Authors Posts by Linley Dolby

Linley Dolby

Linley Dolby

Can we talk about the ticks for a second? They are everywhere! What was once a seldom occurrence in my household has become a daily encounter. The dogs are covered, the husband is covered, and I constantly have that phantom sensation that they are crawling all over me. So let’s consider this a public service announcement: check once, check twice, then check again. Yuck.

June 6 is the 70th anniversary of D-Day, the outset of the Normandy landings, which have been called the beginning of the end of WWII. My grandparents, Ted and Floss Morgan, have headed down to the National WWII Museum in New Orleans to commemorate the event. During their visit, Grampy will be presented the French Legion of Honor medal for his service in helping liberate France from Nazi rule. My mother, Pam Dolby, will be there, as well as Uncle Teddy and Aunt Cindy, who live in New Orleans, and the group will be joined by the San Antonio contingent, Timmy, Marty, Matt, Debbie, and Riley Morgan. Additionally, the ceremony will feature representatives from the Museum, Allied countries, veterans, and a local student who will honor the memory of a New Orleans soldier who lost his life on D-Day with performances by Sharon Turrentine, the Museum’s Victory Belles, and the Military Band.

Tommy and Liam Smith headed across the pond to spend some time with Paula and Drew Smith in London. Highlights of the trip included a visit to the Cutty Sark, a street crossing at Abbey Road, straddling the Prime Meridian, toasted cheese sandwiches, and of course, an obligatory selfie with Big Ben. Looks like you chaps had a smashing time.

Be sure to check out the newly upgraded Katama Farm Trail at the FARM Institute, which was officially unveiled last Friday. With support from the Edey Foundation, TFI partnered with Vineyard Conservation Society to create educational signage for an interpretive trail covering the Farm’s history from its glacial origins to today’s efforts to renew Island agriculture. One unique aspect of the trail is that it is one of the most accessible on the Island. The area is very flat (as is all of Katama), and the paths are either dirt roads or mowed grass on firm ground. Also, thanks to the Vineyard Independence Partnership, an Island disability advocacy group, a state-of-the-art all-terrain wheelchair can be checked out from TFI’s farm stand. To reserve the chair in advance, call 508-627-7007.

June 14 is “Shorebird Saturday.” Join the Trustees of Reservations for a tour of active bird nesting sites on Saturday, June 14. Meet at 8:30 am at Norton Point Beach in Katama. Call 508-693-7662 for more info. Or for another option, walk the beach with Felix Neck staff to record field data, search for birds and nests, and identify bird and mammal tracks in the sand. Meet at 9 am at the State Beach access trail on the Oak Bluffs side of Big Bridge. For more info, call 508-627-4850.

You have one more day to shop healthy foods to help islanders in need at Stop & Shop. Through June 7, the “Share Your Bounty—Buy One, Give One” Healthy Food Donation Campaign encourages you to help increase the availability of nutritious wholesome food that complements and supplements what clients are given at the pantries and senior programs. The program aims to educate Vineyarders on how to make better choices about the food that they give to the Island’s food assistance programs: The Island Food Pantry, Serving Hands Food Distribution, and MV Center for Living. The campaign encourages folks to give foods that they love and use. Check that containers are unopened and the date on the container is not past the expiration date. Find out more at

Birthday wishes go out this week to Susan Sellers and Denise Searle, who celebrate June 6; and to Courtney Berwind, who celebrates June 7. Hope it’s a good one!

I somehow survived the long weekend. Something like 16 barbecues later, here I am back at my desk, craving green vegetables after multiple burgers, steak tips, and ribs. Definitely not complaining, but it is absolutely time for a salad or three.

I logged about five miles walking around Edgartown on Saturday in the beautiful weather, the smell of lilacs in the air. My walk took me through the old side of the cemetery, where I wandered among the headstones of residents passed, paying close attention to the flags of those who served. It felt like an appropriate way to commemorate Memorial Day in my own quiet way, and meditate on those we’ve lost.

