Eco warrior staycations

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If you have an afternoon
Support local growers by volunteering a Sunday to work with the folks who till Rooftop Farms in Greenpoint (rooftopfarms.org; e-mail rooftopfarmer@gmail.com).

If you have a day
Stock up on corn, peaches and berries, among other seasonal delights, at the Columbia Greenmarket (Broadway between 114th and 115th Sts; Thu, Sun 8am--6pm). Then head to the Ravine in Central Park’s North Woods (midpark between 102nd and 106th Sts); you can’t see the city from there—pretend you’re in Walden instead of one of the more populous places in the world. Local guide Paul Keim is leading a twilight bat walk through Central Park Tuesday 18 ($20; for reservations call 212-691-7483). Quick, sign up before Gotham runs out of bats; they’ve been mysteriously dying off in great numbers recently.


Wildlife Refuge

If you have a weekend
Take a beautiful walk through the salt marshes of Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge (nps.gov/gate), where you can spy ospreys, warblers and the oddball American woodcock. For a more laid-back tour, hop the sightseeing Afternoon Eco Cruise on August 30, departing from Riis Landing (718-318-4340, nyharborparks.org; $6). Afterward, roll out your sleeping bag and camp in Floyd Bennett Field (50 Aviation Rd; 718-338-3799, nps.gov/gate; every set of three nights $50). Formerly a Brooklyn air hub, the field now offers some of the only overnight camping within city limits. More proof of how we can turn our urban wastelands into lush greenery can be found at Staten Island’s Freshkills Park. What is now a giant parkland (three times the size of Central Park) used to be the world’s largest landfill. Bus tours (free, departing from Eltingville Transportation Center in Staten Island, nycgovparks.org) are approximately 90 minutes, and happen regularly, usually on Saturdays, from April through November. Wanna do good with your own trash, too? A composting workshop helmed by Staten Island Compost Project director Mark Bigelow will be held at Freshkills August 29 at noon ($2, nyccompost.org).

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New York City staycations
You need a summer break but don't have the days off? Save time by staying home!

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