Welcome home to the West Tisbury School sixth-graders who took to the sea aboard Shenandoah. Included in the mix were Solon Oliver who celebrated his 11th birthday along with his 26 classmates and his mom, Liz, who was one of the lucky chaperones. The sailing Olivers returned home just in time to help celebrate Barrett’s ninth birthday. Barrett celebrated surrounded by the boys from his class with a backyard birthday sports-themed bash.

Ten-year-old Bella Thorpe travelled to Hits Show Ground in Saugerties, New York, where she participated in the Youth Dressage Festival put on by Lendon Grey. She won the written exam, placed second in dressage equitation, and tied for seventh in the dressage test. Bella won her whole division and returned to her Crossroad home with a gold medal in hand. To really round out her weekend she won an award for stall decorating.

Owen Singer is back in town. He arrived from his home in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and was happily welcomed by his teen friends and challenged to a bass fishing competition.

Susan, Jason, and Sophie Balaban had a visitor last week. An owl graced their patio on multiple occasions. Does this mean, perhaps, it is nesting nearby?

Beth Mayhew had her eyes open this past week. She spotted Doug Vanderhoop and his wife Linda enjoying a seafood supper in Menemsha. Her eyes were on the water too. She spotted an Egg Harbor which hailed from Belfast, Maine, and a Pearson whose port of call was Saint John, BVI.

Bill, Kathy, and Katy Smith travelled to Boston and took in the country tunes of Jason Aldean at Fenway Pahk.

The Slater home was filled with family once again. The Bennett gang was back in town. This time Aaron really outdid brother-in-law Caleb when he caught two, yes two, keeper bass in one evening. Caleb, his bride Chris, and daughter Celia are here for two weeks from their Northbridge home. Celia just celebrated her 15 birthday on Tuesday. I remember when she was little enough to fit in a wagon with buddy Chase Soulagnet.

William, along with buddy Dylan, is back under Betsy Burmeister’s roof for two weeks. He will be attending M.V. Adventure Camp and all the great spots Menemsha has to offer. With new boogie board in tow, the boys of Worcester with sleep well at night after enjoying the fresh salt air.

This is the 19th year of the Eliza Brickner Poetry contest at the Chilmark Library. Stop in or give the folks at the Library a call about all the details. I’ll give you the heads up that entries, open to grades 6 though 12, are due on Monday August 12.

Aura Walker was back at her grandparents home for a visit. Aura is now a successful mental health counselor and hypnotherapist with a private practice in Los Angeles. She utilized the Church meeting room and held sessions with clients for a few days while she was here. She hopes this will be good opportunity to share her services with folks in our community. Call her at 310-382-6313 for more information.

Roxanne (Jardin) Sordi, along with her three sweet girls Samantha, Brianna, and Celina, was recently in town for a visit with grandma Judie. Sadly, dad Mark had to stay behind in Delaware to tend to patients, but the girls managed to accumulate some stories to take home to him about their adventures.

As soon as the Jardin home emptied it refilled with daughter Jackie and her clan. Husband Bo and daughters Ruthie and Isobel Hornbuckle ventured north from Maryland to visit and catch up with old friends. As always, some Bite food was in the mix and a chat session between Ruthie and my daughter Bradley took place. I smile when Jackie pops her head in at the Texaco and states “I’m here.” Why? Because no matter how long it has been, we pick right up where we left off.

Flanders Field Softball continues to be the place to witness magic happen. Bill Edison, as always, called in after a lengthy nine-inning game in the hot sun with a detailed sports report. An all-star pitching duel took place between Ziggy and Hans. The result proved, once again, that age can’t stop you if you set out to be successful. When Joel Greenberg was asked who he learned his skills from, he proclaimed it was his mother who was the influential one. You cannot discount the influence of women in baseball (or softball.)