Chilmark: Peaceful garden walks

Seen while on an evening walk toward Dutcher Dock. — Valerie Sonnenthal

Sweet honeysuckle fills the air while hydrangeas show off their full-bodied blossoms, I love this time of year. It’s a comfort to see gardens exploding with color and offering their seasonal bounty. I harvested my garlic, which turned out better than last year’s, but still not as full as previous years. I loved seeing Albert Fischer’s garlic hanging against the outside of his barn, and followed suit with my own.

I want to wish a belated happy 100th birthday to Betty Eddy. If you were lucky enough to attend the Chilmark Women’s Symposium when Betty hosted, you were treated to wonderful life stories, where there was always something to learn while being able to laugh at yourself. At 92, she published her first book; you can still enjoy “Letters from the Attic” by Betty Eddy Lidgerwood, or share it with a family member.

On July Fourth, I attended a salon offered biweekly by the BLM M.V. organizers. If you want to take steps in your life to be actively antiracist, this is a safe place to start. Contact All are welcome to daily nine-minute vigils held at 10:30 am at Beetlebung Corner.

Congratulations to clay artists Heather Goff and her husband Bill O’Callaghan, who’ve created Island Folk Pottery, where you’ll find a magical sculpture trail and pottery shed showroom/gallery on their Chilmark property, opening for social distance walks and visits. Learn more at, or call 508-955-9944.

The Freedom Garden at Native Teaching Farm has had many loving hands helping to create this wonderful community healing garden. See, 94 North Road.

Kara Taylor’s Gallery is open for the summer, featuring new work from South Africa; 24 South Road, 508-332-8171.

Flanders Field will remain a field of dreams with the cancellation of Chilmark Softball this summer.

For the latest Island COVID-19 test numbers and to make an appointment, see

The Yard is holding virtual yoga and dance classes, and the YardWork interactive series; see

Peaked Hill Studio is offering a July 24-26 weekend of Kaiut Yoga Workshops with guest teacher Tucker Shelton from Asheville, N.C. Learn more at Online Kaiut classes are offered five days a week, and you are welcome to take class outside at the studio in Chilmark. Contact the studio for more info.

The Chilmark library is hosting Online Drop-In Poetry Workshops with Donald Nitchie, Saturdays, July 11 and 18, from 2 to 3:30 pm. Freedom Songs Artist Talk with Kevin Blythe Sampson on Wednesday, July 15, at 5 pm is a talk on his interactive assemblage art at Union Chapel from July 12 to 19. Email to sign up and get the Zoom invitation. Events for the Youth Summer Reading calendar have been posted at Chilmark library’s Weekly Read Aloud Stories with Sarah is available through a video link. For info, see, and sign up for the weekly newsletter on the Programs page.

Volunteer opportunities can be found at

Eat local, get takeout, see art, play tennis, enjoy our beaches, farms, and farm stands, take walks, cook, watch the stars or the fog roll by, it’s summer, go fishing, we do hope you enjoy yourselves. Wear masks in all public places.

If you need any help, Chilmark Neighbors offers volunteer assistance. You can find them and anything COVID-related at this great page our town created:

If you’re on Facebook, 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.

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