Authors Posts by Linley Dolby

Linley Dolby

Linley Dolby

We now see the warm days giving way to cool nights. It’s almost time to start snuggling under blankets and pulling a couple of sweaters out of winter storage. I was glad to see last week’s spate of high temperatures and abundant sun, because so many of our neighbors who bust their tails all summer in the service industry were finally able to get out to the beach and get their toes sandy.

I had news from the Rossi family this week that Alex and his now fiancée, Cassie Roberts, got engaged on the Island on Aug. 30. Mike Creato took the two up for a biplane ride on a beautiful day, early in the evening. When they landed, Alex got down on one knee and proposed. Some of Alex’s family and friends were there to celebrate with champagne and cake. The two currently live in Jersey City, N.J. Good luck with your plans, and here’s to years of happiness!

We had a visit from New Orleans this past weekend from Al Kirkendal and Teresa Martin. Much as we do when in New Orleans, these two focused much of their visit on appreciating the local culinary offerings. In other words, we ate our way from one end of Edgartown to the other. Oysters, lobsters, swordfish, quahogs — no creature of the sea was safe. And man, was it delightful. You two are welcome back anytime, as long as I can once again tag along for all your meals.

Lauren Elias celebrated the big 3-0 this past Monday, and what a great day it was. It started with a relaxing day at Norton Point with husband Alex, K9 buddy Brackish, and a ton of friends, and it wrapped in Oak Bluffs with a delicious meal at the Red Cat. Lauren and Alex, who tied the knot in a small ceremony in St. John this past spring, will celebrate their wedding with a big ol’ party at the Elias house in Western Mass. this coming weekend. Here’s to many celebrations to come.

We ran into the Port Hunter crew out on the beach on Monday. These guys are definitely among the folks I mentioned earlier, who I was thrilled to see getting a little taste of summer now that they are not laboring away in the kitchen, behind the bar, or on the dining room floor. I was talking to Alyssa Starzyk, who, in addition to tending bar at the Port Hunter, manages In the Pink. This particular beach day was Alyssa’s third of the season (the other two were also within the past week), as well as the first day she hadn’t stepped into the store since May! Glad to see you all getting the chance to wind down.

Amanda Cohen will once again be hosting an autumn yoga retreat at the Chappaquiddick Community Center, Saturday, Oct. 11, from 9:30 am to 12 noon. This extended practice offers the opportunity to be in your body, to play, stretch, move, awaken your spine, and deeply relax. The retreat will focus on pranayama (breathing) and asana (mindful movement). Amanda’s teaching invites deep relaxation while strengthening and energizing the whole body. Her long experience at teaching multilevel classes allows every posture to meet each person wherever they are in their practice. Amanda teaches with clarity and gentle humor, welcoming the whole person to be present for deep rest and rejuvenation. All levels are welcome. Please bring a blanket and water. For more Information or to register, call Amanda at 508-274-9570, or email her at

Birthday wishes go out this week to Bill Jacob, who celebrates on Sept. 13; to the lovely Sydney Mullen, Sept. 15; Bonnie Kingsbury, Sept. 16; and Penny Vanderhoop and Darren Belisle, Sept. 17.

Belated wishes go out to Captain Porky, who celebrated a big one Aug. 31. I had misread the report and thought his birthday was September — oops. Hope it was a good one!

Randy Walpole's antique car won the Tisbury Car Show this past Sunday. — Photo Courtesy Kate Walpole

Linley-DolbyIt’s hard to believe I just typed the word “September” in this header. The kids are back to school, the Steamship Authority has removed the last of the Connecticut and New York SUVs, and there is a feeling of exhalation Island-wide. Sydney Mullen posted a little flipbook of photos onto social media this week, titled Summer in 19 Seconds, and I couldn’t help but comment, “19 seconds sounds about right.”

It seems like moments ago I was dancing with Lizzy Ward under the tents at The Taste of the Vineyard, or catching up with Bobby Hayman on the Fourth of July parade route. And now we change gears. The big yellow buses begin to outnumber the VTA fleet, tiny children with giant backpacks flock to classrooms….

…And of course, Pam Dolby can talk about nothing but football. The countdown is on for the season opener, and the Edgartown travel team is already making preparations. For the next four — or God willing, five — months, discussions of tailgate food, injury reports, bunk ref calls, and glorious, glorious touchdowns will dominate the family conversation. And from here on out, every conversation begins and ends with, Go Pats!

