Authors Posts by Megan Alley

Megan Alley

Megan Alley

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Now dawn comes later and prods me awake as ruffles of light peek in around the edge of the window shades an hour before it is time for the alarm to go off. Even the crows that only a few weeks ago were full of enthusiastic cawing, waking the neighborhood with their annoying calls, sound reluctant and unenthusiastic as their harsh calls barely sound across the trees. So summer starts to wind down as the dark also creeps in earlier, and suddenly the days are shorter, as is the time to enjoy the outside. With all the events taking place this week, you will have to move quickly to fit them all in.

The wondrous Agricultural Fair opens this week with many exhibits, side shows, and of course all the games for both young at heart and younger. And those colorful fireworks will once more be shown on Friday night, thanks to the hard work of the Oak Bluffs Firemen’s Civic Association members and volunteer firefighters. Show your support for both events the best you can so that these traditions can continue.

You can now follow the M.V. Film Society and the M.V. International Film Festival both on Twitter and Facebook by clicking on the appropriate name. Become a fan and keep in touch with the world of cinema on the Island.

The M.V. Campground and Tabernacle has offered many programs this summer and they just keep coming. Today, Thursday, Aug. 19, at 4 pm there will be a special children’s event of Steve Songs in Concert. One of the original members of Vineyard Sound, Steve is the star of “Mr. Steve” on PBS Kids. Wonderful concert for children and adults and no admission charge.

The 175th Anniversary Celebration of the founding of the Camp Meeting on Martha’s Vineyard will take place on Sunday, Aug. 22, at 7pm. There will be a MVCMA Historical presentation by Marge Hopkins and refreshments. All are welcome to join in the very special celebration with no admission charge.

Cottage Gardens will be the subject on August 25 at 9:30 am as Alicia Lesnikowski and Thalia Scanlan from COMSOG will be in the Tent to discuss appropriate plants for a cottage garden. And a real farewell to summer as the final Community Sing for 2010 at the Tabernacle takes place on August 25 at 8 pm.

There will be an All-island Kick-off event called “Let’s Move Martha’s Vineyard” on Tuesday, Aug. 24 (rain date Aug. 25), based on Michelle Obama’s National initiative “Let’s Move” to get communities involved in stopping childhood obesity within the next generation. The object is to get individuals and families started on a year-long effort to increase activity and perhaps eat a bit healthier.

There are a number of free activities along with our Island chefs’ examples of how to fit healthier meals in an affordable easy manner into busy lives. The location will be in Oak Bluffs Parks with Alley Park (formerly Waban) as the central HQ. Activities start around 8:30 am at the Inkwell (Town) Beach with the Polar Bears, followed by Outrigger canoe trials and quick swimming “skill pointers.” Alley Park Fun activities, music, and demos are from 1 to 6 pm. Niantic Park Pro Tennis Exhibition, MVRHS Boys and Girls Tennis vs. Town officials, and Tennis “skill pointers” from 10 am to 3:30 pm and M.V. Little League 11- vs. 12-year-olds All Star Game at 6 pm in Veira Park.

Starting August 20 you can see the website for course descriptions and online registration for ACE-MV at for adult and community education.

There will be early registration at the Let’s Move Martha’s Vineyard Kick-Off Festival from 1 to 6 pm.

MV’s new Flatbread Company is different from other pizzerias in two ways: They use locally grown organic ingredients, and every Tuesday is Benefit Night as therestaurant donates $3.50 for every flatbread sold between 5 and 10 pm to a local nonprofitorganization. Tuesday, Aug. 24, the proceeds will benefit the M.V. Center for Living. This is a wonderful way for Vineyarders to help their local nonprofits.

The free fitness classes are continuing every Sunday at the Mansion House. This Sunday, Aug. 22, join Island healer, Fae Konjte-Gibbs, as she guides you through her yoga class called “Inner Body Yoga.”

So many of us have admired the new Oak Bluffs Firemen’s Museum at the four corners by the Fire Station. All of this was made possible by the determination, hard work, and dreams of retired Oak Bluffs Fire Dept. captain Donald Billings, and the late assistant chief, Bill Norton. Many donations were made by citizens and also landscapers, electricians, and other vendors who either donated time and materials or charged the minimum price possible for their services. We all have seen the beautiful results of this cooperation. On Saturday Sept. 4, there will be an open house there starting at 1 pm. There are plans in the works to possibly open the museum two half-days a week so the memorabilia there may be viewed by visitors. They also would love to have any fire department-related objects that you would like to donate.

We send birthday smiles to Terry McCarthy and Richard Mello III on August 12, Nelson Oliver and Shaun DePriest the next day, Russ MacDonald on August 18 and Becky Rogers and my son Dion Alley on August 19.Enjoy your week.Peace.

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Crowds, longer traffic jams, high humidity, and a struggle to remain patient signal the arrival of August. We know that it is also the wind down of summer, so do those things that you were going to do “someday” today.

