Town Columns

I’m writing this column on my living room sofa under a warm wool blanket with Nelson asleep in a nest by my feet. It was barely 50 degrees when we woke up. The dogs are curled into tight balls on their dog beds.

Although the sky is overcast, there will be no rain today. Everything is dust-dry, the grass brown, leaves shriveled to conserve what little moisture they can. Mike’s truck kicks up dry clouds of dust when he drives in and out during the day. Saturday night’s promised rainfall left barely a coating in the rain gauge. It had sounded so promising. I can’t believe we are not in a drought.

Mike and I met Ethel and Ralph Sherman years ago at SBS, then remember Ethel behind the desk at Dr. Westover’s office. We have loved her jams and perfectly-arranged vegetables at the Farmers’ Market, along with advice, and her way of making me feel like the most welcome sight in the world. I can’t believe she is gone. My condolences to Ralph and their family, and to everyone who feels the world emptier for her loss.

Walter Ashley was another presence in our lives. Mike always enjoyed his visits with Walter and always learned something. The two of them discussing the finer points of chainsaw repair is an image that makes me smile. He helped Mike restore our 1978 Power King tractor one winter. He was the guru, and will be sorely missed by a large number of people. We will be at the Ag Hall this Sunday between 1 and 3 o’clock to join Connie and their many friends and to celebrate Walter’s life. Hope you can make it, too.

Pam Thors sent a reminder from the Community Preservation Committee that proposals for 2015 projects are due tomorrow, Sept. 19. You may file your application for eligibility with Pam at Town Hall, or file electronically You can email any questions to Calling Pam is a little more complicated, as CPC doesn’t have its own phone. Call Executive Secretary Jen Rand at 508-696-0102 and she will help get you to Pam.

If you have always wanted to know more about electric vehicles, you will have your opportunity this Saturday, Sept. 20. Vineyard Power and Cronig’s Market will host the second annual Electric Vehicle Plug-In Day at the down-island Cronig’s parking lot from 9 am to 12:30 pm. You can view, test-drive, and learn about the vehicles (including a motorcycle) and about rebates and tax credits.

Ellen Weiss called this morning to invite me for a beach walk and to take a break from household chores. She is preparing for the arrival of “three ladies from Thousand Island Park – we call it TIP” – a Victorian campground resort established in 1870 on Wellesley Island in the middle of the St. Lawrence River near the Canadian border. Ellen spoke there last year about our Camp Meeting Association in Oak Bluffs. She met Trude Fitelson, Julie Mathieu, and Katherine Zimmerman — her guests who will arrive on Tuesday, to study the Oak Bluffs Campground and how it is being preserved. They look forward to spending time with association members and studying the campground. Hopefully, they will have time for a beach walk. They will bring their findings back to TIP as part of its preservation process.

Don’t forget the Saturday-evening performance of Arnold Rabin’s play What do people talk about when they have nothing to say? at the West Tisbury library at 7 pm.

Susan Bellincampi will speak about her new book, Martha’s Vineyard, A Field Guide to Island Nature, at the West Tisbury library on Tuesday, Sept. 23, at 5 pm. Susan has been director of Massachusetts Audubon’s Felix Neck Sanctuary since 2006, and writes the weekly All Outdoors column in the Vineyard Gazette.

Vineyard Colors photographers Moira Fitzgerald and Yann Meersseman will be at the library on Thursday, Sept. 25, to speak about their photographs and exhibition currently atop the stacks. The program begins at 5 pm.

Beth Kramer just called to tell me about Richard Knabel and David Stanwood wanting to give the library a vintage rosewood Steinway that David has restored. She said that everyone at Jonathan Revere’s memorial had so enjoyed having musical accompaniment during the celebration of Jonathan’s life that this idea was born. There are frequent musical programs at the library, and a piano would be a wonderful thing to have. If you are interested in contributing to this gift, please call Richard at 508-696-9134.

I am partial to flowers that smell wonderful, and find myself frequently reminiscing about fragrances from my childhood or from special occasions. It has made me indulge in one extravagance the year round; I always have fresh flowers on the table in our living room. The highlight of this summer has been Krishana Collins’s lilies. Every week there seems a new color in her display and every week I carefully choose my bouquet: the most beautiful, the one with the most buds still to open. Their perfume carries throughout our house, and I am filled with happiness and gratitude for this small gift.

