2012 Newsletter

From the President

by Penni Sharp

Spring is well underway on Fishers Island as I write this annual greeting on behalf of the Museum. After one of the mildest winters in my memory, spring has brought a strange mix of weather conditions with temperatures well into the 80s during March followed by chilly days in April and May. For those interested in phenology, the bloom time of many of our plants has been well ahead of schedule this year. The early bloom time raises questions regarding the first appearances of butterflies and other pollinators and the first arrivals of migratory birds. Will these events coincide with bloom time as they have in the past or is the timing out of synch? It will be interesting to track the timing of spring happenings as the years proceed. In any case, one thing is certain: spring is a welcome and delightful season on the island.

The off season has been a productive one for the Museum. I hope that all have had a chance to visit the Museum’s newly refurbished web site: www.fergusonmuseum.org. Credit goes to Beth Jepsen of Insite Design for her excellent design and to Museum Director Pierce Rafferty who orchestrated the content. One of the highlights is our new Osprey Cam for which we thank the Fishers Island Conservancy. The Conservancy provided the grant funding that enabled the Museum to purchase the camera and necessary software, We are also very grateful to the personnel of the F.I. Electric Co. and Telephone Co. who performed the installation and helped with some of the technical issues. What a treat it is to observe the osprey nest up close, particularly when one is off island.

We are looking forward to a busy summer with an exciting new annual show featuring the artwork of Charles B. Ferguson. This promises to be one of our most popular shows and a great tribute to Charlie. We are also mounting a special exhibit that honors the wonderful legacy of gardens and parties at Bunty and the late Tom Armstrong’s Hoover Hall and Hooverness. We hope that all will come celebrate with us at our opening party on Saturday, June 30th, 5 to 7 p.m.

The Land Trust continues to pursue land acquisitions under the able guidance of our Vice-President Bob Miller. One of our recent projects is the management of Silver Eel Preserve, a parcel of land that was purchased with open space funding by the Town of Southold. Located across from the ferry dock at Silver Eel Cove, the property has a walking trail and access to a rocky beach.

The Museum would not be what it is today without the support of many Fishers Islanders and I extend my thanks to all who have contributed to our endeavors. I also wish to thank all of the Museum Board members for their time and efforts on behalf of the Museum. Board members have given many hours of volunteer time ranging from event planning and assistance with collections, research and exhibits to financial advice and fund-raising.

We have a full schedule of events for the summer, all of which are posted on the web site. Plan to visit the Museum often and to take part in our programs and excursions. I am looking forward to another island summer and hope to see each and every one of you at the Museum!