On Thursday, Aug. 12, from 6 to 7 pm, Gus Ben David returns to our library for an encore presentation of his “Animal Interviews.” His July event was SRO, so come early. Then on Friday, Aug. 13, at 11 am author Tom Dresser will talk about his new book, “African Americans on Martha’s Vineyard: From Enslavement to Presidential Visit.”

This Sunday, Aug. 15, The Mansion House is offering another free class at 5:30 pm. Featured is a Pilates Power Mat class with certified Pilates instructor Brenda Correa.

Walter Ashley of Oak Bluffs, owner of C&W Power Equipment, is featured in the August issue of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine, in an article on chainsaw cutting at the Ag Fair.

Just follow the light on August 18 and it will take you to the Campground for Grand Illumination Night, where hundreds of lanterns will decorate the cottages and surrounding areas. The Friends of the O.B. Council on Aging will host their 2nd annual Illumination Night Lobster Roll Sale that same night starting at 5 pm. Included on the menu are the rolls, chips, cookies or brownies for dessert and a beverage for the price of $15. This fundraising event directly benefits the O.B. Sr. Center.

Trinity Episcopal Church in Oak Bluffs will have the very reverend John P. “Jep” Streit as celebrant on the next two Sundays, August 15 and 22. The Rev. Streit is dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral in Boston, where he is well known for his outreach and inclusiveness among Boston’s diverse ethnic and religious communities. Trinity Episcopal Church, a summer chapel, is located across from the Steamship Authority in Oak Bluffs. Services are at 9 am and all are welcome.

Only five weeks until the M.V. International Film Festival. The Festival will take place on September 9, so stay tuned for more info as we receive it.

My sister Joyce Wadsworth is here from her home in Paso Robles, Calif., visiting her daughter Lynn Rebello and Lynn’s children, James, Ashley, and Joel. We took her for a ride to Menemsha on Sunday and she saw the damage to the waterfront there for the first time. Even though a lot has been cleaned up, she still was overwhelmed by the loss.

You won’t have to venture outside the Campground area in Oak Bluffs for a variety of entertainment. This afternoon at 4 pm there is a special children’s event with The Airborne Comedians, a comedy with Amazing Juggling. Fun for all ages! Free Admission.

Tomorrow at 7:30 pm for Monster Madness, a children’s musical play performed by children in the Campground community. And a treat for adults will be held on Saturday, Aug. 14, at 6 pm when there will be an Evening Concert with the Artie Shaw Orchestra and music and dancing to wonderful big-band music.

On Sunday, Aug. 15, at 7 pm, the Family Movie night at the Tabernacle will feature “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.” Free-will offering. And you are asked to please bring a nonperishable food donation for the Island Food Pantry. The summer film series in the Tabernacle continues with the film “Last Train Home” on August 17.

The Animal Shelter of Martha’s Vineyard and the friends of Oak Bluffs together are presenting an evening with jazz legend Ramsey Lewis at the Performing Arts Center on the campus of the MVRHS. This fundraiser will take place this Sunday, Aug. 15, at 7:30 pm. Doors will open at 6:30.

The M.V. Garden Club will hold its annual meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 17, at 1 pm at The Old Mill in West Tisbury. The topic for this month’s program isHow Birds Have Changed, presented by Gazette columnist Soo Whiting of Chilmark.

Most Islanders are familiar with the Jimmy Fund, but Rose Cogliano, the popular assistant director of the Oak Bluffs Senior Center, has a special interest in The Dana -Farber Cancer Institute’s walk in Boston on September 12. Her 38-year-old sister, Denise Cogliano, the youngest of Rose’s eight siblings, died suddenly in March of this year. Denise also had Island connections, working for Susan Branch, and she had some wonderful friends here on the Island. She was a strong supporter of this march and always lead a team in memory of her father, Joseph Cogliano. Upon Denise’s death, Rose’s daughter Marguerite didn’t hesitate to take over team Cogliano with the help of Sotheby’s Real Estate in Boston, the firm Denise worked for. So, if you would like to support this team, sign on to team Denise-Gibson Sotheby’s and show the people up in Boston that we Vineyarders can make a big difference!

We send birthday smiles to Terry McCarthy and Richard Mello III today, Nelson Oliver and Shaun dePriest on August 13, Russ MacDonald on August 18, and my son Dion Alley and Becky Rogers on August 19.Enjoy your week.Peace.

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Well, we say goodbye to July this week and hope that August will be a little cooler and less humid, but I don’t think that has ever happened. I can’t imagine there being more people and tourists in town than there were this month, but usually there are. I guess we have to hang in there a little longer and adapt to the traffic jams, long lines, and no parking places.

The Federated Church House Tour Committee announces that its upcoming 4th annual Edgartown house tour, will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 10, from 2 to 4:30. This year’s tour will include four wonderful homes with seven sites, including a charming boathouse on the harbor. Tickets are $35 each and may be purchased in advance by mailing checks to the Federated Church (with House Tour in the subject box) P.O. Box 249, Edgartown, MA, 02539, or may be purchased the day of the tour in front of the church.

