News in Brief
Sheriff's Meadow Foundation acquires Quansoo Farm
Mrs. Florence Harris has given 156-acre Quansoo Farm to Sheriff's Meadow Foundation (SMF).
"Located on Black Point Pond, within sight of the Atlantic, Quansoo Farm is part of the coastal sandplain, home to many rare flora and fauna, some on the brink of extinction," according to an announcement of the gift by SMF vice president Emily Bramhall of Chilmark. Mrs. Harris also provided funds to construct a building on the farm for SMF to use and donated an additional parcel of land which may be sold, at the Foundation's discretion, to establish an endowment to support the farm, the SMF press statement also announced.
"Sheriff's Meadow is happy and proud to announce a conservation gift without precedent," Ms. Bramhall added. "One hundred fifty-six acres of pristine, environmentally unique, and breathtakingly beautiful land along the south shore in Chilmark. This magnificent acquisition comes though the generosity of Mrs. Florence Harris, known to all as Flipper. Sheriff's Meadow is deeply grateful to Flipper - to her generosity and love of the Vineyard - to have been given the opportunity of caring for this invaluable tract of coastal sandplain and of preserving it for future generations. We are well aware of the responsibilities that go hand in hand with this incredible gift. It is our plan to protect the variety of indigenous plants, to engage in the restoration of the native flora and fauna when and where appropriate, and to control, and hopefully eradicate, invasive species. This area of the Vineyard, between Tisbury Great Pond and Chilmark Pond, is an important link among several large tracks of globally rare sandplain."
Dick Johnson, Sheriff's Meadow's restoration ecologist and acting executive director, added that, "along with Long Point Reservation, Sepiessa Point Reservation, the State Forest, Herring Creek Farm and Katama Airfield, as well as privately owned land under conservation restriction, Quansoo Farm helps conserve one of the largest and ecologically most important mosaics of grassland, heathland and other sandplain natural communities in the world."
The SMF announcement explained that guided educational walks at Quansoo Farm will be offered to the public, as well as visits for scientific and educational purposes. SMF also plans to use the property "as an educational experience for Vineyarders, particularly for those of school age, providing them with a close-up experience of rare habitat and unparalleled beauty."
Mrs. Harris is originally from Ardmore, Penn. She spent summer childhoods at Barnard's Inn Farm in West Tisbury and continued to summer on Martha's Vineyard until her death in 2005. Her sister was Polly Hill, and Barnard's Inn Farm is now the site of Polly Hill Arboretum.
New media by and
A new on-line publication called The Vineyard Voice is up and running on the internet this week, offering a chance for anyone to "publish their thoughts and ideas, in any digital media, at any time," according to a statement announcing the launch.
Each month will focus on an Island issue. The October issue looks at affordable housing, while the November issue will discuss locally grown food.
Readers are invited to publish additional reporting or responses in the form of writing, pictures, audio, or video, forming "extended community conversations," on important issues.
In addition to the community publishing section, The Vineyard Voice also has a classified section. A group building tool will be established soon, where groups can exchange ideas, post calendars, and create discussion forums. Also promised is an interactive business directory.
The new publication is at
The M.V. Governor, in a more peaceful moment. Photo by Brian Jolley
Governor strikes Island Home in Monday mishap
At about 8 am Monday, the Steamship Authority's double-ended, diesel electric powered Governor, returning to her Woods Hole slip after losing electrical power moments before as she departed on her first trip of the day to the Vineyard, struck the Island Home, tied up in the adjoining slip.
"In the process and with limited maneuverability, the Governor collided with the Island Home that was in the slip," Wayne Lamson, the boatline's general manager said Monday. There was only minor damage from the "fender bender," as Mr. Lamson described it. Governor was moving at about two knots. No one, among passengers or crew, was injured on either vessel.
Governor was beginning a hazardous cargo trip to the Vineyard when the accident occurred. She had no passengers, except truck drivers, on board. Coast Guard marine safety office inspectors examined Island Home and permitted her to return to service about an hour after her 8:15 am scheduled departure.
"There was a dent in the hull [of Island Home} above the waterline," Petty Officer Lauren Downs of the Coast Guard said. Results of standard drug and alcohol tests on Governor's crew after the accident were negative, according to Petty Officer Downs.
