In the April 17, 2015 issue of the Vineyard Gazette, Oak Bluffs conservation agent Elizabeth Durkee wrote an excellent op-ed on the Inkwell and Pay Beach, acknowledging the special place it holds in our history, culture and hearts and also providing a comprehensive explanation of the causes of the erosion over the years. She also described the work taking place today to ameliorate, well, Mother Nature’s actions.

Mrs. Durkee indicated that the sand beneath Little Bridge would be dredged and the sand re-deposited at the beaches (it has) but reminds us that this is just a temporary fix, not a permanent solution. This is a costly project that presumes sand will be available—and it usually is not.

For all of you who are new and only remember the sand covering the Inkwell, there used to be huge boulders lining the wall that were used to protect what little beach there was in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Before that time, the fact is most of us would have hated how the Inkwell and Pay Beach looked. In the Victorian era when Cottage City flourished, people hadn’t yet adopted swimming as a pastime. They ‘bathed,’ which was tantamount to standing around in the water. Huge wooden bath houses that blocked the beach and water almost entirely were built for folks to change into bathing suits. Described as “the ugly, boxlike structures obliterating views of the water and occupying great swatches of sand,” there was no need to attempt preserving the slim portion of sand we find so romantically desirable.

Today, true to its word (after a substantial amount of prodding from taxpayers and an active volunteer committee) the town of Oak Bluffs is completing an aggressive, Pharaoh-worthy refurbishing of the beaches — with a nice surprise. Truck after truck is delivering sand from Little Bridge to front loaders and bulldozers and the contractor (International Golf Company) has included a huge machine with the process (apparently voluntarily) to sift sand and place the finer portions on top. That’s remarkable. Thanks very much to them, and, of course, Mrs. Durkee.

One of the more exciting aspects about Martha’s Vineyard Museum’s season opening reception for the new Loïs Mailou Jones exhibit Friday at 5 p.m. is the ability to see for the first time her work from private collections. You may know some of the kind people who are lending parts of their collections. These include Vineyarders Barbara Alleyne, Chris Chapman, Dr. Adelaide Cromwell, Tommy Fisher, Barbara Lee, Dolores Little, Chris and Sheila Morse, Dr. Beny J. Primm, Olive Tomlinson, Teri and Lloyd Trotter, Nancy and Milt Washington and, of course, the Loïs Mailou Jones Pierre Noel Trust. Dr. Chris Chapman, trustee of the Loïs Mailou Jones estate, will speak about the artist’s life and legacy at the reception.

Washington Ledesma also has an art opening Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. at 5 Murrant avenue. For more information, call 508-560-2647.

On Saturday, June 13, at 6 p.m. the Oak Bluffs Library begins a live music series with a concert on the lawn featuring The Brother’s Rye, billed as an “outlaw jug band.” For the family-friendly concert, bring blankets or lawn chairs. In case of rain, the concert will be held inside.

Jazz and pop singer Vivian (Beard) Male shared that last Saturday there was a gathering at Grace Church in memory of Barbara L. Houtman with grandchildren, great grandchildren and family friends present. One of only a few female members to serve the Oak Bluffs Board of Selectmen, Barbara Houtman was also the only black woman chairman. Condolences to the family and rest in peace.

Nine of the “14 Photos That Prove Martha’s Vineyard Is Straight Out Of A Children’s Storybook” published in a recent issue of Town and Country Magazine were taken in Oak Bluffs. Naturally.

Martha’s Vineyard Magazine’s Best of the Vineyard Celebration starts at 6:30 p.m. Friday, June 12, at the Loft. Stop by and cheer for your Oak Bluffs favorites.

It is anticipated that the work on the Inkwell will be completed around July 1. Take note, however, this procedure is not a sustainable practice.

So how about plovers, a nice Chianti and fava beans? I couldn’t help myself.

Keep your foot on a rock.

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