Authors Posts by Megan Alley

Megan Alley

Megan Alley

Fall is rapidly disappearing over the horizon as we bid farewell to Columbus Day weekend.  Crowds were everywhere, shopping, sightseeing, or just socializing with friends they probably might not see again until Spring. It seems as if even the Saturday rain did not discourage shoppers or some events.

For the first time, my daughter, granddaughter, myself, and even my great grandson decided to hold a yard sale, on the one rainy day of the weekend, Saturday. Postponed until Sunday, we held it in competition with numerous other sales, seemingly on every block. But preparing for the sale was an experience through the past for me. As I browsed through possible items for sale, I found myself scanning old books and items that I had insisted on saving throughout the past years, because “some day” I might need them, or I was absolutely going to finish that handwork that my mother had never completed. I was able to release many of these things that, in my heart, I knew would never be finished or used by me as I realized that the memories that they held for me, I would always have and cherish more than the material items I was letting go.

Many college students returned to their families here for the weekend. Among them were Jackie Swan from Brown University, Matt Marchand from Providence College and my grandson Jeremy Alley-Tarter from Assumption College. As this is their first year of college, they were enthusiastically received by their families with cries of, “I am so glad to see you,” and, “You have grown so much.” And then they were off to greet their friends who they had not seen for a couple of months.

We knew the town was extra busy this summer and this was confirmed as Oak Bluffs Association (OBA) president Dennis daRosa claims an exceptional summer for Oak Bluffs this year. According to Mr. daRosa,  the information booth manager, John Newsom, reported a 30 percent increase in the number of visitors (45,000+) requesting assistance at the booth in July and August this year. And there were also record crowds at both the Harbor Festival in June and Tivoli Day in September with almost double the number of vendors at both events. There are still more events to look forward to: the Artist’s Ball on Sunday, October 26 at Dreamland; the traditional Town Tree Lighting on Wednesday, December 3; and the Annual Santa Sweepstakes beginning on November 29 and continuing through December 19. Many thanks for the hard work and good examples set by OBA member Erik Albert and planning board chairman Brian Packish for organizing “Civic Pride” cleanup efforts that have twice now united citizens of Oak Bluffs to hit the streets with brooms, rakes, and trash bags with the goal of keeping the heavily traveled downtown area clean and much more attractive.

On Saturday, October 18, from 12 noon to 3 pm, the First Baptist Church in Vineyard Haven will sponsor the first annual Oktoberfest in Vineyard Haven. There will be sausage, homemade sauerkraut, hot dogs, and Offshore Ale root beer sold concession style and an Oompah Band providing music. Crafts, vendors, baked and fresh produce tables will offer items for sale. There will be games for kids: water balloon throw, lucky ducks, a Puppet Show at 2 pm.  Stop by and enjoy the fun for all ages!

Tom Dresser will speak about his new book, ­Music on Martha’s Vineyard, at Friday Morning Conversations at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center on Friday, Oct 31, from 10 to 11:30 am. Tom traces the musical journey of Vineyarders from the days of whaling chanteys and the Tivoli dance hall, to the Moon Cusser Cafe and the Hot Tin Roof, and he will discuss the numerous interviews with Island musicians, as well as the backgrounds of many musical groups.

I think Halloween will be found everywhere this year. The library presents a scary program: Dark Passages, Masters of Horror on Tuesday, October 28, at 6:30 pm. Come and hear works by masters of horror read aloud, including Poe, Hawthorne, and others, read by Holly Nadler, Gwyn McAllister, Gerry Yukevich, and Anna Marie D’Addarie. Good, scary fun!

We send birthday smiles to granddaughter Kayla Bryn deBettencourt, Richard Mello Sr., and Janice Duarte on October 17, Vincent Frye and Fritz Knight on the 18th, Erich Luening on the 19th, Nathan Francis, Saige Araujo and Jeannie Holenko share the 20th, and Judy Williamson the 22nd.

Enjoy your week.  Peace.

We knew the warmer weather could not possibly last forever, still it was a bit startling when I awoke Monday morning and the temperature was only 34 degrees. Some of the fall flowers seem to survive a bit longer in the cooler weather, but the majority give the appearance of giving up and falling over. For the first time this fall I had to turn my heat on. But not having to do so until October is a reflection on the weather we had these past few months. Now we are headed to the last holiday weekend for the fall which means a resurgence of crowds and events.

