As I start this week’s column, I’ve assumed my position in a comfy chair, feet up, to watch Game 5 of the World Series. In the first four games, we’ve seen some great baseball, some boring baseball, some terrible baseball, and some record-breaking baseball. Most notable was watching 18 innings on Friday night, glued to the TV from 8:09 Friday night to 3:30 am Saturday. And there were two amazing realizations during that time. First, it was impressive how many people stayed up into the wee small hours to watch the game. Friends chatted away on Facebook, many wishing the Red Sox bats would wake up, while others simply wished for the game to end. The other amazing thing we noticed was how many empty seats there were in Dodgers Stadium, at what was 11 pm their time. Those fans sure aren’t Boston fans. We hang on till the end, through good and bad, and we make some noise, even if it’s in our own living rooms. We’re lucky fans to have such sports dynasties here. And the athletes and the teams are, in turn, lucky to have such loyal fans. I’m not a fan of other sports, but I love me some baseball.
Sadly, the week also brought with it great tragedy, and I would be remiss if I neglected to mention the tragic events that happened at the Tree of Life Synagogue on Saturday, where 11 people lost their lives at the hands of a gunman. There are no words to adequately express the sadness and dismay over this event and others like them. They are becoming all too common. My thoughts are with the families and friends affected by this senseless violence.
The Houses of Grace Island Homeless Shelter needs volunteers to staff the shelters between Jan. 1 and March 31. The volunteer orientations will take place on Monday, Nov. 1, at 7 pm at St. Andrew’s Church in Edgartown, and Wednesday, Dec. 5, at 7 pm at the Good Shepherd Parish Center at 55 School St., Oak Bluffs. If you would like to help out but can’t make one of the orientation sessions, please contact Father Chip Seadale at email@example.com.
Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard is inviting all artisans, candlestick makers, knitters, and bakers to contribute to their Handmade from the Heart fundraiser, to be held on Saturday, Dec. 8. They are seeking any unique handmade items, including jewelry, knitted items, paintings, pottery, photographs, Christmas ornaments, baked goods, and more. Please call 508-693-0189 if you have items you wish to donate. All proceeds from the sale of the items will go directly to the care of patients and their families. Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard is a completely community supported program.
All are welcome to celebrate All Saints Day, on Sunday, Nov. 4, at the Federated Church, 45 South Summer St. Edgartown. This Sunday service begins at 10:30 am with the Rev. David G. Berube, with music by the Federated Church Choir under the direction of Peter R. Boak, minister of music. You are invited to bring a framed photo of someone special in your life who has passed away, to be placed on a special table in front of the pulpit. For more information, call 508-627-4421, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy birthday wishes go out to Sally Mitchell on Oct. 30, Jane Varkonda and Annemarie Donahue on Nov. 1, and Darren Morris on Nov. 2.
Though we never seem to get any trick-or-treaters, I got to see some amazing Halloween costumes this week via social media. So many people are talented and creative. Honestly, Halloween always exhausted me when the kids were young. It was always chaos, and excitement, and a busy schedule to be everywhere we needed to be, plus sugar. None of which makes for a relaxed time. We pulled it off, though, through the years, and we have lovely memories. So to all you moms and dads out there, and to anyone else who makes it happen for your little ones, hats off to you. You’re doing great.
Congratulations to Nedine Cunningham, our seventh and eighth grade social studies teacher. Last weekend, Nedine traveled to Denver to run in her 50th — yes, 50th — half-marathon, all in the past six years. She’s also done a number of full marathons during the same timeframe. Next weekend she will head to New York to take part in the New York City Marathon as part of Fred’s Team, and in honor of Barbara Bloodgood, who died last winter from esophageal cancer. Donations to Fred’s Team go to support critical cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. You can donate to the cause by clicking this link to her donation page: bit.ly/2Rirlwv. Congratulations and good luck, Nedine.
Get your golden ticket for the Edgartown School’s rendition of “Willy Wonka” this week. The junior high musical will be in the school gym on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 2 and 3, at 7 pm. It’s a not-to-be-missed performance.
Nov. 5 through 9 is Zero Waste Week. All Island schools, with the support of Island Grown Schools and Vineyard Conservation Society, will be looking at ways to reduce and reuse. I’ve always been a recycler and a reuser, but since working on a recycling project with our eighth grade this year, I’m really understanding that we have to start at the beginning, which is reducing use of disposable items. Just little changes can have an effect. When I buy fruit, I don’t use plastic bags anymore. Buying items in bulk and packing in reusable containers is another plus. Coffee to go is a treat instead of a staple of my diet. And I bought a stainless steel reusable straw to keep with me. What are you doing to reduce, reuse, and recycle?
Have a great week. As I close out the column, I can officially congratulate the Red Sox, as they are, indeed, the world champions. Was there ever any doubt?