Town Column


By Jacqueline Sexton
Click here to contact Jacqueline

Posted September 20, 2007

Happy 60th anniversary to Shirley and John Mayhew. Sixty years is quite an achievement. Menemsha fishermen know Johnny as one of their own, and Shirley as the photographer who rushed her photos of hurricane damage to Life magazine after one of the severe storms. Life developed the photos and wrote her an encouraging letter, including the information that their staff photographer, Alfred Eisenstadt, had been in Menemsha and had also sent photos of the storm. Undeterred by the loss of sudden fame and fortune, Shirley continued her photography business, and many families today treasure her photos of their babies and small children, as we do one of ours, taken 36 years ago.

"Back to school" is a whole new ballgame for last year's graduates as they move to West Tisbury's sixth grade. They take the bus, change classrooms, meet new teachers, and make new friends, according to Katie Carroll, whose daughter Bradley is a sixth grader this year. Perhaps the biggest change is the class trip to the University of Rhode Island's Alton Jones Environmental Education Center where they will take part in a "four night learning experience."

Belated happy birthday to Bradley who turned 11 on September 5.

Chris Abrams and Laurisa Rich are back running the preschool for another year and have added an assistant, Talia Luening, whose big smile "adds a cheerful and energetic new dynamic." Most of the preschoolers this year are blonde, blue-eyed boys.

Katie Carroll, Julie Flanders, Lori Keefe, and Sarah Nixon had a "girl's night out" dinner at the Beach Plum Inn last week. Here's a mystery seeking a solution: Who were the couple at a nearby table who looked pretty happy and apparently got engaged there the same evening?

Kathie and Emmett Carroll went off-Island to visit Kathie's mother, Carol Crocker, and did a side trip to Maine while there.

The Friends of the Library gave a farewell tea for Kimberley Schlesinger, departing library associate who, with her husband, will move to upstate New York next week.

You may have noticed a new face at the library. She is Emily Levett, who will take over Kimberley's duties. A former museum archivist, Emily spent childhood summers in West Chop and has been active in the affordable housing efforts and is a director of the Habitat for Humanity Development Fund. We all welcome her.

Marine researcher Dr. Elizabeth A. Fairchild, will discuss the feasibility of restoring the flounder population in Vineyard waters at the library next Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 5 pm. Dr. Fairchild has been the director of a restoration project for more than a decade at the University of New Hampshire's Atlantic Marine Aquaculture Center, which reports that the New England flounder population has decreased dramatically in recent years. Fairchild's research has centered on the ideal size for releasing the juveniles, and where, when, and how to condition them for life in the wild. The talk is sponsored by the Menemsha Fisheries Development Fund and by the Friends of the Library. There is no charge and everyone is welcome.

The Friends of the Library are sponsoring a slide show, "Eye Contact - Faces From Around the World," by documentary photographer Alan Brigish on Wednesday, Sept. 26, from 5:30 to 6:30 pm. Photographs of India by Mr. Brigish are also on view at the library until the end of the month.