SAVE THE DATE – KIM SMITH MONARCH BUTTERFLY PROGRAM AT THE TRUSTEES OF RESERVATIONS STEVENS COOLIDGE PLACE

Please join me for the Monarch Migration Celebration at the Stevens Coolidge Place in Andover on Saturday October 5th at 10:30am. I am cosponsoring the event and giving my slide presentation and talk “Beauty on the Wing: Life Story of the Monarch Butterfly.” The presentation is part of a day long event celebrating the Monarch migration. This promises to be a wonderfully fun day for kids and adults!

Monarch Migration Celebration

You spent the summer watching them flit about your gardens, now it’s time to wish them well on their trip down to Mexico – it’s the Monarch Migration Celebration at Stevens-Coolidge Place!

This celebration will kick off with a children’s pollinator parade around the property (costumes encouraged!) bringing all visitors to an afternoon of demos, crafts & stories, seed bomb making and gardening tips to bring these orange friends to your yard in the spring. Want to join in the butterfly tagging? Bring your flying friends with you and we’ll be happy to show you how! Butterfly release at 2:30PM

Trustees Member: $3
Trustees Member Child: $5
Trustees Family: $15

Nonmember: $6
Nonmember Child: $10
Nonmember Family: $25
Please help us plan for the day. Pre-registration is encouraged.

Stevens Coolidge Place

137 Andover Street

North Andover

TREMENDOUS COASTAL WATERBIRD CONSERVATION COOPERATORS MEETING!

On Tuesday I attended the Coastal Waterbird Conservation Cooperators meeting, which took place at the Harwich Community Center on Cape Cod. The meeting is held annually to bring together people and organizations that are involved with population monitoring and conservation efforts on behalf of coastal waterbirds. Threatened and endangered species such as Least Terns, Piping Plovers, Roseate Terns, and American Oystercatchers are given the greatest attention.

I was invited by Carolyn Mostello, event organizer, to create a short film, Gloucester Plovers Go Swimming, for the “Strange and Unusual” section. The film features our three little chicks SWIMMING in the tidal creek (see next post). I also provided a group of photos of the late hatching chicks for DCR. The film and the photos were well-received, which was gratifying to me, to be of help in documenting and sharing these wonderful stories.

Conservationists from all seven Massachusetts coastal regions participated, as well as conservationists from nearby states, including representatives from Maine, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire. To name just some of the organizations presenting at the meeting-Mass Wildlife, Trustees of Reservations, Essex Greenbelt, Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), Mass Audubon, and US Fish and Wildlife.

In the morning, each region gave the 2019 population census report for nesting birds as well as providing information about problems and solutions. We all share similar challenges with predation from crows and gulls, uncontrolled dogs, enforcement, and habitat loss and it was very interesting to learn about how neighboring communities are managing problems and issues.

Trustees of Reservations Coastal Ecologist Jeff Denoncour presented on behalf of the north of Boston region, of which Gloucester is a part. Essex Greenbelt’s Director of Land Stewardship Dave Rimmer and intern Fionna were in attendance as well. Both Crane Beach and Parker River are having a fantastic year and the numbers are up across Massachusetts, Maine, and Rhode Island. There are still many young chicks yet to fledge on Massachusetts beaches so the final count has not been determined.

The afternoon session was filled with outstanding lectures presented by conservation biologists and all the programs were tremendously informative.

I met Beth Howard from Mass Audubon, who has been involved with care taking the L Street Piping Plovers and Paige Hebert from Mass Wildlife who has been helping manage Roseate Terns. The DCR staff managing the shorebirds at Nahant, Salisbury, Winthrop, and Revere Beach were all there and they are just a stellar group of young people.

It was a great day! Many attendees expressed congratulations for Gloucester fledging three chicks. Last year after attending the meeting I wrote the following and it’s wonderful that our hope for Gloucester’s Plovers was realized this year: “After attending the cooperators meeting, I am more hopeful than ever that our community can come together and solve the problems that are preventing our PiPl from successfully nesting and fledging chicks. What we have going in our favor is the sheer number of amazing super volunteers along with strong community-wide support.”  

FANTASTIC PIPING PLOVER NEWS FROM COASTAL ECOLOGIST JEFF DENONCOUR AT CRANE BEACH

Jeff Denoncour, Trustees of Reservations Coastal Ecologist, shares some record breaking Piping Plover news from Crane Beach. Jeff writes that “at Crane 49 pairs nested and 87 chicks have fledged, with 8 chicks remaining, a great year and breaking records for Crane!”

Piping Plover lift off, times two!

