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Category: Holidays

Own the Night like the Fourth of July

Onset Children's Parade (Photo by Ella Necheles)

Around about now, Katy Perry gets stuck on repeat in our head. We watched her Firework video again and start getting excited for the Fourth. To keep the soundtrack in our head relevant, we’ve put together a list of Fourth of July activities — not just fireworks, but parades, fleet blessings and more. It’ll keep you humming all week long.

Boom, boom, boom.


Fireworks

All events are listed from East to West (or a rough approximation of that!)

Onset-Wareham Fireworks, July 7, 9ish (we love a good when a schedule officially uses “ish”), Onset Beach. See more here.

Middleboro Fireworks, July 6, 10:00, Pierce Playground. See more here. 

New Bedford Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular 2018, July 4, 9:00, State Pier, Downtown New Bedford. Viewing from lower Union Street. See more here.

Freetown Fireworks Festival, July 3, 6-10 pm, Hathaway Park, Water Street, Assonet (near the former The Assonet Inn). See more here. 

Fall River Fireworks, July 4, 9:30, Fall River Heritage State Park, Davol Street at the waterfront.


Parades

Bourne on the Fourth, July 4, 10:00, Main Street, Buzzards Bay. See more here. This parade gets a prize for best named patriotic parade.

Marion Fourth of July Parade, July 4, 9:00,  Spring Street, Marion. See more here. 

Fourth of July Car Cruise and Parade, July 4, 9:00, starts at Fairhaven High School, 12 Huttleston Avenue, Fairhaven. Floats and marchers join at Cushman Park. See more here. 

Freetown Annual Parade, July 4, 10:00,  South Main and Water Streets.

Westport Annual Parade, July 4, 10:00 (road closure at 9:00), Main Road north of Hix Bridge Road. See more here. 


Other Fun Stuff

Onset Blessing of the Fleet, Pet Parade, Bike Parade & Doll Carriage Parade, July 7, Onset Pier, Onset Avenue. Participating boaters parade their vessel on a route that will form between the islands near red nun 14, then proceed inbound to the face of the Onset Pier where vessels will be cheered by spectators and blessed by a local priest. Boaters are encouraged to decorate their boats and prizes are given. At 10 a.m., just before the vessel parade, children of all ages are invited to participate in the Pet, Bike & Doll Carriage Parades. See more here. 

Middleboro Carnival, July 3 – July 7, evenings. Pierce Playground. See more here. 

Mattapoisett 5 Mile Road Race, July 4, 9:00, Shipyard Park, 13 Water Street, Mattapoisett. $25 on July 3 or $30 if registering on July 4 (includes t-shirt) . See more here. 

Fort Phoenix Independence Day Ceremony and Cannon Salute, July 4, 10:00, Fort Phoenix, Fort Street, Fairhaven. Following the Car Cruise and Parade, there will be a patriotic program at the Fort featuring a reading of the Declaration of Independence, Emma Lazarus’ poem “The New Colossus,” and the firing of the fort’s five 24-pound Seacoast Defense cannons by the Fairhaven Village Militia. See more here. 

4th of July with Frederick Douglas, July 4, 10-2,  Customs House Square, Barkers Lane, New Bedford. Meet Frederick Douglass and other people who lived in New Bedford during the 1800s. At 12:00 Frederick Douglass will give a speech in which he discusses slavery, independence, justice, and what it means to be an American. Hear the Declaration of Independence read aloud. In addition you will be able to meet Douglass, the 1850s Ladies, Civil War soldiers, local leaders, and park rangers. See more here.


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8 Great Things: December on the South Coast

We’re back with another of our  8 Great Lists. Here, we bring you 8 special South Coast happenings in December. There’s SO much going on this month that it was very hard to keep it to eight (but we did, because we’re creatures of habit and because 55 doesn’t rhyme with “great”).

1. We Love a Parade

South Coast happeningsFall River knows how to throw a great holiday parade: giant parade balloons; Santa and Mrs. Claus arriving by helicopter; Clydesdale Horses; 30 parade floats; 29 marching groups; 17 bands; children participating from every school in the city; and more!

The 33rd annual event is on Saturday, December 2. Santa arrives at 12:45. Parade begins at 1:00 from Kennedy Park down South Main Street, ending at the corner of Central and Bedford Streets. See here for more information.

