Authors Posts by Jamie Stringfellow

Jamie Stringfellow

Jamie Stringfellow

John Tiernan of the Dockside Inn, at the Massachusetts Lodging Association's recent Stars of the Industry Awards.

John Tiernan, manager of the Dockside Inn on the harbor in Oak Bluffs, was named General Manager of the Year by the Massachusetts Lodging Association (MLA) at its Stars of the Industry Awards for his outstanding leadership at the Martha’s Vineyard boutique hotel.

The awards recognize outstanding accomplishments in the lodging trade. According to a press release, Mr. Tiernan, nicknamed “Chief of Comfort,” has earned a reputation for treating guests and employees like family and for his signature enthusiasm and pride for his hotel.

“The owner, John, picked us up in his vintage Rolls Royce and showed us around town, pointing out all the stops we needed to make,” wrote one guest in support of his nomination. “He made us feel so important as we drove around town! We made great conversation with John along the way, and he even had the bartender give us a round on the house once we settled.”

For more information, go to

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The Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank announced yesterday the purchase of a 30.6-acre property at Toms Neck in Edgartown for $5,170,000 from seller Ann Floyd and others.

The property, made up of overgrown farm fields, surrounds Pease Pond and has long views out to the Cape Poge Pond, a prolific shellfish resource. The Land Bank’s acquisition of the property will conserve several pre-subdivided building lots, and reduce the potential number of future septic systems in Cape Poge Pond’s watershed, according to a press release.

“The acquisition was singular in Land Bank history, however, for reasons unrelated to the land itself: The transaction was an unusual collaboration between donors, volunteer creditors, and a remarkable citizens’ organization known as the Chappaquiddick Open Space Committee,” the press release said.

The committee, chaired by Nancy Hugger, arranged for the Toms Neck property’s acquisition and its financing. Of the $5.17 million cost, $2.2 million was donated outright and $1.9 million was collectively loaned to the Land Bank by 11 Chappaquiddick families.

Management planning is underway. The Land Bank expects the property will be opened to the public in 2016.

Anyone with questions about the acquisition is encouraged to attend one of the Land Bank Commission’s regular weekly meetings at 5 pm on Mondays, or one of the Edgartown town land bank advisory board’s meetings at 4:30 pm on the first Thursday of the month, in the Land Bank’s offices at 167 Main Street in Edgartown. Call 508-627-7141 for more information.


March 23, Richard S. and Lee M. Dubin sold 19 Crocker Dr. to Katherine O’Brien for $825,000.

March 23, Isabel B. Lenssen, trustee of Isabel B. Lenssen Trust, sold 11 Plantingfield Wood Circle to Black Point LLC for $540,000.

March 24, JP Morgan Chase Bank NA, as successor in interest by purchase from FDIC as Receiver of Washington Mutual Bank, the present holder of the mortgage from John Alden Hall to Washington Mutual Bank FA, sold by foreclosure deed 69 The Boulevard to Big B Capital LLC for $1,000,000.

March 25, Leo J. Cushing, trustee of 77 Fuller Street Realty Trust and the Joseph C. Whitney Qualified Personal Residence Realty Trust, sold 77 Fuller St. to Twanette Tharp for $5,400,000.

March 27, Stewart R. Kusinitz sold 16, 14, 10 and 8 Puwal Lane to Kruppers LLC for $2,485,000.

West Tisbury

March 26, Caroline R. Flanders sold 20 Bailey Park Rd. to Laurie C. Clements for $236,900.

March 26, Joseph A. and Natalie A. Thibodeau sold 145 Great Plains Rd. to Christopher A. and Margaret O. Murray for $640,000.

March 26, Paul Lazes sold 13 Rock Pond Rd. to Caroline R. Flanders for $505,000.

Mass Audubon at Felix Neck welcomes Alexandra (Ally) Ferland to the Felix Neck staff. Ally is Felix Neck’s new education assistant, and will work closely with Josey Kirkland, education coordinator, to provide nature education programming to students in the Island school system. She will also lead public programs for the community at the sanctuary during the summer season.

Graduating from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a B.S. degree in Natural Resource Conservation, Ally’s focus was environmental conservation. According to a press release, Ally believes that her childhood on Martha’s Vineyard led to her passion for the natural world: “The idea of sharing knowledge and awareness of the importance of conserving this Island is what gets me excited, and gets me up in the morning.”

