Once in awhile, it rains. And sometimes, you and your putter aren’t speaking. For members at Reynolds Lake Oconee, these circumstances are just another reason to attend some of the diverse curricula offered through the Linger Longer Living Series (LLLS). Beginning its second decade, the LLLS at Reynolds has become recognized nationally for the depth of its offerings, and, week after week, it is rare for a seat to go unfilled. When Marie Garrison launched the LLLS in 2006, she started with the Reynolds members. “In the beginning, I met with several members to kick-start my research. In doing so, I learned about their interests, talents, and skills, but I also realized that they did not want the curriculum to be limited only to what they preferred. They had an appetite for a broad variety of events and programming, and that continues to guide me as I research and choreograph new events.” Garrison’s investigations have led her to ongoing relationships with universities, artists, musicians, scientists, culinarians, philosophers, dance instructors, and even students from local high schools like those who recently led a lecture and discussion on writers of significance from rural Georgia and how the lake country influenced their lives and works. “With such diversity in the membership, I’ve always tried to make sure that the offerings are likewise diverse,” says Garrison. This year, Garrison has added a learning curriculum to the lineup. Called “Linger Longer Living Beyond,” it addresses contemporary global issues and provides lectures and discussions on subjects as wide-ranging as international trade and security, understanding ISIS, national politics, and economic and political stability in Southeast Asia. “The reception to ‘Beyond’ has been something even I hadn’t expected,” admits Garrison, “and confirms again that while our members have a deep appreciation for the culture, culinary, and musical profile of so many of our events, there also is an endless curiosity for learning about new things as well.” “Beyond” is delivered generally as a four-class series, with reading and extended resources provided. “It’s like college for an hour or two, except it’s purely volunteer, and we get served grilled salmon and a chilled Pinot Grigio,” beams Garrison. What’s next? “Last fall, we had Joel Sartore, who has been traveling the world taking pictures for National Geographic for three decades, and he really brought down the house,” says Garrison. “The presentation was fascinating for all ages, and, as usual, Chef Derin and the team exceeded everyone’s expectations with the dinner they pulled together. I have a lot of freedom to go find more and more of these types of presenters and am excited about that journey.”

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