Letters to the Editor
To the Editor:
Over the course of the past couple of years we've read in the papers, or heard over the grapevine, of many simmering neighborhood disputes, some of which have escalated into full-blown battles. In the late spring and summer we all forget these disputes while treading water. As summer winds down we'll be able to go back to more broadly focused pursuits, and to worrying about what our neighbors are doing.
Here is a starter list of all the things that annoy you and/or your neighbors. It is hardly comprehensive, but many are irritants that I've heard mentioned.
Clothes on the line.
Clothes on the lawn.
Clothes hanging over the porch rails.
Unclothed bodies in the yard.
La Boheme at dawn.
Rap music at sunset.
Neighbors emulating Pavarotti or Callas on the front porch.
Testosterone fueled boys doing wheelies and laps around the yard or in the neighboring woods in go-carts and ATVs.
Dogs using your lawn as a dog park.
Cats waiting to pounce under your bird feeders.
Animals using your yard as an abattoir.
Cutting your lawn on Sunday
Not cutting your lawn on Sunday afternoon.
Dandelions/thistles/daisies/wild flower meadows.
Swimming pool parties with noisy horseplay.
Swimming pool parties with amorous couples.
Sand boxes with screaming kids.
Crows, deer, raccoons, skunks, rats, snakes, mice, owls.
Horses and horse flies, llamas, goats, alpacas.
Cows in heat.
Kids screeching and fighting.
Adults screeching and fighting.
Meat cooking on the barbecue.
Revving chain saws.
Barrels of lobster bait.
Old scallop shells, just spread.
Venison hanging in the trees.
Song birds in the early morning.
The boat in the back yard.
The trailer in the back yard.
The old car/truck in the back yard.
Box in bloom.
The simple ranch house that undergoes a multi-year renovation.
The simple ranch that becomes a de-facto motel.
The simple ranch that becomes a multi-family compound.
The neighbor who continuously sculpts their half-acre parcel with a Bobcat.
The tear-down across the street that turns into a starter castle.
The three Hummers parked next door sporting "God Bless America" bumper stickers.
The Comcast/Verizon/utility trucks - each with a single occupant - clustered near job sites with their engines running.
The swearing parrot in the backyard cage.
The neighbor who feeds skunks and/or raccoons.
Spraying the trees for caterpillars/gypsy moths/etc.
The jamming group of would be musicians.
Playing taps every afternoon.
Neighborhood dogs who knock over the garbage cans.
Yowling cats at midnight.
Whippoorwills at dusk.
Fog horns or the sounds of fishing boats leaving at dawn.
The airport rotating beacon.
Private jets taking off and/or landing.
Small planes taking off and/or landing.
Tall trees and no sun.
Low trees and no shade.
Thin hedges and no privacy.
High hedges and/or low hedges: see above.
Poison ivy and Russian olive.
Bull briar creeping across boundaries.
Illegal guesthouses and or accessory apartments in the garage.
Making a snow mermaid (the town officials made the owner provide a bikini top).
Flickering TV screens seen through curtainless windows.
Excessive outside lighting.
Occupying your parking space.
Picking your blueberries.
Picking your flowers.
And the list goes on and on. And no, I'm not making them up. In every instance, the aggrieved neighbors will solemnly attest that whatever it is "has destroyed the peace and tranquility of the neighborhood, reduced the value of their property, annoyed the tenants, reduced their ability to enjoy their property, caused a health risk, endangered their family, etcetera. And there ought to be a law!" [Or, the law ought to be enforced]. And, oh, of course, how could I forget crowing and cackling chickens. My grandfather used to quote: "Whistling girls and crowing hens always come to no good ends." So true.
I'd love to hear your additions to the list.
Virginia Crowell Jones
To the Editor:
A follow-up to my letter about the poor Comcast service published in your issue dated July 26, but first a word regarding your editing. In my original letter I did not identify Brian Roberts, the CEO of Comcast and a client of mine, by his full name because it was inconsistent with the intent of the letter to make his name public, which seemed to me in keeping with the Island community's traditional relationship to its more notable summer residents. When I saw that you had, on your own, inserted his name, I promptly wrote you again, taking you to task for having, in effect, altered my letter to a public personal attack. Offering no acknowledgement that your actions had fundamentally changed the nature of my original letter, much less an apology for so doing, you declined to publish the second letter because of my accompanying request that you not edit it. (I should note that the Vineyard Gazette, also sent the original letter, did not see fit to take such editing liberties.)
