Course Offerings

Fall 2014 Course Offerings

Here's a list of the Fall 2014 courses. Below this overview list is the complete schedule. It contains times, places, and descriptions of each offering. Once you receive your registration packet in the US Mail, you may register. If you wish to join and register, please contact us at 341-4896.

  • "Your Family Tree Begins With YOU!"- Pat Wilson
  • "Petticoats To Prostitutes: Women In The Civil War"- Yvonne Bigney
  • "Aquacize"- Ann Condon
  • "Chocolate, Another Contribution of the New World To Civilization"- Jacques Levine
  • "Layman's Guide to 'Krishnamurti'"- Bernie Ampel
  • "Another Mystery Lady: Meet Vera Stanhope"- Chris Godwin
  • "Child Labor in Walden"- Mary Ellen Matisse
  • "What Is Money And Why Should You Care About Monetary Policy?"- Greg Gilman
  • "Let's Go To The Movies"- Nelson Page (This course is free to members)
  • "Fiction and Non Fiction"- Marlena Lange
  • "Hiking: Basha Kill & Black Rock Forest"- Marlena Lange
  • "Mahjongg"- Florette Soroka
  • "Heroes & Villians, Continued"- Frank Kieck
  • "Crafts For Fun"- Jean Kachele
  • "Made In Chester"- Clifford Parker
  • "Greece's Parthenon"- Demos Kontos
  • "Bridge"- Marion Sotelo, Jeanine Kachele, Marilyn Schuck
  • "Help! Facebook, Facetime, Skype, Twitter: What's This All About?"- Maureen Larsen
  • "The Civil War"- Heidi Weber


Fall 2014 Course Offerings

Welcome to Encore’s FALL 2014 course offerings.  These learning opportunities are scheduled within the college’s academic calendar and are assigned to available areas after the credit classes have been scheduled.  SInce this schedule is completed at least two months before classes begin, neither Encore nor its instructors can make changes after that.  The only exception would be a college-wide postponement, cancellation, or rescheduling i.e. snow day. So choose your courses carefully.

Please remember to note for each course:

  • the number of sessions
  • the exact dates of those sessions
  • the location (building & room)

Because of content and/or classroom size, many courses have enrollment caps. Registrations are processed on a "First Come-First Served" basis. Here is our FALL 2014 Course Schedule.

Monday Classes FALL 2014

*** MAH JONGG: 6 sessions 1:00-3:30pm Monday, September 8,15,22,29

 October 6,20

ROOM – Shepard Center Alumni Room

Learn to play that popular game, Mah Jongg, which you keep hearing about.  The American version will be our focus.  The class is for men and women who are beginners, but can also serve as a refresher course for those who have played before.  Participants will need to purchase their own Mah Jongg cards.  Instructor will order after 1st class.  Approximate cost $7.00.

Instructor:  Florette Soroka, Pat Blau

Florette has played Mah Jongg for over 35 years and has been teaching others to play for numerous years in Chester, at Middletown Mulberry House, Encore and at the Town of Wallkill Wildflower Community Center.

***MORE MYSTERY LADIES: 2 sessions, 2:00pm-4:00pm, Monday, September 8, 15    

ROOM – Library 221

Get to know a new mystery lady, Vera Stanhope, created by British writer Ann Cleeves.  In both print and video, CDI Vera solves murders in Northern England while dealing with her own middle age issues.  Explore how she adds to that special group of sleuths: Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple, Murder She Wrote’s Jessica Fletcher, “Prime Suspects” Jane Tennison, No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency’s Mma Ramotswe and carries several steps further the tradition of teenage Nancy Drew.  We’ll also look at how Vera’s character, played by accomplished actor Brenda Bleythen, has been translated from the novel to television.  After this short course, we’re betting you’ll want to read the Vera books and see the Vera DVDs!

Instructor: Chris Godwin

Chris is Professor Emeritus of English, SUNY Orange and has a special interest in how women are portrayed in literature and media.

***CHOCOLATE:  ANOTHER CONTRIBUTION OF THE NEW WORLD TO CIVILIZATION   2 sessions 2:00pm-4:00pm Monday, October 6, 20

ROOM – Library 221

On Christopher Columbus’ 4th trip to America, he discovered chocolate which became another example of “money grows on trees” in the new world, and added to the health and pleasure of civilization.  Most of the things we eat that is grown came from North Central and South America.  In these sessions we learn about how the various people from Europe discovered, provided chocolate to Europe and prospered from its use by trading with and finding uses for it and how all these new products provided the world with the opportunity of freedom and upward mobility for the good life.

Instructor: Jacques Levine

Jacques is a lifelong resident of Middletown.  He graduated from the Wharton School of Commerce, owned a footwear factory in Middletown, and is active in civic and religious organizations in the area.

Tuesday Classes Fall 2014


***MADE IN CHESTER: 1 session 2:00pm-4:00pm, Tuesday, October 28

                                                                      ROOM – Harriman Hall 201

Learn more about our “very own backyard.”  An amazingly wide variety of items has been and is currently manufactured in Chester.  These range from astronomical to surgical instruments; muck shoes to sportswear; wheel hubs to sash locks; jewelry to building trusses and, of course, world famous cheeses such as cream, Neufchatel, Fromage and DeBrie.

Instructor: Clifton Patrick

Clifton has been the Town of Chester Historian since April 2003.  He documents Chester’s historical assets and potential archaeological sites there. He also promotes Chester and its history through publications and public presentations.

*** KRISHNANURTIS: 3 sessions 2:30pm-4:00pm Tuesday, September 9,16, 23

ROOM – Shepard Center Alumni Room

Jiddu Krishnanurtis (1895-1986) was an Indian born philosopher.  One of his main concepts is “Truth is a pathless land”—self-knowledge cannot come from any organization.  Only through our understanding of the contents of our own minds, the watching of our own thoughts, can we begin to free ourselves from fear and stresses.  In these discussions, Bernie will share some of his own experiences with Krishnanurtis ideals and how they have helped him, both personally and professionally.  Attendees will be invited to share some of their own experiences, if they wish.

Instructor: Bernard Ampel

Bernie has lived in the Hudson Valley for 40 years, has been a Psychotherapist in family and individual counseling for 30 years in private practice and is interested in all things pertaining to the working of the mind.

***YOGA MOVEMENT & MINDFULNESS: 3 sessions 3:00-4:30pm Tuesday,  September 16, 23,30                          ROOM – Phys Ed Dance Studio

Students will learn and practice gentle yoga movement to improve strength, posture, balance, flexability, thus self-confidence.  Students will learn mindfulness techniques to become more aware of themselves and surroundings through breath work and hands-on experiences.  Deep relaxation practices will be practiced as well. Yoga may be practiced in chairs, Students must be able to stand.  Mats are not required.

Instructor: Sherrie DeBergh

Sherrie has practiced yoga for decades and teaches classes for adults and children for 10 years.

She leads workshops for teachers including techniques to use in the classroom.



1 session 2:00pm-4:00pm Tuesday, October 7

ROOM – Shepard Center Alumni Room

This course will focus on a little known part of our area history: child labor in the Village of Walden in 1880.  In that year, there were 70 children working in the New York Knife Company.  Children also worked in six other factories in Walden, but we did not have exact numbers until the NY State Factory Inspectors’ Reports were published beginning in 1890.

Instructor: Mary Ellen Matise

Mary Ellen is currently the Historian for the Village of Walden

***YOUR FAMILY TREE BEGINS WITH YOU: 2 sessions 2:00pm – 4:00pm        Tuesday, October 14, 21

ROOM – Shepard Center Alumni Room

Students will begin creating their personal family tree.  Organization of the family tree information will be taught and each person attending will have the start of their family tree book upon completion of class. Students will need to bring a 3-ring binder, copy of their birth certificate and a favorite photo of themselves.

