Authors Posts by Megan Alley

Megan Alley

Megan Alley

What a week we just had. We enjoyed the marvelous fireworks, thanks to the many donors and hardworking firemen. They were great. If you agree, send a helping donation to the Oak Bluffs Firemen’s Civic Association. And then on Sunday, we said goodbye to the president. Now students are getting ready for the school opening in September, right after Labor Day. In my day it meant that we had to get used to wearing shoes again after a summer of bare feet. But now there are long lists handed out of what each student needs. Lots of changes.

Farm, Field, Sea, an Island culinary adventure, takes place on Saturday, August 29. Step into the shoes of authentic sea and soil farmers and fisherman of Martha’s Vineyard. You will experience behind-the-scenes farm exploration, shellfish and seafood education, and tasty local foods. Breakfast and lunch will be served at bespoke Island locations. For questions, log on to

Native Islander and graduate of MVRHS Dawn Breeze has returned to her Island of origin this summer to offer a one-day series of special events. She will lead her “Creativity + Courage” workshop, as well as sharing an exhibit of recent artworks created on another island — Iceland. Breeze created her workshop in 2011 as an expressive arts program for individuals in recovery. Funded in part by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the workshop is scheduled for Sept. 5 from 2 to 5 pm at the historic Tashmoo Waterworks Building and grounds. The cost of the workshop is $75 including materials, and there are limited scholarship available. For further information, contact the artist direct at 917-622-5141.

The Oak Bluffs quilters group (formerly from the OBCOA) has been meeting at the Good Shepherd Parish Hall for the past two summers. They send heartfelt thanks to Father Nagel and the office staff for their warm hospitality. They are now back at their winter quarters at 80 Pondview Drive in Oak Bluffs. Any new quilters from all Island towns who might like to join them would be welcome. They are mainly a hand-quilting group, but at Glenna Barkan’s home there is a room where machine sewing is available. As usual their hours are Monday and Friday from 1 to 3 pm. This remarkable group has been quilting together for 18 years, and has contributed money and quilts to many worthy organizations for a total of nearly $40,000. Not only that, but they have a good time while they are quilting along. They are happy to have had the chance to contribute to fuel and medical assistance to younger folks from all Island towns, as well as giving a dozen or so children’s quilts to the Red Stocking Fund every Christmas. Glenna’s phone number is 508-693-8586.

Did you know that the Island Food Pantry, located in the Stone Church in Vineyard Haven, is available for food distribution throughout the summer by calling 508-693-4766. The Serving Hands Distribution program runs year-round out of the Baptist Church in Vineyard Haven. The next distribution date is August 28. For more info, contact Betty Burton at 508-693-5339.

The world premiere of an original play by Edward L. Beck starts this week and runs through Sept. 12 at the Vineyard Playhouse. This play revolves around loss, faith, and complicated love. For more info, go to

We send birthday smiles for August to Woodside Village residents Annie Smith, Merrell Raymond, Hanry Rancourt, George Thibault, and Vincent Comunale. Smiles to Liz Wilson on August 29, Pam Melrose on the 30th, Nancy Giordano and Sean Flynn on the 31st, Tony Ferreira and Anne Davey on Sept. 1, Ed BenDavid Sr., Evelyn Christopher, and Valarie O’Donnell on the 2nd, and Reliable Market’s Robert Pacheco on the 3rd.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Well, I think any high snow piles left over from last winter’s storms must have melted by now. I know that I have. My flower gardens are beginning to get that tired end-of-summer look. But there are still amazing flower displays everywhere about town. What a beautiful welcome to town are all the well-cared-for gardens along the bulkhead, and across the street on the banks fronting the Wesley House and the other houses that overlook the harbor. What more can you say about Ocean Park than simply gorgeous, and it seems as though every street you drive down there are flower beds and flowering shrubs everywhere. Take the time to enjoy the views even amid the traffic jams and crowds.

Our town lost two longtime residents these past few weeks. Condolences to the family of Edmund Bernard. Edmund was a Korean War veteran, and well-known gardener and proprietor of Bernard’s Greenhouse, providing many families and businesses with flowers and plants. A graveside service with full military honors will be held on Saturday, August 29, at 10:30 in the Veterans’ Memorial section of Oak Grove Cemetery in Oak Bluffs.

Family and friends mourn the loss of Patsy Maitland Gentch, who died last week. Patsy was the smiling friend who always took time to speak with you and left you feeling upbeat and happy. How sorry we are, and will truly miss that endless smile.

Fr. Augustine Banganlie, who has assisted for the past few summers at Good Shepherd Parish, said goodbye to his parishioners this week. Father Banganlie, a native of Sierra Leone, has been assigned to a parish in Ireland, and will leave for that destination this week.

