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Category: Things To Do

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!

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8 Great Things: November on the South Coast

bike on the beach

We’re back with another of our monthly 8 Great Lists. Here, we bring you 8 special South Coast happenings in November. Put that Halloween candy down and check out our top picks for the month right now.

1. Full Moon Owl Prowl

Did you know a full moon is 250,000 times brighter than the brightest star in the sky (we just learned that from the Farmer’s Almanac)? This Saturday, you’ll get a chance to ponder that while enjoying November’s full moon. While you’re at it, Mass Audubon is hosting an owl prowl at its Stone Barn Farm property as the full moon rises, to explore and identify noctural wildlife as it awakens! Enjoy a guided walk and listen to calls of multiple species of owls.

Where & When: November 4, 6 – 8 pm. Stone Barn Farm, 786 Horseneck Road, Dartmouth. $10 members/$12 non-members. Advance registration is required. Register online or call 508-636-2437.

2. Run, Walk, Eat Pizza, Drink Beer

DNRT Trail RaceThere’s something for everyone at the third annual Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust trail run. Come out and support the DNRT’s 35+ mile trail network and 5,000+ acrecs of protected open space! The 3.3. mile running course and 2.4 mile walking course wind through fields and forests at Destruction Brook Woods. What’s the carrot? Your entry fee supports the important work of the DNRT. Also, post-race music, pizza and beer.

When & Where: Saturday, November 4, starting at 11 am. Slade’s Corner Road, Dartmouth. More details here.

3. Cycling & Wine Tasting

We order the Backroads catalogue just to stare longingly at the itineraries of France and Italy biking trips. If you do the same, here’s a wonderful alternative. Spend the day biking through Westport and Tiverton (a 25-30 mile trip, averaging between 12-15 mph) and end up with a private wine tasting at Westport Rivers Winery. It’s just $10 (which covers the wine tasting) and is sponsored by the Appalachian Trail Club.

When & Where: You have to reserve a space with the trip leader — click here to get the information.  Saturday, November 11, 10 am to 5 pm.

4. Go Whole Hog

Marc Swierkowski of Ella’s Wood Burning Oven Restaurant in Wareham is collaborating with Brandon and Laura Higgins-Baltzley, the chefs from the pop-up restaurant Buffalo Jump, along with other well known chefs Dan Amighi and Claudette Zepeda Wilkins (who will be featured on America’s Top Chef next month). The group will cook a variety of pork-focused canapes, side dishes like clam jagacida, and a very large, whole roasted pig (or two). All proceeds go to the Sonoma County Resilience Fund because Laura Higgins-Baltzley went to culinary school there.

When & Where: It’s a little off the South Coast but we’d follow Chef Marc Swierkowski anywhere, especially when it’s for a good cause. Tickets must be purchased in advance by calling (508)361-2361. $45.00 per person (BYOB). November 11 at 2 p.m. until the sun sets at Coonamessett Farm, 277 Hatchville Road, East Falmouth.

5. Document History

Waterfront Strike of 1985-86. Courtesy of Spinner Publications.

Every month, the Fishing Heritage Center sponsors a monthly Dock-U-Mentary focusing on the commercial fishing industry (Dock-U-Mentary! we love that!). This month, they’re serving it up with a twist. As part of its effort to document the history of organized labor in the Fairhaven and New Bedford waterfront, the Center presents “Remembering the Strike of 1985-86.” They will create a sensory experience through images and sounds with clips of television coverage of the strike, slides of archival images and even audio clips from a riot outside the auction house. Following the presentation, they’ll invite community members to add their own memories and create a community conversation about the strike from the not-too-distant past. How many times do we get to see history documented before our very eyes?

When & Where: November 17, 7 pm. Corson Maritime Learning Center, 33 William Street, New Bedford, 508-993-8894. Presented with the New Bedford Whaling National Park. More information here.

