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Fall and Early Winter Events 2017

Events are free unless otherwise indicated. For more information, contact Julia McLeod at outreach@hhltmaine.org or 207-837-9613.

Short Course on Harpswell’s Islands
Click here for details.

Harpswell Walks for 50+
Wed., Sept. 20, 1 p.m.  *  Curtis Farm Preserve, 1554 Harpswell Neck Road  *  Advance registration required. Please call Linda Strickland at the Harpswell Town Office at 207-833-5771 to register

Interested in an easy guided walk on some of Harpswell’s beautiful trails? Harpswell walks for 50+ are a great way to spend time outdoors, walk on mostly level ground, meet new people and have fun. Join Harpswell Aging at Home, Harpswell Heritage Land Trust and Harpswell Recreation on the third Wednesday of the month at 1 p.m. Free. Transportation and hiking poles are available if needed. If you need transportation, contact the Volunteer Transportation Network (VTN) at 729-0757. Participants are limited to 15. The September walk at Curtis Farm is approx. 1/2 mile on a level and even trail around a field, including a spur trail to a large glacial erratic nicknamed “The Pebble.” Parking is located at 1554 Harpswell Neck Road. Look for a sign on the right.

Bittersweet Removal at Mitchell Field
Friday, September 22, 9 a.m.-12 p.m. (morning shift) or 1-4 p.m. (afternoon shift)  *  Mitchell Field, 1410 Harpswell Neck Road  *  Advance registration required. Click here to register.

Join the Mitchell Field Committee and the Harpswell Invasive Plant Partnership (HIPP) at a work party to remove Asiatic Bittersweet at Mitchell Field. Bittersweet is an invasive vine that twines up to 30 feet over trees, vegetation and telephone poles. It is abundant in the woods of Mitchell Field, where it is endangering trees and other native plants and animals. We invite you to learn more about this prolific invasive plant and cut its stems, while working in tandem with two professional pesticide applicators who will be applying herbicide to kill their roots – the recommended treatment for mature vines. All are welcome. Free pizza served between the morning and afternoon shifts.

Click here for more information about the Harpswell Invasive Plant Partnership.

Kara Douglas photo

Invasive Plant Identification and Control Work Party
Saturday, September 30, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.  *  Curtis Farm Preserve, 1554 Harpswell Neck Road  *  Advance registration required. Click here to register.

Please join the Harpswell Invasive Plant Partnership (HIPP) at a work party to remove invasive plants at Curtis Farm preserve. We plan to remove Burning Bush, shrub Honeysuckles, Barberry, Autumn Olive, Asiatic Bittersweet, and thistles. As these plants are removed, native plants will have a better chance to thrive at this beautiful preserve on Harpswell Neck. At the event, we will provide a short discussion on identifying and removing invasive plants, then work together on removal. Please bring your own water and, if you have them, work/gardening gloves and weeders/clippers. All are welcome. Free pizza served after the work is done!

Click here for more information about the Harpswell Invasive Plant Partnership.

Priscilla Seimer photo

Identifying Mosses and other Bryophytes
Sunday, October 1, 1-2:30 p.m.  *  Hackett and Minot Trails, 929 Harpswell Neck Road  *  Advance registration required. Click here to register.

Go for a walk to identify some of our lush populations of mosses and liverworts and to discuss how they fit into the ecosystem and the big picture of plant life. Free. Please park at the Harpswell Historical Society, 929 Harpswell Neck Road.

The field guide we’ll focus on is Mosses, Liverworts, and Hornworts: A Field Guide to Bryophytes of the Northeast, which was written by trip leader Ralph Pope. If you have other bryophyte identification references, feel free to bring them along. Copies of the book will be for sale ($20) and a few loaner copies will be available. Loaner 10X hand lenses will also be available, but if you have one, please bring it along.

Curt Chipman photo

Harpswell Day: A Celebration of Traditional Handcrafts and Subsistence Skills
Saturday, October 14, 12-4 p.m.  *  Harpswell Historical Society, 929 Harpswell Neck Road

Join Harpswell Historical Society and Harpswell Heritage Land Trust for a celebration of traditional handcrafts and subsistence skills. This event happens rain or shine at the Harpswell Historical Society Museum, Centennial Hall, the Old Meeting House, the one room schoolhouse and outdoors. For all ages, there will be much to see, do and learn about during this free event celebrating Harpswell’s history. See and participate in demonstrations of many traditional handcrafts and subsistence skills; visit with sheep; enjoy music, food and storytelling; and learn about Harpswell’s history. Click here for more information.

Ocean Acidification: Will Lobsters and Clams Disappear? What can we do to Fight Acidification of Local Waters?
Tuesday, October 17, 5-6:30 p.m.  *  Harpswell Heritage Land Trust, 153 Harpswell Neck Road

The ocean waters around Harpswell and other coastal Maine towns are becoming more acidic, affecting many types of marine life such as lobsters, clams, scallops, oysters, cod and plankton. Increasingly, people are concerned about the impacts on fisheries and the ecosystem. While ocean acidification is caused primarily by the rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, it is also strongly influenced by local factors such as excessive nutrients coming from land. What is ocean acidification, what changes are happening, and what can be done here in Harpswell? Find out at this engaging talk by ocean acidification expert Aaron Strong of the University of Maine and the Maine Ocean and Coastal Acidification Partnership, a grassroots effort to understand and reduce the threat of acidification along the Maine coast.

