Trailers, rides, booths, tents, and displays are appearing at the fairgrounds. Animals are being moved into stalls. Art, vegetables and flowers, family projects, quilts, knitting, woodworking, pickled string beans, cookies, cakes, and pies will fill the Ag Hall by the time you are reading this on Thursday. The 151st Agricultural Fair will have begun.
This year's theme is Timeless Traditions. Susan Klein and Alan Brigish's book, "Bountiful," a history of the Ag Society and Fair, will be on sale this year along with tee-shirts and posters. It's the big event of the summer.
Cynthia Walsh's grandchildren, Avery and Bowen Fernie, are busy preparing their entries for the Fair. They have been keeping Cynthia busy and entertained for most of the summer. Their parents are here, too, Katherine Walsh and Bruce Fernie, all from Florence, Italy.
Mark, Renee, Devan, and Blake Hearn arrived in time for the Fair. They are staying with Mark's parents, Glenn and Linda Hearn. Paul Caruso joined his family, Laura (Hearn) and Morgan, for the weekend. I was disappointed that he didn't bring his motorcycle over this time, but with the heavy rains we had, I suppose there wouldn't have been much opportunity for him to take me for a ride.
Amy DelTorto will be here from Connecticut with her children, Kendra and Devin. They will be staying across the street from us, with Amy's parents, Tony and Doreen Rezendes. Kendra is looking forward to riding at the Fair with her Aunt Vickie, and joining Grandpa Tony for his morning coffee on Alley's front porch.
The DelTortos will meet their new nephew/cousin for the first time. The newest resident of our neighborhood is Dana and Lori Rezendes's son, Nathan John, born last Friday, August 10, at Martha's Vineyard Hospital. Tony and Doreen are very excited having their little grandson right next door.
One of the highlights of my summer has been discovering the pleasure of breakfast at the Beach Plum Inn. Sue Hruby took me there last week, after discovering it with Joanne Scott and her sister, Michelle, who was visiting from Florida. Breakfast is served on a peacefully quiet patio at a leisurely pace for conversation, enjoying your companions and the view. The food is fabulous. I had a Dutch Baby pancake, puffed up from the oven in its cast-iron pan, with apricot preserves on top. Sue had what she described as the best omelette she had ever eaten. I liked it so much that I told Dorothy Barthelmes about it. We went together last Thursday for another wonderful breakfast. Dorothy then took her husband, Bob Henry, and their houseguests, Larz Pearson and Rick Trevino, who also proclaimed it the best. Dorothy and I now have a date for every Thursday morning while she is here.
Dorothy was my Aunt Janice Hull's dearest friend. She and Bob stay at the Slocum House for August and the first two weeks of September every summer, often with the most interesting guests. Currently, the aforementioned Rick and Larz are here — amazing cooks, opera lovers, and convivial companions we look forward to seeing every summer. I was flattered to learn that they read my column online all year to follow happenings in West Tisbury. Last night, Dorothy's son, master boat builder Rob Stevens, and his partner, Allison Hepler, arrived from Bath, Maine, just in time for dinner.
A funny story. Last night when we got home, Mike realized that his fire pager was no longer clipped to his belt. He rushed back to Dorothy and Bob's with a flashlight. No pager. It wasn't in our yard either, or in any of our vehicles. Distraught, he reluctantly went to bed, then after searching again this morning, off to work. About 11 o'clock, the phone rang. It was Bob, saying he had found the pager. As they left the house heading to the beach, Bob "heard a voice in the bushes, and there it was." Mike actually answered his cell phone when I called him, came right home to pick it up, and reunited with his pager securely attached, jauntily returned to work. A crisis averted.
Don't forget that the Friends of the Library are holding their annual meeting next Wednesday, August 22, 4 pm, at the library. There will be a review of the past year and financial reports. Good cookies, too. All are invited.
Two events for young adults at the library next week. Mathea Morais's readers and writers program for ages 9-14 will run August 20 to 24 every morning from 10:45 to noon. Please pre-register at the library. Monday night at 6 pm there will be "an extravaganza for young adults," the DVD release party and Hunger Game-A-Thon, featuring games and popcorn with the movie. Monday night stargazing will be cancelled.
Thursday afternoon, August 23, is the last literary event of the season. Poets Fanny Howe and Katie Peterson will read and discuss their poetry beginning at 5 pm.
The library still needs 400 sponsored bricks to ensure that the entire walk will be paved when our addition is completed. Cathy Minkiewicz asks everyone to "Please consider giving a brick to mark a loved-one's birthday or anniversary, as a memorial, to feature a favorite literary quote." Engraved bricks for $125 can be purchased by individuals, families, or groups. Donation forms are at the library or on the website.
Have fun at the Fair.