Category Archives: Uncategorized

Ethnic Lunch Club tries Korean at Lighthouse Tofu

In June 2018, our adventurous foodies had lunch at Lighthouse Tofu, a Korean restaurant.  Here are some photos of the food and fun. Thanks to Arlene Kigin for organizing, and to Carolyn Francis for the photos!








If you’d like to join our Ethnic Lunch Club, please send an email request to with your name and contact information.


Introducing Our Newest Club: Tech Hobbyist

Are you interested in awakening your inner tech geek? Perhaps you are interested in learning more about 3D printing, Arduino, Raspberry Pi, robotics, or drones? Or just tinkering with some of the latest electronic devices?

Then join the new Tech Hobbyist Club, open to all Encore Learning members. No tech experience is required.

We will meet at the Virginia Tech Thinkabit Lab in Falls Church. Meetings will be held on Mondays from 2-4 P.M. We will meet one to two times per month, depending on club members’ interest. Our first meeting will be Monday, October 15, 2018.

Steve Shapiro is the club coordinator. If you are interested in joining this group, please send an email to

Meeting Location: Virginia Tech Northern Virginia Center (7054 Haycock Road, Falls Church). The Thinkabit Lab is located on the ground floor of the building. Use the main entrance and use the stairs the go down one level. Then turn right and go to the end of the hall.

Parking is available in the lot adjacent to the building. The building is located very close to the West Falls Church Metro Station. A map of the location is on page 40 of our Fall 2018 Course Catalog and can also be found here,

Encore Learning Presents Author Daniel Stone

Daniel Stone, author of The Food Explorer, spoke on Monday August 27, 2018 to an enthusiastic audience at Arlington’s Central Library.

Author Daniel Stone.

Stone spoke about his book which details the true adventures of David Fairchild, a late-19th-century globetrotter and botanist whose life’s work was to  introduce Americans to more diverse crops such as pomegranates, avocados, mangoes, and more. His efforts transformed the American diet from sustenance to enjoyment.

Daniel Stone is a Washington D.C.-based writer for National Geographic, focusing on environmental science, agriculture, and botany. He is also a former White House correspondent for Newsweek and The Daily Beast, as well as a writer for Time Magazine, The Washington Post, Vice and Literary Hub. He currently teaches environmental policy at Johns Hopkins University.

This event was jointly sponsored by Encore Learning and the Arlington Public Library.

Instructor Profile: Tom Wukitsch

Tom Wukitsch learned computers, mastered several ancient and romance languages, served in the Navy and became a Foreign Service Officer, holding posts in Europe, the Middle East and Washington. But wherever he was, whatever he was doing, Ancient Rome was his passion.

Tom in exposition mode.

His interest had begun early – reading National Geographic as a six-year-old at his grandmother’s in Chicago. At that age, he asks, “Who doesn’t want to be a Roman emperor?” In his retirement, he balances that desire to learn about Roman times with an appetite to share. He has taught one of a variety of Ancient Rome courses each semester since Arlington Learning in Retirement Institute, the predecessor to Encore Learning, began in 2002.

This semester the course is Crusades – Wars Among Christians and Muslims, a 10-session course. His other courses included ancient Rome, medieval Rome, Renaissance Rome, ancient Egypt, Pompeii and Vesuvius, and Carthage and North Africa. He has led members of our Travel Club on private tours to Rome, Florence, Venice and Egypt.

Elucidating in Edfu Temple, Egypt.

Although besotted by the ancient world, Tom had an early introduction to the world of the future: computers. Still in high school, he took a job in California as a gopher for Admiral Grace Hopper, a pioneer in computer programming. He entered Loyola to study early ancient history, focused on math and then, at the University of Chicago, archaeometry, which uses computer design to enhance archaeological discovery. He did “shovel bumming,” as beginning archeological work is described, dating pottery in a tent full of equipment that now is the size of a fountain pen. Then he decided he needed to make money.

Tom took the family path into the Navy, which introduced him to flying and brought him back to his love of ancient Rome. Assigned to Naples as an admiral’s aide, he had plenty of time to explore and volunteered at the archeological museum for a year. He was there when the Navy needed an archeologist to study underwater cities near Naples and assure that the Navy wouldn’t harm them as they shipped in new electronic equipment in newer, heavier vessels.

Daily traveling inevitably leads to cappucino.

His next assignment was the NASA research station at Moffitt Field in California. Although he was too tall to be a real astronaut, he was placed in the astronaut corps which was testing to see if planes that could go higher than the atmosphere and come back to earth without falling apart. Tom thought he was invincible, but his knees and a broken back still tell him he wasn’t.

