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Learning at the Lake

Program Number: 21427RJ
Start and End Dates:
8/10/2014 - 8/14/2014; 8/24/2014 - 8/28/2014; 9/22/2014 - 9/26/2014; 9/29/2014 - 10/3/2014; 10/12/2014 - 10/16/2014; 3/23/2015 - 3/27/2015; 5/3/2015 - 5/7/2015;
Duration: 4 nights
Location: Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Price starting at: $699.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Multi-Topic
Meals: 4; 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 2 Dinners    
Meal Options: Gluten Free; Vegetarian    

Nestled on the shore of a sparkling lake you’ll find the perfect setting for learning with gifted instructors who are passionate communicators, comfortable accommodations for reflecting on new ideas and satisfying meals shared with new friends. These programs are intellectually stimulating but easy on the body and joints. Enjoy covered decks with fresh breezes or get out on the lakeside walking path for even more activity. As a special highlight, attend a cultural event. See our date-specific details for specific course descriptions to find the learning adventure that's right for you!


• Enjoy courses in history, music, politics, literature and biographies of people who have changed our world.
• Absorb stimulating information, rethink old ideas and gain new perspectives.
• As a special highlight, attend a cultural event.

Activity Particulars

Minimal walking required; participants are welcome to explore nature paths or lakefront.

Date Specific Information


EXPLORING AMERICA DURING THE 1950s: In the early 1950s the United States was riding a wave of post-war prosperity, a Baby Boom had taken hold and the crooners ruled the radio; but change was in the air. By decade’s end the U.S. would be entrenched in the Cold War and Space Race. Compare the presidencies of Truman and Eisenhower. Learn more about the Marshall Plan, the Iron Curtain, atomic bomb testing and McCarthyism. Rock-n-Roll appeared in the mid-'50s with stars like Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley. Wrap up with a look at the golden age of television. Attend a performance of “Smokey Joe’s Café” at The Fireside Theater.


EXPLORING AMERICA DURING THE 1940s: Survey this remarkable decade from distinct perspectives. Consider the presidencies and policies of Roosevelt and Truman, through the end of the Great Depression, into the war years and by decade’s end a new era of prosperity. Discuss the food and fashion of the age, when sauerkraut became Liberty Cabbage and Hollywood stars sold war bonds at the Stage Door Canteen. Explore the musicals of composer Leonard Bernstein such as “West Side Story” and “On The Town.” Delve into the era of the big band, from Duke Ellington to Glenn Miller. Attend a performance of “On The Town” at The Marriott Lincolnshire Theater.


TURNING POINTS: THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION: Like revolutions in the past, the Industrial Revolution was one of great upheaval and change. Supporters praised the modern factories and new wealth that was created. Critics pointed to the thousands that became destitute after moving to the cities. Explore this time period by looking at the historical record and learn about the factors that gave rise to technological advances. Discuss writers like Mark Twain who gave voice to those seeking social justice. Look at musicals that used this time period for dramatic inspiration. Attend a performance of “Les Miserables” at The Fireside Theatre.


AMERICA’S DAIRYLAND: Discover for yourself why Wisconsin truly is “America’s Dairyland.” Test your knowledge of dairy cows; can you tell the difference between Holsteins, Guernseys and Jerseys? Talk with industry experts about dairy science and the process of converting feed into milk. Discuss the disappearing family farm and the growth of large factory farms. Try your hand at making butter and ice cream and sample other dairy products like milk, cheese and yogurt. Experience firsthand, dairy operations and enjoy a day of exploration at the World Dairy Expo, held every year in Madison, Wisconsin. This program will be mooo-velous!


PARIS: HERITAGE AND HISTORY IN THE CITY OF LIGHT: Explore Paris during the time of Victor Hugo. Take a closer look at urban planning and the work done by Haussmann to level entire blocks of narrow medieval streets in order to create wide avenues and new buildings. It was beautiful, yes, but harder for revolutionaries to build barricades and easier for the military to move troops and canon. Delve into economics and the thousands of workers who migrated from the countryside to the city to work in the factories. Some were able to support themselves and their families, but many faced starvation, poverty and violence. Discuss Hugo’s novel and its themes of revolution, justice and redemption. Attend a performance of “Les Miserables” at The Fireside Theatre.


INSIDE THE OFFICE OF THE U.S. PRESIDENT: Often called the most powerful person in the world, the U.S. President’s role has evolved significantly from the one stated in Article II of the Constitution. Explore the President’s role as Commander-in-Chief with noteworthy events related to declaring war and making peace. Discuss foreign policy success and challenges. Learn more about the Electoral College and interesting election results among other topics. Attend a world premiere performance of the new play “Five Presidents” at the Milwaukee Repertory Theater in Milwaukee.