Michael James Dixon celebrated his sixth birthday in grand style on Sunday last. There was a cookout with dad Matt Rivers in charge, a dinosaur theme, including a cake decorated by his grandmother Linda Amaral, games with prizes for everyone, and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents and great-grands, babies, and friends from both sides of the family. All of this great fun was held at Nana Kati’s and Grandpa Dave’s house. The huge bounce house provided great entertainment for the kids and of course Matt.

Remember, roads will be a bit more crowded, as the County Fair, Illumination Night, and the Oak Bluffs Fireworks all occur this week. Enjoy these events, but remember traffic will be slow, and for the first time this year, dogs will not be permitted at the fair. I suggest you use common sense when deciding whether you should bring your dogs to the other two events. Do you really think dogs enjoy the crowds and the noise?

Birthday smiles to Tony Ratcliff on August 21, Leon Holt and Erin deBettencourt on the 23rd, Christine Anthony on the 24th, Ken Rusczyk on the 26th and Erika Bettencourt on the 27th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Once more our town and Island are crowded with visitors and guests. One group we are all familiar with, of course, is President Obama and his family. We welcome them, and hope he enjoys a quiet and peaceful vacation away from the childish antics of want-to-be leaders of our country.

Can you imagine trying to enjoy a vacation while surrounded by microphones, reporters, cameras, and sightseers?

This week has brought me family visitors from all parts of the country, and actually the world. My sister Joyce Wadsworth, from Paso Robles, Calif., is here for a few weeks. Cousins Judy from South Yarmouth and Gary from Upper New York State visited all of us for the day on Monday last, and we took a tour of the up-Island area and other places around the Island. They were amazed at the changes and the beauty. Also on Monday, my daughter-in-law Debra and granddaughter Paige arrived from Perth, Australia, and will be joined by my son Dion on Thursday, when after a short visit with Bagley relatives in New Hampshire, they will head to their new home in Houston, Texas.

The Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association is sponsoring a very special event on Friday, August 14, at 8 pm at the Tabernacle in the Campgrounds. Father Augustine Banganlie, visiting priest at the Good Shepherd Catholic Parish from Sierra Leone, will be presenting “Sierra Leone: The Scourge of Ebola and the Crisis of Faith.” Father Augustine is a native of Sierra Leone, and will be offering his eye-opening, firsthand perspective of the Ebola crisis in Africa and how faith is an integral part of both the problem and the solution. All are welcome for this very important event. A free-will offering will be taken, and all proceeds go to a charity supporting Ebola relief in Sierra Leone.

Again this summer, Featherstone is holding the Potters Bowl on Sunday, the 23rd of August, at 4:30 pm. Come buy your bowl and have it filled with great soup, and enjoy drinks, dessert, music, and a great afternoon.

On August 18 there will be a Tuesdays at Twilight concert at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury featuring the Berlin/Johnson Jazz Duo and Friends.

Next week is the busiest of the summer. Wednesday is the Grand Illumination Night in the Campgrounds. For years we have enjoyed the sight of the Japanese lanterns of all colors and shapes decorating the gingerbread cottages, and of course many buildings surrounding the Campground itself. Come early and enjoy the Community Sing in the Tabernacle, and then the entire area is illuminated by the lanterns. Oohs and aahs of admiration echo throughout the grounds as once more we are privileged to view the panorama of color and light.

Thursday through Sunday brings us the County Fair in West Tisbury. Carnival rides, exhibits, livestock shows, and a huge variety of food and music draw us every year to enjoy this old-fashioned entertainment.

Then head to Oak Bluffs on Friday, that week, for our very own fireworks in Ocean Park. What greater place to view them than oceanside at the park? You must arrive early to claim your space, as the park soon fills up with thousands of people. Bring along chairs or blankets and perhaps a picnic lunch, and settle in and enjoy the band concert before the fireworks show. When the sky darkens, the show will begin with explosions of color and sound.

In preparation for Illumination Night, our library will hold an Illumination Craft class on Wednesday, August 19, at 10 am and 11 am. Celebrate Illumination Night by painting your very own lantern. Space is limited, so call to preregister for the 10 am or 11 am start time.

The Author’s Talk by Beny J. Primm, M.D., takes place at the library on Thursday, August 20, at 11 am. Dr. Primm will discuss his book, “The Healer: A Doctor’s Crusade Against Addiction and AIDS.”

At the library on Tuesday, August 18, from 5 to 7 pm, there will be a Panel Discussion: Criminal Justice Reform. Attorney Nkechi Taife, attorney Jesselyn McCurdy, and Andrea C. James are on the panel, and there will be a question and answer session. This is a free event.

