The temperatures are hovering in the teens and we are ready to say goodbye to January. You want us to distract you from the thermometer? Here’s a list of 8 Great Things to while away the hours in February — walks, wine, chocolate, community building, music and more — as we wait for glimpses of spring.
We’re getting our 8 Great Things list out a bit earlier this month because half of them take place on December 1 and 2 and we want to give you a heads up, with plenty of time to plan!
1. Shopping Spree Weekend!
We’ll be spending the first weekend of December finishing our holiday shopping at all of our favorite South Coast shops. Join us and get 10% off when you mention South Coast Almanac! We are grateful to these small businesses who have advertised with and supported us. And we love the personal attention they lavish on their customers. There’s a place on the list for every type of gift, so there’s no reason to leave the South Coast when checking off your list this year.
Check out the 34th annual Fall River Children’s holiday parade, one of the largest in New England. Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive via helicopter, which we think is an exhilarating modern twist on the classic sleigh. Music, floats, giant balloons (think Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade) and excitement make this a great kick off to the holiday season. Free. December 1, 1-4 p.m. Kennedy Park, Fall River. See more here.
3. Open. Water. Swim.
Need to go back and read that headline once more? That’s right! Our brave (crazy?) friends over at the Buzzards Bay Coalition are keeping things interesting! Open water + onset bay + December 1 date makes for a very cool time (pun intended). Wetsuit and colorful hat are required. Friends not ready to take the plunge are welcome to join on kayak. Head over to the Onset Pier on Saturday, December 1 at 10 am to experience “that cold water rush”or just to watch other brave souls experience it! Free. December 1, 10 a.m. See more here.
4. Wreaths, Wine, and a Damn Good Time
Seriously, how could we pass up an event with this title!? Led by the owner of Hammer and Lace at The Barn at Sweet Fern Hill in Middleboro, this wreath making workshop is BYOB, with light refreshments and supplies provided, and you’ll go home with a wreath that would retail for $120. Tickets are $60, December 1st, 3pm. See here for tickets.
But we couldn’t stop at just one wreath workshop! Soule Homestead is hosting two workshops at the same time as their annual holiday fair. Wreaths: $25 for Soule members/$30 for non-members, centerpieces: $15/$20, holiday fair free admission, December 2nd, 10am or 1pm, 46 Soule Street, Middleboro. Preregistration is required. See more here.
Alice’s Table is hosting wreathmaking at Bittersweet Farm. You can order from the Bittersweet Farm menu as you enjoy the company of others and the creativity of making your own wreath. $75, December 5, 6:30 pm, 438 Main Road, Westport. Buy your ticket and see more here.
5. Padanaram Christmas Festival
We happened to talk recently with a woman who moved to Padanaram from the West Coast and you know what drew her to buying a home in Padanaram? The elves! She loved watching the village come together to decorate and celebrate the Christmas season a few years ago! Now’s your chance to go and see what she’s talking about. Santa and the elves, performances, giveaways from local businesses, food and refreshments help make the season bright. December 7, 5 – 8 p.m. Padanaram Village, Dartmouth. See more here.
6. Onset Christmas in the Parks
For more village Christmas flavor, head over to Onset on the 8th. Santa arrives via fire truck at noon to kick off the fun! There’s cookie decorating, photos with Santa at the firehouse with hot chocolate and goodies, a talking Christmas tree, and horse-drawn carriage rides throughout the afternoon. The event is free, with parking available at the pier, but donations will be gladly accepted. December 8, 12 – 3 pm, Onset Village. See more here.
7. Holiday Pops
We love the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra! And we think there’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit than listening to music with friends and family. The orchestra offers a 3:30 children’s matinee, featuring some fun surprises for young audience members, and a 7pm concert with slightly more music (but both performances last around an hour). Pssst: our friends at the NBSO have offered a special deal to South Coast Almanac readers! Use the code SCA20 for 20% off your Pops tickets. If you haven’t had a chance to take in one of their concerts yet, now is the perfect time! December 15th, 3:30 or 7pm, tickets $20-$43 (plus 20% off with code SCA20), The Zeiterion, 684 Purchase Street, New Bedford. Buy your tickets here or call the box office at 508-994-2900.
8. Snowshoeing the Shoreline
Embrace winter and get outside! Join Mass Audubon Society at Allens Pond Wildlife Society to explore the beautiful beach loop trail. Bring your own snow shoes (or hiking boots, should there be no snow) to trek along the 2 mile loop looking for winter wildlife and signs of animal activity! $10 for Audubon members, $12 for non-members.December 29, 9-12, Allen’s Pond, Dartmouth. For more information and to register, click here.
