Authors Posts by The Martha's Vineyard Times

The Martha's Vineyard Times

9074 POSTS 0 COMMENTS

0

The Harbor View Hotel has named Andrew Bartlett as its new general manager. He will oversee all operations of the 124-year-old hotel. The move marks a return to the Vineyard for Mr. Bartlett after a four-year tenure as general manager of the Plantation on Crystal River in Central Florida, which, like the Harbor View, is managed by Scout Hotels.

Mr. Bartlett joined the Scout family in 2009 as front office manager of the Kelley House in Edgartown. He was promoted to innkeeper less than a year later. A graduate of the University of New Hampshire with a degree in tourism planning and development, Mr. Bartlett launched his hospitality management career in Ojai, in Southern California.

In 2012, according to a press release, the Harbor View Hotel was named one of the Top 50 U.S. Resorts in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards issue, Best Hotel on the Vineyard by Martha’s Vineyard Magazine and Best Resort/Hotel by Cape Cod Magazine’s Gold Awards. The Harbor View is a member of Historic Hotels of America.

1

Summer doesn’t officially end until September 23. For many, the upcoming Labor Day weekend is the dividing line. Close observers of Island roadways and intersections are more inclined to name Ag Fair weekend as our summer visitor solstice, the peak after which the number of SUVs with New York and Connecticut plates begins to diminish.

Martha’s Vineyard is a seasonal balloon. The week of Illumination Night, the Oak Bluffs fireworks and the four-day Ag Fair is when it appears it might burst. The week that follows is when it begins to slowly deflate. About February, that balloon will be flat.

This week, summer visitors, including President Obama and his entourage and their security details, headed back to work and their off-Island routines. Students who had not already done so returned to college. The lessening of traffic, people, and frenetic activity was noticeable everywhere but at the Steamship Authority where boatline employees did their best to accommodate the departing passengers and vehicles.

So this is a fitting time in the rhythm of Island life to take notice of those Islanders who mostly remain unnoticed behind the scenes until they are needed, and who, happily, do not figure in the vacation experiences of most summer visitors— the Island’s volunteer EMTs and firefighters, police, dispatchers, nurses, and doctors.

Travelers who arrive and depart from the Island by air on scheduled and private airplanes likely take little notice when they pass by an unprepossessing building located not far from the Martha’s Vineyard Airport terminal. Inside that building, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, the men and women that staff the Dukes County Sheriff’s Department Communications Center calmly and professionally knit together the Island’s emergency response system.

Over the course of the past eight weeks the radio scanner in The Times newsroom rarely remained silent for very long. Most visitors might be surprised to learn how much goes on behind the scenes of their lovely vacation spot.

The calls run the gamut: An elderly person is ill and complaining of shortness of breath; there is a bike accident in the state forest and an individual is bleeding from the head; there is a three-car motor vehicle accident with “unknown injuries,” a woman can be heard screaming for help from a house; there are sheep in the road; a suspected shoplifter on Main Street; a caller has reported a driver swerving all over State Road headed up Island; a swimmer in trouble off State Beach; a driver is locked out of her car in the Stop & Shop parking lot; and on and on it goes: a smell of gas in a house elicits a visit from the fire department; a burglar alarm summons the police.

Every call is a precursor. Medical emergencies bring a quick response from the Island’s corps of dedicated, volunteer EMTs. Police rush from emergency call to emergency call. Several times over the course of the summer dive teams have mobilized and rushed to answer calls of swimmers and boaters in distress. Often, even before they arrive there is a happy ending. The call comes over the scanner: “swimmers on the beach, you can slow your response.” Nevertheless, every call is answered with the same vigor as the one before it.

One particularly busy summer day, ambulances were racing from town to town to provide mutual aid, the term used when one town summons help from another. Of course, mutual aid is the lifeblood of any small community. Although our population swells from about 17,000 in the winter to about 105,000 in the summer, our instincts are still that of a small community where neighbors look out for neighbors, even if they are only our neighbors for a week or two.

The end of the summer will not bring an end to emergency calls, only a let up in the volume. Hopefully, the men and women who have manned the front lines of the Island’s emergency response systems with be able to catch their collective breaths and find time to go to the beach. A tip of the hat to them all.

Farewell Mr. Obama

President Obama and his family have departed Martha’s Vineyard for Washington, D.C. He returns to many challenges. We trust that his time on the Vineyard provided him with a welcome respite and time to reflect on the course he must steer.

It appears he enjoyed his Island vacation. But it is hard to know. Mr. Obama remained well out of the public eye and showed little appetite for meeting the Island public, if even for a fleeting moment. Americans like their elected leaders to be personable, but unfortunately it may be a sign of the times. See you next year, Mr. President.

4

To the Editor:

Only on Martha’s Vineyard could one have dropped their wallet on the VTA Lift and had it returned intact with ID, credit cards, and money.

August is the busiest month of the year here on the Vineyard with our population swelling to 90,000 or more people.

