Around Town March 21, 2014

0:00 This Weekend Forest Crew TrainingVolunteers will be gathering at the Rye Nature Center on Saturday from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Learn to fight invasive plants, […]

Published March 21, 2014 5:00 AM
12 min read


This Weekend

Forest Crew Training
Volunteers will be gathering at the Rye Nature Center on Saturday from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Learn to fight invasive plants, repair trails, and build boardwalks.  The comprehensive training will prepare volunteers to work independently or as part of a team throughout the year. Teens may earn community service credit at the same time. For more information, email


Nature’s True Colors
Discover the rewards of taking memorable pictures at the Rye Nature Center on Saturday at 1 p.m. Even novices will learn to get the most out of their cameras – remember to bring them – and each shot they take. The fee is $5 for members, $8 for non-members.


Little Patriots
Youngsters, ages 7–11, can learn about Rye during World War II at the Square House Museum’s presentation on Saturday from 1-2:30 p.m. The Rye Historical Society is offering an afternoon of activities, from listening to historic radio broadcasts to a scavenger hunt and patriotic poster designing. No supplies needed. Fee is $15 per child. Space is limited, so reservations are suggested. Call 967-7588.


A Fairy Tale Comes Alive
Two weavers promise the emperor new clothes and the Rye library promises a magical time as it presents “The Emperor’s New Clothes” Saturday from 3-4 p.m. Arts troupe Singing Harp founder Alyssa Reit presents the tale by Hans Christian Andersen in a dramatic form with musical accompaniment, suitable for ages 6 to adults. For more information, call the Children’s Reference Desk at 231-3162.


Ribbit, Ribbit
Can you recognize a frog call? Learn how at the Rye Nature Center’s Frog Watch on Saturday at 3 p.m. Trainees will learn through a citizen-science project called Frogwatch USA, which assists biologists in collecting data about frog populations in local ponds. It’s fun, educational, and helps conserve the little amphibians. Teens and their families are welcome. Contact


Irish Tea and Tales
Continue the St. Patrick’s Day celebration with Marianne McShane, who returns to the Rye Free Reading Room on Sunday from 2–5 p.m. to spin more enchanting yarns from the Emerald Isle. Other storytellers will join her to entertain with fascinating anecdotes of years passed. The program is presented by the Rye Storytellers’ Guild, which meets monthly at the library to share telling techniques. Irish tea, cheese, and soda bread will be served.


The Founders’ Greatest Hits
Join the Jay Heritage Center for a lively musical interpretation of the shaping of our nation, complete with songs, ballads, and musical manifestations of the Federalist vs. Anti-Federalist debate on Sunday from 3-5 p.m. Spend a memorable afternoon listening to the ditties George Washington and John Jay listened to and discovering the dance steps of early America.


Arts & Entertainment

Sound and Surroundings
An exhibit by local artist Jim Langley runs through March 29 at the Rye Arts Center. “Sound/Figure/Ground” features figures and local forms alternating lead roles with the Long Island Sound in oil paintings, 2009 – present.


Capturing an Instant
“Moments,” an exhibit of landscape paintings by Kiyoko Brown and Marge Wynne, is be on display at the Rye Free Reading Room through March 29. The exhibit explores the interpretations of moments in time, experienced, remembered and painted by each artist.


A Classic Evening
The Mannes Music Salon Series’ final concert and reception will be held at Wainwright House on March 29 at 8 p.m. The program offers classical music performed by the young artists of Manhattan’s Mannes College at The New School for Music. The series, led by Artistic Director Pavlina Dokovska, offers a deeper understanding and appreciation of the works performed.

Tickets are $30. Reservations required, limited seating. Call 967-6080 or log on to    

AT-FTCJ.F.bone1large-1All That Jazz
Welcome spring with the smooth sounds of jazz. Wainwright House is hosting a jazz concert and serving a delicious Corner Stone brunch on April 6 from noon to 3 p.m. On this final installment of the Jazz Brunch Series, the John Fumasoli Trio will be playing original and standard selections from the greats. Entry is $35 for members, $45 for non-members, $50 for walk-ins.  


