Aldo Leopold, circa. 1940, at “The Shack” in Wisconsin where he wrote “A Sand County Almanac”  (Courtesy Aldo Leopold Foundation, www.aldoleopold.org)
Aldo Leopold, circa. 1940, at “The Shack” in Wisconsin where he wrote “A Sand County Almanac” (Courtesy Aldo Leopold Foundation, www.aldoleopold.org)
The words Aldo Leopold wrote in 1948 still strike a note today: “There are some who can live without wild things, and some who cannot.” These words are the start of Leopold’s “A Sand County Almanac,” one of the best-loved conservation classics of all time by the father of wildlife ecology and the United States Wilderness system.

Leopold was a hunter, a forester, a conservationist, a philosopher, educator, writer and outdoor enthusiast who established the first federal wilderness in 1922, wrote the first textbook on wildlife management and established the first professional program in wildlife ecology and management.

Throughout, Leopold took a community view of the natural world and our place in it.

“There are two things that interest me,” he wrote. “The relationship of people to each other and the relationship of people to the land.”

The words in “Sand County Almanac” hold an even more special meaning when read out loud by members of the community together, as a much-needed reminder of Leopold’s Land Ethic.

This year, Maine joins 26 other communities across the country to celebrate Leopold’s ideas during Leopold Weekend, the first week in March, with three related events in Rockland, Lincolnville and Camden. All events are free and complement each other.

Rockland Shows Leopold film at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, March 2, at the Visitor Center of the Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge in Rockland (9 Water Street) in the big white house in the triangle on South Main Street.

“Greenfire,” a full-length Emmy-awarded documentary film with Peter Coyote’s famous voice, explores Leopold’s extraordinary career and traces how he shaped the modern conservation movement and continues to inspire projects all over the country that connect people and the land. The screening will be hosted by The Friends of Maine Coastal Islands and Eliza Bailey representing Georges River Land Trust, and with Christine Parrish, who organized Leopold Weekend.

Lincolnville Reads Leopold from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 3, at Lincolnville Community Library (208 Main St., Lincolnville Center), with a nature walk included. Community members will read parts of their favorite essays and tell short personal stories related to them, punctuated by music by Will Brown and others and a couple of poems. Attendees are invited to share land stories, too, as time permits before the walk. Bring the right shoes for the walk. Hosted by Jim and Cindy Dunham.

Camden Wings Leopold from 2 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, March 4, at Camden Public Library. Christine Parrish, Jim Campbell, Lois Anne and friends will do an interactive reading of Leopold’s essays on woodcock, bird behavior and wilderness, with a few dramatic turns to keep it lively.