The Robert G. Silvers Memorial Seminar Series

Celebrating the Best of the Human Mind
The life and spirit of Sally Silvers' beloved Robert will be celebrated in perpetuity with a generous endowment to the Osher program. She created the Robert G. Silvers Memorial Seminar Series: Celebrating the Best of the Human Mind to commemorate Robert's wondrous intelligence and humanity. The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Missouri presents the eighth annual event of the seminar series.

After setting records for the number of courses in which he enrolled each semester, Silvers assumed the role of instructor. He was teaching a course in woodworking in the Osher program when he took ill eight years ago. So overwhelming was Robert's passion for the beauty of wood and opulent wood veneers, Sally's choice of speaker for the series has been a woodworking artist — the very one that was her husband's inspiration and mentor, Ian J. Kirby.

Join Sally Silvers' family, friends and acquaintances — and our students — to celebrate this fine human being who shared our lives and our hopes. He was one of our finest, most caring instructors — totally committed to his students and the Osher program.

It is from Ian Kirby that Robert acquired his avocation. The devotion, the respect, the bond between the Silvers and Kirby continues unchanged. You will likely experience the avocation they shared — and, of course, Kirby's impressive insight into the development and historical importance of this great art.

A Clear-Eyed Approach

1 p.m.

Moss A

Oct. 27, 2017

The need for a kitchen and a bathroom requires no explanation. However, the need for a clear-eyed approach as to how these rooms best function, and your response to that function, is another matter. Whether you are planning to design from scratch, remodel or simply rethink existing spaces, you will do better with "a clear-eyed approach." Join us at the Robert G. Silvers Memorial gathering where Ian Kirby will deliver your personal prescription of eye drops.

The subjects of these lectures in memory of Robert Silvers are angled to topics that instructor Ian Kirby believes Robert would have enjoyed. Previous talks have focused on the Arts and Crafts movement in Great Britain and the U.S., our human relationship to industrial design and nature, and a personal journey through Kirby's own work and inspiration.

Instructor: Along with degrees in furniture making and materials and wood science and technology, Ian Kirby holds a degree in industrial design. All of these are the results of his studies in England.

Kirby first came to the U.S. in 1973 on a sabbatical from his teaching post at Middlesex University to teach design in the California State University system. He then served as a visiting professor at The School for American Craftsmen at Rochester Institute of Technology. In 1976, Kirby emigrated and opened his school of furniture making and design. It was during summer classes at Kirby Studios that he met Robert. Soon afterwards, Robert and Sally invited him to design them a new home.

Since closing the school in 1987, Kirby has been involved in all the activities for which teaching leaves no time, from commission work on interiors and furniture to writing articles and books and traveling to give three-day seminars and lectures. Recently, Kirby ended all "outside" work to focus only on the design and creation of his own house and its furniture.

This Robert Silvers Memorial Lecture is the only public function he commits to because of the depth of his relationship with the Silvers family.

Special events

Osher Saturday Morning Book Talks

Coffee and cakes at 9:30 a.m.
Book Talk 10 a.m.
Hillcrest D
Book selling and signing will follow the Book Talks

Sept. 9
"The Mindfulness-based Eating Solution"
(2016) by Dr. Lynn Rossy

Main Squeeze

In our second book on mindfulness this year, our September Osher book talk turns our attention to the critical problem of America's seemingly insatiable hunger for more food. Rossy gives attention to 'emotional eating [which] can spiral out of control.' This book has a strategy with a keystone being 'diets don't work,' or work for very long. The basic issues that she will discuss are things that most of us would quietly acknowledge … but the book provides doable strategies that we can handle. A premise in her work is that 'mindfulness' can be appreciated. She exhorts (and shows how) people to get off the 'automatic pilot' that shapes not only eating habits, but life style as well.

Oct. 7 
"Setting Free the Kites"
(2017) by Author Alex George

Carol and Greg Busacker

Alex George gave the Saturday Morning Book Talks one of its best sessions ever when he spoke of his novel A Good American in 2012. That novel continues to be a major volume in gaining a sense of immigrants and the difficult settlement demanded by 19th century Missouri. In recent months, George is probably better known for the creative and effective work he has done in founding the Unbound Book Fest that first occurred in 2016 and had 'Chapter Two' this past April. Setting Free the Kites is a tight and powerful story about two teenage boys whose friendship seems rather unlikely, but provides enormous strength for each. Instead of decades being covered, as in A Good American, Kites looks in depth at two summers as life issues come racing at these boys in their growing up in Maine. Themes of hope, family complexity and romance all give energy to this new Alex George novel. 

Nov. 4 
Writing Under Stress with Author/Speaker Steve Weinberg

Anne Graver Edwards

Steve Weinberg is a major investigative journalist who brings a special perspective to the Osher Book Talks. For only the second time has an author spoken to the group without the benefit of a 'hot off the press' book to discuss. Steve spoke to us in August two years ago when he was moving toward the end of his research into a book on Garry Trudeau's Doonesbury book. On the way to that conclusion and the publication of a very promising work, Steve suffered a stroke. He has now been keenly focused (along with vital help from wife Scherrie) on recovering his full capacity for writing, living full well and even driving since the stroke. Because of his evocative and illustrative language, I have asked him to come to talk with us about "writing under stress."