2. Be Starry-Eyed

South Coast happenings“Look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see, and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious.” Stephen Hawking

UMass Dartmouth, in collaboration with the Astronomical Society of Southern New England (ASSNE), makes it easier for us to follow Stephen Hawking’s advice this weekend. On Saturday, the UMass Dartmouth Observatory throws its doors open to the general public for a FREE night-sky viewing session. The event depends on a clear sky. Check here for more information, including how to find out if there is a weather cancellation. Saturday, December 2 at 7 p.m. The Observatory is located in the field to the right of the main campus entrance off Old Westport Road, North Dartmouth.

3. It’s a Wonderful Movie

South Coast happeningsAfter the City of New Bedford tree lighting ceremony, Mayor Mitchell is inviting folks back to the Zeiterion Theater for a FREE showing of the holiday classic. If you haven’t seen it, you must. If you’ve seen it 99 times already, you should see it again. Zeiterion Theater, 684 Purchase Street, New Bedford. No tickets or reservations needed. More info here.

 

 

4. Make Room for Cookies

Photo courtesy of Medi ThomasThere’s a lot of things to do in December. But you know what’s most important? Completing a 5K in a Santa suit! Because you’ll be surrounded by a lot of fun people who don’t take running entirely seriously. And because you’ll burn some calories for a season of eggnog, hot chocolate and cookies.  “But I don’t have a Santa suit,” some of you are saying right now. No worries (and no excuses) — the suit is included with registration!  Participants are encouraged to bring a wrapped toy for those in need. Saturday, December 9, 2017.With a 1:00 p.m. start time (12:30 for those under 14 years old).Corner of MacArthur Drive and Union Street in New Bedford. Click here for more information and to register.

5. Snooping in Other People’s Houses

South Coast happeningsThe only thing better than snooping around other people’s houses is doing it when the houses are decorated to the nines. You can do this in Fairhaven, Marion, and New Bedford on the weekend of December 9-10. Enjoy the architecture, the interiors, the festive airs and the community spirit (the New Bedford and Fairhaven tours support historic preservation; the Marion tours support community scholarships).

The New Bedford House Preservation Society hosts the New Bedford tours. Candlelight tours (from 4 to 8 pm) are on December 9 and an afternoon tour (from 1 to 5 pm) is on December 10. More info here. 

The Sippican Woman’s Club hosts the Marion tour on Saturday, December 9 from 10 am to 4 pm. Start from Handy’s Tavern, 152 Front Street, Marion and end with Tea at St. Gabriel’s Episcopal Church from 2 to 4 pm. More info here.

The Fairhaven Historical Society hosts the Fairhaven tour on Sunday, December 10 from 1 to 4 pm. Start from Fairhaven Academy, 141 Main Street, Fairhaven. More info here.

6. It’s for the Birds

South Coast happenings

Photo courtesy of Nasketucket Bird Club

The National Audubon Society organizes the nation’s longest-running citizen science bird project. You can be part of its annual Christmas bird count this year with the Nasketucket Bird Club. The club hosts the count, followed by a potluck. Contact Justin at [email protected] or 774-207-8515 for more information. December 16. Meet at Park & Ride, 87 North Street, Mattapoisett at around 8 am (call or email Justin for an exact time). See more about Nasketucket Bird Club here.

7. Make Hay While the Sun Shines

South Coast happenings

Photo courtesy of Buzzards Bay Coalition

We have less than 9 hours and 10 minutes of daylight here on the South Coast on the winter solstice. Make the most of that daylight by joining the Buzzards Bay Coalition to enjoy a spectacular sunrise walk on West Island. 613 Fir Street, Fairhaven. Thursday, December 21, 2017 from 6:30 to 7:30 a.m.  For more information and to register, click here.

8. All Month Long

South Coast happenings

Photo courtesy of Fall River Historical Society

The annual open house at the Fall River Historical Society features spectacular holiday trees in each of the historic Victorian mansion’s rooms. The trees are decorated with different themes and in unexpected ways and have been featured in Victorian Homes magazine, the Boston Globe and WCVB’s Chronicle.  Follow the visit with high tea at the Historical Society’s Easton Tea Room. The open house runs from November 18 to December 30 and admission is free. (holiday hours: weekdays, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; weekends 1 to 4:30 p.m.). For information about the tea room, read more here.