About the Speaker: A native of Lewiston, Aaron Strong is an assistant professor in the School of Marine Sciences at the University of Maine. Aaron is a sustainability scientist who works with communities, stakeholders and resource managers to develop solutions to environmental problems, and he serves on the board of the Maine Ocean and Coastal Acidification Partnership. He holds a Ph.D. in Environment and Resources from Stanford University, an M.A. in Climate Change Policy from Tufts University and a B.A. in Political Science and Biology from Swarthmore College.

This event is part of our series on Our Changing Ocean.

Katie Wright photo

Cranberry Picking at Otter Brook
Saturday, October 28, 3-4:30 p.m. *  Otter Brook  *  Advance registration required. Click here to register. We will send directions to those who register.

Join us to pick cranberries and take an optional hike at the new Otter Brook Preserve in north Harpswell. We will be picking in a field, where cranberries grow low to the ground. Participants can bring home the cranberries they pick. Cranberries freeze well and are delicious in sauce, apple pie, scones and more!

This is one of a series of Harpswell Family Outings, which are fun, free, outdoor activities for families. They are organized by a collaborative effort of the Harpswell Community Nursery School, Harpswell Recreation Department and Harpswell Heritage Land Trust.

Preparing for Sea Level Rise
Sunday, October 29, 1-2:30 p.m.  *  Harpswell Heritage Land Trust, 153 Harpswell Neck Road  *  Advance registration requested. Click here to register.

The impacts of climate change are becoming increasingly visible in our state and across the nation. You’ve probably noticed more frequent news coverage of intense storms, unusual temperatures, ocean warming, and coastal flooding.

As these issues become more prevalent in our daily lives, it’s becoming more important to understand the impacts of these events — today and in the future. Ensuring the region’s resiliency to climate impacts, such as sea level rise, requires a scientifically informed and engaged public. Here’s your chance to join that group of engaged individuals in your community!

Join Gayle Bowness from the Gulf of Maine Research Institute for a 90 minute interactive learning experience to explore the data behind sea level rise. Together, we’ll explore models projecting impacts in your community, and we’ll examine potential resiliency measures.

This event is part of our series on Our Changing Ocean.

Resilient Coastal Communities and Marine Ecosystems: Translating Science into Action

Saturday, November 18, 3-4 p.m.  *  Harpswell Heritage Land Trust, 153 Harpswell Neck Road

As a community, how can Harpswell adapt, adjust and be resilient to the big changes that are happening in the ocean? And how can we help the ecosystem to be resilient and continue to provide the benefits — like bountiful seafood and diverse marine life — that we depend on? Dr. Heather Leslie will share insights from her research in the field of resilience science and describe how the science of resilience is changing people’s understanding and stewardship of coastal and marine ecosystems. Drawing on work she has done in Maine and Mexico, she will focus on what it means for the coast to be resilient and what can help increase Maine’s resilience to change.

About the Speaker:  An international leader in marine conservation science, Dr. Heather Leslie conducts research on the ecology, policy, and management of coastal marine ecosystems. Heather is Director of the University of Maine’s marine laboratory, Darling Marine Center, and Libra Associate Professor of Marine Sciences in UMaine’s School of Marine Sciences. She studies and teaches about the causes and consequences of environmental change in marine systems, and how to more effectively connect science to policy and management. Heather earned a bachelor’s degree in biology at Harvard University and a Ph.D. in zoology at Oregon State University.

This event is part of our series on Our Changing Ocean.

Make a Winter Solstice Lantern
Sunday, December 10, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.  *  Harpswell Heritage Land Trust, 153 Harpswell Neck Road

Using watercolors, oil pastels, decorative punches and your imagination, create a lantern to celebrate the winter solstice. Show up anytime. It won’t take the entire time to make a lantern. This free event is open to all ages.

We encourage you to bring your lantern to the Winter Solstice Lantern Walk (see below).

Paul Avis photo

Winter Solstice Lantern Walk
Thursday, December 21, 5-6 p.m.  *  Houghton Graves Park, 1714 Harpswell Neck Road  *  Advance registration required. Space is limited. Click here to register.

Celebrate the winter solstice with a lantern walk and bonfire at Harpswell Heritage Land Trust’s Houghton Graves Park on Orr’s Island. Welcome the lengthening days with light, song and community. We will walk along a short, easy trail lined with luminaria. Those who bring lanterns may carry them. At the end of the trail, we will warm up with songs, a fire and hot cocoa.

All ages are welcome. Bring a flashlight. No real flames, please. We will have LED lights to place in the lanterns.

Community members are invited to make lanterns in advance, for free. Come to a lantern making workshop on Dec. 10 (see details above).

This is one of a series of Harpswell Family Outings, which are fun, free, outdoor activities for families. They are organized by a collaborative effort of the Harpswell Community Nursery School, Harpswell Recreation Department and Harpswell Heritage Land Trust.