Town Column : Edgartown
I am very happy to share that, following the vote at town meeting last week, the clean-up process has begun at the Edgartown library, following the "puff back" of the heating system a few months ago. This is exciting news to everyone who enjoys the library, anyone who has experienced their cramped corners at the town hall over the last few months, and the entire staff of the library, who are all anxious to get back to the stacks in the Carnegie building.
A six-person, soon to be eight-person, crew from Munters, the state's remediation firm, has completed its first week of work at the library. The workers have been pulling up carpet and scraping glue off the concrete floor. Books are being wiped down with chemical sponges and will be returned to the shelves once they are clean as well. I'll try to keep you informed as I hear more on the progress.
Mark your calendar! Following the Edgartown School PTO meeting at 6 pm on April 1, Carrie White will present "Keeping Your Kids Safe." This "must-attend" presentation is open to the public at the Edgartown School and will be at 6:30 pm in the library.
Last month, San Diego, Calif., was the host of the International Window Cleaning Association annual conference. Every year two contests are held: the Speed contest and the Medley contest. The Speed contest is just that - speed. Contestants race to finish three windows in the least amount of time. This event has been in the Guinness Book of World Records for many years. For the past 12 years, a window cleaning company from Japan has won this contest.
The Medley is a contest of perfection and the contestant with the fewest mistakes wins. This event includes ten types of windows, from high windows that require a pole, to French windows with small panes. The challenge is that the contestants are not allowed to "touch up" their work and no towels, rags or chamois are allowed. Taking first place in this event this year, from a group of 50 experienced window cleaners, was Edgartown's own Zachary White, co-owner of Sparkle Window Cleaning, making Sparkle the world's best window cleaning company. Zachary received a free admittance to the convention to be held next year in Atlanta, a medal and a 14-inch Glass Trophy. For more information about the event, log onto iwca.org.
Pia Gundersen emailed me with a funny recollection and query for the public. While overhearing the books on CD that Jacob and Eli love falling to sleep to, Pia recalled as kids she and her sister loved to fall asleep listening to stories played on the record player. One of the favorites back then was Cinderella, fear and anticipation growing with the increasingly frantic music as Cinderella ran running down the steps to beat it home before the stroke of midnight. Pia recalled that their record had a scratch, (something today's youth will never understand, of course) and they would shout "broken record!" Their mom would patiently go in and nudge the needle ever so slightly to get over the skip so they could fall asleep to the inevitable happy conclusion. Another favorite was Mother Goose recorded by Vincent Price. Can you imagine an ominous voice like that of Vincent Price doing children's ditties? So, Pia's question to the public is just that - does anyone recall or maybe even own the Vincent Price/Mother Goose recording? Quite a few years ago, her sister tried looking it up at the New York public library to see if she could still get the recording, but nothing ever came of that search. Feel free to let me know and I'll pass on any information to Pia.
I must say that I was flabbergasted by the attendance at the special town meeting a couple of weeks ago. Wow! We actually had to stand in line to get in, which I don't think I've ever even done at the regular town meeting. It was a full house and quorum was reached with ease, which was refreshing. I hope the regular meeting is as successful.
I'm happy to report that the article to protect the ancient ways passed overwhelmingly at the meeting. As you may recall, I have voiced my opinion regarding the need to protect the ways for the future. The article produced much passion on both sides of the issue but in the end, the townspeople voted to protect the paths, showing faith in the process by which the planning board and interested community members came up with the plan.
Jeff Chapman called me to let me know that his mother, Ethel Chapman, celebrated her 80th birthday on March 4. Jeff and his sisters, Susie and Penny, and their families enjoyed a small, low-key dinner celebration to commemorate the day with their mom, since you only turn 80 once and it's a momentous occasion. It was so nice to talk to Jeff and catch up with him. He is truly an old Island soul and definitely one of the nice guys.
Happy birthday wishes go out to Miss Lilly Kurelja, who turned six on St. Patrick's Day. This year Lilly celebrated with a trip off-Island to see friends and venture into New York for some shopping fun.
Happy birthday to Sarah Taylor as well, who also turned six, celebrating with a pool party at the Mansion House. The kids had a great time playing in the pool, followed, of course, by cake and ice cream.
That's the news for now. Please note that the deadline for my completed column is Monday at noon, which means that you need to get me your news no later than Sunday afternoon if you want to see it in print the following Thursday.