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Arlan-WiseIsland astrologer Arlan Wise shares her astrological forecasts with us each week on Mondays. This column is like a cosmic weather report. It is written for everyone based on the sign the moon is in that day and what the planets are doing. Don’t be confused by the signs. This is not like the usual Sun sign astrology columns you see. Go towww.arlanwise.com and click onHow To Read this Column for a full explanation. To arrange a personal reading, phone her at 1-(508)-645-9292.

September is Virgo’s month. It’s a time to plan and get organized. We have been programmed to entering a higher grade as we begin the new school year in September. It works to continue that feeling and use the month to upgrade our lives.

It will be a calm month, except for a disruption when Pluto turns into direct motion on the day of the Autumnal Equinox. You’ll hit some bumpy water at that time.

Mercury starts a retrograde period on October 4. He will be retrograde until October 25. Use the days in September to make the big changes, buy the big-ticket items, and start new jobs and projects. You’ll be glad you did.

Monday, September 15 – Moon in Gemini. Take care of all the short tasks on your things to do list. You won’t have the concentration to stick to anything for too long. It will feel good to get up and out and do a number of errands instead of sitting in one place all day. Your mind is sharp. Have a meeting of a book group, writing class, or a brainstorming session at work.

Tuesday, September 16 – Moon VC Gemini, enters Cancer 11:24 am. Empty your inboxes in the morning. Answer all those people you’ve put aside to write to or call at another time; this is a good time to get it done. The afternoon has gentler energy when you’ll feel what to do, rather than think it. It will feel good to stay home at night and cook a satisfying dinner.

Wednesday, September 17 – Moon in Cancer. Use your gut feelings to alert you to what’s going on with the people around you. Be ready to offer tender loving care to those who are overwhelmed with emotions. Everyone will be sensitive to wounds caused by old relationships, ones which will reappear so that they can be healed. Plant berry bushes today.

Thursday, September 18 – Moon in Cancer, VC from 2:38 pm.  Use the morning hours to go over your investments and make changes if you feel it’s the right thing to do. Harvest your vegetables and go to the farm stands to buy fruits that are in season. Make jellies, jams, and preserve and freeze as much as you can. Check on the security of your home and office.

Friday, September 19 – Moon in Leo. Today and tomorrow are lucky days. Think only in positive terms and see how that improves your life. Thought is creative so be optimistic and see how the power of thought brings good things to you. Be generous towards others and give a big donation to a charity that helps children. Have an amorous evening.

Saturday, September 20 – Moon in Leo. Forget your worries and obligations and take the kids to a place where you can play and have fun. If you don’t have kids, borrow some from a friend. Take them to a matinee at the theater. Open your heart and love everyone you see. Create a special romantic time with your beloved. Make it one you’ll always remember.

Sunday, September 21 – Moon VC Leo, enters Virgo 11:54 am. Sleep late and enjoy lazing around in bed. You’ll feel like doing the chores once the moon changes sign. You’ll be organized and can zip through your list of things you planned to do this weekend. Mars and Neptune energize you tonight so you may have trouble sleeping if you let all kinds of ”what ifs…” run through your mind. Stay calm.

Lena the greyhound takes retirement seriously. (Photo Courtesy of Mary-Jean Miner).

Before we moved to Martha’s Vineyard, in 1991, we often boarded our Doberman in Falmouth at River Bend Farm Kennels while visiting friends on the Cape. When we moved to the Island, we again boarded Hilde there for extended trips. On learning that we now lived on the Vineyard, the owners of the kennel asked us to take flyers from Greyhound Friends, a rescue agency, to our vet, as they thought the Island would be a wonderful place for retired greyhounds.

When our Hilde died of old age, we immediately thought about adopting one of those retired racers.

Tesse tests the tide. (Courtesy of Mary-Jean Miner).
Tesse tests the tide. (Courtesy of Mary-Jean Miner).