Author, historian, and former Howard University librarian Janet Sims-Wood will discuss her book, “Dorothy Porter Wesley at Howard University: Building a Legacy of Black History” on Friday, August 21, at 11 am.

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

Have you driven by the old Oak Bluffs basketball court down at Niantic Park lately? Well, it was there one day and gone the next, but is slowly being rebuilt. The center of summer activity for Oak Bluffs youth needs some help to be completed. The original courts were built many years ago, at least 35. Led by the director of recreation at the time, Dan MacCarthy, and with sweat equity by numerous volunteers including the Fire Department and the cooperation of the Park Department, it was completed in one summer, and was the answer to keeping hundreds of young people involved in safe and healthy activities through many summers. But now donations are needed to complete the renovations for the basketball and tennis courts. You may send donations to the Town of Oak Bluffs Niantic Park Fund, P.O. Box 1327, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557.

If you think Oak Bluffs is only a summer playground, take a look at all the other events coming up in August.

Islanders Write is coming back. Organized by MVTimes Contributing Editor and Oak Bluffs resident Kate Feiffer, you can catch it on Monday, August 10, at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury; the first panel begins at 8 am and the last one at 4 pm. The day features workshops, panel discussions about writing, author signings, and much more (including food by Rosewater Market). It’s free and open to the public, and features an outstanding cast of Vineyard year-round and seasonal residents and visitors. For more information, visit

Our Oak Bluffs library will host Vinyasa Flow Open Level Yoga on Tuesday, August 11, and Thursday, August 13, at 10:30 am. Yuliana Kim-Grant will lead this class. Please bring a mat if you can. An author’s talk by La Shonda Barnett will take place on Thursday, August 13, at 6:30 pm. Her historical novel, “Jam on the Vine,” is about a black woman who launches a newspaper in the Jim Crow Midwest. Storytime in the Park is every Tuesday through August 25 at 10 am in Hartford Park, Oak Bluffs. Come join Miss Sondra for songs and stories outside. Canceled in inclement weather. Meet your local heroes on Thursday, August 6, from 10 to 11 am at the library, where you will be able to explore a fire truck, a police car, and more. And for great fun, you are invited to bring your stuffed animal to the Stuffed Animal Camp-Out on Friday, August 7, to Saturday, August 8. On Friday between 10 am and 2 pm, drop off your favorite stuffed animal for an all-night adventure in the library! Join them for breakfast the next morning at 10:30 am to hear all about their wild time.

Brad Reedy, Ph.D., LMFT, owner and clinical director of Evoke Therapy Programs, will be visiting the Island to give a presentation on “Raising Resilient Children” on Tuesday, August 11, from 4:30 to 6 pm at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School library. The Island Wide Youth Collaborative (IWYC) is sponsoring the event, which is free and open to the public. You will also have an opportunity to purchase Dr. Reedy’s newest book, as he will hold a book signing for “The Journey of the Heroic Parent: Your Child’s Struggles and the Road Home,” which will be available for sale at the event.

The Martha’s Vineyard Community Services Thrift Shop, Chicken Alley, kicks off its Collectables Sale weekend with a fashion show and boutique sale on Friday, August 14, from 5 to 8 pm at the Thrift Shop. The event also includes the screening of the film “Traceable,” free of charge, at 4 pm at the Capawock Theater in Vineyard Haven on Saturday, August 15. The Big Art Show and Sale is Sunday, August 16, from 1 to 5 pm at the Thrift Shop.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum is holding its annual meeting, highlighted by the 2015 Martha’s Vineyard Medal award ceremony on Monday, August 10, at 5 pm. The meeting will be held at the former Marine Hospital in Vineyard Haven. This year’s recipients include Pat Gregory (posthumously), Patricia Morgan, and Cynthia Riggs. The medal is awarded annually to leaders in the community in recognition of their outstanding commitment to preserving the history, arts, and culture of the Island.

Curious about those gingerbread cottages in the Campground? Well, mark your calendars for Wednesday, August 12, when the Martha’s Vineyard Camp-Meeting Association proudly presents the 20th annual Gingerbread Cottage Tour. The tour runs from 10 am to 3 pm, with the last ticket sold at 2 pm. Tickets are $25, and proceeds benefit the Tabernacle Fund. The tour includes visits inside six cottages, admission to the Cottage Museum, and delicious desserts, finger sandwiches, and punch. You may purchase tickets in advance at, or on the day of the tour at the Tabernacle.

Remember, if you get a yearning for lobster rolls on Tuesdays, you can purchase them at the American Legion Hall in Vineyard Haven. They start selling at 4:30 pm until 7 pm, and there is always plenty of parking.

