Don Henley to host Walden Woods gala at Boston Park Plaza, and Billy Joel will be in the house

Don Henley
Don HenleyRobb D. Cohen/Invision/AP/file/Invision/AP

Don Henley isn’t just a founding member of the Eagles — he’s also the founder of the Walden Woods Project.

With a mission to preserve “the land, literature and legacy of Henry David Thoreau [and] to foster an ethic of environmental stewardship and social responsibility,” the project annually presents a Global Environmental Leadership and Challenge Award.

This year’s recipients are noted environmentalists Ed Begley Jr. and his wife, Rachelle Carson-Begley.

On Sept. 6, the eco-minded couple will be honored at a Henley-hosted affair at the Boston Park Plaza, with music by piano man Billy Joel. Tickets are on sale now.

The award “recognizes significant achievement in the areas of climate stability, biodiversity, natural resource stewardship, human understanding, and global environmental policy,” according to the project’s website.


Known for his Emmy-winning role on “St. Elsewhere” and recurring roles in Christopher Guest mockumentaries, Begley, 69, is a local environmental advocate. He was an early fan of electric cars, and the couple built a net-zero, solar-powered home. Carson-Begley costarred in the reality series “Living With Ed”on HGTV and Discovery’s Planet Green.

Henley told the Globe previously that the song “The Last Resort,” on The Eagles’ 1976 album, “Hotel California,” was inspired by Thoreau, and that he was and is profoundly moved by the thoughts and writings of the Concord-born transcendentalist.

Around 1990, Henley heard a CNN report about impending development near Walden Pond, which led to the launch of the nonprofit Walden Woods Project.

Table/ticket packages are available now for the Sept. 6 reception, dinner, award presentation, and performance by Joel. Tickets and details can be found at walden.org.

Lauren Daley can be reached at ldaley33@gmail.com. She tweets @laurendaley1.