Tres Grande Vitesse, called Tesse for short, came to live in Oak Bluffs in 1992 soon after we returned from a vacation in France. Named for the high speed trains there, Tesse was a 45-mph couch potato. She indeed loved being on Island, along with several others, whom she met soon after coming here. People who adopt greyhounds tend to seek each other out. Nine or ten families kept in touch, worked to end greyhound racing in Massachusetts, and often rode with their dogs in the Fourth of July parades in Edgartown. Ace, Ginger, Tesse, Windy, Oliver, Mint, and Sneaker all served as ambassadors for adoption, riding on a flatbed truck, each with a soft bed and a dish of water. The owners of River Bend came to the Ag Fair, bringing adoptable dogs. Although this is no longer an event at the fair, and River Bend is no longer fostering greyhounds, the adoption process continues with several other agencies in southern Massachusetts.

As pets, greyhounds are sweet, even-tempered, and good natured. They adapt readily to home life, even though they have most likely spent all their previous years in crate-like kennels. Turned out for brief exercise and runs, they were undemanding and never really had the opportunity to be puppies.

Lena the Greyhound has slowed down some since retiring from racing. (Photo by Kristofer Rabasca)
Lena the Greyhound has slowed down some since retiring from racing. (Photo by Kristofer Rabasca)

They learn very quickly and forget very little. At first, they may be timid and shy, as they adapt to the entirely strange environment you call home. My dogs always remained suspicious of strangers at first, but warmed to visitors eventually. They arrive totally trained to the leash, so they are readily controlled. We used to say the person holding the leash is in charge, even if that person is a small child – a supervised child, of course. In spite of their breeding as runners, they need no more exercise than other dogs. Being retired, they really appreciate nap time. If you want to keep yours off the sofa, teach him early and consistently that couch time must be spent on the dog bed.

My most recent adoption, Lena, learned right away to “wait” when someone was coming or going, as well as leave it,” which serves as a friendly form of “No!”

Being sighthounds as well as runners, greyhounds must always be kept on leash or fenced in. An opening door is an invitation to flight; the dog leaves at about 40 mph, paying no heed to direction or distractions. Because of this, they are not able to find their way home once they slow down or stop. Many are unable to learn “recall,” that is to come back at a signal. It took me four dogs to learn that training myself. Lena will come when called. Usually.

A gaggle of greyhounds gather before the Fourth of July parade. (Courtesy Mary-Jean Miner).
A gaggle of greyhounds gather before the Fourth of July parade. (Courtesy Mary-Jean Miner).

The adoption process is done with great care to be certain the new family understands the unique needs and habits of these dogs. Greyhound Friends, founded in 1983 by Louise Coleman, is our area’s largest agency. Louise has great experience in matching dogs to families, considering the dog’s personalities and ability to adapt. Some can live happily with children or cats, and most other dogs. Early on, most greyhounds were not kept past their racing days. Now, with many active agencies around the world, they, and we, are most fortunate to share their retirement years.

If you think you might have room in your home for one of these forever friends, contact Greyhound Friends in Hopkinton or Greyhound Rescue of New England in Menden online or by phone. The application process is precise, all consideration is given to providing a safe and loving home for each dog, as well as a totally loving companion for the adopting family. My current companion, Lena, and I would be happy to discuss any questions you may have.

In between Tesse and Lena, Rhody and Annie were my companions. It seems that having greyhounds as pets can form as a habit. I can’t imagine life without at least one, providing another heartbeat in my home.

For more information, contact Mary-Jean Miner at mjminer7@yahoo.com; 508-696-8589; or email adopt@greyhoundsrescuene.org.

 — courtesy Arlan Wise

Island astrologer Arlan Wise shares her astrological forecasts with us each week on Mondays. This column is like a cosmic weather report. It is written for everyone based on the sign the moon is in that day and what the planets are doing. Don’t be confused by the signs. This is not like the usual Sun sign astrology columns you see. Go towww.arlanwise.com and click onHow To Read this Column for a full explanation. To arrange a personal reading, phone her at 1-(508)-645-9292.

September is Virgo’s month. It’s a time to plan and get organized. We have been programmed to entering a higher grade as we begin the new school year in September. It works to continue that feeling and use the month to upgrade our lives.

It will be a calm month, except for a disruption when Pluto turns into direct motion on the day of the Autumnal Equinox. You’ll hit some bumpy water at that time.

