Lunch & Learn Series

Bring a bag lunch and learn during these informative talks on popular topics of history, culture, science and the arts. Lunch & Learn programs are offered both LIVE at the Cape May Lutheran Church Hall, 509 Pittsburgh Ave., Cape May, and by ZOOM. You may bring your lunch and beverage but no food or drink is provided. The hall is accessible and free parking is available. No registration is needed if you plan to attend in person.

2024 schedule and lecture topics listed below.

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Magnesite: A WWII Necessity

February 21st: 12 pm

Harry Bellangy of the Greater Cape May Historical Society discusses the need for magnesite during World War II, how magnesite was manufactured, and the plant that opened in 1941 in the area we know today as Sunset Beach.

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A Celebration of All Things π  

March 6th: 12 pm

People around the world are preparing for March 14. It’s Pi Day, an international day of mathematics! Join Donna Szemcsak for a fun exploration and celebration of this mysterious and irrational number. There will be pi jokes, pi music, pi art and maybe even some pie!

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It’s March! A Time to Celebrate Irishness 

March 20th: 12 pm

Every March in the United States, revelers from coast to coast celebrate all things Irish by hoisting pints and cheering bagpipers, step dancers and marching bands parading through city streets. Where did the traditions begin, how did they spread across the ocean and why have we embraced them today? Find out by attending this Lunch & Learn presented by Mary Stewart

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Art in Nature, Nature in Art

April 3rd: 12 pm

Stan Sperlak is a nationally recognized painter whose works feature the atmosphere and landscape of Southern New Jersey. He also had a four-decade co-career as a landscape designer. He melded those passions in his 37-acre Nature Preserve & Sculpture Garden in Goshen, NJ. Stan will talk about his journey and inspirations, and detail how he finds art in reclaimed, recycled, and repurposed objects, as well as purchased pieces.

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We All Scream for Ice Cream

April 17th: 12 pm

Delve into the delightful journey of frozen indulgence with a captivating presentation from Ben Ridings on the history of ice cream. Uncover the sweet evolution of this frozen treat, from ancient flavors to innovations, in an exploration of its cultural and culinary significance.

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The Music of Mendelssohn

May 1st: 12 pm

Embark on a musical journey through the life and works of the Romantic-era prodigy Felix Mendelssohn with Dr. Brenda Leonard. We’ll consider all he accomplished in his short life and preview some of his works that will be appearing on the Cape May Music Festival in the next few weeks.

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Shipwrecks of Cape MayTrue Stories of Death & Survival

May 15th: 12 pm

Rusty Cassway, Captain of the Cape May-based Explorer, will discuss the history of several historical shipwrecks located near Cape May.  His tales will chronicle the explorers who visit these wrecks and those who faced death and survival as shipwrecked souls.

Past Lectures

More About Music: Composers of the 2023 Cape May Music Festival 

Presented by Dr. Brenda Leonard

05/03/23

Marvels and Missteps: Medicine During the Victorian Era

Presented by Ben Ridings

04/19/23

A History of Libraries in the United States

Presented by Cape May County Libraries’ Outreach Librarian, Audrey Dingler

04/05/23

The Impact of Immigration on America 

Presented by Ted Bryan

03/15/23

Yes, nice Victorian women DID use that 4-letter word: MATH

Presented by Dr. Donna Szemcsak

03/01/23

Why Does Modern Art Look So Weird? 

Presented by Dr. John Curtis

02/15/23

The Maritime History of Cape May

Presented by Mal & Dottie Knapp

02/01/23

The Stories behind the Mother Goose Rhymes

Presented by Maryetta Dorricott of the Endicott Reardon Family Museum

01/18/23

A History of New Year’s Resolutions 

Presented by Mary Stewart

01/04/23

A History of Christmas Carols

Presented by Brenda Leonard

12/21/22

Nonprofits: They’re Not all the Same!

Presented by Jody Alessandrine

12/07/22

A Closer Look at Veterans Day

Presented by Mike Urbanski

11/16/22

“The Lenape Nation and the Virtues of the Seven Grandfathers”

Presented by eri Hislop, also named Xeli Otaesak Pilsit Xkw, of the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania

11/02/22

“Discovering Cape May’s Role in the Underground Railroad”

Presented by Theodore Bryan

10/19/22

Victorian Email: And Other Communications in the Late 1800s

Presenter: Ben Ridings, Cape May MAC Curator

10/05/22

Two Women, Two Worlds

Presented by Mary Stewart

09/21/22

“Six Centuries of Cello “

Presented by cellist Brenda Leonard

 09/07/22

“Vintage Tweets: Suffrage Era Postcards”

Presented by Carol Crossed

08/17/22

“What does a Symphony Conductor Do Besides Wave a Baton? “

Presented by Jed Gaylin of Bay Atlantic Symphony

 08/03/22

“Impressionist Art: How Do You Paint Light?”

Presented by John Curtis

 07/20/22

“History of Independence Day”

Presented by Mary Stewart

07/06/22

“Tool of the Trade”

Presented by Ben Riding

 06/16/22

“Let’s Play Ball: A Century of Baseball History.”

Presented by Mary Stewart

05/18/22

History of Gardens from Eden to Present

Part 1

Presented by Elan Zingman-Leith

04/20/22

Emerald Cape May

Presented by Ben Ridging

03/16/22

Love Cape May Style

Presented by Elan Zingman-Leith

02/16/22

Shocking Secrets of Victorian Christmas

Presented by Elan Zingman-Leith

12/15/21

A History of Thanksgiving in America

Presented by Mary Stewart

11/17/21

Guardian at the Point – Life as a Cape May Keeper

Presented by Ben Ridings

10/20/21

History of Bicycling

Presented by Tom Carroll

9/22/21

A Feeling of Community

Presented by CCA, Hope Gaines and Rachel Dolhanczyk

6/16/21

The Roaring Twenties

Presented by Mary Stewart

5/19/21

The Great Fire of 1878

Presented by Ben Ridings

4/12/21

The First Ladies Part 2

Presented by Mary Stewart

3/17/21

The Doo Wop Experience

Presented by Mike Urbanski

2/12/21

The Presidents in Cape May

Presented by Ben Ridings

1/21/21

CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS: Decking the Hall

Presented by Mary Stewart

12/16/20

YULETIDE AUTHORS: How Charles Dickens & Washington Irving Transformed Christmas

Presented by Ben Ridings

12/9/20

OTHER EDUCATIONAL OUTREACH PROGRAMS