Adult Session had its 23rd successful year, despite the regrettable absence of long-term instructors Ali Wieboldt, Terry Richardson and the Spanglepotts. Thanks to the miracles of modern technology Terry, whose truck failed him somewhere between Charleston and Vesuvius, was able to beam the slides for his talk on “Light Pollution” to Flip, so the show went on although without Terry’s usual dynamic presentation.
The theme was “Nature at Night,” with topics ranging from insects to plants to snakes. Nell Fredericksen told us about the few snakes that manage to be active at night, while Flip Coulling and Julie Moore told us about behavioral and biochemical processes that some plants switch on at night. Connie Sancetta gave an overview of bioluminescence, reducing the room to laughter when she imitated male and female fireflies attempting to communicate. Chris Chamberlin and Amy Beaird explained about caterpillar feeding patterns, and led a flashlight exploration to see the little guys in action.
Walter Mehring and Nell organized two jewelry projects on making wood-bead necklaces (Walter) and cast silver using carved molds of cuttlebone (Nell). Peter Mehring by request repeated his popular recordings of frogs and insects at night, showing us how the sound changes when the frequency is lowered, which may reflect the subjective experience of the animals themselves. In a new direction, Walter taught us how to use listening skills to reduce argument and increase understanding between two people with opposing viewpoints. Mike Tabony and Walter’s cousin Harry Hanger gamely agreed to represent their views on climate change while Walter coaxed them along a path of understanding. Paul Cabe taught us about the nightly behavior of crayfish.
In addition to all the learning there was book sharing, hikes, naps, great food, and many a good time.
Dates and information (being added as it becomes available) about Nature Camp’s 2013 Adult Session are available here: