My garden, filled with the usual cadre of hungry winter visitors and residents—cardinals, juncos, tufted titmice, black-capped chickadees, nuthatches, woodpeckers, sparrows and raucous blue jays—has a special star this year. My male ring-necked pheasant can be seen all day, every day, strolling from feeder to feeder, enjoying the cracked corn. This is the first time he’s stayed through the winter.
By the way, if you need help identifying some of our unusual winter visitors, I’ve found something that I love even more than my dog-eared copy of Peterson’s field guide. The Birds of North America Online, from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, is a marvelous website for identifying new birds by sight and sound. Check it out at www.bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna. There is a yearly fee, but it is so worth it. Enjoy!
Very special birthday wishes go to my “understanding” friend, wildlife enthusiast and “pond pal” Jamie Holthaus. Jamie, who writes the Hampton Bays’ column “Friends and Neighbors,” celebrates her special day on Monday, January 23.
Congratulations to Lauren Ciuzio who received an undergraduate degree from the State University of New York at New Paltz. Lauren obtained her bachelor of science degree in childhood education 1-6.
For a real winter’s treat, check out the new website of one my favorite East Quogue artists at www.peterbeston.com. Peter’s beautiful artwork will warm your soul.
The annual meeting of the East Quogue Cemetery Association will be held on Monday, January 23, at 7 p.m., at the East Quogue United Methodist Church parish hall on Montauk Highway. All stockholders and lot owners are welcome to attend.
For an interesting winter’s evening, come to the Quogue Library this Saturday, January 21, for the monthly Film Feast. The featured film will be “Margin Call.” This much-acclaimed thriller revolves around several key people working at an investment bank during the early stages of the financial crisis. The feast begins at 6:30 p.m. and the film at 7:15 p.m. Price of admission is a beverage and a dish that serves at least six. Please call the library at 653-4224, ext. 4, to register.
Looking for something to do to chase away winter’s chill? Then join Amy Hess and friends this Saturday, January 21, for a Pot Luck Supper at Amy’s Ark Studio and Farm. Bring a dish, beverage of your choice and a flashlight. Don’t be late as the fun begins at 6 p.m. Amy’s Ark is located at 10 Hollow Lane (Mill Pond) in Westhampton. For more information, call Amy at 902-3655.
Calling all boys and girls! Registration will take place for boys and girls interested in playing baseball and softball for the East End Little League on two consecutive Saturdays, January 21 and 28, from 10 a.m. until noon both days, at the VFW Post located at 129 Montauk Highway in Quogue. Registration forms will also be available at all elementary schools and on the group’s website www.leaguelineup.com/eastendlittleleague. Returning players may register by mail.
In last week’s column, I sang the praises of our Southampton Animal Shelter. Now we can help the shelter and have fun at the same time. Puppy Love Prance, a night of square dancing and hoedown fun, will take place at the Southampton Inn located at 91 Hill Street in Southampton on Saturday, February 11, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $50. For more information, visit www.southamptonanimalshelter.com or call Cathy Duemler at 728-7387.
And speaking of the Southampton Inn, I would like to thank East Quogue’s Dede Gotthelf and her remarkable staff for hosting an unforgettable book signing for me!
Kim Covell, founder of the Flying Point Foundation for Autism and assistant editor at the Press News Group, has, in three short years, done an amazing job with the foundation. Kim needs volunteers to help with the organization’s dinner and fashion show, summer camp and Starlight Ball. For more information, send Kim an email at email@example.com or visit www.fpf4autism.org.