Friday, April 30, 2010

May Cooking Classes

Are you ready for a serious culinary education? Kiss Z Cook has several long-term classes starting this month, including the scrumptious "Let's Bake" series, an outdoor grilling series, and level two of its foundation series for basic skills. Each series meets once per week for six or eight weeks.

The Carmel venue also has some great one-shot classes scheduled this month, such as "Cooking with Cheese" and "Outstanding Soups."

I'd sign up for "Let's Bake" in a heartbeat if it didn't conflict with several short trips I have planned ... and if my husband wouldn't kill me for spending $360 at once.

On the less expensive side, R Bistro chef Erin Kem continues her culinary wandering with a class on Middle Eastern cuisine at Frasier's Gourmet Foods ($35). Also on the schedule: a spring farm-market cooking class with chef Brad Kline.

At Chef JJ's in Broad Ripple, you'll find classes on sausages, pizza and ribs ... apparently they're working from a list of my husband's favorite foods.

Finally, if you took April's Sushi 101 at the Chef's Academy, continue your education with Sushi 102, taking place May 8.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

IUPUI Announces Summer Schedule

The IUPUI Community Learning Network has posted its summer schedule, and -- as we've come to expect -- it's heavy on the professional-development options. But there are some fun personal-development options, too, including the usual offerings in writing, languages, music, floral design and photography.

I'm especially excited about the range of fitness classes being offered this summer, including a Saturday-morning fitness sampler and a hiking club (both $99 for six weekly sessions). Not your style? Try belly dancing, golf, tai chi, zumba, pilates and more.

And here's a fun tidbit: That'll Teach Me got a mention in the catalog. It includes our award for 2009 Class of the Year, which went to the outstanding Immersion Spanish Institute. It was an intense but fun class, and it prepared me well for three months in Peru!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Singing the Blues

It's back! Sign up quickly for Allen Stratyner's popular class, How to Play Blues Harmonica, offered at the JCC. In six one-hour sessions on Tuesday evenings (July 6-Aug. 10), he'll teach you both traditional and country harmonica styles, and he'll tell you what he knows about the history of blues ... which is a lot. Cost is $79; call the JCC at 251-9467 to register.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Everything's Coming Up Roses

The spring planting season is just beginning, but already it's time to consider what you'll actually do with those piles of tomatoes and zucchini. (Hey, you can only make so much pasta sauce.) Enter the ever-useful Purdue University Extension Office, which is offering several upcoming classes in its Master Food Preserving Program.

Classes include:
  • Food safety and freezing food (June 2)
  • Boiling water process (June 11)
  • Pressure canning (June 17)
  • Pickling and drying foods (June 21)
  • Jams and jellies (June 23)
Classes run 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Scott Hall on the Johnson County Fairgrounds. Cost is $150 (or $125 through May 3); the registration deadline is May 24. Individual classes are $30 each, but only if space is available after full-course registrations.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Boca Loca Closes, Fuego Loco Opens

While I was gone, the big news in Indy adult education was the closing of Boca Loca Beads. Owner Jari Sheese walked away from her Fountain Square institution and, along with several other creative women, opened Fuego Loco Studio -- where the focus is on classes rather than retail sales.

At the moment, Fuego Loco is offering several lampworking classes, including a $60 "Intro to Lampworking" option. I assume that co-owner Bonnie Ramirez, aka The Torch Queen, will also be offering welding classes, but I don't see them listed on the site yet.

Meanwhile, the former Boca Loca site is now Heirloom Classics, which will continue to focus on jewelry and beads. You can even take some basic jewelry-making classes, starting at $20, such as "Wire Working 101" and "Jewelry Making 101."

So, now we have two educational venues instead of one, which is good. On the other hand, Jari's bead shop is gone, which is bad. But don't despair: You can still buy her beautiful work on Etsy, possibly the Web's best home for independent artisans.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Register for Summer Art Classes

Registration is now open for the Indianapolis Art Center's summer classes.

On the plus side, you can try out the center's fancy-dancy new online registration system. On the negative side, the summer class offerings are ... shall we say, uninspired? If you want a basic class in painting, glassblowing and the like, you'll find it. If you're looking for something new and different, however, you'll have to cross your fingers for a better fall schedule.

On a personal note, I'm quite disappointed by the absence of PMC classes. I love playing with precious metal clay, and now that I have a little kiln at home, I want to refresh my skills. Oh, well -- crossing my fingers for a better fall schedule.

In the meantime, pick up tickets to the 40th anniversary Broad Ripple Art Fair, to be held May 15-16. Through next Friday, tickets are four for $40 (a savings of $20).

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

It's Back: Follow the North Star

It's time once again for Conner Prairie's Follow the North Star program, which immerses participants in the experience of fugitive slaves on the Underground Railroad. I've reviewed the program before -- it's not exactly fun, but it's incredibly powerful. For more information, watch Conner Prairie's promotional video, which still gives me chills.

Starting April 9, the program runs on Friday and Saturday evenings in April, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. The program lasts 90 minutes, and groups start every 15 minutes. Tickets are $19; make reservations at (317) 776-6006.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

And, We're Back!

After three incredible months in Peru, I'm back home in Indy -- and already plotting this year's educational adventures. Over the next few days, look for updates on April cooking classes, the new venture from Jari Sheese (former owner of Boca Loca Beads), and much more. It's great to be home!