The Adult School Kicks Off its 90th Anniversary with New Classes and Events 

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From the South Orange-Maplewood Adult School:

Spring has sprung at the South Orange-Maplewood Adult School! SOMAS is kicking off its 90th year with an exciting slate of fun events and over 100 classes! We’ve got lectures, fitness, technology, arts and crafts, performing arts, fine arts and so much more! Browse the online catalog, sign up for our weekly newsletter and register for classes at SOMADULTSCHOOL.ORG


  • Salamishah Tillet, winner of the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for Criticism, is the 2023 Redpath Event’s featured speaker. Salamishah will discuss how Alice Walker’s iconic book, “The Color Purple”, influenced her life and led to the writing of her book, “In Search of the Color Purple: The Story of An American Masterpiece”. She will be joined by Prof. James Goodman of Rutgers University. This is SOMAS’ Redpath event, and the first in our 90th anniversary series “From Injustice to Insurrection”.  Wednesday, February 15, 7-8:30pm, Columbia High School, Maplewood. 
  • Nancy Solomon, senior reporter and the founding editor of New Jersey Public Radio, will join us to discuss her true-crime podcast Dead End: A New Jersey Political Murder Mystery. After the talk, SOMAS will present Solomon with the Gus & Thelma Sickles Award for Lifelong Learning, followed by a wine-and-dessert reception. Thursday, April 27, 7-9pm, The Woodland.
  • Emily Zacharias will present The Best of Likely Stories: Great Actors. Great Writers. Great Stories. Likely Stories is an evening of storytelling inspired by Isaiah Sheffer’s Selected Shorts at Symphony Space. This evening will feature some of the best. Stay for the afterparty with wine & dessert. Monday, March 27, 7-9, The Woodland. 
  • Stephen Whitty Presents: 1933: Hollywood’s Most Revolutionary Year, Monday, May 1, 7-8:30pm, Columbia High School Black Box Theatre. 
  • Lectures from award-winning art history educator Janet Mandel featuring Faith Ringgold (Thursday, March 23, 7-8:30pm, online), Georgia O’Keeffe (Thursday, April 20, 7-8:30pm, online) and Gustav Klimt (Two Tuesdays, May 9 & 16, 7-8:30pm, online).
  • Carol Simon Levin portrays Lillian Moller Gilbreth, motion study pioneer and “Cheaper by the Dozen” mother of 12, with Mothers of Invention, Thursday, May 11, 6:30-8pm, Columbia High School. 

The Spring 2023 semester also features a trove of over 100 stimulating classes and entertaining events:

Join us again at The Village at SOPAC for our popular Arthouse Film Festival, starting March 13. 

Take a day trip with our Moonlight Beach Walk, Guided Eco-Cruise and Vintage Shopping with a Pro

Have a fun night on the town with: BYOB Poetry Salon at The Write Space, a Paella Party at Kitchen Table Maplewood, Trivia Night at 4 City Brewing Co. and a Wine Pairing Dinner at Village Hall Restaurant. 

Get your heart pumping (and some fresh air) with: Pilates, Yoga, Birding in NJ, Tap Dance, Flamenco, Couch to 5K, Zumba & Zumba Gold, T’ai Chi and Golf.

For the kiddos: Suzuki Violin Lessons, What to Expect in Middle School, Junior Golf, Run for Fun and Spring Break Golf Camp

Spark your creative juices with classes like Pinot & Pottery, Adventures in Watercolors, Pet Portraits in Collage, Gel Plate Printmaking, Calligraphy, Hooked on Knitting, Intro to Water Soluble Oil Paint, Abstract Mixed Media Workshop, Understanding Sewing Patterns, and Dorodango: The Art of Polishing Mud Balls

Take control of your future and finances with: Retirement Income Planning, Divorce Demystified, Design Her Future, The Fundamentals of Investing, Long-Term Planning 101 and Social Security & Medicare.

Kickstart fun home and garden projects with Home Staging, Upholstery, Native Plant Basics, Master Your Sewing Machine, Planning & Prepping a Native Plant Garden or Enhance Your Home: Be Smart With What You Have

Embrace your inner extrovert (and funny bone) with Finding Joy Through Juggling, Improv for Everyone, Enjoy Speaking, Intro to Professional Voice Over, A Public Speaking Intensive and Stand-Up Comedy

Need help getting pen to paper? Check out: A Memoir Workshop, A Newbie’s Guide to the Publishing Process, Create a Children’s Picture Book, Creative Writing, Grant Writing and How to Publish (or Create) a Children’s Book

Stimulate your mind (and bring a friend) with: Chess for Beginners, Mah Jongg for Everyone, Bridge and Superpower Memory.

Explore your musical side with Guitar 1&2 and Instant Piano for Busy People.  

Dive into languages with: French, Italian, Spanish and ESL

Have a sweet tooth? Join us for a Craft Chocolate Tasting.

Tap into your spiritual self with: Sound Bath Experience, Meditation, Psychic Reading, Tarot.

Lose Weight, Stop Smoking or Relieve Stress with Hypnosis.  

Dive into technology with: Cutting the Cord on Cable, Clean Up, Edit & Share Photos, Excel, Shutterfly Photo Books, Passwords: Never Forget and Getting the Most Out of Google

Planning for college? Check out A Family Guide to Finding the Right College and Lentz & Lentz SAT/ACT Prep

Learn key life skills with Executive Functions & The Challenges of ADHD and Understanding Your Child with ADHD

There’s truly something for EVERYONE in this catalog and classes fill up quickly, so sign up today! 

More classes will be added throughout the semester so be sure to get on the mailing list — sign up at

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The Adult School is a nonprofit organization and does not receive any taxpayer funding. The school relies solely on the revenue from tuition and contributions from our vital community. To donate or become a sponsor, please email: or visit the website

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