We send birthday smiles to Ben deBettencourt on August 7, Ken Debettencourt and Bob Gatchell on the 8th, Oak Bluffs Fire Department Fire/EMS Chief John Rose on August 9, Danielle Sedlier and Sarah Trudel on the 10th, my daughter Kati Alley and Deb Hammett on the 11th, Terry McCarthy and Richard Mello III on August 12th, and Nelson Oliver and Shaun DePriest on the 13th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

As we say farewell to July, I am wishing for more rain and more patience. The lawns and flowers are struggling to look fresh and new, and I think I have spent way too much time looking in amazement at how drivers decide to navigate the four-way stop near the new fire station. We have the undecided drivers who just wait, looking as if they are waiting for the (nonexistent) traffic light to turn green. Then the drivers who decide that they will just follow the car in front of them right through the intersection. I can’t decide if my favorite is the driver who slides through making a turn as he is texting on his cell phone or the ones who attempt give you a fierce stare as they boldly proceed whenever they want to. Here is a brief lesson. When you come to a four-way stop, the driver to the immediate right of the last car to go through the intersection, is the next one to go through — and so it continues round and round. Let’s see if this helps.

The Tuesdays at Twilight Concert program continues on August 4 with a concert at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury featuring the band Good Night Louise. The concert is sponsored by the West Tisbury Library Foundation, and all proceeds go the West Tisbury Free Public Library. Doors will open at 7 pm, and the concert will begin at 7:30 pm. Tickets may be purchased in advance at the West Tisbury Free Public Library and at Tisberry Fro Yo, just off Main Street in Vineyard Haven. Tickets are $15 for adults and half-price for kids 12 and under. Limit of six tickets per person. The Art Cliff Diner food truck will serve dinner from 6 to 8 pm on the Grange grounds, and Tisberry Fro Yo will be for sale after the show.

Just a reminder about the Yard Sale to benefit Good Shepherd Parish Saturday, August 1, from 8 am to 2 pm at St. Augustine’s Church parking lot in Vineyard Haven.

The program at our Oak Bluffs library on Tuesday, August 4, is Acting for Teens, from 11 am to 12:30 pm. Kate Hancock and Anna Marie D’Addarie will lead the workshop, which will include acting, speech, scene work, Shakespeare, and more. This program is for ages 10 to 14 years. Space is limited to 10 actors. A live performance from the summer acting workshops follows at 1 pm. This is a free program.

Bijan Bayne will give an author’s talk at the Library on Wednesday, August 12, at 11 am. The subject, which will be of interest to many, is “Martha’s Vineyard Basketball: How a Resort League Defied Notions of Race and Class.” In an era of ’50s segregation, and ’60s and ’70s uprisings, Vineyard basketball brought people together. This also is a free program.

Think you can’t live without a car? Well, you will think again after listening to Holly Nadler as she leads a panel discussion about car-free living. Also on the panel are Cheryl Burnes, Paul Mohair, David Whitmon, and Jessica Harris. The discussion will be on Thursday, August 6, at 6 pm at our library.

The eighth annual Federated Church House Tour will be on Tuesday, August 11, starting at 1 pm at the Federated Meetinghouse, Edgartown. There will be a free lecture by historian Mary Jane Carpenter about the beautiful and historic North Water Street homes that are included in the tour. The tour runs from 2 to 4:30 pm, with refreshments served for the duration on a lawn overlooking Edgartown Harbor and the Chappy Ferry. Tickets are $40, and are available the day of the tour at the Meetinghouse. Proceeds benefit the ongoing preservation of the 1828 Federated Church Meetinghouse.

Ice and Flow, a Stina Sayre Design fashion show and fall preview, will be to benefit Friends of Family Planning of Martha’s Vineyard. The show will be held on Tuesday, August 4, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at Stina Sayre Design in Edgartown. As the Friends of Family Planning are in the middle of their capital campaign to pay off their mortgage, Ms. Sayre will donate a portion of the evening’s proceeds to the organization. For questions, please call 508-627-7077.

We send birthday smiles to Sophia McGroarty Sampaio and Garrett Brown on August 1, Nancy Gardella on the 3rd, and Tricia Bergeron on August 4. Susan Klein and Alison Reynolds share the 5th..

And smiles to Evamae Magee on August 6.

Enjoy your week. Peace.


Things change so quickly, don’t they? Especially the weather, which switched from fall-like air to rain showers, and now to real hot and humid days. The beaches are crowded, and so are the streets, especially down by Farland Square, where all the passengers from SSA vessels to the Island Queen funnel down to that one area before going to separate destinations. But this is what we think about all winter: that we will have a busy summer and before you know it, it will slowly come to an end.

