Chilmark: Earth Day is every day

One of my favorite signs of the seasons changing, seen repeatedly at Lucy Vincent Beach. —Valerie Sonnenthal

Chilmark is the second town in the U.S., after our neighbor West Tisbury, to adopt a ban on the sale of single-use plastic bottles. I’d say that’s pretty cool. Earth Day has become every day, and it will be Mothers Day soon. My first real-ish job was helping my mother, a volunteer for Scientists Institute for Public Information and Scientists Committee for Public Information, file articles, news clippings, newsletters, correspondence, etc., in 1968. The National Resources Defense Council had just started, and when they needed scientists, the ladies ran down the hall to us in a second-floor walkup on the southeast corner of Madison and 68th Street. Moving on from the past to beautiful blooms abounding, colors popping, leaves peeping, plants pushing up to the sun, and the excitement of spring.

Mermaid Farm is brimming with young plants, including rhubarb, kale, and more. North Tabor Farm has eggs, kale, and more. The Food Truck may be gone, but don’t forget takeout from Menemsha Fish Market, plus drinks and treats at the Texaco Station.

Glad to see the great photos of Jonah and Ingrid Goff-Maidoff enjoying Old San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Chilmark Chocolates is closed through May 1.

New dump stickers are available from our refuse station on Tabor House Road. If you want to know more about what you can bring to the dump, see

Registration is now open for CCC memberships, tennis, and sailing. They are also welcoming donations to complete the new tennis building, adding rocking chairs for the porch, installing AC throughout the CCC, and adding additional boats to expand the sailing program. Learn more and register at

Celebrate Arbor Day at Polly Hill Arboretum on Friday, April 26, from 1 to 3 pm, free. Take a guided tour of spring-flowering trees with PHA curator Todd Rounsaville, and observe a tree-planting demonstration to learn the best practices for planting trees in your own landscape. This year’s free seedlings will be Oriental spruce (Picea orientalis), available while supplies last. Learn more at

It’s Pathways Arts Grand Finale of the season on Friday, April 26, with the PickPocket Bluegrass Band, composer Tony Tobia, Atzic and his 379-year-old violin, writers reading including Julia Kidd, Sian Williams, Corinne de Langavant, and me, plus a dance film curated by Lisa Gross, dancing for all, and merrymaking. Doors open at 6:30 pm and programs begin at 7 pm, free, but donations appreciated. Thank you, Pathways Arts, for keeping the creative fires burning and supporting our Island’s community of artists across all mediums and messages.

Ladies, bring your friends to the not-to-be-missed Chilmark Women’s Symposium, on the theme of “Wildlife,” on Saturday, April 27, from 9 am to noon. Feel free to share breakfast treats, and donations welcome.

Constance Messmer is offering Reiki First Degree on Saturday and Sunday, April 27 and 28, 9 am to 5 pm. Learn more at

The First Congregational Church of West Tisbury will celebrate Earth Day on Sunday, April 28, at its 10 am service, and has invited renowned cell biologist Ursula Goodenough to speak, revealing how science can deepen our experiences of wonder and humility, and further our ethical responsibility to not just care for creation but pursue creation justice.

Native Earth Teaching Farm is hosting a Goat 4-H Family Farm Day on Saturday, April 27, from 1 to 3 pm, weather permitting. There will be a family gathering, work day, bonfire, and open house for all those interested in this summer’s goat 4-H program, Kids on the Roof. Help evaluate the herd, plan for kidding in May, and set the calendar and sign up for the coming season of goating fun and excitement. If you are interested but can’t come that day, make sure to contact us to get your name and preferences on the list. A Native Medicinal Mushroom Workshop will be held on June 1 from 11 am to 2 pm. These mushrooms are used for immune support rather than food, but the techniques used will be applicable to other forest species as well. Volunteers also needed. The workshop is $25, and includes one inoculated log to take home; additional logs are $10 each. Call 508-645-3304 to volunteer or register.

The Chilmark Community Church’s Pizza Nights are on Tuesdays at 6 pm, all ages welcome. 9 Menemsha Crossroads, Chilmark. For further information, call 508- 645-3100.

The Chilmark Public Library will celebrate National Poetry Month on April 27, at 1 pm, with a presentation of “Even Though the Whole World Is Burning,” a documentary film that chronicles the poetic achievements and environmental activism of former poet laureate W.S. Merwin. Following the film, Alice Kociemba, the founding director of Calliope Poetry for Community, will lead a poetry writing workshop, “Poetry’s Three Rs: Reverie, Reverence and Respect,” that uses Merwin’s poems to generate new work. The Local Poetry Audio Archive welcomes all poets to participate, by contacting adult programming coordinator Marlan Sigelman at 508-645-3360, or emailing to make an appointment for recording. In honor of Mental Health Month, NAMI will give a presentation on the ways they provide support for Island families on Wednesday, May 1, at 5 pm. Stories and Songs with Rizwan continues on Tuesdays and Saturdays at 10:30 am. Afterschool crafts with Irene continues on Wednesdays at 3 pm. Learn more at or 508-645-3360.
Interested in heading to the Boston MFA, or any state Trustees of Reservations property? If you have a library card, you can check out passes for reduced admission at our town library.

The last Chilmark Potluck Jam will be held on Saturday, May 4.

The Yard has announced its 2019 season lineup; buy a membership or get tickets at

Have a great week.