6. Ignore Etiquette

Frozen SingalongWe all know it’s considered bad form to go to the theater and sing along with the show (see 13 Rules For Going to the Theater). But sometimes, don’t you just want to belt it out? The Zeiterion is giving us this chance by presenting the sing along version of Disney’s Frozen where the audience is actually encouraged, with subtitles, to get in on the action. So, let it go, let it go, can’t hold it back anymore!

When & Where: Zeiterion Performing Arts Center, 684 Purchase Street, November 19 at 2 pm. Tickets are going fast, order them here or call the box office at 508-994-2900.

7. Meet Some Texas Gentlemen

Texas GentlemenThe Texas Gentlemen don’t take themselves too seriously (watch the armadillo races in one song’s video here) but they do take their music seriously. They released their first album, TX Jelly, in September and they’re bringing it to us at the Narrows Center. Moving between “contemplative and raucous,…the music touches on blues, soul, folk, country, rock and gospel.” We want to have as much fun as they seem to be having.

When & Where: November 20, Narrows Center for the Arts, 16 Anawan Street, Fall River, 508-324-1926. Doors, 7 pm, Show, 8 pm. Tickets are $22 in advance, $25 at the door. Order here.

8. Rock Meets Classical

Lauri PorraWe love the New Bedford Symphony even when – no, especially when — they go outside the box to reach ALL music fans, not just classical music fans. This month, they’re bringing in Lauri Porra, the great grandson of famed Finnish composer Jean Sibelius. He’ll dazzle in the U.S. premiere of his own Concerto for Electric Bass and Orchestra, combining rock and classical music. The New Bedford Symphony will follow with the First Symphony of Porra’s great-grandfather, written when he was just 33 years old.

Yes, that’s right — they’ll be marrying rock and classical right before us. We can’t wait!!

Even better news — we’re giving away a pair of tickets to this season’s symphony and you can use them for this concert (or any other one). Enter here to win.

When & Where: November 26 at 3 pm. The Zeiterion, 684 Purchase Street, New Bedford. Call the Z’s box office at 508-994-2900 or buy them online here.


We’re lucky to live in such a vibrant place! Get out there and love where you live. 

And if you want to stay in the know about other cool things to do, as well as stories about the people, places, food and other things that make the South Coast special, sign up for our free emails right here.

Maybe you have other suggestions for the month…feel free to add them in the comment section.

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8 Great Things: October 2017 on the South Coast!

We’re back with another of our monthly 8 Great Lists. Here, we bring you 8 special South Coast happenings so that you can enjoy the best of our area in October. See what our month is shaping up to look like!

Buzzards Bay Coalition’s Watershed Ride

What: Bikes + Philanthropy. All participants sign up to ride 35, 75 or 100 miles and promise to raise at least $300 each to protect Buzzards Bay’s waters and watershed. Join us on the ride (by clicking here), cheer for us along the route (click here to see the route map and relative times) or throw a $5 or $10 donation our way (by clicking here) to support the amazing work of the Buzzards Bay Coalition.

When: October 1 from 7:00 in Little Compton and all throughout the day to the finish line in Woods Hole

Where: Starting lines at Sakonnet Point, Horseneck Beach (Westport) and Eastover Farm (Rochester). Finish line party at Woods Hole.

King Richard’s Faire

What: An annual tradition on the South Coast and hard to describe. People walk around gnawing on large turkey legs, many garbed in medieval attire. Music, entertainment galore (Mud Show, anyone?), royal parades, shopping and jousting. For more info, click here.

When: Saturdays and Sundays through October 22, also Columbus Day, 10:30 – 6

Where: 235 Main Street, Carver

Cost: $32 for adults, $16 for children

Manjiro Festival

Manjiro Festival, FairhavenWhat: As a fourteen year old in 1841, Manjiro Nakahama was rescued after a shipwreck by Fairhaven whaling captain William Whitfield and returned with Whitfield to live in Fairhaven. Manjiro became the first Japanese person to live in the United States. This Japanese-American festival celebrates the friendship between the two countries and includes music and food, martial arts demonstrations, taiko drummers, flower arranging, raffles, booths featuring food and crafts, a tea ceremony, and much more.