Good Shepherd Parish of Martha’s Vineyard is having a yard sale on August 1. The sale will take place at St. Augustine’s parking lot at 56 Franklin Street in Vineyard Haven from 8 am to 2 pm. If it should rain, the sale will be inside St. Augustine’s Hall at the same address.

On July 28, Tuesdays at Twilight at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury will present Spotlight on Youth, a concert showcasing the Vineyard’s best new musical talent. Performers range from fifth graders through high schoolers, and have been chosen by their music teachers as the most advanced, talented, and hardworking young singers and instrumentalists on the Island. Doors will open at 7 pm, and the concert will begin at 7:30 pm. Tickets may be purchased in advance at the West Tisbury library. Tickets are $15 for adults and half-price for kids 12 and under. This concert is sponsored by the West Tisbury Library Foundation, and all proceeds go toward supporting the West Tisbury library. The Art Cliff Diner food truck will serve dinner from 6 to 8 pm on the Grange grounds. For more info, check

The opening of the Martha’s Vineyard Book Festival is on Friday, July 31, at 5:30 pm at the Chilmark Community Center. The opening of the festival features a dialogue between two high- profile journalists: Ta-Nahisi Coates and Michelle Norris. Tickets for the event can be purchased at

The annual book sale at the Oak Bluffs library will take place on Thursday, July 23, and Friday, July 23, from 10 am to 4 pm and on Saturday, July 25, from 10 am to 2 pm. There will be a wide assortment of books, CDs, audio books, and DVDs, all available at pleasant prices. The sale is sponsored by the Library Friends of Oak Bluffs to help support our library.

Saturday last, Dori and Tim Clark of Oak Bluffs hosted Tim’s parents, Lorraine and Richard Clark, for a party to celebrate Lorraine and Richard’s 60th wedding anniversary. The couple’s four children planned, organized, and carried through with a wonderful celebration. Their children, grands, and greats, and many friends, gathered to witness this popular couple’s renewal of wedding vows. Great food and company outside on that beautiful afternoon, under the shade of the tent, made for a perfect Saturday-afternoon party.

It seems impossible, but the Martha’s Vineyard Community Services annual Art Buchwald Possible Dreams Auction is now in its 37th year. The auction will be held on Sunday, July 26, at Winnetu Oceanside Resort. Gates open at 3:30, and shortly after the dreams begin. Tickets will be available at the gate for $25 or online at Proceeds from this auction support the many programs offered by Martha’s Vineyard Community Services that continue to assist so many people in numerous ways. So by attending, you might not only fill your dreams, but help fulfill the dreams of others.

Our library is offering a series of music programs. OB Live, featuring the Martha’s Vineyard Spirituals Choir, takes place on Thursday, July 30, at 6:30 pm. Jim Thomas leads the choir, and also provides historical context for the slave songs.

Looking for a bargain and a delicious meal also? A complete chicken dinner will be served at the First Baptist Church Parish House in Vineyard Haven on Saturday, July 25, at 6 pm. The menu includes chicken, coleslaw, potato salad, cornbread, and baked beans, with beverage and dessert. Tickets are $15. Eat in or takeout. Reservations are suggested. For more info, call 508-693-1539.

We send birthday smiles for the month of July to Woodside Village residents Albert Hutchenson, Russell Marsden, Barbara Nolan, Joyce Dodge, Douglas Searle, Jon Moore, Edwin Lapiene, Myna Araujo, Betsy Tierney, Robert Shelton, Raphael Shai, Howard Harrison, Neis Sjostrom, and Merrianne Sharpe. Smiles to Aiden and Logan Araujo, Pat Rose and Richard Cage on the 24th, Paul Robinson on the 26th, Travis Bernard, Rachel Barrett and Denise Alwardt on the 29th, and Heather White, Ashley Medeiros, and Luke dePriest on the 30th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.


It’s getting a bit more difficult to keep the promises I made last winter to never again complain about hot summer weather again. It looks like we are having a short spell of hazy, hot, and humid for this week. But it doesn’t seem to stop crowds of people from arriving every day to enjoy what we take for granted: our beautiful Island and scenery. We have had to switch into summer mode for best times to shop, keep appointments, etc. I have found that if I allow twice the time to reach my destination that I did in the off-season, I manage to arrive on time. However, is there still an off-season here anymore?

Might I ask why town officials and newspaper articles still refer to Alley Park as Waban Park? It has been renamed for more than six years now to honor my husband, retired Fire Chief Dennis Alley, for his 53 years in the fire service in Oak Bluffs. People seem to do the same thing when they refer to the David Healey Mall as Post Office Mall, and that was dedicated over 25 years ago. Habits die hard, and I remember it took a while for all of us to switch from Gay Head to Aquinnah, but now it seems natural enough. It seems that after six years, at least town officials should be able to remember the change of name. If in doubt, please just go to the park and read the plaque on the boulder placed at the edge of the park.

