OVERLAND PARK — Johnson County residents age 50 “and better” have a new avenue for learning enrichment. Johnson County Park & Recreation District’s 50 Plus Program will offer Osher Lifelong Learning Institute courses this fall at four locations: Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse in Prairie Village, the Matt Ross Community Center and the Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center in Overland Park, and the Roeland Park Community Center.
Part of KU Professional & Continuing Education, KU’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, with its network of more than 120 instructors, provides members with a wide range of noncredit enrichment courses, covering history, literature, art, music, religion and more without the pressure of exams or homework. The institute delivers accessible, innovative learning environments to participants 50 years and older at 25 sites in 13 cities across Kansas and Greater Kansas City.
“This new partnership puts us in neighborhoods we haven't been able to reach before," said Jim Peters, director of the Osher Institute. “We are excited to join Johnson County Park & Recreation District and its already established 50 Plus Program to bring new, exciting knowledge to the area. Not only do participants learn from our instructors, but they also learn amazing things from each other.”
The JCPRD 50 Plus Program began in 1971 and is the area’s leading provider of recreational and leisure activities for adults, serving more than 15,000 participants each year. Peters reached out to JCPRD in April to see if its leaders would be interested in offering Osher courses, and this fall, five courses are already on the schedule.
“We're thrilled,” said Michelle Alexander, JCPRD 50 Plus manager. "This is a great fit for us. Osher courses will be a nice addition to our current offerings. We’re excited to add programs at this kind of level, with courses taught by practicing and retired educators.”
This is the latest expansion of Osher courses in the area, with Leavenworth and Eudora locations added this spring and summer.
Register for Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Courses in Johnson County
Registration is open for fall Osher courses. Explore Johnson County courses and special events, including those at the KU Edwards Campus, or browse the catalog. Below is a list of fall’s Osher courses with JCPRD:
- The Geography of Kansas: What Dorothy Didn't Know About a Place Called Home
Thursdays, 7-9 p.m., Sept. 13-27, Roeland Park Community Center
- Kansas: The Cradle of Basketball from James Naismith to Olympic Gold to Phog Allen
Wednesdays, 7-9 p.m., Oct. 10-24, Roeland Park Community Center
- Faith of Our Founders
Thursdays, 2-4 p.m., Oct. 11-25, Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse
- Arlington National Cemetery: Its History & Its Heroes
Fridays, 9-11 a.m., Oct. 19-Nov. 9, Matt Ross Community Center
- Hinges of History: How Our Border Region Has Changed America
Thursdays, 2-4 p.m., Nov. 1-15, Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse
About the University of Kansas Edwards Campus
The KU Edwards Campus at 127th Street and Quivira Road in Overland Park brings the high-quality academic, professional and continuing education programs as well as research and public-service benefits of KU to the Greater Kansas City community in order to serve the workforce, economic and community development needs of the region.
About Johnson County Park & Recreation District
For more than 60 years, the Johnson County Park & Recreation District has been enhancing the lives of the citizens of Johnson County through its parks, quality of programs, professionalism and response to developing trends. The district's contributions to the personal lives of Johnson County's citizens have earned the agency local appreciation and national acclaim. The agency’s mission is “to enhance the quality of life in Johnson County by providing high-quality parks, services, and recreation programs.” In working toward this goal, JCPRD records more than 7 million park visitors and over 2 million recreation participants in more than 4,000 programs each year.