Congratulations to Randy Walpole, who took home the first place trophy at the Tisbury Firefighters Association’s 8th Annual Car Show, which took place this past weekend on Main Street in V.H. Randy has been working on the restoration of his Nash Metropolitan for several years now. You might see him on sunny days riding around in the classic turquoise-and-white convertible, enjoying the wind in his hair. What a great way to cap off a sweet birthday weekend, as Randy just celebrated his day on August 28.

Chappy had a nice visit from Bridger and Norah Westhelle, who were on Island to celebrate Bridger’s 4th birthday at grandparents Margaret and Jim Mullen’s Chappaquiddick home. While here, they went to the Fair twice — the tractor pull and lumberjack competitions were favorites — enjoyed pancakes at the Edgartown Firehouse, and swam at the ferry beach. While birthday boy Bridger enjoyed being the center of celebrations, Miss Norah, who is one, was doted on by all. Aunt Sydney maintains that this was the best week of the whole summer.

The 30th annual Boys and Girls Club Golf Tournament will take place Saturday, September 6, at Edgartown Golf Club, beginning at 7 am. The tournament format welcomes four-player scramble, single players, partial teams, and full foursomes. Entry donation includes a continental breakfast, greens and cart fees, refreshments, prizes, trophies, raffles, and more. Players must register by phone (508-627-5343) or in person at the club. For more info, contact Peter Lambos at 508-627-3303, or

Women Empowered will honor four outstanding Island women, Saturday, September 6, at 11 am at the Harbor View Hotel. The mission of Women Empowered is to support Islanders in gaining control over their lives by helping them develop the skills to manage money, resolve debt, explore job options, and identify resources. This year’s honorees are Betsy Burmeister, Judy Crawford, Jesse Keller, and Anita Botti. For information and tickets, call 508-696-8880.

Special birthday wishes go out to George Magnuson, who celebrated his 90th on September 4th. Hope you had a great time!

Additional birthday wishes go out to Lyra Paciello, Sara Townes, and Lisa Barbini, who celebrate September 6; Ashley Mundt, September 7; Lauren Maciorowski, September 8; and Graham Murray, September 9. Make it a good one, folks.

Don’t forget to watch out for little ones crossing the street, on and off buses, and waiting at bus stops. The time has come for pink erasers and number two pencils, so keep an eye out for our young learners.

Linley-DolbyIt’s time to make a list and get all those last-minute summer things done before it’s too late! I’ve made it to most of my favorite spots, but I still haven’t had ice cream on a bench, been out on a boat, or taken a sunset swim at State Beach. I was supposed to finally hit the flats this week with Kara Shemeth to forage for our own quahog dinner, but the schedule is getting a little out of hand as we approach Labor Day.

Much of the Connecticut contingent said their goodbyes this past weekend, and already the first day of school photos have been popping up on Facebook. I got to catch up with some of these folks as we celebrated my niece Addy’s birthday out at Norton Point on Sunday. Addy got to hang with all her buds, decorating cupcakes, playing in the bay, and brutalizing a defenseless piñata. Her actual birthday is August 27. Hope seven is an awesome year, Kid.

Congrats to Michael Valenti and Emilee Whorton on their recent engagement. Hope you guys have a great time planning the big day, and we wish you a lifetime of happiness together.

We got to catch up with Alex Avakian and Emily Norberg over Fenway franks last weekend as Dave and I took Boston by storm. The two are still out in Waltham, with Emily commuting to her travel planning job, and Alex climbing the ranks in the fish distribution world. They have been doing the weekend warrior thing to M.V. most weeks, striking a great balance of working hard/hardly working.

This week’s Vineyard Conservation Society Almanac was filled with cool upcoming events. First off, the Martha’s Vineyard Museum will host an archaeology ID day, Saturday, August 30, from 9 am to 12 noon, at their Edgartown campus. Bring your archaeological finds from the Vineyard and around the world to the museum where a panel of distinguished archaeologists will help you identify, examine, and discuss them.

Also, the FARM Institute is gearing up for their fall programming, which begins Saturday, September 6. Weekly Saturday programs include Wee Farmers (age 2-5) from 9:30 to 11 am, and for older kids, there’s “Farmer for a Day” from 1 to 3 pm. Little tykes must be accompanied by an adult. For more info, call 508-627-7007.