Members of the Martha’s Vineyard Public Safety community posed a challenge this past weekend: jump in the frigid water or make a donation to the Wounded Warrior Project. Once “nominated,” the nominee must make and document his or her plunge and pay forward the nomination to a few other colleagues. So far, I have watched the Cold Water Challenge videos of James Dropick, Kara Shemeth, Kate Conde, Paulo DeOliveira, Jake Sylvia, Mike Gazaille, Will Bishop, Zach Townes, and Michael Klimek. It is great to know our rescue men and women can rise to this challenge. I have yet to hear of anyone who has declined, to the detriment of the chosen charity, so in honor of our brave, shivering rescue personnel, I’m going to make a donation to Wounded Warriors Project — feel free to join me if you feel so inclined,

I had an email from Ed and Maryanne Jerome about an upcoming fundraiser in son Joseph’s name being held June 14 at the Chappy Golf Course to benefit Island families with chronically ill children. As the Jeromes have learned first-hand, the cost for Island families to get their chronically ill children back and forth to the Boston hospitals, on the SSA, stay overnight, park their car, pay for gas and food, etc. can be overwhelming, especially for those who make many trips there in a year. For the Jeromes, there were years in which they spent nearly 100 days in hospitals. So, the Jeromes have created this fund to help those Island families facing this heavy financial burden. They have already been able to help several families this year and plan to help many more.

The golf tournament will take place at the Royal and Ancient Chappaquiddick Golf Links, est. 1886, followed by a silent Auction, cocktails, and hors d’oeuvres at Brad Woodger’s camp house atop the beautiful cliffs of Chappaquiddick overlooking Edgartown Harbor. For further information, contact Doug DeBettencourt 508-560-1286, Susan Mercier 508-939-0063, or Ed Jerome 508-627-8510.

Vineyard Montessori will host two fundraising events on May 31. First, Flyin’ MV, a day of aviation fun for the whole family, will take place 11 am to 2 pm at Katama Airfield. Next, parents can put the kids to bed, swap out sneakers for dancing shoes, and hit the Field Club for “Fly Me to the Moon,” an evening of dancing, cocktails, small plates, and auction items, which will take place from 7 to 11 pm. For further info or ticket purchasing, either call up one of your Montessori parent friends, or call 508-693-4090.

Paint Corner Art Bar continues their lineup of fun events with a painting party at Among the Flowers Café, Thursday, May 29, from 6 to 9 pm. Art Bar leaders will guide you step by step in creating your own masterpiece, while eating, drinking, and mingling with friends. No experience required. Visit for info and to sign up.

The Relay For Life, an event to raise money for the American Cancer Society (ACS), will take place this weekend starting Saturday, May 31, at 9 am, and continuing until Sunday, June 1, at 9 am at the MVRHS track. There is still room for teams, volunteers, and survivors who wish to participate. Visit for more information on getting a group together and signing up.

Birthday wishes go out this week to John “Duzza” McCarron, who celebrates May 31; to Hilary Grannis and Mary Johnson, June 2; to Taylor Pierce, June 3; and to Neil Flynn and Kate Conde, June 4. Hope you have a good one!

Kids attending Felix Neck's Fern & Feather camp might be lucky enough to spot this black crowned night heron. — Alison Shaw Photography

Linley-DolbyHere they come, people! Get ready! On Friday, those ferries start spouting summer residents, vacationers, day-trippers, bikes, babies, and black Labradors, and that deluge of new faces and frenzied paces is due to continue clear into September. Summer season is officially upon us. Time for endless days of sunshine, fried clams, ice cream, and social calendars promising an abundance of fun.

We got a taste of summer this past weekend, when we decided to take a ride out to Norton Point. A “ride” turned into “might as well bring a grill and chairs,” and the next thing we knew, six hours had passed in a sandy, sunny, sausage-with-mustard-y haze. A couple of brave souls even jumped into the ocean. That’s one way to clean out those winter cobwebs right quick.

Last week, we celebrated the opening of The Port Hunter, our favorite summer spot. The soft opening granted a great opportunity to reconnect with some of our migratory friends, such as Lee and Cheryl Welch, who once again spent their winter on their boat, cruising around the Caribbean. From port to port, island to island, a pirate’s life for these two. We are thrilled to have you back in the home harbor.

I ran into Kevin Searle the other day, who is currently facing another round in the ring with cancer. Kevin will be undergoing surgery at Falmouth Hospital on May 30, and requests all happy thoughts, good vibes, and prayers you wish to send his way. And if you would like to go a step further, cards can be sent to the hospital or to 51 Chase Road in Edgartown. Good luck, Kev. You got this!

Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary is marking the 50th anniversary of its Fern & Feather Day Camp with a series of celebratory events commencing this month and extending to the Columbus Day Weekend. The creation of the Fern & Feather Day Camp was a pivotal moment in the history of the wildlife sanctuary. Conservationist Anne Hale and friends believed the island community needed a place where children could roam free to explore the outdoors and learn from knowledgeable naturalists. The group founded the Martha’s Vineyard Natural History Society in 1964 and started the day camp at Felix Neck that year. A number of special 50th anniversary events are planned over the next few months to commemorate Fern & Feather, including book signings, various educational programs, and visits from renowned naturalists. The wildlife sanctuary is also undertaking a 50 for Fifty scholarship drive, with a goal of raising $50,000 to ensure that all Vineyard families can participate in this enduring tradition. For more information on Fern & Feather Day Camp and the 50th anniversary events at Felix Neck, visit

Beginning on May 26 and running until August 31, the 1828 Meetinghouse of the Federated Church will be open from 1 to 3 pm every day. Hosts will be on hand to answer questions, and information about the history of the church will be available. Sit in the pews both downstairs and upstairs and imagine what it is like to hold worship services in this special place, which was built 186 years ago. It has changed little since then, from its large chandelier adorned with old whale oil lamps from the days of whaling to the large windows that  provide ample sunlight. Frederick Baylies Jr., the architect of the Meetinghouse, later designed the Baptist Church on School Street and the Old Whaling Church on Main Street. For more information, please call Marna at 508-627-4421.

I’ve had word from Judy Bruguiere regarding an upcoming celebration of Pat Brown’s life that will take place June 27, beginning with an 11 am service at St. Elizabeth’s Church followed by a reception. Pat was a lifelong resident of Edgartown and the school nurse for all of the Island schools as well as Judy’s oldest and closest friend. Pat’s friends, neighbors, former coworkers, and students are encouraged to submit their special memories, photos, and tributes (dated if possible) by email to Jennifer Marlin ( or mail to Jennifer W. Marlin, P.O. Box 1311, Edgartown, MA 02539. These will be shared on memorial display boards, and anyone wishing to speak at Pat’s celebration will be encouraged to do so: her life was filled with many beautiful stories that have yet to be told.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Nicole Le Blond and Janice Donaroma, who celebrate May 22; to Jerry Bennett, May 23; to Ashley Van Murphy, May 24; and to Eliza “Disco” Dolby and Denise “Diamond D” Solomon, May 27. Have a good one, party people.

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley Dolby here.

This weekend was all about the mamas, and it was fun to celebrate. Main Street looked so fun decked out in pink and green bunting, burgees, and flags, and the barrels of pink hydrangeas and hanging plants really helped it all pop. Great job, Board of Trade — you’ve really outdone yourselves.

My uncle Timmy Morgan was here visiting from San Antonio for the week to celebrate Grammy’s birthday as well as Mother’s Day. Tim’s visits always deserve a mention not only for their eventfulness, but because he is an avid follower of this column. A highlight of Tim’s trip was meeting the newest additions to the Morgan clan, Dylan’s wife, Nili, and their newborn son, Aaron Raymond Morgan. It has truly been an exciting year.

Speaking of Dylan, the last time Lord Stanley’s Cup touched upon Edgartown, we at the Wharf felt we owed some thanks to a visit facilitated by Dylan from one of Tom Taylor’s taxidermied bears, which crowd-surfed the Pub decked out in Bruins gear. Well, this past week, the bear made a return trip on the shoulders of captain Eli Bonnell, just as the Bs went into overtime, and within two minutes, the Bs scored and took the win. Keep that bear nearby, please. Things just got a little hairy on Monday…. Go Bruins!

This weekend I met a fellow named Brian Smith, who was just finishing up his Vineyard visit. He and girlfriend, Laura Wright, had been visiting from Northampton. The two stayed at Harborside and spent time driving around the Island checking out the sights, and also made it out to the Edgartown Lighthouse.

The Edgartown Firemen’s Association is hosting a Fire Museum Opening Day on Sunday, May 18, from 11:30 am to 2 pm to welcome back the 1952 Mack fire truck after a winter restoration. The event will include a cookout at the museum located behind the fire station, children’s activities, ice cream, tee-shirts, and of course, fire trucks to climb on and bells to ring.

The Martha’s Vineyard Cultural Council (MVCC) is proud to announce the first annual Grant Recipient Celebration on May 20, from 6 to 7:30 pm at the Martha’s Vineyard Film Center in Vineyard Haven. Past recipients of grants from the MVCC, this year’s grant award recipients, and the public are invited to attend the celebration. Grant recipients will share their work including salsa dancing, poetry readings, troubadour recitals, film clips, and music. Appetizers and beverages will be served. For more info, contact Jennifer Christy at 508-627-0958.

Another note from the Film Center: They will be bringing Boston’s Berklee College of Music’s Silent Film Orchestra to the Vineyard for a live performance of the silent film “Safety Last” on June 26. They could use your help finding lodging for the 16 visiting musicians/composers for two nights mid-week. If you can help, or have an idea on lodging for these students, please contact Brian Skidmore at or 781-479-4559.