The glory of September continued to unfold this week with exquisite weather and fewer crowds. I went to Philbin on Sunday and it was wonderful. I even went into the water. There are still good beach days to be had and kayaks and paddleboards to take. Plus this year the beach plums are growing like mad — people are saying this is the best batch they’ve seen in years. Time to make jam or just take a walk and pick a couple and eat them on your way.

Goodbye Giulia, we will miss seeing you every week at the library. This past Saturday was Giulia’s last day at the Aquinnah Library, and there was a very sweet sendoff with lots of treats. Giulia will continue working at Community Services, and she has also started a new job at the Hebrew Center. I know she will do well at both.

This Saturday at the library you can make a tie-dye shirt, tablecloth, pillowcase, or whatever you would like; you just need to bring the item in and the dye and the instructions will be there. Dyeing starts at noon. Next Saturday Nancy Caldwell will hold a one-day workshop at the library titled Negotiating and Creating Agreement. The workshop will be based on role-play and case studies, enabling participants to establish their own style of negotiating. The workshop is free but limited to 12 people, and sign-up at the library is required. Call the library at 508-645-2314, or just stop in.

Joan LeLacheur is having an Open Studio at 42 Old South Rd. in Aquinnah this Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm. There will be more new and traditional jewelry designs of wampum beads and moon snail and conch shell.  For more information you can contact Joanie at or 508-645-9954.

Phil Weinstein is teaching a class on Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace at the Katherine Cornell Theatre in conjunction with the Vineyard Haven library throughout the fall. It is at 7 pm over six Wednesdays. The first was this past Wednesday, but not to worry, there are five more, the next one being Oct. 1, then Oct. 15 and 29, Nov. 12 and Dec. 3. Reading War and Peace is a great fall project; even if you’ve already read it, it’s worth rereading. I know it’s long, but I can tell you from experience that it’s a great read — very engaging, funny, and wise. It is not a difficult read; it takes stamina as it’s long, but it is worth the time. Phil is such a great teacher I’m sure he will have some wonderful insights into the novel.

Happy birthday to Jeffrey Madison, who celebrates on Wednesday Sept. 24. Welcome home to Adrianna Ignacio, who came back last Thursday. She has a long way to go in her recovery, but I saw the pictures of her on Facebook and I have to say I’m not sure how she did this, but she did manage to look glamorous in a halo cast.

I had the pleasure of attending Ruby Iantosca’s birthday party this past Saturday, and the highlight of the party, aside from seeing Ruby look so happy, was Arlen and Lexie Roth performing together. Arlen is such an amazing guitarist and he and his band are so tight, they play together and off one another so well. Were I a singer I would want to sound like Lexie Roth, soulful and bright with such a love for music and a great sense of the story of the song. She is confident but not showy. How lucky are we to have such talent in our town?

Summer resident Eve Lake, daughter of Morgan Hodson and Bill Lake, was married at the Allen Farm this past Saturday. She and her groom, Curtis, have known each other for 11 years and have followed each other around the globe to Africa, and various schools — Emory (her), Yale (him), and the place of their meeting, Bowdoin. He is a lawyer and she is a doctor of internal medicine in residency. They reside in Seattle. The wedding was quite lovely and the rain held off until everyone was safe inside the tent.

And they’re off! The rods, the reels, the boxes of tackle, a sandwich in a plastic bag for sustenance, the waders and lures and heads in the game. Someone is going to catch the Big One — might as well be you. That’s right, folks. It’s Derby season.

The opening bell rang out 8 am Sunday morning to signify the start of the 69th Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby, and people are psyched. The weigh-in station crew has been keeping busy, having already having processed more than 2,000 pounds of fish. Those of you who have been reading along for a while know how much I love the spectacle of the weigh-in station. With a coffee in the morning or an ice cream cone in the evening, it’s the best place to hang out, catch up with some folks, and watch the filleters at work. So get on down and check it out, if you’re not already out dropping a line. And keep me posted with your Derby stories, please. Good luck, folks!

It’s a special week in the Dolby household, as both of my siblings celebrated their anniversaries. Chris and Liza Dolby marked 13 years on Sept. 14 with a family trip to the Cape, while Shannon and Andy Smith hit the 10-year milestone on Sept. 18, which they enjoyed with their toes in the sand in Nevis.

Local sailboat Aileen was off to Larchmont last week for the 50th Shields National Regatta. In the able hands of her team of five — the brawny Tim Bryan, Scott Morgan, David Culbertson, Jay Henderson, and Bob Hurst

— Aileen placed 15th overall. Now she is back home on Chappy, ready to be hosed off and wrapped in winter blankets for a much-deserved hibernation. Good Night, Aileen.

