Cape Ann in August: A Festival of Good Times
Peter Webber From The Cape Ann Chamber Of Commerce Submits This Fantastic Festival Calendar For August On Cape Ann
Cape Ann in August: A Festival of Good Times
August is truly Festivals Month on Cape Ann. While great events and music, art and community festivals take place throughout the year on Cape Ann, the month of August is so packed with festivals and special events that it can truly be described as Cape Ann’s Festivals Month! Here are some of the featured events and activities:
August 2, 2014
Festival by the Sea, Manchester-by-the-Sea, 10 am to 8 pm
On Saturday, August 2nd, Manchester’s celebration of local art, music and food, Festival by the Sea, returns to downtown. The popular annual event will feature over 75 artists ranging from painters to jewelers and artisans, and it will stretch from Town Hall Common throughout town into Masconomo Park.
In the park, visitors will find not only art, but a variety of foods provided by local restaurants and food trucks as well as a beer garden featuring Cape Ann Brewing’s signature ale, Fisherman’s Brew.
On the Masconomo Park bandstand, live music will extend throughout the day featuring many Cape Ann favorites like Joe Wilkins, Bradley Royds and Allen and Dylan Estes. The all-day event will culminate with a 6 pm headlining performance by Vermont native and current New York City musician, Caitlin Canty.
Described by Urban H2O Music Director, Mark Miller as “clear eyed, clear voiced and singing sweetly from her soul, (Canty) captivates an audience.” Canty’s early summer performance at Cambridge’s ubiquitous Club Passim sold out days before the show.
Festival co-chair and music director, Chris Langathianos, said, “I have been following Caitlin for a while now, so I am thrilled that she accepted our offer to headline our local celebration of the arts. She will be coming directly from performing at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival which draws as many as 15,000 attendees, so we’re going to see a special talent right in our own backyard.”
Festival by the Sea begins at 10 am and continues on into the evening with the concert in the park. In the event of inclement weather, the rain date will be the following day, Sunday, August 3rd. For more information, follow Festival by the Sea on Facebook.
The event is free and there will be ample parking and a complimentary shuttle to and from satellite parking areas. Mark your calendar and pack your blanket for a day of great music, inspired artistry and delicious, locally grown foods. Festival by the Sea is sponsored by the Manchester Division of the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce.
August 7 – 9, 2014
56th Annual Sidewalk Bazaar, Downtown Gloucester
Now celebrating its 56th year, the Sidewalk Bazaar takes place on Main Street in Downtown Gloucester with over 120 vendors, street food, live music and children’s activities. Gloucester’s 55th annual Sidewalk Bazaar will be held from Thursday, August 7 through Saturday, August 9. Artists, Crafters, Food Vendors, Non-Profits, Kids’ Activities & Entertainers from near and far join Gloucester Merchants and Restaurants on the street for a fun and festive three days. The Sidewalk Bazaar is sponsored by and a celebration of Gloucester Downtown and is a Gloucester tradition that shouldn’t be missed.
August 9, 2014
Gloucester Blues Festival (Stage Fort Park, Gloucester)
Now in its third year this annual event has brought blues lovers from far and wide to Gloucester each August since 2012. Nearly 1500 people attended last summer’s festival and this year’s show should exceed that number with the interest that has been generated. Make sure to get your tickets early as blues lovers from throughout the Northeast will look to get the best seats in this beautiful harborside park.
World-class blues will reverberate through the park from 11 am to 8 pm with some of the nation’s finest performers playing from the Gloucester Blues stage. This year’s list of performers includes Willie J. Laws, Sugar Ray & the Bluetones, Biscuit Miller, Debbie Davies, Victor Wainwright, Tinsley Ellis, and Ronnie Baker Brooks. Located right on the harbor at beautiful Cressey’s Beach, the event will have a beer garden and outstanding food vendors. Bring your own chairs or blankets (sorry, no pets, no umbrellas and no coolers). Tickets are $28.00 in advance or $40.00 at the gate. To purchase advance tickets online up until August 4, and for further information, visit gloucesterbluesfestival.com. Onsite parking is $15.00 (free on-street parking is limited to 1 to 2 hours). The Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce is the principal sponsor of the Gloucester Blues Festival, which is produced by Paul Benjamin and Bob Hastings.
August 9, 2014
Rockport Rotary Lobsterfest/ Illumination Night, Rockport
Saturday, August 9 features a full day packed with Cape Ann festivals, with Gloucester’s Blues Festival just the beginning of an event-filled day. The Cape Ann Festival scene then shifts to Rockport for the Rotary Club’s annual Lobsterfest, from 3:00 to 7:00 pm, and culminates with a spectacular Fireworks display over Rockport’s Sandy Bay. The fireworks are set to go off at approximately 9:30 pm. Come early and shop, eat and browse around town. Lanterns will be hung around town. Raffle tickets are available at Katie’s Gift Shop to win an original oil painting by Ken Knowles. All proceeds go to help fund Illumination Night, Rockport’s own Fireworks! Anyone interested in making a donation in support of the Rockport Fireworks is encouraged to mail or deliver their contribution in person to: Rockport National Bank, Rockport Fireworks Fund, c/o Marcia Budrow, 37 King Street, Rockport, MA 01966. All are invited to like and support Rockport Fireworks on Facebook here.
August 10, 2014
35th Annual Rockport Acoustic Music Festival
Millbrook Meadow, Noon – 6pm
Since 1979, the Rockport Acoustic Music Festival has brought performers from many genres – acoustic rock, folk, world, blues, jazz, Celtic, bluegrass, world vibe, and more – from across the country to perform during the peak of the summer season in Rockport.
