Town Column


By Gail Craig
Click here to contact Gail

Posted May 10, 2007

With lots of news to share this week, I'll skip the prelims and set right to work.

Sunday, May 13 marks the annual MV Goes Pink - A Weekend to End Breast Cancer and Support Islanders with Cancer. The Awareness Walk, which raises money and awareness for breast cancer research via the Susan Komen Foundation and the MV Cancer Support Group, kicks of at 10 am on May 13. Registration begins at 9 am at Sengekontacket Pond parking lot on Beach Road in Oak Bluffs, before the first bridge. It will be marked with pink balloons. The stroller-friendly walk, which is approximately 10 miles long, follows the bike path and sidewalks of Edgartown to the lighthouse and back. Walkers are encouraged to wear pink and solicit donations! For more information regarding the walk or donating to the cause, visit their web site at

On May 11, from 6 pm until 8 pm, Quest Martha's Vineyard, Mass Audubon at Felix Neck, and Martha's Vineyard Museum present Sengekontacket Stories - Tales from the Pond to collect and share stories of place. Join Gus Ben David, Linda Marinelli, Dave Grunden, Buzzy Blankenship, Rob Kendall, and friends to hear their stories of Sengekontacket and share memories about life on the Pond.

This program is part of a larger effort to create a Sengekontacket Kayak Quest that will be used this summer at Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary to teach people about the pond's unique people, places, and wildlife. The goals of this project are to bring together a diverse group of people to share their stories about the pond and relay its living history, record and share the pond's history and stories with the public, and through partnerships with stakeholders, develop a self-guided quest, a tool to teach visitors to Felix Neck about Sengekontacket Pond. For more information, please contact Suzan Bellincampi, Sanctuary Director at Felix Neck, at 508-627-4850 or

Congratulations to Joel DeRoche and Joanne Cassidy, who were joined in marriage on Friday evening. They were blessed with a gorgeous evening for their celebration, with so many of their family and friends there to support them. We're sorry to have missed it. Best wishes to the happy couple.

COMSOG will have their Mother's Day Seedling sale from May 12 through 28 from 9:30 to 1:30. Stop by to get a jump on your gardens.

COMSOG has also announced that their David Crohan concert, with a post concert reception, will be on Sunday, June 10, at 4:30 at the Whaling Church. The cost is $20 at the door.

On May 17, from 10 am to 12 noon, The Anchors will be hosting "Treasure or Trash?" the Timothy Rush, Nancy Whipple ECOA rendition of the Antique Road Show. All ages are invited to participate by bringing in an antique - the more mysterious, comical, or baffling, the better! There will be a prize awarded if you can stump the appraiser! Please call in advance with information regarding your item by calling Cathryn at (508) 627-4368 ext. 13.

I find myself in a difficult place tonight, as my father in law, Phil Craig, is in the hospital as I write this, in the final stages of his brief battle with cancer. Though time with him is short, I am in turmoil about whether or not to write about him tonight. On the one hand, it seems inappropriate to anticipate the loss that we are facing as a family. On the other hand, I realize that by the time this goes to print, this powerful, shining beacon of light may well have gone out. To not write about him seems somehow wrong as well. I guess the best I can do is relay the amazingly powerful image I had of Phil this morning. While ruminating on these questions of life and the afterlife, I was overcome by my image of Heaven for Phil and I had a lovely picture of him, galloping off atop his beloved horse, Comanche, with the family dog, Antar "the Noble Beast" running along side, and Ol' Pood, the treasured cat along for the ride. It was not something I actually conjured up, just a clear - and amazingly comforting - image that popped into my head.

Phil has been an interesting man to come to know over these last 12 years, an odd combination of rugged cowboy and mellow Island boy. You could always count on him for an answer to virtually any question and an opinion on every topic. He has lived his life very much on his own terms and had much to offer to those of us lucky enough to know him. When his time on this earth does come to a close, he will most assuredly be missed and we will move on, to live our own lives in a manner that will hopefully reflect his light and zest for life. When the time does come, I wish you an amazing journey, Phil.

My thoughts go out to everyone tonight, to those struggling with their own battles, to those experiencing the great joys life can bring and to everyone in between. Cheers to all of us.