2021-2022 Special Interest Groups (SIGS)

2021-2022 Special Interest Groups

Our AAUW-NWV Branch offers several Special Interest Groups (SIGs) – small social groups that meet regularly in the homes of members or elsewhere to share their love of books, cards, hiking, theater, wine, or other varied topics. Our interest groups allow you to connect with other AAUW-NWV members in a comfortable social setting while providing opportunities for education, involvement, friendship, and fun.

Interested in joining a group or starting a new group: Contact Mary Jo or Karen.

Special Interest Group Chairpersons

Karen Diaz                     email                        720-989-3702

Linda Styrwoll               email                         218-259-4437

Book Clubs:

             Monday Book Club:               Book Discussion

Meeting: 2nd Monday at 2:00 PM (October-April)

Contact: Karen Bunting              email                                810-602-4796

The Monday Book Club reads a variety of genres, including fiction, history, non-fiction, etc. Members make book recommendations, then vote on which books we will read and discuss each year. The books are selected well in advance, giving members time to obtain, and read them.  Discussion leaders volunteer and take turns for the meetings. Meetings are held at the CIT Group Inc, Bank, in their community room. When the room is not available, meetings will be held in member homes or Zoom.

The Open Book Club:            MeMber’s ChoiCe

Meeting: 3rd Monday at 2:00 PM (September- May)

Contact: Betty Merwin                                                623-986-0165

The Open Book Club offers a fun social way for members to discuss books they love. Each month either a fiction or non-fiction book is read by everyone and discussed at the meeting. The member who selects the book of the month serves as hostess and discussion leader. Meetings are held in members’ homes or Zoom.


Meeting: 3rd Tuesday at 7:00 PM at a member’s home

Contact: Anne Burris                      email                              623-376-7696

Cannot meet during the day? The Deborah Channell Memorial Book Group meets

monthly in the evening to discuss a book of any genre. Membership is limited to 12 who each select a month, a book for all to read, lead the discussion, and provide wine, soft drinks, and light snacks. Please call or email me to see about availability.  

SnowBird Book Club

Meeting: 1stTuesday at 1 PM (November – April)

                  Barnes and Noble Bookstore in Surprise

Contacts: Lorie Lux                 email              708-606-0837

 Sharon Phelps        email        612-799-5474

Open to both permanent and “snowbird” residents, the Snowbird Book Club discusses a variety of books from any genre at Barnes & Noble on Bell Road in Surprise. Each month, a volunteer leads the discussion. The April meeting is a luncheon.

  Non-Fiction Book Club

Meeting: 2nd Wednesday at 6:00 PM (September-April)

Contact: Jan Murphy          email         602-799-2227

Join us to discover a wide range of authors and topics as we meet to discuss non-fiction titles of new or recurring interest. The hostess provides the location (in her or another’s home) and leads the discussion that month. Books are selected far in advance and leaders share some discussion notes before we meet. We all bring snacks to share and treat ourselves to lively discussions. Our choices in the non-fiction genre are never boring.


Cards and Games:


Meeting: 1st and 3rd Wednesday at 1:00 PM

Contact: Pat Riffle                email      623-546-1254

Meeting: Second and Fourth Wednesday at 1:00 PM

Contact: Nancy Wilson       email          623-252-7436

 Snowbird Bridge

Meeting: 1st and 3rd Friday at 1 PM             November – April

Contact: Patt Bowers          email                     208-340-0419

                        Nancy Wilson       email                                  623-252-7436

Do you know when to bluff, bid, pass, or double? There are two Bridge groups that play cards throughout the year providing a spirited, challenging way to become friends with your fellow competitors. Let us know if you wish to join us to play or sub.


Meeting: 4th Thursday @ 1:00 PM (all year)

Contact: Sheryl Saddoris            email                  623-251-5122

If you love to play Euchre or want to learn a quick fun card game, this is the group for you. The group meets in members’ homes, where players make friends while trying their hand at getting bowers, scoring points, and winning games.


           Mexican Train

Group I:  1st Thursday at 1 PM – 4 PM

 Barbara McCart     623-556-1248    email

For a fun, fast-moving game played with dominoes, try Mexican Train. We welcome any member interested joining and we will happily share and teach the rules of “the train.” The group meets in members’ homes for an afternoon of lively fun, friendly competition, and camaraderie.

Travel and Adventure: 


Contact: Judith Neigoff        email                623-544-0525


Come out and Hike with your AAUW friends. Most hikes are planned for all hiking skills levels. We will have shorter, easier paths and more challenging trails on hikes. We like to carpool from the SCW Library, or you can meet us at the trailhead. Information on each hike will be emailed to Hiking Club members a few weeks before each hike. Traditionally, we have hiked the 4th Monday of every month; this coming year we hope to also include additional hikes on different days of the week. After hiking we usually have lunch together at a nearby restaurant. Once a year, in January, we have a Hiking Club Potluck Dinner where we discuss hikes, leaders, and our 4-day hike in April.


Arts and Hobbies: 

                                           Creative Writing

   4th Wednesday from 9:30 – 11:00 AM

Contact: Greta Bryan email 623-546-2793

               Lorie Lux email  708-606-0837

   Are you a frustrated author or interested in exploring your
literary aspirations? The purpose of our Creative Writing group
is to awaken our creativity as writers, to share our efforts and
interests, to Critique our works while growing knowledge of the
craft of writing, and to seek and learn opportunities for
publication. We meet at members’ homes throughout the year.