42 PAIRS OF PIPING PLOVERS NESTING AT CRANES BEACH!

July 9th 2018 – From the Trustees “The Piping Plovers at Crane Beach are doing great this year! 42 pairs have nested making this the third highest amount of nesting Piping Plover pairs since 1986. So far 42 chicks have spread their wings and flown. Many more chicks are still on the beach and we are waiting on more nests to hatch. Please remember to keep your distance and give these protected birds their space.”

I love how the pale seashell coral pink in the clam shells mirrors the orange hues of the PiPl’s beak and legs. I don’t know why this photo strikes me as funny, but it just does. Tiny birds with huge personalities!

Boston Globe lists the Great Marsh symposium NOV 9th- public invited

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Great marsh logoThere’s still time to register today or walk in tomorrow for the Great Marsh Coalition 5th annual special conference on rising water issues and natural systems. Register thru Essex County Greenbelt $20 fee  WHEN: November 9, 2017, 8:30AM- 3:15PM. WHERE: Woodman’s in Essex.

From the Great Marsh Coaltion:

Generous Great Marsh coalition symposium supporters (many are coalition members)- local municipalities, Essex County Greenbelt, Essex National Heritage Area, Mass Audubon, Ipswich River Watershed  Assoc., League of Women Voters Cape Ann, Merrimack Valley Planning Commission, Metropolitan Area Planning Commission (MAPC), National Wildlife Federation, and The Trustees 

What is the Great Marsh Coalition?

The Great Marsh Coalition is a group of organizations and agencies that began meeting in spring 2000 to discuss ways of building a regional consciousness and identity for the Great Marsh. The Coalition supports a coordinated approach to education, research, protection, and management to promote preservation, restoration, and stewardship of the Great Marsh. Current Coalition members include (but are not limited to): City of Gloucester is one of Eight Towns and the Great MarshEssex County Greenbelt AssociationEssex National Heritage AreaIpswich River Watershed AssociationMassachusetts Audubon SocietyMassachusetts Office of Coastal Zone ManagementMassachusetts Department of Environmental Management’s ACEC ProgramParker River Clean Water Association, Cultural Alliance of the Lower Merrimack Valley, and The Trustees of Reservations.

GREAT MARSH COALITION

Boston Globe article and Continue reading “Boston Globe lists the Great Marsh symposium NOV 9th- public invited”

Trailblazers and Scenes from Essex National Heritage 20th Anniversary Gala at Peabody Essex Museum

Secretary John Kerry reconnected with Mayor Romeo-Theken before he took to the podium to address more than 300 guests attending the Essex National Heritage 20th Anniversary gala at the Peabody Essex Museum. They go way back. Essex National Heritage was designated in 1996 with key support from John Kerry and Ted Kennedy.

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20th Anniversay Gala at Peabody Essex Museum L-R: Mayor Romeo-Theken, Gloucester; Secretary John Kerry; Annie Harris CEO Essex National Heritage

Here’s a star, Emily Levin from Essex National Heritage. Everyone who hosts programs over Essex National Heritage fabulous annual Trails & Sails enjoys working with Emily.

The temporary Essex National Heritage illumination is projected above the Halo sculpture by Anish Kapoor.

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Emily Levin, Essex National Heritage (20th Anniversary Gala Peabody Essex museum)

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ANNOUNCING THE TRAILBLAZERS

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4000 votes helped select a few Trailblazer nominees for a special champagne toast representing their mission and all the wonderful cultural resources across 34 towns. Kim Smith was in good company! We toasted the following 2017 Essex National Heritage Area Trailblazers:

1)PRESERVING THIS SPECIAL REGION
1st place | Essex County Greenbelt Association
2nd place | Ipswich River Watershed Association
3rd place | The Cabot

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2)CONNECTING PEOPLE TO PLACE
1st place | The Trustees of Reservations
2nd place | Mass Audubon
3rd place |Essex Agricultural Society

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surprised Pilar !

3)BUILDING & GROWING OUR FUTURE
1st place — Peabody Essex Museum
2nd place — YMCA of the North Shore
3rd place — Valley View Farm

4)ADVANCING OUR EDUCATIONAL MISSION
1st place (tie) | Lowell’s Boat Shop and The House of Seven Gables
2nd place | Maritime Gloucester
3rd place | Essex Shipbuilding Museum

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sailing at the same table: Mayor Romeo Theken, Mary Kay Taylor Schooner Ardelle, Graham Mckay Lowell’s Boatshop Amesbury; Stefan Edick Schooner Adventure. Bill Steelman presenting award to Graham.

Nice detail: the second festive beverage for the reception featured the trio of colors in the Essex National Heritage logo.

