It was a simple act of faith. It was one of the most inspiring things I have seen in Quogue in quite awhile.
Anyone parsing the panoply of blessings that define life in our village would have to pay heed to the abundant evidence of simple acts of faith—and simple acts of soldiering on and restoring faith—that knit together the fabric of this remarkable community.
Thanks to the coronavirus, much of this evidence has moved into the virtual realm. For just one example, where once one could see cars lining Quogue Street on Sunday mornings in front of the Church of the Atonement, now visiting preachers lead prayers for the faithful in Zoom meetings replete with traditional music courtesy of undaunted organist and choir director Patricia Osborne Feiler and the church’s Zoom coordinator, Schuyler Rowe.
Physical evidence abounds up and down Jessup Avenue, where the Quogue Historical Society soldiers on by providing paper maps for self-guided walking tours of the diminutive but buzzing business district. The complete makeover of the Quogue Market into a more welcoming space represents a major commitment to the community that is unquestionably an act of faith.
From Beth’s Cafe and the Quogue Gallery on Quogue Street to Flowers by Rori, the temporary headquarters of the Quogue Library and the Post Office on Midland—and all the shops and businesses in between: Double Rainbow, Quogue Liquors, Homespun, the Quogue Shops, Jen Going Interiors, Big Buddha Yoga and Barre, and Blown Away Hair Salon—just opening their doors for business can be seen as a simple act of faith during this pandemic. But beyond that, the level of customer service they offer goes beyond gratitude to their clientele; it speaks to their faith in the healing and connecting power of kindness, staying positive and doing the right thing.
All the people who continue to support the groups and organizations that are now restricted by pandemic protocols from safely fulfilling their missions or even undertaking their traditional fundraising events are making their own acts of faith. With donations large and small—to the Quogue Volunteer Fire Department, Quogue Wildlife Refuge, the Police Benevolent Association, Quogue Historical Society, Hampton Theatre Company, Quogue Library, Quogue Junior Theater Troupe, Quogue Chamber Music, the Quogue Association and others—they are taking personal responsibility for doing their part to nurture and protect the soul of our community.
What I witnessed, though, was a personal act of faith. Driving down Ocean Avenue, I saw a car pulled over with flashers blinking and a man on his knees beside it. I slowed down as I approached, thinking I would stop to see if he was alright or needed help. But as I passed, he stood up and I could see he had laid a prayer rug on the grass, with his smart phone in the middle of it.
Perhaps he used the compass on his phone to orient the rug toward the east and Mecca. Driving down the road, I glanced in the rear view and saw him kneeling and touching his forehead to the ground. I’m not sure of all the reasons why, but seeing that man in the afternoon light stopped on the side of the road to pray made me feel better somehow, more hopeful.
I know he wasn’t doing anything for my benefit, but I was grateful that I was able to witness a man, just one man I didn’t know, whose faith dictated that he stop whatever he was doing and take the time to pray. On Ocean Avenue. In Quogue. It opened up our community. I hope he felt safe.
And so it goes in the days of the novel coronavirus today.
Open House Art Show Saturday Benefits Wildlife Refuge
Artist Steve Alpert and his wife Dorothy are hosting an open house art exhibition titled “Desire” on Saturday, August 22, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., with 20 percent of proceeds from any sales going to the Quogue Wildlife Refuge. Rain date for the outdoor exhibition at 29 Old Main Road in Quogue, at which all coronavirus protocols will be observed, is Sunday, August 23, also from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
According to a release, the outdoor exhibition will feature “oil paintings such as ‘Desire,’ which was inspired by a trip to the Amazon region in Peru, and recalls Claude Monet’s Water Lilies cycle.” Also on display will be more recent works, such as “Duck,” “Summer Sun,” and “At Rest,” paintings that “capture the magnificence and uniqueness of the East End’s landscapes.”
Mr. Alpert continues to pay tribute to the men and women who serve in the U.S. Armed Forces. His latest initiative is “Proudly She Served,” a series of large portraits honoring “active duty military and veteran women who exemplify courage, strength, and selfless service, and who inspire the generations of young women following them,” according to the artist’s dedicated website for the project. (www.proudlysheserved.com)
Meanwhile, partly in response to the global disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the artist has “turned his attention to where he began: nature,” according to the release.
The artist explained his idea of dedicating funds to the Wildlife Refuge this way: “We are a short walk to the Quogue Wildlife Refuge and have enjoyed its unique year-round splendor” ever since he and his wife moved here some 20 years ago, the artist said. He noted that during these days of stay at home orders and quarantine, the Refuge has been “as much a sanctuary for people as the animals it protects.”
“Recognizing that this summer season is going to be difficult for many non-profit organizations that depend on special fundraising events to help meet their operating costs, and that a number of local art shows have been cancelled,” Mr. Alpert said, “it seemed a perfect fit to have an open house art exhibition at our home and commit to 20 percent of all sales to go to the Quogue Wildlife Refuge.”
To make donations directly to the Quogue Wildlife Refuge, click here or visit www.quoguewildliferefuge.org and click on Wild Night Appeal. You can also use the QWR “text to donate” app for smart phone users. Donations can now be made from anywhere simply by texting QWR2020 to 202-858-1233. The new app leads users to a very simple donation form, right on their cell phones.