Congratulations to Richard Combra Sr. who is the new Farm Neck Golf Club Champion. His staff at the Big Dipper send hearty cheers his way.

Greg Skomal of Oak Bluffs, who is about to leave the Island, is the featured scientist in a July 2010 Martha’s Vineyard Magazine article called “Unraveling the Great White Hype.” In the article, Greg talks about sharks in New England waters, and specifically about the increasing population of gray seals, a favorite food of great white sharks, in the waters off the Cape and Islands.

The Free Sunday specials at the Mansion House will run through the month of August . This Sunday, Aug. 1, at 5:30 pm, fitness director Brenda Wallis will be teaching her popular class, Butt n’ Up. Blending strength training, low-impact aerobics, and yoga, this fusion class will give you an all-over body workout.

We have been enjoying our South Carolina relatives’ visit for the past two weeks. Our son and daughter -in-law Dion and Debra and their children, 14-year-old Ben and 5-year-old Paige, have been visiting and entertaining us these past couple of weeks and reconnecting with their Island relatives. Grandson Sam had to remain back home in Charleston as he enters his sophomore year of college in a few weeks, so now his summers are spent working. The family started the long drive back home today and now things are very quiet.

The Vineyard Playhouse, Doug Liman, and his friends Tamara Buchwald and Abigail Rose Solomon, will be presenting a gala celebration to benefit the Playhouse. Come and enjoy the sunset at his historic 18th century Chilmark homestead on the ocean on Sunday, Aug. 1, from 5 to 8 pm, featuring a performance by Film, TV, and Tony award-winning Broadway actress and singer Debra Monk accompanied by Wesley Nagy. Please RSVP to Tessa Hayward 508-693-6450 ext. 29 or

Katie Mayhew and David Crohan have released a CD of a live recording of their duets from their Fall 2009 concert at the Whaling Church. A percentage of the profits from the CD will be donated to several different Island nonprofits, including COMSOG (The Community Solar Greenhouse) and Camp Jabberwocky.

Katie and David will be performing together again this summer at a benefit concert for COMSOG on August 1 at the Whaling Church at 4:30 pm. CDs will be on sale at that concert.

Marquerite Cogliano has been placed on the Dean’s list at U-Mass Amherst. Marguerite is majoring in sociology and criminal justice and will be a senior in this upcoming year. Her mother Rose and brother Joe are very proud of her.

Want to try a brief free ride on one of those Hawaiian outrigger canoes by the little bridge? Just call 508-627-6097 and a free tryout will be arranged.

If you want a relaxing and entertaining time this summer, come and see Marty Nadler’s show at the Tabernacle on Saturday, Aug. 7, at 8 pm. Titled “Very Vineyard,” you will laugh and actually relate to much of the material. Marty has added some new material along with some of the classic pieces.

Penny and Don Hinkle found a parakeet at their East Chop home on Sunday. To claim it, please phone 508-693-2637.

We send birthday smiles to Heather White, Bernie Crossland, and Ashley Medeiros on July 30, Sofia McGroarty Sampaio on August 1, Tricia Bergeron and Donald Mitchell on August 4, and Joann DeBettencourt, Evamae Magee, and Susan Klein on August 5.Belated smiles to David deBettencourt who celebrated on July 14.Enjoy your week.Peace.

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These past few weeks have tested the abilities of the Island’s EMS and Fire departments to the nth degree. How fortunate we are to live in a community where cooperation between these departments brings forth the absolute best abilities of each individual and each group. We are very lucky that no matter what emergency event takes place we are in the best of hands and are so very proud of all involved.

Congratulations to Shawna Medeiros and John Odonnell on the birth of their son, Liam Sean Odonnell who was born on June 30. His proud grandparents are Valarie and Bruce Odonnell, also of Oak Bluffs.

Tom Dresser will be the guest speaker at the Friday Conversations program at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center on July 23. Tom will discuss his latest book, “African Americans on the Vineyard, from Slavery to Obama.” This is Tom’s 10th book on subjects from murder to the many charms of the Island.

The African Artists Community Development Project is bringing Melanie DeMore back to the Island to hold a singing workshop for the concert on August 5 at Union Chapel. With grace, humor, and energy she teaches her African-American folk and gospel music in easy to remember four-part harmony that is guaranteed to lift the spirit. Please join them either at the workshops or the concert at Union Chapel to raise money for Zambian orphans and disabled children. The Children’s Singing Workshop with Melanie is at 2 pm at the Grange Hall Theater in West Tisbury and the Adult Sing Workshop is at 6 pm at the Charter School, also in West Tisbury.

The Crab Cake Suppers have started again this summer. They are held each Wednesday at the Trinity Church Parish House across from the Tabernacle in Oak Bluffs from 6 to 7 pm or until sold out, so get there early. The cost is $12 for a full meal, and hot dog meals are also available for $5. Meals can be eaten in or taken out and proceeds from the suppers go to various mission and/or community outreach programs that the church supports.

