Tonight has proved to be a very interesting night in our household. Riley and Amelia both went off-Island this weekend. Riley had his yearly inspection for the U.S. Naval Sea Cadets, and Amelia traveled to Rhode Island to take part in a March for Our Lives rally. I’m so incredibly proud of both of them, participating in things that are important to them, and even more so for the amazing discussion that we had tonight about firearms and the tragic school shootings that keep happening. Their views are similar to each other in many ways, and yet different at the same time, and it was pretty cool to sit back and watch them talk about all the different views and options.
The public is invited to learn about soil health at a free two-part workshop sponsored by the Dukes Soil Conservation District in collaboration with the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society, Island Grown Initiative, and the Polly Hill Arboretum on Saturday, April 7, from 9 am until 12 pm and from 1 pm until 3:30 pm at the M.V. Agricultural Society Hall, on Panhandle Road.
The workshop will be led by Maggie Payne, resource soil scientist for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in southeastern Massachusetts, and Dr. Brandon Smith, USDA NRCS soil health specialist, and is made possible by a grant from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. The morning session will focus on Vineyard soil types, interpreting soil tests and a field soil health assessment. The afternoon session will focus on the science of organic matter in the soil and mobility of important nutrients, and practices to improve soil health, including cover crops and reduced tillage. There will be a panel discussion featuring Simon Athearn of Morning Glory Farm, Andrew Woodruff of Whippoorwill Farm, Matthew Dix of North Tabor and Thimble Farms, and our soil scientists. Lunch will be provided by the Island Grown Initiative for those who pre-register by April 2 by emailing Bill Wilcox at email@example.com.
The next Neighborhood Convention, on Restorative Justice, will take place at 11 am on Tuesday, April 3, at the Unitarian Universalist Society in Vineyard Haven with Peter Meleney. Bring a bag lunch.
Felix Neck seeks volunteer citizen scientists to help collect data on local wildlife species. Trainings are available for osprey monitoring on Thursday, March 29, 5 pm until 7 pm, and Saturday, March 31, 1 pm until 3 pm. They will also offer two horseshoe crab survey training sessions on Thursday, April 19, 1 pm until 3 pm, and Saturday, May 5, 1 pm until 3 pm. Plan on spending some of the time outside, and dress appropriately. Registration is required for both events. Please call the sanctuary at 508-627-4850 or go online to massaudubon.org/felixneck for more information and to register for a training.
Registration is open for the Fern and Feather Day Camp at Felix Neck as well. Visit massaudubon.org/felixneckcamp or call 508-627-4850 for more information.
Did you know you can run a timed 5K every Saturday here? The M.V. Running Company has a 5K each Saturday at 9 am at the State Forest. Meet at the M.V. Sharks parking lot. It is a certified course, and is professionally timed, but sorry, no medals or T shirts. In cases of extreme weather, runs are canceled. For more information, check out marthasvineyardrunning.com.
MCAS testing has started on the Island. The high school started their testing on Tuesday this week, and our school will be running them next week. Make sure your kids get lots of rest and have a good breakfast, and most of all, help them stay calm and relaxed.
I’m pretty sure spring is coming, though it has been hard to tell recently. Have a wonderful week, and keep smiling.