On Saturday, July 25, head to the retirement celebration for Superintendent James Weiss at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury from 5 to 8 pm. Tickets are $25 and are available at the door, the Superintendent’s office, or the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School. Proceeds from the tickets will support the James Weiss Student Activity Fund. Come join the party and celebration of community.

Have you ever wondered what was going on in Washington Park in Oak Bluffs on Sundays? It’s the Oak Bluffs Summer Market, which takes place every Sunday in the park between the Ocean View and Our Market. Stop by and you will find a variety of local produce, specialty foods, antique and vintage items, and much crafts and art. The market opens at 9 am, and you will also be able to enjoy beautiful views of the harbor while browsing through all the items displayed there.

The kickoff for the 29th annual Martha’s Vineyard Hospital Golf Benefit Tournament takes place on Sunday, July 19, at Farm Neck Golf Course, with cocktails from 5 to 7 pm. Monday the 20th the tournament tee-off time is at 8:45 am.

The Martha’s Vineyard Chamber Music Society offers concerts on Monday and Tuesday evenings this summer. The July 20th concert is free, with no ticket required, the other concerts for Monday evenings are July 27 and August 2, 10, and 17. These concerts will be held at 8 pm at the Old Whaling Church on Main Street in Edgartown. Tuesday concerts are held at the Chilmark Community Center, and the July 21 concert is free. There will also be concerts on August 4 and August 11, which is the final Chilmark concert.

Christmas in July takes place at our Oak Bluffs Public Library on Saturday, July 18, from 10:30 to 11:30 am. It’s Christmas at the library. Come do a holiday craft and visit with Santa!

The Weekly Teen DIY Craft will be on Tuesday, July 21, at 3:30 pm, featuring DIY Chalkboards.

Pete the Cat will visit the library on Wednesday, July 22, at 10:30 am. Everyone’s upbeat friend will be the guest at storytime.

I am reminding you about the 11th annual Della Hardman Day celebration, which will be held on Saturday, July 25, at 4 pm in Ocean Park. This event, sponsored by the Town of Oak Bluffs and the Della Hardman Day Committee, chaired by Gretchen T. Underwood, celebrates community, culture, and a zest for living as exemplified by Della Hardman (1922–2005), an artist, educator, and writer.


Watch this

Tom Dresser’s next book talk is scheduled for Friday, July 17, at 10 am at the Oak Bluffs Council on Aging. The subject is his new book, “Martha’s Vineyard: A History.” This is a great opportunity to meet and chat with him about the book. This latest book is the eighth in a series of Vineyard histories. This talk is open to the public, and not limited to senior citizens. All are welcome. Opportunity for questions and comments, and the chance to purchase a book.

We send birthday smiles to Russell Rogers and Summer Ann Clements on July 17, Suzanne Metell and Michael Daniel on the 18th, Lynn Webster on the 19th, and Charlene Alley on the 22nd.

Congratulations to Marylou and Anthony Piland, who will celebrate their 24th wedding anniversary on July 20th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.


Last weekend’s weather was just about perfect for all the July 4th celebrations. Parades, cookouts, and beach parties went on from Friday night through Sunday night, with many fireworks, both legal and illegal, crashing throughout the three days. My 4th celebration did not go so well, however. On Saturday morning, my lab Molly became quite ill, and the result was an emergency visit to the vet on call. Animal Health Care Associates and Dr. Ross and her tech Terry were caring, wonderful, and kind, but Molly needed to get to Barnstable, to the Cape Cod Veterinary Specialists there, for a more complete diagnosis and, if possible, treatment. With a letter from Dr. Ross, my daughter Mary and I and sweet Molly were granted immediate passage on the boat, where the staff was wonderful. The vet at Barnstable, after more intricate tests, gave us the sad news that Molly had a cancerous tumor near her heart and also in other areas, and was in heart failure. So we had to be ready for a sad goodbye, but petted and held her as she went on to a painless future. We had her for almost five years from Labs4rescue, and she was about 6 when she arrived in our home. But I think it was Molly who rescued us, as she came at a difficult time in our family, and immediately made herself at home in our house and our hearts.

Summer Campgrounders Pam and Charlie Rogers have two sons who have been in Ireland playing in a lacrosse tournament. Their youngest son Scott goes to Springfield College and is on the lacrosse team, and his older brother Jack is a goalie on the lacrosse team for Keene State College. When the Springfield lacrosse team traveled to Ireland to play in the tournament, the coach of the team told Scott that he needed a goalie, and asked him to see if his brother could come with the team to fill that role. There was such a huge group from Springfield going that they broke into two teams. The final was just held, with the two American teams playing each other. The game went to overtime, and Scott scored the winning goal with Jack in goal, keeping the other team from scoring.

