Aquinnah: Sassafras Earth Education on PBS

—MV Times

The first day of school on the Island was this past Tuesday. Clyde Smith, who turned 18 last week, is a senior. Laina Benoit, Noah Manning, Yossi Monahan, Nahani Hyde, and Olive and Violet MacPhail are all juniors, and Hayden Higgins (who is off to boarding school this year) and Rodeo Purves-Langer are sophomores. Claus Smith started high school! Emmett Taylor and Amaya Hyde began eighth grade, and next year they will make the move to high school. Erick Moore began seventh grade, Ivan Vanderhoop and Clovis Smith started sixth grade, and Louis Moore is going to fifth grade, along with Nanawusuwee Vanderhoop and William Vanderhoop. Tillie Taylor, Lyle Vanderhoop, and his cousin, Kuhpay, are in fourth grade, Muhtuqwas Vanderhoop joined the big kids in first grade, and Wunotuway Vanderhoop is starting kindergarten. I hope everyone has a great, or at least not terrible, year at school.

The Aquinnah Pow Wow is this Saturday and Sunday at the Aquinnah Circle; gates open at 11 am, and the Grand Entry is at 12:30 pm. There will be dancing, drumming, and food. It is always a wonderful time.

At the library this month, the Afterschool Club is back, Thursdays at 3:30 pm. This Saturday from 3 to 4 pm, Bridgette of Maple Mehndi will be on hand for “henna on the deck”; email to register. Dick Johnson and Patrick Roden-Reynolds will give a talk on Lone star ticks and alpha-gal allergy (or the red meat allergy) that can come with their bites. The talk will be on the library deck at 5 pm, on Tuesday, Sept. 13; email to register. The next meeting of the book group will be on Sept. 20 at 3 pm to discuss “True Biz” by Sara Novic. The group will meet on the deck, email to register.

The MVC’s Climate Action Plan is now complete and available to review. They will be presenting at the Aquinnah board of selectmen’s meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 13, at 5 pm.

The Gay Head 10K Road Race is one month away. The race is on Sunday, Oct. 2, and the proceeds raised go to the upkeep of the lighthouse. There is also a kids fun run option around the Aquinnah Circle this year. Not sure what the age limit is on that fun run — I may do that one if I’m allowed. Registration is online at or

Congratulations to Sassafras Earth Education. It was featured on PBS’ “NewsHour” on August 23 — you can find the segment on the Sassafras website.

Aquinnah has a new resident! Sophia Welch and her husband, Kyle Colter, had a baby boy on Sept. 1 at 11:48 pm. I have not been told the name yet, but a sincere congratulations to the Welch and Colter families, especially big sister Ocie. Happy birthday to my dear friend, Anja May, who celebrates on Sept. 13.

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