Instructor: Patricia Wilson

Pat is a Middletown native who is a retired Middletown School District teacher and is the current treasurer for Encore.

Wednesday Classes Fall 2014

***HEROES AND VILLIANS CONTINUED: 4 sessions 2:15-4:15 pm,  Weds., September 10, 17, October 1,8                                                                                  ROOM – Harriman Hall 319

We continue our history of the Hudson Valley by studying the decent folks and rogues that haunt the nooks and crannies of the Hudson Highlands and beyond.  DW Griffith, George Washington, Thomas Edison, Pete Seeger and Joseph Brant are among those we will learn more about.

Instructor: Frank Kieck

One of Encore’s most popular instructors, Frank is an avid old time radio and mystery fan who collects old radio shows and mysteries as a hobby.

***HIKING: 2 sessions 2:00-4:00 pm Wednesday, October 1, 8

Basha Kill Wildlife Preserve, October 1

For the first adventure, Marlena says, participants will meet at Haven Road Parking lot.  This walk is also an easy walk in the beautiful marsh run by the DEC, part in Sullivan County, and part in Orange County.  The property allows for fishing, boating, bird watching and later in the year hunting on the northern side of the marsh. We will be on the southern side in no-hunting season.    For directions go to will also be included with course confirmation.

Black Rock Forest/Cornwall, October 8

For the second walk, participants will meet in the back parking lot at SUNY Orange next to the Encore office.  This walk will be moderate on carriage roads. Wear sturdy shoes or sturdy sneakers or hiking boots if you have them.  Bring water.  Marlena will bring Deep Woods Off and a first aid kit.  Participants may also want to bring binoculars, especially to the Basha Kill.  Rain cancels this course.  If you have any questions about that day’s hike, you can call between 11 and 1:30 at 343-4841 or her cell 665-9200. Students need to be able to walk on uneven trails for at least 1 ½ hours.

Instructor and Guide:  Marlena Lange

***FICTION: NON FICTION: 2 sessions 2:00-4:00 pm, Wednesday, October 15, 22

ROOM – Library 221

We will discuss Purple Hibiscus, a novel set in Nigeria, written by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie for the October 15th class.  For the October 22nd class, we will discuss Monuments Men, written by Robert M. Edsel.  Students will be required to read each book prior to class.

Instructor: Marlena Lange

A long time Encore instructor, Marlena has also been a teacher of English at Chester High School, SUNY Orange, Harriman College and Mercy College.  She has worked in many local prisons and is an active member of Friends of Thrall Library.

***CIVIL WAR IN 1864: 3 sessions 1:00-3:00 pm, Wednesday,   October 8,15, 22

ROOM – Harriman Hall 211B

This course will cover the significant events that transpired during the Civil War in 1864.  This particular year marked the start of the Union’s true push for victory.  At times the events that happened during this year are considered controversial, due to the change in warfare.  This course will cover the military, political, social and cultural history of 1864 in America.

Instructor: Heidi Weber

Heidi is an Assistant Professor in the SUNY Orange Global Studies Department.  She is also Honors Coordinator for the Center for Teaching and Learning at SUNY Orange.


2:30-4:30pm Wednesday, October 15, 22

ROOM – Harriman 319

We expect money to serve as a medium of exchange, a unit of account and a store of value.  The many things that have served as money throughout history have served these functions to wildly varying degrees.  We might best describe some instruments as “moneyish”.  This is why monetary policy is one of the least settled topics in economics.

Instructor: Greg Gilman

Greg was the proprietor of Weber’s Store in Middletown for 35 years.  He retired 5 years ago.  He has been a board member at First Federal Savings in Middletown.

***THE PARTHENON: 1 session, 3:00-4:30pm Wednesday, October 29

ROOM – Shepard Center Alumni Room

This course will cover the Parthenon and its relation to 5th century Athenian culture and its history.

Intructor: Demos Kontos

Demos earned his Ph.D. from the University of Cincinatti, was a Professor of History at SUNY Orange for 45 years and has published on Greek culture and society.