Mercury starts a retrograde period on October 4. He will be retrograde until October 25. Use the days in September to make the big changes, buy the big-ticket items, and start new jobs and projects. You’ll be glad you did.

Monday, September 1 – Moon VC Scorpio, VC from 11:40 am until 1:17 pm when it enters Sagittarius. After some intense fretting over what didn’t go your way this summer, you’ll feel like getting outside and playing. You can work on your own projects in the morning and as the day goes on your spirits rise and you move into holiday mode. Take a walk in the dark tonight to see the stars and wonder about the universe.

Tuesday, September 2 – Moon in Sagittarius. You want to extend your holiday weekend and continue the party. It’s a good day to Skype, call, or email your friends who live in foreign countries. Make plans to take a trip to see some of them. Mercury enters Libra and he helps you negotiate compromises and balance your needs for work and play. He gives you soothing words to use when you want to get your way.

Wednesday, September 3 – Moon in Sagittarius, VC from 2:06 pm until 6:15 pm when it enters Capricorn. The Sun and Pluto dance in earth signs and show you where to place your feet so you can take the next step along your path. They squeeze you like a toothpaste tube and tell you what you need to leave behind. Think big when you look to the future.

Thursday, September 4 – Moon in Capricorn. You can work long hours with good concentration today. It’s a day when you will get a lot accomplished and do so in an orderly, efficient manner. Think about how you want to advance your career and make a schedule of what to do when. It’s a good day to look at real estate to lease or buy.

Friday, September 5 – Moon in Capricorn, VC from 11:08 am until 7:59 pm when it enters Aquarius. Start the day early and get the important work done before the moon goes void. After that it’s a good time to clean up your workspace and decide what to discard and what to put away. Venus enters Virgo and she loves to keep things orderly, organized, and useful.

Saturday, September 6 – Moon in Aquarius. This is the weekend to get involved in community projects. Volunteer where you can be of help. Shop for practical items that you need rather than want. Surf the Internet for interesting information and connect with friends on social media. Escape into your mind with science fiction books or movies.

Sunday, September 7 – Moon in Aquarius, VC from 1:19 pm until 7:47 pm when it enters Pisces. The calendar says today is Grandparents Day. Give yours something special, at least call them, or spend time with your grandchildren. It’s a good day for all kinds of therapy. The Sun and Chiron team up to offer you healing energy that you can use to help cure old wounds or help others with your insightful comments.

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A Movement Workshop for Island Schools.

Young dancers in a Yard program at West Tisbury Elementary. (Photo by Sofia Strempek) — Sofia Strempek

When some of the Island’s children return to school next month, they’ll find an additional “R” to the Three R’s – rhythm.

The 2013 camp Make Kids Dance was such a success that the Yard will be running dance programs in Island schools. (Photo by Sally Cohn)
The 2013 camp Make Kids Dance was such a success that the Yard will be running dance programs in Island schools. (Photo by Sally Cohn)

The Yard – Martha’s Vineyard’s premier proponent of dance – is introducing a program, “Making It,” into the curriculum of Island schools. Working with professional dance troupes from off-Island, kids will learn about movement and building choreography. Created by David White, The Yard’s Artistic and Executive Director, patterned after the Kids Make Dance Camp at The Yard, and administered by Jesse Keller (who teaches a similar workshop at the Y), it will be customized to fit the available time and needs of the participating schools.

While some may consider it frivolous to bring a movement workshop into the syllabi, the program is about much more than dance. Keller explains. “While (the students) definitely learn movement skills, this program is not meant to focus on teaching kids steps. It’s more about the kids’ creativity and how they can link movement to their everyday problem solving, life skills, literary skills, and things like that.”

She cites a week-long workshop they held at the high school in April. “We brought in David Parker and The Bang Group (from New York). They’re a tap and rhythm group but they also work a lot with props. We worked with the students on a piece that the (professional) group performed. They were in Velcro suits. Afterwards, we did our warm-up and split all the kids into teams. We gave them five pieces of different types of Velcro — suits that they could put on, Velcro-covered balls, things like that. The task was to, in a group, learn how to connect and disconnect these in three ways and in movement only.”

