Gov. Maura Healey visited the Island Thursday for a tour of the Vineyard Wind facility and to honor a local figure in youth sports.

She also threw out the first pitch at a Little League game at Viera Park in Oak Bluffs featuring the Mets versus the Diamondbacks.

Shaking hands with Island technician Gabriel Bellebuono. — Ray Ewing

A press conference was held at the new Vineyard Wind operations and maintenance facility in Oak Bluffs and was preceded by a tour of a crew transfer vessel being used to access Vineyard Wind’s offshore wind project.

Governor Healey was joined by state Sen. Julian Cyr, Vineyard Offshore CEO Alicia Barton, Avangrid CEO Pedro Azagra, local officials and a local technician on the project, Gabriel Bellebuono.

The governor praised those involved in making Vineyard Wind’s project a reality.

“The work you do in getting us away from fossil fuels is so important to our planet,” she said. “It’s a climate solution. It’s also a technological wonder. And it represents some really hopeful and important things about the future of our state and of our world.”

The governor with Dana Rebeiro (left) and Tatum Reis, (right), both of Vineyard Offshore. — Ray Ewing

Additionally, Governor Healey spent time emphasizing the project’s value as a creator of jobs, both on the Island and throughout the state.

“Overall, we know that Vineyard Wind has created more than 2,000, high-quality jobs in Massachusetts, and it’s delivered more than $600 million in economic output for our economy,” Governor Healey said.

Governor Healey expressed pride in the state being “on the forefront” of offshore wind power.

“This is an industry that is safe, that is tested,” Governor Healey said. “Other parts of the world have seen tremendous success, not only in lowering energy costs but also [in] taking steps to actually reduce emissions and save our planet.”

State Sen. Julian Cyr joined the proceedings. — Ray Ewing

Senator Cyr added that wind power offers a path forward from the region’s unsustainable energy harvesting practices of the past.

“Folks need to remember that until very recently, when you turned on the lights the power was generated with a dirty coal plant at Brayton Point right in Somerset,” he said.

As of late May, the Vineyard Wind’s project includes 16 completed turbines with 46 more to go.

Governor honord Lisa Knight for her 33 years coaching sports on the Vineyard. — Ray Ewing

Prior to the press conference, Governor Healey and her team received a tour of the Windea Intrepid, the crew transfer vessel that takes maintenance and construction personnel out to the wind farm.
 Capt. Josh Rand even offered up his captain’s chair to the governor.

“I feel like I’m a master of the universe,” Governor Healey joked.

Following the press conference, the governor and her team headed to Viera Park, where families of young athletes gathered for a celebration of youth sports.

Governor threw out the first pitch at a Little League game. — Ray Ewing

Governor Healey’s speech at the event underscored the importance of youth sports in her own life and her appreciation for the thriving youth sports culture on the Vineyard.

“As a little girl, I had a passion around sports, and you learn a lot about yourself,” she said. “You learn how to practice, you learn how to make mistakes and get better.... All these things are really, really important lessons.”

The governor also honored Lisa Knight, a former multi-sport coach and physical education teacher at the regional high school, with a governor’s citation in recognition of her 33 years of educational service.

Many of Ms. Knight’s family members, friends and former players were in attendance.

The governor and Ann Whiting enjoy a moment. — Ray Ewing

“I get no greater thrill than to look out here on this field right now and see these kids out here,” Ms. Knight said. “Today was exceptional.”

Directly following the ceremony, Governor Healey headed to the baseball diamond, where she threw the first pitch in Thursday’s AAA Minors league game.

Renee Clermont and Alexa Arieta, Little League parents who were also coached by Ms. Knight when they were students, said they were pleased that the governor took the time to encourage their children to pursue their passions.

“I think it’s good to see the kids feeling like what they’re doing is important,” Ms. Arieta said.