When: October 7, 10-5

Where: Center Street, Fairhaven

Cost: Free. Click here for more info.

New Bedford Seaport Chowder Festival

New Bedford Chowder FestivalWhat: A throw down with chowder, soup & quahogs from nearly 20 restaurants and caterers, with live music, local beers and specialty cocktails, children’s activities and the annual YMCA lobster race.

When: Sunday, October 8th, 12-5 (tasting will end at 3 pm)

Where: New Bedford waterfront, Pier 3

Cost: $15 in advance ($18 day of), $5 for children between 6 and 12, free for those 5 and younger (click here to purchase tickets)

Cider Social & Cow Pie Bingo

Little Compton Cider Social & Cow Pie BingoWhat: The Little Compton Historical Society’s fundraiser has been held “longer than anyone can remember” and includes local vendors and cow pie bingo.

When: October 9, 1-4 p.m. The cow enters promptly at 3 (do you know how much fun it is to write that sentence?) UPDATE: The event has been moved to October 15th because of forecasted rain.

Where: 548 West Main Road, Little Compton

Cost: The cider social is free. Tickets for cow pie bingo are $10 each (3 for $25) with proceeds going to the Historical Society.

New Bedford Connect

October things to doA day bringing together dentists, veterans assistance, housing support, community volunteers, resources and services for area residents who are homeless, at risk of becoming homeless or have a friend or family member in danger of losing shelter.

They need our help! Consider donating your time to the one day event. If you can’t do that, they also need food, gloves & cash donations.  See here for more and to let them know how you can help.

When: October 18th, 9 -1

Where: YMCA, 25 South Water Street, New Bedford

Cost: Free. Donations of food, cash, and socks are welcome.

Farm to Table Cocktail Shaker

Weatherlow FloralsWhat: Weatherlow Florals and Little Bitte Artisanal Cocktails invite you to tour the flower fields and greenhouses, harvest herbs and blooms, learn to make seasonal garden-to-glass cocktails with spiced cordials, and design a colorful harvest swag to take home for your front door!

When: October 26 from 5-7 p.m.

Where: Weatherlow Farms, 845 Sodom Road, Westport

Cost: $75, all materials included. Register here.

New Bedford Children’s Bookfest

Children's New Bedford BookfestWhat: This special kids’ edition of New Bedford Bookfest will feature 20 authors and booksellers and 10 specially selected illustrators in the Groundwork! Gallery.

When: October 28 & 29, 12-4

Where: Groundwork! 1213 Purchase Street, New Bedford

Cost: Free


We’re lucky to live in such a vibrant place! Get out there and love where you live. 

And if you want to stay in the know about other cool things to do, as well as stories about the people, places, food and other things that make the South Coast special, sign up for our free emails right here.

Maybe you have other suggestions for the month…feel free to add them in the comment section.

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Overnight Adventures: Lizzie Borden’s House

Photo by Andrew Ayer

In last year’s print issue, we set out to find a half dozen cool overnight adventures on the South Coast. We’ve been rolling them out online for those of you who don’t have the 2016 magazine. Today’s feature is our last in the series: overnighting it at Lizzie Borden’s home. If you’d like to see it as it appeared in the magazine, click here. Otherwise, just read on….

Lizzie. In the drawing room. With a hatchet.

Lizzie Borden HouseIt’s a real-life game of Clue when you visit the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast and listen to the well-informed tour guides show you around the house where Mr. and Mrs. Borden were found bludgeoned to death on a steamy August day in 1892. The guides provide you with the evidence; you form your own conclusions.