Thursday Classes Fall 2014

***AQUASIZE: 2 sessions, 3:00-4:00pm Thursday, September 11,18

ROOM – Physical Education Pool

Students will be introduced to basic acquasize movements and equipment. Showers & locker room are available; bring your own lock.  Report directly to pool for class dressed in bathing suit. Class will be one hour in the water.  It would be helpful if the participant’s doctor knew about this exercise. No street shoes on the pool deck!

Requirements: the ability to enter and exit the pool independently and the ability to move around the pool independently.

Instructor: Anne M. Condon

Anne has been a popular, certified and accomplished swimming instructor for many years.

***BRIDGE: 5 sessions 1:00 – 3:00 pm Thursday, October 2,9,16,23,30

ROOM – Shepard Center Alumni Room

Take a seat; continue last spring’s class with our knowledgeable faculty trio.  Learn more bridge conventions, play of the hand, defense and signals. 

Instructors: Marion Sotelo, Jeanine Kachele, Martha Schuck

All three instructors have been duplicate bridge players for many years.  Marion has attained the rank of Silver Life Master. All three love the game and want others to share their enthusiasm for the game.


3 sessions 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm,          

THURSDAY, November 6,11, 20

ROOM – Library 221

You know about the generals, the soldiers and the battles. Now come and learn about the effect the civil war had on the women and how they dealt with the many changes.

Instructor: Yvonne Bigney

Yvonne was a civil war re-enactor for 10 years participating in many reenactments including Museum Village, Walnut Mt, the 135th anniversary @ Gettysburg, etc.  She belonged to the 15th NY Volunteer Calvary and 124th NY Infantry-the “Orange Blossoms”. She has given talks at historical societies, libraries and schools.


Friday Classes Fall 2014

***CRAFTS FOR FUN: 3 sessions 1:00pm– 3:00 pm Friday     October 10, 17, 24

ROOM –Shepard Center Alumni Room

Make a light-up snowman; make lovely little fabric flowers; how about a kissy bird or a gingerbread man?  All you need to bring to class are ideas for other crafts.  Cost of all supplies you will need to create and have fun is $15.  Please bring exact cash to first class.

Instructor: Jeanine Kachele

Jeanine has lived in the area for 5 years and enjoys teaching this craft. She also co-teaches Encore’s bridge class.

***Help! What are Facebook, Facetime, Skype, You Tube, Twitter All About?

1 session 1:00 – 3:00 pm Friday, December 12


SUNY Orange’s Maureen Larsen returns as our guide through the ever changing forests of these internet-based avenues of communication.  She’ll use a big screen projection system and answer our questions.  Remember: This is an overview course, not a hands on workshop.

Instructor: Maureen Larsen

Maureen is SUNY Orange’s Director of Academic Technology.



All are welcome to attend "Films For Everyone", one or all movies. This class does not count as one of your free membership courses; however; you must sign up for ths courseon your registration form.

***FILMS FOR EVERYONE: 6 sessions 2:00-5:00pm Friday October 10,17,24,31 November 7,14

ROOM – HA 111                                     

Students will view 6 films which will be both entertaining and informative.  A brief history of each film will be presented before showings; discussions will follow the movie.  The following films will be shown:

  • 10/10 – “Yankee Doodle Dandy”
  • 10/17 -  “Lion in Winter”
  • 10/24 -  “Saving Mr. Banks”
  • 10/31 – “Long Gray Line”
  • 11/7  -  “All About Eve”
  • 11/14 -  “Sunrise at Campobello”

Program is subject to change.

Instructor: Nelson E. Page

Nelson has been affiliated with the motion picture exhibition for the past 30 years.  As President of Majestic Star Entertainment, Nelson presently oversees five locations with a total of twenty screens, located in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.  He also served as Chairperson of the Fort Lee Film Commission and serves on several other Boards which include Theatre Organ Society (TOSI), Bergen County (NJ) Film Commission and the Riverton Film Society in Nyack, NY.


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