Where are Vanessa and baby Bong Bong? These treasures have not been seen in Farm Pond this year and we are wondering where they might be or what has happened to them.

The sixth annual Della Hardman Day celebration sponsored by the Town of Oak Bluffs will be held on Saturday, July 31, in Ocean Park. A series of cultural and educational programs are being planned for the 2010 celebration by the Della Hardman Day Committee composed of year-round and seasonal residents.

On Sunday, July 25, the Mansion House is offering a body conditioning class for free. Join trainer Brenda Correa at 5:30 pm as she guides you safely through a series of strengthening moves both with and without a variety of equipment. All are welcome, both members and non-members. The free Sunday series will continue through the month of August.

Yard Arts are featuring many events among which will be “All Things Mozart,” a lecture/concert with Cori Ellison, on Tuesday, August 3, from 5:30 to 6:30 pm and other programs too numerous to list here. For information or to register, please call 508-645-9662 or visit

Two popular speakers are returning to the Oak Bluffs library in the upcoming weeks. Tom Dresser is coming back on Friday, Aug. 13, at 11 am and Michael Wooley on Thursday, July 29.

We send birthday smiles to Aiden and Logan Araujo on July 24, Paul Robinson and Joanne Debettencourt on the 26th and Travis Bernard, Rachel Barrett, and Denise Alwardt on July 29.

Enjoy your week.Peace.

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This hot and so very humid weather has lasted for such a long stretch it makes us wonder if we have been suddenly transported to a place somewhere in the tropics. Now, instead of a rarity, air conditioners have become commonplace and thank goodness for the dry, cool air they provide. It is not without a loss however, as with the windows being closed, I do so miss the sounds of the birds singing that draws me to the window to watch them eating at the feeders. And I no longer hear the sweet sound of the wind chimes outside the bedroom windows that lull me to sleep. I guess, while this heat wave persists, I will have to make the choice between comfort and pleasure.

I have received many comments about the item in last weeks column regarding the beach rubbish incident. I am starting to feel like the rubbish police as one reader wanted me to know that there is someone who “smuggles” rubbish into the public bathrooms by the bulkhead via her large beach bag, where she leaves her trash in the containers there. If everyone played fairly, it would cost everyone a lot less for town services.

On Friday, July 16, the guest speaker at the Friday Conversations program at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center will be Peter Martell, Emergency Management Director for Oak Bluffs. Peter will talk about the dangers related to, and preparations for, the hurricane season, which is now upon us. Peter has many years of experience as emergency management director and will share his knowledge and insights.

Follow the crowd to the Oak Bluffs library for their annual book sale. On Friday, July 23 from 10 am to 5 pm, and on Saturday July 24 from 10 am until 3 pm you may find the best bargains on used and interesting books. Sunday from 12 noon to 2 pm is the giveaway day when you may get a book at no charge. Please remember that this event will be at the Oak Bluffs library this year.

Congratulations to my friend of more than 50 years, Ruthie Metell, who was honored as the volunteer of the year at the Oak Bluffs senior center. Ruthie has always been one of the first to volunteer to help out with any charity event, never complaining, always smiling.

The Martha’s Vineyard Garden Club will hold its monthly meeting on Tuesday, July 20 at 1 pm at The Old Mill in West Tisbury. The topic for this month’s program is hydrangeas. Paul Mahoney, the guru of plant disease diagnoses and the owner of Mahoney’s Garden Center, will present the program.

Another free class is being offered by the Mansion House on July 18. A new piece of strength training equipment called the kettlebell will be featured. Master kettlebell trainer Mathea Morais will guide you through a series of powerful and dynamic moves that will work all the muscles in your body including the heart. This class begins at 5:30 pm.

On Friday evening, July 23, from 7 to 8 pm, the story of Captain Levi Jackson and the rescue of 14 people from the Mertie B. Crowley, which wrecked off Wasque on January 23, 1910, will be told by his great-grandson Herb Ward. The talk will take place at the Parish House of the Federated Church, on the corner of Cooke and South Water Streets in Edgartown. A suggested donation of $10 will go to the Minister’s Discretionary Fund, to help Island families in need.

Maureen and Bill Anderson, daughters Kristen Anderson, Kathy Farrissey, Gretchen Anderson, and son Bill hosted a graduation party for Kristen’s son Ian Thompson last week. Ian graduated from the high school at St. Pete’s Beach in Florida so this get-together enabled his New England relatives to offer their congratulations.

The annual Campground Flea Market takes place on Saturday, July 17 from 9 am to 1 pm, rain or shine.

Livingston Taylor, with special guest Kate Taylor, will be in concert that night at 8 pm. Tickets are $20 and $35. This will be a rare opportunity to have both Livingston and Kate together for a wonderful evening at the Tabernacle. Then on Sunday, at 8 pm there will be a concert with Ed Kilbourne, singer, song-writer, story-teller. A free-will offering will be taken.

