Authors Posts by Hermine Hull

Hermine Hull

Hermine Hull
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The sky is gray as I am writing this. I am hoping for rain, although the weather radar map shows most of the precipitation going just west of us. Still, a chance. Everything feels dusty dry. Mulch helps. As much as I wish for rain, I have to admit that most of our summer weather has been pretty nice. This week, though, the predictions are for hazy, hot, and humid as we end July and begin August.

I will be losing my husband now, as the Fire Department will start setting up the hamburger booth for the Ag Fair. Funny to think that the fair is only three weeks away. Those three weeks will be filled with activity, as everyone in town will either be busy at the fairgrounds or preparing exhibits at home. This burst of activity always seems to come so quickly, then be so quickly over. Then, so will the summer start to wind down and feel our own. I look forward to those days of late August and beautiful September, the change from busy-ness toward solitude, still warm sand and water, colors changing to goldenrod and asters.

For now, gardens are filled with produce and colorful flowers at their peak. The Farmers Market is almost overwhelming in its generous abundance. I look forward to the displays at the fair. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Speaking of abundance, the Friends of the West Tisbury Library have once again triumphed over chaos, turning the school gym into the orderly lines of tables of books we have come to expect. Art and Architecture, Biographies, Poetry, Island History, Crafts, Children’s Books, and so on, all clearly labeled and ready for eager readers to arrive, book bags in hand. The Book Sale begins Friday morning, and goes through Monday, August 3. Hours are 9 to 3 every day. Books are half-price on Sunday and free on Monday. Donations are always welcome. It is the big fundraiser that helps support so many of our library’s programs and extras. Thanks to the Friends for their dedication and efforts on the library’s behalf, and to all the patrons who will be lined up and ready come Friday through the weekend.

We will all miss Jennifer Tseng, who worked her last day at the library on Friday. Poet, now novelist, enthusiastic and knowledgeable planner of literary programs, she addressed her emails to us columnists as her “literary lovelies.” I always knew something interesting would be found there. Jennifer will be participating in this weekend’s Martha’s Vineyard Book Festival. She will speak about and read from her book, “Mayumi and the Sea of Happiness,” on Saturday at 11:15 in the Squibnocket tent on the Chilmark Community Center grounds. “Mayumi” is a finalist for the New England Book Award, and has been listed on Huffington Post’s “15 Beach Reads for the Summer.”

Another person who has left her familiar venue is Shari Foiles of our West Tisbury Post Office. She is leaving the Island, excited that she will be living and working near her sister in Maine.

If you are reading this in time, Writers Read begins at 6:30 Thursday evening at the West Tisbury library. Call ahead to reserve your allotted six minutes, or just come along. Both fiction and nonfiction writers are welcome.

There will be a reception at the library this Friday, July 31, for artists Marie-Louise Rouff and Julia Leonard. Meet them, learn about their work, look carefully, and enjoy the snacks and the crowd. The reception is from 3 to 5 pm.

Making Rockets with Matt Hayden is this Saturday’s family craft, set up in the Children’s Room from 10 am to noon. The Lego Club will meet later in the day, from 3 to 4:30.

Willa Vigneault will give a presentation about her recent trip to Jordan on Tuesday, August 4, at 5 pm in the Program Room.

Doors open at 7 pm on August 4 at the Grange Hall for “Tuesdays at Twilight Concert,” sponsored by the West Tisbury Library Foundation. Good Night Louise will perform a folky medley of Americana and blues, with appearances by Jemima James, Rose Guerin, and other special guests. The concert begins at 7:30. Tickets are $15 for adults and $7.50 for kids 12 and under, available in advance at the library or Tisberry Fro Yo. The Art Cliff food truck will be parked outside from 6 to 8 for dinner, and there will be yogurt treats after the concert.

Another musical library event takes place next Thursday, August 6, when the Friends sponsor a concert by Choro das 3 at the library. The performance begins at 7:30 and is free. Choro is “urban jazz native to Brazil that shares a similar feel with New Orleans jazz or ragtime or bluegrass.” Choro das 3 is an instrumental group made up of three sisters and their father. Eduardo plays pandeiro, a Brazilian tambourine. Corina plays flute and piccolo; Elisa plays mandolin, banjo, clarinet, and piano; Lia plays seven-string guitar. They look forward to introducing our families to their family’s music.

Leslie Baker is exhibiting 24 monotypes and oil paintings at the Marion Art Center. Her show, called “Now and Then,” combines her familiar Island landscapes with the abstract work she has been exploring for the past few years. She began experimenting with abstraction by doing monotypes in the printing studio at Featherstone, then using them as the inspiration for large oil paintings. The exhibition represents her past year’s work. It runs through August 14.

Alan Brigish and Susan Klein’s show of photography and stories from their book, “Now and Zen,” opens with a reception this Sunday, August 2, 4 to 6 pm, at Featherstone.

Good Shepherd Parish is having a yard sale this Saturday, August 1. They will set up their wares from 8 to 2 in the parking lot of St. Augustine’s Church in Vineyard Haven.

If you are interested in architecture and Island history, Edgartown’s Federated Church is hosting a house tour on Tuesday, August 11. Historian Mary Jane Carpenter will give a free lecture about the historical homes along North Water Street. The tour is from 2 to 4:30, and ends with tea overlooking Edgartown Harbor. Tickets are $40. For information: 508-627-7079.

Mike just came home for lunch and turned on the Weather Channel. The band of green showers that looked so sparse this morning is now a broadened, angry swath of dark green and yellow, indicating real rain that may fall over the Vineyard. As I have had the column to write this morning, I haven’t gone out to water yet. I think I’ll hold off and hope for a good, steady rain this afternoon. There is always plenty to do indoors, too, if I can’t be out in the garden.

From the vantage of Alley’s porch, there was a lot of traffic in West Tisbury this weekend, more than any of us remember. Reports from people driving in it seemed to corroborate our observations. Traffic was reported down the Edgartown Road way past Vincent and Heather Maciel’s, down South Road past the Yoga Barn. Music Street on both sides was lined with parked cars, squeezing barely moving cars into the narrowed roadway waiting to enter State Road. All the events in town appeared to have been popular and well-attended: the Antique Show, Farmers Market, the Art Show at Howes House, programs at the library, the Blueberry Festival, the Artisans Festival, an opening at the Field Gallery, and a couple of weddings. Plus regular traffic to the gas station, Alley’s, 7A, Cronig’s, the post office, Conroy’s, people just wanting to go for a ride up-Island. It was one busy weekend.

