Aquinnah: The Trot


The annual Chilmark School Turkey Trot was last Tuesday, and it was very exciting. For the first time in school history, two children tied for first place. The Trot is a race where all the children of the school run half a mile up Middle Road (from the start at Beetlebung Corner), then turn around and run half a mile back. The older children are timed for their physical fitness tests, and parents and local townsfolk are encouraged to participate, either by running or cheering people on. Hayden Higgins and Rodeo T. Purves-Langer (Aquinnah boys both) were neck and neck during the last bit of the race. First one would pull ahead and then the other. When they crossed the finish line their strides were completely in sync, and they both received first-place gold medals. Congratulations to them, and Claus Smith who came in in second place, and Lathrop Keene, who got third. Congratulations to all the kids who ran, and a big thank-you to all the people who came and cheered and helped.

The Aquinnah Public Library will host its first “Dinner and a Movie” of the season this Thursday. It will screen “The Emoji Movie” at 5 pm. There will be pizza, veggies, and fun. Story time will be held on Thursday at 3:30 pm and Saturday at 10:30 am. Saturday at 11 am is Kids Craft: Snowflake Tiles.

Sargent Gallery is having an open house and benefit from noon to 5 pm on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. There will be wine, cheese, and hot cider, so stop in for some art and warmth. The open house is a benefit for the Fund for Wild Nature, an environmental organization that grants funds to individuals and nonprofits to promote wildlife protection and recovery. The fund would like to get involved with projects on Martha’s Vineyard, so if you have a project, consider applying to the Fund for Wild Nature for a grant. More information is available at Sargent Gallery. If you can’t make the open house but would like to schedule an appointment, call Megan at 508-645-2776. The gallery is located at 832 State Road in Aquinnah.

Paul Doherty’s “Reflective Abstractions,” a series of photographs at the Chilmark branch of the Martha’s Vineyard Savings Bank, will be on display through Jan. 2.

Pathways Living Room Studios is open daily from 11 am to 5 pm every day except Wednesdays and Sundays. Every Monday the Knitting Group meets at Pathways from 1 to 3 pm. Everyone who crochets, knits, weaves, etc. is welcome to work on a project, and if you need some help, that’s available as well. The group is led by Rebecca Gilbert. Next Friday, Dec. 8, there will be a premiere of the movie “The Ravenite,” by Dennis Mohr and Alec Wilkinson. Ed Grazda will lead a discussion of his photography, “Mean Streets,” and on Dec. 9, there will be music with Brad Tucker, David Hannon, and others.

The next three Sundays: Dec. 3, 10, and 17 at 5 pm, the Chilmark Community Church will present free “Offerings of Music and Light” to brighten the darker days. Join Lia Kahler, Atzic Marquez, and other Island singers, musicians, dancers, drummers, and readers in celebrating the hope, love, joy, peace, and light of the holiday season. Candle lighting and refreshments included. The church is located at 9 Menemsha Crossroads, in Chilmark. For further information call 508-645-3100.

Aquinnah Cultural Center is hosting a “Fun Raiser” on Saturday, Dec. 9, at 4 pm. Tickets are $20. Price includes a traditionally themed dinner by Kristina Hook. There will be Wampanoag artists selling gifts (just in time for the holidays!), and music by Black Brook Drummers and Carole Vandal.

Healthy Aging Martha’s Vineyard will present its community action plan at its annual meeting on Thursday, Dec. 7, at the Martha’s Vineyard Hebrew Center at 130 Center Street in Vineyard Haven. The meeting will run from 9 am to 12:30 pm. At 9:45 am the keynote speaker, David P. Stevens, executive director of the Massachusetts Council on Aging, will speak. Everyone is welcome to attend, but please RSVP at 508-693-1627.

I have some very sad news to report this week. Nancy Caldwell passed away on Thanksgiving. Nancy and her husband, Duncan, summered in Aquinnah and then spent the rest of the year in Paris. This was their routine for many years. She served as a summer member of the Aquinnah Public Library Friends Group. She was often a featured speaker of the library’s “Summer Speaker Series,” where she spoke about multiculturism and European politics. Nancy was a hot ticket. She and Duncan were together for 42 years; they had two children, Olivia and Sebastian. Much love to all the Caldwells and Nancy’s many friends here and abroad. I will miss seeing her about town. Condolences also go out to Spa Tharpe, whose mother recently passed away. Spa’s mother lived in Trinidad, and Spa went to the island for the funeral, leaving shortly before Thanksgiving. He is home now, and surrounded by his Island family here.


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