Kudos to the VTA staff, Steve Edwards and Vicky in particular, for your caring and honest attitude toward me in my plight.

God bless you.

Jakki Hunt

Oak Bluffs

0

Congratulations to everyone involved in the just concluded, magnificent production of Peter Pan by the Island Theatre Workshop held at the Performing Arts Center, Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School.

To the director and all his support staff, the actors who span generations, the wonderful orchestra, superb lighting and special effects, and the supportive families and friends who made this happen, thanks and kudos to you all for making this such a delightful experience for your audience.

You know who you are.

Harriet Hoar
Edgartown

0

To the Editor:

I am a daily West Chop walker and I find that speed limit stations and signs that read  “Drive Like Your Children Live Here,” go unnoticed because drivers are holding their cellphones while driving, often over the speed limit, oblivious to walkers, even those pushing baby carriages. Whatever happened to common courtesy and pedestrian safety? I deplore the use of hand-held cellphones while driving and urge that this Island think hard about a resolution to this increasing problem.

Liza Coogan

Vineyard Haven

0

To the Editor:

Please vote for Tom Conroy for treasurer in the Democratic primary on September 9. He is far and away the most qualified candidate to be our next state treasurer. He has two economics-related graduate degrees and worked for 16 years in the financial services industry to support companies that create new jobs. In the Legislature, where he has served for eight years, he has written laws that helped improve our state’s credit rating, saving taxpayers tens of millions of dollars. He wrote a cost/benefit analysis of the original casino proposal, showing that it would not deliver its promised benefits.

Tom embodies the strong principles that voters are seeking from elected officials. He recently led the charge to pass a higher minimum wage law in Massachusetts. He has authored laws to increase job training and preserve unemployment benefits for people who are down on their luck. He knows that these are not just the right ways to help people, but will grow the local economy and create more jobs.

Tom Conroy is an experienced, trustworthy public servant, expert in finance, with a big heart and the wisdom to do the right thing in an effective and financially responsible way. Please give him your vote.

Peter Pease

Oak Bluffs

0

The Martha’s Vineyard Bonsai Club wishes to thank all of the 348 people who came by the exhibit and voted for their favorite bonsai tree. The winner is Don Sibley with his beautiful 28-year-old Japanese Maple grown from seed. The runner up was Ernie Carlomagno from Donaroma’s Nursery with his beautiful very old, very large forest. It was nice to see that all of the following people who entered trees received votes, which proves that there is something for everyone at the Fair. They were Eric Turner, Carolyn Flynn, Vito Palermo, Dan Whiting, Betty Trider, Karen English, Marvin Rosenkrantz, and Rick Bayley.

Carolyn Flynn

Edgartown

0

To the Editor:

I received a frantic call from a distant relative who sent me a card, only to have it returned by our lovely postal people as it was sent to my street address rather than my P.O. Box.  A common error, yes?

This lead me to major sadness wondering how many other letters, cards, etc. I never get.

How many out there think I am dead or gone — moved, who knows? I am reasonably certain there are others in West Tisbury (other towns too?) like me wondering too.

Why can’t this be fixed? Why do my UPS, FEDEX, my auto registration, and insurance papers all say Vineyard Haven? Vineyard Haven isn’t even a town, for crying out loud. It is an annex of Tisbury.

Forty-two years I’ve been in West Tisbury. I want my mail. Anyone else?

Frustrated in 2014.

Joanne Scott
West Tisbury

9

To the Editor:

Enough already. It is high time that The Times stopped making its letters column available to the vaporous screeds of Peter Robb (Aug. 20, “Just plain tired”). Mr. Robb has no clue about how to construct a persuasive argument by offering verifiable evidence. Instead he trades in rank, unsupported, and insupportable assertion, sweeping generalization, and false claims. Ergo, “After nearly six years of the Obama presidency the evidence clearly suggests he is failing. His poll numbers continue to drop…He is mired in weekly scandals. He has grown the welfare state and imposed socialized medicine.” And on and on he continues in this vein. Mr. Robb purports to know what the majority of Americans want (smaller government, lower taxes, strong borders, a strong military, reducing the debt and transparency). He conveniently overlooks the fact that President Obama is what the majority of Americans want, having voted for him twice.

It is not my purpose to defend everything President Obama has done, or to claim he is holy perfection. But it is my purpose to remind The Times of its own statement about letters to the editor: “All letters are subject to editing for style, taste, sense, and conciseness…We publish most letters but not all. The editor chooses.”

Mr. Robb’s letters fail on these grounds. We’ve heard from him ad nauseam. The Times demeans itself by publishing this kind of drivel.

Nicholas W. Puner

West Tisbury

1

To the Editor:

There would be no need to visit Lourdes to witness miracles if drivers would simply observe Handicapped Parking signs at the Vineyard Haven post office or at Cronig’s.

A.E. St-Germain

Vineyard Haven