The M.V. Center for Living will sponsor a benefit Hootenanny Sing-along, Thursday, August 28, from 7 to 10 pm at the Chilmark Community Center. The sing-along and karaoke gathering will be fun for the whole family. Bring your musical instruments and music stands and join in the old-time folk, early rock and roll, and gospel fun. Light refreshments will be offered. For details, call 508-939-9440.

I’ve had word from Ellie Bates that the Friends of the Edgartown Public Library will sponsor the second annual Pennywise Path 5K run/walk on Monday, September 1. Register online at or at the library’s front desk. Meet at 9 am at the Edgartown School for number pickup. The first 200 registrants will receive a tee-shirt and prizes will be awarded in all categories. Call 508-627-4221 for more details.

Happy, happy birthday wishes go out this week to Randy Walpole, who celebrates August 28; to David Vaughan, August 29; and to Mike Poirier, September 3. Hope you gentlemen have a great time.

Linley-DolbyThings are beginning to wrap up around here. There is that nip in the air that reminds us September is right around the corner, and with the annual Illumination, Fair, Fireworks trifecta on the docket for this weekend, we watch the curtains close on another busy summer season. Of course, I remind you all each year, the Friday highlight in Edgartown this weekend is ample parking and restaurant space as the Island dukes it out in Oak Bluffs and West Tisbury for prime Fair and Fireworks real estate.

Dave and I will be up in Boston, celebrating our 11-year wedding anniversary with concert tickets and a Red Sox game. Hard to believe it’s been 11 years since we met in the middle of Green Hollow to exchange our vows — it feels like both a millisecond and a lifetime ago. Happy anniversary, Weagle. Here’s to many more!

In K9-Edgartonian news, this week, newcomer Manny Morgan had his first of many Chappy playdates with Cody Bryan. Manny, a beagle/bulldog mix, is quickly becoming a fixture among the Edgartown butt-sniffing set, as Elvis Abbott and neighbor Hannah show him the ropes. He’s a pretty mellow dude, so he’s catching on quick. Welcome to the fold, furry guy.

Tom and Laura O’Grady made their annual Vineyard visit from Connecticut this past week, with children Thomas, Charlie, and Cate in tow. The kids got in some beach fun, while the grownups highlighted the visit with a sunset dinner at Outermost Inn, celebrating Laura’s birthday.

It has been fun hearing people’s stories of presidential sightings and interactions, including protocol introductions from Secret Service personnel and meetings with the big man himself. Among those lucky enough to have had the opportunity was Mikey Rottman, whose kitchen at Farm Neck has had a revolving door of celebrity visits lately. In addition to the Commander in Chief, Mikey has had photo ops with President Clinton as well as Bill Murray this past week. Coincidentally, Mikey celebrated his 35th birthday on August 19. Not a bad birthday week, Chef.

If you haven’t made it to Felix Neck for one of their guided kayak tours, you still have time. Join a Felix Neck naturalist on an exciting kayak adventure on Sengekontacket Pond. Paddle by Sarson’s Island to see nesting shorebirds. Watch American oystercatchers, cormorants, and shorebirds feed and frolic. Explore the salt marsh and search for pond wildlife. All trips focus on the natural history of saltwater communities found on Martha’s Vineyard. Check it out on a Saturday, 9:30 to 11:30 am until September 15 or  Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:30 to 11:30 am  until August 28. Another option is the self-guided Kayak Quest, in which you can enjoy Sengekontacket Pond at your own pace. The rhyming Quest clues will help you uncover the story of the pond’s people, places, and wildlife. Your Quest ends after you find the hidden Quest box. Kayaks, paddles, life jackets, and Quest materials are all included. Quests are yours for the partaking Monday through Friday until September 26. Call to reserve a boat. For more info, call 508-627-4850.

The Annual Evening of Music on the Lagoon will be held at Jim and Pam Butterick’s house at 359 Barnes Rd., Oak Bluffs on August 31 at 6 pm. Enjoy wine and appetizers at sunset on the Lagoon on the last Sunday of summer, and listen to the fabulous pianist Adele Dreyer play Rhapsody in Blue, to be joined afterwards by musician extraordinaire Peter Boak for duets. Donations of any amount will be accepted for the Federated Church Organ/Music Fund and/or Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard. Please be generous. For questions email

Birthday wishes go out this week to Brion McGroarty, who celebrates August 20; Laura Townes, Katie Fahey, Matt Frederick, and Lynn Ditchfield, August 21; Doug Heil, August 22; and Matt Sanville, August 24. Enjoy!

