Oak Bluffs: Super blue moon, Back Door Donuts, cultural festivals, and outdoor concerts

—MV Times

“I think if you have a passion for what you do, then there are no limitations on how long or how much you can accomplish.”  –Tony Bennett

Anthony Dominick Benedetto, the beloved Tony Bennett, died on July 21, just a few weeks shy of his 97th birthday. He truly lived up to this quote, as he was one of the greatest singers of his generation, and he continued to sing and perform, reaching new, younger audiences throughout his life, recording with artists of every genre and decade. He received awards and accolades well into his nineties. Tony Bennett will truly never be forgotten.

The first full moon of August will rise on August 1. This moon is called the Sturgeon Moon, after North America’s largest freshwater fish, which was an essential food source for Native Americans in the Great Lakes region. It will be a supermoon, which is always amazing to see. But even more amazing — there will be a second full supermoon at the end of August, making that one a rare super blue moon. Mark the dates, and prepare to howl.

There has been some hubbub on social media and in the news about Back Door Donuts. The whole thing has reminded me of the old “Telephone” game, you know the one: Someone whispers something in your ear, you pass on what you heard, and it goes around a circle until it comes to the last person, who always repeats something very different from what was said at first. Social media is just like that, and an angry mob of keyboard tappers can be created in minutes. Back Door Donuts began as a little treat for those in the know — fresh doughnuts sold quietly from the kitchen door, mostly to late night workers on their way home. Like all things Vineyard, it has grown large, and become a favorite summer tradition for many. The neighbors are asking for more consideration of their peace and privacy, and the community needs to do what we do best — listen to one another and create positive solutions.

The 27th annual African American Cultural Festival, sponsored by The Cottagers, Inc., of M.V. will take place on Friday and Saturday, July 28 and 29, at historic Hartford Park on Pequot Avenue. This is always a fabulous gathering of artisans, offering a dazzling marketplace for unique items, clothing, jewelry, and art.

The library is hosting the Sankofa Festival from August 3 to 5. This festival began in 2016 as a celebration of Oak Bluffs being featured as part of a permanent exhibit called “Power of Place” at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. The Sankofa bird is a symbol of West Africa, and the festival is filled with speakers, artists, and performers throughout the three days. The full schedule is on the library website.

Music on the Lawn at the library this Thursday from 6 to 7 pm will feature Johnny Hoy and Delanie Pickering.

Acclaimed journalist and author Charlayne Hunter-Gault will be speaking about her new book, “My People,” at the M.V. Hebrew Center Saturday, July 30, at 7:30 pm. If you can’t make it all the way to Vineyard Haven, Ms. Hunter-Gault will be presenting her book at the O.B. library on Saturday, August 19, at 3 pm.

The Tabernacle Sunset Series continues on Friday with Annie and the Fur Trappers from 6 to 7:30 pm. Then on Saturday, July 29, enjoy the Vineyard Sound a cappella singing group at 7 pm. Speaking of singing, don’t forget about Community Sing at the Tabernacle, every Wednesday at 7:30 pm. This special tradition is as fun as ever, and feels like a respite from the clamor of summer.

The last July “Musical Monday” at Featherstone will feature the Jon Bates Band on July 31; music starts at 6:30 pm. Starting in August, the time will change to 6 to 7:30 pm, and there is a great lineup scheduled.

Barbara Rogers let me know that the 63rd annual West Tisbury Library Book Sale is happening from Thursday, July 27, through Monday, July 31. The sale runs from 9 am to 3 pm each day, in the tent at the West Tisbury School. Sunday is half-price, and on Monday, books are free.

I was sad to hear that Ed Medeiros passed away on July 18. Ed was a Korean War vet and a talented musician. Deep condolences to his family and his many, many friends.

July birthdays include Rachel Barrett Perry and Denise Cote-Alwardt on the 29th, and Ashley Medeiros on the 30th. Bob Laskowski celebrates on August 1, along with Maureen Farrissey and my cowgirl cousin, Julie Lawrence. Birthday hugs to Mrs. Scissorhands and Super-Mom Seniel Hannigan on August 2! Sing a birthday song to Brian Weiland on August 3.

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