Chilmark: Rest in Peace Mark London

"Run, Sharon Run" was a quilt at this year's Ag Fair made from Sharon Guadagne's t-shirts from her year's running the Chilmark Road Race made by Gale Green from Burlingame, CA for Sharon's daughter Coleen. — Valerie Sonnenthal

I am sad to share Mark London passed away on August 19 after receiving a stem cell transplant for NK cell leukemia, according to his wife, painter Linda Thompson. I learned of his passing at the final CCC Author Series, when Suellen Lazarus opened the evening with writer Michael Pollan by sharing that the community of Chilmark lost a longtime supporter and activist. My heart goes out to Linda Thompson, their children and their extended family.

It was great to see Sandy Broyard’s blue-ribbon hooked rug, Heather Goff’s blue-ribbon dragonfly tiles, Rebecca Gilbert’s red-ribbon spun wool yarn, and Emily Boyd’s scale model of the Gay Head Lighthouse at the Ag Fair, along with so many inspiring creations, produce, displays, bonsai, animals, friends, and always just plain fun. It’s hard to believe summer is winding down so quickly, but a couple of days of grey skies and cooler temperatures remind us of what’s coming.

I attended a Monday night preview of “Chilmark,” a world premiere by writer and director Catherine Rush. It is one of the best productions I’ve ever seen at the M.V. Playhouse. Not only are there deaf performers, but all performers (except one) sign throughout the production, giving one a greater sense of what living in Chilmark in the late 1880s would have felt like, and why it was such a remarkable community. If you are able to see this production, running through Sept. 8, get your tickets now at or call 508-696-6300.

Sig Van Raan reports this week that “a well-attended and high-spirited morning of softball belied the cloudy and cool skies. Hans Solmssen’s team squeaked by Caleb Caldwell’s team 14-13, although Caldwell’s team scored six runs in the final inning to pull within one run. However, there had been some confusion about the prior inning’s run production by Hans’ team, so a tie was called. Tony Horowitz’s team defeated Caleb’s team by two touchdowns and a field goal in the second game. The final score was something like 25-11. Lots of zany plays with the existential metaphor ‘that’s way the ball bounces’ prevailing in the discussions. The commissioners met to determine next week’s seasonal awards. Serious buzz among the players as to who will win the vaunted Howie Hustle award. Hot dogs and drinks will be on tap after the game.”

The last Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival film of the summer season is “Time for Ilhan Omar” on Wednesday, August 22, followed by a discussion with director Norah Shapiro and the subject of the film. See for films, tickets, and more info. We’ll see them again in March 2019.

The Chilmark library Wednesdays at 5 pm continues on August 22, when artist and author Phoebe Sheldon speaks about her book “Rufus: A Boy’s Extraordinary Experiences in the Civil War.” On August 29, hear Barbara Bates Conroy speak on her and her son Jack’s experience with addiction and her latest book, “Dear Jack: A Love Letter.” She will address about the chaos addiction creates, the lack of support and resources available, and the devastating outcome of the disease and the yearning for peace and healing. Join artist Rick Freed at the exhibition opening of “My Martha’s Vineyard Line” on Saturday, August 25, from 2:30 to 4:30pm. The library weekly knitting group meets Tuesdays from 3 to 4:30 pm; bring your own supplies and projects. Every Wednesday in August there is a LEGO Free Build from noon to 4 pm. As of Sunday, August 26, off-season hours are back in effect: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday 10:30 am – 5 pm; Wednesday 10:30 am – 7 pm; Friday 10:30 am – 1:30 pm; closed Sunday and Monday.

Come see Vineyard-based choreographers plus the Yard’s artist interns perform at Island Grown Dances on Thursday, August 23, at 7 pm. Dance the Yard, the Yard’s resident dance collective, performs on Saturday, August 25, at 11 am and 7 pm. Check out daily yoga, dance classes, and see what else is going on, and get tickets at or call 508-645-9662.

Join Sarah Moore for her opening of “Abstract Land and Sea Scapes” at the M.V. Saving Bank from 5 to 6:30 pm on Friday, August 24.

Artist Stelio Mormoris holds an artist reception of his contemporary oil paintings on Sunday, August 26, from 4 to 7 pm at his home studio, 33 Quenames Rd.; all are welcome.

There’s an MV Blood Drive on Friday, August 31, from 1 to 6 pm at Alex’s Place, YMCA. Please make an appointment by calling 1-800-Red-Cross or at

Have a great week.