Oak Bluffs: Blue Folk band and Coast Guard boat

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— Shelby Regan

“When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”

This quote, made well-known by Jimi Hendrix, who may have heard it from the teachings of Sri Chinmoy Ghose, an Indian spiritual leader who may have paraphrased the quote from a speech by the prime minister of the United Kingdom in the 1800s, William Gladstone. In any case, it has been in my head for the last week as the Island community came together to help the Venezuelan immigrants who were flown to Martha’s Vineyard without warning by the governor of Florida. He’s made it clear that he wanted to prove a point and had no problem using human lives to do it. The young men, women, and children who were dropped off here had no idea where they were, but it didn’t take long for the Island community to make them feel safe and comfortable and cared for. I think the only point that was proven was how low the Florida governor would go in his quest for power.

Meanwhile, it’s been kind of amusing to see the explosion of media coverage about the Island. It seems that the press can’t decide if we are a “wealthy celebrity playground” or a “ghost town after Labor Day” (just two quotes from the many articles).  My favorite quote from an Islander about the refugees was “they enriched us.” Yes, they did, by reminding us who we really are — away from social media — and how we respond when people are in need.

Tivoli Day was granted a perfect sunny Saturday this year, and the annual street fair on Circuit Avenue was just wonderful. It was great to see friends and neighbors out enjoying our Main Street. I caught up with so many friends I haven’t seen all summer, and the music was awesome (thanks, Philly D!).

There will be a concert not to miss at the library on Thursday, Sept. 22. Blue Folk will perform a fresh take on bluegrass, folk, and American songbook tunes. If you love guitar and banjo picking, be there at 3 pm for an hour-long concert in the meeting room.

On Saturday at the library, right after storytime at 10:15, kids can Touch a Boat at 11 am. The Coast Guard is bringing a boat on land to be explored up close, kids will love it! Later in the day, you can learn about Ayurveda, one of the world’s oldest holistic healing systems. Sonja Josephson, a Kripalu certified Ayurveda health counselor, will talk about adjusting diet and lifestyle as we transition from summer to fall. This free workshop is from 2 to 3 pm.

The beautiful Farm Pond Trail was planned to be cleaned up by students in grades 6 to 8 on Tuesday, Sept. 17. Thank you, students!

And thank you to the people who clean up trash everywhere they go, on our sidewalks, beaches and trails. I see it happening on my walks every day. It makes such a difference and it’s not that hard to do.

Featherstone is hosting “The Art of William Blakesley: A Retrospective” through Oct. 2. For nearly 50 years, the Blakesley studio on Montgomery Square greeted everyone as they entered the MVMCA campgrounds from the harbor. Bill chronicled Vineyard life and his paintings are filled with nostalgia and gorgeous colors. I am lucky enough to have a well-read copy of the book of “Jump-Rope Rhymes for Vineyard Kids” written by his wife, much-loved teacher Liz Cornell, which is filled with his artwork also. There was a gathering of old Campground friends to celebrate this exhibit at Featherstone on Sept.18. Herb and Dorothy Wass, daughter Gretchen, the Rehaks, and the Sturdivants were on hand to remember and thank their dear friends Bill and Liz.

Speaking of Featherstone, congratulations to Garden Gate Child Development Center on their permanent move to the Featherstone campus! There will be an open house and reception on Thursday evening, Sept. 22, from 5 to 7 pm. Directors Leigh Ann Yuen and Dawn Warner and their talented staff will show off their new classrooms and studios which have been designed with joy. I am thrilled Garden Gate has moved to Oak Bluffs, and I know that the partnership with Featherstone will bring exciting experiences for all.

September birthdays continue with Mike Magaraci celebrating on the 22nd, and new grandpa Sean Conley on the 23rd. Happiness to Ken Davey on the 24th, and on the 25th balloons go to Misty Araujo and Jeff St. Pierre. Susie Wallo celebrates on Sept. 26, and Beth Blankenship O’Connor will skate into a new year on Sept. 27.

Send me your news!

If you have any Oak Bluffs Town Column suggestions, email Joanne Lambert, joannelamber@gmail.com.

 

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