Hey Amazon shoppers: Did you know you can name Martha’s Vineyard Community Services as your charity of choice, and Amazon will donate a percentage of your purchases to this worthy cause? Instead of going to the main Amazon site, shop at, sign in using your regular Amazon account information, and use the search box to find Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. Bookmark the site, and when you make future purchases, MVCS will be saved as your charity of choice.

Seniors, you still have time to sign up for a trip to Wegmans, followed by a fashion show and high tea at the Northborough Senior Center. The trip will take place Wednesday, Sept. 24th, leaving on the 8:15 boat out of Vineyard Haven and returning on the 6:15 pm. At the fashion show, you’ll learn how to shop smart and dress with great style on a budget, while you enjoy tea and delicious homemade tea sandwiches and desserts. Call the Anchors to sign up right away: 508-627-4368.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum will hold the 13th annual Ceremony of Remembrance at the Edgartown Lighthouse Children’s Memorial on Saturday, Sept. 20 (rain date Sept. 27) at 1 pm. The Museum is steward of the Edgartown, East Chop, and Gay Head Lighthouses and caretaker of the Children’s Memorial.

Twenty-six new stones have been added in the past year, with names of children of all ages and from across the country. The ceremony is an opportunity for families and friends to gather and remember all of the 651 children who are part of the Memorial.

Stones may be purchased by contacting Betsey Mayhew at the Martha’s Vineyard Museum at, or by calling 508-627-4441, ext.112. Visit www.mvmuseum.orgfor more information about upcoming programs and exhibits.

M.V. Fashion Week is upon us, and the series of events will kick off

Thursday, Sept. 18 at Lure in the Winnetu, beginning at 6 pm.

Cocktails will be followed by dinner and a fashion show, where you can preview some of the Vineyard’s most current and elegant fashion offerings. A percentage of the fashion show’s proceeds will benefit Angel Flight NE ( For more information on this and other Fashion Week events, visit

Birthday wishes go out this week to Max Sherman, who celebrates Sept. 19; to Dayce Moore and Cammie Naylor, Sept. 21; and to Michael Donaroma, Sept. 23. Enjoy!

Morning greets us with lingering darkness now as the days are shortened.  For some reason my lab Molly is already arising earlier and earlier in spite of my attempts to convince her that 5 am is not 6 am so please go back to sleep for one more hour. The landscape is tired, as if the effort of presenting a beautiful view during the summer has been exhausting and this, along with a lack of rain, results in dying flowers, drooping foliage and leaves on trees changing color and dropping already.

The Oak Bluffs School, already busy welcoming students, is preparing to acquaint parents and guardians with the staff and programs. You are invited to weekly meetings every Wednesday at 8:30 am in the school library. In these meetings, you may ask your questions and voice concerns.

You will also have a chance to visit your child’s classroom and work when the school hosts Back to School Nights beginning at 6 pm on the following dates: Grade 3, Thursday, Sept. 18; Grade 2, Tuesday, Sept. 23; Grade 1, Tuesday, Sept. 30; Kindergarten and Project Headway, Wednesday, Oct. 1; and grades 5 through 8, Wednesday, Oct. 8.

A free Health Fair open to the public will be held on Monday, Sept. 22, from 4 pm to 6 pm at the Tisbury Senior Center in Vineyard Haven. Tests include glaucoma, hearing (call for an appointment), blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar. There will also be information on elder care, homecare and more, including refreshments and giveaways. For info, call 508-696-4205.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum will hold the 13th annual Ceremony of Remembrance at the Edgartown Lighthouse Children’s Memorial at 1 pm, Saturday, Sept. 20(rain date Sept. 27).

The idea for creating a memorial at the base of the Edgartown Lighthouse belonged to Rick Harrington, who envisioned it as “one more light to leave on” for his late son Ricky. Very quickly the concept grew into a way to memorialize the many children who have died by placing an engraved stone at the base of the lighthouse. In the past year, 26 new stones have been added with names of children of all ages and from across the country. The ceremony is an opportunity for families and friends to gather and remember all of the 651 children who are part of the Memorial.

The Museum is steward of the Edgartown, East Chop, and Gay Head Lighthouses and caretaker of the Children’s Memorial.

Stones may be purchased by contacting Betsy Mayhew at the Martha’s Vineyard Museum at or by calling 508-627-4441, ext. 112.