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Over the River & Through the Woods: Post-Thanksgiving Walks

You may be prepping for Thanksgiving right now, knee deep in peeling apples or wrestling the bird into some sort of brine-y package. Take a break for a moment and look at our 6 suggestions for post-Thanksgiving walks. Think of it as our holiday gift to you. It’s a reminder to all of us that (i) we live in a beautiful area and (ii) we should probably walk off some of that pecan pie.  Perhaps most importantly, it encourages us to hop into sweatpants (elastic waistbands, folks!) as soon as possible after that big meal (yes, you’re welcome).

We actually reached out to get suggestions from the experts, the staff and volunteers of our active land conservation organizations. Some of these organizations have even gone to the trouble of helping us off the couch by organizing walks that we can join. Showing your gratitude for these wonderful organizations and folks is as simple as just showing up!

Pick a place (or 2, or 3 – it’s a long weekend!) and get outside.

Carleen Loper, Wareham Land Trust Volunteer

Post Thanksgiving walks

Westgate Preserve. Photo courtesy of Wareham Land Trust.

Carleen suggests the town’s Westgate Preserve because it’s “an excellent choice for Thanksgiving weekend because it’s literally over the river and through the woods!” Featuring a retired cranberry bog and the Weweantic River, Westgate Preserve exudes holiday spirit. Leashed dogs are allowed there as well. More here.

Jim Bride, Sippican Lands Trust

Sippican Lands Trust Post-Thanksgiving Dog Walk

Jim tells us that Sippican Lands Trust is hosting its fifth annual Post-Thanksgiving Dog Walk at White Eagle Parcel in Marion at 10 a.m. on Sunday, November 26th. Just take a look at that picture — how great does that look? Find out more here.

Deb Hood, Events Manager, Buzzards Bay Coalition

Deb says, “for my walk, I’d have to go with The Sawmill, the Buzzards Bay Coalition-owned public park on the edge of Acushnet and New Bedford’s North End.” She says the trails at the front of the park are wide, flat and accessible so the whole family – from strollers to wheelchairs (and everyone in between) – can journey to several scenic river overlooks at the former home of the Acushnet Saw Mill Company. See details here.

Kendra Murray, Development & Outreach Specialist, Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust

Ridge Hill Rainbow. Photo courtesy of DNRT.

Kendra says, “Ridge Hill Reserve is a great place for post Turkey Day walk! This 175 acre property abuts the Southeastern MA Bioreserve. There are several trails, whether you’d like to take a quick 1 mile stroll along the blue trail, or a longer hike on the red and green trails. The Green Trail runs to the top of Ridge Hill, one of the highest points in Dartmouth. There are several beech groves along this trail, and as of last weekend, the foliage was a beautiful rich orange. The red trail is a bit flatter and easier. On the western most portion of that trail you can get a  great view of the Copicut Reservoir. We just put in a new set of stairs on a fairly eroded portion of the blue trail, as well.”  See more about Ridge Hill Reserve here.

Kendra also mentioned that DNRT is hosting a guided walk on Saturday, the 25th at 9 am at the Destruction Brook Woods (see more about that here).

Jennifer Escher, Board member, Tiverton Land Trust

Pardon Gray Reserve. Photo courtesy of Tiverton Land Trust.

Jennifer suggests joining the Tiverton Land Trust at one of its post-Thanksgiving group hikes at the Pocasset Ridge Conservation Area or Pardon Gray Preserve.  For more ambitious hikers, Garry Plunkett will lead hikers on some moderate slopes at the Pocasset Ridge Conservation Area.  The newly opened trails will allow those in good physical to experience an amazing forest ecosystem. For the less ruggedly inclined and for families with young children, Wayne Browning will lead a 45 minute trail loop at Pardon Gray Preserve.

Both hikes take place on Saturday, November 25 (Pocasset Ridge starts at 1, Radon Gray Preserve starts at 2). Sturdy shoes, fluorescent orange vest/hats are recommended (orange vests will be provided on-site).  See here for more details.

Brendan Buckless, Outreach & Stewardship Coordinator, Westport Land Conservation Trust

Herb Hadfield Conservation Area. Photo by Greg Stone.

Brendan suggests the Herb Hadfield Conservation Area one of the Westport Land Conservation Trust’s most visited spots. With 158 acres and 2.5 miles of hiking trails, the property features the pristine Angeline Brook, one of Westport’s finest coldwater streams.  Trailheads are located at 364 Adamsville Road or 255 Cornell Road. See directions and more here. 

Make your nature plans and mark the calendars now before your mind is foggy with tryptophan!

Do you want to keep up with everything local and wonderful — from nature walks to food to people to shopping to events? Yes?! Sign up for periodic updates here.

