Fall festival season begins

The Vineyard Gardens Harvest Festival has treats and games for all ages. —Lynn Christoffers

Although summer is officially over and even the most hardy of souls are breaking out their sweaters and boots, this weekend gives us one last chance to say goodbye to the summer bustle. There are festivals happening all over the Island this Columbus Day, boasting anything from local cider to live music, from chocolate to artisan pottery. Take your pick or try them all — this is why fall really is the best season on the Vineyard.

13th annual Art of Chocolate Festival

Oct. 7 – 9

Featherstone Center for the Arts, Oak Bluffs

Taste chocolate concoctions made by Island bakers, artists, and chocolate lovers at this annual festival. The event kicks off with a preview party on Oct. 7 from 6 to 8 pm, followed by the festival on Oct. 8 and 9 from 12 to 4 pm. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit featherstoneart.org/2016-events.

Vineyard Artisans Columbus Day Weekend Festival

Oct. 9, 10 – 4 pm

Grange Hall, West Tisbury

This one-day-only event is the final chance to catch all your favorite Island artisans in the last show until Thanksgiving weekend. Items on sale include weaving, fine furniture, pottery, leather goods, oil paintings, pastels, mixed media, sculpture, wampum jewelry, hand-knit items, clothing, photography, handmade books, and much more. The festival will be held indoors and outdoors, rain or shine. Admission and parking are free. For more information, visit vineyardartisans.com.

Popcorn Festival

Oct. 9, 10 am – 3 pm

Native Earth Teaching Farm, Chilmark

Come for some fall farm fun and help celebrate popcorn with people, poultry, and pygmy goats. Share some snacks with the friendly farm animals. Free admission. For more information visit nativeearthteachingfarm.org.

Rock Your Boots Festival

Oct. 7, 6 – 9 pm

Sailing Camp Park, Oak Bluffs

The Rock Your Boots Festival is Rising Tide Therapeutic Equestrian Center’s fall fundraiser, featuring live music by the Mike Benjamin Band, a silent auction and raffle, beer, wine, apps, and a local raw bar by the Oak Bluffs Fish Market. Admission is $50. For tickets or more information, call 508-693-1185 or contact info@risingtidetec.org.

Harvest Festival

Oct. 8, 11 am – 3 pm

Vineyard Gardens, West Tisbury

Come celebrate fall with the whole family at Vineyard Gardens’ best event of the season. There will be hands-on nature projects, hot dogs, caramel apples, pumpkin pie, and refreshments. Everything is free. For more information, visit vineyardgardens.net.

Oak Bluffs Open Market

Oct. 9, 11 am – 2 pm

Washington Park, Oak Bluffs

The Oak Bluffs Open Market is a fun mix of local produce, specialty foods, arts, crafts, antique and vintage dealers, massage, tarot, and more. Enjoy live music with John O’Toole. For more information, visit facebook.com/OakBluffsOpenMarket.