The Oak Bluffs School Class of 2015 is holding a fundraiser for the class trip to Philly. There will be a multi-family yard sale and bake sale on Monday, Oct. 13, at 82 Alpine Avenue from 9 am to 2 pm. At the same time, and at the same location, they will also hold a car wash, rain or shine. Let’s support these ambitious students in their fundraising efforts.

A Halloween twist has been added to the third annual Walk for the Animals on Saturday, October 18, at Tradewinds Park in Oak Bluffs (rain date: Monday, October 19). Participants are encouraged to bring their pets in costumes to the Oak Bluffs School. Prizes for the Best Costumes will be awarded in three categories according to the age of the person who created the costume: 12 and under, 13 to 19, and 20 and older.

Anyone who likes to walk is welcome, whether you have a pet in costume (or not) or you just want to walk by yourself or with two-legged friends. Walkers may start any time between 10 am and 12 noon. The flat course winds through the woods along the old landing strip with many cutoff points for those who want to do a shorter version. Parking and Registration will be available at the Oak Bluffs School on Tradewinds Lane in Oak Bluffs where the course starts and finishes. Water will be available for both humans and the pets along the course.

A Kurt Vonnegut Celebration on Saturday, October 11, from 10:30 am to 2 pm at the library will feature  a traveling Vonnegut display. You may try out a vintage typewriter or create library card art. Then at 10:30 am, there will be a documentary screening of “2081” and at 12 noon, a staged reading of “Who am I This Time?” This is a free event.

The library will hold a Fossil Day Craft for Kids on Wednesday, October 15, at 3:30 pm. Come and make dinosaur footprints. This event is for ages 2 and up, with a parent. Then on National Fossil Day, Thursday, Oct. 16, from 4 to 7:45 pm, there will be a huge fossil display. Q&A with experts. Bring your fossils. This is a  family event, free and for all ages.

Here is a heads-up for the MVRHS Minnesinger Silent and Live Auction Benefit on Saturday, Oct. 25. It will be held from 6 to 9 pm at Dreamland in Oak Bluffs. The $25 cost  includes hors d’oeuvres, chowder bar, desserts and cash bar. Tickets are available from any MVRHS Minnesinger or at the door. For more info call 508-939-4053. The proceeds go towards the Minnesingers Scholarship Fund to help offset their travel and trip expenses abroad in April where they will be performing at several venues, including local schools and churches.

The 25th Annual Oak Bluffs Columbus Day 5K Road Race & 1 Mile Fun Run takes place on Sunday, October 12, and will benefit the Oak Bluffs class of 2015. The 5K Race (starts at 11 am) 5K Walk (starts at 11am) walkers may NOT run the course. The 1 Mile Fun Run starts at 10:30 am. Registration is at the Wesley House. The entry fee is $ 20 for the 5K run and 5K walk.

The 24th annual Martha’s Vineyard CROP Walk for Hunger will be held on October 19.  The walk starts at 2 pm with check in at St. Augustine’s Church in Vineyard Haven at 2:30 pm.  The walk is from St. Augustine’s to Trinity Church in Oak Bluffs, and back.

We send birthday smiles to Todd Rebello and Mabel McCarthy on October 9; my grandson Benjamin Alley shares the 10th with Anita Billings and Maximus Metell; Zach Sweeney, Joe deBettencourt, my sister Joyce Wadsworth, and Kristen Mathias on the 11th; Marty Nadler and Alexis Moreis on the 13th; Jen Combra on the 14th; Diane Claussen on the 15th; and Renee Balter on the 16th.

Enjoy your week.  Peace.

Come celebrate National Fossil Day at the Oak Bluffs Library on Thursday, Oct. 16, from 4 pm to 7:45 pm. Everyone is invited to bring fossils to show others, inquire about, or just to see what others bring.

Back by popular demand, the Martha’s Vineyard Museum is once again celebrating the faces of Martha’s Vineyard with a second “Island Faces” portrait competition in collaboration with Featherstone Center for the Arts. The contest is open to the public, ages 15 and up, and the artwork must be a two-dimensional painting, drawing, photograph, or mixed-media (no larger than 3′ by 3′). It must be a new work, created in 2014 or early 2015. The artwork must depict a Martha’s Vineyard resident, either year-round or seasonal. It can also be a self-portrait. Submit artwork (300 dpi or higher) no later than March 1, 2015, for the first round of judging. Please send all images and contact information to, or bring/send to the museum on a CD or flash drive.

