A new adult coloring book, filled with scenes of Greenport, is launching Saturday with a reception at American Beech. Proceeds from the book and related art will support Community Action Southold Town (CAST). At the event, pages colored by local artists and 3D printed replicas will be auctioned. Below, Go North Fork chats with the book’s creator Jake Rose (JR) and the Executive Director of CAST, Linda Ruland (LR) Q: What gave you the idea for this coloring book?
JR: I got the idea for this coloring book when my parents and I were having dinner at the sushi restaurant Stirling Sake, which is across from Clarke’s Garden. My dad and I felt that the Garden was beautiful enough to be done on a line drawing. The rest, as they say, was history.
Q: How many pages is the book? How did you select what to draw?
JR: The book is forty-eight pages long. I selected the buildings that I wanted to draw by figuring out what were the most prominent, aesthetically impressive, and culturally significant landmarks within Greenport.
Q: How did you involve the artists in the colored pages? How did you choose them?
JR: I involved the artists in the colored pages by telling them about the coloring book and the event benefiting CAST. Everyone who heard about the project was excited to give their finest contributions. I chose them through personal connections, which was helped by Greenport’s social nature.
Q: What's your connection to Greenport?
JR: My connection to Greenport stems from spending the past six summers in the town, getting to know the townspeople.
Q: Do you have a favorite drawing in the book?
JR: I have not one but three favorite drawings within the book: The Coronet, Aldo’s, and Nova Constellatio Gallery.
Q: What's happening at American Beech?
JR: This Saturday, August 20th, 2016, I am launching my Greenport coloring book at the American Beech restaurant. The artists’ renditions of the tabloid-sized drawings will be displayed at the event. These works of arts, along with 3d printed sculptures of the Jail and the Blacksmith, will be sold at the event, with all of the proceeds going to CAST. The launch will be from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. There will be food platters and a variety of drinks.
Q: How many coloring books have you printed? Where are they available for purchase outside of the event?
JR: So far, I have printed 100 coloring books. They will be available for purchase at a variety of places outside of the event, such as Gallery 429 on Main Street, Open Space in Stirling Square, Burton’s Book Store on Front Street, and online at ColorGreenport.com; the website will be live by August 20th.
Q: Do you have a list of the participating artists?
JR: Yes. Lorraine Kreahling colored the Auditorium; Cindy Roe colored the Bait & Tackle; Sandra Shebitz colored the Blacksmith's; Christopher colored the Carousel; Nancy Ness colored Bruce’s Cheese Emporium; Cynthia Rose colored Clarke's Garden; Cassie Brown colored Claudio's; Helen Weinstein colored the Clock; Etta Seigel colored the Coronet; Shawn Ehlers colored First & South; Carla Oberlander colored the Greek Church; Kelly Franke colored Jail/Brewery; Kara Hoblin colored the Maritime Museum; Isabelle Haram-Leonardi colored Nova Gallery; Megan Barron colored Preston's; and Amy Worth colored the South Street Gallery.
Q: This very cool coloring book release benefits CAST; what is CAST?
LR: CAST, a board run, non-profit corporation, was founded in 1965 to help low income residents in the Town of Southold—Laurel to Orient and Fishers Island -- in the areas of nutrition, employment, energy, health and education. We serve over 6000 clients per year.
Q: What kinds of specific services do you offer?
LR: We have a year round food pantry in which we provide emergency food bags for families in crisis, plus two monthly food bags year round. During school vacations our Feed-A-Kid program provides breakfast and lunch food items for children who are eligible for free or reduced lunch at school. This summer we served 112 children from 52 families.
We also have a sharing room—people can donate clothing, household items, books, toys, and small appliances, and clients who need them can take them.
A lot of our work is advocacy and referrals, helping people with applications, whether for Medicaid, food stamps, whatever they need; we help 40-60 families a month that way.
Gert’s Greens is a wonderful program that provides fresh fruits and vegetables for Senior Citizens throughout the town. In collaboration with the Southold Town Human Resource Center, coupons are given out to local seniors and they can purchase fresh produce from selected farm stands around the town. This program was started by a loving granddaughter in memory of her grandmother, Gertrude Lenahan.
One of our programs is the North Fork Parent-Child Home program. Each week for two years, home visitors spend an hour with the client and his/her child. They bring a new book or toy for the child, and through play, they support the parents and help prepare the child for success in kindergarten. Children 18 months old to 4 years of age are eligible for the program.
We have summer story hours for preschoolers, and during the school year, we offer tutoring in math and reading for elementary students. Beginning in the fall we will again offer ESL classes.
Through a private donation we were able to purchase a mobile computer training lab which we move to different areas in our town and teach beginning computer skills to help people get back into the workforce.
Q: Wow, that’s a comprehensive set of services. Since you take donations and offer such a variety of help, is there anything you need people to donate in particular?
LR: Right now we are involved in a School Supply drive in which we collect backpacks and school supplies and give 150 Kindergarten through twelfth graders the tools they need to start school in September. Because of the cooler weather approaching we will need warm blankets, coats, socks, hats, gloves, scarves, shoes and boots. We always need health and beauty aids—shampoo, toothpaste, soap, toilet paper, feminine products and baby diapers. Items for our sharing room and food for the food pantry is always welcome. During the holidays we accept donations for Thanksgiving dinners and Christmas gifts for our clients.
Q: Any changes coming soon?
LR: Yes, we are very excited that we will be moving across the street to 316 Front Street sometime in the early fall. The space is larger and has its own parking.
Q: This is such a community focused group. What’s your connection to Southold Town? To CAST?
LR: I’m a North Fork native and have lived here all my life. I married a local farmer, and that kind of cemented it. The North Fork is our home. All we needed was here, and we love it. I was a teacher for thirteen years and then became the director of Family Service League’s North Fork Early Learning Center for twelve years. Family Service League provides many of the same services as CAST, just on a larger scale. I previously served on the Board of Directors of CAST for two years, and when the Executive Directorship became open, I took on that role.