Earth Day Lives; Long Live Earth Day!

Earth Day was established in 1970 as part of the counterculture’s activist expression of concern for the health of our planet, and as a protest against the incursions and assaults on the environment stemming almost exclusively from the rapacious greed of the human race. 

Attention to Earth Day has waxed and waned over the almost 50 years since its beginning. Today, though, with so many hard fought gains in the environmental movement imperiled and in many cases under attack, marking the occasion seems more important than ever. And that’s not even considering the elephant in the biosphere: global warming.

In the same way that At Quaquanantuck encourages readers, whatever their faith, to keep compassion and the true spirit of Christmas in their hearts all year long, so too is it imperative that all of us be energized by the spirit and intention of Earth Day throughout the year. Fortunately, we have the good fortune to reside in Quogue, where respect for nature and the environment is part of the fabric of our lives.  

The annual Earth Day Celebration will be held at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge on Saturday, April 22, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Remember that this celebration goes forward rain or shine. After all, it’s not called “Stay Inside If the Weather Isn’t Pleasant Day” or “Living Room Couch Day.” Earth Day is all about being mindful, immersing oneself in the elements, and being grateful for all the gifts, blessings and wonders of the natural world and, perhaps, the Great Spirit that animates it.

All are invited to the Refuge to celebrate nature and this lovely planet we call home during this all-day affair. There will be guided birding walks, bat and bird house building, live animal presentations, crafts, environmental exhibitors, and self-guided kayaking and canoeing on Old Ice Pond.

Some of programs that will be offered include Eastern Long Island Audubon Society (ELIAS) guided bird walks, family yoga, a welcome and Earth Day acknowledgement from Dr. Chris Gobler of the Stony Brook Southampton School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, nature photography tips, “meet a hawk,” “wolf chat,” a beekeeper talk, and live owls in the Nature Center.

This celebration for all ages is offered by Eastern Long Island Audubon Society, Westhampton Beach Earth Day, and Quogue Wildlife Refuge. For more information, check the QWR website, www.quoguewildliferefuge.org  for schedule of events. No reservations necessary. Rain or shine.

In honor of Earth Day at the Quogue Library, kids age 6 and up will be making rainbow wind chimes from recycled materials today, Thursday, April 20, at 3:30 p.m. That’s the spirit: get them started early. 

Foreign Policy and Poetry at Quogue Library

“The Future of Europe: Coping with Crisis” is the topic for the next Foreign Policy Association Great Decisions Discussion slated at the Quogue Library on Saturday, April 22, at 5 p.m.

The success of Brexit in the United Kingdom referendum on EU membership surprised British voters and stunned the rest of the world. Having helped secure peace in Europe for the past 70 years, the European Union now faces an uncertain future. The devastating refugee crisis, lingering financial recession and the constant specter of terrorism—and the complicated interconnectedness of those three issues—threaten unity within individual countries as well as among the member nations.

The Brexit vote underscores the complexities of integrating an extremely diverse continent. Saturday’s discussion will focus on what post-Brexit Europe will look like, and examine the different ways that U.S. foreign policy can adapt to the changes.  

The Foreign Policy Association Great Decisions Discussion program provides background information and policy options for the eight most critical issues facing America each year, serving as the focal text for discussion groups across the country. For more information, visit www.greatdecisions.org.

In celebration of National Poetry Month, Quogue resident Michael Cook will discuss “How Does Poetry Work?” at the Quogue Library on Sunday, April 23, at 2 p.m., illuminating his explanation with readings of his own poetry, as well as some of his favorite poets. These include, but are not limited to: Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, W.H. Auden, William Blake, Theodore Roethke, and the great Japanese Haiku writers.

Mr. Cook agrees with Gerald Heard that it is “almost always disastrous not to be a poet.” His book “The Rise and Fall of the Mind” will be available for purchase after the event.

The global touring menu for Friday, April 21, and Saturday, April 22, at the Inn Spot on the Bay will make a domestic stop this week, sampling the unique cuisine of the state once known as the Republic of Texas, the only state that was ever an independent sovereign nation.

Don’t forget: If you want to get the detritus of winter, at least in its dead leaves form, off of your property, all leaves must be piled by the side of the road for free village pickup by April 30.

At Quaquanantuck encourages readers to send in news and notes of interest to Quogue residents, even if the items are being sent from winter addresses or other parts of the country. Friends and family who enjoy all things Quogue are encouraged 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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