Here is a chance to support Martha’s Vineyard Community Services: If you purchase items through, please consider adding MVCS as your charity of choice. Instead of going to the main Amazon site, shop at and Amazon will donate 0.5 percent of your purchases to MVCS. Sign in using your regular Amazon account information and use the search box to find Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. Bookmark the site, and when you make future purchases MVCS will be saved as your charity of choice.

In partnership with M.V. Regional High School’s Environmental Club, members of the Martha’s Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative Ocean Sustainability-in-action Project will participate in the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup with a cleanup from 10 am to noon on Sept. 20 of the Tisbury Harbor beach.

Autumnal Equinox Family Yoga will take place on Saturday, Sept. 20, at 10:30 am at our very active library. Celebrate the changing season with family yoga with Ms. Sondra. Stuffed Animal Storytime will take place on Sept. 16 from 10:30 to 11:30 am, and Scrabble and chess will be held on Sept.  20 from 10 to 12 noon.

We send birthday smiles for the month of September to Aidylberg and Woodside residents: William Sullivan, Eileen McLaughlin, Spencer Hilton, Florence BenDavid, and Emma Goldhorn. Smiles to Ronnie Klein on the 19th, Corey and Amber Medeiros on the 20th, Ruth Metell and Ruthie Van Brakle sharing the 21st, Alice June Thompson on the 22nd, Ken Davey, Ann Metell, and Annabelle Metell on the 24th, and Dustin Shaw on the 25th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

Now I am wondering what happened to summer. Suddenly the sunset is earlier and earlier and the breezes are really cool. I’m not ready yet.

Saturday, Sept. 20, is the Annual Ceremony of Remembrance at the Edgartown Lighthouse at 1 pm. The public is invited to this moving ceremony for children, commemorated at the base of the Edgartown Lighthouse in the Children’s Memorial. You can also enjoy music and light refreshments provided by the Harbor View Hotel. Rain date: Saturday, Sept. 27 (verify at 508-627-4441, ext. 110).

September is a busy month at the senior center. Visitors enjoyed a music class presented by Charles Blank, an afternoon tea & talk featuring poets Annette Sandrock and Lee McCormack, an organizational gathering of Island writers, and a session about Medicare, targeted to the boomer generation.

Kathleen Samway presents a new senior center program on Monday at 1:30 pm called A Matter of Balance, introducing an eight-week series that addresses balance, falls, flexibility, strength and problem-solving. This series is designed for those who want to increase their activity level and fight the fear of falling. Kathleen is a physical therapist and clinical director of the former VNA.

Try the free Health Fair at the Tisbury Senior Center on Monday from 4 pm to 6 pm. Get your blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar and hearing checked, and get tested for glaucoma. Call 508-693-4205 with questions, or for an appointment for the hearing test.

The Friends of the Tisbury COA host a free Afternoon Tea on Monday, Sept. 29, from 4 pm to 5:30 pm to celebrate the end of summer. Everyone is invited. See friends, learn about events, and get involved. The Friends plan special events to raise funds for the center. You are welcome to learn about what is happening at your senior center, a community center for all stages of getting wiser. (I think that’s such a nice way to describe our aging.)

By the way, have you seen a large black snake recently? Black racers (Coluber constrictor) are important predators in grasslands, shrublands, and forest edges, all part of the Vineyard landscape. They are harmless to humans but control rodent populations, including the white-footed mice that host deer ticks (and Lyme disease). The Vineyard Conservation Society is helping to collect data on these snakes; they are really big and scary to look at, but terribly useful while not harmful to us. If you have photographed one or can say where you may have seen one lately, VCS wants to know: 508-693-9588.

Registration is open for all ACE MV fall classes: online at, by mail, or at the new ACE MV office at 35 Greenwood Ave., 2nd floor. That’s the MV Family Center building across from our library. Or sign up at the Course Sampling Fair at the high school on Wednesday, Oct. 1 from 5 pm to 6:30 pm. Class sizes are limited, and early registration is encouraged.

There are classes in job skills, math and English to prepare for college or GED, and college courses, as well as writing, jazz, canning, theater, and Thai cooking — even understanding Medicare. Adults can bring children (ages 6 to 12) to learn the basics of salsa and Latin beat together. I guess I should try the class on auto maintenance for women.

Cycle Martha’s Vineyard is only two weeks away. The cycling ride around the Island on Saturday, Oct. 4 (508-627-8303), benefits the Rotary Club and the Gay Head Light. You can ride again on Sunday — or run or golf. Sunday is a Gay Head Light 10K ( And more: The MV Golf Tournament at Mink Meadows on that Sunday benefits Big Brothers Big Sisters. Call 508-693-0101.