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Trick-or-Treat: The Best Neighborhoods & Traditions!

We’re well into the countdown to Halloween and we wanted to give you the inside scoop on great neighborhoods for trick-or-treating and other Halloween adventures. We asked six of our favorite realtors to give us the lowdown for their neck of the woods.

Will Milbury, Milbury & Co.

Will Milbury, Milbury & Co.

Will Milbury said that Padanaram Village in South Dartmouth is a network of close-knit neighborhoods that teems with children and young families and is a great spot for trick-or-treating. He also mentioned Boo at the Zoo, hosted by the Buttonwood Zoo in New Bedford on October weekends, as a fun family event that isn’t too scary. Boo at the Zoo is still running this year from October 27 – October 30th, 6 to 9 p.m. Find out more here.

Will is the owner and principal broker of Milbury & Co which has purposefully remained a small, competitive independent firm. He lives in South Dartmouth and is an active member of the community. You can find him at the Milbury office at 304 Elm Street, Dartmouth where there’s always a candy basket out front (thank you!) but they’ll have extra Halloween treats thrown in on Tuesday.

Howe Allen

Howe Allen
Howe Allen Realty

Howe Allen called out Fairhaven Center (between Green, Middle, Washington and South Streets) for Halloween magic. He said, “Many of the homes open up to the beautiful green spaces in the Center and people tend to do it up.” According to Howe, Fort Street from the Fort Phoenix area to Cedar and then back up Green is great because parents can park at Fort Phoenix and walk the circle with their trick or treaters.  Finally, he mentioned Oxford Village between Pilgrim Ave and North Street, west of Main Street as having “lots of home with character and characters!  Oldest part of Fairhaven, these homes lend themselves to the Halloween holiday.”

Howe is the owner of Howe Allen Realty with offices in Fairhaven and New Bedford. He is also a renovation fanatic. Not a year goes by when renovation projects don’t fill his days (and nights). You can see some of his projects on the Howe Allen Realty FaceBook page. In addition to rehabbing homes, he enjoys traveling and experiencing new cultures. Howe shares his life with his husband, Tim Evans, and two Jack Russell Terriers, Cheer and Dutch. Howe Allen Realty, Center Street, Fairhaven, (888) 491-9993.

Cecile Callahan, Robert Paul Properties

Mattapoisett’s Cecile Callahan said, “growing up in town the place to be on Halloween was, and still is, the village. The homes in the village all welcome trick-or-treaters. After you score big trick-or-treating, get to the annual Mattapoisett Police Halloween Parade which begins at 6 pm at Center School on Barstow Street.” She promises candy and costume prizes for all ages, preschool to senior citizen.

Cecile is a realtor with Robert Paul Properties in its Marion office and is also the owner of the popular website and blog Mattapoisett Living. Cecile is a Mattapoisett native who is always on the look out for the best sunrises and sunsets. She loves the outdoors, photography and is a big cheerleader for the South Coast. Check her out at Mattapoisett Living and at Robert Paul Properties, Front Street, Marion, (508) 395-6391.

Cassy West

Cassy West
Robert Paul Properties

Cassy West said the place to be on Halloween is the village of Marion where the Marion Art Center’s volunteer witches, together with the Sippican Elementary School band, lead a costume parade around the village before the kids scatter for trick-or-treating. She says the annual event draws hundreds of children and it’s great fun. The parade begins at the Marion Music Hall (corner of Front and Cottage Streets) at 4 p.m. on Halloween night.

Cassy is a realtor with Robert Paul Properties in its Marion office and the owner of Wellness by Dezign where she offers holistic design services for home and office. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, she is a certified LEED V4 Green Associate and brings a keen aesthetic to her work every day. She spent her summers as a child in Marion and now lives in Mattapoisett. Find her at Robert Paul Properties, Front Street, Marion, (508) 395-6391 and at Wellness by Dezign.

Lights! Lots and Lots of Lights!

Cindy Parola Laforce Realty

Cindy Parola said, “back when I was younger, we all went to Cromesett in Wareham– lots of kids, lots of houses close together – it’s still a hot spot. I have a friend there that gives out comic books!  Isn’t that awesome?” She also loves Parkwood Beach neighborhood because it’s a friendly neighborhood with lots of folks hanging out in their front yards, greeting people, with fire pits going. Finally, she reminded us that Wareham Crossing has its big Boo Bash this Saturday from 10-1 (and that the merchants on Main Street will be giving out treats on Halloween itself).