Regional high school students are the latest guest curators to open an exhibit in the Spotlight Gallery at the Martha’s Vineyard Museum. Students from Corinne Kurtz’s Women’s Studies class have spent months studying the history of female criminal activity on the Island, and they will now debut their work in the form of an exhibit entitled Women and Crime: Victims and Perpetrators, which will open at the museum on Monday, May 19, with a reception from 5 to 7 pm for parents, families, and the general public. The exhibit will be up through June 1. Visit for more information.

I’ve had word from Tom Dresser about a couple of upcoming events in support of the book he has penned with Herb Foster and Jay Schofield, “Martha’s Vineyard in World War II.” On Tuesday, May 20, they will speak at the Oak Bluffs Library beginning at 6:30 pm. They will talk about the old days on Circuit Avenue, and the role Vineyarders played in the war effort. On Saturday, May 24, the trio will be signing copies of their book on the front porch of Edgartown Books.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Sara Moses and Leanne Cash, who celebrate May 15; to Jamie Le Blond, May 17; to Casey O’Connor, May 19; and to Brandon Willett and Tim Klein, May 21. Have fun, folks!

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley Dolby here.

Well, May really has jumped in over the past week to kick the doldrums of April to the curb. I spent so much time outside this past weekend, soaking in the vitamin D and enjoying — finally! —  some fresh air. Backyard golf, burgers and dogs on the grill, bikes strewn across the lawn — it finally feels a bit like spring.

Well, blink and you will miss it, because the next few weekends of May are jam-packed with goings-on, at last culminating in Memorial Day weekend, when the boats will start getting jammed with the kids and beach umbrellas and golden retrievers and SUVs all on a mission to get a head start on summer fun. So whether you’re into the Pink and Green, with all of the activities that entails, or you’re looking to help rescue some animal tails, or you’d like to go hear some tales from the stage, on or off Island, we’ve got you covered.

I’ve had word that Brooke Hardman Ditchfield is currently performing in with the Medford Actors’ Shakespeare Project in a production of “As You Like It.” The show will run through May 18, so if you find yourself in the Medford area, go check it out. Visit for more info.

Remember Hannah Guerin and her sisters selling their flower bouquets on Meeting House Road back in the day? Well Hannah is all growed up, but still creative as ever. Now living in Brooklyn, Hannah has launched a handmade jewelry line, called Trinkknacks, which with its barnacle, seashell, and driftwood themes clearly takes some of its inspiration from the Vineyard, while also having that city edge informed by Hannah’s years in New York, where she attended Parsons School for Design. Hannah recently started selling a few of her pieces at Brooklyn Collective in Cobble Hill, and if you happen to be in the area, the store is throwing a party on Friday, May 9, to celebrate the new artists they’ve taken on. Otherwise, check out to see what Hannah has been working on.

The Night of a Thousand Paws, a benefit for the Animal Shelter of Martha’s Vineyard, will take place Saturday, May 10, at 9 pm at the Seafood Shanty. Get out and dance with The Chandler Blues Band with guest singer Gordon Healy, an avid supporter of our furry friends. If you can’t make it, you can always make donation at Barks and meows of thanks resound.

If you’re looking for some nature this weekend, get up to Felix Neck on Saturday from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm to explore the Island’s cornucopia of wild foods. Sanctuary Director Suzan Bellincampi will teach you to identify and prepare select wild edibles that can be found in your backyard or neighborhood. Foraged foods will be used to create a light lunch to share. Register at or call 508-627-4850.

And if a day of beauty is more your jam, get over to Sea Spa Salon, where you can meet with a Decleor Skin Care specialist who will be available to evaluate skin concerns. The event will take place Saturday, May 10, from 10 am to 2 pm, and it will include door prizes and gift baskets too — a great idea for Mother’s Day. Call 508-627-8953 for info.

The MV Cancer Support Group will host An Evening Under the Stars on Thursday, May 15, at Farm Neck from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. The event will include a buffet dinner, drinks, dessert, and music by Mike Benjamin. The MVCSG raises money to help Island cancer patients and their families with the various costs of their treatment. For info, call AnneMarie Donahue at 508-627-7958.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Leah D’Amato, who celebrates May 8. And an extra special birthday wish goes out to my Grammy, Florence Morgan, who celebrates May 8. Don’t worry, Grammy. I won’t tell them how many years. I like me life too much.