According to Keller, not only did the kids learn to work together creatively to accomplish the task and see the everyday objects in a different light, but kids who normally would not associate with each other laughed together and had fun. “They were working with kids that they probably wouldn’t be hanging out with at lunchtime,” Keller explains.

David White further elaborates, “We had kids who were on the autistic spectrum who had aides with them. In the case of those kids who were part of this process, the aides uniformly said that they had never seen their kids so immediately productive in that kind of situation – working in groups, socializing.”

“And the real beauty of it,” Keller adds, “was every single kid in the high school participated.”

Also, by bringing in pros like The Bang Group from New York, the Everett Company from Providence, Rhode Island, and H.T. Chen from Chinatown in New York, the programs expose students to artists who are making a living in their field – a boon to kids faced with career decisions.

After the April workshops (held at several Island schools), and the success of the summer camp, it wasn’t difficult to bring Island schools on board. The Yard already has Chilmark, Edgartown, and Oak Bluffs Schools scheduled. “But,” says Keller, “we’re still having conversations with the (other) public schools, and the Charter School, figuring out what would work for them.” Some schools, like Edgartown, see it as fitting into their physical education curriculum, although it can be used to address particular subjects.

David White sees it as fitting into almost any area of the curriculum. He views movement as a potential science lab. “Dance is three things,” he explains, “Take one material thing, the body, take two immaterial things, space and time, and you mash them up. That’s a physics problem.” He also considers it a cultural lesson. “Chilmark School is looking to do an ancient China thing,” he relates, “And we’re bringing in H.T. Chen and his company from Chinatown.”

The program at Edgartown School will work with fifth and either seventh or eighth graders, one day a week, for one period, spread over ten week. Teachers will be consulted on a continuing basis throughout the program. “That’s where we’re gauging our success,” says Keller. “Being in very close contact with the teachers during the entire process.” They’ll be asked how it’s affecting their day, if they’re seeing changes in the students. If they’re seeing more focus. In addition, an in-depth questionnaire will be filled out by the teachers and principals at the end of the program.

During the April workshop, the physical education teacher asked the students to journal throughout the process and that helped shape the current program.

Ultimately, it’s fairly certain that every student will take away something from “Making It.” David White explains, “Movement and dance provides a different kind of creativity, a different kind of firing of neurons in the brain, that can stimulate all sorts of things in the intelligences and aptitudes of these kids in other areas.”

And it builds confidence. “It’s made so that every kid can succeed,” Keller says. “Every kid can do it.”

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Although last winter was particularly severe both in its cold and snow cover, many Vineyarders complained early this summer that there were more ticks than ever. This is intriguing because the proliferation of these pests in earlier years was often ascribed to relatively mild winters. There may be other examples of such dubious assumptions, which have led to flawed proposals for controlling ticks.

The apparent contradiction of received wisdom about the arachnids reminded me of a campaign last year to reduce their number by slashing the Vineyard’s deer population (MV Times,  Aug. 29, 2013, “Sam Telford from Tufts talks tough on ticks”; Vineyard Gazette, Jan. 31, 2013). Although the main advocate for drastically reducing or extirpating deer, Sam Telford, has made a strong argument for re-approving the vaccine against the disease, which became yet another victim of our litigious culture when it was withdrawn from the market after lawsuits, my experience suggests that his direct linkage between the number of deer and cases of Lyme disease is weaker, and is based on a failure to compare different eco-systems.

Here’s the current doctrine: the main vector for Lyme disease is deer ticks — that much is certainly true — as Mr. Telford says, up to 94 percent of female ticks have fed on deer. This is where I become suspicious for a couple of reasons. First, because of the words “up to,” which indicate that there is a range. The second is because the specific numbers of both ticks and deer in such diverse environments as wetland forests and grasslands, and most importantly the ratio between them, is essential to understanding the true significance of any numbers, and the factors behind them. Ninety-four percent of 100 ticks per acre with two deer would be utterly different, to take an extreme example, in its impact on humans, than 94 percent of 10,000 ticks per acre with one deer.