Belated congratulations go out to Doris Stewart and Jerome Clark, whose anniversary was yesterday. Anniversary wishes go out today to Louisa Gould and J.B. Lamont.

Big bunches of birthday balloon wishes go out today to Hilda Illingworth. Wish the best tomorrow to Barbara Maciel. Happy birthday to Jan Dorchester and Dan Greenbaum, who celebrate on Saturday. Sunday belongs to Trip Barnes and Ken Ward. Happy birthday to Lori Dorsey on Monday. Next Wednesday there will be a run on birthday candles: Greetings go out to Muriel Laverty, Judy Federowicz, Kathy Rogers, and Kenny Davey.

Heard on Main Street: Take the edge off the darkening fall days and come together for the pleasure of learning. [ACE MV]

Gyrokinesis Workshop at the Chilmark Community Center. —Photo courtesy of Amanda Tay

September mornings wake me to the cool of changing seasons. I love seeing the new Dorper lambs grazing in the field next door. We have been picking apples from our wild apple tree and enjoying carrots, beets, and potatoes from our garden. I feel rejuvenated after a three-day Gyrokinesis Workshop with Billy Macagnone of New York City’s Body Evolutions Studio at the Chilmark Community Center, and am grateful this work was available to those on the Island who cannot travel, including teachers Daryl Owens and Giulia Casalino. What I learned having seven guests in my home for the weekend was when no one answers a phone at a restaurant you know is open, it’s a wedding party. We tried to eat out in Chilmark for dinner on Saturday night. No luck at Chilmark Tavern, or Homeport. We tried State Road, no luck. We called Isola in Edgartown and when we got there only the pizza restaurant was open. In the end we were seated on a side porch away from crowds and noise and enjoyed a delicious meal at Alchemy. So I guess during wedding season if you do not have reservations and no one is answering the phone, head to a town with choices.

Welcome home and back to school for the 4th and 5th graders from Chilmark School who successfully navigated the ocean and returned safely to our shores after a week of adventure on the Alabama.

Chilmark Preschool’s fall fundraiser to support their enrichment programs is portrait sessions with Island photographer Albert O. Fischer. This year they are offering shoots at both Grey Barn & Farm and Menemsha Beach. Please consider enjoying this for you and your loved ones or giving it as a gift to friends or family. Here are the dates and locations: Saturday, Sept. 20, 2 pm to 6 pm, Menemsha Beach; Sunday, Sept. 28, 2 pm to 6 pm, Grey Barn & Farm; Saturday, Oct. 4, 9 am to 1 pm, Menemsha Beach; and Saturday, Oct. 18, 9 am to 1 pm, Grey Barn & Farm. Cost is $75 per session, which includes 15 minutes of shooting and high-resolution digital files of all photos. Contact Sarah Waldman at 781-799-9941 or to reserve your session! More information at

The Chilmark library would like to extend thanks to everyone who supported the Summer Reading Program with coupons of appreciation. Children’s librarian Kristin Maloney said, “We had a very successful program, and are grateful for the extra incentive to encourage children to read that our local businesses provide. Almost 200 children signed up for the Summer Reading Program.” The library sends big thanks to The Bite and Karen Flynn; Chilmark Chocolates and Allison Burger and Marybeth Grady; Chilmark Store and Jennifer Lorusso and Joel Glickman; Menemsha Texaco and Marshall and Katie Carroll; Menemsha Galley and Frank and Merrily Fenner; and Menemsha Market and Debbie Packer.

Be sure to drop by the photography exhibit by Chilmark resident Hillary Noyes-Keene displayed in the Chilmark public library meeting room through Oct. 2. And check out Liza Lynch’s photography exhibit at Santander Bank from Sept. 19 to Oct. 3.

Don’t forget it’s M.V. Fashion Week, supporting Angel Flights NE. Check for events.

The sun has been shining, and getting those beach days in before the start of school was an unexpected gift for many. Monday brought the pre-K kids to school for their first day, and we hope they loved their new classrooms, teachers, and friends. Though there are bicycle tours led by oversize vans, the traffic is gone, and the porch at the Chilmark Store is still packed with visitors in the mornings and at lunchtime.