Someone told me it was only seven weeks to Labor Day. I should say that there are wonderful things about the summer, and many of us who live here are happy to see summer friends. It just comes on so quickly and all at once, and for a relatively short time. So many activities and socializing with friends, and all the preparation and planning. Then it’s over, as quickly and precipitately. It’s just a lot of change to cope with. Plus it’s hot. It’s not all bad, but it can be hard.

Mary Beth Norton has welcomed Dr. Gillian Sutherland for her first visit to the Vineyard. Dr. Sutherland is a retired historian from Newnham College, University of Cambridge. They met when Mary Beth taught at Cambridge and was affiliated with Newnham College in 2005-06.

Paul Levine and Marie-Louise Rouff have Marie-Louise’s son, Professor Emanuel Pastreich, visiting with them for the week. Marie-Louise was just heading off to pick him up at the ferry when we spoke this morning. Emanuel is a professor of Japanese and Korean Literature at Kyung Hee University in Seoul, South Korea. He spent part of last week attending a conference in Vancouver, B.C.

Caryn Broitman and Brian Walt have had Brian’s brother and sister-in-law, Harold and Brenda Walt, visiting from Los Angeles for the weekend. They attended the Friday night Shabbat service at the beach, spent Shabbat together, and walked to Sepiessa with Shlomi, Rabbi Broitman’s poodle. On Sunday, Brian and Galya took them to Chappy for a tour of Mytoi and Wasque.

Owen Potts is here for the whole summer, staying with his grandmother, Marjory Potts. Owen is a high school freshman and handyman extraordinaire. His skills include bicycle repair (many of us remember Owen’s grandfather, Robert, who was also pretty handy and an avid bike rider) and he is offering “electronic-free childcare” for kids ages 3 to 10. He will read stories, play cards and board games, soccer, whiffle ball, hide-and-go-seek, and more. All at reasonable rates. Call Owen at 508-693-3584.

Bruce Haynes celebrated his birthday on July 19 with a small family party at home. Wishing you many happy returns, Bruce.

I am celebrating the good news that Fia Fleishman has found a home. Robert Herman and Madeline Way will be caring for Fia while Giulia Fleishman attends school in Israel. I’m sure Julian and Rose will help with dogwalking, and that all of you will love having Fia in your home and lives.

On a sad note, Leslie Stark died last week. There was a memorial service at the Martha’s Vineyard Hebrew Center on Sunday afternoon. In his honor, the West Tisbury library moved their planned program of 12th and 13th century music and poetry to a later time, so that participants and the audience could attend the service. My condolences to Myra and to all the theater community, of which Leslie was a dynamic and respected member.

Polly Hill Arboretum has hired a new plant propagator, a position that has remained unfilled for too long. Brian McGowan and his wife need year-round housing. If you know of anything, please contact Karin Stanley at the arboretum at 508-693-9426 or email to karin@pollyhillarboretum.org.

The West Tisbury library has scheduled lots of interesting special programs along with their regular weekly offerings. Sol y Canto, a Pan-Latin sextet, will perform this Saturday, July 25, at 4 pm. Rosi Amador is the singer, and Brian Amador the composer and guitarist. There is also accompaniment on piano, woodwinds, bass, and percussion, all an interpretation of contemporary Latin music. The whole family is welcome to this free program.

Laura Edelman is offering two free yoga classes at the library. Tweens and teens meet on Saturday, July 25, and August 5, 10:15 to 11:00. Classes for 4- to 8-year-olds are Tuesday mornings, 10:15 to 11:00, this Saturday, July 25, and August 1 and 8. Please preregister at the library.

Anna Mia Davidson will speak about her new book of photographs at the library on Tuesday, July 28, at 5 o’clock. “Human Nature: Sustainable Farming in the Pacific Northwest” has just been published.

Jennifer Steele will read from and discuss her new book, “The Ambassador’s Wife,” at the library on Wednesday, July 29, at 7 o’clock.

Monday, July 20, Writers Read will meet at 7 pm. All are invited to bring short works of original prose — fiction or nonfiction. You are allotted six minutes, so sign up at the library circulation desk.

As our Friends of the West Tisbury Library are preparing for their annual Book Sale, so are their cohorts at the Oak Bluffs Library. Oak Bluffs’ sale is in the library, and begins this Thursday, July 23, 10 to 4, through Saturday, July 25, 10 to 2. Ours begins next week: Friday, July 31, through Monday, August 3. Tables and books already fill the West Tisbury School gym. I called Chilmark to check with them, but their sale isn’t till mid-December. Plenty of opportunities for book lovers on our Island.

West Tisbury cartoonist Paul Karasik invites everyone to a “Very Semi-Serious” discussion at the MVRHS Performing Arts Center this Friday evening, July 24, at 7:30. Bob Mankoff, cartoon editor for the New Yorker, and island cartoonists Mr. Karasik and Mick Stevens will likely provide an entertaining program. Tickets are available at tmvff.org/very_semi_serious.

If you have ever wondered if lightning strikes twice in the same place, or have any other storm or weather questions, Felix Neck has invited weatherman John Pearson and his electrostatic-energy Van De Graaff generator to speak and demonstrate on Monday, July 27, 7 to 8 o’clock. The event is free, and all are welcome.

When I called the Chilmark Library earlier, I had a chance to catch up with Ebba Hierta, and through her, her husband. “How’s Chuck?” I asked. Ebba told me he was having a busy summer, but has managed to get in a little fishing. He caught three keeper fluke the other day and, using the miracle of cell phones, was able to call friends right from the boat, still offshore, and invite them to share the bounty that night for dinner. Nice to hear stories about our year-round friends getting to enjoy their summers and do normal stuff. Even just a little.

Julia Humphreys and her dog Xochi when he won his Pronounced Nose Work Level 2 Title. Photo by Karen Odgen

Frank Drake’s garden, which was very visible up and across the Edgartown Road, always seemed a remarkable achievement. He planted it every year on the Fourth of July. Within weeks it had not only caught up, but surpassed the efforts of everyone else in the neighborhood who had dutifully put in early crops in April and hot-weather plantings around Memorial Day. His tomatoes, pole beans, and corn reached the sky, covered with perfectly formed vegetables in astounding abundance. No animal, bird, or insect ever dared interfere. His wife Helen cooked and put up whatever Frank grew, feeding their family much of the year from this relatively small and productive rectangle. Oh, and it didn’t have a fence around it.

I have been thinking about this as I survey my tomato plants still in peat pots, beans and summer squash seeds as yet unplanted. Potatoes and garlic are coming up, and it’s a good raspberry year. I have nothing to say about the packages of sweet peas and other annual flower seeds, most of which instructed me to sow after the last frost. I know I’ll get them in eventually, and with good soil and compost, will hopefully have some flowers and good vegetables this summer. Meanwhile, I am picking delicious Sungold cherry tomatoes off my spindly plants, and making artistic bouquets for the house from ferns and hosta leaves, with a few blossoms from cooperating perennials.