I respectfully request that this letter be published, and I am curious as to what editing you see as appropriate in this case.
Back to Comcast. Slightly over a week after the publication of my criticism of their customer service, I received a call from Zakee Rachid, who identified himself as the Plymouth based coordinator of Comcast's regional technical and customer service. He couldn't have been more gracious. He apologized for my experience, took personal responsibility for the poor response to our problem, and assured me that Comcast prides itself on prompt resolution of service issues. By way of explanation, he informed me that where Comcast has taken over former Adelphia service, they are in the process of replacing hardware, re-training technical service personnel, and expanding the local customer service communications department. He explained that until these processes are complete, frequently "overflow" calls are re-routed to a central customer service base. in Texas I believe. He suggested that callers ask to speak to the local desk in Plymouth, and he promised prompt and courteous service from personnel under his authority, and increasingly improved response to complaints, as they get all departments up to snuff.
That was, to re-cap: apology, accountability, straightforward explanation and assurance of improvement. I cannot recall any customer service response more professional and assuring, including from Doug Cabral, The Times editor.
To the Editor:
As summer draws toward an end, let's celebrate this glorious season - for it's sunshine and sandy feet and salty hair, for the gathering of friends and family on porches and decks, sharing time removed from stress and worry. The symbol of summer is the colorful beach towel, drying in the sun. On Friday, Aug. 17, let's show our love for this season and this Island by hanging our beach towels out on display, from porch railings, balconies and chairs. Let the beautiful colors of summer show and remind us to treasure this time when our windows and doors are open and our feet are bare. Let's walk around our parks and admire each other's beach towels, and wave to each other in acknowledgement of how very lucky we are.
To the Editor:
I am writing to add my voice to those who have already expressed outrage at the completely inappropriate tactics used by law enforcement authorities during their recent drug surveillance operation on Martha's Vineyard.
Imagine this if you will: You and your wife have a dear friend visiting from off-Island. You're all looking forward to sharing a few days of idyllic Vineyard peace. Your home is secluded off Skiff's Lane and backs up to the quiet and peaceful 5,000-acre State Forest.
One afternoon (Thursday, July 26, to be exact) you're doing some work in your upstairs studio. Your guest is downstairs, sitting on the front stoop of the house enjoying a cool beverage.
Gradually, though, you become aware of the sound of a distant helicopter. The drone gradually grows louder, then louder still, the roar finally becoming so loud you have to terminate an important telephone conversation.
You walk to your window, look outside, and notice with concern that a helicopter appears to be circling your house.
But in a couple of minutes it flies off to a nearby neighbor's home and does the same thing, then to another neighbor's, then back to your house.
This cacophony, this circling over private homes, continues for the better part of an hour.
You attempt to continue working, but then in a few minutes the roar of the helicopter gets really loud.
Now becoming alarmed, you hurry down the stairs and outside.
You immediately notice two things:
First, this is an unmarked helicopter, bristling with antennas.
And it's now hovering less than 200 feet directly over your home.
The noise is deafening.
A helmeted figure with a dark face visor sits in the side doorway of the helicopter and he is pointing a long metal object toward you (Is it a weapon?).
The effect of all this is menacing.
The other thing you notice is that your female friend is crouched on the front stoop, hugging her knees with her arms and looking clearly agitated.
"What are they doing?" she asks with an apprehensive glance up at the now nearly stationary, roaring helicopter. You have no idea what to say.
After two to three minutes of cacophonous hovering, the helicopter again departs.
You go back inside and call the airport to ask what is going on.
"Government aircraft," says a monotone voice.
"What government?" you ask.
"We have no further information," the voice responds.
"You mean you can't even tell me what government is hovering over my house?" you say incredulously.
"We have no further information."
You call the State Police office and get a recording. You do not leave a message.
The hovering, the din, the man with dark visor pointing his intimidating apparatus at you - all this continues for another half hour before the helicopter finally flies away for good.
But the agitation doesn't end. Neither does the paranoia. Nor the anger. Like a dark cloud, it remains the rest of the afternoon and into the evening, the last evening of your friend's visit.
I later read a brief report in the local newspaper explaining that this dreadful experience was brought to us by state and federal police who were looking for marijuana plants. The article says they found some.
Well, thank goodness. I'm relieved I no longer have to spend endless hours worrying about the threat of some fellow Vineyarder growing a few pot plants in his or her back yard.
By using such unnecessary and intrusive big brother tactics, our government is eroding what little privacy we have left. We should all be outraged.
