Oak Bluffs: Community food resources

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— Shelby Regan

Our days remain beautiful and unseasonably warm even when temperatures drop into the low 30s during the night. The morning sun usually warms us up quickly. The birds are really enjoying the suet and emptying the feeders rapidly, and for some reason the squirrels are making few appearances in my yard. The approaching winter seems to slow everything down, including me. I am still thankfully able to do a great deal, but it just takes me a week instead of a day. The weekly crossword in the newspaper that I enjoy doing has fallen victim to this as many times it has been sacrificed for fuel to start my woodstove fire, even before I have completed the puzzle. I am thankful, though, that the wood stove has been our main source of heat with this mild weather. I sometimes feel like the bears who get ready for winter by eating and napping before they hibernate. It is difficult to not sit and read books all day, as now I am engrossed in reading “The Guest Book.” And then the new season of “The Crown” premiered over the weekend. Very interesting series, but I am going to have to re-watch the two episodes I watched on Sunday as I am positive that in one of the Windsor Castle scenes I saw a mouse run across the carpet. I shall watch for it again. Seems impossible, but then so did seeing a fly on top of a man with white hair during the debates.

Sympathies to the friends and family of Allan “Buddy” deBettencourt, who passed last weekend, just nine days after his brother Nelson. Buddy was a native Islander in every sense of the word. He served the town well as a captain of the ladder truck of the Oak Bluffs Fire Department, and as a longtime park commissioner. He will be missed by many, including his two sons and daughters-in-law, and six grandchildren. We are so very sorry.

A correction to the item in last week’s column regarding the 50th anniversary of the establishment of Bink’s Auto. Sue and Willy deBettencourt are not just the managers of the shop, but also the owners. Congratulations again.

Eric deBettencourt has returned to his home in California after a short visit with his mother and siblings. Eric’s daughter Emily is driving across the country to join her father in Los Angeles and to explore the Western coast.

Grab and Go Meals are still available at the Oak Bluffs School during weekdays from noon to 1 pm until Dec. 17. If possible, to make it easier to keep an accurate count, please pre-order by calling the school at 508-693-0951.

Island residents 60 years and older: your voice matters. Please participate in the Island-wide adult Healthy Aging on Martha’s Vineyard (HAMV) survey. Your opinion will influence how our Island creates the programs and infrastructure that will support our growing older adult population. To complete the survey, go to sites.google.com/view/hamv-survey. If you would prefer a paper copy, please contact Cindy Trish at ctrish@hamv.org, or call 508-693-7900, ext. 455. Results from this survey will help HAMV, the county, and the towns make important decisions about how to make the Vineyard a great place for you to age, and for you to share how you would like to contribute to our Island. One in three residents are now over 60. Planning ahead is essential to maintaining an aging friendly Island for this growing population.

Since April 2019, in collaboration with the Greater Boston Food Bank, Good Shepherd Parish has offered food distributions of frozen proteins, along with fresh fruits and vegetables. Food will be distributed at the Parish Center’s back entrance at 55 School St. for anyone experiencing food insecurity. Due to precautions for the coronavirus, all folks receiving food are asked to remain in their vehicles, and prepared boxes will be placed in your car by staff/volunteers. The next distribution for Food Baskets will be on Nov. 21 at 10:30 am. Serving Hands distribution has one location for pickup on November 20th at 1:30pm: at the Ag Hall in West Tisbury.

Just a friendly reminder that my deadline for the Nov. 25 edition of the Times is tomorrow, Nov. 20, by noon, because of the approaching Thanksgiving holiday.

We send birthday smiles to Jake Ponte on Nov. 20. Susan deBettencourt on the 21st, Gina deBettencourt on the 23rd, Talia Luening and Pam Herman on the 24th, Deb Brown and Priscilla Sylvia on the 25th, and Nora Jardin, Bill Anderson Jr., and Myrna Rogers Sylva on the 26th.

Enjoy your week. Peace.

If you have any Oak Bluffs Town Column suggestions, email Megan Alley, meganislandmegan@comcast.net.