Special Interest Groups 2021-2022

FWC’s Interest Groups are the heart of our organization!  Take a look at upcoming plans below.  These groups cover a range of shared activities on evenings, weekends, and weekdays that promote learning, health, fun, and friendship.  Ask any one of our members and they’ll tell you some of their deepest relationships have come from the camaraderie in FWC Interest Groups!  Membership allows you to participate in any or all groups.

 

Book Club DAY (Co-coordinated by Joan Zetterman and Patty Sparks)

Book Club DAY meets the 2nd Wednesday of each month, hosted by a rotating roster of members who facilitate a review of the author and book.  The group has met by Zoom through 2020-1,  but will meet in person at member’s homes beginning this September.  DAY Book Club met Wednesday July 21st for a planning session.  Their selections can be found on this website page entitled “DAY and EVE Book Club Selections 2021-2022”.  Their first meeting was at Mary Gurney’s new home on September 8th.  They met at Dorothy Sansom’s home to discuss the “Weight of Ink”  by Rachael Kadish on October 13th.  November 10th the group met at Claudianna Todd’s home to discuss “The Far Away Brothers” by Lauren Marken. They enjoyed three Salvadoran foods during the discussion of the book about twin Salvadoran minors entering the US and their struggle to become legal.  Everyone enjoyed the book and the Salvadoran treats.  The last Daytime Book club in 2021 met December 8th at Paradise Cafe in Regency.  discuss “Green Lights” by Mathew MacConaughey was discussed.  The January Book Club to discuss “You’ll Never Believe What Happened to Lacey” by Amber Ruffin was postponed due to Covid rise in our community.  In February the group discussed “How it Always Is” by Laurie Frankel on February 9th.  In March the group discussed  ” The “Rhythm Boys of Omaha Central” by Steve Marantz at the home of Patti Sparks.  The Daytime Book Club discussed “The Worst Hard Time” by Timothy Egan on April 13th at the home of Mary Gurney.   The Daytime Book Club met May 11th at the home of Joanie Zetterman and discussed “All Quiet on the Western Front” by Erich Maria Remarque.  The last book club meeting of this year will meet at Claudianna Todd’s home on June 8th to discuss “When Time Stopped” by Arianaa Newmann.

Book Club is a great way to experience a variety of literature, contemporary and classic, and to get better acquainted by sharing the ideas in each month’s selection.  New participants are always welcome.

Book Club EVE (Coordinated by Theresa Olsen)

Book Club EVE meets by Zoom the 3rd Thursday of each month from 5:30-6:30 PM, hosted by a rotating roster of members who facilitate a review of the author and book.  Our first Evening Book Club discussed the “Searcher” by Tanya French on September 16th.  On October 21st, the Evening Book Club discussed “As Bright as Heaven” by Susan Meissner via Zoom.  On November 18th the Evening Book Club discussed “Sleeping Beauties” by Owen and Stephen King via Zoom.  The Evening Book Club members met for a holiday social on Thursday, December 16th at 5:30 PM at Herbe Sainte restaurant and bar in Aksarben Village.  The Evening Book Club met by Zoom at 5:30 PM on January 27th to discuss “The Four Winds”by Kristin Hannah.  Carol McGlade chose to play a Bingo game asking members to recall events in the book to fill a special Bingo card.  What fun!  Thursday, February 15th the group discussed “White Tears/Brown Scars: How White Feminism Betrays Women of Color” by Ruby Hamad on Zoom. A small group met by Zoom at 5:30 PM on March 17th to discuss “Ariadne” by Jennifer Saint.  In April the group met by Zoom on April 21st to discuss “The Testaments” by Margaret Atwood.  Feel free to join our group at any time.  The next meeting will be May 19th to discuss “The Unexpected Joy of the Ordinary” by Catherine Gray. For further reading selections in 2022, please refer to the page “DAY and EVE Book Club Selections 2021-2022” on this website.

Dining Out (Coordinated by Sara Crouse)

Dining Out meets on the 3rd Saturday of each month around 4-6:00 PM at selected restaurants.  This group is for members and spouses who enjoy an evening out with friends.  When unrestricted, the group wines and dines at various restaurants in Omaha and surroundings areas.  The group is notified of the restaurant selection and location a month in advance, so everyone can decide if they wish to give it a try.  During our first four years, we’ve gathered at 25 different restaurants and sampled the wide variety of food that Omaha offers.  

“Dining Out” began our new year on July 17th with great food and conversation at the family owned Greek Islands. “Dining Out’ met at the “Prairie Plate Farm-to-Table Restaurant” outside of Waverly for dinner on August 21st at 5:30 with great food once more.   Our “Dining Out” group met at Malara’s Italian Restaurant on September 18th. Everyone enjoyed the excellent Italian cuisine that evening along with great conversation.  October 16th, the “Dining Out” Group met at Fernando’s on Pacific for at taste of Mexican cuisine.  The Dining Out group will pause their dinner meetings in November, December and January.  “Dining Out” resumed their dinner get-togethers on Saturday, February 19th at Taxi’s Grill and Bar.   The “Dining Out” group met at 402 Eat + Drink at Village Point (17305 Davenport St. Q#-115) on March 19th for good food and great conversation. The group paused their meeting in April due to Easter weekend but will resume meeting May 21st at Barrel & Vine (1311 South 203rd Street). If you enjoy a time of fun people and great food, join us this year for our “Dining Out” events.