Linley-DolbyWow, we’ve really been having some awesome weather, which is much appreciated after a couple of wet weekends. Well, the ducks certainly enjoyed the wet days, but I am loving this sunshine. Sundays at Norton, backyard pig roasts, sipping cocktails on rocking chairs, ah…This is summer.

On the flip side, even now in the depths of summer, my father continues to garner harassment on his futile search for the snowy owl this past winter. He says he ran into Franny and Eddie Gentle at the barbershop the other day, and they gave him a couple of jabs. Well, Dad, I’ve just received a postcard from your winter nemesis that reads, “The Arctic Circle is beautiful this time of year. Tell Mike I said ‘See you next year. NOT.’” Kind of rude, if you ask me. Them’s fightin’ words.

Congratulations to one of my first ever babysitting charges, who tied the knot this weekend. Lindsay Smith and Matt Garcia exchanged their vows on Saturday, August 9, surrounded by family and friends, at the Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles. A strong contingent of Vineyard folk made the cross-country trip to witness the nuptials. Best wishes to the two of you.

Alex and Maggie Morrison hosted their annual throwdown this past Saturday, complete with roast pig, live music, and an interpretive Celine Dion DJ set presented by Fitzroy. All were sent home with full bellies and smiles from ear to ear. Can’t wait until next year.

The Murrays took Edgartown by storm this summer, sailing, fishing, beaching, playing tennis, and adding new talents to their repertoires. For Hannah, this meant learning to dive, conquering the Beach Club water slide, and learning to fish — she was in fact declared by Captain Ed Jerome the “Queen of the Flukes.” Meanwhile, Zachary worked on his opti navigation, tossed out the first pitch at an MV Sharks game, and found success with rod and reel, catching both a bluefish and his first sand shark. These two will have a lot of stories for show and tell, come September.

Best of luck to blogger Marnely Murray, who has entered a recipe in the Make the Switch Whole Grains Month Contest. This national contest includes 18 chosen bloggers across the US who start with an old recipe made with refined grains, and then transform the dish into one featuring whole grains, all in an effort to encourage people to consume more whole grains. A substantial cash prize is at stake, as well as the opportunity to help people make healthier choices. Check out for more info.

This Week In Pancakes: The Fire Department has you covered on August 24, from 8 am to 12 noon, so mark your pancake calendar, and drop by the station to get your fix. Don’t tell me you don’t have a pancake calendar, because that’s just nonsense.

Kids, grab your parents and head up to Felix Neck for some learning and crafting creature fun time. This program, which offers young naturalists a close-up look at native animals of Martha’s Vineyard, combining a story, craft, and a look at the “creature” of the day, will take place Tuesday and Thursday, August 12 sand 14, from 10 to 11 am. Tuesday, the topic is bugs in general, while Thursday will provide a closer look at our native caterpillars. For children aged three to five with a parent/guardian. Call 508-627-4850 for more info.

A special enormous bunch of balloons go out to birthday boy Bob Carroll this Friday, August 15, as he celebrates his 90th turn about the sun. Don’t tie all 90 balloons to your chair, Mr. Carroll, or you might end up on the moon. Happiest wishes to you!

Also, this week we bestow happiest of birthday wishes upon Lisa Sherman, who celebrates August 15; Braden Moriarty, August 16; Corrigan Mello and Patrice Brewer, August 18; and Mikey Rottman, August 19. Have a blast, guys!

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley here.

Linley-DolbyNow that it is August, as I mentioned last week, I was beginning to wonder where all the pancakes are. Usually the moment August 1 hits, my inbox is just a flood of pancake breakfast invitations, but we seemed to be experiencing a pancake drought. So you must imagine how relieved I was last weekend to see someone hanging a banner for the Rotary Club’s annual breakfast. I must have sounded like a lunatic, audibly exclaiming, “I was WONDERING where all the pancakes were!” Well, that particular pancake breakfast has come and gone, no thanks to a report from me. Mea culpa!

In other pancake news, a belated birthday shoutout goes to Nick Prescott, who celebrated with a half stack July 24. A secret undisclosed location, where as a general rule, they do not sacrifice griddle space to surface hogging flapjacks during the crazy summer months, was kind enough to allow the birthday boy his favorite treat, provided that he make it an early, early, early bird special. That was one well-received worm.

