Oak Bluffs: Cinco de Mayo, Little League, senior center, library benefit, and Healthy Kids Day

—MV Times

“It is better to die on your feet than live on your knees.” —Emiliano Zapata, Mexican revolutionary

Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May) is a celebration of Mexico’s victory over the Second French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. It was not Mexican independence day, as there were many more battles to be fought. But it was a story of resilience and strength that boosted the morale of the Mexican people, and established a sense of national pride that helped the country to persevere through more trials. Cinco de Mayo is actually celebrated more in the U.S. than in Mexico, as a day to celebrate Mexican heritage and traditions. And tequila. ¡Feliz Cinco de Mayo! 

Last Saturday, I heard the crack of a bat from the direction of Veira Park, so I walked over and sure enough, it was opening day for M.V. Little League. So great to see all the kids, looking excited and proud in new uniforms and paint-streaked faces. And all the parents, grandparents, and friends gathered to cheer them on. I walked from there to the beach to help clean up, and then to over the harbor to say hello to Petey, Brendan, and Jen at the Coop. Ahh, spring has arrived!

In another sign of spring, there will be music on the harbor this Saturday, May 4, from 2 to 5 pm in front of Coop deVille. Morgan Reitzas Band and Friends will be playing on the boat; hope it’s a sunny day!

“Teamwork makes the dream work!” is the Oak Bluffs senior center motto. Their May calendar has added some new activities to the schedule. Besides the morning exercise classes, there are different games every afternoon from 1 to 3, like cornhole, bingo, and dominoes, along with more relaxing activities like knitting and coloring with friends.

On two Thursdays (May 9 and 23) at 12 pm, enjoy Marvelous May luncheons at the Center. Please call Rose for additional information and to schedule your reservation. Sorry, no walk-ins. And on Fridays, it is “Smartphone Mastery” from 11 am to 1 pm. Come and learn to love your smartphone with Rachel and Char Rooney. Get more comfortable with texting, browsing, and snapping pictures.

On Saturday, May 4, at 10 am, the library is partnering with Polly Hill Arboretum to offer “Forest Bathing” or shinrin-yoku, a Japanese practice of relaxation in nature. Enjoy a mindful walk through the beautiful, peaceful grounds, led by Shanta Gabriel. It is free and open to the public, to celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month.

Plan to have dinner (or lunch) at Offshore Ale on Tuesday, May 7. It is Dine-to-Donate all day to benefit the O.B. library. The Library Friends of Oak Bluffs have put together a fabulous silent auction you can participate in, as well, with items like a two-hour bowling party at the Barn, a basket of local goodies from MV Baskets, gift certificates from the Pawnee House, Offshore, and the Toy Box, and more. You just need a coupon from the library, which you can get in person or online, to enjoy a great meal and have 20 percent of the proceeds go to the library.

While we’re talking about the library, start uncluttering your bookshelves now and get ready to bring your extra books to the Book Drive on May 11, from 1 to 3 pm. The big book sale will be scheduled for three days in July.

Healthy Kids Day at the YMCA is Saturday, May 4. From 1 to 3 pm, join the fun; it’s free and open to the public! There will be bounce slides, an obstacle course, a toddler zone, face painting, an art station, Family Zumba, and more.

Speaking of the Y, the Summer Drive-In will start its fifth season this June, in collaboration with Circuit Arts. A schedule of movies, music, and other performances will be posted soon; check at driveinmv.com.

I was able to catch up with Renee Nolan in Middleboro last week. She and Steve Grace were just back from four months in Palm Springs, looking very tan and healthy. Renee’s house on Nashawena Park has sold, which is bittersweet, as the house held many memories for Renee and her family. Her sister, Muriel O’Rourke, is doing some big renovations at the family house next door, where the Surprenants grew up. Renee and Steve will be back on-Island to see their friends and family as soon as they get unpacked and settled.

Hooray, hooray for birthdays in May! Courtney Campbell, Megan Farrell, and Amy Coffey all celebrate on May 2. Cinco de Mayo babies Willy Nevin, Todd Alexander, and Fred Hall will fiesta on the 5th! Happy birthday on the 6th to Leslie Hurd and Sarah Henry. Island rock star Don Groover has his day on the 7th.

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