LIzzie Borden HouseIt’s a popular spot. Several thousand people each year take the tour of the Borden home. Only a few hundred are brave enough to stay here overnight. Overnight visitors get a longer tour and the privilege of saying they spent the night at a home where one of the nation’s most infamous murders took place. The very bravest stay in the John Morse room where Abby Borden was discovered in a pool of blood.

Make it through the night and you’ll be rewarded with a breakfast that is much the same as the Borden’s enjoyed on the day of their death (minus the mutton broth).

Lizzie Borden HouseSuzanne Keefe and her sister Julie Wack took their daughters to the bed and breakfast one cold February night last year. After the tour, their guide told them she would see them in the morning. To Keefe’s surprise, she said, “Oh, I don’t stay here!” The only guests at the house that night, they settled in to the Borden sisters’ rooms and lived to tell the tale. Their overnight stay was not without incident. In the middle of that winter night, the heat mysteriously stopped working.

Stay here if you dare.

 

Overnight rates are between $200 and $250, depending on the room. For more information, go here or call 508-675-7333. Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast, 230 Second Street, Fall River.

If you want to be in the know about other great  spots and secrets of the South Coast, sign up for our free updates here.

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Overnight Adventures: Sleep Like a President

Delano Homestead. Photo by Andrew Ayer

In last year’s print issue, we set out to find a half dozen cool overnight adventures on the South Coast. We’re rolling them out online for those of you who don’t have the 2016 magazine. Today’s feature: staying at FDR’s summer home in Fairhaven. If you’d like to see it as it appeared in the magazine, click here. Otherwise, just read on….

George Washington didn’t sleep here. But Franklin Delano Roosevelt did.

The Delano Homestead was the family home of Sara Delano Roosevelt, the mother of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Young Franklin spent summers, as well as holidays, at this home. He continued to visit as an adult, even visiting with Eleanor when he was president.


Set on a quiet, lovely street that still retains hitching posts from the days of horses and carriages, the neighborhood looks much the same as it did a hundred years ago.


Delano Homestead dining room. Photo by Andrew Ayer.After Sara Roosevelt died in 1941, the Federal/Greek Revival home was sold at auction. In 2001, Paul Beauchamp bought the grand home, decorated it with period furnishings and graciously opened the doors to guests. Old home fans will love the original details: a majestic rosewood banister that gracefully sweeps you upstairs, handmade keys to the the original hardware on the doors, the arched fan transom windows and gingerbread bracket mouldings.

 

History buffs will appreciate all the historical pictures and books that Beauchamp has collected. Set on a quiet, lovely street that still retains hitching posts from the days of horses and carriages, the neighborhood looks much the same as it did a hundred years ago.

Delano Homestead dining room. Photo by Andrew Ayer.Overnight stays from $130 – $170/night (depending on the season). For more information, go to the website or call 508-992-5552. Delano Homestead Bed & Breakfast, 39 Walnut Street, Fairhaven.

If you want to be in the know about other great  spots and secrets of the South Coast, sign up for our free updates here.
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8 Great Things! September 2017 on the South Coast

New Bedford Working Waterfront

After a few months spent loafing at the beach, we’re back with our monthly 8 Great Lists. Here, we bring you our 8 special things to do so that you can enjoy the best of the South Coast in September.

Onset Bay Kite FestivalOnset Beach Kite Festival

What: A celebration of the glory of kites at Onset Beach’s Kite Festival. With build-a-kite stations and kites for sale, as well as live kite flying demonstrates, the whole family will enjoy the day. Really, who doesn’t love a kite? Check out the Onset Bay Association Facebook page for updates on the event.

When: September 2 @ 10 am – 4 pm

Where: Onset Beach, 184 Onset Ave, Onset

Cost: Free

Feast of Our Lady of AngelsFeast of Our Lady of Angels

What: A traditional Portuguese “festa” that will be filled with live music, authentic Portuguese and American food, games, kids’ activities, auctions, and more. There will be a parade on Labor Day that will include marching bands, clergy, and local officials.