Got Edgartown news? Share it at

Caroline and Ellie Dolby at the Red Sox game on Patriot's Day. — courtesy Linley Dolby

Linley-DolbyWell you all definitely made the most of your April breaks: from bowling to BoSox to Bippity Boppity Boo, you really did it all. My nieces, Ellie and Caroline Dolby, attended their first Red Sox game on Marathon Monday, where they ate everything in sight, including cotton candy, hot dogs, kettle corn, Italian ice, and lemonade while donning freshly purchased Sox duds — sparkly of course. Also visiting Fenway for the first time, Steve Aben took in a Sox/Yanks game this past weekend amid the hallowed green walls, before promptly returning to work at the Wharf the next day.

Dee and Jack Laird headed to St. John for some fun in the sun, where Jack mastered snorkeling. Mary Morano tagged along to work on her tan.

Miles and Christian Hayes visited their grandparents and great-grandparents in Western Massachusetts and Middlesex County. Along the way, they checked out a bee apiary and a butterfly apiary. Lindsay Medeiros and sons Ben, Wyatt, and Dunovan Belisle took a three-day whirlwind excursion to New London and Storrs, Conn., Amherst, and Northampton to check out colleges for Dunovan. They enjoyed great food, bowling, a little shopping in Northampton, and finished up the trip with Chinese food on the boat ride home. The Nicholson family came to visit for some Vineyard fun, including a couple of turns on the Flying Horses, where Darby got the brass ring.

For the Townes girls, Camden, 8, and Ava, 5, it was sunny Florida, where they made the requisite pilgrimage to Disney World and stayed in the Lion King Suites. Meanwhile, Allison Savva, Julia Smith, Greer Thornton, and Nonnie Garvin kept it closer to home, with their combined seven kids in tow, taking the Sea Crest Beach Hotel in Falmouth by storm, where Anina, Brynn, Asher, Mya, Hailey, Wyatt, and Penelop, got in some pool time, bowling, and arcade and beach fun.

Sheylah Callen took sons Finlee and Hugo to Newport, R.I., where they visited the Narragansett Bay exploration center and aquarium. Finlee, 5, got to pet dogfish sharks, while little bro Hugo, 18 months, played in the tanks as well.

It’s time for the 12th annual Rainbow Place Rainbow Run, this Saturday, May 3, at 9 am. Preschoolers run from the parking lot at the end of Main Street up to the Old Whaling Church to raise money for the school. It is always quite a sight to behold.

While we’re on the topic of running (ish), allow me to introduce the Amity Island Running Club — a group of runners taking part in a 200-mile relay race from Hull to Provincetown. Team members include Edgartown residents, as well as several teachers from the Edgartown School: Megan McDonald, Nedine Cunningham (who also just ran the Boston Marathon), Darren Belisle, Adam Darack, Amanda Hollyfield, and Kara Shemeth. They will team up with another six from upstate New York and begin Friday morning, May 9, in Hull and finish in P-Town mid-day Saturday. Pati and Chad Nelson are hard at work on van decorations for the Jaws-inspired theme. For more about the race, check out

Teresa Yuan is excited to announce an exhibition of her art at the Island Art Gallery/Kennedy Studios, Vineyard Haven. A reception will be held Sunday, May 4, from 2 to 4 pm. The collections of her paintings in the show are from 2013 to 2014. Over 20 of them were made this year. Ms. Yuan is a native of Taiwan who came to the U.S. when she was 19, then pursued an art degree from Pratt Institute. She is a longtime member of Old Sculpin Gallery. You can catch the show Monday through Saturday, from 10 to 5 pm.

Belated birthday wishes go out to Sandy Fisher, who celebrated his 98th birthday on April 14. Sandy enjoyed cake and ice cream with three of his children, eight grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Dave Alton, who celebrates May 1; to Matt Boyle, May 2; to Paige Anderson, May 3; and to Kara Shemeth and a certain anonymous shed-dweller, May 4. Also, a very happy anniversary goes out to my parents, Pam and Mike Dolby, who celebrate May 6. Everyone have fun!

Linley-DolbyHere’s the scene: Beach Road, Saturday evening as the sun sets over Sengekontacket. I sit in the passenger seat of a friend’s Jeep, her five-pound squirrel dog hopping frantically about. We review our shopping list, sing along to the radio, everything is as expected. And then I see it. Clear as day, atop the State Beach dunes, still and proud as a statue. Though the warmer weather has rendered its face in darker hues, there is no mistaking the majestic — and sometime mythical — snowy white owl. And I FREAKED RIGHT OUT. My poor friend behind the wheel thought someone was dying as I pointed over her shoulder, unable to form intelligible words, finally managing, “I SAW IT! I SAW IT! I SAW IT!” Then explaining among expletives of pure astonishment, “THE SNOWY WHITE OWL!”