Mr. Lamson said he thought Governor would be repaired and back in service by the end of the day Monday, after further inspection and approval by the Coast Guard.
The Steamship Authority acquired Governor from the federal government in 1998, when she was declared surplus after being retired from service to the Governors Island Coast Guard base in New York Harbor. She began life in 1954, running between San Diego, Calif., and Coronado. Coincidentally, a history of her years of service on the West Coast appears in a Letter to the Editor in this morning's Times.
Aboard Governor, diesel electric propulsion uses diesel engines to drive generators, which supply electrical power to electric motors that turn the vessel's propellers and supply ship's power.
Farm Neck Foundation seeks grant applicants
The Farm Neck Foundation, a charitable organization created in 1989 and funded by contributions from the membership and supporters of Farm Neck Golf Club, is accepting grant applications from eligible Island non-profit organizations "whose goal is to improve the quality of life in the Martha's Vineyard community."
According to a press release, the aim of the foundation is to provide charitable assistance to the Island community in the form of donations and grants to civic-minded organizations in need of funding. The Foundation gives special consideration to innovative approaches to problems or needs that cannot get funding through traditional sources.
Island non-profit organizations should submit a concise proposal describing their specific project, its potential benefits, budgetary requirements, and grant amount requested by November to: Farm Neck Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 1656, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557.
Love to hear from you
Daniel E. Dunlap, a sergeant in the New Hampshire National Guard's 237th Military Police Company, has deployed to Baghdad. At home on the Vineyard, Annette Anthony and Luke Dunlap invite Sgt. Dunlap's friends to be in touch. Sgt. Dunlap's address is: Sgt. Daniel Dunlap, 1132nd MP Company, 95th MPBN, FOB - Rustamiyah, APO - AE - 09390-2402. Email: cuzyd@MSN.com.
MVC offers workshops
on planning and zoning
The Martha's Vineyard Commission (MVC) will host three workshops offered by the Citizen Planner Training Collaborative (CPTC) to provide information helpful to local planning and zoning officials in making decisions on their community's current and future land use.
The three workshops include: Planned Production Affordable Housing Plans, Sat., Oct. 13, 9-11 am; Vested Rights and Nonconforming Uses and Structures, Wed., Oct. 17, 7-9 pm; and Roles and Responsibilities of Planning Boards and Zoning Boards of Appeals, Wed., Nov. 7, 7-9 pm.
Brochures and registration forms are available at the MVC or by contacting the CPTC at 413-545-2188 or online at
The three workshops will be held at the MVC offices at 33 New York Ave. in Oak Bluffs, at a cost of $30 per person, per workshop.
The November workshop will be conducted via the Internet for those with web access. However, the MVC will host the November workshop free of charge. Those who wish to attend at the MVC do not have to register with CPTC but are asked to call the MVC at 508-693-3453 to sign up.
Biting dog has new
A German Shepard declared dangerous by the Aquinnah selectman has found a new home off-Island, with a New Hampshire woman who specializes in handling biting dogs.
According to the Aquinnah dog officer, the dog has been involved in three aggressive attacks on people who entered the property of his owner, Megan Sargent.
At a special selectman's meeting last week, the 8-year-old dog was ordered muzzled, kept on a leash outside his home, and Ms. Sargent was ordered to seek behavioral training for the dog.
"I did not want to live with the restrictions the town put on him," said Ms. Sargent. "I did not want to euthanize him."
Mary Sanderson, who operates a 400-acre facility in Madison, N.H., said she accepted the dog this past weekend. "He's going to be fine," said Ms. Sanderson. "We take in, from all over the East Coast, dogs with a bite history. We rehab them. If possible, we adopt them out; if not, they stay here with us."
Ms. Sargent said her experience with the controversial case has heightened her desire to move out of Aquinnah. "If it had been any other town, it would have been handled differently," she said. She added that if her circumstances change, she may be eligible to adopt the dog again.
William J. Nicholson III
William J. Nicholson III, 61 of Oak Bluffs died on Oct. 2, at his home. A visitation will be held on Monday, Oct. 8 from 2 to 4 pm and 7 to 9 pm in the Chapman, Cole & Gleason Funeral Home, Edgartown Road, Oak Bluffs. His funeral service will be Tuesday, Oct. 9, 11 am at Faith Community Church, Meeting House Road, Edgartown. A complete obituary will follow in a later edition of The Times. Visit www.ccgfuneralhome.com for an online register book and directions.
