Social Events

Monday, December 9th – MAPS Annual Holiday Party

Our annual Holiday Party will be held on Monday, December 9th from 6:30-9:00 in the Arbor Room at Thornhill. Our Holiday Party is always lots of fun!  This year our party includes:

  • Buffet – Everyone brings a large dish to share.
  • Raffles – raffle baskets and a grand prize of a free class at The Morton Arboretum will be raffled off.  Tickets are $1.00 each.  Buy as many tickets as you like when you arrive – cash only.
  • Game – a scavenger hunt with lots of winners and terrific prizes.
  • Centerpiece raffles – everyone in attendance is eligible to win one of our table centerpieces.
  • Competitive game – bring your fighting spirit!
  • Slide show – This year’s MAPS holiday party slide show is titled “Vacation Photos”, and we need your images to make it happen.  Send in any vacation photo(s) you like – hand of man is OK.  Please make sure your photo contains some nature and is not a selfie or family shot.  Your images can be old or new, and post-processed any way you like.  The caption for your image will be what it is and where it is, i.e., “Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island.”  We need a lot of images to create the show, so send in up to 10.  We may not be able to use every image, but will fit in as many as we can.Follow these steps:
    • Resize your images to 1000-2000 pixels on the longest side and save as a jpeg. Do not send images over 1 MB in size.
    • In the subject line of the email, type “Vacation Photos.”
    • Name each image with your name, for example, “John Smith 1, John Smith 2”, etc.
    • In the body of the email, state the caption, for example, “Windmill, Netherlands”.  The caption is what the subject of the photo is and where it is located.  Keep the caption short! You can be silly or descriptive or whatever you like!
    • Send all images attached in one or more emails to marymehl@comcast.net by Nov. 25th.
    • Please do not imbed your caption or any copyright on the image.  All artists will be acknowledged.

As you can see, there’s something for everyone at our annual Holiday Party.  Members can bring a guest.  Seating is reserved for those who sign up here.

Everyone is to bring a large dish to share.
Recommendations for dishes to bring – if your last name begins with…

A-F:  desserts – pies, cakes, cookies, candies, etc.
G-N:  green salads, pasta salads, Jell-O salads, fruits, fruit salads, veggies
O-Z:  appetizers or finger foods, meat dishes, casseroles – hot or cold

Or if you just have a favorite dish you want to bring, please do so.  Please bring your food in a serving dish or bowl with an appropriate serving utensil.  (We have the capability of keeping foods warm on a hot tray.)

Thanks!  See you there!

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Monday, December 10, 2018 – MAPS Annual Holiday Party

It was a wonderful night for our annual MAPS Holiday Party. Volunteers came early to set up everything and made the Arbor Room look so festive. Members arrived with loads of great smelling dishes that filled up the tables in the Founders Room. There was plenty of food for all!

Everyone appeared to enjoy the slideshow, “All Creatures Great and Small”.  Members sent in their favorite creature images with clever captions making for a funny show.

We played games, including a scavenger hunt that had 20 lucky winners. Our “ABC” game was quite competitive, but only Kate’s table would win in the end. Several members won the table centerpieces, and we had 6 grand prize raffle winners. Donna T. won the free Arboretum class.

Thanks to all the volunteers who set everything up. Thanks to all who helped out during the party with games, raffles, food, drinks, lighting, sound and video. Thanks to those who stayed and cleaned up. It took everyone’s help to make a great evening! Andy took pictures all night long. Click on the images to enlarge them.

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Monday, December 11, 2017 – MAPS Annual Holiday Party

Snow was coming down as MAPS members arrived for the annual MAPS Holiday Party. Lots of wet hugs were exchanged as friends greeted each other. Volunteers had worked hard to make everything look great. Partygoers arrived to see snowmen adorning every table.

Newly elected officers were introduced; Tim O’Brien, President and Steve Bush, Vice President. Plates were piled high at dinnertime with all the yummy food members brought to share. We enjoyed the slideshow “Through the Seasons” of members’ images. Competitive spirits showed during the scavenger hunt, but it was “no holds barred” when it came to winning the table dance. Raffle prizes were awarded and snowman centerpieces were won. Lots of prizes for lots of winners!

