StaRGazing 2012 Events

Annual Business Meeting, Monday, 9:00-9:30am

All Mensa members (no guests, please) are welcome to find out what has happened in GLAAM during the preceding year and what the Board's vision is for the future.

Bunco Mixer

Bunco is a silly little dice game that you learn in a minute, and you change partners every other minute. A good mixer and a fun time!

BYOB (Bring Your Own Bottle) Wine Tasting, Friday Evening

Back by popular demand! This program invites attendees to bring a bottle of wine to share with others in the StaRGazers Lounge on Friday night! Enjoy fellowship with other Mensans and you enjoy the delightful tastes of your fellow wine connoisseurs!

50th Anniversary Kick-Off Cocktail Party and Awards Presentation, Saturday, 9:00pm

2012 is the 50th Anniversary of GLAAM. This evening we kick off a year long celebration as we look back at some of the events and activities that stand out in our memory of 50 years of Mensa on the west coast. Tonight will include the recognition of some of our amazing volunteers and the memories and recollections of people who built this chapter from its earliest days. Hors d'oeuvres provided and a cash bar will be available for cocktails. Feel free to wander around the rest of the RG and mingle with your Mensa friends as well. Admittance included with RG registration, but non-RG attendees are welcome to join us for the evening for a nominal charge of $10. Please pay at the Registration Desk on the second floor of the Warner Center Marriott, 21850 Oxnard Street in Woodland Hills. Please contact Desiree Sagray with any questions at (626) 329-3979 or

Fishbowl, Saturday Night

A free-wheeling, non-judgmental forum where you can ask those questions you have always wanted to ask of members of the other sex – and actually get some answers! There are sure to be many laughs and maybe a few revelations.

Flashback to the 1960's Improv Games, Sunday Evening

As part of our kick-off of 50 years of GLAAM, we are going back to the time when Boomers were teens and bouffants were the rage … Barbie and skateboards … mini-skirts and go-go boots … turtle necks and wide ties for the guys! The youth, the energy, the music … the movement! Come back and remember the time when GLAAM got started as we begin our look back and celebrate 50 years of fun!

Games in our dedicated Game Room

Once again, Michael Wong will stock our dedicated Game Room with over 200 games showcasing a variety of party games, strategy games, role playing games, word games, trivia style games, and almost any other style of game you can think of! If you are gamer, this is a room you will enjoy indulging in. If you are not, then this will be a wonderful opportunity to be introduced to the many different styles of games and meet other Mensans who enjoy playing them as well! Visit our Games page for much more about our games and tournaments.

Game Tournaments

Bananagrams, Carnelli, Cranium, and Time's Up/Colander — visit our Games page for details.

Generation X/Y Meet & Greet, Friday, 7:30pm

Want to meet others your age? GenX and Gen Y will get together to start the RG off right. We are open to anyone interested in activities and discussions focused on people in Generation X (1961-1981) or Y (1976-1990), which is anyone in their 20s, 30s, and 40s. Join coordinators Danielle Hanne and Vesper Burnett at the Meet & Greet and get to know other (relatively) young Ms before we head out on the Pub Crawl!

Kids' Track, Sunday, supervised by GLAAM Gifted Youth Coordinator Madeline Walker

Visit our Kids' Track page for much more about our programs for children and parents.

Media Exchange

Bring your unwanted books, magazines, DVDs, CDs, tapes or any media to the table for attendees to take home. Remaining items will be donated to a library or charity.

Mensa Testing, Sunday, 8:30-11:00am

Invite your family and friends to take the official Mensa exam and see if they qualify for membership in Mensa. Feel free to stay and join us for the day's festivities. Please sign up in advance! Contact Proctor Dave Felt at and see his website at

New Member Reception, Saturday, 11:00am

Welcome New Mensans! This is your chance to meet your fellow Mensans at GLAAM's largest party of the year – the RG! We'll have a brief period of orientation followed by the opportunity to enjoy the rest of the RG offerings. Please RSVP with Danielle so we know how many to count.

Performance by Madeline Mann

Madeline Mann

Madeline Mann is a young singer-songwriter hailing from Santa Monica, CA. Her music is a light-hearted mix of folk and pop, with catchy melodies and playful lyrics. Her most notable song, Hot Guys with Four Eyes, has appeared on more than two dozen geek and gamer websites — landing her a geeky following. By day, Madeline is a Communications student at UC San Diego who plays ukulele between classes.

