Community Shorts

Posted November 29, 2007

Everest survivor at PAC

In 1988, Ed Webster did the unimaginable. With three others, he scaled Mt. Everest without bottled oxygen, Sherpa support, or radios. Not only did they survive, but they climbed a new route. The climbers reached the mountain's south summit, 300 feet shy of the main summit, but they paid dearly for their success. Toes were lost, as were eight of Mr. Webster's fingers. Mr. Webster will be at the Performing Arts Center at the regional high school to talk about his trek.

"Everest the Hard Way...Ed Webster's Snow in the Kingdom" is a lecture to benefit the Humanitarian Reach Peace Project, and sponsored by the M.V. Cultural Council and M.V. Savings Bank. He may be a familiar face: as he was on the cover of National Geographic Adventure Magazine in 2003, and featured in the 1989 Sports Illustrated Superbowl issue. He's written five books, including "Snow in the Kingdom, My Storm Years on Everest." The lecture is on Thursday, Dec. 6, at 7 pm. The regional high school is located in Oak Bluffs, on the Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road. A donation of $10 is suggested. For more information, call Martha Flanders at 508-693-5553.

Sunday stroll

The Land Bank invites you to join them on a guided walk of Ramble Trail Preserve in Tisbury on Sunday, Dec. 2. The trail is one of the Island's first trail networks. The trail features cliff steps that lead to Lagoon Pond's stony beach, and a trail that abuts Brightwoods Park, owned by the Sheriff's Meadow Foundation. The walk is at 1 pm, will last approximately 90 minutes, and will take place rain or shine. Parking is limited, so carpooling is encouraged. Meet at the trailhead, located on Winyah Lane, off the Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road. For more information, call the Land Bank at 508-627-7141 or visit

Lena Vanderhoop, Jo-Ann Ewing, Laba Thiam, Linda Doty, Lisa Larsen, Ginny Omar, Twona Thomas, Susan Tirabassi, Neuseth Cleary, Terrie Maclaren and Joyce Staruk
The honorable VNA home health aides are: (seated, left to right) Lena Vanderhoop, Jo-Ann Ewing, Laba Thiam, and Linda Doty. (Middle row) Lisa Larsen, Ginny Omar, Twona Thomas, Susan Tirabassi, and Neuseth Cleary. (Top row) Terrie Maclaren and Joyce Staruk, the home health aide coordinator. Photo by Mary Baker. Click photo for larger version.

Home health aides honored

On Nov. 14, the Vineyard Nursing Association (VNA) honored their home health aides with an appreciation breakfast. The chefs, culinary arts students at the regional high school, cooked up a variety of offerings, from eggs benedict and bacon to fruit salad and toast. November is National Home Health Care month, and the women were also presented with gift bags by Bob Tonti, director of the VNA.

Rainy Day
Rainy Day in Vineyard Haven was a busy place last Friday. This was the third year the store ran a special Black Friday promotion. Photo by Tara Kenny. Click photo for larger version.

Basic black

"It's Black Friday Vineyard-style. Not 4 am, but 9 am," said Danielle Bailey, owner of Kiddo's. She and store associate Sandy Burt welcomed customers to the Tisbury Marketplace children's store with a free gift and a discount coupon good on all purchases made on Black Friday.

"Our plan was to go Rainy Day first. Get our coupon, and come to Kiddo's," said shopper Alyssia Miller as she waited for Kiddo's to open. Ms. Miller is from Hamilton, Ohio, and was visiting family on the Island for the holiday. Rainy Day on Main Street in Vineyard Haven also gave free gifts to their first 25 customers last Friday, as well as a discount coupon good all day.

"There were more people waiting in line this year," said Rainy Day manager Helen MacLeod. She estimated about 85 people streamed through the door when they opened at 8:30 am. Pointing to a Bananagrams display, Ms. MacLeod said, "We had to refill the display a few times. It's the hot toy."

We Islanders set our own pace. While the rest of America set alarm clocks for 3 am and fought the mall crowds, we queued up, talked with neighbors, sipped hot chocolate, and enjoyed another sunny late fall day.

Karin Stanley
Karin Stanley, education and outreach coordinator at Polly Hill, made frequent stops along the route to describe the wide variety of trees growing on the property. Photo by Susan Safford. Click photo for larger version.

Polly Hill walk and soup making demonstration

Visitors at the Polly Hill Arboretum were in for a double treat two weekends ago-a brisk hike around the property led by Karin Stanley, education and outreach coordinator, and a soup making demonstration led by Cathy Walthers, chef and author.

Ms. Stanley pointed out the variety of trees grown by Polly Hill, and how they are used on the Island. We meandered along the trails, seeing tulip trees, beeches, red and white cedar. We passed by a grove of beetlebung trees, known in the rest of the world as tupelos. We admired the double row of conifers, used as a windbreak to protect the more sensitive plants, we passed by witch hazel and sassafrass, beech and a variety of oak.

We circled the property, arriving back to the wamth of the visitors center where Cathy Walthers was heating up stock for the afternoon soup making demonstration.