Local SIGs

(Special Interest Groups)

There is no “membership” in the local Special Interest Groups (SIGs). All SIG activities are open to any Mensan interested in that subject or activity. The acronym “SIG” may be applied at the discretion of the host to any regularly scheduled, Mensan-organized event or activity. If an activity is open to the general public, it will be stated in the announcement.

Mensans, their spouses, and accompanied guests may attend activities. Please observe requests for res­ervations. You are encouraged to contact the host before an event to assist in planning and to promote carpooling. Most events are non-smoking. Please observe smoking restrictions.

Note: Standing policy of both American Mensa and Chicago Area Mensa stipulates that, at parties held in private homes, the choice of who may attend is at the discretion of the host.

We currently offer these long-standing local SIGs as well as others:

  • Chess

    If you enjoy playing chess, or want to learn, join the Chess SIG. The group will be largely virtual, on chess.com, with plans for occasional face-to-face game days or tournaments (Hosted SIG).

  • Futures and Fantasies

    F&F meets during odd-numbered months, usually on the second Sunday, usually at a library. Participants propose, select, and presumably read books in the science fiction and fantasy genres, as well as plain English science fact books (Hosted SIG).

  • Poetry SIG

    Meets monthly usually during the evening of the second Friday. Participants read and discuss poetry, which is mailed out beforehand (Hosted SIG).

  • Rainbow SIG

    A band of happy folk focusing on LGBTQ+ concerns and what LGBT+s have to offer (Hosted SIG). They even have their own website (link to it via Hosted SIG).

In addition to the local SIGs, American Mensa also has numerous SIGs — interests include astronomy/astrophysics, beer, Shakespeare, aviation, Jimmy Buffett, poker, chess, motorcycles, Esperanto, renewable energy, and many more (see the American Mensa SIG Handbook for information on creating a national SIG). So you're bound to find a group that shares your interests.

If you find these activities intriguing but have not yet joined Mensa, please contact our Membership Chair.

Hosted SIGs

SIG Contact Information for Current Members

Communicating via Mensa Connect

Mensa Connect is the newest email-based communications tool for groups of Mensa members. To send and receive emails via Mensa Connect, you must first join a community (aka group). You will be automatically enrolled in certain communities like the one for the Chicago Area Mensa and, based upon your zip code, one of the Area Coördinator’s Communities. The CAM Chat Group on Mensa Connect is not based upon any particular interest or subject but one that enables members to voice their opinions or to enlighten other members, but most people have chosen to do so by joining the various closed Mensa Facebook groups. There are also the American Mensa Hospitality and Firehouse communities for those who wish to avoid Facebook or just enjoy using Mensa Connect. So join a Mensa Connect community that reflects your interests. Once you join, you can see any prior communication and can initiate your own. You can opt out any time you wish, so there’s no harm in checking one out. More information and tips are on our Group Email page.

Mensa Connect & Email List Information for Current Members

Organizing/Hosting Events

As a Mensan, you can organize events whenever you like and limit them to members of an email list or you can organize an event that includes all Mensans. If you'd like to include all Chicago Area Mensans, the best way is via ChiMe. That way you will reach not only those who have access to email, but all the members of Chicago Area Mensa. If you’d like to plan an event, in-person or virtual , and you want it included on the website’s monthly calendar, in Meetup, and in the CAM Events Email, you’ll find all the information you need here on our website. If your event occurs in September or later, you can get your event listed in ChiMe by completing your submission before the deadline (you still have 15 days to submit it). If you’ve missed the deadline, submit the online event form or email the Activities Bulletin Editor  and we’ll add it to Meetup and to the website. If you create an event on Facebook, please notify the Activities Bulletin Editor  so that all members know. So whether it’s an impromptu event, something that’s just come to your attention you think CAM members would enjoy, or you’re just a procrastinator, you can still get the word out to try to get a group of your fellow Mensans together for a last-minute event.

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