#Newsflash | The Glorious Sandpiper + Other Self-Improvement Opportunities
BY QEDC It's In Queens
Sandpipers are tiny wader birds that complete roughly-19,000-mile treks from Argentina’s Tierra del Fuego to the Artic and back every year.
Deborah Cramer is a nature writer who followed some sandpipers, or red knots, on their annual migration and wrote about it in her book, The Narrow Edge: A Tiny Bird, An Ancient Crab, and An Epic Journey, which won the Best Book Award from the National Academies of Science, Medicine, and Engineering.
With help from breath-taking images and awe-inspiring anecdotes, she’ll discuss her odyssey with the Queens County Bird Club on Wednesday, Jan. 20, at 7:30 pm.
Part travel journey, part declaration of love for a species, part ode to the importance of conservation, The Narrow Edge describes the delicate balance of marine life, avian existence, shorelines, and oceans. Cramer, a Visiting Scholar at MIT’s Environmental Solutions Initiative, notes that horseshoe crabs leave the water to lay eggs on beaches during high tides and full or new moons. Soon thereafter, the sandpipers arrive to feast on the protein to fuel their migrations.
Sounds delicious, but the author notes that dwindling numbers of crabs — due to such factors as erosion and storms — puts the birds in peril.
This upcoming week is actually a great time for self-improvement, thanks to Queens agencies. In addition to the nature lecture, there are virtual opportunities to learn about art, culture, food, and history. Here’s a primer on three upcoming programs.
On Sunday, Jan. 16, at 11 am, Greater Astoria Historical Society President Bob Singleton leads The Turnpikes of Long Island City. Presented with the Municipal Arts Society of New York City, this virtual tour looks at three major roadways — Vernon Boulevard, Jackson Avenue, and Astoria Boulevard — and their roles in LIC’s development.
On the same day, but at 2:30 pm, Queens Historical Society zooms The Art of Guyanese Pine Tart. QHS employee Aliana Ramdass Priors, who is of Guyanese heritage, shares the story behind a short-crust pastry with fresh pineapple filling that’s immensely popular in the South American country. There’s a local angle, too, as many immigrants from Guyana have settled in the Richmond Hill area over the past few decades. Thus, pine tarts are served in various restaurants and bakeries, especially ones on Liberty Avenue.
Last but not least, the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, which is located in Queens College, will stream an Artist Talk with contemporary painter Jordan Casteel on Tuesday, Jan. 19, at 7 pm. Using her own photographs, Casteel creates almost life-size portraits of people she encounters, posing them within their natural environments.
The event is an enrichment collaboration with GT Museum’s online exhibition HUMAN/Nature: Portraits from the Permanent Collection, which is currently displaying a mix of drawings, paintings, prints, and sculptures.