Happy October, friends.
There’s a unique kind of energy in the air as humans and animals alike prepare for the change of seasons. You can feel it on early fall walks in the woods, and along the trails at Gilsland Farm. If you venture into our Visitor Centers, either in Falmouth or Holden, you’ll find that same sense of energy. We’re not just gearing up for winter, though — we’re getting busy enjoying autumn!
Most recently, we had a blast on our annual Pelagic sea voyage, which staff naturalist Doug Hitchcox described vividly in his trip report. We also celebrated the 50th anniversary of our Bald Eagles of Merrymeeting Bay boat trip on a perfect Saturday, riding up the Kennebec and tallying 47 eagles! We got to toast the trip and founding leader Dick Anderson, including presenting him with a framed congressional proclamation. It was a joy to be a part of that celebration.
Back on land, we did a bit more toasting at our second annual “Autumn Equinox” event at Gilsland Farm. Hosted by Portside Real Estate Group, this event was one of the most fun I’ve seen at Gilsland Farm, with an awesome band, great food trucks, a silent auction, and a wonderful atmosphere. On top of that, the event raised three times as much as last year! If you missed it, be sure to keep an eye out for next year’s event.
September was busy, but October is no slouch, either. It all starts next weekend, when we host our annual Apple Day family festival at Gilsland Farm. And afterward, we’re trying something new — Ciderbration, a 21+ afternoon event featuring adult beverages from Rocky Ground Hard Cider (read more about them in the latest Bon Appetit!), Allagash Brewing, and Chickadee Wine; delicious snacks; lawn games; and the music of The Larry Williams Band. Apple expert John Bunker will kick it off with a presentation in our Visitor Center at 1 pm. It’s going to be a lot of fun, so be sure to reserve your tickets now!
Swing by our Nature Store and you’ll see they’re getting ready for winter by preparing for our annual bird seed sale and stocking up on great nature-themed holiday gifts — including selections from our new “Sustainable Home” line of green living products.
Also: In case you haven’t heard, we have an election coming up. If you haven’t already made time to study the candidates and positions, October is prime time to develop your personal point of view — and to prepare to participate in the most important event in a well-functioning democracy. Our advocacy team is working hard to make sure Maine voters understand the implications of our decisions on wildlife and habitat around the state and around the nation (just last week, they submitted hundreds of comments they had collected from you in defense of the Endangered Species Act to the federal government!).
Even amidst the fall fervor, I always try to be sure I leave time to quietly observe nature. Our attentiveness to nature is wired into our genes, and it provides benefits to our physical and mental health. I hope you continue to find peace amidst the frenzy!