This has all come to mind as Mike and I went to celebrate Bill and Betty Haynes’s 50th wedding anniversary last Saturday. Bruce and Jennifer Haynes held the party at their house. Co-host and hostess were Janice Haynes and her husband, Jeremiah Brown. Jennifer’s parents, Margaret and Bill Burke, came to help, and Betty’s brother and sister-in-law, Fred and Linda Lewis. And, of course, all the grandkids: Nathaniel, Jessica, Lily, and Hannah. It was a beautiful day for a party, and being West Tisbury, the company and the food were exceptional. The point of my story is that Bill always teases me about how lackadaisical I am about getting my garden in every spring, so I wanted to bring something that came from my garden. I did, a rhubarb and raspberry crisp, and he was duly impressed.

Continuing the horticultural theme, the Polly Hill Arboretum’s seasonal Walk Through Imagination has been set out by imaginative duo potter Bill O’Callaghan and storyteller Robin Tuck. This year’s story is “The People of Pim.” It’s fun to walk through the arboretum, and you have till the end of August to find out about the people and secrets of Pim.

Julia Humphreys and her golden retriever Xochi traveled to Litchfield, Conn., to compete in Level 2 Nosework Trials. Xochi found all the hidden scents in all four elements (containers, vehicles, interior, and exterior) with an overall time of 3 minutes 57 seconds, a minute and a quarter faster than the next dog. “But best of all, because the judges in each of the four elements stated that our teamwork was outstanding, his title was ‘Pronounced,’ which means with honors. He was awarded first place overall,” said Julia. Karen Ogden was there, too, as the official photographer.

Louise Bessire took her three granddaughters on a Viking River Cruise on the Danube, from Budapest through Bratislava, Vienna, Salzburg, and Passau, ending in Prague. Blakey, Clay, and Emma Bessire all enjoyed exploring the cities for treasures and learning the history of each place.

The West Tisbury Church will have tents and tables set up and banner flying for their annual Blueberry Festival, one of the signature events of summer. There are always delicious sundaes and smoothies to enjoy on the lawn, and jars of jam to take home. It’s this Saturday, July 18, noon to 4.

On Sunday afternoon at 3 o’clock, the West Tisbury library presents the sixth annual performance of “The World of Troubadours” and “Trobairitz: Poems and Songs from 12th and 13th Century Southern France.” Tenor Jason Wang is the soloist, accompanied by lutenist Richard Maloney and members of Ensemble Passacaglia. Paul Levine will give historical background and explain the origin of the works. The event is free and open to the public.

Other library programs this week and next include, on Saturday, July 18, art projects in the morning, and the Lego Club meeting from 3 to 4:30. Monday Night Movies are “City of Bones” for teenagers and “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day” for families. Both begin at 6:30 and are free, popcorn included. Meet on the front porch at 9:30 Monday night for Star-Gazing with Lenny Schoenfeld. The library, in collaboration with the Yard and YOU, presents “You Can Dance If You Want To,” a family dance party, from 4 to 6 on the 22nd and 23rd. Also on Wednesday, the 22nd, at 5 o’clock, Tom Dunlop and John Wilson present clips from home movies and theatrical films shot on the Island, some dating from the 1920s, part of their effort with the Vineyard Gazette to save a cinematic record of Martha’s Vineyard. And I have it on good authority that there will be a surprise guest at Thursday morning’s preschool story time.

The Friends of the Library are in full force preparing for their annual Book Sale. They could use some help from energetic, book-loving volunteers. If you are interested, come to the West Tisbury School gym Monday through Friday mornings, 9 to noon. And if you have books to donate, please bring them to the school during those hours.

The West Tisbury Personnel Board needs a new member. Their job is to administer policies and procedures covering town employees. If interested, please call Maria McFarland, 508-696-6404, or email personnel@westtisbury-ma.gov.

A retirement party is planned for Superintendent James Weiss at the Grange Hall next Saturday, July 25, 5 to 8 pm. Tickets are $25, sold at the door, the superintendent’s office, or the MVRHS. Proceeds will go to the James Weiss Student Activity Fund.

The Howes House Friday Watercolor Painting Group is having a two-day exhibition of members’ work. It’s open on Friday, July 17, noon to 4, and Saturday, July 18, 9 to 2.

Rez Williams’ new paintings of Ireland and his continuing series of fishing boats will have an opening at A Gallery on Saturday, July 18, 5 to 7 pm.

Wendy Weldon, who was inspired by her travels in Asia this winter, opens “Color” at the Field Gallery Sunday afternoon, 5 to 7.

A call to the community: My friend Giulia Fleishman is leaving for Israel on July 23, where she will study Torah and Talmud for 10 months at the Pardes Institute for Jewish Learning. She is desperately looking for a home, temporary or permanent, for her 3-year-old dog, Fia. Fia is a mix of mostly husky, a very pretty brown and tan girl with a sweet temperament. If you are interested, please call Giulia at 917-903-9038.

Driving down New Lane the other day, I saw a new farm stand at the intersection where New Lane branches off to Tiah’s Cove Road to the right and down to Flat Point Farm to the left. I saw that the proprietor is Milo Brush, youngest in a long line of West Tisbury farmers. His great-grandfather was Arnie Fischer, who started Flat Point Farm. Arnie Jr. is Milo’s grandfather. His mom, Emily Fischer, and dad, Doug Brush, are continuing the tradition at Flat Point. And now Milo. His Swiss chard and bok choy looked healthy and delicious. Do stop by.

Raspberries. Just the color a painter would describe, a dark pink-red. Sweet. Perfect. Of course, the best, ripest ones are deep in the tangle of briars that is my raspberry patch. It escaped the neatly planted rows of canes to flourish inside the vegetable garden fence. The best soil, I suppose, and regular water. For now, they remain there. Handfuls for breakfast, along with the alpine strawberries that border the beds outside our kitchen door.

I wish they had ripened in time for our friends’ children to pick last week. I had watched and planned. When Mike’s cousin Stephanie’s son, Alexander, was a little boy, the raspberries always ripened for his arrival for Fourth of July. This time, it was my friend Sara’s children, Eli and Annabelle, who picked the last of the strawberries and looked at the uncolored, not-yet-fruit on branching canes. They were too young for explanations.