When: September 2 @ 5 pm – Midnight, September 3 @ noon – Midnight, September 4 @ noon – 10 pm

Where: Our Lady of Angels Feast Grounds, 7 Jesse St, Fairhaven

Cost: Free

Dartmouth Grange Rural Community FairDartmouth Grange 2017 Rural Community Fair

What: From pie eating contests to scavenger hunts, beekeeping, spinning wool, magic shows, and more, there is something for everyone at this fair that celebrates rural America. There are plenty of competitions, so be sure to check out the website to see about entering some.

When: September 8 @ 4 – 9pm and September 9 @ 12 – 9 pm

Where: Patrons Hall in Historic Russells Mills Village, 1133 Fisher Rd, Dartmouth

Cost: Free

 

Brahmin Tent SaleBrahmin Tent Sale

What: If you’ve been eyeing a Brahmin handbag, now is your chance! Tents are filled with Brahmin handbags that are up to 70% off and people travel far and wide from across the country to make it to this event. Even if you don’t technically need a handbag, you’ll love the energy here. Check out our popular blog post to get a sense of the spirit of the tent sale right here.

When: September 15 @ 9 am – 6 pm, September 16th @ 9 am – 6 pm, September 17 @ 10 am – 5 pm NOTE: These dates are different from our print magazine’s listing (sorry!)….check out the Brahmin website here for updates.

Where: Brahmin Times Building, 77 Alden Rd, Fairhaven

William Street Neighborhood FestivalWilliam Street Neighborhood Festival

What: Three historic churches in New Bedford are opening their doors to show off the artistic talent of New Bedford. There will be art exhibits, theater, and lots and lots of live music. Food trucks and crafts areas, too! Fun for everyone.

When: September 16 @ 12 pm – 5 pm

Where: William Street, New Bedford

Cost: Free

New Bedford Working WaterfrontWorking Waterfront Festival

What: The day begins auspiciously with whaleboat races starting at 8 am and it only gets more exciting from there. The festival is an inside look at the commercial fishing industry that is so important to New Bedford commerce. There will be contests, live demos, live music, fisherpoetry and more. For a full schedule check out their website.

When: September 23 @ 11 am – 6 pm

Where: Steamship Pier and 38 Bethel St, New Bedford (there will be a free shuttle provided between the two locations.)

Cost: Free

Wareham's Fourth Saturday Contra Dances4th Saturday Contra Dance

What: Contra dances are folk dances made up of line dances with English Scottish, and French origins. This event is open to longtime fans and newbies alike. If you’re a beginner who wants a little more instruction, show up at 6:30 pm for an introduction.

When: September 23 @ 7 pm – 10 pm

Where: Wareham Boys & Girls Club, 13 Highland Ave, Onset

Cost: Suggested donation of $8 for contra dancing and helpful tips. Light refreshments will be served.

Fort Phoenix Historical EnactmentFort Phoenix Historical Encampment

What: Learn what life was like at Fort Phoenix in the 1770s. There will be period costumed men and women, 18th century games and toys, and activities like tin smithing, leather working, fire starting, sewing, and more. On Saturday evening at approximately 6:15 there will be a demonstration of the night firing of the fort’s five cannons.

When: September 23 @ 10 am – September 24 @ 3 pm

Where: Fort Phoenix, Fort Street, Fairhaven

Cost: Free

Aren’t we lucky to live in such a vibrant place? Get out there and love where you live. 

And if you want to stay in the know about other cool things to do, as well as stories about the people, places, food and other things that make the South Coast special, sign up for our free emails right here.

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Overnight Adventures: Big Mamie Can Host You

Photo by Andrew Ayer

In last year’s print issue, we set out to find a half dozen cool overnight adventures on the South Coast. We’re rolling them out online for those of you who don’t have the 2016 magazine. Today’s feature: overnight at Fall River’s Battleship Cove. If you’d like to see it as it appeared in the magazine, click here. Otherwise, just read on….

