Just when you thought we could not get any busier, we did! So long to the July vacationers, welcome to the August gang! A special, heartfelt so long to Sara Brown of this newspaper. Sara has been with the Gazette for six and a half years. She is moving on to Seattle. We wish her well and hope she visits many times. Thank you, Sara.

Wes Stokes is here, fishing, clamming and tending to Bill and Jan’s beautiful flowers. Meanwhile, right across the street, our recently retired financial counselor at the hospital, Laurie Marotta, has opened her bed and breakfast, the Driftwood (thedriftwoodmv.com). Laurie has beautifully decorated three bedrooms and worked on all her fabulous flowers and inviting areas of her yard. Jazz piano can be heard playing in the background. When you have that visitor overflow, keep the Driftwood in mind.

The parade was cancelled last Sunday for the Holy Ghost Society but the fun went on at the Portuguese-American club for this popular annual event. Music, food, auctions, raffles and fried dough. What could be better?

Noel Macy is visiting his mom Lowely Finnerty and sister Tanita on-Island. I hope to catch up with him soon.

I ran into our Living Local correspondent Jeff Canha, down by the dock earlier this week. Jeff is not only a storyteller but also an artist of all things fish. Some of his great work is up at Barn, Bowl and Bistro in Oak Bluffs.

I had not been to a concert in eight years. I made sure to join some friends, Bobbie Jo Sears, Sarah Powell and Marilyn Van Tine, in getting tickets for Judy Collins. I have had the pleasure of seeing Judy many times before in New York, Chicago and Boston. What a lovely woman and great talent! She enthralled us with new works and old hits. Ari Hest joined her in singing some of her best works and she returned the favor singing some of his. A truly magical evening!

This was a record of sorts for me. Four nights later I returned to the Old Whaling Church with friends to see Brio, Bliss, Boffo featuring seven singers and four pianists presenting works from the opera, from Island composer, Phil Dietterich, and from Broadway. This was a special concert to benefit and celebrate the Martha’s Vineyard Chamber Music Society. In retrospect, I remember taking Nonna, lover of music and a musician herself, to Judy Collins at the Tabernacle many years back and also to some of the M.V. Chamber Music Society’s performances. You certainly would have enjoyed and recognized many of the opera pieces as well as Broadway showtunes. What a great pleasure to see and hear this vibrant concert!

Walter and Gail Burke have two beautiful granddaughters visiting from West Springfield. Abigail Burke-Adams is now 12. Her sister, Alexandra, is seven. The girls have taken their grandparents swimming, crabbing, fishing, to the movies and the library for summer reading programs. I am happy the weather has held well for their annual vacation on storybook Island.

If you read this in time, I would like to suggest you attend the 12th annual Island Autism Group auction and tea on Thursday, July 26 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Dr. Daniel Fisher House. You can bid on fine art, crafts, and jewelry, all made on-Island. This is a group very close to my heart. I’ll see you there.

The birthday bandwagon pulled along my daughter-in-law, Lilly Clark, on July 24. Lilly celebrated with her family at her dad Reymundo’s home in Rockford, Ill. And on Saturday, July 28, beautiful world traveller Maggie Menchu takes the cake. Many happy returns.

Vineyard Haven news can be sent to iklean@yahoo.com.