Edgartown: Tough week at Edgartown School, and Dickensian Christmas Village

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— Shelby Regan

Happy Thanksgiving week! I can’t believe it’s late November already. Well, the temperatures the last few days are doing their best to convince me but part of me feels like we were only relaxing in the sun at the beach a few weeks ago. The days sometimes seem long but the weeks and months go quickly, and the years, they just fly by at lightning speed. 

This was one tough week at the Edgartown School. Well, all the schools really and the whole Island. Early Thursday morning is the day we went into a shelter-in-place. The kids immediately turn to the teacher, expecting some sort of useful information. But I had none. I hadn’t heard of a drill scheduled for that morning. And the kids themselves pointed out that the voice over the loudspeaker seemed more excited than during drills. I reassured the kids that a shelter in place is usually a medical emergency in the building or something like that and it just keeps us out of the way of emergency personnel. So we went about our business but after a half hour they started suspecting something was up and wondering if they’d miss their next class. It became clear that something had happened outside of the school after a good hour or so but we still didn’t know what. In fact, we didn’t use phones or computers. Kids aren’t supposed to have phones in schools anyway but adults are also not to use them during such situations. Eventually, word got around of the bank robbery in Vineyard Haven and the kids in my room, at least, breathed a bit easier. With not much else to do, we completed a special project that I needed to have done for next week for a school event, played some games, did some artwork, looked at old yearbooks for ideas for this year’s book, worked on a puzzle, ate lunch together in the room, and generally just tried to stay busy, learn a little, relax, and tried to not worry about what was happening. I was absolutely 100 percent crazy and completely exhausted by the time I got home. Even knowing that we were all safe, I still was crazy worried and pulling every single trick out of my magic hat to keep 8th graders focused, learning, and entertained while staying off electronics. It was really a wake up call for me. I realize how lucky we are to be able to feel pretty safe on this Island. Alas, we are not without our own dangers even here. As I write this, rumor has it that one of the perpetrators has been arrested. Fingers crossed that this has some closure soon. Thank you to all the EMS who have been working so hard on this case and my thoughts go out to the people who were working at the bank and their families. I hope you take some time to process everything that happened.

I know it isn’t Edgartown news per se but I think it’s important to share that Oak Bluffs has all sorts of Christmas fun planned on Friday and Saturday this week. From a crazy silly fun run to photos with Santa to the finale when they light a tree at Healey Park and light up Ocean Park. Check out the details at obamv.com/events/light-up-oak-bluffs. With Thanksgiving officially over at midnight, it’s perfectly okay to Christmas it up beginning Friday.

The public is invited to go see the Dickensian Christmas Village display at The Carnegie Heritage Center, complete with festive shops and homes with windows all aglow, villagers out and about for the holiday season, snow covered evergreen trees, and much more. They are open on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays during the day. Check out bit.ly/DickensianChristmas_MV for more information, email sissy@mvpreservation.org, or call 508-627-4440.

The Vineyard Artisans Festival is also happening on Friday and Saturday from 10 am until 4 pm at the Ag Hall. A $2 parking fee is for the Vineyard Artisans Scholarship Fund, which awards several scholarships to graduating MVRHS students for studies in the arts each year. Check out their website at vineyardartisans.com/artisan-pages, email artisan02557@yahoo.com or call 508-693-7927 for more details.

That’s about all for now. Short turnaround time this week. Have a wonderful week and a fun filled and happy Thanksgiving.

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