Below you'll find a list of all the courses currently being offered on the Gulf Park campus this summer. Scroll through and see what's happening. When you're ready to register click here and sign into your account.

Don't have an account? Click here and register for one today!

Call (601) 264-2780 in Hattiesburg or (228) 214-3277 in Long Beach if you have any questions. 



Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Experience - $45

Friday, June 8

9:00am - Off-site (Meridian, MS)

Field Trip

Join us as we spend the day in Meridian exploring this new venue that tells the creative story of our state. We'll break for lunch (on your own) before continuing our visit and heading back to Hattiesburg. Newly opened, the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Experience, or The MAX as its founders call it, gathers the stories of Mississippi's music legends and showcases the overwhelming impact of Mississippi’s creative legacy to locals and visitors under a single roof. The Max promises to be a major destination with a cultural impact that could extend far beyond Mississippi.


Door Art Painting Class - $40

Friday, July 13

2:30pm - Off-site (Bristles Art Studio, 16 Office Park Drive, Hattiesburg, MS 39402)

Seminar by Lissa Ortego

Come paint a unique wooden door hanger for your door.  Choose from over 50 designs! An outline will be drawn for you and colors can be chosen at the class.  Classes last about 2 1/2 hours. We will take you through the painting process step by step, and you will leave with something aDOORable for your door! Choose your design ahead of time, so we can get your wooden shape cut!  Check out our website at www.bristlesstudio.com to see what door hangers are available under the "Front Door Wars" tab. Lissa Ortego, owner of Bristles Art Studio for over 13 years and an alumna of USM, teaches art to children and adults. She's been voted Best Artist in Best of the Pinebelt for two years.


Watercolor for Beginners - $20

Wednesday, July 11 and 18

12:30pm - Peck House

Two-part Seminar by Tasha Messer Williams

We will be reviewing the basic rules and techniques of watercolor. Tasha Messer Williams is the co-owner of art*cetera in West Hattiesburg. She offers a variety of art classes at her store and is a professional portrait artist. Although Tasha works in a variety of mediums, her expertise is in watercolor and charcoal drawing.


The Eye Hears and the Ear Sees - $30

Monday, June 11, 18, 25, July 9, 16, 23

12:30pm - Peck House

Six-week Class by Dana Stratton

Using the medium and subject of your choice, we will work using background music that should inspire you to "get in the zone" and get inspired.  Bring your own supplies and reference material: the music will range from classical to modern. Stratton is a retired art and art history teacher who has taught at OLLI since 2000.

Drawing Media - $30

Thursday, June 14, 21, 28, July 12, 19, 26

12:30pm - Peck House

Six-week Class by Marty Broadus

This will be a 6-week course exploring a variety of drawing media: pencil, colored pencil and pen & ink. We will practice how-to-draw skills, shading for realism, using colored pencils and techniques for using pen & ink. You'll need the following supplies: #2 pencils, kneaded eraser, good quality colored pencils, several fine- to medium-point Sharpies, drawing paper 9X14 or smaller. Optional: anything else you like to draw with, watercolor pencils, etc. Marty is a retired art and drama teacher and a secretary for the South MS Art Asso. She also taught at Painting with a Twist where she assisted her daughter, Lola, in opening the studio in 2011.




Fun with Fresh Flowers - $15

Tuesdays, June 12, 19, 26,

10:30am - Peck House

Three-week class by Helen Ciraldo

In this first three-week class, we’ll learn about arranging fresh flowers, beginning with a brief lecture on the process and styles and followed by time for practice and presentation. Participants will need the following items for the class: a small bunch of mixed flowers, simple vase or container, newspaper, Oasis material, scissors, items of your choice to accessorize or use as a base. Helen Ciraldo is a homemaker with over 60 years experience in flower art, winning numerous juried competitions and serving as president of her local garden clubs several times.


Fun with Dried Flowers - $30

Tuesdays, July 10, 17, 24

10:30am - Peck House

Three-week class by Helen Ciraldo

In this second three-week class, we’ll learn about making framed art with dried flowers beginning with a lecture on the techniques, materials, and process followed by time for practice and presentation. Participants will need the following items for the class: small bunch of mixed flowers (preferably wildflowers), desiccant material or fine sand for drying, drying box, Elmer’s glue, hairspray, tweezers, cardboard backing, small picture frame (no larger than 8x10), and scissors.