To the Editor:
I did not realize the helicopter was on the endangered species list.
To the Editor:
My wife and I are the two visitors to the Island referred to in the letter by David Whitmon that was published on Aug. 2.
We applaud David's efforts to make M.V. a safer place for cyclists. While we are experienced cyclists who ride on the road, with cars and other motor vehicles all over the country, many other visitors to the Island are more casual cyclists who take for granted that all bicycle paths are safe to ride on, when the truth is actually the opposite on many of the bicycle paths on the Island. It is really in the best interest of the economy of the island to encourage more people to visit the Island and to travel by bicycle when they are here.
We live in New Jersey, a place that is similar to the Martha's Vineyard in some ways. There are parts of the state that are very congested with heavy traffic, like Vineyard Haven and Edgartown, while other sections are quiet and rural similar to the up-Island areas. The most significant difference is that we virtually never have to deal with rude drivers, particularly to the extent that we have experienced on the Island. Martha's Vineyard has the rather dubious distinction of having the most cycle unfriendly motorists we have ever encountered in the entire country.
The municipal authorities and the business community might also take note of the fact that this entire issue of "Motorist abuse of cyclists" and David Whitmon's efforts to make the Island safer for cyclists is being posted to an "E-mail forum for tandem cyclists" that is distributed worldwide and is read daily by thousands of cyclists. These are people who have the disposable income to buy expensive bicycles and who like to travel around to nice places in order to ride and enjoy them. The issue has generated a lot of discussion and publicity regards cycling on the Island.
We still like to visit the Island, but we would like to have a little more respect from others who we share the roads with.
Filling in the gaps
To the Editor:
Thank you for your article last week on the state of the Island's municipal web sites. We'd just like to point out that although it's a few blocks from town hall, the Edgartown Public Library is a part of town government, and until the redesign of the town's main site is ready, we are posting minutes of Edgartown selectmen's meetings as they are approved and become available.
Also on our web site, www.edgartownlibrary.org, we post information on special and annual town meetings as they approach (including the full warrants in printable form). We post full election results on the morning after every town election day. This winter, we will post information on closings for the Water Street construction project. We're hoping we can help the town hall fill in the gaps until they are up to speed.
a planner's goal
To the Editor:
Under the natural resource section of the Island Plan, it states that the idea is to allow the public access to the beach. What better way to start than with the public town beach of Lamberts Cove? Even West Tisbury's Martha's Vineyard Commission member Linda Sibley agrees that the Lambert's Cove Beach policy is counter to the "Island character." I wonder if any of the presidential hopefuls who are to be visiting our Island want to comment on this matter. Nobody from West Tisbury seems to want to. End beach apartheid.
The U.S., arrogant and greedy, aids terrorists
To the Editor:
The Democratic Congress has recently hurriedly passed a bill to give the Republican administration additional power to eavesdrop (i.e. spy) on U.S. citizens without court warrants. This is surprising considering how President Bush and his government have broken laws by trespassing on individual civil rights and liberties and used excessive secrecy and stonewalling to hide their illegal intrusions.
It is said that some who voted for the transfer of additional powers did not vote no for fear of accusations of "being soft on terrorism." I seek to be intimidated neither by terrorists nor by hard liners who would charge me with failing to stand up to terrorism and lacking in patriotism.
Why is it that so few voices are raised to protest that the hard right's response to terrorism is simple-minded, both stuck up on inflated ideas of how superior our wisdom and virtue are compared to other people's and nations', and a selfishness which claims for ourselves an unjustly large share of the world's goods and services?
This tragic arrogance and greed by the U.S.A. and its citizens is, alas, of great aid to Osama Bin Laden and his ilk by giving him an easier, yes softer, job of recruiting more terrorists.
Cheap as the wind
To the Editor:
As a civil engineer, I controlled the cost of constructing new electrical power plants. Coal, oil, and nuclear are the fuels used to generate electricity at thermal electric power stations. Recycled water is the fuel used to generate electricity at hydroelectric facilities, and wind speed is the fuel used to generate electricity with a wind turbine.
The residents of the Cape and Martha's Vineyard experienced a financial shock in January 2006, when they saw the cost of generating electricity spike 86 percent. The increase resulted form the disruption in oil and natural gas supplies caused by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Generating electricity with offshore wind is more cost effective than with fossil fuels.
Professor James Manwell of UMASS, a recognized leader in wind energy, calculated the cost of generating electricity from a hypothetical wind farm at between 6.4 and 8.5 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh). The residents of the Cape and Martha's Vineyard currently pay 10.99 cents per kWh for generated electricity.