It is a journey we all have partaken of together. My phone never stops ringing, my email lighting up with your sightings. In the time since I imposed a moratorium on owl announcements, I have had reported sightings from Doug Dexter, Bruce Farland, Ashley Spinney, Shelly O’Neil, Renee Vieira (whose son’s picture of the owl, incidentally, made it onto the NECN morning news), and several others. We really were in this one together. And I’m thrilled that I have closure. Now my poor dad is another subject altogether, as the owl continues to be a sworn nemesis, haunting his dreams. Luckily, he’s an osprey man, so hopefully he can find distraction in the observance in the sudden arrival of a different bird of prey. Anyway, thank you all for your support and encouragement. I can now move on with my life without the sorrow of what could have been. (Cue the tiny violins.)

I had word from Hilary Granis about the third annual Daf-Faux-Dil weekend on Nantucket, which she attended along with buddies Katie Doll, Cheri Mason, Bill Jacob, and Sully. The tradition began three years ago when the group headed over to the other island for Daffodil Weekend, only to discover the event was not slated until the next week. So for the last two years, the team heads over to ACK the week before, hence the name: Daf-Faux-Dil weekend. Who needs all those crowds anyway?

I want to give a quick shout-out to our Police Department, many of whom spent Patriots’ Day working alongside the Boston Police Department to provide security at the 118th Boston Marathon. Officers traveled to Boston for specialized training earlier in the month, then worked directly with the Boston Police Department Bicycle Unit along the marathon route. Pretty proud of these guys.

The 3rd annual Pink & Green Weekend, a celebration of Spring and Mother’s Day, is coming up May 9–11, with events for all ages. Kick off the weekend with the whole family at Donaroma’s Cirque du Pink and Green event, Friday, May 9, 4–6 pm. Then throughout the weekend, enjoy sales, promotions, the 2nd Annual Bartender’s Drink Contest, Mothers’ Day brunches, and of course the Pink & Green Ball, complete with music from the Sultans of Swing. For a full schedule as well as ticket info, visit

Calling all you aspiring Hasselhoffs: the Mansion House Health Club will offer American Red Cross Life Saving certification. Aquatics Director Jennifer Fragosa supervises and teaches through videos, group discussion and hands-on practice, participants learn teamwork, rescue and surveillance skills. The American Red Cross Waterfront Lifeguarding course teaches participants the knowledge and skills to recognize and respond to aquatic emergencies, preventing drowning and injuries. Register now to get trained to be a certified lifeguard for Waterfront locations. For info or to reserve your spot, call 508-693-2200 or email

This week in birthdays, we have Stacey Ickes, who celebrates April 24; Sara Graves and Cassie Bradley, April 25; Lisa BenDavid and Coo Cavallo, April 27; Paulo DeOliveira and Donna Cavallo, April 28; Lark Bakkensen, April 29; and Brian Ditchfield, Matt Cutter, and Richelle O’Neil, April 30.

In addition, a Very Special birthday wish goes out to Doug Dexter who celebrates a milestone birthday April 30. I can’t tell you how many years, because I don’t have candle fire insurance on this column, but definitely tell him happy birthday when you see him, because that Wharf paddle is really going to smart on this one.

Linley-DolbyWhat a weekend for outdoor time — sunshine and barbeques and numerous flip-flop sightings. I’ve been driving around with my windows down and enjoying every second of this spring. Even the 4 am wakeup calls with my dogs have been enjoyable, with Mars huge in the sky and the pinkletinks still reeling from a late night of partying.

Speaking of the new and exciting, the Avakian family has welcomed a baby girl. Lillian Marie made her debut April 12, weighing in at 8 pounds, 1 ounce, to proud parents Brooke and Derek and big brother Cooper. This girl will never want for pink, frilly things, and has in fact already donned her first hair accessory. Congrats all around, and welcome, little one.

Vinny and Frankie Paciello were psyched to attend their first Bruins game this weekend, and what a good weekend it was for those Bs, having just earned a playoff spot and clinched the best record in the NHL. These kids will never know what it was like to live the heartache of Boston sports in the days of yore. Good for them. And Go Bs!

I ran into Jade Bennett the other day and was thrilled to congratulate her on all the exciting goings-on in her world. She and husband, Joe Rock, tied the knot this past February at Windemere, to ensure that Jade’s grandmother could witness the nuptials. The happy couple has since returned from their honeymoon cruise, in time to put the finishing touches on their new home, which their daughters, Grace and Madison, will surely enjoy. Best wishes for a happy future to you two and your family.