On the Big Screen at the Square House
The Rye Historical Society continues its focus on World War II with two classic films. “Stalag 17” will be shown March 30 from 3-5 p.m. The 1953 film, directed by Billy Wilder and starring William Holden and Otto Preminger, is about escaping American World War II prisoners. By way of introduction, Society Director Sheri Jordan will discuss how the film relates to Rye’s own prisoners of war.
“Casablanca” will be presented April 6 from 3-5 p.m. with refreshments at 2:30. The 1942 favorite, starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, is set in unoccupied Africa during the early days of World War II.

Admission is $5, free for service personnel and veterans. Refreshments will be served before the screenings, at 2:30 p.m. Call the Historical Society at 967-7588 to reserve a seat.

A New HATitude
Remember when all the high society ladies and gents wore hats? SPRYE is offering a docent-led tour of an ArtsWestchester exhibit that features 150 hats from 40 contemporary milliners and private collectors, April 8 at 2 p.m. The hat’s function in global cultures and its position in 20th and 21st century fashion will be highlighted. ArtsWestchester is located in White Plains. If there is enough interest, lunch at a local restaurant will be an option. Call 481-5706.


Brush to Canvas
Artist Harriet Sadow’s paintings will be on display at the Rye Free Reading Room from April 2-29. An opening reception will be held April 5, 1-4 pm. Having been featured in both solo and group shows throughout New York and Connecticut, Sadow notes, “Inspiration comes from many sources, sometimes visual or auditory, other times from the written word.” She received her formal art education at Boston Museum School of Fine Arts and Columbia University. The artist admits she usually starts with a doodle that leads her to “a land of endless possibilities.”


Choir of Angels
The choirs of Christ’s Church and Rye Presbyterian Church will join to sing Johannes Brahms’ “German Requiem” at Rye Presbyterian on April 6 at 4 p.m. The 60 singers will be under the direction of Ruaraidh Sutherland, organist and choirmaster at Christ’s Church. Rye Presbyterian Music Director Kevin Walters will provide the organ accompaniment, supplemented with harp and timpani. The soloists are Szilvia Schranz, soprano, and Stephen Hartley, baritone.

Also known as the “Protestant Requiem,” this is powerful music of great depth and beauty. Enjoy this harmonious experience in the warm acoustic of the RPC sanctuary. No charge for admission and a free-will offering will be received. Contact or


Talks & Workshops

Tiger’s Torment
An anthropologist’s report on golf, race, and celebrity scandal will be discussed at the Rye Free Reading Room’s Current Events Book Group on March 25 from 6:30-8 p.m. in the Ogden Nash Room. “The Passion of Tiger Woods” by Orin Starn offers an engaging and unapologetic perspective on popular culture. Enjoy an entertaining ride through history by reading the book and having the opportunity to discuss it with peers and moderator John Dolan.


Vaccination Fact and Fiction
Holistic moms are presenting a frank discussion with Dr. Eva Vanamee, a scientist and medical doctor, about the Gardasil vaccine at the Rye Free Reading Room on March 26 from 7:30-9 p.m. in the Meeting Room. Dr. Vanamee is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai and has earned a Ph.D. in Biophysics and an MS in Chemistry. She’ll help all those who attend the lecture to separate fact from hype.


AT-Andrea-RaynorThe Divine Andrea Raynor
Rye’s own Andrea Raynor, author of “Incognito: Lost and Found at Harvard Divinity School,” will discuss her engrossing memoir on April 3 from 7– 8:30 p.m. at the Rye Free Reading Room. In her book, she openly shares personal experiences about her faith and unlikely path to religious life.

Although she always had aspirations of being a doctor, Raynor found herself at the Divinity School, which held countless surprises. Her classmates included two men undergoing sex changes, a woman who fancied herself a geisha, and a gay and lesbian caucus. The United Methodist minister and cancer survivor served as a chaplain to the morgue at Ground Zero. Today, she is also the Rye Fire Department’s chaplain.


Be Not Afraid
Patty Chang Anker couldn’t ride a bicycle or dive into the deep end of the pool, but one day she mustered enough courage to do so. It took a great deal of determination, some inspiration, and her two daughters, but she did it. In her debut book, “Some Nerve,” Anker shares her own experiences, as well as the dramatic stories of others who have triumphed over their own fears. She will be discussing her memoir at the Rye Free Reading Room on April 9 at 7 p.m.

