Edgartown: Haunted tour, fashion show, and ESP

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— Shelby Regan

As I (finally) sit down to write this week’s column, I’ve got butterflies in my belly! Baby girl child is sitting in an airport in New York, heading to Europe for two months. I realize that chronologically speaking, she is not a baby girl, but it feels like I put my baby on a big plane to head into the big wide world. I’m terribly excited for her, but I’m sure going to miss that sweet face around these parts, and honestly, if I could, I’d wrap her in bubble wrap and keep her by my side always. But as a girl who became a responsible adult far too soon, and never sowed my wild oats, I’m booting her out the door at the same time I’m holding onto her tight as can be. And I’ve just defined most parents’ experiences as our kids grow up, haven’t I?

So, what’s going on around these parts? I’ve been hyper-focused on Amelia and her trip, and have failed to notice that anyone else is around. Ha-ha. The weather certainly has been tough to take this last week. I used to have a hard and fast rule that the heat doesn’t go on until Nov. 1. But I’ve softened in my old age. Or I’m just more willing to part with a dollar. Or I just can’t stand to be cold anymore. But I caved last night. Usually I have this little window where I can just close the windows and be fine for October. But this year, I closed the windows and it was STILL too cold for my old bones. So on went the heat. Not high. Just enough to take the edge off. I am still hoping for some summer days ahead. Or at least some bright, sunny, beautiful days. I’m already tired of gray. That could make for a very long winter.

This weekend officially ends the “high season,” and sends us into the shoulder season, but there is still much fun to be had. Just in time for Halloween, author Thomas Dresser leads the intrigued with this curated, self-guided tour through the dark and mysterious streets of Edgartown. The tour explains mysterious encounters that real people have described, by illuminating, at each stop, the true history of the happenings. To experience the tour right now: download the free Built Story app, available for both iOS and Android. Once in the app, just search Thomas Dresser. Each tour costs $10. Once purchased, tour takers can start, pause, stop, and retake the tour as many times as they wish for 30 days.

The Farmers Market continues on Saturday mornings from 9 am until noon at the Ag Hall in West Tisbury. Get your local yummies and gifts for the holidays. View the list of vendors at wtfmarket.org. I know several people who have already started their holiday shopping. Give the gift of local goods! You can’t go wrong, whether buying for yourself or others.

The FARM Institute is offering up Fall Barnyard Buddies on Saturday mornings from 9:30 until 10:30 am. This is best suited for kids age 2 to 5. Meet the animals and explore the farm. Activities change weekly. Registration is required, and there is a fee. For details, check out the website, thetrustees.org/place/farm-institute-the, or call 508-627-7007.

The Edgartown library is having a fashion show on Saturday, Oct. 8, from 4 until 5 pm. Celebrate fall fashion with looks from three of the Island’s top clothing designers: Angela Sison of Conrado, Randi Sylvia of Kenworthy, and Gareth Brown of Rooey Knots. Registration is requested. You can register at the bit.ly/ELFallFashion registration page.

Are you a David Bowie fan? Silly question. Who isn’t? That said, if you are like me, you won’t want to miss the Bowie documentary “Moonage Daydream” at the M.V. Film Center this week. It is playing Oct. 6 and 13 at 4 pm, and Oct. 5, 8, and 9 at 7:30 pm.

The Oak Bluffs Fall 5K Run is Sunday, Oct. 9 at 9 am, for the benefit of the Oak Bluffs School eighth grade. You can register at runsignup.com. After you run, you can head on over to Washington Park for the Oak Bluffs Open Market, from 10 am until 2 pm.

At 4 pm on Sunday, the annual St. Francis Day Blessing of the Pets will be happening at Grace Church in Vineyard Haven. All are welcome. Bring your pets, whether great, small, or stuffed. Treats for cats, dogs, and humans after the service. For more information, visit Grace Church’s website at graceepiscopalmv.org, or call 508-693-0332.

Happy birthday to my favorite niece (on M.V.), Abby Gardner, on Oct. 6, my cousin Maddie Kelley on Oct. 9, and Buck Martin on Oct. 12.

If you haven’t read it yet, you should check out Karl Nelson’s Letter to the Editor (“Losing teachers to the mainland,” Sept. 28) about losing teachers to the mainland. He really hits the mark. When I started 15 years ago, there were multiple licensed teachers applying for not only teaching jobs, but also the ESP (assistant) jobs. Now Edgartown still doesn’t have a music teacher. And we are short many ESP positions. The music teacher position was just recently advertised again for, I think, the third time. It’s been offered to, and I stress this, off-Island applicants (I’m guessing there have not been any Island applicants), and everyone who was offered the position has declined. Why? Housing. I’m sure that the fact that we still don’t have a contract doesn’t help, especially when faced with the cost of living here compared with off-Island.

Additionally, we don’t have any subs. Last week, I went in with bruised ribs and body aches after my fall, because there were no subs, and if I didn’t go in, another teacher would have to give up their planning time to cover for me. We should not be in a position where we have to take another teacher away from their job to cover ours when we are sick. So if you’re interested in subbing, here’s your chance. Contact the superintendent’s office in Vineyard Haven to apply. The pay is $120 per day. You won’t get rich, but it’s better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, as they say. Many times, an ESP will fill a teacher slot, and you would take the ESP spot, which is a great way to get your feet wet. Teachers will leave plans for you if you do cover a class yourself. And we’ll take good care of you. I promise. And we will be very grateful.

I think that’s about all I’ve got. Have a great week. Enjoy the long weekend. Stay kind!

If you have any Edgartown Town Column suggestions, email Gail Gardner, ggardnermv@gmail.com.