A small but cheerful crowd gathered at 50 Bailey Park Road on Saturday afternoon as the Thomas family — JR, Ariel, Tysean and Dreyden — officially cut the ribbon on their new three-bedroom home in West Tisbury. The Rev. Cathlin Baker of the West Tisbury Congregational Church offered a blessing to the new home, assisted by Tysean and Dreyden. The home was built over the past year and a half by Habitat for Humanity volunteers. As is required for a Habitat home purchase, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas put in 500 hours of work on the house.
“This really has been a group effort,” Habitat board member Greg Orcutt told the crowd.
The Thomas home is the second of three Habitat homes in Bailey Park. Immediately after the blessing and ribbon-cutting, the third home, at this point a slab of foundation at 45 Bailey Park, had its groundbreaking ceremony. The home is owned by the Lawyer family: Wayne and Holly, and daughters Emily, Payton and Kylie.
The application process for a Habitat home is a blind selection, Mr. Orcutt said, but in a typical Vineyard twist, the Lawyers will move in to a home next door to family. Mrs. Lawyer’s sister, Jennifer Fragosa and her family, husband Joe and daughter Briana, moved in to 49 Bailey Park last summer.
“Completely accidental,” Mr. Orcutt said of the pairing. “If this was Boston, that wouldn’t happen.”
Following the groundbreaking, cousins Emily and Briana rushed to play on Briana’s swingset together.