Oh, am I disappointed! I shall still let you know that Featherstone and the Martha’s Vineyard Museum are holding the Island faces (year-round and seasonal faces) portrait contest. The deadline for entries, with a $25 entry fee, is Feb. 29, open to artists age 15 and up. The artwork must be a painting, drawing or photograph no larger than three feet by three feet, and it can be a self-portrait. Send a high resolution jpg (whatever that is!), 300 dpi or higher, for the first round of judging, accompanied by the artist’s statement of relationship with subject, no more than 200 words. The winning portraits will debut at the MVM summer opening reception on June 15, and will be displayed throughout the summer. There will be cash prizes and a separate “Peoples’ Choice” voting category. My angst? Many years ago famous Island photographer Jacqueline Baer, who can make Quasimodo look like George Clooney, did a really great portrait of me and my friends, Fred and Priscilla Thifault. Well, Priscilla is a most accomplished artist who did a loving portrait of her husband, Fred, certainly an Island character. So I was hoping to be competing with Fred! However, after a careful review of the rules, turns out the work must be recent and created for this contest. If you are interested in participating, e-mail

Since staycation at the Mansion House was booked last holiday weekend, I had the pleasure of having a three night slumber party at my house for Renae Brown and her beautiful daughters, Cheyenne and Monique. The only thing lacking was a pool. Well, one girl did take a bath. Why do they call them slumber parties? We were up till 4 a.m. the first night, 3 a.m. the second night and 2 a.m. the third. Quantities of junk food were consumed along with regular healthy meals. I wore my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle pajamas. The dogs and cat were thrilled for the company. Same time next year.

The Vineyard Haven Public Library’s lecture series on making sense of the American Civil War is fully booked. Try one of the other Tuesday night offerings. The League of Women Voters is presenting Tisbury 101, everything you want to know about our town’s government. It began last Tuesday and will continue at 7 p.m. on Jan. 24 and 31, Feb. 14 and 21 and March 13. Delve into the mysteries of town government.

The children’s programs at the library continue with story time on Tuesdays, 10 to 10:30 a.m. for the infants to two year olds, 11 to 11:30 a.m. for the three to five set. Be sure to see Clifford the Big Red Dog in person on Jan. 31. Crafts continue for ages five and up 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Thursdays. Tweens from eight to eleven play Wii games on Wednesdays from 3 to 5 p.m., grades six and up get control of the Wii games on Fridays from 3:30 to 5 p.m.

Our condolences to the family and friends of a great man about town, Arthur Dickson. It doesn’t seem like Tisbury without him. Elenase Kloss, Uta’s mother, died in Germany the day after Christmas. Uta has flown to Germany to settle things, but her Island Art Gallery is still open on Main street. She will return on Jan. 27 if you would like to stop in and offer your sympathy.

Another great but very private man in my neighborhood has died, Procter Smith. His widow, Leigh Smith, was able to get family friend Rev. Bob Daly on-Island for a private graveside service last Monday, Jan. 16. All three grown children, Pam, Alison and Procter, were able to attend along with all six grandchildren. I shall never forget Procter’s many kindnesses to me and his enthusiasm for our Island after retiring here from Montclair, N.J. 25 years ago. I think Procter and Leigh were at every on-Island high school football game. They took a great interest in my son and cheered him on, along with other Island children who were not related to them. They followed my son’s career in the United States Marine Corps closely and always stopped to ask about him. Procter was always smiling and I’ll remember him that way.

The birthday bandwagon pulls along Kim Montanile and Mary-Beth Pate today. Tomorrow is a party for Carol Whitmarsh, Noah Casner, Cameron Moore, Annie McEvoy, Ned Hehre and twins Derek and Travis Fennell. Jan. 22 is claimed by Donna Bouchard. Jan. 23 belongs to Yesmin Silva and Lisa Jannace Meade. Jan. 24 is shared by Katie Campbell and Eva Balbino Dias. On Jan. 25 remember poet Robert Burns along with Bunny Davis and Kristin Pachico. And on Jan. 26 Shirley McCarthy takes the cake. Many happy returns.