The Inside Scoop - for Members Only
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Welcome to  The Inside Scoop , our electronic  newsletter  f or members only.
Please  enjoy this issue,  and  share 
your  f eedback by emailing 

Know someone who would make
a great Instructor?

We are planning for Spring 2019 classes and would appreciate your suggestions, along with contact information. Email the office and staff will pass it along to us. Thank you in advance for helping us continue to offer new courses.

-- Barbara Spangler, Academic Program Committee Chair:

Get to Know Your Board of Directors

We're fortunate to have so many dedicated members serving on our  Board of Directors . We asked our new Vice President, Tom Adams, to tell us a little bit more about himself. Tom writes:

I have been a member of Encore Learning since the end of 2015, when I retired from the State Department after more than 40 years of government service.  My wife was already a member, and I needed little urging to join since she had described many of the great courses she had already taken.
I similarly had no hesitation when asked to join the Encore Learning Board because in the few years I have been a member, I learned that the organization functions well only if lots of us volunteer to assist our small and hard-working professional staff. I had already served as a Class Aide and had even taught a course on Haiti which afforded me a good look at how the organization worked and I wanted to support its continued excellence any way I could.

Steve Spangler and Tom Adams at the Community Advisory Council Meeting, May 2018. Photo by Joe Furgal.

The best thing about Encore Learning is how easy and affordable it makes continuing education. Learning not only comes from those who present in courses and at Special Events, but also though fellow members, who are a very smart, knowledgeable and interesting group of people.
I grew up mostly in Arlington, although I lived three years in France in the early sixties where my father, a career Naval Officer, was stationed. I went to the University of Virginia where I majored in History and was the Editor of the college newspaper.
Besides volunteering at Encore Learning, I also participate in some leadership training for mid-level officers at the Agency for International Development and deliver meals for Arlington's homeless through my church and A-SPAN. A-SPAN strives to end homelessness in Arlington through housing and ongoing case management. I am also trying to improve my golf game through participation in a senior league.
I am a fan of spicy food, particularly Chinese Szechuan, Mexican, Indian and Thai.
I am hooked on Philip Kerr's Bernie Gunther series which combines my two favorite reading genres, detective novels and history.
My heroes are my parents, who had five children and worked very hard to get each and every one of us the very best they could provide, while setting fine examples themselves of modesty, integrity and optimism.

Tom and his family hiking in Colorado. Photo courtesy Tom Adams.

I have travelled to many parts of the globe in my career and seen many incredible sites, but I really don't have a favorite place. I have high hopes of exploring even more of the world with my wife and discovering other memorable locales.

Another one hiking in Colorado. Photo courtesy Tom Adams.

I would like Encore Learning members to know that I will teach another course this fall dealing with how the 29 post-Soviet countries in Europe and Eurasia have fared since the fall of the Iron Curtain. I hope this topic will be of interest to members.

Fall 2018 Catalog - It's Almost Here!

Our Fall 2018 Catalog will be mailed out in mid-August. We are offering 35 courses. We have four new instructors -  John Champagne,  Wayne Limberg, Bonnie Mangan, and Emil Sunley. We have many new courses led by current instructors, as well as some tried and true favorites. So watch your mailbox! And if you haven't received your catalog by September 1, 2018, let us know.

Here's a photo of part of the committee working away:

Left: Jill Neuville and Miillie Lawson, Co-chairs. Right: Bill Reilly and Carolyn Gosling. Photo by Marjorie Varner.

More News and Photos

Special Events Round-up:

On June 20, 2018, our members went on  tour of the Clara Barton Missing Soldiers Office Museum, with Bonnie Mangan, recent Encore Learning library speaker on Women of the Civil War. Bonnie joins us as a new instructor this fall, teaching Civil War Soldiers' Experiences.

Photo by Louise Kenny.

On June 27, members enjoyed a tour of Hillwood Museum, former home of Marjorie Merriweather Post.

Photo by David Tate.

On July 3, our intrepid garden lovers braved the heat for a tour of the Pollinator garden with Smithsonian horticulurist Michael Allen:

Photo by Bill Peters.

Listening and learning while seeking shade:

Photo by Bill Peters.

Staff Corner

Our Fall 2018 Course Preview will be held once again at Wakefield High School. Thanks to our outgoing membership co-chairs, Ed Rader and Paula Kaufman for helping smooth the transition for our new membership co-chairs, Carol Cochran and Kathy LaPier. And special thanks to Stephen Hopper for coordinating this fall's Course Preview. Mark your calendars for the Saturday after Labor Day - September 8, 2018, 9:00 A.M. to Noon. It's a busy time of year and you don't want to miss it!

Summer hours are in effect between the Memorial Day and Labor Day holidays with the office staffed on Wednesdays from  10:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M. Please check the calendar on our website whenever you are in doubt. Your own scheduled activities are listed under Your Activities tab when you log in to the  Member Account Manager.

Our shared office space on the third floor of APS's Syphax Center has become  home though ongoing construction continues to keep us on our toes.  As always, use  or 703-228-2144 to contact us and schedule any face-to-face meeting in advance.

-- Marjorie Varner, Executive Director

Connecting Friends with Encore Learning

We're often referred to as the "best kept secret in Arlington." New members join mostly because they hear about Encore Learning from a friend.  When joining online, new members may enter a "Referred by" name. We look forward to thanking you here in the newsletter - see below.

Bring friends to our  "Meet the Speaker" series at Arlington Central Library. These events are open to the public and a great way for prospective members to learn more about us.

Anyone can do it! When you simply like our Facebook page or share our Facebook posts and events to your social network, it's a huge help.

Like us on Facebook

  • Volunteers are always needed. If you'd like to get more involved, please email
  • Check the calendar on our website for our office hours. Summer hours begin Memorial Day and run through Labor Day.
  • Save the Date: Course Preview is Saturday September 8, 2018
  • Save the Date: Registration opens at 10 A.M sharp TUESDAY September 11, 2018.
Welcome New Members

In June 2018, the following  new members joined Encore Learning. Please be sure to give these folks a warm welcome.

Annie Olson
Jerry Tempalski

And Thank You to the following instructors who also become new members:

John Champagne
Wayne Limberg
Emil Sunley
Elizabeth Jones Valderrama

Please email the office with any corrections.

Photos, Photos, Photos...

We all love looking at them and it seems we can never get enough here in the office. Please share your photos of Encore Learning activities with us. The higher the resolution of the photo, the better (1 MB or higher). Shots taken on your mobile phone are great! Just email them to us and if we use your photos, we will make sure to acknowledge you as the photographer. We can't use thumbnails, though, so please check your photo size settings prior to emailing.

Don't Want to Wait for the Next Edition of The Inside Scoop?


Donations are Always Welcome

Encore Learning is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Any donation is a charitable contribution deductible from income tax to the full extent permitted by law. Members, friends and organizations wishing to support Encore Learning may direct contributions to our  General Fund  or to our  Arlington Youth Scholarship .

We hope you enjoyed this edition of  The Inside Scoop . If you would like to submit an article or share some photos of members participating in Encore Learning activities, please email Beth Dowd: .
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