Cindy lives in Bourne now with her husband Mike and six adorable, patience-testing kitties (her favorite candy: “Kit Kats, of course”). LaForce Realty is a boutique real estate brokerage with four offices: Lakeville, Bourne and two in Wareham. Laforce Realty, Tyler Avenue, Wareham, (508) 958-5376.

Sue Ann Murley, DiVito Realty

Sue Ann Murley said that Onset Foursquare Church sponsors Trunk-or-Treat at Lopes Field where cars line up with their trunks open and filled with candy. Instead of going to houses, children visit the cars. The free event features theme-decorated trunks, games, bounce houses, refreshments, a DJ and some unusual characters. Lopes Field is off Onset Avenue. For more information, call 508-291-1595.

Sue Ann is a realtor with DiVito Realty with offices in Onset and Hull. She lives in Onset with her partner, Jeff Gorman, and their Maltese Poodle Henry. In years past, Henry has entered into the Halloween spirit by dressing as a hot dog and a devil but Sue Ann says “he hated every minute of it.” So he may just be a Maltese Poodle this Halloween.  DiVito Realty, 247 Onset Avenue, Onset, (508) 295-0213.

We would love to know where the favorite spots are in your town. Tiverton, Westport, Little Compton, Rochester, Lakeville, etc…whatcha got for us? Please comment below!

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Fourth of July-palooza!!

Onset Children's Parade (Photo by Ella Necheles)

Welcome to the Insider’s Guide to Fourth of July on the South Coast! This isn’t our first rodeo when it comes to the jam-packed excitement that Fourth of July brings. With so many events going on, it can be daunting to decide where to go and what to do. We at South Coast Almanac have created a day by day guide for the long long weekend. Each day is organized by categories: Fireworks, Parades, and Other Fun Stuff.

If you plan it right, you can go to different fireworks four nights in a row. Remember: it’s a marathon, not a sprint! Stay hydrated, folks. 🙂

July 1

Fireworks
Onset/Wareham – Starting at dusk over Onset Beach and Bay (Rain date 7/8/17)

Marion – 9:20 PM Set off from the Kittansett Club, Point Road

Parades
Onset – Children’s parade beginning promptly after the blessing of the fleet at 10 AM. Prizes are awarded for the best decorated bicycles, pets, and doll carriages.

Other Fun Stuff
Onset – The Onset Bay Association will host the 4th Annual Blessing of the Fleet, a patriotic boat parade complete with the blessing of your vessel by a local clergy member. 10 a.m. at the Main Pier. In the afternoon, there will be a free concert with local favorites Pocketful of Soul, digging deep into the library of all your favorite funk, soul and R & B tunes you will be sure to want to get up and dance to. Bandshell (across from town pier), from 1-4 p.m.
Seekonk – Independence Day Thrill Show: 5:00-9:30 PM at Seekonk Speedway spectator drags, car & truck enduros, crazy figure 8 races, powder puff races, and fireworks!(rain date July 2nd)

July 2

Fireworks
Marion – 9:00 PM Silvershell Beach (Rain Date 7/3/2017)

July 3

Fireworks
Freetown – The annual fireworks festival starts at 6:00 pm. Fireworks display begins at 9:30ish, South Main & Water Streets

July 4

Fireworks
New Bedford – The fireworks begin at 9:00 pm from Jetties Beach Barge – 7 Fish Island (Rain date 7/5/2017)
Fall River – Watch the Fireworks from Battleship Cove. Gates open at 7:30. Fireworks begin at approximately 9:30 PM. Tickets are $8.00 per person. See more here.

Parades
Buzzards Bay – Bourne on the Fourth Parade, 10:00 am on Main Street
Marion – Annual parade starts at 9:00 am. Route: East on Main Street to Spring Street; North on Spring Street to Route 6; East on Route 6 to Front Street; South on Front Street to Main Street
Fairhaven – Fourth of July Car Cruise & Float Parade. Gather for flag raising 8:30 am at Fairhaven High School, 12 Huttleston Avenue, Fairhaven. Parade departs from there at 9 a.m.
Westport – Parade starts at noon from Main and Hix Bridge Roads, Ends at the Westport High School
Freetown – Starts at 10:00 am at South & Main St.

Other Fun Stuff
Mattapoisett– 48th Annual 4th of July 5 mile Road Race: 9:00 AM at Shipyard Park, 13 Water Street.

Have any other ideas for July Fourth fun? Share them with us by commenting below.

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