“A little bit of nerve could take you to places you never dreamed of,” Anker remarked. “The journey has been truly wonderful.”

AT-Patty-Chang-AnkerShe attributes three things to prompting her metamorphosis. First of all, as she approached 40, she realized that she was passing on her own fears and limitations to her two daughters, 8 and 3 at the time. How could she send her kids out everyday and expect them to do things she herself wasn’t capable of? Her anxiety was enough to dampen the enthusiasm for her whole family.

She also began observing her contemporaries’ behavior. “Some were running marathons, going back to school or making a career change, while others were counting themselves out. They were settling because it was comfortable. You start seeing your life shrink,” she said.

At the same time, she picked up a copy of Elizabeth Gilbert’s bestselling memoir, “Eat, Pray, Love,” about a woman’s search for meaning in Italy, India, and Indonesia. Anker asked herself, “How could I have a journey of transformation right here in Westchester?”

In the middle of the night, she decided to start a blog. Never intending to share it with the world, she even chose an obscure URL. “I wanted a different future for my kids, so it was more of a letter to my daughters,” she explained. “I promised them that mom is going to learn to stand on my head, to dive in the deep end of the pool in spite of belly flops and public humiliation, and to ride a bike without crashing into a tree.”

That was the first entry of what turned out to be “Facing Forty Upside Down,” whose author was heralded by Good Housekeeping as “the blogger we love.” Anker chronicles overcoming her everyday fears honestly and humorously. She talks about the voices of fear in her head, which she dubbed, “my Greek chorus of perpetual doubt,” and she is forthcoming about her heritage.
“Chinese Americans do not blog. You do what you’re good at quietly,” she quipped. “The idea of challenging yourself is not culturally engrained in me.”

Nevertheless, the former Media Relations Director for The New York Times, learned to ride a bike in New York City, learned to stand on her head through yoga, and overcame her fear of moving water in a speedo by taking two 30-minute lessons at the county pool.

“We thought we knew what we were capable of and when we realize we’re capable of more, it blows the doors wide open,” noted Anker, who started writing “Nerve” about a year and a half after her middle-of-the-night blogging.

In writing “Nerve,” she not only shared her own trials and tribulations with endearing humility, but she connected people who were on the cusp of overcoming their fears with experts, teachers, therapists, and clergy who could help them. She is grateful that “people have connected with the book so deeply” and compassionately advises, “Start small and work within the constraints of your own lives.”

At, the author encourages readers to take her SomeNerve Challenge, whether it’s writing a declaration, “I’ll face my fear of blank, by doing blank,” or joining her on a TD Five Boro Bike Tour in May.

The unstoppable Anker offers, “A life worth living is the life where you put yourself out there.”


Talking Textiles
Textile conservator Virginia Whelan will be explaining the methods she employed to conserve two needlepoint samplers for the Jay Heritage Center, where she will hold her lecture on March 30 from 3-5 p.m. One sampler was donated by descendants of John Jay, the other by descendants of Warner Van Norden and Grace Talcott. Drawing on her breadth of experience with American artifacts of the 18th and 19th centuries, Whelan will also take questions from audience members as to how to preserve their own heirlooms and translate their family stories in threaded imagery.

Her recent clients and commissions include: The Museum of the American Revolution in Philadelphia, where she was hired to stabilize and frame George Washington’s Commander-in-Chief 13-star silk flag; and The Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum in Hyde Park, where she is currently treating three significant textiles worn or owned by FDR and Eleanor Roosevelt. Read more about her recent conservation of a flag that was “witness” to the Battle of Gettysburg,

Fee is $15 per person, $10 seniors.

The Great Outdoors

Take a Hike!
Put on your hiking boots and explore the forest with the whole family at the Rye Nature Center on March 29. Meet at 9:15 a.m. and start the morning with flora and fauna. There’s no better way to embrace spring than a long walk though Mother Nature’s natural resources. Free for members, $10 for non-member families.