My reasons for suspecting that Mr. Telford’s conclusions are based on an incomplete analysis are founded on decades of life outdoors on the Vineyard. Here’s what I’ve noticed. When my family and I walk along mown paths in oak forests between Menemsha and the Brickyard in June and July, we almost invariably pick up a few deer ticks, despite the fact that we can see for considerable distances under the trees, and deer are usually absent or sparse. But after 20 years and tens of thousands of hours of yard work and thrashing through brush in a sassafras, beech, maple and tupelo (Beetlebung) forest in Aquinnah during the same months, we have yet to pick up a single tick, although deer are visible all day long in an area with far more places to hide.

Mr. Telford might be tempted to respond that these observations are just the anecdotal experiences of one man and his family, but I’d suggest that the difference has been too great and consistent over decades to be easily dismissed. It would be wiser to find the reasons behind the observations than to dismiss them. Here’s my hypothesis.

The abundance of deer and near absence of ticks in Aquinnah’s lush wetland forest, and abundance of ticks despite a lower number of deer in Chilmark’s dry oak forest suggest that the differences go deeper than the relationship between deer and their parasites. In fact, it suggests that it has something to do with the types of forest. One of the chief differences between them is that oak forests produce more starch in the form of acorns that squirrels can hoard, leaving plenty for other rodents such as white-footed mice, which serve as the hosts for immature deer ticks. The mice are a crucial carrier of the ticks, which thrive, even when there aren’t many deer, if the rodents are plentiful.

The evidence from our forest in Aquinnah also suggests that the contrary is true — that the ticks nearly disappear when there are plenty of deer, but few mice. This difference has been so flagrant in my experience that I think the common term for Ixodes scapularis, “deer tick”, is a misnomer, which misdirects attention towards the wrong animal, just because it is a bigger and more obvious target. The ticks should probably be renamed the “white-footed mouse tick,” “oak tick,” or “acorn tick.”

This brings me to the question of good versus bad solutions. Mr. Telford “makes no bones that his primary short-term objective is to significantly reduce the deer population on the Island” by killing them. Perhaps he should watch a TED talk by Alan Savory in which Mr. Savory says that his greatest regret is that he told African governments to cull ten of thousands of elephants in order to manage their reserves, causing the extermination of 40,000 elephants, although his analysis turned out to be backwards.

There are two better ways to reduce the number of Ixodes scapularis on the Island than unleashing a shooting-fest, one of which is so well-known that I was surprised that Mr. Telford did not mention it. It involves the use of tickicide-treated rollers at passive feeding stations for white-tailed deer. According to Cornell University, study after study (Carroll et al 2002, Pound et al 2000, Pound et al 2000b, Solberg et al 2003) has shown large reductions in tick populations following the use of such devices.

Another entirely compatible solution would be to favor vegetation that does not produce surplus starch for mice. I imagine that this solution would be preferable to people who would rather see a few trees removed from their views, than the disappearance of deer, which provide the countryside with much of its charm.

If I were a hunter, and I am indirectly, in the sense that I have allowed specific hunters to hunt on my land, I would also be opposed to Mr. Telford’s plan, since it would result in the rapid reduction of the very deer hunters enjoy stalking. It might be fun at first, but would end up destroying a pastime that many people enjoy.

One thing I agree on with Mr. Telford is that the problem of Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases is huge and must be addressed. The question is simply, how? The answer is probably to attack the problem in several ways at once. One way is to continue encouraging sustainable hunting, since it plays a positive role in maintaining the Island’s ecological balance. Another way that should be implemented simultaneously is to install feeding stations or salt licks with tickicide-treated rollers in oak forests and other infested environments. A third one is to favor vegetation that does not encourage the proliferation of mice and their ticks. The fourth way, which Mr. Telford and I agree on whole-heartedly, is to push for the re-approval or improvement of the vaccine.

In the meantime, we should be wary of listening to any calls to manage nature through destructive intervention or violence, since such approaches have caused enormous unintended consequences in the past.

Duncan Caldwell is a Fellow at theMarine and Paleobiological Research Institute of Vineyard Haven and a Lecturer in prehistory, Doctoral module, Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris.

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Oak Bluffs officials are adjusting parking regulations and tightening security for fireworks night, Friday, August 22. — File Photo by Susie Safford

Oak Bluffs Police plan to tighten security for the Ocean Park fireworks this Friday. Added measures will include limited access points, searches of backpacks, coolers, and bags, strict traffic and parking bans, and more police officers.