Welcome to the Trish family, who will be in town for the next couple weeks. Cindy and Jim Trish will be accompanied by son Tyson and daughter-in-law Gina Trish, with their sons, Cameron and Weston, in tow. Their daughter, newly minted Dr. Erin Trish, will also be on hand. The littles will enjoy camp at the FARM Institute, while I’m sure the bigs will make their own fun. Enjoy!

Also in town for a spell was MVRHS golf legend Tom Medeiros, visiting from Clemson, South Carolina with his wife, Christy, and three girls, Disney (age 11), Alex (age 10), and Hadley (age 8). The kids enjoyed time with their cousins, including the obligatory trip to the Flying Horses, while Tom got to catch up with the fam.

The Edgartown Police honor guard took the field at Fenway Park this past Friday to participate in the opening ceremony of the Red Sox versus Yankees game. There to represent our town were Sgt. Kenny Johnson, Stephanie Immelt, Dayce Moore, David Rossi, Michael Gazaille, William Bishop, Det. Sgt. Chris Dolby, and Sgt. Jonathan Searle. What a cool honor. Hats off to you.

Congratulations to Kate Conde on completing her Firefighter I & II certification at the Barnstable County Fire Academy. Kate was one of three women in the graduating class of this 20-week program. Hopefully none of us will ever require her services!

The Island Theater Workshop will present a benefit performance of Peter Pan on Friday, August 15, at 7:30 pm at the MVRHS Performing Arts Center. The performance, directed by Kevin Ryan, will benefit The MV Center for Living and help support the following Center for Living programs and services for Island seniors: the Supportive Day Program (a social daycare program for elders), the Medical Taxi Program, the Emergency Food Program, and the Support Group for families coping with Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related dementia issues. Call 508-939-9440 for tickets and information.

A reception for the benefit of the development of an original Martha’s Vineyard abolitionist opera, 1854, will take place at the Anchors Sunday, August 10, 2014, from 4 to 6 pm. The opera is based on an abolitionist movement on the Vineyard in the mid-19th century. A presentation regarding the history, concept, and development of 1854 will be introduced at the reception. An authentic Moroccan buffet prepared by Gia Rae Winsryg will be served. Come learn about a little known part of Martha’s Vineyard history while enjoying a unique, delicious cuisine. 1854 is sponsored by the Martha’s Vineyard NAACP and the U.S. Slave Song Project, an Island-based spirituals choir. For more info, contact

Tom Dresser, Herb Foster, and Jay Schofield continue to shake hands and kiss babies to promote their book, “Martha’s Vineyard in World War II,” which is now in its second printing! The fellows will speak at the Edgartown Library on Wednesday, August 13, at 7 pm. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, the book is a composite of interviews with people who lived on the Vineyard during the war; archival research from the files of the

Museum and the Gazette; and descriptions of life on the homefront of

Martha’s Vineyard during the war, including accounts of military operations ranging from a bombing report and air raid shelters on Main Street to the mock invasion of paratroopers who were deemed “rowdy” once they landed in Katama. All are welcome, and books will be available for purchase.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Lizzy Ward and Grace O’Hanlon, who celebrate August 7; to Amelia Ball, August 10; and to Tim Bettencourt, August 13. Have a good one!

Got Edgartown news? Contact Linley here.

Linley-DolbyGood-bye, July, we hardly knew you. Onward, to my favorite month of the year. With the Fair and the Fireworks still up ahead, and the Commander in Chief due for his annual visit, we’re really just getting to the good part, the meat of this summer sandwich, so to speak. But what I want to know is, where are all the pancakes?

I’ve been following the plight of Kennedy Cunningham for months now, and I’d really like to get the word out to the Vineyard community about this amazing child. You all remember the Vegas? Livvy and I were Edgartown Eagles together back in the day. Now her life has taken her to Philly, where she is married to a heavyweight boxer and has three little cuties. Among the little ones is daughter Kennedy, who was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), a congenital heart defect where the the left side of her heart was under-developed and unable to function. She had her first open heart surgery at two days old and the second six months later. She was hospitalized for the first year of her life and suffered many setbacks along the way, including a stroke, many blood infections and also required a trach and vent for several years when she was younger. Now, almost 9 years later, Kennedy is awaiting a heart transplant, and continues to show that Dad isn’t the only fighter in the family.

