Welcome to Southeast Michigan Mensa!

Mensa is the largest of the international high-IQ societies. The purpose of our Southeast Michigan chapter is to provide opportunity for intellectual and social belonging and networking among diverse people. Bookmark this site to see SEMM’s calendar of events for members and their guests. In addition to local events and monthly meetings, SEMM hosts a Winter Bash (games party), SEMMer Bash (picnic), and a Regional Gathering held each April and known as SEMMantics. We're also on Facebook and Meetup!

07 August 2015

August Meet-in-the-Middle

Wednesday August 26 at 6:30 pm

It’s the end of summer! Come meet Mensans from other groups at the cheapest, shortest Regional Gathering anywhere. We have a new venue that is even easier to find and has both good food and good beer! We have our own room reserved and we can stay and talk (or play board games) as long as we want.

Please join us for the annual August Meet-in-the-Middle in Brighton/Howell at:
Block Brewing Company
1140 South Michigan
Howell, MI 48843

Block Brewing is a new brew-pub which features in-house brewed craft beer at reasonable prices. They use local and Michigan based suppliers for products used in all their recipes. Spent grains from the brewing process are repurposed as feed for area farmers.

They also are known for their dry rubbed and smoked in-house meats, award winning sauces, hand-cut fries and house-made cornbread. Entrée salads are $9-11. Pizzas range from $7 (cheese) to $14 (smokehouse meats). They have BBQ regulars like ribs, pulled pork, beef brisket and smoked turkey. They also have fish dinners ($13 &18), burgers ($9-14) and other sandwiches ($9-11). Vegetarians will find veggie pizza, house-made Mac & Cheese and cheddar ale soup.

Still not convinced? The owner promises to give us a tour of the brewing process. Good food, craft beer, easy to find, free tour, great conversation and our own room for as long as we wish to stay. Hope to see you there!

Take I-96 to the D-19 exit (#137). Turn north towards downtown Howell. Block Brewing is on the left (west) almost immediately. From M-59 take Michigan Avenue south through town. If you cross I-96 you’ve gone too far.

More information? Call Jean or Ed Becker at 810.229.2113, or Bob Strauch (734-973-6522, 734-604-3791c; bstra2012@nullaol.com) or James Draper (810.624.1791).

26 July 2015

August Monthly Gathering

August Monthly Gathering (Reminder, no July gathering!):

Saturday, August 15, 2015

The ExComm meeting begins at 6:00pm
Mingling begins at 7:00pm
Program begins at 8:00pm

ADMISSION (Exact change appreciated)
Adult members: $4
Adult guests: $5
Children 13 and under: $2
Members receive free admission in the month of their birthday

Northwest Unitarian Universalist Church 23925 Northwestern Highway Southfield, MI 48075

The gathering adjourns to –
Shield’s Restaurant ? Bar ? Pizzeria
25101 Telegraph Road (just north of 10 Mile) Southfield, MI 48034
In the wake of revelations that surfaced in 2013 concerning the extent of the NSA’s domestic surveillance programs, citizens were outraged that a U.S. government agency had gathered the phone records of millions of Americans and used that information to, among other things, track their very movements. Domestic surveillance programs run by our government are, unfortunately, nothing new.
The FBI began COINTELPRO (“Bureauese” for Counterintelligence Program”) in 1956 to disrupt the activities of the Communist Party of the United States. In the 1960s, it was expanded to include a number of other domestic groups and individuals, such as: The Ku Klux Klan, the Socialist Workers Party, the Black Panthers, Dr. Martin Luther King, anti-Vietnam War activists, and the American Indian Movement. During its fifteen years of operation COINTELPRO illegally curtailed the First Amendment rights of hundreds of thousands of individuals. Yet, when its existence was brought to the fore in 1975, public outcry was barely audible and sanctions against the FBI were nonexistent.
Join us on Saturday, August 15th, when Craig Ciccone, local historian and historical consultant, guides us through COINTELPRO, the FBI’s most infamous domestic surveillance and disruption program, including: who its targets were; the creative initiatives devised by FBI agents (such as assassination); what the FBI considered COINTELPRO’s “successes” and the FBI’s continuous attempts to block the release of its own documents.
Mr. Ciccone specializes in the study of political assassinations of the 1960s and ‘70’s, and has appeared on dozens of radio, television, and podcast shows, and lectured extensively at high schools, colleges, universities, and a vast array of political, social, and civic organizations.
Doors open at 7:00pm for mingling with your fellow Mensans and guests. The program starts at 8:00pm.