Memories into Memoirs

               Meeting: 1st Monday at 9:30 AM

Contact: Joye Kohl                  email        623-556-1746

                               Lorie Lux                   email         708-606-0837

Do you have a story to share? The Memories into Memoirs group enables members to write and tell their stories about themselves and their experiences. It provides a forum for capturing personal memories and preserving them as compelling memoirs. The meetings are in members’ homes where you present your work for discussion, feedback, and encouragement.


Food and Wine I  

                                    Meeting: 4th Wednesday at 4:00 PM (October-April)

Kathleen Padula  email  623-234-3993

                                    Janet Kafel     email  530-340-3203

 Food and Wine II

                                    Meeting: 3rd Wednesday at 4 PM (October-April)

Contacts: Gail Peterson   email      623-680-8210

                     Diane Smith     email   612-280-4446

Are you a wine lover and interested in great food? Each month, the Food and    Wine Club gathers at a member’s home or a local venue. We spotlight wines from a specified world region, add ideal foods to complement the wines and savor our selections.


Women’s History

Meeting: 3rd Friday at 9:30 AM, October through April (No December meeting)

Contacts:  Joye Kohl                 email         623-556-1746

                      Deborah Hansen   email    602-920-9365

 Goal: “To promote equity through understanding the history, accomplishments, and dreams                    of  women.”

If you are interested in the role of women in history and would like to
celebrate, explore, and share the accomplishments of women, this group
is for you! Our spotlight will focus on American Women in history and their
interesting stories of hurdles, defeats, and successes. Join us for fun,
learning, and fellowship. We have a trip planned in May to the La Posada Inn –
check the Newsletter and eblasts throughout the year.


  Geneology Gals                                                 

  Genealogy is like Gardening, If you care for the roots…the rest will grow and bear fruit.

The Genealogy SIG known as the “Genealogy Gals” meets once a month on the second Friday of the month. If you are interested in your family’s history, this is the group for you!

Contact Ann Mitchell for more information or to sign-up. Learn ways to share your discoveries with others. Interested, but have not yet started, or need a boost to get back on track? Here is the perfect answer….


Great Decisions

Meeting: 2nd Tuesday; 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM (September through May)

Contact: Sharon Phelps  email   612-799-5474

 This Discussion Group focuses on various critical global issues facing America. There will be a new Great Decisions topic each month.


Activities open to all members

Girlfriends and More

           Rosemary Dougherty           email           623-760-8479

               Sharon Phelps                email           612-799-5474


We are social group open to all members designed for fun, social get-togethers. This group provides fun experiences for members who would like to have some “girl time” to savor casual time with AAUW friends. It is an opportunity to enjoy each other’s company and develop our friendships.

Usually meets the last week of the month but variance willbe determined by the activity for the month. Watch for Eblasts!

We go to the movies (Mary Poppins Returns, Rocket man etc.), casinos, art exhibits, etc., followed by lunch. During Pandemic may do Zoom Brown Bag Lunch meetings with an interesting fun topic TBD.

Join us as often as you would like. Share any ideas you have for a fun, delightful outing! We want everyone to have a good time!

       “A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, and               still gently allows you to grow.” William Shakespeare



Arizona Adventures

contact: Patty Lang                               email                     623-533-5933

Arizona Adventures and Lunch

IS NOT A SPECIAL INTEREST GROUP that you join for the year.

Any AAUW member may only sign-up for that month’s field-trip. The details for the fieldtrip and where we are going for lunch will beavailable via eblast and at the General Meetings. These are usually all day events for women only (sorry, no significant others). We travel up to a two
hour drive by carpool – our numbers are limited by the number of drivers.
We suggest you share the cost of driving expenses with your driver. All other
Expenses such as admission fees and lunch are yours. We meet for the fieldtrip
at aisle #16 (note new location) at the SCW Library. For day and time for the
meeting, check your eblast. RSVP’s are necessary to plan the count for
attendees and for the number of drivers we need.

This group provides a fun way to explore Arizona and make new friends. A few of our past adventures have included: Sun City Alzheimer Research Center; AZ Greek Monastery; Japanese Garden; PBS Cronkite Studio KJZZ; Art fairs and markets; Museums, Amazon Distribution Center; Culinary School Tour and lunch; Orpheum Theater Tour.

Rules for attending AZ Adventures and Lunch;

  1. Proof of Covid Vaccination (Covid Card or Picture on Phone)
  2. Wear your nametag
  3. We leave on time; if you are late you can catch up with us at our destination.
  4. Respect your driver and share expenses
  5. If you are unable to attend, notify Patty Lang ASAP at email or

623-533-5933. If unable to reach her, notify someone else going on the trip.

Due to the present pandemic, it may be necessary to make changes up to and   including cancellation of scheduled events. Notices will be forwarded by eblasts.


If you are interested in any of these groups or have new ideas contact                                    Karen Diaz or Linda Styrwoll

  • A 3rd Wine and Food Group
  • Art Club
  • Travel Club