Booktoberfest Crafts for Kids will be held at our Oak Bluffs library on Saturdays, Oct. 4, 11, and 18, from 10:30 am to 11:30 am. There will be crafts for kids, all ages, bookmarks, door hangers, journals, and a different craft each week, all free.

Then Spooky Stories for Kids will be the theme on Friday, Oct. 10 at 3:45 pm. Hear spooky stories and visit the cemetery. There will be glow-in-the-dark craft for ages 4 and up with a parent, and it’s free.

ACE MV Fall Classes start the week of Oct. 6, so register now online at There is a late fee for registering on the first day of class.

On Saturday, Oct. 4, come to the Harvest Festival at the Agricultural Hall in West Tisbury. The festival runs from 10 am to 3 pm, and admission is free. The $ 5 parking fee is to benefit the M.V. Public Charter School. There will be workshops, panels, an open stage, and a community supper from 5 pm to 7:30 pm, with live music and dancing from 5 to 10 pm.

Congratulations to Colleen Farrissey, who recently received her RN degree from Cape Cod Community College. Colleen’s parents, Kathy and Andy Farrissey, are quite proud of their daughter’s achievements, as are her grandparents, Bill and Maureen Anderson.  Congratulations, Colleen, you have a very promising future ahead of you.

The First Congregational Church of West Tisbury and its director of music and organist, David Rhoderick, invite you to enjoy a very special performance on Oct. 5 at 3 pm at the church. Come and experience the wonder of these moving compositions. Enjoy the classic and familiar Vivaldi’s “Gloria” and the seven songs of Thompson’s “Frostiana,” which celebrates the poetry of Robert Frost. Doors open at 2:30. The concert is presented by the West Tisbury Congregational Choir and Fall for the Arts. Admission is $15 for the performance, and students are free. For more information, call 508-693-2842.

I have just received word of the death of John (Blinoff) Folliot of Greenville, Md. John was a member of the Tisbury High School class of 1953, and one of my classmates. Condolences to his wife and family.

Mass Audubon’s Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary welcomes one and all to a free event on Sunday, Oct. 12, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their Fern and Feather Day Camp. The family-friendly celebration from 11 am to 3 pm at the sanctuary will focus on fun, food, music, and memories. Since 1964, the day camp has been teaching children about the wonders of the natural world, and lots of alums, former staff, and folks that just love Felix Neck are expected to attend and share stories.

On Oct. 12 (Sunday of Columbus Day weekend) at 4 pm, M.V. Chamber Music Society artistic director and pianist Delores Stevens, violinist and composer Maria Newman, and percussionist Martha Thatcher will play a free Dedication Concert at the brand-new West Tisbury Free Public Library.

We send birthday smiles to Grace Vanderhoop, Elyse Madeiras, and Bob Blythe on Oct. 2,

Will deBettencourt and Marc Hanover on the 3rd, Robert Moreis and Mikaella Blake on the 6th, Donna Joyce on the 7th, and Ann Knight and Daniel Blake on the 8th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

The cooler temperatures are creeping in more frequently, but occasionally warmer days fool us into thinking that summer is everlasting as they tease us with unexpected heat. How worrisome to see how dry everything is, as no longer is our view of the landscape one of lush green but brown dying grass and drooping perennials and leaves. We are now wishing for rain that is so badly needed.

Along with the cooler weather comes the annual migration of the spiders, whose path seems to be directly through my house. Never have I seen such a strange variety: small black ones, swinging tiny tan ones, and then the marathoners, who scurry across the floors so swiftly that they vanish out of sight before I can swat them. It makes me wonder if rumor has it that my home is a branch of Ramada Inn for spiders.

Our library wants to remind patrons that starting Oct. 1 through Feb. 25, 2015, the Alphabits Storytime program runs every Wednesday at 10:30 am. There will be songs, stories, and alphabet crafts with Ms. Zoe. This program is for ages 1½ to 5 years old, and there will be a new letter each week.

Congratulations to Tristian Gromoshak, an Oak Bluffs fifth grader. Tristian was awarded honorable mention for his drawing for the 2014 Kids Day T-shirt contest for the annual Bluefish Derby, and was awarded $25 in “fins” (checks from the Derby to spend at Island businesses).

On Sept. 30, Flatbread Co. will host a benefit night for the West Tisbury Library Foundation.

A celebration of the life of Chilmark resident Beatrice “Beach” Phillipps Bennett, beloved wife of Bill Bennett, is Sunday, Sept. 28, at the Ag Hall in West Tisbury from 2 pm to 5 pm. If anyone would like to bring a dessert to share, they would be very welcome to do so.