Thoughts and prayers for this brave little one are vastly appreciated, and if you care to help out monetarily, as the logistics of this surgery, among other things, include a cross-state move for the entire family, visit×15/kennedy-s-heart-transplant-fundraiser. Let’s send Miss Kennedy and her family that warm Island community hug.

Congrats to Shane Quinlan Gallagher, son of Arthur and Vera Gallagher of Edgartown, who graduated from the Boylston Police Academy on June 19. Shane is currently employed with the Tewksbury Police Department. A graduate of Endicott College, Shane is a former member of the USMC 3nd Amphibious Reconnaissance Battalion. He served in Operation Enduring Freedom. He retired with the rank of Sgt. from the USMC in June 2013.

Sandy Joyce shares with us the happy news that Kerry and Bob Branca welcomed a new member to their family on July 14, Jacob Kent. He joins two big sisters, Laila (age 5) and Allie (age 3). Proud grandparents include Betty Branca of Canton, Sandy and Mike Joyce, and Annie and Ray Long, all of Edgartown. Sandy reports that Jacob’s sisters adore him and all are excited to welcome a little boy into the family.

Each year five gracious families open their beautiful homes so that the public can tour through them, for the benefit of the Federated Church in Edgartown. This year’s tour will be on Tuesday, August 12, and will feature a variety of homes from the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries, located at 75 and 96 South Water Street and 80, 64, and 96 School Street. An introductory talk by historian Mary Jane Carpenter will be held at the Federated Church Meetinghouse at 1 pm with the tour following, from 2 to 4:30. Tea and refreshments will be included, at the Mayhew Parsonage on South Water Street. Tickets may be purchased at the Meetinghouse, 45 S. Summer St., Edgartown, on the afternoon of the tour. For information, please call Anne Vose at 508-627- 7077.

It’s time for the Board of Trade’s annual sand sculpture contest, which will take place August 7 from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm at South Beach. This family-oriented event is great for the creative at heart and your budding little builders. So pack your pails and shovels and head to South Beach to enjoy a day in the sun and fun creating your sand masterpieces.  For more info, call 508-939-0199.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Barbara Phillips and Jane Barbini, who celebrate August 1; to Peter Lambos, August 2; to Derek Avakian and Claire Maxwell, August 3; to Melanie Rankow Prescott, Pam Dolby, and Zach Ward, August 5; and to Colette Fischer, August 6. Also, folks, Sunday is a holiday of particular reverence in the Dolby household, as we toast the birth of Tom Brady. Plan your observances accordingly. Go Pats.

Linley-DolbyThe dog days are upon us, and Triangle traffic is a nightmare. I shudder to think what my mostly abandoned PO box looks like right now, and I’m pretty sure it has been at least two weeks since I’ve driven through Vineyard Haven. Luckily I’ve been making it from my summer bunker to the beach quite regularly this year.

This week, we made it out to Norton with the Monday Funday crew, which is composed primarily of friends who work in the restaurant industry who of course do not get weekends off. It was a bit cloudy, but we didn’t let that ruin our fun. On hand for some beach games and tasty treats were the LeBlondes, the newly minted Moores, Amelia, Kris, Nate and Harriet, Casey O’Connor, and birthday boy Seth Cohen.

The party continued with dinner at the Port Hunter, which if you haven’t tried yet, you are sorely missing. The food there is insanely good, particularly the fish specials, which are fresh caught and creatively prepared each day. Anyway, excuse the unsolicited endorsement, but I really can’t get enough of that place.

Reunions abounded this past weekend. Katie and Marylee Eith arrived to visit with their Rankow cousins in what has now notoriously been dubbed the annual “Cousins’ Weekend.” Meanwhile across town, the Meinhart clan was together again en masse. Whoever organizes this annual throwdown, managing to get dozens of family members from all over the country in the same place at the same time each year, deserves a medal.

I chased the niece and nephew around the Generations Picnic on the lawn of the Doctor Daniel Fisher House last Friday. What an event that was! From the bouncy castle to the climbing wall to the dance floor, it was enough to make a little kid’s head spin. I spent much of the time standing in the middle of the grounds fielding parents questions of “Have you seen (insert child’s name here),” as sugar-addled children zoomed past. Fun was most assuredly had by all.