The 22nd annual VCS Earth Day Beach Clean-up will take place on Saturday, April 19, from 10 am to noon. So make your way to Fuller Street, Lighthouse, South (Left & Right Fork), or State Beach (Bend in the Road) and enjoy a morning of fun and environmental service and kick off spring with a renewed appreciation for the natural beauty of our Island. There’s no need to register or call ahead — just come out to your favorite beach where volunteers will be waiting with everything you need. This year’s after party returns to the Harbor View Hotel. From 12 noon to 2 pm, you can compare your treasure hunting stories while enjoying treats from the Harbor View and Scottish Bakehouse. There will also be a free raffle for gift certificates to Bunch of Grapes for the kids, and a garden basket from S.B.S. for the adults.

I’ve had email from T. Batts and  Lauren Ricks, two self-proclaimed wash-ashores who landed on the rock about five years ago who spend their summers working at the Seafood Shanty, and now their free time honing a children’s comedic brand, “Broccolihead and Carrottop.” These veggie characters are coming alive in an interactive book to be released at the beginning of the summer season. In order to get the word out this summer, servers at the Seafood Shanty will be wearing shirts on Fridays inspired by the brand. Check out to learn more about T. and Lauren and their new venture.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Megan Shai Brown, who celebrates April 17; to Ron Green, April 20; and to Jason Dyer, April 23. Hope you all have a great time. And to the rest of you, Happy Easter, Happy Passover, and Happy Spring!

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley Dolby here.

Linley-DolbyI love seeing doors slowly begin to open all along Main Street. We have new places to meet up, new menu items to try, and the men in brown delivering box after box to our local purveyors of goods for our window-shopping delight and eventual consumption. All set to the backdrop of pinkles tinking and crocuses crowing and jonquils jauntily jutting through the leaves.

So far, we’ve hit up the Atlantic for a much-needed change of scenery. Also moving toward the opening gates, Chesca’s throws open the doors today Thursday, April 10, and Détente will begin their season on April 18 — make your ressies now for Easter Brunch and/or Easter Dinner. There is a lot of anticipation for the new Italian place by the owners of Rocco’s that is slated for Lattanzi’s old space. And I’m excited to see what will transpire at 11 North Water as well — the construction crew seems to be keeping busy out front there. It’s all coming back to life!

The Martha’s Vineyard Center for Living is holding its first fundraiser for 2014 at the MV Film Society Center located at 79 Beach Road in the Tisbury Market Place on Sunday, April 13, from 4 to 7 pm.  The event will include wine, hors d’oeuvres, dessert, and music by Michael Haydn, followed by a showing of the film “Away From Her,” which will begin at 5 pm, in which a marital relationship is strained when the wife is sent to an Alzheimer’s facility, where she falls in love with another patient in plain view of her husband and family. Following the movie, there will be a Q&A with Facilitator and MVC4L Board President Karen Achille, MVC4L Executive Director Leslie Clapp, Supportive Day Program Administrator Eileen Murphy, and Senior Staff Member of Windemere Mary Holmes. For reservations and further info, please call Leslie Clapp at 508-939-9440.

I’ve had a message from Tony Lombardi about a monthly Elder Tech Fair Program that brings elders and teens together for one-on-one appointments to tackle elders’ questions about their tech devices. Elders are often mystified by their smartphone, tablet, or laptop and benefit from spending some quality time with a teen volunteer who may be able to help clear the mist away. Elder Tech is sponsored by Alex’s Place at the YMCA of Martha’s Vineyard as part of its HumaniTeen Service efforts and also Digital Connectors, the Digital Literacy Training Program which is sponsored by Comcast. There is no cost to seniors (55+) to attend. An appointment is needed. Call 508-693-1676 to schedule an appointment.

Attention seniors: On Monday, April 14, at 1:30 pm, the Tisbury Senior Center will host a forum on Emergency Preparedness in the event of a winter storm or hurricane. Chuck Cotnoir will speak on the importance of having a go-bag filled with emergency supplies. Beth Toomey will share her experiences working in the Falmouth shelters during Hurricane Sandy and speak about the difficulties of shelters. Jim Klingensmith will talk about what is done to accommodate pets, and Chris Cini will answer Tisbury emergency-management questions.  The center is located at 34 Pine Tree Rd. in Vineyard Haven. Call 508-696-4205 for further info and to sign up.