Fine Arts (Co-coordinated by Marge Boska and Marge Woodman)

Fine Arts group members attend 4-5 outings per year to art-related venues and exhibitions of interest to the group.  From a walking tour of South O’s architecture, to traveling exhibits at the Joslyn, or road trips to special events, this group seeks opportunities to experience the visual arts and beyond.  Times vary according to the activity.  The Fine Arts group met on September 18th and travelled to Red Oak, Iowa to shop at the White Sparrow and J Mercantile artsy gift shops before touring the Five One 8 Gallery in Red Oak.  The group then travelled to Malvern, Iowa to visit 3 galleries participating in the “Southwest Iowa Art Tour”.  One of these galleries is owned by one of our members! On Thursday October 21st at 10:00 AM, the group visited the Impressionist show at the Gallery 1516 on Leavenworth street. The group will pause their meeting during the increase in Covid-19 within our community and resume in the Spring of 2022.   On April 21st the group met for lunch at the Joslyn Art Museum cafe before touring the facility (Joslyn is closing for renovations soon).   Watch our website for then next upcoming event details.

Gourmet Club (Co-coordinated by Belinda Greiner and Mary Beth Gust)

The Gourmet Club meets 4-6 times per year hosted at rotating member locations.  Gourmet members share meal preparation tips and learn new culinary techniques while enjoying an evening of socializing.  Over the years this group has sampled a wide variety of cuisines and enjoyed the diverse culinary talents of the group.  Don’t let the name scare you, the emphasis is on a good party.  Spouses are included in the gatherings.  

Throughout this pandemic, the group found ways to connect.  On Sat 3/27/2021 members enjoyed a virtual full course dinner experience led by Catherine Siebel, proprietor of Fearless Cooking, Chicago.  The Gourmet Club wrapped up their year on June 5th at Todds with a “Take Five” menu and jazz music.  The Gourmet Group met meeting Saturday September 4th at Scooter’s Coffee to map out the 2021-22 year of Gourmet activities.  They planned 5 get-togethers between October 2021 and June 2022. The first get-together was a “Small Plate Buffet” – “A Night in Spain” hosted by Joanie and Rowen Zetterman at their lake home on October 9th.  Our Gourmet Club dinner met at the home of Mary Beth Gust on November 13th.  It was a pot-luck soup, salad and dessert dinner with members bring their favorites for all to enjoy.  Our Gourmet gathering at Pat Leuschen’s home in late January 2022 was cancelled due to Covid-19 increased in our community.  Our FWC Gourmet met on March 12, 2022 at Julie and Russell Sebastian’s home at 5:30 PM with great food and conversation.  The the final meeting for this year was a barbecue gourmet dinner on May 7th at the home of Barbara and Merle McAlevy.

Everyone is welcome to join our “amateur chefs” and culinary group.   Bon Appetit!

Happy Hour Club (Coordinated by Theresa Olsen)

Our NEW monthly Happy Hour Club was established to provide an opportunity for after-hours socializing (6:00-7:00PM) for members and spouses.  It was designed especially for members to bring a friend and potential member onside of work to meet our friendly group and learn more about Faculty Women’s Club.  The kick-off event this year was on August 17th at “Pint Nine Brewing” in Papillion from 6-7 PM.  The Happy Hour group learned interesting facts about the brewing process from our new members Don and Kelly Klepser.   On September 28th the “Happy Hour” group met at Keith & Theresa Olsen’s home.  They hosted a bourbon tasting from 6-7PM that evening.  Our  “Happy Hour event  held on Tuesday November 16th at Spirit World’s outdoor patio at 6680 Center Street was a great success.  Everyone bundled up in their Ugliest Sweater for this event. Prizes were awarded to the Ugliest  Sweaters.  On Tuesday, December 14th our group met for “Happy Hour” at the Library Pub from 6:00-7:00 PM. As always, there was great conversation among the attendees. Moving into the New Year, we will be planning another “Happy Hour” when the Covid-19 numbers begin to drop.   On January 20th the group had a Zoom meeting to discuss their favorite mixed drinks.  They began meeting again in person in March 2022.  Below are the planned dates and locations.

  • Wednesday, March 16, 2022 at The Cottonwood Room (302 South 36th Street)
  • Wednesday, April 27, 2022 at The Green Room (306 South 16th Street)
  • Tuesday May 17, 2022 at The Burlington League (1002 South 10th Street)-
  • Monday, June 20, 2022 at The Jewell (1030 Capitol Avenue)

All Club members are welcome to attend any of the “Happy Hours”which begin at 6 PM.  Please consider bringing a UNMC guest and their spouse to meet our group.  This should be great fun for all and a way of recruiting new members to our organization.

Hiking Club (Coordinated by Laura Bilek)

This NEW Club, launched in 2020, allows fellow members and spouses to hike together along local trails.  The Hiking Club meets each 2nd Saturday at a determined time, with social time outdoors following the hikes.  Trail selections will include both gentle and challenging options, as well as dog-friendly choices.

