48 new cases, three new clusters

Edgartown restaurants shuttered by COVID; Loft to require proof of vaccination or negative COVID test for entry.


Updated 3:50 pm

New COVID-19 cases doubled last week to 48 and include three new COVID clusters, according to the Martha’s Vineyard boards of health report.

There are 25 new cases of fully vaccinated individuals, one was partially vaccinated, and 20 were not vaccinated. Two had an unknown vaccination status.

Of the new cases, 35 were symptomatic, two had no symptoms, and 11 are unknown. Health officials are still following 40 of the cases, seven are not being followed, and one was lost to follow up.

In an update Monday afternoon, Tisbury health agent and boards of health spokesperson Maura Valley reported there were six new cases reported Sunday and seven new cases on Monday for a total of 13 this week.

For the first time in months, the boards of health have confirmed three new COVID clusters, all from staff at different Edgartown establishments — 14 at Alchemy, five at Port Hunter, and six at the Harbor View.

The Island has reported nine other COVID clusters since the pandemic began: an October wedding (eight cases), Cronig’s Market (19 cases), a Bible study group (11 cases), M.V. Hospital (five cases), Project Headway (four cases), King’s barbershop (eight cases), Shirley’s Hardware (all six staff), the Barn Bowl & Bistro (nine cases), and Cardboard Box (three). A cluster is defined as more than two people from different families or households with a shared source of infection.

The Port Hunter and Alchemy temporarily closed their doors during the Island’s busiest month of the year.

Edgartown health agent Matt Poole told The Times Monday that two restaurants in Edgartown had temporarily closed due to staff testing positive for COVID-19. All of this comes as the Island has had an uptick in positive COVID-19 results. The Island boards of health are expected to release an update on last week’s numbers later today, but as of Friday the Island had 29 cases.

The Port Hunter has been closed since August 2, but is expected to reopen Tuesday, according to the restaurant’s website. 

Poole called the Port Hunter’s situation a “success story” due to the restaurant’s quick action in identifying and containing the positive case.

“It was an example of people doing the right thing,” Poole said. 

The other restaurant to close was Alchemy, which Poole described as a “bigger group.” 

As of now, Poole said he was not aware of any reopening date for Alchemy. Both restaurants also have high vaccination rates, according to Poole.

Poole stressed the importance of personal responsibility in dealing with COVID and the Delta variant. “Make smart decisions and minimize risk,” he said.

He added the vaccine is doing its job, but there is an early contagious period before immunity kicks in, which is why vaccinated people still need to take precautions such as social distancing in crowded places and mask wearing.

“Community wide we need to all understand the environments that we choose to spend time, social events we go to, public places. We should all assume we may be exposed to delta,” Poole said. “If there are children in the mix or those that can’t vaccinate..we need to go back to get our numbers in check.”

Alchemy Restaurant closed on Friday after a member of their staff tested positive for COVID-19, according to an Instagram post. “We will be testing the remainder of our staff and sanitizing the restaurant in the interim. We apologize sincerely for any inconvenience this may cause, but we believe this is the right thing to do to protect our staff, guests, and community,” the post states.

The post also says plans to reopen this week will be posted on their social media and website.

Meanwhile, some establishments are increasing COVID protocols. In an email Monday, The Loft in Oak Bluffs said they are now asking patrons to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test within 72 hours before entering the club. In a follow up email, Joe Chambers of CK Communications said a photo of a vaccine card on someone’s phone will work. The Loft hosts the MV Concert Series.

“If a patron is not able to show proof of vaccination or a clean COVID test, they will not be allowed to attend the performance, and their ticket purchase will be refunded. MV Concert Series and the Loft are committed to providing a safe environment for all to work, listen, and enjoy live music,” according to a statement from CK Communications Group. “We will work closely with the state and local health department and follow best practices to create a safe and healthy concert experience. It is our hope that we can ease these restrictions once further progress has been made reducing transmission of the virus. Until then, we appreciate your patience and cooperation.”

Last week’s results bring the total number of confirmed positive results to 1,609 since the pandemic began in March of 2020. Of those cases 824 are males, 784 are females, and one is nonbinary.

The hospital has administered 27,911 vaccine doses — 13,827 first doses and 13,927 second doses.

As of July 30, the hospital has administered a total of 21,863 COVID tests. Of those, 1,125 are positives and 20,728 are negatives. 