To meet Massachusetts' goal of supplying four percent of its electricity needs from new, renewable fuels by 2009, the shallow water winds in Nantucket Sound must be tapped to produce long term, carbon-free, lower cost electricity.
To the Editor:
After more than 20 years at Martha's Vineyard Hospital, the time has come for me to leave. My last position was as telephone receptionist in the lobby. I cannot go without letting so many people know I will not forget them.
I will remember fondly all the patients, their families and friends, and the kind words and comments to me. I'll miss the people coming and going through the lobby to therapy and the lab, and the daycare staff and kiddies who stopped on their walks around the hospital. I would hear a chorus of little voices saying "Joannie's here," and they'd all gather around for cookies. Last, but believe me not least, all my friends employed by the hospital and the volunteers, Windemere, Hospice, and the VNA. You will be missed and thought of often. You will all be with me whatever I do or wherever I go. Thank you all for your friendship.
Joan M. David
Lifestyle in jeopardy
To the Editor:
This letter comes with a sense of foreboding regarding our Island neighborhoods' future. There is no doubt a shortage of affordable housing exists here, and we have witnessed with dismay the flight to the mainland of so many of our formerly staunch middle class members.
The harsh fact remains, that there will never ever be sufficient housing for all the people who wish to live here. The world's population is already over six billion, increasingly daily at unheard of rates, with the rise sharply increasing. Water, not oil, will be the world's next vanishing commodity.
We have just finite space on this beloved Island, but it is gradually being eroded and despoiled by either monumental homes used only briefly or homes so densely populated that former lawns, trees, and shrubs in front and back yards are turned into unsightly parking lots.
Behind my own home, a monumental three-story modular structure appeared overnight, with two-car garage, and with what appears to be an apartment above, plus plans for a basement apartment and possibly a dormitory or more bedrooms on the third floor. Even if it is permitted by law so to do, the outcome for our neighborhood and our lifestyle is in jeopardy. Each bedroom likely means another vehicle, on these minimum size, 50-foot lots. Greenery to be replaced by unsightly parking lots or on-street parking on the already overloaded Tashmoo Avenue.
There has never been in my 30 years of home ownership here between Main, Tashmoo, and William streets, a basement apartment. What does this bode for our future?
I see our pleasant environs turning into a vast housing complex for workers. Our pleasant green lawns and gardens will be supplanted by high fences to hide the cars and trucks of the dwellers of these overly populated houses. Notice, I do not say homes? Our neighborhoods, as we have known, will disappear as a livable entity, our home values will diminish, as we have noted is happening elsewhere in formerly quiet, individual single-family areas and the homes of abutters go up for sale.
Despite the ever-present clarion for more affordable housing, the increased density of human population could lead to our ruin. Water shortages, sewage problems, traffic jams, social service overload, and city-like atmosphere, from which we came to escape, will be our destiny.
We must cease and desist by changing laws as they now exist and accept the harsh reality that there will never be sufficient housing to meet the needs of all who seek to come to this paradise little Island. As Carlyle Cronig once told me, 30 years ago, "Everyone wants to be the last person on this Island." True, but today the pace has accelerated to such a point that we here, in my area of Vineyard Haven, are confronted for the first time with the tragic consequences of our loose building code and planning board laws. The permission granted to erect this huge, three-story modular house on a minimum-size, 50-foot lot leads to the possibility of it not being truly a home, as we neighbors define it, but more of a boarding house despite its owners' probable insistence that all who dwell there will be family members, and that the vast third floor is to be "a study!"
The tragic transition for the rest of us law abiding, long-term residents, is loss forever of our tranquil single home modest dwellings environment, with three more 50-foot frontage lots yet to be sold and built upon. The density of population could be an ecological disaster for the former tennis court, wooded area, not to mention the loss of the Montessori School's parking lot and the addition of a private road for access to two of these projected houses.
I, to escape such a grim possibility, as a woman of seven decades plus, have added my name to the long list of potential dwellers in a well established independent living facility just down Main Street where tranquility and beautiful grounds still prevail. Hopefully my fears are unfounded, but based on what transpired on Mud Puddle Lane, and other uniquely Vineyard modest neighborhoods. I am none too sanguine.
Support for prevention
To the Editor:
My two daughters, Maria and Gina Williams, will be participating in a walk for suicide prevention on Sept. 30 in New Hampshire. This is to honor their father, Officer Frank Williams, who died last year. Please donate, if you can, on the web site. outofthedarkness.org. It would be greatly appreciated to help stop this terrible illness. God bless.
