Festive Fall Fun on Cape Cod

There’s a reason the locals call this “second summer” on Cape Cod.

The crowds have dissipated, giving those of us who live here an opportunity to enjoy all the Cape has to offer. The weather is also ideal – not too warm (mostly) and not too cold (mostly) – making autumn the perfect time to cross off those activities we may not have had a chance to experience during the summer.

The beaches are less crowded. Traffic has largely disappeared. But there’s still plenty of adventure to be had. So grab your pumpkin spice coffee (or apple cider… or pumpkin ale) and get ready for some festive fall fun on the Cape.

Explore Outdoors

A peek at the temperatures reminds us that winter is coming. But it’s not here yet.

Fall is our last chance to get outdoors and explore those off-the-beaten-path destinations we may have overlooked when space was at a premium. Now there’s no excuse to discover why locals want to keep places like the Knob in Falmouth (worth the trip) all to themselves.

While in Falmouth, make sure to check out the Shining Sea Bikeway, which extends from Woods Hole to North Falmouth. You can walk it, but a bike makes it better. Make sure to bring your phone to capture some of the stunning views, especially Great Sippewissett Marsh, that you’ll see along the way.

Closer to our Mashpee Commons location is South Cape Beach, a beautiful stretch of sand that is popular among those who love to swim, fish, hike, or watch birds.

Mashpee is also home to RideAway Adventures – they also have shops in Sandwich – which offers kayak and stand-up paddleboard tours as well as rentals. They can even organize a team-building outing for your company or nonprofit.

A short drive from CapeSpace Hyannis is Mass Audubon’s Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary, which offers access to sandy beaches, woodland trails, and spectacular views of Barnstable Harbor and Sandy Neck Beach.

Head further east where the Cape Cod National Seashore provides countless opportunities to explore the outdoors. Fort Hill in Eastham, Atlantic White Cedar Swamp in Wellfleet, and Race Point Beach in Provincetown are among the more popular (and recommended) hikes in the area.

Flock to a Festival

What do you get when you combine food, drink, arts, crafts, live music, a 5K road race, and a canoe and kayak race? A whole lot of fun AND this year’s Yarmouth Seaside Festival, which is back the second weekend of October with a lineup perfect for the entire family. There will be pumpkin decorating; wild animal demonstrations; a pie eating competition; fireworks; and a sand sculpture contest at Smuggler’s Beach in South Yarmouth.

The weekend before Halloween, the Sandwich Glass Museum will host the 10th Annual PumpkinFest, featuring handcrafted glass pumpkins and seasonally themed glass items that will liven up any home at this time of year.

And then there’s Mashpee Commons, which will get into the act all month long. From Fall Fest on Saturday, October 9th, featuring face painting, pumpkin painting, live music and more, to its Sidewalk Saturdays: Fall Edition, held weekends throughout October, Mashpee Commons will be embracing the best that autumn has to offer on the Cape.

Become a Beer Connoisseur

Is Cape Cod becoming the beer capital of the world? It sure seems like it, with breweries sprouting up from one end of the Cape (Tree House Brewing Company in Sandwich) to the other (Provincetown Brewing Co.).

If you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry.

Our friends at TapTastings have you covered. They’ll take you and your crew on a tour of the region’s breweries (and wineries), where you can get a real taste of the Cape. They recently were crowned winner in the 2020 Best of Cape Cod in the tour category – we’ll raise a pint to that!

Their tours are ideal for bachelorette and bachelor parties, company outings, family reunions, or gathering a group of friends who want to safely enjoy the Cape’s expanding beverage scene. So what are you waiting for? Book your tour today!

See a Show

After a year in which the pandemic devastated the arts, live theater and music have returned with a vengeance. As the host of a virtual performance by the Cape Cod Chamber Orchestra in January, we couldn’t be happier.

Whether it’s music or theater, the arts have a power to bring us joy, lift our spirits, and connect us to one another.

Of course, we recommend the Chamber Orchestra, which is playing a festive show dubbed “Ghost Hunters” – they’ll even be having a costume contest – on October 23rd at St. Christopher’s Church in Chatham and on October 24th at Pilgrim Congregational Church in Harwich Port.

You also can’t go wrong with the Cotuit Center for the Arts, which is hosting “Muskrat Love,” an original comic revue featuring songs that we hate to love (“Copacabana,” “Sugar, Sugar” and many more).

Also, this month the Falmouth Theatre Guild returns, bringing Rodgers & Hammerstein’s famed musical “Carousel” to the stage, while the Cape Cod Theatre Company gets festive with a Halloween Sketch Comedy Show featuring Improv Cape Cod.

If it’s music you’re looking for, then there are plenty of options, from Naukabout Brewery in Mashpee to Cape Cod Coffee in Sandwich to Cape Cod Beer in Hyannis. Get whisked away to Ireland at O’Shea’s Olde Inne, a popular spot in West Dennis to catch a show. And then there’s The Music Room, a newcomer to the Cape scene that is attracting local, regional and national acts to perform in an intimate setting in West Yarmouth.

Have a Spooktacular Halloween

Of course, it wouldn’t be fall without the scariest holiday of the year – Halloween!

With its rich history, one would expect the Cape to be teaming with ghosts (and ghost stories). It is, and local paranormal expert Derek Bartlett offers up tours nightly in Barnstable Village, one of the oldest sections of the Cape, that places a spotlight on the history and haunted nature of the area.

The Cape is the perfect spot for your Halloween adventures, which should also include Mashpee Commons and their annual family-friendly trick-or-treating. You can even bring your dog – and dress them up too!

At CapeSpace, we’ve regularly celebrated Halloween, with our members and staff dressing up for the occasion. Stay tuned to see who Community Managers Anna and Haley will be this year!

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