Community celebrates Celeste’s 30th birthday

Drive-through party included drums, gifts, and good wishes.


Celeste Ewing’s 30th birthday celebration included a drive-by of friends, family, and community members. Before 5 pm on Memorial Day, the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School parking lot was flooded with cars and emergency vehicles, all of them turned out to give Celeste a very special drive-by birthday.

Celeste’s father, Colin Ewing, led the procession out of the high school and down to the Ewing house on Old Schoolhouse Village, where he hopped off his motorcycle to greet his daughter.

Following Ewing were more than 50 vehicles filled with friends from her old high school Life Skills classes, family, and emergency personnel.

As the many well-wishers passed by, Celeste and her family stood near their driveway and waved. Many folks left flowers and other gifts for Celeste, but perhaps one of the most special gifts was Island rhythm masters Rick and Hudson Bausman, playing drums in the back of a truck especially for her.

The father-and-son duo, who are good friends with Celeste, jammed away as the birthday parade continued through the village and back out to the Edgartown–Vineyard Haven Road.

Five Dukes County Sheriff’s cruisers attended the celebration, along with Oak Bluffs Fire, Police, and EMTs. Even the Martha’s Vineyard Airport firefighting truck rolled by to wish Celeste a happy birthday.

Many of the cars that drove by had signs saying “Happy Birthday” and “Congratulations on 30.” Friends and family blew kisses to Celeste, and one car came through with Camp Jabberwocky stickers placed all over, which is a summer camp Celeste normally attends. One man even drove over on a moped to wave to Celeste and wish her the best.

After the first wave of cars drove by, some even came back again to say another cheerful hello to Celeste and her family.

Celeste’s mother, Chris Ewing, said one of the amazing things about her daughter is how she has touched so many people in the community through her kindness and compassion. Chris said that Celeste was busy earlier reading through birthday messages on her iPad, but she was happy to come out and experience the special celebration.

Normally, Chris said the Ewings have a big family reunion for Celeste’s birthday, but this year they had to think of another way to celebrate the big 3-0 while also being safe.

Colin said his daughter is a celebrity on Martha’s Vineyard, and he is thankful for the outpouring of community enthusiasm. “Celeste really does know everyone, and everyone knows her. I think it’s because she is a part of so much that goes on here,” Colin said.

After the last car drove by the Ewing house, Celeste said she had a great birthday all around.

“We took a power-walk and baked a cake,” Celeste said. “Vanilla cake with vanilla frosting is my favorite.”