As winter fades away, we have been very fortunate in Aquinnah with just some snow dusting and nothing to shovel or really plow as the winds keep most areas bare. With spring just a few weeks away, the songbirds have returned on cue to serenade us upon awakening each morning.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum will open this week and it has been well worth the wait. Everyone will be amazed at the transformation of the old United States Marine Hospital that has sat atop the hill overlooking Vineyard Haven harbor since 1895. Enjoy.

Get well wishes to Reverend Leo Christian who will return to Community Baptist Church of Gay Head this week following his recent surgery. In the interim, worship was offered by Reverend Roger Spinney in February, and this past week Pastor Robert Tankard led the congregation.

The third annual Police vs. Fire Ice Hockey Heroes will be held on March 9 at 5 p.m. at the Martha’s Vineyard Ice Arena. Proceeds will benefit the Island Autism Group.

James and Melissa Mahoney and their children Aileen and Seamus have returned from school vacation on the island of St. John. Their 2018 summer vacation was spent in Ireland, a trip Melissa’s parents Kevan and Marcy have previously enjoyed.

Dan Sauer and Wenonah Madison and their children Waylon, Amos, J’Leah and Zuzu returned from their winter vacation in Jamaica on Monday. Dan is back at 7a and Nonie at the Aquinnah town hall.

Sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Erica Bunker Ponte, daughter of classmates John Bunker and Suzanne Fischer, who passed away at Martha’s Vineyard Hospital on March 2. Erica is survived by John and Susie, her brothers John Jr. and Rodney and his family, and by her husband Kenneth Ponte and their children Hunter, Shelby and Jake. A memorial fundraiser will be held at the Portuguese American Club in Oak Bluffs on March 15 from 7 to 10 p.m. to assist the family in their time of need following Erica’s illness. Tickets are $25.

Condolences to the family and friends of Evelyn Sylvia Simpson, sister of Manuel “Sonny” Sylvia and his wife Janice Cook Sylvia.

Condolences to the families of Richard Andrade Sr. and Ruth Metell, long time family friends.

Across the channel at USCG Station Menemsha, congratulations to Chief Robert Parent who recently received his seventh Good Conduct Award for three years of service in adherence to the USCG C Values of Honor, Respect, and Devotion to Duty. The award was presented to him by Senior Chief Justin Longval.

Congratulations and all the best to BM2 Joseph Belladue and Amber Brubaker on their upcoming marriage on March 15. Congratulations to Petty Officer Justus Christopher who earned his first Good Conduct Award for three years of service. SN Dallas Ricker was recognized by his shipmates for fixing the units government vehicle, thereby saving Station Menemsha time and money. Congratulations to SN Daniel Gonzalez-Respeto who has passed his nursing license in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, transferring his skill and knowledge from his previous licensure in Puerto Rico.

Happy Birthday wishes this week to USCG FN Christian Ortega-Santiago as he celebrates today following a weekend visit with his father at Cape Cod Air Station. Alice Russell will party today. Juliette Fay will observe her special day on March 10; USCG SK2 Timothy Bihansky will celebrate on March 10 as will Beth Seabourne. Eileen Maley will observe a milestone on Mar 11 and Tiffany Smalley also parties on March 11. Nancy Edwards Thompson and Janice Rose share the day on March 12. Ken Wentworth and Lisa Bibko-Vanderhoop will party on March 13. Steve Edwards will celebrate on March 14, and Tamara Hirsh and Jib Ellis share the day on March 15.

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