23 July 2015

2015 Mensa Testing Day

Mensa Membership Month is October and a key event during Mensa Membership month is Mensa Testing Day. Mensa Testing Day happens this year on Saturday, Oct. 17. Although Local Groups are encouraged to test on Oct. 17, we understand that not all Local Groups can make this happen so we ask that you plan your test sessions for Membership Month sometime in October. This is an important recruiting initiative and we cannot do this alone. Our goal for Membership Month is to increase membership and awareness nationwide, and we need your help to spread the word about Mensa.

This year we will offer 50% off testing for the entire month of October 2015! That is just $20 to take the official Mensa Admission Test!

In the coming weeks, we will provide you more details, including copy and promotional items.

As mentioned before, we have retractable banners and tablecloths to create a professional and branded image at your next test session or event. Contact JulieG@nullamericanmensa.org and find out how to get these items and your first banner free!

19 July 2015

SEMM Participates in 56th Ann Arbor Art Fair

The Southeast Michigan MENSA chapter participated in the 56th annual Ann Arbor Street Art Fair on Wednesday, July 15 and Thursday, July 16. By securing a booth space through the Washtenaw Non-Profit (WNP) organization, members of SEMM organized materials, set up the booth space, and engaged the public for two full days while presenting MENSA to art fair visitors.
Preparation activities included attendance at the WNP pre-fair meeting, communication with corporate MENSA to secure numerous handouts, banners, and MENSA give-a-ways, and creation of poster boards for the booth.
As shown in the pictures, the event was a huge success and cemented the presence of MENSA at the prestigious Ann Arbor Art Fair. The interaction with potential child members also took place as they attempted to solve a neat puzzle provided by the group. Preparation for next year’s fair has already begun!
The event was originally suggested by Lynn Broniak-Hull (co-vice president Ann Arbor area SEMM) but was definitely bought to fruition by Kumar Bhatt (SEMM Marketing Manager). Volunteers that worked hard in engagement of the public at the booth included: Kumar Bhatt, Jean Becker, Denise Harris (Toronto MENSA), Lynn Broniak-Hull, Kathleen Geisting, Billie Lee, Pete Mulliner and Harry Sommers. Larry Arbanas created the puzzle for children and Peter Mulliner also assisted with booth set up.
At least 100 individual conversations took place with visitors to the booth that involved creating an awareness for the mission of Southeast Michigan MENSA and how children and adults could join. Several contacts were made with individuals from other countries including Guam and Canada. Everyone involved enjoyed the truly enriching experience.

Kumar with a memberJean with kids - Mensa puzzleArt Fair Mensa1Art Fair Mensa 2Art Fair  Jean

27 June 2015

Volunteers Needed for Ann Arbor Art Fair

Fellow Mensans, we have some exciting news to share with you!

It is time to be seen at Michigan’s biggest Art Fair. SEMM has secured a booth at the Ann Arbor Art Fair on July 15 & 16, 2015 (Wednesday and Thursday, only). This is perhaps the first time SEMM will be having a marketing presence at the Art Fair. We will be in the non-profit booths area on Liberty St., between 5th and 6th, at the strategic cross way between various other exhibits/events.

Lynn Broniak- Hull (new Ann Arbor Area Representative) and I are organizing this marketing event to showcase SEMM at the fair, and we need your help!

The official open hours are 10 am to 9 pm, but we will need help in (a) setting up on the evenings of Tuesday and tearing down on Thursday, (b) staffing the booths on July 15 & 16 (Wednesday & Thursday) and possibly (c) distributing leaflets to fair attendees and directing foot traffic to our booth. Perhaps kids of adult members might be a good option. There will be lots of literature and other items to hand out.

For now, we have a few requests:

1. Does anyone have an art fair type booth we could borrow (6’X6′, made of fire retardant material & rain proof)?

2. Would you like to be a member of the organizing committee?

3. Can you work a shift (4 & 6 hours) during those days? (or shorter duration if you can’t commit)

4. Do you know of, and could you subsequently refer any businesses that would offer their wares or services as marketing tools – something we could use to have a raffle throughout the two days? (for example: Restaurant: dinner for two, Book store: suitable fiction/nonfiction eBook/soft cover, Health spa/ Healthcare, Gym/ yoga sessions, etc…)

We may also need to borrow some Mensa shirts if some volunteers do not own one.

We have a planning meeting on Saturday, June 20, 2015, 7 PM- 8 PM (before the monthly meeting) at Northwest Unitarian Universalist Church, 23925 Northwestern Highway, Southfield, MI 48075. Please attend if you can. If you cannot attend the meeting, but would like to help, please contact Lynn & Kumar at marketing@nullmensadetroit.com.