The Block Island Times

In Case You Haven't Heard

By by Fran Migliaccio | Feb 08, 2012

About town

A new monthly program for all to enjoy, Winter Pot Lucks Film & Food, takes place the first Thursday of each month, 6 p.m. at the Island Free Library from now through May. This collaboration of the Ocean View Foundation and the Island Free Library, a brainchild of Kristin Baumann and Kim Gaffett, offers a free film at the library on each designated Thursday. Attendees may bring a light supper, something to share, or just come for the film.

The first film of the series, “Oceans,” aired the evening of Groundhog Day and attracted a goodly turnout of 20 adults and 11 youths. The next film will show on Thursday, March 1. Kim Gaffett welcomes anyone with a title request to contact her.

We groundhogs, numbering 948 this year, welcome the 949th member of our year round population, the baby girl of Amy Lewis Land and Steve Land! Born Monday, February 6, at 4:25 p.m., she weighed in at 7 pounds, 7.5 ounces, and measured 19 inches. As of this writing she is unnamed, and my own humble suggestion is that Celia and Anne are both lovely appellations. Put them together, Celia Anne, and you have a nickname, Cee Anne: Cee Anne Land, sound it out, very Block Island-y. I suggested it with a smile to uncle Justin Lewis, but am certain the family has many preferred, beautiful names.

Speaking of that Groundhog count, I was fortunate to be a census counter again this year, working with Jennifer Phillips and Mark Vallaincourt on the High Street-and-tributaries neighborhood. It’s the one I’ve worked on for years, and it was fun to be doing it with these two conscientious counters.

Also great, that evening, to see Don Warner. Don has been gone for three years, staying at his home in Madison, Conn., and working on the mainland. Don, by-the-bye, is the brother of Cindy Pappas.

Frank and Dot Leslie were in for the count too, at Poor People’s Pub. Dot confided that she had never been to the establishment “in her life,” even when it was the Albion. Frank, however, admitted to having been once on his own, and we had to josh him about stepping out and not telling.

Shared a wonderful pizza that evening with Jean Valentine, and we reminisced about the days when the count used to take place at the old Sam Peckham’s, more formally known as the Samuel Peckham Inn (or tavern).

Lovely to see Ed Heron, Marty Dunne and daughter Julia Dunne of Center Road that evening as well.

Thank you, as always, to organizers Maggie and Don Thimble and Nat Gaffett, and hosts Ross and Brenna Audino of Poor People’s Pub, all of whom made the evening possible and very fun, with plenty of fine food and good cheer.


We were advised by proud grandparents Lydia and Don Littlefield that Noah Gasner has been accepted at the University of Vermont for next year, and we learned from proud parents Kerri and John Spier that Sam Spier, too, has been accepted at UVM. Congratulations to both young men!

This year’s senior class is seven in number, and the soon-to-be grads are, in addition to Sam and Noah, Michael Hanson, Theo Mott, Kody Nicastro, Kyle Schwartzer and Danielle Woodward.

New and noteworthy

We of Block Island are fortunate to have access to the freshest eggs in the world, and we hope everyone has been trying them! Containers of these locally produced Block Island eggs, in half-dozen size, are available at Block Island Grocery. Upon inquiry, we learned that the egg farmers are Joe Sprague, Everett and Verna Littlefield, and Amelia Gallant. The eggs are carefully washed every evening after being brought from the hen house, then packaged for market, and they are truly delicious. Everyone should support our hard-working local farmers, who are turning out a superior product at a very affordable price.

All creatures

At a recent get-together on the West Side, muskrats made their way into the conversation of a friend who loves gardening. “We catch them and take them to a pond,” she said matter-of-factly. I said, and meant it, that muskrats are welcome in Sands Pond, at least as far as I am concerned. These furry semi-aquatic mammals are delightful to see in the yard at the edge of the pond and can do no harm to my garden-less premises. They are good pond stewards, helping to clean out excess vegetation, and they occasionally eat insects as well.

I also — dare I say it? — enjoy seeing deer in my yard. They’re graceful, quiet, and at times amusingly playful.

Doing well

Jack Sisto continues to recover at home from the effects of a stroke, responding well to physical therapy and Theresa Sisto’s loving care and excellent cooking.

Two visits to Eleanor Mott at Kent Regency in recent weeks found her looking beautiful, in good spirits and doing well. She spoke with happiness of her trip to Block Island last August for the wedding of daughter Susan Mott to Norris Pike, and hopes to be able to make the trip again.

Of cakes and candles

Happy upcoming birthdays to Lillian Martin, Megan Mitchell and Becky Ballard, all on February 16; Barbara MacDougall, now wintering in Arizona, February 17; Pam Hinthorn, February 18; Joanne Hutchins, now in sunny Highland Beach, Fla., February 20, and Lou Marsella on the same date; and Nancy Walker Greenaway, February 23.

Let us know what’s happening! Visiting relatives, special occasions, updates on friends near and far, projects… Deadline is Tuesday morning, and Fran can be reached at 466-2892 or

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