Here we go. While At Quaquanantuck in its cyber form is still working out some technical issues—asking email respondents to click buttons that don’t exist, prompting inadvertent “unsubscribe” responses, e.g.—there is too much going on in these environs to timorously refrain from posting whilst trying to master new electronic skills.
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If the cyber gods are smiling, this week’s column could be posted in time for last-minute signups for the Full Wolf Moon Night Hike at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge on Thursday, January 12, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. The approximately 90-minute hike through the forest up to North Pond is open to adults and families with children 11 and over; hikers will look and listen for nocturnal creatures and enjoy some night vision activities under the light of the moon.
Native Americans named the January moon after the wolf as this is the time of year when wolf packs howled hungrily outside of villages. The cost is $5 for QWR members or $10 for non-members; call the Refuge at 631-653-4771 for details.
Also on Thursday, January 12, the globe-trotting Cheffe Colette, of Inn Spot By the Bay renown, will be offering a cooking demonstration and tasting ($15) at the Quogue Library at 6 p.m., for a gustatory tour of some of her recent destinations. Cheffe Colette will share tales of gathering recipes from the stalls of Les Halles in Paris to the street vendors of Amsterdam and the Journeyman Wurst vendors who travel with their mobile store everywhere in Europe.
Registration is required (631-653-4224) and guests are asked to bring a favorite beverage for tableside traveling.
It’s also opening night at the Quogue Community Hall for the Hampton Theatre Company production of “4000 Miles,” the Amy Herzog family drama that won the Obie Award for Best New American Play and was a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize. The curtain goes up on this second play of the Hampton Theatre Company’s 2016-2017 season at 7 p.m. on Thursday, January 12, 2017 and the show will run through January 29.
In “4000 Miles,” Herzog uses warmth and good humor to look for healing points of connection between the contentious, elderly, left wing Vera Joseph and her disaffected, 20-something grandson, Leo Joseph-Connell.
The dramatic comedy’s action turns on Leo’s impromptu visit to his feisty grandmother’s West Village apartment in search of solace after suffering a major loss while on a cross-country bike trip. Over the course of a single month and the introduction of two of Leo’s friends, the two unlikely roommates—separated by a yawning generation gap—infuriate, bewilder, and ultimately reach each other.
The Pulitzer Prize citation for “4000 Miles” described the play as “a drama that shows acute understanding of human idiosyncrasy as a spiky 91-year-old locks horns with her rudderless 21-year-old grandson.” Robert Simonson, in a Playbill article on the Pulitzer finalist, noted that critics found the “naturalistic tapestry” of this “gentle, warm drama … touching, compassionate and authentically felt.”
The cast of “4000 Miles” features three Hampton Theatre Company veterans and one newcomer. Playing Vera Joseph is HTC artistic director Diana Marbury, last seen as Grandma Kurnitz in the 2016 production of “Lost in Yonkers.” Ben Schnickel, last on the HTC stage in the roles of Jim, Tom and Kenneth in “Clybourne Park in 2015,” has the role of her grandson Leo.
Amanda Griemsmann, who appeared most recently as Nina in the 2016 HTC production of “Vanya, Sonia, Masha and Spike,” has the role of Bec. Newcomer Samantha Herrera, a graduate of the Neighborhood Playhouse, plays Amanda.
HTC Executive Director Sarah Hunnewell directs. Set design is by Sean Marbury; lighting design by Sebastian Paczynski; and costumes by Teresa Lebrun.
Showtimes for “4000 Miles” are on Thursdays and Fridays at 7, Saturdays at 8 and Sundays at 2:30. There will also be an additional matinee performance of “4000 Miles” on Saturday, January 28, at 2:30 p.m. prior to the regular 8 p.m. evening performance.
New this season, the HTC is offering $15 discount tickets for audience members 35 and under. For more information or to reserve tickets, visit www.hamptontheatre.org, or call OvationTix at 1-866-811-4111.
Speaking of openings, all are welcome at the opening reception on Saturday, January 14, 2017 at the Quogue Library for the library Art Gallery’s January exhibition, “Aubrey Grainger: Farms, Water and East End Scenes.”
Aubrey Grainger, a Sagaponack-based plein air painter, is passionate about capturing subjects ranging from the East End of Long Island to the Adirondacks. Major influences on her work include the celebrated Hudson River School artist Frederic Church and the Impressionists, particularly Monet, for his attention to the effects of light on landscapes.
The artist is a former member of Plein Air Peconic, a group of artists and photographers who work in connection with the Peconic Land Trust, which is dedicated to preserving the area’s farmland.
Art Gallery Committee members Liz Hartman and Judy McDermott are chairs of this show which will be on exhibit from January 4 to 29.
Jumping back to Friday, January 13 (yes, Friday the 13th), the Quogue Wildlife Refuge will be hosting “Fireside Stories and Conversations with Shinnecock Elders” at 7 p.m. in the Nature Center. Coffee and tea will be served and the fee is $10 per person, payable at time of registration; 631-653-4771.
On Saturday, January 14, the QWR and the Quogue Library are teaming up for a “Storybook Walk: The Mitten by Jan Brett” at 10:30 a.m. for ages 4 through 8 accompanied by an adult. “The Mitten” is a Ukrainian folktale retold by Jan Brett and is about how a young boy named Nicki loses his white mitten in the snow. One by one, woodland animals find the mitten and crawl in; first a curious mole, then a rabbit, a badger and others, each one larger than the last.
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More next week; ever onward.