Jack Ryan

Jack Ryan lives in Oak Bluffs and works at the West Tisbury post office. Each morning he takes the Vineyard Transit Authority bus to work.

“Normally there are some teachers and students and people who work at Cronig’s on the bus with me,” he said. “But now I’m the only one.”

Mr. Ryan was worked at the West Tisbury post office for five years, and the Vineyard Haven post office for two years before that. The postal service is one of the few businesses running regular hours and in close contact with the public. Mr. Ryan said there are protocols in place.

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Andrew Berry

Andrew Berry is a captain of the Chappy Ferry.

Four years ago he retired from his possition as assistant principal at the regional high school.

“The ferry is like water or electricity,” he said. “It’s an essential service for people that live on Chappy. You have to get everything from groceries to emergency vehicles over there. It’s essential we keep it running.”

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David Araujo

David Araujo is the director of the Island Intervention center and the director of the emergency services program.

The Island intervention center oversees the urgent care program that is run out of Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. The emergency services program handles all the emergency service cases that go through the hospital, the jail or the community. They handle assessments and figure out the safest possible placement for individuals.

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Ed Cisek

Ed Cisek is the owner of Cottage City Cab Company.

As the coronavirus pandemic situation unfolded in March, Mr. Cisek said he noticed a different mood in his customers.

“There was just something in the air. I’ve been doing this for so long you can tell the vibe people have. No one was really talking about it, but everyone was kind of holding their breath both literally and figuratively.”

On March 18, he stopped his traditional taxi service.

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Chrissy Kinsman

Chrissy Kinsman owns Pie Chicks, the Island pie-making business she began in 2013.

Ms. Kinsman said her workload is busier than it usually is this time of year. Ordinarily, she would be focusing on summer planning but instead she is in the kitchen. For her, it is about keeping her business going during this time as well as finding ways to give back to the community.

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Sarah Crittenden

Sarah Crittenden owns Ghost Island Farm in West Tisbury with Rusty Gordon, her partner in life and work.

“We’ve been together since dirt was invented,” she said.

Ghost Island Farm is coming up on its ninth year. The farm stand is a small operation but packed with produce year-round. It is open to everyone but also utilizes a member system where customers pay a lump sum up front and receive a discount. The up-front money is essential for the farmers to plan and plant crops.

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Belle Dinning

Belle Dinning is an emergency medical technician for the Oak Bluffs fire department. She also works part-time as an EMT in Tisbury and part-time at the hospital.

Ms. Dinning said that when emergency medical crews go out on calls, for the safety of the team they treat it as if everyone has Covid-19 until proven otherwise. EMTs are dressed in full protective gear, and if anyone is experiencing respiratory symptoms, they dress in a full hazmat suit with “goggles, glasses, masks, the whole deal.”

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Nina Ferry

Nina Ferry is the reference librarian and the head of adult technology services at the Oak Bluffs Public Library.

“The first two weeks were a scramble as to how we were going to contact patrons and stay connected,” Ms. Ferry said, referring to the shut-down order.

Part of that scramble was transferring a large number of their materials and services into a digital medium. Individuals can still obtain library cards if they’re interested in any of the library’s newly purchased digital services which include e-books, e-audiobooks, videos and music.

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Andy Herr

Andy Herr performs with the Pickpocket Bluegrass Band, Jellybone Rivers and the Maniacs of the Heart, The Space Invaders and the Pinkletinks. He’s also a sound engineer, a guitar teacher, and for the past three years has been hosting open mic nights at Island Music in Vineyard Haven.

“A month ago, we were planning a three-year celebration party,” he said.

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Dawn Blackwood

Dawn Blackwood is a cashier at Our Market in Oak Bluffs.

One of the biggest adjustments for essential businesses like Our Market has been limiting the number of customers they allow in the store at once.

Ms. Blackwood said some customers still try to enter the store in groups.

“We’re open from eight to six and we can only let four people in at a time,” she said. “Some of the customers would normally come in three or four times over the day and we can’t do that either. We can only let them in once per day.”

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