Tag Archives: GreenStar

Listening

14 Apr

I’m listening, to the wise people around me.  Beyond the din, there are those who are committed to others, to working for more than personal gain.

Susan Peterson Gateley of Silver Waters Sailing welcomed me and my friends to a water chestnut pull on the Red Creek Marsh Unit in Wayne County many years ago.  We met two women, dressed in work clothes whose boats were quickly filling with long, leafy vegetation they were extracting from the marsh.  As we began to move the wet, tangled masses to the back of pickups, I reached in quickly and grabbed the plants, only to feel sharp thorns plunge into my hands! Chuckling lightly with amusement and compassion, I was advised not to repeat my behavior and handed a pair of gloves.  Novice volunteers worked quickly together to load the invasive plants before heading off for a late afternoon kayak and picnic.  The gratitude of the volunteers and kayakers was immense, they were so glad to participate in a positive, healthy activity with other friendly people.

Each year the water chestnut returned, but with increased management, including staff from the Finger Lakes Institute, the invasive may be temporarily controlled.  If left alone, the plant could cover the waters, blocking out light and making passage for animals and boats impossible.  Though quite glad to have this quiet marsh in improved condition, many problems are harder to identify or positively affect.  Mrs. Gateley covers many of these pollutants in her movie Lake Ontario: A Quest for Hope.

Cayuga Lake has a steward in Hilary Lambert of the Cayuga Lake Watershed Network.  Hilary works with residents and municipalities around Cayuga Lake for clean, healthy water. Her team has made great strides with GIS technology, recently releasing satellite imagery of nutrient runoff into the lake.  Meet at The Space at GreenStar today in Ithaca to learn more about HABs and other sources of non-point pollution.

Dragon boats brought Hilary and I together for the first time.  We inspected the lot before they were launched in Cayuga Lake.  It only took a few moments to realize she was a savvy advocate for water. Tomorrow, we return to a rest area north of Taughannock Falls to tidy up an area that is a first impression of our area for many.  Now under the adoption of the Cayuga Lake Watershed Network, the area lies in an area with a steep incline and stream upon Cayuga Lake’s western shore.  This site’s cleanliness has improved! I’m quite surprised to see it in fair condition. Though we are expecting scattered showers, we’ll eliminate any trash and celebrate our progress with a hike at Taughannock Falls and snacks from GreenStar!

Another amazing woman has entered my life.  She is 103 years old! She is sharp and educated, living a life of civic engagement and within a thriving rural community.  Talking with her about her life and reading local works has opened a vivid world of regional understanding and cultural possibilities.  She often says she could use another fifty years for everything she would like to do.

What will we do and share?

More details about this amazing woman and tomorrow’s cleanup!

 

 

 

 

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Looking Back and Looking Forward

30 Apr

On this wet, last day of April in upstate NY,  I’m pleased to recall an assortment of fun recent events and to forget snow for now, while enjoying the blossoming wild flowers.  Crimson and white trillium brightened my morning last week at a favorite hiking spot.

Trillium bud.

Trillium bud.

Mother Nature offered a bit of warmth and sunshine before many April showers. The peepers came out to close our Saturday barbeque with song, while a hazy moon sat high above our campfire and wooded pond.  We shook off our social skills like our warmer weather clothes, only to retreat once again indoors.

One wet morning I happened upon the Montezuma Audubon Center on Rte. 89 north of Savannah.  My pup and I explored a new hiking trail that looped around north of the center.  Our curiosity was heightened as we looked around each bend, through the trees, at the forest floor and up at the sky.  Our impromptu visit was so refreshing that the center and its grounds may be one of my new favorite places! This Saturday, May 3, a Wildlife Festival will be held at the Montezuma Audubon Center.  Live animals including a Bald Eagle named Liberty will help attendees learn more about wildlife. Find out more details here.

My tolerance for weather may be much greater than many others.  Winter hikes and rainy treks are a reality for some, for others such experiences are far from fun.  Plans for a beach cleanup, 4OG,  along the shore of Lake Ontario were postponed due to rain.  Hopefully a bit of sun and warmer weather will make our event more fun for the little ones and their parents.  Many thanks to GreenStar Co-op for their financial support! It only seems natural to feed volunteers who come together to clean our shores.  GreenStar is committed to sustainability and our local food system.  Apples from Little Tree Orchard in Newfield, filled my basket and I was awarded 2 wooden nickels for bringing my own bags.  I tossed the tokens in bins marked with the names of local charities.  I know the Cayuga Dog Rescue scored 5 cents that trip.

Excursions around the region have offered as much variety as the weather patterns.  “Lean Forward,” a digital art show at The Mill Art Center and Gallery, entranced me with the breadth of techniques and subjects.  Long-time fans of digital art will appreciate the advanced techniques and sentiments expressed via digital media in this show.  A second and third visit are high on my list of things to do.  Dinner at The Rabbit Room made this show’s opening reception even more rewarding.  The Parisienne gnocchi is one of my favorite dishes anywhere.

Ryan William Vineyard was also an unexpected stop yet I am quite thankful to have visited this farm winery on the south-eastern side of Seneca Lake.  The wines offer complexity and flavor that hint at the care given to both the grapes and wine production process. The Late Harvest Riesling amazed with apricot flavor and residual sugar near 17%!  This wine does well in the bottle, making it a wise choice for special occasions.

There is so much to be enjoyed in the Finger Lakes! What are you looking forward to as summer nears?