Relay For Life, an event to raise money for the American Cancer Society (ACS), is set for May 31-June 1, at the MVRHS track, and they are still looking for people to sign up as teams, volunteers, and survivors. Please visit or the Relay For Life Martha’s Vineyard Facebook page for more information on getting a group together and who to contact to do so. The theme for this year’s event is celebrations, i.e. birthdays, holidays, or anything you’d like to celebrate.

Last week was a Very Special Episode of the Edgartown column, so I’d like to give a belated Happy Birthday shout-out to some folks we missed: James Dropick and Sean Hegarty celebrated April 4; Hadley Antik, April 5; Patty Gazaille, April 6; Dylan Morgan, April 7; Alison Smith, April 8; and Amy Heil and Nancy Morris, April 9. Hope it was a good one!

This week, we have Jennifer Neville celebrating on April 10; Caroline Dolby, April 11; Pam Cassidy, April 12; Paula Smith, April 13; and last but certainly never least, Mikey Harmon, April 14. Have a blast, folks!

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley here.

If the writer's column were put in a time capsule, readers a century from now would understand what Edgartown was like on the cusp of spring, 2014. — Photo by Alison Shaw

Linley-DolbyAbout once a year, a group email goes around among the editors at the Times and the town columnists to get everyone back on track with exactly what the town column should be — what’s allowed, what’s frowned upon, and the requisite reminder not to exceed 800 words. This year’s email conversation had me thinking about my goals for the column, why I do what I do, and who I look to serve in my role as town columnist.

Well, I’ve broken column writing down into five rules that I adhere to religiously (and for which I have a bevy of creative writing professors to thank).

Antoinette Maria Reading Walker Kelley Taylor

1. Stick to the assignment. My assignment as I see it is to represent my town, my community, and this particular point in time. If someone were to find a batch of my columns in a time capsule 100 years from now, I would want them to know that the winter of 2013-14 was (really, really) cold and snowy, a lot of people were fascinated by owls, and the most popular fundraising method was through the sale of pancakes. Super important things. I also aim to be representative. We have a diverse population — young and old and socioeconomically vast — and inclusion is my goal. Sometimes I fail miserably at this goal, but…see Rule 3, and know that I really, really try.

2. Always have an audience in mind when you write anything — whether it be your wife, your third-grade teacher, or your dog. This clarifies whom you are speaking to, the voice you use, the words you choose to express yourself. My father established himself as this audience very early on in my column writing career. It helps that he appreciates my dorky sense of humor and my dry wit. He calls me each Thursday morning, newspaper so freshly pressed the ink could stain his fingers, and says, “Great column” or sometimes, “The column sucked this week.” Which is totally okay, because I firmly believe….

3. Every column can’t be an A+. Some weeks, you guys have so much fundraising and announcing going on that I don’t have a lot of space to pontificate (Dad’s voice in my head: “Good word!”). And honestly, some weeks I am so thankful for those press releases because I do have a real job and I don’t always have the mental space for those 800 words — oh my god 800 WORDS?! — and the best I can do is fill the page and send off the file in a puff of Internet smoke, then collapse from the effort.

4. Always be amazed. I’m amazed by the things I see, the words I choose to express them, and the distances those words reach. I like to mention goings-on of not only those currently residing, voting, and paying taxes here in the 02539, but also people who grew up here now far-flung across the globe, people who spent just summers here but hold this town so dear in their hearts, people who think of our little postage stamp town as home no matter how far their travels may take them. One time, a friend wrote from Afghanistan thanking me for a birthday shout-out. And every time my column is late to go live, I get angry emails from a couple of Texans who eagerly await their weekly dose of Dock Street gossip like two junkies who just can’t kick the Murdick’s Fudge.

5. When in doubt, return to Rule 1: the assignment. And why did I accept this assignment? Because I love my town — the buildings, the people, the history. And each column I write is a love letter to this town that my family and generations before me have called home. I tread on the same bricks as my great grandmother, Antoinette Maria Reading Walker Kelley Taylor, whose high heels clacked and giant earrings bobbed as she made her way around the corner from School Street for an ice cream soda each day, perhaps picking up a loaf of bread at National Grocer, which is now, a century later, a bar that I frequent with my friends. And my grandfather who returned from World War II to serve the town as selectman for decades. And my mother who learned about house charges shopping for bathing suits with her friends — and returning clothing upon Gram’s learning about house charges. And for myself, my readers, and our place in history, which is of equal importance to the passage of time in this place. We perhaps don’t live in the most dramatic time, but this time matters because it is ours. And when that time capsule is unearthed 100 years from now, our children will know I never saw that snowy owl, but on April 4, 2014, I came in at exactly 800 words.

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley here.