November is the season of harvest, so it’s only appropriate that our November Speaker Series event will have an focus on Maine’s farmland. Amanda Beal, the new executive director of Maine Farmland Trust, will give a talk entitled “The Nexus of Conservation and Agriculture” in which she will outline the many environmental, social, and economic benefits of keeping working farmland in our communities.
Governors of New England states have set a goal of making the region 50 percent food self-sufficient by the year 2060. To achieve this goal, a good portion of that local food most likely will come from Maine’s farms. In the next few years, entrepreneurs developing new local food ventures could breathe fresh life into our rural economy. This is good news for conservation since stewardship of the environment is fundamentally a local effort and ecosystems like the Maine north woods are more likely to survive if nearby communities are thriving.
November is also when cooler fall weather usually catches up with us. When blustery weather has kept me indoors, I’ve been enjoying a recent book on Maine Sporting Camps by noted conservationist and sportsman George Smith. This wonderful book highlights many of the traditional Maine Woods hunting and fishing camps and has me already hatching plans for next summer vacation.
The book also got me thinking about the truly unique experience of visiting Maine Audubon’s Lodges at Borestone Mountain Sanctuary – a naturalist’s equivalent of Maine sports camp. If you’re interested in renting Borestone next summer, 2017 dates are filling up fast, so check the availability our calendar and make your reservation soon!
Whether you’re a sportsman or naturalist or both – the best way to experience Maine is meeting nature on its terms. These experiences are what a life well lived is about. Hope you and your family have been enjoying the outdoors this season!
Ole Amundsen is Executive Director of Maine Audubon. He has more than 25 years of experience in conservation leadership, with a focus on landscape scale conservation, environmental education and finance. Amundsen most recently served as program manager for the national land trust, The Conservation Fund.