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Gloucester organizations and partners were featured in the slide loop including: City Hall for Community Preservation, Discover Gloucester, Lannon, Rocky Neck, Schooner Adventure, HarborWalk, Cape Ann Museum.

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from Essex National Heritage printed matter:

On April 5 2017 we’re celebrating all of the incredible organizations and people that we’ve spent the last two decades working with to preserve and enhance the significant historic, cultural, and natural places that make Essex County like nowhere else. We are also THRILLED that Secretary John Kerry will joining as the celebrate. Secretary Kerry played a key role in the federal legislation designating the Essex National Heritage Area in 1996!

Who are the Trailblazers and which will receive a toast?
The public nominated 131 Trailblazers.  While all Trailblazers will be recognized at the Gala, only a few will be honored with a special toast!  The public was invited to vote for which Trailblazers will receive a toast, and the results will be revealed only at the event; toasts will be made at the Gala!

Have Prius–Can Do!

I wrote this post several days ago. Westport was hit very hard by Sandy.

Let’s hope Westport is spared coastal flooding from Hurricane Sandy

This upcoming planting week for my newest project, The Mary Prentiss Inn, a beautiful inn in the heart of Cambridge (more about The Mary Prentiss Inn later) has been disrupted by Sandy. One of the nurseries I work with cancelled delivery and wanted to reschedule, but not until after the 5th of November. By that time I’ll be knee-deep planting Willowdale for the spring of 2013. I didn’t want to disappoint my clients and postpone work until later in November. What to do? Have Prius, will travel.

Much has been written about the super fuel efficiency of the Prius (saving me much, much $$$ over the eight years I have owned a Prius), but rarely do I see mention of it’s fantastic carrying capacity when the back seat is made flat. People look at me in disbelief when I tell them I have transported trees and (smallish) sofas in the back of my Prius so I thought you’d like to see.

125 Boxwood plants, with room to spare in the front passenger seat

Friends often tell me I need a truck or a van. Perhaps when an auto manufacturer designs a 22k truck or van that gets 45 miles to the gallon (when loaded to the max), I’ll consider. In the meantime-have Prius, can do!

Westport is one of the most exquisite New England towns you will ever see. The topography is such that the farmland runs to the ocean’s edge. Through community and conservation groups, Westport is earnestly endeavoring, and succeeding, in preserving its historic and agricultural heritage–as we know in Gloucester, it is very intelligent when communities work together to help protect and preserve their farmers and fishermen.

The Bayside Restaurant ~ Charming little spot to eat in Westport, across the road from Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary. The Bayside offers a complete menu, including many delicious seafood entrees and Homemade Pies!

Super Fresh Rhode Island Calamari

You can see why Sylvan is one of my top five nurseries, not only for their exquisite plant stock, but because they are located about a hundred yards down the road from Allens Pond Wildlife Santuary.  In autumn, after the coastal Monarchs depart Cape Ann, they fly south and next congregate in the Westport area, in and around Allen’s Pond and Horseneck Beach.

 Allens Pond ~ Hurry Monarchs and Get Going! October 26, 2012

From the Trustees of Reservations website, “In many towns throughout Massachusetts The Trustees of Reservations have worked in partnership with the state’s Department of Agricultural Resources to help preserve family farms. Nowhere has that work been more successful than in Westport, where the partnership includes the Westport Land Conservation Trust and the town. Together, the groups have protected 13 farms in Westport over the past five years, including two dairy farms, two Christmas tree farms, an organic fruit and vegetable farm, a beef cattle operation, and even a piggery. There are now a total of 28 preserved farms in Westport, encompassing over 2,100 acres.”

Westport, Massachusetts

School vacation week on Cape Ann

From the Beacon

From Ravenswood Park to Halibut Point to the Essex Shipbuilding Museum, there is plenty for kids and families to enjoy during school vacation week. Plus enjoy art, dance and cheerleading lessons as well.

Here are some ideas:

Ravenswood Park programs

The Trustees of Reservations is hosting a series of programs “February School Vacation = Exploration!” at the Cape Ann Discovery Center at Ravenswood Park with explorations at their surrounding properties beginning on Saturday, Feb. 13 running through Sunday, Feb. 21.

Cost is $4 for Trustees member adults, $5 for non-member adults, and free for children. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

The following programs will be offered:

Ice Age Trail, Saturday, Feb. 13, 1-3 p.m.

Hermit’s Tales on the Trails, Tuesday, Feb. 16 and/or Thursday, Feb. 18, 1-3 p.m.

Snowflake Shapes and Science, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 1-3 p.m.