The ACE MV Course Sampling Fair is Wednesday, Oct. 1, at MVRHS from 5 pm to 6:30 pm. Come meet the teachers, register for classes (36 different classes being offered), and sample delicious food prepared by their cooking instructors. Reminder: There is a $10 late fee if you sign up on the day of the course, so register now. For more info, call Diane Abbot at 508-693-9222.

This Friday, Sept. 26, is your last chance for the season to have one of Grace Church’s famous lobster rolls, which are sold from 4 pm to 7:30 pm, along with a cold beverage and chips. Assorted pies and hot dogs are also available. For information or to order in advance, call 508-693-0332.

“Meditation and Mindfulness: Calming the Mind, Reducing Stress, Optimizing Well-Being” led by Elliott Dacher, M.D., begins its fall session on Wednesday, Oct. 1. Classes are held Wednesday evenings at the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital Medical Staff Library, 6 pm to 8:15 pm. The eight-week series is co-sponsored by the hospital and the YMCA of Martha’s Vineyard. Preregistration is required. Tuition is $150, $130 for YMCA members, $75 for hospital employees. For more information, email Iryna Demedenko at or call 508-957-9476.

Saving the best for last, heads-up for a another delicious Portuguese-American Club fish fry on Oct. 2 from 5 pm to 7 pm. Head to the club and enjoy this always tasty dinner with many tempting sides and numerous desserts.

We send birthday smiles to Susie Wallo on the 26th; Dennis Rose, Lauren Metell, and Keilla Geddis on the 27th; Martin Moreis, Raymond Dahill, and Zachary Mathias on the 28th; and Happy Anniversary wishes to Bernie and Mark Crossland on Oct. 1.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Morning greets us with lingering darkness now as the days are shortened.  For some reason my lab Molly is already arising earlier and earlier in spite of my attempts to convince her that 5 am is not 6 am so please go back to sleep for one more hour. The landscape is tired, as if the effort of presenting a beautiful view during the summer has been exhausting and this, along with a lack of rain, results in dying flowers, drooping foliage and leaves on trees changing color and dropping already.

The Oak Bluffs School, already busy welcoming students, is preparing to acquaint parents and guardians with the staff and programs. You are invited to weekly meetings every Wednesday at 8:30 am in the school library. In these meetings, you may ask your questions and voice concerns.

You will also have a chance to visit your child’s classroom and work when the school hosts Back to School Nights beginning at 6 pm on the following dates: Grade 3, Thursday, Sept. 18; Grade 2, Tuesday, Sept. 23; Grade 1, Tuesday, Sept. 30; Kindergarten and Project Headway, Wednesday, Oct. 1; and grades 5 through 8, Wednesday, Oct. 8.

A free Health Fair open to the public will be held on Monday, Sept. 22, from 4 pm to 6 pm at the Tisbury Senior Center in Vineyard Haven. Tests include glaucoma, hearing (call for an appointment), blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar. There will also be information on elder care, homecare and more, including refreshments and giveaways. For info, call 508-696-4205.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum will hold the 13th annual Ceremony of Remembrance at the Edgartown Lighthouse Children’s Memorial at 1 pm, Saturday, Sept. 20(rain date Sept. 27).

The idea for creating a memorial at the base of the Edgartown Lighthouse belonged to Rick Harrington, who envisioned it as “one more light to leave on” for his late son Ricky. Very quickly the concept grew into a way to memorialize the many children who have died by placing an engraved stone at the base of the lighthouse. In the past year, 26 new stones have been added with names of children of all ages and from across the country. The ceremony is an opportunity for families and friends to gather and remember all of the 651 children who are part of the Memorial.

The Museum is steward of the Edgartown, East Chop, and Gay Head Lighthouses and caretaker of the Children’s Memorial.

Stones may be purchased by contacting Betsy Mayhew at the Martha’s Vineyard Museum at or by calling 508-627-4441, ext. 112.

Here is a chance to support Martha’s Vineyard Community Services: If you purchase items through, please consider adding MVCS as your charity of choice. Instead of going to the main Amazon site, shop at and Amazon will donate 0.5 percent of your purchases to MVCS. Sign in using your regular Amazon account information and use the search box to find Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. Bookmark the site, and when you make future purchases MVCS will be saved as your charity of choice.

In partnership with M.V. Regional High School’s Environmental Club, members of the Martha’s Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative Ocean Sustainability-in-action Project will participate in the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup with a cleanup from 10 am to noon on Sept. 20 of the Tisbury Harbor beach.

