Chilmark: Finding big brothers and big sisters

Gabe, age 9, who lives with his mom in Chilmark, was highlighted in the January Big Brothers/Big Sisters newsletter. He's been waiting more than a year for a Big Brother. —Courtesy Valerie Sonnenthal

It’s our first Valentine’s Day without a stop at Chilmark Chocolates, but it’s also a long weekend, with schools and state and town offices closed on Monday, Feb. 17 for Presidents Day. Our library will be closed on Tuesday, Feb. 18. Just to clarify, there is no February Potluck Jam; the next one is March 7.

The Chilmark energy committee wants to discuss moving our Island to a resolution of 100 percent renewable energy by 2040, and is offering a series of one-hour informal conversations about this initiative, and to help us think about our community’s path toward a fossil-free future. The first one, being held at the Chilmark library, is Wednesday, Feb. 12 at 5 pm.

If you want to try Grey Barn’s new cinnamon buns, you’ll have to wait until Saturday, March 7. Sadly, they sold out by 9:30 am, not expecting it to be such a popular item. They promise there will be plenty for all in March.

Congratulations to Thomas Bena, who has spent the past four years touring with his film “One Big Home.” That chapter closed this week on Feb. 11 with a lecture at UConn. Bena looks forward to turning his attention to new projects. Of course the movie will continue its own journey; should you know anyone interested in screening it, they can always contact him at

Do you know about the Waiting Littles? Gabe, age 9, who lives with his mom in Chilmark, was highlighted in the January Big Brothers/Big Sisters newsletter; he’s been waiting over a year for a Big Brother. There are 14 Island boys looking for Big Brother mentors. Read Gabe’s story and learn more at

Internship applications for the Yard are due on Feb. 15. If you did not attend an informational webinar but still want to apply, email Learn more at
Permaculture Through the Seasons at the Allen Farm continues on Saturday, Feb. 15 from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm with a donation-based class: “Trees, Edible Forest Gardening.” 421 South Road.

On Saturday, Feb. 15, a Teen Game Con, for ages 12 to 18, hosted free by Island libraries and Alex’s Place, will be held at the MVRHS cafeteria from noon to 3 pm. Video games played across multiple platforms, with pizza and snacks.

The Trustees lead a Winter Walk, Sunday, Feb. 16, from 1 to 3 pm at their conservation restriction property. Meet at Squibnocket Beach. Members $5, others $10. RSVP required to 508-627-3599 or

The M.V. Coast Guard Auxiliary meets on Wednesday, Feb. 19, at the West Tisbury Fire Station, 452 State Road, from 6:30 to 8 pm; the public is welcome.

Chilmark Community Church hosts Thursday Strings from 10 to 11am; it’s a drop-in, bring your guitar, fiddle, bass, banjo, mandolin, or whatever you like to play. Also there’s a weekly Thursday Prayer group at noon.

The Chilmark library hosts Stories and Songs with Rizwan on Tuesdays and Saturdays at 10:30 am. Irene’s Afterschool Craft continues on Wednesdays at 3:30. For more info call 508-645-3360 or go to Follow our library on Facebook.

Pathways Arts Ocean Film Night on Thursday, Feb. 13, will show new research on sperm whales, plus shorts. Love Songs on Friday, Feb. 14, includes a fantastic lineup of Island musicians. Gimili Gita Glavin leads the Saturday, Feb. 15, Collage Workshop from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. Hear Wallace Bullock perform an Homage to African American poets on Tuesday, Feb. 18. The February Art exhibit includes paintings by Basia Jaworska and Shavanae Anderson, collage by Suesan Stovall, and ceramics by Chioke Morais. All evening programs begin at 7 pm, doors open at 6:30 pm. All events are free, donations welcome. Learn more about presenting and offerings at Stop by to see the art exhibit, write, enjoy your lunch Tuesday through Saturday, 11 am to 5 pm.

Help keep a Vineyard kid in our community; check out the second annual Foster Parent Recruitment event Saturday, Feb. 29, 11 am to 2 pm, an informative and casual get-together with take-home information packets, applications will also be available. If you’d like to speak to someone about the event, please contact Department of Children and Families (DCF) social worker Chris Russo, 508-760-0275, and be sure to let local foster parent Elexis Wildanger know that you’re planning to come so they can prepare enough packets; please call or text 508-326-1155. The event will be held in Oak Bluffs. We are particularly fortunate that the necessary DCF training will be offered on-Island. Any questions or interest are welcome. Please share.

Have a great week.