Aquinnah: Vineyard of the future

— Kyra Steck

It kind of feels like spring might actually be here to stay. The daffodils are blooming all over town and the weather has been constant with some cold spells here and there. The only thing budding on our road are the briars, but every night I hear the pinkletinks shouting. I mean, I’m not going to pull out my summer clothes or anything crazy, but I might clean out the planters on my deck and plant some hardy seeds.

At the library this month: the next sessions of Juli Vanderhoop’s four-part virtual series about keeping honey bees will be on April 24, then May 8 and 22. Email Julia at to register. The book group will meet next Thursday, April 22, at 3 pm via Zoom. They will discuss Kiley Reid’s “Such a Fun Age,” email to register. There will be a vegetable gardening Q and A with Emily Armstrong of Island Grown Initiative on April 29 at 5 pm via Zoom (email Julia at the above address to register). The library has take-home crafts for kids that you can pick up at the library any Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday in April between 11 am and 4 pm. As always, they are offering curbside pick-up during those times as well.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum will present the One Island, Many Stories Speaker Series: Changing with Liz Durkee this Thursday, April 15, at 4 pm on Zoom. What will living on the Vineyard look like in the next 15, 20, 50 years? With climate change, the housing crisis, and the potential for changes in infrastructure, what do we need to prepare for? How do we want life to be here? Join MVM research librarian Bow Van Riper and Liz Durkee, climate change planner for the Martha’s Vineyard Commission, in a conversation around the theme of “changing.” Members $5, nonmembers $7. Register at

This Saturday, April 17, from 10 am to 12 pm the Vineyard Conservation Society will host its annual Earth Day Beach Clean-up. The beaches in Aquinnah where there will be volunteers with gloves and trash bags are Lobsterville, Philbin, and Tribal Beaches. You are welcome to bring your own supplies if you do not want to interact with others; mask wearing will be enforced. You can also pick your own stretch of beach or trail not listed and gather trash. If you are not on-Island this Saturday, do it another day this month instead. VCS is asking that you take photos of the “coolest, grossest, and most unusual things” found and tag them on social media @vineyardconservation or email them the photos at There will be prizes awarded for the best things found.

After we help clean up the beaches, the Yard is presenting Dance Education Lab: Hip Hop for Social Justice facilitated by The Wondertwins, Deborah Damast, Jesse Keller Jason, and Daria Fitzgerald on April 17, from 2 to 5 pm. This is a virtual workshop where participants will explore the possibility of engaging with hip-hop for social change through discussions, images, music, dance, and writing. The workshop will provide pedagogic strategies that engage collaborative dance-making with lineage and legacy that can be applied to any class setting and introduce participants to the Yard’s newly designed dance-making curricular units. To register and for more information go to

Welcome back to Juli Vanderhoop who just spent a week in Mexico for some much-needed sun and relaxation. She did have a long and arduous trip home but is happy that she went. Juli’s son, Emerson, will be moving to New York City at the end of the month where he will be living with his sister Ella. Emerson has been at Juli’s since leaving Dartmouth last spring due to the pandemic. Good luck, Emerson, and enjoy this next chapter. Many people in town are receiving their second COVID vaccine shots (thank goodness!) and are experiencing everything from mild/no symptoms to what feels like a 24-hour flu. After getting my second Pfizer shot, I was achy and tired for a day and then it was over. I felt fine and hugely relieved to be vaccinated.

Happy Birthday to Carole Vandal who celebrates on Friday. I hope your day is filled with love and music.

If you have any Aquinnah Town Column suggestions, email Molly Purves,