By John W. Cronin
President of the Board of Directors, Garden City Bird Sanctuary, Inc.
On Jan. 9, the Garden City Bird Sanctuary, Inc. celebrated its 13th annual Winterfest. Ordinarily, I would explain that Winterfest is a holiday we, on the GCBS Board of Directors, began in 2009 to honor all our members and supporters. It always takes place on the second Saturday in January. However, 2020 has been anything but “ordinary;” the word “unprecedented” has been used most often to describe it.
We have seen a worldwide pandemic for the first time in a century. Riots have torn apart our cities. Political strife keeps us divided. We need to come together to heal and move forward in hope. Winterfest is the means by which this process can get started. Humanity has always flourished in communities. Interdependence is needed for survival. We have a nuclear family, then an extended family and close friends, which continues further into our surrounding neighborhood, state, and country. At Winterfest, we seek to celebrate and strengthen the bond of community that exists in Garden City between families. In so doing, we remember our common purpose and come forth with a greater resolve to be part of the solution to the problems which afflict the world.
Winterfest is full of meaningful ceremonies and traditions which reflect the three virtues that any community needs to survive: volunteerism, environmental stewardship, and (most especially) hope.
Covid-19 and the other events of 2020 have left us depressed, locked down, and isolated. No more!
Our ceremonies included a special thank you to the first responders. We had a candlelit ceremony to mourn all those who passed in 2020; everyone who attends is invited to write down the name of a loved one lost to be remembered during the service.
For more scene & seen event photos visit longislandpress.com/category/scene-seen.