All of Ocean Ave. will be closed to traffic at 3 pm for the fireworks. Seaview Ave., from Lake Ave. to Samoset Ave., will be closed at 4 pm. There will be parking at Sunset and Waban Parks. Handicap parking will be available at the Steamship Authority staging area and around the Civil War monument.

Evening SSA ferries and the New Bedford fast ferry will be re-routed to Vineyard Haven. The 3 pm New York fast ferry to Oak Bluffs will arrive in Vineyard Haven at 8:30 pm. Expect delays. Choosing a pickup location out of the downtown area is recommended.

Shuttle bus service from Edgartown will be at the corner of Seaview and Tuckernuck Aves., at the Seaview Condominiums. The Vineyard Haven shuttle stop will be at the corner of Lake Ave. and Dukes County Ave.

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Oak Bluffs police early Saturday morning arrested Reinaldo Braga Barbosa, 34 of Edgartown, after he attacked his ex-girlfriend in her home on Pennsylvania Avenue after she arrived there with a friend who had escorted her home because she feared Mr. Barbosa, police said.

Mr. Barbosa is charged with assault with a dangerous weapon (knife), strangulation, armed burglary, domestic assault and battery, and violation of an abuse prevention order, according to a press release.

Mr. Barbosa confronted the woman and her friend in her driveway when she arrived home from a party. “He started knocking on the window of the vehicle telling the female victim to get out,” police said. At the time, there was an active abuse prevention order in place that prohibits Mr. Barbosa from having contact with the victim and orders him to stay away from her residence, according to police.

“The female victim asked her male friend to stay with her until she got into her house safely.”

After the woman entered the residence Mr. Barbosa forced his way inside and began choking her. The male party who drove the female victim home then ran over to help his friend, police said. Mr. Barbosa allegedly then went into the kitchen area of the residence and armed himself with a kitchen knife at which point he went towards the male with the knife, police said. Oak Bluffs and Edgartown police arrived and Mr. Barbosa fled. He was later arrested at approximately 7 am that morning at his residence on 12th Street South in Edgartown. He is currently being held at the Dukes County Jail without bail on a probation violation in connection with a previous assault and battery case in which he pled guilty and received a 6 month suspended sentence.

Charlie-NadlerCharlie Nadler grew up on Martha’s Vineyard and graduated from MVRHS with the class of 2002. Until mid-March, he lived in the Los Feliz area of Los Angeles where he worked in the film and television industry and performed stand up comedy. He’s just relocated to New York City, where he will continue to muse about his life on and off Martha’s Vineyard in his weekly “From Afar” column.

I spent 11 months summoning the courage to write my first five minutes. In retrospect, I don’t know why courage was required to tell jokes at a forgettable open mic in the back room of a dive bar, but it was.

As I wrap up my fourth year performing stand up, I am relieved to have that rookie chapter in my rear view. It feels great to shed old fears and form new, scarier goals. Or maybe I just tell myself that to rationalize my obsessive behavior that transforms every comedy milestone into a false peak.

The moment I realized I could tell one joke successfully, I began to target the “milestone” of performing as a headliner, and I’m proud that I achieved this the other night; I told just under 45 minutes of jokes in my favorite town in the world: Oak Bluffs.

Preparing for this performance was a combination of a lot of living, thinking, writing, bombing, rewriting, and re-bombing. I arrived on the New Bedford fast ferry the night before very uncertain, and frankly unsatisfied, with several portions of my material. I rarely get more than five to ten minutes of stage time here in New York, so a good portion of my setlist had barely been tested, and I had no idea how it would all flow as one work.

I don’t know how this happened — maybe it’s the Fluoride in the water — but while reviewing my material in Oak Bluffs the afternoon of the show, I made a handful of last minute tweaks and punchline rejiggers, and suddenly felt completely reassured. I was irrationally comfortable. I probably should have sought medical attention.

I think this moment of Zen came from knowing that the audience deck would be stacked to an almost illegal level. Family, friends, so many types of wonderful people from all different chapters of my life turned out.