Autumnal Equinox Family Yoga will take place on Saturday, Sept. 20, at 10:30 am at our very active library. Celebrate the changing season with family yoga with Ms. Sondra. Stuffed Animal Storytime will take place on Sept. 16 from 10:30 to 11:30 am, and Scrabble and chess will be held on Sept.  20 from 10 to 12 noon.

We send birthday smiles for the month of September to Aidylberg and Woodside residents: William Sullivan, Eileen McLaughlin, Spencer Hilton, Florence BenDavid, and Emma Goldhorn. Smiles to Ronnie Klein on the 19th, Corey and Amber Medeiros on the 20th, Ruth Metell and Ruthie Van Brakle sharing the 21st, Alice June Thompson on the 22nd, Ken Davey, Ann Metell, and Annabelle Metell on the 24th, and Dustin Shaw on the 25th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Now this week starts with the weather that we think of as first days of school in September. Sunny, dry, and very comfortable. My street is very busy every morning with children headed to school. Many riding bikes, some driven in cars, and most walking with a parent and accompanied by another sibling in a stroller. However, an awful lot of the parents, mothers especially, are so focused on their cell phones that I wonder if they realize they are missing a wonderful opportunity to communicate with their children. Please re-think this and don’t miss these precious moments.

I feel most grateful and cared for  this week by all my neighbors, relatives, and friends. Apparently Saturday, when on my way to 4pm Mass in Vineyard Haven, I took off my lifeline as I was driving out of the driveway. And wouldn’t you know, I accidentally set it off. By the time I got to church, my neighbor Mike told me to be sure to reset my alarm when I got home, and then Fr. Nagle said he had just received a strange email from Susie with the same message. When I checked my cell phone after church it was loaded with messages from my family. Thanks to everyone from the friend who called my daughter at the beach, who called my grandson at the airport, who called an EMT friend and my neighbors Mike and Susie, who went to the house to reassure the responding EMTs and Firemen that I was well and safe in Vineyard Haven. Sorry for all the commotion and thanks so much everyone for your caring responses.

Save the date for the Oak Bluffs celebration of Tivoli Day. It will arrive in Oak Bluffs for the 37th year on Saturday, September 13. It is either the celebration of summer’s end or the beginning of the shoulder season. The fun starts at 10 am, ends at 7 pm, and takes place all along Circuit Avenue, which is closed to traffic for the event.

The 4th Annual Jena Pothier Ring Challenge is also on Saturday the 13th.  To date over $13,000 in funds has been raised.  Show your skills and see who will be the champion at catching the most rings in this annual fundraiser to support the Jena Pothier Flying Horses Scholarship Fund, where 100% of the proceeds benefit MVRHS students.  There are four categories: Mini Junior (up to age 8), Junior (ages 8 to 15), Adult (16 and up). Professional can be any age, you know who you are. Cost is $10 per entry and a table will be set up to register participants all during Tivoli Day. The event starts at 4:30 pm.

So just to keep you extra busy, also on Saturday is the George V. Tankard, Jr., Memorial 5K Road Race, sponsored by the MVNAACP. The race starts at 11 am at the Wesley House, and you may register on Friday from 7 to  9 am or on Saturday from 8 to 10am. This race is a Scholarship Fundraiser.

Even though summer is ending, our Library continues with its many programs. The Ring-A-Ding Story Time takes place every week on Wednesdays at 10:30 am until September 25, when it will be

replaced by Alphabits Story Time. This new program will start October 1, on every Wednesday, and run through February 25, 2015. Children will enjoy songs, stories, and alphabet craft with Ms. Zoe. Program is for ages 1 1/2 to 5 years old. A new letter will be featured each week.

Little Yogis (yoga for children) takes place on Thursdays each week from  4 to 4:45 pm through May 28, 2015, with Ms. Sondra for children age 4 to 11 years.

Hoopfest will be held on Saturday, September 13, at 10:30 am, featuring hula hoop games and fun for kids age 3 and up.

A very special party will take place at the Library on Friday, September 12, from 10:30 to 11:30 am. Please join everyone as they thank Rosemary Hildreth for her 20-plus years of service to the library and wish her well in her retirement.

