Weather or Not, Spring Will Arrive

And now the day itself is upon us—St. Patrick’s Day, of course—and sadly the weather doesn’t look all that much better for the parade in Hampton Bays this Saturday than it did for last weekend’s Ice Station Zebra affair in Westhampton Beach.

It might be possible to take heart based on the unreliability of weather predictions these days, especially given the forecasting fiasco attending Winter Storm Stella this week. Thankfully, the sky-is-falling alarmism and doomsday one-upmanship that is the hallmark of all media based meteorology these days once again overinflated the severity of the storm. They completely blew the call on the type of precipitation we could expect, and thus the anticipated accumulation.

They were right about the the winds, though. And so it was probably just as well, and safer for all, that there was essentially an island-wide ironic snow day on Tuesday even though it was raining. As this column is being posted, less than a week away from the first day of spring, gone are the anomalous 62-degree days of February, replaced by bitingly cold dips into the 20s, with wind chill reducing apparent temperature to the single digits. Beware the ides of March indeed.  

But perhaps it will be warmer than predicted for the parade in Hampton Bays on Saturday. For the sake of those representing the QFD—who once again stepped off in style last weekend despite the cold—all the other marchers, and all the spectators, At Quaquanantuck devoutly hopes so.

At Quaquanantuck was heartened to hear how beautifully the Coneheads rallied for Saturday’s parade, once again taking the top prize as they honored and celebrated the memory of their beloved founder and creative and spiritual spark, the late John Murray.

According to one helpful correspondent, Quogue residents enjoying a bit of respite from the winter cold down in Naples, FL recently had a bit of deja vu, as ash and smoke from wildfires drifted over their homes in a wind blowing atypically east to west. It seems that more than 7,500 acres of brush have been consumed in that part of Florida and Interstate 75 was even closed for a day because of uncontrolled fires reminiscent of the Pine Barrens wildfires of 1995 that raged for days, threatening so many properties in Quogue and Westhampton. Yet another time when we were all reminded of the courage, dedication and selflessness of our magnificent volunteer firefighters.

On Saturday, March 18, it’s time once again to join friends, neighbors, and other cinephiles for an evening of fine food and a terrific film at the monthly Film Feast at the Quogue Library. This month’s selection is the romantic thriller “No Way Out” (1987) with (a very young) Kevin Kostner, Gene Hackman, and (in her best role) Sean Young.

Lt. Commander Tom Farrell (Kostner) has been assigned as the CIA liaison for the Secretary of Defense, David Brice. At a diplomatic bash, the lieutenant is enticed by a sensual and charming cosmopolitan, Susan Atwell (Young). After one of the greatest limousine rides in the history of cinema, romance ensues. Then Farrell finds out that Susan is also his boss’s mistress, and everything goes sideways for all concerned.

A few IMDb keywords paint an apt picture of this film: “neo noir”; “murder”; and, best of all, “Hitchcockian.”

The feasting begins at 6:15 and the film will be screened at 7:15. As always, admission is a beverage to share and a dish that serves at least six. Please note that there is an additional $5 fee for out-of-district participants. Best to call the library at 653-4224 to let them know you’re coming and what food you’re planning to bring.

Next up in the Sunday Author series at the library at 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 19, will be the fascinating artist and activist Ruth Sergel, talking about her book, “See You in the Streets: Art, Action and Remembering the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire.”

In 1911, the tragic fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City took the lives of 146 workers, most of them young immigrant women and girls. Their deaths galvanized a movement for social and economic justice then, but Sergel saw that today’s laborers continue to battle dire working conditions. She felt compelled to bring the lessons of the fire to bear on today’s labor practices by fusing art, activism, and collective memory to create a large-scale public commemoration inviting broad participation and inciting civic engagement.

Sergel’s book, “See You in the Streets,” showcases her work and has been hailed for offering “an exuberant perspective on building a social art practice.” Call the library at 631-653-4224 to register.

Opening night is only a week away for Bernard Slade’s “An Act of the Imagination,” the suspense filled mystery that is the third play in the Hampton Theatre Company’s 2016-2017 season at the Quogue Community Hall. The show opens on Thursday, March 23, and runs through Sunday, April 9; shows are at 7 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays, 8 p.m. on Saturdays, and 2:30 p.m. on Sundays. For ticket information visit www.HamptonTheatre.org or call Ovation Tix at 1-866-811-4111.

As many theater savvy residents know, HTC has started offering a bonus 2:30 p.m. Saturday matinee on the last weekend of each show’s run. Now, courtesy of the Quogue Club at the Hallock House, the Saturday matinee of “An Act of the Imagination” on April 8 has a very enticing offer attached: Theatergoers can enjoy a three-course lunch at the Quogue Club at 12:30 prior to ambling down Jessup Avenue to enjoy the matinée at 2:30. The cost of a delicious lunch in the beautiful club dining room and a ticket to the matinée performance is $60.  

Anyone wishing to reserve tickets for this package is asked to send a check for $60 (per person) to Hampton Theatre Company, PO Box 400, Quogue, NY 11959. Because the same package will be offered to theatergoers for the June 10 matinée on “Alarms and Excursions,” remember to note which show and date you are reserving for and your name, email address and phone.

Now that our attention has come around to fine dining, while still remembering that this time of the year essentially belongs to the Irish—at least around these parts—what better segue than to note that the three-course, $38 prix fixe dinner at the Inn Spot on the Bay on Friday (St. Patrick’s Day) and Saturday will be a celebration of Irish cuisine.

This is not your father’s corn beef and cabbage, of course. Starters include a “40 Shades of Green” salad; truffled cabbage and potato soup; chunks of lobster baked with cream and Irish whiskey (a dish unaccountably named  “Dublin Lawyer”); and a “Dunmore Tartlet” of leeks, bacon and cheese baked in a savory custard.

For entrées, Colette is preparing a “Boyle Dinner” dish of bacon, cabbage and potatoes with homemade mustard; a “Mourne Mountain Stew” of Irish lamb with new potatoes, root vegetables and pearl onions; Irish risotto; “Salmon of Knowledge”; and “Tullamore Beef.”

For a sweet finish, there will be “Irish Coffee Mousse,” “Kerry Apple Bake” and homemade ice cream.

The $6 Street Food entry this week sounds like a winner: it’s a lamb slider with cheese, spicy mint chutney and chips. For more information, to find out more about Colette’s cooking classes, or to make reservations, visit www.theinnspot.com, or call 631-728-1200.

Here’s hoping that all readers of At Quaquanantuck will spread the word so that everyone knows about the Quogue PTA Annual Pancake Breakfast, scheduled this year on Saturday, March 25, from 8:30 to 11a.m. at Quogue Fire House. In addition to the customary delicious breakfast accompanied by Hampton Coffee, there will be a basket auction with fabulous prizes, fun crafts for kids, and more.

All proceeds will benefit the very important Arts in Education at the Quogue School. For more information, contact Amy Owens at amyaowens@gmail.com.

 

At Quaquanantuck encourages readers to send in news and notes of interest to Quogue residents, even if geographically at a remove from our beautiful village. And please tell friends and family who enjoy all things Quogue and some beyond to email AtQuaq@gmail.com and ask to be put on the mailing list, or just to visit AtQuaquanantuck.com and feel free to follow.

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