He worked for a defense contractor briefly, until a friend encouraged him to take the Foreign Service exam. He knew ancient languages, Italian, German and French – thanks to growing up in a multilingual family where everyone was also good in math and music. He passed, and, as a new junior political officer, headed to Damascus, where he could speak Arabic and was back in the archeological world of the Middle East. He learned the Syrian archeological sites, and was glad to show them to many visiting Congressmen.

Tom in Egypt.

In Jerusalem, he became the “outside” Arabist in the West Bank, learning and reporting on the Gaza and various sects in the area. Back at State Department he headed the offices of Middle Eastern and European analysts and married another foreign service officer, Margaret Dean. They, and her son, went to Tel Aviv for three years, where they had another son. Tom spent his time learning about the nearby villages and winning reporting awards. He also had an opportunity to work with a Harvard scholar in Jordan identifying the archeological sites of photo plates made in the 1800s. The family then returned to Washington, where they finally were able to adopt a three-month-old Columbian girl.

Tom and Margaret in Egypt.

Tom spent nine years in Washington in intelligence and research on the Middle East and Europe as a planning advisor on weapons of mass destruction and global warming for the Secretaries of State and Defense. After a back-breaking fall at the Pentagon, he retired. Margaret’s next assignment was Rome, and Tom was in his archeological element once again. He became the unofficial guide for embassy and VIP field trips – first on crutches, then two canes and finally one cane. He studied archeology, worked with Groupo Archeologica, and taught.

His return to Washington coincided with the beginning of ALRI, which became Encore Learning. He taught that first semester and every semester since, appearing each time at the class preview in his trademark shorts and sandals. Tom confesses he never has been a coat-and-tie person, even when he worked at the Pentagon. Once he was called in to brief Secretary of State George Schulz. Though questioned about his dress — khakis, no tie and a cardigan, Tom went in for the briefing and found Schulz tieless at his desk wearing khakis and a moth-eaten cardigan. “George, you’re overdressed,” said Tom. They had a good laugh, and a good briefing.

— Written by member Jody Goulden

— All photos courtesy Tom Wukitsch

The Simple Joy of Conversation: Breakfast Club

We asked Ron Wise, our Breakfast Club Coordinator, to send in some photos and an update. “There’s not much to say – we eat and we talk,” he said. Ron’s right, of course, and it’s the simple pleasures of sharing a meal and lively conversation that keep our members coming back each week. We’ll let the photos do the talking.

Lee Cooper and Lee Austin. Photo by Bill Mugg.

Keith Fairbrother, Dru Dowdy, Chris Nottingham. Photo by Lee Cooper.

Ellen Mugg, Bill Mugg, Barry Ginsberg. Photo by Lee Cooper.

Ron Wise, Keith Fairbrother, Dru Dowdy. Photo by Lee Cooper.

Dru Dowdy, Chris Nottingham, Lee Austin, Steve Shapiro, Bill Mugg, Barry Ginsberg. Photo by Lee Cooper.

The Breakfast Club meets Wednesday mornings at 8:00 A.M. at La Madeleine in Bailey’s Crossroads. If you’d like to join, please email your request to Newcomers, both talkers and listeners, are welcome!

Details can always be found on the Clubs page of our website.

Save the Date: Course Registration opens on TUESDAY September 11, 2018

Registration will open at 10 a.m. sharp.  Members will want to ensure that their membership is still current and their system login and password are working prior to registration.  Former members will still have a pre-existing account and should not create a new account. Prospective members may join and establish an account at the time of registration. Please contact the office if you have any questions about how to access your account or renew your membership prior to registration day.

Join us for our Fall Course Preview on September 8, 2018

Come and learn what we are all about!

Our Course Prevew is open to current and prospective members.
Feel free to bring friends, relatives and neighbors.

Encore Learning’s instructors will give brief presentations about their academic courses. Members often tell us that the instructors’ presentations at the Course Preview influence their registrations.

Get the latest news on our clubs, special events and volunteer
possibilities along with a quick bite and hot drink.

Doors open at 8:30 a.m.
Program begins at 9:00 a.m. and ends at noon.

1325 S. Dinwiddie St., Arlington, Virginia 22206

Call the Encore Learning office at 703-228-2144 for specific directions or any questions.

Instructor Profile: Wayne Limberg

Wayne Limberg is a new Encore Learning instructor, but he’s not a new teacher. “I always wanted to be a teacher,” he said. Wayne might have inherited his love of teaching. His mother taught in South Dakota in one of the last one-room school houses there. When she told the farmer down the road who headed the school board that she needed a new coal shovel, he sent his son to check out the situation. “My mother liked to say that she got the boy, but she never got the shovel,” Wayne said. His parents married in 1946 and moved to El Segundo, California, where they raised Wayne, his brother and sister.

