Back to the Vineyard – Edgartown, with a Splash of Vineyard Haven

We left Nantucket later in the morning on July 18, allowing the fog to lift. It was an overcast and dreary morning.

Sharing the channel with a ferry leaving Nantucket
Twenty-six nautical miles under a gray sky and periods of rain. Magnolia is barely visible in the distance behind us.

Edgartown is always a stop on our travels out this way. Nice harbor, beautiful architecture of a classic New England whaling town, steeped in history and now tourism. 😉 I’ve written about our stays here in 2016 and 2017 so once again I will try not to be overly repetitious. It’s getting harder because we have our favorite things that we enjoy doing over and over.

The Edgartown mooring field stretches from the entrance to the harbor after the Chappaquidiick Ferry crossing all the way to the beginning of Katama Bay, out of sight in this photo.
We were assigned Mooring #62 which was farther out in the field than we like, but Magnolia was only one ball away. As you can see, the weather improved dramatically.

We already had plans for our first evening in Edgartown, continuing a tradition Al and I began many years ago – a Vineyard Sound concert. “Vineyard Sound” is an all-male acapella college group that began in 1992 as a group of ten friends from Connecticut College, Skidmore College and Wesleyan University who all loved music and the island. 

This group is special to me. I first heard them back in 1993 when they sang at Silas Deane Middle School in Wethersfield where I was then teaching 7thgrade mathematics. Two of the founding members had attended the middle school so they did a concert there for the kids. When we honeymooned on Martha’s Vineyard in 1994, we looked them up and have tried to catch a concert every time we have been here since then. Naturally the members change over the years, but I must admit, with chagrin, that I was caught off guard when I realized the current singers were not even alive when we heard the first Vineyard Sound concerts back in 1993. Feeling old……………

They perform 5 evenings per week in various locations around the island so we were able to see their Thursday evening Edgartown concert at the Federated Church.

Waiting for the concert to begin in the Federated Church.

All of us thoroughly enjoyed the concert. The songs were a nice mix of old and current, appealing to everyone. And afterwards we stopped at Scoops for ice cream……….. Yikes! No pictures???? Have to take my word for this.

On Friday morning, we played the “Dockwa game” for a mooring again. Now that you need to go through Dockwa for a mooring reservation in Edgartown, you can only get one night at a time. Once you are there, you spend each morning requesting anther night, sometimes in person and sometimes on the VHF. It is interesting to listen to the VHF as people call in to request another night’s stay. Sometimes they get one and sometimes they don’t. I haven’t quite figured out the why’s for that although I have theories.

Our big event(s) for this Friday was to take a bus to Vineyard Haven using the MVTA, Martha’s Vineyard Transit Authority. It’s a great system for getting around the island. An all-day pass is $5 for senior citizens. Isn’t it nice to be that old?

The wheels on the bus go round and round…… (You need grandchildren to understand that and sing along.)
On our walk we passed this house – can you see all of the blue bottles and glassware in the windows?

Why did we leave Edgartown and head to Vineyard Haven? Because Friday nights are lobster roll night at the Grace Episcopal Church. Dan Pashman’s Sporkful podcast about these lobster rolls was very motivating. This would be a first for us and Anthony and Annette were all in, too. If you are near Vineyard Haven on a Friday evening in the summer, we highly recommend going to Grace Episcopal Church.

Grace Episcopal Church, Vineyard Haven
It’s a pretty simple operation and runs very smoothly due to years of practice.
The “Grace Episcopal Lobster Crew” – check out that lobster hat!
For $20 you get a lobster roll with so much lobster meat it was enough to share, a drink and chips.
Annette and Anthony enjoying their lobster rolls. Sorry about the photo, Annette, but it definitely shows you were digging into that lobster roll!
We ate our meal outside on a pretty picnic table under a tree.

We had tickets for a 7:30 pm movie and had time to squander with a walk around Vineyard Haven. Our walk brought us to the Black Dog Tavern, another must-do tourist thing to share with the crew of Magnolia .

Black Dog Tavern where we had drinks and shared appetizers. A backwards dinner, but still tasted delicious. 😉
Al and Anthony stroll the dock at the Black Dog Wharf.
Maiden is the documentary film about 24-year old Tracy Edwards who led the first all-female crew in the Whitbread Round the World Race in 1989, a grueling yachting competition that covers 33,000 miles and lasts nine months. It was EXCELLENT!!

Weather dictates boating travels and activities. Saturday and Sunday were just too hot to do anything on shore. The heat wave that arrived on the east coast affected the islands as well as the mainland. At 90 degrees, this became one of our quieter stays in Edgartown. We mostly stayed on the boats, reading, blogging, and weaving, and swimming off the boat.

Weaving in the shade of the aft cockpit.
Annette and I tried to get in the water in nearly every harbor. The water temperature was in the mid-70’s and felt so refreshing.
LOOK AT THAT!! It was so hot, even Anthony took a dip. Al took the photo but was also in the water to cool off.
A grilled swordfish dinner with chilled side salads was a fitting feast to the hot day.
A cooling dinghy ride to tour the harbor just before sunset.

Sunday was our last day in Edgartown so we dragged Anthony and Annette along to share another of our MV traditions – breakfast at Among the Flowers. (hmmm…. food sure seems to be a major part of our boating.)

Among the Flowers Cafe
Another delicious breakfast there.

Sunday became another lazy day on the boats, which was just fine because it was another hot one. Our Edgartown buddy, Mike, stopped by to say hi and give us a pump out. Mike runs the pump-out boat during the day and the launch in the evening, and he never fails to visit for a spell. Now pump-outs may not be a pleasant topic for a blog, but it is certainly a necessary and vital part of boating. Pump-out boats = clean harbors!!!

Mike at work and visiting with Al.
Sunday, July 21st, was National Iced Cream Day!! WooHOO! Just happened to have two little pints in our boat freezer………….

Monday morning began with a very early stop at Edgartown’s water dock before departing for the next harbor. We do love that water dock – so easy to refill the tanks.

Magnolia enjoyed the ease of the water dock (…and they have a water maker.)
A picnic table is provided for those sit-down moments while you wait for the tanks to fill.
The Edgartown Yacht Club with new cedar siding – looking good!
The EYC figurehead
Church steeples of Edgartown
Magnolia leaving Edgartown.
Edgartown Lighthouse – And so, we say good bye to Edgartown for this year.

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