Condolences to the family of Vivian Combra Debettencourt, who died on Sunday last. A friend since high school days, she became a “cousin in law” to me through marriage. Always with a smile and laugh when we met, she will be sorely missed by her family and numerous friends. So very sorry to all who loved her.

On Friday, July 10, at the Friday Conversations at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center, guests will be 22 students from across the country who are spending their summer interning at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute’s Work/Study Program. They will discuss their work and their experiences.

The Lagoon Pond Association will be holding its annual meeting the Saturday, July 11, at 9 am at Featherstone Center for the Arts. Many residents and visitors in both Tisbury and Oak Bluffs enjoy the beautiful waters of the Lagoon for swimming, boating, and shellfishing. However, the water quality of the Lagoon is threatened by septic systems, road runoff, and fertilizer. The LPA is working with the towns to address the problems, but they need more concerned residents to get involved. The meeting will include panel discussions and question and answer sessions with town officials.

The Oak Bluffs Library Writers Group will be meeting today from 10 am to noon. And the Book Babies will also meet today, from 11 to 11:30 am. Also on July 9 from 4 to 4:45 pm, the Little Yogis will be meeting. July 14 from 8 to 11 am, the Graphic Novel Book Club will be meeting. More classes and programs go on at our library, and you can check those by going online to

David Crohan will be in concert at the Whaling Church in Edgartown on Sunday, July 12. All proceeds will benefit Island Elderly Housing quality-of-life programs. David has always given us an incredible evening of musical entertainment, and you will not be disappointed with this concert. There will also be a silent auction. The concert begins at 7 pm, and doors will open at 6:30 pm. Tickets are available at, or at the door and locations around the Island. For more info you can reach Anne Baird at 508-693-7009.

On Saturday, July 18, head to the Grange in West Tisbury for a Cocktail Social and Summer Auction featuring comedian Jimmy Tingle. This will be for the benefit of Rising Tide Therapeutic Equestrian Center. The center helps physically, emotionally, and learning-disabled children and adults improve their quality of life through interactions with horses. The social will be from 5 to 9 pm. Tickets are available online at

We send birthday smiles to Hope deBettencourt, Fronzie Conlin, and Josh Correllus on July 10, and Colleen Farrissey on the 11th. Lauren Weaver and Jeff laBelle share the 13th, followed by David deBettencourt on the 14th. Smiles to grandson Nick Rivers on July 15, and also Dianne Kenney. Sophie Combra and Olivia Law Butler share the 16th. Enjoy your week. Peace.


The Tabernacle will host many events celebrating its 180 years. — File photo by Ralph Stewart

Summer has arrived, bringing rain, thunder, and great wind gusts, and of course many more people. The weather has actually been quite nice, and we did need the rain. The last day of school was this past Monday, so remember to please drive carefully, as enthusiastic children are not always aware of traffic.

Because of ongoing renovations at Niantic Park, the Oak Bluffs Summer Basketball program will not be held as usual this year. However, Basketball Camp for boys and girls 7 to 13 years old will be held on Mondays through Thursday from 9 am to noon. The camp will be at the Oak Bluffs School gym, and run by MVRHS boys varsity Coach Mike Joyce, winner of the Boston Globe and Massachusetts Basketball Coaches Association Coach of the Year award. What a great opportunity for these children.

On June 20th my husband, a retired Oak Bluffs Fire Department chief, celebrated his 80th birthday. Family members visited him at his home in Windemere to wish him well, and then in the evening we all gathered for a cookout party at our daughter, Kati Alley’s house. Children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren celebrated his milestone birthday with great food, fun games, and great memories. Of course the birthday boy was not able to be there, but those of you who know him realize it was exactly the kind of party he would have loved, as he didn’t have to attend. A party guy he never was. Our son, Dion Alley, traveled from far-away Ohio so he could get his birthday wishes in also.

The library has more events than ever. A new program, “Story Time in the Park,” will take place every Tuesday starting July 7 at 10 am. The program will be held in Hartford Park in Oak Bluffs. Join Miss Sondra for songs and stories outside. Canceled in inclement weather. Little Yogis will take place every Thursday, starting July 9, from 4 to 4:45 pm at the Oak Bluffs Public Library. This is a weekly drop-in yoga class with Sondra on the lawn for ages 4 to 11 (bring a towel or a mat). Canceled in inclement weather. And then we have a one-time-only July special. On Tuesday, July 7, at 3:30 pm, there will be a “Teen DIY” craft at the library. You will be decorating a giant banner.

