August 16: A Plan For The Big Weekend

August 16: A Plan For The Big Weekend

August 16, 2018

The next few days require a strategy. With the Fair in West Tisbury, the fireworks in Oak Bluffs, a killer lineup of films in Vineyard Haven and Edgartown — plus speakers, book signings and more, you will need to plan ahead (and leave plenty of time to negotiate traffic!). To that end, we’ve put together a sample itinerary, with options, to help you plan for the best weekend of the summer on Martha’s Vineyard. Have a great time, be safe, take lots of photos — and we hope you win a ribbon at the Fair. As always, you can take a look at our calendar for a complete list of the weekend’s events.

Thursday, August 16 | See You at The Fair

We think tonight is a perfect night to visit the 157th Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Fair. It’s opening night, the buzz is palpable as folks stream into the Hall to see the exhibits, and this year, the Fair folks are bringing in some fresh musical talent, starting with the Indie-soul act Dwight and Nicole, who will be onstage in the new music tent starting at 8:00 p.m. Go early and check out the animal barn before the magnificent oxen start leaving (some depart Thursday night after their events, some Friday). Do a few rides on the Midway and then grab a bite; you don’t have to go the tempura, burger, and fried dough route—there are locally sourced tacos, sandwiches, and other healthy (well, sort of) treats, too. (For a complete schedule of daily events at the Fair, click here.)

We understand if the Fair isn’t your thing. The MV Author Series has a great speaker tonight at the Chilmark Community Center, starting at 7:30 p.m.: Tayari Jones will talk about her novel, An American Marriage, a beautifully written book that was a 2018 Oprah Book Club selection. And a great collection of Historic Movies of Martha’s Vineyard plays at the MV Film Center tonight at 7:30 p.m.

Monty and Buck take their turn in the heavyweight draft horse pull.

Friday, August 17 | Fireworks Dazzle

You might want to arrange your day starting backwards. The fireworks in Oak Bluffs start at 9 p.m. The Vineyard Haven Band starts playing in Ocean Park at 8 p.m. You could grab some takeout from Gio’s or Dilly’s Taqueria or get an early dinner anywhere in Oak Bluffs before that, then set up your beach chairs in the park.

Highlights at the Fair today include the draft horse pulling contest, the corn shucking contest, and sheep judging in the barn. Be sure to visit the fiber tent where spinning and weaving demonstrations, as well as sheep shearing and working dog demonstrations, happen all day long.

Tonight if you’re not up for the fireworks crowds, there’s live music in Edgartown and plenty of other spots around the Island. In Vineyard Harven, two critically acclaimed films, BlackkKlansman and Crazy Rich Asians, play at the Capawock (5 p.m. and 8 p.m. respectively).

Saturday, August 18 | Around the Island

You will definitely want to add extra time for a drive up-Island this morning if you want to hit the Chilmark Flea Market (starting at 9 a.m.), the West Tisbury Farmers’ Market (opening at 9 a.m.), or get an early start on the Fair (gates open at 10 a.m.).

Schedule in plenty of beach time, reading time, or down time this afternoon, because your options tonight are plenty: Tony award-winning singer Audra McDonald performs at the Martha’s Vineyard Performing Arts Center at 8 p.m.; the Built on Stilts Festival continues in its second weekend at Union Chapel at 8 p.m., and a preview of the new play Chilmark happens at the Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse at 7:30 p.m.. The Dock Dance Band plays at the Fair at 8:30 p.m.

Sunday, August 19 | Art for Our Sake

Sundays on the Vineyard are dedicated to artists, starting with the Artisans Festival at the Grange (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and ending with art openings all over the Island: the Granary Gallery in West Tisbury, the Sargent Gallery in Aquinnah, and the Old Sculpin in Edgartown, to name a few. In between, there’s the 9th Annual Potters Bowl at Featherstone Center for the Arts from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

The Fair runs from 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. today.

Aug 16 1pm – Aug 30

Brewery Tours

Bad Martha Farmer’s Brewery

Aug 19 9am – Oct 7

Oak Bluffs Open Market

Washington Park

Aug 20 8pm

MV Concert Series: Keb’ Mo’

Martha’s Vineyard Performing Arts Center

Aug 19 8am

Edgartown Fireman’s Association Pancake Breakfast & Open House

Edgartown Fire Station

Aug 19 9:45am

Union Chapel Sunday Service

Union Chapel

Aug 20 8pm

TMVFF: Thelma & Louise

Chilmark Community Center

Sep 4 – Sep 9 Martha’s Vineyard International Film Festival | Find Out More
Sep 9 Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass & Bluefish Derby | Find Out More
Oct 18 – Oct 21 Martha’s Vineyard Food & Wine Festival | Find Out More

Top photo: Jeanna Shepard

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