Come to Featherstone to see the sparks fly at the first annual iron pour on Martha’s Vineyard. On Saturday, September 20, from 10 am to 9 pm, you can celebrate the revival of the industrial arts with the casting of 1500 pounds of molten metal. You can enjoy the day by simply watching or you can create your own piece of cast iron art. Purchase a scratch block $30 or a scratch bowl $50 (limited). Scratch block carving from 10 am to 6 pm, metal pouring from 7 to 9 pm, rain or shine.

Belated huge birthday smiles to Ann Tuccelli, who celebrated her 90th birthday on August 25. Ann now resides at the Glenridge Nursing Home in Malden. For many years she worked, along with her sisters, at the family business on Circuit Ave., Mary’s Linen Store. Birthday Smiles to Emily deBetttencourt on September 12, my daughter Mary Alley on the 13th, Florence BenDavid on the 15th, followed by Rick Kelly on the 16th.Patty Morreis, Kathy Burton, Natasha Huffam and Vani Personi share the 17th. Happy anniversary to Rick and Pat Kelly on the 17th also.

Enjoy your week.  Peace

Megan-AlleyWelcome to September with visions of cooler weather and less crowded streets, stores, and beaches. How quickly the summer flew by. Labor Day passed quietly. It is supposed to be a day to honor all workers, but I am sure most employees did not spend the day relaxing but attended to their jobs. Just to put things in proper perspective and so you won’t feel sorry for yourselves, here are some wage figures from the Oak Bluffs town report for 1960. The Police Chief’s wage was $4,200, Fire Chief’s $300, Harbor Master $250 and the Treasurer $1,900. So things have improved a bit since that time.

School opens today and before we know it students will be engrossed in their studies and   extracurricular activities. Please be aware that students will be gathered at the bus stops and riding and walking to the school, so take extra care in driving.

For the second year in a row our Oak Bluffs Library won a blue ribbon at the fair for their book display. Congratulations for your hard work.

Programs upcoming at the library are: the Oak Bluffs Writer’s Group, today from 10 am to 12 noon. The Book Babies group will also meet today, from 10:30 to 11:30 am, and the Little Yogis program is from 4 to 5:45 pm.

Each month we screen a different movie from a new era. Themed games, trivia, and fun —  period clothing optional.

Stuffed Animal Storytime will take place on September 5, 10:30–11:30 am. Bring your favorite pal to storytime for stories and songs. Great board games of Scrabble and Chess take place on September 6 from 10 am until 12 noon.

Throwback Thursday Movie Night is on Thursday, September 11, at 5:30 pm. Alfred Hitchcock, Jimmy Stewart, and Grace Kelly join forces in this classic thriller, with Hitchcock trivia, 50s name game, and refreshments.

The school would like to remind parents of all incoming kindergartners that the office needs a copy of every child’s birth certificate and immunization record before they can start first grade. Sweet Dianne Rhoades, sister of Donna, is celebrating her 61st birthday today, Sept. 4. If you see her at Windemere, at the Federated Church of Edgartown, or out and about, please give her a hug and continued wishes for optimal health.  Her friendly smile is contagious.

Birthday smiles to Skylar Christopher Hall on the 6th, Susan Phillips on the 7th, and Ryan Araujo on the 10th.

Enjoy your week.


Megan-AlleyAre things any quieter? A bit perhaps. The sounds of helicopters roaring overhead late Sunday evening signaled the departure of the President and his family. They were not the only visitors leaving our Island. Many people who had come here for a short stay, perhaps to see the Illumination night celebration or the fireworks show, and students returning to their schools and also freshmen, excited to start off a new path in life, have also left. But we still have much to see and do, as always.

Just so you won’t get bored, the Trinity United Methodist Church is sponsoring a benefit Jewelry Treasure Hunt sale. There will be jewelry for sale to please everyone’s taste at a variety of prices. The sale will take place on Saturday, August 30, at the Parish House in the Campground. Doors will open for the sale promptly at 10 am, no prior admittance and will last until 3 pm or perhaps a little longer.

Friends of the Edgartown Public Library are sponsoring the second annual Pennywise Path 5K run/walk on Monday, September 1. Register online at or at the front desk.

For the first time in memory, starting on Labor Day, September 1, St. Augustine’s Church in Vineyard Haven will be the only Catholic Church in Good Shepherd Parish on the Island  open for Masses until Memorial Day 2015. Starting on Saturday, September 6, through October 12 the schedule will be Saturdays 4 pm and Portuguese Mass at 7 pm. Sundays there will be services at 8 am, 9:30 am, and 6 pm.