Celebrity Wine Makers Starring in Mississippi - $15 (includes wine).

Wednesday, May 30

2:30pm - Off-site (Cotton Blues, 6116 Hwy 98 E, Hattiesburg, MS 39402)

Seminar by Carl van Coppenhagen

We will sample the top wines made by famous celebrities that you can find in Mississippi and discuss their history, quality, and value. If you’d like to order off the menu to have something the pair with your wine, you may do so at your own expense. As the owner of Carl's Wines and Spirits, van Coppenhagen has a great deal of knowledge regarding the history of wine and is himself a vineyard owner.


Thai Favorites - $45

Tuesday, June 19

10:30am - Off-site (The Kitchen Table, Midtown Market, Hattiesburg, MS 39402)

Seminar by Julie Hall

At the Kitchen Table we'll learn about basic Thai dishes including Shrimp Coconut Curry, Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce, Thai Cucumber Salad, Pot Stickers, Mango Sorbet, and how to prepare them easily. Julie Hall is a Culinary Instructor at The Kitchen Table in Midtown Market. Originally from the Jackson area, Julie has an extensive working career with restaurants in Hattiesburg and Jackson including Nicks, The Purple Parrot, and Jody's Bakery.


Breadsmith Tour - $15

Tuesday, July 10

10:00am - Off-site (3705 Hardy Street #20, Hattiesburg, MS 39402)

Field Trip by Heather Bickham

Participants will learn the process of bread making from mixing to baking. First, each participant will learn how to shape dough and then it will be baked. While baking, we will discuss the mixing process, ingredients, proofing time and how it’s baked. Each participant will take home the bread they shaped and a pizza dough. Heather Bickham and Stephanie Messina own Breadsmith, a bread bakery, where they make fresh bread and sweets daily, with no additives and preservatives. Their bread is hand made, using the best ingredients. They’ve been in business for almost 7 years.




Yoga For Strength and Flexibility - $30

Mondays and Wednesdays, June 11, 13, 18, 20, 25, 27 July 9, 11, 16, 18, 23, 25

11:45am - Peck House

Exercise Class by Michele Ferguson

This yoga class is perfect for beginner students and seasoned yogis. In this class you will learn a gentle yoga sequence that will emphasize the mind-body- breath connection to accessing more strength and better flexibility in daily living. Michele, a 500-hour registered teacher with Yoga Alliance, has practiced yoga since 2004. She places emphasis on body alignment & movement. Classes are designed to bring awareness to these aspects while creating body strength & flexibility.


Yoga For Strength and Flexibility - $30

Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28 July 10, 12, 17, 19, 24, 26

10:30am - Peck House

Exercise Class by Michele Ferguson

This yoga class is perfect for beginner students and seasoned yogis. In this class you will learn a gentle yoga sequence that will emphasize the mind-body- breath connection to accessing more strength and better flexibility in daily living.


Yoga Flow - $30

Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28 July 10, 12, 17, 19, 24, 26

9:15am - Peck House

Exercise Class by Michele Ferguson

This class is for students who have practiced yoga previously and are ready to move to the next level. It will consist of a series of sun salutations and standing poses followed by a cool down stand with seated pines and supine poses.


Zumba Gold - $30

Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28 July 10, 12, 17, 19, 24, 26

11:45am - Peck House

Exercise Class by Sylvia Kolakowski

This is a fun exercise class filled with easy, energizing dance moves and music that will make you move your feet. Sylvia teaches Zumba at several locations throughout the Hattiesburg area.


Restorative Yoga - $30

Fridays, June 15, 22, 29, July 13, 20, 27

10:30am - Peck House

Exercise Class by Michele Ferguson

Students will practice deep relaxation through the use of props, deep breathing, and meditation. The entire class is conducted in different reclining poses designed to allow the body to completely relax while focusing on the movement of the breath.




