Cancer Resource Center Family Picnic 2019 Retrospective

 

 

Here’s an event I wouldn’t have missed for the world. I couldn’t,really, because I was in it and it was a benefit for a great local non-profit The Cancer Resource Center of the Finger Lakes. There was a strange but true art opening from which all sale profits went to the Center, featuring drawings by maverick Johnny Dowd and debuting Jade Dowd Vanderbergs constructions and crochet magic. I had some items there,too, since I didn’t chicken out. Then Johnny and Mike played a set celebrating the release of Johns new album Family Picnic. There were guest musicians,food and drink, and twinkly lights. Because there should always be twinkly lights.

It was SO fun, and if you want the selfie to prove it, check out the photo booth shots. Jyl clearly lost her mind on the props (not that they aren’t always out of hand). Really,I’m dyin’ here. The mask made it to Johnny’s European tour!

The promo is below. I think this should become an annual event, don’t you?

Join us as Johnny Dowd celebrates the release of his new album “Family Picnic” with an Art Opening featuring his sister Jennifer Edmondson, and niece Jade Dowd Vanderberg, followed by a performance by Johnny, Mike Edmondson, & Kim Sherwood-Caso. They are  pulling out all the stops, and Park Doing is opening the show.

Grayhaven Motel – 657 Elmira Rd, Ithaca
Art Opening begins at 6:00pm
Music begins at 7:30pm

The art pieces will be available for purchase at the Art Opening by making a donation to CRC. The show ends on 3/28.

Please join & share our
Facebook event page.

Presented by Low Profile.
Sound by Resident Noise.

There’s nuthin’ like a Dowd Family Picnic!

Johnny on his new album, Family Picnic, which will be released March 1:

“I had to dig pretty deep for this one. Not sure how many more tunes I have in me. Tick tock. This record took an unexpected turn to the past — my past. It’s kind of like Wrong Side of Memphis 30 years down the road. Surprisingly little has changed for me (emotionally, that is). I’m still drawn to the same themes — unrequited love, murder, general foolishness. Waltzes and shuffles and boom chuck beats abound. Ice cream chord changes. Plus Kim Sherwood-Caso and Mike Edmondson. What’s not to like? An Americana classic, if I do say so myself.”

      – CRCFL

 

 

 

 

Downtown Ithaca Glowing

I was actually in town for Gallery Night, and with a busted toe, only planned to walk to a couple of must-see shows. The main goal was the TCPL, which as well as being awesome just for being a library, often has  interesting and eclectic displays. This night it was pieces created from discarded materials:

Bookmark Collection for Sam by Alice Gant

Celebrate ReUse 2!Submitted work in this exhibit will incorporate materials that would otherwise be thrown away. This show is a partnership of TCPL and the Ithaca ReUse Center. Artists: Victoria Romanoff, Alice Muhlback, Alice Gant Diane Colman, Robin Tropper-Herbel,  Emily Sullivan, Clari Pennels, Teresa Yatsko, Nancy Malina, Eva M. Capobianco, Laura Robert, Maude Rith.

My sister and I were particularly interested in this exhibit because a) she knew someone in the show, like she knows someone in every place in town and b) we are planning on participating in a workshop FL ReUse is hosting to create some pieces of our own.

This piece by Alice Gant resonated with me personally, since I have both a collection of bookmarks AND things that I found in books.

Glad I made it this far, I was limping back to the car when we passed a Glow Ithaca event. I admit I miss the ice sculptures that were the centerpiece of Ithaca’s previous Winter Light festivals, but historic upstate NY cold weather patterns are now more like hysterical ones, and not in a haha way. So rather than chance an unseasonable thaw, Ithaca has switched to a sort of ground based aurora borealis concept. Twinkley light fan that I am, I enjoyed the bit of it I saw.

Glow Ithaca!The main attraction, or at least billed so, was a light installation called Prismatica by Raw Design. Tall, multi-colored lit prisms were installed around the Commons, and there were a number of young folks having fun spinning them, so that’s all good. Seeing as the Commons itself is a well lit public space, I found the effect rather muted. What I did enjoy was watching the silent disco dancers (hilarious) who glowed themselves, and the whole arena light show effect provided, including tree uplighting.

 

And then of course there’s Sparky. That’s some serious glowing.

Other events will be spread over the course of the next week, a change from concentrating on a single weekend. You can check out the schedule here. With any luck, maybe I’ll learn to use a light saber…

Wooly Adelgids

 

Tsuga canadensis the year we discovered Adelges tsugae (woolly adelgid)

HWA distribution courtesy NYS DEC

Bad news this year – walking across the creek bridge next to our house I got smacked in the face by a hemlock branch encrusted with Adelges tsugae (wooly adelgids). Currently a serious threat to Tsuga canadensis (hemlock) here in New York, adelgids can kill a tree in as little as four years by tapping directly into the trees food storage cells. One insect can be responsible for orginating as many as 40,000 descendants in a single season!

Hemlock distribution courtesy NYS Hemlock Initiative

This is a big deal in our neck of the woods. Hemlocks are the third most common tree in our forests, and are what is called a “foundation” species. This means they create the ecosystem where they resides. Also a climax species, they are members of a mature forest, and critical components of a clean water system.

 

We have been keeping an eye on the four mature hemlocks in a row here, and even now see not many more adelgids than these, but it is no more likely there are only the adelgids we see than there is only the one house mouse we caught… still, in a spirit of hopeless optimism inappropriate to our current political climate, my husband cut the branch off and burned it in the wood stove. We then sprayed the ground between the tree and the  house with isopropryl alchohol, ’cause some fell off, okay?

 

Zeb Strickland

We like these trees. They are close to the house but not TOO close (like the Norway spruce), and they hold the creek bank near where it likes to flood the road. Even though we assume the many, more ancient hemlocks in our woods won’t benefit much from stopping adelgids down here, we suddenly feel on the front lines of an invasion. These trees are on a direct path to a work site, and we don’t want to become vectors ourselves, spreading the little bastards to uninfected areas.So we have asked Forest and Water Solutions to come have a look.

I met Zeb back when I was part of the Cornell Botanic Gardens Natural Areas Academy for a few years. A great teacher, we spent some time discussing the pro and cons of pesticides and certification in their application. (I got to “shoot” some Japanese knotweed under his supervision, a highlight of my time there.) So we were already pretty confident when we contacted him, and his easy manner and thorough explanation of the process cinched it. We signed up for a single basal bark application for four trees.

Forest and Water Solutions

I was able to stand nearby and watch. It didn’t take long, or cost much. Zeb used two chemicals, one faster acting and the other good for five years or so. For those of you rightly concerned about the over use of pesticides, I was pleased to see how careful and contained the process was. Yes, we could have left these trees alone. Would their death have been certain, or is it possible experiments in the introduction of natural predators would have progressed enough in time to save them? If not, does it matter that these four trees, out of the hundreds near us,survive? I don’t know. We weighed the options and we made this choice. I wish us all luck.