There will be two shows at The Yard this weekend. The Bridgman/Packer Dance, on Friday, July 16 at 8 pm and on Sunday, July 18 at 6 pm. Then there will be an evening with dance photographer Lois Greenfield, Sunday, July 17 at 5:30 pm. Please feel free to contact Yard Artistic Director Wendy Taucher at 508-645-9662 or if you would like further info.

Deborah Colter will meet and greet visitors to the Cousen Rose Gallery on Saturday, July 17 for a Meet-the-Artist Reception from 7 to 9 pm. While you are enjoying the art, the reception music will be provided by Peter MacLean.

Don’t forget the P.A. Feast starting this Saturday followed by the parade and more feasting on Sunday.

Our deepest condolences to the family of Linda Francis. We know she was loved by her sister Susan, daughter Felicia, and her granddaughter Ariana, all of whom will miss her dearly.

We send birthday smiles to Sophie Combra on July 16, Russell Rogers and Summer Clements the next day, Suzanne Metell on July 18, Lynn Webster on July 19 and Charlene Alley on the 22.

Enjoy your week.


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Fourth of July weekend was picture perfect, wasn’t it? The weather was what made a good holiday — so that visitors could spend time at the beach although it seemed like hundreds were walking around town or in the stores.

I am going to tell you a fish story, but it is not the typical one about the big one that got away. In fact, in this case, it absolutely got caught. A few weeks ago a friend, who we will call David in the interest of anonymity, was out fishing as usual at dusk. He loves to fish but gets distressed over the rubbish beach-party participants leave behind.He tries to pick up what he can, but the messes continue to accumulate.

The last straw for him was when he came across trash that was obviously household rubbish not even from a beach party. As he picked it up he found a bill with a name and address on it so, without missing a beat, he went to the post office, bought a box, addressed it to the person whose name was on the invoice, and packed the trash into the box with a note saying ” the next time you come to Martha’s Vineyard, take your trash home with you.” Wouldn’t you have loved to have been a fly on the wall when that person opened his package? He said it was well worth the $11 for the cost of the box and the mailing fee.

The Arts District Stroll will be on Saturday, July 10, from 4 to 7 pm. The Alison Shaw Gallery at 83 Dukes County Ave. will open the “dock” show of fine art photography, and have a book signing for “Schooner,” the new book written by Tom Dunlop and full of Alison’s photos, chronicling the building of a 60-foot wooden schooner at Gannon & Benjamin in Vineyard Haven. There will be plenty of great art, and food and drink will be served up by all of the neighborhood galleries.

Tom Dresser has a new book out this week, “African Americans on Martha’s Vineyard, from Enslavement to Presidential Visit.” Many of the stories in the book are based in Oak Bluffs, from early business ventures by African Americans to racial situations that were a challenge to handle, either at the airport or at a local hotel.The first book talk/signing is scheduled for the Oak Bluffs library on Friday, July 9, at 11 am, and he will address the Supportive Day Program at the Tisbury senior center on July 13 at 1:45 pm.

A screening of the documentary “The Shark is Still Working,” by the M.V. Film Society will take place on July 13 at the Tabernacle. Some 35 years ago a little film called “Jaws” that was shot on Martha’s Vineyard became Hollywood’s first true summer blockbuster.

Sydney Asbury, chief of staff to Governor Deval Patrick, will attend an open meeting of the M.V. Democratic Council on Saturday, July 10, at the Howes House in West Tisbury, from 9 to 11 am. Here is youropportunity to ask questions or voice your concerns about everything from wind power to casinos, education to health care.

Archer Robert Butler, born on June 28 at the Falmouth birthplace, was welcomed into the world by his parents, Olivia and Nicholas, as well as his grandparents, Jack and Pat Law of Oak Bluffs, and his godmother Jessica Burgoyne of Edgartown. Big sister Delilah was so excited and proud to bring her baby brother home.

Sunday, July 11, at 5:30 pm, the Mansion House in Vineyard Haven will be offering a free Stott Pilates class with Toni Cohen. This class is great for all levels of fitness and is free for everyone.

Sean Waite, who previously worked at the M.V. Airport, is now in the Gulf of Mexico helping with the oil spill cleanup as the captain of the vessel that receives the oil the “skimmers” collect. So now he joins the ranks of the hundreds of workers working so hard to control this devastating oil spill.

The M.V. Campmeeting Society is offering more interesting programs this summer. On Friday, July 9, at 8 pm there will be a classical music concert with Dr. Amaryllis Glass (pianist) and Melissa Westgate (cello) who will play music by Haydn, Beethoven, Ginastera, Chopin, and Mendelssohn. There is no admission charge, but a free will offering will be taken.

Then on Saturday, July 10, at 10 am there will be a Bicycle Safety Clinic with the Oak Bluffs police. Officers will conduct a workshop featuring bike safety inspections, a discussion about rules of the road, state and local laws, helmet-fitting, games and ice cream. The goal is to learn safe bike riding. All kids and parents are welcome. The event will be on Siloam Avenue, just off Dukes County Avenue, which will be blocked off for the event.

