Summertime has been hopping for the Friends of CCMNH! When the opportunity arose for us to represent the Museum at the 7th annual Brewster Conservation Day, we leaped into action. (There was a bonus for the Friends: we could put our kayak on display and sell raffle tickets at Drummer Boy Park!)
Our topic: FROGS OF CAPE COD.
Ruth Courtnell began by contacting the Friends membership and asking for help – but not before she went to the CCMNH Gift Shop to collect frog toys, books, and scientific models to include in the booth.
Using some rusty science librarian skills, Alison Rilling learned that nine species of frogs live on Cape Cod. Mass Audubon generously gave us permission to reproduce the material on their website https://www.massaudubon.org/, and Alison adapted text and photos (adding a few photos from other sources) for eight 3’ by 2’ eye popping colorful posters.
Meanwhile, Shirley Vautin set to work designing a miniature Frog Pond, complete with lily pads, native plants, twigs and rocks for frogs to hide in – and then proceeded to hide 22 frogs.
A number of CCMNH photographers sent us their own pictures of “Frogs From Around the World” for a display to run throughout the day on a digital picture frame.
July 14, 2018, the day of the event, was clear and sunny – a perfect Cape Cod day. Bright and early, Jan Evans, Anne Best, and Ruth Courtnell delivered carloads of tents, tables, toys, frogs, posters, easels, and chairs. Elaine Allard joined in and they set up the tent and display.
Fred Budreski picked up the kayak from the Museum and arranged the kayak and raffle setup. The “mobile merchant” Square electronic sales system from the Museum was used to sell tickets and accept charge cards.
The action after that was nonstop! Myles Marcus, Alice Berry, and Doris Shiffman joined the early birds at our little tent, engaging with the dozens of visitors who toured the exhibit and learned about Cape Cod Frogs. Both children and adults loved seeing the photos and chatting with our volunteers (most of whom hadn’t been frog experts, but by the end of the day were coming close). And everyone loved searching for the 22 frogs hidden around the Frog Pond.
Over $300 dollars worth of kayak raffle tickets were sold!
And hundreds of people, both Brewster residents and visitors, were able to get a taste of the vast store of information – and fun activities – that our Museum has to offer. Marjorie Williams, CCMNH Senior Aquarist, reports that the Museum is home to individuals of six of the Cape’s nine frog species, so Museum visitors can get a close-up view of our native frogs. (Except that the spring peeper rarely shows herself; you probably can’t get a peep at her…)
At the free lunch that was provided to exhibitors and volunteer workers, Dorria Marsh, the event coordinator, told our volunteers, “I’m hearing raves about your booth!” And what fun we all had!
And no one – even our own CCMNH volunteers – could find all 22 frogs in the Frog Pond!