Summer has finally arrived

The Oak Bluffs Harbor Festival welcomes the season.

Dozens of tents lined Lake Ave. for the annual Oak Bluffs Harbor Festival. — Photo by Michael Cummo

It was a busy day at Oak Bluffs Harbor on Saturday, where hundreds turned out to take advantage of the beautiful weather at the annual Oak Bluffs Harbor Festival. Vendors lined up along the water on Lake Avenue, showcasing their products and causes to passersby.

The always popular tent for Eclipse Massage Therapy was busy with visitors looking for a short midday massage. The team at Second Chance Animal Rescue stopped people in their tracks with a cage of young kittens looking for a new home. Development plans for the proposed Niantic Park Playground were on display, and volunteers on the project were on hand to explain the schematics for the new park, complete with play areas resembling a historic steam ferry, a lighthouse, and a Victorian cottage.

Martha’s Vineyard Community Services also used the event as a chance to spread the word, distributing information about domestic violence and their Connect to End Violence program. Also represented was the Rotary Club of Martha’s Vineyard, hosting a Net Result gift card raffle to benefit Island charities, luring people in with the prospect of winning 50 pounds of lobster.

Several artists displayed their work, including photography by Debra Gaines, fine art pastels by Warren Gaines, Island wampum by Phoenix Russell, leather goods by Rebecca J, Original Cyn jewelry by Cynthia McGrath, and more.

Many visitors were spotted purchasing new clothes from the festival; especially popular were the summer straw hats from the Black Dog that several walked away wearing. Athletic wear featuring the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks collegiate baseball team was also for sale, along with I’m Bluffin and Legendary MV clothes. Island Alpaca offered a selection of their ever-so-soft merchandise as well.

As the crowds grew hungry, people treated themselves to strawberry shortcake, and Oak Bluffs’ Chef Scottie Blue manned the grill, serving up summer favorites hot dogs, hamburgers, and ribs. Nancy’s was bustling all day, with a constant stream of people in line for takeout food and Donovan’s popular frozen drinks. Diners packed the patio, listening to the music of Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish, and several even danced along to the quintessential Island tunes.

The day was a picture-perfect one, and proof that summer has, in fact, arrived.