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When July arrives here, it really arrives. We’re a day late getting this blog post up because we were in a heat coma yesterday. But we’re back with our 8 Great Things list. Not to be confused with our Fourth of July holiday happenings list which will be up tomorrow so that you can plan your patriotic activities.
1. Get Folksy
100 artists, 8 stages, and 2 days of folk music at annual favorite, the New Bedford Folk Festival! One weekend every July, folk artists congregate in downtown New Bedford, playing 10 hours of continuous music each day. The festival takes over the Historic Whaling district, filling the Zeiterion and spilling out into the New Bedford Whaling National Historic Park. The event features craft and food vendors and a family area on top of the non-stop music. July 7 -8,$30 for one day, $40 for two day pass, New Bedford Historic District. See here for more.
South Coast fun fact of the month: Westport is home to over 70 (that’s right SEVENTY!) species of wild edible plants. Move over farm-to-table, we’re doing field to mouth! Join the Westport Land Conservation Trust and expert foragers on this two hour walk through Westport Town Farm, learning how to identify 18 species of edible wild plant along the way. The walk will teach you how to become the truest local eater, with information on how to find and prepare edible plants in a safe and environmentally friendly way. The event requires pre-registration, email [email protected] July 10, 2:00. Suggested donation of $10. See more here.
Free live music and thousands of your closest friends, family, and neighbors? What could be better! It’s block-a-palooza, the biggest block party in Fall River. Musical headliners this year include Kat Wright and local favorite Quinn Sullivan (check out this video of Quinn wowing Ellen Degeneris when he was just 6 years old). This July, take it to the streets and jam out to some rock and roll (for free!). July 12, 6:00. South Main Street, Fall River. In case of rain, the party moves indoors to the Narrows Center for the Arts. See more here.
4. Tunes & Brews with Down the Road Beer Co.
Summer dream: sitting by the water, beer in hand, serenaded by live music, watching the sunset. The South Wharf Yacht Yard and Marina, partnering with Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust (DNRT), is making the dream come true. Join them for their “Tunes & Brews” series event on July 20th, featuring tunes by Ken Richards and brews by Down the Road Beer Co. Best of all, donations from this event will go to DNRT and help them protect more than 5,000 acres of land. July 20, 5 – 8 p.m. South Wharf Yacht Yard and Marina, 218 Elm Street, Dartmouth. See more here.
5. Maria, I Just Met A Girl Named Maria….
Every summer, the New Bedford Festival Theatre brings the excitement of Broadway theater to the South Coast! This July, the theatre presents West Side Story for 7 nights, bringing the drama, love, and tragedy of the classic musical to the Zeiterion. July 20-22, 26-29. Tickets $39-$59. 684 Purchase Street, New Bedford. Find out more here.
6. Outdoor Movies!
We don’t have drive-ins anymore but we DO have outdoor movies. Onset and Fairhaven are keeping the family entertained this summer. Every Thursday through August 9, the Onset Bay Association shows a movie feature at the bandshell. Storks (July 5), Power Rangers (July 12), Little Pony (July 19), Rock Dog (July 26), Leap! (August 2) and Black Panther (August 9). Check out the OBA website for more info.
Fairhaven invites everyone to bring their beach chairs and picnic blankets for the screening of Disney’s Coco projected on the big screen in Livesy Park. Before the movie, enjoy face-painting, food, ice cream, games and activities. The event is free. July 21 (rain date: July 22). 6 – 11 p.m. (movie begins at 8:15). See more here.
7. Harbor Days 2018
The Mattapoisett Harbor Days are jam packed with fun, starting with the triathlon on July 15th and culminate in the weekend events. Festivities take place in Shipyard Park and feature live music, strawberry shortcake, a fish fry, crafters, vendors and good food, as well as a lobsterfest on Sunday. The proceeds allow the Lion’s clubs to support sponsored charities and the Mattapoisett community. July 21-22. See more here.
8. Moonlight Kayak Tour
Experience the magic of sunset (and moonrise) on the water thanks to the Lloyd Center for the Environment. After some brief kayaking instruction, head out on the water for a leisurely paddle and sight seeing adventure in the Westport River. Kayakers of any level are welcome to participate, registration required by July 25th. July 27, 6:30-9pm, $65 members, $80 members. See more here.
AND ONE EXTRA TIP FOR JULY:
What’s better than Battleship Cove? Battleship Cove for free!! Experience all of the magic at Battleship Cove with no charge on July 6, including their maritime museum and Fall River Carousel and the experience of a maritime sailor. With thanks to the Highland Street Foundation. 5 Water Street, Fall River. See more here.
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