Cynthia da Silva offers services
to Boston clientele
Cynthia da Silva, owner of Hypnosis Center of Martha's Vineyard and Aazora Face & Body Sanctuary on Main Street in Vineyard Haven, will be providing services to Boston area residents.
Ms. da Silva has joined the practice of Stephen Cina, team acupuncturist for the New England Patriots and the Boston Bruins, according to a press release. She will travel to Boston weekly while maintaining her year-round Island practice.
Ms. da Silva is a certified hypnotherapist specializing in complementary medical hypnosis, pain management, and sports performance. Appointments may be scheduled with Cynthia for either location by calling 508-524-9022 .
Workshops for entrepreneurs
offered Oct. 11
The Edgartown National Bank and South Eastern Economic Development Corporation (SEED) will host two free entrepreneurial workshops on Thursday, Oct. 11, from 8 am to 3:30 pm at Lola's in Oak Bluffs.
The three-hour morning session will cover learning the fundamentals of planning, preparing, and financing a business. It is geared toward helping potential entrepreneurs evaluate and understand the fundamentals of owning one's own business.
The afternoon session will cover financial statements and how they help determine the health of a business, and will focus on understanding a balance sheet, income statement and cash flow statement.
Registration is free. A complimentary breakfast and lunch will be provided. Register by Monday, Oct. 8, by calling Tamarah Barao at (508) 822-1020. The workshops are sponsored in partnership with the Martha's Vineyard Chamber of Commerce, the Service Corporation of Retired Executives, and the Martha's Vineyard Commission.
Up-Island Pottery holds
Up-Island Pottery is moving to a new studio location on Fulling Mill Hill off of Fulling Mill Road in Chilmark. Owner and potter Candy Shweder will hold an open studio sale on Sunday, Oct. 7, from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm.
According to a press release, old favorite shapes and glazes that are no longer being shown - including the last of the beloved pansy pattern, rose pattern and the perennial favorite, celadon - will be available along with deep discounts and half price for seconds.
Follow the arrows off Middle Road in Chilmark to the studio. Ms. Shweder will continue to sell her wares at both the Chilmark Flea Market and Artisans Shows.
Islanders head to Women's chefs and restaurants conference
Elizabeth Germain, vice president of Martha's Vineyard Slow Food, will lead a panel discussion entitled "Buy Local, Connect Community, Promote Sustainability" at the Women Chefs and Restaurateurs National Conference to be held at the Hyatt Regency Newport Hotel and Spa in Newport, R. I., from November 3 to 5, according to a press release.
Island participants and panel members for the conference titled, "Back for the Future! Traditional Foodways Inspiring a Healthier Tomorrow," will include: Ali Berlow, executive director of Island Grown Initiative; Jan Buhrman chef/owner of The Kitchen Porch; Melinda DeFeo of The Farm Institute; Daniele Dominick of The Scottish Bakehouse and Che's Lounge; and Rebecca Miller of North Tabor Farm.
For information and registration about the WCR conference, go to: www.womenchefs.org.
Dukes Academy offers real estate testing on the Vineyard
Dukes Academy, the Vineyard's only real estate school, has been approved as a licensed test center for the state's real estate salesperson and broker licensing exams. Dukes Academy has been working with the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons to offer Islanders this special convenience, according to a press statement released by Robert Sawyer of Dukes Academy.
Promissor, the official provider of assessment services for the state, will administer the state's examination program. State testing for the real estate industry is a rare opportunity on the Vineyard. Ordinarily individuals seeking a real state license must travel to one of five authorized assessment centers located around the state and incur the additional expense and burden of overnight accommodations.
The test is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 17. All eligible candidates should immediately contact Dukes Academy to make a reservation at (508) 696-1900 or e-mail to email@example.com. The school will answer questions and assist candidates to choose from among three time slots.
The pre-licensing course required for potential salespersons begins Oct. 16, and the broker licensing course begins Oct. 30. Seating for these classes, as well as the state exam, is limited.
A story published Sept. 27, about the lack of winter fuel storage capacity on the Island, "Truckers request Saturday freight run," incorrectly referred to propane as natural gas.