Ally will be heading up Felix Neck’s Nursery School Naturalist program for preschoolers, beginning April 2. This program runs every other Thursday from April 2 to June 11 at the sanctuary from 10:30 am to 11:30 am. Participants will look for signs of spring and watch the season unfold at Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary through stories, crafts, walks, live animal presentations, and more! Ages 3 to 5 with a parent/friend, $6 per child for members of Mass Audubon, and $9 per session for nonmembers.

Our Lambert’s Cove spotters report in.

Also called chorus frogs or tree frogs, peepers can make quite a racket considering they are barely an inch long. — File photo by Lisa Vanderhoop

The spring peepers, otherwise known as pinkeltinks, are back. After an especially long and cold winter, the sounds of springtime have invaded West Tisbury, surprisingly, several days earlier than last year.

Alex Goethals, of West Tisbury, heard them about 5 pm, Thursday and emailed The Times. “I was working and could hear them from inside [my] house. They are very loud… [and] I live next to a swampy area, so the sound is unavoidable.”

Nancy-Alyce Abbott, of West Tisbury, first heard them around 6:45 pm that same day. Her son Brian heard them and gave a shout, leading Ms. Abbott onto her back porch, which is right off Lambert’s Cove Road, to hear for herself.

“I have been keeping an ear out for them,” she said. “I have kept track of when I have heard them in past years, so I knew it would be anytime now. They usually start ‘singing’ just after sunset, and they really like rainy weather.” Thursday evening was mild and rainy.

Mr. Goethals and Ms. Abbott have competed in past years to see who can hear the tiny frogs first, then alert the media. This year was no exception, as both heard them on the same day. Mr Goethals, though, was quickest by about two hours. His email to The Times office was time stamped at 4:55 pm; Ms. Abbott’s was 7:08 pm, giving Mr Goethals the unofficial crown for yet another year.

Sandy Fisher called Friday morning and left a message in which she reported hearing the peepers about 8 pm.

One day later, Oak Bluffs peepers joined the chorus. The Times received the following email at 8 pm, Friday: “ER night shift reporting in — pinkeltinks audible from hospital parking lot. First of spring?”

For more background on the the history of the friendly race, or the spring peepers, check out our article last year: Jeepers, creepers, Martha’s Vineyard loves its spring peepers.



Listen to them!


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And win a prize of meat or fish.

When will this snow mound finally disappear? – Photo by Ralph Stewart

On Tuesday we got an email from Paul Watts, vice president at the Edgartown National Bank. “As I go from home to work and work to home each day,” he wrote, “I drive by a very large pile of snow near the Granite Hardware store, in the parking lot. Since the winter has dragged on for so long, I thought I would share an idea.” Mr. Watts suggested that The Times launch a contest wherein readers would guess at which hour on which day the giant (not as giant as it was a few weeks ago, but still sizeable) snow mountain at the Triangle would completely disappear.

So, consider this a contest: Send us an email (, or post as a comment below this story, your best guess on the date (and, if you’re into precision, the hour) that the mound at the Triangle will be completely gone.

Whoever is closest will win a $50 gift certificate to the Edgartown Meat & Fish Market.

Raindrops don't deter Vineyarders from slurping up Blizzards.

Dark skies and raindrops didn’t stop hundreds of hungry Islanders from lining up at Dairy Queen for its spring opening on Tuesday. It was a long, cold blizzard-filled winter on Martha’s Vineyard and it wasn’t  clear whether those in line were more eager for DQ Blizzards, or a just an annual, reliable sign that spring was indeed on the way.

By 3 pm, the rain tapered off, and Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School student correspondent Sophie Petkus reported: “There were tons of kids arriving when we got there. I ordered a grasshopper Blizzard with hot fudge. Sarah [Dawson, on break from the University of Vermont] got a chocolate Blizzard with Oreo, Heathbar and M&M’s.”

Six DQ employees— four behind the counter, and two assists — kept up with the steady demands, which appeared to lean heavily away from traditional soft-serve cones, and toward Blizzards, in all forms.

Seems appropriate.

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The Island Home will not make her Monday morning run. File photo by Steve Myrick

Updated, 9:52 am, Monday

The Steamship Authority is running boats on a trip-by-trip basis, but has canceled the following trips:

9:30 am Woods Hole to Vineyard Haven, due to mechanical issues

10:45 Vineyard Haven to Woods Hole, due to mechanical issues.

The Authority advises calling 508-548-3788 or 508-693-0367 or visiting to check on current status.