistence of memory across metamorphosis in Lepidoptera, and the basis of hosts shifts in temperate butterflies. Dr. Weiss grew up in San Francisco and studied Geological Sciences at Harvard University, earning her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley’s Botany department. Later, she studied insect behavior at the University of Arizona. Currently, she and her colleague Dr. John Lill at George Washington University are investigating the indirect ecological effects of the Brood X periodical cicada emergence on the temperate deciduous forest community. They are very excited about the return of Brood X, and are eager to share the biology of these fascinating insects with everyone
This event is independently presented by LFV.
WEDNESDAY APRIL 28 "Hillwood: A Garden for All Seasons" with Kate Market, Executive Director of Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens. Kate Markert has delved into the archives to describe Post’s approach to creating this enchanting environment of mansion & gardens fitting perfectly together.  As the result of strategic planning, exciting special exhibition programs, stimulating and relevant public programs and revitalized gardens, Kate has guided the organization to a more than fifty-percent increase in attendance and the tripling of membership.
Kate Markert is the author of A Garden for All Seasons: Marjorie Merriweather Post’s Hillwood, the first publication devoted to these special gardens in the heart of Washington. She and Erik Kvalsvik worked for over two years to photograph the estate in every season, in many different weather conditions and at different times of the day to illustrate, in gorgeous color, the result of modern horticulturists' labors and Post’s original vision
MONDAY MAY 3, 1:00-2:00 pm.  “Cabin John: Legends of an Uncommon Place” with Judith Welles. Who or what is Cabin John? The name Cabin John is steeped in mystery and legends about lost lovers, ghosts, pirates, and buried treasure. Early land records cite Captain John’s Run, now Cabin John Creek. Did Captain John Smith’s journeys along the Potomac River in 1608 take him to the area later named perhaps after him? Cabin John, a Maryland community near Georgetown in Washington, D.C., has historical significance. The Cabin John Bridge, once known as the Union Arch, is an engineering marvel. It carries the aqueduct that gave Washington, D.C., its first public water. Never before published photos show the grandeur of the Cabin John Bridge Hotel, a resort destination in the 1890s and 1900s.  
Judith Welles is a writer and former journalist who has authored local history books about the area in which she lives including Cabin John: Legends and Life of an Uncommon Place, Lilly Stone, and a new pictorial history Potomac. She also wrote a worklife e-book for Kindle, Get a Life, Try This! Judy was media relations manager for PricewaterhouseCoopers and IBM and a speechwriter for U.S. Cabinet members. She has chaired the Montgomery County, Maryland, Commission on Aging, been a Board member of the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal Trust for the national park and is a speaker for the Montgomery County Historical Society. Her lively talks are accompanied by PowerPoint slide shows of historic photographs.  
This event is independently presented by LFV.
THURSDAY MAY 6 (rescheduled from 3/31) "Pandemic Ethics: What Have We Learned So Far? What Challenges Lie Ahead?" Historically, pandemics raise a large and complex set of ethical issues. These questions include, for example, how best to prioritize who will have access to inevitably scarce resources like vaccines, how to design public health measures that balance liberty with the common good, and where to draw the line in managing global and national interests. Pandemics also inevitably reveal the fissures in a society, illuminating longstanding inequities, and impacting the most vulnerable communities.
In this session, Bradford Gray, an eminent sociologist and chairman of The Hastings Center’s board of directors will interview the president of The Hastings Center, Mildred Solomon, who has been writing and speaking nationally and internationally on the ethical issues raised by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mildred Solomon has an international reputation for her research on, and advocacy for, wiser health care and science policy. In addition to her leadership role at The Hastings Center, she is Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine, part time, at Harvard Medical School, where she directs the school’s Fellowship in Bioethics, a program that builds the bioethics capacity of the Harvard teaching hospitals. Dr. Solomon is both a bioethicist and social science researcher.