Then starting Saturday, October 18, until Memorial Day , the Saturday schedule will remain the same but Sunday is changed to 9 am and 5 pm. St. Elizabeth’s and Our Lady Star of the Sea will be shut down for the winter. St. Augustine’s has been insulated and a new heating system installed. It is hoped that this will be a wise economic move.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum is opening its latest exhibit on August 29, depicting three generations of artists from one family. Although a little tongue in cheek, Moore and Moore and Moore, the show’s title, declares that the talent just keeps coming. This exhibit reveals the connections and relationships of three artists: landscape painter Nelson Augustus Moore, his great-great grandson Andrew Gordon Moore, a realist painter who lives in Oak Bluffs, and Hannah Moore, Andrew’s daughter. The exhibit will open on August 29 with an Opening Reception in the Museum Galleries, 5–7pm. Admission is free for Museum members and $7 for non-members. Children under 6 are always free. The exhibit will remain on display through October 25.

On Sunday, Sept. 21, Oak Bluffs Police Chief Erik Blake will walk up to 26.2 miles along the historic Boston Marathon route in the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk presented by Hyundai. He will join an expected 8,500 walkers with the goal of raising more than $7.5 million for the Jimmy Fund for adult and pediatric patient care and cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, bringing the event’s 26-year fundraising total to more than $100 million. It raises the most money of any single-day walk in the nation. To register for the walk or to support a walker, or to volunteer, visit

Head to the Oak Bluffs Senior Center to enjoy another Friday Conversations program. On Friday, Sept. 5, 10–11:30 am, our guest speaker will be a new, young literary find: Stanley Kissel, who found his muse at age 75. Stanley, a summer resident of the Vineyard, will discuss his third novel, Murder In Swing Time. He will also discuss his approach to writing, and why he started so late in life. This novel is an old-fashioned murder mystery and private detective yarn that takes place in New York City, post WW II.

Throwback Thursday Movie Night on September 11 is a classic Alfred Hitchcock thriller starring Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly. The movie starts at 5:30 pm. There will be Hitchcock Trivia; 50s name games and refreshments.

Flatbread Benefit Night: Join us for a fun night at Flatbread Company, on Airport Road, on Tuesday, September 2, between 5 and 9 pm. The First Congregational Church of West Tisbury will receive a percentage of the pizza sales for the evening (either eat in or take out). Once again, a silent auction will be featured with exciting, unusual, and distinctive items to bid on. Good humor will prevail as friends try to outbid one another for these great items. Invite your family and friends for this end-of-summer event to support the church and its mission. All ages and sizes are welcome!

On Monday, Sept. 8, 5:30–6:30 pm, there will be a legal clinic presentation at the Tisbury Council on Aging on Pine Tree Rd. The subject of Arthur Bergeron of Mirick O’Connell Law Firm will be “Dealing with Alzheimers: At Home, in Assisted Living, or in a Nursing Home.” He will be joined by representatives of Alzheimers Association and Elder Services of Cape & Islands. Register at the Council 508-696-4205; a light meal will be provided.

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. Come and 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. For questions email

We Send Birthday Smiles to Liz Wilson on the 29th, Pam Melrose on the 30th, and Nancy Giordano and Sean Flynn on the 31st. September birthday smiles start with Tony Ferreira on the 1st. Ed BenDavid Sr., Evelyn Christopher, and Valarie O’Donnell share September 2. And let’s give Robert Pacheco the day off from Reliable Market on his birthday, September 3.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Megan-AlleyOne of the things I look forward to in the summer are real tomatoes. The gardens are suddenly filling up and overflowing with those fragrant, delicious fruits. No more, at least for a while, of tomatoes that do not smell, taste, or seem like the real thing.  Now we must scramble for different ways to cook and preserve them for future enjoyment. I am starting to realize why it takes me so long to complete routine matters. As I pass the kitchen windows, I am distracted by the birds and their antics at the feeders and before I realize it I have been watching for some time.  Heading to the bedroom, the window flower boxes in those windows are now drawing me closer, first just to admire the flowers and then observing the busy bees as they float from blossom to blossom in search of pollen. Some are already so heavily laden with pollen that as they alight on flowers, the stems bend downward from their weight. How fascinating it is to watch their work until I am jolted into the reality that perhaps it is time for me to imitate them and also be busy as a bee!

Can it possibly be that summer is winding down?  This week has brought us the Grand Illumination, the Agricultural Fair beckons us to West Tisbury, starting today and running until Sunday evening, and of course our Town’s own grand finale, the Fireworks show in Ocean Park Friday night.

