Have you booked your ferry yet???

My family started coming to Martha’s Vineyard in 1960.  My grandmother was friends with another Vineyard family, the Manleys, and rented their home on Canonicus from 1960-62.  In the spring of ’63 they purchased our family home on Pequot Ave. 

Growing up, I always felt like the location was amazing.  We are just a block or two from town, the basketball courts, the beach and ocean park.  From the time I was nine through the end of high school, I spent summers on the island with my grandmother.  Those were the BEST times.  As a kid in Oak Bluffs, there were always lots of kids around to play with.  To this day most of my best friends are connected to the island.


Nia & Family 

My kids are the 4th generation in the house and planning for our stay is a family ritual.  Over the years, we have taken almost every mode of transport possible to the island, but our favorite is to take the car ferry out of Woods Hole.  For us, the process starts in January.  This year, ferry reservations opened on January 12.  For some reason, I had it in my head that they opened at 9am.  Imagine my surprise when I checked Facebook and a friend had already posted that they got theirs.  I jumped out of bed, grabbed a computer, and freaked out for 20 minutes as the site kept crashing from all of the traffic.  At 6:30 am on the first day tickets were available, half of the boats were already sold out.  After sweating it out, success!  We had tickets for summer of 2016. 

 Click here to book your ferry, ASAP!!!

Everyone has their own preferred way to travel, mine was formed as a kid.  Our family ritual is to leave the house between 2 and 4 am to catch one of the first boats of the morning.  As we drive, there are landmarks that build our excitement for the ride – hitting exit 93 and finally crossing the border into RI; the giant bug in Providence; the Bourne Bridge.  Once we pass the Palmer Ave. lot, and have the last few minutes to go, our excitement is almost at a fever pitch.  Finally we round the corner and you can see the ferry.  After the long drive we can’t wait to get up on deck, breathe in the salt air and get the first glimpses of the island.  It’s time to exhale – we’re headed home. 

Lobster rolls for dinner!


In part two, Nia will share her picks for super chill fun and food on the island.



Nia Rhodes Jackson grew up in Queens, NY and now lives in CT with her husband and three children.  In August, you can find her in Oak Bluffs, rocking on her porch, laying on the beach or eating a lobster roll.  During the rest of the year, you will find her planning events and programs for a park conservancy.

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