The Tabernacle is celebrating its 180th anniversary this summer, 1835 to 2015. They have planned an amazing summer of special events. The first event is a fundraiser for the Tabernacle Preservation Fund. On Saturday, July 11 at 8 pm, they will present “Story for a Starry Night for Love of a Small Island.” It will feature stories by our own Susan Klein, images by Alan Brigish, and music by Gary Girourd. Tickets are $25, and are available at, at the Cottage Museum Shop and at the door. Doors will open at 7:30 pm.

Friday Morning Conversations at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center, on July 17 from 10 to 11:30 am will have Tom Dresser as the guest speaker. Tom will discuss his newest book, “Martha’s Vineyard: A History.” The book is an overall history of the Vineyard.

On Friday, July 24, from 10 to 11:30 am, the Morning Conversations program will have as their guest the Oak Bluffs library circulation manager, Anna Marie D’Addarie. Anna Marie will speak about the history of boxing, the boxer, the ethnic groups, modern-day boxers, and the future of boxing. If there is time and interest, there will be a demonstration.

The 11th annual Della Hardman Day celebration will be held on Saturday, July 25, 2015, at 4 pm in Ocean Park. This event, sponsored by the Town of Oak Bluffs and the Della Hardman Day Committee, chaired by Gretchen T. Underwood, celebrates community, culture, and a zest for living as exemplified by Della Hardman (1922–2005), an artist, educator, and writer. Following her death, the Town of Oak Bluffs voted to honor her memory in perpetuity on the last Saturday of July. This annual event is held under a tent near the gazebo in Ocean Park. This year the guest speaker is Cornell William Brooks, the 18th president and CEO of the NAACP.

The Friends of Oak Bluffs Council on Aging is once again sponsoring a Foxwoods Trip. The date is July 28, and the cost is $30, plus your SSA boat ticket and spending money. Call Rose at 508-693-4509, ext. 3, to register and for information.

We send birthday smiles to Rahmale Hopkins and Deborah deBett-Ratcliff on July 3, Joe Also on the 4th, James Cage on July 5, Barbara Fehl and Pam Gibson on the 6th. Erin Pacheco, Donald Billings, and Karen Hunt Torrance share the 7th, and Nicholas Mathias has the 9th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Don’t ever tell anyone that you are going to make a quick trip into Reliable Market to pick up a few things. It is absolutely impossible, as I have found out over the past 50-plus years. On the way in you will be greeted by the cashiers, and Bob and others at the meat counter, and that is only the beginning. In every aisle you turn down and every time you pause to pick up some groceries, you will meet a familiar person, and perhaps you only saw them yesterday or maybe a few years ago, but it always means an extended and news-filled conversation. And don’t think that when you leave the store you will be on your way home shortly. For as soon as you step outside, you probably will run into a few more friends, and the conversations continue. Before you know it, the quick trip to Reliable has extended into more than an hour. But what a fun-filled hour it has been.

From June 26 to July 18, The Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse will be presenting the play A Walk in the Woods, by Lee Blessing. This Pulitzer-nominated play, based on real-life cold war negotiations in the 1980s, centers on a Soviet and an American who have left the table for an informal walk in the woods on the outskirts of Geneva.

Dr. John Rizzo has accepted the position of principal of the Oak Bluffs School. Dr. Rizzo comes from the Milton Bradley Elementary School in Springfield. His child-first philosophy made him the favorite for all the stakeholders who participated in the search process. Dr. Rizzo will officially assume the position on August 1, 2015. Until that time, the current principal, Richard Smith, will continue to oversee the Oak Bluffs School.

As we are approaching the end of this school year, here are a couple of important upcoming events. Kindergarten graduation will be held in the cafeteria on Thursday, June 25, from 2 to 2:30 pm. Monday, June 29, will be the last day of school, with a noon dismissal. Because of the snow days, we came pretty close to having school into July, which I believe would have been a first.

Big thank-you to the Oak Bluffs Highway and Parks Department. Last week I spoke with Chris Gibson regarding painting white lines at the four-way stop where Hudson and Alpine Avenues intersect. I thought that it might alert drivers to the fact that those red signs with STOP written on them mean stop. He said as soon as he had time he would do it, and just a few days later, the lines were in. Thanks guys.

The new Oak Bluffs Fire Department Station is moving right along. The workers seem not to care about the weather — they just plug along doing their work and making progress every day. They are right on schedule, so before you know it, the work will be completed, and it will change the look of the corner.

We send birthday smiles to Arthur BenDavid on the 25th, Ashley Rebello Andrews and Leanne Giordano on the 28th, Abbey Grace Marchand, Donna Leon, and James Maseda on June 30th, and Maddy Alley on July 1.

Enjoy your week. Peace.