Aquinnah: Blues Blizzard


Welcome home to Jim Wallen, who flew to Majorca after Thanksgiving. From there he joined Seaquell, a 108-foot sloop captained by his son Zachary. They sailed some and motored some to Antigua via Gibraltar, arriving there on Christmas Day. From Gibraltar to Antigua was 3,300 miles in 15 days. Jim’s wife (and Zach’s mom), Kathleen Smith, was waiting for them in Antigua. They celebrated New Year’s with Leah (Bassett) Deleau and her husband, Didier. Kathy and Jim returned home to Martha’s Vineyard on Jan. 3. That family knows how to have a good time wherever they go. We should all be so lucky.

At the Aquinnah Library this week, Story Time is on Thursday at 3:30 pm and Saturday at 10:30 am. Kids can stop by on Saturday from 11 am to 3 pm to make a salt crystal snowflake, and the Afterschool Club meets Tuesday at 4 pm. The Book Group will meet Tuesday at 3 pm to discuss Lisa See’s “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan.”

Pathways is keeping us entertained and engaged up-Island, all winter long. On Friday they will host “An Evening of Music,” featuring Seth Cooperrider, Rico Holley, David Hannon, Barbara Dacey, Missis Biskis with her husband, Tauras, on bass, and Nate D’Angelo. Doors will open at 6:30 pm and the music begins at 7 pm. Every Saturday at 3 pm, Allison Cameron Parry will lead a Qi Gong class open to all ages. There is a $15 suggested donation. On Tuesday, Jan. 22, the Tuesday night writer’s series continues with “Writing and Poetry,” featuring Jenny Allen, Julia Kidd, Gwyn McAllister, and others. Presentation begins at 7 pm. Valerie Sonnenthal will lead three “Monthly Meditative Sound Saturdays”; the first one will be held on Jan. 26 from 5 to 6 pm. These events will begin in silence. Bring whatever you need to sit (or lie) comfortably in silence: a mat, a cushion, blanket, etc. It is suggested that you arrive a few minutes early to settle in.

The Second Chance Animal Rescue of Martha’s Vineyard will host a dinner and silent auction at the P.A. Club this Saturday, Jan. 19, at 5 pm. The dinner will include vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. There will be many wonderful items to bid on. Tickets are $25 per person at the door, or $20 in advance by calling 508-560-6046.

The Aquinnah community is invited to attend a free dinner on Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 5:30 pm at the Town Hall to talk about how we can increase our town’s self-reliance and safety by training our townspeople to help one another in case of an emergency. Topics of discussion will include the town’s emergency preparedness needs, skills people would like to develop to strengthen preparedness, and plans to aid communication and responsiveness in case of an emergency. Town Emergency Manager Gary Robinson will share free training opportunities available to strengthen people’s ability to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters. Everyone is welcome to attend this planning meeting. To RSVP or for more information, please contact Aquinnah energy and climate committee member Noli Taylor at

Save the date! The annual Chilmark School PTO’s “Blues Blizzard” will be held on Saturday, Feb. 9, from 7 to 11 pm at the Chilmark Community Center. This adults-only dance party will have Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish, live and silent auctions, desserts, beverages, and photo-booth fun. Tickets are $20 ($15 for seniors) at the door or through any Chilmark School family. All proceeds benefit the Chilmark School outing program and PTO.

Christina Montoya is off to Cuba to continue her study of Cuban dance and culture. She will surely bring back some great moves and new perspectives on her work. I look forward to hearing about her adventures and seeing her new work.