The TestMV site has administered a total of 40,146 COVID tests. Of those, 398 are positives, 38,748 are negatives, and zero are pending results. 

The town of Aquinnah has administered 556 tests, with three positive results.

The Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) has reported a total of 15 positive cases of COVID-19.

There were 18 positive tests reported at the Martha’s Vineyard Public Schools, from a total of 16,122 tested. 

Due to how tests are conducted, there can be a discrepancy between the number of positive individuals and the number of positive tests reported.


Updated with Sunday and Monday case numbers. An earlier post incorrectly stated Atria Restaurant was closed due to a COVID case. — Ed.


  1. Good reporting would have you find out how many came to Obamas party and who was maskless and for how long. Instead you continue the Covid hysteria with cases that dont mean anything and say nothing on the hypocrisy of the party.

    • If there are any cases that will result from the Obama party, it is too soon to know. Even the quickly spreading delta variant takes at least 3 days to appear, other iterations, longer. Your obsession with hating Obama and keeping covid political, after all the months and months of your spreading covid disinformation, outright lies, exaggerations, and minimizing, is getting a little old, ENGELMAN.

      • I am not calling for names Jackie nor do I care about the party nor do I hate Obama. I just want the times to tell us what “”scaled down”” looked like and comment on the sophisticated maskless instead of parroting cases cases cases.

        • Andy — do you realize what you write ?
          you say “find out how many came to Obamas party and who was maskless”
          Then you say “you are not calling for names”
          When the article was about Obama’s party, the times reported pertinent information.
          This article is about rising covid cases and you are screaming about Obama’s party.
          “Nor do I hate Obama” you say– How can you actually put that in print ? We all know you Andrew— have you no shame ?
          If you hate the guy just say it– man up.
          Since I am a liberal , I try not to hate anyone, but I will be right out there and say that I have utter contempt for trump and actually do hope that bad things happen to him.
          Excuse me– at least I am honest.

          • You’re so funny Don Don!
            “I’m a Liberal, I try not to hate anyone… but Trump”
            This is in the same rebuttal calling out someone for pointing out the hypocrisy of Obama’s party?
            You haven’t changed a bit DonDon!
            Fact: hundreds of people came from all over the world to attend Obama’s party. They came and partied maskless (as if paper masks actually filter viruses) meanwhile insisting that “everyone get jabbed and wear a mask always”… double standards much?
            The totalitarian,technocrat, globalist liberals are cheering on the destruction of the U.S., and installing the The Great Reset, and Americans like you are endorsing it. I finally awakened from the Liberal trance and realized that Obama and all his cohorts are working to destroy America. According the Media they control, they are winning.
            Meanwhile, the vast majority of the voting Americans don’t want any of it.
            Polarization: you are either with the Flag-burning Fascists, who want no country, boarders or freedoms, or you are with the Americans who love their country and are willing to stand up against this insanity.
            Choose wisely.

          • Craig. Nice to see you haven’t changed much either.

            How are things in Hawaii ? Tell me, did you ever figure out how the cia got all those explosives into every corner of every floor of the world trade centers without anybody noticing?
            I had never heard of the “great reset” , so I looked it up.
            Seems this is an idea by Prince Charles to take the opportunity to do a little tweaking of our society when the economies of the world start to come back. It seemed to have an emphasis on some environmental issue that we are no doing so well on. Perhaps you haven’t seen the videos..
            How about this one ?

            Tell me Craig, how does a speech about reshaping our economies and our environmental footprint turn into
            “The totalitarian,technocrat, globalist liberals are cheering on the destruction of the U.S., and installing the The Great Reset, and Americans like you are endorsing it. I finally awakened from the Liberal trance and realized that Obama and all his cohorts are working to destroy America. According the Media they control, they are winning.
            Meanwhile, the vast majority of the voting Americans don’t want any of it.
            Polarization: you are either with the Flag-burning Fascists, who want no country, boarders or freedoms, or you are with the Americans who love their country and are willing to stand up against this insanity.”

            I think the last word of your quote says it all.

            You know my e mail address– feel free to have a conversation with one of your old flag burning fascist buddies who doesn’t want a country , borders, or any freedoms.

            Or maybe with your old American buddy who loves his country and is willing to stand up against this insanity.”
            Our definitions of what “insanity” is may differ.
            But I will tell you I love this country.
            Don’t lump me into your conspiracy theory rants.