PIRATES, PRIVATEERS AND BUCCANEERS: Why do we romanticize and idolize pirates? They aren’t very nice people. Then why do we dress as pirates and watch pirate movies? Explore the golden age of piracy in the Caribbean, along the lines of Jack Sparrow. Learn more about famous female pirates like Anne Bonny and Mary Read. Study the pirate genre in film with swashbucklers Errol Flynn and Maureen O’Hara and in music with works by Berlioz and Bellini. Attend a performance of the play “Peter and the Star Catcher” at the Milwaukee Repertory Theater in Milwaukee.

Coordinated by Covenant Harbor.

Lake Geneva

One hour southwest of Milwaukee, Lake Geneva is a resort city whose popularity arose from its accessibility from Chicago via the railroad. With its many large summer homes, the city has been called "The Newport of the West," and it remains a year round destination for those seeking a quaint, lakeside getaway.

Conference center located on beautiful Geneva Lake in a 51-acre wooded site. Beautiful lake shore walking path for viewing historic mansions.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Greg Athnos

Greg received his bachelor’s in music education from Northwestern College and his master’s from the University of Michigan. He also studied at the University of Oslo and was an associate professor of music at North Park University in Chicago. Greg continues a busy lecture schedule and leads art appreciation study groups to Europe.
Linda Bachand

Linda Bachand earned a bachelor’s of music from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her master’s in arts and history from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, with a European history specialty. She has been performing in the Midwest for 35 years, giving presentations on Broadway musicals and serving as a church musician. Linda maintains a private voice and piano studio — and she is an avid gardener.
Christine Brookes

Christine Brookes is a Lake Geneva native who received her bachelor’s in education from the University of Michigan and master's in education from Viterbo University, specializing in language arts and reading. She has performed at the Bristol Renaissance Faire and with several community theaters.
Ellen Langill

Dr. Ellen Langill earned a bachelor’s degree in Latin from Grinnell College, where she was a National Merit Scholar, and a Ph.D. in American History from the University of Wisconsin. She has published more than 15 books and articles in the fields of legal and business history and the story of specific companies and organizations. Several of her books have won both regional and national history awards, including her 150 year history of Milwaukee law firm Foley & Lardner. Dr. Langill teaches in the history department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Meals and Lodgings
   Covenant Harbor
  Lake Geneva, WI 2 nights
 Covenant Harbor
Type: Conference Center
  Description: You'll be staying at the Geneva Bay Retreat Center at Covenant Harbor Bible Camp. Since 1947, this faith-based camp and retreat center has been committed to providing excellent facilities and programming to the youth, families and adults who come to this lakeside location. Situated one mile west of downtown Lake Geneva on 52 beautiful wooded acres, the camp and retreat center offer an ideal location to learn, relax and create lasting relationships. The historic property includes several buildings left from the Sturges Estate created around the time of the Great Chicago Fire when wealthy families built their summer "cottages" at the lake and stayed for the summer season. Today, the Lake Geneva area is still known as Chicago's Summer Backyard. Guests are encouraged to explore the grounds and walk along the public access lake shore path. The path goes all the way around the lake (23 miles total) but even walking a small portion you'll see historic and modern homes, all beautifully kept.
  Contact info: 1724 W Main Street
Lake Geneva, WI 53147 USA
phone: 262-248-3600
  Room amenities: Each guest room contains a radio/alarm clock, hair dryer, telephone with voice mail, soap, air conditioning , shampoo and lotion. This retreat center does not have televisions in their guest rooms; as a retreat center they do not want any distractions to get in the way of you getting the most from your program experience.
  Facility amenities: Geneva Bay Retreat Center is a self-contained facility with 32 guest rooms, meeting space and dining room all in one building. An elevator provides access to all three levels (meeting and dining room in the ground floor level with two floors of sleeping rooms above). Free internet (wi-fi) service throughout the building. Due to the topography of the area, mobile phone signals may not always be reliable. Relax with new friends in two lounges, one with a television with basic news channels. No alcohol permitted on site.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: $80.00 Call 262-248-3600, ext. 333 for additional nights availability.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: $80.00 Call 262-248-3600, ext. 333 for additional nights availability.
  Check out time: 10:30 AM

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Arrival and check-in at 4:00 pm at conference center in Lake Geneva, WI. You will be staying at Covenant Harbor that night.
  End of Program:
Program ends after 11:30 am lunch. Departures by 1:00 pm. You will be staying at Covenant Harbor the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. Covenant Harbor Waiver. This form cannot be completed online. You'll find the form before the Participant Information Form in your pre-program materials. Complete and return to the address provided.
  Parking availability:
Free parking on site for duration of program.
To Start of Program
  Location:  Lake Geneva, WI
  Nearest highway: Highway 50.
  Nearest airport:  Gen. Mitchell International Airport (MKE), Milwaukee, WI.
  From End of Program
  Location: Lake Geneva, WI
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details