Meanwhile, they enjoyed their time on the Vineyard with all the things parents and children do here: visiting beaches and animals, gathering stones and crab shells, walking barefoot, exploring everything from the back of their parents’ bicycles or from their own vantage point a couple of feet above the ground. There’s something magical about watching children discover the world. It’s a gift to watch and share.

Whitney and Bill Moody have been anticipating that very pleasure. Mike and I saw Whitney on our walk yesterday. Bill was up in Boston picking up the grandkids, Maya and Aiden Callahan, arriving from London. “Two-and-a-half weeks we’ll have them all to ourselves,” said Whitney. I know everyone will have a great time.

The weather has been pretty perfect. Not too hot, a little breeze. Rainstorms have been exciting. Hard, driving rain with thunder and lightning, wind blowing right in. There were lots of calls for the Fire Department and Rescue Squad. Gas alarms, smoke alarms, and a lightning strike kept everyone busy.

Fortunately, the Fourth itself was lovely for cookouts, beach walks, the parade, and fireworks. Mark Bettencourt took the big brushbreaker 732 to Edgartown for the parade. The Great Pond was full of Sunfish, kayaks, canoes, and a Hobie Cat, and we could see lots of people on the beach across the pond.

A new kitten named Maddie found Morgan Caruso and has moved in for good. Laura said she just appeared. Now Maddie and Layla, the resident elder cat, are eyeing each other and getting along, so far.

Happy birthday to Asa Allen Ruel, who turns 1 year old this weekend.

I was sad to learn that Carolyn Spengler died last Tuesday, June 30. Carolyn was accomplished at everything she did. She belonged to the Garden Club, the Monday Night Knitters, loved to travel with her husband Art, and was a genuinely nice person to know.

Phil DaRosa’s Second Annual Martha’s Vineyard Sound, an indie music festival, is this weekend, Saturday, July 11, and Sunday, July 12, in Oak Bluffs. Lots of familiar performers and lots of new ones, plus activities, all with a decidedly Vineyard flavor.

West Tisbury photographer Randi Baird is exhibiting her photographs of Stina Sayre’s newest collection at Stina Sayre Design on Winter Street in Edgartown. The opening is 5 to 7, Tuesday, July 14. Randi’s photographs bring together the clothing, models, and natural landscape settings, all in an artistic blend.

Valerie Sonnenthal leads MELT Mondays at the Howes House, 8:30–9:30 am. MELT is a combination of simple self-care techniques, focusing on hands and feet.

Plan ahead for the Annual Blueberry Festival at the West Tisbury Church, next Saturday, July 18, noon to 4. Expect a full description in next week’s column.

Regular activities resume at the West Tisbury library. Island-Grown Storytime is today, July 9, at 10:30 in the Children’s Room. An artist’s reception for Sally Taylor begins at 5 pm. Martha’s Vineyard Quilters meet at 6 pm, and there will be a public forum called “The Crisis of Homelessness and the Call to Care” from 6 to 8 pm. Friday, July 10, the Mac Pro is available from 10 to noon. Saturday, July 11, speakers from St. Vincent and Martha’s Vineyard will present “Sister Islands” about the history and relationship of St. Vincent & Grenadines with Dukes County. It begins at 3 o’clock. Monday, July 13, is a busy day. Mathea Morais’ Writing Workshop begins at 10:30. Mother Goose on the Loose storytime for infants begins at 10:30. At 5 pm Naomi Jackson will read from and talk about her debut novel, “The Star-side of Bird Hill.” Family and teen movies begin at 6:30. Come with binoculars and a blanket to star-gaze at 9:30 on the lawn behind the library.Dan Cooney will lead a comic book making workshop for teens on Wednesday, July 15. West Tisbury firemen and a fire truck will visit next Thursday’s story time at the library from 10:30 to 11:30.

I am sorry to report that our baby skunks didn’t live very long. We found them dead in our yard, one on Tuesday morning and the other on Friday. There is still a bit of skunk aroma wafting through the yard sometimes, so I think the parent(s) or maybe other siblings must be around somewhere. They were cute, but I knew what was to come, and it’s nice to be able to go out in our yard without worry.

We had a nice visit from Mari Harman and Tom and Elise Thomas. They just arrived on the Island, and headed right over to visit Nanuk, who was Mari’s former dog. Nan always dances and smiles and settles by her feet, for Mari was Nanuk’s first love.

 

The hayfields are being cut, their fragrance drifting across to those of us lucky enough to be passing at the time. Old-fashioned orange tiger lilies decorate the roadsides, too, in clumps or masses, sometimes tangled with rambler roses, sometimes on their own. Elderberry bushes and viburnums are blooming, along with the last rhododendrons, and a pair of the most splendid fiery orange azaleas at the entrance to the Polly Hill Arboretum driveway has enchanted me all week. All are surely grateful for the inch or so of rain we had over the weekend.

Fortunately, the rain held off “till after the last guest left” Cathy Minkiewicz’s outdoor birthday party Saturday evening. More properly, it was a belated birthday party. Cathy’s actual birthday was in snowy February, not conducive to traveling for family or for outdoor gatherings, so the celebration of her 70th birthday happened as planned in June. Mike and Cathy’s kids came from Arlington, Va., and Salem, bringing the four grandchildren ages 2 to 8, who were off visiting the animals at Native Earth Farm when I spoke with Cathy on Monday morning.

Town has been busy, with everyone attending the Farmers Markets on Wednesdays and Saturdays, the Artisans’ Shows on Thursdays and Sundays, and the Antique Show on Fridays.

Leslie Baker, Rob Hauck, Julia Mitchell, and Donna Straw will be exhibiting together at A Gallery in Oak Bluffs. The opening reception is Sunday, July 5, 5 to 7 pm.

Sheila Fane’s exhibition at the West Tisbury library has been extended through July 6. It will be followed by Sally Taylor’s exhibition, “Consenses,” based on her sending a dozen photographs of the Island to 150 artists worldwide, to be interpreted by them in their own mediums. Come to the opening reception next Thursday, July 9. Viewers will be able to add their interpretations on an inspiration board, continuing the chain of reactions and responses.

Lynn Christoffers is showing “Cats of Martha’s Vineyard” through July at MVTV’s studio at 58 Edgartown–West Tisbury Road. New cat photographs and a video starring Marcel Duchat are included. Hours are Monday to Friday, 9 to 5.

Paul Karasik and Marsha Winsryg are exhibiting together at the Vineyard Playhouse Art Space in Vineyard Haven. Paul’s cartoons and Marsha’s oil pastels are on view through July 10 during box office and production hours, and by appointment.

Jeanne Staples will exhibit Haitian quilts and crafts for the next two Mondays, July 6 and 13, 10 to 3, at the Federated Church in Edgartown.

