Recently, right on our patio, in broad daylight, I spied a young stag eating from a bag of apples. In autumn, deer seem more determined, nudging aside chicken-wire that was adequate garden protection over the summer. My squash garden is mostly destroyed except for one determined plant way back under the wire that has set a couple of late yellow squash. In a few days they’ll be ready to eat, if deer don’t get there first.This fall my brother’s apple tree is laden. Several shopping bags of apples appeared on our doorstep, so husband Don and I have been experimenting with applesauce. Don sweetened the pot by adding ripe bananas. My innovation uses wild grape juice for cooking liquid. This results in tart, grape-flavored red applesauce. I like it over Greek yogurt or on pancakes, though admittedly a spoonful of sugar helps.
A fond memory over our years is how Montauk magically transforms from a summer to an autumn place; Montauk daisies blooming everywhere and shops decorated with cornstalks, hay bales, and pumpkins. Nature’s beauty runs riot alongside the efforts of local residents to welcome the new season.
In recent years the clever, creative people of Montauk have progressed a step further with Montauk Scarecrow Days, which happen this year from October 10 through November 2. It’s time to see many scarecrows created by businesses, groups and individuals throughout town‑or make your own! Stop by Keeshan Real Estate this week to pick up your scarecrow frame and location assignment. Materials should be available by October 3. A flier submitted to this column lists 668-1540 as the number to call for more information. Scarecrows must be family-friendly and in good taste. Now in its fourth year, the event is organized by Montauk Youth and the Montauk Village Association and sponsored by Gurney’s Inn and Riverhead Building Supply, who help underwrite costs of lumber and materials for the frames.
On Saturday, from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., the Montauk Historical Society sponsors its third annual Archaeology Fest on the grounds of Montauk’s Second House Museum at Second House Road. Funding is provided by a grant from the New York Council for the Humanities. The event is suitable for people of all ages and everyone is invited. Last year the festival was visited by more than 700 people.
Archaeology Fest is designed to raise community awareness and support for a second museum on the site, still in the planning stages, which will celebrate and explore Montauk’s rich archaeological and natural history. The festival provides hands-on demonstrations and displays that will be the core of the new museum’s educational programs. It promises to entertain, inform and delight with topics such as “friction fire,” “flintknapping,” “bow and arrow making,” and more. Early cooking techniques will be demonstrated using local produce and shellfish. In addition to demonstrations, you can enjoy brief talks by well-known archaeologists and historians who actually donate items from their personal collections for an exciting raffle. Family-friendly food and beverages will be available.
Please note that Montauk Library’s Silly Scarecrow event has been moved to take place at the Archaeology Fest. The activity is for all ages and is on Saturday from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Children’s Librarian Julie Anne Korpi invites kids to create a scarecrow to sit outside the library. This scarecrow will not be part of the competition. Students in grades six through 12 can earn community service for helping the library at the fest.
Another traditional event this busy weekend is Field Day on Sunday, October 5, from noon to 4 p.m. at Third House (also known as Montauk County Park). Hosted by Montauk Youth and Concerned Citizens of Montauk, this free event is fun for the whole family. Enjoy races, live music by the 3Bs, obstacle courses, fire trucks, face-painting, a bubble gum contest and more. Food and beverages, including Ed Lightcap’s famous chili, will be sold. In the event of uncooperative weather, the rain date for Field Day is Sunday, October 19.
Local places of worship, including St. Therese and Montauk Community churches, observe World Communion Sunday this week on October 5. A special peacemaking offering will be received. Twenty-five percent of funds will stay here in Montauk and at MCC will be used toward strengthening the churches’ relationship with local Latino neighbors.
A Youth Coffeehouse at Montauk Community Church for grades 8 through 10 has been rescheduled for the evening of Friday, October 4 at Montauk Community Church. Please call the church office at 668-2022 for more information. Plans were still in the making at the time of this writing.
Another sign of autumn and the swiftly approaching holiday season is that The East Hampton Press is seeking nominees for its annual Community First Award. Please nominate a member of our community who makes a positive impact; a friend, neighbor, relative or co-worker. The Press would like to hear about how his or her actions benefit the lives of others and our local community. It can be someone who has been nominated in the past but did not win. Write a brief, compelling story about the nominee, highlighting how that person’s actions benefit the lives of others. A donation will be made to an organization affiliated with the winner, who will be featured in our Hamptons Holiday publication. Submissions can be made via email, no later than October 24, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lastly, a reminder for opera buffs that on Saturday, October 18, from 12:55 to 5 p.m., at Guild Hall in East Hampton, there will be a live televised HD screening of Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro.” Tickets, at $15 each, must be purchased in advance at the Montauk Library circulation desk by October 1, though library events director Carolyn Balducci may let you slide a day or two.