It is Possible Dreams time again. The annual event will take place this Sunday, July 27, at the Winnetu. The Possible Dreams Auction is held as a benefit for Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. The idea for an “unbuyable opportunities” auction was brought to Community Services by Sandy Ray, then chair of the Fund Raising Committee. The Possible Dreams Auction is one of the oldest, most enduring celebrity concept auctions and in its first 31 years, the Auction Committee has raised over $8 million dollars in support of unfunded care provided by the five programs of Martha’s Vineyard Community Services (CONNECT to end violence, Early Childhood Programs, Island Counseling Center, Disability Services, and the Thrift Shop). For more info, visit

Ladybug Girl is coming to the Edgartown Library for the Noon on the Lawn Series, August 1st. Grab the kids, pack a picnic, and go meet Ladybug Girl while you hear her stories read. For more info, call 508-627-4221.

Island Autism Group is hosting their 8th annual fundraiser Wednesday, July 30, from 3 to 5 pm at The Doctor Daniel Fisher House in Edgartown. Admission is free. Donations are welcome. There will be a raffle auction as well as light refreshments served. For further information, contact Marcy Bettencourt at 508-693-2106.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Ryan Murtha, Ken Magnuson, and Hana Moriarty, who celebrate July 25; to Jamie Ann Greene, July 26; to Steve Aben and Adam and Alex Elias, July 27; to Andy Smith and Vera Dello Russo, July 28; and to Lauren Major, July 29. Have a good one, folks!

I had a weekend of birthday celebrations to attend this past weekend, which was a great way to catch up with some Martha’s Vineyard friends amid all of our hectic summer schedules.

First up, Friday night we hit the Square Rigger to toast with lobsters for Amanda Hollyfield, the happy birthday girl. Representing Edgartown at our party of a million, we had Ryan Murtha, Mikey Harmon, and Glenda Gotscik (who incidentally just picked up keys to her new digs, putting her back in E-town). Amanda managed to avoid the paddle at The Wharf, making it a happy birthday indeed.

Saturday, a bunch of us gathered in Yvonne Sylvia’s back yard to surprise Annie Sylvia for her 30th birthday. Her husband, Jake, did a fantastic job wrangling friends old and new, big and small to fete Annie on her milestone day. I had fun catching up with Jen and Grace O’Hanlon, Laurel Zettl, and the newly wed Michael and Mo Klimek. I was talking to Justine Shemeth about how great it was to be in that backyard after all these years, as all of us who grew up as children of firefighters, spending Sunday mornings climbing all over the ladder truck and ringing the bell, spent a lot of time with the Sylvias while the Department was under the purview of the late Chief Albert Sylvia.

Well, one date led to another, and as I sat talking to Ms. Sylvia about years ago, when my father first worked for Albert as an electrician and a young Chris Dolby who could barely walk somehow lead-footed his way through the Sylvia’s garage door, we set a date. And Monday morning I picked up Mrs. Sylvia and brought her over to visit with her bestie, my gram Floss Morgan, and arranged for the two to have mani/pedis while they caught up. The stories those two can tell! Amazing. I can only hope to be sitting at 90 years old with my best bud, laughing and having fun.

Happy belated anniversary to Nonnie and Dave Garvin, who celebrated seven years of marriage on July 14. The two toasted (and toasted and toasted) their day with a whirlwind weekend of wine tasting throughout Sonoma and Napa. Here’s to many more!

Proud parents Leanne and Jade Cash and newly minted big brother Tyson welcomed Cameron Eagle Cash to the fold on July 9 at 11:33 am, weighing in at 8 pounds, 9 ounces. Watch out for this kid and his buddy Aaron Morgan making their names on the b-ball court. Here we go, Vineyard.

Our revolving door of summer visitors begins this week, but it is not all play no work for our buddy, Joe Grotto. Joe is a rep for Smuttynose Brewing Co., and his people have just collaborated with the folks at Flatbread to create a brew exclusively for Flatbread restaurants. The new brew, dubbed Emotional Rescue, is an organic amber Saison brewed with maple syrup. Joe will be pouring at Flatbread, with musical accompaniment provided by Dan Blakeslee, on Thursday, July 17, from 6 to 8 pm. I’ll be there. You should be too.

