Another fun season of Luther Oaks U has been created for 2019-2020. Guests, age 62 and older, are welcome to attend all events, which are complimentary. Space is limited for these events, reserve your spot early!

Ray & Joan:
The Man Who Made the McDonald's Fortune and the Woman Who Gave It All Away

Friday, November 22, 2019 | 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Illinois State University Alumni Center | 1101 N. Main St. – Room 118 | Normal, IL 61761

Did you know that the first McDonald’s was actually an orange juice stand? And despite Ray Kroc’s claim that he built the first McDonald’s in Des Plaines, Illinois in 1955, it’s simply not true! Otherwise we’d be eating Big Kroc’s instead of Big Mac’s.


Professional storyteller, Jenny Riddle, will share interesting tidbits about Ray and Joan Kroc as she brings to life Lisa Napoli’s best-seller, Ray and Joan. Jenny, in the role of Joan Kroc, will give you insights into the man who made the McDonald’s fortune and woman (Joan) who gave it all away. Sure, Ray was a philanthropist who donated huge sums of money to medical research into diseases such as arthritis—on the advice of his PR team! Hmmm. After Ray’s death, Joan gave away even bigger sums to causes such as the anti-proliferation of nuclear weapons movement, the treatment of alcohol and AIDS, the establishment of Hospice Centers throughout the U.S.—just to name a few—and usually gifted anonymously. And what were Ray and Joan like as people? 


Join Jenny for an entertaining and informative look into the lives of this famous power couple. 


Kindly respond by November 15, 2019.

The David Davis Mansion:
A Big House on the Prairie

Friday, February 21, 2020 | 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Illinois State University Alumni Center | 1101 N. Main St. – Room 118 | Normal, IL 61761

This is the story of Judge David Davis and his life in Bloomington, Illinois. Jeff Saulsbery will discuss David Davis’ life and the events that led to the building of the historic David Davis Mansion. He will tell the story of the 1860 campaign, which saw Davis’ good friend, Abraham Lincoln, elected President and how that impacted the Judge’s life and career.  


Kindly respond by February 14, 2020.

The Bloomington-Norma Circus Legacy:
The Golden age of Aerialists

Thursday, March 19, 2020 | 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Illinois State University Alumni Center | 1101 N. Main St. – Room 118 | Normal, IL 61761

Mark Schmitt and Maureen Brunsdale wrote this book titled, “The Bloomington-Normal Circus Legacy: The Golden Age of Aerialists.” Their presentation will provide an overview of the community’s rich circus past and detail the place where so much of this history comes back to life—in the Circus & Allied Arts Collection in Milner Library on the campus of Illinois State University.


Kindly respond by March 12, 2020.

What's New in Memory Loss Research

Thursday, April 23, 2020 | 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Illinois State University Alumni Center | 1101 N. Main St. – Room 118 | Normal, IL 61761

Steve Satek, president and founder of Great Lakes Clinical Trials, will lead a presentation about the benefits of medical research and utilizing clinical trials to aid in finding a treatment and/or cure for Alzheimer’s and other such diseases.


In a recent survey of 10,000 individuals in ten countries, 62% said they worry they may develop Alzheimer’s disease. Of those people, 91% believe the solution to tackling the disease lies in medical research and 79% said they would be willing to participate in medical research. 


Memory loss affects nearly everyone—whether we see it in our families, friends, or our community. This presentation will leave you with key takeaways to better understand this devastating disease and ways you can make a difference in the fight to end Alzheimer’s.


Kindly respond by April 16, 2020.

Luther Oaks U Graduation Party

Thursday, May 21, 2020 | 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Luther Oaks | Independent Living Dining Room | 601 Lutz Road | Bloomington, IL 61704

Meet back on the beautiful Luther Oaks campus and join the fun as we gather together to celebrate the end of another great year of Luther Oaks University! Relax and savor our culinary delights and pastoral views. Enjoy the sounds and beauty of a musical presentation by a talented harpist during this final opportunity for a get-together before school is out for summer!


Cap and gown rental not required—but there will be pomp & circumstance with cake!


Kindly respond by May 14, 2020.

Contact Us

Tel: (309) 557-8000

© Lutheran Life Communities

A 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation

Empowering vibrant, grace-filled living

across all generations.


601 Lutz Road,

Bloomington, Illinois 61704

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