Petty and unreasonable
To the Editor:
After seven years of living full time on our Island, I firmly believe that I have earned the right to be petty and unreasonable, like everyone else. So let me take this opportunity to express my troubled opinion in regards to our Island's most recent bank robbery in Edgartown last week. Actually, the word robbery might indicate that they were in danger of being apprehended while inside the bank and therefore could be a bit misleading. In fact, my six-year- old cousin Emily was much more adept at finding her target during our childhood games of hide and seek and might be able to teach Edgartown's men in blue a thing or two about searching for someone who is hiding. Assuming the culprits were locals, I would think that simply yelling out "Marco" would have elicited a telltale "Polo" from the ingenious thieves, thus revealing their location under a desk or behind a ficus tree.
Is robbing a bank even illegal here? Clearly it has been legal to run over foreigners for years and so is it such a stretch to think that something like bank robbery is also? (I am not sure about this and will make it a point to ask.) Don't laugh. In 1999, I was arrested for drunk driving in Oak Bluffs - and I was walking. Yes, as I walked down Circuit Avenue on the Fourth of July, I was apprehended for drunk driving and I didn't even have a car. When I inquired of my lawyer about my confusion, I was told I should plea and take the classes, forfeit my license and pay the fines. (True story.) So what's a little armed robbery amongst friends?
But I am not as upset about this recent bank heist as maybe I should be. In my opinion, it was comforting to have someone waltz into the bank and steal my money outright rather than do it on an hourly basis or one pound of hamburger at a time. Yes, I thought that there was some unspoken respect shown by this upfront plan, and I also didn't have to listen to someone inform me that my plumbing was on the verge of a total infrastructure collapse or that I needed a permit to paint the doghouse.
And speaking of infrastructure, I know I speak for all of us when I say how tragic the bridge collapse in Minnesota was. I couldn't help thinking about our very own drawbridge which was declared questionable several years ago and has remained untouched due to the ominous number of studies yet to be completed. The collapse in Minnesota was referred to as a national tragedy of immense proportion. Here it will be called a "groundbreaking."
I suppose we should be thankful that it is so close to the hospital, in case any of us are caught in the structural breach when it occurs. I suppose, the truth is that it might just be our undoing. It has always been my opinion that instead of building a $50 million facility the money would be better spent buying about 20 Life-Flight helicopters to ferry us back and forth to the mainland for anything more severe than a cold (and even a cold if it was bad enough). In fact, I completely support the building of the helipad on Chappy and advocate that everyone have one on their property just in case.
And since we are speaking about Chappy, isn't it time that we all just admit that affordable housing is never really going to happen here? Personally I think that it would be a good idea to allow the proposed wind turbine farm and tie up a houseboat to each tower like some sort of poor person's Waterworld, where they can motor back and forth to work during the day. It would be similar to planet of the apes except the orangutans have trust funds and the gorillas are in charge of the Ag Fair. It is just an idea.
So that is what I think about the state of our Island at the moment. Don't kill the messenger. It is only one man's opinion and together we can all, well, never mind. Just don't kill the messenger.
MV license plate update
To The Editor:
Many people have been wondering what the status of the new Martha's Vineyard license plate is. The Registry of Motor Vehicles requires that we gather 3,000 sign-ups before they put the plate into production. We are nearly half way there. Our board has decided that we will take stock at the end of September and evaluate whether or not to continue this effort. Advertising on radio and the newspapers all summer is very expensive for a small organization like ours, and we have to decide if we can afford to continue the commitment.
We know that it will mean a real infusion of money to the Island non-profits year after year as people renew these special plates, and we want to see this as a reality, showing pride in and love for this special place. Many seasonal residents have signed up, as well as many Islanders. The plate costs $40 above the regular registration fee, and is renewed every two years - only $20 a year to bring about $100,000 to the island non-profits!
We know that enough forms have been downloaded from the web site (www.mvdonors.org) or taken from the brochure racks in the libraries to allow us to reach that threshold. But where are they? If you have an application sitting on your desk, please send it in now. If you have already applied, please be patient - and ask your friends to sign up fast, so you can have the number we have reserved for you. So far almost everyone has been assigned one of their choices.
M.V. Donors Collaborative
The Fair's a bad deal
To the Editor:
My family has visited Martha's Vineyard for nearly a decade, but thanks to an ag fair in our new home in New Paltz, New York, we're spoiled forever. We can't justify the cost of coming to your ag fair again.