Under the Guns

USS Massachusetts at Battleship Cove Photo by Andrew AyerDocked in the Taunton River is the USS Massachusetts, a steady and impressive presence in Fall River for over 50 years. Christened by her wartime crew as Big Mamie, she was rescued from the scrap heap by them and by Massachusetts’ citizens in 1964. At the time, thousands of Massachusetts schoolchildren helped by contributing their pennies to bring the World War II battleship home. It’s appropriate then that today, thousands of children come to her each year to enjoy an overnight stay in the nation’s oldest maritime camping experience.

Along with scout and school groups, the USS Massachusetts also provides overnight accommodations for families. It’s clear the staff has as much fun with the overnights as the families. They lead in depth and knowledgeable tours of various parts of the ship. They answer any question you can think up and provide additional activities for families to participate in like Morse code, rope tying, Navy lingo bingo, storytelling and World War II-era cartoons.


Like real WWII sailors, you’ll find yourself bunking in narrow cots stacked four cots high. You’ll line up for dinner and breakfast chow-line style in the officer’s mess.


Sleeping Quarters at Battleship Cove. Photo by Andrew AyerLike real WWII sailors, you’ll find yourself bunking in narrow cots stacked four cots high. You’ll line up for dinner and breakfast chow-line style in the officer’s mess. If the weather cooperates, you can bring your sleeping bags up and sleep under the big guns (and the stars). You can’t beat it for a piece of living history.

Overnight stays start at $60 per night and include dinner and breakfast, as well as two days’ admission to Battleship Cove. The next family overnight experiences are on August 5 and September 2. For more information, go to Battleship Cove’s website or call 508-678-1100. Battleship Cove, 5 Water Street, Fall River.

If you want to be in the know about other great  spots and secrets of the South Coast, sign up for our free updates here.

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A Farm Stay (or as we like to call it, A Hay-cation)

Stonehaven Family Farm (Photo by Andrew Ayer)

In last year’s print issue, we set out to find a half dozen cool overnight adventures on the South Coast. We’re rolling them out online for those of you who don’t have the 2016 magazine. Today’s feature: a farm stay. If you’d like to see it as it appeared in the magazine, click here. Otherwise, just read on….

Stonehaven Family Farm (Photo by Andrew Ayer)You could be in Ireland looking across at sheep grazing in green fields, a lazy river and stone walls in the background completing the perfect vista. Or you could be in Westport, ready to roll up your sleeves and learn what it takes to be a farmer.

Virginia Merlier owns Stonehaven Family Farm, which provides overnight visitors with a taste of farm life. After you settle into her comfortable home, you’ll have time to explore the local beaches, shops and sights, but Merlier will remind you that afternoon chores are at 4:30. As you gather chicken eggs, herd the ducks, and make the animals ready for night, she’ll tell you about the heritage breeds she raises here and chat with you about farming. In the morning, you’ll enjoy the eggs you collected for breakfast before another round of chores. Fresh flowers from the garden will probably grace the table.

Stonehaven Family Farm (Photo by Andrew Ayer)Farm stays are popular in Europe and are gaining popularity in the United States with people who are intrigued by farm life. In Westport, Merlier has hosted visitors from near and far, including many international visitors. Maybe you’ve always wanted to see where your food comes from. Maybe owning a farm has been a romantic dream of yours. Maybe you just like being surrounded by outdoor beauty and animals. Stonehaven Family Farm is the place to go.

Stonehaven Family Farm (Photo by Andrew Ayer)All photos by Andrew Ayer. For more information about the farm, go to the website here or call 508-636-1361. Stonehaven Family Farm, 1506 Drift Road, Westport.

If you want to be in the know about other great spots and secrets of the South Coast, sign up for our free updates here.

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Our Top Picks for May: 6 Things We’re Really Looking Forward To

May is a lovely month. Just on the cusp of summer, it’s an exciting time of year. Here are some things to pass the time away while we anticipate the best season of the year.

