Special Events

Here are a few of the fun events our book club has enjoyed over the years….

Dinner at the Royal Canadian Military Institute
October 4, 2009


Book Club Barbecues:

Our annual barbecue is held on a Saturday evening in June. All spouses are invited and the husband of the hostess picks the book we will discuss. A pot-luck meal is held. Members bring appetizers, salads or desserts and the hostess and host provide the main course. After we eat, we hold a discussion about the book and life in general. One memorable evening was spent discussing “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus”! The barbecue is a great social occasion and it’s fun to mix with the other members of our book club “family”.

Great Canadian Stage Company:

We have been to see two plays by this Toronto production company. Generally we meet for supper first and try to hold a quick discussion about the performance afterward.

In 1997 we attended “Thirteen Hands”. This play by Carol Sheilds was about bridge (the card game) and the friendship between four very different women. Some of us read the play before attending the performance. We found it an uneven production. The insights into relationships were terrific, but the weird musical production numbers were just plain strange.


In 1998 we attended “Claptrap” written by Tom Wood. This play was a satirical look at live theatre. Claptrap unfolds in the fictional town of Oslo Ontario at the “Ibsen Festival” – a very funny parody of the Shaw and Stratford Festivals here in Southern Ontario. There was a backstage reception following the play, which the most energetic of us attended.

Christmas Cookie Exchange:

We tried this on a couple of ambitious occasions! Each member baked a dozen cookies, using the recipe of her choice, for each participant in the cookie exchange (plus an extra half dozen for the meeting). At the meeting, we divided up the cookies and each participant came away with seven or eight dozen cookies of all different types. Then we pigged-out on the extra half dozen we all brought!

Psychic Reading:

One evening Carol arranged for Mira Cook, a local psychic, to come to our meeting and give us all individual readings. It was very interesting as one by one we went down to the basement to receive our forty-five minutes of advice (along with a tape recording of the session to play later). Mira also did a half hour meditation and relaxation exercise with our whole group and gave us some background on her choice of career. We had mixed reactions to the readings; some thought it authentic, others were doubtful. But we found Mira very talkative and personable.

Woman’s Spa Night:

The Burlington Community Centre held an evening for women to try out the various services offered locally. For a very small fee we were treated to: massage, aromatherapy, make-up applications, reflexology, wine tasting and manicures. After the spa, we tried to have a discussion of the month’s book, but we were too relaxed and tipsy to talk much sense!

Howard Engel Author’s Night:

In May 1995, we went to the Oakville library to hear mystery author Howard Engel read from his latest novel and answer questions. He was a wonderfully entertaining speaker and even signed our paperback copies of his book “A City Called July”! We enjoyed his novels as they were all set in the Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Christmas Gift Exchange:

This was a fun event that we first tried in 1998. Members purchased one small Christmas gift for between $10 and $15. At the meeting, we drew numbers. The person with the lowest number opened the first gift from a pile in the centre of the living room. The next person had a choice of opening a second gift, or stealing the gift from the first person. This went on until all gifts were opened and the person with the highest number had the choice of everyone’s gift! It was great fun, with plenty of stealing and hiding of the most coveted items.