The Hiking club began the new year in July with a 3.5 mile stroll at Standing Bear Lake. In August, they explored the trails of Hummel Park. In September they had a beautiful 4 mile hike at Prairie Queen Recreational Center.  In October, they met at DeSoto Bend Wildlife Refuge to checkout the Fall foliage.  The November 13th hiking adventure was at Summit Lake Reservoir in Tekamah, NE.  The group then checked out a few of the restaurants in Tekamah after the hike.  December 11th the group will pause from hiking and meet for a social hour and begin their hiking in 2022 following the schedule below.

Check out the schedule below and grab a potential member to join us on our hikes each month!

The hiking Club will continue through this next year with the proposed schedule:

  • July 17, 2021 – Standing Bear Lake (3 mile hike)
  • August 14, 2021 – Hummel Park (various distances for hiking)
  • September 11, 2021 – Prairie Queen Recreational Center (4 mile hike)
  • October 9, 2021 DeSoto Bend Wildlife Refuge (1.6 mile loop)
  • November 12, 2021 – Summit Lake Reservoir (5.4 mile hike or half of it)
  • December 11, 2021 – Group Holiday Social
  • January 2, 2022 – Field Club (3.5 mile hike out & back)
  • February 12, 2022 – Flanagan Lake (5.2 mile hike or half)
  • March 19, 2022 – Flanagan Lake (5.2 mile hike or half)
  • April 9, 2022 – Spring Creek Prairie Audubon (various distances to hike)
  • May 14, 2022 – Boyer Cute National wildlife Refuge (various distances to hike)
  • June 11, 2022 – TBD

Standing Bear Lake, the Field Club, Flanagan Lake are ALL EASY, PAVED trails for those who would like to start hiking with our group. Come join in the adventure, camaraderie and fun!

Needle Arts (Coordinated by Mary Gurney)

Needle Arts meets on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays from 9:30 – 11:30 AM hosted by rotating members in their homes. Members bring UFOs (unfinished objects) or whatever they are working on, and join in for a morning of stitching and conversation.  This casual gathering includes novice and accomplished knitters, quilters, leaders, embroiderers, crocheters, etc.  The first meeting of this year was Tuesday September 7th at Mary Gurney’s home. Needle Arts met on October 5th at the Paradise Cafe in Regency for a morning of conversation and stitching and at Belinda Greiner’s home on October 19th.  Needle Art met on November 2nd at Paradise Cafe in Regency.  They will met November 16th at Claudianna Todd’s home. They met for the last time in 2021 at Carol McGlade’s home on December 7th.  The Needle art group began 2022 by meeting January 4th at Susan Mather’s new home.  The January 18th and February 1 meetings were cancelled due to Covid-19 surge in our community.  The group met at Belinda’s home on February 15 and Mary Gurney’s home on March 1st.  The group met March 15th at the home of Claudianna Todd and met April 5th at the home of Mary Gurney.  A small group met for lunch at “Masters Hand” in Tekamah on May 3rd and enjoyed the time out.

Need inspiration?  This group is for you.  You will find it here.  Join us!!

Pickleball/Badminton (Coordinated by Claudianna Todd)
This group meets the first Sunday of each month from 3:00 to 5:00 P.M. at the UNMC Center for Healthy Living (3908 Jones Street), if open, or at an outdoor location.  Spouses are included and co-ed teams are encouraged. Both pickleball and badminton are set for play.   Afterwards, members often rotate to host a potluck dinner or social time pending Covid-19 updates.  Spouses are included and co-ed teams are encouraged. 

The first meeting this year due to an “uptick”in COVID numbers was a “soft opening” start-of the season potluck picnic on Sara and David Crouse’s deck Saturday, September 11th at 5:00 PM. As things kept changing with COVID numbers, so did our upcoming meeting plans.  We were in the UNMC Fitness Center for our get-together Oct 3rd.  You can enter the Fitness Center through the main door on the North side of the building by swiping a staff identification badge or by calling the number posted for an attendant to open the door.  Fitness Center “members” are not charged a fee to play but there is a fee of $7 for guests .  The FWC Pickleball Group met Sunday, November 7th at the Fitness Center at 3:00 PM followed by a tacos at Theresa and Keith Olsen’s home.   Sunday, December 5th the group met at the Rec Center from 3-5:00 PM with soup after the game at the home of Dorothy and Steve Sansom. The group met January 9th at the Fitness Center, but because of increasing Covid-19 numbers there was no get-together after for pizza as planned. The group met February 6th at the recreation center (KN95 masks are required).  There was no get-together following play. The group met March 6th at the Rec center followed by pizza at the home of Claudianna and Gordon Todd.  The group met April 3rd for a workout followed by a chicken fajita dinner hosted by Elizabeth and Mark Rupp.  They met May 1st at the home of Linda Chee and Andy Dudley after a workout at the Rec Center.  They will meet at Laura and Tony Bilek’s home after Pickleball on June 5th.

The rules of the game are simple, so consider joining the group for fun and friendship.