Chilmark: Abundant local farms

I’ve always loved passing this magical vehicle on North Road. — Valerie Sonnenthal

Last week I participated in a Sing with Roberta Kirn online, which made me so happy to connect with friends I haven’t run into, and to be part of a welcome activity I’d been missing. Roberta’s next Sing is Thursday, June 4, at 5 pm; contact her at to join. I also got to do a library program with 22 attendees, including one-third of my Tibet travel mates joining us from Bainbridge Island, Wash., Alpine, Calif., and Dallas, Texas. What a surprise, since we’d not seen one another since last September. Thank you, Tracy Thorpe, for reaching out. If you have a program to offer our community, please let Tracy know; her email is

Spring is a time of abundance, and Chilmark is so fortunate to reap the rewards of our local farms. Here’s our local farmstand news:

Tea Lane Farm’s first Spring Plant Online Sale has begun, and has not only a gorgeous variety of flowers but also great information. Check out the program at Place your orders by 8 am Friday for a Saturday socially distanced pickup from 10 am to 4 pm.

Beetlebung Farm will be offering an online preorder and pay-in-advance option, with Friday pickups. Place online orders anytime between 9 am Sunday and 12 pm Thursday. Then you will be contacted with a Friday pickup time. Beginning Saturday, May 23, the honor-system farm stand will be open daily except Friday. Please be aware, only one person at a time may shop in the farm stand. Click to shop for pickup at

North Tabor Farm is offering a CSA this summer, beginning June 22 through August 31. On Monday they’ll post what is in the weekly bag. Preorders must be in by Wednesday at 5 pm, with Friday pickup at their stand, or Saturday at the West Tisbury Farmers Market, now at the Ag Hall. Learn more on their Facebook page, and sign up for their new newsletter at

Native Earth Teaching Farm is taking visitors. In fact, the goats are lonely, so feel free to say hi, pet them, or even feed them grass (only). If you want to lend a hand to help create the Recovery Garden so that next year it will be ready to be planted as an indigenous seed garden under Julie Vanderhoop’s direction, pick up instructions in the mailbox. Learn more at

The Chilmark Tavern will open for takeout on Thursday, May 21. Owner Jenna Petersiel said they “will do dinner and meal kits available for contact-free safe pickup starting at 5 pm most evenings. Ordering can be done online at or by phone at 508-645-9400. Once we get going, we will try our hand at delivery, but not just yet. Menu will change frequently, and we will run daily specials starting in a week or two.” Having had takeout a few times last summer from Chilmark Tavern just from the regular menu, I know they’ll do an awesome job.

Dump stickers are in; purchase yours on Wednesdays at the town dump on Tabor House Road. Stickers cost $25 each, or $10 for resident seniors over 65, and $35 for all nonresidents. Bring ID of proof of residence. Your dump sticker is also good for Aquinnah, Edgartown, and West Tisbury. Trash disposal costs $4 per barrel/bag of household trash; a partially full barrel counts as one barrel. Metal objects besides cans are subject to fees. Be sure household trash does not include construction material or hazardous waste. Learn more at

Get takeout in Menemsha: Larsen’s is open 10 am to 5 pm, call 508-645-2680; Menemsha Fish Market takes orders between 11 am and 5 pm at 508-645-2282; Menemsha Texaco, open daily from 9 am to 1 pm, takes pantry-item orders before noon at 508-645-2641, or email; and the Galley will open on Thursday, May 21.

The Aquinnah Shop is open for takeout noon to 7 pm, Thursday to Sunday, see Orange Peel Bakery has baked goods, nuts, granola, jam, honey, and many staples, with curbside pickup on Tuesdays and Fridays; see or call 508-645-2025.

Jan Buhrman and Kitchen Porch Catering continue online cooking; she even has an e-book available. To-go meal kits and grocery items are available through her Produce Packs; see for more info.

Chilmark resident Thorpe Karabees is collecting nomination-form signatures to be put on the ballot for state representative. You can email him at and he’ll send you a PDF for your signature. Read more about why he is running here:

Cast an early vote for the town election here:

I love that Nancy Aronie organized cake and flowers from Cup of Karma recipients and surprised Polly Simpkins at her Vineyard Haven home with a socially distanced surprise love bomb last week, with neighbor Paul Doherty able to catch the event on his camera.

Sign up for the virtual 2020 Chilmark Road Race at

Check Pathways Projects new content online including their Imagined Garden series, weekly Tuesday Writing & Poetry series, plus an Artist’s Talk with Frances McGuire and the Galapagos Whale Project Update. All are found on

Chilmark library’s weekly email newsletter lets you know current offerings, so sign up on the Programs page of the library website. Artist and teacher Tiffiney Shoquist offers drawing from observation, photographs, memory, and imagination, through guided practice, critiques, group discussions, and independent work, on Saturday, May 23, 12:30 to 1:30 pm. Children’s librarian Sarah DeBettencourt offers a Weekly Read-Aloud available through a video link. Crafts with Irene can be accessed here: Sign up for Philip Weinstein’s two-part lecture plus Q and A on James Joyce’s “Dubliners,” Wednesdays, May 20 and 27, 5 to 6:30 pm. Osprey Monitoring with Felix Neck, a virtual training session on Sunday, May 31, at noon with Liz Dengenis, will review the program’s 50-year history helping to establishing critical nesting habitats, and teach you how to approach a nest, collect data, and learn all about the natural history of these famous summer residents. Write to sign up for all adult online programs. For info, see

If you’ve just arrived and are self-quarantining or need any help, Chilmark Neighbors offers volunteer assistance after you provide basic information at Contact by phone is available Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm, and Sunday from 9 am to 4 pm, 508-545-3249 or email

If you’re on Facebook, you can check It’s a Chilmark Thing for up-to-date information about our town and Island, as some of what you find here may be dated.

Have a good week, and enjoy Memorial Day weekend.

If you have any Chilmark Town Column suggestions, email Valerie Sonnenthal,