We send birthday smiles to Claire Gibson on July 9 and my neighbor Nicholas Mathias who will turn 2 on July 9, Hope deBettencourt, Fronzie Conlin, and Josh Correllus on July 10, Colleen Farrissey on July 11, Lauren Weaver and Jeff LaBell on the 13th, and a big smile to grandson Nick Rivers as he turns 21 on July 15.

We are so pleased that Pat Suarez is home after a long five-week recovery from a stroke. I spoke with her and she has regained her speech, and is now able to walk. Pat credits the loving care given to her by her daughters, Juanita and Rita, to her recovery.

Huge congratulations to Truelayna Rose who has passed the Paramedic Course. I always knew she would be able to reach her dream.Enjoy your week.Peace.

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On Friday, July 2, at the Bunch of Grapes, Ann Nelson, the store’s former owner and major Vineyard benefactor who developed that fine book shop, will be honored. Starting at 7:30 pm, there will be refreshments, a three-minute video about the book, “Martha’s Vineyard — Now & Zen,” and some words about its long-term mission. A book signing will complete the evening.

Heather Hughes made a comment online about how disappointed she was that I had not mentioned the death of Danny Meader in my column and she was absolutely right. I do apologize for the omission. Danny and Robin have been long-time family friends and it seems impossible that Danny is no longer with us. Our most sincere condolences to his much-loved family — wife Robin, children Jared ,William, and Jaime and their children. He was a happy, involved parent and an admired citizen of Oak Bluffs.

On Thursday, July 1, at 6 pm the library will show a new movie about Leo Tolstoy starring Helen Mirren, Christopher Plummer, and Paul Giamatti. The film is free and so is the popcorn.

The Campmeeting theme for 2010 is the 175th Anniversary of the founding of the Camp-Meeting in Oak Bluffs. The first Camp-Meeting was held in 1835 and they have been going strong ever since. They will have 175th Anniversary celebrations on July 25 and August 22 at 7 pm in the Tabernacle. This summer they have increased the number of activities for families and children. Every Monday evening at 7 pm is Family Movie Night at the Tabernacle. The first movie, on July 5, is “The Sound of Music.” There is no charge for the movies, but a free will offering will be taken.

Saturday, July 3, at 10 am is the Children’s Independence Day Parade around the Tabernacle. All are welcome to march in the parade or come and watch the fun. Also on Saturday, at 8 pm the Island Community Chorus performs in the Tabernacle.

The American Legion is sending out a request for assistance in placing the flags for the 4th of July so everyone can enjoy the magnificent Avenue of Flags at Oak Grove Cemetery in Vineyard Haven. They ask that you came at 7 am to help put the flags up and again at 3 pm to take them down. They also are continuing to sell lobster rolls or chowder every Tuesday at the Legion Hall from 4:30 to 7 pm.

Karen Achille reports that on Saturday, July 10, the Friends of the O.B. Council on Aging are hosting a giant yard sale, which is open to vendors from the public. There are 14 spaces available. If you are a member of the Friends, the cost of a space is $15, and for all others a space will be $25. Bakery and plant sales and refreshments make this an event not to be missed. For more information, call Karen at 508-360-5842 or sign up at the Senior Center.

The Garden Gate Child Development Center Class of 2010 enjoyed a preschool graduation celebration on the beach in Vineyard Haven on June 23. Among the small group of eager five-year-olds was Nicholas BenDavid, the son of Gary and Joellen BenDavid of Oak Bluffs.

The Yard Arts! 5th Anniversary Gala is this Friday, July 2, at 6 pm, featuring dinner in the festival tent followed by an eclectic program of dance, opera, and theater. For more information, please contact Wendy Taucher at 508-645-9662 or

The West Tisbury Grange Hall in West Tisbury will be the place to go on Monday July 5 for the African Crafts Sale and Puppet show. The sale is from 4:30 to 7:30 pm, with the puppet show of Spindrift Marionettes starting at 5:30 pm.

The kick-off for the Island-wide summer reading program at the Island libraries will also be on July 2 at 11 am in the West Tisbury Ag Hall.

On July 7 at Toddler Storytime for ages 1.5 to 3 at 10:30 am and Preschool Storytime for ages 3 to 5 at 11:30 am; the theme will be gardens.

Turtle Time: a Felix Neck Workshop will take place on Thursday, July 8, from 3 to 4 pm, for grades 1 through 4 only. Space is limited, so you must pre-register.

Helping Barb Fehl celebrate her birthday on July 6 will be her daughter, Ashley, and eight-month-old grandson, Makie, who will fly in from Tigard, Ore., to join in on the party.

Martha’s Vineyard has announced its 2010 Best of the Vineyard results, which featured 77 awards for Island places, businesses, and activities. Oak Bluffs took home 23 wins this year. Oak Bluffs winners of either Best Place or runner up were Sharky’s Cantina, Offshore Ale Company, and Giordano’s Restaurant. Basics took home four runner-up wins.