“Waterfront” (the movie), Saturday, Feb. 20, 3:30-5:30 p.m.

Animals of the Night: Live Animal Presentation, Saturday, Feb. 20, 6-7:30 p.m.

Beginning Winter Birding, Sunday, Feb. 21, 8-10 a.m. (at Halibut Point State Park in Rockport).

Call 978-281-8400, e-mail capeanneducator@ttor.org, or register online at www.thetrustees.org.

Hip-hop and shipbuilding with Wellspring

Wellspring Cape Ann Families is planning two free fun events for February vacation, open to all on Cape Ann.

Shipbuilding will be held Tuesday, Feb. 16, 10-11:30 a.m. at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum, 66 Main St, Essex. Make your own Chebacco Boat and learn about maritime history. The first 40 families will also receive a free copy of the local children’s book “Schooner.” Registration is required by calling 978-281-7856 with the number of children and adults.

Hip-Hop/Latin Dance is on Thursday, Feb. 18, 10-11:30 a.m. at WCAF, 28 Emerson Ave., Gloucester. Rock your body with local Hip-hop/Latin Dance fitness trainer Jennifer Amero from The Met: Metamorphosis Alternative Fitness Studio. Workshop is geared towards children 7 and up and parents are welcome to participate.

These free events are made possible by the Linden Foundation.

For more information, call Stacy Randell, 978-281-7856, srandell@wellspringhouse.org.

GHS Cheerleading Mini Camp

The Gloucester High School Cheerleaders will host a Mini Camp on Feb. 16, 17 and 18 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Gloucester High School Field House. All children ages 5 to 14 are welcome. The cost is $75. Registrations are still being accepted by calling Patricia Marques at 978-283-5718 or e-mail cpauljr@verizon.net.

Art Haven special classes

While still offering the normal schedule of after-school classes, Art Haven is offering a variety of activities for elementary and middle school students next week. Individual classes are $20 or $25:

Elementary School

Paint Big: Monday, 9-11:30 a.m.; Tie Dye a T-shirt, Tuesday, 9-11:30; and Lord of the Rings Day: Wednesday, 9-3:30 $20

Middle School

Pottery Day: Monday, 12:30-3; Tie Dye a T-shirt: Tuesday, 12:30-3; Lord of the Rings Day: Wednesday, 9-3:30; Jewelry Making: Thursday, 9-11:30; Silk Screen T-shirts: Thursday, 12:30-3.

For information, visit www.arthaven.org. For reservations, call 978-283-3888 or e-mail arthaveninfo@gmail.com.

Beginning Winter Birding

Date:     January 17, 2010
Location:     Halibut Point Reservation
Time:     8 – 10AM
Cost:     FREE to all.
Phone: 978.281.8400
E-mail: rlatham@ttor.org

Halibut Point is nationally renowned for viewing winter birds. Learn the basics of birding, natural history, and behavioral traits of our area’s winter birds such as ducks, gulls, cormorants, loons, grebes, gannets, and alcids. Meet at Halibut Point parking lot.

You can also join us on February 21 and March 21.

Click here for Driving Directions

Know Your Place: Special events at Ravenswood Park

From the Beacon-

The Trustees of Reservations is offering a series of events at Ravenswood Park in Gloucester:

Sunday, Nov. 1, noon-2 p.m.: The new Education Center’s ExSKULLent Adventure. Families are welcome to join in the newest treasure hunt “Sweetbay Swamp Quest” and learn about this new family sport, make your own stamps, and make your own passbooks. Learn how and what animals eat with close-up views of animal skulls. Costumes are welcome. Free to all.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 1-3 p.m.: Ravenswood Rocks! Geological features tour with DCR’s John Ratti. A rock is not a thing, but a drama. It reflects universal axioms such as, “As above, so below,” and is the great unifying science of the world. Join the Trustees and Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation educator John Ratti for a unique presentation of this elegant science. Members free, nonmember adults, $5. Pre-registration required.

For the rest of the schedule, click here.

Heart Healthy Trail Day to be held Oct. 11 at Coolidge Point lawn

From the Beacon

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Trustees Website Photo

The Trustees of Reservations will hold Heart-Healthy Trail Day on Sunday, Oct. 11, from 10 a.m. to noon at Coolidge Point’s Ocean Lawn, Manchester.

This fairly flat, grassy terrain stimulates all your senses, offers fascinating views, and will ease you into walking your way to health. Coolidge’s Ocean Lawn is open Fridays-Mondays all year long.

Admission is free. Pre-registration requested by contacting The Trustees at 978-281-8400.