I had to travel off-Island on Sunday, and we ran into a mini-blizzard in Wareham and vicinity. Lots of snow, wind and some moments of white-out on the highway. Not fun, and even more bitter when we came home and found it hadn’t snowed here . . . why do we ever leave!!

There is some dredging going on in front of Dutchers Dock with sand piling up in the parking lot. I always want to stand there to collect the bottles that come up with the sand!

Seven Vineyarders traveled to Portland, Me., on Wednesday last to attend the Northeast Aquaculture Conference and Exposition. Warren Doty, Chilmark selectman and president of the Menemsha Fisheries Development Fund, attended along with Emmett Carroll, who represented Vineyard Oyster farmers, and Isaiah Scheffer, who is Chilmark’s shellfish constable. There were three days of presentations, lectures and displays. The Vineyard contingent was there to explore new ideas for growing shellfish. Amandine Surier of the Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group presented a paper on cultivating triploid bay scallops. They all agreed the conference was well worth the travel and they brought back many new ideas.

Christmas time gives us a few excuses to go to Edgartown and enjoy some of the activities scheduled as part of the Christmas in Edgartown festivities. Here are some that might interest you.

Plum Hill Preschool, a nonprofit organization that is part of the Island Waldorf Community, is presenting its annual fund-raiser tomorrow, Dec. 13, at the Federated Church Parish hall in Edgartown. The Elves Faire will offer a puppet show, assorted crafts, food and a silent auction. All are welcome from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Edgartown Federated Church Choir will present An Old Fashioned Christmas Concert at the church Meetinghouse tomorrow, Dec. 13, at 7:30 p.m. and, again, on Sunday at 3 p.m. The choir is under the direction of Peter R. Boak.

And while you are in Edgartown, check out the Hospice Handmade from the Heart sale at the Dr. Daniel Fisher House tomorrow, Dec. 13, from 10 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Back in Chilmark, the Friends of the Library invite us all to their used book sale at the library. It will run thru Dec. 17; after that, there will be price reductions. Currently, hardcovers are $1 and paperback books are 50 cents.

Abigail Larsen is still collecting warm hats, mittens, gloves and scarves for distribution in Boston next week. Please drop off donations at the Chilmark School until Dec. 18. Alison is the daughter of John and Susan Larsen of Chilmark and she is a junior at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School. If you have questions, you may contact Abigail ant 508-645-3805.

Pete and Katherine Teel are home from a trip that was intended to take them on a tour of Viet Nam but was curtailed to a longish stay in Bangkok and home again. Political unrest in that city canceled their flight to Viet Nam but didn’t affect sightseeing, so they saw lots of Bangkok and surrounding sites instead.

Remember the annual holiday open house at the library on Dec. 17 from 4 to 6 p.m. There will be lots of refreshments, music and good cheer. Greens will be available for making swags and wreaths and there will be special crafts for children. The Friends of the Library are hosting the party.

The annual Chilmark Firefighters Association’s Christmas party for the children of town will take place on Dec. 18 from 4 to 6 p.m. with the arrival of Santa a most anticipated event.

Did you know that Chilmark offers you two free health services? You may have your blood pressure checked on the first Thursday of every month at the town hall by Nicole Bartlett, RN, of the Vineyard Nursing Association. The hours are from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. No appointments are necessary for this service. Additionally, there is a town nurse clinic on the third Wednesday of every month for which you do need to make an appointment. The nurse is at town hall on that day from 3 to 3:30 p.m. Call 508-693-6184 extension 7132. Nice to know help is in town should you need it.