Reports are coming in from across Chappaquiddick of squirrel sightings. So far it has been just “the” squirrel reported at feeders and bird baths. That’s the good news. Once it becomes plural that will be bad news. Squirrels aren’t the least bit shy about becoming your housemate and they are particularly determined to do it on their terms. They are prolific parents as well.

The first annual five-mile Chappaqquiddick road race, officially named Chappy Point to Point, is scheduled for Sunday, June 30, with an 8:30 a.m. start. Runners will be taken to the fishermen’s parking lot at Wasque by Trustees of Reservations vans. From there runners will head toward the finish line at the ferry point. Organizers are seeking sponsorships and are working on a website, so expect more information in weeks to come. The race is a benefit for the Chappaquiddick Community Center and the Trustees of Reservation’s Martha’s Vineyard Fund.

The Chappy ferry will begin running on the summer schedule on May 23, the Thursday before Memorial Day weekend. When on the summer schedule, the ferry operates continuously from 6:45 a.m. through midnight, weather permitting. As the seasonal traffic flow increases both ferry boats will be running during the busy times. Keep in mind that the additional ferry is shorter in length than the regular ferry, so often a third truck won’t fit aboard it. If you drive a small vehicle, stay far enough back behind big trucks or trailers on the Chappy side so that you can see and pull around them. Then keep an eye out on for the captain or crew to wave you around a larger vehicle in line in case there is just enough room for you on the boat. This will happen only on the Chappy side as there is too little room on Daggett Street on the Edgartown side to safely pass another vehicle.

The Chappy Ferry rate hike will go into effect on Saturday, May 18. The cash fare for vehicle and driver will increase from $12 to $13. The fare increase of $1 applies only to the cash fare for a car or pickup and the driver but does not apply to the discount ticket book prices or to the cash fares for bigger vehicles such as those with dual rear tires.

The Chappy Store, now known as Jerry’s Place, will open for the season beginning on the Thursday before Memorial Day weekend. They plan to be open weekends only until mid-June.

The rhododendrons are starting to burst into blossom at Mytoi, along with the primroses and azaleas. This past week, for three days, a group of Sierra Club volunteers worked with Mytoi’s ambitious new gardener, Marc Fournier to accomplish a whole lot of spring cleanup. The stream is flowing again and the turtles should be appearing soon on sunny days.

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