Club Passim has an East Chop connection. It has been run for the last seven years by Dan Hogan. Jim Wooster will take over from Dan who is retiring on September 1.

The mission of Club Passim is to provide exceptional musical experiences for both audiences and performers. It works to accomplish this mission through its legendary listening venue, music school, artist grants, and outreach programs. Located in Harvard Square, it began as the historic Club 47 in 1958 and is now a nonprofit corporation. It features both new and established performers and puts on more than 400 shows a year.

Jim Wooster comes well prepared to assume the executive director’s position. He has served on the Passim board for the last two years. More importantly, he has been the business manager of Globalpost since its founding in 2009. Globalpost is an international news website. It reports on politics and current events from around the world. It reaches an audience of five million readers a month living in more than 230 countries.

East Choppers may remember that Jim was a member of the Courage Brothers, a popular band in the 1990s. Jim played lead guitar and sang background vocals. The band produced two CDs which I still listen to on my iPod. As a result, his moving to Club Passim is a natural fit.

When I asked him what his goals for the organization are, he said: “Dan Hogan brought disciplined financial management to Club Passim. He inherited a struggling organization financially and is leaving it in much better shape. I want to build on Dan’s successes. I especially want to raise grant money to support our artists.”

Old time residents of the Chop may remember Tom Rush who performed at the Mooncusser in the 1960s. Tom still performs at Club Passim. You may want to check their website to see when he will be there.

At the East Chop Association meeting on Saturday, president Craig Dripps introduced Dr. David Foster, a professor of forestry, ecology, and environmental change at Harvard University. Dr. Foster educated us on the gall wasp blight on the Vineyard generally and places where it has broken out in East Chop like Monroe and Massachusetts avenues.

Dr. Foster recommended a three-step strategy to deal with the problem. If dead trees pose a hazard with the potential to fall on houses or power lines, cut them down. If diseased but savable trees exist in prominent places, it makes sense to treat them. Finally, diseased trees in forested areas should be left alone. Nature will do a better job repairing itself in such situations if left alone.

The East Chop Association has adopted a policy to deal with the problem in line with Dr. Foster’s recommendations. It has budgeted $5,000 for the next two years to treat prominently placed trees. The good news about the gall wasp blight is that it rarely lasts longer than 10 years.

Although it is against my policy to report on parties, last Friday there was a special one. Chris and Jeff Riotte had a surprise birthday party to honor Jeff’s sister Carol Hyler. Carol is here from Colorado helping the Riottes while Jeff recovers from his recent bout with cancer. There was a wonderful spirit at the party, a feeling of gratitude and relief that Carol is here to help Jeff and Chris through this difficult period.

Finally, this is my last chance to remind readers who have promised me an update for East Chop Families. Please get it to me soon. We hope to start putting the book together this fall.