September is here.  Fall is right around the corner.  

We celebrated the tail end of summer with our major fundraising event on August 25th at the Conference Center - Cheeseburger in Paradise.  This year the food was hot, the Sean Sikes Band was hot, and with all the dancing, the crowd was hot!  Much thanks to Doug Landry for sponsoring our band this year, and Ozark Health for sponsoring our savory food fixings prepared by Cindy Wellenberger, Greg Calaway, and their awesome kitchen crew. Thank you to all who participated!  The proceeds from this event offset the cost of classes and provide funding for our Sterling Scholars lecture series.  Thus far in 2018 we have offered 71 classes or events, with 826 participants – and the year is just about halfway over.

We have already booked our Sterling Scholars series presenters through February 2019, with more waiting to be finalized. Our lineup includes Aliza Yarden-Cummings with Local Certified Natural Farming from the Gathering Place on Wednesday, Sept. 5.  Dr. Sonia Toudje from the History Department at the University of Central Arkansas will talk about Native Americans of Arkansas on Wednesday, Oct. 3, Judy Allen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma with Choctaw Code Talkers of World War II will be here on Wednesday, Nov. 7.  We are hosting local resident Lee Phillips with his photo-journey of England and Scotland on Wednesday, Dec. 5, and Pat Guin of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma with the Native American Seed Exchange on Wednesday, Feb. 6.

The Sterling Scholars lectures are held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Indian Hills Little Red Restaurant during the Rotary Club meeting on the first Wednesday of the month.  This event is open to the public and purchase of lunch is optional.

New classes are in the planning stages and our Painting and Jeweled Spider classes are as popular as ever with our residents and resort guests alike.

Finally, it is a rare occurrence when I take a moment to step out of my role as director of the Education Center and address a personal matter, but this is one of those times:

“Fair winds and following seas Senator John McCain.  Few men have made such a deep impression on me.  Navy Captain McCain was my husband’s commanding officer and flew the A7 Corsair jet off of aircraft carriers with him in VA-174 at Cecil Field in Jacksonville, Florida.  I made his book Character is Destiny mandatory reading for my college freshmen at the University of Central Arkansas, where I was a professor.  This collection of biographies of inspirational people who changed history was a very good study for my international and American students.  I wish him peace on this final journey, I will always admire his fighting spirit, dignity, and grace under pressure.”

The Fairfield Bay Education Center is located in the Village Mall, next to the Mayor’s office, and is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  Our classes and events can be found on our Facebook page: FFB Community Education Center.  I hope you can join us.