Everyone appeared to enjoy the evening. Thanks goes out to all the volunteers who pitched in to make the party a success, from decorators, to food and drink service, to directors, to game helpers, to AV/tech, to our photographer, to raffle ticket sellers and especially to cleaners!

Here is a selection of photos from Monday’s Holiday Party. We hope these pictures will be a reminder of the fun we all had as well as the hard work and attention to details from every volunteer.  Please click on a photo below to enlarge it and begin a slide show.

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Monday, December 12, 2016 – MAPS Annual Holiday Party

It was so wonderful to see everyone at our annual Holiday Party! The Arbor Room was transformed into party mode by the many hard-working volunteers who arrived early to help out. As everyone arrived they walked into a venue full of candy canes and gingerbread men. 

During the President’s business meeting, we re-elected current secretary, Bill Miotek, by unanimous vote. We heard about new audio-visual equipment coming to the Arbor Room, and about the wonderful speaker lineup next year, including a special weekend with internationally-renowned photographer, Bryan Peterson, in May.

Everyone brought in wonderful dishes to share, and we all had plenty to eat. We were treated to another wonderful slideshow of members’ images titled “Say Anything”. Our members were very clever with their captions! The “Gingerbread man Scavenger Hunt” had twenty happy gift bag winners. Fifteen lucky attendees won an edible table centerpiece. Cora Jacobs lead a wonderful special tribute to photographer, Walt Anderson, who is retiring from teaching at the Arboretum this year. The evening ended with six members winning the special raffle prizes, including a free class from The Morton Arboretum.

Many thanks to all the volunteers who arrived early and got everything set up. Thanks to those who helped out during the evening with games, raffles, contests, food, drinks, lighting, sound and video. Thanks also to those who stayed late and cleaned everything up. Without all your help, this wouldn’t have been the fantastic evening that it was! Happy Holidays!

Click on an image below for some images from the evening:

Monday, December 14, 2015 – MAPS Annual Holiday Party

It was so wonderful to see everyone at our annual Holiday Party – what a great turnout! Well over 100 MAPS members came out to have fun and celebrate the spirit of the season together. The Arbor Room was transformed into an elegant wintry venue by the many hard-working volunteers who arrived early to help out. 

During the President’s business meeting, we re-elected many current Board members and voted in our new Vice President, Tim O’Brien. We got to see the final graduating class of the Nature Photography Certificate Program, which included MAPS members Bill Schauert, Lydia Rindt, Connie Wolf, Bill Miotek, John Harris and Linda Haynes…Congratulations!

Everyone brought in wonderful dishes to share. It was a pleasure to fill our plates by the fire in the Founders Room. Our MAPS elves sold a record breaking number of raffle tickets. We were treated to another wonderful slideshow of members’ images titled “The Beauties and the Beasts”. The “Green Candy Cane Scavenger Hunt” had twenty happy gift bag winners. The “Distinctive Holiday Wear Contest” was a hit, and Mary Smith walked away with a Morton Arboretum gift certificate card for her wonderful Christmas tree costume. Fifteen lucky attendees won a table centerpiece. The evening ended with four members winning the special raffle gifts, including a free class awarded by Megan Dunning from The Morton Arboretum.

Many thanks to all the volunteers who arrived early and got everything set up. Thanks to those who helped out during the evening with games, raffles, contests, food, drinks, lighting, sound and video. Thanks also to those who stayed late and cleaned everything up. Without all your help, this wouldn’t have been the fantastic evening that it was! Happy Holidays!

Click on an image below for some candid shots of the evening:

  • Saturday, July 18, 2015 – MAPS Annual Picnic – Meadow Lake at The Morton Arboretum

We got lucky – the rain stopped Saturday afternoon just in time for us to start the picnic.  It was nice to see so many hardy MAPS members brave the hot weather to come out to our annual MAPS picnic. Thanks to everyone for bringing such great food and cool drinks. Thanks also for everyone who helped set up the picnic area and take down everything when the day was over. Many of us tried the macro challenge shooting water drops on CDs, and others walked around the lake to photograph the LEGO Exhibit installations. Good food, good friends, good fun!

Click here to see everyone’s photos.