Your Strategy for Living the Life You Love in Retirement - $10

Monday, June 25

2:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Charlie Legg

Living in retirement with a successful foundation and the major components of a sound and sustainable retirement strategy is important for everyone. This seminar will include a discussion of planning for the expected, preparing for the unexpected, and positioning your portfolio to do both. There will be ample time for questions. Legg is a financial advisor with Edward Jones where he has helped business owners and families with their money for the last 12 years in the Hattiesburg area. He seeks to understand what is important to his clients and use an established process to help them reach their financial goals.




Scrumptious Moths - $10

Tuesday, June 26

9:30am - Peck House

Seminar by Diane Lafferty

In this seminar, we'll look at numerous seldom-seen moths and explore how beautiful these hidden creatures are. Diane Lafferty is retired and has been black lighting moths with a friend from New Orleans for many years. She has tried to identify as many moths as possible.


Turf Management 101 - $10

Wednesday, June 27

12:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Ross Overstreet

We'll cover basic lawn management practices including cultural practices, fertilization, insect/disease control, and other aspects related to turf management. Overstreet is the current Extension Agent for Lamar County with the MS State University Extension Service. With a bachelors degree in both Business Administration from the University of Mississippi and in Turf Management from Mississippi State University, he has previously served as the Superintendent of various golf courses in the southeast.




Stop The Bleed - $10

Wednesday, June 13

12:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Melanie Nunnally

"Stop the Bleed" teaches people, with or without healthcare training, how to stop or slow bleeding in the event of a mass casualty or life threatening accident. Melanie Nunnally is a USM graduate with a BSN, RN who began working in the Emergency Department at Forrest General in 2003 as a charge nurse.  In 2013, she became the Trauma Program Manager / Nurse Manager of the Trauma Clinic.  She is a Trauma Nurse Core Course and Bleeding Control Instructor.


The Genogram and Bowen Family Systems Theory - $10

Thursday, June 21

12:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Valerie Loeschen

Freud and his theoretical "offspring" worked to understand human behavior by exploring ideas around inner conflicts and congruence. Through the years, the theory has continued to evolve, bringing the maternal/child dynamic into the equation. In the 1950s, Murray Bowen developed his family therapy work, stating 'We can't understand human behavior outside the family and community context'. He outlined 8 key concepts and introduced a tool called the genogram (a family tree using symbols) to help visualize the patterns that affect an individual. In this seminar, we will create our own genograms and apply his concepts to our Families of Origin. Valerie Loeschen is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 20 years experience in psychotherapy. She resides in Laurel, where she has been in private practice since 2002.




Ancient Egypt

Wednesdays, June 13, 20, 27, July 11, 18, 25

9:30am – Peck House

Six-Week Class by Marvin Kendrick

Recent investigations have brought the date the Great Pyramid of Khufu (Cheops) to within a single year of its construction – 2750 BCE. This precision is unprecedented for structures from the Bronze Age. We’ll explore how this precision is possible, what it means, and look at recent papyrus discoveries that shed light on the pyramid’s development and construction. We’ll also consider some of the architectural planning and cultural development in Egypt as well as its Mesopotamian antecedents. Dr. Kendrick is an accomplished historian of art, architecture, and religion with degrees from the nation’s leading universities.


Mississippi History and Civil Rights Museums - $45

Friday, June 22

8:30am - Off-site (Jackson, MS)

Field Trip

Join us as we spend the day in Jackson exploring these two magnificent museums that tell the stories of our state. We'll break for lunch (on your own) and you're welcome to explore both museums or dive deeply into one. In the six months these museums have been open, they've already captivated vistors of all ages and experiences in Mississippi. Let's go (or return!) to dive deeper into the history of Mississippi.


Slavery and the Civil War in Mississippi - $10

Tuesday, June 26

2:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Max Grivno

This course examines how enslaved Mississippians responded to the sectional crisis and the Civil War.  It explores their political mobilization and resistance during the 1850s, their employment as military laborers and soldiers, and the ways in which they shaped the course of the Civil War in Mississippi. Grivno is an associate professor at The University of Southern Mississippi, where he teaches courses on Mississippi, the Old South, and Slavery.




