Growing a Business, One Pine Needle at a Time
Heidi Sistare
Twenty years ago Norman Lobb bought too many seedlings and Danny Whiting’s family had a fallow farm field. The mistake turned out to be a business opportunity, and this winter they are selling Christmas trees at L&W Farm in West Tisbury.
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Twelve Days of Tisbury Reinvigorates Business Association
Katie Ruppel

A mechanical Santa wrote with a quill inside Moonstone Jewelers window, a mannequin fashioned a poinsettia dress in Alley Cat’s and a toy train zipped around photographs of snowy Vineyard days inside Island Art Gallery.

All were admired by the crowds assembled on Main street in Vineyard Haven on Tuesday, but Mix’s storefront — adorned with vintage toys stuffed in coffee cups — earned the best window award, given by four high school art students.

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Dressing Up Ocean Park for Christmas is a Labor of Love
Katie Ruppel
The wind blows hard as Mark Crossland and his crew assemble the last of 18 Christmas trees in Ocean Park. Mr. Crossland and Alisson Brasil tie a rope in a knot at the end of a pole, mount the pole in the ground, cable the rope down, and start wrapping Christmas lights around the six-foot tree.

The guys zip-tie the string to the ropes, and splice each light to prevent burn-out. It takes the crew about a week to fill Ocean Park with the trees, which for now look a bit naked in the sunlight.

But at night?

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Troubled Times Color Christmas Mood
Chris Burrell
If you're not feeling quite ready for the holidays, if the festive mood hasn't grabbed you, don't worry. You're not alone.
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Santa Surveys His Domain

With six shopping days left until Christmas, Tisbury merchants say the women will come early, the men late. Parking will be tough, but when isn't it? And though the wind may be cold the shops are warm, and the white lights of a Main street night alone make it worth the walk.

Vineyard Haven store owners are hoping this weekend will bring a rush to boost holiday business. December is usually one of the more profitable months of the year, but so far sales have been lackluster.

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Wrapped and Ready, Edgartown Leads Weekend of Merrymaking
Jack Shea

Downtown Edgartown began looking a bit like Christmas weeks ago when wreathlike green loops appeared on the white picket fences at Hob Knob Inn and Tomassian & Tomassian law offices. Soon after, Santa began standing sentry in faux Doc Martens by Edgartown Hardware and evergreen spriggery sprouted in Soigne’s windows.

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Gifts for All, Good Tidings for Island
Phyllis Meras

In Tisbury town on Church street,
the traffic all was stuck
So those who’d gone on shopping sprees
were clearly out of luck.
They grumped and groaned and left their cars,
And some among them longed for bars
Though they could find right many a snack,
To soothe frayed tempers, but — alack —
There was no wine or beer for sale,
Only soft drinks like ginger ale.
Since by one vote the town decreed
It did not want — it did not need
Drinks alcoholic in the town
That for sobriety is renowned.

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Gifts for All, Good Tidings for Vineyard
Phyllis Meras

At the Animal Shelter of MV
The dogs were barking with great glee,
And the cats were purring to beat the band,
For they sensed, in the air, that something grand
Was about to happen — to bring delight
To all Martha’s Vineyard, which is right.
In the sky above, they sniffed reindeer
Getting ready to land and to bring good cheer
Not only to shelter dogs and cats
And gerbils and guinea pigs and pet rats
In need of homes and loving care,
But Island humans would get their share
Of gifts from the sleigh in the air on high

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Gifts for All, Good Tidings for Vineyard
Phyllis Meras

West Tisbury’s Mill Pond was all white;
The snow on the cattails a pretty sight.
The mallards were swimming up and down.
A wood duck, too, was visiting town,
And hooded mergansers were having their day
While in their incredibly stately way
Babette and Romeo — that elegant pair
Of swans that assuredly add such flair
To Mill Pond waters were cruising about
Enjoying a breakfast, without a doubt,
Of cornbread supplied by Jenkinson, Joan,
Who looks after the swans all on her own
Because they make such a picturesque sight

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Poem: Gifts for All, Good Tidings for Vineyard
Phyllis Meras
Editor's Note: Each year, editor Phyllis Meras creates a Christmas poem for the Vineyard.
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