Chilmark lost two remarkable women in the past couple of weeks, Dr. Laura Lee Reid and Ethel Sherman. Our hearts go out to Laura’s children Sarah Canca, Katy Decker, and Eben Coszutta and their families. Dr. Reid’s memorial service was a celebration of her life with nearly 300 people crowded into the Grange Hall. Dr. Bernard Levy appreciated her participation in creating a program for recovering doctors in Massachusetts and thought she was the first woman doctor on staff at the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital.

Chilmark also mourns the passing of Ethel Sherman, and we send our love and support to the love of her life, Ralph, and their family. I met Ethel at Cynthia Riggs’ writer’s group when it was conducted at Howes House in 2007. Ethel’s wonderful stories about Ralph surprised us and warmed our hearts. She always managed to put a smile on my face, always had time for a kind word, shared her love of the Island Farmer’s Market, and her preserves were much coveted holiday gifts for off-Island friends. Ethel we miss you terribly!

Help repair the cross and steeple of the Chilmark Church by attending mezzo-soprano Lia Kahler’s varied program of songs, spirituals, and arias, on Sept. 14 at 3 pm at the Chilmark Community Church. Lia’s pianist, Richard Gordon, and organist, Philip Dietterich, will also perform as soloists. A silent auction at 2 pm will continue during intermission and the reception following the concert. For tickets, $15 general, $10 senior/student, call 508-645-3325.

This week The Yard continues with local artists at Poetry Night, Wednesday, Sept. 10 at 8 pm; and Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish play for Public Dancing Allowed, Friday, Sept. 12 at 8 pm. For more information, call 508-645-9662 or go to

Yes, Chilmark Chocolates is open again, Thursdays – Sundays, 11:30 am to 4:30 pm. Homeport Back Door is open Monday – Wednesday from 11 am to 3 pm and Thursday – Sunday from 11 am to 8:30 pm; dinner inside is served from 5 pm on Thursdays – Sundays. Chilmark Tavern is open Thursdays – Mondays from 5:30 pm. Chilmark Store is open weekdays until 3:30 and weekends until 8 pm. The Galley is open 11 am to 3 pm, Sunday – Friday and Saturdays from 11 am to 7:30ish. The Bite, just filmed this week for the Travel Channel, is open Tuesdays – Sundays from 11:30 to 3:30 pm. And both fish markets are open daily: Larsen’s Fish Market is open Sunday – Thursday from 10 am to 6 pm and Friday – Saturday from 9 am to 7 pm; Menemsha Fish Market is open 9 am to 7:30 pm every day.


Oh, how I love September in Aquinnah. The weather has been superb and the water is still warm. Over the weekend I kayaked over to Picnic Point on the pond with my husband and a friend and it was so heavenly. It felt like the Caribbean. Or what I imagine the Caribbean would be like since I’ve never actually been. You get the picture — it was lovely and I felt like I was “away” and not at home and that was even lovelier, a little two-hour vacation in our backyard.

This Saturday, Sept. 13, will be Giulia’s last day on staff at the library. There will be an informal, festive celebration throughout the day to send her off. There will be refreshments served, and if you are inclined to bake or cook something to contribute to the party, please do. I know I will miss Giulia’s sweet way with all the town kids and her kindness. I wish her the best of luck in all her endeavors.

I know it’s only September, but this is the first of two times that I will mention the winter holidays in this column. The Chilmark Preschool’s fall fundraiser is portrait sessions with Island photographer (and former longtime Aquinnah resident) Albert O. Fischer. This is the third year that the portrait sessions have been held, and the photos make great holiday cards. The sessions are held at either the Grey Barn & Farm or Menemsha Beach. The dates of the sessions are: Menemsha Beach, Sept. 20 and Oct. 4; Grey Barn & Farm, Sept. 28 and Oct. 18. Contact Sarah Waldman at 781-799-9941 or to reserve your session. Sessions are $75. The profits go to Chilmark Preschool’s enrichment programs.

There is a collection of poems available by Island and off-Island writers about the Gay Head Lighthouse. It is called “Legacy of Light: Poems for the Gay Head Lighthouse,” and Aquinnah resident and talented artist Mitzi Pratt has hand-bound 50 copies. The limited editions are $175. They can be ordered by emailing Mitzi at; there is a softcover version for $20 available as well, but the limited edition would make a lovely Christmas or Hanukkah present. Proceeds from the sale go to the Save the Gay Head Light fund.

Adrianna Ignacio is coming home! She should be released from Spaulding Rehab and home by this weekend. Her recovery will continue for a long time, but at least she will be here with her friends and family and not alone in a hospital. Welcome home Adrianna, we are so glad to have you back.