When I ran into Ken Edwards and complimented him on the wonderful article in last week’s Calendar about Clay’s copper  relief sculptures, Ken replied that it was the best Father’s Day present he had ever received. Clay was very complimentary about his dad’s encouragement and support, as well as learning the craft from working with Ken. It’s wonderful to see the younger generation coming into their own. Congratulations, Clay. Your work is beautiful.

West Tisbury’s the Roundabouts — Cheryl, Erik, and Julius Lowe — will be performing this Friday evening, July 3, at the P.A. Club in Oak Bluffs. The concert begins at 8:30.

Ellen Weiss has returned from visiting her family in New York City. I asked if she had time to see any art, and she replied that the best was the new Whitney Museum. The building was designed to show off the art, but also to be comfortable and contemplative for viewers. Ellen said there were lots of places to sit, and wonderful views of the Hudson River. Reviews of the new building and exhibition spaces have all been raves, Ellen’s included. It’s at 99 Gansevoort Street, if you plan to be in the city.

Suzanne and Rich Hammond are justifiably proud that two of their kids have just graduated from college. Genevieve was awarded a bachelor of science in Public Health and Health Science from UMass Amherst. She will attend UMass Boston School of Nursing in the fall. Evan graduated as salutatorian of his class at Boston Architectural College. He received honors commendations for outstanding landscape architecture. Congratulations to you all.

Town offices will be closed on Friday for the 4th of July holiday. The library will be closed both Friday, July 3, and Saturday, July 4. Please note that all children’s events at the library have been cancelled through July 8 as a precaution against measles.

Lots going on at the library. Stargazing nights are July 6 and 13 at 9:30. Elizabeth Benedict will discuss college admissions on July 7 at 5 pm. Drop in between 10 and 12 on Tuesdays and Fridays with questions for the Mac Pro. Next Wednesday, July 8, Martha’s Vineyard Spiritual Choir will perform at 6:30. Sally Taylor’s art reception is on July 9 at 5 pm.

Former Music Street resident, Martha’s Vineyard Times Calendar editor, and travel writer Perry Garfinkel will be in town, visiting Mark Mazer and leading a five-day travel-writing workshop August 30 to Sept. 5 at Noepe Center for Literary Arts. For information and to register, call Justen Ahren at 508-560-0467, or online: bit.ly/1BRGsUs.

My thanks to Beth Kramer for taking over the column while I was ill. She did a great job, and said she enjoyed doing it.

We have been amused and plagued by a family of baby skunks in our yard. Tiny and very cute, they appear fearless, coming quite close to the house as they explore. Their little bottlebrush tails stand straight up, and they are already able to spray. Talley, who has always been timid, is afraid to go outside. Nan doesn’t even pay any attention; she is pretty fearless herself. So far, neither dog has been skunked, but I suppose it’s only a matter of time before the cute little guys become a lot of adult problems.

 

The wind blew, and with no rain, everything is drier than one would expect after our snowy winter. Some days have been overcast, some perfect warm sunshine. But we really need rain.

If you drive down Edgartown Road, take a look at Harriet Bernstein’s yard (there’s a red hat on a post at the end of the driveway.) Her three spectacular Kwanzan cherry trees are in full bloom, completely spanning the front of her property. They make quite a sight from the road.

Many of you will remember Joan and Bill Lamont and their kids, who spent many summers here in their home on Charles Neck Way; Colorado East was what they called it. Sadly, they sold their house in the ’90s, and have only been back a few times. The latest was last Wednesday and Thursday. They had “the most perfect ferry ride,” according to Joan, and perfect days for riding their bikes around the Island. They were on the East Coast for their eldest grandson, Lamont Gross’s, graduation from Boston College, and took the extra days to visit the Island. We had dinner together here Wednesday night. It felt just like our many dinners when we were all just down the road from one another. Even to Mike getting called on his pager to a brush fire.

There have been so many fire calls lately for brush fires. The department is on high alert, as conditions are so terribly dry. Thankfully, all have been small and containable. Please, everyone, be extra careful. Our Island is like a tinderbox right now, and an out-of-control brush fire would be disastrous. Every town has had small fires called in.

Another note of caution: a reminder to leave your car windows all wide open and park in the shade if you have a dog in the car. Don’t leave him or her for any length of time, as cars can heat up terribly fast.

A note on the passing of Edie Baker’s beloved golden, Lily. (NOT from an overheated car; she had a charmed life with Edie.) Lily was adopted at age 3, and lived to almost 16. It was one of those serendipitous conversations where Mike and I were at our Sunday airport breakfast talking to Jane Hawkes and Alison McKinley about the dogs we had all recently rescued from various shelters. Edie was looking for a dog, and I mentioned a golden we had heard about. Lee Dubin made the arrangements, and Lily arrived in Edie’s life. I’m so glad it was a long and happy friendship.

On Saturday May 23 at 3 pm, the library will hold another Lego Club extravaganza.

Please join Tim Boland on Saturday, May 30, at 2:30 pm at the library for the final talk in his series. Tim will discuss the landscaping of the new library, and take participants on a tour of the grounds.

The library will be closed Monday, May 25, in observance of Memorial Day. Please remember that the library is now closed on Sundays till mid-October, but will continue to host special events on Sundays.

There will be two free concerts this month at the West Tisbury library. On Friday, May 29, at 7 pm, the Martha’s Vineyard Peace Council will be offering “Music Presented in the Cause of Peace,” featuring music by Bach, Liszt, Schubert, and others performed by pianist Lisa Weiss, accompanied by soprano Stephanie Barnes and mezzo-soprano Martha Hudson, with Jesse Keller, dancer. On Sunday, May 31, at 4 pm, Sara Rosenthal and Julie Prazich will sponsor the first annual “Remembering the Rosenthals” concert, featuring Diane Katzenberg Braun and Music Street playing works by Beethoven, Ravel, Bartok, and others.

Both concerts are free and open to the public. Please call the library at 508-683-3366 to reserve a seat. Seating is limited.

Volume Two of a projected three-volume biography by local resident and author Paul Magid has arrived at our library. The Gray Fox: George Crook and the Indian Wars opens in 1866, when General Crook began his series of campaigns against the Paiutes, Apaches, Sioux, and Cheyennes. The first volume was George Crook: From Redwoods to Appomattox, if you want to start at the beginning.

Dane Boggs, author of Reiki Awakening, will be guest speaker at the Howes House this Friday evening, May 22, 7 to 9 pm. Sponsored by the Lyme Center of Martha’s Vineyard, he will discuss his personal victory over Lyme with the help of Rife and Reiki therapies. Rife machines will be available for demonstrations. His lecture, “A Path to Wellness: Fighting Lyme Disease,” is open to the public.