        • Im sure everyone believes you don’t hate Obama or care about the party, ENGELMAN. You’ve only said this under every article mentioning the party, and under several articles, like this one, that have nothing to do with Obama or his party. I think you should tell us all again how little you care, just to make sure we all understand.

  2. Andrew– I can assure you that none of the cases reported last week were from Obama’s party.
    I doubt any of the people who tested positive last week were at Obama’s party either, as everyone was tested before having anything to do with the party.
    And talk about hypocrisy– you fault a local newspaper for not reporting the names of individuals who were at the party, and how long they were there without a mask on.
    Should the Times go over the surveillance tapes and identify these people.. I mean , really Andrew, it’s not like they were committing any crime.
    You railed about the freedom of the jan 6 terrorist who ransacked the capitol building and wanted to hang the V.P of the U.S.
    Going over publicly available video to identify those people was an affront to their freedom and privacy. you think.
    Hypocrisy indeed.

  3. We should all just stop commenting on anything this Andrew person has to say…they do it all for the attention and to argue.
    I would like to say, that I am not surprised by this report, Covid and the variants, are here for the long haul. We should not think we are going to be back to any type of normalcy, any time soon. The folks who rail against the vaccine (because of whatever conspiracy theory they believe in) will continue to be the biggest spreaders of this disease.
    The politicization of this disease and the vaccine, in shameful.

    • Gail
      Your point about not responding to Andrew is a good one– However, he does provide some degree of entertainment, as most of his comments fall into the category of comedy.
      it would be funnier if it weren’t so serious.

    • It’s likely Andrew Engelman makes more posts on more articles on this site than anyone else. I’m not sure if the Times keeps those statistics. If nothing else it keeps a lonely man busy to think he’s of some importance here. His repetitiveness makes it easy ignore what he writes. I did ask the Editor if a “block” option could be activated a few months ago, but have now adopted my own mental one for when I see his name.

    • Good point but the bigger question is why does the Times continue to publish his ridiculous comments, some of which can get people killed?

  4. Also, the article doesn’t mention what the Harborview is doing after the positive tests there?

  5. And The Newes Pub at The Kelley House (also Edgartown) has now closed due to Covid19 infections there.

    There is a sign on the restaurant front door.

    Be careful out there, folks.

  6. With compliments to Gail and Don and Gayle for speaking well on the subject, may I remind us that Dr. Fauci (get ready for the boos) called this epoch, #4?, the pandemic of the unvaccinated. Surely I am sorry for those who got caught in this web who are young children and/or cannot for medical reasons be vaccinated. The rest of us will largely be okay. But it is very sad to think that this whole thing continues to be carried on by anti-vaxxers. Why the anti folk cannot realize the fact that they are the ones dying is astonishing. Along with, of course, now young (under 12) children. How incredibly sad. An old acquaintance just told me, “I don’t want to be a guinea pig” and “it’s the immigrants who are causing this spread, and Joe Biden has let in over 3 million of them since he was inaugurated.” I don’t even know how to respond to that kind of thinking. Deep breaths, everyone.

  7. MASS PSYCHOSIS – From Joost Meerlow: “The social transformation that unfolds under totalitarianism is built upon and sustained by delusion for only deluded men and women regress to the child like status of obedient and submissive subjects and hand over complete control of their lives to politicians and bureaucrats.” Ask yourself is this happening? Read history are we repeating the political equivalent of the 1930’s? Which produced: Franco, Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, Tojo a world war and 10s of millions of deaths. This is how it starts scare the population and then offer them relief which reduces or eliminates freedom. From the comments here, we are sliding down that path. The United States is based on the Constitution and rule of law and democracy, what is happening now is eroding the very foundations of this country. Yet we argue about a American (a member of the ruling class which tells us we must obey), having a birthday party while the country slides into dysfunction, tribalism and closer to to totalitarianism. Only free men can stop tyranny, focus on the big picture not distractions.

    • People who are free and decent and sane voluntarily do all they can, according to science, to stop a pandemic from killing— get vaccinated, wear a mask, social distance, stay out of crowds, wash hands frequently. Selfish and ignorant people need rules and mandates to be sure their selfish stupidity doesn’t kill or sicken anyone else, especially those who are vulnerable, like children and the immunocompromised. Cult “patriots,” who liken a community coming together to protect the health of all, to Nazis and fascist regimes, need an intervention or medication or both. If these people were not free, their insane rants would not be so available on social media.

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