Instructor: Regina Gee

Dates: Wednesdays, Oct. 12th to Nov. 16th

Time: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Location: Hager Auditorium, MOR

Held at Museum of the Rockies, this class includes an opportunity to explore The Villas of Oplontis Near Pompeii with Dr. Regina Gee, guest curator of the exhibit. The Villas at Oplontis (a World Heritage Site near Pompeii) have been under excavation for years. Luxurious Villa A is

believed by some to be the property of Emperor Nero’s second wife. Villa B was a thriving wine export business when, in 79AD, Vesuvius’ eruption buried both villas. Learn about the architecture, marble statuary, fresco fragments, everyday artifacts, even coins and gold jewelry carried by the unfortunates who sought shelter in storage rooms at the water’s edge.

An exhibit of artifacts (including never-before-exhibited items) from Oplontis will be at the Museum of the Rockies, June 18 to December 31, 2016.

Class Format: lecture, discussion, and exhibit visits

Readings (recommended): Exhibit Catalogue

Instructor Bio:  Regina Gee, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Art History at MSU and Adjunct Curator of Art History at MOR, is one of three researchers working on the villas and is an expert on frescos found there. Several years ago, she and her research colleagues from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Michigan received permission from the Superintenza to organize an exhibit of artifacts from the site to travel to the US for the first time.


Kathryn Earley 2When my husband and I were looking for our place to retire, one of the places we visited was Bozeman.  While we were here we went to the library, where I happened to pick up a Wonderlust brochure.  Here was university-quality instruction by experts in a huge number of subjects.  No homework, no exams, no papers, just a chance to learn new things or review things we’d already studied.  It was also an opportunity to meet people with a wide variety of interests.  I was hooked! Over the past several years, I’ve come to feel strongly about supporting this valuable community resource for lifelong learning, and fortunately there’s a community of dedicated volunteers who feel the same way.

This past year was our first as Friends of MSU Wonderlust, whose mission is to support and promote MSU Wonderlust.  We’ve contributed funds to getting a new projector at Hope Lutheran Church, where many of our classes are held, and to Gallatin Community Radio, which broadcasts many of our Friday Forums.  We’re also sponsors of and taking part in Active Aging Week and the Prime Age 50+ Expo.

In September Friends will sponsor the MSU Wonderlust reception.  Join us at the Country Bookshelf on September 9, 5 pm – 7 pm, where you can meet instructors and other people interested in learning.  Also in September we’ll be a sponsor of the Bozeman Public Library’s celebration of Yellowstone National Park, Our Yellowstone.  

On October 3rdand 4thMSU Wonderlust is hosting an interactive symposium for practitioners and lifelong learners, Lifelong Learning: New Opportunities for Aging Communities.  This symposium, sponsored by Friends of MSU Wonderlust and MSU’s Office of Research and Development, will provide an opportunity to share knowledge, experiences, innovations, and strategies.

Save the dates: Wednesday, October 3, 5 pm – 7 pm, for the opening reception and presentation featuring Dr. Renee Reijo Pero of MSU and Dr. Rick Knopf of Arizona State, and Thursday, October 4, 9 am – 4 pm,for in-depth sessions on various topics, featuring speakers from across Montana and the U.S.  For details on the symposium and on all MSU Wonderlust program offerings, see   

Kathryn Earley, President of Friends of Wonderlust