Bradford Gray is senior fellow emeritus at the Urban Institute and editor emeritus of The Milbank Quarterly, which he edited for 13 years. Before coming to the Urban Institute in 2004, he was the founding director of the Division of Health and Science Policy at the New York Academy of Medicine (1997-2004.). Earlier he was director of the Institution for Social and Policy Studies and the Program on Nonprofit Organizations at Yale University, with a faculty appointment in the Department of Epidemiology
The Hastings Center is a nonpartisan, nonprofit research organization created from multiple disciplines, including philosophy, law, political science, and education. The Hastings Center was critical to establishing the field of bioethics in 1969 and has been evolving ever since.
This event will be recorded and the link to this recording will appear on the LFV Calendar Events page after the event.
This event is brought to you by the Council of Former Federal Executives & Associates (COFFE). 
THURSDAY MAY 13 "The Golden Age of Music, Part II" Join Pianist/Singer/Sheet Music Expert Michael Lavine as he takes you on another tour of Tin Pan Alley, from its humble beginnings in the Lower East Side and moving on to Broadway and Movie Musicals. Michael is back with more songs you love. He will be joined by Broadway and cabaret performers, as he presents many of the world’s most beloved songs of the 1920’s and 1930’s. Feel free to sing along.
Michael Lavine has worked as a musical director, pianist, vocal coach and singer all over the world. He’s worked with composers as varied as Stephen Schwartz, Stephen Sondheim and Burton Lane and Comden and Green. He’s put out a number of CD’s and will be releasing some new ones in conjunction with this concert. A graduate of Columbia University, Michael owns one of the larger privately held collections of sheet music in the world. You can read more on Michael on his site, 
This event will not be recorded.  
WEDNESDAY MAY 26 "Biden's Foreign Policy in the Middle East and North Africa, Recipes for Success or Failure?" Jean AbiNader will review initial steps taken by the Biden Foreign Policy team to reshape US policy towards the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region including countering Iran and terrorism, bolstering allies, promoting human rights, and re-establishing humanitarian and economic assistance programs. He will also review Congressional responses and initiatives and how they impact Biden’s agenda. AbiNader will identify how these policies serve US interests and contribute to regional stability, security, and development, and the challenges and opportunities in the upcoming year.
Jean AbiNader consults on strategic communications and organizational change for both international and US clients; has led a graduate level seminar at Georgetown University; lectured at American University on international development and challenges in intercultural negotiations; and leads a seminar on effective negotiations at Al-Akhawayn University in Morocco. His blogs can be found on and his website:
THURSDAY JUNE 10 "Your Retirement Dream: How Planning Can Make It Come True" with Harriet Edleson, author and journalist. Retirement! Have you imagined you’d be lounging on a beach in the south of France or Bethany Beach? Riding a luxury train through the White Towns of Southern Spain? Cruising the Danube on a luxury riverboat? Or, taking courses with others like yourself? Serving on a nonprofit board? Buying a vacation home in the mountains? Spending more time with the ones you love? Relocating to be near your grandchildren? 
Whether you are already retired or thinking of retiring in the next five or 10 years, planning will make the journey more enjoyable and secure! What do you really want to do? Think about all the resources you have or will have at a time when you may no longer be working. Will you have a pension or will you be relying on Social Security and savings? Whatever your situation, the best way forward is knowledge. Learn about the optimal time for claiming your Social Security retirement benefits and how to decide whether downsizing is for you, since housing can be the largest expense in retirement.
Harriet Edleson is an expert on baby boomer retirement strategies. She has written the Retiring feature for The New York Times and the Where We Live feature for The Washington Post. A former writer/editor/producer for AARP where she specialized in Social Security, she now writes for Kiplinger's Retirement Report. Her forthcoming book, 12 Ways to Retire on Less: Planning an Affordable Future is to be published in May 2021 by Rowman & Littlefield next year.
Visit her website at
THURSDAY JUNE 17, 1:00-2:00 pm. "The World Awaits Your Visit, Reserve Now: Navigating Post-COVID Travel." Benita Lubic, President of Transeair Travel, will talk about the present status of travel, where can Americans travel now, restrictions, and the Covid Passport.  The current state of the world has made us more aware of the way we travel, and the destinations we visit. She will discuss current state of air travel, cruises plus review health and safety travel procedures, policies and regulations. You’ll also learn best practices for being a safer (and smarter!) traveler so you are prepared when you are able to travel again.