El Segundo was a Standard Oil company town, given its name Segundo because if was the second largest Standard Oil refinery on the West Coast;  where a whistle blew to mark the end of every work day. His father worked in the aircraft industry, an industry that about doubled the population to 15,000. Wayne graduated from El Segundo High School in 1965, and was named to its Hall of Fame in 1984. He earned his bachelor’s in history at Loyola University in Los Angeles.

“It was because of the influence of a high school teacher almost 50 years ago, that I decided to specialize in Russian history,” he recalled. A fellowship from Georgetown University brought him to Washington, his Ph.D. and his government career.

In 1972, he was teaching part-time and working on his doctorate. A retired Navy officer and professor, knowing Wayne was having no luck finding a  teaching position in Russian history, suggested he consider working for the government. The CIA offered him a job, but agreed to wait for him to finish his doctorate. In 1973, he earned his Ph.D. in Russian history and began working for the CIA.

The start of Wayne’s government career did not mean the end of his teaching. “Over the years I’ve done a good deal of teaching,” he said. “I averaged a class every other year, including at the University of London.”

Wayne began at the CIA, but over the years, he moved from the CIA to the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research, back to the CIA and back to the State Department. The agencies frequently worked together and with other government agencies.  Wayne’s jobs centered on analysis and the Soviet Union/Russia. He travelled to the Soviet Union/Russia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and  Tajikistan and spent many a week at NATO headquarters.

Did he see the changes coming to the Soviet Union?

“It was clear Gorbachev was different but by no means did I foresee how fast the USSR would fall,” he stated. “  One of colleagues In 1987, looking at the Solidarity movement wondered if  Poland might pull out of the Warsaw Pact and that it would fall.  Wayne recalls saying somewhat sarcastically, “Sure, and then the Berlin Wall will fall.”

Wayne welcomed the changes.  “Like many, I hoped Russia our optimism faded as the 1990s progressed and  Putin came to power,” he remembered. “If anything, current day Russia under Putin is harder to read and predict.”

Wayne formally retired four years ago, but returned to the State Department part time as a senior editor until May 2018. His wife Susan recently retired after teaching at Georgetown Visitation for 40-plus years. They are long-time empty nesters with a 38-year old daughter and 40-year old son. “In the last five or six years, my wife and I have taken one foreign trip and one domestic trip every year,” he said, “We went to Italy in June and are going to Seattle and the North Cascades for a wedding in September.”

Wayne has also travelled many miles as a hiker. He has hiked the John Muir Trail in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California. He’s a former Supervisor of Trails for member of the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club and continues to help maintain the Appalachian Trail  in Shenandoah National Park.  Two of his recipes for gorp trail mix have been published in Backpacker magazine, as has one unusual hiking experience.

“My wife and daughter told me to celebrate one Father’s Day by hiking,” he remembered. “It was a beautiful day, but I kept seeing people hiking toward me with funny smiles.”   He soon found out why when he met the Artful Dodger, a storied nude hiker. “I hiked with him for the next hour, trying to look only into his eyes.”

In retirement, Wayne’s teaching has continued. Recently, he lectured at a friend’s class at Johns Hopkins University extensions.  When that friend had to turn down offer to teach an Encore Learning course, he suggested Wayne. This fall, he’ll teach his first course for us, Russian Foreign Policy: Rising Threat or Declining Power? He heard about Encore Learning through member Dwight Rogers, a fellow congregation member at Rock Spring Congregational United Church of Christ.

— written by member Laura Paul. Photos courtesy Wayne Limberg.

Summer Office Hours in effect through Labor Day

The office will be open from 10:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M. Wednesdays through September 3, 2018 – except July 4. If you need to speak to someone in person, be sure to email or call ahead for an appointment. Always check the calendar on this page for updates.

Members’ Annual Meeting on May 24, 2014

Members, please plan to attend this once-a-year event. It provides an opportunity for you to meet and elect Encore Learning’s leadership.


Thursday, May 24, 2018
9:00 A.M. to Noon


Fairlington Community Center
3308 S Stafford St
Arlington, VA 22206


There is free (but limited) parking on site. Allow time for street parking, if necessary, and observe zoned parking restrictions. The center is serviced by Metrobus.


Annual Meeting Agenda


9:00 A.M.       Social period, light refreshments
9:30 A.M.       Business meeting


  • Call to order:  Art Gosling, President
  • Treasurer’s Report:  John Morton, Treasurer
  • Election of Encore Learning Board: Marilyn Marton, Nominating Committee Chair
  • Closing:  Art Gosling

12:00 P.M.       Meeting concludes