Dec. 2 
"Fiddler's Dream"
(2017) by Howard Marshall (with Musicians Dale Pauley, Russ Ravert and Kathy Gordon)

University of Missouri Press

Our presenters will conduct a program made famous by legendary fiddler Dale Pauley. Dr. Marshall is a long-time fiddler, but also a scholar of the many ways in which the fiddle has played a creative and community role in Missouri for decades and decades. He will play, but he also will be joined by Dale Pauley, Kathy Gordon and Russ Ravert. This year-ending Osher Saturday Morning Book Talk will also serve as a thanks to Columbia Parks and Recreation and Osher@Mizzou for two good years of support and development of the literary voice of mid-Missouri.

Special events: Extramural

Travel Club

Every second Wednesday, 2 p.m.

Waters House (2104 Hillcrest Drive)

Osher@Mizzou class, is an open forum and agenda for sharing travel tips, tales, opportunities, photos, destinations and deals. We've had presentations on extended living in a foreign country, purchasing the right camera and the merits of traveling alone or in a group. If any of this sounds enticing, join the Travel Club at their monthly meetings. Please share your email address with and she'll add you to the mailing list for reminders and minutes of the topics and web resources discussed. Anyone can become a Travel Club member for $40 for the entire year; this membership entitles Travel Club members to enjoy all the benefits of a basic Osher membership. All other Osher members may attend Travel Club meetings at no charge.

El Club de Español

Thursdays, 2 — 4:30 p.m.

Hillcrest C

This Spanish club is for participants who have studied the present and the preterite tenses in Spanish. Osher members at any level may attend at no charge. 

For all others, the Parks and Recreation charge for using the room is $25 per person for the entire year. Call Judy Elliott at 573-445-3194 if you plan to participate in El Club de Español.

Columbia Parks and Recreation 50+

Columbia Parks and Recreation 50+ welcomes Osher members to an exciting new fall semester at Waters-Moss Memorial Wildlife Area, Hillcrest Community Center, Moss Building and Waters House!

We hope you have taken advantage of the added benefits offered this Osher academic year (September 2016 through June 2017) that included a 2016 Parks and Recreation Waters-Moss/Hillcrest 50+ membership as well. As members, you can enjoy the following activities at Parks and Recreation facilities at Waters-Moss: Travel Club, Saturday Morning Book Talks, Spanish Club, Painting Group, Mah Jongg, Adult Coloring Group and games such as Mexican train dominoes, bingo and jigsaw puzzles, as well as potlucks.

Pick up a monthly calendar or visit, then search "Senior/50" or let the Hillcrest front desk know you would like to receive the calendar by monthly email.

50+ travel opportunities

Hop on board the bus and join Columbia Parks and Recreation for fun and relaxation. Day trip information is listed below. Additional trips may be announced as well. Travel is always an adventure that enriches your life.

50+ Tours

Escorted day and overnight trips onboard White Knight charter coaches. Trip costs will vary depending on length and included activities. Quality and pacing are important to the planning of our trips.

50+ Explorers

Our 14-passenger Parks and Recreation bus takes monthly trips at a minimal cost around Columbia. Each activity also includes a meal for social time together.

At the time this catalog goes to print, trips you may want to know about are still in the planning stages, so please check with the Hillcrest front desk at 573-874-7475 for the most up-to-date details.

  • Oct 10-13
    Mount Magazine, the highest mountain in Arkansas — with sweeping vistas of broad river valleys, deep canyons and distant mountanins — is a true marvel to see in its fall glory. We will stay at the Lodge of Mount Magazine that has undergone amazing renovations in 2016.
  • The New Theatre Restaurant in Overland Park, KS begins their 26th season at the same location and we attend all 5 shows. The surroundings are unique, the food buffet is fresh and tasty, and the entertainers are true professionals. Shows include:
    • Oct.4
      Driving Miss Daisy starring Michael Learned (The Waltons) and Reginald VelJohnson (Family Matters)
    • Dec. 6
      Funny Money starring Jim O'Heir (Parks & Rec) and local star, Deb Bluford (This date may turn into an overnight Holiday trip to Kansas City.)
    • March 28, 2018
      Barefoot in the Park starring Cindy Williams and Eddie Mekka (Laverne and Shirley)
    • June 6, 2018
      Sister Act (with an all star cast)
    • Sept 19, 2018
      Mamma Mia! (with an all star cast)

Activities and meeting space

The Moss Building is available for weekend rentals and some mid-week dates on a limited basis. With space for 150 people, this is a great place for meetings, birthdays, graduations, wedding receptions, reunions and other events. At $35 an hour (with a two hour minimum plus a refundable deposit), the Moss Building is an affordable and versatile space for your next gathering.

Contact Parks and Recreation at 573-874-7460 for information.