The Chilmark Women’s Symposium XXXV is this Saturday, May 23, from 9 to noon at the Chilmark Community Center. The topic is “Just When You Thought …” There are talks and small group conversations, and the best things to eat with coffee or tea. It’s free, but donations are much appreciated.

The Teen Library Club will meet at 4 pm on Wednesday, May 27, for a movie at the library. Popcorn will be served.

If you are interested in architecture and Island history, the Federated Church Meetinghouse has announced that it will be open to the public from 11 am to 1 pm daily from May 25 through Oct. 12. It’s a beautiful building on the corner of South Summer Street and Cooke Street in Edgartown. It was designed by Frederick Baylies Jr., also the designer and builder of the Baptist Church on School Street, now a private home, and the iconic Old Whaling Church on Main Street. Built in 1828, it was the fifth Meetinghouse of the First Congregational Church of Martha’s Vineyard. In 1925, the Baptist Church merged with the Congregational Church, forming what is now the Federated Church. This will be an opportunity to see and enjoy this building if you are not already familiar with it. For more information, visit the website federatedchurchmv.org, or call 508 627-4221.

A short column this week. My cousin Hannah Beecher and I are going off-Island to attend Bob Henry’s funeral service in Bethesda, Md., on Sunday afternoon. I wanted to get the column in before we leave on Saturday. Apologies to anyone who sent me news over the weekend.

I went off Island Sunday for Mother’s Day, to have lunch with my cousin Sally at Heritage in Falmouth. The boat over was crowded, and the lines for the boat coming home that afternoon were unbelievable. The Steamship Authority parking lot was filled with more people than I ever remember, and it’s only early May.

Complaining to my friend Joanne Scott this morning, she told me her story: Her daughter Tabor called her Saturday morning with a surprise request: “Meet me in Falmouth.” So she did. They spent a lovely day together, an early Mother’s Day outing. When Joanne got to Woods Hole to come home, she told me there were so many people that there was a standby area for walk-on passengers. Neither of us ever remember such a thing. And it’s only early May.

Ann Burt got an early Mother’s Day present — a shiny new green garden cart, so light she can “move it with just a finger.” Her daughter Prudy and son Percy were coming on Sunday for dinner and to help with the gardening chores. I know Ann does a lot herself, and her garden is resplendent with daffodils along the Tiasquam River that crosses the back of her yard, lovely boxwoods, the biggest contorted hazel I have ever seen, which Ann “whacks down” periodically, and the most perfect and productive vegetable garden fenced at the top of the hill.

The shadbush are gorgeous all around town, as are the pear trees at the cemetery and new leaves on maples. Edgartown Road looks particularly pretty with the Garden Club’s new plantings in the Triangle. They have settled in their first year, and extend the daffodil display from Brandy Brow down across the road. With the greening-up of shrubbery along the marsh and the Mill Pond, it is all fresh and beautiful.

Polly Hill Arboretum horticulturist and arborist Ian Jochems is offering a workshop this Saturday, May 16, 10 to noon. It’s called “The Finest Cut: Taking the Fear Out of Pruning.” He will cover different techniques, as well as tool maintenance, with demos and hands-on practice. Participants will take a tour to observe how plants in the arboretum’s collection have responded to their pruning program. Preregistration is required. The cost is $20, or $10 for PHA members.

Habitat for Humanity is having a sale of construction materials on Saturday from 8 am to 2 pm behind Carroll’s Trucking at 475 Edgartown Road. You may find just the right thing to finish your project. New and antique hardware, windows, cabinets, toilets, and tools will all be for sale. If you have materials to donate, or would like to volunteer to help out, call 508-696-4646, or email houses@habitatmv.org.

You can also get rid of stuff, farther down Edgartown Road, at Martha’s Vineyard Community Services Spring Electronics Disposal Day. For fees from $2 to $30 (10 percent discount for a full carload), bring your old air conditioners, cell phones, computers, etc. between 9 am and 2 pm, and help support Community Services.

For fun, the Vineyard Montessori School second annual Flyin’ MV and Fly Me to the Moon is also this Saturday. Come to Katama Airport between 11 am and 2 pm for a flight around the Island. Then grownups are invited to an evening event at the Dunes from 7 to 10. Call Head of School Deborah Jernegan, 508-693-4090, for more information.

Then there’s the 2015 Bird-a-Thon to raise money for Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary. They are looking for birders and sponsors for their two-day event, which starts at 6 pm on Friday, May 15, and runs through 6 pm on Saturday. Call Felix Neck at 508-627-4850 or visit massaudubon.org/birdathon to sign up to count or make a pledge.

Mary Wilson and Pitter Patter Puppets will perform at the West Tisbury library Saturday morning at 10:30 for 2- to 7-year-olds. It’s free. Afterward, from noon to 2 o’clock, Mary will lead a puppetry workshop for adults.

Paula Martin will be at the library at 3 pm, to talk about “Spring Cleaning and Organizing.”

The YMCA is the place for the 2015 After Prom Party for juniors and their dates this Saturday night. From 10 pm to 5 am, enjoy music with a DJ at poolside, good food, games, etc. For information, call Rachel Araujo, 774-310-0027, or Debbie DeBettencourt, 774-836-6448.

This Sunday, May 17, will be the last Sunday the library is open. Sunday hours will resume in mid-October.

West Tisbury painter and printmaker Marie-Louise Rouff will open her new studio/gallery this Saturday, May 16, between noon and 4 pm. You will see her sign on State Road across from Ghost Island Farm. Turn in, and you will see the gallery entrance on the right. The gallery will be open Saturdays and Sundays, noon to 4, and by appointment through the summer. Marie-Louise’s phone number is 508-693-2072, and her website is mlrouff.com.

Clare Boland, sophomore at Cornell University, was awarded the Corson-Browning Poetry Prize by the Department of English. The prize includes an award of $1,000. Clare is an English and Performance & Media Studies major. Her parents, Tim Boland and Laura Coit, are very proud.

I end with the sad news that Bob Henry died on Saturday at his home in Bethesda, Md. Bob was a well-known summer visitor, especially with the bridge players, golfers, and beachgoers he regularly spent his time with. Dinner parties with Bob and his wife, Dorothy Barthelmes, were special occasions, made extra-special by the host and hostess, with good conversation and good food. We who loved Bob had hoped he would have one more summer in the Slocum House.

 

 

 

I don’t think there was a dry eye in the library Sunday afternoon as Cindy Mitchell and Shannon Gregory Carbon spoke about Pat Gregory, father, library patron, town moderator, at the ceremony dedicating the lobby in his memory. David Stanwood played the piano as people milled around before the ceremony. It was standing room only. The library looked springlike and beautiful, filled with vases of daffodils decorating every surface.

