Town Columns


By Kay Mayhew - October 5, 2006

Our sympathies go to the family and friends of Sally (Blair) Coker. We have lost a very special person who touched many Islanders. She gave her time to teaching English to youngsters in China as well as teaching literacy classes on the Island. She was surrounded by her loving family during her last days. Last Sunday the ladies of the Island Methodist churches held a luncheon tribute where many shared fond memories. Sally was a weaver who gathered the threads of many of our lives into the tapestry of her life. We will miss you, Sally. Send cards or notes to the family at P.O. Box 2123, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568.

A couple of weeks ago town clerks and election officers from across the Island and some from off Island met here with Harry Petrucci. He is with the office of William Galvin, Secretary of State. He was discussing the effects of the federal law called Help America Vote. The actual law runs 163 pages so he was just hitting the highlights.

Under the new law everyone will now have access to the voting booth. Every polling place in America will have handicap voting equipment by the November election this year. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts will pay for the machines, with an audio component as well as a large screen. The machine will verify for the voter exactly which votes have been marked on the ballot.

Most of the other changes modify slightly the ways town clerks and election officials run our elections. Massachusetts has one new requirement. The town clerks now have to develop an evacuation plan in case of emergency, such as fire, or bomb threat, or even loss of power, which may cause a move to another location. Of course, our Tisbury Town Clerk Marion Mudge had already prepared a plan, which she shared. Many of the town clerks had experienced minor delays, but none had yet had to move to another site.

Lynne Benson of the Heath Hen Yarn & Quilt Shop invites you to learn how to make a scrappy quilt. Denise Gebing is a guest quilting instructor from Pine Top, Arizona. She will be teaching from 9 am to 5 pm this Sunday. Denise is a frequent visitor to the Island. Her daughter Jennifer lives here with her husband Roy Cutrere and their children Annabelle, Michael, and Sophie. On Saturday from 2 to 4 pm, Ann Drechsel will teach an original-design knitted hat.

This weekend marks Lynne's seventh anniversary with the Heath Hen Shop. The Toy Box is also celebrating their 19th anniversary at the Tisbury Marketplace this weekend.

The Martha's Vineyard Film Society will show the 12 short films selected from international competition tomorrow evening at 7:30 pm at the Cornell Theatre.

Next week on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 13 and 14, young Island artists will celebrate youth in the arts at the Whaling Church in Edgartown. All are invited to enjoy the performances, with face painting booths, kids games, arts and crafts, and food. YesFest is a fundraiser for IMP in-school programs. All profits from YesFest go to programs for the Island schools. Tisbury's Sarah Swift will perform in IMPact on Saturday at 10 am and at 2 pm. Also Kate Medeiros is part of Sketchy Teens, which opens the 7:30 pm show that night.

Happy anniversary to Arthur and Priscilla Dickson, who celebrate 62 years of wedded bliss on Saturday. My husband Donald and I will mark 45 years together that day. Laura and Bob Barbera's anniversary is Sunday.

Belated birthday greetings go to Mya Houston whose special day was yesterday. She is celebrating by spending her birthday weekend in Fryeburg, Maine. She is enjoying the Fryeburg Fair with her grandparents Pat and Larry Sylvia.

Big bunches of birthday balloon wishes go out tomorrow to Donald Childs. Bea Welch parties on Saturday.

Heard on Main Street: "If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything."