Community Shorts

Posted October 4, 2007

Electronics Disposal Day

Following the successful event this past winter, there will be another Electronics Disposal Day at M.V. Community Services on Saturday, Oct. 13. Between 9 am and 2 pm, dispose of your unwanted computers, cell phones, televisions, and other electronic waste, for a small, tax-deductible fee. Island charities, such as Community Services, will receive a portion of the fees collected. According to event developer Steven Beck, approximately $270,000 has been raised in 2007 for charities across the state. Community Services is located at 111 Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road in Oak Bluffs, across from the high school. Home pick-ups are available but limited. To schedule, call Mary Jean Connelly at 508-693-7900 ext. 267.

ServSafe class offered

The Public Health Network Services is hosting ServSafe food service classes this month. Cynthia Barletta and Alice Robinson of the host service will teach the classes, sponsored by the Oak Bluffs Association (OBA). Classes begin Oct. 9 and will run on three consecutive Tuesday and Wednesday nights from 5 to 9 pm at M.V. Regional High School in Oak Bluffs. You must pre-register for materials, which cost $250. Discounts are available for additional employees of the same establishment and OBA members. To register, contact Ms. Barletta at 508-624-4808 or Ms. Robinson at

Ryan Searle awarded Bryant scholarship

Ryan Searle has received the Betty Ann Lima Bryant Scholarship for 2007. Established by friends and family of Ms. Bryant shortly after her death in 1994, the scholarship is awarded annually "To further the education of a Vineyard resident who has demonstrated a commitment to community service and human rights."

A 1998 graduate of Martha's Vineyard Regional High School, Ms. Searle is currently a second-year student at Vermont Law School in South Royalton, Vt. In her first year there, she made the dean's list, and she was accepted to the school's award-winning General Practice Program.

From 2003 to 2006, Ms. Searle worked as a counselor/advocate at Women's Support Services at Martha's Vineyard Community Services. During this period she earned a Masters degree in Criminal Justice from Curry College in Milton.

Ms. Searle plans to return to the Island to practice law. "I plan on using my degree to help those in need on the Island," she wrote in her application for the scholarship. "As my long-term goal, I envision creating a program where low-income survivors of domestic violence can receive free or low-cost legal representation."

As a young woman, Betty Ann Lima Bryant was a dedicated advocate for disadvantaged Islanders, as well as a highly charged political activist. She was later elected to several offices - both tax collector and selectman in Chilmark, and eventually county commissioner. For more information about the scholarship in her name, or to contribute to it, contact Whit Griswold, 508-693-0680, or

Hone your computer skills

Want to learn about a specific computer topic? Make an appointment to work one-on-one with a librarian at the Oak Bluffs Pubic Library and learn how to use e-mail, the Internet, and the Library's online catalog to find books, DVDs, CDs and more. Call the library to make an appointment today at 508-693-9433.

Grants available

Non-profit organizations are encouraged to apply for the Farm Neck Foundation grants available for next year. The Foundation is a charitable organization founded in 1989 that is funded by members and supporters of Farm Neck Golf Club. The Board of Directors looks to award grants to Island organizations whose goal is to improve the quality of life on the Vineyard. The Foundation also gives special consideration to organizations that cannot get funding through other, traditional sources. To apply, organizations must submit a proposal detailing their specific project, the benefits, budgetary requirements, and grant amount requested. Proposals must be received by Nov. 1. Send proposals to Farm Neck Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 1656, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557.

Knowledge going digital

Come to the next installation of the Vineyard Haven Evening Lecture Series on Oct. 11 at 7 pm. Kenneth Peterson, of the Boston Public Library, will introduce "SchoolRooms," a new online tool that will make high quality content designed by teachers and librarians available to all residents of Massachusetts at no cost. This information-packed discussion will offer a glimpse of where libraries are headed in the age of the Web. You can investigate SchoolRooms for yourself online at

Memorial hike-a-thon.

This Saturday, Oct. 6, all are invited to the fourth annual Justin Lord Coleman Memorial Hike-a-thon in Chilmark. Justin died from injuries sustained in a car accident in Australia in October 2003. The ten-mile hike will start at the Coleman's house at 150 South Road in Chilmark and head down to Hancock Beach, then along the shore to Lucy Vincent Beach and back again. This year the hike will also be in memory of Alex Cohen, a friend of Justin's who died in 1991 in an automobile accident at the age of 19. Barbara and Tom Furino, whose son, David, died in a car accident in 2004, will speak to the walkers at 12 pm, before the hike commences at 12:30 pm. The event, which in the past years has raised $26,000 for charity, is free for all hikers. For more information, visit or call Evie Coleman at 508-645-2261.