When I was a kid, the Fourth of July was right up there with Christmas as far as holidays went. There was often a picnic at a county park a few miles from our home, and my mom always made a chocolate cake that had red, white and blue frosting that looked just like an American flag.That night, we’d join the huge crowd that made its way down to watch the fireworks and then hurry home to enjoy root beer floats and play with sparklers, while our folks watched from the porch, warning us to not poke our brothers and sisters with them. (Sometimes I wonder how my parents could be so dumb. We would have never in a million years thought to poke someone with a burning sparkler, but once we were told not to do it, it became so tempting.)
Most years, I have to work on the Fourth because we have to get the paper out, but we are going to press a day early this week, so I’ll have a rare summer holiday. I wonder if you can still buy sparklers?
The Bridgehampton Historical Society will open the Beebe Windmill, at the corner of Hildreth Avenue and Ocean Road, from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday. The windmill is on the State and National Registers of Historic Places and is a town landmark as well. If you’ve never seen a real windmill, it’s worth a look. It will be open several more times this summer and tours can be arranged by appointment.
The artist Peter Spacek returns to lead a “Kids Cartooning Camp” being held in conjunction with the Charles Addams Foundation next week from Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the society’s Archives Building at 2539A Montauk Highway. The cost is $200 and there are limited spaces left. (A second session is tentatively planned for August 19 to 22.) Kids will be grouped according to age and ability and there will be an exhibit of their work on the last day.
And don’t forget the society has two summer exhibits, “From Pastures to Putting: Bridgehampton’s Golfing Tradition,” at the Archives Building and “The Boarding House Era in Greater Bridgehampton” at the Corwith House.
Call 537-1088, visit www.bhmuseum.org, or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Friends of the Hampton Library’s Fridays at Five lecture series kicks off this week with an appearance by Terrence McNally, whose most recent book is “Golden Age and Other Plays.” Lily Koppel, whose latest book is “The Astronaut Wives Club: A True Story,” speaks on July 12. Tickets are $15, and you can buy a series of four for $60.
The Friends’ annual fundraising cocktail party will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on July 20 at the home of John and Cassie Pouschine on Farmview Drive in Sagaponack. Contact the library at 537-0015 for information about tickets and raffles.
Other library programs include a League of Women Voters open forum, “An Evening with Jay Schneiderman,” at 7 p.m. on Tuesday; a conversational Spanish class taught by Nancy Bagshaw starting Wednesday—the fee is $50 for eight sessions; and “There’s an App for That,” in which participants explore top-rated user-friendly applications for smart phones and tablets, Thursday, July 11, at 11 a.m.
For more information, call 537-0015 or pick up a copy of the library’s newsletter, “The Link.”
If you’d like to get out and about, join the Friends of the Long Pond Greenbelt for a “Grassland to Grassland Traverse” from 9 to 10:30 a.m. on Saturday. Meet at the South Fork Natural History Society Museum parking lot on the Bridgehampton Turnpike and be ready for a moderately-paced 2-mile hike from Vineyard Field to the grasslands of Poxabogue County Park. The leader, Dai Dayton, can be reached at (631) 745-0689.
The Friends will hold their monthly meeting at 6 p.m. on Monday at the Long Pond Greenbelt Nature Center at 1061 Bridgehampton Turnpike, (just north of Scuttlehole Road intersection on East side). After the meeting, at 7, Abdoul Samake will present his conservation/environmental education project from his native Mali. He will show images of the land and its people, waterways, indigenous plants, wildflowers, animals, story culture and music.
For more information, call (631) 745-0689.
Next Thursday, July 11, the Friends and the South Fork Natural History Museum will present “The Night Sky: Celestial Viewing” at 7 p.m. at the SOFO museum on the Turnpike. Leaders from the Custer Institute on the North Fork will offer a brief presentation, with topics on astronomy, telescopes and the celestial objects that can be seen. Then, weather permitting, telescopes will be available for viewing the heavens. Light refreshments will be served. This program is for adults and children age 8 and older. The rain date is Friday, July 12. To make a reservation call the museum at (631) 537-9735.
Bridge Gardens on Mitchell Lane will offer a photography workshop for teens on Wednesdays from July 10 through 24, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. The workshop will be led by Ellen Watson, and participants will learn skills in camera basics, use of natural light and fill flash, portraiture, composition, and photo editing, using their own cameras. A selection of student works will be on display at the gardens through the month of August. The fee is $15 per class and space is limited.
“Garden to Table for Children” will be offered next Thursday, July 11, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Melissa Goleski will lead children in harvesting from the garden beds, preparing tasty snacks, and learning how easy it is to eat healthy every day. The fee is $5 per child and space is limited.
For reservations for either program, call the Peconic Land Trust at (631) 283-3195, extension 19, or send an email to Events@PeconicLandTrust.org.
Birthday greetings to my daughter Genevieve, who turns 19 on Thursday, July 11.