Goodman Community Center | Older adult Culture Club has deep…

Older adult Culture Club has deep conversations and discussions on topics of human interest

The group discusses issues related to history, art, philosophy, social problems, religion, music and habits/behaviors weekly.

May 9, 2024 |
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By Gayle Laszewski, GCC assistant director of older adult programs

Culture Club, which meets every Monday from 10:30 a.m. to noon, began three years ago as an idea shared between two men who became friends over the years during older adult lunch at Goodman.

“I have an idea,” Lee Ozanne said to Skip Oberbrunner. “And I want to talk to you about it.”

The idea presented by Ozanne was to start a discussion group that covered many different topics related to human culture. A group not just for philosophers who appreciate deep conversations, but for anyone who wants to learn and discuss topics of human interest.

Culture Club began on the premise that every member in the group would have the opportunity to select a topic and everyone’s opinion was valued. As a starting point for selecting a topic, Ozanne spent months researching YouTube videos to create an enormous list of subjects to choose from. The group has discussed issues related to history, art, philosophy, social problems, religion, music and cultural habits/behaviors. Despite the sad news about the passing of Ozanne, Oberbrunner continues the group’s legacy.

“I like exploring ideas and getting different perspectives,” Elisia White said. “Culture is important for all! It opens our minds and hearts to be more inclusive.”

Oberbrunner also agreed that “it’s important to expand your mind no matter what age you are. When you see a bigger picture of the world, it can make you feel small and humble.”

Another member of the group, Victory Smith, stated that “the topics expand your awareness. I don’t know what I don’t know. With more knowledge, there is less cognitive dissonance between what is real and what is not.”

Others have commented they enjoy the diversity of the discussions, since everyone takes a turn selecting a topic.

Herb Niles finds the group “intellectually stimulating, which is good for mental health and well-being.”

The group would like to expand its membership and are exploring options such as offering the sessions via Zoom.

“It’s a matter of people coming and knowing that their opinion will be valued,” White said.

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