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Interest Groups

We issue a warm invitation to all members to participate in any interest group. Unique opportunities for friendship, sharing, and learning are offered. The only requirement for participation is paid membership in The University League.

Interest Group Chair:  Susan Ihler
Assistant Interest Group Chair:  Linda Baumann

NOTE:  Many Interest Group meeting locations are closed indefinitely due to the pandemic.  Where feasible, some groups are meeting online via Zoom.  Please contact individual group leader/s for the current status of their meetings.

      Complete Interest Group Meeting Schedule 2020-2021 (pdf)

Click on any interest group below for more information, including meeting times, organizer contact, and a brief description of the activities.

Read what some of our interest groups are doing this year. (PDF posted February, 2019)

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Monday and Thursday, 8:00–9:30 am (Weekly, year round)

Contact: Marilyn Gundermann or Caroline Liedtke

The University League Aerobics Group is about far more than aerobics.  This group of approximately 15 women share laughter and friendship as we bond every Monday and Thursday from 8:00 to 9:30 AM at Madtown Twisters‘ on Old Sauk Road.  We warm up with a fun aerobics dance routine, then become more and more flexible by doing yoga, lift some weights, do some core work, and end with stretching.  This total workout brightens up the day.  Once a month we go out for coffee after we’re done with our fitness routine.




Contact: Helen Read or Diane Smidt

The Antiques Interest Group pursues talks, tours, gallery visits, museum experiences, and some excursions out of town to points of mutual interest.  Come and join us!

Armchair Travelers

First Monday, 7:00 pm (October through May)

Contact: Mary Jo Willis

Learn about places to travel with little effort on your part, the foods of the country or area, ways to travel (rail, barge), the ins and outs of safe, low-stress travel and the unique culture of places within the US and other countries.  We meet at Oakwood West, Nakoma Room. Everyone is welcome! Topics and speakers are developed over the summer.

Armchair Travelers Programs 2019-2020 (PDF)

Armchair Travelers Programs 2018-2019 (PDF)

Armchair Travelers Programs 2017-2018 (PDF)

Armchair Travelers News (Oct. 2016) (PDF)

Bird Study

Fridays, 9:00 am (Spring and Fall)

Contact:  or Roma Lenehan or Jill Feldkamp

Walk different trails—observe birds and their habitats. Meet at the far western end of the parking lot at Covenant Presbyterian Church at the corner of Segoe Road and Mineral Point Roads.

Birding Activities (PDF)

Birding Schedule 2018-2019 (PDF)

Birding Schedule 2019-2020 (PDF)


Book Critics

Second Monday, 7:00 pm (September–May, plus July)

Contact: Frances Johnson

The group selects nine books in July to read throughout the year. A member reviews a book each month, followed by a general discussion. Meet in members’ homes or at Oakwood West.

Book Critics Calendar 2019-20 (PDF)

Book Discussions

Third Monday, 1:00 pm (September–May)

Contact: Elizabeth deBoor

Members read an assigned book prior to attending meeting. Following coffee and dessert, a group member leads the discussion and all members actively participate. Meet in members’ homes. Eight books are read each year. May is a luncheon and September is a summer recap as well as a light-read book to discuss.

Book Discussion Group Activities (PDF)

Book Discussion Schedule 2019-2020 (PDF)

Bridge (1st and 3rd Thursday)

BRIDGE – First and third Thursday, 12:30 pm (year round)

Contact: Gennie Bostian

Play in members’ homes. Light refreshments are served by hostess.


Bridge (2nd Thursday)

BRIDGE- Second Thursday, 12:30 pm (year round)

Contact: Judy Stang

Bridge is played in the Party Room, Oakwood West Tower, 3rd floor.

Bridge (4th Thursday)

BRIDGE LUNCH – Fourth Thursday, 11:30 am (year round)

Contact: Katherine Masden or Carol Mathis

Bridge following lunch from the menu at Benvenuto’s Italian Grill (part of Holiday Inn), 1109 Fourier Drive, Madison. All levels of players welcome.

