Although last Sunday was rainy and cold, a friend and I decided to venture out and drive up to Hammonassett Beach State Park to take part in some of the festivities. It was decidedly less hectic than it had been the day before, but we were still able to watch the flintnappers create arrow heads and other timeless tools ("You could clean a fish with this," one man told my friend as he handed her a small stone flake with a very sharp edge.)
At another tent, I listened as a man from the Connecticut State Museum of Natural History told me about an exhibit called "The Life Work of Rex Brasher" featuring paintings by a little-known artist who, when he was 8 years old, vowed to paint all the birds of North America and to do it better than Audabon! I picked up two free newsletters and some Brasher post cards featuring the Grasshopper Sparrow, Pied-Billed Grebe and Roseate Tern.
Stopping by one table, we learned all about the Shoreline Greenway Trail as we listened to lively live music by Amalgamated Muck. There were a few vendors who were selling handmade items - jewelry, baskets, carved wooden bowls and figurines - and my friend, author and artist Dale Carson of the Abenaki tribe, was there in her traditional tribal garb at a table laden with her books and handcrafted jewelry and dreamcatchers.
After a bite to eat and something warm to drink, we sat down to watch as wildlife rehabilitators Christine Cummings-Secki and Todd Secki brought out their birds of prey who live at A Place Called Hope in Killingworth. Among the beautiful birds they brought out was the American Kestrel and another smaller raptor, a large Red-Tailed Hawk, a Barred Owl and a Great Horned Owl. Christine and Todd are full of knowledge about the raptors and are skilled handlers. The small crowd was fully engaged and time went by too quickly.
As the Jamboree participants packed up to leave, we drove to the Meigs Point Nature Center and wandered through the exhibits, which included live snakes, turtles, fish and crabs, as well as stations showing the history and articles found along the shoreline. Our hours at Hammonassett were well spent, as usual.
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