Quogue Library Virtual Programs for Every Age and Interest
This summer’s newly retitled “Intro to Classical Music” series continues with a second installment on Saturday, August 22, at 4 p.m.: “It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s Mozart’s Symphony 40.”
The three installments of the series, offered on successive Saturdays in August at 4 p.m., offer lectures for those less familiar with opera and classical music. Everyone logging in for the virtual program will get an inside look from the maestro’s perspective, while conducting along with an animated orchestra.
The Saturday, August 29 installment at 4 p.m. will be “Can You Keep a Secret: Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6.” To register for this program, email firstname.lastname@example.org and request the Zoom login information.
The newly formed Anti-Racism Book Club will launch a Zoom discussion of a second book, “How to Be an Anti-Racist” in meetings scheduled at 7:30 p.m. on three Tuesdays: August 25, and September 8 and 22.
Teens and Adults are invited to “Express Yourself!” on a live Zoom tour of Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center with educator Joyce Raimondo on Wednesday, August 26, at 4 p.m.
To register for Quogue Library virtual programs, go to www.quoguelibrary.org and click on the appropriate flier for Zoom login registration. Clicking on the “I Hate Classical Music” flier will direct you to email email@example.com.
“Eugene Healy: Recent Paintings” Opening at Quogue Gallery
On view until September 30, “Eugene Healy: Recent Paintings,” featuring 23 new paintings by the artist, is the final show of summer 2020 at the Quogue Gallery.
“Many of Healy’s paintings are abstractions of shore scenes, being places that have evoked particular moods and feelings in the artist,” notes Peter Hastings Falk, Chief Curator and Editor of Discoveries in American Art. “And it is those feelings that he so effectively materializes with mediums ranging from oil, watercolor, encaustic, oil crayon, lacquers, and colored pencil applied to fragments of canvas, boards, and paper. Often, one delights in the subtle addition of beach sand, fragments of printed fabrics, and even pieces of window screens.”
Starting in 1967, the artist began a long exhibition record with art museums and galleries throughout the country. He has also served as a curator, beginning in the late 1970s when he conceived and organized the popular traveling exhibition, “American Vision,” which was launched at New York University. Later, he served as Director of the National Artists’Alliance, and as exhibition designer for the Yale Center for British Art. Healy earned a BFA from New York Institute of Technology in 1972.
Spirited Competition for Golf Titles in All Brackets
PGA Golf Professional Richard Stucklen organized an array of tourneys for young and old to establish the club champions for this summer at the Quogue Field Club.
Starting with the juniors, in the 7 to 8 age bracket, Lach McAuliffe was the winner and Hugh McAuliffe the runner up. Cole Durham was the winner and Nathan Koehler the runner up in the 9 to 10 bracket; Lach McCaghren was the winner and Miles Tamis the runner up in the 11 to 12. In the 13 to 16 division, Will McCarthy was the winner and Robert Moran the runner up.
Next up was the Pinehurst tournament for Adults and Juniors, with a three-way tie for first in the 10 and under division: Cole Durham and Sean Barrett, Hugh and Jack Wylie, and Nathan and Jay Koehler. Chase and Keith Carter were the winners and Silas and Chris Warren the runners up in the 11 to 12 bracket. And Robert and Tom Moran bested runners up Jack and Eric Sartorius in a playoff in the 13 to 16 division.
In the Ladies Club Championship, Caroline Harris Bond was the winner of the 9-Holers Flight and Anne Anthony was the runner up. This year’s Ladies Club Champion is Wendy McCarthy, and the runner up, established by a playoff against Frances Beatty Adler and Stefanie Beck, is Katy Barbatsuly.
Men’s Club Championship finalists this year were Peter Prentis vs. Kip Allardt in the second flight; Gerry Keefe vs. Peter Schellbach in the first flight; and Dana Robinson vs. Jed McCarthy in the Senior Flight. This year’s Men’s Club Champion is Sean Barrett, who defeated runner up Clint Dewey in the finals.
In the recent Stableford tournament, meanwhile, Tom Moran and Peter Prentis tied for fourth; Evan Clark was third; Phoebe Erdman was the runner up; and the winner was Brady Tolan.
Congratulations to all the champions and all the competitors!
The Reverend Zachary Thompson Leads Atonement Virtual Service Sunday
The Church of the Atonement on Quogue Street is welcoming the Reverend Zachary Thompson to officiate virtually at the Morning Prayer service of the Church of the Atonement on Sunday, August 23, at 9 a.m. All those wishing to obtain login information for the Zoom platform are requested to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reverend Thompson has been an Associate Rector at St. James’ Church in Manhattan since 2017 and is primarily responsible there for parish life, new member incorporation, and pastoral care. Prior to joining the St. James’staff, he served as an Associate Priest and as a Rector in Atlanta, GA, as well as Chaplain at Emory University.
Originally from Princeton, NJ, he earned his Master of Divinity at Emory University and a Master of Sacred Theology at Sewanee: The University of the South. The Rev. Thompson’s wife, Amy, served as an elementary school educator for a decade in Atlanta, and is now the Director of Admissions at the Church of the Epiphany Day School on the Upper East Side. They have two young sons, Rowan and Ezra.
The Atonement, a mission of the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island, welcomes worshippers of all faiths. Atonement organist and choir director Patricia Osborne Feiler provides the music for the virtual Morning Prayer services. This Sunday’s 9 a.m. service will be recorded for later viewing on the church’s website (Quoguechurch.org).
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