Chilmark remembers Sheldon Hackney


Glorious days, fog, much-needed rain, clouds and perfect sunsets — besides enjoying fresh home-baked breads by my younger son, assorted new fish and shellfish for the visiting niece and nephew, blueberry everything at home and at the West Tisbury Church Blueberry Festival, sunset and dinner outside the Aquinnah Shop, exploring the beach, and each day filled with new wonder. So much to be grateful for this July!

Maybe you’ve seen the neon orange Chilmark Fire Department shirts? I did, on three different people in one evening. Fire Chief David Norton tells me for a donation you too can support our local Fire Department and may find some volunteer firefighters offering shirts off the back of the fire truck parked for sunset in the Menemsha Beach parking lot. If you miss them there, there’s always the Wednesday, August 6, Backyard Bash at the Community Center (CCC), 5–8 pm.

This week I got to talking with the ladies at Menemsha Fish Market and here’s what I learned: Ekaterine (Kate) Tchelidze, from Georgia (yes, the country) has returned for her third summer working with Stan Larsen. It is here where she met fellow American University student Erisa Rodra (second summer) from Albania. Erisa, majoring in Economics and Business Administration, has one more year, while Kate, majoring in Journalism and English, has one and a half years left until graduation from their university in Bulgaria. Kate hopes to intern at one of the Island papers this fall.

Bill Edison tells me that Lucas from London, aged 10, arrived for his second summer visit with his grandmother, and after practicing “rounders” on the other side of the pond, he got a hit and ran all the bases proclaiming, “I’ll be back next week.” My nephew Alex from Berlin enjoyed pinch-running in this week’s game and looks forward to playing when he returns next summer.

Popular Story Book Character Ladybug Girl, from the books by David Soman & Jacky Davis, visits the Chilmark Community Center with Kristin the Chilmark Library’s Children’s librarian on Monday, July 28, 11 am. Sponsored by the Martha’s Vineyard Library Association. Everyone is invited, not just campers .

One new easy way to support Island nonprofits is to do your online shopping through Tisbury Turkey. Go to and you will be supporting Friends of Family Planning through August 31.

A reminder to Riparian Owners of Tisbury Great Pond: the annual meeting will be held at 10 am, Saturday, July 26, at the Howes House in West Tisbury. Any questions please contact Ellen Sturgis,

Join host and executive producer Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! and Charlayne Hunter-Gault for a joint benefit for MVVY 93.7 and Democracy Now! A catered Beach Plum Inn reception, 5–6:30 pm, precedes Amy’s 7 pm Katharine Cornell talk about “The Silenced Majority.” For tickets and info:

Next up at the Author Series at the CCC on Sunday, July 27, 7:30 pm, are The Beekman Boys (Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge), who gave up city life to become goat farmers in upstate N.Y.  Known from their hit TV show on the Cooking Channel, their new cookbook, “The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Vegetable Cookbook”, is a trip through their farm’s year-round vegetable bounty.

On Thursday, July 31, a tribute to beloved Island resident Sheldon Hackney, a distinguished scholar of civil rights and social justice who died last year. Charlayne Hunter-Gault will moderate the evening and many contributing essayists for “Dixie Redux,” a series of essays honoring Hackney will be on hand to speak, followed by a reception.  Tickets are available, Bunch of Grapes Bookstore, and Chilmark Community Center (Mon.–Fri., 9 am–12 noon only).

Got Chilmark news? Contact Valerie here.