We send Birthday Smiles to Madeline Alley on July 1; Rahmale Hopkins on July 3; Joe Alosso and Robert Hughes on July 4; James Cage on the 5th; and Erin Pacheco, Donald Billings, and Karen Hunt Torrence on July 7.

My computer has been ailing and for some reason is erasing some messages when I try to read them. So if you have sent me an article and do not see it in the column, please resend, remembering my deadline is noon of the Monday before Thursday publication.

Enjoy your week.


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I had some questions from readers who were unable to locate the Town Columns on the website. After checking it out, I found the Town Columns are now listed under On Island. The story times at the Oak Bluffs library have some exciting subjects coming up in the next two weeks.Mermaids will be featured on Wednesday, June 23, from 10:30 to 11:15 for the Toddler Storytime (ages 1.5-3) and at the Preschool Storytime (ages 3-5) from 11:30-12:15.At the same times on Wednesday, June 30, both Storytimes will focus on some great stories abouttrucks.Jenna Duncan is working with Vineyard Pedicab and some other sponsors on the Pan Martha Challenge, a subset of the Pan Mass and all rider-raised dollars go directly to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The July 17 ride will begin and end in Oak Bluffs. They are really looking to get the word out to make this ride as successful as it can possibly be.Come and have a delicious supper sponsored by the United Methodist Church of Martha’s Vineyard, which will be holding crab cake suppers on Wednesday evenings from 6 to 7 pm at the Trinity Parish House (across from the Tabernacle) starting July 23 and running through August 11. Crab cakes, sweet potato fries, coleslaw, dessert, and lemonade go for $12 or try a hot dog meal for $5. Either dine in or take out.Middle School assistant teacher Gloria Darden, who is retiring after 14 years of service at the Oak Bluffs School was honored at the last Friday’s Morning at the School.Gloria came to the school in 1996 after a long career in higher education and was a popular and admired staff member with both adults and children.The Oak Bluffs School Students’ Garden is planted and growing, so go by and take a look. They need help maintaining it over the summer, and if you are able to do so, please contact the school front office or 508-353-0312, MV and Smoke’n Bones announced that as of last Monday, Smoke’n Bones joined the growing number of local businesses who have eliminated the use of Styrofoam. Smoke’n Bones turned to Eco MV to provide eco-friendly alternatives for all packaging. We send birthday smiles to Halley Levesque who turns the BIG 40 today, to Pat Suarez on June 18, Jane Maseda and Tony Lima on June 19, followed by my husband Chief Alley,Pam Swan and John O’Donnell on the 20th, Grandson Jerremy Alley Tarter, and Teddy and Robbie Pacheco on the 21st and Paula O’Conner on the 22nd.Enjoy your week.Peace.

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Saturday morning at 6 am the sun was starting to lighten up the sky and within two hours it was as black as night as those tremendous thunderstorms crashed in. The noise sounded like the sound track from one of those old black-and-white World War Two movies in the midst of a bombing scene. But as it always does, the sun has come out again, and now the weather has changed entirely.

My yellow Lab, sweet Sophie, missed her 15th birthday by a matter of hours. On Memorial Day evening she suddenly got ill and collapsed. A trip to the Vineyard Vet Clinic revealed many problems and a suspected cancer. So with tears in our hearts and eyes we made the difficult but loving decision that it was time to let her go. I cannot praise Drs. Williams and Dunnigan enough for their compassionate care for so many years and the gentle and respectful way that they assisted her on her last journey. Her 15th birthday would have been June 1, and I know that she had an unusually long and happy life. But how I miss her running to greet me with her “Lab wag,” carrying one of her toys in her mouth and brightening my day. I am so grateful for the 15 years of joyful memories she left me.

The Friday Conversations program at the Oak Bluffs Senior Center will have Polly Brown and Jane Hawkes of Vineyard Village at Home as their guest speakers on Friday, June 18. Vineyard Village at Home is a volunteer organization offering support services for older Islanders who need a little extra help to remain in their homes.

The library continues with its programs throughout the summer. On Wednesday, June 16, from 10:30 to 11:15 the Toddler Storytime for ages 1.5 to 3 will feature cats, as will the preschool story time for ages 2 to 5 from 11:30 to 12:15. On Saturday, June 19, from 11:00 to 11:45, there will be a Father’s Day Surprise Storytime.

Oak Bluffs school students Belle Dinning, Angela Hayes, Emily Moore, and James Robinson, and Charter School student Danielle Hopkins all have roles in “My Mom is Trying To Ruin My Life,” which will be running at The Vineyard Playhouse over the next two weekends. The play was adapted by MJ Bruder Munafo from Kate Feiffer’s book of the same name.

The annual Oak Bluffs School Fine Arts Night is Tuesday evening, June 15th, from 6:00 to 7:30 pm. This is always an outstanding evening in which to browse through arts and crafts presentations, reflecting the hard work that the arts programs have done with their students over the year. The arts viewing will be from 6 to 7 pm, and will be followed by a 4th-5th grade concert from 7 to 7:30.