Benita is now is celebrating her 62nd year owning a travel business, having traveled to about 140 countries. She arranges group and sales incentive travel, personalized individual trips and escorted tours, including many cruises, worldwide. Among her trip highlights are over 25 tours to Cuba for religious groups, humanitarian, beekeepers, baseball, chess enthusiasts and the Washington Ballet; visits to Bhutan, Japan, China, Thailand (most of Asia), South Africa, East Africa, Morocco, Israel, Egypt, most of South America, the South Pacific plus the US. It has been a stimulating and challenging career. Her husband, Robert, is a retired Professor of Law at American University and practicing Lawyer. Benita has lived in Washington for 75 years mostly in Chevy Chase, DC. and is a Woodrow Wilson and University of Wisconsin graduate.  
Benita's clients have many different interests and specialties --- this keeps the work fascinating. The business has changed dramatically over the years. From paper tickets in 1959 to the internet and e-mails, now solutions are readily available.
This event is independently presented by LFV.
Registration Link:
WEDNESDAY JUNE 23  "The Current State of U.S. Russian Relations" with author and journalist Gregory Feifer. Nearly every 24-hour news cycle contains a news item related to Russia. Gregory will offer insights that may help us in understanding the rationale behind the current chaos in the world order. 
A former NPR Moscow correspondent who reported from Russia for almost a decade, Gregory Feifer witnessed the coup d’état attempt against Mikhail Gorbachev in 1991. During the country's resurgence under Vladimir Putin, he observed the effects of its vast new oil wealth on an increasingly nationalistic society, as well as, Moscow's rekindling of a new Cold War-style opposition to the West. As a senior correspondent at Radio Free Europe in Prague, Feifer investigated Russian influence in Europe, including the Kremlin's use of Gazprom, the Russian gas monopoly, as an instrument of foreign policy. 
Before joining NPR in 2005, Gregory Feifer lived in Paris and New York and has written for numerous outlets, including The New Republic, The Washington Post, and World Policy Journal. Feifer has also authored a number of books including The Great Gamble and Russians: The Power Behind the People. He serves as executive director of the Institute of Current World Affairs, which awards fellowships to young men and women allowing them to travel outside of the US and gain an in-depth understanding of chosen topic areas. 
This event is brought to you by the Council of Former Federal Executives & Associates (COFFE). 
Registration Link: 
WEDNESDAY JULY 7 "The Beauty and Science of the Magnolia Family" with Edward M. Barrows, Professor of Biology, Georgetown University.
Washington’s Cherry blossoms are in the limelight each year, while Magnolias, equally spectacular flowering trees, are somewhat in the shadows.  The aim of my talk-discussion is to tell you more about Magnolias – their evolution, diversity, and flowers – and hear what you have to say about them.  My presentation features many colorful, original photos of Magnolia specimens in the Washington, D.C., Area Ecosystem (WDCAE, DC and four surrounding counties), especially Georgetown University and the U.S. National Arboretum.  About four of the approximately 224 world Magnolia species are native to the WDCAE.  About 10 non-native species and 100 of their hybrids and cultivars are the Ecosystem’s gardens, parks, and yards.  Bring your Magnolia comments and questions and ride the Magnolia Magic Carpet with me. Registration link to follow.
More information and registration link to follow.

THURSDAY JULY 8  Joe Bonfiglio, President of E.D.F. Action, (Environmental Defense Fund) will focus on the development and execution of advocacy strategies designed to deliver environmental policy and legislative wins.
More information and registration link to follow.

WEDNESDAY JULY 28 "Advanced Care Planning Workshop" with Mary Ann Buckley, LCSW-C, C-ASWCM, Executive Director of Care Management, Corewood Care. Your wishes matter – make them yours and make them known. Five Wishes is changing the way we talk about advance care planning. It is more than just a document. Five Wishes is a complete approach to discussing & documenting your healthcare & life choices. It is connecting families, communicating with healthcare providers, and showing your community what it means to care for one another. The workshop will also discuss MOLST and Living Wills. Join our free & interactive virtual workshop to learn more!
More information and registration link to follow.
For questions, please contact the Little Falls Village Office
Call (301) 320-3267 or Email