Edgartown: Looking for Thanksgiving tales


Not surprisingly, I haven’t heard from many of you regarding your fun, family-filled Thanksgiving stories. It’s understandable, I’m probably not the first person you were thinking of this weekend. I won’t take it personally! It is my sincere hope that you were enjoying some relaxing time off, maybe some crazy shopping for those of you who do the Black Friday thing, lots of leftovers, and some pretty nice weather these past few days. Please send me emails this week if you have some Thanksgiving tales to share.

It feels a little bit like a starting gun went off this weekend, doesn’t it? Holiday decorations are going up. Yes, I know, they had already begun to appear, but now they are really popping up all over the place. The craft fairs are starting up, the various holiday concerts are posted, Christmas in Edgartown is on the horizon, Hanukkah begins Sunday, Dec. 6, and Christmas is just a blink away. In my typical fashion, I’ve done nothing, unless you count thinking about buying presents. It’s a very special time of year. My seasoned advice? Rejoice in your family and friends, and remember what this holiday season is really about. And get out there and enjoy celebrations and make memories!

Did you know CB Stark Jewelers is heading into its 50th year? 2016 will mark their 50th anniversary. I’m shocked. I remember when CB Stark was the “hippie place down by the boat in Vineyard Haven” (at least in our minds). We’d go there with some of our birthday or Christmas money and pick up some sterling silver trinket; rings, earrings, or bracelets. Sometimes we’d just admire the jewelry. They’re now on Main Street in Vineyard Haven, not down by the boat, and also in Edgartown, most recently relocating to 10 Main Street in Edgartown. They are staying open this holiday season, for the first time at their Edgartown location, as they gear up for the big anniversary year in 2016. What do you get a jewelry business for a 50th anniversary, anyway?

Did you see the recent story online about the waitress who treated two firefighters to breakfast to thank them for their hard work fighting fires? They, in turn, found out that she had a disabled father who needed a new handicap van, so they started a GoFundMe page, and the family wound up with more than enough money for the van. Well, mark your calendars for Friday, Dec. 11, at 6 and be part of a similar feel-good story, when the doors open at the P.A. Club for the Wheels for Brian Auction. This auction, set up by Olivia Law Butler, is a fundraiser to purchase a new handicap van for Brian Sullivan, brother of the Edgartown School’s music teacher, Kelly Sullivan. When Brian was 12, he was struck by a car. He suffered intensive brain injuries that left him in a coma for more than two months. Though the the family was originally told that Brian wouldn’t survive, 16 years later he is not only surviving, but thriving. Both of his parents had to quit their jobs to take care of their son. Kelly and Brian’s dad recently passed away, leaving the bulk of the caretaking on their mom, as Brian lives with her. To help with the costs of a new van, Kelly and her significant other, Mark Kokoszka, began a fundraising drive, and Olivia Law Butler jumped onboard, organizing this amazing auction to help toward the cost of a van. Many local artisans and businesses have donated to the auction, and it should be a fun night. They are still accepting donations to the cause, if you’re interested in donating. You can contact Olivia Law Butler at 508-326 9430 or Kelly Sullivan at 603-505-1343. Doors open at 6 pm, and the live auction begins at 7 sharp. See you there!

If you’ve ever given any thought to becoming a substitute teacher in the Martha’s Vineyard school system, the time is now. We have a substitute teacher shortage here on the Island. To apply, one need only go to the Superintendent’s Office in Vineyard Haven, across from the Tisbury School. You can get an application packet there, and also fill out the required paperwork for a CORI (criminal offender record information) check, and set up an appointment to be fingerprinted. Yep — you do have to be fingerprinted. So do we. Regular teachers leave detailed plans for you, and working with the kids is great. You can get on the sub list for all the schools, or limit it to certain schools, if you prefer. There are more than 100 staff members at the Edgartown School alone, and I’m not sure how many Island-wide. But we can certainly keep a good sub busy. Call the super’s office for more information at 508-693-2007.

The Healthy Aging Task Force is offering an educational program designed to help family caregivers cope with the demands of caregiving. This program will help you care for yourself while caring for a relative or friend. You will benefit from this class whether you are helping a parent, spouse, or friend; someone who lives at home, in a nursing home, or across the country. The new session will run from Monday, Jan. 4, until Feb. 8. There is no cost for attendees. To register, contact Mary Holmes at 508-862-1933 or mholmes2@partners.org.

I’d love to share some of the special events coming up over Christmas in Edgartown Weekend, so please email me anything you’d like to share at ggardnermv@gmail.com. We listened to some Josh Groban holiday music on our way home tonight, and I was struck by the last lyric and how it can always be applied: You have everything you need, if you just believe. Have a great week.