1.  Pass the Popcorn: Fairhaven Short Film Festival

Whoops! This has been postponed and future dates will be announced in the fall — but we’re still leaving it up so you can put it on your radar for later in the year. 

Bring your Junior Mints to the third annual Fairhaven Short Film Festival taking place on May 5 and 6 featuring films collected by Asbury Shorts USA. Academy Award nominated director Jason Reitman (JUNO, Up in the Air, Thank You for Smoking) calls Asbury Shorts, “The best short film show I’ve ever seen.” Forget about watching these films on YouTube or your smartphone, enjoy them on the big screen at the Fairhaven Town Hall Auditorium.

Sponsored by Howe Allen Realty and the Fairhaven Improvement Association, net proceeds will fund a scholarship for a Fairhaven student planning to study film and digital media production.  For more information on the films or to purchase tickets, go here.

2.  Tuesdays with Haskell

A few years ago, the Trustees of Reservations bought the late Allen Haskell’s property right in the heart of New Bedford.  Haskell was a lifelong New Bedford resident and a famed horticulturalist. The six acre property hosts a traditional New England style common, beautifully designed historic gardens and one of the oldest homes in New Bedford.

Celebrate spring by dropping in on Tuesday mornings (through October) from 9 am to 12 pm to help tidy the garden and learn new skills. All you need are gloves and water — no previous gardening skills are required.  For more information, click here. May 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30th, 787 Shawmut Avenue, New Bedford.

3.  Dust off Your Bike

We just formed our team for the Buzzards Bay Coalition’s annual Watershed Ride. We hope you’ll join us! It’s a beautiful course and the camaraderie among riders is pretty wonderful (the party at the finish line is great, too). If you want to join the South Coast Almanac team, check it out here.

The Velofix Van (Photo courtesy of Marianne Lee)

The Velofix Van (Photo courtesy of Marianne Lee)

Yes, yes, we know the ride is in October but we’re putting it on our May calendar as a reminder to dust off our bikes, get out there and train for it. To that end, we just emailed Mike Lee of Velofix Southcoast. We met Mike at the Watershed Ride last Fall where he handled bike support and were blown away with his mobile bike repair van. When we learned he’ll come to your home or office with his mobile van to tune up bikes, we took his business card. And didn’t lose it. Thanks to Mike, there really is no excuse for not getting your bike in shape for the season. Check Velofix out here.

4. Take a(n Unconventional) Hike

The Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust (DNRT) has a couple of cool (and free) walks happening in May. First, a full moon walk on Wednesday, May 10 at 7:30 at Slocum River’s Reserve where two DNRT members lead an exploration of the evening landscape. The walk lasts approximately an hour and the DNRT suggests a flashlight or headlamp to help navigate the trails as the moon rises and sun sets. If the weather is questionable, call 508-525-9266 or check here on the morning of the walk.

And throughout May, families can enjoy StoryWalk® which celebrates nature and reading all at once (how many events can boast that?). Paskansett Woods features “Watch the Birdie” by Nancy Cote (featured in the 2016 South Coast Almanac) and Ridge Hill Reserve features “Feathers for Lunch” by Lois Ehlert.  Walk the trails and read the story with the family during the whole month of May. See more here.

5. Brahmin Handbags Tent Sale

We’ll have a blog post coming up on this as we get closer to the date because this is more than a tent sale. It’s a great story. The semi-annual sale draws people from all over the country (no kidding!) and has the festive aura of the old Filene’s Basement Wedding Dress sales. Whether you need a handbag or not, you shouldn’t miss it. May 19 and 20, 9 am to 6 p.m and May 21, 10 am to 5 pm. 77 Alden Road, Fairhaven. Tent is located on the lawn next to the Standard Times parking lot. See the Facebook event listing here.