Gen. Mitchell Int'l Airport (MKE), Milwaukee, WI to Lake Geneva


From Airport




Commercial Van/Shuttle
Covenant Harbor Van Shuttle
phone: 262-248-3600 x309
Advanced Reservations Required


Per Person/One Way:


$75 per person, $100 for two people traveling together
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


1 hour 15 minutes 




55 miles


Van Shuttle provided by Covenant Harbor from/to the Milwaukee airport on the program start and end dates only. Contact Ms. Brooke Furmanek, the program coordinator, to make your reservation at 262-248-3600 x309. One-way cost $75 per person or $100 for two people traveling together.

Driving Directions
  From Chicago to Lake Geneva Take the I-294 N towards Milwaukee (there will be tolls). Take I-94 W (You are actually going north) to Milwaukee (There will be tolls). Take the Hwy 50 W exit to Kenosha/Lake Geneva. Follow Hwy 50 W approximately 28 miles to Lake Geneva. Stay on Hwy 50 W one mile and turn left into the Covenant Harbor Bible Camp entrance. The entrance is just before Highway 50 widens from two lanes to a four lane highway.
  From Madison to Lake Geneva Take I-90 south to I-43 north. Follow I-43 north to Hwy 50 east (Lake Geneva). Follow Hwy 50 for about 10 miles. As you enter Lake Geneva you are coming down a big hill and the highway will narrow from four lanes to two lanes, at this point the Covenant Harbor/Geneva Bay Centre entrance is on the right. Continue down the drive and bear to the right at the fork, up the hill to Geneva Bay Centre (three story red brick building). Passenger drop off to the left, parking to the right. Travel time approx. 1 hour 30 minutes.
  From Milwaukee to Lake Geneva Take I-43 south to Exit 36, Hwy 120 East Troy/Lake Geneva. Take Hwy 120 south 13 miles to Lake Geneva (three stop signs). Continue straight into Lake Geneva, do not follow Hwy 120 around the city, instead continue straight onto Broad Street to the second stop light (intersection of Broad St and Hwy 50, the lake will be directly in front of you). Turn right on Hwy 50 and proceed west one mile (the lake is on your left) to the Covenant Harbor Bible Camp/Geneva Bay Centre entrance on your left (lakeside). Look for the red "Welcome Road Scholar" sign. The entrance is just before Hwy 50 widens from two lanes to a four lane highway. If you see Snake Road you've gone too far. Continue down the driveway and bear to the right at Heinzelman Way, continue up the road and park in front of the thee-story brick building (Geneva Bay Centre).
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival / Orientation
(Monday, September 29)
 Afternoon: Plan to arrive in Lake Geneva in the afternoon. Check-in at Geneva Bay Conference Center at Covenant Harbor at 4:00 pm central daylight time. Please, no early check-ins. If you do arrive early, you are welcome to bring in your luggage, have a cup of coffee and wait in the lounge or take a walk down by the lake until your room is ready. Room key, name tag and program booklet distributed at check-in.
 Dinner: Buffet at 6:00 pm in the lower level dining room. You'll find a salad bar with fresh greens and an array of toppings. Grab a seat in the dining room and take your glass to the beverage center for your choice of soda, iced tea, coffee, tea or ice water. Meal times are a great opportunity to meet your fellow participants and talk about past programs you have attended.
 Evening: Gather at 7:15 pm in the meeting room to kick off the program with ORIENTATION. Your Group Leader will give an overview of the program, provide additional information about your accommodations and amenities and answer any questions. Then you'll have a chance to introduce yourself to the group and tell a little about your hometown and hobbies.
Accommodations: Covenant Harbor
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Field Trip to See Farming Operations
(Tuesday, September 30)
 Breakfast: Buffet at 8:00 am in the lower level dining room.
 Morning: FIELD TRIP. Board our coach at 9:00 am for a field trip into the southern Wisconsin countryside. Visit a dairy operation to see first-hand the milking process.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Continue our FIELD TRIP.
 Dinner: Buffet at 6:00 pm in the lower level dining room.
 Evening: Gather at 7:15 pm in the lower level meeting room to hear from a dairy industry expert.
Accommodations: Covenant Harbor
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Free Time Opportunities
  Lake Geneva, WI Lake Geneva Area Chamber of Commerce
Your guide to Lake Geneva. For additional information, visit
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

You can't find a better value than Road Scholar.

As a not-for-profit organization, we are dedicated to providing all-inclusive educational programs at great value. From lectures to gratuities to field trips to accommodations - the tuition you pay up front is all that you pay.

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