Nature’s Carpet
It may be flowerless and it may lack true roots, but mosses are beautiful, too. The Rye Nature Center is offering a Moss Gardening Workshop on March 26 at 1 p.m. The class will uncover the mysteries of this ground cover, it’s biology, and even tricks for growing. A hands-on dish garden project will also be included. $10 per member, $15 for non-members

Family Ties


Cardboard Boat Regatta
Join the Rye Y for its first super fun, crazy pool regatta on March 28 at 6:30 p.m. Imagine paddling down a pool in a boat made entirely of cardboard and duct tape. In this friendly competition, participants do just that, constructing boats at home then racing them down the length of the Rye Y’s pool. Don’t believe it can be done? Google “cardboard boat.” Completed boats are judged on artistic creativity before they get soggy!

For more information, guidelines, and race rules, contact Hillary Southard at Free for Family members, $5 per boat for Youth or non-members. Registration required.


March Madness Merriment
Bring the family to an evening of athleticism, theater, and comedy at the Mamaroneck High School Palmer Gym, March 30 at 5:30 p.m. The internationally acclaimed Harlem Ambassadors will take on the Rye Y team, made up of local coaches and teachers, in a fun-filled evening of basketball showmanship, featuring high-flying feats, ball-handling tricks, and hilarious antics. It’ll be a slam dunk!

A limited number of tickets are available. Advance ticket prices are $15 for adults, two for $25, and $8 for students and seniors. Children under 3 are admitted free. Purchase tickets at the Y front desk or online


Let’s Go to the Fair
Rye Neck School District’s Spring Fair “Up, Up and Away” will be held on the middle/high school campus April 5 from 11 a.m.- 4 p.m. Families will enjoy activities for all ages and the kids will delight in a few surprises.


Teen Times

Finding the Poet Within
To celebrate National Poetry Month, Maureen Amaturo is heading up a Teen Poetry Workshop at the Rye library, April 1 from 6:30-8 p.m. Experiment with various poetry forms and exercises that will stir your imagination and expression. Whatever the inspiration, seize this opportunity to enjoy creating literary art.


Children’s Corner

There Was a Young Penguin Named Rex
The Rye library’s Friday Fun Flick on March 28 from 3:30-4:45 p.m. is “Adventures of the Penguin King.” Ages 5 and up will enjoy the story of a penguin that has returned to Penguin City after being away from home for three years in the depths of the ocean. Rex goes from adolescence to adulthood and learns a few lessons in between.


Sensory Story Time
The Rye Free Reading Room has partnered with the Harrison Library to offer a story time program for children with special needs at the Harrison Library on March 29. Ages 3-5 are welcome at 9:45 a.m., ages 6-8 at 10:45 a.m. Through peer modeling and a wide range of fun activities, youngsters learn to love reading while developing the skills.


Save the Date

AT-pos-house-party-1Carriage House Revival   
Poor Old Shine, a roots/Americana band, is coming to the Jay Heritage Center for a benefit concert April 26. The band, which performs in bluegrass festivals and rock clubs alike, will be playing a washboard, musical saw, and a scrap-metal drum set, along with guitars and banjos. Likened to The Band and Johnny Cash, Poor Old Shine mixes original music with traditional folk ballads.

Put on your blue jeans and boots and get ready for some foot stomping, down home music, easy eats, and spirited drinks. Tickets are $75, $125, and $200.


Spirits, Smokes, Snacks, and Spoils
Men, come play a hand and enjoy a cigar on the porch at The Square House on April 25 at 8 p.m. The Rye Historical Society is offering a night out with the boys, complete with cigars, professional card dealers, scotch or the libation of choice in the Square House Tavern, c. 1730. Fee is $60, chips included.


Canvas on the Sound
Rye Arts Center is holding its spring gala, Sitting Pretty, May 3 at 7 p.m. at Shenorock Shore Club. The honorees are Laurie Platek, Peter Sinnott, and the Famous Artists program. Enjoy an evening of cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, light supper, and live and silent auctions.


Seaside Soiree
The Rye Historical Society’s Summer Benefit Gala will be held June 7 from 7-10 p.m. The fundraiser will be held al fresco at a private waterfront home with cocktails and, hopefully, a beautiful sunset. The Society beckons, “Come sail away with us to our soiree by the sea.”



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