Part of me says my column should be four simple words:
GO TO THE FAIR.
The other part of me says: Good grief, summer really is winding down and there's so much good stuff to cram in I had better do my best to mention it all.
First of all, if you haven't had a chance to swing by the Chilmark Community Church on a Tuesday evening to get your lobster roll there is certainly no time like the present. From 4:30 to 7 pm you will find the friendly faces of Kathie and Emmett Carroll, Emily Broderick, Rebecca and Mike Hewitt, Sarah Mayhew Shipway, Billlie Hancock, Connie Williams, Kim Cottrill, and Judy and Ted Mayhew. This well-rounded and handy crew makes, serves, packages and does all of the before-and-after prep work this yummy little fundraising enterprise has to offer.
Proud parents Bret Stearns and Sarah Doyle are beaming with delight over daughter Ava's performance at the 2012 US Pony Finals. Riders from all over gathered at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky, for the nearly week-long event. Competing against the top 190 riders in her division, Ava took home a third overall. What an accomplishment for the tween.
Jane and Conrad Neumann celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary surrounded by family galore at the Chilmark Church Fellowship Hall. Although their actual anniversary was July 7, this week was when their children and families have swooped in from all over to reminisce, tell stories, and party it up. Daughter Jennifer and Marty Schelhaus and Christina Faye travelled from New Jersey. Son Jonathan and Christina Gildersleeve with children Elijah and Simona are here from Portland, Oregon. Son Cris and Leslie, Evan, Corain and Auden are here from Ireland. Not to mention the Slater cousins are all here to even out the mix. I spotted Jack and Scottie along with their folks Aaron and Sarah (Slater) Bennett the day prior to the big event. Let me tell you, this party was a hot topic of conversation. I hear it was a huge success, but Scottie did lose his plastic bead bracelet. If found, return to his grandmother Jane at Over South Antiques. Well, even if you don't find it you might as well stop in. She's got some great treasures tucked in there.
Scott, Jennifer, and Stella Frank, and doggie pal McCoy have had the pleasure of daughter/sister Sophia's company this past week. After an internship in Paris and settling into a new New York City apartment, where she will continue her education at NYU, Sophia had a few free days to take in a home-cooked meal or two along with plenty of loving from mom and dad. Not to mention the licks and nibbles from McCoy.
One might wonder what makes summer softball at Flanders Field so memorable. Bill Edison can share the perfect example. When Hans Solmssen's team was beat by the striking home run off the bat of a young fellow simply known as Matt, all congregated on the diamond and shared celebratory high fives. There are no winners. There are no losers. This Chilmark love affair gets together even on the dreariest of days. They may not swing a bat and toss a ball in a downpour, but they are known to gather at a "shall remain nameless" friend's home on Lobsterville for hors d'oeuvres and softball-themed fun.
I don't know if you've noticed, but my clan has been in Menemsha a lot of hours this summer and we have managed to sustain life without any food in our fridge — okay, so we have some milk, apples, and various condiments. Hand-cut fries from the Back Door, chicken grillas from the Galley, mozzarella sticks from the Bite, piping hot fish cakes from Larsen's and chowder from Menemsha Fish rounded out with lots of Cheez-Its at the Texaco, our caloric intake seems pretty well balanced to me. The nice thing about being in Menemsha so many hours is that we get to see many friends — year-round, summer, old and new.
Some characters spotted this week: Tegan and Laila Fenner, Dash and Todd Christy, Anja May, Fynn and Yossie Monahan, Cliff Moskow, Tori, Will, Kate, Emma and Will Dolan, Sarah, Bob and Bobby Nixon, Julie Flanders, Bella Thorpe, Johna McVey, Beth, Mariah and Jessica Campbell, the Karlinsky clan, Nick Grace (fondly known as Nick Grace guitar player), Ellen, Kestutis, Grazina and Tauras Biskis, Joe and Hadley Chapman, many members of the O'Connor family, all the members of the Keefe gang, Owen Singer and Claire Ganz, Morgan Estrella, Hartley Sierputoski, Marshall David, George McLaughlin...and countless others.