Now we have lilacs to look forward to. Janice Haynes commented that she has never seen so many buds, and expects “a spectacular lilac year.” Not to rush the season, as we have weeks still to enjoy the daffodils. Magnolias and flowering cherries are gorgeous. The pear trees at the cemetery are showing huge colored buds ready to burst.

Another prediction comes from Tom Hodgson, who says asparagus and peas will be “especially good.” Tom and his wife, Christine Gault, had lunch recently with Christine’s mother, Mary Bell, Beth Kramer, and her mother, Joan Hopkins. The garden comment came up during this outing, as Tom told about spring’s progress at Wishetwurra Farm, one of the most resplendent and productive gardens in town.

Following the town meeting vote to identify properties for fire and emergency services, Kenny Mastromonaco is making signs for the fire department for $20 each. Map, lot, and street numbers will be displayed. Call Kenny at 508-693-6008.

Bobby Maciel has been in town, visiting from Maine. Besides spending time with his parents, Bob and Barbara, he has been a welcome presence at the fire departments, where he left many friends when he moved. Bobby has been active in his new department, as we knew he would be. Firefighting is in the Maciel blood.

Sue Hruby, Alice Early, and Elle Lash spent the weekend together in Boston attending the Annual Writers Muse and Marketplace Conference sponsored by the famous Grub Street Writers Organization. They all went to different workshops and meetings, covering everything from meeting prospective agents to learning about editing and rewriting manuscripts. Lots of good information. All three are longtime members of John Hough’s weekly writing group.

I finally met Hazel Waring, almost walking in her pink high-top sneakers, almost a year old. Hazel, her mom Diana, and grandmother Pat were at the library on Sunday.

Joanne Scott had to miss the library dedication, as her granddaughter’s second birthday party was scheduled for the exact same time. Bianca Mary Stafford was guest of honor at a birthday bash at the home of her parents, Ben and Katie. Grandparents Bob Stafford and Patience Sampson of Boston and Maine also attended. Joanne reports, “Lots of lovely balloons and children. The sun came out, and delicious cake was enjoyed by all.”

Bill and Betty Haynes were off-Island attending the graduation of their grandson, Nathaniel Haynes, from the New England Institute of Technology in Warwick, R.I. Bruce and Jennifer Haynes, Jessica Haynes, and Janice Haynes were there. Classmate and friend Jacob Oliver graduated, too. His parents, Jesse Oliver and Allison Barrett, were in the audience.

There are a lot of graduations coming up over the next few weekends. I hope proud parents and grandparents will call me with their stories for the column.

I do know that Janaye Rooney will graduate from UMass-Amherst next weekend with a B.A. in English. Her parents, Rich Rooney and Jan Paul, will be there, so note that Jan’s store, the Heath Hen, will be closed Friday and Saturday. When they get back, Jan has plans to celebrate her three years owning the store in its Woodside Village location. I’ll keep you posted.

Marsha Winsryg has returned from Zambia, where she made dolls with moms from the Mama Bakita School. Marsha took fabric and sewing supplies for the moms, and tempera paint to keep the kids busy. She returned with lots of new crafts for sale to help support the African charities she holds dear. You may contact Marsha at 508 693-4059 or aacdpafrica.org.

The Minnesingers’ annual Spring Concert will take place this weekend at the MVRHS Performing Arts Center. Concerts are Saturday, May 9, at 7 pm and Sunday, May 10, at 3 pm. There will be singing and dancing to music from “An American Songbook,” celebrating 90 years of the Oscars. Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for students and seniors, available from any member of the Minnesingers or at the door.

Living Local Harvest Festival has announced the dates for their event, Oct. 2 and 3. They are looking for volunteers, displays, and vendors. Food vendors need to sign up by May 15, so if you are interested check their Facebook page, their website livinglocalmv.org, or contact livinglocalvineyard@gmail.com.

A good time to do some spring cleaning, as MVCS Electronics Disposal Day is coming up next Saturday, May 16, 9 to 2, at Community Services. Get your old air conditioners, cell phones, computers, copiers, dehumidifiers, fax machines, laptops, printers, monitors, microwaves, ranges, refrigerators, scanners, stereo equipment, televisions, washers, dryers, and anything else you can think of. Fees are between $2 and $30, with a 10% discount on carloads. All proceeds benefit Martha’s Vineyard Community Services.

Artist of the Month at the West Tisbury library is Richard Limber. See his paintings in the Program Room and at the circulation desk. Paul Thurlow is guest musician at a concert this Friday, May 8, at 7 pm. Saturday, May 9, Tim Boland will talk about “Small Flowering Trees for Your Landscape,” a timely subject as everything is blooming right now. (Take a look at the pink cherry tree in the field at Polly Hill Arboretum, where Tim is the director and an amazing plantsman.) Wednesday afternoon, May 13, the Writers’ Residency Spring Reading Series convenes at 5 pm. There is also a Teen/Tween Movie at 4. (Free popcorn.) Nicole Cabot leads the Island Grown Story Hour on Thursday morning, May 14, at 10:30. The subject is “Seafood.” What could be better?

Daffodils are everywhere, blooming along roadsides and in gardens all across town. The Cooks’ lawn on Music Street is a carpet of blue chionodoxa. The star magnolia on the Olsens’ front lawn, several cornus mas, and the first forsythia make driving along State Road a visual treat. Then there are the alluring gardens and displays at the three garden centers.

Everybody seems to be raking and planting, so relieved to feel warm sunshine and see new growth. I will admit to having put on shorts already, but then that cool wind comes up, and I’m running upstairs for long pants and socks and a polar fleece jacket. We haven’t needed to start a fire these last nights.

The opening into the Great Pond is still maintaining. It’s nice to see folks out in boats, many oystering. Nice enough to be walking along the beach.

Marjory Potts spent last week in Washington, D.C., visiting her son Oliver and his family. She said the cherry trees are more spectacular than one can imagine from seeing them in the news. They are small, but thickly branched and flowered. Marjory and her grandchildren looked up, barely able to see the sky through the trees.

Linda Vadasz had a beautiful day for her birthday last week. The day was warm and sunny. Friends Elaine and Bill Farran were visiting from New York. Bill is an artist, who spoke at the Martha’s Vineyard Hebrew Center about his series of woodcuts, “Wooden Synagogues of Poland.” After Bill’s presentation, Linda was taken out to dinner with Gaston, the Farrans, Dan and Nancy Cabot, and Nicole and Ben Cabot and their daughters, Violet and Reed. Wishing you many happy returns, dear Linda.

