Monday, December 31, 2012

Getting Crafty at the Curious George Cottage

We had a lot of fun this week with all the kids and parents that joined us for Curious George Story Time and Craft at the Curious George Cottage. Over the vacation week we have made reindeer, Katy-no-Pocket kangaroos, and birch bark sleds complete with pine cone people! Many thanks to our friends at the Bookmonger in Waterville Valley's Town Square for lending us a copy of Rebecca Rule's new book "The Iciest, Diciest, Scariest Sled Ride Ever." It was the perfect book to accompany our birch bark sleds with pine cone people. Check out this book at the Bookmonger - you will enjoy it! 

Join us for Curious George Story Time on Fridays this winter at 3:30 p.m. at the Curious George Cottage, and at the Margret and H.A. Rey Center in Town Square on Saturdays at 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

Curious George Story Time and Craft will be held again during the February Vacation Weeks. We hope to see you then!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Citizen Science is Blooming!

That's according to the National Environmental Education Foundation. This past year they released a neat poster, highlighting the impact of citizen scientists nation-wide. Some amazing accomplishments in 2011 include the tallying of over 61 million bird observations during the Christmas Bird Count, water quality monitoring at 1,750 sites around the nation on World Water Monitoring Day, and mapping the first detailed fall migration flyway of monarch butterflies in eastern North America. Fine accomplishments indeed!

The Rey Center encourages citizen scientists to get involved wherever they can. One way is to participate in Rey Center citizen science programs, such as, Water Watchers, helping us monitor the quality of our local waterways, Species Monitoring on Welch Ledges, helping us catalog alpine plants for preservation, or Phenology Watchers, recording the timing of seasonal events in our local forests.

You too can make a difference! Join us or look for opportunities in your own backyard. To learn more, contact me at

Kim Votta

Curious Cuttings...

I have been taking advantage of the lack of snow this December by putting on my hiking shoes. While strolling along I kept noticing green bits on the ground and upon closer inspection I realized that they were cuttings from fir trees. At first I thought maybe they had blown down in the wind, but as I kept walking I noticed more. They seemed to be directly under a tree so I ruled out the wind which would scatter them more.

I picked up one of the cuttings and noticed that it appeared to have been snipped from the tree. That made me start to consider an animal as the culprit leaving all these curious cuttings. So I began to think of critters that might like twigs & buds as a snack. I had recently read an article about porcupines so I had them on the brain and knew they eat parts of trees, but then pictured them hanging precariously on the end of a branch and ruled them out based on weight. So that left me with squirrels.

When I returned to work I asked my coworker, Kim, and she said that it was indeed squirrels. Since the seeds and nuts grow in clusters on the end of the twigs the squirrels have figured out that it is easier to snip the twig instead of each little seed.

These curious cuttings are the work of squirrels busily working to store enough food for the winter that I know is on its way. Bring it on, LET IT SNOW and I will happily trade in my hiking boots for cross country skis!

Leigh Ann Reynolds