What is better than a classic car, an iconic North Fork restaurant that has the opportunity to dress up the times and raise money to take care of wildcats?
For a group of North Fork women, it’s as good as it is.
The modern snack bar on the Aquebogue main road provides the ideal backdrop for shooting classic cars and women wearing 50’s clothing. These models are members of the North Fork Country Kids Rescue, a group that cares about wildcat colonies and aims to educate people about these animals.
The photos were taken at Snack Bar on Sunday morning and will be used in the group’s calendars and sold to raise funds to support their efforts.
“100% of the revenue to support these animals,” said Virginia Skude, Aquebogue, founder of North Fork Country Kids Rescue. The team conducts TNR-traps, neutral and return throughout the region – to control the number of wildcats. Scudder said they provided medical and other care for the colony.
Equally important, they work hard to educate people about cats and wild colonies.
People often contact this group, hoping to get rid of the colony – sometimes threatening the damage to the cat.
“We are trying to get community members and businesses to know that we can’t just enter and remove cats. You can’t just relocate a wildcat colony. We are also committed to helping those who care about cats understand how to do this better,” she says.
Skadel said that the cat came to the United States with the earliest European explorers. There are many colonies of cats, multi-generational communities, and their ancestors have lived in the wilderness of the North Fork for centuries.
Scudder has been “TNR-ing” for 18 years. At any time, her team has more than a dozen colonies, they are working hard and caring for them.
As a high school teacher at the West Islip School District, Scudder’s relationship with North Fork can return to the summer with her parents when she was a child. She said that everyone in the group lives in North Fork and is passionate about the area.
“We want to talk about why North Fork is not only so important to us, but also so important to other parts of Long Island,” she said.
“I used to be a dog,” Skadel said. “When I became a member of this community, I didn’t even know what a TNR was.”