Gingerbread Cottage Tour is back

A sweet stroll through history: Experience enchantment at Oak Bluffs' iconic cottages.

The Gingerbread Cottage Tour has returned this year. –Courtesy MVCMA

Prepare to be dazzled by Oak Bluffs’ beloved gingerbread cottages. On Wednesday, August 9, the Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association presents its 23rd annual Gingerbread Cottage Tour. This event is making a much-anticipated return after a three-year hiatus, and promises to be a day filled with enchantment and wonder. For one day only, from 10 am to 3 pm, six privately owned (and publicly adored) gingerbread cottages will open their doors to the people. These cottages are particularly special this year, as they boast picturesque views of the Oak Bluffs Harbor.

Discover how owners have maximized the utility of their small quarters while preserving each cottage’s original character. Your tour will also include admission to the Cottage Museum, where you can learn more about the history and architecture of these quaint dwellings. And what would a tour be without some delightful refreshments? Enjoy some treats at the Island-renowned Tabernacle as you experience the sights and sounds of this one-of-a-kind event. Your $30 ticket is also a contribution to a noble cause. All proceeds from the event will go toward the Tabernacle Restoration Fund, preserving this historic landmark for generations to come. Let’s delve into some highlights of these gingerbread cottages. 

First up is Susan and Ed Zephir’s timeless cottage, built in 1867 at 56 Lake Ave. The Zephir cottage seamlessly integrates the old with the new. Its original front half radiates vintage charm, while the back half, knocked down and rebuilt, offers a touch of modernity. There is a soft but significant bump on the floor from renovations, marking the transition from old to new. The cottage also features paintings by Islander artists Adam Thompson and Allen Whiting. This cottage’s history also includes two small cottages, demolished in 1975, previously known as Suits Me, Suits Us. 

Next on the list is Linda Steere’s cottage at 58 Lake Ave. Adjacent to the Zephirs’ cottage and built in the same year, Steere dubbed her dwelling the Chicken Coop. The cottage stands out for its distinctive vintage appearance, adorned with unique balusters under the railing, as well as cut shingles along the wall. 

Third up, Orland and Kim Donald’s cottage was built in 1869 at 62 Lake Ave. Their large-roofed balcony and three side dormers highlight its exterior. With three bathrooms — a rarity in the Campground — and modern additions like HVAC, this cottage is both charming and the envy of many.

Aptly named 30 Rock, Tim Cuppett and Marco Rini’s cottage is located at 30 Rock Ave., and was built in 1870. A testament to Cuppett’s architectural abilities: Rather than replacing, he restored elements while adding energy-efficient features. Strategic placements of Plexiglas and mirrors bathe the interior with natural light, while custom Romanesque doors and windows maintain the cottage’s vintage style.

Fifth on the list is Matt McCormack’s Harbor View Landing. At 16 Commonwealth Square, the original elements of McCormack’s cottage meet modernity. Its modern kitchen and upstairs bedroom contrast with the original living area and stairway, separated by a barn door. Custom M.V. runners grace the staircases in this winterized, newly renovated cottage, filled with nautical decor.

Last but not least, Peter and Deloris Grant’s cottage is located at 26 Rustic Ave. Built around 1870, Grant’s cottage is renowned for its mansard roof, improving the second floor’s headroom. During the challenging times of COVID, the Grants personally gave this cottage a loving makeover. Every detail of the porch railings and gingerbread balustrade was meticulously crafted — each piece cut, sanded, and painted with care. Originally square in shape, the cottage has seen changes over the years, including a later addition of a downstairs bedroom and bath.

Don’t miss the magic of Oak Bluffs’ beloved Gingerbread Cottage Tour! Mark your calendars for August 9, from 10 am to 3 pm, as the Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association presents its 23rd annual tour. Save the date and register now at