The country wisdom about the quantity of acorns relative to the severity of the upcoming winter leads me to expect an extremely harsh winter. The past few days and nights have found Mike and me beleaguered by an endless pinging of acorns hitting the skylights in our sunroom. They litter the ground, sharp under foot. I am waiting for the squirrels to start eating them instead of the birdseed in our feeder. (I just found out from Beth Kramer that squirrels prefer white oak acorns, which are sweeter than those from red or scrub oak. Who knew?)
Kindergarteners at the West Tisbury School will be studying the effects of the fall season in different habitats around town: by the ocean, in a forest, on farm crops and animals. I hope they will observe the colors of the goldenrod and vegetation around Parsonage Pond that has been so spectacular. Perhaps Erica Oliver's third grade class, which is studying pond life, might take a look, too.
Principal Michael Halt will be welcomed back from Iraq with a special assembly at the West Tisbury School on Monday, October 1, at 2 pm. It will be great to have him safely home, back to school and his family. Welcome home!
Sunday's dedication of the plaque at Music Street and the photographic exhibition at the new library, the newest site on the African American Heritage Trail of Martha's Vineyard, was well-attended and well-received. Both Polly Murphy and Nancy Smith were in attendance; they are sisters, and two of the five West Tisbury women honored in the dedication ceremony.
This will be a busy week upcoming. The Ag Hall will be the scene of two events, the Harvest Festival and the Antique Power Show, both Saturday, September 29. George Hartman is looking for help setting up the Power Show; if you are interested, please show up at the Ag Hall on Friday. George is also putting out a call for exhibitors. "Anything related to power and of special interest" is his description, intentionally broad, and can include cars, farm equipment, machines, engines, and whatever. Antique is good, but anything vintage is the best.
In that regard, George and Bill Honey spent this past weekend in the western Massachusetts town of Whately, attending what was described as "the aristocrat of private antique engine shows." They were invited to attend with their friend Phil St. Jean. The collection of incredibly rare engines sounded awesome and I look forward to hearing more details on Saturday.
Also this Saturday, there will be an all-day "Leaf Crafts" project set up at the library. I got to meet Circulation Assistant Steve Klebs's son, Sawyer, this past Saturday. He was helping his dad, working at the library for the day.
The Second Chance Animal Rescue is holding a yard sale at 31 Worcester Avenue in Oak Bluffs. It is scheduled from 9 am to 3 pm on Saturday, Sept. 29, with Sunday, Sept. 30, as the rain date. Anyone who has good, saleable items to donate may call Verna Carr at 508-696-8305. All money raised goes to fund the group's spay/neuter program, and pay for food and supplies, medical care, and heating bills. When I spoke to Verna Carr, she was between two-hour feedings for a litter of two-day-old kittens at the shelter.
The Annual Fall Book Fair at the West Tisbury School will take place Oct. 1 through 5 during school hours, and with special evening hours on Thursday, Oct. 4, from 6 to 8 pm.
Wednesday, Oct. 3 is the date for what the West Tisbury Firefighters' Association hopes will become an annual event. As a result of a conversation between neighbors, Bill Haynes and Deon Thomas, Deon offered to host a dinner at his restaurant in North Tisbury to raise money for the Association. There will be two seatings, at 5 and at 8 pm, for the prix fixe three-course meal. Entrée choices are: garlic-crusted salmon, beef lasagna, and rosemary-crusted chicken. Everyone is invited to attend and I hope the evening will be a successful one. The Association raises money throughout the year for their scholarship fund, Thanksgiving baskets distributed around town, and a fund to help sick or injured firemen and their families. It sounds like a fun and unexpected evening out, so I hope lots of people will call Deon's at 508-696-0090 to make their reservations. See you there.
There will be a workshop at the Polly Hill Arboretum next Saturday, Oct. 6, from 9 am to noon, in which participants will make a garden obelisk. The instructor, Janice Shields of "Cut It Out," is committed to recycling invasive plant materials into decorative and practical garden structures. Please call the Arboretum at 508-693-9426 to register.
Library Director Beth Kramer asked me to mention that the library needs and welcomes volunteers. If you have a little or a lot of time to spare, please stop in and speak with Beth about volunteering. There are lots of different jobs to do, and you see everyone in town at the library. Also, anyone who has extra paper grocery bags to spare, please drop them off next time you are at the library.
Megan Mendenhall will celebrate her birthday on Sept. 29 and her mother, Kathy Logue, will celebrate on Oct. 4. Julie Kimball has a birthday on September 30. Ann Leggett's special day is Oct. 6. I hope they will all be wonderful. "Happy Birthday" to you all.
It has been another beautiful week. Mike laughs at me when I say things like, "This is the most beautiful fall we've ever had," because he says I say the same thing every year.