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Quote of the Week
“The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second best time is now.”
--unknown source proverb
Public Hearing for Hickory Cove Preserve
Thursday, Nov. 6, 4:30 pm, Edgartown
A discussion of the draft management plan for the Land Bank's Hickory Cove Preserve will be held at the MVLB building
in Edgartown. Click here
to view the plan.
Walk at Felix Neck
Tuesday, Nov. 11, 10:00 to 11:00 am
Visit Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary for a stroll and celebrate the
changing of the seasons. $5, free for members. Call (508) 627-4850 for
Winter Farmers' Market
Saturdays from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, West Tisbury
The winter market is indoors at the Ag Hall on Panhandle Rd. Twenty vendors, live music, and lunch available.
Saturday Kids Programs
Saturdays from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, Aquinnah
Outdoor education for kids 6-13 at Sassafras, includes scouting and
exploring, fire and other outdoor skills, wild harvests and cooking, and
much more. Held Nov. 1, 8, 15, 22; Dec. 6 & 13, $150 for five
sessions. For more info on this or other programs, call (508) 645-2008
In Season Recipe
If you have a food processor this one is super-easy. If not, you
could always try the blender; what's the worst that could happen?
(Answer: a very tart smoothie)
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries
- 1 apple
- 1/2 cup honey
Preparation: Pulse the cranberries a few times until
well-chopped, but not blended. Add a finely diced apple (peeled first,
if desired) and the honey and stir well. Then just let sit for a few
hours for the flavors to combine.
Local organic cranberries
from the Vineyard Open Land Foundation's Cranberry Acres bog are
available at Cronig's, Tisbury Farm Market, Morning Glory Farm, and
Alley's General Store. This recipe was taken almost exactly from Island
Grown Schools' Harvest of the Month Program. See their recipe card
for serving suggestions.
One more serving idea that's especially healthy is to use the relish as a dressing/topping for a very simple wilted kale salad:
- Combine the juice of half a lemon with a dash of olive oil and salt and pepper
- Remove mid-ribs from a small bunch of kale and cut into salad-size bites
- Mix the kale with the juice mixture for a couple minutes, massaging
it firmly for curly/frilly kale, just lightly tossing for the
Italian-style broadleaf kale.
|Monday, November 3, 2014
Winter Walks 2014-2015
Conservation Through the Decades
The view from below (Photo by Brendan O'Neill from a previous walk; click for full size)
In recognition of our 50th anniversary, VCS’s 2014-2015
Winter Walks program will take a decade-by-decade approach to
highlighting the history of conservation on our Island. We will visit
five important and iconic spots conserved with VCS help.
The season kicks off with a visit to the Gay Head Cliffs on Saturday,
Nov. 22, where VCS and the Town of Aquinnah won a National Natural
Landmark designation in 1965. In January we will visit Katama Farm
(today the home of the Farm Institute), which was preserved in the 1970s
as a town treasure. The 1980s brought protection at Morning Glory Farm,
and in succeeding decades, Allen Sheep Farm and Mermaid Farm –
locations that have come to define the Vineyard’s commitment to
sustainability for the future.
All Winter Walks start at 1:00 and are about 1.5 to 2 hours long,
followed by cider and cookies. After November’s trip to the Cliffs,
walks resume their regular schedule of the second Sunday of the month.
Watch the Almanac for details on the walks as they approach!
2014-2015 Winter Walks
November 22: Gay Head Cliffs, Aquinnah
December 14: Morning Glory Farm, Edgartown
January 11: Katama Farm, Edgartown
February 8: Allen Farm, Chilmark
March 8: Mermaid Farm, Chilmark
Has Earth Reached Peak Farmland?
Along with increasing yields per
acre, reducing or eliminating the use of ethanol in automobile fuel
would allow more land to be taken out of corn production and returned to
the wild. Click to enlarge; data from USDA, as presented in link below.
This summer, long-time VCS Science Adviser Jesse Ausubel delivered a
fascinating lecture for our colleagues at the Sheriff’s Meadow
Foundation. Titled Meat and Potatoes and the American Landscape,
it’s a boldly optimistic take on past, present, and future trends in
consumption of energy and materials, in support of an argument that the
future will see not less, but more land available for forests and other natural habitats. A print version is now available online – definitely worth checking out!
A Peek Behind the Curtain
Traitor or hero, valuable insight or frivolous entertainment? Opinions
will vary on the bombshell of insider information dropped by one
offended oil and gas industry executive following a closed-door
presentation from a pair of political consultants. Even the importance
of the message – delivered as an audio recording (transcript) to the NY Times
– is debatable. It’s a bit shocking to hear the tactics of political
operatives spoken out loud, and could be a PR nightmare for the oil and
gas industry, but it’s also the sort of stuff many people already
In short, as the Times reports,
the annual meeting of the Western Energy Alliance (a trade group for
oil and gas companies) featured a presentation from political
consultants Berman & Company, who made the case for embracing some
less-than-savory practices for swaying public opinion. “You can either
win ugly or lose pretty,” argued founder Rick Berman, in reference both
to his general tactics and to his company’s current
anti-environmentalist campaign “Big Green Radicals.”
A central bailiwick of Berman & Co.’s product is the creation of sophomoric and generally un-funny political parodies, often lampooning celebrities
who support causes harmful to their clients’ business interests. Or, in
the words of Berman: “Use humor to minimize or marginalize the people
on the other side.” But, be warned, as it would appear the
marginalization machine is gearing up for a new target. During the same
presentation, vice president Jack Hubbard described his own “research”
efforts: the essential work of digging up embarrassing personal details
about board members of the Sierra Club and other environmental
non-profits for use in future campaigns. So, for all you current and
past VCS board members – keep an eye out for someone in a sharp suit
rummaging through your garbage!