The ideal community event

To the Editor:

Community events are usually conjured up to be the ideal gathering of family and friends, to witness or participate in some special activity designed to bring one another closer together.

The Oak Bluffs Tree Lighting was and is just such an event.

Hats off to the those who would not let winds from the southeast at 30 mph, accompanied by rain, keep them from this annual gathering of family, friends, and good old St. Nick.

A very special thanks to the Vineyard Brass Ensemble whose members were flexible, spirited, and giving of their talent and wonderful caroling music in the shelter of the historic Arcade building between Sharky’s and the Locker Room.

In the true spirit of community, there are so many to thank. I hope I don’t leave anyone out. Thanks to the PTO, which got the word out to all school parents to bring food and children (six large laundry baskets were collected for the Island Food Pantry); to Brian Weiland, his children and students for their spirited holiday music; to Mark and Bernie Crossland for all the great holiday decorations in Ocean Park, downtown, and especially in Sunset Lake; to the Oak Bluffs Highway Department for lighting the avenue and keeping our town looking so great all year long; to Paul Mahoney for the great tree; to Mike Santoro and friends for the warm and welcoming Game Room, hot chocolate and support; to the hot chocolate servers, Holly Alaimo, Priscilla Sylvia, and John Newsom; to the Friends of Oak Bluffs for the red bows everywhere; and most of all to the Oak Bluffs Fire Department for bringing Santa and his helpers who picked up and delivered all the wonderful gifts of food, and gave children the renewed excitement that comes with this truly ideal community event.

Best wishes for a great holiday.

Renee Balter

Oak Bluffs Association