History of Federal Law Enforcement and US Customs - $10

Wednesday, July 11

12:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Art Reifke

Special Agent Reifke's law enforcement career includes Military, State, Local, and Federal service, retiring from the New Orlean Metro Division of US Customs. He conducted investigations with national and international imapct. He received numerous awards for his service including The Secretary of the Treasury Award for excellence in significant criminal investigations and three Commissioners of Customs Awards for Excellence.  This seminar will provide an introduction to federal law enforcement and explore the history of the United States Customs Service, formed in 1789. We will touch on numerous aspects of the Customs Service including its criminal investigative arm focused on addressing drug trafficking and recent enforcement activities.


The Talking Heads of Rapa Nui: Easter Island’s Mystery, History, and Archaeology - $15

Tuesdays, June 12, 19, 26

9:30am - Peck House

Three-week Class by Dan Browning

Having returned from travelling to Easter Island earlier this Spring, Dr. Browning will share new insight into the history and meaning behind some of the greatest historical treasures and artistic wonders on earth. Browning has been a professor of religion and history for 26 years and has taught several OLLI classes in the past. His specialty is Biblical Archaeology and his research activities also include megalithic tombs, Dead Sea Scrolls, and entrances to Hades.


"I was an Estray: Exploring Runaway Slaves in Mississippi and the Atlantic World - $15

Wednesday, June 13 and 20

2:30pm - Peck House

Two-part Seminar by Douglas Chambers

We will learn about the experience and significance of slaves who ran away, often "self-emancipating," and how their harrowing experiences help us to better understand the world of slavery and pre-1860 American history. Wherever there were plantations and newspapers, there were published advertisements for runaway slaves. Participants will have the opportunity to read a collection of Mississippi runaway slave ads (some 1,500 runaways), a special issue of the Journal of Mississippi History, and to consider how runaway slaves challenge our popular understandings of American history. Chambers is Associate Professor of History at USM, an author/editor of five books and over two dozen scholarly essays, and guest editor of a recent special issue on runaway slaves for the Journal of Mississippi History (dated 2013; published 2015).


The 1950s - $20

Thursday, June 7, 14, 21, and 28

9:30am - Peck House

Four-week Class by Ryan Schilling

In our seminar meetings, we will discuss key events of the 1950s, while focusing on the Eisenhower Administration, Civil Rights Movement, and key changes in American culture. Ryan Schilling currently teaches World and US History at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, on the Perkinston Campus.  This is his fifth summer to teach at OLLI.



Conversational Spanish

Mondays, June 11, 18, July 9, 16, 23

2:30pm – Peck House

Five-week Class by Martha Adams

Quieres aprender Español? Claro que sí! Do you want to learn Spanish? Of course!

Come enjoy learning Spanish from a native speaker and fellow OLLI member. This class’s approach to learning basic Spanish words and phrases is one you’ll find enjoyable no matter your level of experience or comfort with learning new languages. Martha Adams is a retired educator, native of Colombia, and active OLLI member.













T.S. Eliot, Yoga Philosophy and The Waste Land - $10

Friday, July 13

2:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Jessica Cloud

While pursuing his graduate studies at Harvard, T.S. Eliot put a year into deep study of the Yoga Sutras with renowned scholar James Haughton Woods. Yoga, defined in the Sutras as the practice of stopping “the fluctuations of the mind-stuff” (Patañjali 8), provides the possibility of hope and equanimity in Eliot’s poem The Waste Land (1922), which depicts a world seemingly devoid of meaning. Not only can the influence of the Yoga Sutras be seen in the poetic form, style, and voice of The Waste Land and in the explanatory notes to the poem provided by Eliot, but classical yoga philosophy, as articulated in Patañjali’s Sutras, also forms the basis of a yogic spiritual journey in the poem. Cloud is a professional fundraiser serving as the VP for Advancement for Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, CA. She also has a passion for literature and in May will graduate with an M.A. in English Literature from USM.




