Oak Bluffs: Slow season

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Winter brings a change to our town. If you take a ride up Circuit Avenue now, it appears as if there is only one side of this avenue that is a hub of activity during the summer. So many stores are closed on the right-hand side of the street, and we are missing two of our most popular sites. Our sweet and welcoming store Secret Garden has left us forever. It was always a centerpiece of attraction to so many, and always the source of not just souvenirs for tourists, but a place where we could always find gifts and greeting cards whenever needed. The store was the start for the revival of stores on Circuit Avenue over 30 years ago. We miss that small store and the ever so helpful employees. And we have lost one of the meccas of winter meals and friends’ meeting places until March, as Linda Jean’s has closed until that time for annual renovations and a well-deserved break for their employees. During the long winter months it was a source of warmth, good meals, and fellowship. The waitresses always had time to mingle among us, inquiring about our families and bringing us news of theirs. All are friends here. But they will be back, and we will welcome them and they us.

Thank goodness for those stores that remain open during the slow season, like Phillips Hardware, daRosa’s and our ever-reliable Reliable Market. There are no strangers, at least not for long, at the market. We all know that it takes 10 minutes to shop there and another 30 to converse with people, including the familiar employees and other shoppers. Those stores and our popular Post Office provide a bit of sunshine through the gray of winter.

Our condolences to the family and friends of Jake Baird, who lost his life in an auto accident last week. Jake was a senior at M.V. Regional High School, who now has so many mourning his loss. We are so very sorry.

Once again the M.V. Playhouse is offering Monday nights at the movies. All movies start at 7 pm, and there is a $5 cash entry fee at the door. This Monday, Jan. 22, the feature is “Lord Love a Duck,” with Ruth Gordon.

Mini golf is coming back to the Oak Bluffs library, so start practicing. Events will take place on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 9 and 10. More details will follow for your information.

Molly deBettencourt, a senior at our high school, was recognized at the VIneyarders basketball game at North Quincy High School on Monday last. Molly was two points short of reaching 1,000 points at the start of the game. It didn’t take long for her to reach that goal, and the game was quickly stopped and she was recognized for this accomplishment to great applause. The Vineyarders went on to win the game 54 to 46, with Molly contributing 33 points to that win. Those points included five three-point baskets. Traveling to see the game were Molly’s parents Erin and Michael deBettencourt, her grandmother Sandra deBettencourt, cousin Kaitie Marchand, and Devin Araujo. If you would like to see the Vineyarders’ next game, they will play Bishop Feehan at a home game tomorrow at 4:30.

We send birthday smiles to Marcia Valentzas and Patti Linn on Jan. 18, Alfie Araujo on the 20th, my granddaughter Talia Rogers, Tristan Araujo, Catherine Deese, and Rosemary Hildreth on the 21st, Buddy deBettencourt, Michael Blake, Paul Buckley, and Holly Nadler on the 23rd, Joe Peters and Megan Klein on the 24th, and Wayne Barrett, Julia Bettencourt, Eagan Gibson, and Madeline Alwardt on the 25th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.