August 13-17, 2014
Rockport Jazz Festival
The 3rd Annual Rockport Jazz Festival at the Shalin Liu Performance Center will feature a broad range of great jazz. From the vocal styling of Cyrille Aimée and innovative jazz rhythms of drummer Ali Jackson, to the Afro-Cuban inspired sounds of pianist Donal Fox and established jazz masters of Christian McBride and Kenny Barron, there is something for everyone. For a detailed schedule of concert performances please visit here.
August 16, 2014
Downtown Gloucester Block Party (Downtown Gloucester)
Celebrate summer at the Second Block Party of 2014 in downtown Gloucester. Main Street transforms into a strolling mall featuring al fresco dining; stores open for shopping; Kid’ Town games and multi-performances at five outdoor stages. Diverse bands, dance troupes and you, the audience, perform! It starts at 6 pm and it’s free! The Downtown Gloucester Block Party Series is a project of the non-profit Cape Ann Business Incubator (CABI).
August 16 – 17, 2014
Gloucester Waterfront Festival (Stage Fort Park, Gloucester)
More than 175 juried artists and craftsmen from throughout the United States will be coming to Gloucester for this festival, now in its 34th year. Live music, unique creations and delicious food will highlight the two-day event. A pancake breakfast from 7:30 to 11 am (sponsored by the Rotary Club of Gloucester) helps to kick off Saturday, August 16 in grand style while free live “family style” entertainment on both days includes puppeteers, ragtime jazz and maritime music. On Sunday the North Shore Old Car Club will return to the Waterfront Festival with a wide array of classic antique cars on display nearby. The Gloucester Waterfront Festival runs from 9 am to 6 pm each day. The site is handicap accessible and friendly pets on leashes are welcome. Free Admission. The Gloucester Waterfront Festival is sponsored by the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce and produced in partnership with the Chamber by Castleberry Fairs.
August 16 – 17, 2014
Paint Essex & Wet Paint Auction (Cox Reservation, Route 133, Essex)
This year’s third annual Paint Essex and the Wet Paint Auction will bring numerous fine artists to Essex to paint the Great Marsh, Essex River, antiques, historic sites and landscape of Essex. Sculptors are welcome to build or donate sculptures to Sunday’s auction and 10 photographers may participate. Several antique shop interiors are available for artists, too.
Space is limited: one artist per participating shop. A Silent and Live Auction on Sunday of the weekend’s paintings, sculptures and photographs will be held at the Allyn Cox Reservation accompanied by live music by Old Cold Tater, hors d’oeuvres and a wine reception. The events are sponsored by the Essex Merchants Group. Proceeds go toward an Art Scholarship to be presented in 2015 and toward promoting Essex as a travel destination.
Paint Essex: Saturday, August 16 from 8 AM – 4 PM
Wet Paint Auction: Sunday, August 17 from 5:30 – 9 PM, admission $25 person.
Free Auction Preview: Sunday 1 – 1:30 PM
Artist Demos: Sunday 1:30 – 3:30 PM
Artist pre-registration is requested. $10 per participating artist includes one ticket to Sunday’s auction. Artists register Saturday at Essex Shipbuilding Museum, 66 Main Street, Essex, MA. For more information, to register or volunteer, please contact Teri Eramo of Eventide Gallery by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 978-880-8043.
August 29 – 31, 2014
Gloucester Schooner Festival (Gloucester Harbor)
Sponsored by Maritime Gloucester with support from the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce, the Gloucester Schooner Festival celebrates its 30th year as it takes over Gloucester Harbor once again. This annual gathering of the finest vessels from ports along the Eastern Seaboard is a can’t miss Labor Day Weekend event! Highlighted by the Mayor’s Race on Sunday afternoon and the Parade of Sail earlier that day this festival will entertain all members of the family and give visitors a chance to see the final product of work done by local builders as well as those from afar. It’s Gloucester’s major maritime event, with participating vessels coming from ports along the Eastern Seaboard. Large and medium-size vessels will be part of the vast array of schooners sailing the waters of Gloucester Harbor with more than 20 schooners expected to compete. The Schooner Festival also offers plenty of shore side events including Sunday morning’s Parade of Sail along the Boulevard promenade (Stacy Boulevard, Route 127) as the large schooners head out to sea for the Mayor’s Race.
Also, Cape Ann’s weekly Farmers Markets and multiple concert series continue throughout the month of August. Follow the links below for further details about all of these wonderful FREE summer events throughout Cape Ann:
Cape Ann Farmers Market (Stage Fort Park, Gloucester), every Thursday from 3 to 6:30pm;
Essex Farmers Market (Shepard Memorial Park, Essex) every Saturday from 9am to Noon;
Rockport Farmers Market (Harvey Park, downtown Rockport) every Saturday from 9am to 1pm;
Gentile Bandstand Concerts (Stage Fort Park, Gloucester) every Sunday at 7pm;
Rockport Legion Band Concerts (Legion Hall Bandstand at Back Beach, Rockport) every Sunday at 7pm
Masconomo Park Summer Concert Series in Manchester (Tuesdays, August 5 & 12);
Harbor Loop Concert Series (Thursdays, August 7 & 21)
Gloucester HarborWalk Summer Cinema: Free Outdoor Movies, every Wednesday at dusk, 65 Rogers Street
Visit www.capeannvacations.com for details, links, and information about these and other Cape Ann events, updated frequently.