College Town Escape Room - $15

Thursday, June 14

2:30pm - Off-site (2206 Hardy Street, Hattiesburg, MS 39401)

Field Trip

Come join your fellow OLLI members and staff as we work together to solve the puzzles posed to us and work our way out of the room as quickly as we can. This will be a fun afternoon doing something we've never done before! College Town Escape Rooms mission is to give you a unique, interactive experience every time you step foot through the door by creating unique, scenario-based, live-action puzzle games.


Introduction to Duplicate Bridge - $10

Wednesday, 20-Jun

10:00am - Off-site (Sigler Senior Center, 315 Conti Street, Hattiesburg, MS 39401)

Seminar by Sue Hegwood

This seminar will introduce bridge players to the world of duplicate bridge. Players will learn about scoring, using bid boxes, rotating tables, etc., and have a chance to play with experienced bridge players. Sue Hegwood is the president of the Hattiesburg Bridge Club. She is a lifelong bridge player and has been a member of the Club for 15 years.


Country Girl’s Creamery and Tea Farm Tour - $35

Thursday, July 12

9:00am - Off-site (Lumberton, MS)

Field Trip

Join us as we spend the day in Lumberton exploring this fantastic local farm and distributor. We'll take a tour and have lunch at the Creamery (included in the price). Country Girls Creamery, a family owned and operated dairy farm producing natural Jersey Cow products, is located in Pearl River County and provides dairy products fresh from the farm to your table! In the beginning Country Girl’s Creamery was focused on selling at the surrounding farmers’ markets, but has since expanded their business into many retail stores as well.


Waltzing into Better Health - $10

Monday, June 11

2:00pm - Peck House

Seminar by Michael Forster

Did you know that social dancing is one of the healthiest things you can do?  It improves physical stamina, sharpens cognition, reduces stress, and contributes to an overall sense of well-being.  The good news is that you don’t need to know a bunch of fancy steps to reap the benefits of dancing; a handful of easy moves does the trick.  Enjoy this brief and very basic introduction to several popular dance styles, including Rumba, Waltz, Foxtrot, and Swing.  NO PARTNER OR SPECIAL ATTIRE REQUIRED. Dr. Michael Forster is a professor of Social Work and Dean Emeritus of the College of Health at USM. He's an avid social dancer who participates locally with USA Dance.


Waltzing into Better Health - $10

Monday, 16-Jul

2:00pm - Peck House

Seminar by Michael Forster

Did you know that social dancing is one of the healthiest things you can do?  It improves physical stamina, sharpens cognition, reduces stress, and contributes to an overall sense of well-being.  The good news is that you don’t need to know a bunch of fancy steps to reap the benefits of dancing; a handful of easy moves does the trick.  Enjoy this brief and very basic introduction to several popular dance styles, including Rumba, Waltz, Foxtrot, and Swing.  NO PARTNER OR SPECIAL ATTIRE REQUIRED. This is an additional offering of the seminar on June 11. Feel free to register for either one or both!


Review of Strategies and Practices of Bridge - $30

Monday, June 11, 18, 25, July 9, 6, 23

9:30am - Peck House

Six-week Class by Ellen Davies

In this course, we study the more unusual bids and strategies of bridge.  This course is Part 1 of a 2 part series.  Participants need to have been playing bridge at least 1.5 years. Ellen Davies is a retired teacher and lawyer who learned bridge as a teenager from her mother.  She has taught a number of bridge classes at OLLI.




Pondering Possible Past Lives - $15

Friday, June 15

9:30am - Peck House

Two-part Seminar by Duann Kier

Do you believe in reincarnation?  Do you believe that you personally have had past lives?  If so, do you know what some of them may have been?  How can you find out more about them?  Could you already be remembering your past lives, but just haven’t recognized it?  Come join this highly interactive seminar pondering your possible past lives and why recognizing them may be helpful to you in this life. Duann Kier is a professional psychic, hypnotist, author and humorist from Florence, Mississippi.


Do Animals have their Own Religions? - $10

Tuesday, June 19

2:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Daniel Capper

In this seminar we will look at materials from my book Learning Love from a Tiger. We'll focus on both scientific and religious outlooks concerning the possibility that animals might have their own species-specific forms of religiosity, as startling as that may sound. Daniel Capper has been a professor in the Department of Philosophy and Religion at the University of Southern Mississippi since 2000, where he teaches Asian, Native American, and comparative religions.