6. Ta Da! It’s launched

Last year's Almanac launch

Last year’s Almanac launch

On May 18, we officially launch the 2017 edition of our print magazine. On the 18th, copies will be on their way to our subscribers’ doors and trucks will be delivering them to newsstands all over Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Keep your eye out for it!

If you want it delivered straight to your door for 30% off the cover price, you only have a few more days to pre-order. After that, we have to raise the online price to the newsstand price. Why do we have to do that? Because we give our mailing list to the printer soon. After that, we lose out on bulk mailing rates from the printer which means hauling copies to the Onset post office and sending it off by priority mail. If you decide to preorder the issue, we pass the savings straight along to you — because we love our subscribers. If you want to join their ranks, click here.

In the meantime, stay up to date with South Coast events, stories and best-kept-secrets by signing up here.

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5 Days, 5 Adventures: Daytripping for April Vacation

A Daytrip to Adventure Park at Heritage Museums & Gardens

School vacation is upon us — if you’re staying around town, we’ve got some good daytrip ideas for you. We took a tip from Leslie Poulin over at First Citizens’ in Fairhaven and lost ourselves in the Cape Cod Museum Trail website. Finding out everything that’s going on at various museums and when they’re happening is hard to keep track of. This website makes all that easy.

We’re hoping someday that there is a South Coast Museum Trail. In the meantime, we’re enjoying the Cape Cod Museum Trail guide, especially because there is no better time to go over the bridge than April – the weather is good, the traffic is good. Here’s what caught our eye for next week, day-by-day:

Climb Among the Treetops! (Monday)

Heritage Museums in Sandwich has an aerial forest park in the treetops. We went last summer and everyone LOVED it. With climbing, ziplines and bridges between tree platforms made of rope, cable and wood, it’s one of those things you’ll be talking about all year long. You’re outside, you’re seeing things from an entirely different perspective, you’re snug in a harness so you’re safe as can be. Splurge and do this with the kids this spring!

To celebrate Patriot’s Day on Monday, they’ve hidden bells throughout the course, to signify the warning of the British Invasion. Climb and find the bells! The Adventure Park at Heritage Museums & Gardens, 67 Grove Street, Sandwich. Climbers must be at least 7 years old.

Are You Getting a Signal? (Tuesday)

Over a hundred years ago, the first transatlantic wireless signal went out from Wellfleet. Think about all that has happened since then. On Tuesday, you can explore the site where Guglielmo Marconi transmitted the first official wireless message across the Atlantic. 11 a.m. More info here.

This Is Your Brain on Nature (Wednesday)

Apparently, nature walks are good for the brain. So, let’s get on with it! Enjoy one of the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History’s nature trails. At 1 p.m. (all week!), a naturalist will lead a family field walk. More here.

Afterwards, check out Nature 365, an innovative video journal filmed by wildlife photographer and filmmaker Jim Brandenburg and directed by Laurent Joffrion, designed to provide an authentic and poetic vision of nature. Each day’s journal is 60 seconds. The Museum will show the April journal (30 minutes) on a continuous loop throughout the day. More info here.

Old School Fun & Games (Thursday)

Learn about and experience children’s games, crafts and activities from long ago at Centerville Museum’s Morning at the Museum.  All ages are welcome though it’s geared to 6-11 year olds. You’ll play historic board games, make postcards, create worry dolls and more.  See more info here. 

Let’s Dance! (Friday)

There’s a contra dance on the third Friday of each month on the Outer Cape. Live musicans and a caller guide you through a variety of dances. They say anyone can do it so bring the whole family to enjoy the exuberant reels and jigs of the British Isles, Canada and America. Why not round out the vacation week with something you may never have done before? More info here.

Wait, Wait, There’s More! (Saturday and Sunday)

There’s even more happening on the weekend! Wander about the Cape Cod Museum Trail website to find more cool things to wrap up vacation week. You’ll find a model boat show, a LEGO Home-Building Competition, whale walks and more.

Thanks for the tip about the Cape Cod Museum Trail website, Leslie!

 

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