Asked and Answered

Environmentally conscious readers will be heartened to learn that the Quogue Association responded on Monday, May 6, to At Quaquanantuck’s suggestion that there might be a more responsible approach to the annual duck race. Herewith the complete text of the Association’s email:

“Dear Andrew,

“Thank you for your positive comments in your May 2 publication of At Quaquanantuck supporting the Quogue Association. We are proud of our long record of preservation, beautification and general support within our Village.

“Across all our activities we are as a Board focused on the need to protect our environment minimizing the use of plastic in lieu of other disposable products including cups, straws and other waste.

“Specifically related to the annual duck race we have invested considerable time and effort over the last years reviewing and discussing other environmentally friendly and efficient options that allow us to continue with our long-established Quogue tradition.

walk on the beach AB
Beach walkers. —A. Botsford Photo

“It is important to recognize that every year we assign a group of “wranglers” to canoes, kayaks and motor boats for the task of retrieving any lost or stray ducks [the “recovery network” referred to in last week’s column—AQ]. As a result, any duck loss is minimized. Any locals are welcome to join us in this process.

“This year we have decided that we will try another new approach thanks to our discovery of an environmentally protective product that will allow us, the volunteers, to clean the ducks so that we can re-use them in following years. This process will take place shortly after race completion and will save money, help our environmental goals and allow our simple sales process to continue unchanged.

“We hope you will share this letter with your readers and that our community will appreciate the continued efforts by our Board to protect the environment we all enjoy. We look forward to seeing you all at the duck race on Sunday, July 14th.

“Kind Regards,
Cecelia Lazarescu, President
Quogue Association”

It should be noted that several readers weighed in on the duck race on Thursday and Friday of last week, shortly after the column was posted. All were in favor of the Quogue Association finding a way to recycle all recovered ducks for re-use, rather than adding each year’s new batch of ducks to the waste stream. One reader recalled refusing to buy ducks for races in the past because of this issue.

In addition, after asking if the oversize plastic duck on the Jessup Avenue pond could be removed, the same reader questioned how funds raised from the “sale” of ducks were being spent, to wit: “The focus and some of the proceeds of the duck race are used to pay for the beer and wine party at the Village Dock. Is using our donated money to provide alcohol necessary? Isn’t this supposed to be a family event, not a beer bash? Couldn’t people bring their own beverage from home in reusable containers? This is just another example of a way we could educate our community.” Food for thought.

At Quaquanantuck is happy to provide a forum for civil discussion of village issues and initiatives and welcomes all comments. All are encouraged to share ideas and opinions by writing to open soon 

Great sighs of relief were heard up and down Jessup Avenue, from motorists and other passersby as well as neighboring store owners, when the signs above were posted in the windows of the Quogue Country Market. At Quaquanantuck hopes to get more details about the “NEW Ownership” [sic] for next week’s column. Meanwhile, it appears there are some job opportunities for enterprising individuals. Stay tuned. —A. Botsford Photos

Foreign Policy Association Looks at “The Middle East: Regional Disorder”
The Foreign Policy Association Great Decisions Discussion program—hosted by the Quogue Library and moderated, following the screening of a short film, by Susan Perkins and David Rowe—will take up the question of “The Middle East: Regional Disorder” for its Saturday, May 11, meeting at the Quogue Firehouse at 4:30 p.m.

The briefing from the FPA on this topic notes that “As the presidency of Donald J. Trump passes the halfway point, the Middle East remains a region in turmoil. The Trump administration has aligned itself with strongmen in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, which along with Israel have a common goal of frustrating Iranian expansion.”middle east

Questions for this Saturday’s discussion include: What will be the fallout from policy reversals such as withdrawing from the Iranian nuclear accord and moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem? Does the United States see a path forward in troubled states such as Syria, Yemen, Libya and Iraq? Is the United States headed toward war with Iran?

These very popular programs tend to be quickly oversubscribed, so all interested in attending are urged to register at your earliest convenience by calling the library at 631-653-4224.

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 news and suggested reading on the topic, visit

“Field Guide 101” Program at Quogue Wildlife Refuge
Help is on the way for anyone who finds it challenging to read and understand field guides, thanks to a “Field Guide 101” program coming up on Saturday, May 11, at 2 p.m. at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge.

This program for adults and families (fee is $5 per person) will begin with a short interactive PowerPoint program in the Nature Center covering terminology and techniques to simplify the navigation of plant manuals. A guided hike in the woods will follow to give participants some hands-on experience while applying what they’ve learned.

To register, call 631-653-4771, click here, or visit

Bakery flowers PP
Sign of Spring: “Bakery Flowers.” —Patricia Prentis Photo

Sign Up Now for QWR Summer Field Ecology Program 2019
A reminder to parents to sign up the young folks for one of the nine one-week sessions of the children’s Summer Field Ecology program at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge, which will be marking its 50th anniversary this summer.  

Early signups are encouraged; for more information and signup forms, visit

Wildlife Refuge Seeking Summer Help
With the Summer Field Ecology program on the horizon, the Quogue Wildlife Refuge is now hiring for summer positions and internships. Job openings include: part-time temporary receptionist; summer camp educator for Summer Ecology program; and summer camp educator for Little Naturalists program.

Summer internship positions include: Summer Ecology program educator; Little Naturalists educator; and Nature Center animal care intern. For more information, call the Refuge at 631-653-4771, click here, or visit the QWR website,

At Quaquanantuck encourages readers to send in news and notes and photos 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 and ask to be put on the mailing list.

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