Chilmark: School has started

Trevor Sullivan Weinstein from New York City shows off his sand building complex to passersby at the end of August on Lucy Vincent Beach. —Valerie Sonnenthal

School has started, so I just want to welcome all the new families and kids to the Chilmark School and Island community. Congratulations to Gabe Bellabuono, son of herbalist Holly Bellebuono, who has worked with Barney Zeitz, and is now showing his own metalwork at the Chilmark Gallery.

The humidity dropped, the temperature rose, there were some clouds, but what a beautiful weekend it was. Our farm stands are abundant, so be sure to stock up anytime you need fresh veggies, meat, eggs, or flowers; Allen Farm, Beetlebung Farm, Grey Barn, Mermaid Farm, Menemsha Crossing Farm, and North Tisbury Farm.

Folks at Menemsha Texaco spotted the Obamas enjoying an evening aboard Banjo thanks to Hank Goldberg. I and guest Iwalani Kaluhiokalani, owner of SmartBody Movement in Brookline, thoroughly enjoyed the amazing last performances of the season at the Yard. All I can say is Subject:Matter (choreographer Ian Berg) is one of the best tap-dancing companies I’ve ever seen, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed they come back for another residency and get to teach classes in the community. Also Aysha Upchurch’s “An Ode to the Journey of My Joy” was a joy to behold; she is a multitalented performer that left the audience uplifted indeed. In the meantime, if you love the Yard and want to support their future, consider donating to their capital campaign so we can all enjoy year-round programming, performances, teachers and performers in the schools, and all their many offerings.

I couldn’t bring myself to acknowledge all the after–Labor Day scheduling changes until school officially started. Here are the new fall hours: Chilmark General store now open 7 am to 3:30 pm daily and Saturday until 5 pm; the Menemsha Galley is open from 11 am to 3 pm daily; the Menemsha Deli, Monday through Thursday 8 am to 3:30 pm, and Friday and Saturday 8 am to 4:30 pm. Fish stores are open daily as usual, at least until mid-September. Don’t forget the rest of the shops along Basin Road now that we’re entering the sale season. Breakfast with a View at the Beach Plum Inn continues 8 to 10:30 am daily through Oct. 20; more pop-up dinners to be announced soon.

If you have a small dog (under 25 pounds) and need a dog sitter in Chilmark, Heather Goff, ceramicist and website designer, offers daily care and overnight stays at her Chilmark home with a fenced-in yard. Check out

You have two more chances not to miss the phenomenal musical “Low Down Dirty Blues,” with superb performances by the entire cast, at the M.V. Playhouse through Sept. 7. Tickets at 508-696-6300, or

Help celebrate the town of Chilmark turning 325 on Saturday, Sept. 14, at an old-fashioned potluck dinner starting at 6 pm at the Chilmark Community Center. Bring a dish to share. Susan Murphy says, “We hope to have music and dancing. This is nothing fancy. Come in your Island cars, wearing your Island clothes, and let’s have a party!”

Sig Van Raan reports, “The last Sunday morning of Chilmark Softball had a great turnout of players, observers, wives, kids, dogs, toddlers, and disabled-list players who watched perhaps the best game in years, when David Dinch’s team beat Hans Solmssens’s team 5-4. The lead changed hands in the last two innings, great defense prevailed, and the game wasn’t decided until the final out. The second game wound up being referred to as ‘the Carnage of Flanders Field.’ A tie game was called after a few innings due to two players from the same team who incurred various injuries, one while running the bases (hamstring), the other after swinging wildly at a pitch (shoulder). There were various medical specialists attending to the players including an oncologist, an EMT, an allergist, a psychiatrist, a massage therapist, and an internist, but no orthopedic specialist. One of the players will be in a shoulder sling, the other will require crutches for a week. But no lasting damage, as folks made their goodbyes and/or plans for evening cocktail parties and beach sojourns. All in all, a pretty spectacular season of great softball, sportsmanship, and community.” Flanders Field of Dreams will await the sunshine players of summer in 2020.

The Chilmark Flea Market runs through Sept. 7, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 am to 2 pm at 142 North Rd. More info

See Fae Kontje-Gibbs’ art through Sept. 11 at the M.V. Bank. All sales will go toward the building of her new studio.

The Chilmark Public Library welcomes Lorena Crespo, who will lead a drop-in Spanish language conversation meet-up, Tuesday, Sept. 10 at 3:30 pm: a short 15-minute topical refresher lesson, followed by 45 minutes of open conversation with optional guided exercises. Beginner level lesson, open level conversation. This meet-up is intended for those who are learning on their own, and want to converse with others to practice. Conversation meet-ups will continue through the fall. (A perfect compliment to Mango Languages, available through your local libraries.) Stories and Songs with Rizwan continues on Tuesdays and Saturdays at 10:30am. Artist Malcolm Brown’s “Color + Water,” a collection of fine art oceanscapes, runs through Sept. 13. The library is now closed both Sundays and Mondays.

Have a great week.