Thinking of trying something new in 2023? Maybe you can learn a new language or brush up on an old one.

You'll have to act fast for these classes, as they are limited to 12 people. 

What will you be learning? Pennsylvania Dutch.

This all started back in the fall, when the Berks History Center offered a series of in-person PA Dutch classes. They were so popular that the center decided to give it another go, this time offering virtual classes.

The 8-week course begins Monday, Jan. 9 and runs through February 27. It's $50 if you're a member of the history center, and $120 for non-members.

It's designed as a beginner course, so you'll get an introduction to the language and culture. You'll learn how to pronounce words, and there will be some vocabulary and common phrases.

Each class is 90 minutes.

Bradley Smith, who will lead the classes, says he's hoping that by keeping the classes small, it will encourage conversation and really be an active way to learn the language.

It's personal for Bradley, who has a connection to the language. He says by hosting these classes, he feels like he's honoring his parents, grandparents and great-grandparents who all spoke Pennsylvania Dutch.

So far, 68 students have signed-up, with a total of eight classes. Some of the slots are now filled, but they still have openings in several classes.

Bradly says they'll add a few classes if they need to.

Along with the language, you'll also learn about the music, food, arts and crafts and folklore of the PA Dutch.

To sign up for the Zoom classes, call the Berks History Center at 610-375-4375.

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