Don’t forget that the continuation of our annual town meeting is scheduled for Tuesday evening, April 28, 7 pm, at the West Tisbury School. We need a quorum to act on the remaining seven articles.

The town voted to dedicate the foyer of our library in honor of Pat Gregory, beloved West Tisbury teacher and moderator of years of town meetings. The dedication ceremony will be Sunday afternoon, May 3, at 3 o’clock.

Charles Terry, bass and guitar player and composer, will perform at the West Tisbury library this Friday, April 24, at 7 pm. “An able sideman, ready to drop everything and hit the road,” Mr. Terry has performed with Stan Strickland, the Steve Fox Quintet, Joe Keenan’s Touring Circus, the Offshore Cycle Band, and others.

Tim Boland, executive director at the Polly Hill Arboretum, will celebrate Arbor Day with a lecture at the West Tisbury library, “Trees Are the Answer! Cultivating Trees on Martha’s Vineyard.” He will talk about organic landscape practices, adaptable native plants, deer-resistant plants, and landscaping using environmentally informed landscape practices. He was responsible for much of the landscaping outside the library. The lecture is this Saturday, April 25, at 2:30 pm.

Susie Bowman and Fred Hotchkiss will speak at the library on Tuesday, April 28, 5 to 6 pm. Their program, “Horseshoe Crabs: A Story of Beach Trysts and Blue Bloods,” tells the lives and history of the horseshoe crab, illustrated with slides, and discusses opportunities for involvement in the Horseshoe Crab Citizens Science Survey Project. Ms. Bowman was a teacher and naturalist at the Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary. Mr. Hotchkiss is founding director of the Marine and Paleobiological Research Institute, whose mission is to inspire young people to pursue study of marine science and fossils.

Daniel Mayhew will facilitate an adult console game night at the library on Thursday, April 30, at 6 pm. He will have a wide variety of software titles, and hopes to broaden interest in the creative, as well as the competitive side, of video games.

Former West Tisbury poet laureate Fan Ogilvie and other Island poets laureate organized a workshop with students of the Charter School, Chilmark School, and the Regional High School to study the history of the Gay Head Lighthouse. Participants wrote poems and illustrated them. Their work was made into a book by the Tisbury Printer and presented at an authors’ party, where the young poets read their work. Each student was given a copy. Now you can buy one for yourself; copies are on sale at Bunch of Grapes. All proceeds will go to supporting the lighthouse’s upcoming move.

It has been a sad week for artists, as West Tisbury lost two very good ones.

Nick Thayer was an amazing and inspiring printmaker. He worked at Featherstone, where for many years he made monotypes every Thursday morning with Rob Hauck, Wendy Weldon, and Leslie Baker. Rob told me that they met this past Thursday and, though dispirited, they vowed to continue on. Sincere condolences to Nina and their family, and Nick’s many admirers.

Eleanor Rodegast was one of the early members of my art/crit group. She was a wonderful painter who was modest about her talents. She could paint the figure like no one else. And she had a good sense of humor besides, always good company when we got together to paint from a model or for our monthly critiques and dinners. We have all missed her since she moved off-Island, and note her passing. Condolences to her family and friends.

 

Hand set vintage type,

hand mixed oil inks,

hand printed on

19th ct. platen presses

in the barn by the garden

in West Tisbury

on Martha’s Vineyard Island

—Emma Young, letterpress printer

 

So Emma Young describes herself on her website. Emma designs and prints all sorts of visual gems, but none so special as her books of her own poetry. The latest is titled tomato skin DIAMOND: one dozen poems.

Ms. Young has just been named West Tisbury’s poet laureate. Her poems are as luscious as the manner of their presentation on thick paper that takes the inks and impressions of letters and art. Congratulations, Emma.

Island Poet Laureate Arnie Reisman will host a poetry reading at the West Tisbury library next Tuesday, April 21, at 4:30. After his reading, Island poets will be invited to read one of their poems at the open-mike event.

Next week is school vacation week, and the library has planned to set out a family craft every day between 11 and 4, and to show family movies every afternoon at 2. The schedule is:

Tuesday: Big Hero 6

Wednesday: Song of the Sea

Thursday: Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

Friday: The Boxtrolls

Movies are free, and so is the popcorn.

Saturday, April 18, there will be a performance by Vineyard Belly Dance & Revue at 1 o’clock at the library. The Lego Club will meet from 3 to 4:30.

Please note that the library will be closed on Sunday for spring cleaning and on Monday for Patriot’s Day.

A request from the Friends of the West Tisbury Library: Please hold on to your bags of books for the book sale until July 1, when they move from the sheds into the school gymnasium. The sheds are bursting full. This year’s Book Sale will take place July 31 to August 2.

The Vineyard Sinfonietta has planned a special concert next Friday evening, April 24, 6 to 7:30, at the Chilmark Church to honor flautist Edie Yoder, who is moving to an artists’ colony in Indiana to pursue her painting. The program will range from Mozart to Joplin. There will be time for a brief farewell to Edie and refreshments following the concert. The concert is free.

Valerie Sonnenthal will lead two workshops at the Howes House this Thursday, April 16, and April 30, 1 to 2:30. The first is Foot Fitness. The second is an Introduction to MELT Method. Cost is $25 each. Please call 508-693-2896 to reserve. You may also look at Valerie’s website, peakedhillstudio.com, for information about what she does and her private classes.

Sue Hruby, our representative to Cape Light Compact, wants to invite everyone to their upcoming Energy Efficiency Program. It will be held at the Edgartown Senior Center (the Anchors) on Tuesday, May 5, at 1 pm. Home energy assessments, rebates, and incentive programs will be discussed.

When I saw animal control officer Joannie Jenkinson the other day, my first question was about the condition of Rockette (the Mill Pond swan we formerly thought was Rocky). Rockette was hit by a car; she has had an accident-prone history. Last year she was seriously injured by a snapping turtle in the pond, and it was touch-and-go for quite awhile. All of our wildlife, farm animals, and pets are lucky to have Joannie looking out for them. Sadly,  Rockette died of her injuries. She died on the Island, where she lived her short life. Joannie tried her best to save her. May she rest in peace.

Don’t forget to vote today. The polls at the Public Safety Building are open till 8 pm.

Major League Baseball season opened last Monday, and I was pleased to see baseball players on the diamond across the street at the fire station, too. Pinkletinks are making a racket in the ponds at night. The first daffodils and myrtle flowers are blooming in my garden. I spent part of the weekend raking leaves and enjoying the sunshine. It’s lovely to have windows opened wide to the mild spring air.