Be prepared for parking restrictions, re-routing of traffic and altered bus schedules. But the resulting show of fireworks is worth the temporary inconvenience and is enjoyed by thousands of all ages.

This time of year also brings the exodus of not only our summer guests but also students returning to their studies at off-Island institutions. Among those entering college for their first year are Katherine deBettencourt, the daughter of Michael and Erin deBettencourt, who has chosen to continue her education in Florida where the weather is a bit warmer in the winter than here on the Island. Katherine will also be able to continue playing  golf, a sport which she excelled at as a member of the MVRHS golf team. Mary Alley will take her son and my grandson, Jeremy Alley-Tarter, to  Assumption College in Worcester this week, where he will be busy with his environmental science studies and track activities.

As these students head off Island for future adventures, there are enough activities here to keep our heads spinning.  The Sullivan 5K Run/Walk event for the whole family takes place this Saturday around East Chop.  For info, log

Oak Bluffs School students can access the Oak Bluffs School web site for a list of supplies you will need to start school in September, and more helpful info.

The Oak Bluffs Library will host an author’s visit on Wednesday, August 27 at 4 pm. Author Amelie Loyot will discuss her book, “Vanessa: The Sea Serpent of Martha’s Vineyard.”  This program is for all ages and is a free event.

Although he had an interruption to his vacation to head back to Washington, D.C., for a few days this week, we do hope that President Obama and his family were able to enjoy vacationing on the Island. It didn’t seem to me that down-Island traffic was impacted by his visit much more than it is on an ordinary summer day. But as for up Island, that is probably a different story. Hopefully, for a few hours at least, he found some peace away from stress and criticism.

We send birthday smiles Tony Ratcliff today, Ginny Hall, Leon Holt and Erin deBettencourt share the 3rd, Christine Anthony on the 24th, Ken Rusczyk on the 26th, Erika Bettencourt on the 27th, grandson Chris Alley and the brothers Marchand Andrew and Matthew on the 28th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Megan-AlleyWelcome to August, which usually means that our lawns and flowers are starting to look a bit dried up and not so beautiful. But thanks to some timely rain showers, things are still bright and beautiful. Of course, the crowds and therefore traffic lines seem endless. Everyone says drivers and visitors behave badly during August. Perhaps by now we are all exhausted and frustrated by fighting traffic and waiting in long lines and actually trying to be nicer than we really are. That is impossible to do for more than five minutes, so the next time you are ready to explode because of someone’s rude or stupid maneuver, try saying, “Oh my goodness gracious,” and you will find it is impossible to lose your temper.

A Backyard Music Concert — a fun, music event for the whole family — will take place at our own Oak Bluffs Library. On Saturday, August 16, 6–7 pm, the Rye Brothers jug band returns. Bring a blanket, picnic, and friends for a concert on the lawn (indoors if raining). This is a family-friendly band.

Friday Morning Conversations at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center continue to bring in interesting speakers. On Friday, August 15, from 10 to 11:30 am, the guest speaker will be young Philadelphia author Jon McGoran, who will discuss his newest book, “Deadout.” “When Martha’s Vineyard’s bees begin to mysteriously die off and a biotech company plans to release genetically modified bees into the environment, a vacationing Philadelphia detective discovers that the bees aren’t the only things being modified. Things spin violently out of control as he closes in on what they are really up to, and he must race to stop them before their plot succeeds, and spreads to the mainland and the world.”

The Children’s Author storytime  at the Library on Wednesday, August 20, starts 10:30 am. Come and meet author Christie Jones-Ray, and hear about her book,  “Eliza Visits Martha’s Vineyard.”

Last weekend, accompanied by my sister, Ann Hearn, and my daughter, Mary Alley, I went north to Lebanon, N.H., for a Bagley family reunion. What a great time it was; I met cousins I knew from childhood and met many more for the first time. There were close to 80 first cousins, second cousins, spouses of relatives and all were connected to the Bagley family.  Each family had a table displaying photos, letters etc. that gave a history going back for years. I realized that the last time I went away for a vacation was seven years ago, but this one was worth the wait.

The Sullivan 5K Run Walk is on Saturday, August 23. Kids fun run starts at 8:45, walkers at 9 am, and runners start at 9:30 am, For more info log onto

We remember Jenna  on the 17th and  send birthday smiles to Russ MacDonald on August 18, my son Dion Alley and Becky Rogers on the 19th, and Marilyn Wey on August 20th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Got Oak Bluffs news? Email Megan Alley here.