When the weather turns colder, it's easy to give in to the inclination not to venture out of one's cave - or home, as the case may be. But with a full roster of exciting new and popular returning winter programs and events, the Adult Activity Center at Pottawatomie Community Center makes staying active and engaged easy, warm and fun.

The holiday season gets off to a bright start with the festive "Holiday Tree Trimming" party on Monday, November 27, from 11 to 11:30 AM. Join the staff and fellow AAC members for a delightful morning of decking the halls. Christmas music and goodies add to the seasonal cheer. The event is free, but registration is requested.

Once those holiday decorating senses have been stimulated, Christmas fans can keep the creative juices flowing at the "Follow the Leader Painting Party" on Thursday, November 30, from 1:30 to 2:30 PM. The staff from Visiting Angels will guide each party participant through step-by-step instructions for painting a beautiful holiday wreath that will be suitable for hanging in one's own home or giving as a gift. Acrylic paints and other art supplies are provided, but painters are encouraged to bring their own smock or apron.

Of course, nothing says "Christmas" like a cheery holiday lunch with friends, and the "Winter Wonderland Dinner Party" is a returning seasonal favorite. Held on Friday, December 1, from 11:30 AM to 3 PM at the Q Center, this luncheon is a welcoming way of making sure close friends can celebrate the season together - without the hassle of doing one's own cooking or decorating. Everyone's favorite holiday songs will be provided by the Edizon Dayoa Big Band variety show and raffle drawings will be held for special prizes. Transportation to and from the Pottawatomie Community Center is available. The cost for AAC members is $40 and nonmembers, $60.

And as long as we're talking food, the AAC has even more opportunities to share holiday meals. The "Let's Do Lunch" program that visits a different area restaurant every month will stop at Townhouse Caf?n Wednesday, December 6. And for those who love to cook during the holidays, the regular "Potluck Party" will be featuring "Holiday Ham" dishes when it meets on Thursday, December 7 from 12 to 2 PM at Pottawatomie Community Center. This is the perfect chance to try out a new dish or share a favorite recipe.

Sharing food can happen another way through volunteering with the Northern Illinois Food Bank. One day each month, AAC members can help the Fox Valley community by assisting with essential chores that vary according to the NIFB needs and skill levels of volunteers. December's outing takes place on Wednesday, December 13 from 9 AM to 12 PM. Get into the holiday spirit by giving the gift of your time to help make sure that less fortunate Fox Valley residents don't go hungry this holiday season.

But even after all this, if cabin fever is still hanging on, two new AAC day trips may hold off those seasonal blues. Step back in time to explore the Dole Mansion in Crystal Lake on Wednesday, December 6. Built during the Civil War, this stately home was purchased in the 1920s by Lou Ringling, widow of the renowned circus family's eldest brother. Decked out for the holidays, the mansion is both a celebration of the season and a glimpse into the home's colorful history. Transportation, admission and lunch is included in the $49 fee. Registration must be completed by November 20.

And what would Christmas be without some serious shopping? A trip to Naperville's "Christkindlmarket" can be just the place to find some unique treasures. This cherished German and European tradition offers wares from vendors selling season gifts and decorative items. Shop indoors at new walk-in cabins and then take a break for lunch on-your-own from food and drink purveyors at the market. Scheduled for Thursday, December 14 from 10 AM to 2 PM, transportation is included in the $19 fee. Registration is due by November 29.

For more information about any of the holiday and winter activities offered by the Adult Activity Center, contact Taylor Krawczyk, AAC Supervisor, at 630-513-4324.