The Byron Forest Preserve wants you to learn about a groundbreaking environmentalist through a free Zoom event this Sunday.
Rachel Carson is the author of Silent Spring. In 1964, less than two years after it was published, she died from breast cancer. But her message about protecting the environment lives on.
Leslie Goddard is a scholar and an actress. She will bring Carson "back to life" at the Zoom event.
“She was the one who really, I think, kicked off the thinking that we have today, which is that humans aren't above nature, we don't control nature, we're part of nature, what we do to this planet we do to ourselves," said Goddard. "That kind of thinking was not at all prevalent in the 50s and the 60s. But it's enormously important to how we think about the environment today.”
Stoddard said Carson also wrote three other books, "four if you include her posthumous one."
"One thing that always strikes me is that when you read her writings -- and what I try to bring out in the performance -- is she just deeply loved nature," Stoddard said. "She could see poetry in watching the curve of a bird against the sky."
Stoddard considers Carson one of the most influential women in American history and has been portraying her for seven years. The Zoom performance will last 45 minutes and afterwards, Stoddard says "Rachel Carson" will take questions from the audience.
"I love answering in character. And then if there's anything that comes up that Rachel can't answer, I will turn it over to to Leslie," she said.
To register for the free event, email the Byron Forest Preserve District at email@example.com by Friday, March 5. For more information, you may call 815-234-8535 ext. 200 for more information.