The MV fair is inexpensive to enter, but for many families, the entrance fee is misleading. Once inside, the fair offers the usual overpriced food and side-games we've all come to expect from traveling carnivals, but what killed us each year was the cost of the rides. Positioned at about $3 per person, the rides quickly sapped our resources. A 10-second trip down a slide could easily cost us $6 or $9 each time the kids wanted a turn. The longer, more exciting rides seemed worth it, but before we knew it, we'd gone through three or four sheets of tickets and were out over $100. We typically left before we wanted to, just to avoid having to say no to our kids. This meant that we didn't usually hang around long enough to put money in the pockets of the locals who were selling food and merchandise.
Contrast this with our local fair in upstate New York. The entrance fee was higher ($12 per person over four), but once in, all of the rides were free. The carnies were the same grumpy bunch you import onto the Vineyard, but our local community had worked out a deal that paid them a larger cut of the entrance fee in order to absorb the price of the rides. As a result, we managed to pet the goats, feed the cows, marvel at the huge bunnies, admire the craft work, and thrill at some great rides, all for $48. Had we chosen to eat the funnel cakes, buy some tchotchkes, or play some side games (which are essentially legalized gambling for kids), we could easily have spent over $150, as many of our friends did, but at least we had the choice to be frugal.
I'd suggest that the people in charge of the MV Ag Fair either set the entrance price higher to include the cost of the rides or keep the price low but get the carnies to offer inexpensive pay-one-price tickets for their rides. That way, most of the money spent at the fair would go toward the people who need it most: the merchants and restaurateurs of Martha's Vineyard.
We'll miss the MV ag fair, but not too much. We have the same thing back home, it turns out, but if we feel like shelling out an extra $100, it's not going to be spent on the fair. We'll take it right to Murdick's Fudge.
New Paltz, N.Y.
To the Editor:
I would like to publicly thank the Edgartown ambulance service and the EMTs. On Aug. 1, I tripped and suffered a bad fall, full face on a hard surface. I was bleeding profusely, and the ambulance was called, and came within minutes. I cannot give enough praise to the EMTs. They were considerate, gentle, caring and very, very professional, making the traumatic experience a lot easier.
I suffered a minor concussion and am quite bruised with a lovely black eye that extends down to my cheek, a bruised nose and temple, and a few other black and blues. Nothing broken, thank God.
Thank you again, my EMT angels.
Lorraine St. Pierre
An event to remember
To the Editor:
On behalf of the board of trustees and staff of Martha's Vineyard Hospital, I'd like to take this opportunity to express our thanks to a number of people for bringing the Boston Pops to the Vineyard again and to those who helped to make the entire evening an event to remember.
First, to Gwen and Peter Norton for sharing their beautiful home with all of us.
To The Festival Network, their CEO, Chris Shields and COO, Landon Mertz, who worked closely with the hospital to ensure the event's success, and to Jim Spanfeller, CEO of Forbes.com, the corporate sponsor of The Festival Network, our sincere thanks for inviting Martha's Vineyard Hospital to be a part of this exciting evening and to Don Tretsky, production manager and his staff, who did an amazing job turning the Park into a concert hall.
To Herb Putnam, for connecting us to The Festival Network and doing an incredible job as liaison for just about everyone from the Steamship Authority to the town of Oak Bluffs for making sure there were enough porta potties (56 to be exact).
To Rob Scherer, for bringing his years of expertise and experience to the entire event.
To all of the great volunteers who assisted both The Festival Network and the hospital, including the three young men who became unofficial volunteers at the very end of the night, by helping the staff load up all the beach chairs - Peter, Clark and Coleman, many thanks.
And finally, to the Town of Oak Bluffs, who has again hosted a wonderful event for the enjoyment of all.
With a light summer breeze and the ocean beside us, Sunday night's performance by the Pops, Natalie Cole, and Branford Marsalis along with Carly Simon, Kate Taylor, and Liz Witham could not have been more spectacular.
We hope everyone had a great time and look forward to seeing you again next year on August 10, when The Festival Network will be putting on another great show.
Timothy J. Walsh
President and CEO Martha's Vineyard Hospital
Applause for VTA
To the Editor:
Each time I ride the VTA buses, I think to myself, I must write a letter acknowledging how efficient the bus system is and what a good job they do. The drivers are very good and also very considerate and courteous. They go out of their way to make sure each person is on the correct bus for their destination.