Hey folks, the Seastreak fast ferry is offering several discounted trips off the Island, specifically geared toward Island residents, but certainly open to all. Upcoming trips include Friday, June 18, to Foxwoods; Friday, June 25, to Six Flags New England; as well as daily adventure pass rides to New Bedford, which include roundtrip ferry, lunch discounts, and admission to any two New Bedford area attractions. For more details, call 800-262-8743 or visit

Birthday wishes go out this week to Hannah Guerin, who celebrates July 17; to Jade Bennett, July 18; to Angela Welch, Michael Zwack, and Caitlin Rosbeck, July 19; to Susan Shea and Karen Hiemer, July 20; and to Natasha White Snowden, July 21. Have a good one!

Linley-DolbyWell, Fourth of July was a great day to be a duck. Luckily, the powers that be set their sights on Saturday to fete America, the beautiful, and Mother Nature was happy to oblige with sunny skies and a clear night for fireworks — Arthur be damned.

We all know it takes more than a hurricane to stop the Edgartown party train from rolling (just ask Lucas Butynski about Hurricane Irene, ahem). Out in Katama, an RPI reunion of sorts was taking place at Patricia Giumarra’s, where nephew Michael Zwack, played host to several friends and significant others from his alma mater, including Alex, Christopher, JP, Steven, and Robyn, who made the trip from Troy, New York, and Meghan and Chris from Boston. The crew beached every day, and had some good nights out, dancing at Atlantic and hanging out at the Port Hunter. They weathered hurricane Arthur, seeking shelter at the various watering holes, and even managed to fit in a lobster bake before Saturday’s fireworks. I’m sure they will all be back soon.

Summer Street was taken by dueling storms: that of Arthur as well as a tornado of children, as Billy and Sally Betz hosted several friends from Connecticut. Jenn and Colin Seely, with children Emma, Brian, and Cammy; Anne and Ryan Michaelis, with children Ella, Tessa, and Owen; Jen and Chris Bargas, with children Amelia and Liam; and Kim Jung, with children Henry and Stella were all in attendance. We missed Peter Jung on this trip, as he is busy preparing for a new job in Florida. Oliver and Pearl Betz and their dog, Bear, were happy to show all their young friends the lay of the land at Gramsy and Grandfather’s, and cousins Addy and Andrew Smith were on hand to join in the fun.

It’s a big week for Kathy Benoit: in addition to celebrating a milestone 60th birthday on July 11, she will also celebrate five years being cancer free. Kathy has spent the past two weeks spoiling her grandsons, Charlie and Henry Marsland, visiting from Westwood. Daughter Kelly Boccia will join the crew with her family, husband Jay and children Cloe and John on the 11th for a celebration weekend. Congrats and happy birthday. Here’s to many more!

I’ve had word from Ellie Bates that daughter Amy is here visiting after having completed the Urban Teacher Education Program of the University of Chicago for her Master’s Degree. Amy is taking some well-deserved down time before returning to Chicago in the fall with hopes of teaching in the Chicago schools.

In other smartypants news, Keene State College congratulates Lucas Thors of Edgartown on earning an Enrichment Scholarship. This scholarship recognizes first-year students who display high academic performance. Merit awards are determined from a review of the students’ application for admission to Keene State. Congratulations, Lucas!

I had an email from Molly Foehl last week wishing her parents, John and Sarah Foehl, a happy 50th Anniversary, which the two just celebrated in June. Molly made the trip from Oakland, California to meet up with her parents and siblings, to celebrate this special occasion. Sarah grew up summering on the Vineyard, and some of the couple’s courtship was conducted here, while John painted houses and camped out. I love a classic Vineyard love story. Congratulations, and here’s to many more.

With summer storms fresh on everyone’s minds, get up to Felix Neck to check out upcoming presentation “When Lightening Roars, Go Indoors,”  on Monday, July 21, 5–6 pm. Does lightning strike twice in the same place? Where is the best place to find shelter during a storm? Explore these questions and more with Felix Neck’s own weatherman, John Pearson, and experience electrostatic energy with a Van de Graft generator. For more info, call 508-627-4850.

We have a lot of birthdays this week. Happy wishes go out to Sean Moriarty and Morgan Olson, who celebrate on July 10; to Amanda Hollyfield and Kathy Benoit, July 11; to Annie Sylvia, July 12; to Jaime Gaspar, July 13; to Jay Swartz and Kalle Connelly, July 14; and to Joanne Cassidy, July 16. Hope you all have fun!