By Kay Mayhew - June 15, 2006

Congratulations to the Tisbury eighth graders. Now they are the high school class of 2010.

At 2 pm today the Jazz Appreciation Series at the Tisbury Senior Center continues. Leslie J. Stark has a phenomenal collection of recorded jazz and possesses the knowledge and love of subject to keep the audience entranced. Last week, in a section on big bands, some of the audience joined in to swing and sway. This week in "An Appreciation of Jazz, Selections from 90 Years of America's Unique Music," the focus is on the saxophone.

Leslie describes his preparation as "indulging myself by re-listening to the greatest recordings of classic jazz, spanning nearly 90 years." As a producer of commercials for a large advertising agency, he hired some of the greatest jazz musicians to play anonymously the background music of many commercials. Leslie was fortunate enough to become personally friendly with many of those great instrumentalists. Also for more than 55 years he haunted jazz clubs in New York, Boston, St. Louis, Montreal, Chicago, Paris, Brussels, and New Orleans. He has a collection of nearly 400 albums, about a third of them collecting dust - 33 1/3 vinyl discs. The series continues Thursdays at 2 pm through June.

Barbara Harnen and Gloria Wong have returned from a cruise trip to Alaska on the Holland American ship "Zaandam." Their enthusiastic report is that they had an absolutely wonderful time and decided that this is the best way to travel. The scenery was, of course, spectacular. They enjoyed an outside cabin with a picture window on the promenade deck so they could come out of their stateroom, go around the corner and be out on the deck where one could walk completely around the ship.

After the cruise, they visited Victoria in British Columbia, Canada, for four days. Beautiful Victoria is steeped in British history. Their parliament building is much like that in London. Barbara and Gloria also spent a good deal of time in Victoria's Chinatown. They enjoyed an authentic dim sum, during which Gloria hosted a large group of her family members. Barbara said, "We feasted on all kinds of Chinese specialty items, and I tried every one of them." They returned to Seattle on the Victoria Clipper, a high-speed catamaran, before flying home.

Happy Father's Day. I like to see young fathers today so much more active in the everyday lives of their children. Take a minute to treasure your own memories.

You don't have to go downtown to visit some Island shops. Go to the Vineyard Haven Library Fair on Sunday. Holly Nadler will be there with her Sunporch Books. Look for Heather Kochin of Rainy Day and Judy Pisano for Belushi Pisano Gallery. Chris and Evan Fielder will have towels and rugs from Turkey. Chris Mayhew and Karen Coffey will bring antiques. Margaret Penicaud will sell items to benefit the Haitian Fish Farm. Alice Thompson makes jewelry, and Maria Jarillo makes her exclusive Mexican bags. Jynell Designs will offer everyday glassware with special Island designs created by Jynell Kristal.

Frosty the miniature pony will vie with Marc Brown's "Arthur" for the attention of the small children. The fair runs from 2 to 4 at the library on Main Street. Tisbury Fire Lieutenant Ken Maciel and his crew, representing the ladder truck, will be grilling hamburgers and veggie burgers as well as hotdogs. They will have chips and soda to round out the meal.

The Vineyard Committee on Hunger invites you to their Golden Oldies Fundraiser Dance next Wednesday at 7 pm at Outerland (née Hot Tin Roof). Jeff Pratt will play favorites from decades past for your enjoyment. There will be a silent auction of donations from Island artists and merchants. Tax-deductible tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Call 508-693-7914 for tickets.

Big bunches of birthday balloon wishes go out today to Fredrick Nash. Shawna Nute parties on Monday. Tuesday belongs to Laura Kimball. Ed Herczeg will blow out the candles on Wednesday.

Heard on Main Street: "The torrential rains have washed away the caterpillars. Well, at least some of them."