If you noticed speeding ambulances headed up to Aquinnah a couple of weeks ago, they were for Anne Vanderhoop, who broke her other hip (not the one that broke on Halloween). She is recovering at Spaulding Rehab on the Cape until Sept. 16, and would love to hear from people; please drop her a line:

Anne Vanderhoop

Spaulding Rehabilitation

311 Service Road

East Sandwich, MA 02537

Walter Delaney died on Tuesday, Aug. 26. He moved off the Island in June to be closer to his daughter and her family. Walter was town meeting moderator for 36 years and fire chief for 17 years. He served on many committees and did much service for the town of Aquinnah. His wake was held last Thursday and his memorial service was private. He was predeceased by his beloved wife Nancy, who died last summer. Our hearts go out to his daughter, Gayle M. Delaney, and her husband Andrew Dineen and their son Raymond. Remembrances may be made in Walter’s memory to the Aquinnah Fire Department, 63 State Road, Aquinnah, MA 02535.

Happy birthday to Paul Manning, who celebrated on Sunday, and happy birthday to Anja May, whose birthday is Saturday. Ona Ignacio will be celebrating in style on Tuesday, and Eliska, one of the bartenders at Chilmark Tavern, will be celebrating on Wednesday. Congratulations to Emmett Taylor, who started kindergarten at the Chilmark School last week. Good luck to Nanauwe Vanderhoop, who started at the Walnut Hill School last week. I have a feeling that Nanauwe will do great; it’s her parents that I’m a little worried about, as Nanauwe is boarding at the school and so David and Saskia have an empty nest right now. I know that although they miss her they are awfully proud of her.

Arnold Rabin has written a new play. What do people talk about when they have nothing to say? will have one performance only at the West Tisbury Library next Saturday, September 20, at 7 pm. The play is in three scenes and is about a story told by two women, their husbands, and their conversations resolved. It is directed by Leslie Stark, who is also one of the actors. Others are Mike Adell, Jenny Allen, and Connie McCreery.

I have known Arnold and his wife, Sydell, mostly from the library, visits to my gallery, and walks around town. As with so many people, I never think about their off-Island lives. Arnold’s has been pretty impressive. He has been a writer, producer, and director for television; the writer of a novel, short stories for adults and children, several plays, and a book about grammar.

Same with Leslie Stark. Retired to the Vineyard after a career in broadcast advertising, he is active in Island Theater Workshop and the Vineyard Playhouse. He has directed two other of Arnold’s plays. The performance is free and all are welcome.

Vineyard Colors has a fabulous exhibition at the library. It comprises a year of photographs. Three hundred and sixty-five images are folded and stretched across the tops of bookcases, upstairs and down. The photography is compelling, and the presentation is a knock-out. If you like it, you can sign-up for their daily emails, The Daily Paper Route, photographs taken around the Island as they deliver our newspapers.

My art/critique group has hung our show in the Program Room. We will be speaking and answering questions on Monday, Sept. 15, at 5:30 pm.

The Graphic Novel Book Club will meet at the library on Monday, Sept. 15, at 7 pm. Carolina Cooney will lead a discussion of Habibi by Craig Thompson.

Steve Maxner’s ten-week series of guitar lessons also begins at 7 pm on September 15. Guitars are provided for free and there is a $20.00 materials fee. Please pre-register at the library circulation desk or call 508 693-3366.

C.K. Wolfson will speak about her book, Painting a Life, Ray Ellis: An Artist Seen through His Work, at the library on Wednesday, Sept. 17, from 5 to 6 pm.

That same evening, 6:30 to 7:30 pm, the Martha’s Vineyard Cultural Council will host a grant-writing workshop for anyone interested in applying for a MVCC grant to help fund a local cultural activity or event in 2015. Council members will be on hand to answer your questions about the application or funding process.

There is a beautiful yellow and white quilt on display at the library. It has caught my eye and, I am sure, yours as well. It is to be sold in a silent auction on Sept. 30 at Flatbread Pizza. That night is a fundraiser for the library. The quilt was made by Wendy Nierenberg and won a blue ribbon at the 2013 Agricultural Fair.

Martha’s Vineyard Community Services will begin two new groups for caregivers of anyone with memory loss from Alzheimer’s, stroke, or other dementias. There is a respite group at the same time, providing art and music for the loved one while the caregiver attends the support group—a great pairing that makes it easier for caregivers. Victoria Haeselbarth and Nancy Langman will lead the two groups. One meets on Tuesday, the other on Thursday mornings, both from 9:30 to 11:00. Groups begin on Sept. 16 or 18. Please call Community Services at 508 693-7900 to sign up. The meetings are free and refreshments are provided.

