Autumn brings with it Derby Fever. It hits the Island hard and runs rampant. Small boats drift and troll along Dogfish Bar, Painted House, the Elizabeths, Lucas Shoal, the Hooter, the back side of Noman’s and more, all in search of “the big one.” Men, women and children don their foul weather gear and take to the jetties and shorelines with rods, tackle, bait and snacks well prepared as if hunkering down for a long hard winter. We are bedraggled when not catching the elusive fish of Vineyard waters. On the other hand, we are rejuvenated and amped up, as if heavily caffeinated, when one takes our hook and gets reeled in.

Lew Colby, Giles Welch, and Riley Cameron, among others, have been fishing hard. Riley made the daily board this past weekend with a 7.54-pound bluefish. Like I said, Derby Fever has hit hard.

Robin Robinson and Hollis Smith pulled to the Texaco fuel dock the other day and offered me a tour of the Ketchams’ boat, Majic. Most of you know Robin has taken on the task of captaining the 1957 Richardson sedan cruiser which has been temporarily tied up on the Menemsha Harbor west dock. A few afternoon and sunset cruises have been taken, and all provided some nice photo ops for folks who like to reflect on the good old days. She will be taken south to have some further restoration work done this winter.

Jack Schlossberg participated in his first triathlon last weekend. He was dedicated and trained all summer. The goal was, of course, to complete the course. Jack not only finished but managed in two hours and something minutes. (He told me but, alas, I have forgotten the exact time. My apologies.)

Hip, hip, hooray for Olivia Larsen. The Chilmarker and eldest daughter of Susan and John has been appointed the new Aquinnah Library director. Olivia wrapped up her master’s degree in library science through Drexel University last winter and has held positions in both the West Tisbury and Chilmark libraries. There are plenty of opportunities for folks to stop in and say hello to Olivia. She would love to learn all of the faces and names of her fellow book enthusiasts.

Thursdays from 3:30 to 4 p.m. and again on Saturdays from 10:30 to 11 a.m. you will find Wiggle Worms Story Time. Every Thursday during the school year various after-school programs, open to all kiddos in town, are offered from 4 to 5 p.m. If that’s not enough for your young ones, each Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. is a drop-in craft for kids. Saturday folks at the library will be celebrating the Chinese Mid-Autumn Moon Festival and making fire breathing dragons along with a special story time. I’m not sure how one creates a fire breathing dragon, but it sure sounds thrilling.

For the older set in town, October’s book group selection is a spooky comparison of Dark Romantics: Poe and Hawthorne. The meeting will be Oct. 13th at 5 p.m. The two short stories, The Masque of the Red Death and The Minister’s Black Veil, are available to pick up at the library.  

Let’s give a warm welcome to the newest Manning family member. Three-month-old pup Rhett, rescued from Saint Thomas, is already feeling the love from his human Noah. The adorable little guy became an Aquinnah resident on Sept. 22. Lots of patience will be needed but the love the Manning family will receive in return will be immeasurable.

Henry Costabel and John Kosboski, former Aquinnah Restaurant breakfast club members from the good ole days, bumped into one another a few days ago. Both were headed off in opposite directions but opted to park their cars and take a few moments to catch up and exchange pleasantries. Moments like that are easily passed over because we are all always in a hurry to get somewhere but, when you slow down and embrace those moments and reconnect with old friends it truly is worthwhile.

As always, shout out anything you’d like to see in print. Until June is back at the helm and charting the course you can reach me at