The arrival of 50 illegal migrants at Martha’s Vineyard on Wednesday rocked the small island but inadvertently allowed the foreign visitors brief exposure to one of America’s top travel destinations.
Martha’s Vineyard’s tightknit, affluent community, comprising mostly Democrats, including former President Barack Obama, had proudly taken in the migrants after they were flown in by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
DeSantis, noting Florida enforces immigration law, reasoned that “it’s better to be able to go to a sanctuary jurisdiction, and, yes, we will help facilitate that transport for you to be able to go to greener pastures.”
The migrants’ stay at the Vineyard was, however, short-lived as Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) was quick to deport them from the island. Baker announced he was sending them on Friday to a military base on Cape Cod because “the island communities are not equipped to provide sustainable accommodation” for the mostly Venezuelan nationals.
In light of the revelation that Martha’s Vineyard is not immune to receiving planes of illegal migrants — planes Biden too has sent in scores to cities across America since taking office — and because the DeSantis team has floated the idea of sending more to Martha’s Vineyard, below is a list of island activities for any new arrivals.
1. Take a ferry to Nantucket
The illegal migrants were ferried from Vineyard Haven to Woods Hole, a ride during which some left their buses on the ferry to “gaze across the glistening water at Cape Cod,” the Cape Cod Times reported. They can, if they have $41, also take a one-way trip to Nantucket via ferry to see more glistening water through October.
2. Visit the lighthouses
Martha’s Vineyard is home to five historic lighthouses.
3. Go to a public beach
There are several easily accessible beaches, including one little-known nude beach, called Moshup Beach, which is located over by the Gay Head lighthouse and cliffs on the west side of the island.
4. Take advantage of off-season restaurant deals
The post-Labor Day lull is a prime time to visit Martha’s Vineyard, when tourism has died down but restaurants and shops remain open, according to a Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce blog post.
5. See famous settings from Jaws
There are a number of areas on Martha’s Vineyard to see film locations from Steven Spielberg’s classic American thriller movie Jaws, but perhaps the most famous one is the “Jaws bridge,” connecting Edgartown and Oak Bluffs.
6. Buy Black Dog or Vineyard Vines clothing
There are several stores in Martha’s Vineyard that sell apparel by The Black Dog and Vineyard Vines, two companies whose recognizable logos, the black Labrador/boxer mix and the smiling whale, originated in Martha’s Vineyard. A Black Dog T-shirt is roughly $35.
7. Check out Chappaquiddick Island
The island on Martha’s Vineyard is known for its beaches, Cape Poge lighthouse, trails, birdwatching, lack of internet, and a notorious 1969 incident in which Sen. Ted Kennedy, President John F. Kennedy’s brother, negligently drove his car off a bridge, resulting in the death of a 28-year-old campaign aide.
Write to Ashley Oliver at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at @asholiver.