Dining Out Dinner

Fourth Saturday, 5:30 pm (year round)

Contact: Priscilla Thain

Meet at a restaurant for dinner, followed by dessert at home of host—or meet for an occasional brunch.

Dining Out Lunch

Fourth Wednesday, 11:45 am (Monthly, year round)

Contact: Kathy Knox

Members enjoy good food and good company and take turns planning lunch at area restaurants.

French Reading and Conversation

Second and fourth Wednesdays, 12:30–2:30 pm (September to May)

Contact: Linda Christen or Jan Tymorek

General French conversation; use selected readings as basis for discussion. Meet in members’ homes or at the Sequoya Library.

French Conversation II

Third Wednesday, 12:30 – 2:30 pm (September to May)

Contact: Anne Doherty

Members meet monthly for light refreshments and to engage in general conversation in French. Meetings are held in members’ homes or at public libraries. Selected readings may be used.


Fourth Monday, 7:00 pm, Oakwood West (September to May)

Contact: Catherine Tesar or Mary Jo Willis

Share experiences and hear guest speakers.  No experience is necessary to join this group.  The May meeting is a 6:00 pm potluck dinner.

Surnames Being Researched (PDF)

German Genealogy Links

International Foods Dinner

Second Sunday, 6:00 pm

Contact:  Sally Carpenter

We are a well organized dinner club that makes it possible to have wonderful and unique dinner parties in our homes.  The recipes are creative, tested and easy to prepare.  Conversation flows freely making these Sunday night dinners fun.

International Foods 2019-2020 Calendar (PDF)

International Foods 2018-2019 Calendar (PDF)

Mah Jongg

Every Tuesday, 9:30 am (year round)

3 members playing Mah JonggContact: Helen Lackore

Play the American version of Mah Jongg, an ancient Chinese game using tiles. We meet in the Game Room of the apartment/office building of Coventry Village Retirement Campus, located just off South High Point Road. New and experienced players are welcome, as well as those who wish to learn the game.

Movies in the Afternoon

Second Tuesday, ~4:00 pm

Contact: Roma Lenehan

Join friends once a month to view and discuss new movies at local theaters. Time and meeting location will vary depending on movie schedules. Singles and couples welcome.

Spanish Conversation

Second Thursday, 1:00–3:00 pm

Contact:  Joan Leffler

Informal group where members share experiences, conversation and read short articles or watch videos followed by discussion in Spanish.

NOTE:  During the summer of 2020, we will NOT meet in July and August.  Meetings will continue via Zoom on September 10, 2020.  New participants please contact Joan Leffler to add your email address to the group’s list.

Spanish Reading / Literature

First and third Thursday, 1:00–3:00 pm

Contact: Esther Bach-y-Rita or Daniel Hill

Join us anytime for reading and conversation of works by contemporary authors of the Spanish-speaking world.  Activity offered in collaboration with the Sequoya Library.  Intermediate to advanced language fluency is recommended.   Meetings are held September to June at the Sequoya Library.

Calendario 2019-2020 (PDF)

Calendario 2018-19 (PDF)


Date, Time, Location TBD

Technology is a newly formed Interest Group that hopes to set a regular meeting schedule and location by fall 2020.  Its purpose is to educate and support members in their technology needs.  Once the meeting schedule and location have been determined, they will be posted to the Interest Group page (under Technology) on the University League website,  If interested in joining the Technology Interest Group, please contact Mary Jo Willis or Joan Leffler.

Wine Divas and Dudes

Fourth Thursday, 4:30 – 6:30 pm (September through May)

Contact: Elaine Rosenblatt

Are you on a first-name basis with any Super Tuscans? Have you tried the wines of Lake County, California? Wine Divas & Dudes offers the opportunity to taste new and different wines while enjoying lively conversation. Each meeting centers on a wine theme, usually with appetizers. One of several members volunteer to host a meeting, selecting the theme. At each meeting, each attendee contributes $15 to help defray costs.  (Note: Meets the third Thursday in September and October.  November and December are combined into a single meeting).


January 2019 (PDF)

January 2018 (PDF)

August 2017 (PDF)

August 2016 (PDF)

January 2015 (PDF)