The immense love and support in the room that night made me feel like I could tell any joke I wanted, in any way I wanted, so I did. I am so thankful to have had such a special environment and memory. Oak Bluffs always has a knack for this kind of magic.

Serendipity has always played such a fun role in my development a comic, and I have so much appreciation for Tony Lombardi, Alex’s Place, and the Martha’s Vineyard YMCA for putting this all together for me. What started with my question about open mic night last summer, turned into opening for the IMPers, and now this year’s show. There is new talk about doing this every summer, so if you’ll excuse me I’m going to jump off this false peak; I have some more bombing and re-bombing to attend to!

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A perfect day for a bike ride in the State Forest.

President Barack Obama and daughter Malia ride through the Manuel F. Correllus State Forest in what would be a rare public sighting. (Ivy Ashe for the Vineyard Gazette) — Ivy Ashe for the Vineyard Gazette

On another gorgeous Martha’s Vineyard summer day, President Obama, Michelle and daughter Malia behaved like any other vacationing family — the difference being a train of SUVs, reporters and Secret Service agents —  and went for a bike ride in the Manuel F. Correllus State Forest.

President Barack Obama rides through the Manuel F. Correllus State Forest.
President Barack Obama rides through the Manuel F. Correllus State Forest.

President Obama departed his vacation home in Chilmark at 11:18 am for West Tisbury, according to pool press reports. The motorcade arrived at a bike path in West Tisbury at 11:38 am and the Obamas and their security contingent pedaled away.

The traveling press pool traveled by van a few miles to a scenic spot on the bike path and waited for a fleeting sighting of the bicycle-riding Obama family. Mr. Obama, the First Lady and Malia passed by, pedaling at a leisurely pace. “Hey guys, nice day, huh?” Mr. Obama said to the pool.

All three were decked out in athletic wear, with Michelle Obama in gray spandex capri pants and a short-sleeved top. Malia wore running shorts and a black T-shirt.

The president wore a black athletic shirt, dark gray pants, white socks and black Nikes. All donned bike helmets. A phalanx of Secret Service agents followed closely behind.

The press pool saw the president and family for only seconds as they continued to make their way down the path.

President Obama’s motorcade departed at 12:33 pm, a little less than an hour after arriving at the bike path.

First Lady Michelle Obama.
First Lady Michelle Obama.

Ten minutes later, the president arrived at Farm Neck Golf Club, his third trip since Saturday to the popular Oak Bluffs Course. Today’s golf partners, according to the White House are: Glenn Hutchins, Cyrus Walker and Robert Wolf.

The State Forest was created in 1908 in an effort to save a dwindling population population of heath hens. Only 45 remained on Earth at the time. The State Forest has since expanded to 5,343 acres and the heath hen is extinct.

 

To the Editor:

Thanks, Joyce and the the MV Times, for a wonderful article (August 5, “Kids and parents collaborate to stage Spring Awakening”) that really captures what the Spring Awakening project was all about!

I want to give a special shout-out to actor Joe Mendick who played the lead role of Melchior in our production. A 2014 graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, Joe devoted his time and talents to be a part of this collaboration, bringing together elements of professionalism, talent, and craft to breathe life into Melchior. This immensely talented actor is headed out to L.A. for a very successful career, I’m sure.

Another shout-out to MVRHS junior Ben Davey who blew me away with his knowledge and ability to design, move, and run lights. His devotion to the show and getting things right was impressive and greatly appreciate.

Additionally, many thanks go to Brian Nelson and family for the use of their beautiful chairs.

And to the following community people and organizations: schools superintendent James Weiss, Charlie Esposito and the PAC staff, Kathleen Forsythe for her poster design, the Youth Task Force, Martha’s Vineyard Community Services, the YMCA, Lily Lubin, Elina Street, MJ Bruder-Munafo and the Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse, Cynthia Bermudes, Joanne Cassidy, Julie Sierputoski, Jil Mastriciano of Rise MV Performing Arts, Richard Paradise, Bob LaSala, Chris Mara, Sean Conley, Nancy Gilfoy, and Cronig’s Market.

What a fantastic island this is!

Michele Ortlip

West Tisbury