September 2009 - Central Park

The Wizard Of Oz Screened In Central Park

Flying Monkeys in the heart of Manhattan? Oh my! Yes, the Yellow Brick Road is winding through Central Park, Tuesday, September 29th. Netflix is sponsoring a 70th anniversary screening of the 1939 classic, “The Wizard Of Oz”. The showing is free and is taking place at Rumsey Playfield, the site of the annual SummerStage festival. . . . → Read More: The Wizard Of Oz Screened In Central Park

Feel Free: A National Parks Celebration in Central Park

Feel Free: A National Parks Celebration in Central Park featuring Carole King, Alison Krauss and the Counting Crows . . . → Read More: Feel Free: A National Parks Celebration in Central Park

Pavement Reuniting For Concert At SummerStage In 2010

Pavement Reuniting For Concert At SummerStage In 2010 . . . → Read More: Pavement Reuniting For Concert At SummerStage In 2010

Bard For The Birds

The starling is only mentioned once by Shakespeare, in a passage which shows that in his time this bird, which possesses remarkable powers of imitation, was taught to say words. The fiery Hotspur declares that although the King had forbidden him to speak of Mortimer he would find his Majesty –

“When he lies asleep, And in his ear I’ll holla ‘Mortimer!’ Nay, I’ll have a starling shall be taught to speak Nothing but ‘Mortimer,’ and give it him, To keep his anger still in motion.” [1st Henry IV – I, 3]

There it is – one passage in one play by the Bard. Wouldn’t seem so very important – except for the fact that because of this single reference there are now over 200 million of the birds making their home on the North American Continent.

In 1890 a drug manufacturer named Eugene Scheiffelin had the intriguing notion that New York City should be home to all Shakespeare’s songbirds. He brought thrushes and skylarks from England and released them into American skies. They failed to fight their way into our ecology. He also released 100 starlings into Central Park. They fared a little bit better.

The starling can now be found from Alaska to Florida in flocks that may number as many as one million. They carry disease, destroy millions of dollars in crops every year and drive indigenous species out of their natural habitat. In 1960 a flock in Boston was so large it fouled the engines of . . . → Read More: Bard For The Birds


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