A lot of attention will be paid, no doubt, to the Belmont Stakes in two weeks when bettors handicap the chances of the first Triple Crown contender in years. Horse racing may indeed be the Sport of Kings but in Oak Bluffs all eyes are on the sport of Presidents — bowling at the newest jewel of Cottage City.

The Barn is now open for business for the whole family. Two of the four presidents represented by life size pictures at the new bowling center have visited the Island (Presidents Obama and Nixon). The Barn is worthy of its bowling alley ancestors, once located at the other end of Circuit avenue — the one next to the Dreamland casino and the Captain’s Table, another one that used to be where the Sand Bar is now, and the one located beneath the Pastime Theatre where the soon to be re-opened Strand stands today.

Bowling enjoyed an uneven history in neighboring Vineyard Haven, hampered no doubt by their still Victorian drinking laws. According to an article from the May 27, 1949 Vineyard Gazette, the Pastime Bowling Alley proprietor Joseph R. Leonardo acquired the Vineyard Haven Alley and announced plans to reopen it as a skating rink managed by Albert E. Holmes. It’s unknown how long the rink lasted, but in 1953 it was sold again as a six-lane bowling alley. In January 1958 the alley was sold to a new owner who planned to use it for the Beach Shop, a home furnishing and housewares store that lasted until 1963 with the announcement that Al Brickman was buying the building and returning it to a bowling alley as originally constructed in the early 1930’s.

In March 1964 the luxurious new establishment, The Cue Club and Focs’le Dining Room, opened with pool and dining tables and a modern seven-lane bowling alley designed to appeal to families aged from six to 60. Well promoted, the concept of having bowling teams of all ages was pursued, but by February 1965 Mr. Brickman announced negotiations to sell the stock of the institution to Oak Bluff’s Herbert Metell, the owner of Darling’s candy business who had opened a branch in Vineyard Haven. That transaction must not have been brought to fruition because the Feb. 29, 1981 Vineyard Gazette heralded Mr. Brickman’s transformation of the bowling alley/pool hall/dining club to a roller rink featuring disco music called Seaskate.

Disco, having killed everything in its swath, didn’t portend well, and as a result, today the former Vineyard Haven bowling and entertainment center is a gas station and convenience store in a town still limited to beer and wine.

The Barn, shiny and new, tasteful in and out, seeks to return another part of the entertainment heritage of Oak Bluffs just in time for the Memorial Day season opening weekend. You really should stop by.

Fine dining, upscale lounges, great places for hot days and cool nights and folks who can be characterized as either. It is safe for children, sane for grandparents and sensitive to all.

Now we just need one of those movie theatres back. Make a donation today at mvtheaterfoundation.org.

At 5:30 p.m., on Tuesday, May 26 the Martha’s Vineyard Museum hosts Dr. Karen Gear, endodontist and forensic dental specialist who lectures on the unique identities of teeth in conjunction with the museum’s exhibit on the subject.

If you remember and still have books in good to excellent condition, there is an opportunity to donate them to the Oak Bluffs Library Saturday from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. This drive is sponsored by the Library Friends of Oak Bluffs.

In an editorial in 1880 Cottage City Star, publisher Howes Norris wrote “We don’t think the voters are quite willing to sufficiently recognize the wants and needs of the summer residents...Non-residents pay our taxes. They don’t grumble at supporting our schools and other expenditures, from which they receive no benefit. Let us in turn do the little in our power this year to show them we mean to look after their comfort and pleasure by doing a few little necessary things for their gratification.”

Welcome home snow birds.

Keep your foot on a rock.