Pub Crawl, Friday, 8:00pm with Danielle Hanne and Hilary Foster

We will head over to Ventura Blvd. to check out some of the interesting spots nearby. Van transportation between the general Pub Crawl area and the Marriott will be available and crawlers will have a planned order of stops … but once the Crawl departs there is no set time at each stop!


Chocolate tasting $5.00
We will be sampling a selection of fine chocolates from Belgium, Germany, Holland, Switzerland, and United States. We will be concentrating on the products of a famous chocolate maker from each of these country. There will be a nice surprise if we have over 20 attendees. Similar to the cheese tasting, the host will assemble a personal sampler platter with most of the chocolates sampled for interest parties who couldn't make it to the presentation. Unfortunately, the “surprise” will not be available to participants who choose to pick up their plate at the game room.

Cheese tasting $8.00
The tasting will focus on fine fromage from Europe, with the usual heavy emphasis on French cheeses. Continuing with the theme from last year, we will be comparing and contrasting similar cheeses, with an emphasis on Blue, Spanish cheeses and French Chevre (goat cheese). We are going all out this year with over 30 cheeses (none from South America this time)!! For attendees interested in the tasting but who couldn't attend due to other activities, the host will assemble a personal sampler plate with most of the cheeses sampled, to be picked up at your leisure in the game room, with a highly abbreviated lecture on the fromage if desired. (Disclaimer: some of the cheeses we will sample are very rich and high in fat content. Please be aware if you are not used to consuming large amounts of such foods.)

Aperitifs tasting $10.00
From Bryan K. Willis: Thanks to Mensa, I get to host an apertif and digestif tasting! For you sticklers, I know exactly what your gripe is. “Bryan,” you'll say, “apertifs are before a meal and digestifs are served after a meal! The timing of this event isn't right!” Well, you high-falootin' know-it-all, since folks often will confuse the two, it's wise to lump the two together. It also gives me more freedom to do what I want. And since many countries drink different things, I want to do a lot! As much as I can get away with on Mensa's dime! Anyway, in the event, I'll learn ya the difference between many types of these little pregestives/digestives and also show you a few textbook examples — maybe even some non-textbook examples if you play nice. Join me in getting drunk and saying it's to aid our digestion!
Whiskey tasting $12.00
From Bryan K. Willis: Do you like whiskey? Do you not know if you like whiskey? Do you not know what whiskey is? If the answer to any of these is “yes,” and I'm pretty sure it is, then you should join me for the whiskey thing I'm doing! I'll talk about whiskey, show you nice examples of many styles and let you drink every one! Honest! How often do you get to drink Bourbon, Scotch, and Irish style whiskeys in one place? If it's a lot, we should totally hang out, but you should still show up anyway.
“Off the Wall” alcohol tasting $12.00
From Bryan K. Willis: Have you ever seen some booze made with some crazy thing or another and wondered, “Wow, that sure is something! I sure wish somebody would tell me about this booze, and maybe even let me have a taste of said booze!”? Well, mi amigo, color yourself lucky, because I am here to lay down the boozy goodness! There are more unique alcoholic beverages out there than a dog has fleas, and I am going to bring some for this event! You may love some, you may hate some, but if you drink enough of these, you won't care! What will I bring? Something made some some crazy fruit? Booze made out of a rare ingredient? I ain't tellin', pal! Could be some beers, could be some wines, could be some spirits, could be all three and more! You want to find out, then you get a ticket to the tasting and find out with the rest of 'em! Now, if you'll excuse me, I gotta go see a guy about procuring some bottles…
All alcohol tasting combo $30.00
Experience all three for a discounted price!

Van Tour to the beautiful Getty Villa in Malibu, Saturday, 9:00 am

The world famous Getty Villa is an educational center and museum dedicated to the study of the arts and cultures of ancient Greece, Rome, and Etruria. Antiquities are arranged by themes including Gods and Goddesses, Dionysos and the Theater, and Stories of the Trojan War. Stroll around the Roman-inspired architecture and gardens. Gather at 9:00 am for the drive through Topanga Canyon to Pacific Coast Highway. Doors open at 10:00. We will leave at noon to return in time for the RG lunch at the Marriott. Tickets are included. Contact Madeline at for more info.