I have noticed the shortening days. It’s already getting dark as I prepare dinner. I suppose it won’t be long before we are bringing in wood for the stove to take the chill off in the evenings. The seasons are shifting; next week it will be autumn, the autumnal equinox, and our world will slowly darken into winter.

I’m not sure why I’m thinking ahead to that as I enjoy these sunny days. There is a quietness to time now. No more lines of cars as I try to get out of my driveway. Our woods are still green and beach walks beckon, and I’m wearing shorts to feel the sun on my skin. But I know it won’t be long before chamois shirts come out and the woods begin to open up to the sky, leaves turning colors and dropping to the ground. It all feels a time away and close by.

We are all pleased to hear that Gloria Wong is recovering well from her surgery and is now regaining her strength slowly. She is living at this time with her daughter in New Hampshire. We hope to see her back on-Island with us in a few weeks.

The MV Museum invites you to a house tour on West Chop this Saturday from noon to 3 pm.  Historian Mary Jane Carpenter will present the history of West Chop as a summer community. Five homes will be open following the talk, and guests will enjoy lemonade and cookies at the last house. Before the talk, purchase a patron ticket for brunch with mimosas at a private home. Call 508 627-4441 x117 to sign up for brunch or more information. Talk and tour is $45; tour only, $35. Tickets may be purchased next to the tennis courts at the West Chop Club until 2 pm on Saturday.

Do you remember when you were supposed to wear summer clothes and white shoes only after Memorial Day and just through Labor Day, but never later? Now you see folks wearing white shoes all year, especially if they are made by Adidas. When Mother Nature makes our fall school days as warm as summer, we have to dress in something cool and comfortable. I remember the anticipation of those wonderful first days of school, when we all had new clothes and shiny new shoes and even a new lunch box. As I think back, it seems that it did not take very long for the newness to be worn off those school clothes and lunch boxes.

Saturday is Doggie Adoption Day at The Black Dog from 10 am to 1 pm. You can see lovable dogs, including black labs, who want homes. Or just admire the happy puppies who have found new families on parade by the Black Dog Tavern. You’ll smile at the happy faces and wagging tails all around.

This Sunday is the annual 5k Run/Walk to benefit the library. Sign your kids up for the free half-mile Kid’s Fun Run for kids 13 and under. The 5k Run/Walk starts at the Vineyard Haven Library and proceeds to the West Chop lighthouse and back. You can register at the library or on Sunday, starting at 8:30 am. Forms can be downloaded The Fun Run starts at 9:45 am.

Quilters need the cooler weather to do their work comfortably. The air is cooling just in time for you to begin planning your sewing and knitting projects. The Heath Hen Quilt & Yarn Shop is open at 10 am weekdays in the Woodland Shopping Center. Someone asked me the other day where Heath Hen was, and now you know.

The Shaw Cramer Gallery is closing at the end of November. This means you have a wonderful chance to get some lovely artwork at a discount now. Twenty years ago Nancy Cramer opened the gallery, featuring Island artists, and now has decided she wants more studio time to do her own work. She offers all kinds of fine art, unusual jewelry, and glass works at 56 Main Street. Check it out.

This Tuesday at 10 am you can join the new writer’s group forming at the Tisbury Senior Center.

For those of us rereading Tolstoy’s War and Peace before we meet with Professor Philip Weinstein, I should remind you that the first meeting is next Wednesday at the Cornell Theatre.

Are you a boomer? You can learn all about Medicare on Thursday at noon at the Tisbury Senior Center. Bring a sandwich and cookies, and coffee or water will be provided. Do you know how the Medicare system works? What are parts A, B, C, and D? Make wise choices for plans that work best for you. Open enrollment for part D is from mid-October to December 7.

Next week the Martha’s Vineyard Film Center brings you the Martha’s Vineyard Fashion Week at different venues and assorted times with fashion on film and on the runway. Check it out on

Happy anniversary to Chuck and Anne Downing, who should be partying today.

Big bunches of birthday balloon wishes go out today to Susan Rice. Wish the best on Sunday to Joyce Stiles Tucker. Many happy returns to Kevin Olson on Monday. Tuesday belongs to Stephen Hammond and to my dear husband, Donald Mayhew.

Heard on Main Street: You are entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.