And save June 16 for the 8th grade graduation at 5:30 pm.

Windemere Nursing and Rehabilitation Center is having an auction to benefit their residents’ activity programs. They have a very small budget for entertainers and outings and this auction is an important part of their annual fundraising.

These funds are used to take the residents on outings to Home Port, Farm Neck, Grace Church for lobster rolls, the Minnesingers, Community Chorus, and plays, as well as bringing in entertainers, exercise programs, and many more activities. Auction items include a trip to France, a sailing cruise with lobsters and champagne, a day trip for two on a Black Dog Tall ship, and a handmade quilt. The auction is June 11 from 6 to 8 pm at the Ag Hall in West Tisbury. In addition to the silent and live auctions, there will be a raffle, hors d’oeuvres, and wine. Trip Barnes as auctioneer is worth the price of admission (zero) alone.

The Martha’s Vineyard Garden Club will hold its monthly meeting on June 15 at 1 pm at the Old Mill on Edgartown Road in West Tisbury. Seasonal resident and Vineyard artist Nancy Noble Gardiner will present her beautiful flower photography. A hospitality hour with refreshments will follow the program. The cost for guests is $5; there is no cost for members.

We send birthday smiles to Hilde Combra on June 11, Maryanne Alwardt on June 13, Jaime Young on June 14, and Arthur Pye on June 15. Let’s all celebrate Flag Day on June 14 by flying the flag proudly.

Enjoy your week.


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Well, we almost had it. A perfect three-day Memorial Day weekend that is, until of all things, smoke from wildfires in Canada sent smoky haze over the Island on Monday. But we managed to still enjoy the sunny weather, welcome many tourists, and observe the Memorial Day parade.While shopping the other day, I met the “Queen of Avon,” Grace Frye. I want you to know that she is still as beautiful and happy as ever. It was so good to see her and talk to her for a bit.Last summer John Swan Sr. died after a two-year battle with cancer. Shortly after John died, his widow, Pam, was diagnosed with breast cancer from which she has been recovering. This spring Pam and her children — John Jr., Julian, and Jackie — brought some hydrangeas and other plants to place on John’s grave. When they went to plant them last week, the plants had disappeared from the graveyard. The only word that I can come up with that fits this ignorant act and the people responsible for it is “disgusting.”Barrier beaches are essentially strips of sand with water on both sides. Join naturalist Dick Johnson for a walking tour of Eastville Point Beach to learn about these dynamic environments. Johnson has 20 years experience working on Martha’s Vineyard, and barrier beaches are his favorite habitat. He is a member of the Eastville Point Beach Committee which is working to prepare and implement a comprehensive restoration and management plan for this small public beach close to the towns of Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven. Call for registration and car pool info, 508-693-9426.Maddie Alley and her friend Ella Jernigan want to get the word out that they were the first to jump off the new Second Bridge on Beach Road shortly after it opened. Island residents will have the opportunity to enjoy a beloved children’s fantasy when the Martha’s Vineyard School of Ballet presents “I Do Believe In Fairies, Journey To Never Never Land” at the MVRHS Performing Arts Center tomorrow Friday, June 4, at 6:30 pm. Tickets may be purchased at the door for $10. Performers from Oak Bluffs are Jocelyn Baliunas, Rebecca Mandelli, Ava McGee, and Elizabeth O’Brien.Sunday’s Hospice Memorial Day 5K Race had the biggest turnout in its history. The view from the Wesley Hotel porch was magnificent. The harbor was crowded with boats and the sidewalks were crowded with sightseers and onlookers. Grandson Jeremy Alley-Tarter came in 5th overall.The entire Oak Bluffs School staff and student body took part in a Memorial Day observance with an all-school assembly in the gym on Friday afternoon. Students performed songs, recited poems, and read passages reflecting our country’s respect and homage to our brave veterans. Several local veterans were on hand, including staff members Rae Carter and Brian Weiland, as well as special guests, courtesy of the Oak Bluffs VFW and American Legion, Mev Good (US Army), Jim Dorsey (US Army), and Gene DeFelice, retired Capt. US Marines. Jim Dorsey and Mev Good spoke on their experiences in the armed services.Dates to remember at the school are the June 4 string concert and on June 6 to June 11, the 8th Grade Philly Trip.Big Times in May for the Labell family. Wally Labell celebrated his 60th birthday on May 26 and he and Linda celebrated their 35th Wedding Anniversary on May 24.They had a bash at Nancy’s on Saturday the 22nd with approximately 120 family and friends. Son Jeff was the deejay and it was a terrific time.We send birthday smiles to Jamie Reilly on June 1, my sister Ann Hearn on June 5, Hilda Mitchell the next day, Rory Moreis on June 7, followed by Bob Murphy the next day, Ernestine Kinnecom on the 9th, and Suzanne Walker, Lisa Williston, and Donald Bendavid all celebrate on the 10th. Anniversary wishes to Willy and Susan deBettencourt on the 10th.Enjoy your week.Peace.