Chilmark: Slow down

Another Willys from Chilmark, spotted when I went for my morning swim. A mint jeep indeed. — Photo by Valerie Sonnenthal

Slow down. That’s right, it’s time for those of us who live here to drive slower than we think we should just to avoid the unexpected from around a corner or coming from a dirt road. I know if I had not been extra slow, I might have already been in a number of fender-benders in the past two weeks.

I love seeing neighbors Bob and Irene Hungerford walk their Clydesdale horses from their home to pasture twice daily, the bright-blooming dogwood trees, gardens beginning to pop with color, starry night skies, and warmer days. Take time to inspect your loved ones for ticks. Seriously. I took two of the pinhead type off myself one afternoon, and was just lucky they had barely been on longer than an hour or two. Rose geranium oil can be used on both people and pets as a natural tick prevention.

Congratulations to all the graduating Chilmark fifth graders: Silas Abrams, Emmett Favreau, Tegan Fenner, Katelyn Goldsmith, William Mayberry, Emma Mayhew, Adam Miller, Tristan Scott, Tyler Shipway, and Atlas Zack and their families. Have a wonderful summer!

On Friday, June 26, at 8 pm and Saturday, June 27, at 6:30 pm, my old neighbors from Rockland County, N.Y., Bridgman|Packer Dance will be in residence at the Yard, performing “Truck” inside a 17-foot box truck, and their latest piece, “Remembering What Never Happened,” integrating live performance, video technology, and imagery from the Mojave Desert. You will be transported and taken on a fantastic journey — don’t miss them! For more information and tickets, check Don’t forget they have daily dance classes and yoga too.

Kirtan comes to the Yoga Barn all weekend, with Tom Lena and Shakti Rowan, beginning 5:30 pm on Friday, June 26, with a free yoga class. Check out the schedule and get tickets at

The Beetlebung Farm Cookbook is a hot item, and not only in Chilmark or on the Island. When I was in New York City the other weekend, I went to my favorite literary bookshop, McNally Jackson on Prince Street, and not only was Jennifer Tseng’s new book on the first table of new fiction when you entered, but Chris Fischer’s book was dead-center in the middle of the new cookbooks featured on their table. When I saw Chris this week, he told me it is now in their window! If you haven’t yet seen the book, be sure to drop by the Chilmark library for the Saturday, June 27, reception for Gabriela Herman’s photography for the book, from 3 to 5 pm. And on Wednesday, July 1, you can hear Chris Fischer speak about his latest project and serve freshly baked bread with crostini toppings from his book.

The West Tisbury School fifth grade class is holding a Cow Chip Bingo fundraiser for their Shenandoah trip at Flat Point Farm on Saturday, June 27, at 10am. A cow will be turned loose in a fenced-in field, marked off in 100 numbered squares. The winner is determined by the cow making its first deposit on one of the squares. Each square costs $50, with the winner taking home $1,000. To purchase a square, contact Liz Oliver at 508-939-0616.

The Chilmark Community Church welcomes the Rev. Kathleen Dorr, an Episcopal priest for 20 years, most recently in the Diocese of Connecticut, on Sunday, June 28, to preach at 9 am. Sunday School continues through the summer during church. Congratulations to Pastor Seongmoon Ahn, who has been appointed to a new church in East Bridgewater. The Revs. Vicky and Armen Hanjian will be serving Chilmark for July and August.

Kara Taylor’s first gallery opening of the season is Sunday, June 28, from 5 to 8 pm for her small mixed-media landscapes. Stop by and help her celebrate at 24 South Road. For more information, see

Opening day for Chilmark summer softball at Pasture Road Field was a complete washout, with much-needed thunderstorms. We hope this did not ruin Father’s Day activities. Be sure to join in the softball fun on Sunday, June 28, at 8:30 am at Pasture Road Field.