Back in the sixties Woody Guthrie played at the Mooncusser, the iconic coffee house that was next door to Phillips Hardware store on Circuit avenue. His son Arlo, who played at the high school for the Nantucket Nectar festival, is famous for the popular Alice’s Restaurant that is played every Thanksgiving on our own WMVY-FM. The song’s catchy refrain: “You can get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant” suggests the goods one can get at Phillips — Oak Bluffs’ 87-year-old hardware store.

Robert Phillips, the son of the founder, passed way recently and his daughters Donna and Susan continue to operate the business, open five days a week for our convenience. We should be thankful for all the stores open for our benefit year round for so long: Tony’s Market since 1877; daRosa’s (1935); Debettencourt’s Gas Station (1946); and Reliable Market since 1947. Indeed, holiday shopping in Oak Bluffs this weekend helps us all, and every store that can be open is open for your business. Open, I might add, with tremendous mark-downs and sales on almost everything.

Besides our many local merchants, the town of Oak Bluffs has much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving and holiday season. Town leaders have seen to our fiscal health and in 2015, fortuitously, we have benefited from a newly renovated Strand movie theatre, the Barn Bowl & Bistro, the restorations of Niantic park, Town Beach and the Inkwell, a wonderfully welcoming library, another thoughtful elementary school principal (Dr. John Rizzo), and the new adult game room (The Loft). The reinvigorated restaurant and night club, The Ritz, provides night life for our downtown area that now has several updated storefronts with new businesses and a bank branch. Cottage City Oysters may be the dawn of a new local industry, and we are moments away from the opening of the new fire safety building. These are a lot of reasons to be proud to be from OB — and for us to be thankful.

Anna Marie D’Addarie reports that Martha’s Vineyard Community Services’ Chicken Alley Thrift Shop is open for business with a holiday pop-up shop on Friday, Nov. 27 and Saturday, Nov. 28.

There are several holiday-themed events coming. Friday, Nov. 27 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. there’s a holiday Oak Bluffs open market, and the Oceanview restaurant will have free Christmas card photo portraits, music, vendors and pet pictures. The Santa Sweepstakes from Nov. 27 to Dec. 21 is a free raffle from 30 town businesses with a chance to win a $25 gift certificate with any purchase.

The annual tree lighting is on Wednesday, Dec. 2 in Post Office Square at 6:30 p.m. It includes caroling by the Vineyard Classic Brass Ensemble and then holiday music from the Brian Weiland Band. Hot chocolate will be served, and of course Santa will be making an appearance. Please bring a food item for the food pantry.

Another Oak Bluffs open market takes place on Dec. 5, and includes free horse-drawn hayrides from the Strand Theater from noon to 3 p.m. A puppet parade begins from the foot of Circuit avenue at 2 p.m. and there will be an old-fashioned Christmas at Offshore Ale from 2 to 4 p.m. with cookie decorating, ornament making and caroling.

There will be a celebration of the life of Phillips Hardware proprietor Robert Edward Phillips (1/24/33 – 11/1/15) on Friday, Nov. 27 at 11 a.m. at the Trinity United Methodist Worship Center in the Camp Ground, with internment to follow. Thanks to Robert Phillips for his military service in Korea, and condolences to the family and friends.

Have you seen the new fence lining Town Beach? Although bright and shiny, it closely resembles the fence of old. Oak Bluffs — you can get anything you want — except Alice’s Restaurant.

Keep your foot on a rock.

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