- Secular Sunday Social #6 (with Tales of Fossil Hunting)
Independence Branch of Cuyahoga County Public Library
It's been awhile since we did one of these... and this one will feature a an extra helping of science! For the first hour or so, we'll have a nice communal lunch and chat. Bringing a food item - main dish, snack, dessert, or drink (non-alcoholic of course) to share is greatly encouraged, but not mandatory. Feel free to list what you're planning to bring in the comments below. For the 2nd half, we will be treated to a presentation by avid fossil hunter (and former science teacher) Randy Pelton! Randy has made a number of trips to fossil-laden parts of the U.S. during the past couple of years (including areas such as Montana which often yield the remains of dinosaurs). He will be telling us about his excursions, and will provide plenty of pics. Note about food items - we can't actually "cook" anything at the library, although there is a small kitchenette adjacent to the room. There will, however, be plenty of room on the food tables (and plugs) for crock pots, etc. Hope to see you there! :)
- Discussion: The Politics of Our Time
Center for Inquiry Northeast Ohio's June meeting will feature an open floor discussion with a self-explanatory title – “The Politics of Our Time”. We’ll be examining the current state of political affairs, and taking a look at the candidates (both official and potential) and dissecting the positions of the major political parties on important and current issues. The discussion will be ordered but essentially unmoderated – VP of Programming Mark Tiborsky will provide some materials to use as “jumping off” points for discussion. As usual, light refreshments will be served... see you there! :) (image courtesy of Politico)
- Parade the Circle 2019
For 29 years, the Cleveland Museum of Art has been bringing this FREE signature summer event to Greater Cleveland. University Circle comes alive with color, music, and art for all ages. International and national guest artists join Greater Cleveland artists, families, schools, and community groups in a spectacular display of bright costumes, giant puppets, stilt dancers, handmade masks, and colorful floats. Circle Village, which includes activities, entertainment, and food, is presented by University Circle Inc. Parade the Circle is a day-long event that also sees the Wade Oval turn into what organizers call "Circle Village," which resembles a European outdoor market with vendors, food, kids' activities and, yes, beer. Huzzah! Parking is hard to come by if you don't come early!! I'd recommend getting an Uber or Lyft and walking to our usual spot on the "grassy knoll" in front of the Natural History Museum.
- Hessler Street Fair (times are tentative)
http://hesslerstreetfair.org/about-hessler.html This is Hessler's 50th anniversary year! Come enjoy the festivities. If anyone wants to be an event host, you can get a group together to meet and hang out. Please email me if you want to be an event host. They are asking people to bring cash for food, etc., as not all vendors accept credit cards. More info TBD.
- Gals and Guys Gastronomic Gala
Gals and Guys come on out to "think freely" while eating good food, catching up with friends and meeting new ones! This is a monthly Meetup, held primarily on the last Thursday of each month, but the day might change some months. RSVP by: Tuesday, May 21 at 7pm MENU: https://simonsbrecksville.com/menus I will be getting there at about 6:45pm, so feel free to come early too if you like. Reservation will be under Suzy Wernet and "Cleveland Freethinkers." Hope to see you there! Suzy Wernet
- Testy Topics Roundtable #4: Islam and Associated Issues
Richmond Heights Branch of Cuyahoga County Public Library
Islam is Earth's 2nd largest religion, having an estimated 1.6 billion adherents (over 22% of the world's population). 50 of the world's nations are majority Muslim; in virtually all of them, the religion guides governance to some degree. As with the declining numbers of religious adherents here in the U.S. (mostly ex-Christians... the percentage of U.S. "nones" now stands at 23%), the number of ex-Muslims continues to grow in both the Islam-dominated world and the Western world. Islam and issues associated with it are also (somewhat mysteriously) "hot potatoes" even within the greater freethought sphere. Many would rather dare not speak about it; others will tend to indulge in obscurantism, obfuscation, or insist on "qualifiers" for any discussion on these topics (especially online). Frustration about this, along with a sense of betrayal at the hands of secular liberals, is a common theme touched on by ex-Muslim atheists and agnostics. From Sarah Haider, atheist and co-founder of Ex-Muslims of North America: "The betrayal of the left has really hurt us, because in principle these people should be on our side, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with us in our efforts to reform Islam and bring human and women’s rights to Islamic countries. But they’re barring the gate, telling us we’re ‘Islamophobic’ or spurring hatred toward Muslims or contributing to a hostile atmosphere for them. They even say we’re contributing to Western imperialism. This is nonsense and is appalling to us.” For our roundtable discussion, we'll touch on the above and much more. Some visual materials will be provided as background info, and to use as jumping off points for discussion. Attendees are welcome to suggest additional materials. Some of us may want to gather for a late lunch/early dinner ("linner") after the roundtable... suggestions welcome! See you there! :)
- CFINO: "Celestial Strangeness"
The famed English astronomer Sir Arthur Eddington [masked]) once quipped, “Not only is the universe stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine”. Since Eddington’s lifetime, some “unimaginably” strange objects have been analyzed, photographed, and at least partially understood. Join us on Wednesday, May 8 at 7pm at Independence Library for a good dose of the strangeness of space! CFI Northeast Ohio's VP of Programming, Mark Tiborsky (an avid amateur astronomer/astronomy buff for many years), will be providing an overview of some of the weirdest known objects in our universe, with his presentation “Celestial Strangeness”. The program will focus on everything from bizarre objects in our own solar system to those located in the farthest known reaches of space. Casual science buffs won’t want to miss this one! And as usual, light refreshments will be served. See you there! :)
- Akron Oddmall Spring 2019
This is a "come anytime" type event - but our local FFRF chapter (Northern Ohio Freethought Society) will be tabling there all weekend long, so be sure to stop by and say hi! From the Oddmall website: "Emporium of the Weird is Oddmall’s largest and most established show. It features over 260 booths showcasing the works and wonders of an abundance of artists, crafters, entertainers, and purveyors of games, toys, comics, and all things geeky, awesome, amazing, amazingly amazing, and amazingly amazingly amazing. Live entertainment, costume contests, and a variety of interesting diversions fascinate even the most jaded of curmudgeons. Average attendance is 10,000-12,000 guests." The event is free to attend, though they do suggest a $5 voluntary donation. More info can be found here: https://www.oddmall.info/emporium-of-the-weird/ Since the event runs all weekend, and there is not an official group host at any specific time, members are welcome to coordinate meeting up with other members in the comments below. Hope to see you there! :)
- Spring Hike #1
Join us to celebrate Earth Day and nature's renewal in general, with a nice hike at Brecksville Reservation! We'll meet in front of (or inside) the Brecksville Nature Center. We may be taking the relatively rugged (and scenic) Deer Lick Cave Loop Trail (4 miles), or the shorter (2.5 miles) but still very nice Hemlock Loop... our choice will depend on conditions. Either way, good footwear is highly recommended. There are a number of good nearby choices to gather for a meal after the hike. The Creekside, which has very good food but is a tad pricier, and Simon's (which is more of a family restaurant/delicatessen) are two possibilities. Hope to see you there! :)
- Gals and Guys Gastronomic Gala
Gals and Guys come on out to "think freely" while eating good food, catching up with friends and meeting new ones! This is a monthly Meetup, held primarily on the last Thursday of each month, but the day might change some months. MENU: http://www.tasteofkeralam.com/ Parking in the back. RSVP by: Tuesday, April 23, 6:30pm I will be getting there at about 6:15pm, so feel free to come early too if you like. Reservation will be under Suzy-"Cleveland Freethinkers." Hope to see you there! Suzy Wernet