Trees are starting to leaf out and the grass is densely green, so it must be May in Maine. We can stop feeding the woodstove and spend our time mowing and gardening instead. Some folks have planted their peas already, chives are ready to eat and the rhubarb is about two weeks away from a pie. Many more of the seasonal residents are back, and there are more faces around town that we do not recognize, so tourism must be beginning again.

School events

Traditions continued this last week with the annual 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament. Teams composed of teachers and students competed for fun as well as fame and glory. In team colors both gaudy and subdued, players and fans enjoyed the after school activity.

The second school Visioning Meeting went well with 12 people in attendance. They discussed value statements and the 16 core values established earlier by students, faculty and the community. Work on a visual vision statement was the next activity, as often folks’ eyes glaze over at the paragraph of jargon that constitutes some school vision statements. It is hoped that a vision statement will be ready to present to the school board in May.

I enjoyed talking with junior Kaleb Dyer at the school’s shop this week about his major boat project. Back in August he ordered a Holland 14 hull from Holland’s Boat Shop in Belfast with the intention of finishing it to become his tender. His lobster boat, The Captain, named after his great-grandfather, is out in the harbor and he knows his boats, but even so he had to convince teacher Mark Jackson to let him take on this project as part of his academic year. Mark’s never seen a kid do something like this at Vinalhaven. Likely it is rare even in other schools, as Kaleb has put in many after school hours including weekends, fiber glassing, adding a floor to allow for drainage, and designing a removable seat. “He’s capable and driven,” said Jackson. It’s certainly a beautiful boat and with only a gel-coat left to complete, hopefully we’ll be seeing it and its cool Newport green color out on the water soon, on its way out to The Captain.

Business around town

The Island Community Medical Services is pleased to announce that they have been selected for an Island Fellow in partnership with the ARC. They are interviewing candidates currently. According to Executive Director Dinah Moyer, the fellow will be working with ICMS and the ARC on community wellness programs. Housing needs to be located for the fellow as well, so if you have housing to offer, do contact Dinah at the medical center at or 863-4341.

Also around town, this Saturday Dan Stevens and David Dodson will be in concert at the Union Church at 6 p.m. They have visited the island before and folks enjoy their original and traditional songs in English and Spanish. Great for all ages, it will be a low-key evening and the $10 suggested donation will benefit the Union Church and the ARC. And remember, it is a suggested donation, so come and enjoy the music and contribute what you can. To hear some of Dean Stevens work, go to his website and click on the link for his new CD.

What folks are talking about

The Fourth of July is now a point of discussion and with only nine weeks left until the big event, it is time to start thinking about floats even though the theme has not been officially announced. The American Legion Auxiliary will be raffling off handmade Adirondack chairs this year, and the fireworks committee is trying to raise a bit more money towards the 6th of July Fireworks display. If you would like to help them meet their goal, tax-deductible donations can be sent to The 4th of July Committee, PO Box 335, Vinalhaven, ME 04863.

It seems strange to be preparing for July in the beginning of May, but Maine has a short summer, so we need to pack a lot in, and that requires some planning. Enjoy writing all the options on your calendar, for your own enjoyment and that of those tourists starting to schedule their visits.

If you have news to share that you would like to see in this column, please drop me a line at or leave a message at 863-4134.