First Steps in Human Space Exploration - $15

Tuesday and Thursday, June 19 and 21

12:30pm - Peck House

Two-part Seminar by Lee Walker

While earlier space exploration seminars focused on the Apollo lunar missions, a wealth of information and documentation is increasingly available on the history of the the former Soviet Union's space program. In this course, we will combine the efforts and amazing inventive work of both Soviet and American engineers and astronauts/cosmonauts. This is a story to spark your imagination (and memory) and to share with your grandchildren. We will examine models and personal mementos from both the United States and Russia that can be found  quite easily if you wish to start your own collection. Join us for a look back that can help you feel it all over again. Lee Walker taught in public schools for many years and was a co-founder of the Interaction Factory, a hands-on science discovery place, where he help design and conduct learning adventures for area youth.  An avid astronomer for years and a continuing space science fan, he loves sharing at OLLI.


Introduction to Beekeeping - $15

Thursday, June 21 and 28

12:30pm - Peck House

Two-part Seminar by Ed Hafer

Part One of this course, held at Peck House, will include an introduction to the fascinating world of the honey bee. Part Two will feature a visit to Ed Hafer's apiary (122 Griffith Rd., Hattiesburg, MS 39402) where participants will get to see the bees in action and sample some freshly-extracted honey. Ed Hafer is a relatively new beekeeper. When he is not wrangling stinging insects, he can be found teaching music history at USM.




Toxic Masculinity: Its Development and Impact on Society - $30

Wednesday, June 13, 20, 27, July 11, 18, 25

9:30am - Peck House

Six-week Class by Katie James

Social movements in 2018 bring light to mass shootings and sexual assault.  Some people frame these problems in terms of access to guns and mental health.  This course will add to these explanations by exploring how a culture of toxic masculinity contributes to an array of social issues.  What are boys being told about what it means to be a successful man?  How is our society set up for these boys to fail?  How do they take out their frustrations on marginalized groups?  And most importantly, what can we do to change things?  In this course, we will focus on answering these questions.  Along the way, we will challenge stereotypical ideas of masculinity by reading work from preeminent gender scholars. Katie James is an assistant professor of sociology and interdisciplinary studies.  She studies gender and justice.  She has studied these two issues in the workplace, families, and schools.


British Women Spies of World War II - $10

Wednesday, June 20

12:30pm - Peck House

Seminar by Allison Abra

This seminar will examine the history of the British women who served as agents in the Special Operations Executive (SOE) during World War II. SOE was the branch of British intelligence charged by Winston Churchill to "set Europe ablaze," and a group of remarkable women were among the hundreds of agents sent on missions into Occupied Europe. The class will explore their stories, and consider what impact their service had on gender relations in Britain during the war and in the years since. Abra is an assistant professor in the History Department at Southern Miss. She specializes in the histories of modern Britain, women and gender, popular culture, and war and society. In 2017, she published a book on popular dance in Britain during the Jazz Age.


Lady Mary in Constantinople - $10

Monday, July 16

9:30am - Peck House

Seminar by Nicolle Jordan

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu traveled to the Ottoman empire in 1718-19 with her husband, the British ambassador to the region. Her Turkish Embassy Letters are fascinating and cover many topics, including her observations about how the Ottomans developed a smallpox inoculation. She had the treatment performed on her own children as a way of bringing the method to Britain—but she is barely recognized for this service even today. Her letters also challenged the notion that Ottoman women were less free than English women. The veil, she claimed, gave them the anonymity to do almost anything they wanted. In this seminar we’ll discuss key letters that describe Montagu’s fascinating encounters with Ottoman women, in spaces like the Turkish bath where no men (and certainly no English men) had been before. Nicolle Jordan is an Associate Professor of British Literature at USM. She teaches and writes about British literature and culture of the long eighteenth-century, with a particular focus on landscape and women’s writing. She has published articles on Anne Finch and Lady Mary Wortley Montagu.