Water Tasting by the Sea

The water-tasting components, ready to go. —Barbara Davis

On a hot, but not too hot, hazy, but not unpleasantly hazy, afternoon, about 250 people attended the Water Tasting by the Sea fundraiser for Vineyard House, the Island’s sober living center. Standing by the edge of Oyster Pond with my fruit-infused water in hand, I gazed out over a view that contained something unfamiliar in summer: lovely scenery with no people. Already a worthwhile trip. Brian Mackey, president of the board of directors of Vineyard House, confirmed this: “Given the weather, and given the setting, it’s the place to be,” he said.

Turning around, I returned to the lovely tent with flags unfurled at its peak on the Friedman estate, and surveyed the art (donated by more than 25 local artists and art owners), being auctioned to raise money for the center that helps people in the early stages of recovery from substance abuse. There was great food by Jan Buhrman of Kitchen Porch caterers.

A raffle of five dynamite activity packages, featuring golf, fishing, flights, and the Red Sox, was popular, though Kate Desrosiers, Vineyard House operations director, noted, “We’re not like other events; we don’t have alcohol, so that cuts back on the bidding a little.”

Ms. Derosiers said she’s estimating they raised close to $70,000, and noted how grateful Vineyard House was to the Richard Friedman family, who agreed to host the event for the third time at their lovely property: “It was like gilding the lily to celebrate 20 years of Vineyard House in this setting.”